Hyatt to buy Apple Leisure
US hotel operator Hyatt Hotels Corp on Sunday said it entered a deal to purchase resort company Apple Leisure Group from its private-equity owner KKR & Co and travel-and-leisure specialist KSL Capital Partners for US$2.7 billion in cash. In 2017, KKR and KSL bought the Pennsylvania-based resort operator from Bain Capital for an undisclosed price. The acquisition of Apple Leisure Group’s asset-light business would increase the percentage of revenues and earnings Hyatt would generate from fees, Hyatt said in a statement. After the deal is completed, Hyatt would double its global resort footprint, it added.
Residential deals pick up
The city-state’s residential market rebounded the most in six months, signaling the sector’s resilience as buyers anticipate COVID-19 restrictions easing. Purchases of new private units rose 82 percent to 1,589 last month, from 872 in June, Urban Redevelopment Authority data showed yesterday. It is the highest increase since January, when 1,633 homes were sold. The jump is due to buyers rushing to purchase homes out of fear of being priced out, especially as the economy is poised for further recovery amid the government’s plans to reopen the country, said Christine Sun (孫燕清), senior vice president of research and analytics at OrangeTee & Tie (橙易產業).
Sydney ready for bidders
Sydney Airport yesterday said that it is prepared to hold discussions with suitors over a takeover offer of more than US$16.8 billion as the company’s largest shareholder, UniSuper Ltd, agitated for negotiations to start. The airport said it is “open to engaging” with the bidders, led by IFM Investors, if they make an offer that reflects “long-term value.” At the same time, Sydney Airport rejected a small sweetener from the group that boosted the newest proposal to A$22.8 billion (US$16.73 billion). UniSuper, which would fold its 15 percent stake into the take-private group, said the latest A$8.45-a-share bid, up from A$8.25, was “the basis for a reasonable negotiation.”
Liaoning Bora investigated
The management of troubled private oil refiner Liaoning Bora Enterprise Group (遼寧寶來) has been taken over by government officials from China’s Panjin city amid a tax probe that could lead to heavy fines and possible insolvency, people familiar with the situation said. A team led by officials from the northeastern city, where the conglomerate is based, has been appointed to run the company from this month, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the matter is sensitive. Bora is seeking to restructure and avoid collapse due to mounting financial woes brought on by unpaid taxes.
Berlin to cut Lufthansa stake
Germany plans to sell up to one-quarter of its 20 percent stake in Lufthansa AG over the coming weeks, the German Finance Agency said yesterday, citing positive developments at the bailed-out airline. Lufthansa had received a 9 billion euro (US$10.6 billion) package from the German Economic Stabilization Fund (WSF), which was set up to help companies to ride out the COVID-19 pandemic. The WSF has said it would sell the complete stake, which is worth more than 1 billion euros, before the end of 2023. Lufthansa plans to issue new shares, probably before the Sept. 26 parliamentary elections, to help it to return bailout money to taxpayers.
SELF-SUFFICIENCY: Alibaba is one of a number of Chinese firms that has answered Beijing’s call to invest in the development of cutting-edge technologies Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (阿里巴巴) yesterday unveiled a new server chip that is based on advanced 5-nanometer technology, marking a milestone in China’s pursuit of semiconductor self-sufficiency. The Chinese tech giant’s newest chip is based on micro-architecture provided by the SoftBank Group Corp-owned Arm Ltd, it said. Alibaba, which is holding its annual cloud summit in Hangzhou, China, said that the chip is to be used in its own data centers in the “near future” and would not, for the time being, be sold commercially. “Customizing our own server chips is consistent with our ongoing efforts toward boosting our computing capabilities with better
Production at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp’s (TSMC, 台積電) fabs was not affected by a fire at a construction site for a water recycling facility in the Southern Taiwan Science Park in Tainan. The world’s biggest contract chipmaker said that the construction site is not adjacent to its fabs, which were unaffected. CTCI Corp (中鼎工程) is responsible for the construction of the facility, which it is to operate itself once it is completed, the chipmaker said. The facility caught fire at about 11am, and the blaze was brought under control about 30 minutes after the incident was reported, the Southern Taiwan Science Park Administration
‘SHORT-TERM ECONOMIC PAIN’: A military takeover would only temporarily weigh on wafer production on both sides of the Taiwan Strait, IC Insights said Taiwan has more chip manufacturing capacity than any other economy in the world, US-based market information advisory firm IC Insights said in a research paper last week, cautioning that the nation’s strength could prompt China to attempt to take over Taiwan. Taiwan commanded 21.4 percent of global installed IC capacity, ahead of South Korea’s 20.4 percent, Japan’s 15.8 percent and China’s 15.3 percent, North America’s 12.6 percent and Europe’s 5.7 percent, IC Insights said. Taiwan is one of two countries that uses 10-nanometer technology or better to produce wafers, holding 62.8 percent of global capacity, with South Korea holding the remaining 37.2
AGGRESSIVE STEP: With the new processors, Apple is aiming at the high-end chips Intel has provided for the MacBook Pro and other top-end Macs for about 15 years Apple Inc on Monday took the most aggressive step yet to strip Intel Corp chips from its computers, announcing more powerful homegrown Mac processors alongside a total revamp of its MacBook Pro laptop computers. The company showcased the chips at an event called “Unleashed,” which also included its latest audio products. The new components, called the M1 Pro and M1 Max chips, are 70 percent faster than its M1 predecessors, Apple said. It also unveiled a redesigned MacBook Pro, adding larger screens, MagSafe charging and better resolution. With the new processors and devices, Apple is aiming squarely at the high-end chips that Intel has