Company news in brief

10 May 2021 | Business

Airbus Jan-April deliveries up 25%

Airbus delivered 45 jets in April, bringing its total so far this year to 170 - up 25% from the same period of 2020 when airlines were reeling from the first shock of Covid-19.

April deliveries trebled compared to the same period a year earlier, but slipped from 72 in March, company data showed.

US and Chinese domestic markets have seen a surge in travel as vaccinations widen and Britain said on Friday it would cautiously allow international travel to resume.

Airbus plans to increase production of medium-haul jets from the third quarter, partially restoring cuts sparked by Covid-19.

While deliveries have recovered faster than some experts anticipated, they have not kept pace with Airbus' current production rates of just over 50 aircraft a month, suggesting additions to an end-year surplus of almost 100 undelivered jets. – Nampa/Reuters

BMW confirms 2021 outlook

BMW remains on course to meet its profit targets for 2021 despite rising raw material costs, the German carmaker said on Friday, having largely steered clear of the semiconductor chip shortage battering rivals like Volkswagen.

Volkswagen boss Herbert Diess had said on Thursday that Europe's top carmaker was in "crisis mode" over the chip shortage, which would hit profits in the second quarter, while Ford Motor Co last week said the lack of chips could halve its second-quarter vehicle production.

BMW said that sales of its electrified vehicle models more than doubled in the first quarter, when it also benefited from higher prices and strong demand in China.

BMW had already reported a 370% jump in pre-tax profit as it bounced back more strongly than expected from a pandemic-ravaged first quarter last year.

Sales in China almost doubled in the first quarter versus the same period in 2020, the company said. – Nampa/Reuters

Tullow Oil emerges from overhaul

Tullow Oil's US$1.8 billion bond, which was launched to help it manage a US$2.4 billion debt pile, drew more interest from investors than expected after the Africa-focused producer's financial overhaul, the chief executive said on Friday.

Rahul Dhir also told Reuters the firm did not plan to sell more oil and gas fields after disposing of assets worth US$750 million following last year's oil price plunge, including its US$575 million sale of a Uganda project stake to Total.

"No divestments are on the anvil, we think we're done with that," said Dhir, who took up his post at the London-listed company in July when oil prices had been hammered by the pandemic.

Signalling investor confidence in the company, the bond received interest totalling US$4.2 billion, Dhir said.

The bond will allow Tullow to pay down its reserve-based lending facility with banks and its two bonds totalling US$950 million which were set to be paid in July 2021 and in 2022. – Nampa/Reuters

Ericsson settles dispute with Samsung

Ericsson has reached a "multi-year" agreement on global patent licences with Samsung, the Swedish telecom equipment maker said on Friday, ending a dispute that hit its first-quarter revenue.

Ericsson said it had not disclosed how many years the deal, which includes patents for all cellular technologies, would last. It said it now expects second-quarter patent licensing revenue to be 2 billion crowns (US$237 million) to 2.5 billion crowns.

The settlement, which ends ongoing lawsuits in several countries, was done in record time as patent disputes between technology companies can often take years to settle.

The current dispute started in December, while the last tussle between the two companies was in 2012 and took two years to resolve.

The cross-licence agreement covers sales of network infrastructure and handsets from Jan. 1, 2021, it said in a statement. The companies declined to disclose the terms citing confidentiality. – Nampa/Reuters

Adidas hikes outlook despite lockdowns

German sportswear company Adidas raised its 2021 sales outlook on Friday, saying it expects strong demand for new products despite ongoing lockdowns in Europe, supply chain challenges and political tensions.

Adidas said it now expects sales to grow at a high-teens percentage rate in 2021, compared to the forecast it gave in March for growth of a mid to high teens rate, with a jump of around 50% expected in the second quarter.

It said the acceleration would be driven by new products as well as big sports events like the European soccer championship and the Copa America.

Adidas had seen sales jump 156% in greater China in the first quarter, a year after the coronavirus pandemic hit there. At the end of the first quarter, 89% of the company's stores had reopened.

Adidas said first-quarter sales rose 20% to 5.268 billion euro (US$6.35 billion), ahead of average analyst consensus for 5 billion, while net income from continuing operations jumped to 502 million euros. – Nampa/Reuters

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