Business

World Bank cuts 2015 Malaysia GDP forecast

PUTRAJAYA: The World Bank has cut its 2015 growth forecast for Malaysia’s economy to 4.7% from an earlier estimate of 4.9% on expectations of slower export growth and investments in the oil and gas industry as well as moderate private consumption next year.

Inflation up 3% in November

PETALING JAYA: Inflation rate, measured by the consumer price index (CPI), rose 3% in November from 2.8% in October, exceeding economists’ forecast of a slower-paced 2.7% growth.

Nirvana CEO: Opportunity to accumulate shares

HONG KONG: Integrated death care service provider Nirvana Asia Ltd that made its debut amid weak market sentiments on the Hong Kong Exchange yesterday feels the current valuation provides an opportunity for investors to accumulate the shares.

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LONDON: IBM aims to expand the number of data centres it offers clients around the world by 25% to meet fast-rising demand for Internet-based services, after what has been described by a company executive as a "breakthrough year" in 2014 for its cloud computing business. IBM has quadrupled the number of cloud data facilities it offers around the world to 49 in the past 18 months, responding in part to laws requiring the local retention of data following revelations over US government Web surveillance, as well as increased corporate compliance rules. The company said on Wednesday it has now struck a partnership with data centre provider Equinix Inc for nine more cloud centres in Australia, France, Japan, Singapore, The Netherlands and the US. In addition the company is opening up three new cloud computer facilities of its own in Germany, Mexico and Japan. The information technology giant, which is contending with a change in its classic business mix of software and outsourcing services as corporate clients focus on reaching their customers via the Internet and mobile phones, said its own cloud business is having a banner year. "We have had a really good year. We would call it a breakthrough year in cloud," Angel Luiz Diaz, vice president in charge of IBM's cloud computing business, told Reuters. IBM's cloud revenue amounted to US$4.4bil in 2013 and was up by 50% in the first nine months of this year, it reported in October, making it one of IBM's fastest-growing businesses, although it still accounts for only a fraction of the US$94bil in total revenue IBM is expected by analysts to generate this year. Diaz declined to comment on the company's performance during the fourth quarter but IBM has announced multi-year deals in recent weeks worth a total of more than US$4bil that are fuelling the company's expansion in data centres. The company's cloud computing services let companies mix classic computing jobs with new ways of working, a twist on the largely consumer-facing cloud services made popular by Amazon's Web Services, Google and Microsoft. IBM, along with rivals Hewlett-Packard and EMC's VMware, offer "hybrid cloud" services that let customers run key business data on private, internal networks along with consumer-facing public cloud systems. Such hybrids provide companies with certain speed, security and regulatory advantages but at similar costs to public clouds, said industry analyst Charles King of the firm Pund-IT.  Mixed systems also let customers move their existing business software to the Internet over several years rather than in one big leap. So far this quarter IBM has set major deals with airline Lufthansa, Dutch bank ABN AMRO, advertising giant WPP , audio electronics maker Woox Innovations in Hong Kong and the Dow Water arm of Dow Chemical. IBM has also put in place a variety of technology partnership deals with SAP, Microsoft, Tencent, AT&T and Intel to give its customers more flexibility in running other major business systems on IBM cloud networks. IBM also said on Wednesday it had reached a cloud services deal with National Express Group Plc to enable the UK-based bus and trains operator to offer commuters up-to-the-minute train schedules and what it said would be Britain's first postcode-to-postcode journey planner. – Reuters

IBM says cloud business enjoying 'breakthrough year'

LONDON: IBM aims to expand the number of data centres it offers clients around the world by 25% to meet fast-rising demand for Internet-based services, after what has been described by a company executive as a "breakthrough year" in 2014 for its cloud computing business.

18 December 2014 | 5:29PM |

Foreign News

KLCI continues recovery, up 20 points at midday

KUALA LUMPUR: The gloom seems to have lifted as the local stock market continues to build on Wednesday’s reverse of negative downtrend when the FBM KLCI gained 7.96 points to 1,681.9 at the close. By midday today, the index had climbed 20.3 point to 1,702.2 – a gain of 1.21%.

18 December 2014 | 12:45PM |

Stocks

Sime Darby, Maxis push KLCI higher

KUALA LUMPUR: The FBM KLCI extended its gains and ended Thursday almost 19 points higher, backed by Sime Darby and Maxis, as investors sentiments recovered in line with the mostly firmer Asian markets.

18 December 2014 | 5:21PM |

Markets

Khazanah, upset with Jentayu, postpones meeting

KUALA LUMPUR: Khazanah Nasional Bhd is dismayed with Jentayu Danaraksa Sdn Bhd's "unprofessionalism" in presenting its proposed complementary plan to rescue ailing Malaysia Airlines (MAS), describing it as "a very unusual way of conducting business in corporate Malaysia", sources said on Thursday.

18 December 2014 | 1:08PM |

Airlines

BIMB Research sees bargain hunting on Bursa

KUALA LUMPUR: BIMB Securities Research expects bargain hunting to continue on Thursday but its upside may be limited by the persistent foreign sell-down thus envisage the FBM KLCI to test the 1,690 level.

18 December 2014 | 8:36AM |

Economy

Berjaya Sport Q2 net profit up 20.6% to RM99.7mil

KUALA LUMPUR: Berjaya Sports Toto Bhd recorded a 20.6% year-on-year jump in net profit to RM99.7mil from RM82.6 in the second quarter ended Oct 31, 2014, as revenue rose 44.7% to RM1.254bil from RM866.9mil.

