Chief Company News Correspondent
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Jul 11, 2013

German retailer Praktiker files for insolvency

FRANKFURT, July 11 (Reuters) – German home-improvement chain
Praktiker filed for insolvency on Thursday after talks
with creditors failed, sending its shares into freefall and
sparking fears of heavy job losses.

Germany’s retail industry has had a rough ride during the
economic downturn as consumers in Europe’s biggest economy, who
tend to save a large part of their earnings, kept a tight rein
on spending.

Jul 8, 2013

Osram shares fall on debut as some investors bail out

FRANKFURT, July 8 (Reuters) – Shares in Osram Licht AG
fell as much as 2.4 percent on their stock market
debut on Monday, as some investors sought an exit following the
lighting company’s spin-off from engineering group Siemens AG
.

Having opened at 24.00 euros, giving the company a market
value of about 2.5 billion euros ($3.2 billion), shares in the
company fell to a low of 22.99 euros. At 0927 GMT, shares traded
at 23.18 euros apiece.

Jun 21, 2013

Airbus wins order battle at Paris Airshow

PARIS (Reuters) – Last-minute orders swept Airbus to victory over Boeing at a Paris Airshow marked by stormy weather and hot debate over the next generation of big jets.

European planemaker Airbus clinched deals for 90 more planes on Thursday, taking its orders and commitments at the world’s top aviation fair to 466 aircraft worth $69 billion (44.54 billion pounds) at list prices.

Jun 20, 2013

Helicopter makers woo oil sector with speed and comfort

PARIS (Reuters) – Companies like Eurocopter (EAD.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Sikorsky are making their helicopters faster, bigger and more comfortable to attract more customers from the offshore oil and gas industry to generate sales as military budgets shrink.

Oil companies already use helicopters to ferry workers to and from offshore rigs. These choppers may rack up 1,500 hours of flight time every year, much more than corporate or even military equivalents.

Jun 20, 2013

Airbus bags firm orders worth $39 billion at show

PARIS (Reuters) – European planemaker Airbus (EAD.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) clinched deals for another 90 planes on Thursday, taking its total orders and commitments at the Paris Airshow to 466 aircraft worth $68.7 billion at list prices.

The tally includes firm purchase orders for 241 planes worth $39.3 billion, Airbus told a news conference at the show.

Jun 20, 2013

Mining equipment makers rise to efficiency challenge

FRANKFURT/STOCKHOLM, June 20 (Reuters) – Mining equipment
manufacturers are making improvements to machinery that they
hope will deliver productivity gains for customers and counter
falling orders.

Under pressure from investors for higher returns, miners
want to get the most out of every shovel, grinder and truck to
help maintain margins which are being squeezed by high labour
and energy costs and cooling commodity prices.

Jun 19, 2013

Sky’s the limit for civil drones

PARIS, June 19 (Reuters) – From their roots in spying and
stealth military attacks, unmanned planes are spreading into the
civilian sphere and could soon be put to work in tasks as
diverse as inspecting oil pipelines, catching rhino poachers and
even flying travellers.

According to the European Commission, there are more than
400 projects across 20 European countries to develop civil
unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) ranging from some weighing just a
few grammes to others the size of an Airbus A320 jet.

Jun 19, 2013

Orders top $100 bln as Ryanair gives Boeing a boost

PARIS, June 19 (Reuters) – Orders at the Paris Airshow
surpassed $100 billion on Wednesday, as planemakers Boeing
and Airbus cashed in on demand for
fuel-efficient jets and growth in both budget carriers and
emerging markets.

Ryanair, Europe’s biggest low-cost airline,
finalised an order for 175 Boeing 737-800 aircraft worth around
$15.6 billion at list prices on day three of the aerospace
industry’s showcase event, the largest single order ever placed
by a European airline with the U.S. group.

Jun 17, 2013

Doric unveils $8 bln Airbus A380 order

PARIS, June 17 (Reuters) – Transport financier Doric Lease
Corp said it would buy 20 Airbus A380 aircraft in a
deal worth $8 billion at list prices and could snap up more,
putting the planemaker on track to hit its full-year order
target for the superjumbo.

Airbus is aiming to sell 25 A380s this year, up from nine in
2012, when orders were hurt by the discovery of wing cracks that
shortened the life of certain parts and forced the company to
make costly repairs.

May 31, 2013

Frankfurt ‘Blockupy’ protesters target ECB, banks, airport

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Anti-capitalist demonstrators from the Blockupy movement paralysed Germany’s financial center on Friday, cutting off access to the European Central Bank and Deutsche Bank’s headquarters.

Protesters against Europe’s austerity policies, estimated by police at 1,500 but by Blockupy at 3,000, descended in the early hours on Frankfurt’s financial district to disrupt business at institutions they blame for a deep recession in euro zone countries such as Spain and Greece.