News in brief

Posted: November 9, 2017 at 2:02 a.m.

Firm buys Sherwood

software company

Thoma Bravo, a San Francisco private-equity investment firm, will acquire ABC Financial Services in Sherwood, a software company serving more than 6,700 health clubs, both companies said Wednesday.

The deal should close by the end of this year. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

ABC Financial has increased its global presence over the past few years, expanding into markets in Europe and elsewhere in North America.

"ABC Financial owes much of its present success to the legacy of our owner and founder, Jim Bottin," said Paul Schaller, the chief executive officer.

Bottin started ABC Financial in 1981. It provides software and payment processing for the health and fitness industry.

Stephens Inc. was the financial adviser to ABC Financial and its legal adviser was the Rose Law Firm.

-- David Smith

China firm's $1.2B

is for U.S. beef, pork, China's largest e-commerce company, said Wednesday that it will purchase more than $1.2 billion of U.S. beef and pork over the next three years.

Beef products will be shipped from the Stock Growers Association in Montana, while pork will be sourced from Smithfield Foods Inc.

The purchasing is part of's overall plan to buy $2 billion in U.S. goods, according to a statement released after a signing ceremony in Beijing.

More than 30 percent of meat sold in China in the first half of 2017 was imported, data showed.

"China's shoppers will rest assured knowing that they are able to purchase safe, high-quality meat products imported from the U.S.," said Richard Liu, chairman, in a news release.

-- Nathan Owens

Arkansas Index rises

1.29, ends at 376.56

The Arkansas Index, a price-weighted index that tracks the largest public companies based in the state, rose 1.29 to 376.56 Wednesday.

"Equities edged higher, but the financial sector fell for the fourth-straight day as investors gauged potential tax implications following election results and the expected unveiling of the Senate tax reform plan [today]," said Leon Lants, managing director at Stephens Inc. in Little Rock.

P.A.M. Transportation shares jumped 14.4 percent after the company announced preliminary results of a tender offer to repurchase up to 400,000 outstanding shares.

Total volume for the index was 24.3 million shares.

The index was developed by Bloomberg News and the Democrat-Gazette with a base value of 100 as of Dec. 30, 1997.

Business on 11/09/2017