Business & Tech


Pier 1 files for bankruptcy


Pier 1 files
for bankruptcy

Home goods retailer Pier 1 Imports Inc. said Monday that it has filed for bankruptcy protection. The Fort Worth, Texas-based company, which was founded in 1962, has been struggling with increased competition from online retailers such as Wayfair. Pier 1 said it will pursue a sale, with a March 23 deadline to submit bids. In the meantime, Pier 1 said lenders have committed approximately $256 million in debtor-in-possession financing so it can continue its operations during the Chapter 11 proceedings. Pier 1’s sales fell 13 percent to $358 million in its most recent quarter, which ended Nov. 30. It reported a net loss of $59 million for the quarter as it struggled to draw customers to its stores. Last month, Pier 1 announced it would close 450 stores, including all of its stores in Canada. The company is also closing two distribution centers. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


discussion set on climate change and winter sports

Sugarbush Resort in Warren, Vt., will host a panel discussion on climate change and other related challenges to the ski and snow sport industries. The free open forum will be held on Saturday at 6 p.m. at the Gate House Lodge at Lincoln Peak. It’s being held in collaboration with the group Protect Our Winters, which describes itself as a community of athletes, scientists, and business leaders advancing non-partisan policies that protect the world for future generations. Sugarbush President Win Smith will moderate the panel discussion among environmental experts. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Apple warns that coronavirus will hurt revenue

Apple said on Monday that it was cutting its sales expectations because of the coronavirus in China, in a sign that the outbreak has hit global business and is set to exact a steep toll. The iPhone maker, which is highly dependent on Chinese factories and Chinese consumers, said in a statement that its supply of smartphones would be hurt because production was ramping up more slowly than expected as China reopened its factories. Apple also said that demand for its gadgets in China had been hurt by the outbreak; it closed all of its stores in the country last month and they have yet to reopen. Apple is one of the first to publicly disclose what is likely to be a difficult chain effect from China and the virus on the business world. Many global companies rely on factories in China to manufacture everything from socks to laptop computers. And Chinese consumers, who had ridden a wave of rising wealth, had snapped up luxury goods, iPhones, and many other items. — NEW YORK TIMES


New Hampshire chosen for public/private partnership focused
on biotech


New Hampshire has been chosen as the site of a new public-private partnership focused on biotechnology. The US Department of Health and Human Services is launching the nation’s first Foundry for American Biotechnology in Manchester, led by inventor Dean Kamen’s Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute. The goal is to develop technology and products that will allow Americans to recover faster from natural disasters and other public health emergencies. The foundry’s first project will focus on small devices that could be brought to disaster locations to make medicines on-site. The consortium will include the federal Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response as well as representatives from industrial pharmaceutical and industrial automation sectors. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


to buy portion of Dean Foods

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The largest milk cooperative in the United States has reached an agreement to purchase “a substantial portion” of the struggling milk company Dean Foods, the two parties announced on Monday. Under the agreement, the co-op, Dairy Farmers of America, would pay $425 million to acquire 44 of Dean Foods’ facilities, as well as the real estate, inventory, and equipment necessary to operate them. But the deal must be approved by the bankruptcy court overseeing Dean Foods as well as government antitrust regulators. Dairy Farmers of America was founded to help small farmers market their raw milk to dairy processing companies like Dean Foods, which prepare milk for distribution to retailers. — NEW YORK TIMES


Maine to spend $800,000 for restoration projects

Maine and federal environmental officials have signed off on a decision to use an $800,000 environmental settlement to fund restoration projects in Hampden, Charleston, Sedgwick, and Brooksville. The projects are located in Kenduskeag Stream, Sucker Brook, and the Bagaduce River. The replacement of road culverts and installation of fishways are outlined in the final restoration plan for the Chevron Oil Terminal Facility in Hampden. The work is due to be completed in 2020. The settlement stems from multiple releases of oil at the former Chevron and Texaco marine oil terminal facilities in Hampden. — ASSOCIATED PRESS


Maker of French high-speed train to buy Bombardier rail unit

French train maker Alstom, maker of the TGV high-speed train, agreed to buy the rail unit of Bombardier Inc. for as much as 6.2 billion euros ($6.7 billion) to almost double in size, as the Canadian company offloads assets following a costly expansion in aerospace. Alstom, based in Saint-Ouen, near Paris, will pay as little as 5.8 billion euros in the cash-and stock transaction outlined in a memorandum of understanding, according to a statement Monday. Combining with Bombardier Transportation would make Alstom the clear No. 2 in rail equipment and help it counter the industry leader, China’s CRRC Corp., which is increasingly targeting global sales. — BLOOMBERG NEWS