Business News

Boeing will halt production of its troubled 737 MAX

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COMMERCIAL AVIATION makes up the bulk of Boeing’s revenues. Military-minded top brass of its large defence arm would be excused for seeing that business as a case study in tactical and strategic failure. After two crashes of its 737 MAX airliners, which killed 346 people and were linked to a defective flight-software system, the bestselling […]

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The trouble with patent-troll-hunting

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Dec 14th 2019 NEW YORK NUCURRENT, A STARTUP in Chicago, has come up with a way to charge electronic gizmos wirelessly—a nifty trick for devices such as smartphones. So nifty, in fact, that Samsung, a giant South Korean device-maker, uses it in its mobile phones—or so NuCurrent claims. In 2018 NuCurrent sued Samsung in America […]

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Tesco considers selling its Asian supermarkets

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WHEN COSTCO, an American discount retailer, opened its first store in Shanghai this August, huge crowds of shoppers forced managers to shut it down. The world’s 250 biggest retail chains are present in ten countries on average and get about a quarter of revenues from international operations. Expansion into foreign markets looks like a no-brainer […]

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How to deal with board gender quotas

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“IT’S LIKE smoking; ultimately only a hard intervention made people change,” says Jochem Overbosch, an executive recruiter in Amsterdam. As with bans on lighting up indoors, he says, so too with mandatory quotas for women on company boards, which the Dutch Parliament voted for this month after softer targets failed to move the needle much. […]

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A price war has undermined India’s big telecoms companies

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Dec 14th 2019 MUMBAI NARENDRA MODI often waxes poetic about “Digital India”: a country where clogged, dangerous roads are replaced by fast, ubiquitous cyber-motorways. The prime minister can be forgiven a touch of political hyperbole. In a world transformed by telecommunications technology, India has stood out. In the 1990s merely getting a fixed phone line […]

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SMB Winning pays $15bn for rights to Guinea’s iron mountain

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WHEN PROSPECTORS discovered a gargantuan deposit of iron ore in the misty Simandou mountains 17 years ago, many Guineans hoped it would transform their impoverished country. The remote location makes its estimated 2.4bn tonnes of iron ore—valued at perhaps $230bn—hard to mine. Gyrating commodity prices scared off investment. So did lurid corruption scandals involving billionaires, […]

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Conduct yourself

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What businesses can learn from the arts Dec 12th 2019 PICTURE A LECTURE session at a business school and you probably envisage students gazing at screens filled with equations and acronyms. What you might not expect is choristers attempting to sing “O clap your Hands”, an eight-part anthem composed by Orlando Gibbons and first performed […]

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Microsoft’s GitHub mulls expansion in China

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GITHUB IS NOT a household name. But the American company, which is the world’s largest repository of open-source software, provides vital digital infrastructure on which much of the multibillion-dollar software business depends. So vital that Microsoft was happy to pay $7.5bn for the firm in 2018. The software giant’s boss, Satya Nadella, noted at the […]

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Saudi Aramco’s IPO is the biggest ever

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Editor’s note: On December 5th, soon after this article was published, Saudi Aramco said its IPO had raised $25.6bn, valuing the company at $1.7trn THE ASPIRATION was clear. First, list a portion of Saudi Aramco, a state-owned oil giant that is the world’s most profitable company. Then use the windfall to diversify Saudi Arabia’s economy. […]