Nov 19, 2013 19:53 UTC

DSM’s pill deal oddly blends carve-out and LBO

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By Neil Unmack
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

DSM has come up with an odd formulation to solve its drug-production headache. The world’s biggest vitamin maker is merging its DSM Pharmaceutical Products (DPP) business with a private equity-backed rival. DPP was a subscale distraction. But the precise benefits of the $2.6 billion tie-up are hard to fathom. And DSM cedes control of the unit without reducing its economic exposure.

Nov 19, 2013 15:08 UTC

EasyJet’s growth will get harder to replicate

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By Olaf Storbeck

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

EasyJet is turning improved customer service into bundles of cash. The numbers are especially impressive in the context of the millions being lost by many of Europe’s legacy airlines on short-haul flights. It also makes a stark contrast with the low-cost rival Ryanair, which has issued two profit warnings since September.

Nov 18, 2013 18:58 UTC

Derivatives detail could sink bank wind-down plans

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By Daniel Indiviglio
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

A seemingly small derivatives detail could sink global bank wind-down plans. American and European regulators want to standardize contracts to help cross-border lenders fail smoothly. If the problem isn’t fixed, investors could undermine financial stability by calling in swaps. It’s a reminder of how much work still needs to be done to end too big to fail.

Nov 15, 2013 18:38 UTC

GE finally puts Jack Welch era out to pasture

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By Antony Currie
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

General Electric is finally putting former Chief Executive Jack Welch’s ghost out to pasture. On Friday the conglomerate said it intends to spin off its North America retail finance business. That will help return GE Capital to its roots lending to mid-market companies and its parent’s industrial concerns.

Nov 15, 2013 17:14 UTC

Review: At Apple’s core, a fitting man of mystery

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By Richard Beales
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Jonathan Ive is the British perfectionist who leads Apple’s design team. A new book about him by journalist Leander Kahney shows his huge influence uniting form and function at the U.S. tech giant. But Ive the man remains largely hidden behind a screen that’s as obsessively crafted as any of the company’s gadgets.

Nov 14, 2013 18:41 UTC

Snapchat bid triples Facebook’s desperation

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By Robert Cyran

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Facebook’s Snapchat bid shows triple the desperation. The social network shelled out $1 billion for no-revenue Instagram a little over a year ago. Now it’s said to be dangling as much as $3 billion to lure in a mobile app that sends self-destructing digital images. Facebook’s apparently escalating need to buy off marauders at its moat suggests its defenses may be scalable.

Nov 14, 2013 04:26 UTC

Nirvana eludes Japan after one year of Abenomics

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By Andy Mukherjee

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The economic nirvana promised by Shinzo Abe when launching his bid to become prime minister a year ago continues to elude Japan.

Nov 13, 2013 21:54 UTC

A trio of finance lessons from Bacon’s triptych

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By Richard Beales and Rob Cox

The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions expressed are their own. 

The record-busting $142 million sale by Christie’s of Francis Bacon’s triptych of Lucian Freud on Tuesday – not to mention the unprecedented New York auction total of almost $700 million – shows a contemporary art market in heady territory. It’s possible, if a tad tenuous, to extract a matching trio of lessons for the broader world of finance.

Nov 12, 2013 17:15 UTC

Apollo and Cooper can still do a deal

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By Una Galani
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are her own.

The buyout of Cooper Tire & Rubber Co hasn’t gone flat yet. The U.S. company and Indian buyer Apollo Tyres are locked in a legal battle over an agreed $35 per share offer. But both sides insist they still see merit in a union that will create the world’s seventh biggest tyre manufacturer. Adjusting Apollo’s offer to reflect the potential cost of removing the two main roadblocks to the deal suggests a revised bid of at least $27 per share.

Nov 11, 2013 19:43 UTC

BlackBerry turnaround starts out all thumbs

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By Richard Beales
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

BlackBerry’s turnaround is starting out all thumbs. The $85 million worth of stock handed to new boss John Chen over five years at least provides the right incentives. But the struggling Canadian company surely needs more attention than one man doing both top jobs, especially if he’s commuting from California.