Business & Finance

J.M. Smucker Co., a leading maker of jams, jellies and dessert toppings, said it will acquire the Jif peanut butter and Crisco cooking oil brands from Procter & Gamble for $1 billion in stock. The deal also includes the Jif and Crisco plants in Lexington, Ky., and Cincinnati, and all their employees. Orrville, Ohio-based Smucker said the acquisition eventually will almost triple its annual earnings and double annual sales to $1.3 billion.

Redback Networks Inc. posted a massive net loss of $3.1 billion in the third quarter, as sales plunged 54 percent due to the worldwide telecommunications industry slump, the Financial Times reported. The San Jose, Calif.-based supplier of broadband and optical networking equipment and services recently cut about 200 jobs, one-sixth of its workforce. Redback once planned to challenge Cisco Systems and Juniper Networks Inc. for leadership in the industry.

"Up to 25 percent" of Akami Technologies Inc.'s workforce of 1,300 people will be laid off, the Internet content distributor announced. The Cambridge, Mass., company's servers allow clients to deliver video, advertising, and other high-bandwidth materials. Its cofounder and chief technology officer, Daniel Lewin, was a passenger on one of the hijacked airliners that hit the World Trade Center Sept. 11.

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