Sun, Mar 23, 2014 - Page 15 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

BEVERAGES

Pepsi CEO’s bonus raised

PepsiCo chief executive Indra Nooyi got a pay package of US$13.2 million last year, representing a 5 percent increase from the previous year. The pay bump for the Indian-born Nooyi was the result of a higher performance-based bonus, reflecting the company’s improved financial results after coming out of a “transitional year” in which it slashed costs and stepped up investments in flagship brands. PepsiCo Inc, based in Purchase, New York, had been under pressure to improve its results when Nooyi announced a “reset” in 2012 to strengthen its brands. The company made a point of investing more heavily in marketing for its Pepsi soda, which had lost market share to Coca-Cola Co over the years.

FAST FOOD

Wendy’s plans phone-pay

Wendy’s is rolling out a program that lets customers pay using their smartphones, following a similar plan unveiled by Burger King this week. The Wendy’s Co, based in Dublin, Ohio, has been testing the mobile payment option over the past year and said the majority of its about 5,800 US locations are now ready to accept the payments. The move reflects a push by fast-food chains to court younger customers by tapping into the attachment they have to their smartphones. Burger King Worldwide Inc also said this week it would introduce a mobile payment program at its US restaurants next month. Meanwhile, McDonald’s Corp has acknowledged the importance of mobile payments, but is still in a testing phase after hiring its first chief digital officer in October last year. In the meantime, Starbucks Corp is pushing to get more customers to sign up for its app and loyalty program and says 14 percent of all purchases now come from mobile payments.

RETAIL

Tesco in India venture

Britain’s Tesco on Friday said it had struck a joint venture deal with India’s Tata Group to become the first foreign supermarket to enter the country’s US$500 billion retail sector. The world’s third-biggest retailer made the announcement after winning clearance from the Indian Foreign Investment Promotion Board for a US$140 million investment in the alliance with Tata Group unit Trent Ltd. Tesco said in a statement it had “entered into an agreement with Trent Limited, part of the Tata Group, to form a 50:50 Joint Venture in Trent Hypermarket Limited (THL) which operates the Star Bazaar retail business in India.” It said final clearances were still necessary. If approved, the deal will make Tesco the first retail giant to debut in the massive Indian retail market since New Delhi removed foreign investment barriers in 2012. On completion of the deal, THL will operate 12 stores.

GREEN GOODS

US plans negotiations

The US on Friday said it was planning to begin negotiations with other leading trading countries for a deal to cut tariffs for green goods like solar panels. The office of the US Trade Representative said it had officially notified the US Congress of the plan to open talks for a new pact on environmental goods under the WTO. “By eliminating tariffs on the environmental technologies we need to keep our air and water clean, for example, we can make them cheaper and more accessible to everyone,” US Trade Representative Michael Froman said.

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