French tax plan loses steam
France’s drive to force Internet giants to pay more taxes is losing steam, amid resistance from other EU countries that serve as tax shelters to companies like Apple Inc. Under pressure from Ireland, Luxembourg and Britain, EU leaders in Brussels on Friday stopped short of calling for a Europe-wide policy for digital multinationals. The EU’s 28 leaders agreed to push for “an effective and fair taxation system fit for the digital era,” but said it should be an international system, not just European.
Airbus to push CSeries sales
A deal giving Airbus SE a controlling stake in Bombardier Inc’s CSeries jets should lead to extra work for the Canadian planemaker’s factory in Northern Ireland, UK Business Secretary Greg Clark said on Friday, after meeting with executives from both companies. Airbus’ investment this week in the Montreal-based plane and train maker’s CSeries jets is expected to reduce costs and increase sales of the narrow-body jets. Bombardier is the largest manufacturing employer in Northern Ireland, which is the poorest of the UK’s four nations.
Hudson Bay’s Storch leaving
The parent of Lord & Taylor and Saks Fifth Avenue said on Friday that CEO Jerry Storch is stepping down and will return to his advisory firm on Nov. 1. Storch has been CEO of Toronto-based Hudson’s Bay, which also operates the department store chain under its namesake, since January 2015. Hudson’s Bay said it has retained an executive search firm to recruit a new CEO. Executive chairman Richard Baker is to serve as interim CEO.
LSE chief stepping down
London Stock Exchange Group PLC (LSE) said on Thursday that its chief executive officer Xavier Rolet will leave the bourse operator by the end of December next year, just under a decade after he took the helm at the firm. LSE said it would start looking for his successor now. The group also reported a 17 percent rise in third-quarter total income to ￡486 million (US$641 million), as its clearing and FTSE Russell businesses grew strongly.
Sweden to get battery factory
Start-up company Northvolt AB said on Thursday it had picked its home country Sweden to build Europe’s biggest factory for electric car batteries, rivalling Tesla Inc’s US “Gigafactory.” The factory at Skelleftea is to employ up to 2,500 people. Construction of the factory is to start in the second half of next year and it is expected to raise production progressively between 2020 and 2023. Once fully operational, the site is to produce lithium-ion batteries totaling 32 gigawatt-hours per year, Northvolt said.
LG, Qualcomm partner up
LG Electronics Co said on Thursday that it will work with Qualcomm Inc to jointly research and develop autonomous driving technologies. The South Korean company said the two firms have opened a joint research center in Seoul and will open another one in Seoul by the end of next year. Their joint research will focus on developing 5G wireless technology and other wireless technologies needed for the safety of connected cars, LG said.
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