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Morning 10: HOSPITAL BOARD SHAKEUP SPURS RESIGNATION

Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Crain's Chicago Business

1. WALGREEN'S $6.7 BLN BOOTS BUY-IN
Drugstore-chain giant Walgreen, moving to establish a global presence, agreed to pay $6.7 billion in cash and stock to acquire a 45 percent stake in Europe's Boots Alliance. Walgreen gets an option to buy the remainder of Boots in three years at a price of about $9.5 billion, and the company's top executive said Walgreen has "every intention" of completing that second stage deal. Read more here

2. DAMAGE CONTROL AT GROUPON
Jason Child, Groupon's chief financial officer, sat down with Crain's reporter John Pletz ahead of the shareholder meeting today for a wide-ranging discussion of the company's direction following its rocky IPO, battered stock price and a high-profile accounting embarrassment. The job at hand is to restore investor confidence in the numbers "completely," he said, and to deliver revenue and profit growth -- along with "no drama." Here's the interview with Crain's

3. HOSPITAL BOARD SHAKEUP SPURS RESIGNATION
Benn Greenspan, a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health, abruptly resigned from the Cook County hospital board, citing his "dismay" at the substantial changes in board membership County Board President Toni Preckwinkle implemented through a recent shakeup. Read more in Chicago Health Care Daily

4. NEW BOSS AT KPMG CHICAGO
KPMG LLP tapped 53-year-old Patrick Canning, currently the head of the accounting firm's Boston office, to run its larger Chicago operation. Mr. Canning, a 31-year KPMG veteran, will succeed Phil Rohrbaugh, 59, who is retiring. It's in Crain's

5. SABER RATTLING
Investment firm Neuberger Berman LLC disclosed that it boosted its stake in OfficeMax to 5 percent from 4 percent, and also complained that the Naperville office supply concern, which isn't buying back shares or paying a dividend, isn't returning money to shareholders. As some investment firms are inclined to do, Neuberger suggested it might launch a proxy fight if things don't improve. It's in Crain's

6. NO MYSTERY HERE
Chicago mystery writer Sarah Paretsky is a longtime Cubs fan but now "I'm gone, I'm done, I'm throwing away my Cubs caps and warm-up jacket, I'm staying away from Wrigley." Why? Because of Joe Ricketts. "It gives chutzpah a new definition to back a campaign against the president of the United States because you hate even the small safety net we have, and then, as patriarch of the billionaire family that owns the Cubs, ask us for $300 million to rebuild Wrigley," the author says. Read the full outburst here

7. MEETINGS SHOW TO MEET HERE
Chicago and one of its key convention rivals, Orlando, have pulled away a small but influential trade show from Baltimore. The three-day Americas Meetings & Events Exhibition, run by Reed Travel Exhibitions, will rotate between the two cities, coming to McCormick Place in June of 2013. Read more in the Chicago Tribune

8. REIT LOOT
Local real estate investment trust companies threw lots of money at their CEOs last year, with Ventas Inc. chief Debra Cafaro pulling down a whopping $18.5 million package. Details in Chicago Real Estate Daily

9. BOEING TAKES UP GOLF
Boeing Co. has signed a long-term deal with prominent pro golfer Ernie Els, marking the aerospace giant's first-ever endorsement deal with an individual athlete, Danny Ecker reports. Read Danny's blog here

-- Separately, Ed Sherman reports, after Webb Simpson won the U.S. Open Sunday using a specialized putter, golfers are lining up to buy that version. "There's an old saying in golf: 'What plays on Sunday sells on Monday,'" explained the owner of Tinley Park-based Bettinardi Golf. Here's the story

10. NEW RETAILER LINK FOR THREADLESS
Four months after it teamed up with Gap Inc., Chicago design company Threadless -- best known for its "crowd-sourced" T-shirts -- has launched a similar retail partnership with Bed Bath & Beyond, says Brigid Sweeney. Here's Brigid's blog



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