STAYING LOCAL: After threatening to leave California, Kinkisharyo International reached an agreement with labor and community groups that will keep light rail manufacturing jobs in Los Angeles County. The agreement, brokered by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, ends a multi-year battle between L.A.’s organized labor movement and the Japanese company, which does not have unions in its other factories. Kinkisharyo is doing final assembly work on 78 rail cars for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority in hangar space it leases from Los Angeles World Airports in Palmdale. The company has agreed to take a neutral position on whether its approximately 250 employees in Palmdale can unionize.
DEATHS: Amgen Inc. halted two clinical studies on an experimental cancer drug after a preliminary review showed increased deaths among one group of patients. The Thousand Oaks pharmaceutical company said it would terminate studies on rilotumumab, a drug developed in-house that treats stomach cancer when used in combination with standard chemotherapy. A review by a monitoring committee found an increase in the number of deaths for the group of patients using both rilotumumab and chemotherapy compared to the group receiving only chemotherapy.
BARS: Nellson Nutraceutical, an Irwindale nutrition bar and powder maker, announced plans to acquire Le Groupe Multibar Inc., a Montreal-based manufacturer of nutritional and snack bars. The combined company will have four manufacturing facilities, as well as research and development centers in the United States and Canada. Nellson, a portfolio company of New York private equity firm Kohlberg & Co., and Multibar are both third-party manufacturers, making bars and powders for other companies.
HACKED: Culver City’s Sony Pictures Entertainment suffered a widespread hack that shut down company computers from coast to coast. The film and TV division of the Japanese tech and media conglomerate Sony Corp. was hacked by a group calling itself #GOP, which claimed to have obtained the studio’s internal data. The group said they would release “secrets” if demands were not met, though what those demands were was unclear.
RETIRING: Craig Martin, chief executive of the Pasadena engineering and construction services firm Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. is retiring because of health issues. Martin will step down Dec. 26, the last day of Jacobs’ fiscal first quarter. He joined Jacobs in 1994 and became chief executive in 2006. Noel Watson, the company’s former chief executive, will serve as executive chairman until a new chief executive is appointed.
OIL OFFER: Shell Oil Corp. has offered $90 million to settle a lawsuit brought by Girardi & Keese on behalf of 1,491 current and former residents of Carson’s Carousel Tract, who have been living with petroleum contamination traced to the oil giant. If residents accept the offer, it would end a legal battle that began six years ago with an environmental investigation. The $90 million would be split among attorneys and residents, with a court-appointed special master to determine how much each plaintiff will receive based on their personal injury and property damage claims. Shell also has offered to compensate residents if they sell their homes for below-market values.
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