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11/2/20: What’s Going On

Airplanes explore new tactics, the Trump administration is levying new rules to restrict skilled foreign workers, Huawei makes factory expansion plans for Shanghai and more from around the business world.
(Benson Truong)
(Benson Truong)
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“Airlines are resorting to a new tactic in navigating the pandemic-inspired collapse in travel: They are giving seats away…The deals can drum up demand and get travelers comfortable with flying again. They are also keeping at least some cash coming in the door, as airlines keep much of their fleets parked. Alaska Airlines usually runs 10 to 12 big promotions a year; it has recently been offering three a month.”

“New rules from the Trump administration restricting skilled foreign workers are unnerving U.S. startup hubs, as founders and investors say the limitations will hamstring their ability to recruit top-tier talent to grow their businesses. The changes to the H-1B visa program announced in October will make qualifying for the work visas much tougher and compel employers to pay foreign workers drastically higher wages.”

“Chinese telecom equipment and smartphone maker Huawei is working on plans to build a semiconductor fabrication plant in Shanghai that wouldn’t use U.S. technology, the Financial Times reported. Such a plant would be part of Huawei’s attempt to secure supplies even though U.S. sanctions have limited its access to chips made by Taiwan’s TSMC, the world’s largest contract chipmaker.”

Companies Raising Capital
NameAmountDescription
Marshmallow$30 MillionMore “Inclusive” Car Insurance (United Kingdom)
Warren$1.4 MillionHelp Local Cloud Providers Compete Against Tech Giants

“Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners said it is buying Astound Broadband, the sixth-largest U.S. cable-TV provider, for $3.6 billion, in one of the biggest leveraged buyouts this year.”

“The U.S. Air Force recently bought dozens of Chinese-made drones to use for testing and training, according to officials and records of the purchase, fueling concerns about continued Defense Department use of technology that lawmakers consider a threat to national security.”

“U.S. buyout firm Hellman & Friedman LLC is in exclusive talks to sell its privately held European payments company Nets Group to Italy’s Nexi for stock, the latest potential tie-up in the fast-consolidating industry.”

“Rental-car companies, crushed by a collapse in bookings at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, are now getting a lift from two unexpected sources: rising used-car prices and more people looking to travel by car.”

“The U.S. government said it would “vigorously defend” President Donald Trump’s ban of TikTok, the popular Chinese-owned video app, after a federal judge blocked the ban.”

“Factories in Asia and Europe bounced back strongly in October, with some patches of fresh hiring, as manufacturers ramped up production of goods in hot demand from consumers despite rising coronavirus infections.”

“India’s Future Retail Ltd said on Sunday that a Singapore arbitrator’s order in its dispute with Amazon.com Inc is not enforceable under Indian law and not binding on the company.”

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