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Feb 12, 2014

Heineken sees return to revenue growth from emerging markets

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Heineken (HEIN.AS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the world’s third-largest brewer, forecast a return to revenue growth this year with higher beer sales in Africa, Asia and Latin America after a slowdown in a number of emerging markets in 2013.

The maker of Dutch maker of Heineken, Europe’s top-selling lager, Sol, tequilla-flavored Desperados and Strongbow cider said on Wednesday that 2013 had been a challenging year with difficulties in eastern Europe, Latin America and Africa.

Feb 7, 2014

ArcelorMittal sees 2014 profit rise as Europe revives

BRUSSELS, Feb 7 (Reuters) – ArcelorMittal, the
world’s largest steelmaker, forecast higher profits this year,
driven by higher steel sales and margins, and an increase in
iron ore production as Europe ended two years of decline.

The company, which makes 6-7 percent of the world’s steel
and is a broad gauge for the health of global manufacturing,
said global steel consumption should increase by between 3.5 and
4 percent in 2014 from about 3.5 percent last year.

Feb 6, 2014

Exclusive – EU ready to lift duties on most U.S. goods for trade pact

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union will offer to lift tariffs on nearly all goods imported from the United States as part of negotiations towards the world’s largest free-trade deal, people familiar with the proposal have told Reuters.

The offer will be made on Monday, a week ahead of face-to-face talks between EU trade chief Karel De Gucht and his U.S. counterpart Michael Froman in Washington, they said.

Feb 6, 2014

Exclusive: EU ready to lift duties on most U.S. goods to reach trade pact

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union will offer to lift tariffs on nearly all goods imported from the United States as part of negotiations towards the world’s largest free-trade deal, people familiar with the proposal have told Reuters.

The offer will be made on Monday, a week ahead of face-to-face talks between EU trade chief Karel De Gucht and his U.S. counterpart Michael Froman in Washington.

Feb 3, 2014

Ablynx agrees Merck cancer deal worth up to 1.7 billion euros

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Belgian biotech company Ablynx has signed a deal with Merck & Co worth up to 1.7 billion euros ($2.3 billion) to develop ways of triggering the body to fight cancer by itself.

The collaboration involves a new generation of drugs designed to activate the immune system. The first in the field – Bristol-Meyer Squibb’s Yervoy – is targeting melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.

Jan 27, 2014

Liberty Global buys Ziggo to expand European cable empire

UTRECHT, Netherlands/BRUSSELS (Reuters) – U.S. cable group Liberty Global (LBTYA.O: Quote, Profile, Research) has won its 10-month pursuit of Ziggo (ZIGGO.AS: Quote, Profile, Research) with a deal that values the Dutch operator and its debt at 10 billion euros ($13.7 billion) and expands billionaire John Malone’s vast European cable empire.

Ziggo rejected an initial offer from Liberty last October as too low, seven months after the U.S. group controlled by Malone first bought shares in its Dutch target.

Jan 27, 2014

Liberty extends Europe reach with Ziggo takeover

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – U.S. cable group Liberty Global has agreed to buy Ziggo in a cash and share deal valuing the Dutch operator at 10 billion euros ($13.7 billion) to expand its reach across Europe.

Ziggo, which in October rejected an earlier offer from Liberty as too low, said in a joint statement on Monday that the current offer implied a price of 34.53 euros per share compared with Friday’s close of 33.25 euros.

Jan 26, 2014

Fed in focus after emerging market mauling

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve will take center stage in the week ahead with a widely expected cut to its bond-buying stimulus, responding to an improving U.S. economy but also helping fuel a dramatic emerging market sell-off.

Argentina, Turkey and Ukraine felt the full force last week of a global flight from developing world assets as investors grew concerned about slower growth in China and U.S. monetary tightening, as well as the countries’ own problems.

Jan 24, 2014

Liberty-target Ziggo sees unchanged core profit in 2014

BRUSSELS, Jan 24 (Reuters) – Dutch cable group Ziggo NV
, which is in talks on a takeover by U.S. peer Liberty
Global Plc, forecast unchanged core earnings for 2014
with investments in promotions and in its new mobile service
offsetting revenue growth.

The group said there was little it could say about its talks
with Liberty, which it revealed in December. It had previously
rejected an offer as too low.

Jan 23, 2014

Delhaize sales expansion neutralised by weak dollar

BRUSSELS, Jan 23 (Reuters) – Belgian supermarket group
Delhaize reported broadly unchanged fourth-quarter
revenue on Thursday as sales growth in both the United States
and Belgium were neutralised by a weaker dollar.

The group, which has about 3,500 stores worldwide and makes
about 60 percent of its revenue in the United States, said
revenue inched up by 0.1 percent, or 3.0 percent at identical
exchange rates, to 5.34 billion euros ($7.24 billion).

    • About Phil

      "I am responsible for Reuters news out of Belgium and Luxembourg, which has led to many long nights outside parliament in Brussels awaiting news of fraught coalition talks and state bailouts of Belgian banks. I have previously worked in London, Amsterdam, where my work included consumer electronics group Philips and the Lockerbie trial, and Berlin, where I covered the Hamburg trials of suspected September 11 conspirators."
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