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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Tech center to break ground Tuesday

Compiled from staff and wire reports The Spokesman-Review

Officials at the Spokane Intercollegiate Research and Technology Institute will mark the groundbreaking of a new technology center Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. on the Riverpoint Higher Education Park campus.

The 39,200-square-foot building will be run by SIRTI. Half its construction cost came from a $3 million federal grant. Offices and lab space will be leased to area technology companies, said SIRTI Chairwoman Nancy Isserlis. She said no lease agreements have yet been signed. The building will be completed by December, said SIRTI spokesman Patrick Jones.

The groundbreaking will be at the corner of Pine and east Riverside, south of Trent Avenue. The SIRTI Foundation paid $850,000 to Washington State University for that property.

EWU offers business seminars

Eastern Washington University wraps up its “incubator without walls” seminar series Saturday with a presentation by two officials from the Spokane office of the U.S. Small Business Administration.

The officials, Ted Schinzel and Gil Acevedo, will address financing and loans for small-business owners.

The free seminar will be held from 8 a.m. until noon at the Riverpoint Higher Education Park, 668 N. Riverpoint Blvd. Call Terry Sanchez at EWU for information or reservations at (509) 358-2208, or e-mail him at

Yahoo to buy back outstanding stock

Yahoo Inc., the Internet portal company, said Thursday it will buy back up to $3 billion, or 7 percent, of its stock over the next five years.

As of March 4, Yahoo had 1.4 billion shares outstanding. Based on Wednesday’s closing price for Yahoo stock of $30.87 the buyback represents about 97 million shares.

Shares of Yahoo rose 54 cents, or 1.8 percent, to close at $31.41 on the Nasdaq Stock Market.

Companies use buybacks to increase earnings per share by reducing shares outstanding.

Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Yahoo said it will pay for the buyback using working capital. Yahoo had $4.6 billion in cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities as of Dec. 31.

Toshiba fined for sharing trade secrets

Electronics maker Toshiba Corp. and a subsidiary were ordered to pay Lexar Media Inc. $84 million in punitive damages Thursday for sharing trade secrets with another rival maker of flash memory chips used in digital cameras, music players and other devices.

The decision came a day after the same Santa Clara County jury awarded Lexar $381.4 million for theft of trade secrets and violating its fiduciary duty. The total award now stands at $465.4 million – less than half the $1 billion sought by Lexar.

Toshiba has declined to comment on the case, as other matters remain unresolved. Next month, Lexar will ask the court for an injunction that bars sales of Toshiba products using Lexar’s technology in the United States.

Lexar is pursuing an unfair business practices claim as well, which also is expected to be decided by the judge next month. Lexar also is pursuing patent infringement claims in federal court.

Shares of Fremont, Calif.-based Lexar rose $3.16, nearly doubling, to $6.33 in Thursday trading on the Nasdaq Stock Market. They lost 63 cents, or nearly 10 percent, in the extended session. Shares remain far below the 52-week high of $18.55.

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