Thursday, May 22, 2003

Tristate summary



From staff and wire reports

Convergys in Philippines

Convergys Wednesday said it would open two integrated contact centers in Manila, Philippines.

Construction is under way, and the first employees will be in the building in less than two months. When the buildings reach their capacity of about 880 workstations, Convergys will have one of the largest, multiclient, American-owned operations in the Philippines.

Full employment at the new contact centers is expected in 12 to 14 months. Convergys will be providing technical help desk services along with customer support programs 24 hours a day for Fortune 1000 companies.

Another suitor for store chain

Dayton, Ohio-based Elder-Beerman Stores Corp., the department-store chain that's in talks to be acquired, by a company, might receive an all-cash offer from another: a development firm interested in expanding the retailer.

EB Acquisition Ltd. said it's prepared to make an offer at an undisclosed premium to Elder-Beerman's current share price. No formal offer has been made, said Erin Caffrey Braun, an outside spokeswoman for EB Acquisition.

Elder-Beerman said last week that it entered into an agreement with an undisclosed company and had received several unsolicited inquiries into whether it was for sale.

EB Acquisition, led by developer Daniel Summers, said it would keep Elder-Beerman's headquarters and employees in Dayton and consider expanding. Elder-Beerman had a net loss of $14.2 million in the year ended Feb. 1, the third straight money-losing year.

AFG to sell convertibles

American Financial Group Inc. plans to offer $150 million in unsecured convertible notes in a private offering, it said late Tuesday.

AFG, the holding company for the financial interests of Reds owner Carl Lindner, will use the money to repay debt and support operations. The notes will be convertible into AFG common shares and will be due in 2033.



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