Business Digest


August 25, 2004

In the Region

CitiFinancial to close office in Hanover, lay off 116 workers

CitiFinancial, the Baltimore-based consumer lending division of CitiGroup Inc., plans to close an office in Hanover and lay off 116 employees by year's end.

Work done at the center, near Baltimore-Washington International Airport, is being moved to CitiFinancial support centers in Charlotte, N.C., Dallas and Phoenix, a company official said.

"It is an effort to maximize efficiencies and leverage our resources in technology," said spokesman Robert Julavits.

CitiFinancial specializes in home and personal lending. It has more than 25 branches in Maryland and about 2,000 in the United States. The company has another support office in Frederick and a real estate lending division in Columbia called Chesapeake Appraisal and Settlement Services.

Va. company to move headquarters to Greenbelt

An Arlington, Va.-based information-technology services firm will move its headquarters to Greenbelt in October, the state said yesterday.

Internosis will bring 170 jobs to the Golden Triangle Building in Prince George's County initially and expects to increase employment to 250 by 2006.

The Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development promised a $200,000 loan - which won't have to be paid back if the job goal is met - and a $75,000 work force training grant, while the county provided a $20,000 grant. The company also is eligible for up to $250,000 in job creation tax credits.

Clear Channel radio buys Del. news-talk station

The nation's largest radio station operator has purchased family-owned WILM, a news-talk station in Wilmington, Del., but listeners should not notice much of a change, officials said yesterday.

The deal was confirmed by WILM Vice President and General Manager E.B. Hawkins, whose family bought the station in 1948 and began an all-news format in 1976. Terms were not disclosed.

Both Hawkins and Joe Puglise, vice president and marketing manager of Clear Channel Delaware, said WILM will stick with its news-talk format.


Adelphia executives seek $10 million to $20 million bonus

Adelphia Communications Corp.'s top two executives have asked for bonuses of $10 million to $20 million to stay with the cable operator as it attempts to emerge from bankruptcy, a company director said yesterday.

Chief Executive Officer William Schleyer and Chief Operating Officer Ronald Cooper proposed to the company's compensation committee that they be paid the bonuses provided Adelphia meets certain targets, E. Thayer Bigelow, the director and a member of the committee, testified in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York.

Adelphia, the No. 5 U.S. cable television operator, is separately asking the court for permission to pay as much as $50 million in bonuses to encourage employees to stay as it attempts to sell itself or reorganize. That figure doesn't include bonuses sought by Cooper and Schleyer.

Several creditors have objected to the bonus plan, saying it's too expensive.

AM General told to slow Hummer production

General Motors Corp. has told AM General to slow production of the H2 Hummer.

AM General spokesman Lee Woodward said yesterday that the company, which makes the vehicle for GM, plans to end its second shift on Oct. 25, moving those workers to the first shift and to a neighboring plant that builds military Humvees. He would not give the exact number of employees affected, but said no layoffs were expected.

GM spokesman Pete Ternes said the cutbacks were not related to recent increases in gasoline prices. He said GM was simply trying to match production with sales.

Regulators probe Amex, Chicago options exchange

The Justice Department is investigating possible antitrust violations at the Chicago Board Options Exchange and the American Stock Exchange, according to the National Association of Securities Dealers annual report.

Antitrust regulators are probing an alleged "product allocation agreement" between the CBOE and Amex, but the report provided no further details. Both the CBOE and the NASD-owned Amex deal in options contracts on equities.

Neither CBOE nor Amex would comment on the case, but both said they were cooperating with the Justice Department investigation. A Justice Department official also refused to comment.

Brewer, Alcoa produce aluminum beer bottles

Pittsburgh Brewing Co., the maker of Iron City Beer, and Alcoa Inc., the world's largest aluminum maker, are combining efforts to produce aluminum bottles that keep beer colder for as much as 50 minutes longer than a glass bottle.

About 20,000 cases of the new aluminum bottle beer are en route to as many as 28 states and should be on shelves this week, Alcoa and Pittsburgh Brewing said yesterday.

The bottles have three times the aluminum of a typical beer can, which gives them superior insulation, an Alcoa spokesman said. The beer will cost an additional $1 per case to pay for the extra metal.

Boeing reportedly sells 18 long-range 777 jetliners

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