Best Buy rival Circuit City filed for bankruptcy protection this morning. How good is that news for our hometown electronics retailer? Last week, analysts forecast that competitors’ store closings could hurt Best Buy in the short term because it means lots of liquidation sales. The shaky economy will dampen any bump Best Buy might get, but in the long term it looks to be a positive.
More Best Buy: Why is it Circuit City and not Best Buy that’s filing for bankruptcy this morning? TheStreet.com writes that “customer satisfaction is a key difference that’s keeping one company steady while the other one falters.” Best Buy has done a better job of predicting what customers want and then catering to those demands, it says.
A Travelers Insurance commercial by Fallon Minneapolis took top honors at a local advertising awards show Friday, Finance & Commerce reports. The 60-second TV spot is called “Risk” and features a man who leaves a trail of destruction as he wanders an empty city. Nearly 1,000 advertising executives attended the event Friday at the First Avenue nightclub in downtown Minneapolis. Watch the ad here:
Wells Fargo put out a call for investors last week, offering to sell 400 million shares of common stock to boost its assets as it buys Wachovia Corp. Some analysts are disappointed with the amount the bank was able to raise, TheStreet.com reports. One analyst predicts the bank will need to return to investors again for another round of stock offerings.
3M is freezing salaries for U.S. employees and plans to “continue to chip away” with job cuts, the Pioneer Press reports. The company already eliminated 1,000 positions in the third quarter as it braces for an economic slowdown, the newspaper says. Also: The Maplewood firm has bought a small Norwegian food-safety company, Food Diagnostics AS, which has been a distributor of 3M products for several years.
Another local acquisition: St. Paul-based Ecolab has purchased an approximately one-third stake in Henkel AG, a German detergent maker, Bloomberg reports. Meanwhile, Ecolab says despite the economic outlook, it expects earnings to grow in 2009. CEO Douglas Baker Jr., said in a statement that it expects earnings per share in the range of $1.95 to $2.05.
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