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Business news in brief

In the Region

Comcast and MSG Network?

Comcast Corp. or Twenty First Century Fox Inc. might be interested in buying MSG Network and MSG+, which could be for sale as Madison Square Garden Co. splits its main business, according to Brandon Ross, an analyst for BTIG in New York. MSG chairman James Dolan plans to cut the $6.4 billion company into two pieces: the sports franchises and entertainment venues on one side, and the regional sports television networks on the other. For Philadelphia's Comcast, Ross said, it would be the next logical move after acquiring Time Warner Cable Inc., which owns two RSNs in another big market, Los Angeles. Comcast is still awaiting approval of the Time Warner takeover. - Bloomberg News

Hedge fund challenges Shire

Kyle Bass, founder of Hayman Capital Management, is expanding his campaign against drug companies. Shire P.L.C., which has a facility in Chesterbrook, is the newest target of the hedge-fund manager's strategy to challenge drug patents, according to filings with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Bass is challenging patents on Lialda and Gattex, according to the filings, which together would have made up 12 percent of Shire's revenue in 2014. "A small minority of drug companies are abusing the patent system to sustain invalid patents that contain no meaningful innovations, but serve to maintain their anticompetitive high-price monopoly," Bass wrote in an e-mail. Stephanie Fagan, a spokeswoman for Shire, said in an e-mail statement: "Shire is confident that the validity of our patents will be upheld." - Bloomberg News


Commerzbank settles

Commerzbank A.G., Germany's second-largest bank, won court approval of its $1.45 billion deal to defer prosecution for violating U.S. sanctions on doing business with Iran and Sudan. The bank and its New York unit accepted three years of compliance monitoring as part of the agreement with the Justice Department. The deferred prosecution deal signed last month by bank officials and lawyers for both sides was accepted Friday by U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell in Washington. - Bloomberg News

Medtronic settles suit

Medtronic has agreed to pay $4.4 million to settle a lawsuit filed by the federal government accusing the company of selling medical devices made in China and Malaysia to the U.S. military. Federal law requires that devices sold to the military be manufactured in the United States or its international trading partners. Minnesota U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger alleged Medtronic bought spinal-surgery devices in China and relabeled them to indicate they had been manufactured in Memphis, Tenn. - AP