Tue, Oct 29, 2013 - Page 15 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

AUTOMAKERS

Toyota still world No. 1

Toyota Motor Corp’s global sales for the first nine months of the year reached 7.41 million vehicles, little changed from the previous year but outpacing General Motors (GM) to keep its lead as the world’s top-selling automaker. Detroit-based GM said earlier this month that its global sales for January through last month totaled 7.25 million vehicles, up 4.6 percent from a year earlier. Toyota’s vehicle sales for the first three quarters inched up 0.1 percent. Toyota said yesterday that it sold about 2.5 million cars, trucks and buses in the July-to-September quarter, led by overseas growth.

DIAMONDS

Alrosa to raise US$1.3bn

Russian state-owned diamond miner Alrosa expects to raise US$1.3 billion in a share sale, a figure at the bottom of a previously announced range, in a government privatization drive that has been hit by delays and weak investor sentiment. Market sources said US investors, including asset management group Lazard, were the biggest buyers of the shares, purchasing up to 60 percent of the 14 percent stake in Alrosa, which vies with Anglo American-owned De Beers as for the mantle of the world’s largest diamond miner. Alrosa’s offer price of 35 roubles per share puts the company’s market capitalization at 258 billion roubles (US$8.12 billion). It had been pegged at between 35 roubles and 38 roubles a share.

INTERNET

Sohu profit falls 20 percent

Sohu.com Inc (搜狐), operator of a popular Chinese Web portal, said yesterday its quarterly profit fell 20 percent due to higher expenses, but revenues rose. Sohu said it earned US$41 million in the three months ended Sept. 30 compared with US$51.5 million a year earlier. Revenues rose 29 percent over a year earlier to US$368 million. Profits were squeezed by a 53 percent rise in operating expenses due to more staff and higher costs for marketing, especially for mobile products and online games.

GREEN ENERGY

JAG to build 13MW station

JAG Energy Co, a unit of Japan Asia Group Ltd, will build a 13 megawatt solar power station in Kanagawa Prefecture, south of Tokyo.Construction will start in February and be completed in March 2015, Tokyo-based Japan Asia Group said in a statement yesterday. No financial terms were disclosed. Toshiba Corp will supply solar panels and electricity generated at the plant will be sold to Tokyo Electric Power Co, according to the statement.

CURRENCY

Russia cuts gold reserves

Russia reduced gold reserves for the first time in a year last month as Mexico cut holdings for a 17th straight month, according to IMF data. Russian reserves declined about 0.37 tonnes to 1,015.1 tonnes, while Canada’s holdings fell to 3 tonnes last month from 3.1 tonnes, and Mexico’s lost 0.1 tonne to 123.5 tonnes, the IMF data showed. Central-bank gold purchases may total 350 tonnes this year, the World Gold Council predicts, after they added 534.6 tonnes last year, the most since 1964.

INVESTMENT

G4S rejects US$2.5bn offer

G4S said it had rejected a £1.55 billion (US$2.5 billion) offer for its cash solutions business from British private equity group Charterhouse Capital Partners, saying the bid undervalued the unit. The company, the world’s largest security services firm, said yesterday that the nature and timing of the non-binding offer, which was made by the group on Tuesday last week, was “highly opportunistic.”

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