Sun, Apr 30, 2017 - Page 14 News List

World Business Quick Take



Didi raises US$5.5bn

China’s ride-hailing leader Didi Chuxing (滴滴出行) on Friday said it had raised more than US$5.5 billion in new financing amid reports that the fund injection makes it the most valuable start-up in Asia with a worth more than US$50 billion. Beijing based-Didi, which claims nearly 90 percent of China’s ride-hailing market after buying rival Uber Technologies Inc’s assets in the country last year, said it would use the money to “support its global strategy and continued investments in AI-based technologies.” Didi’s valuation makes it No. 1 in Asia and No. 2 in the world after Uber’s US$68 billion, according to rankings by the Wall Street Journal.


GDP surpasses expectation

The economy has fared better than expected under the uncertainty caused by US President Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office, with GDP up 0.6 percent in the first quarter. The GDP growth, announced on Friday by the Institute of Statistics, slightly beat analysts’ expectations of a 0.5 percent boost. GDP growth was partly driven by a boost in exports, which grew 11.2 percent in the first quarter. Eighty percent go to the US. The government and central bank expect GDP to rise between 1.3 percent and 2.3 percent this year.


Crude prices buoy expansion

Rising crude prices helped Chevron Corp and Exxon Mobil Corp easily beat analysts’ quarterly profit expectations on Friday, setting an upbeat tone as the two companies press ahead with shale oil expansions. First-quarter results were especially robust at Exxon, with quarterly profit more than doubling to US$4.01 billion, even as production fell 4 percent. Chevron swung to a US$2.68 billion quarterly profit and turned cash flow positive, earning more than it spent, a milestone Wall Street analysts had long sought. Chevron’s results were helped by US$2.1 billion in asset sales.


Time not for sale

Time Inc’s stock tumbled on Friday after the publisher said its board is not considering a sale of the company. The New York-based company said that a number of parties expressed interest in the business, but Time’s board decided the company was better off continuing with its current plan, which includes increasing revenue from its digital operations and using its brand on other platforms such as TV, events and new products. Aside from its namesake magazine, it also owns brands like People, Sports Illustrated and Fortune. Shares ended the day down US$3.1, or 17 percent, at US$15.2.


Qualcomm slashes forecast

Qualcomm Inc is slashing its profit expectations after saying that Apple Inc is now refusing to pay royalties on technology used in the iPhone. Apple sued Qualcomm earlier this year, saying that the San Diego chipmaker has abused its control over essential technology and charged excessive licensing fees. Qualcomm on Friday said that Apple now says it will not pay Qualcomm any fees until the dispute is resolved. Qualcomm now expects earnings per share between US$0.75 and US$0.85 for the April to June quarter. Its previous forecast was for earnings per share between US$0.90 and US$1.15.

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