Business News - part 40

AstraZeneca Looks to New Leadership As Drug Patent Expiration Hurts Sales

AstraZeneca Looks to New Leadership As Drug Patent Expiration Hurts Sales

BUSINESS

  • Pascal Soriot, AstraZeneca’s new leader, expected to combat decline in sales and pre-tax profit caused by expiration of drug patents
  • Most critical losses through to 2016 include best-selling drugs Crestor, Seroquel and Nexium
  • Recovery plan includes annual strategy review, outsourcing of product development and acquisitions

Global pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca is looking to the leadership of new chief executive Pascal Soriot to counter the company’s decline in revenue and pre-tax profits as reported in the third quarter.

Poor financial results, including a 56% decrease in net profit and a 19% decrease in sales, largely reflect the expiration of significant drug patents and entrance of cheaper generic brands into the market.

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Yahoo Buys Smartphone App Start-Up Stamped To Focus On Mobile

Yahoo Buys Smartphone App Start-Up Stamped To Focus On Mobile

BUSINESS

  • First Yahoo acquisition under new CEO Marissa Mayer
  • Yahoo to become mainly mobile company
  • Stamped app to be scrapped in favor of new Yahoo app

Yahoo Inc has acquired the smartphone application maker Stamped as part of its push to build a customized lineup of products and services for smartphones, tablet PCs and other mobile devices.

The purchase of the New-York based start-up is new Yahoo chief executive officer Marissa Mayer’s first M&A venture since she defected from arch-rival Google three months ago to help revive the internet pioneer and transform it into a mainly mobile company.

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Consumer Products Leader Newell Rubbermaid Cutting Jobs, Changing Executive Members

Consumer Products Leader Newell Rubbermaid Cutting Jobs, Changing Executive Members

BUSINESS

  • Newell Rubbermaid to cut 1,900 jobs
  • Rubbermaid restructuring  expected to save $180 million to $225 million annually
  • Savings from reorganization to be used to grow brands, boost sales in foreign markets

Consumer products manufacturer Newell Rubbermaid Inc. will cut 1,900 jobs and reorganize the company as part of a restructuring plan aimed at saving money for reinvestment.

The company plans to eliminate 10% of its workforce by mid-2015, and departments will be reorganized with several executives replaced.

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Proctor & Gamble To Introduce New Products To Win Back Market Share

Proctor & Gamble To Introduce New Products To Win Back Market Share

BUSINESS

  • Procter & Gamble sees drop in net sales of close to 4% over July-September 2012
  • New products and productivity measures to be implemented to help regain market share
  • Competitors Kimberly-Clark and Colgate cutting jobs

The world’s largest consumer-products manufacturer Procter & Gamble Co reported a drop in net sales of close to 4% from July-September 2012 over the same period last year.

In light of this, the company has laid out a turnaround plan aimed at regaining market share in key categories, with new products to be introduced and productivity measures to be implemented.

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Pfizer Buys Specialty Drug Maker NextWave Pharmaceuticals For $680 Million

Pfizer Buys Specialty Drug Maker NextWave Pharmaceuticals For $680 Million

BUSINESS

  • Pfizer buys NextWave to offer more diverse portfolio of high-quality medicines
  • Pfizer selling off nutritional and animal health businesses to focus on developing new prescription drugs
  • NextWave ADHD drug Quillivant XR approved by FDA, expected to be available in US by January 2013

Pfizer Inc., the world’s largest drug manufacturer, has agreed to purchase emerging specialty pharmaceutical company NextWave Pharmaceuticals Inc. for $680 million as part of its strategy to focus on developing new drugs.

Specifically, NextWave manufactures an attention deficit hyperactivity disorder drug, called Quillivant XR.

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Airbus Launches New A350 Aircraft Manufacturing Line

Airbus Launches New A350 Aircraft Manufacturing Line

BUSINESS

  • Airbus A350 aircraft designed to decrease fuel consumption dramatically, made out of lightweight carbon-composite material
  • A350 marked as Europe's first major contribution to new generation of aircraft
  • Airbus to begin production immediately, should generate 10 planes per month by 2018

European airplane manufacturer Airbus has launched a new assembly plant for its latest jetliner the A350. The A350 assembly factory will produce a new generation of aircraft made of lightweight materials engineered to save carriers fuel costs and allow Airbus to go head-to-head with rival Boeing.

The plane is meant to be Europe's first major contribution to a new generation of aircraft scheduled to drastically decrease fuel consumption by using high-tech materials. The A350 will be made of carbon-composite elements instead of much-heavier aluminum and is designed to seat between 270 – 350 passengers.

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Semiconductor Deal: Dutch ASML To Buy US Company Cymer For $2.6 Billion

Semiconductor Deal: Dutch ASML To Buy US Company Cymer For $2.6 Billion

BUSINESS

  • ASML and Cymer to develop EUV technology, satisfy consumer demand for microchips
  • PC demand drops to 349 million units in 2012, marking first decrease since 2001
  • Demand for memory chips to be weak during start of 2013, while demand for logic chips to grow

ASML Holding NV, Europe’s largest semiconductor equipment supplier, has agreed to purchase San Diego, CA, based Cymer Inc. for around $2.6 billion to accelerate the develop of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) semiconductor lithography technology used in the creation of microchips.

EUV technology is used to increase the capacity and speed of microchips, while lowering costs and making them more energy efficient. The chips are used in smartphones and tablet computers.

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Coca-Cola Sales Slow In China

Coca-Cola Sales Slow In China

BUSINESS

  • Chinese sales slow to 2% growth, still vital to company’s long-term growth
  • Despite slowdown in China, Coca-Cola saw growth worldwide
  • India takes China’s place as largest market for Coca Cola sales, to see $5 billion investment in next 8 years

The world's largest soft-drinks manufacturer Coca-Cola Co. is seeing sales in China, one of the world's fastest-growing consumer markets, slow in the third quarter.

Sales in China have grown by only 2% this past quarter, marking a slow down compared to 11% growth one year ago and 7% during the second quarter.

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Japanese Mobile Phone Company SoftBank To Purchase Majority Stake In Sprint Nextel For Over $20 Billion

Japanese Mobile Phone Company SoftBank To Purchase Majority Stake In Sprint Nextel For Over $20 Billion

BUSINESS

  • Entering US market offers Softbank opportunity to grow
  • Japan handset shipments down 27% over past five years
  • Sprint struggling financially since Nextel purchase; deal provides funds to pay down debt

SoftBank Corp., Japan's third-largest mobile phone carrier, is purchasing a 70% stake in leading US carrier Sprint Nextel for over $20 billion. The deal will be mutually beneficial for both companies, allowing them to better compete in the lucrative US market.

In Japan, handset shipments have fallen 27% to 38 million units over the past five years; during the same time US shipments grew, reaching 191 million units in 2011.

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IBM, AT&T Partnering To Offer Cloud Services For Fortune 1000 Companies

IBM, AT&T Partnering To Offer Cloud Services For Fortune 1000 Companies

BUSINESS

  • Service provides data access via IBM network and AT&T infrastructure; target audience is Fortune 1000 companies
  • IBM hopes to make $7 billion in cloud revenue by 2015
  • IBM also seeking to boost its presence in analytics market

International Business Machines Corp., the world’s largest computer services provider, and AT&T Inc., the largest phone carrier in the US, have entered into an agreement to deliver a secure, network-enabled cloud service.

Cloud services involve storing software and information in offsite data centers.

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