Business News - part 43

Qantas Airways Teams Up With Emirates To Expand European Reach

Qantas Airways Teams Up With Emirates To Expand European Reach

BUSINESS

  • Qantas Airways to partner with Emirates starting April 2013
  • Emirates deal to help Qantas cut profit loss and expand European services
  • New partnership latest addition to Qantas plan to overhaul international network

Qantas Airways of Australia has announced a partnership with Emirates of Dubai on its European routes; the Sydney-based carrier is ending a nearly 20-year partnership with British Airways in view of curbing its profit loss on international operations.

The new 10-year agreement will enable Qantas to provide its customers flights to over 70 destinations in Europe, Africa and the Middle East as its European hub moves from Singapore to Dubai. Qantas anticipates that collaborating with Emirates, the world’s largest international carrier, will facilitate its recovery from the $459 million it lost in long-haul operations for the financial year that ended in June.

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McDonald’s Launches Vegetarian Restaurants In India To Capture More Market Share

McDonald’s Launches Vegetarian Restaurants In India To Capture More Market Share

BUSINESS

  • McDonald’s catering to local tastes in India with vegetarian-menu-only restaurants
  • Majority of India’s population does not eat beef or pork due to religious reasons
  • Half of McDonald’s menu in India already vegetarian

McDonald’s Corp., one of the world's largest fast-food chains, has plans to open its first vegetarian-menu-only locations in India in an attempt to capture more of the Indian market.

McDonald’s tailors its menus worldwide to suit local tastes. In India, its menu offers no pork or beef, with only chicken and vegetarian options.

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Chinese Search Engine Baidu Launches New Mobile Browser 20% Faster Than Competitor Products

Chinese Search Engine Baidu Launches New Mobile Browser 20% Faster Than Competitor Products

BUSINESS

  • Baidu aims to have new mobile browser downloaded by 80% of Android users
  • Number of mobile internet users in China rises to 388 million
  • Baidu plans to invest $1.6 billion in cloud computing

Baidu Inc., China’s leading search engine, has launched a new mobile browser in an effort to capture the nation’s vast mobile internet market. Baidu Explorer is said to be 20% faster than products from main competitors, including Apple’s Safari, UCWeb Inc's UC Browser and Google’s Chrome.

China has seen its number of mobile internet users rise to 388 million out of the its overall internet market of 538 million users. According to a government report recently released, for the first time the number of mobile users in China has surpassed the number of desktop users accessing the internet.

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Italy’s Gruppo Campari Buys Jamaican Rum Maker For $415 Million

Italy’s Gruppo Campari Buys Jamaican Rum Maker For $415 Million

BUSINESS

  • Campari aims to expand in North America with Lascelles de Mercado & Co acquisition
  • Deal includes brands Coruba, Wray & Nephew, Appleton Special/White and Appleton Estate
  • Rum third most popular spirit behind vodka and scotch

Italian aperitif manufacturer Gruppo Campari will purchase Jamaican rum maker Lascelles de Mercado & Co for $415 million in an effort to expand in the North American market.

The Milan-based company will purchase an 81.4% majority stake from Caribbean conglomerate CL Financial Ltd, which is run by the government of Trinidad and Tobago who took over management of the company after a 2009 bailout.

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Valeant Pharmaceuticals To Bolster Skin Care Business With Medicis Acquisition

Valeant Pharmaceuticals To Bolster Skin Care Business With Medicis Acquisition

BUSINESS

  • Valeant to buy Medicis for $2.6 billion; first takeover since failed Cephalon bid last year
  • Buyout to add Botox rival Dysport to Valeant’s skin care portfolio
  • Deal expected to account for 50% of total revenue

Leading Canadian drug company Valeant Pharmaceuticals has finalized a $2.6 billion deal to take over dermatology product maker Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp, reviving a buying spree that has been stagnant since a failed bid for biopharmaceutical company Cephalon Inc last year.

