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Oct 25, 2013

USG People: pick-up in Europe to continue in Q4

AMSTERDAM, Oct 25 (Reuters) – Dutch staffing firm USG People
beat forecasts for third-quarter operating profit on
Friday, flagging a pick-up in Europe which it expects to
continue in the fourth quarter and pushing the shares up nearly
5 percent.

The staffing sector is generally considered a barometer for
economic health because companies tend to hire temporary staff
at the beginning of an economic recovery when most businesses
are reluctant to add to their permanent headcount.

Oct 21, 2013

Philips profits nearly triple as turnaround bears fruit

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Philips (PHG.AS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) reported a near-tripling in third-quarter net profit, beating forecasts and pushing its shares to their highest since mid-2010 after two years of cutting costs, selling weak businesses and targeting new products at emerging markets.

The Dutch firm once known for its audio and video products has shifted its focus towards the fast-growing healthcare equipment and energy-efficient lighting sectors, bowing to competition from a plethora of Asian companies as consumer entertainment evolved to mobile internet devices.

Oct 2, 2013

KPN shareholders clear German unit sale to Telefonica

THE HAGUE, Oct 2 (Reuters) – Shareholders in Dutch telecoms
group KPN have approved the 8.55 billion euro ($11.6
billion) sale of its German unit E-Plus to Spanish rival
Telefonica, paving the way for KPN to step up
investment and resume dividend payments.

Combining the German units of KPN and Telefonica will create
the country’s largest mobile operator by customers, giving
Telefonica more clout to compete with Vodafone and
T-Mobile.

Sep 17, 2013

Philips lifts targets, to return $2 billion to shareholders

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Philips (PHG.AS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) raised most of its financial targets and announced plans to return 1.5 billion euros ($2 billion) to shareholders, saying it would reap the benefits of a two-year revamp to focus on healthcare, lighting and consumer appliances.

However, the Dutch group warned of tough conditions in many of its markets and the new goals fell short of some analysts’ hopes, sending its shares lower in early Tuesday trading.

Sep 13, 2013

Van Gogh copies in 3D look almost real, cost 25,000 euros

AMSTERDAM, Sept 13 (Reuters) – It would be the envy of
forgers: a technology that can mint near-perfect reproductions
of Vincent Van Gogh’s paintings at a rate of three a day, with
differences only experts can detect.

So far, five of the Dutch painter’s best-known works,
including “Sunflowers” and “The Harvest”, have undergone the
treatment in a project backed by Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum
using technology developed by the Fujifilm unit of Fujifilm
Holdings Corp.

Aug 30, 2013

KPN foundation tries to block America Movil offer for KPN

AMSTERDAM/MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – An independent foundation tasked with protecting the interests of KPN (KPN.AS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) shareholders on Thursday moved to block Carlos Slim’s proposed 7.2 billion-euro ($9.52-billion) offer for the Dutch telecoms group, casting doubt over his expansion plans in Europe.

Slim’s America Movil (AMXL.MX: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) (AMX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) already holds nearly 30 percent of KPN, but the surprise move by the KPN foundation against his firm’s offer underlines the difficulty the tycoon faces in extending his telecoms empire outside of Latin America.

Aug 26, 2013

Telefonica wins Slim over with sweetened German deal

AMSTERDAM/MADRID (Reuters) – Telefonica has raised its bid for KPN’s German arm by 6 percent to 8.55 billion euros ($11.5 billion), winning over top KPN investor America Movil and setting the stage for consolidation in Europe’s largest mobile market.

The Spanish telecoms group’s original deal to buy KPN’s E-Plus unit was thrown into doubt earlier this month when Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim’s America Movil said it would launch a bid for the shares in KPN it does not already own.

Aug 26, 2013

Telefonica wins Slim’s backing for improved E-Plus deal

AMSTERDAM/MADRID, Aug 26 (Reuters) – Spain’s telecom giant
Telefonica improved its offer for KPN’s German
unit E-Plus, winning support from the Dutch telecom group’s
biggest shareholder, America Movil.

Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim’s group, which now owns
29.77 percent of KPN, said it still plans to go ahead with its
separate 7.2-billion-euro ($9.65 billion) bid in cash for the
remaining shares in the Dutch group it does not already own.

Aug 23, 2013

ABN AMRO bad debts rise as government plans sale

AMSTERDAM, Aug 23 (Reuters) – State-owned Dutch lender ABN
AMRO warned on Friday that the weak domestic economy
would lead to higher bad debts, underlining the challenge the
government faces as it prepares for the bank’s eventual sale.

The Netherlands is expected to push ahead with an initial
public offering (IPO) despite current valuations pitching its
value at less than half the 30 billion euros ($40 billion) the
government poured into its 2008 rescue.

Aug 22, 2013

Dutch lender Rabobank tots up likely costs of Libor scandal

AMSTERDAM, Aug 22 (Reuters) – Rabobank, one of
several banks named by the authorities in the international
Libor interest rate rigging scandal, has made an unspecified
provision in its first-half results for settling with
regulators.

The Dutch cooperatively-owned bank expects certain
regulatory agencies and authorities to conclude their
investigations this year, it said in a statement on Thursday.

    • About Sara

      "Sara Webb, bureau chief for Indonesia, has lived in Jakarta since 2007. She has worked as a journalist in Asia, Europe and the United States."
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