Royalties sought by Hughes reducedA federal judge ruled...

BUSINESS DIGEST

June 18, 1994

Royalties sought by Hughes reduced

A federal judge ruled yesterday that the Hughes Aircraft Co. was entitled to only a small fraction of the $3 billion in royalties and back interest that it had sought from the government in a 21-year-old legal dispute over a satellite-technology patent.

Hughes, a General Motors Corp. subsidiary, estimated that the decision would be worth $114 million.

Judge Turner decided that Hughes was entitled to royalties of only 1 percent of the value of 81 satellites that used the disputed technology, rather than the 15 percent royalty that Hughes had sought.

Paperboard firm postpones closing

The scheduled June 20 closing of Chesapeake Paperboard Co., a Baltimore company that recycles waste paper into paperboard, has been postponed until at least July 4, according to Murrell Smith Jr., chief operating officer of the company.

The deadline may be pushed back further to July 18, depending on customer orders and the outcome of a vote by union workers, who are represented by the United Paperworkers International Union. Mr. Smith would not say what is at issue in the vote.

The financially troubled company, which has 113 workers, is seeking about $12 million in financing over the next five to 10 years to modernize its South Baltimore plant at Fort Avenue and Woodall Street, according to officials of the Baltimore Development Corp.

Quaker Oats rumored Nestle target

Quaker Oats Co., maker of popular products ranging from oatmeal to Gatorade, was rumored yesterday to be a takeover target by Nestle SA, sending its stock to a 12-month high.

The Chicago-based company's stock closed $7.25 higher, at $78.625, on the New York Stock Exchange. Quaker and Nestle did not comment.

Budweiser seeks China deal

Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc., the biggest brewer in the world, said yesterday it had agreed to enter into a joint venture in China to produce its flagship Budweiser beer.

Under the deal, Anheuser-Busch's international unit will get an 80 percent stake in the Zhongde Brewery, in the central China city of Wuhan.

Delta, Virgin Atlantic clear hurdle

The Justice Department has given antitrust clearance to Delta Air Lines' planned partnership with Virgin Atlantic Airways, the Atlanta-based airline said.

The arrangement awaits clearance from the U.S. Transportation Department.

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