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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Wanxiang Says Panel Approves A123 Sale

January 29, 2013 1:54 pm | by Randall Chase, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Chinese auto parts conglomerate Wanxiang Group Corp. says a federal panel has approved its purchase of most assets of failed battery maker A123 Systems Inc. Wanxiang said Tuesday that the Committee for Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) approved the $257 million deal.

Hostess Picks Little Debbie Maker For Drake's

January 29, 2013 10:17 am | by Candice Choi, AP Food Industry Writer | News | Comments

Hostess has picked the maker of Little Debbie as the lead bidder for its Drake's cakes. According to a filing in U.S. bankruptcy court, McKee Foods has offered $27.5 million in cash for the cake brands, which include Devil Dogs, Funny Bones and Yodels. The fate of Twinkies and other Hostess cakes are still being negotiated with other bidders.

Rare-Earth Elements Mine Possible In Alaska

January 28, 2013 1:54 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

An Alaska company has set its sights on developing a rare-earth element mine by 2016 on southeast Prince of Wales Island. Ucore Rare Metals' proposed Bokan Mountain Project could begin construction in 2014 with the proper permits, The Ketchikan Daily News reports.

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Climate Threat

New Research Indentifies Major Climate Threat To Global Supply Chains

January 28, 2013 8:08 am | by CDP & Accenture | Articles | Comments

Seventy percent of companies believe that climate change has the potential to significantly affect their revenue, a risk which is intensified by a chasm between the sustainable business practices of multinational corporations and their suppliers, according to research published today by the Carbon Disclosure Project and Accenture.

Belkin To Buy Linksys Router Maker From Cisco

January 25, 2013 9:58 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Belkin, a maker of smartphone cases and computing accessories, said Thursday that it is buying the home networking business unit of Cisco, including the Linksys router brand. Privately held Belkin, based in Playa Vista, Calif., did not disclose the purchase price, nor did Cisco Systems Inc. The deal is expected to close in March.

RFID solutions

Keep Track Of Your Assets

January 25, 2013 8:00 am | by Adebayo Onigbanjo, Product Marketing Manager – Location Solutions (LS), Zebra Technologies | Articles | Comments

Global manufacturers are constantly looking for ways to make their operations more agile, efficient and profitable. A smart way to reach those goals is to realize the most value from every asset in its supply chain. Barcoding, passive and active RFID, and Real-Time Locating System (RTLS) solutions can be used to make smart business decisions that will help improve operational performance.

Republic Airways Buys Jets From Brazil's Embraer

January 24, 2013 2:07 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Brazilian planemaker Embraer said Thursday it signed a contract with Republic Airways Holdings Inc. for the sale of 47 E-175 passenger jets for an estimated US$2 billion. Embraer says in a statement that the agreement includes options for an additional 47 aircraft, which would bring the total value of the deal to approximately US$4 billion.

Wal-Mart Warns Suppliers On Stricter Measures

January 22, 2013 2:04 pm | by Anne D'Innocenzio, AP Retail Writer | News | Comments

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has alerted its global suppliers that it will immediately drop them if they subcontract their work to factories that haven't been authorized by the discounter. Wal-Mart's stricter measure, along with other changes to its policy, comes amid increasing calls for better safety oversight after a deadly fire at a Bangladesh factory that supplied clothing to Wal-Mart and other retailers.

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Reports: Microsoft May Invest In Dell Buyout

January 22, 2013 1:58 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

CNBC and The Wall Street Journal are reporting that the discussions to buy struggling computer maker Dell now include Microsoft as a potential investor. If Microsoft joins in a Dell buyout, CNBC and the Journal say the software maker would contribute $1 billion to $3 billion. That amount would make Microsoft Corp. a minority investor in a complex deal expected to cost $23 billion to $27 billion if it's completed.

Turbulent Times For Boeing & Airbus

January 21, 2013 1:40 pm | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

CNNMoney's Jim Boulden looks at the pressure and problems Boeing and Airbus have faced in launching their new high-tech airplanes. Airbus' A380 has seen mid-air engine explosions and cracked wings, and now Boeing is dealing with battery - and possibly electrical - issues of its own.

Supplier Benefit

How Business Networks Can Create A Win-Win for Buyers & Suppliers

January 18, 2013 8:08 am | by Siddharth Taparia, Senior Director of Portfolio and Strategic Marketing, SAP | Blogs | Comments

A Business Network contains a suite of network connected and analytic applications and an ecosystem of buyers and suppliers that can use these applications for initiating sourcing relationships, buying products and services and identifying additional opportunities for increasing revenue or saving costs.

Official: Rare-Earth Elements In Jamaica's Red Mud

January 16, 2013 10:04 am | by David McFadden, Associated Press | News | Comments

Jamaica may be able to benefit from newly found deposits of rare-earth elements that are key ingredients for smartphones, computers and numerous other high-tech goods, the Caribbean island's top mining official said Tuesday. Science, Technology, Energy & Mining Minister Philip Paulwell said Japanese researchers believe they have found "high concentrations of rare-earth elements" in the country's red mud, or bauxite residue.

