IN BRIEF

Dallas business partners buying Planet Hyundai dealership

John Staluppi on Thursday named the buyers of his local Planet Hyundai dealership.

In a statement, he said Texas-based business partners Don Tamburro and Ron Coury will buy the dealership at 7150 West Sahara Ave.

Financial terms still weren’t disclosed.

The sale includes the business and real property at the dealership and is expected to close by April 1.

Staluppi operates the Superstore Auto Group, which includes Planet Nissan, Henderson Nissan, Acura of Las Vegas, Centennial Buick-GMC and the soon-to-reopen Centennial Hyundai.

 

Local fuel prices stay flat in week, but top national average

Las Vegas gasoline prices remained mostly flat during the week, auto club AAA reported on Thursday.

In its Daily Fuel Gauge Report, AAA pegged the average price of a gallon of regular, unleaded self-serve gasoline at $2.762 on Thursday, down from $2.77 per gallon a week ago, a decline of 0.3 percent.

The local price is down 1.6 percent from $2.808 per gallon a month ago and up 28.8 percent from $2.143 per gallon a year ago, AAA said.

The Las Vegas average price is slightly below the statewide average price of $2.794 per gallon but above the national average of $2.636 per gallon, AAA said.

 

International Game Technology will close operations in Japan

Slot machine giant International Game Technology said Thursday it will close its operations in Japan later this year.

In a brief statement, the Reno-based company said the closure would include severance charges of about $20 million. IGT said the decision was made because of "ongoing difficult market conditions and lack of strategic fit."

Japan’s slot machine business has been volatile over the past few years. In fiscal year 2007, IGT shipped 29,800 machines to Japan. That figure fell to 6,000 machines in 2008 and 3,775 machines in 2009.

JP Morgan gaming analyst Joe Greff estimated the company would ship just more than 2,000 machines this year.

"Given the capital investment required for this business, as well as the minimal earnings impact, we do not see the decision to end operations as a negative aspect of the IGT story," Greff told investors.

NEW YORK

Snacks business boosts quarterly profits for PepsiCo

PepsiCo Inc.’s fourth-quarter profit almost doubled on strength in its snacks business and overseas beverage operations, and the company said it will keep expanding internationally to buffer the slumping U.S. drinks market.

The snack and drink maker also said Thursday it expects more savings from its buyout of two of its bottlers, a deal it says will help it get new products to market more quickly because it will control their distribution. The company said the deal, valued at $7.8 billion, should close by the end of the month.

The company, whose brands include Gatorade, Quaker and Pepsi-Cola, earned $1.43 billion, or 90 cents per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 26, even with the estimates of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters. These estimates normally remove one-time items.

Sales rose 4.4 percent to $13.3 billion from $12.74 billion.

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