• Hola, Cuba! Have We Got Some Goods For You
    It will be a while before the Pepsi starts flowing freely in Havana or your Uncle Willy will be able to get legal Cohiba cigars at the local luncheonette, but the administration's moves to open political relations with Cuba has everyone from fast-food purveyors to hoteliers to farm supply manufacturers smacking their lips at the prospects of reopening trade with a market just 90 miles from the coast.
  • Sony Decision To Make 'The Interview' Disappear Ignites Twitterstorm
    Even as the U.S. government reportedly has assigned blame for the hack of Sony Pictures' computer network squarely on North Korea, studio executives are coming under attack from Hollywood insiders and tweet-enabled outsiders both for what they've done and for what they apparently have no intentions of doing. Not only has the movie been yanked from the big screen, it won't be streaming on iPads either.
  • Sony Cancels NY Premiere Of 'The Interview' After Hackers Threaten Theaters
    The New York premiere of the Sony picture "The Interview" was canceled yesterday and the studio gave theater chains the option of bowing out of screening it. Meanwhile, the action-comedy's stars pulled out of media appearances and various law-enforcement agencies weighed the threat of a terrorist attack on moviegoers as the hackers who have leaked sensitive email correspondence and personnel information threatened, "whatever comes... all the world will denounce the Sony."
  • InterContinental Books Kimpton Boutique Chain Of Hotels And Eateries For $430 Million
    InterContinental Hotels Group, the U.K.-based web of 697,048 rooms in more than 4,700 hotels worldwide including brands such as Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and Candlewood Suites, is purchasing the Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants chain -- "where inspired travel begins" -- in the U.S. for $430 million in cash.
  • PetSmart Going Private In $8.7 Billion Deal
    In what is the largest private-equity deal of the year so far, a consortium led by London-based BC Partners is acquiring PetSmart's chain of 1,387 stores in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico for $8.7 billion, indicating that smart money believes there's still some gravy left in a dedicated chain that has been squeezed both by big-box retailers and online competition.
  • Plunging Gas Prices Put Consumers, Retailers In A Holly Jolly Mood
    Shopkeepers are rejoicing as gas prices continue to tumble, job figures improve and most other economic data point to a more robust economic picture than we've seen since the crash of '08. We can add to that the breaking news that the House has approved a $1.1 trillion spending bill that will likely keep the government open through next September.
  • McDonald's Cutting Eight Menu Items in January And Reducing Extra Value Meals
    Get your totally disenfranchised vote in now on CNBC's "which item should be cut off the menu" poll as McDonald's follows through on expectations to shed excess items by saying it will slice eight items from its menu next month to speed up service.
  • Jeffries, Who'd Become 'The Old Guy' At The Party, Abruptly Departs Abercrombie
    Once upon a time, when Abercrombie & Fitch was a tweedy place for fly fishermen and wannabe bighorn sheep slayers, it fell upon hard times. Then Mike Jeffries came along and made it feel - and act - young. It thrived. But, as inevitably as the AARP cards arriving in the mailboxes of Gen Xers, things got old again. Jeffries, 70, is retiring.
  • As Sales Plummet, McDonald's Puts Some Spin On Consumers' 'Evolving Expectations'
    Against analysts' grim expectations, things got worse than anticipated at McDonald's last month even as the company scrambles to adapt to changing tastes for food-on-the-go by offering customized items at the same time that it is simplifying its menu and catering to regional tastes.
  • Squeezing Value Out Of Brand Lululemon After A Few Sour Years
    Lululemon -- with its reputation worn down by quality-control problems, some questionable decisions and the propensity of its co-founder to strike the foot-in-mouth posture -- appears to be in recovery mode.
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