The Massachusetts Restaurant Association lashes out at Gov. Patrick’s plan to raise the sales tax on meals; HarborOne Credit Union’s earnings are up 23%; State Street’s equity fund grows by 60%; Sovereign shareholders approve the sale to Banco Santander; Home Depot shutters its 34-store Expo Design Center chain; job losses at Analogic Corp.; and nominations are open for the Massachusetts Alliance for International Business awards.
Restaurant group criticizes tax plan
BOSTON – The Massachusetts Restaurant Association lashed out at Gov. Deval Patrick’s plan to raise the sales tax on meals from 5 percent to 6 percent and allow municipalities the option to levy a new 1 percent meals tax.
Peter Christie, the trade group’s CEO, said the tax singles out restaurants at a time when they can least afford it. The trade group says restaurant operators have been struggling to survive in the current recession, and this change would make it tougher for them.
Earnings up 23% at HarborOne Credit
BROCKTON – HarborOne Credit Union reported that it earned $7.2 million in 2008, an increase of 23 percent from 2007. Meanwhile, the Brockton-based credit union’s assets grew by 12 percent to end the year at $1.7 billion.
Equity fund grows 60% at State Street
BOSTON – State Street Corp. said its assets under administration by its private equity fund team grew by 60 percent last year. State Street now provides fund administration services for 400 private equity funds with more than $138 billion in assets. State Street said private equity firms often look to third-party administrators such as State Street to outsource and cut costs during a slowdown in financial markets.
Shareholders OK Sovereign sale
BOSTON – Sovereign Bancorp Inc. shareholders approved on Wednesday the sale of the bank to the company’s largest minority shareholder, Spain’s Banco Santander. The deal, which was valued at $1.9 billion when it was announced in October, is scheduled to close on Friday. Gabriel Jaramillo, a veteran executive with Santander, is scheduled to become the new CEO of Sovereign once the deal is completed. Jaramillo will work out of Sovereign’s Boston offices.
Home Depot closing Expo Design chain
BURLINGTON – Home Depot is closing its 34-store Expo Design Center chain as part of an effort to cut 7,000 jobs. The only Expo store in this state is in Burlington; the former Expo store in Braintree has been converted to a Cardi’s furniture store. Home Depot said the Expo chain was not a strong business even during the housing boom, and it has weakened significantly during the current recession.
Analogic cutting 140 positions
PEABODY – Analogic Corp. plans to cut 140 positions or 9 percent of its global work force. The Peabody-based medical imaging technology company said it is cutting the jobs as part of a broader effort to save about $9.6 million annually.
Nominations sought for trade awards
BOSTON – The Massachusetts Alliance for International Business is seeking nominations for its annual trade achievement awards. The awards recognize Massachusetts companies, institutions or individuals who display leadership in international trade-related activities. The nomination form is available at aimnet.org/maib.
Patriot Ledger staff