Business news briefs
Dell is trying to soothe shareholders about its proposed $24.4 billion acquisition by a group led by its founder, saying managers considered a number of options before agreeing to the buyout. Dell's statement comes three days after a major shareholder ridiculed the plan as a rotten deal that undervalues the computer giant.
A pair of mustachioed pizza makers - visible from behind a glass display at a new Domino's store in Seattle - tossed dough into the air as corporate executives looked on. The chain calls the concept "pizza theater," because customers can watch their orders being made. The new look is part of a four-year-long effort to boost carryout business.
gas fracking not
Germany's environment minister says he doesn't expect natural gas "fracking" to start any time soon in Europe's biggest economy. Shale gas is located underground across Europe, but environmental concerns are widespread. "Fracking" frees natural gas by injecting wells with chemically treated water and sand. Critics say it can pollute groundwater.
Karen Mills, who led the Small Business Administration as it focused on helping small companies recover from the Great Recession, is leaving the post she's held for four years. Mills, a former investment banker, won high marks for her efforts to increase lending to small businesses.
AOL posts first
in eight years
AOL Inc., the Web publisher that owns the Huffington Post, reported its first sales gain in eight years. Fourth-quarter sales rose 3.9 percent from a year ago to $599.5 million. The growth came from AOL's third-party ad sales business, which helps Web publishers sell ad space.