BUSINESS March 18, 2014 | 5:20 PM
A recent bidding war for French mobile network operator SFR, which belongs to Paris-based telecommunications and media company Vivendi, saw Altice-owned cable group Numericable win out over telecommunications and construction company Bouygues, both also with Paris headquarters.
Altice, Numericable’s parent company, offered Vivendi a counter bid of €11.75 billion (over $16.4 billion USD) as well as a hefty stake (of at least 32%) in the united Numericable/SFR.Read more »
BUSINESS March 17, 2014 | 5:42 PM
Facebook Inc., the world’s largest social network, will debut 15-second video advertisements in newsfeeds in an effort to increase the website's profitability.
The ads began to be offered to select US ad partners this month and will appear in newsfeeds in late April or early May. Users will not see the same video more than three times daily, and Facebook has said it will focusing on higher-quality promotions instead of showing more ads to users.Read more »
BUSINESS March 17, 2014 | 3:27 PM
OAO Rosneft, Russia’s largest oil producer, will become the largest investor in Italian manufacturer Pirelli & C. SpA, the world's fifth-largest tire maker, after taking a stake in the consortium which will own Pirelli.
The current consortium, Lauro61/Camfin, owns 26% of Pirelli. It will dissolve and create a new company. Rosneft will take over investor Nuove Partecipazioni.Read more »
BUSINESS March 14, 2014 | 5:55 PM
Recently McDonald’s Corp. revealed that the figures for its comparable-store sales in February worldwide had dropped much lower than expected, largely due to a decline in business at its over 14,200 US sites.
Consensus Metrix reported that for restaurants open for a minimum of 13 months—thus more established—global sales dipped by 0.3%. The overall picture for McDonald’s roughly 35,400 restaurants around the world is lackluster. Only the European market, the company’s most profitable, had gains, with February sales increasing by 0.6%. In Africa, the Middle and Asia Pacific, however, sales dropped by 2.6%. The 0.3% global sales decline this past quarter eclipsed analysts’ predictions of 0.1%. In the US, same-restaurant sales dropped by 1.4%, more than twice the 0.6% predicted by analysts.Read more »
BUSINESS March 14, 2014 | 5:02 PM
American menswear retailer Men’s Wearhouse Inc. has agree to purchase rival Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc. for $1.8 billion, ending months of negotiations. The combined company will have sales of $3.5 billion annually, some 23,000 employees and more than 1,700 locations.
It will become the fourth-largest menswear retailer in the US after Macy’s, Kohl’s and J.C. Penney. Improved sourcing and merchandising will save shareholders $100 million to $150 million over three years, the companies said in a joint news release.Read more »
BUSINESS March 13, 2014 | 3:01 PM
American Airlines cancelled its interline agreement with JetBlue, ending perks customers of both airlines enjoyed, now that it has access to the East Coast of the United States.
The agreement, which started in 2010, allowed customers to buy connecting flights on each other's planes using one ticket. It also offered frequent-flyer programs and baggage handling.Read more »
BUSINESS March 12, 2014 | 6:03 PM
Getty Images, the world’s biggest stock photo company, is offering its content to the public for free after recognizing that its library of over 150 million photos were being widely pirated and shared over the internet, with watermarks and without.
In the past, users needed to pay licensing fees for watermark-free Getty photos. According to The Verge, a US technology news and media organization, Getty is now removing the watermark for roughly 40 million of its pictures.Read more »
BUSINESS March 11, 2014 | 12:28 PM
American office supply retailer Staples Inc. plans to close 225 underperforming locations, representing 12% of its North American locations, and cut $500 million in annual costs by 2016.
The plan comes after a disappointing holiday season and forecasts for a further decline in business.Read more »
BUSINESS March 10, 2014 | 12:09 PM
London-based oil producer BP intends to separate its onshore US oil and gas assets into a new division that will boost the competitiveness of its shale gas portfolio there.
BP, by market value the second-largest European oil company, asserted that this separate shale division with new Houston headquarters would be more viable as a competitor against independents as it could benefit from faster cycle times and shorter decision-making times.Read more »
BUSINESS March 7, 2014 | 6:02 PM
American electronics chain RadioShack Corp. lost $400 million in 2013, and plans to close 1,100 stores as part of chief executive Joe Magnacca’s turnaround plan.
The retailer has struggled for years to compete against online retailers and changing technology. Analysts say RadioShack cannot compete in a world where people shop online and that it is too dependent on wireless technology.Read more »
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