Wed, Oct 10, 2018 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

ENTERTAINMENT

Netflix to buy ABQ Studios

Netflix Inc is buying its first production studio — the New Mexico facility used to make The Avengers and Sicario — to accommodate its growing output of original movies and television shows. The world’s largest paid online TV network said it was in final negotiations to purchase ABQ Studios, with eight sound stages in Albuquerque, it said in a statement on Monday. Terms were not given. Netflix already shoots the supernatural drama Chambers and the epic Messiah in New Mexico and previously shot its Emmy-winning series Godless there as well. New Mexico offers tax incentives to attract productions. Together the state and the city of Albuquerque would provide Netflix with US$14.5 million in funding. Netflix said it would create up to 1,000 jobs a year and spend US$1 billion on production over the next 10 years.

CRYPTOCURRENCIES

Start-up receives license

Crypto Finance AG has obtained the same license as professional fund managers from Switzerland’s financial regulator as the country pushes to become a leader in the growing virtual-currency industry. The Zug-based company is now being recognized as an asset manager of collective investment schemes, meaning it can manage and distribute domestic and foreign funds and provide advice to investors, the company said. Obtaining the license removes a hurdle for the company of former UBS Group AG banker Jan Brzezek, allowing it to cater to wider group of professional investors managing cryptofunds in Switzerland after getting a license to distribute investment schemes in the country earlier this year.

INVESTMENTS

Qatar offers incentives

Qatar has allocated US$2 billion to attract multinational companies to its financial center in its latest effort to rival Dubai. Companies that set up a hub in Doha are to be provided free offices and tax incentives as well as seed capital to cover five years of operating expenses in return for a commitment of at least a decade, Qatar Financial Center Authority CEO Yousuf al-Jaida told Bloomberg TV. Qatar’s financial hub aims to launch the incentive plan in the first quarter once all the governance structures have been put in place. The plan comes after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut economic and diplomatic ties with Qatar in June last year, accusing the country of financing terrorist groups and having close ties with Iran, charges Qatar rejects. The rift forced Qatar to shift import routes to Kuwait and Oman, and buy goods from Iran and Turkey.

GERMANY

Exports edge down 0.1%

German exports unexpectedly fell in August, the Federal Statistics Office said yesterday, in a fresh sign that manufacturers in Europe’s largest economy shifted into a lower gear over the summer months. Seasonally adjusted exports edged down 0.1 percent from July, missing a Reuters forecast of a 0.3 percent rise. Imports dropped 2.7 percent, undershooting a predicted 0.2 percent fall. ING economist Carsten Brzeski blamed the low trade volumes over the summer months on a general weakening of global manufacturing activity and a temporary blip in domestic demand. Volker Treier from the DIHK chambers of industry and commerce said the weak data meant that he would probably have to cut his forecast for 5 percent export growth this year. The seasonally adjusted trade surplus widened to 18.3 billion euros (US$21 billion) in August from 15.9 billion euros in July, the data showed.

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