Morning Roundup: FEI sells; Cascade Locks extends water battle

In today’s news, FEI sells, while Cascade Locks keeps up the fight.

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Another one bites the dust. FEI Co., Oregon’s high-performane electron microscope manufacturer, has sold to Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. for $4.2 billion. Although the deal requires shareholder approval, it should close in early 2017. FEI, one of the few publicly traded companies headquartered in Oregon, employs more than 3,000 employees worldwide, with $930 million in revenue last year. If the sale is approved, FEI will join the analytical instruments segment of Thermo Fisher, which is based in Waltham, Mass. The Portland Business Journal has more. 

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And another icon dismantles. Since its sale to Golden Gate Capital in 2006, Norm Thompson has shifted its employees away from Oregon. The iconic retailer closed its call center in Hillsboro in 2007, and earlier, this week, announced it was shuttering its Hillsboro headquarters. That office employs 82 employees, only 13 of which have a guaranteed job at a satellite office near the closing HQ. Read more from The Oregonian.


Nike, boats and efficiency.  Beaverton-based Nike announced yesterday another expansion in Europe: a new distribution center to be constructed on the company’s  European Logistics Campus in Belgium. The new facility will be largely served by a network of canals to drastically reduce truck deliveries, as well as increase recycling and will operate from 100 percent renewable energy. Read more here.

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Detroit drought. Businesses relying on Detroit Lake are in for a bumpy ride this summer. Unlike last year — when water levels dropped to the lowest recorded — the reservoir is starting the season in better shape, but a hot and dry summer forecast means the reservoir is likely to drop from the already-low water levels. Those businesses reliant on the reservoir fought to stay in business this season, another dry summer can’t help. The Statesman Journal has more. 

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Water wars, continued. Despite a 69 percent vote in favor of essentially blocking the Nestle bottling plant in Cascade Locks, the Gorge city is not giving up the fight. Nestle has spent years trying to build a bottling plant in the small city, and doesn’t intend to stop trying, as OPB reports. Longtime supporter Cascade Locks may try to invoke home rule, but the burg’s ability to pull this off is unclear. Read more from OPB.



Takata recall. Faulty airbags from Japan’s Takata Corp resulted in eight automakers issuing a recall today for more than 12 million U.S. vehicles. With too much force, Takata found the airbags can explode and spray metal shrapnel — the possibility has already been linked to 13 deaths and more than 100 injuries. The largest recalls come from Honda and Fiat, with 4.5 million and 4.3 million recalls respectively. Reuters has more.