18 December 2014 | 6:30PM |

Earnings

Jentayu snubbed by Khazanah on offer to buy airlines

PETALING JAYA: Officials of Jentayu Danaraksa Sdn Bhd are disappointed that Khazanah Nasional Bhd cancelled a scheduled appointment with them, dashing their plan that could save 6,000 jobs at Malaysia Airlines (MAS).

17 December 2014 | 12:00AM |

Airlines

Berjaya Sport Q2 net profit up 20.6% to RM99.7mil

KUALA LUMPUR: Berjaya Sports Toto Bhd recorded a 20.6% year-on-year jump in net profit to RM99.7mil from RM82.6 in the second quarter ended Oct 31, 2014, as revenue rose 44.7% to RM1.254bil from RM866.9mil.

18 December 2014 | 6:30PM |

Earnings

LONDON: IBM aims to expand the number of data centres it offers clients around the world by 25% to meet fast-rising demand for Internet-based services, after what has been described by a company executive as a "breakthrough year" in 2014 for its cloud computing business. IBM has quadrupled the number of cloud data facilities it offers around the world to 49 in the past 18 months, responding in part to laws requiring the local retention of data following revelations over US government Web surveillance, as well as increased corporate compliance rules. The company said on Wednesday it has now struck a partnership with data centre provider Equinix Inc for nine more cloud centres in Australia, France, Japan, Singapore, The Netherlands and the US. In addition the company is opening up three new cloud computer facilities of its own in Germany, Mexico and Japan. The information technology giant, which is contending with a change in its classic business mix of software and outsourcing services as corporate clients focus on reaching their customers via the Internet and mobile phones, said its own cloud business is having a banner year. "We have had a really good year. We would call it a breakthrough year in cloud," Angel Luiz Diaz, vice president in charge of IBM's cloud computing business, told Reuters. IBM's cloud revenue amounted to US$4.4bil in 2013 and was up by 50% in the first nine months of this year, it reported in October, making it one of IBM's fastest-growing businesses, although it still accounts for only a fraction of the US$94bil in total revenue IBM is expected by analysts to generate this year. Diaz declined to comment on the company's performance during the fourth quarter but IBM has announced multi-year deals in recent weeks worth a total of more than US$4bil that are fuelling the company's expansion in data centres. The company's cloud computing services let companies mix classic computing jobs with new ways of working, a twist on the largely consumer-facing cloud services made popular by Amazon's Web Services, Google and Microsoft. IBM, along with rivals Hewlett-Packard and EMC's VMware, offer "hybrid cloud" services that let customers run key business data on private, internal networks along with consumer-facing public cloud systems. Such hybrids provide companies with certain speed, security and regulatory advantages but at similar costs to public clouds, said industry analyst Charles King of the firm Pund-IT.  Mixed systems also let customers move their existing business software to the Internet over several years rather than in one big leap. So far this quarter IBM has set major deals with airline Lufthansa, Dutch bank ABN AMRO, advertising giant WPP , audio electronics maker Woox Innovations in Hong Kong and the Dow Water arm of Dow Chemical. IBM has also put in place a variety of technology partnership deals with SAP, Microsoft, Tencent, AT&T and Intel to give its customers more flexibility in running other major business systems on IBM cloud networks. IBM also said on Wednesday it had reached a cloud services deal with National Express Group Plc to enable the UK-based bus and trains operator to offer commuters up-to-the-minute train schedules and what it said would be Britain's first postcode-to-postcode journey planner. – Reuters

IBM says cloud business enjoying 'breakthrough year'

LONDON: IBM aims to expand the number of data centres it offers clients around the world by 25% to meet fast-rising demand for Internet-based services, after what has been described by a company executive as a "breakthrough year" in 2014 for its cloud computing business.

18 December 2014 | 5:29PM |

Foreign News

Sime Darby, Maxis push KLCI higher

KUALA LUMPUR: The FBM KLCI extended its gains and ended Thursday almost 19 points higher, backed by Sime Darby and Maxis, as investors sentiments recovered in line with the mostly firmer Asian markets.

18 December 2014 | 5:21PM |

Markets

TNB to invest more in renewable energy

KUALA LUMPUR: Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) will increase its investment in alternative sources of energy to ameliorate the effects of a fossil fuel shortage going forward, says chairman Tan Sri Leo Moggie.

18 December 2014 | 4:14PM |

Corporate News

The Japan Automobile Manufacturres Association says there is a "sense of crisis" hanging over the industry, as domestic sales remain anaemic - AFP Photo.

Japan auto lobby sounds alarm over weak domestic sales

TOKYO: The head of Japan's auto lobby on Thursday said a "sense of crisis" hung over the industry, with unexpectedly weak domestic sales revealing the failure of government stimulus policies and currency turmoil hitting key export markets.

18 December 2014 | 3:21PM |

Foreign News

IBM says cloud business enjoying "breakthrough year"

IBM aims to expand the number of datacentres it offers clients around the world by 25% to meet fast-rising demand for internet-based services, after what a company executive said has been a "breakthrough year" in 2014 for its cloud computing business.

18 December 2014 | 2:42PM |

Foreign News

Khazanah, upset with Jentayu, postpones meeting

KUALA LUMPUR: Khazanah Nasional Bhd is dismayed with Jentayu Danaraksa Sdn Bhd's "unprofessionalism" in presenting its proposed complementary plan to rescue ailing Malaysia Airlines (MAS), describing it as "a very unusual way of conducting business in corporate Malaysia", sources said on Thursday.

18 December 2014 | 1:08PM |

Airlines

Bursa Malaysia issues UMA query to Pan Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Pan Malaysia Holdings Bhd has been issued an Unusual Market Activity (UMA) query from Bursa Malaysia Securities on Thursday for the group's recent rise in price and volume.

18 December 2014 | 12:45PM |

Markets

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