Business News - part 36
BUSINESS March 11, 2014 | 12:28 PM
- Staples to close 12% of its North American store locations
- Customers shopping online poses challenge
- Analysts say it might be too little, too late
American office supply retailer Staples Inc. plans to close 225 underperforming locations, representing 12% of its North American locations, and cut $500 million in annual costs by 2016.
The plan comes after a disappointing holiday season and forecasts for a further decline in business.Read more »
BUSINESS March 10, 2014 | 12:09 PM
- New BP continental US unit to boost cycle times, decision making and profitability against independent competitors
- US business to be BP-owned but managed independently at new Houston location
- Several oil companies worldwide divesting US shale divisions in last three years
London-based oil producer BP intends to separate its onshore US oil and gas assets into a new division that will boost the competitiveness of its shale gas portfolio there.
BP, by market value the second-largest European oil company, asserted that this separate shale division with new Houston headquarters would be more viable as a competitor against independents as it could benefit from faster cycle times and shorter decision-making times.Read more »
BUSINESS March 7, 2014 | 6:02 PM
- RadioShack turnaround plan involves closing 1,100 stores
- RadioShack struggles to compete against online retailers and changing technology
- Poor performance blamed on holiday shopping season, soft market for mobile devices and being under stocked in some products
American electronics chain RadioShack Corp. lost $400 million in 2013, and plans to close 1,100 stores as part of chief executive Joe Magnacca’s turnaround plan.
The retailer has struggled for years to compete against online retailers and changing technology. Analysts say RadioShack cannot compete in a world where people shop online and that it is too dependent on wireless technology.Read more »
BUSINESS March 6, 2014 | 5:36 PM
- Incentives drew customers to dealerships
- Nissan led automakers with 16% gain
- Some foreign manufacturers saw sales drop
Automakers saw sales in the United States rise in February 0.3%, as incentives drew customers to dealerships. Last month, nearly 1.2 million vehicles were sold.
On average, incentives for February were $2,633 per vehicle, or up 5% from 2013, according to TrueCar. The average transaction price was $32,074, some 3.6% higher than 2013. It’s also the highest February average sale price since 2009.Read more »
BUSINESS March 5, 2014 | 10:35 AM
- Bayer aims to boost its position in emerging markets for herbal medicine and over the counter drugs in China
- Healthcare expenditure in China predicted to increase from $357 million to $1 trillion by 2020
- Pharmaceutical companies worldwide moving toward herbal medicines and OTC drugs
Pharma giant Bayer, creator of Aspirin, will purchase Dihon Pharmaceutical, a privately-owned company with headquarters in south west China to strengthen its position in Asia, where pharmaceutical businesses are growing, and help it reach its goal of becoming the #1 non-prescription drugs company worldwide.
Dihon focuses on traditional herbal Chinese medicine and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs—a sector in which it is a leader in China. Dihon boasts yearly sales of $168 million and has 2,400 employees.Read more »
BUSINESS March 4, 2014 | 6:18 PM
- Deal with Nippon marks the end of Hulu’s international business venture
- Japanese viewers watch content on televisions, computers, tablets, gaming consoles and smartphones
- Hulu to offer US customers more broadcast content
American online video on demand service Hulu LLC has entered into an agreement to sell its Japanese unit to Nippon Television Network Corp., the top Japanese television network, ending Hulu’s venture into international business.
Hulu launched its Japanese unit in September 2011; the unit offers subscriptions for unlimited viewing of premium content on internet-connected devices for a $9.60 monthly fee. It has 50 content partners and offers more than 13,000 movies, dramas and anime.Read more »
BUSINESS March 3, 2014 | 5:19 PM
- New BlackBerry CEO John Chen strengthening BlackBerry Messenger service with better encryption technology and extension to Windows Phone platform
- Present focus to engage company’s 80,000 existing core business clients
- New BlackBerry smartphones to bring back popular features such as ‘send,’ ‘end,’ and ‘menu’ buttons
BlackBerry CEO John Chen has announced plans to sell or create new products related to the BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) smartphone service to help build a stronger foundation for the company.
With Chen centering his efforts to boost the Waterloo, Ontario-based company on BBM, BlackBerry’s instant-messenger, as well as BlackBerry’s business customers, the company’s stock has risen steadily after a period of decline.Read more »
BUSINESS February 28, 2014 | 11:24 AM
- Airbus to produce 46 model A320 aircraft per month produced by 2016
- Airbus has backlog of 5,500 jets
- Airbus reports 2013 income up 21%
Airbus Group NV, Europe’s largest aerospace company, plans to increase production of its A320 model by 10% to 46 aircraft per month by 2016.
Last year, demand for new aircraft rose 22%, and Airbus secured orders for over 1,500 new planes worth $225 billion in list prices. Growth was seen primarily in emerging markets, but also from American carriers replacing their aging fleets.Read more »
BUSINESS February 27, 2014 | 5:09 PM
- Terms of deal not revealed
- Netflix to provide videos quicker, more clearly
- US law allows providers to charge websites more
Netflix Inc., the world’s largest subscription video-streaming service, has agreed to pay Comcast Corp., one of the largest US broadband providers, for faster internet speeds to provide customers with better service.
The terms of the deal were not revealed, but are rumored to be in the millions of dollars, according to Bloomberg.Read more »
BUSINESS February 26, 2014 | 4:15 PM
- Comcast buys Time Warner Cable for $45.2 billion to create a dominant force in the US cable market
- Comcast and Time Warner Cable anticipated to save $1.5 billion in yearly fees over 3 years
- Joint company to have roughly 30 million subscribers
Media and communications giant Comcast Corp. plans to acquire Time Warner Cable Inc. at a $45.2 billion price tag; this all-stock agreement would see the two largest cable TV corporations in the US joining forces.
This deal is anticipated to close by year end once regulatory and shareholder approval is given.Read more »