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Business News - part 40

Network Equipment Leader Cisco Buys Cybersecurity Firm Sourcefire

Network Equipment Leader Cisco Buys Cybersecurity Firm Sourcefire

BUSINESS

  • Sourcefire deal helps Cisco add next-generation security technology
  • Sourcefire makes intrusion-detection products; 19% of its revenue comes from anti-hacking technology used by US government
  • More acquisitions expected in the IT security industry

Networking equipment manufacturer Cisco Systems has purchased cybersecurity software maker Sourcefire Inc. for $2.7 billion to add next-generation security technology to its portfolio and boost its security business.

Recently, Cisco lost market share in the network security industry to smaller rivals, and now hopes the purchase of Sourcefire will help its reputation and make it a top player in security.

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American Airlines Parent Company Posts Strong Q2 Profit

American Airlines Parent Company Posts Strong Q2 Profit

BUSINESS

  • AMR hits $220 million in profit for Q2 2013, compared to $241 million in losses for same period last year
  • American Airlines to merge with US Airways to create largest national airline
  • American Airlines boosting capacity by 2.7% this quarter

AMR Corp., the parent company of US airline American Airlines, posted $220 million in profit for the second quarter of 2013 thanks to lower fuel prices and cost-cutting measures taken during its Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring.

AMR posted $241 million in losses for the same period in 2012, and these new figures mark the first profit in the second quarter for the company since 2007.

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Second-Quarter Profits for Phillips Rise 30%, Thanks to Healthcare Unit

Second-Quarter Profits for Phillips Rise 30%, Thanks to Healthcare Unit

BUSINESS

  • Orders for healthcare division up 7%
  • Cost cutting strategy working better than expected
  • Other divisions also see rise in orders

Second-quarter profits for Royal Philips NV rose 30% to $418 million and sales rose 3%, boosted by a strong healthcare unit which saw orders rise 7% compared to the same quarter in 2012.

Phillips’ healthcare division is now its most profitable. The company is the leading medical equipment supplier in the United States and a top-three hospital equipment producer worldwide.

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Mobile Phone Maker Nokia Sees Sales Drop 24%

Mobile Phone Maker Nokia Sees Sales Drop 24%

BUSINESS

  • Nokia sold 7.4 million Lumia smartphones in second quarter 2013, up 32% from first quarter
  • Overall Nokia sold 27% fewer smartphones and basic mobile phones compared to same period year
  • Nokia to cut 440 more mobile phone division jobs 

Mobile phone maker Nokia reports second quarter 2013 handset sales dropped 24% to €5.7 billion, falling short of expectations and losing market share to global competitors Apple and Samsung.

Nokia managed to sell 7.4 million units of its best-selling Lumia smartphone in the second quarter, a 32% increase from the first quarter. However, analysts polled by Reuters had predicted that 8.1 million Lumia units would be sold.

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Soft Drink Giant Coca-Cola Sees Profit Fall Due To Shifting Tastes, Bad Weather

Soft Drink Giant Coca-Cola Sees Profit Fall Due To Shifting Tastes, Bad Weather

BUSINESS

  • Coca-Cola profit down 4% worldwide; global sales volume up 1% or well below expectations of 3.3% growth
  • US soda consumption at 26-year low
  • Coca-Cola sales volume fell 4% in Europe, stagnated in China

Soft drink maker Coca-Cola has reported profit is down 4% worldwide to $2.68 billion during the second quarter of 2013, with global sales volume up 1% but well below expectations of an anticipated 3.3% growth.

Coca-Cola also reported a drop in profit in the North American market, marking the fourth time in the last five quarters that the region has seen a decrease.

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Chinese Search Engine Giant Baidu Buys App Store 91 Wireless

Chinese Search Engine Giant Baidu Buys App Store 91 Wireless

BUSINESS

  • Baidu pays $1.9 billion for app store 91 Wireless to increase its share of mobile market in China
  • 91 Wireless one of China’s top third-party app stores; over 10 billion apps downloaded from 91 Wireless
  • Apps more popular than mobile sites because internet download speeds are slow in China

China’s biggest search engine Baidu Inc. will pay nearly $2 billion to purchase the nation’s leading smartphone app store 91 Wireless from NetDragon Websoft Inc., a Hong Kong-listed company, in an effort to gain a larger piece of the mobile market.

The deal should help Baidu shift its present focus on desktop computing searches, where it holds 82% of the market share in China, to mobile devices – the clear wave of the nation’s future. It is Baidu’s biggest acquisition yet.

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AT&T Purchases Prepaid Mobile Service Provider Leap Wireless

AT&T Purchases Prepaid Mobile Service Provider Leap Wireless

BUSINESS

  • Leap acquisition gives AT&T access to prepaid wireless market
  • Leap network covers 35 states, is 6th largest carrier in US
  • More wireless industry mergers likely as companies compete for larger market share

AT&T Inc., the number two mobile carrier in the US, is purchasing prepaid mobile service provider Leap Wireless International Inc. for $1.19 billion to expand into the lucrative prepaid market.

The deal is worth nearly double Leap’s worth, and Leap can no longer solicit other bids. 

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Worldwide PC Sales Decline For Record Five Successive Quarters

Worldwide PC Sales Decline For Record Five Successive Quarters

BUSINESS

  • Global PC shipments down 11%  
  • PC shipments in US bolstered by growth in professional market 
  • Lenovo leader in hard-hit PC market over HP by very slim margin (less than 1%)

Some 76 million PC units were shipped globally in the second quarter of 2013, marking a decrease of nearly 11% over the same period in 2012, as reported by research firm Gartner. The PC market has now experienced five successive quarters of decreasing shipments, its longest period of decline to date.

Separate research by firm IDC also indicated an 11.4% decrease in PC shipments worldwide from second quarter 2012.

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US Grocery Leader Kroger Adds Harris Teeter Supermarkets To Its Network

US Grocery Leader Kroger Adds Harris Teeter Supermarkets To Its Network

BUSINESS

  • Kroger buys Harris Teeter for nearly $2.5 billion to expand in mid-Atlantic and southeastern states
  • Kroger to operate 2,631 supermarkets in 34 states after merger
  • Deal is Kroger’s largest acquisition since Fred Meyer; marks fourth-largest takeover of a North American food retailer since 2003

The largest grocery-store chain in the US, Kroger Co., has agreed to buy Harris Teeter Supermarkets for just under $2.5 billion.

The merger with Harris Tweeter will allow Kroger to expand its reach in mid-Atlantic and southeastern states.

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Drugstore Chain Walgreen Joins Forces With Health Insurer Blue Cross To Promote Healthcare Act

Drugstore Chain Walgreen Joins Forces With Health Insurer Blue Cross To Promote Healthcare Act

BUSINESS

  • Walgreen, Blue Cross launch www.LearnAboutReform.com to provide education on and encourage enrollment in the Affordable Care Act
  • US government to spend $212 million promoting the law, with a hotline and website as information tools
  • Close to 3.7 million people may enroll during insurance expansions; 25 million people expected to have coverage by 2018

Walgreen Co., the largest US drugstore chain, is teaming up with health-insurance provider Blue Cross Blue Shield Association to educate Americans on the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a federal law designed to provide health insurance to millions of uninsured.

The companies have established an educational website called LearnAboutReform.com that is designed to encourage the uninsured to use government exchanges to shop for subsidized health plans. The website will also educate users on the benefits available through the ACA as well as penalties for not signing up for coverage.

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