Selasa, 7 Januari 2014

The Star Online: Business

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The Star Online: Business

Microsoft close to naming CEO

Posted: 07 Jan 2014 05:36 PM PST

Microsoft Corp is closer to naming a new chief executive, according to a source familiar with the board's thinking, but it lost a front-runner candidate on Tuesday when Ford Motor Co's chief, Alan Mulally, said he would not be going to the software giant.

Mulally's comments reignited the guessing game over who will take over at Microsoft, following the elimination in December of another reported candidate, Qualcomm Inc's Steve Mollenkopf.

Microsoft said last month it expects to appoint a new CEO early this year. It has been seeking a replacement for Steve Ballmer since the long-time CEO in August announced his plan to retire.

Sources familiar with the process have told Reuters that Microsoft is down to a "handful" of candidates, including one or more outsiders from the tech industry, former Nokia  CEO Stephen Elop and insiders Satya Nadella and Tony Bates.

Mulally, who has never denied his interest in the Microsoft job, told the Associated Press on Tuesday that he will remain at Ford at least this year. Two people close to the matter told Reuters that Mulally is no longer under consideration for the top job at Microsoft.

"Out of respect for the process and the potential candidates, we don't comment on individual names," a Microsoft spokesman said.

The Ford CEO said he wanted to end the Microsoft speculation "because I have no other plans to do anything other than serve Ford." When the AP asked whether his comments should end concerns from investors about his exit, Mulally said: "You don't have to worry about me leaving."

Ford spokesman Jay Cooney confirmed the comments. After news of the interview, Ford shares rose 1.3% in extended trade, while Microsoft shares fell 1.1%.

Several prominent Microsoft investors had campaigned behind the scenes for Mulally to succeed Ballmer. But one source familiar with Microsoft's board's discussions said Mulally's candidacy raised questions about "culture and leadership style".

Mulally's apparent interest in the job attracted considerable media attention that overshadowed Ford's product-related announcements, such as the roll-out of the new Mustang, something that frustrated Ford's board of directors, people familiar with the matter said - Reuters.

Brahim's shares up after inking deal with ANA Holdings

Posted: 07 Jan 2014 07:02 PM PST

KUALA LUMPUR: Shares of Brahim's Holdings rose at midmorning on Wednesday after it the company inked an agreement with ANA Holdings to produce produce halal Japanese cuisine for in-flight catering in Japan.

At 10.57am, its shares rose 15 sen to RM2.18 with some 2.81 million shares traded between the prices of RM2.05 and RM2.18.

The FBM KLCI surged 10.23 points to 1,835.34. Turnover was 604.59 million valued at RM515.811mil. There were 341 gainers, 224 decliners and 282 counters unchanged.

Alliance Research has maintained its Strong Buy recommendation on Brahim's with a revised target price of RM2.67.

It said on Wednesday that Brahim's was collaborating with All Nippon Airways (ANA) to provide in-flight halal meals to ANA's Asian routes and Middle Eastern airlines at Haneda and Narita airports.

In addition, the group will also supply Dewina Food Industries's (DFI) ready-to-eat meals to ANA-operated hotels via Brahim's Food Japan.

"All in, management expects a net profit contribution of RM2.0mil to RM3.0mil to the group's bottomline in FY15, which is in line with our expectations," it said.

Apple seeks remove court-appointed antitrust monitor

Posted: 07 Jan 2014 07:00 PM PST

NEW YORK: Apple Inc is seeking the removal of a lawyer appointed by a court to monitor its antitrust compliance following a ruling last year that the company had conspired to fix e-book prices.

An attorney for the consumer technology giant on Tuesday asked U.S. District Judge Denise Cote in Manhattan to disqualify Michael Bromwich from serving as an external compliance monitor, arguing he had shown a personal bias against the company.

In a letter to Cote, Apple's lawyer cited a "wholly inappropriate declaration" filed by Bromwich last month.

In the declaration, Bromwich defended his work as a monitor against Apple's complaint that he had overstepped his mandate. He also detailed his unsuccessful efforts to gain Apple's cooperation for his assignment.

Cote appointed Bromwich in October following a ruling she made in July finding Apple liable for conspiring with five publishers to raise e-book prices above those established by the dominant retailer in the market, Inc <AMZN.O>.

But the relationship between Apple and Bromwich quickly spiraled downward.

In November, Apple complained Bromwich had aggressively sought to interview top executives, even though his mandate called for him to assess the company's antitrust policies 90 days after his appointment.

Apple also cited Bromwich's proposed hourly payment rate of $1,100. Those fees, Apple argued, provided Bromwich incentive to run "as broad and intrusive investigation as possible."

In the letter on Tuesday, Apple's lawyer repeated those same complaints.

A spokeswoman for Bromwich declined to comment.

The case is U.S. v Apple Inc et al, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, 12-2826- Reuters


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