Briefs: Twitter’s football grab; Pfizer and Allergan don’t mix
●● In its first broadcast deal, Twitter won the right to stream 10 Thursday-night NFL games in the coming season, which may help it recharge user growth. Twitter beat out a slate of heavyweights including Amazon.com, paying about $10 million for the games, according to a person familiar with the matter. The NFL said it turned down higher bids, because it likes Twitter’s facility with live events. ●● Pfizer and Allergan walked away from their $160 billion merger after a U.S. Treasury Department action lessened the financial appeal of the deal. Federal rules published on April 4 would make it tougher to complete so-called inversions, when U.S. companies use acquisitions to shift their addresses to lower-tax countries. An inversion with Ireland-based Allergan could have been worth up to a total of $35 billion in tax savings. ●● Thomas Staggs, Walt Disney’s chief operating officer, stepped down on April 4 as the company’s board said it would broaden its search for new chief executive candidates. He was being groomed to replace CEO Robert Iger, whose contract ends in June 2018. ●● Rovio Entertainment, the company behind Angry Birds mobile games, said it had a $14.8 million loss last year. Game revenue was up, but expenses swelled in advance of The Angry Birds Movie, opening on May 20. ●● The Justice Department sued oilservices company Halliburton to block itss proposed merger with rival Baker Hughes, saying the $34 billion deal would hinderr competition and bring higher prices and less innovation to the industry. The two companies pledged to fight the lawsuit.