Thu, Mar 21, 2019 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

TECHNOLOGY

Tencent weighing bid

Chinese Internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd (騰訊) is weighing a bid for part of Temasek Holdings Pte’s stake in global retailer A.S. Watson Group, people with knowledge of the matter said. The Singapore state investment company is considering selling about a 10 percent stake in A.S. Watson for about US$3 billion, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. That is just under half of its 25 percent holding.

INTERNET

Instagram allows shopping

Facebook Inc-owned Instagram on Tuesday made a move into potentially lucrative e-commerce by adding an option to buy products shown off in posts by selected brands. A new “checkout” button for instant purchasing launched in a beta version of the app in the US with a limited number of businesses, according to the popular image-centric messaging service. Tapping the checkout button is to allow shoppers to select options, such as size or color, and then pay for items without leaving the Instagram app. Previously, people inspired to buy products featured in Instagram posts had to follow links to outside online shopping sites. Brands taking part in the checkout feature included Adidas, Burberry, Dior, H&M, Nike, Oscar de la Renta, Prada, and glasses retailer Warby Parker.

ZIMBABWE

Tobacco harvest to decline

The country’s tobacco crop, one of its main generators of foreign exchange, is expected to decline as much as 13 percent this year, the industry marketing board said. Output might be 220 million to 240 million kilograms in the marketing season that began yesterday and ends in September, an official at the Tobacco Industry & Marketing Board said in the capital, Harare. Production last year was 252 million kilograms. The harvest would be reduced by drought and damage caused by Cyclone Idai to barns used to store the crop, the official said.

TECHNOLOGY

Doctolib valued over US$1bn

Doctor appointment booking app Doctolib has been valued at more than US$1 billion after raising new funding, adding to the surge of interest in healthcare start-ups. Founded in 2013, Doctolib operates a doctor’s appointment booking app and related management software, and has been growing services of video-based consultations and digital prescriptions. Doctolib’s 150 million euro (US$170 million) round announced yesterday was led by US-based growth equity investor General Atlantic, the start-up said in a statement. Doctolib is the latest unicorn technology start-up in a club that includes cloud storage supplier OVH Groupe SAS, vehicle-sharing app Blablacar and music streaming service Deezer SA.

SEMICONDUCTORS

Google boosts AMD stock

The biggest move in Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) Inc shares in seven weeks led to some head-scratching on Wall Street. The stock on Tuesday rallied 12 percent as Alphabet Inc’s Google unveiled its videogame streaming service that would use AMD processors, even though analysts said the chipmaker’s involvement was already known. AMD chief executive officer Lisa Su (蘇姿豐) said during a presentation at the CES trade show in January that its graphics processors would be used as part of Google’s gaming project. “We are surprised by the stock price move as we believed this was a well-known win,” RBC’s Mitch Steves wrote in a research note.

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