What the other papers say this morning - 13 May 2014


Allergan: Valeant bid would hit R&D
Allergan has launched a robust defence against a near-$50bn bid by rival drugmaker Valeant and activist investor Bill Ackman, warning that a takeover would crush research and severely impair its ability to sell its products, including Botox. Allergan also said it had doubts about the viability of Valeant’s business model.

US tax crackdown hits Savile Row
Huntsman, a Savile Row tailor renowned for its luxury bespoke suits, has made trips across the Atlantic for decades to size up the power brokers of Wall Street. But following a US customs crackdown, this tradition – like the company’s revenues – is facing a snip. Tougher oversight by US tax authorities, who are using technology to track what enters the country and ensure that appropriate duties get paid – is making expensive suits even pricier.

Hop prices up on US craft beer boom
A cool craft beer has become part of the uniform for self-respecting hipsters from Brooklyn in New York to the London borough of Hackney. In the US the $14bn craft beer industry has seen annual double-digit production growth over the past few years. This has doubled the price of the specialist aroma and flavour hops favoured by craft brewers to about $7 to $10 a pound over the past five years – the highest since 2007-08 when the market was hit by a severe drought.


Key Co-op leader backs reform plans
Pressure on the Co-op Group to overhaul its board intensified yesterday as one of its most influential members voted for change. The Midcounties Co-op, and its president Patrick Gray, have backed a call for sweeping reforms tabled last week by Lord Myners.

Gazprom to agree gas deal with China
Moscow’s state-controlled energy group is closing in on a long-awaited deal to supply China with gas, amid western sanctions against Russia over the Ukraine crisis. Russia’s deputy energy minister said the deal is 98 per cent complete.

The Daily Telegraph

First phone for new Blackberry chief
Ailing smartphone maker BlackBerry will today make a new bid to turn its fortunes around with the launch of a cut-price handset in Indonesia, one of its last bastions. The Z3, which is expected to be introduced in other emerging markets in the future, is the first new BlackBerry phone since chief executive John Chen took the helm of the crisis-hit company last year.

British Airways gets Moody’s upgrade
The owner of British Airways saw shares climb after Moody’s upgraded the carrier’s rating because of improved earnings. BA had its rating upgraded by one level from B1 to Ba3.


Dubai agrees to sell Mauser for $1.7bn
Dubai International Capital said it agreed to sell German industrial-packaging firm Mauser for $1.7bn to private-equity investor Clayton, Dubilier & Rice. The deal is the latest sale by a state-owned holding firm that aims to help the emirate repay debts accumulated over the past decade.

Mercuria hires top ex-Goldman trader
Swiss trading house Mercuria Energy Group has hired the former co-head of commodities trading at Goldman Sachs, Magid Shenouda, ahead of its transformative acquisition of JP Morgan’s physical commodities business.