REJECTED, AGAIN: Taubman Centers Inc. said its board unanimously rejected the revised $20 per share cash offer from Simon Property Group in conjunction with a subsidiary of Westfield America Trust, calling Simon’s third offer "inadequate, opportunistic and clearly not in the best interests of Taubman Centers shareholders." Robert S. Taubman, chairman, president and chief executive, said he believes this is not the right time to sell, noting the company has a strong track record and has achieved the sector’s highest funds from operations per share growth rate for the first nine months of 2002. Additionally, he noted, a number of its properties are at early stages in their development cycle and are expected to generate increasing returns over the next few years.

WATCHING BENETTON: Benetton and watchmaker Sector have struck a deal to roll out a new line of United Colors of Benetton timepieces. The line is expected to generate sales of about $191.1 million over the five years of the contract, while advertising expenses for that period should be at least $15.9 million. The line, which bows in the second half of the year, will be available in select watch stores and Benetton sales points. Sector, controlled by Bulgari-led fund Opera, wants to expand its brand portfolio. It recently signed a pact to produce Valentino’s watches.

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