News roundup: Langlois re-elected local restaurant association president … US oil and gas drillers to lead production in 2017 … UnitedHealth buys surgical center operator for $2.3M

    Ready to serve: Jeremy Langlois of Ruffino’s Restaurant has been elected to his second consecutive term as president of the Greater Baton Rouge Chapter of the Louisiana Restaurant Association. According to a news release, Langlois has been an LRA member since 2014 and a board member of the Baton Rouge chapter since 2015. Every year, the chapter elects a restaurant owner from among its ranks to serve as president. Langlois is one of nine LRA chapter presidents in Louisiana.

    On the way up: North American exploration and production companies will spend one-quarter more this year than they did in 2016, leading global growth among oil and gas companies, according to Barclay’s annual survey of oil production companies. As FuelFix.com reports, spending is expected to increase by 7% worldwide after declines of 26% in 2015 and 23% last year. The biggest swing comes in North America, fueled by U.S. shale drillers, where spending had dipped by 38% in 2016, Barclays predicts. Larger companies could boost spending by as much as 58% this year. Read the full story. 

    On the grow: UnitedHealth Group is buying surgical center operator Surgical Care Affiliates for about $2.3 billion in a cash-and-stock deal that will add to its outpatient holdings, The Associated Press reports. The Minnetonka, Minnesota-based health insurer will add Deerfield, Illinois-based Surgical Care to its Optum health services unit, which has 20,000 affiliated physicians and hundreds of facilities. Surgical Care operates 205 surgical facilities and partners with about 3,000 physicians. The acquisition will be funded with between 51% and 80% of UnitedHealth stock. The remainder will be in cash. Read the full story.

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