General Electric to float Swiss arm
GE Capital, the financial arm of General Electric, is to float a 60 per cent stake in its Swiss consumer credit operation, valuing the business at up to 1.5bn swiss francs (£1bn). The float of GE Money Bank, which will be renamed Cembra Money Bank, is expected by 30 October. The sale is the first move by GE to exit a significant financial services operation. It is widely seen as a test case for the strategy of reducing the importance of financial services within the group.
Ziggo rejects takeover offer
John Malone’s European buying spree of cable assets was dealt a blow after Dutch operator Ziggo said on Wednesday it had rejected a takeover offer by the US billionaire’s Liberty Global media group. Ziggo said in a statement that it considered the “preliminary” offer inadequate and cautioned there was no certainty of any revised offer. It did not detail the terms of the approach.
WH Smith websites remain offline
The entire website of WH Smith is likely to be down for the rest of the week as the 221-year-old retailer attempts to purge its ebook section of titles that feature extreme sexual content. The retailer took down its website on Saturday after reports that it was selling self-published ebooks featuring such content on whsmith.co.uk.
Barbie still dominates at Mattel
Demand for dolls helped sales at Mattel jump by 6 per cent in the third quarter ahead of the crucial Christmas season for toy companies. Barbie sales increased three per cent, after posting declines in the previous four quarters. More than half a century after first going on sale, Barbie continues to be the world’s best-selling doll brand.
Black & Decker shaves guidance
Stanley Black & Decker has cut its guidance for 2013 earnings, blaming the move in part on the US government shutdown, which it said had slowed organic growth.
The Daily Telegraph
Morgan ousts grandson of founder
Charles Morgan is vowing to fight back after being removed from the board of the Morgan Motor Company, which his grandfather founded more than a century ago. The shock move comes seven months after he stepped down as managing director to be replaced by Steve Morris in a reshuffle described as amicable.
LoveFilm-backer hires Waterhouse
The venture capital backer of companies such as LoveFilm and Wonga has hired Daniel Waterhouse, the man who has led investments in the like of internet music service Spotify and cab ordering firm Hailo.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
Toys ‘R’ Us names chief executive
Toys ‘R’ Us yesterday named Antonio Urcelay, a longtime company veteran, as its next CEO, ending an eight-month search and ensuring the company has a leader through the crucial holiday season.
Wal-Mart takes pause in China
Wal-Mart, reassessing some of its international operations, yesterday unveiled plans to close about 25 underperforming stores in China next year. But it plans to open 30 others, meaning it will add more stores than it subtracts. Closures are also planned in Brazil.