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Business news in brief

In the Region

OSHA cites N.J. manufacturer

United Hospital Supply Corp., a family-run Burlington Township company that makes and designs metal cabinets and furniture for laboratories and offices, faces a proposed fine of $181,500 for 21 worker health and safety violations - most of them serious and repeated, the U.S. Labor Department's Occupational and Safety and Health Administration said Monday. "The willful and repeat violations cited during these latest inspections were identified in 2010 at United Health Supply Corp.'s facility," Paula Dixon-Roderick, OSHA's area director in Marlton, said in a statement. "In the last five years, the company has shown plain indifference by not implementing or maintaining corrective actions to address these hazards." Matt Lyons, president of the company, which markets its products under the names Lab Design and Fenco, said, "We disagree with these findings." He said the company addressed OSHA's complaints in 2010 and will also do so this time. Citations, issued Nov. 19 after inspections May 27 and June 9, noted electrical hazards, unguarded machinery, lack of hand protection, and improperly screened welding stations exposing workers to hazardous ultraviolet light. - Jane M. Von Bergen

Developer scraps demolition

Nashville-based Southern Land Co. has canceled its request to demolish the 1855-vintage Rittenhouse Coffee Shop building at 1904 Sansom St. as part of its plan for a mixed-use tower project. Southern Land attorney Neil Sklaroff said in a letter to the Philadelphia Historical Commission on Monday that it was withdrawing its application to designate the coffee shop's preservation as a hardship. The company is still seeking clearance to demolish two other historically protected structures, the Warwick apartment building and the Oliver Bair funeral home, it said Friday. - Jacob Adelman

Fresh Market coming to Phila.

Fresh Market, a specialty grocery chain with stores in Glen Mills and Horsham, is opening its first Philadelphia location in early 2016 on Germantown Avenue in Chestnut Hill, in a former car dealership. To fill 90 openings, the grocery chain, specializing in fresh meats, seafood, fruits, and vegetables, is holding a career day at the Hilton on City Avenue on Dec. 2 between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. Job seekers attending must apply online at before the event. The Greensboro, N.C., chain operates 182 stores in 27 states. - Bob Fernandez

WSFS buying Penn Liberty

WSFS Financial Corp. said Monday it is acquiring Penn Liberty Financial Corp., owner of Wayne-based Penn Liberty Bank, for about $101 million. Under the terms of the agreement, which has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies, Penn Liberty shareholders will be entitled to elect to receive either 0.6601 shares of WSFS common stock or $21.75 in cash for each common share of Penn Liberty they hold. Pending regulatory approval, the banks expect the deal to close by September 2016. Penn Liberty, which has assets of $651 million, operates 11 customer branches in Chester and Montgomery Counties. Wilmington-based WSFS Bank is the oldest and largest local bank in Delaware; it was founded in 1832 and has $5.4 billion in assets and 63 branches in Delaware (44), Pennsylvania (17), Virginia (1), and Nevada (1). After the deal closes, Patrick Ward, chairman and CEO of Penn Liberty, will join the WSFS board and become executive vice president and Pennsylvania market president. Brian Zwaan, Penn Liberty's chief operating officer and chief lending officer, will also join WSFS as senior vice president of Pennsylvania commercial banking. - Inquirer staff report


Petco chain sold for $4.6B

The private-equity owners of Petco Animal Supplies have reached a $4.6 billion deal to sell the San Diego-based food and supplies retail chain to CVC Capital Partners and the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board, Petco officials said Monday. CVC, a private-equity group, and the Canadian pension fund beat a joint offer from buyout firms KKR & Co. and Hellman & Friedman, as well as a bid by Apollo Global Management. Petco has been owned by TPG Capital and Leonard Green & Partners since it was taken private in 2006 in a $1.8 billion debt-leveraged buyout. In August, Petco told the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission it was considering an initial public offering. The company reported net income of $75 million in its latest fiscal year on revenue of $4 billion. - San Diego Union-Tribune

Madoff's aides get a break

U.S. prosecutors dropped their bid to boost the prison terms for five of Bernard Madoff's ex-employees, who received "merciful" sentences after being convicted of aiding his $17.5 billion fraud. The sentences for the group, Madoff's top aides, ranged from 21/2 years to 10 years, less than half the time sought by the government. In a notice filed Monday in federal appeals court in New York, the government did not explain why it was abandoning its effort. The U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan declined to comment. Madoff was arrested in December 2008, pleaded guilty, and is serving a sentence of 150 years in jail. - Bloomberg News