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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

GE Offers To Buy Back Shares From Berkshire Hathaway

September 14, 2011 9:37 am

General Electric Co. says it is offering to pay $3.3 billion to buy back preferred shares bought by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. during the depths of the financial crisis. GE said in a regulatory filing Tuesday that it has mailed its offer to Berkshire, which is based in Omaha, Nebraska.

Johnson Controls Invests In Batteries, China

September 14, 2011 9:24 am

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Johnson Controls Inc. said Wednesday that it will invest $100 million to build a plant in China that will produce vehicle batteries with start-stop technology. The plant will supply global and local automakers in Asia and is expected to begin production in early 2013.

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GE Says Gas Turbine Sales Returning

September 14, 2011 9:20 am

NEW YORK (AP) — General Electric Co. has received $1 billion in orders this year for turbines that burn natural gas to make electricity from customers in North America eager to take advantage of low natural gas prices. Natural gas prices in North America have been low and steady in recent years as drillers have learned to unlock vast amounts of natural gas once thought inaccessible in shale formations throughout the U.

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OH Regulators Hear Testimony On Controversial Utility "Tariffs"

September 14, 2011 9:16 am

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio utility regulators are preparing to hear testimony on a plan that would offer utility-bill breaks to businesses that create jobs. The idea of these "economic development tariffs" was pitched by the staff of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio in July as a unique way to attract growing businesses to the struggling state.

Transportation Dept. Proposes Ban On E-Cigs For Airlines

September 14, 2011 9:03 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration Wednesday proposed banning the use of electronic cigarettes on airline flights, saying there is concern the smokeless cigarettes may be harmful. "Airline passengers have rights, and this new rule would enhance passenger comfort and reduce any confusion surrounding the use of electronic cigarettes in flight," Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a statement.

Aircraft Supply Plant To Mean Hundreds Of SC Jobs

September 14, 2011 8:59 am

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — An aerospace supply firm is locating in South Carolina near the state's new Boeing 787 assembly plant and could eventually create as many as 350 jobs for the area. The InterTech Group said Wednesday its aerospace subsidiary, TIGHITCO (T-I-G-hit-co), will build a new plant in North Charleston.

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Feds Prepare To Release BP Oil Spill Report

September 14, 2011 4:52 am

A key federal report into what caused the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history was being readied for release as early as Wednesday amid revelations that BP made critical mistakes on the well and failed to tell its partners and the U.S. government when it realized it. An investigation team of the U.

Union, Automakers Continue Talks As Deadline Nears

September 14, 2011 4:42 am

DETROIT (AP) — United Auto Workers negotiators say they made progress with General Motors Co. during contract talks Tuesday night, but both sides are quickly approaching a deadline to reach new deals with GM and Chrysler Group LLC. The current four-year contracts expire at 11:59 p.

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Bostik Explosion Results In Nearly $1M Fine

September 14, 2011 4:35 am

BOSTON (AP) -- The federal workplace safety agency has recommended $917,000 in fines for a Massachusetts adhesives manufacturer after an explosion there injured four workers. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration on Tuesday announced it had cited Bostik Inc. for what it alleged were 50 violations of workplace safety standards at its plant in Middleton.

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Beer Consumption Continues 4-Year Decline

September 14, 2011 4:30 am

NORWALK, Conn., Sept. 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- For the fourth year in a row, the beer industry has continued its declines and lost 1.9% to total 2.8 billion cases. According to the Beverage Information Group's recently released 2011 Beer Handbook, continued declines in the Light segment continue to contribute to the overall losses in the industry.

Infiniti Could Share Mercedes Small-Car Platform

September 14, 2011 4:19 am

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The CEOs of Daimler and Renault-Nissan say their 18-month old partnership has avoided the mistakes that sank earlier industry tie-ups and could be expanded, including the likely use of Daimler vehicle architecture in a compact car from Nissan luxury brand Infiniti.

Dehumidifiers Recalled For Fire Risk

September 14, 2011 4:14 am

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Thousands of dehumidifiers are being recalled for a second time after being blamed for more house fires. The Consumer Product Safety Commission says LG Electronics Tianjin Appliance Co. is again announcing a recall of Goldstar and Comfort-Aire dehumidifiers because they can pose a fire and burn hazard.

JR Automation Tech To Open New SC Facility

September 13, 2011 9:14 am

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — JR Automation Technologies plans to open a new facility in Pickens County, creating 54 high-paying jobs over five years. The Holland, Mich.-based company said Tuesday it plans to invest more than $2 million in its engineering, sales and manufacturing plant in Pickens.

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Toyota To Build New Factory In Indonesia

September 13, 2011 9:12 am

JAKARTA, Sept. 13 (Kyodo) — Toyota Motor Corp., Asia's biggest carmaker, announced Tuesday it will build a second factory in Indonesia to meet demand in the growing Indonesian market. The new plant, to go into operation in early 2013, will increase the company's production capacity in the country to 180,000 units per year from the current 110,000.

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Union Backs Offshore Wind Power In VA

September 13, 2011 9:10 am

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (AP) — Labor leaders representing steelworkers, the construction trades and shipbuilders added their collective clout Tuesday to the drive to develop offshore wind power in waters off Virginia. The union leaders said Virginia has the skilled workforce to help build an industry that one estimate said could generate more than 10,000 jobs.

Obama Proposes Taxes To Pay For Jobs Bill

September 13, 2011 9:07 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama, In a sharp challenge to Republicans, proposed paying for his costly new jobs plan Monday with tax hikes on the wealthy that Republicans have already emphatically rejected, setting the stage for a likely new fight with Congress. By daring Republicans anew to reject the tax increases on rich Americans and corporations, Obama could gain a talking point as the 2012 presidential campaign moves forward, if not a legislative victory.

Car Makers Show Off In Frankfurt But Outlook Dims

September 13, 2011 9:03 am

By Colleen Barry, Jamey Keaten, AP Business Writers FRANKFURT (AP) — The world's carmakers showed off the next generation of cleaner, smaller, and higher-mileage vehicles at the Frankfurt auto show Tuesday, but all the thumping sounds systems, slick videos and glossy concept cars could not obscure the anxiety about Europe's financial crisis.

Boeing Says Outlook Strong Despite Uncertainty

September 13, 2011 9:02 am

NEW YORK (AP) — An executive from Boeing Co. said Tuesday the airplane maker continues to have a "very positive outlook on the commercial aerospace market" despite growing economic uncertainty. Speaking at Deutsche Bank Aviation and Transportation Conference, Boeing's vice president of business development, Nicole Piasecki, said airlines are still buying new aircraft despite renewed fears about a slowdown in the U.

Mercedes Aims For Premium Car Market Dominance

September 13, 2011 5:40 am

FRANKFURT (AP) — Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche says he aims to make Mercedes the strongest luxury brand by the end of the decade. Zetsche says Mercedes is launching 10 new entries in the next four years — including five compact cars — in its bid for volume. He refused to set a target, saying the goal was to produce more cars than premium competitors Audi and Porsche.

Fiat, Chrysler Aim To Produce 6M Cars By 2014

September 13, 2011 5:38 am | by Colleen Barry, AP Business Writer

FRANKFURT (AP) — Fiat and Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne said Tuesday that the combined companies still aim to produce 6 million cars a year by 2014 despite the increased uncertainty in global financial markets. Speaking on the sidelines of the Frankfurt Auto Show, Marchionne expressed frustration at Europe's spiraling debt crisis, which threatens to engulf Fiat's key market of Italy.

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