Wed, Jun 13, 2018 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

AUTOMAKERS

JLR moving base to Slovakia

Britain’s biggest automaker, Jaguar Land Rover Automotive PLC (JLR), is moving all production of its Land Rover Discovery to Slovakia from a plant near Birmingham, which is to be retooled to accommodate a new generation of electric cars. The company, owned by Tata Motors Ltd, would create a new factory platform at its Solihull, England, plant that would enable the production of cars in electric, gasoline and diesel versions, said people familiar with the matter, asking not to be named because the information is not public. Discovery production would be moved from the beginning of next year, meaning job cuts at the Solihull plant are possible before it ramps up staffing again, the people said.

UNITED KINGDOM

Job growth remains healthy

The economy continued to create jobs at a healthy pace in the three months through April, but wage growth unexpectedly slowed. The employment rate reached a record-high of 75.6 percent after the economy added 146,000 jobs, more than the 120,000 predicted by economists. The jobless rate held at 4.2 percent, its lowest since 1975. However, a surprise moderation in the pace of wage growth might suggest that the economy retains a margin of spare capacity. Pay growth excluding bonuses slowed to 2.8 percent between February and April, the Office for National Statistics said yesterday. For Bank of England policymakers, the question is how quickly the economy uses up whatever slack it has left. Bets on an August interest-rate hike receded on Monday after manufacturing and construction failed to bounce back as forecast in April following snow disruptions the previous month.

HEALTHCARE

KKR to buy Envision

Private equity firm KKR & Co is to buy Envision Healthcare Corp for US$5.57 billion plus debt, after a lengthy sale process by the hospital staffing and surgical center company. Including debt, the all-cash purchase is to value Envision at US$9.9 billion, the healthcare company said in a statement on Monday. Envision said the US$46-a-share price represents a 32 percent premium to its stock price in November last year, when it announced it was reviewing strategic alternatives. The review started for the Nashville, Tennessee-based company after activist investor Starboard Value LP, run by Jeff Smith, revealed a stake and said it would make an attractive takeover target.

AUTOMAKERS

Byton raises US$500 million

China-based electric-car start-up Byton (拜騰) has raised US$500 million as it ramps up efforts to take on rivals such as Tesla Motors Inc. Byton’s new capital is led by from First Automobile Works Group Corp (中國第一汽車集團), Tus-Holdings Co (啟迪控股), Contemporary Amperex Technology Co (寧德新時代能源科技) and others, a statement from its North American headquarters in California said on Monday. “The success of this funding round highlights how diversified strategic investors will further expand Byton’s circle of friends and broaden our development opportunities,” president and co-founder Daniel Kirchert said. Early this year, the company unveiled at the CES its vision for “intuitive and intelligent” cars for global markets starting next year from about US$45,000. Byton is led by former executives from Tesla, BMW AG, Apple Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google, and expects to launch in China by next year and in the US and Europe by 2020.

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