Chief Company News Correspondent
Maria's Feed
Dec 19, 2011

Etihad buys Air Berlin stake to win scale in Europe

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Etihad Airways is taking a stake of almost 30 percent in Germany’s Air Berlin (AB1.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), becoming the first Gulf carrier to challenge European legacy airlines by putting cash on the table to gain scale.

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad will spend about 73 million euros ($95 million) to buy new shares of Air Berlin, raising its stake to 29.21 percent from just below 3 percent, and will lend the German carrier $255 million, the two companies said on Monday.

Dec 19, 2011

Etihad snaps up stake in debt-laden Air Berlin

FRANKFURT, Dec 19 (Reuters) – Etihad Airways threw a
lifeline to ailing Air Berlin and gained access to more
European routes by raising its stake in the German airline to 30
percent and lending it $255 million.

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad will buy new shares in Air
Berlin, Germany’s second-biggest carrier after Lufthansa
, for about 73 million euros ($95 million), raising its
stake to 29.21 percent from just below 3 percent, Air Berlin
said on Monday.

Dec 15, 2011

Freight handlers go for specialization in crisis

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Logistics companies around the world are rushing to invest in specialty cargo facilities in search of wider margins and stable growth in an increasingly uncertain outlook for global trade.

Freight companies can charge higher prices for handling delicate electronic components, vaccines that have to remain chilled or Arabian race horses than for standard cargo.

Dec 15, 2011

Lufthansa Cargo China near tipping point – CEO

FRANKFURT, Dec 15 (Reuters) – The air freight arm of
Deutsche Lufthansa is reviewing its business in China,
the world’s second-biggest economy, where cargo companies are
struggling to make a profit, according to Lufthansa Cargo’s
chief executive.

“We are leaving all options open,” Karl Ulrich Garnadt said
at the Reuters Global Manufacturing and Transportation Summit.

Dec 9, 2011

Germany in fresh push to outlaw right-wing party

WIESBADEN, Germany (Reuters) – Germany is making a second bid to ban a far-right political party represented in two state assemblies, after police arrested a former party official for his links to a small neo-Nazi group that murdered nine Turkish and Greek immigrants.

“Our aim is to outlaw the NPD (National Democratic Party),” German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich said during a news conference following a meeting with the interior ministers of Germany’s 16 states on Friday.

Dec 8, 2011

Anarchist group may have sent letter bomb-German police

FRANKFURT, Dec 8 (Reuters) – An Italian anarchist
group has claimed responsibility for a letter bomb sent to Josef
Ackermann, chief executive of Deutsche Bank, and may
have sent two more packages, investigators said on Thursday.

The suspicious envelope, intercepted on Wednesday evening,
has raised fears that a wave of protests against the failures
and excesses of bankers could turn more violent, and prompted
police across Europe to warn banks to be extra vigilant.

Dec 8, 2011

Package sent to banker was bomb -German police

FRANKFURT, Dec 8 (Reuters) – A suspicious envelope
sent to Deutsche Bank Chief Executive Josef Ackermann
was a letter bomb capable of exploding, investigators said on
Thursday.

No one has so far claimed responsibility for the package,
which was intercepted late on Wednesday.

Dec 8, 2011

Letter sent to Deutsche Bank CEO contained powder

FRANKFURT, Dec 8 (Reuters) – A suspicious envelope
mailed to Deutsche Bank head Josef Ackermann, the
face of capitalism in Germany, on Wednesday contained an
apparent explosive powder that may have been homemade, police
said on Thursday.

“What we had here was a powder, which indicates that we’re
not dealing with commercial or military explosives,” Alexander
Kiessling, a spokesman for Frankfurt police, said. “It could be
something homemade, for instance made out of fireworks.”

Dec 5, 2011

SAP splashes out in cloud-computing frenzy

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – SAP’s $3.4 billion takeover of SuccessFactors will help it keep up with peers in the frenzied race for cloud-computing business, even if the price it paid is very high at first glance, analysts said on Monday.

“We believe SuccessFactors could be a very good strategic fit for SAP in the cloud sector and we prefer the decision to grow externally in this booming area,” DZ Bank analyst Oliver Finger said.

Dec 5, 2011

Commerzbank cuts debt pile to avoid more state aid

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Commerzbank AG (CBKG.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) moved to fend off government intervention on Monday, saying it would buy back 600 million euros ($806 million) in cut-price debt in a bid to shore up its capital.

The partly state-owned bank, which received an 18.2 billion euros bailout in the wake of Lehman Brothers’ collapse, is believed to need some 5 billion euros by mid-2012 to meet new capital rules, sources have told Reuters.