World Business Quick Take


Sat, Nov 16, 2013 - Page 15


Google lawsuit dismissed

A US judge on Thursday dismissed a long-running lawsuit challenging Google’s huge book digitization project, ruling that the scanning of millions of books is not copyright infringement. Judge Denny Chin dismissed the case which dates back to 2005, saying Google’s project is “fair use” under copyright law and “does not supersede or supplant books because it is not a tool to be used to read books.” Plaintiffs, led by the Authors Guild, had argued that Google’s “Library Project” violated the rights of authors by scanning works without obtaining approval from the authors. However, Chin concluded that Google’s use of the copyrighted works is “highly transformative” in that it enables readers to find out about new books and permits book text to be transformed “for purposes of substantive research, including data mining and text mining ... thereby opening up new fields of research.”


Firms invest in solar plants

Internet giant Google and investment firm KKR will invest US$400 million in six solar plants in California and Arizona, the companies announced on Thursday. The plants are expected to be operational by January next year. They will be managed by Recurrent Energy, a California solar developer. The companies plan to sell the electricity to municipal users and local utilities, including Southern California Edison. Five of the plants are in California and the sixth is in Arizona. A Google spokeswoman said the total investment in the projects is US$400 million.


Wal-Mart sees Q3 profit

US retail giant Wal-Mart Stores Inc on Thursday notched a 2.8 percent rise in third quarter profit from a year ago, but trimmed its full-year profit forecast against a tough competitive backdrop. Wal-Mart Stores Inc, the world’s largest retailer, said net income for the third quarter came in at US$3.7 billion on revenue of US$115.7 billion. Earnings translated into US$1.14 per share, a cent above analyst forecasts. Revenue, up 1.7 percent from last year’s third quarter, was well below the US$116.8 billion consensus estimate.


Firm buys Dwango shares

Nintendo Co, the creator of the game franchises Mario and Zelda, bought 612,200 shares in Dwango Co, a company that provides content through mobile phones, according to a statement filed with the Tokyo Stock Exchange yesterday. Nintendo is not planning to distribute games through Dwango’s video delivery system Niconico, Nintendo spokesman Yasuhiro Minagawa said. Nintendo currently promotes its games through the system, he said. Nintendo acquired the shares at the request of Dwango chairman Nobuo Kawakami for his personal funding needs, he added.


Kleenex maker to divest

Kimberly-Clark Corp, the maker of Kleenex tissues and Huggies diapers, plans to spin off its healthcare business, leaving management to focus on its consumer and professional brands. The tax-free deal would create a stand-alone, publicly traded company with about US$1.6 billion in annual sales, Dallas-based Kimberly-Clark said in a statement on Thursday. The unit that would be separated makes products such as sterile wraps, surgical face masks and catheters. About 70 percent of its sales last year were in North America, with most of the rest in Europe and Asia. In the third quarter, revenue rose after the division posted declines in the previous four quarters.