Related Content Mortgage closing costs up 6% this year The Canadian Hudson’s Bay Company is buying the high-end American retailer Saks in a deal worth nearly $3 billion, including debt. The Toronto-traded Hudson’s Bay Company already owns Lord & Taylor and a network of Hudson’s Bay department stores across Canada. This latest acquisition will see the group managing 320 stores in the U.S. and Canada. “This exciting portfolio of three iconic brands creates one of North America’s premier fashion retailers,” said HBC’s chairman and CEO Richard Baker in a written statement. “With the addition of Saks, HBC will offer consumers an unprecedented range of retailing categories and shopping experiences.” There had been rumors for the last few years that Saks would be bought out, and the buyout chatter intensified in May. Reports had surfaced saying Saks might be taken over for as much as $18 per share. In the end, Toronto-traded HBC agreed to pay $16 for each Saks share. “We believe this transaction delivers compelling value to our shareholders,” said Saks chairman and CEO Steve Sadove, in a written statement. “The $16 per share price represents an approximate 30 percent premium to the May 20 closing price, the day before media speculation (of a takeover) began.” The all-cash deal has been approved by the board of directors at both companies. The takeover is expected to be finalized before the end of the year, however, Saks was given a 40-day “go-shop period” when it is allowed to consider other takeover options. “There can be no assurance that this process will result in a superior proposal,” Saks said in a press release. HBC, which was founded in 1670, will be slashing its dividend after it closes the deal. Copyright 2013 by CNN NewSource .
New Data Concludes Wait Times for Patients With Gastrointestinal Disease Are Increasing Across Canada
Colonoscopies are among the medical tests for which professional fees face a cut of 10%. Pointing to new initial data gathered in April 2012 from the Canadian Association of Gastroenterology Survey of Access to GastroEnterology (SAGE), Desmond Leddin, Lead of the SAGE, says “a comparison of data from surveys performed in 2005 and 2008 shows that wait times for patients with gastrointestinal disease have increased across Canada.” “This CAG national survey information combined with the new fee structure in Ontario gives us cause for concern about patient safety,” says CAG President Dan Sadowski. “With evidence in hand that patient wait times have been increasing over the past seven years, we can’t support any government decision – in Ontario or elsewhere in Canada – that results in reduced access to, or longer wait times for, important medical procedures including colonoscopy, which can prevent and reduce cancer rates.” About 20,000 Canadians are diagnosed with colon cancer every year. Of that number, one-third will die of the disease. Notwithstanding these statistics, the CAG and OAG agree that cancer screening is a success story in Canada, and that prevention and early detection by access to colonoscopy is key to reducing the burden of the disease. The proof rests in the release of statistics on May 9 by the Canadian Cancer Society on the decline in deaths from colorectal cancer due to increased screening. “We have made important gains to reduce national rates of colorectal cancer through colonoscopy screening programs,” says Dan Sadowski. “We are concerned that the Ontario government’s decision to cut professional fees will have two bad outcomes. The first is that longer patient wait times will grow even longer due to a drop in access to cancer screening procedures. The second is that it may open the door to similar policy decisions in other regions in Canada. In both cases, it is the patient who will bear the brunt of these decisions.” Links: