Business

In brief: Twinkies returning to shelves July 15

NEW YORK – Hostess is betting on a sweet comeback for Twinkies when they return to shelves next month.

The company that went bankrupt after an acrimonious fight with its unionized workers last year is back up and running under new owners and a leaner structure. It says it plans to have Twinkies and other snack cakes back on shelves starting July 15.

Based on the outpouring of nostalgia sparked by its demise, Hostess is expecting a blockbuster return next month for Twinkies and other sugary treats, such as CupCakes and Donettes. The company says the cakes will taste the same but that the boxes will now bear the tag line “The Sweetest Comeback in the History of Ever.”

“A lot of impostor products have come to the market while Hostess has been off the shelves,” said Daren Metropoulos, a principal of the investment firm Metropoulos & Co., which teamed up with Apollo Global Management to buy a variety of Hostess snacks.

Drake’s cakes, meanwhile, were snapped up by longtime Hostess rival McKee Foods, which makes Little Debbie snacks. McKee said in an email Monday that Drake’s cakes should be back by “late summer/early fall.”

Digital revenue on rise, newspaper execs say

WASHINGTON – Executives at some of the nation’s largest newspaper companies say they are more hopeful about their future after seeing readership grow for digital subscriptions.

Speaking at the American Society of News Editors’ annual convention, the newspaper executives said Monday that increased use of their digital products is resulting in higher revenue.

Patrick J. Talamantes, president and CEO at the McClatchy Co., said that his company was getting an additional $25 million in revenue this year from its new subscription models that charge for online content.

Mark Thompson, president and CEO of The New York Times Co., also reported success from its digital subscriptions. Readers typically must pay to read stories on the New York Times’ website after viewing 10 stories for free each month.

Newspaper companies have struggled in recent years with declining circulation for their printed editions.

Court ruling protects generic drug makers

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court says generic drug manufacturers can’t be sued in state court for a drug’s design defects if federal officials approved the brand-name version the generic drug copied.

The justices voted 5-4 to agree with generic manufacturer Mutual Pharmaceutical Co. Inc., which wanted a $21 million judgment against it dismissed.

A New Hampshire jury gave that to Karen L. Bartlett after she took sulindac, the generic form of the drug Clinoril, in 2004. It caused her outer skin layer to deteriorate and burn off, leaving at least 60 percent of her body as an open wound. She is also now legally blind.

The federal appeals courts upheld her verdict, but the justices said federal law pre-empts the New Hampshire law that allowed Bartlett’s lawsuit.

Fired Zimmer leaves Men’s Wearhouse board

NEW YORK – Ousted Men’s Wearhouse founder George Zimmer has quit the company’s board.

Zimmer was fired as the company’s executive chairman last week. On Monday he submitted a letter resigning from the board.

Zimmer says in the letter that it’s clear from his firing that the board is determined to avoid addressing his growing concerns with recent board decisions and the company’s direction.

Zimmer, 64, built Men’s Wearhouse Inc. from one small Texas store using a cigar box as a cash register to one of North America’s largest men’s clothing sellers, with 1,143 locations.



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