Chief Company News Correspondent
Maria's Feed
Mar 9, 2012

Travel groups look east for 2012 bright spots

BERLIN, March 9 (Reuters) – With a weak western
European economy, fear of political unrest in North Africa and a
cruise business hit by the Costa Concordia disaster, travel
groups are looking to eastern Europe, China and corporate travel
to brighten up 2012.

The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)
expects global arrivals of international travellers to increase
by 3-4 percent this year, after a 4.4 percent increase to 980
million in 2011, with growth driven by emerging markets.

Mar 9, 2012

Costa Concordia could delay 2013 cruise bookings

BERLIN (Reuters) – Cruise bookings for next year could remain slow until the industry manages to dispel safety concerns after the Costa Concordia capsized off the west coast of Italy in January.

Cruise bookings tumbled after the Costa Concordia struck a rock near the Isola del Giglio and grounded on her side, killing at least 25 people and raising questions about the safety of the luxury cruise ship industry.

Mar 8, 2012

No quick revival seen for Egypt, Tunisia tourism

BERLIN, March 8 (Reuters) – Egypt and Tunisia are
unlikely to see tourism – a vital prop for their battered
economies – revive anytime soon as holidaymakers continue to
shun North African destinations a year after the “Arab Spring”
revolutions.

Bookings to the two countries collapsed last year after
popular uprisings across the Arab world toppled veteran rulers
in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, and forced Yemen’s president to
sign away his powers.

Mar 8, 2012

Deutsche Post sees 2012 operating profit growth

BERLIN, March 8 (Reuters) – Deutsche Post DHL
sees its sales and operating profit edging up this
year, and continued growth in the coming years on the back of
robust Asian demand for express delivery and supply chain
services.

“Of course growth numbers will be smaller this year than in
the last two years, but we have no indication of a recession,”
Chief Executive Frank Appel said.

Feb 23, 2012

Allianz holds dividend in face of profits slide

FRANKFURT, Feb 23 (Reuters) – German insurer Allianz’s
dividend payment ratio leapt to 81 percent of net
profit in 2011 as it held the shareholder payout steady while
net profit almost halved.

Catastrophe claims and writedowns on investments in
sovereign bonds and banks were behind the profit fall revealed
by Europe’s biggest insurance group on Thursday. At 2.55 billion
euros ($3.38 billion) it also missed consensus by almost half a
billion euros.

Feb 23, 2012

Allianz holds dividend in face of profits slide

FRANKFURT, Feb 23 (Reuters) – German insurer Allianz’s
dividend payment ratio leapt to 81 percent of net
profit in 2011 as it held the shareholder payout steady while
net profit almost halved.

Catastrophe claims and writedowns on investments in
sovereign bonds and banks were behind the profit fall revealed
by Europe’s biggest insurance group on Thursday. At 2.55 billion
euros ($3.38 billion) it also missed consensus by almost half a
billion euros.

Feb 23, 2012

Allianz keeps div flat after Greece hits FY profit

FRANKFURT, Feb 23 (Reuters) – German insurer Allianz’s
dividend payment ratio leapt to 81 percent of net
profit in 2011 as it held the shareholder payout steady while
net profit almost halved.

Catastrophe claims and writedowns on investments in
sovereign bonds and banks were behind the profit fall revealed
by Europe’s biggest insurance group on Thursday. At 2.55 billion
euros ($3.38 billion) it also missed consensus by almost half a
billion euros.

Feb 15, 2012

Puma eyes soccer boost in Euro 2012 year

FRANKFURT, Feb 15 (Reuters) – German sportswear group
Puma said it aimed to capitalise on soccer’s Euro 2012
tournament to grow its business in the sport, when forecasting a
near 10 percent rise in group sales for 2012.

Along with larger rivals Adidas and Nike,
Puma has enjoyed rising sales over the past year and reported
record 2011 sales of 3 billion euros ($3.9 billion), driven by
demand from Asia and Latin America.

Jan 31, 2012

More examples of A380 cracks, repairs under way

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Singapore Airlines (SIAL.SI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said on Monday it had found examples of recently identified wing cracks in all six of the Airbus A380s on which it carried out mandatory inspections, as a senior pilot issued reassurance over the superjumbo’s safety.

The discovery of more instances of cracked wing components was expected after Airbus (EAD.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said last week it had found the problem and predicted that until it had time to conduct repairs, a consistent pattern would emerge in further tests.

Jan 25, 2012

New BlackBerry CEO dashes hopes for quick turnaround

FRANKFURT/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Research in Motion Ltd’s (RIM.TO: Quote, Profile, Research) could have chosen a fiery, inspirational new CEO but they chose a stoic engineer instead, dashing investor hopes for a quick turnaround for the struggling BlackBerry maker.

The softspoken and bespectacled Thorsten Heins, who had worked at Germany’s Siemens AG (SIEGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) for more than 20 years before RIM, failed to inspire Wall Street on Monday as he pledged to continue on the same path as his predecessors.