Sat, May 04, 2019 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

FOOD AND BEVERAGE

Beyond Meat soars on debut

Celebrity-backed vegan burger start-up Beyond Meat Inc on Thursday made a sizzling Wall Street debut, more than doubling its share price. Backed by Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio and Microsoft Corp founder Bill Gates, the California-based firm had valued itself at about US$1.5 billion at opening on the NASDAQ exchange, but its starting share price of US$25 soon sky-rocketed to US$65.75, before ending at US$59.43 — a valuation of US$3.38 billion.

APPAREL

Adidas profit beats forecasts

German sporting goods maker Adidas AG yesterday said that sales online and in China had pumped up profits and revenues in the first quarter. From January to March, net profit leaped 17 percent year-on-year to 632 million euros (US$705.5 million), outstripping forecasts from analysts surveyed by FactSet Research Systems Inc. Operating profits grew at the same pace, reaching 875 million euros, as revenues clambered 6 percent higher to 5.9 billion. Sales at the group’s flagship Adidas brand added 5 percent, it said.

CHEMICALS

BASF maintains targets

German chemicals giant BASF AG yesterday stuck to its full-year targets, even as it reported falling profits in the first quarter, blaming the drop on global trade tensions’ damping effect on business. From January to March, the Ludwigshafen-based group saw net profits fall 16 percent year-on-year to 1.4 billion euros. Operating profit fell 24 percent to 1.7 billion euros, although the group had managed to boost revenues 3 percent to 16.2 billion.

BANKING

French lender slides further

Societe Generale SA was unable to halt the slide in its investment bank last quarter. Profit at the unit that houses the trading operations declined 16 percent in what is usually its strongest period. Earnings were dragged down by fixed-income trading, while the larger business of buying and selling equities and providing services to hedge funds did better than almost all peers. The results contrast with those of larger rival BNP Paribas SA, which on Thursday surprised markets with a rebound in fixed-income trading that beat European and US peers.

AIRLINES

Air France-KLM still battling

Air France-KLM yesterday said its losses deepened in the first quarter of the year under the pressure of higher fuel costs and competition, although the group managed to boost passenger numbers. The net loss of 320 million euros was worse than the 269 million euro loss it suffered in the January to March period last year. The Dutch-French airline group’s shares fell more than 4 percent at the opening of trading in Paris, while the overall market was flat.

ENTRTAINMENT

Sinclair buys Fox networks

Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc has agreed to buy the Fox regional sports networks from Walt Disney Co, turning the local-TV company into a cable-sports powerhouse, the Wall Street Journal reported. The deal is valued at more than US$10 billion, the Journal said, citing unidentified people familiar with the matter. An agreement could have been announced as early as yesterday, the newspaper said. Disney and Sinclair did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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