SC business notebook, May 28

May 28, 2014 

Doug Seidenstricker pours beer at the Old Mill Brewery in Lexington.

TRACY GLANTZ — tglantz@thestate.com Buy Photo

Craft breweries deal should bring major brewer to state

A compromise on a bill that could mean a spending and infrastructure bonanza for craft breweries in South Carolina will likely pass this year and will bring a major California-based craft brewer to the state, lawmakers said Tuesday. Sen. Luke Rankin, R-Conway, said at a House-Senate conference committee meeting that he had been told by Commerce Secretary Bobby Hitt that Stone Brewery, a large, popular craft brewer, would expand its operations to the state if the bill is passed. Senators said that Stone is looking at the Greenville, Spartanburg and Charleston areas. A company spokeswoman, however, said the brewer has not decided on a location. The bill that would ease restrictions on craft brewers is a game-changer for the fledgling artisan brewing industry in the state.

Bank of America resubmits capital plan to Federal Reserve

Bank of America has resubmitted its capital plan to the Federal Reserve, a month after it discovered errors in its initial report and was forced to suspend a bigger dividend payout and a stock buyback. Shares in the bank slumped 4 percent on April 28 when it said that it had made an error in how it how it valued securities obtained in its acquisition of Merrill Lynch during the financial crisis in 2009. Bank of America had already received permission from the Fed to raise its quarterly dividend from the current 1 cent, to 5 cents per share, and to buy back $4 billion of its own shares. Those plans were put on hold when it determined that it has overestimated its capital ratios. The bank said Tuesday that changes will lead to less than a one-basis point reduction in reported capital ratios for the period ended Sept. 30, 2013, and will have no effect for the period ended March 31 of this year.

Pilgrim’s Pride makes offer to buy Hillshire Brands

Chicken producer Pilgrim’s Pride is offering to acquire fellow meat maker Hillshire Brands to create a “protein-focused” company in a deal worth $5.58 billion. The offer is contingent on Hillshire scrapping its plan to buy Pinnacle Foods, which makes Birds Eye frozen vegetables, Duncan Hines cake mixes and Hungry Man frozen dinners. Hillshire, which makes its namesake lunchmeats, Ball Park hot dogs and Jimmy Dean sausages, announced the $4.23 billion deal earlier this month as a way to expand into different parts of the supermarket.

The (Charleston) Post and Courier and The Associated Press contributed.

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