Top Headlines: Airbus to Finally Build Tankers?; Austal Wins Big Contract

Woodfin talks priorities at Birmingham Business Alliance dinner
Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin on Tuesday night marked the end of a year when he said the Magic City saw the largest amount of capital investment in the city’s history. At the same time, Woodfin told the Birmingham Business Alliance, during its annual chairman’s meeting at the Alys Stephens Center, that the city still needs a “sense of urgency” to combat the economic problems it still faces. –

Airbus may yet win some military air tanker business
Airbus is teaming up with a new U.S. partner, Lockheed Martin, to try to crack the U.S. military air tanker market nearly eight years after losing out to rival Boeing in a bitter battle to supply refueling planes to the U.S. Air Force. Airbus and Lockheed, the biggest U.S. arms maker, said on Tuesday they had signed an agreement to meet the growing demand for aerial refueling for the U.S. military. – Reuters

O’Neal Industries’ $30M gift will fuel UAB cancer research
The economic impact of a $30 million gift from O’Neal Industries and its shareholders to the O’Neal Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham will help recruit top cancer scientists and expand clinical trials, says Michael Birrer, center director. – News release

Sale of Shoal Creek mine closes at $387 million
Peabody Energy has completed its purchase of the Shoal Creek seaborne metallurgical coal mine from private coal producer Drummond Company for $387 million, reflecting customary purchase price adjustments. The acquisition includes the well-capitalised mine, preparation plant and logistical assets and excludes legacy liabilities other than reclamation. – World Coal

Austal wins $40.3M intermediate ship contract
Austal U.S.A. has been given the go-ahead to begin purchasing materials for what will be the 14th Expeditionary Fast Transport delivered to the U.S. Navy. The Undefinitized Contract Action announced late Monday is an intermediate step sometimes taken before a full contract is finalized. This one, valued at $40.3 million, will provide money for Austal to order materials and major drivetrain components, and to perform engineering work in advance of the contract. –

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$20 million renovation, rebranding of Hilton Birmingham at UAB complete
The $20 million renovation and rebranding of the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s flagship hotel is complete, Hilton Hotels & Resorts announced on Monday. The hotel was converted from a DoubleTree by Hilton property to a Hilton Hotels & Resorts hotel. –

Birmingham seeks business clarity from Brookings think tank
Birmingham is partnering with a national think tank to come up with innovative ideas to boost the Magic City’s economy. Mayor Randall Woodfin announced on Tuesday a multi-year partnership with Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program to learn ways to bring higher paying jobs and income equality to Birmingham. Corporate and educational partners such as UAB, Regions Bank and Altec are also partnering on the effort. –

Ford, VW give more details on proposed partnership on U.S. production
Following a meeting with President Trump on Tuesday, Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess gave a public run through of the company’s potential options for increasing American-based automotive production. Chief among the day’s talking points, Volkswagen’s alliance with Ford and a potential use of the Blue Oval’s U.S. plants to build cars. – Jalopnik

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