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The Business Matrix: Thursday 1 August 2013

Hugo Boss pins hopes on women

Fashion brand Hugo Boss hopes new shops and a womenswear line designed by Michelle Obama-favourite Jason Wu will help it grow sales for the year. The German based brand, which is 56 per cent owned by London-based private equity group Permira Advisers, said its second quarter profit was €101.8m (£89m).

Dell shares fall as takeover bid stalls

Michael Dell and Silver Lake’s $24.4 bbn (£16bn) bid to take over Dell Inc suffered a blow yesterday after the company’s special committee rejected their request to change the voting rules in exchange for a sweeter bid. Dell shares fell 3 per cent to $12.48, their lowest level since news of the takeover broke on 14 January.

EADS group to  use Airbus name

EADS will combine its defence and space units and take the name of its flagship brand Airbus, adopting a similar structure and style to arch-rival Boeing as it targets higher profits. Chief executive Tom Enders did not rule out job cuts in the group’s 45,000-strong defence and space operations, which will be based in Germany.

New Siemens boss signals fresh start

Joe Kaesar has been appointed chief executive of Germany’s biggest engineering group Siemens taking over from Peter Loescher who presided over two profit warnings. Kaesar, currently finance director, shaved off his moustache last week saying that this could signal to capital markets that Siemens had new beginning.

O2 will bring 4G to initial five million

O2 has sets out its plans for its 4G network launch later this month. The superfast network will be switched on in London, Leeds and Bradford on 29  August, reaching up to five million people from launch. O2’s rollout plan aims to make 4G available to an additional two million people per month.

AstraZeneca seals deal for new drug

AstraZeneca has taken steps to bolster its depleted drug pipeline by sealing a deal with a US Biotech worth as much as $815m (£535m) for rights to an experimental anaemia drug. FibroGen’s  pill, currently known as FG-4592, is the first of a new treatment designed to boost production of red blood cells.

Taylor Wimpey ready to build

Housebuilder Taylor Wimpey expects booming business for the next 18 months on the back of improved consumer confidence and government schemes, according to chief executive Pete Redfern, who unveiled a 42 per cent rise in pre-tax profits to £109m.

BT Sport needs extra time for deal

BT was forced to admit that it still has not done a deal with pay-TV giant Virgin Media to carry its new BT Sport channels, which begin broadcasting tomorrow. The fact that BT has been unable to agree terms is a blow as Virgin has almost four million pay-TV customers.

Comparison site’s shares slump

Shares in the comparison website slumped more than 16 per cent after it admitted it had suffered a slowdown in June and July. The group has been a notably strong performer over the past year.

Dignity profits increase by 5.6%

Funeral services group Dignity said a 5.6 per cent rise in the number of deaths helped push its profits up by a fifth to £33.1m in the six months to 30 June. The group said the number of deaths was expected to return to normal for rest of 2013.

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