World Business Quick Take


Fri, Oct 28, 2011 - Page 10


Olympus defends purchases

Olympus Corp’s new president says his company has done nothing wrong in past acquisitions, defending the purchases as strategic amid escalating scrutiny triggered by its recently fired CEO Michael Woodford. Shuichi Takayama stuck to the Japanese company’s denials but offered more details about the deals in question, including a US$687 million payment made to financial advisers as part of its purchase of the UK’s Gyrus Group PLC. Olympus confirmed for the first time the identities of the financial advisers as Axes America LLC and Axam Investments Ltd.


Daimler’s profit down

German automaker Daimler said yesterday that its net profit fell by 16 percent in the third quarter because of writedowns on its investments in French and Russian groups Renault and Kamaz. Daimler, which owns the flagship Mercedes-Benz brand, said in a statement its bottom-line profit fell to 1.36 billion euros (US$1.9 billion) in the period from July to September from 1.61 billion euros a year earlier. Underlying profits, as measured by earnings before interest and tax, dropped by 18.6 percent to 1.968 billion euros. Third-quarter sales, on the other hand, rose by 5.3 percent to 26.407 billion euros on a 10.6 percent increase in unit sales to 525,517 vehicles.


Bayer earnings shoot up

Bayer AG says its earnings more than doubled in the third quarter compared with a year-earlier figure that was weighed down by one-time charges. The pharmaceutical and chemical company said yesterday that its net profit for the July to September period was 642 million euros — a 125 percent increase over the previous year’s 285 million euros. Revenue was up 1 percent to 8.67 billion euro from 8.58 billion euros. Bayer said the increase was driven by sales in emerging markets.


BASF profit beats estimates

BASF SE, the world’s largest chemicals maker, reported third-quarter profit that beat analysts’ estimates as price increases and the purchase of cosmetic-ingredient maker Cognis helped limit a drop in margins. Earnings before interest, tax and items such as costs from acquisitions and restructuring fell 11 percent to 1.96 billion euros, BASF said yesterday in a statement. Analysts had predicted 1.85 billion euros, according to the average of 16 estimates compiled by Bloomberg.


Lufthansa’s profit plummets

German airline Lufthansa said yesterday that its bottom-line net profit declined by 21.3 percent to 494 million euros in the third quarter. Revenues in the period from July to September rose by 6.7 percent to 8.075 billion euros, Lufthansa said in a statement. Lufthansa already issued a profit warning last month, blaming a disappointing performance in August, deteriorating booking forecasts for the airline industry and wider economic uncertainty.


Shell profits double

Energy giant Royal Dutch Shell said yesterday that net profits doubled to US$6.98 billion between June and September as revenues rose by a third thanks to higher oil prices. The profit after tax figure for the third quarter compared with net income of US$3.46 billion during the equivalent period last year, the Anglo-Dutch group said in a statement. Group revenue jumped 36 percent to US$123.4 billion in the third quarter from a year earlier.