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Sony (NYSE:SNE) has reported a record annual net loss of $5.7 billion in fiscal year 2012. This represents its fourth consecutive year of losses thanks to problems in its TV division. A strong yen had consolidated sales dropping 9.6 percent to YEN6.5 trillion ($8.2billion). Looking for a bright spot, Sony foresees a recovery this fiscal year with its forecast of YEN30 billion net profit and YEN 180 billion operating profit.
Panasonic (NYSE:PC) and the Japanese trading house Itochu will merge their mobile-phone sales units. This will create Japan’s third-largest handset firm, according to Nikkei. This could take place by October with Panasonic’s Panasonic Telecom Co. folding into ITC Networks Corp (JP:422); Itochu is a 60 percent owner, according to MarketWatch. In the end, Itochu may have a less than a 50 percent ownership in the merged entity, while Panasonic would have “roughly 20 percent.”
Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) has appeared as a large shareholder in KPN (KKPNY.PK), disclosing that it has a 10.01 percent ownership in the Dutch company. Morgan purchased the stake only three days prior to America Movil’s (NYSE:AMX) EUR 8 per share offer for KPN. The Mexican company has said Morgan isn’t holding the position on its behalf.
Facebook (FB) will launch an app store in the coming weeks that will be customized for each of its users, similar to the site’s News Feed display content. Malorie Lucich, a Facebook spokeswoman said, “We’re trying to solve that app discovery problem. For a lot of people, it’s hard to find this stuff.” The company is taking submissions from developers who are interested in selling their apps in the network, which could an offer a new revenue stream for the company, according to Bloomberg. Similar to Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), not everyone will get their app into the App Center if it doesn’t “meet a high quality bar.”
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FedEx Corp.(NYSE:FDX) announced plans on Thursday to purchase Tatex, the French business-to-business express transporation company. It did not disclose the price but the privately-held, 1,000-employee company will help the company expands its European business. The company said, “The acquisition will give FedEx Express access to a nationwide domestic ground network.”
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