German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier is pictured during an interview with Reuters in his ministry building in Berlin, Germany, June 17, 2019. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch
June 18, 2019
BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany will support three company alliances with earmarked funds of 1 billion euros for the domestic production of battery cells in an effort to reduce carmakers’ dependence on Asian suppliers, Economy Minister Peter Altmaier told Reuters.
Among the more than 30 companies that applied for state funding at the German Economy Ministry are carmakers Volkswagen and BMW, as well as German battery maker Varta and Swedish battery manufacturing startup Northvolt.
France and Germany have already asked the European Commission to approve state subsidies for a cross-border battery cell consortium including carmaker PSA, its German subsidiary Opel and French battery maker Saft.
“We’ve now reached a point where we can say that there is likely to be not only one battery cell consortium, but probably three,” Altmaier said in a Reuters interview.
The Economy Ministry will submit all necessary state aid documents to the European Commission once it has completed its selection process, Altmaier said.
The European Union allows state aid under certain conditions under its rules for Important Projects of Common European Interest (IPCEI).
Europe’s Energy Commissioners Maros Sefcovic and Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager have signaled support for the battery cell initiative.
“We hope that by the end of the year we will have clarity from Brussels,” Altmaier said, adding that the growing interest of the industry in the scheme showed that Berlin was right in pushing ahead with its new industrial policy plan.
Altmaier denied to comment on which companies have the best chances to get the earmarked state funds.
Northvolt and Volkswagen have said earlier this year that they are planning to set up a joint venture to build a battery plant in Salzgitter, Germany.
(Reporting by Michael Nienaber; Editingy by Joseph Nasr)
FILE PHOTO: People look over a display in the NXP booth during the 2019 CES in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S. January 8, 2019. REUTERS/Steve Marcus
May 29, 2019
(Reuters) – Dutch chipmaker NXP Semiconductors NV said on Wednesday it will buy Marvell Technology Group Ltd’s wireless connectivity business for $1.76 billion in cash to offer its customers a bigger product portfolio.
NXP will sell Marvell’s connectivity products such as WiFi and Bluetooth along with its edge computing platforms to its clients in industrial, automotive and communication infrastructure markets.
The unit brought in $300 million in revenue for Marvell in fiscal 2019 and NXP expects that to double by 2022.
“NXP had been underinvesting in WiFi for the last few years, as it had assumed it would be able to access Qualcomm’s WiFi technology, but in mid-2018, the deal collapsed,” PiperJaffray analyst Harsh Kumar said.
Chipmaker Qualcomm Inc agreed to buy NXP in 2016 but walked away from the $44 billion deal last year after failing to secure Chinese regulatory approval amid a bitter Sino-U.S. trade spat.
The deal with Marvell will help NXP, which makes a wide range of chips for industrial and automotive customers, to cross-sell Marvell’s products to its clients.
For Marvell, a sale of its connectivity business made strategic sense as it is focusing more on the network equipment market following its $6 billion acquisition of Cavium in 2017.
“We are not surprised to see the divestiture,” Kumar said. “Marvell had believed the company could use the assets to enter the automotive market, but in our view, the opportunity is rather small.”
The deal, expected to close by the first quarter of 2020, will add to NXP’s adjusted operating profit in the quarter after the transaction closes.
Shares of Marvell rose 3.8% at $22.17, while those of NXP were down marginally.
(Reporting by Sayanti Chakraborty and Supantha Mukherjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)
FILE PHOTO: Uber Technologies Inc. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi (2nd from R) and co-founder Ryan Graves (R) ring a bell on the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) during the company’s IPO in New York, U.S., May 10, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo
May 24, 2019
By Heather Somerville
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Uber’s first employee and one-time chief executive Ryan Graves will step down from the company’s board of directors, Uber said on Friday.
Graves this week informed the company of his intention to resign from the board, beginning Monday. Graves started at Uber in 2010 as the first employee and held a brief stint as CEO until co-founder Travis Kalanick took over that position. Graves is no longer working at Uber but had remained on the board.
