TAUBMAN’S ROUND ONE: A federal court in Michigan granted Taubman Centers’ motion to dismiss a claim by hostile takeover suitor Simon Property Group that it is attempting to deny shareholders the power to call a special meeting. In an amended filing with the Michigan court that is hearing the case, Indianapolis-based Simon last year alleged that Taubman was trying to block its then $1.5 billion bid by improperly changing the bylaws of the company. Simon, in a new joint venture with a subsidiary of Westfield America, has since upped the bid to $1.8 billion. The court, however, said Simon could proceed with another claim related to the anti-takeover law, a hearing for which will take place March 21.

TIMES HIRES KANTOR: The New York Times Wednesday named Jodi Kantor the editor of the Sunday paper’s Arts & Leisure section, reporting to culture editor Steve Erlanger. Kantor, currently an editor at the Web-zine Slate, emerged as a candidate only a few weeks ago, nudging aside more whispered names like former Harper’s Bazaar editor Kate Betts. Kantor, 27, has worked at Slate since dropping out of Harvard Law School in 1998, editing the site’s cultural coverage under editor in chief Jacob Weisberg. Kantor replaces acting editor William McDonald, who will become deputy culture editor reporting to Erlanger.

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