ZURICH (Reuters) – When Roche paid $46.8 billion in 2009 to gain full ownership of Genentech, fears were rife that the arrival of the Swiss men in suits would stifle the free-wheeling innovative culture at the California-based biotech.
Three years on, however, the jeans-wearing scientists in San Francisco have proven they are the ones driving the drugs pipeline of the 116-year-old Basel-based pharma giant, casting a shadow over Roche’s own research operations.
VADUZ (Reuters) – Voters in Liechtenstein rejected a proposal to abolish the ruling prince’s right to veto the results of popular referendums on Sunday, underscoring how citizens see the ruling family as integral to the principality’s wealth and stability.
The referendum was proposed by pro-democracy campaigners after Crown Prince Alois von und zu Liechtenstein said last year he would block the legalization of abortion if citizens approved it in a referendum. In the end, citizens rejected it anyway.
BASEL, Switzerland, June 13 (Reuters) – One of the largest
and most peculiar pieces at this year’s Art Basel – the world’s
top fair for modern and contemporary art – is a gigantic pink
sculpture of intertwined aluminium tubes resembling part of the
Austrian artist Franz West’s “Gekroese” (2011) – Austrian
German for “bowel” – is his biggest piece to date and sold on
the first day of the fair for a seven-figure sum, according to
Jona Lueddeckens from the Gagosian Gallery.
ZURICH, June 6 (Reuters) – Roche Holding AG’s
RoActemra drug helped to reduce symptoms in rheumatoid arthritis
patients better than Abbott Laboratories’ top-selling
Humira when given as a single treatment, the Swiss drugmaker
said on Wednesday.
The phase IV trial showed that after 24 weeks of treatment
65 percent of patients who received RoActemra experienced a 20
percent reduction in swollen and tender joints compared with 49
percent of those on Humira, Roche said.
ZURICH, May 31 (Reuters) – Swiss drugmaker Novartis
is hoping key cancer data on both its marketed
products as well as promising drugs in its early pipeline will
show it can pack a punch in the oncology field at a major
industry meeting later this week.
The Basel-based group, which trails local rival Roche in
oncology, will present late-stage data on its drug Afinitor in
postmenopausal women with advanced breast cancer as well as two
late-stage studies on its blood cancer drug Tasigna in patients
with Philadelphia chromosone-positive chronic myeloid leukaemia.
LUPFIG, Switzerland, May 30 (Reuters) – Swiss engineer ABB
is targeting annual growth of 20-25 percent in the
expanding data centre market by using more energy efficient
direct current technology, the head of its Low Voltage Products
said on Wednesday.
“DC is one of the highest growth industrial sectors for ABB
to participate in,” Tarak Mehta told a media conference in
Baden, Switzerland. “If you walk around in the emerging markets
there are more cell phones than people – that’s a tremendous
drive for computing horsepower,” Mehta said.
ZURICH (Reuters) – Swiss dental implants maker Straumann (STMN.S: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is buying a 49 percent stake in Brazil’s Neodent for 260 million Swiss francs ($277 million), a pricey attempt to expand in a booming market for cosmetic surgery and offset sluggish demand in Europe.
Cosmetic dental surgery is already widespread in Latin America and Straumann expects a growing middle class to splash more cash on their teeth.
NEUCHATEL, Switzerland, May 14 (Reuters) – Andrew I-Jen Chen
swapped a career crunching numbers at French bank BNP Paribas to
take up an apprenticeship at one of Switzerland’s most
prestigious watchmaking schools.
He is one of a growing number of people attracted to a
career in horology as Swiss watch firms vie for staff to meet
buoyant Asian demand for high-end timepieces and to fill the
hole left when industry heavyweight Swatch decided to
cut the volume of mechanical watch parts it sells to others.
ZURICH, May 14 (Reuters) – Holcim, the world’s
second-largest cement maker, facing surging energy costs and
weak demand in Europe, plans to cut costs and improve efficiency
to boost profits by at least 1.5 billion Swiss francs ($1.62
billion) by the end of 2014.
The Swiss company’s cost-cutting drive, which could also
include some asset sales, follows a tough first quarter for the
world’s big cement-makers, which are battling soaring fuel costs
and sluggish European markets.
ZURICH, May 9 (Reuters) – European builders are pinning
their hopes on the U.S. after severe weather, rising fuel costs
and cutbacks in domestic public spending projects conspired to
bash first quarter volumes and profit.
The world’s second largest cement maker Holcim
said sales of cement, aggregates, ready mix concrete and asphalt
all dropped by double digits across the region and net profit
after minorities was 10 million Swiss francs ($10.82 million),
well short of an average forecast for 41.2