Seven things for PR pros to know Monday morning, 9.22.2014

Hundreds of thousands march against climate change; Secret Service under scrutiny; EMC, HP call off merger talks; Alibaba's IPO wows; UFC cuts ties with fighters accused of domestic violence.

1. Hundreds of thousands of protestors  — the number has been placed from 300,000 to as high as 400,000 — marched in New York City on Sunday to raise awareness of and demand action on climate change. Celebrities including Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo marched, as did political leaders including New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and former Vice President Al Gore.

2. The Secret Service is under scrutiny after a man carrying a knife jumped the White House fence and gained entry to the building late Friday. The agency is considering setting up additional checkpoints around the White House. The alleged intruder, decorated 42-year-old Iraq War veteran Omar Gonzalez, is due in court on Monday.

3. EMC recently abandoned talks to enter into a "merger of equals" with Hewlett-Packard. Such a deal would have created a company with a combined market value of $129 billion. The data-storage giant is facing the imminent retirement of its longtime CEO and pressure from activist shareholders.


4. Alibaba’s Friday $25 billion IPO is officially the largest in history. The stock was up 38% as of the end of its first day on the New York Stock Exchange.

5. Home Depot was warned for years about the possibility of hackers using a data breach to steal customer information, former employees of the retailer told The New York Times. The chain’s recent data breach ranks as the largest of its kind, surpassing last year’s cyberattack on Target’s servers.

6. Ultimate Fighting Championship has cut ties with two competitors accused of domestic violence, in one of the latest repercussions to the Ray Rice scandal facing the National Football League. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell held a press conference on Friday that received mostly poor grades from PR pros.


7. Siemens has agreed to acquire US-based oil-equipment maker Dresser-Rand for $7.6 billion. One reason for the deal is that Siemens wants to take advantage of the shale gas boom in the US, according to The Wall Street Journal. 

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