Shake Shack, which has evolved from a hot dog cart in a New York park in 2001 to a global chain of 63 higher-end burger joints run by restaurateur Danny Meyer, CEO of the Union Square Hospitality Group, yesterday filed preliminary papers with the Securities and Exchange Commission to go public.
Audi said Saturday that it would spend about $29 billion over the next five years - $2 billion more than it previously planned - to upend BMW at the top of the luxury car heap by 2020 with new models, improved technology and an expanded global production network.
Just as consumers are feeling more bulge and promising to eat better and less - once the holidays are over - reports abound as to what foods are trending and what will be on the no-no lists in the forthcoming year. Some are obvious - bet you already knew sugar is out - some not, even among the cognoscenti and significant others of the trend watchers.
After gaining approval from the Food and Drug Administration on Friday, AbbVie's new hepatitis C treatment, Viekira Pak, got a marketing boost today with Express Scripts announcing it has negotiated a significant discount for the regimen that is effective for the most common strain of the liver disease and would offer it exclusively to 25 million consumers covered under its National Preferred Formulary.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.