MERGERS AND ACQUISITIONSPlatinum Group, Eden Prairie, said that its private equity fund has acquired the assets of Nordquist Sign Co. Inc. Terms were not disclosed. The new entity, Nordquist Holdings LLC, continues to do business as Nordquist Sign Co. and operates out of its facility at 312 W. Lake St., Minneapolis, with 16 employees who keep their positions. A former owner, Dick Nordquist Jr., has joined the company's board of directors.

NEW BUSINESSCargill Beef Australia and Teys Bros (Holdings) Pty Ltd. (Teys Bros) have agreed to form a 50-50 joint venture company and trade under the name of "Teys Australia - a Cargill Joint Venture," subject to regulatory approvals. Board representation will be shared equally by Cargill and Teys. The new joint venture, to be based in Beenleigh, Australia, it will include the assets of both companies' beef processing and cattle feeding businesses as well as Teys' tannery and value-adding facilities, and Teys' share of its wholesale divisions.

Equifax, Atlanta, and Fair Isaac Co. (FICO), Minneapolis, have entered into a new partnership for the United Kingdom to develop products that will help businesses in banking, insurance, retail and other industries accelerate growth while controlling risk and meeting new regulatory requirements.

Brink Global Solutions, Minneapolis, and Euroscript International S.A., a language service provider based in Bertrange, Luxembourg, have formed BGS Euroscript Inc., a joint venture company based in Minneapolis. This new entity is the first foray into the U.S. market for Euroscript, which has offices in 15 other countries.

DEBT AND EQUITIESGranite City Food & Brewery Ltd., Minneapolis, has completed the previously announced transaction with Concept Development Partners (CDP). The company issued $9 million of newly issued convertible preferred stock to CDP, entered into a $10 million credit agreement with the Structured Finance Group of Fifth Third Bank providing for senior credit facilities, repurchased 3 million shares of common stock from DHW Leasing for about $7.1 million, and purchased real property in Troy, Mich., from DHW for about $2.6 million. Granite City sold 3 million shares of Series A convertible preferred stock to CDP, each share of which is convertible into two shares of Granite City common stock, equivalent to a conversion price of $1.50 per share. CDP has become Granite City's largest shareholder as a result of these transactions.

PERSONNELClario Analytics, Eden Prairie, a provider of cloud-based marketing analytics solutions for multichannel retailers, said that co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Bill Flach has retired, passing the CEO position onto chief technology officer Matt Redlon, who will retain his position as chief technology officer. Flach will continue to serve as the company's executive chairman of the board.