China fund and KKR drop talks to buy into Yum China; ‘Pac Man’ takeover of CJ-owner’s tough to swallow, and another Taco Cantina on the way

A news summary focused on big employers; updated 3:09 p.m.

tacobell-restaurant
The first Taco Bell Cantina in Chicago; next up is in Berkeley, Calif.

YUM: A consortium led by sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corp. and private equity firm KKR has ended talks to buy a stake in Yum’s 7,205-restaurant China unit, partly over Yum’s unwillingness to give up majority control because of the negative tax implications that would pose (Reuters).

GANNETT: Tribune Publishing’s defensive “Pac-Man” takeover of Courier-Journal owner Gannett would be a mouthful (New York Times). Meanwhile, Gannett’s unsolicited bid for Tribune got more personal yesterday, with each company calling out the other’s leaders by name and questioning management’s decision-making (Chicago Tribune).

TACO BELL is planning one of its next new Cantinas for Berkeley, Calif., across from San Francisco. The new formats, which target urban millennials and include alcohol on the menu, were announced last fall for Chicago and San Francisco (San Francisco Eater). The San Francisco Cantina is still alcohol-free — “no beer, no sangria, none of the boozy Mountain Dew slushies that they serve at the flagship Cantina in downtown Chicago,” thanks to a liquor license dispute with the neighbors (SF Eater, too). Taco Bell last week announced plans for four new upscale concept restaurants in Southern California.

KFC: That chicken-flavored nail polish the Internet fell in love with was a one-off by a Hong Kong franchisee; it won’t be sold company-wide. “As a brand strategy, it’s not something we will pursue,” Yum China CEO Micky Pant said in an interview yesterday after the fast food giant’s annual shareholder meeting in Louisville (Courier-Journal). Meanwhile, a video about the polish has gone viral, racking up nearly 231,000 views:

CHURCHILL DOWNS: Two horses have died today in separate incidents after races leading up to this afternoon’s Preakness Stakes (WDRB).

UPS will invest $177 million expanding its distribution hub in Columbus, Ohio, creating 75 jobs on top of the 748 employees already there (Columbus Business First).

PIZZA HUT: New Orleans police arrested a man for doing something very naughty on a mattress behind a Pizza Hut restaurant (Times-Picayune).

In other news, the Westport Village shopping center has been sold to Atlanta-based Hendon Properties for $23.8 million (Courier-Journal). The center at night, below:

Westport Village Shopping Center

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