LOCAL BUSINESS

Crisis topics covered

Bruce Hennes, managing partner of Hennes Paynter Communications in Cleveland, will talk about crisis communications at 6:30 p.m. April 15 at at the Hudson Library & Historical Society as part of its winter/spring 2013 Entrepreneurship Series.

Hennes will focus on communicating during a wide variety of situations. Current and former clients of Hennes Paynter Communications include Case Western Reserve University, John Carroll University, Akron General Health System, KeyBank, Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, NASA and Westfield Insurance.

Register online at hudsonlibrary.org or call 330-653-6658. The library is at 96 Library St. in the First & Main shopping complex.

Warren plant to remain

General Electric Lighting’s Ravenna lamp plant will close next year while the company’s similar factory in Warren has a tentative agreement that would keep the facility there open.

The Record Courier newspaper in Portage County reported that GE Lighting’s Ravenna lamp plant, where 164 people work, will be closed no sooner than Jan. 24, 2014. The decision does not affect a distribution center in Ravenna where 40 people work.

The Warren factory, with 179 hourly workers, would remain open under a tentative agreement worked out between the company and the union representing the workers.

General Electric in January announced it planned to close both factories in early 2014 because of dwindling demand for the type of high intensity lighting made there. Local, state and federal officials began talking with the company to try to keep the two facilities open.

The Youngstown Vindicator reported that GE Lighting and IUE-CWA Local 722 have a preliminary deal that includes cost-cutting measures at the Warren lamp plant and switching to making more energy-efficient bulbs. Union members will need to ratify the agreement.

SOCIAL MEDIA

Facebook has announcement

Facebook has invited reporters to the unveiling of what it calls its “new home on Android.”

Next Thursday’s event will be held at the company’s Menlo Park, Calif., headquarters. Facebook is not providing further details. There has been speculation that the company could launch a new phone, though that’s unlikely. Facebook is more likely to unveil a new Android app or some other integration into Android phones. Citing unnamed sources, the tech blog TechCrunch says Facebook will launch a modified version of Android that embeds Facebook deeply into the operating system.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Is Fisker near end?

Hybrid sports car company Fisker Automotive could be nearing the end of the road. Fisker has hired Kirkland & Ellis, a major bankruptcy law firm, to review the company’s options while it continues to seek investment partners.

Ford is defendant

Ford was sued on behalf of customers in 14 states over claims that its vehicles are subject to unintentionally accelerating and lack fail-safe measures to prevent crashes. The complaint, filed in federal court in Huntington, W. Va., claims that Ford’s electronic throttle system can take control of the accelerator and leave drivers unable to stop the vehicle. The company added a brake override system in its North American cars in 2010 that it failed to include in older-model cars, according to the complaint.

The plaintiffs seek compensation for the loss of vehicle value, contending owners paid too much for cars from 2002 to 2010 with defects. Ford is accused of knowing of the alleged defect and concealing it from consumers.

technology

Panasonic tries again

Panasonic Corp., heading for a second annual loss, will keep its unprofitable television and mobile phone operations in changes that disappointed investors expecting a quicker revamp. The reform plan “seems to lack in speed,” said Mitsushige Akino, chief fund manager at Ichiyoshi Investment Management Co. in Tokyo. Japan’s No. 2 TV maker expects to make that unit profitable by March 2016.

Forecast for eBay

EBay Inc. said it expects revenue to reach $21.5 billion to $23.5 billion in 2015, up from $14.1 billion in 2012. Analysts are expecting $21.4 billion, according to FactSet. The San Jose, Calif.-based company expects adjusted earnings per share to grow by 15 to 19 percent from 2012 to 2015.

Compiled from staff and wire reports