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Archive for Saturday, December 11, 2004

Briefcase

December 11, 2004

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Serologicals to offer 4.2 million shares

Serologicals Corp., a maker of specialty biological products for health-care companies, said this week that it would offer 4.2 million of its common shares for sale to the public, plus up to an additional 630,000 shares to cover over-allotments.

The company -- which has a manufacturing plant in Lawrence's East Hills Business Park -- expects to use proceeds from the sale to repay existing term debt and for general corporate purposes, including acquisitions.

Serologicals shares closed Friday at $23.30, down 2 cents, on the Nasdaq National Market.

Apartments

AIMCO aiming for student market

The company that owns Naismith Hall just off the Kansas University campus is the new owner of a luxury apartment complex near Duke University Medical Center.

Apartment Investment and Management Co. (AIMCO) announced Friday that it had paid $31.4 million for a 312-unit complex in Durham, N.C.

AIMCO made the purchase in conjunction with a joint venture partner, the California State Teachers' Retirement System. The partnership is using a $225 million equity fund established to invest in student-oriented properties.

Among the partnerhsip's investments: Naismith Hall, a private residence hall at 1800 Naismith Drive, across the street from KU's Oliver Hall.

Aviation

Boeing lands leases for Venezuelan airline

Venezuela's new state airline Conviasa will start operations next month with an initial $10 million investment for flights to South America and the Caribbean using leased Boeing aircraft, a government official said Friday.

Venezuelan Production Minister Wilmar Castro told state news agency Venpres that Conviasa would start flights with four leased Boeing Co. 737s and 700s.

Castro said the airline planned to expand international flights to Europe using two Boeing 767 aircraft in June 2005, adding that the airline aimed to create an initial fleet of 12 aircraft for domestic and international routes.

Wall Street

Stocks edge lower on economic worries

Investors' concerns over the economy and potential inflation outweighed a sharp drop in oil prices, sending stocks slightly lower Friday. All three major indexes were lower for the week as Wall Street's customary year-end rally stalled.

Wall Street was rattled somewhat by the Labor Department's latest Producer Price Index report, which measures wholesale prices. The PPI rose 0.5 percent in November, far less than October's 1.7 percent rise, but still a troublesome indicator of possible inflation.

The University of Michigan's latest consumer sentiment index reading helped keep the market's losses minimal, as the index rose to 95.7 from 92.8 in November. Economists had expected a reading of 93.2, and the index's gains bode well for increased holiday spending.

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