Toyota still on top
Toyota remains Japan’s No. 1 global brand, but its value has fallen by nearly a fifth because of the recent massive recalls that dented consumer trust in the quality of its cars, according to an international consultant. An Interbrand report released yesterday said that the value of the Toyota Motor Corp brand dropped 16 percent to US$25.66 billion compared with its last report released a year ago. Toyota’s Lexus luxury model nameplate, which placed seventh last year, dropped to eighth, losing 19 percent of its value, Interbrand said. Interbrand said Honda Motor Co placed second, followed by electronics makers Canon Inc and Sony Corp, and then video-game maker Nintendo Co.
Infineon raises targets
German semiconductor company Infineon yesterday raised its sales and profit margin targets for this year after posting a more than three-fold increase in net profit for the first quarter of its fiscal year. The company said it now expected sales to gain around 15 percent, compared with a previous forecast of 10 percent. The group’s 2010-2011 profit margin is estimated at close to 20 percent, up from the previous range of 15 percent to 20 percent. In the first three months of the year that began on Oct. 1, Infineon rang up 922 million euros (US$1.3 billion) in sales, a leap of 34 percent from the same period a year earlier. The group’s profit margin came to 19.2 percent.
Oracle settles lawsuit
Oracle Corp has agreed to pay US$46 million to settle a lawsuit over alleged kickbacks to win government work. The US Department of Justice charged that Sun Microsystems Inc, which Oracle bought last year, and other technology companies paid kickbacks to Accenture PLC for Accenture to recommend that federal agencies buy Sun products. The justice department said last year that the lawsuit covered software contracts that ran from 1998 to 2006 and were worth hundreds of millions of US dollars.
Deutsche Bank expects drop
Germany’s leading Deutsche Bank expects net profit of about 600 million euros (US$822.99 million) in the fourth quarter, a nearly 54 percent drop from a year ago due to recent acquisitions and restructuring costs. The year before, Deutsche Bank had achieved net profit of 1.3 billion euros and Dow Jones Newswires analysts had agreed on an estimate of about 800 million euros for this year. Pre-tax profit for the fourth quarter was expected to be around 700 million euros, compared with 756 million a year earlier, the bank said late on Monday. Deutsche Bank publishes its annual results on Thursday.
BOA cuts down on bonuses
Bank of America Corp (BOA) senior executives will not get cash bonuses for last year and chief executive Brian Moynihan will not receive a base salary increase this year, according to a securities filing on Monday. This year, Moynihan will have a base pay half as large as some of his chief rivals, with much of his compensation tied up in long-term awards. The head of the largest US bank by assets was paid US$950,000 in last year’s base salary. BOA’s board did increase the base pay for other senior executives. The salaries for chief financial officer Charles Noski, investment banking chief Thomas Montag and consumer bank head Joe Price will rise to US$850,000 this year from US$800,000.
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