As the status of Deutsche Telekom extends to others
We start the week with the news that China has lost a bidding war to acquire the leading broadband network in Germany.
Chinese state-owned Beijing Capital Investment Group had made a €20bn bid for the Bidd-Telekom network, according to a report by Bloomberg. However, it failed in its attempt to lure away the engineering and project management consultancy company formerly known as KPMG – while another group of investors from Switzerland, led by German group MBL Group, withdrew from the bid. Deutsche Telekom is no stranger to controversy. In 2016, it considered cashing in on its networks and spectrum to make a multi-billion-euro acquisition – to the dismay of its investors. The German media conglomerate’s shares rose by 2.8% to €18.65 in Frankfurt on Monday.
A Lili plot thickens
People talk so much about Brexit, but apparently also can’t shake off the slippers or bed. Lili Veronicopoli, the Italian journalist at the centre of a social media storm that saw the hashtag #followinstolina used to mock her, has quit her job at La Stampa after receiving emails and calls to question her position. Veronicopoli had told a reporter from Channel 4 News that her parents were against her relationship with her co-worker Patrizia Halgrin, a married Austrian man. The public support angered Halgrin’s husband, who has encouraged journalists to look into her finances. Her decision to go public so soon after the scandal went public prompted accusations of the media’s homophobia. Halgrin has since said it was all a misunderstanding and asked for forgiveness.
China rides the wall
You may not have heard of the CCTV company in Chinese government, but its negative headlines have been having an effect on a region whose companies would struggle to remain in the public eye. The “silo effect”, where the coverage of a company or industry is better than their competitors, is global. “With the ever increasing importance of information in the economic cycle, this is becoming a global issue,” says Roberta Alleme, an economics professor at Northwestern University.
Squawk is cheap – for now
If you’re watching for another take on Trump’s trade war, another unorthodox outfit wants a crack at you. The New York Times has opened an office in Beijing to report on China as an uncensored hub. Work has begun on a working capital desk for reporting on unavailability of bank finance in China and lending industry data. Elsewhere on the China-US trade war, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that trading firms in Tokyo’s stock market are planning to stop taking orders in US dollars for the first time since July. The reason? Competition from data centres in Silicon Valley and Singapore.
Sky, the satellite television company, has increased its profits and pushed its income further up to a new high. Sky reported an 11% increase in annual operating profit to £1.79bn, compared with £1.56bn in 2016. Revenue also increased, by 6% to £9.1bn. Sky also increased the pace of its dividend, ahead of expectations. The share price, which has been dragged down by competition from internet television providers, shot up by 5% to 661p in London.
In the news
• Use drones in Norway, business leaders advised by intelligence agency after ‘unauthorised flights’ disrupt the nation’s transportation system
• Hong Kong calls its outbreak of bird flu a ‘wake-up call’
• US telecoms regulators approved Comcast and Charter deal to form third largest network in world