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					Des Moines Register

Iowa insurers report claims from wildfires

Several Iowa-based property insurers have reported claims stemming from
wildfires that are sweeping through southern California.

GuideOne Insurance of West Des Moines said that it knew of damage claims to
one church and one senior living center. A spokeswoman for Allied Insurance of
Des Moines said it and sister company Nationwide have received 32 claims for
fire losses and 87 more for wind damage. But she said that an accurate count is
impossible because so many people have evacuated their homes ahead of the

EMC Insurance Group of Des Moines said it knew of no claims. United Fire &
Casualty Co. of Cedar Rapids does not issue policies in California.

Get up early to see new W.D.M. Lowe's

Home improvement retailer Lowe's will open a store near Jordan Creek Town
Center in West Des Moines at 6:30 a.m. Tuesday. The 117,000-square-foot store
and 30,000-square-foot garden center is at 450 S. Jordan Creek Parkway.

The store will employ about 175 people, mostly full-time workers, a Lowe's
spokeswoman said. Lowe's, based in Mooresville, N.C., opens about one store
every three days, she said. Currently, the company has 1,425 stores in the
United States and will open several stores in Canada in 2008 and in Mexico in
2009, she said.

ISU ranks second in licensing study

A National Science Foundation study says Iowa State University ranks second
- behind the University of California - for licensing university-developed
technologies to companies in fiscal 2005. ISU Research Foundation executed
218 licenses in the year ending June 30, 2005. ISU's total 745 active licenses
ranked sixth. The five start-up companies ISU launched in fiscal 2005 ranked
22nd nationally.

Aviva has record sales for nine months

Aviva USA posted record sales for the first nine months of 2007, its United
Kingdom-based parent company reported Thursday. Aviva PLC, the world's fifth-
largest insurance company, said annuities sales by Des Moines-based Aviva
USA rose 57 percent compared to the same period a year ago.
Aviva USA lifted its market share by introducing new products and a marketing
campaign and expanding its distribution network, the company said. Results
were given on a pro forma basis, taking into account Aviva PLC's late 2006
acquisition of the former Amerus Group Co.

Two executives chosen for Iowa Hall of Fame

Clayton Jones, chief executive of Rockwell Collins, and Mark Oman, a top Wells
Fargo executive, will be inducted into the Iowa Business Hall of Fame on Dec. 6,
the Greater Des Moines Committee said Thursday.

Jones is being honored for his leadership of the Cedar Rapids-based aerospace
company as it grew rapidly, added thousands of workers, several acquisitions
and the construction of new facilities.

Oman, Wells Fargo's senior executive vice president of the Home and Consumer
Finance Group, is being honored for leading the company's mortgage business.

The Greater Des Moines Committee's invitation-only, annual black tie dinner
Dec. 6 will include a change in leadership from Michael Helak of US Bank to
former Iowa Gov. Robert D. Ray.

Meredith stock up on news of Wal-Mart deal

Meredith Corp. stock closed at $61.12 a share in heavy trading Thursday, up
$3.14 from Wednesday's close.

The stock went as high as $62.20 Thursday. Investors were reacting to news
reports of improved first-quarter earnings and Meredith's announcement earlier
this week that it was partnering with Wal-Mart Corp. to produce a line of Better
Homes and Gardens home products.

The last time Meredith stock closed at or above $60 was in late July. Its all time
high close was $63.25 on June 5.

Correction:Meredith reported first-quarter earnings on Wednesday. A headline
Thursday misidentified the quarter.

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