BUSINESS October 18, 2013 | 5:57 PM
French food group Danone SA, the world’s largest yogurt manufacturer, has been forced to revise its full-year sales, profitability and free cash flow targets after an Asia recall of high-margin infant formula this summer led to weak third quarter sales. Like-for-like sales growth is now estimated to be between 4.5% and 5%, down from the company’s previous estimate of at least 5%.
Third quarter sales of baby foods fell 8.6%, and the recall is expected to cost Danone $473 million in lost sales. Sales in September were only 40% of sales in July. "Our priority is to get back on track for strong and sustainable growth in this region (Asia) as early as possible in 2014," says Chief Financial Officer Pierre-Andre Terisse.Read more »
BUSINESS October 17, 2013 | 4:28 PM
London-based pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca’s global biologics research and development arm MedImmune has acquired privately-held biotech company Spirogen, which focuses on antibody-drug conjugate technology used in oncology.
AstraZeneca will initially pay $200 million and add on $240 million more provided Spirogen’s products meet all of the predetermined development milestones.Read more »
BUSINESS October 16, 2013 | 11:48 AM
Facebook Inc., the world’s largest social network, has purchased Israeli mobile analytics startup Onavo to support its mobile business and Internet.org initiative, a project that aims to expand internet access to billions of people who are not online. The terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Israeli news sources estimate it is between $100 million and $200 million.
With a focus on smartphones, Onavo's mobile app helps reduce mobile phone costs with the more efficient use of data.Read more »
BUSINESS October 15, 2013 | 4:29 PM
The world’s largest marker of generic drugs Teva Pharmaceutical Industries is cutting 5,000 jobs, or 10% of its labor force, to combat increasing competition. The restructuring will incur $1.1 billion in total charges, but cuts are expected save the company nearly $2 billion by the end of 2017.
Teva’s workforce cuts are Chief Executive Officer Jeremy Levin’s means of increasing the company’s profitability and reaching target cost savings he set out in 2012.Read more »
BUSINESS October 14, 2013 | 3:14 PM
Automotive manufacturer Toyota Motor Corp, the world’s largest seller of hybrid vehicles, is reducing the price of its 2014 plug-in Prius models in the US to meet California’s Zero-Emission Vehicle Program.
Toyota has the largest share of vehicle sales in California, and must sell more low-polluting models than its competitors. The reduction is intended to boost sales and American consumers’ willingness to buy rechargeable vehicles.Read more »
BUSINESS October 11, 2013 | 11:43 AM
Walmart Stores, the world's largest retailer, is ending its six-year partnership with business group Bharti Enterprises, leaving it without a domestic partner in India. The partners operate wholesale cash and carry stores under the name Best Price Modern Wholesale, and are working to finalize details of the dissolution
Walmart will purchase Bharti's 50% stake for an undisclosed amount, giving it control of 20 wholesale stores and its supply chain. Bharti, meanwhile, will purchase Walmart’s compulsory convertible debentures in Cedar Support Services, a company owned and controlled by Bharti Enterprises.Read more »
BUSINESS October 10, 2013 | 5:13 PM
Telecom equipment giant Alcatel-Lucent will eliminate a total of 15,000 jobs by 2015 year-end.
However, as part of what they are calling “The Shift Plan”, the company will also create 5,000 new positions. All efforts are aimed at repositioning Alcatel-Lucent’s focus on next-generation technologies, including IP Networking, Cloud and Ultra-Broadband Access to restore profitability and better serve the needs of its customers.Read more »
BUSINESS October 9, 2013 | 12:05 PM
French aircraft manufacturer Airbus has won an order from Japan Airlines for 31 A350 planes worth nearly $9.5 billion, with an option to add an additional 25 aircraft.
The A350 is a rival to Boeing's 787 Dreamliner, and is designed to be 25% more fuel efficient than previous models. So far 725 orders have been placed for the new model.Read more »
BUSINESS October 8, 2013 | 4:35 PM
Leading global seed company Monsanto Co will spend $930 million to buy weather data firm Climate Corp to help farmers manage risk and increase crop yields through farm modeling and weather data science.
Founded by former Google data scientists and software engineers in 2006, Climate Corp draws on data, including predictive models, and what the company’s CEO David Friedberg terms “hyper-local weather monitoring” to assist farmers in making decisions that can increase corn yields by up to 30 to 50 bushels per acre.Read more »
BUSINESS October 7, 2013 | 5:53 PM
US automotive industry sales in September fell 4.2% to total 1.14 million vehicles, marking the first year-on-year sales decline in more than two years says research firm Autodata.
What caused the drop? Compared to 2012, there were two fewer shopping days in 2013, and the Labor Day shopping weekend was included in August’s figures.Read more »
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