Samsung to resell Note 7
The world’s biggest smartphone maker, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, is next week to start reselling refurbished Galaxy Note 7 devices after a humiliating recall over exploding batteries last year, news reports said yesterday. Samsung Electronics declined to comment on the reports. The recall debacle cost the South Korean giant billions of US dollars in lost profits and hammered its global credibility. About 3 million Galaxy Note 7 devices were returned to the firm, but groups including Greenpeace expressed concern that discarding them could harm the environment. Citing industry sources, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency and other news reports said Samsung would start selling refurbished devices with new batteries and updated software under the name Galaxy Note Fandom Edition. They are to be priced less than 700,000 won (US$616.30) and sales are scheduled to start on Friday next week, Yonhap said.
Facebook making TV shows
Facebook Inc is starting production on high-quality TV series and gaming shows to be broadcast on its platform, one of the social media giant’s executives said on Monday. The online platform, which has about 2 billion monthly users worldwide, is working on the project with a small group of partners and hopes to start putting out episodes of its forthcoming series by the end of the summer, Facebook vice president for media partnerships Nick Grudin said in a statement, confirming a report in the Wall Street Journal. Facebook is funding the shows on its own at first, he said, “but over time we want to help lots of creators make videos funded through revenue sharing products like Ad Break,” a software tool that allows ads to be directly inserted into Facebook’s online content.
Berkshire buys Store stake
Warren Buffett’s company is spending US$377 million to pick up 9.8 percent of a real-estate investment trust called Store Capital Corp. The Scottsdale, Arizona-based real-estate firm announced Berkshire Hathaway Inc’s investment on Monday. Berkshire bought 18.6 million shares of Store Capital for US$20.25 per share in a private placement sale. Store Capital’s stock jumped nearly 11 percent to US$23 after the investment was announced. Berkshire is a conglomerate based in Omaha, Nebraska, that owns more than 90 companies, including Berkshire Hathaway Home Services. It also owns Government Employees Insurance Co (commonly known as Geico), BNSF Railway and several major utilities.
Petrofac forecasts net profit
British oilfield services company Petrofac Ltd yesterday said it expected an underlying net profit of US$135 million to US$145 million for the first half of this year as higher bidding activity in its core markets led to a strong order book. Its order book stood at US$13 billion as of May 31, according to the company, which designs, builds, operates and maintains oil and gas facilities. It last year recorded an order book value of US$14.3 billion as orders picked up in its core Middle Eastern markets. The company’s high exposure to the Middle East oil markets had resulted in good backlog coverage for this year, as record production in the region drove up contract awards. “High level of tendering activity is evidence of greater confidence in our core markets and we continue to have a very good pipeline of bidding opportunities,” CEO Ayman Asfari said in a statement.
NOT ALL GOOD: Analysts warned that other data for last month might be less rosy due to the virus and analysts expect the PMI to contract again next month Chinese factory activity saw surprise growth last month as businesses went back to work following a lengthy shutdown, but analysts said that the economy faces a challenging recovery as external demand has been devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic, while the World Bank said that growth could screech to a halt. China is slowly returning to life after months of tough restrictions aimed at containing the virus, which put millions of people into virtual house arrest and brought economic activity to a near standstill. The strict measures saw a closely watched gauge of manufacturing plunge to its lowest level on record in February,
The output of the global smartphone industry this year is to contract by 7.8 percent on an annual basis as the COVID-19 pandemic ushers in a global recession, Taipei-based market researcher TrendForce Corp (集邦科技) said in a report on Monday. The global production of smartphones is expected to fall to 1.29 billion units, as the pandemic dampens demand for consumer electronics, leading to a decline in shipments across Europe and North America, TrendForce said. With consumers delaying smartphone purchases and thereby lengthening the device replacement cycle, overall prices would suffer a setback that is expected to negatively affect the profitability of smartphone
DEVELOPING TALENT: The electronics contractor is looking to recruit people to work in core tech fields and emerging industries like electric cars and robotics Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密), the world’s largest contract electronics maker, has launched a recruitment drive, offering a monthly salary of no less than NT$45,000 (US$1,485) to university graduates. For those with a master’s degree, the starting pay would be NT$52,000 per month at the minimum, while doctorate degree holders would receive at least NT$60,000 a month, Hon Hai said a statement issued early this week. The latest recruitment drive is aimed at attracting talent in core technology fields — artificial intelligence, semiconductors and next-generation mobile communications — and emerging industries — electric vehicles, digital healthcare and robotics, the
ELECTRONICS Lite-On delays sale of unit Lite-On Technology Corp (光寶科技) yesterday said it would postpone the sale of its solid-state drives (SSD) business to Kioxia Holdings Corp, formerly known as Toshiba Memory Holdings Corp, due to disruptions amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, the Taiwan-based electronics components supplier struck the deal with the Japanese firm, agreeing to sell the unit for US$165 million. Citing unfinished integration work due to the pandemic, Lite-On has deferred today’s closing date until further notice, adding that the delay would not have a negative effect on the unit’s operations. AUTO PARTS Hiroca approves dividend Automotive interior parts supplier Hiroca