Business Briefs: 12/12/13

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Pittsburgh Foundation doubles donation rate to food banks

The Pittsburgh Foundation has doubled the matching funds it will provide to area food banks during its current holiday appeal from $100,000 to $200,000. On Tuesday, the foundation launched an appeal to support the food banks. By Thursday, the foundation said it had received more than $100,000 in donations.

Chicago company to expand to Pittsburgh office

Chicago-based financial services and accounting firm BDO Inc. announced Thursday it was expanding into Pittsburgh with the acquisition of Pittsburgh-based accounting firm Alpern Rosenthal. Founded in 1961, Alpern Rosenthal has 250 partners and staff in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and south Florida. Alpern Rosenthal President Alexander Paul will serve as managing partner of the Pittsburgh office at the combined firm.

Software company finishes audit with positive profits

Ansys, a Southpointe-based engineering simulation software company, announced that the Joint Committee on Taxation takes no exception to its 2009-10 tax returns. The ruling and final resolution of the audit allows the company to record an estimated $11 million favorable tax impact in its fourth quarter financial results.

China's Apple factories improve work conditions

A labor group monitoring three Chinese factories that make Apple products says once-oppressive working conditions have steadily improved in the last 18 months. The Fair Labor Association represents the final assessment in a process that started last year at plants run in China by Apple's largest supplier, Foxconn.

PPG expands aerospace operations in Japan

PPG Industries said it has expanded its aerospace operations in Japan at a new support site in Miyoshi that increases its production capacity and warehouse space.

Retail sales on the rise, especially in online sector

The Commerce Department said Thursday that retail sales rose 0.7 percent in November. Consumers purchased more online -- and less at traditional stores. Auto sales jumped 1.8 percent, furniture purchases rose 1.2 percent and sales at electronics and appliances stores rose 1.1 percent.

Also in business ...

Calgon Carbon said Seth Schofield, 74, chairman of its board of directors, will retire in May. The company said it will reduce its board from 10 members to nine at that time and elect a new chairman later. ... Business inventories increased 0.7 percent in October, the Commerce Department said.

From staff and wire reports

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