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Archive for the 'Corporate doings' Category

ITT shareholders quash church group proposal

May
12

ITT Corp. shareholders at today’s annual meeting rejected a proposal by several church groups that would have required the global manufacturer to prepare a report on its foreign sales of military and weapons-related products and services.
The proposal drew just 6.8 percent of the votes cast at the meeting, the company said. Its sponsors were the Mercy Investment Program and the Dominican Sisters of Hope, the Presbyterian Church (USA), and the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society of the Episcopal Church.
ITT said 83 percent of common shares outstanding were voted at the meeting, held at ITT’s new offices at 1133 Westchester Ave. in White Plains. Shareholders elected 10 board members.

Posted by Jerry Gleeson on Tuesday, May 12th, 2009 at 4:01 pm |
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Drew to take goodwill charge

April
27

Drew Industries Inc., the White Plains company that provides parts for recreational vehicles and manufactured homes, said it expects to take a non-cash goodwill charge against its first-quarter earnings.

The company said it is still calculating the charge but expects it to include “all or substantially all” of the $45 million in goodwill recorded on the balance sheet. If the entire goodwill balance is written off, the impairment charge would be $29 million, net of taxes, or $1.36 a share.

Fred Zinn, the company’s president and chief executive, said the charge will not affect Drew’s operations, liquidity, cash flows or borrowing under its credit agreements.

Joe Giordano, Drew’s chief financial officer, said the charge is “largely the result of uncertainties in the economy, and in the RV and manufactured housing industries.”

Posted by Allan Drury on Monday, April 27th, 2009 at 4:46 pm |
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BioScrip shareholder wants cost cutting, sale

April
27

A shareholder of Elmsford-based pharmacy benefits manager BioScrip Inc. yesterday urged the board of directors to cut costs while also looking to sell the company.

Anchor Capital of Raleigh, N.C. said in a letter to the BioScrip board that investors have lost confidence in management’s ability to cut costs and operate the company’s assets “at a reasonable level of profitability.”

“Therefore, we believe shareholders’ best option for value creation is a sale to a strategic buyer that is willing and able to operate (Bioscrip’s) assets efficiently,” Anchor said in the letter.

Anchor said in a press release that it believes shareholders “have lost patience with BioScrip’s frequent missteps.” That has caused the values of the company’s shares to drop 67.4 percent since the end of 2007, Anchor said.

Anchor said it believes a sale to a strategic buyer could cause the shares to jump 325 percent from their $2.52 closing price last Wednesday. The shares closed yesterday at $2.48, up 3 cents.

Lisa Wilson, an outside public relations agent, said the company had no comment.

Anchor said its affiliates own 512,297 BioScrip shares, about 1.3 percent of the company.

Posted by Allan Drury on Monday, April 27th, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
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Regeneron, Presidential Life disclose compensation

April
24

The president and chief executive of Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. of Eastview took a $53,000 pay cut last year as the company’s stock lost 24 percent of its value.

Dr. Leonard S. Schleifer took home $4.42 million, including $713,000 in salary and $470,580 in bonus, according to a proxy statement filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. He also got $3.12 in stock options and $115,626 in other compensation, the company said.

In 2007, Schleifer, made $4.48 million.

Meanwhile, Presidential Life Corp., an insurance company in Nyack, said in its proxy that Herbert Kurz, the president and chief executive, made $723,496 last year, up from $719,432 in 2007.

He made $569,710 in salary each year. His other compensation in 2008 was $153,786, compared with $149,722 in 2007.

Presidential Life shares lost 41.88 percent of their value last year.

Posted by Allan Drury on Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 3:44 pm |
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Jarden boss made $3.98 million in 2008

April
10

The top executive at Jarden Corp., the consumer products company in Rye, took home $3.98 million last year, a drop from the $22.86 million he made in 2007, the company disclosed in a public filing.

Martin E. Franklin, the chairman and chief executive, made $2 million in salary and received a bonus of $1.5 million. He also received $481,013 in other compensation, which included insurance premiums, imputed taxable income on life and disability policies, personal use of company aircraft, financial consulting fees and other benefits.

But unlike in 2007, Franklin did not receive any stock, options or incentive plan compensation.

In 2007, he received a salary of $1.95 million, a bonus of $2.9 million and stock worth $15.6 million. He also received $1.87 million in non-equity compensation under the company’s incentive plan and $546,076 in so-called other compensation.

Jarden shares fell in value last year along with the rest of the stock market. The stock closed the year at $11.50 a share, down 51.3 percent on the year.

The shares closed Thursday — the last trading day before the Easter weekend — at $15.42.

The company reported the compensation of its executives in an annual proxy statement filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Jarden brands include Sunbeam, Rawlings sporting goods, Bicycle playing cards and Mr. Coffee.

Posted by Allan Drury on Friday, April 10th, 2009 at 10:46 am |
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Presidential Realty chairman resigns for health reasons

April
10

Presidential Realty Corp., a White Plains-based real estate investment trust that owns commercial and residential buildings, said Chairman Robert E. Shapiro resigned his seat due to health reasons.

