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Business

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Briefs

New bank partnership takes shape

Old National Bancorp and Fort Wayne-based Tower Financial Corp. leaders announced plans to form what they described as a partnership in the fall.

Tower’s shareholders approved the acquisition during a Friday business meeting. Old National of Evansville takes the reins in a deal valued at $107.7 million.

Officials have said Tower locations will remain open. Any jobs cuts in the consolidation would be positions that function behind the scenes. Old National hasn’t announced how many of the 165 Tower employees will be dismissed.

Old National has $9.6 billion in assets and 176 branches, while Tower has almost $681 million in total assets and seven branches.

Meatpacker alters beef content labels

Cargill, one of the nation’s largest meatpackers, has added wording to its labels on ground beef packages that indicates whether the meat inside includes a product that’s been called “pink slime.”

Since Jan. 20, all of Cargill’s U.S.-produced, fresh, 100 percent ground beef products that contain what it calls “finely textured beef” will say so on a label, whether sold in bulk or in chubs directly to consumers, the company announced this week. Cargill had said in November that it would add the labeling.

Cargill also said it has developed a website to answer questions about finely textured beef.

Another company that makes the textured beef product, Dakota Dunes, S.D.-based Beef Products Inc., sued ABC News in September 2012 after the organization aired a story that used the phrase “pink slime.” The company said the story mentioned only Beef Products Inc. and its product and misled consumers into believing the product is unhealthy and unsafe.

The company said it lost business and had to close plants in Texas, Kansas and Iowa. It kept open a Nebraska plant that is still running at reduced capacity, but Beef Products spokesman Jeremy Jacobsen said Friday the other plants remained closed.

Feds close inquiry of Samsung patents

The Justice Department says it has closed an investigation of Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. over alleged misuse of patents to exclude some Apple iPhone and iPad models from the U.S. market.

Apple Inc. has said some Samsung wireless patents are being offered on unfair terms, hurting competition. Companies like Samsung owning the rights to essential phone technology must license it to competitors on fair, reasonable and nondiscriminatory terms.

Samsung obtained an exclusion order against Apple from the U.S. International Trade Commission that would have barred the import of some Apple smartphones and tablet computers.

The U.S. Trade Representative overturned the order, and as a result, the Justice Department said it is closing its investigation. The department says it will continue to monitor developments in the area.

Lufthansa names chief executive

German airline Lufthansa AG has named Carsten Spohr to be its next chief executive.

The national carrier said in a statement Friday that the 47-year-old will assume his role as CEO and chairman May 1.

Spohr currently heads Lufthansa’s passenger business. He takes over from Christoph Franz, who is moving to head the board of Swiss drugmaker Roche.

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