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Greyhound sold to German company

FirstGroup will unload Greyhound bus for $172 million.Maranie Staab/Bloomberg


Long-distance bus operator Greyhound may be a US icon, but it’s staying in European hands after British owner FirstGroup agreed on a sale to Germany’s FlixMobility. After a years-long effort to dispose of Greyhound, FirstGroup will unload the business for $172 million, according to a statement Thursday. FlixMobility faces a challenge in transforming perceptions of intercity bus trips in the United States, where many Americans prefer to use a car or plane for long-distance travel. The sector has a reputation for grueling rides, whereas the European equivalent has taken on an eco-friendly, sharing-economy vibe, with perks such as free Wifi and electrical outlets. FlixMobility has been building a low-cost network in Europe for almost a decade and launched the FlixBus brand in the United States in 2018, linking California colleges with destinations such as Las Vegas and Disneyland before expanding to New York and Texas. BLOOMBERG NEWS



Fall River textile plant to grow

Merrow Manufacturing is expanding its Fall River factory and buying equipment with the help of a $1 million loan from MassDevelopment, as part of a project that will add 150 jobs over the next three years to the company’s 235-person workforce. Merrow, owned by brothers Charlie and Owen Merrow, is one of the biggest textile manufacturers remaining in the South Coast region. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Merrow became the largest maker of domestically sourced disposable medical isolation gowns in the country, according to MassDevelopment. — JON CHESTO


South Boston company completes move to Randolph

Amramp, a maker of modular wheelchair ramps as well as lifts and railings, has completed its headquarters move from South Boston to 358 North St. in Randolph. The company, owned by Julian Gordon, employs 60 people and expects to add up to eight jobs in shipping and installation as a result of this expansion in the coming months. The business is leasing a 64,000-square-foot facility for its corporate office, manufacturing, and call center, and it invested more than $4 million in renovations at the site. The town of Randolph offered a tax break valued at $315,000 over six years to help facilitate the move. The Boston property, meanwhile, is being repurposed for life science labs. — JON CHESTO



That Apple gift may not make it under the tree

Shoppers looking for Apple devices this holiday season are facing a chilly reality: Most everything they might want to buy will take weeks to arrive. Orders for the company’s newest products — the iPhone 13, iPad mini, ninth-generation iPad, Apple Watch Series 7, and MacBookPro — won’t be fulfilled until November or December. Even some older devices, including the iMac announced in April, the Mac Pro, and some pricier configurations of the MacBook Air, are seeing delays. BLOOMBERG NEWS


Former CIA chief to advise the super-rich about risks

Gina Haspel spent three decades at the Central Intelligence Agency, ultimately becoming its first permanent female director. Now she’s leading an effort by a US law firm to advise family offices on risks to the world’s ultra-wealthy. Haspel, along with one-time Department of Justice official Andrew Hruska, will oversee King & Spalding’s risk-advisory service, the Atlanta-based firm said Thursday in a statement. The team will work with major banks and other institutional firms to help clients assess risks to family wealth from such issues as countries of origin, regulations, and cryptocurrencies. BLOOMBERG NEWS


Volvo recalling vehicles over airbags

Volvo is recalling another 195,000 US vehicles because the front driver’s air bags could explode and send shrapnel into the cabin. It’s the company’s third US recall for the issue with air bag inflators made by supplier ZF/TRW. It stems from the death of a driver. In all, the recalls cover more than a half-million vehicles. The latest recall posted Thursday by US safety regulators covers XC70 and V70 wagons from the 2001 through 2007 model years that were built from Feb. 22, 2000 through May 4, 2007. The problem is similar to widespread trouble with air bag inflators made by bankrupt Japanese air bag maker Takata. ASSOCIATED PRESS



Facebook will pay French publishers for news

PARIS — Facebook said Thursday it has struck a deal with a group of French publishers to pay for links to their news stories that are shared by people on the social network. The company says it inked the licensing agreement with the Alliance de la Presse d’Information Generale, which represents 300 French publishers, to “improve the quality of online information for Internet users and publishers on Facebook.” The financial terms weren’t disclosed. Facebook also said it would launch in January a French version of its Facebook News product, where the group’s publishers could allow their stories to appear. The licensing deal is the result of a wider push by authorities in Europe and elsewhere to force Facebook and other social media companies to compensate publishers for content. ASSOCIATED PRESS


Flight attendants to get an extra hour of rest between shifts

US flight attendants would be guaranteed an additional hour of rest between shifts under a proposal released Thursday by aviation regulators. The action designed to lessen fatigue among airline cabin crew members was ordered by Congress, and the Federal Aviation Administration had been under growing criticism for missing a Nov. 4, 2018, deadline to adopt the changes. Most of the delay occurred under the Trump administration, which was hostile to the flight attendant unions that had sought the change and skeptical of new regulations generally. The FAA’s proposal would in most cases extend the required rest period to 10 hours from the existing nine hours under current rules, according to FAA documents. It wouldn’t change the existing rules limiting a flight attendant’s work day to no more than 14 hours. BLOOMBERG NEWS



Google to cut fees for subscription services on app store

Google is slashing the fees it takes from subscription services on its app store following pressure from developers and lawmakers. Beginning Jan. 1, the Google Play Store will charge third-party subscription apps a 15 percent commission, the company said Thursday. Previously, subscription apps were charged 30 percent for the first year, then 15 percent thereafter. Google also charged 15 percent for the first $1 million in revenue. Apple also charges 15 percent for subscriptions after the first year, but hasn’t lowered the cut from 30 percent in the first year. BLOOMBERG NEWS