The board of directors did not fill the vacant seat but will nominate a candidate for election at the company’s annual meeting scheduled for June 15.

Shapiro, 91, was a director since 1961.

The board elected Robert Feder, 78, to serve as chairman. He has been a director since 1981.

The company made the disclosures in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Posted by Allan Drury on Friday, April 10th, 2009 at 10:32 am |
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Church groups seek ITT arms report

March
27

Three church groups will ask shareholders of ITT Corp. of White Plains to require the defense contractor to report on its foreign sales of weapons-related and military services.
The Dominican Sisters of Hope, the Presbyterian Church (USA), and the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society of the Episcopal Church plan to present the resolution at ITT’s annual meeting at its White Plains headquarters on May 12, according to the company’s proxy statement filed today.
The resolution would require the company to file a “comprehensive” report, excluding proprietary or classified data, within six months of the meeting. The resolution notes that two years ago ITT was fined $50 million for violating rules governing the handling of documents related to overseas military contracts.
“Weapons sold to one country at a certain time subsequently can become a threat to our own security, as we have seen several times in our recent history,” the church groups said in a statement accompanying the resolution. The report would help shareholders evaluate the effectiveness of new procedures the company has put in place to prevent further violations of the law, the groups added.
In arguing against the resolution, ITT said that the information already is in the public record through government agencies, ITT’s own annual report, and its Web site. Among other organizations, it cited the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (www dsca.mil,) which lists contracts and public notices of proposed military sales overseas.

Posted by Jerry Gleeson on Friday, March 27th, 2009 at 2:00 pm |
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Atlas reducing fleet of planes due to economy

February
6

The poor world economy has prompted Purchase-based Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. to reduce its fleet of Boeing 747-200 planes by seven.

The company, which transports cargo all over the world, has also reduced the size of its crew and ground staff, Atlas said this morning.

Atlas said it expects 2008 pre-tax earnings from operations of $55 million to $60 million, excluding special gains and charges. Those results will include a deferred gain of $155 million related to DHL Express’ agreement to invest a 49 percent equity interest in Atlas subsidiary Polar Air Cargo Worldwide, Inc.

Atlas said it will also report a largely non-cash pre-tax charge of $85 million to $95 million associated with its 747-200 fleet and a one-time maintenance cost of $8 million related to the overhauls of five engines. The overhauls are due to the early termination of a maintenance contract for the planes.

“The current pronounced downturn in global airfreight demand has caused us to accelerate our plans to retire a portion of our older 747-200 assets,” said William J. Flynn, the company’s president chief executive.

The fleet reduction will leave the company with 22 747-400s and seven 747-200 freighters.

Posted by Allan Drury on Friday, February 6th, 2009 at 10:11 am |
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BioScrip to take Q4 charges

February
2

BioScrip Inc., a pharmacy benefits manager in Elmsford, said it will take an after-tax, non-cash charge of $80 million against its fourth-quarter earnings for the impairment of goodwill and the write off of assets to comply with an accounting rule.

The company said the action is the result of poor market conditions that caused a decrease in the company’s stock price.

As a result, the company will report a net loss for the fourth quarter and for 2008.
Stanley G. Rosenbaum, the company’s chief financial officer, said: “Despite the current economic environment, we remain optimistic about the growtyh potential of our specialty pharmacy business.”

The company plans to announce its fourth-quarter earnings on March 3.

Posted by Allan Drury on Monday, February 2nd, 2009 at 10:59 am |
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MasterCard announces reorganization

January
6

MasterCard Inc., the Purchase-based credit card giant, said that it will combine customer accounts in the regions of the world where they are based and integrate all products in each region.

The changes were part of a corporate reorganization announced today.

The company also formed an expanded business unit that includes its U.S.-based global accounts along with its U.S. region. This unit will be headed by Chris McWilton, president of U.S. Markets. McWilton, 50, was formerly president, global accounts.

Posted by Jay Loomis on Tuesday, January 6th, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
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Scarborough investors dissolve business

December
19

Churchill Ventures Ltd. of Scarborough said its shareholders voted today to dissolve the company after it was unable to consummate a business deal for which it was created. Formed in June 2006, Churchill Ventures raised $107.5 million to buy an operating business in the communications, media or technology industries within an 18- to 24-month period.

Posted by Jerry Gleeson on Friday, December 19th, 2008 at 3:49 pm |
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EpiCept Corp. in Eastview nearly through with debt

December
19

EpiCept Corp., a pharmaceutical company in Eastview, said it has nearly paid off its debts. The converted $1.9 million of senior secured debt into common stock and scheduled loan payments. The company reported outstanding senior secured debt of $2.8 million as of Sept. 30. The small remaining balance will be repaid by April 1, the company said.

Posted by Allan Drury on Friday, December 19th, 2008 at 1:17 pm |
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Atlas Air buying back shares

October
9

Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Inc., the air cargo carrier in Purchase, said its board has approved a plan to spend up to $100 million to buy back shares of company stock.

Based on Wednesday’s closing price of $26.58 a share, the buy back would cover 17 percent of the company’s issued and outstanding shares. The company said it will use cash that it has available to make any share buys.

