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Top News Links: Tuesday, Dec. 3

Union chief says Mercedes campaign going well

United Auto Workers president Bob King talks about the union's renewal and hopes to organize one of the automakers in the Southeast; the UAW has its sights on the Mercedes-Benz plant in Tuscaloosa and the VW plant in Chattanooga. — Detroit Free Press

Blue Cross says it's transitioning policies, not canceling

In a war of words, Blue Cross says that it has not cancelled health care policies but moved customers from policies that did not meet Affordable Care Act standards to ones that do. — Birmingham News

UAB teams to provide classes for doctors

Working in conjunction with BroadcastMed Inc., the University of Alabama at Birmingham has begun producing continuing education programs for physicians that are accessible via the Internet. — UAB/BroadcastMed PR

Ten Alabamians vie for fishing crown at home

Ten Alabama bass fishermen have qualified for the Bassmaster Classic in February, the most ever from the host state. — Bass Fan

Medical Properties Trust completes acquisition of German facilities

Birmingham-based Medical Properties Trust has completed the acquisition of 11 rehabilitation hospitals in Germany. — Market Watch

Sterne Agee closes acquisition of UK firm

Financial services firm Sterne Agee, based in Birmingham, has completed its acquisition of Yorvik Partners LLP, a London-based brokerage, which will now be called Sterne Agee UK LLP. — Sterne Agee PR

ServisFirst closes stock offering

Birmingham-based ServisFirst Bancshares has completed sales of 250,000 shares of common stock at $41.50 per share. — ServisFirst PR

Mark Berry to joins Southern Research

Mark Berry has taken the reins of environment and energy research programs at Birmingham's Southern Research Institute, coming to the job from Southern Company. — Southern Research Institute PR

Hangout Festival brings $31 million to coastal economy

Hangout Music Festival promoters say that a new economic study shows the Orange Beach festival attracted 27,000 people, mostly non-local, and pumped $31 million into the local economy. — Orange Beach PR

Aker to provide umbilicals for West African project

Aker Solutions in Mobile has been selected to provide 21 umbilicals — the conduits that provide power, fiber optic connections and hydraulic fluid to offshore facilities — to a Tullow Oil PLC project for the coast of Ghana. — Mobile Press-Register

Tampa firm acquires PKA Architects

Birmingham's PKA Architects has been acquired by BDG Architects, based in Tampa. — Birmingham News

Not the example you want to be

Mobile is cited as a prime example of cities caught in a bad deal when investing in terminals to attract cruises business to their ports, as Cayman officials consider a similar deal. — Cay Compass

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