Chemed Corp. sold its Service America business, which includes major appliance and heating and air conditioning repair, maintenance and replacement services. The subsidiary's Florida-based management will take over the segment's assets and liabilities; financial terms weren't disclosed. Chemed will turn over a $4.9 million receivable that is among Service America's assets. It will pay the first $1 million at the closing, expected by mid-2005, and the rest in 11 monthly installments.

Net service revenues declined from $74.2 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 2000, to $48.1 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 2003. Revenues for 2004 are expected to be $39 million.

Chemed said it will take a $7.1 million pretax charge in the fourth quarter related to the sale, including $1.8 million for costs of employee terminations. Chemed also said that it expects about $14 million in tax benefits next year from the sale. The company is based in Cincinnati and owns subsidiary Roto-Rooter.