Foreign business news in brief

  • Business
  • Wednesday, 02 Feb 2005

MELBOURNE: Australia's biggest private hospital group, Affinity Health, might be floated for more than A$1bil by its private equity owners by the middle of this year, industry sources said on Monday. 

Private equity groups CVC Asia Pacific and Ironbridge Capital and Singapore's Government Investment Corp bought the Affinity hospitals from Mayne Group Ltd in October 2003 for A$813mil. – Reuters 

LOS ANGELES: Walt Disney Co posted on Monday an unexpected rise in quarterly earnings as strength at cable juggernaut ESPN and theme parks more than made up for slower DVD sales. 

Net income rose 5% to US$723mil in the fiscal first quarter ended Dec 31, from US$688mil a year earlier. Revenue rose 1% to US$8.7bil from US$8.5bil. – Reuters 

MANILA: Philippine retail tycoon Henry Sy plans to raise 17.3 billion pesos (US$315mil) selling new shares in his holding company SM Investments Corp in what will be the country's biggest-ever public share sale. 

SM Investments planned to sell 75 million new shares at about 230 pesos each, the Manila-based company said in a draft prospectus filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. – Bloomberg 

For Another perspective from the Philippine Daily Inquirer, a partner of Asia News Network, click here


TOKYO: Sharp Corp said its profit for the fiscal third quarter increased by 18% on demand for its Aquos-brand televisions, and electronics parts. 

Sharp’s net income climbed to 20.9 billion yen for the three months ended Dec 31, from 17.8 billion yen a year earlier, the Osaka-based company said in a statement through the Tokyo Stock Exchange. – Bloomberg 

For Another perspective from The Daily Yomiuri, a partner of Asia News Network, click here


LOS ANGELES: Hilton Hotels Corp said on Monday its fourth-quarter net earnings fell, but revenue per room rose as increased travel fuelled higher room rates – a trend that is expected to pick up this year. 

Fourth-quarter net income fell to US$65mil, from US$67mil a year earlier. Revenue for the quarter rose 7% to US$1.054bil, beating the US$993.3mil that analysts had expected. 

Revenue per available room increased 8.3% and was expected to go up 7.5% to 8.5% in 2005, the company said. – Reuters 

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