Choice Hotels Appoints PWC As Auditor: The audit committee of lodging concern Choice Hotels International Inc. has appointed Big Five firm PriceWaterhouseCoopers as the company’s independent auditors, replacing Andersen.

The change of firms was not the result of any disagreement between the company and Andersen on any matter of accounting principles or practice, financial statement disclosure or auditing scope or procedure.

In a statement, Joe Squeri, senior vice president of development at CHI said, "For more than 20 years, Arthur Andersen has provided Choice Hotels and its predecessors with excellent, professional service. We have the utmost respect for the team with which we have worked.

"However, we believe a change in auditors is a prudent step, given the uncertain environment in which Andersen is trying to operate. We wish them well in the future."

Choice Hotels International operates and franchises such lodging brands as Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality, Clarion, Sleep Inn, Econo Lodge, MainStay Suites and Rodeway Inn.

Kiss Off: Hershey Fires Andersen: Hershey, Pa. - Hershey Foods Corp. fired its auditor Big Five firm Andersen, after some 81 percent of company shareholders voted against re-appointing the firm.

At the annual shareholder’s meeting Richard H. Lenny, Hershey’s chairman and chief executive officer, said that Andersen had served the company well, but recent events had prompted the company to find another auditor.

Andersen had served as the company’s auditor for 75 years. Earlier this year, company directors recommended that Andersen be re-appointed.

A successor has not been named.

Form 8-K Filings

Ambassadors International Inc. (Spokane, Wash.), from PricewaterhouseCoopers to Ernst & Young.

American Resources & Development Co. (Portland, Ore.), from HJ & Associates to Child, Sullivan and Co.

AmeriPath Inc. (Riviera Beach, Fla.), from Deloitte & Touche to Ernst & Young.

Ansys Inc. (Canonsburg, Pa.), from PricewaterhouseCoopers to Deloitte & Touche.

Apache Corp. (Houston), from Andersen to Ernst & Young.

Atalanta/Sosnoff Capital Corp. (New York), from Andersen to Rothstein, Kass & Co.

Cable Design Technologies Corp. (Pittsburgh), from Andersen to Deloitte & Touche.

Capital Pacific Holdings Inc. (Newport Beach, Calif.), from Andersen to Ernst & Young.

Combined Professional Services Inc. (Hollywood, Fla.), from Kurt D. Salinger CPA to Grassano Accounting.

Decorize Inc. (Springfield, Mo.), from Kirkpatrick, Phillips & Miller to Ernst & Young.

Echelon Corp. (San Jose, Calif.), from Andersen to KPMG.

Emergent Financial Group Inc. (Boulder, Colo.), from KPMG to Salberg & Co.

Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corp. (Washington, D.C.), from Andersen to Deloitte & Touche.

Forrester Research Inc. (Cambridge, Mass.), from Andersen to Deloitte & Touche.

Friedman, Billings, Ramsey Group Inc. (Arlington, Va.), from Andersen to PricewaterhouseCoopers.

General Telephony.com Inc. (Houston), from G. Brad Beckstead to Corso.

Insignia Financial Group Inc. (New York), from Ernst & Young to KPMG.

International Isotopes Inc. (Idaho Falls, Idaho), from Grant Thornton to Hansen, Barnett & Maxwell.

Lotus Pacific Inc. (Irvine, Calif.), from Larson, Allen, Weishair & Co. to Hein + Associates.

LSI Industries Inc. (Cincinnati), from Andersen to Grant Thornton.

NDCHealth Corp. (Atlanta), from Andersen to Ernst & Young.

Occidental Petroleum Corp. (Los Angeles), from Andersen to KPMG.

On-Site Sourcing Inc. (Alexandria, Va.), from Reznick Fedder & Silverman to PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Parts.com Inc. (Sanford, Fla.), from Cuthill & Eddy to Moore Stephens Lovelace.

Pinnacle Data Systems Inc. (Groveport, Ohio), from Hausser + Taylor to Deloitte & Touche.

Save The World Air Inc. (Agoura Hills, Calif.), from Hoiberg Business Group to Good Swartz Brown & Berns.

Tom Brown Inc. (Denver), from Andersen to KPMG.

Victor Ebner Enterprises Inc. (Geneva, Switzerland), from Stefanou & Co. to Braverman and Co.

Weight Loss Forever International Inc. (Virginia Beach, Va.), from James E. Scheifley & Associates. to Parks, Tschopp, Whitcomb & Orr.

World Fuel Services Corp. (Miami Springs, Fla.), from Andersen to PricewaterhouseCoopers.

xCel Energy Inc. (Minneapolis), from Andersen to Deloitte & Touche.

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