■ ING Antai names manager
ING Antai (ING安泰人壽) yesterday announced that chief executive officer Chan Pi-yao's (陳丕耀) term will expire at the end of this month, and his post will be taken over by John Wylie, regional general manager of ING Asia Pacific, the company said in a press release. Taiwan has become ING Group's second-largest life insurance market in Asia. To strengthen its foothold here with an eye on the potential retirement pension market, the group decided to have Wylie, an expert in pension programs, lead the company to further boost its sales and market share. ING Antai, the nation's fourth-largest life insurer announced last month that its Taiwanese operations will be upgraded from a branch to a subsidiary company of the Hague-based ING Group, starting March 1.
■ New FSC official announced
The Financial Supervisory Commission's secretary-general William Tseng (曾銘宗) will take over as acting director-general of the commission's Examination Bureau, the commission's spokesman Lin Chung-cheng (林忠正) said yesterday. Lee Chin-chen (李進誠), the former director-general of the bureau, was charged last October and may face an eight-year jail sentence for his alleged leaking of confidential information about a government probe into Power Quotient International Co (勁永國際) to an investor who profited from the information.
■ Foreign investment still rising
Foreign investors continued their interest in Taiwan's shares in February, with net foreign remittances to the stock market amounting to US$1.09 billion from the start of the month until Feb. 10, according to figures released yesterday by the Financial Supervisory Commission's Securities and Futures Bureau. Taiwan has seen net inward remittances by foreign investors increase for three consecutive months since November last year, with the amount hitting a single-month record high of US$8.52 billion in December.
Since the stock market reopened after the Lunar New Year holiday (Feb. 3 until Feb. 10), foreign investors bought listed shares worth NT$569.4 billion (US$17.5 billion) and sold listed shares worth NT$493.4 billion in Taiwan, posting a net buying worth of NT$76 billion, the tallies show.
■ Direct selling booming
Taiwan's direct selling industry is expected to post a growth rate of 30 percent this year, despite competition from other retail businesses, a leading direct selling company said yesterday. According to Amway Taiwan, the market scale of Taiwan's multi-level network marketing amounted to some NT$68.3 billion (US$2.1 billion) in 2004, up 30 percent over the previous year. They noted that health food and skin-care products are the two main product lines fielded by Taiwan's direct selling industry, with the two categories together accounting for more than 60 percent of total sales. They said Amway Taiwan posted sales of NT$6.57 billion in 2005, 28 percent higher than 2004, and that the company was aiming to boost that amount to top NT$7 billion in 2006.
■ NT dollar falls
The New Taiwan dollar declined against its US counterpart yesterday on speculation that foreign investors will add to sales of Taiwan stocks, flocking to the US after the Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said interest rates might increase, traders said. The NT dollar fell NT$0.049 to close at NT$32.401 on the Taipei foreign exchange market, on turnover of US$712 million.
POOR INTERNAL CONTROLS: Insurance Bureau Director-General Shih Chiung-hwa said the company is expected to get back on track while its chairman is suspended The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) yesterday fined Shin Kong Life Insurance Co (新光人壽) NT$27.6 million (US$939,415) for a reckless investment that endangered its solvency, and suspended its chairman Eugene Wu (吳東進) for poor supervision. The penalty is the second-highest in a single case after Nan Shan Life Insurance Co (南山人壽) was fined NT$30 million in September last year and its chairman Du Ying-tzyong (杜英宗) suspended for two years, the commission said. In three rounds of special and regular examinations conducted since last year, the commission found that Shin Kong Life had given too much power to an asset and liability management committee
Tesla Inc is planning to ship vehicles made at its Shanghai Gigafactory to other markets in Asia and Europe, people familiar with the matter said, as the company looks to realize its plan to reduce shipping costs and manufacture vehicles closer to customers. China-built Tesla Model 3s intended for delivery outside China would likely start mass production in the fourth quarter of the year, the people said, asking not to be identified because the details are private. They said the markets targeted include Singapore, Australia and New Zealand, as well as Europe, where customers currently have to wait for a Tesla to
Continental AG, which makes control units for Daimler AG cars, cannot pursue antitrust claims against a group of patent owners, including Qualcomm Inc, which are seeking royalties on telecommunications technology, a federal judge in Texas ruled. Avanci LLC, a licensing pool formed by Qualcomm, Nokia Oyj, Sharp Corp and other owners of patents on technology standards, is not breaching antitrust laws when it negotiates license agreements with automakers rather than the component makers, Barbara Lynn, chief district judge for the Northern District of Texas, said in dismissing the suit in a decision posted on Friday. The licensing group charges US$15 per vehicle
Nano-X Imaging Ltd, a start-up founded by Israeli investor Ran Poliakine, is joining forces with South Korean chipmaker SK Hynix Inc to build a machine that could disrupt a century-old X-ray industry. Valued at about US$2 billion after listing on the NASDAQ last month, Nano-X is seeking to transform a multibillion-dollar industry that has essentially relied on the same technology since Nobel Prize in Physics winner Wilhelm Roentgen discovered X-rays in the late 19th century. Nano-X’s device uses semiconductors instead of metal filaments to generate X-rays. The backing of SK Hynix, the world’s second-largest maker of memory chips, is a boost for