World Business Quick Take - Taipei Times
Fri, Jan 12, 2018 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

TECHNOLOGY

Google acquires Redux

Google has quietly acquired a UK start-up focused on technology that turns surfaces such as mobile phone displays into speakers. Redux developed technology that eliminates the need for small speakers in mobile phones, freeing up space for batteries or other components, the Cambridge, England-based company said on its now defunct Web site. Backed by investors including Arie Capital, Redux raised US$5 million in March last year, and concentrated on markets including computing, mobile, automotive and industrial controls.

ACQUISITIONS

Qualcomm fight for staff

Qualcomm Inc, which is fighting what would be the largest technology takeover by Broadcom Ltd, is guaranteeing that any acquirer would have to pay up if existing employees are fired after a corporate change of control. The chipmaker unveiled a severance plan that applies to most employees below the rank of executive vice president if the company’s ownership changes, according to a regulatory filing on Dec. 22 last year. The workers would get a payout if they are fired without cause or if they choose to leave for “good reason.”

AVIATION

Pilots fired over in-flight fight

India’s Jet Airways has fired two pilots reportedly involved in a midair cockpit fight on New Year’s Day, when the pilot allegedly slapped his copilot during a London to Mumbai flight. After an investigation, the airline “has terminated services of both the cockpit crew with immediate effect,” Jet Airways said in a statement on Tuesday. The company has released no further details. The flight, which was carrying 324 passengers, landed safely.

FINTECH

Bitmain expand into Europe

Chinese bitcoin mining giant Bitmain Technologies Ltd (比特大陸) is expanding to Switzerland in a move that would be key to widening its reach, the group told a Swiss newspaper. Bitmain Switzerland was registered in Zug last month, according to commercial registry filings accessed on Wednesday. “Bitmain Switzerland will play a central role during our global expansion,” a spokesman for the Beijing-based group told the Handelszeitung.

RETAIL

Australians binge on sales

Australian retail sales jumped the most in almost five years in November last year, driven by a binge on iPhone purchases and Black Friday sales. Sales climbed by 1.2 percent from the previous month, triple the estimate of economists and the biggest leap since February 2013, data showed yesterday. The spike included a 9.3 percent surge in electronics sales spurred by the iPhone X release, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said. The result is a turnaround on a weak third quarter.

CHAD

Salary reductions suspended

The cash-strapped nation has suspended a plan to reduce the salaries of its civil servants, Prime Minister Albert Pahimi Padacke announced on Wednesday. The plan, announced earlier this month, aims to ease the strains on a budget badly hit by a nearly four-year slump in oil revenues and a rise in borrowing. Civil service salaries last year totaled 376 billion Central African francs (US$684 million), about the equivalent of the combined revenue from income tax and customs duties, official figures showed.

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