J.C. Penney ( JCP) plans to announce Wednesday it will buy a 16.6% stake in Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia ( MSO) for about $38.5 million, The New York Times reported, citing people briefed on the matter. The company also will receive two seats on the Martha Stewart board. J.C. Penney, as part of a 10-year partnership, plans to introduce ministores and a revamped online presence dedicated to the Martha Stewart brand beginning in February 2013, the people told the newspaper. Martha Stewart Living shares were surging 37.8% to $4.30 in premarket trading Wednesday.
Yahoo! ( YHOO) has requested more information and better terms from potential buyers of a minority stake in the Internet company as the board weighs a variety of proposals, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Discussions with private-equity-led bidders have progressed since offers for about 20% of Yahoo! were submitted last week, the people said. Yahoo! is evaluating a bid of $16.60 a share led by Silver Lake Partners and a competing proposal from TPG Capital . A separate offer for Yahoo!'s stakes in two Asian companies is also on the table, people familiar with the matter told the newspaper. Yahoo!'s directors currently see the private-equity offers as less than ideal, partly because they put a lower premium on Yahoo!'s shares than the board would like, the people said. Yahoo! shares were up 0.8% to $15.96.
Citigroup ( C) plans to cut 4,500 jobs in coming quarters, and will record a fourth-quarter charge of $400 million related to the job reductions. Reports had suggested the bank would lay off at least 3,000 workers as part of broader efforts to cut expenses. It is targeting an annual reduction of 3% to 5% of its expenses. Shares were up 0.2% to $29.80.
Men's Wearhouse ( MW), the men's apparel retailer, earned $39.9 million, or 77 cents a share, in the third quarter on sales of $584.6 million, up 6.3% from last year. Adjusted earnings were 79 cents a share. Analysts expected profit of 65 cents a share in the third quarter on sales of $570.9 million. Men's Wearhouse forecast an adjusted loss of 12 cents to 15 cents a share for its fiscal fourth quarter ending in January, slightly wider than the current consensus view for a loss of 11 cents.
Cablevision Systems ( CVC) is suing Verizon Communications ( VZ) for allegedly running false advertisements claiming that a Federal Communications Commission study shows Cablevision's high speed Internet deliveries are slower than advertised during peak hours.
Delta ( DAL) will pay $100 million for a minority stake in Brazilian airline Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes.
Garden products company Scotts Miracle-Gro ( SMG) expects poorer first-quarter earnings and sales. Sales for the period are expected to decline about $30 million from the same quarter a year ago. The adjusted net loss in the quarter is expected to range from $70 million to $75 million, or about $1.20 to $1.25 a share. That compares with a net loss of $65.6 million, or 99 cents a share, in the comparable period a year ago. The company reiterated its top-line growth forecast of at least 6% in 2012. -- Written by Joseph Woelfel and Andrea Tse >To contact the writer of this article, click here: Andrea Tse.