The week that was: Shark Week

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Shark Week, Part I

The city's two biggest health care predators -- Highmark and UPMC -- are once again in court, and once again, it's about advertising. You may have noticed that UPMC, Highmark and Highmark's upstart Allegheny Health Network have been smothering the TV and radio airwaves with commercial after commercial. Last week, UPMC sued Highmark for false advertising, alleging Highmark is making false claims when it says UPMC will "deny access" to Highmark customers.

It's at least the third false advertising lawsuit between the two parties.

Shark Week, Part II

Is there blood in the water at The Heinz Endowments, Pittsburgh's No. 2 philanthropy? Two of the organization's top staffers were forced out last week -- Caren Glotfelty, the foundation's longtime and well-regarded director of environmental programs, and Doug Root, The Heinz Endowments' spokesman and communications director, have both been dismissed. The Endowments has $1.4 billion in assets and is one of the city's most powerful and influential grant-makers.

Shark Week, Part III

It's a feeding frenzy at the SouthSide Works, where a variety of apartment projects are in the planning stages, now that a decadeslong restriction on the construction of residential rental units has been lifted. According to the PG's Mark Belko, no fewer than three developments are in the offing, and the latest is a 262-unit building at Sidney and South 26th streets. The others: Developer Ralph Falbo wants to convert a proposed townhouse development on South Water Street into a four-story, 56-unit apartment complex, while Oxford Development Co. is proposing to build an eight-story, 173-unit apartment building a block away, at Sidney and Hot Metal streets.

Shark Week, Part IV

The sharks are already circling J.C. Penney CEO Myron Ullman III, who finds himself under fire from members of his own board. Hedge fund manager and J.C. Penney board member William Ackman called on the CEO to resign, prompting an unusual interoffice memo from the retailer's chairman of the board, Thomas Engibous, who said Mr. Ackman's "latest actions are disruptive and counterproductive at an important stage in the company's recovery. ... The company has made significant progress since [Mr. Ullman] returned as CEO four months ago, under unusually difficult circumstances."

J.C. Penney's stock dropped to $12.87 a share Friday, down from $22 in February.

Quote of the week

"No matter what froufrou titles we have, we still take turns cleaning the bathroom."

-- Jamie Quinterno, one of three 20-something Carnegie Mellon University graduates, working out of Etna storefront to design and build a new kind of pediatric heart valve, a device that could help an estimated 3,200 children born each year with heart-related birth defects.

businessnews

Bill Toland: btoland@post-gazette.com or 412-263-2625.


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