UK media and telecoms correspondent
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Jul 9, 2013

British lawmakers recall Murdoch over phone-hacking evidence

LONDON (Reuters) – British lawmakers said on Tuesday they would recall media mogul Rupert Murdoch to clarify evidence he gave to them last year after he was secretly recorded belittling a police inquiry into alleged crimes committed by journalists on his papers.

In a meeting with staff on his mass-selling Sun tabloid, Murdoch said he regretted helping a police inquiry into phone-hacking which has grown into a far wider investigation into alleged illegal reporting practices.

Jul 9, 2013

Shell names van Beurden as surprise choice for CEO

LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) named head of refining Ben van Beurden to replace chief executive Peter Voser, a surprise appointment to steer Europe’s biggest oil firm through an industry-wide battle to replace reserves and control costs.

Analysts and investors had not considered van Beurden, who has worked for the company for 30 years, as a possible contender to replace Voser next year.

Jul 4, 2013

Murdoch belittled British police in secret recording by staff

LONDON (Reuters) – Rupert Murdoch belittled a British police inquiry into bribes allegedly paid by his journalists in a secret recording made by his staff, in sharp contrast to the profuse public apologies he made to defuse anger at news gathering practices.

Murdoch told staff at his Sun tabloid in a private meeting in March that he had been wrong to help the police investigation into tactics he said reporters had used for decades, and promised unspecified support to reporters snared by the inquiry.

Jun 24, 2013

Vodafone agrees $10 bln Kabel Deutschland deal

LONDON/FRANKFURT, June 24 (Reuters) – Vodafone has
agreed to buy Germany’s largest cable operator Kabel Deutschland
for 7.7 billion euros ($10 billion), betting on TV
and fixed-line services in its biggest deal since 2007.

Announcing its second major acquisition for a European
fixed-line network in 12 months, Vodafone said it would pay 87
euros ($110) per share for the group to enable it to offer more
competitive packages with TV, fixed-line and broadband services
to its mobile customers.

Jun 18, 2013

Putin faces isolation over Syria as G8 ratchets up pressure

ENNISKILLEN, Northern Ireland (Reuters) – Russian President Vladimir Putin faced further isolation on the second day of a G8 summit on Tuesday as world leaders lined up to pressure him into toning down his support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Following an icy encounter between the Kremlin chief and U.S. President Barack Obama late on Monday, the G8 leaders will seek to find resolution to a war that has prompted powers across the Middle East to square off on sectarian lines.

Jun 17, 2013

Putin and Obama set to spar over Syria arms at G8

ENNISKILLEN, Northern Ireland (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama faces what could be a frosty G8 meeting with Vladimir Putin on Monday after the Russian leader clashed with the West over plans to arm Syrian rebels fighting President Bashar al-Assad.

At their first private face-to-face meeting in a year, Obama will try to convince Putin to bring Assad to the negotiating table but the Russian leader has shown little sign of compromise.

Jun 12, 2013

Vodafone moves for Kabel Deutschland in quad-play push

LONDON/FRANKFURT (Reuters) – British mobile firm Vodafone has approached Kabel Deutschland about a bid for Germany’s biggest cable operator that could top 7 billion euros ($9.3 billion) and help fend off competition in its most important European market.

The world’s second-biggest mobile operator has long been linked with a move for the cable group as it seeks to meet the demands of customers who increasingly want to take television, broadband, mobile and fixed-line services – so-called “quad play” – from one provider.

Jun 11, 2013

Britvic plays down chances of reviving AG Barr merger

LONDON (Reuters) – British soft drinks maker Britvic Plc (BVIC.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) played down the chances of resurrecting merger talks with smaller rival A.G. Barr Plc (BAG.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), after the proposed deal was finally given the blessing of the competition watchdog.

Irn Bru-maker A.G. Barr and Britvic, behind the Robinsons and Tango brands, had agreed an all-share merger in November, which lapsed in February when the Competition Commission launched its investigation.

May 24, 2013

BA jet makes emergency landing after engine fire

LONDON (Reuters) – A British Airways plane with 80 people on board made an emergency landing at London’s Heathrow airport on Friday after the right engine burst into flames shortly after take-off and the casing ripped away from the left.

The British carrier, part of IAG, said all 75 passengers and five crew members were safe after having been evacuated from the aircraft down emergency chutes on landing.

May 22, 2013

Pearson agrees $75 mln settlement in U.S. e-books case

LONDON/NEW YORK, May 22 (Reuters) – British publisher
Pearson’s Penguin unit said on Wednesday it would pay
$75 million in damages plus costs to U.S. states and consumers
as part of an agreement over alleged price-fixing in the e-book

Pearson, which will take an extra provision on its accounts
this year after setting aside $40 million in 2012, had already
reached an agreement with the U.S. Justice Department in the
e-book pricing case.

    • About Kate

      "I am based in London and cover the UK media and telecoms sectors including BSkyB, Vodafone and WPP. I have previously covered UK general news and sports including major events such as the Olympics and football World Cups."
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