Sat, Nov 19, 2016 - Page 11 News List

Taiwan Business Quick Take

Agencies

FINANCE

Postal deposits grow stably

The average deposit balance per post office account as of the end of September rose about 2.5 percent year-on-year from NT$165,000 (US$5,154) to NT$169,000, indicating stable growth in postal deposits, state-owned Chunghwa Post Co (中華郵政) said yesterday. This year’s figure is NT$25,000 higher than the NT$144,000 recorded in 2011, Chunghwa Post data showed. The average deposit balance in 2012 was NT$150,000, rising to NT$153,000 in 2013, and has continued to increase. The total deposit balance at Chunghwa Post was NT$6 trillion at the end of September, compared with the NT$3.86 trillion held by Bank of Taiwan (臺灣銀行), the largest bank in the nation.

ENTERTAINMENT

Director decries ‘monopoly’

One of China’s most famous film directors has publicly accused the nation’s richest man of monopolizing the cinema market and limiting screenings of his latest movie. Veteran director Feng Xiaogang (馮小剛) said that I Am Not Madame Bovary (我不是潘金蓮) has been given on average 40 percent or more of available screening slots in cinemas, but only 10.9 percent in those run by Wanda Cinema Line Co (萬達院線). The theater chain operator is owned by Wang Jianlin’s (王健林) Wanda Group Co (萬達集團), a real-estate conglomerate that has become the world’s biggest cinema operator and recently signed up as a FIFA sponsor until 2030. In an open letter to Wang on the microblogging site Sina Weibo, Feng said the company had become too powerful in China. Wang’s son, Wanda board member Wang Sicong (王思聰), responded in a Weibo posting to Feng’s accusations by suggesting his film was simply not good enough to merit more screenings. A Wanda spokesman declined to comment.

BEVERAGES

Swire to buy bottling firms

Hong Kong conglomerate Swire Pacific Ltd is nearing the acquisition of Coca-Cola bottling assets in China from a unit of state-owned food giant Cofco Corp (中國糧油), people with knowledge of the matter said. Swire is close to an agreement to purchase stakes in Coca-Cola bottlers from Cofco’s China Foods Ltd (中糧名莊薈) subsidiary, the people said. The deal could value the businesses at about US$1 billion, the people said. China Foods in August said that it was exploring the sale of its stakes in 10 Coca-Cola bottling companies in the country, including some operations that are joint ventures with Swire. Negotiations could still fall apart or be delayed, the people said.

FOOD

CPF to acquire Bellisio

Thailand’s biggest food company, owned by the kingdom’s richest tycoon, has agreed to buy US frozen-food giant Bellisio for nearly US$1.1 billion. Charoen Pokphand Foods (CPF) hailed the acquisition of the US firm, which has a slew of popular frozen brands under its banner, as its first “entry into the world’s largest food market.” The two food titans expect to close the transaction within 180 days, CPF said in a statement released on Thursday. The company is part of Thailand’s sprawling CP Group, owned by billionaire Dhanin Chearavanont. CPF hopes to use its new foothold in the US to “bring greater variety of products, particularly Asian food products, to US consumers,” chief executive Adirek Sripratak said in a statement. Bellisio Foods produces and distributes frozen foods for well-known brands like Boston Market and Chili’s.

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