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The Journal Gazette

Saturday, November 09, 2019 1:00 am

Briefs

City lawyer board chair of Chamber

Staff, news services

Fort Wayne attorney Tim Haffner is the new chairman of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce board of directors.

Haffner, who will serve a one-year term as board chair through November 2020, is a partner at Faegre Baker Daniels, where he is a corporate and commercial lawyer. He has extensive experience in commercial real estate mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures, the chamber said in a news release.

Haffner joined the Indiana Chamber's board in 2006 and was its Volunteer of the Year in 2009. He has also been honored as the Best Lawyers in America-Corporate Law, 2010-19 and Acquisitions Law, 2010-19. In 2014, he was named Fort Wayne Corporate Lawyer of the Year.

He is a past chairman of the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership, as well as the Allen County Economic Development Alliance and the Greater Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce.

“Tim is an excellent advocate for northeast Indiana and has a passion for policy – both at the local and state level,” Indiana Chamber President and CEO Kevin Brinegar says.

Dow reaches deal on Michigan pollution

Dow Chemical Co. has agreed to fund environmental restoration projects worth an estimated $77 million to compensate for decades of pollution by its plant in Midland, Michigan, officials said Friday.

A deal between the company and government agencies calls for improvements to fish and wildlife habitats tainted by dioxins and other hazardous substances from Dow's manufacturing complex in its headquarters city of Midland. The chemical giant also will pay for new public recreation areas with trails, fishing platforms and boating launches.

Report: 40% surge in global billionaires

There are more billionaires than ever before, their ranks surging 40% in five years, according to UBS's 2019 Billionaire Insights report released Friday.

The world's 2,100 billionaires saw their fortunes swell 34.5% from 2013 to 2018 to $8.5 trillion. But 2018 was a losing year for most, thanks to global trade friction and stock market volatility. They lost a combined $388 billion.

Tech billionaires bucked that trend, growing their wealth by 3.4%, or $1.3 trillion, in 2018, according to the report.

Sears, Kmart parent to close more stores

The owner of Sears and Kmart is closing almost a third of its remaining stores just months after buying the struggling retailer out of bankruptcy.

Transform Holdco's shutdown of 96 locations will leave just 182 outlets for the company, which was once America's biggest department store chain.

The merchant “has faced a difficult retail environment and other challenges” and is “pruning operations that have struggled due to increased competition and other factors,” Transform said in astatement.

Gap CEO leaves, outlook lowered

Gap CEO Art Peck has stepped down as the company struggles to turn around a long-standing sales slump.

The San Francisco retailer also lowered its earnings outlook for the year as sales at the Gap, Banana Republic and Old Navy fell in the most recent quarter. The company's stock tumbled 7% to $16.75; shares were trading around $41 when Peck took the CEO spot in early 2015.