Business Briefs: Highmark's Allegheny Health system unveils new logo

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Highmark's Allegheny Health system unveils new logo

Highmark Inc.'s new seven-hospital system, the Allegheny Health Network, now has a new logo, unveiled as part of the company's advertising campaign. The logo was designed by Marshall Strategy of San Francisco, part of a larger effort to organize the three separate health groups (West Penn Allegheny Health System, Jefferson Regional and Saint Vincent Hospital) under one brand.

Program recognizing local sustainable firms expands

The Southwestern Pennsylvania Sustainable Small Business Designation Program, which recognizes local businesses with 50 employees or fewer that adopt sustainable environmental practices, is expanding to include small businesses in all of the state's southwestern counties. The program had operated throughout Beaver and Allegheny County's Main Street districts, recognizing more than 90 businesses.

Urgent care provider to open business office in Green Tree

Physicians Immediate Care LLC, a provider of urgent care services, based in Rockford, Ill., will be locating a billing and payment office in Green Tree, according to an announcement from the governor's office Wednesday. The company is expected to bring 50 jobs to the region. The company received nearly $200,000 in grants and tax credits from the state. Physicians Immediate Care provides urgent health care services in Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska and Oklahoma.

Del Monte considering selling canned food operations

San Francisco-based Del Monte Foods, which has an administrative office on Pittsburgh's North Shore, is exploring the sale of its canned food business and potential bidders include Fresh Del Monte and Pinnacle Foods, according to Reuters, which quoted sources familiar with the process. Del Monte would focus on its pet food lines, if such a sale went through.

Consumer bureau sets penalty for debt collection

Banks supervised by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau now face penalties if they mistreat consumers while collecting debts, the U.S. agency said Wednesday. The new policy, part of a crackdown on debt-collection practices the agency announced last year, will plug a gap in federal anti-harassment law that generally excluded creditors who collected debt themselves, rather than hiring third parties to do the work.

More briefs, Page C-2.

Wholesale inventories shrank 0.5 percent in May

The Commerce Department said Wednesday that wholesale stockpiles shrank 0.5 percent in May, the most in 20 months. That followed a 0.1 percent decline in April, which was revised lower. Sales at the wholesale level jumped 1.6 percent in May and 0.7 percent in April.

Tribune Co. to spin off its publishing arm

One week after boosting its broadcasting holdings with the announcement of a deal to purchase 19 television stations, Tribune Co. said Wednesday that it intends to spin off its publishing business into a separate company. The move would separate Tribune Co.'s publishing assets, including the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times and six other daily newspapers, from the Chicago-based media company's more profitable broadcasting holdings.

CEO of Smithfield Foods testifies before Senate

The head of Smithfield Foods Inc. is trying to ease concerns that the pork producer's proposed takeover by a Chinese company would pose risks to the U.S. food supply. CEO Larry Pope testified Wednesday at a Senate Agriculture Committee hearing on the pending deal with Shuanghui International that the deal isn't about importing Chinese pork but instead a chance to export into new markets with its brands. The deal is subject to federal and shareholder approvals, and is expected to close later this year.

Panera to rework effort for charitable meals

Panera Bread's pay-what-you-can experiment at its 48 St. Louis-area restaurants will be retooled and brought back next winter as a seasonal offering. The Meal of Shared Responsibility was pulled Wednesday. The idea was that the needy could get a meal for whatever they could afford to pay, while those who pay above the company's cost make up the difference. But few needy people were participating, in part because most Panera locations in the region are in middle-class and affluent areas; and after an initial surge of publicity and marketing, awareness dropped off.

From staff and wire reports



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