- - Monday, December 17, 2012

PROVIDENCE — Hasbro says it soon will reveal a gender-neutral Easy-Bake Oven after meeting with a New Jersey girl who started a campaign calling on the toymaker to create one that appeals to all children.

McKenna Pope, 13, of Garfield, N.J., met Monday with officials at the company’s Pawtucket, R.I., headquarters.

It was there where they showed off a prototype of their newest Easy-Bake. It is black, silver and blue, rather than purple and pink.

McKenna said the company is doing everything she asked, including putting boys in the ads.

Hasbro said it has been working on the color scheme for about 18 months and that the new Easy-Bake could be on store shelves next summer.

UTILITIES

Power wholesaler, subsidiary file for bankruptcy protection

CHICAGO — Power wholesaler Edison Mission Energy and its Chicago-based subsidiary Midwest Generation filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday to try to restructure about $5 billion in debt.

It wasn’t clear what impact the move would have on Midwest Generation’s almost 1,000 Illinois employees.

In petitions filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Chicago, Edison Mission Energy listed $5.13 billion in assets and $5.1 billion in debt. Santa Ana, Calif.-based Edison Mission Energy is owned by the California utility Edison International.

Edison Mission Energy President Pedro Pizarro said the companies hope to emerge from bankruptcy independent of Edison International.

TECHNOLOGY

Sprint raises its offer to $2.2 billion for full stake in Clearwire network

NEW YORK — Sprint, the country’s third-largest cellphone company, said Monday that it will buy out the portion of wireless network operator Clearwire that it doesn’t already own after raising its offer price to $2.2 billion.

The deal would give Sprint control of a flailing affiliate, one on which it depends to provide high-speed “Sprint 4G” data services on some of its phones. It would increase Sprint’s access to the airwaves, meaning it could boost data speeds in coming years. However, cell towers using Clearwire spectrum have poor range, making it difficult to provide broad coverage.

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