William J. Flynn, the company’s president and chief executive, said in a statement released by the company: “At current levels, we believe that the company’s stock is undervalued and represents an attractive investment opportunity.”

Posted by Allan Drury on Thursday, October 9th, 2008 at 8:52 am |
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MBIA says it has money to cover payments

September
22

MBIA Inc., the bond insurer in Armonk trying to recover from losses it took due to its exposure to subprime loans, said this morning it has enough cash and government securities to cover the cost of termination payments under investment contracts if it is downgraded.

The company said it has $18.1 billion in liabilities from its asset/liability management business. and about $11.2 billion of that is from guaranteed investment contracts.

MBIA stock has lost 79 percent of its value the past year.

Posted by Allan Drury on Monday, September 22nd, 2008 at 7:56 am |
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BioScrip shares rise after announcement

September
12

Shares of Elmsford-based pharmacy benefit manager BioScrip Inc. nudged higher today, a day after the company announced it would lose $100 million in 2009 revenue due to a decision by UnitedHealth Group to terminate a contract.

BioScrip shares closed at $2.61, up 5 cents, or about 2 percent.

Under the contract, BioScrip drugs and services to United members who have the AIDS virus or who have undergone organ transplants. But UnitedHealth plans to provide the drugs and services in-house.

BioScrip will stop serving the AIDS patients Jan. 31 and the transplant patients March 31. The loss of the contract will have no impact on BioScrip’s financial results this year.

Posted by Allan Drury on Friday, September 12th, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
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GlobeOp investing $10.5 million in Yorktown Heights

September
11

GlobeOp Financial Services plans to buy office and data center space in Yorktown Heights and move 70 employees now based in Harrison into the complex.

The company, which is based in London and New York City and provides services to the financial services industry, paid $5 million for 1565 Front St. and plans to spend an additional $5 million on improvements and new equipment.

The deal is scheduled to close this month, GlobeOp said. The company will move into the 80,000 square feet of space by early next year.

The addition of new equipment to GlobeOp’s Harrison facility has put a space squeeze on the 175 employees there.
Sheryl Lee, a spokesperson for the company, said today that about 70 of those employees will move to Yorktown Heights. The new complex will also provide GlobeOp with the space for future expansion, the company said.

“Investing for the future is essential,” Hans Hufschmid, GlobeOp’s chief executive officer, said in a statement released by the company. “We continuously invest globally in people and infrastructure, reflecting steady growth in client trading volumes and demand for diverse product offerings.”

Posted by Allan Drury on Thursday, September 11th, 2008 at 3:27 pm |
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Rite Aid stores accepting MasterCard new payments

September
10

MasterCard Inc. of Purchase said Rite Aid Corp. stores are now accepting MasterCard PayPass payments. Along with traditional credit cards, Rite Aid will accept PayPass to make transactions quicker for customers, the company said.

Posted by Allan Drury on Wednesday, September 10th, 2008 at 3:51 pm |
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ITT chief executive pushes for sanitation investment

September
10

The chief executive of White Plains-based ITT Corp. yesterday called for greater worldwide investment in water sanitation and solving health problems in poor regions.

“The impact of poor sanitation on the health of people in some of the world’s developing countries is well-documented and inescapable but still dramatically overlooked by governments and industry alike,” Steve Loranger said during a panel discussion in Vienna, Austria, according to a statement from the company.

Loranger said ITT is working to develop water and wastewater treatment products and services that are affordable in developing nations.

ITT has started a program called ITT Watermark, which includes a three-year commitment of $3 million to provide safe water, sanitation and education in hygiene to schools in India, Honduras and Guatamala.

Posted by Allan Drury on Wednesday, September 10th, 2008 at 3:50 pm |
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MasterCard names new board member

September
9

MasterCard Inc., the giant credit card company based in Purchase, said Jackson Tai, the former vice chairman and chief executive of DBS Group and DBS Bank Ltd., has been named to the company’s board of directors.

Tai, 58, was also managing director in the investment banking division at J.P. Morgan & Co. Inc.

Posted by Allan Drury on Tuesday, September 9th, 2008 at 9:58 am |
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IBM maintaining revenue pace in overseas regions

September
8

With the U.S. economy in a major slump, IBM Corp. of Armonk said today its revenue growth in Europe, the Middle East and Africa has not slowed from the first half of the year.

The computer services company said in a regulatory filing that Patricia Murphy, its vice president for investor relations, would tell European investors at a meeting that through the first two months of the third quarter revenue growth in Europe “was consistent with what the company has seen during first half of this year.”

IBM took in about $9.8 billion from the region during the second quarter. That’s about 20 percent more than last year, according to previously-released financial information. Sales in the region were about 7 percent when the figures were adjusted for currency fluctuations.

Posted by Allan Drury on Monday, September 8th, 2008 at 11:57 am |
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Business in the Burbs is our online news blog about businesses based or operating in the Lower Hudson Valley. Visitors here will also find items of interest to consumers in the region. Most contributions are from business reporters and editors covering Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties.

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