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Business News - part 9

Sony Seeks A Patent In The US For Its “SmartWig” Technology Hairpiece

Sony Seeks A Patent In The US For Its “SmartWig” Technology Hairpiece

BUSINESS

  • Wig to include sensors, camera and laser pointer
  • Sony unsure whether device will be commercialized
  • Wearable technology seen as a growing market

Sony has filed a patent application with the US Patent & Trademark Office for its SmartWig hairpieces, which are wigs that include technology to communicate wirelessly and process data.

Sony has developed three prototypes: the Presentation Wig for use with PowerPoint slides, the Navigation Wig for use when traveling and the Sensing Wig for gathering medical information.

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US Media Giant Tribune Co. Cuts 700 Jobs In Its Newspaper Division

US Media Giant Tribune Co. Cuts 700 Jobs In Its Newspaper Division

BUSINESS

  • Tribune Company to cut 6% of newspaper staff to streamline non-editorial positions
  • Company to split television and newspaper assets as publishing business revenue declines
  • Tribune to expand its digital and broadcast businesses

The Chicago-based Tribune Company, owner of the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, recently announced it would cut 700 jobs in its newspaper department to streamline its non-editorial positions across the board by laying off publishing staff, mainly in business roles such as circulation and advertising, with some editorial cuts.

These layoffs represent around 6% of Tribune’s 11,000 total staff. 

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New Jersey To Allow Online Gambling

New Jersey To Allow Online Gambling

BUSINESS

  • Casinos and European operators partner to run 17 gaming websites
  • New Jersey market expected to generate revenue of about $500 million
  • Federal law makes gambling difficult in US

Online gambling is about to launch in New Jersey, pending website tests, possibly leading the way for the rest of the US.

Atlantic City-based casinos and predominantly European-based operators will form a partnership to bring New Jersey residents 17 gaming sites in 2013. The websites will be restricted to poker and casino games.

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Retailer Home Depot Raises Outlook As Homeowners Spend More On Renovations

Retailer Home Depot Raises Outlook As Homeowners Spend More On Renovations

BUSINESS

  • Home Depot reports higher-than-expected third-quarter earnings
  • US homeowners spending more on home renovations
  • Home Depot’s recent results sign of recovery in housing market

US home-improvement retailer Home Depot has raised its revenue growth expectations for the third time in 2013 up from 4.5% to 5.6% as mounting home prices push homeowners to increase spending on renovations.

For the quarter ending at the start of November, Home Depot’s net income rose by 43% from the $947 million of the previous year to $1.35 billion.

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Online Music Service Spotify Raises $250 Million In Funding

Online Music Service Spotify Raises $250 Million In Funding

BUSINESS

  • Spotify to use funding to boost its US service and expand into international markets particularly Japan
  • Spotify now valued at $4 billion; few startups have raised more than $400 million
  • Spotify’s revenue doubled in 2012 to $571 million

Online music-streaming service Spotify has raised $250 million in funding with the aid of venture-capital firm Technology Crossover Ventures. The additional capital puts the company’s value at more than $4 billion, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Spotify will use the capital to boost its US service and expand into international markets, particularly Japan. It recently expanded into Mexico, Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong.

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Nokia Approves Sale Of Mobile Unit To Microsoft

Nokia Approves Sale Of Mobile Unit To Microsoft

BUSINESS

  • Nokia sells mobile unit for over $7 billion to focus on telecom equipment and services division
  • Microsoft needs to make Lumia handset profitable, has $80 billion to invest
  • Nokia had a near 14% market share in third quarter of 2013

Nokia investors have voted almost unanimously to approve selling the company’s mobile unit to software giant Microsoft for $7.35 billion.

The sale includes the Lumia smartphone trademark and technology and Asha feature phones. In 2011, then-CEO Stephen Elop abandoned Nokia’s Symbian operating system and replaced it with the Windows operating system.

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Dubai Air Show: Boeing, Airbus Secure Major Orders

Dubai Air Show: Boeing, Airbus Secure Major Orders

BUSINESS

  • Airline manufacturers secure $142 billion in orders and commitments
  • 80% of orders for Boeing
  • A total of $155 billion in orders were announced

Boeing and Airbus, the world's dominant civil aircraft manufacturers, received aircraft orders and commitments worth nearly $142 billion at the Dubai Air Show.

If commitments are confirmed, 80% of the orders will be for Boeing from Lufthansa, Emirates, Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways.

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Lockheed Martin To Cut Jobs, Close Facilities In US By Mid-2015

Lockheed Martin To Cut Jobs, Close Facilities In US By Mid-2015

BUSINESS

  • Lockheed Martin to cut 4,000 jobs across US; facilities to close in five states
  • Aeronautics, which accounts for 30% of sales, will not see any cuts
  • US Defense Department budget reduced by $52 billion in 2013

Defense contracting giant Lockheed Martin plans to cut 4,000 jobs and close facilities in five states to cut costs in response to reduced US government spending.

The closures, totaling 2.5 million square feet of real estate, will be completed by mid-2015. No new work has been anticipated for these locations, and site programs will shift to other locations.

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Volkswagen Recalls 2.6 Million Vehicles, With Focus On China

Volkswagen Recalls 2.6 Million Vehicles, With Focus On China

BUSINESS

  • Nearly half of recalls affect China, Volkswagen’s most significant market
  • Volkswagen strives to double its manufacturing capability to more than 4 million cars per year by 2018
  • New vehicles more technologically advanced, leading to greater risk of recalls

Europe’s largest car manufacturer, Volkswagen, is dealing with a worldwide vehicle recall of nearly 2.6 million sport-utility vehicles, pick-up trucks and cars as it intensifies attempts to overtake Toyota and General Motors for top sales results.

Nearly 50% of recall touches vehicles in China, Volkswagen’s largest market. The automaker’s division in China will recall 640,309 vehicles starting November 25 to change the oil in several unspecified 7-speed double-clutch gearboxes. This corresponds with Volkswagen’s recommendation that 1.6 million vans and cars need to replace the synthetic oil in their dual-clutch gearboxes with mineral oil.

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Retail: Wal-Mart Cuts 2013 Annual Outlook For Second Time

Retail: Wal-Mart Cuts 2013 Annual Outlook For Second Time

BUSINESS

  • Wal-Mart customer base affected by economic challenges
  • Revenue for US Wal-Mart stores declines 0.1%, while total US sales up 2.4%
  • US stores represent 58% of Wal-Mart’s total sales; revenue has declined for a third straight quarter

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s biggest retailer, has cut its 2013 annual outlook for the second time in three months as its customer base faces ongoing economic challenges, including stagnant wages and higher social security charges.

During the third quarter, net sales grew 1.6% to $114.88 billion and total sales grew 2.4%. International-division sales grew 0.2% to $33.1 billion.

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