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Top Headlines - part 66

Harrods Going Global With Launch Of Luxury Hotel Line

Harrods Going Global With Launch Of Luxury Hotel Line

BUSINESS

  • Qatar Holding aims to turn Harrods into global brand
  • First hotel to open in Malaysia; others to follow in London, Paris, New York, China and Italy
  • Qatar Holding paid $2.3 billion for Harrods in 2010

Qatar Holding LLC, the owner of the famous London-based Harrods department store, is building a chain of high-end hotels worldwide under the Harrods name with the goal of turning Harrods into a global luxury brand.

Qatar Holding vice-chairman Hussain Ali al-Abdulla says Harrods hopes to eventually define “luxury retail and leisure sectors.”

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Alabama Home To First Airbus Aircraft Manufacturing Plant In America

Alabama Home To First Airbus Aircraft Manufacturing Plant In America

BUSINESS

  • Airbus aims to take advantage of America’s need to replace aging aircraft
  • New facility to help Airbus break Boeing’s monopoly on US market
  • Airbus and Boeing compete annually for $100 billion in sales

Global aerospace leader Airbus SAS is building its first American factory in Mobile, Alabama, for $600 million in the hopes of taking advantage of the nation’s aging air fleet.

Airbus president and chief executive officer Fabrice Bregier says: “The US is the largest single-aisle aircraft market in the world, with a projected need for 4,600 aircraft over the next 20 years, and this (new) assembly line brings us closer to our customers."

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China Gets News From The New York Times - In Chinese

China Gets News From The New York Times - In Chinese

BUSINESS

  • New York Times Chinese-language news site aimed at China’s growing middle class
  • Content will be translated from existing NYTimes articles; other articles to be written by Chinese journalists
  • Newspaper will not operate as an official Chinese media company

In an effort to expand its reach to international readers, The New York Times has launched a Chinese-language news website. The new site, http://cn.nytimes.com, is aimed at China’s growing middle-class or “educated, affluent, global citizens.”

The site will feature approximately 30 articles per day, focusing on national, foreign and arts-related topics as well as editorial pieces. Around two-thirds of the content will be translated from NYTimes articles, and one-third of the content will be written by Chinese editors and local freelance journalists.

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AB InBev Buys Mexico’s Corona Beer Maker For $20.1 Billion

AB InBev Buys Mexico’s Corona Beer Maker For $20.1 Billion

BUSINESS

  • New company (Corona, Pacifico and Modelo) expected to generate $47 billion in annual sales
  • Deal should save AB InBev $600 million per year
  • Purchase allows AB InBev to gain sales in booming Mexican market

Belgium-based beer maker Anheuser-Busch InBev has purchased the remaining stake it does not currently own in Grupo Modelo, the manufacturer of Corona, for $20.1 billion in cash.

InBev already holds a 50% non-controlling stake in Modelo, which it gained in 2008 when it purchased Anheuser-Busch for $52 billion. The new $20.1 billion purchase is higher than the $12.1 billion AB InBev was originally rumored to pay, and signals the competitiveness of the Mexican beer market, which is the world’s sixth-largest.

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Apple Preparing Radical iTunes Revamp

Apple Preparing Radical iTunes Revamp

BUSINESS

  • Apple planning biggest iTunes overhaul since release in 2003
  • Improved music sharing, iCloud services, social media among changes
  • iTunes software generated $1.9 billion revenue in 2011

As the online media and applications industries grow ever larger, Apple is looking to make it easier for users to manage their lives up in the cloud with a radical makeover of its iTunes software, according to sources close to the matter.

Changes in iTunes will include improved music sharing and file storage and integration capabilities with its iCloud service. This will streamline users’ management of music, videos and applications across the various Apple devices, the anonymous sources told Bloomberg.

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Samsung Galaxy Tablet Temporarily Banned For Sale in US

Samsung Galaxy Tablet Temporarily Banned For Sale in US

BUSINESS

  • Apple claims Samsung infringing on iPad patents, demands action
  • Injunctions in Germany, Australia and the Netherlands overturned
  • 123.5 million smartphones and tablets expected to be sold by end 2012

The world’s two largest manufacturers of smartphones and tablet PCs Samsung Electronics Co. and Apple Inc. will soon face off in court over patent infringements. A US District Court Judge has placed a temporary injunction on the sale of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 after Apple claimed the Galaxy is a copy of the iPad.

The injunction does not apply to the Galaxy Tab 10.1 II.

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Coca-Cola Increases Investment In India to $5 Billion

Coca-Cola Increases Investment In India to $5 Billion

BUSINESS

  • Coca-Cola adding $3 billion investment in India; has invested $2 billion in India over past 19 years
  • Coca-Cola trails rival Pepsi Co. in India
  • India represents $10 billion market and one of Coca-Cola’s top-ten markets

Coca-Cola Co., the world's largest soft drinks manufacturer, plans to invest $3 billion more than previous announced in its Indian division over the next eight years. In November, Coke announced it would be investing $2 billion, but decided to up its investment after growth increased in Asia earlier this year.

Prior to this, Coke invested $2 billion in India over the past 19 years.

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SalesForce Ups Social Media Competition With Buddy Media Buy

SalesForce Ups Social Media Competition With Buddy Media Buy

BUSINESS

  • Social marketing platform Buddy Media to help SalesForce better compete in social media sector, keep up with customer demand
  • Salesforce estimates acquisition will boost revenue $20 million - $25 million annually
  • Deal largest in Salesforce history

Salesforce.com Inc., which sells CRM software and cloud computing services, is buying social marketing platform Buddy Media for $689 million so it can better compete in the growing social media sector.

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff says the company chose Buddy Media because of its reputable products and the strength of its platform, adding the acquisition will allow Salesforce to keep up with customer demand.

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Starbucks Rolls Out The Dough To Buy Bakery

Starbucks Rolls Out The Dough To Buy Bakery

BUSINESS

  • Coffee shop chain to purchase Bay Bread for $100 million
  • Purchase will help Starbucks achieve its goal of more food choices
  • Offering baked goods will allow Starbucks to compete against fast food chains

Starbucks Corp., the world’s largest coffee-shop chain, will purchase San Francisco-based Bay Bread LLC for $100 million in cash in an effort to boost the number of its non-coffee offerings. The purchase includes 19 retail locations and the brand name La Boulange.

La Boulange products are sold at San Francisco area grocery stores, hotels and restaurants, with products including French style bread, homemade granola and flank steak sandwiches.

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Internet Use To Surge in Middle East And Africa by 2016

Internet Use To Surge in Middle East And Africa by 2016

BUSINESS

  • Fastest growing internet traffic in Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific
  • Popularity of smartphones, internet-based tablets and other mobile technology devices driving surge in usage
  • Wi-Fi availability will account for nearly half of all IP traffic by 2016

Cisco Systems’ Visual Networking Index (VNI), which analyzes the growth and use of IP networks worldwide, predicts that internet traffic will grow at a rate of 29%, with nearly 19 billion total global mobile and fixed network connections by 2016. 

In a recent statement, Cisco said: “The projected increase of global IP traffic between 2015 and 2016 alone is more than 330 exabytes, which is almost equal to the total amount of global IP traffic generated in 2011 (369 exabytes).”

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