Top 10 Stories of the Week! 11/07/16

Below are our top 10 stories that you need to know about. Be sure to check our twitter page for regular posts of important headlines. Click on the links for full stories.

Brexit Opinion articles of the week:

A leading UK fund manager has argued that the Brexit will be “horrible” for the economy. Click here for more.

What impact of Brexit would Brexit have on the renewable energy industry? Click here for the debate.

Analysts argue that Brexit will not harm the UK’s IPO market in the long term. Click here for more.

Opinion Article of the week:

Boeing predicts ‘long-term growth’ and higher aircraft demand over next 20 years. Click here for more on the reasons for these predictions.

 

1. THERESA MAY BECOMES UK PRIME MINISTER 

Former Home Secretary Theresa May took office as Prime Minister on July 13th 2016. Since then she quickly and significantly shuffled the cabinet.

Key appointments and sackings to note;

Philip Hammond was appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer, Boris Johnson became Foreign Secretary, Brexiteer David Davis was given a new position of Brexit Secretary to lead the UK’s Brexit negotiations, and Liam Fox became international trade secretary.

George Osborne, Michael Gove, John Whittingdale, Nicky Morgan and Oliver Letwin have all been sacked by Mrs May.

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills becomes the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) department – led by Greg Clark, formerly communities and local government secretary

As a result, the Department for Energy and Climate Change has been scrapped, its brief folded into BEIS

For more on Theresa May’s shake up, click here.  (BBC News)

2. TURKISH COUP

Some 2,839 soldiers, including high-ranking officers, were arrested after an attempted coup.  The attempted coup was a “black stain on Turkish democracy”,  with 161 civilians and police killed. Those held include two army generals, Turkish media say.

Explosions and firing were heard in key cities on Friday night and thousands heeded a call by President Erdogan to rise up against the coup-plotters.It is unclear who was behind the coup.

The authorities also said 104 suspected coup-plotters had also been killed.

Some 2,745 Turkish judges have also been dismissed in the wake of the coup, state media say.They are reported to include a member of the country’s top court. (BBC News)

For live updates on these issues facing Turkey click here. (BBC News)

3. POKEMON GO SENDS NINTENDO SHARES UP 25%

Nintendo’s share price after the stock jumped as high as its daily 25 percent limit, the biggest gain since the gamemaker started trading 33 years ago.

Investors are getting excited about the success of Pokemon Go, a new augmented-reality smartphone game that integrates the original Pokemon story line — of chasing mythical creatures — into real-world surroundings using a phone’s camera and GPS.

 

Tim Culpan argues that this rally will not last. He claims that despite the fact

“it has topped app download charts and set social media ablaze, Pokemon Go is just one game. And it recalls the one-hit wonder of the Nintendo Wii console released a decade ago…

…Wii’s novelty value came from having users physically play virtual games of tennis, baseball, golf and all manner of real or made-up sports. But the novelty didn’t last, and neither did the stock’s rally. The quick rise and fall of Wii, and the disappointing uptake of its successor Wii U, helped give birth to Pokemon Go.” (Bloomberg)

The Financial Times considers whether Pokemon Go will be the savoir of Nintendo. Click here for their analysis of the game’s recent success and its potential effect.

4. UFC SOLD TO INVESTORS FOR $4 BILLION

Ultimate Fighting Championship, the league that promotes mixed martial arts, has been sold for $4 billion, The New York Times first reported on Monday.

The fighting championship has been acquired by a consortium of investors, led by WME-IMG, the US-based talent agency that represents UFC’s biggest star, Ronda Rousey, as well as talent across movies, television, and music. Last year, WME-IMG also acquired the Professional Bull Riders league. The private-equity firms Silver Lake and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Michael Dell’s investment firm MSD Capital are also backing the UFC deal.

The league is majority-controlled by brothers Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta, who bought the franchise for $2 million 16 years ago. Before the acquisition, they held an 80% stake in the company. White also had a 9% stake in the company.

UFC held the biggest event in its history — UFC 200 — this past weekend in front of more than 18,000 fans in Las Vegas and televised to audiences around the world on pay-per-view. Lorenzo Fertitta, UFC’s CEO, told CNN last year that UFC was on track to generate $600 million in revenue for the 2015 financial year. (Business Insider)

5. FACEBOOK SUED FOR $1BILLION OVER HAMAS ALLEGEDLY USING SERVICE

Lawyers filed a $1 billion lawsuit against Facebook, alleging it allowed the Palestinian militant Hamas group to use the platform to plot attacks that killed four Americans and wounded one in Israel, the West Bank and Jerusalem.

