Business in brief

5 of 8 Steve & Barry's stores in Mass. to close

September 3, 2008
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Discounter Steve & Barry's, which recently filed for bankruptcy protection, said it is closing five of eight Massachusetts stores as part of a newly formed affiliate of investment firms Bay Harbour Management and York Capital Management. To better position Steve & Barry's to reach profitability goals, the new company, BH S&B Holdings, will cut the chain to 170 stores from 276 prebankruptcy. The stores that will close are Independence Mall in Kingston; The Mall at Whitney Field in Leominster; Berkshire Mall in Lanesborough; Eastfield Mall in Springfield; and Hampshire Mall in Hadley. No closing date has been revealed by the company. Steve & Barry's shops will remain open at Liberty Tree Mall in Danvers; Silver City Galleria in Taunton; and Agawam Towne Square in Agawam. (Jenn Abelson)

Covidien, Purdue Pharma settle patent lawsuit
Covidien Ltd.'s Mallinckrodt subsidiary will sell "limited quantities" of the painkiller OxyContin in extended-release form under an agreement with closely held Purdue Pharma LP. The agreement ends a patent-infringement lawsuit between the companies, Covidien said. The Mansfield company said it will begin selling the copy this month. The sales agreement ends in 2009. Purdue, based in Stamford, Conn., has settled with three other generic-drug makers. (Bloomberg)

Boston Scientific reports drug-coated stent data
Boston Scientific Corp. reported results from an aftermarket study of its drug-coated stent Taxus Liberte as the company attempts to gain approval to sell the device in the United States. The Taxus Olympia trial tracked 22,345 coronary artery disease patients for a year after the stent was implanted. Boston Scientific says 3.8 percent of patients needed further surgery, suffered a heart attack, or died from heart-related causes in the year after having the drug-coated metal tube implanted. The Natick-based company said 2.5 percent of patients required further surgery, while 1.2 percent died of heart problems, and 0.8 percent had a heart attack. (AP)

Clinical Data agrees to buy Adenosine Therapeutics
Clinical Data Inc., a Newton medical-test company expanding into drug making, said it bought closely held Adenosine Therapeutics LLC. Clinical said on its website it paid $11 million in cash and $25.2 million in promissory notes and may pay as much as $30 million more in cash if certain milestones are met. Adenosine is developing experimental drugs. Adenosine was owned by Atel Ventures, a division of Atel Capital Group of San Francisco. (Bloomberg)

Ex-Tyco officials seek to have convictions tossed
Lawyers for imprisoned former Tyco International Ltd Chief Executive Dennis Kozlowski and ex-financial chief Mark Swartz Tuesday asked New York's highest court to throw out their convictions, saying a jury had insufficient evidence when it found them guilty. Both Kozlowski, once one of the most powerful US chief executives, and Swartz were found guilty in June 2005 of stealing more than $150 million from the conglomerate. They have each served nearly three years of their prison terms, which were set at 8 1/3-to 25 years apiece. Kozlowski and Swartz were each found guilty of 22 counts of grand larceny, conspiracy, fraud, and falsifying business records. (Reuters)

VMware research chief quits to return to Oracle
VMware Inc., the software maker that ousted its founding chief executive two months ago, said Richard Sarwal quit after less than a year as head of research and development to return to Oracle Corp. Sarwal, who joined VMware from the world's second-biggest software maker in December, oversaw product strategy, according to the company's website. Chief technology officer Stephen Herrod will assume Sarwal's duties, VMware said. VMware is the biggest maker of software that lets computers run multiple operating systems. (Bloomberg)

United drops charge plan for overseas coach meals
United Airlines dropped a plan to charge as much as $9 for meals in the coach cabin of some overseas flights, citing "candid feedback" from customers. United, the second-largest US carrier, had intended to offer food for sale aboard trips to Europe from the Washington area's Dulles International Airport starting Oct. 1. The Chicago-based carrier would have been the first in the United States to end free meals on such flights. Corporate customers and the airline's most frequent fliers objected both to plans to replace hot food with salads and sandwiches, and to charge for them, said United spokeswoman Robin Urbanski. (Bloomberg)

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