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U.S. Steel Corp. remains the Pittsburgh area's highest ranking representative on the Fortune 500 magazine's annual ranking of the nation's largest corporations. The steelmaker was ranked 105, up from last year's 146 slot. Other area names on the list were PPG Industries Inc. at 161; H.J. Heinz Co. at 267; PNC Financial Services Group Inc. at 278; Wesco International Inc. at 406; Allegheny Technologies Inc. at 448; Mylan Inc. at 462; and Consol Energy Inc. at 497. Exxon Mobil Corp. rose to the No. 1 slot, knocking Wal-Mart Stores Inc. into second place. Companies are ranked by total revenue for their respective fiscal years, according to the description on the Fortune magazine Web site.
General Motors Corp. began laying off 1,600 white-collar workers yesterday, and Fiat's CEO left Italy to resume critical talks on an alliance with Chrysler LLC, as deadlines draw closer for GM and Chrysler to finish their restructuring plans. Both automakers are living on a combined $17.4 billion in government loans and have said they'll need more money to survive. Chrysler must cut its debt and its labor costs and forge an alliance with Fiat Group SpA by April 30, or President Barack Obama says Chrysler won't get any more help. Also yesterday, GM revealed that it spent $2.8 million lobbying the government in the first three months of 2009, while the company was surviving on $13.4 billion in federal loans.
New York-based First Niagara Financial said it raised about $380.4 million through its previously announced public offering by issuing 31.05 million shares of common stock. Proceeds were about $360.7 million, up from an initial estimate of $314 million.
Mylan Inc. said its majority-owned Matrix Laboratories subsidiary in India was selected by the Clinton HIV/AIDS Initiative as the primary supplier of five antiretroviral drugs used in secondline HIV/AIDS treatment regimens. Matrix also was selected as the primary supplier of seven antiretroviral drugs used for pediatric treatment.
Smash Technologies, which is working to bring the Web to cell phones using text messaging, received $1.35 million in venture capital funding from sources led by Mark Cuban and Innovation Works. Smash, based in Pittsburgh and San Francisco, was started by two Carnegie Mellon University graduates.
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The parent company of FirstEnergy Corp. said yesterday that its Beaver Valley Power Station Unit 1 in Shippingport has been temporarily shut down for scheduled refueling, maintenance and safety inspections. ... Kellog Co. agreed not to make deceptive or misleading cognitive health claims for its breakfast and snack foods to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it falsely claimed its Frosted Mini-Wheats cereal was "clinically shown to improve kids' attentiveness by nearly 20 percent," the FTC said. ... Westinghouse Electric Co. began work yesterday on the first of four AP1000 nuclear plants in China, the company announced. The structural concrete has been poured for the plant on the island of Sanmen, under a 2007 contract signed by Westinghouse, The Shaw Group Inc., China's State Nuclear Power Technology Corp. and Sanmen Nuclear Power Co. of China National Nuclear Corp.
First Published April 21, 2009 12:00 am