SC business notebook

March 5, 2013 

Ralcorp scoops Frito-Lay

A jury has sided with a St. Louis company in its battle with Frito-Lay over bowl-shaped tortilla chips. Frito-Lay sued St. Louis-based Ralcorp Holdings in February 2012 in U.S. District Court in Dallas, claiming Ralcorp and its Medallion Foods subsidiary infringed on intellectual property rights by making Bowlz corn chips, a product similar to Frito-Lay’s Tostitos Scoops! chips. Frito-Lay was seeking $4.5 million in damages. But on Friday, the jury sided with Ralcorp and Medallion and gave Frito-Lay no money. A spokesman for Frito-Lay says the company is disappointed and considering whether to appeal.

HSBC selling portfolios of U.S. loans

HSBC, Europe’s largest bank, is selling two portfolios containing U.S. consumer and homeowner loans for about $3.2 billion in cash as it looks to minimize its exposure in the country. HSBC has been selling assets as part of its plan to improve profitability and shore up capital. Last year it completed the sale of its U.S. card business to Capital One for $2.6 billion. The two portfolios are being sold to SpringCastle Acquisition LLC, which is owned by consumer finance company Springleaf Finance Inc. and real estate investment trust Newcastle Investment Corp. The transaction includes more than 400,000 personal homeowner loans and personal unsecured loans originated mainly through HSBC Finance Corp. The sale will close in the second quarter.

The Associated Press contributed.

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