In recent months, the specialty pharmaceuticals company has been concentrating on building up its dermatology portfolio in North America, particularly in the United States. The acquisition of Medicis will add Botox rival Dysport to Valeant’s skin care lineup as well a range of other skin treatments, including the acne drug Solodyn.

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Back-To-School Rush Helps US Retailers See August Sales Exceed Estimates

Back-To-School Rush Helps US Retailers See August Sales Exceed Estimates

BUSINESS

  • Same-store sales for chain stores rose by 6%
  • Back-to-school shopping for K-12 and college students expected to hit $84 billion
  • 70% of US economic activity gained from consumer spending

US retailers posted August sales that exceeded forecasts, according to data compiled by retail analysts at Retail Metrics Inc. and the International Council of Shopping Centers. Same-store sales for chain stores on a whole rose by 6%, driven by promotions for back-to-school shopping as well as cooler weather conditions.

Sales were also aided by state sales tax holidays.

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Lexmark Exits Inkjet Printer Market To Focus On Laser Printers, Imaging

Lexmark Exits Inkjet Printer Market To Focus On Laser Printers, Imaging

BUSINESS

  • Lexmark to focus on laser printer market, software and imaging
  • 1,700 jobs to be cut in restructuring
  • Lexmark inkjet printers revenue down 35% compared to last year

It is the end of an era for printer maker Lexmark International as the company plans to close its inkjet printer division to focus on laser printers, software and imaging.

A key factory in the Philippines will close by 2015, and worldwide some 1,700 jobs will be eliminated, representing 13% of the company’s workforce. In January, 625 positions related to consumer ink supplies were already cut.

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Chinese Automotive Market To Welcome Ford Luxury Lincoln Brand By 2014

Chinese Automotive Market To Welcome Ford Luxury Lincoln Brand By 2014

BUSINESS

  • Ford to begin selling luxury Lincoln brand vehicle in China by 2014
  • Ford invested $5 billion in China over past 6 years
  • Ford aims to double its dealerships and assembly plants in China

Leading automotive manufacturer Ford will sell its Lincoln brand vehicle in China within the next two years as it vies for a share of the luxury segment of the world’s largest car market.

The company did not reveal how much it will invest in the Chinese Lincoln venture, but the announcement comes on the back of some $5 billion pumped into the Chinese market as Ford attempts to close the gap with industry leaders General Motors and Volkswagen.

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US Court Rules In Apple’s Favor For Patent Case, Says Samsung Owes Over $1 Billion

US Court Rules In Apple’s Favor For Patent Case, Says Samsung Owes Over $1 Billion

BUSINESS

  • Samsung ruled to have violated 6 out of 7 Apple patents, ordered to pay $1.05 billion
  • Apple files paperwork to have 8 Samsung products banned
  • Smartphones using Google's Android operating system may be forced to make changes to product models

Apple has won a major victory in its court battle with Samsung Electronics over patent disputes, with a US federal court ruling Samsung infringed on 6 out of 7 Apple iPhone and iPad patents. The penalty is a $1.05 billion fine for Samsung.

The verdict follows a South Korean court ruling that both companies infringed on patents.

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GE Transportation Launches EPA-Compliant Train To Meet Updated Emissions Standards

GE Transportation Launches EPA-Compliant Train To Meet Updated Emissions Standards

BUSINESS

  • New GE Evolution train first to meet Tier 4 emissions standards
  • GE invested $600 million to design and test train
  • Evolution train does not require use of urea or costly fueling centers

GE Transportation, a unit of GE and one of the world’s leading railroad industry suppliers, has unveiled its new fuel-efficient, diesel-electric Evolution locomotive, which is designed to meet the US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) strict new Tier 4 emissions standards.

Developed by a team of multi-disciplinary engineers as well as experts who carefully consulted with many of GE’s top rail customers, the new locomotive is said to lower particulate emissions by up to 70% and NO2 emissions by 76%, representing the largest reductions in history.

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