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Here's a quick look at a few of the headlines making news this afternoon.
Coca-Cola in Mideast juice deal
Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO ) has completed its deal to acquire about half the equity in independent Middle East beverage company Aujan Industries, the company announced today. The deal is worth about $980 million, The Associated Press reported, and was announced in December 2011. "Today begins the next era of growth for our system across the Middle East and North Africa," said Ahmet C. Bozer, president, Eurasia and Africa, for Coke. "This transaction creates a platform for further cooperation between the Company, Aujan and existing bottling partners across the region to dramatically change the juice landscape." Coke has acquired 50% of the entity holding the rights to Aujan-owned brands and 49% of Aujan's bottling and distribution operations.
Discover Bank settles over marketing practices
Discover Financial Services' (NYSE: DFS ) Discover Bank has reached an agreement with the Federal Deposit Insurance Company and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to refund approximately $200 million to more than 3.5 million cardholders and pay a $14 million civil penalty. Changes to the company's marketing practices are also required. "The agencies jointly determined that Discover engaged in deceptive telemarketing tactics to sell the company’s credit card add-on products" such as payment protection, credit score tracking, identity theft protection, and wallet protection, according to the CFPB. Half of the penalty payment will go to the U.S. Treasury and half will go to CFPB's Civil Penalty Fund.
TNT Express CEO quits
The CEO of TNT Express will leave the company within the next week, the company announced today, to "pursue an external career opportunity." CFO Bernard Bot will take over as interim CEO when Marie-Christine Lombard leaves. "This development has no bearing on the intended merger with UPS, which we expect to complete in early 2013," said TNT. UPS plans to acquire TNT for $6.51 billion. The Wall Street Journal reported that Lombard, who had joined TNT in 1999, worked her way up the ranks to become one of the few women in charge of a major European company.