Amazon sweetens Prime Day with extra-speedy delivery; no criminal charges in Edsel Ford II’s domestic violence arrest; and KFC India says ‘friendship utni kamal ki hoti hai!’

A news summary, focused on 10 big employers; updated 10:01 a.m.

AMAZON customers in more than 25 U.S. metro areas will be able to get near-immediate delivery of more than 500 items during the e-commerce giant’s second annual Prime Day, a 24-hour extravaganza of extra savings over the retailer’s usual discounts set for July 12. Louisville isn’t one of the eligible cities; the closest is Cincinnati. 😦 Amazon also announced yesterday that first-time Prime Now customers will get $10 off their order when they use the 10PRIMENOW promotional code on orders placed between today and July 12. They will also receive another code later for another $10 off Prime Orders placed later in the month (Cnet and press release).

Prime Day is a big deal in Louisville. The retailer employs 6,000 workers in the Louisville area at mammoth distribution centers in Jeffersonville, and in Bullitt County’s Shepherdsville. Plus, one of Amazon’s biggest shippers is UPS; with 22,000 workers at its Louisville International Airport hub, it’s the city’s single-biggest private employer.

FORD family scion and director Edsel Ford II won’t face criminal charges after being arrested for suspected misdemeanor domestic violence involving his wife Monday night at their Grosse Point Farms home, according to several news media reports this morning. 

Edsel Ford II
Edsel Ford

Ford, 67, great-grandson of founder Henry Ford, spent the night in jail after his arrest, but was released yesterday after the city prosecutor’s decision to not bring charges, according to the Detroit Free Press. He was arrested at about 11:30 p.m. Monday after police were called to the suburban Detroit home he shares with wife Cynthia Ford; alcohol was involved.

Late last night, Cynthia Ford issued a statement denying the incident amounted to domestic violence. “I stand behind true victims of domestic violence and I am not one of them,” she said, the Free Press said in a separate story. “My husband and I ask that you respect our privacy and that of our family. We are working in the right direction to heal from this experience and move forward.”

Cynthia Ford
Cynthia Ford

There was evidence of an altercation between the Fords, enough for police to make an arrest, according to ABC News. But Public Safety Director Daniel Jensen told reporters the assault “was very minor.”

“There was no knock-down, drag-out battle here. But hands were placed,” Jensen said. “That takes it from the level of a verbal assault to a physical assault.”

Detective Lt. Rich Rosati, noting there were no other witnesses or any obvious injuries, said the Fords were “treated exactly as any other family is treated in a similar situation. They were given no greater nor lesser rights, privileges and/or responsibilities than any other person similarly situated.”

State court records indicate Edsel Ford filed for divorce in April, but the case was dismissed May 25. Full news coverage.

Last year, the automaker paid Ford $915,609 in fees — far more than any other director. That included $650,000 under a 1999 consulting agreement he has with the company, apparently prompting considerable pushback by shareholders electing directors this year.

In other Ford news, the automaker filed plans with Metro Louisville regulators detailing its next round of work on a previously announced $2.4 billion expansion of the Kentucky Truck Plant at Chamberlain Lane and Westport Road. The project, announced in December, will be completed over the next four years and add about 2,000 jobs (Courier-Journal).

Ford opened the factory in 1969 and now employs about 5,100 workers there, producing F-250 and F-550 Super Duty pickups, plus Expeditions, and Lincoln Navigators. The automaker employs another 4,700 at the Louisville Assembly Plant at 2000 Fern Valley Road, south of Louisville International Airport, where it builds Escapes and Lincoln MKCs there. More about Ford’s history in Louisville.

Also today, Ford’s public relations department announced another GT supercar development under a headline that screams: “FORD GT COLOR, MATERIAL CHOICES ARE INTENTIONAL, PURPOSEFUL; CUSTOMIZATION OPTIONS ALLOW OWNER’S PERSONALITY TO SHINE” (press release).

KFC‘s India unit is starting a promotional campaign with a new take on the bond of friendship for the launch of the fast-food chicken chain’s Friendship Bucket meals (Brand Equity). The ad includes the Hindi “dost jitney alag hote hain, friendship utni kamal ki hoti hai!”which translates to: “jitney friends are different, as the lotus is friendship!” Watch the TV commercial, top of this pageHere’s KFC India’s YouTube page.

In Louisville KFC news, Courier-Journal staffers picked their seven favorite fried-chicken restaurants, and KFC was nowhere to be found. Intern Allana Barefield went for Big Momma’s Soul Food Kitchen at 4532 W. Broadway. “Order your food to-go or you can sit and eat,” she says. “Food is always fresh. Texture is good and crispy. Drooling over the food. It’s a difficult decision on what to get for your sides” (Courier-Journal).

BROWN-FORMAN: The founding Brown family once more ranked No. 20 on Forbes magazine newest list of the wealthiest U.S. families, with $12.3 billion, including stock in the company and other investments; that was the family’s same rank a year ago. Forbes estimates about 25 family members share that fortune. This year, the Browns are bracketed by the No. 19 Sacklers ($13 billion); their 20 family members’ fortune comes from the popular painkiller drug OxyContin. And at No. 21 and $12 billion, three Marshalls of Great Northern Oil Co. Seven Waltons of Walmart retained their No. 1 spot with $130 billion. This was the third year for the list. All 25  fortunes on the list were started by a previous generation, and editors didn’t include self-made entrepreneurs who founded their companies and already appear with their nuclear family on the magazine’s Forbes 400 list (Forbes).

In other news, Gov. Matt Bevin today announced plans to eliminate or revise some of the state’s 4,500 business regulations (Courier-Journal). Highlands favorite The Joy Luck Chinese restaurant is officially opening a second location today in the East End, at 9850 Von Allmen Court.

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