Business briefs: 6/4/14

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Shaler company plans layoffs

The Louis F. Leeper Co. will lay off about 165 work­ers at the con­sumer pack­aged goods bro­ker’s lo­ca­tion on Fri­day Road in Shaler. The com­pany, which han­dles sales and mar­ket­ing of food and nonfood prod­ucts, no­ti­fied the state Depart­ment of La­bor and In­dus­try that it learned in early May of a loss in busi­ness that would trig­ger the lay­offs be­tween June 26 and July 10.

Acosta to cut 54 jobs

Acosta Sales and Mar­ket­ing plans to lay off 54 em­ploy­ees ef­fec­tive July 21 at its op­er­a­tion at Four Penn Center West. The lo­cal op­er­a­tion is part of a Jack­son­ville, Fla.-based com­pany that works with con­sumer pack­aged goods com­pa­nies and with re­tail­ers. In a let­ter no­ti­fy­ing the state Depart­ment of La­bor & In­dus­try of­fi­cials of the job cuts, the com­pany said, “This per­ma­nent lay­off will close all of the Giant Eagle Man­date op­er­a­tions at the Pitts­burgh, Pa., fa­cil­ity.”

Ruiz Foods moving into closed S.C. Heinz plant

A Florence, S.C., frozen food factory that Pittsburgh-based H.J. Heinz Co. decided to close is being acquired by Ruiz Foods, based in California. Ruiz makes burritos, tamales and Mexican snacks. Its brands include El Monterey and Tornados. Manufacturing is slated to start in 2015, with as many as 500 jobs being created over several years, the company said. Heinz had announced late last year that it would close the plant as part of a move to make its North American operations more efficient.

RTI pays $15.5 million for Dynamet

RTI International Metals has acquired Dynamet Technology, a Burlington, Mass., company that makes titanium and titanium alloy products for the aerospace, defense, biomedical and industrial customers. The Moon titanium producer said it paid $15.5 million cash and could pay bonuses based on Dynamet’s future performance.

Most Americans don’t carry cash

Nearly 60 percent of Americans say they never carry cash, instead relying on credit and debit cards to pay for their daily expenses, according to a survey by The biggest reason for shunning cash was concern over theft. Other top reasons included worry about losing a wallet, convenience and concerns about germs carried on cash.

Bank merger approved

The previously announced merger of NexTier Bank in Butler and Farmers & Merchants Bank in Kittanning was approved by the board of directors of both companies. Subject to regulatory and shareholder approval, the transaction is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter.

Highmark, Allegheny Health Network adding to Bethel Park campus

Highmark Health and Allegheny Health Network are breaking ground Thursday on an expanded outpatient surgical pavilion at Jefferson Hospital’s Bethel Park campus. The planned $17 million expansion is an addition to the Bethel Park Health and Wellness Pavilion. A reception will follow the 5:30 p.m. groundbreaking at 1000 Higbee Drive.

Ark. dealership sues General Motors

An independent used-car dealer in Arkansas is seeking compensation from General Motors Co. for being saddled with “highly dangerous vehicles” that include cars not yet recalled over ignition-switch defects. Nettleton Auto Sales Inc. demanded actual and punitive damages on behalf of all of U.S. dealers that have sold, leased or stocked defective GM vehicles, according to a complaint filed May 23 in federal court in Little Rock, Arkansas. GM disclosed the lawsuit in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan.

Busy Beaver heading to Lawrenceville

Harmar-based home improvement retailer Busy Beaver Building Centers Inc. has signed a deal to open a location in Lawrenceville. The store could open by the end of the year.

From staff and wire reports

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