Hands of healthcare worker guiding hands of older adult on cane
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» Plan to purchase furniture soon? Then prepare for higher costs and significant delivery delays. Among the reasons for the new headaches: backed up ports, which are preventing the unloading of furniture and other cargo on waiting ships; a shortage of rail cars that can move the containers carrying furniture; manufacturing stoppages in China, Vietnam and the United States; Russia’s war with Ukraine, which is driving up costs for fuel; and a shortage of the kind of foam that is used in furniture manufacturing and labor shortages. Collectively, those challenges are both delaying deliveries and helping raise costs, experts are warning.

» Baxter’s recent acquisition of Hillrom is paying quick dividends. Revenue in the first quarter topped $3.7 billion, a 26% increase, according to the medical products firm.

Baxter paid $156 in cash for each outstanding share of Hillrom common stock, for a purchase price of $10.5 billion (based on Hillrom share counts at closing). Including the assumption of Hillrom’s outstanding debt obligations, the enterprise value of the transaction is approximately $12.5 billion.

“The Baxter-Hillrom combination unlocks the next phase of our transformation, presenting a new wave of potential to drive greater impact for patients, clinicians, employees, shareholders and other communities we serve worldwide,” said José (Joe) E. Almeida, Baxter’s chairman, president and CEO.

“Integrating our complementary capabilities introduces additional opportunities for growth across our broad geographic footprint and also creates remarkable new possibilities for connectivity with leading-edge digital health innovation focused on enhancing care, lowering costs and increasing workflow efficiency,” he added.

» The pandemic hasn’t slowed down furniture maker Uline. The Wisconsin-based company is in the midst of hiring 350 new employees and recently finished the expansion of its massive complex in Pleasant Prairie.

» Samuelson Furniture recently donated Allure, a Sound by Samuelson chair, to the Miriam Apartments at Daughters of Miriam Center, a local not-for-profit independent living community providing care and services to older adults in Northern New Jersey.