Diane's Feed
Jan 28, 2015

TracFone to pay $40 million to settle deceptive ad allegations

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – TracFone, owned by America Movil SAB, has agreed to pay $40 million to reimburse customers who purchased prepaid unlimited data plans that turned out to have maximum limits, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission said on Wednesday.

The FTC alleged that TracFone advertised unlimited data plans for $45 a month but either cut off or slowed, or “throttled”, the data once a fixed limit was hit. The agency said millions of customers had been affected by the practice.

Jan 15, 2015

Dollar General seen losing Family Dollar bid

By Sruthi Ramakrishnan and Diane Bartz

(Reuters) – Dollar General Corp stuck to its estimate of divesting 1,500 stores to win approval for its bid to buy Family Dollar Corp, a move that analysts said could end up handing the company to Dollar Tree Inc.

Dollar General’s statement comes a day after two influential proxy advisory firms changed their stance, advising Family Dollar’s shareholders to vote for a deal with Dollar Tree as it offered more certainty of closure.

Jan 9, 2015

20 states join U.S. antitrust probe of Family Dollar merger

WASHINGTON, Jan 9 (Reuters) – Some 20 state attorneys
general have joined the federal antitrust investigation of
competing bids by Dollar General Corp and Dollar Tree Inc
to buy Family Dollar Stores Inc, a development
that potentially complicates the companies’ efforts to win U.S.
approval for a deal.

The attorneys general concern focuses on the likelihood that
the loss of one of the chains would lead to higher prices for
discount store customers, many of whom are poor, said two
sources who spoke privately because they were not authorized to
speak to reporters.

Jan 9, 2015

Rock band The Slants wants to reclaim slur for trademark

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Asian-American rock band The Slants argued in court on Friday that its name is a healthy reappropriation of a term usually considered a slur and that the band should be granted a trademark despite government objections.

The case could have implications for a higher-profile fight over whether the Washington Redskins team in the National Football League should lose its trademarks.

Jan 6, 2015

Former Toyoda Gosei exec to plead guilty to price fixing in U.S.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A former executive of Japan’s Toyoda
Gosei Co Ltd has agreed to plead guilty to price fixing and
rigging bids for auto parts made for cars sold in the United
States, the Justice Department said on Tuesday.

As part of the deal, Japanese national Makoto Horie agreed
to serve one year and a day in prison and to pay a criminal fine
of $20,000, the department said.

Dec 24, 2014

Sysco, US Foods must narrow gap with rival to clear merger -analysts

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The proposed merger of Sysco Corp (SYY.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and US Foods Inc [USFOO.UL] hinges on the top two U.S. food companies helping to turn a far smaller rival into a national player to ease antitrust concerns, but the gap may be too big, analysts said.

Sysco and US Foods, the only two companies with national distribution to hospitals, restaurants and schools, have been discussing the sale of assets such as distribution centers to No. 3 Performance Food Group. Many of those centers are in the western United States, where Performance has little or no presence.

Dec 22, 2014

Lilly must divest Sentinel products after FTC nod on Novartis deal

WASHINGTON, Dec 22 (Reuters) – Eli Lilly and Co has
won approval to buy Novartis AG’s animal health unit
on condition that it divests its Sentinel line of products for
treating heartworm in dogs, the Federal Trade Commission said on
Monday.

The French company Virbac SA will buy the Sentinel
product line now owned by Novartis Animal Health, the FTC said.

Dec 19, 2014

U.S. settles lawsuit over T-Mobile US’s unauthorized charges

WASHINGTON, Dec 19 (Reuters) – T-Mobile US has
agreed to settle a lawsuit filed by the U.S. government over
unauthorized charges placed on customers’ bills, a practice
known as cramming, and to pay at least $90 million, two U.S.
agencies said on Friday.

The Federal Trade Commission had filed a complaint against
T-Mobile in July, saying the company had put subscriptions for
services like horoscopes or celebrity gossip delivered by text
messages on consumers’ mobile phone bills, often without their
knowledge.

Dec 16, 2014

Verisk Analytics scraps plan to buy EagleView Technology Corp

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Verisk Analytics’ said on
Tuesday it would scrap its plan to buy EagleView Technology Corp
because the Federal Trade Commission said it would file a
lawsuit to block the deal.

If the merger were to have gone forward, the new firm would
have had a virtual monopoly in the market for helping insurance
companies to figure out what it will cost to fix damaged roofs,
the FTC said.

Dec 15, 2014

Exclusive: Minnesota AG questions divestiture in Sysco-US Foods merger

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Minnesota’s attorney general expressed concern about the merger of food distribution giants Sysco Corp and US Foods [USFOO.UL], saying it was questionable whether any divestiture could restore competition lost in the transaction.

Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson said in a Dec. 10 letter that her office had heard complaints from Minnesota-based restaurants that the $3.5 billion acquisition would leave them “fewer choices among distributors and potentially resulting in higher prices for consumers.”