Chinese Buyer Says Solar Firm MiaSole Will Expand

January 9, 2013 10:12 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

The Chinese company that bought MiaSole, a California producer of thin-film solar panels, says it can make the emerging technology successful where others have suffered huge losses. Hanergy Group's strong finances will help MiaSole invest in research and ride out a downturn in the global solar market, while its links to customers in China and abroad will help build sales, chairman Li Hejun said Wednesday.

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Precision Castparts Completes Titanium Metals Deal

January 8, 2013 2:27 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Precision Castparts Corp. said Tuesday that it has completed its acquisition of Titanium Metals Corp. for roughly $2.9 billion. The deal, first announced in November, gives Precision a titanium capability that it said has always been a key missing piece from its product portfolio.

Report: Hostess In Talks To Sell Bread Brands

January 7, 2013 10:12 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The makers of Thomas' English muffins and Tastykake snacks are emerging as two of the bidders for Wonder Bread and other Hostess bread brands as the company tries to sell off its assets under bankruptcy-court oversight, a newspaper reported Saturday.

Hostess Expects To Split Up Snack Cakes In Sale

December 21, 2012 1:57 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Twinkies, Wonder Bread and Devil Dogs are likely to return to shelves in coming months, but probably not under the same owners. Hostess Brands Inc. said in bankruptcy court Friday that it's narrowing down the bids it received for its brands and expects to sell off its snack cakes and bread brands to separate buyers.

GE To Buy Aviation Unit Of Italy's Avio For $4.3B

December 21, 2012 1:54 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Industrial conglomerate General Electric plans to buy the aviation business of Italian manufacturer Avio for $4.3 billion to grow its jet propulsion business and strengthen its supply chain. The Fairfield, Conn., company said Friday that it wants to build its supply chain as it ramps up engine production.

Nokia, RIM Settle Old Disputes In New Patent Pact

December 21, 2012 9:48 am | by Matti Huuhtanen, Associated Press | News | Comments

Nokia Corp. and Canadian smartphone rival Research In Motion have agreed on a new patent licensing pact which will end all existing litigation between the two struggling companies, the Finnish firm said Friday. The agreement includes a "one-time payment and on-going payments, all from RIM to Nokia," Nokia said, but did not disclose "confidential" terms.

AP: $1 Coin Backers Give To Harkin Center

December 19, 2012 2:25 pm | by Ryan J. Foley, Associated Press | News | Comments

A South Korean businessman and his Iowa metals company gave $500,000 to a university institute honoring U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin, who is pushing for a dollar coin that could generate tens of millions of dollars in new business for the company, according to records obtained by The Associated Press.

Cisco Closes $141M Deal For Cariden

December 17, 2012 2:10 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Cisco has completed the acquisition of software company Cariden Technologies Inc. for about $141 million. The privately held Sunnyvale, Calif., company supplies network planning, design and traffic management products and services for telecommunications providers.

VA To Host Manufacturing Skills Program

December 14, 2012 2:05 pm | by Michael Felberbaum, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

The Virginia Manufacturers Association is partnering with ECPI University to create a hub for manufacturing education and training in Southside Virginia to help align regional employer needs and economic development objectives. Officials say the institute will help ensure a workforce pipeline to meet current and future job requirements in advanced technology industries.

Supply Chain Management: The Beer Game

December 13, 2012 10:57 am | by Kettering University | Videos | Comments

Prof. Larry Navarre (Business) presents "Supply Chain Management: The Beer Game" during the Provost's Distinguished Faculty Speaker Series. Prof. Navarre touches on the important functions of fulfilling a customer request including product development, marketing, operations, distribution, finance, and customer service.

U.S., EU Looking At World's Biggest Free Trade Pact

December 11, 2012 10:15 am | by Desmond Butler, The Associated Press | News | Comments

After years of battling each other on trade issues, U.S. and European officials are contemplating a dramatic change in direction: joining together in what could be the world's largest free trade pact in an attempt to boost their struggling economies.

Honeywell To Buy Intermec For $603M

December 11, 2012 10:07 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Intermec Inc., which makes barcode printers and radio frequency identification products, said Monday that it reached a deal to sell itself to Honeywell International Inc. for about $603.4 million in cash. Under the terms of the agreement, Morris Township, N.J.-based Honeywell, a technology and manufacturing company, will pay $10 per share for Intermec.

Delta Orders Up To 70 Bombardier Regional Jets

December 7, 2012 2:10 pm | by Joshua Freed, AP Airlines Writer | News | Comments

Delta Air Lines is ordering up to 70 regional jets from Bombardier as part of a major shift in the planes it uses for hauling passengers around the U.S. Delta announced a firm order for 40 of the CRJ900 planes on Thursday, and options for 30 more. The deal would be worth $3.29 billion at list prices if Delta exercises the options, although discounts on such a big order are common.

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