“Facebook has knowingly provided material support and resources to Hamas in the form of Facebook’s online social network platform and communication services,” making it liable for the violence against the five Americans, according to the lawsuit sent to Bloomberg by the office of the Israeli lawyer on the case, Nitsana Darshan-Leitner.

“Simply put, Hamas uses Facebook as a tool for engaging in terrorism,” it said.

Hamas is considered a terrorist organization by the U.S., European Union and Israel. The suit said the group used Facebook to share operational and tactical information with members and followers, posting notices of upcoming demonstrations, road closures, Israeli military actions and instructions to operatives to carry out the attacks. (Bloomberg)

6. CHINESE TYCOON ACQUIRES ODEON CINEMAS

The Odeon and UCI chain is being sold to a company controlled by China’s richest man in a £921m deal that will create the largest cinema operator in the world.

AMC Entertainment Holdings, which is majority owned by Wang Jianlin’s Dalian Wanda group, is buying the group from private equity firm Terra Firma.

The US company shrugged off Brexit-related uncertainty as it announced the deal, noting that the plunge in the value of the pound was “highly favourable” to it.

Odeon and UCI, which has 242 cinemas with 2,236 screens, will continue to be based in London and will operate as a subsidiary of New York-listed AMC. The takeover will create a group with 627 venues and more than 7,600 screens in eight countries. (Sky News)

7. AIRBUS NEARS $12.57 BILLION DEAL WITH AirAsia

Airbus Group is poised to win an order for as many as 100 jetliners from AirAsia , people familiar with the matter said, getting additional commitments from its biggest single-aisle aircraft customer.

The deal may be announced as early as tomorrow at the Farnborough Air Show, said the people, who asked not to be named because the discussions are private. The purchase would consist likely of A321neo narrow-body aircraft, which have a list price of $125.7 million apiece. Buyers typically negotiate discounts.

The Asian low-cost carrier will use at least some of the narrow-body planes to provide stepped-up service to India, one of the people said. AirAsia Chief Executive Officer Tony Fernandes, 52, has 304 single-aisle aircraft and 76 twin-aisle jets on order from the European planemaker as he builds a pan-Asian budget airline that seeks to ride the surge in air travel across the continent. (Bloomberg)

8. GOOGLE TO TRAIN 2 MILLION ANDRIOD DEVELOPERS IN INDIA

Google launched a program to train 2 million developers in India for its Android platform as its fires up a race with Apple Inc. for the country’s developers to create innovative mobile apps.

The Android Skilling program will be introduced for free across hundreds of public and private universities and training schools through a specially designed, in-person program this year. The program would also be available through the government’s National Skills Development Corporation of India, the company said in a statement.

India is expected to have the largest developer population with 4 million people by 2018, overtaking the U.S., but only a quarter are building for mobile, said Caesar Sengupta, vice president of product management at Google. (Bloomberg)

9. POUNDLAND AGREES TO STEINHOFF TAKEOVER

Poundland has agreed to a £597m takeover by Steinhoff, the South African retail conglomerate that owns Harveys and Bensons for Beds in the UK.

The struggling discount retailer recommended the deal to shareholders, who will receive 220p a share, plus the 2p a share dividend announced in June for the year ending 27 March. It values the company at £597m, Poundland said.

Darren Shapland, the chairman of Poundland, said the takeover would allow the retailer to achieve its turnaround ambitions sooner than expected “against a background of increasing economic uncertainty in the UK and a more challenging trading environment”.

The deal is the latest move by the billionaire Christo Wiese to take a share of the UK’s burgeoning discount market. Wiese, who owns a 17% stake in Steinhoff, also has stakes in fashion chain New Look and supermarket Iceland, as well as an investment in Virgin Active gyms via his Brait investment vehicle. (The Guardian)

10. MCOLL ACQUIRES 298 CO-OP STORES

The Co-operative group is planning to sell almost 300 stores to rival firm McColl’s in a move that will see 3,808 Co-op staff transferred. The £117m deal, which is subject to approval by the competition watchdog and McColl’s shareholders, will leave the Co-op with around 2,450 stores, as the company continues to shrink its store portfolio.

The Co-op is aiming to open 100 new stores this year and a similar number next year but wants stores larger than the average 1,700 sq ft newsagent-style premises it is selling to McColl’s.

The mutual said the sale is in line with the company’s growth strategy and plans to increase the number of Co-op members to a million by 2018, and increasing sales from members to 50%.

Co-op has started to see the rewards from its investment and re-structuring model, opening 97 new food stores, while selling off 91 which no longer fitted with the firm’s focus on “convenience shopping.” In April, the mutual announced that underlying profits rose 3.3% to £250m in the food business in the 52 weeks to 2 January, as strong sales and moves to cut costs helped performance. (Sky News)

 

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