The Business Matrix: Tuesday 17 March 2015


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The Independent Online

H&M enjoys latest double-digit rise

Hennes & Mauritz, the world’s second-largest fashion retailer, reported a better than expected 15 per cent sales rise in February, a fifth straight month of double-digit growth and a boost to its shares. Analysts had forecast a 13 per cent increase in sales. Better known as H&M, the Swedish multinational is in 55 countries with 3,500 stores.

Myla to open stores abroad

The lingerie group Myla is looking to open standalone stores overseas for the first time. The retailer has typically only held concessions in stores such as Selfridges but the new standalone store openings have been spurred by the backing of Hong Kong-based Jynwel Capital, which bought the business in August 2013.

Authorities close in on hackers

US federal authorities are confident they can bring charges against hackers who stole details of 83 million customers from JP Morgan Chase. The FBI believes several key suspects are traceable, the New York Times reported. That means that they live in countries with extradition treaties with the US.

Brent and West Texas prices sink

A possible deal over Iran’s nuclear programme hit oil prices as traders braced themselves for more crude hitting over-supplied global markets. West Texas crude sank to a six-year low of $42.85 – while Brent weakened to $53.44 a barrel, its lowest for a month. Signs of higher output in the US also weighed on prices.

Aviva boss earned £2.6m in 2014

Aviva chief executive Mark Wilson took home £2.6m in pay last year after overseeing a rise in the insurer’s share price and its £5.6bn tie-up with rival Friends Life. His £980,000 salary and £1.3m bonus are almost flat year on year. The finance director Tom Stoddard picked up a total of £1.2m.

Valeant ups Salix offer to $11bn

Valeant Pharmaceuticals has increased its takeover offer for Salix Pharmaceuticals to $10.96bn (£7.25bn) in cash, bumping out Endo International, the only other bidder for the maker of gastrointestinal drugs. The deal is good news for Bill Ackman, who has a $3bn stake in Valeant.

Five-year plan for Ryanair in US

Budget airline Ryanair has said it hopes to offer flights between Europe and the US in four to five years. The Irish airline said its board had approved transatlantic flights as part of its plans for future growth, but warned it could take a few years to become a reality.

AO World chair sells £10m shares

The chairman of AO World has sold most of his stake in the online white-goods shop, raking in £10m after a profit warning. Richard Rose sold 5.58 million shares at 180p, leaving him with just 723,443 shares. Mr Rose acted after a 12-month flotation lock-in expired.

Airbus in $10bn helicopter deal

Airbus and Korea Aerospace signed a deal yesterday to produce military and civil helicopters in South Korea, with the agreement potentially valued at $10bn (£6.75bn) over a decade. The two parties plan to build at least 300 helicopters.

WPP linked with Dunnhumby bid

Advertising agency WPP has been linked with a bid for Dunnhumby, the customer data business put up for sale by Tesco earlier this year. About seven bidders are believed to be interested in the business, which could also be floated.