Business News - part 40

Luxury Goods Firm PPR Going Strong At Start Of 2013

Luxury Goods Firm PPR Going Strong At Start Of 2013

BUSINESS

  • PPR shares at highest level in 12 years, sales jump 20%
  • Nearly 40% of PPR’s global sales come from emerging markets
  • PPR brand Puma reports 70% decline in profit

French luxury goods firm PPR SA forecasts 2013 will be a year of growth as shares are up more than 7% to their highest level in a dozen years.

Sales have jumped 20% to $13 billion, and are being driven in part by the success of the Bottega Veneta handbag line. Overall, nearly 40% of PPR’s global sales came from emerging markets.

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Media King Comcast Buys GE’s Stake In Entertainment Company NBCUniversal For Over $16 Billion

Media King Comcast Buys GE’s Stake In Entertainment Company NBCUniversal For Over $16 Billion

BUSINESS

  • Comcast buys NBCUniversal to take over media conglomerate that includes NBC Network, SyFy, MSNBC, Bravo, USA Network, Universal Pictures film studio and Universal Studios theme parks
  • Purchase originally planned for after 2014 but Comcast buying now to avoid higher prices
  • Customers should not see cable prices increase

Comcast Corp, the most valuable media company in the US, is purchasing General Electric Co.’s stake in entertainment company NBCUniversal for $16.7 billion, taking full control of a media conglomerate.

The purchase includes NBC Network; cable channels SyFy, MSNBC, Bravo and USA Network; Universal Pictures film studio and Universal Studios theme parks. Comcast also will purchase the headquarters of NBCUniversal, 30 Rockefeller Plaza and CNBC’s headquarters in New Jersey for $1.4 billion.

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Goodyear Revises 2013 Forecast In Response to European Crisis

Goodyear Revises 2013 Forecast In Response to European Crisis

BUSINESS

  • Weakness of European tire market causes Goodyear to revise forecast down
  • Goodyear broke even in 2012
  • Three-year strategy expected to improve European sales

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., the top US tire maker, has lowered its forecast for 2013 in response to a weak European tire market.

Goodyear expects the global tire industry to increase at a slower than expected pace with volume growing at single-digit percentage rates. Operating profit was revised from $1.6 billion, to $1.4 billion to $1.5 billion. 

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Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner Aircraft Approved For Test Flight, Delivery Delays Expected

Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner Aircraft Approved For Test Flight, Delivery Delays Expected

BUSINESS

  • Boeing Dreamliner passes first test flight after battery incidents
  • Boeing expects delays in Dreamliner production
  • Japan, India, Poland, Chile ban use of Dreamliner until answers are provided

Nearly one month after the US Federal Aviation Administration suspended aircraft manufacturer Boeing Co.’s (BA) 787 Dreamliner jet due to a series of battery-related issues, the aviation giant has now successfully completed its first test flight.

Mid January, several Boeing Dreamliner jets were grounded worldwide to investigate battery-related incidents, including a fire on board a 787 that was parked at Boston's Logan International Airport as well as an in-flight problem that occurred on a different airplane in Japan.

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Toyota Revamping 2014 Tundra to Compete in High-End US Truck Market

Toyota Revamping 2014 Tundra to Compete in High-End US Truck Market

BUSINESS

  • Redesigned Tundra to be sold in $40,000 high-end US truck market
  • Toyota required to offer new features to gain US customers
  • Tundra design changes inspired by customer feedback

Automotive manufacturer Toyota Motor Corp. has updated the design and changed the marketing strategy of its 2014 Tundra pickup truck in the hopes of increasing sales.

At the Chicago Auto Show, Toyota’s US senior vice president Bob Carter said the new Tundra truck has a smoother ride, quieter cabin and a more luxurious design. Toyota is adjusting to meet and capture growing demand in the full-size truck market above $40,000.

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Computer Maker Dell Strikes $24 Billion Buyout Deal With Equity Firm Silver Lake

Computer Maker Dell Strikes $24 Billion Buyout Deal With Equity Firm Silver Lake

BUSINESS

  • Dell goes private in biggest leveraged buyout deal post-financial crisis
  • Dell to take on $17 billion in debt to finance transaction; Microsoft contributing $2 billion loan
  • Dell-Silver Lake deal underlines decline in PC industry

Leading computer manufacturer Dell Inc. is going private via a $24.4 billion deal between the company’s CEO Michael Dell and Silver Lake, an international private equity firm focused on technology.

With this sale, Michael Dell will retain the majority control, or “significant equity,” of the three-decade-old company he founded as a University of Texas student. He foresees the deal as a way to grant Dell more flexibility to aggressively turn around weak revenue.

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Cable Leader Liberty Global Buys Virgin Media To Gain Ground In Europe

Cable Leader Liberty Global Buys Virgin Media To Gain Ground In Europe

BUSINESS

  • Virgin Media acquisition to help Liberty Global enter competitive European market
  • 80% of Liberty Global revenue to come from Europe 
  • Liberty owned by American billionaire John Malone, known as America's King of Cable

Liberty Global, the world's second-largest cable company, is buying Virgin Media, Britain’s second-largest cable television provider, for over $16 billion to gain ground in one of Europe's largest and most competitive telecom markets.

Britain is Europe’s largest cable TV market by revenue.

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Tech Giant Oracle Expands Into Networking Equipment Market With Acme Packet Acquisition

Tech Giant Oracle Expands Into Networking Equipment Market With Acme Packet Acquisition

BUSINESS

  • Oracle pays over $2 billion for Acme Packet, session border control market leader
  • Acme Packet largest Oracle acquisition since Taleo takeover
  • Oracle, Acme Packet good fit because Acme customers already dependent on Oracle business management software

Oracle Corp., the world’s second-largest maker of business applications, is buying Acme Packet Inc. for $2.1 billion to expand into the networking equipment market.

Acme Packet is the leader in the internet session border control market, which is an industry worth under $1 billion. Acme Packet enables delivery of voice, data and unified communications services and applications across IP networks, and offers tools for the secure transfer of data across the internet.

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Apple iPad Tops Tablet Market But Market Share Slipping

Apple iPad Tops Tablet Market But Market Share Slipping

BUSINESS

  • Apple tablet market share drops 3% to total 44% worldwide
  • 52.5 million tablets shipped worldwide in last quarter 2012; PC shipments down over 6%
  • Samsung, Amazon and Asus beginning to make inroads into Apple market share

The Apple iPad still dominates the world of tablet computers, but during the fourth quarter of 2012, its market share slipped by nearly 3% to 44%, according to International Data Corporation’s Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker.

This is the second consecutive quarter Apple market share has declined.

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Smartphone Leader Research In Motion Unveils New BlackBerry, New Name

Smartphone Leader Research In Motion Unveils New BlackBerry, New Name

BUSINESS

  • Company to drop RIM name for BlackBerry; new BlackBerry Z10 and Q10 smartphones announced
  • UK gets new release first; US, Canada, United Arab Emirates to follow
  • US carriers taking longer to test handsets than other markets

Research In Motion has launched its new BlackBerry 10 lineup – and along with it a new name – in the hope of returning to the fore of the smartphone segment that it once controlled.

CEO Thorsten Heins says the new BlackBerry will reignite the enthusiasm that over the last decade saw it become the must-have mobile device for businesses and professionals.

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