Business & Finance
Christopher Galvin resigned as Motorola's chairman and chief executive Friday. Galvin, a grandson of Motorola's founder, cited differences with the board on the "pace, strategy, and progress" of a stalled restructuring that's seen 60,000 jobs cut in three years. Motorola is the world's No. 2 cellphone manufacturer and a leading maker of semiconductors.
Ford reversed a decision to close an assembly plant in suburban St. Louis, preserving 2,600 jobs through at least 2007, Missouri Gov. Bob Holden (D) said Friday. Instead, the automaker agreed to shut a smaller facility in Lorain, Ohio, as part of its tentative contract with the United Auto Workers Union. General Motors, meanwhile, won permission to close a Baltimore plant in mid-2005, The Washington Post reported. It produces Chevrolet Astro and GMC Safari vans and employs 1,100 workers.
Interstate Bakeries Corp., the maker of Twinkies pastries and Wonder bread, is considering closing a "a handful" of its 58 plants after an almost 60 percent drop in first-quarter earnings from the same period last year, The Kansas City Star reported. The figure was still better than analysts expected. Sales of Twinkies and other treats made by the company were off 6.6 percent, and its breads were down 7.2 percent.
Bankrupt Global Crossing Ltd., the world's largest high-speed fiber-optic network, now may be sold to Singapore Technologies Telemedia, President Bush ruled. In a letter to congressional leaders Friday, he said he'd take no action to suspend or prohibit the Singapore government-owned company from acquiring 61.5 percent of Global Crossing for a reported $250 million. Global Crossing, once worth tens of billions, collapsed under massive debts in January 2002. Originally, the Singapore company was to have been a partner with Hutchison Whampoa of Hong Kong, a conglomerate controlled by tycoon Li Ka-shing. But Li is suspected of having close ties to China's communist government and to the People's Liberation Army, and the proposed takeover of Global Crossing prompted concerns over the wisdom of an American company being operated by his group, especially since Global Crossing had contracts to carry State and Defense Department data. In the end, Singapore Technologies Telemedia agreed to pay the full takeover price itself.