Uber held an initial public offering earlier this month, raising $8 billion; its stock is trading about 8% below its IPO price.
(Reporting by Heather Somerville; Editing by Leslie Adler)
FILE PHOTO: The Lenovo logo is seen in this illustration photo January 22, 2018. REUTERS/Thomas White/Illustration
May 23, 2019
HONG KONG (Reuters) – Lenovo Group reported a more than three-fold increase in its quarterly profit thanks to strong computer sales.
Lenovo’s profit in the quarter ended March rose to $118 million, beating an average estimate of $91.4 million by seven analysts, according to Refinitiv data.
Revenue rose 10 percent to $11.71 billion, in line with the average estimate of $11.65 billion by 11 analysts.
For the full year ended March, Lenovo swung to a profit of $597 million, from a loss of $189 million a year earlier. Revenue rose to a record $51 billion.
(Reporting by Sijia Jiang; Editing by Anshuman Daga)
FILE PHOTO : Panasonic Corp’s logo is pictured at Panasonic Center in Tokyo, Japan, February 2, 2017. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon/File Photo
May 23, 2019
BEIJING (Reuters) – Japan’s Panasonic Corp said on its China website on Thursday it continues to supply Huawei Technologies Co Ltd normally.
The company had said earlier that it stopped shipments of certain components to Huawei.
(Reporting by Beijing Monitoring Desk; Editing by Christopher Cushing)
FILE PHOTO: The Huawei logo is seen at a bus stop in Mexico City, Mexico February 22, 2019. Picture taken February 22, 2019. REUTERS/Daniel Becerril/File Photo
May 23, 2019
(Reuters) – A Silicon Valley chip startup has accused a top executive of China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, Deputy Chairman Eric Xu, of participating in a conspiracy to steal its trade secrets, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing court documents.
The allegations were made in a lawsuit set for trial on June 3 in federal court in the Eastern District of Texas, in which CNEX Labs Inc claimed that Huawei engaged in a multi-year conspiracy to steal the company’s solid-state drive computer storage technology, including with the help of a Chinese university, the WSJ reported.
Huawei said in a statement on Thursday the allegations against Xu were “groundless”.
CNEX did not immediately respond to a Reuters’ request for comment.
California-based CNEX is developing technology to enhance the performance of solid-state drives in data centers and has been in a dispute with Huawei since 2017.
It had accused Huawei of enlisting a Chinese university professor working on a research project to improperly access the startup’s technology.
(Reporting by Akanksha Rana in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Anne Marie Roantree in Hong Kong; Editing by Anil D’Silva and Christopher Cushing)
FILE PHOTO: A logo of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) is seen at its headquarters in Hsinchu, Taiwan August 31, 2018. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu
May 23, 2019
HSINCHU, Taiwan (Reuters) – TSMC, the world’s biggest contract chipmaker, said on Thursday its shipments to China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd are not affected by U.S. action aimed at curbing the telecom equipment maker’s access to American technology.
The comment was made by spokeswoman Elizabeth Sun at the TSMC 2019 Technology Symposium in Taiwan’s tech hub of Hsinchu.
TSMC, formally Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd, previously said it would maintain supplies to Huawei for the time being, and that it was assessing the impact of Washington’s decision to limit access to goods incorporating U.S. technology.
(Reporting by Yimou Lee; Writing by Anne Marie Roantree; Editing by Christopher Cushing)
FILE PHOTO: A Hikvision logo is seen at an exhibition during the World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, China May 16, 2019. REUTERS/Jason Lee/File Photo
May 23, 2019
SHANGHAI (Reuters) – China’s Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co Ltd takes cybersecurity seriously and abides by applicable laws and rules wherever it operates, the China Daily newspaper quoted the company on Thursday as saying.
“Hikvision takes cybersecurity very seriously as a company and follows all applicable laws and regulations in the markets we operate in,” it cited the company as telling the newspaper.
“The company has already retained a human rights expert and former U.S. ambassador Pierre-Richard Prosper to advise the company regarding human rights compliance,” it added.
(Reporting by John Ruwitch; editing by Richard Pullin)