Nikko to buy DBS Asset
Sumitomo Trust and Banking Co’s unit Nikko Asset Management Co agreed to buy DBS Asset Management (星展資金管理) from DBS Group Holdings Ltd (星展集團) for S$137 million (US$105 million) to tap business from the expanding ranks of wealthy Asians. Under the accord, DBS Asset will also take a 7.25 percent stake in Nikko Asset and the combined firm’s managed assets will total more than US$150 billion, the companies said in a joint statement filed with the Singapore stock exchange yesterday. The number of millionaires in the Asia--Pacific region reached 3 million last year, matching those in Europe for the first time, a June report by Capgemini and Bank of America Corp’s Merrill Lynch unit said. Asian millionaires’ assets rose 31 percent to US$9.7 trillion, the study showed.
Pfizer CEO steps down
Pfizer Inc’s chief executive has stepped down without warning, acknowledging the personal toll involved in steering the world’s largest drugmaker through a multibillion-dollar merger. The departure of Jeffrey Kindler, 55, comes more than a year after Pfizer completed the signature move of his tenure — the US$67 billion acquisition of rival Wyeth. However, he leaves before the company confronts the US patent expiration of its top-selling Lipitor cholesterol medicine.
Rare-earth extractor coming
Hitachi Ltd has developed machinery to harvest rare earth metals from discarded hard-disk drives and compressors as electronics makers seek to reduce their reliance on Chinese supply. The machine can extract 100 rare earth magnets from hard disk drives per hour, about eight times faster than manual labor, Tokyo-based Hitachi said in a statement yesterday. The company plans to get 10 percent of its rare-earth needs through recycling when the business begins operating in fiscal 2013, Satoko Yasunaga said.
Cathay Pacific CEO named
Airline Cathay Pacific has announced that chief operating officer John Slosar will take over as chief executive next year when current head Tony Tyler leaves to head the industry lobby group IATA. In a press release, the Hong Kong flag carrier said Slosar would take up the post after Tyler steps down on March 31 next year. Slosar, 54, was managing director of parent company Swire Pacific’s beverage division before joining Cathay in 2007.
Hyundai halts Ulsan plant
Hyundai Motor Co stopped production at its plant in Ulsan, South Korea, yesterday because of worker unrest, less than four hours after a three-week shutdown ended. Hyundai, based in Seoul, initially stopped manufacturing at the plant on Nov. 15 after the workers began a sit-in demanding they be made permanent employees. Hyundai resumed plant operations at 50 percent of capacity at 8am yesterday even as the sit-in continued.
Philippines top call-center
The Philippines has become the call-center capital of the world, overtaking India as the No. 1 player in the global business outsourcing market, according to industry data and the government. Philippine President Benigno Aquino forecast last week that the industry’s revenues would hit US$12 billion to US$13 billion next year, rising to US$100 billion by 2020 to account for a fifth of the global market.
Gogoro Inc (睿能創意) yesterday launched its first electric bicycle, the Gogoro Eeyo 1, in Taiwan, after unveiling the bike in New York in late May and in France on Tuesday. The company said it would also introduce the series in other European countries such as Germany and the Netherlands. The “Eeyo project” is the fourth of Gogoro’s eight projects that concentrate on smart transportation, which includes Gogoro’s electric scooter, battery swap system and electric scooter sharing service, company founder and chief executive officer Horace Luke (陸學森) told a media briefing in Taipei. “There are various types of city commuters. We will not
EXPERIMENTAL DRUG: While news about a COVID-19 vaccine is more eye-catching, developing a treatment would be more viable, the Senhwa boss said Senhwa Biosciences Inc (生華科) aims to raise NT$1.5 billion (US$50.57 million) by issuing 15 million new common shares in the third quarter of this year to fund the research of new drugs, including the experimental drug Silmitasertib for the treatment of COVID-19, the company said on Monday. That would be the firm’s largest fundraising effort after it raised more than NT$1.4 billion from an initial public offering on the Taipei Exchange (TPEX) in April 2017, chief financial officer Sarah Chang (張小萍) told the Taipei Times by telephone. The price of the new shares would depend on the firm’s average share price
NOT A PANACEA: Offering 5G services would not solve the problem of declining telecom incomes, chairman Sheih Chi-mau said, expecting a flat 5G telecom revenue Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信) yesterday became the nation’s first telecom to debut its 5G services, offering tiered tariffs that include a threshold of NT$599 and flat rates, as it aims to switch half of its subscribers to the 5G network within three years. Subscribers would have unlimited data transmission for monthly fees starting at NT$1,399 — the same flat rate as when the company launched its 4G service in 2014 — and they can subscribe to the highest-rate plan for NT$2,699 per month for faster data transmission speeds and larger bandwidth, the company said. Data transmission speeds would be within the range
STAYING AHEAD: TSMC expects its sales this year to grow 14 to 19 percent and could spend up to US$3.52 billion on research and development, leaving its rivals far behind Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) reported that the US last year approved 99 percent of its patent applications, which placed the tech giant among the top patent holders in the US. In its Corporate Social Responsibility Report, TSMC said it last year secured about 3,600 patents worldwide, including more than 2,300 in the US. As of the end of last year, TSMC owned more than 39,000 patents, the report said. The company last year filed almost 6,500 patent applications worldwide and ranked among the top 10 patent applicants in the US. In Taiwan, it was the largest patent applicant for the fourth