End PagePosted On: Jan. 21, 2007 12:00 AM CST
Wynn laments holes in painting, coverage
Casino mogul Steve Wynn's self-admitted clumsiness in handling a multimillion-dollar painting by Pablo Picasso could cost him more than expected--if his insurers refuse to pay up.
Mr. Wynn, who admitted he poked a hole in the 1932 work "Le Reve" has filed a bad-faith suit in U.S. District Court in Manhattan seeking to force Lloyd's of London underwriters that wrote coverage for the depiction of Picasso's mistress, to pay the cost of restoring the work.
In media reports, Mr. Wynn described the damage to the painting as a "thumb-sized flap" and admitted it was "the world's clumsiest and goofiest thing to do."
Mr. Wynn reportedly poked a hole in "The Dream," as it is known in English, with his elbow while showing off the work to a group of friends. But Mr. Wynn's insurers balked when he filed a claim seeking not only $90,000 to repair the painting but also the diminished amount of its value.
The painting, valued at $139 million as recently as November, may be worth no more than $85 million today as a result of the accident.
Calls to Mr. Wynn's representatives were not returned. A spokesman for Lloyd's said it would be "inappropriate" to comment at this time.
Come to Jamaica and feel... better, officials say
As if the tropical climate, Captain Morgan and reggae weren't enough to lure visitors to Jamaica, the Caribbean nation now wants to add cardiac care to its list of its attractions.
Aloun Assamba, Jamaica's minister of tourism, entertainment and culture, is urging businesses to increase their investments in medical and retirement tourism, noting that these segments of the economy are poised for growth throughout the Caribbean region.
"The health, wellness and retirement subsectors are indeed growing in intensity. There is a swelling, excitement of thought, feeling, energy and enthusiasm, a new wave, which is fully backed by government through policies and the facilitation of financing," the minister told attendees Jan. 12 at the Jamaica Stock Exchange's second annual conference on investments and capital markets in Montego Bay.
In particular, Ms. Assamba recommended that Jamaica's government provide incentives to the business community to foster the development of renal care equipment; cardiac care centers; paramedic and emergency health services including ambulances, equipment and facilities for bypass surgery; retreat villas for recuperative and palliative care; and retirement communities.
Ms. Assamba specifically pointed to the United States as a target for the health care tourism effort. In 2005, a record 3 million visitors traveled to Jamaica, and 1 million of the total came from the United States--a record from a single market, the government agency said.
K-Fed is on your side, Nationwide
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. hopes that Kevin Federline can sell more insurance than he has albums.
The Columbus, Ohio-based insurer has tapped the aspiring rapper--better known as the soon-to-be ex of Britney Spears--to star in a Super Bowl commercial.
The TV spot is the latest in the insurer's "Life Comes at You Fast" campaign, which underscores the importance of preparing for unexpected changes.
In the spot, Mr. Federline is seen rapping in a music video, but after a quick cut, the commercial reveals that his rhymes are being recorded by a security camera--at the fast-food restaurant where he works.
"The 'Life Comes at You Fast' concept was created to remind people that they need to think about preparing for the future," Steven Schreibman, vp of advertising and brand management for Nationwide, said in a statement.
K-Fed's debut album, "Playing With Fire," was released to much fanfare last October, but sold only about 6,500 copies in its first week, according to media reports.
Mr. Federline is not the first well-known hip-hop figure to appear in Nationwide's campaign.
A 2005 spot featured MC Hammer performing his Grammy-winning 1990 hit "U Can't Touch This" in a mock music video filmed in front of a palatial home. A cut to "15 minutes later" shows a dejected Hammer sitting in front of the same mansion, now in foreclosure.
Ex-California insurance regulator now patrols a different beat
Former California Insurance Commissioner Chuck Quackenbush is keeping "paradise" safe as a night-shift sheriff's deputy in a place far from his scandal-plagued days of protecting policyholders.
"Working to keep paradise safe," is the Lee County, Fla., Sheriff's Office motto. Mr. Quackenbush began his job there in June 2005, according to the Sheriff's Office in Fort Myers, Fla. The starting pay for Lee County deputies is about $38,000 a year--about $100,000 less per year than he earned in the California regulator post.
The 52-year-old recently told a Florida newspaper he would like to put the past behind him, but the newspaper's lengthy article recounting Mr. Quackenbush's history in California probably isn't helping.
Mr. Quackenbush resigned in 2000 from the elected post as California's insurance commissioner. He left amid several investigations examining allegations that he allowed personal lines insurers to forgo paying fines for improperly handling claims from the 1994 Northridge, Calif., earthquake.
Instead, insurer money allegedly went to political consultants aiding Mr. Quackenbush and a football camp attended by his son.
A deputy insurance commissioner and an athletic foundation director eventually went to jail over the matter, but investigators did not link Mr. Quackenbush to any wrongdoing.
The commissioner was considered a rising star in the California GOP before he quit the state post and headed south.
While applying for his current job, Mr. Quackenbush reportedly told the Lee County Sheriff's Office that being a police officer was a lifelong dream.
Contributing: Roberto Ceniceros, Matt Scroggins, Joanne Wojcik