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  • Reuters reports that Wal-Mart Stores is close to making a deal with Ahold to buy its Bompreco chain, Brazil's third-biggest retailer.

    The only holdup at this point reportedly is a court injunction that is stopping Ahold from selling both Bompreco and its smaller G. Barbosa Comercial supermarket chain to the same buyer.

    Once the legal situation is worked out - which is expected to happen in a matter of weeks - the estimated price tag for the chains is north of $400 million (US).

  • The Wall Street Journal reports this morning that Procter & Gamble (P&G) has been sued by Colgate-Palmolive for allegedly falsely disparaging its teeth whitening products in advertising. According to the WSJ, this is the fifth such lawsuit filed against P&G in the past 13 months; other plaintiffs have included Kimberly-Clark, Georgia-Pacific, Playtex Products, and a Johnson & Johnson and Merck & Co. joint venture.

    The paper notes that this marks a shift in P&G ad strategy; the company used to be a somewhat benign advertiser, but these days the company has gotten so adversarial that "the constant stream of litigation is taking a toll."

  • Bankrupt Fleming Cos. will pay its banks $325 million out of cash that it accumulated during its Chapter 11 proceedings, assuming that the bankruptcy court overseeing its case approves an agreement that Fleming reached with its creditors yesterday. According to reports, the banks had been entitled to this money months ago, but held off pressing for payment because they did not want to derail the Chapter 11 process.

    In addition, Fleming was ordered by the bankruptcy court to put $14.7 million into escrow for eventual payment to vendors.

    The only part of Fleming still operating is its Core-Mark c-store distribution business…which also is on the market.

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