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The Journal Gazette

Tuesday, June 12, 2018 1:00 am

Briefs

Germans add CEO to Audi probe

Staff, news services

FRANKFURT, Germany – German prosecutors say they have expanded their investigation into manipulation of emissions controls at Volkswagen's Audi division to include Audi's CEO, Rupert Stadler.

Munich prosecutors said Stadler's private residence was searched Monday along with that of another division manager whose name was not released.

A statement issued Monday said that Stadler was being investigated on suspicion of fraud and indirect improprieties with documents. The addition of the two executives brings to 20 the number of people under suspicion.

The probe of Stadler focuses on cars sold in Europe that were believed to be equipped with software that turned emissions controls off during regular driving. Volkswagen has pleaded guilty to criminal charges in the United States, and nine managers, including former CEO Martin Winterkorn, were charged there. Two are serving prison terms; Winterkorn and the others remained in Germany and are unlikely to be extradited.

Audi said in a statement that “we are cooperating with the authorities” in the probe.

USG investors agree to Knauf takeover

German building materials maker Knauf is buying American building products maker USG in an approximately $7 billion deal.

Gebr. Knauf KG will pay $44 per USG share. That includes $43.50 per share in cash payable once the transaction closes and a special dividend of 50 cents per share that would be paid after shareholders approve the deal.

Berkshire Hathaway and its subsidiaries, which own about 31 percent of USG's outstanding stock, have agreed to vote in favor of the transaction.

USG will keep its headquarters in Chicago, and the deal is expected to close early next year.

Lake City adding 6th Indianapolis branch

Lake City Bank is opening its sixth office in Indianapolis, officials announced Monday. The anticipated opening is in early fall.

The office will be downtown at 101 W. Ohio St. Lake City Bank signs will be placed at the top of the building's east and west facades.

Warsaw-based Lake City opened a regional headquarters in Indianapolis in 2011. That office is at 96th and Meridian streets. The newest office will be the bank's 50th.

IHOP change to IHOb is to hawk burgers

IHOP, which teased a name change to IHOb this month, says the “b'' is to promote its burger menu.

The pancake chain has been coy about whether the name flip is permanent, saying Monday that it was “for the time being.” Pressed for details, the company would not give an end date for IHOb but referred to the “tongue-in-cheek name change” and said it was tied to the summer burger promotion.

The company known for breakfast already had burgers on the menu but is adding a line made of Black Angus ground beef. It started using the IHOb name on social media, on its website and for in-store promotions.

The hints of a name change had spurred guesses on social media – and some disappointment Monday at what was revealed. Others were concerned that the pancakes would disappear: “No need to worry, the pancakes aren't going anywhere!” IHOP reassured customers on Twitter.