Citigroup hiring in Ireland
US financial services group Citigroup will hire 250 people in Ireland next year in operations, funds, technology and product development, the company said yesterday. Citigroup already employs more than 2,200 workers in Dublin and Waterford, about 160km south of the capital, and has hired 300 people in the past 12 months. The jobs announcement was a rare piece of good news for Ireland, which has been rocked by a financial crisis that has seen unemployment soar, emigration return and its application for an 85 billion euros (US$113 billion) bailout from the IMF and EU last month.
Toshiba shipments to fall
Toshiba Corp’s shipments of NAND flash memory chips may fall as much as 20 percent next month and in February because of a power outage at a plant, the company said. The outage, which occurred at 5:21am on Wednesday, affected some equipment at Toshiba’s Yokkaichi plant in central Japan, said Hiroki Yamazaki, a spokesman at the Tokyo-based company. Almost all equipment should be back on line sometime today, he said. Toshiba forecasts its chip unit will make up about 17 percent of revenue totaling ￥7 trillion (US$83.5 billion) this fiscal year.
Volvo chief to step down
Volvo chief executive Leif Johansson will step down from the helm of the world’s No. 2 heavy goods vehicle manufacturer next year, the company said in Stockholm on Wednesday. During his 14 years, he refocused the company on heavy vehicles, selling its car business to Ford in 1999. It was subsequently bought by China’s Geely in August. Johansson will formally step down as president and chief executive officer in August next year.
South Korea ratings hold
Standard and Poor’s (S&P) yesterday affirmed its credit ratings for South Korea, but said it could lower them if military tensions with North Korea escalate or if the North’s succession is contested. S&P also expressed concern over the potentially hefty cost to Seoul of Korean reunification if the North’s regime collapses. The current ratings are supported by the nation’s dynamic economy, sound fiscal position, and a projected modest net external creditor position, the agency said.
Standard’s income flat
Standard Chartered bank says income has been flat in the second half of the year, but the company expects to deliver record full-year profits despite steeply rising costs. Standard Chartered yesterday said in London that it is spending more money to comply with regulatory requirements and faces increasing competition for hiring and retaining staff. The bank said it expects a double-digit percentage rise in costs for the year. It also said that provisions for bad loans have continued to improve.
Club Med cuts net loss
French leisure group Club Med yesterday said it had cut its net loss by a factor of four in its 2009-2010 financial year, adding that prospects for next year looked good, with a sustained rise in reservations. In the financial year that ended on Oct. 31, Club Med suffered a net loss of 14 million euros (US$18.6 million), against a loss of 53 million euros the previous year and a profit of 2 million euros the year before.
‘ACCORDING TO PLAN’: A company official said that it has set up production sites worldwide to provide services and that its Wisconsin project was going smoothly Hon Hai Precision Industry Co’s (鴻海精密) smart manufacturing center in Wisconsin would begin trial manufacturing in the middle of this year, the company said yesterday, adding that it plans to build a research institute to develop key technologies to support growth over the next five years. Hon Hai, known internationally as Foxconn Technology Group (富士康科技集團), said in an annual report submitted to the Taiwan Stock Exchange that its planned Foxconn Institute for Research in Science and Technology would conduct research into artificial intelligence, next-generation communications, quantum computing, cybersecurity and nano semiconductors in Taiwan. Hon Hai is to make products at the center
STAYING AHEAD: Fitch said that TSMC remains technologically ahead of others, but Samsung is building a new chip fab, while China is investing in its domestic industry As escalating US-China tensions and COVID-19-related production disruptions force US technology supply chains to transform, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (TSMC, 台積電) US$12 billion chip fabrication plant in Arizona would be key to spurring greater US production of core semiconductor components, Fitch Ratings said. “We view the US-TSMC alliance as a first step in building a more autonomous US technology supply chain, given high barriers to entry, specifically related to the significant capital and design capability required for leading-edge semiconductor manufacturing,” Fitch said in a statement on Tuesday. “By working with TSMC, US chipmakers will not face the financial burden of incremental investment
E Ink Holdings Inc (元太科技), the world’s sole supplier of e-paper displays for e-readers and shelf labels, posted its best quarterly net profit for the first quarter in nine years amid increased demand during a traditionally slow season. Net profit soared 80 percent to NT$787 million (US$26.23 million) in the quarter ended March 31, compared with NT$438 million a year earlier. That translated into earnings per share of NT$0.69, up from NT$0.39. E Ink posted lower royalty income of NT$371.23 million last quarter from NT$448.74 million a year earlier, a company financial statement showed. E Ink said that it expects royalty income to
DIVERSIFICATION: Although COVID-19 would push more companies to produce in emerging markets, DBS said that it was unlikely that firms would totally leave China Geopolitical tensions and supply disruptions are expected to accelerate the migration of manufacturing out of China, as concerns about the risk of production concentrated in one country increase, S&P Global Ratings said. Although its economic expansion might be weaker than previous levels due to the accelerated relocation of manufacturing, China’s economic growth would still be stronger than that of most other economies, the ratings agency said. “While absolute growth rates will moderate, we believe China’s economic performance will continue to be a key sovereign credit support,” S&P Global Ratings credit analyst Tan Kim Eng (陳錦榮) said in a statement on Thursday. “Its growth