1.ASTON MARTIN-Aston Martin said sales to dealers in 2021 surged 82%, even as the British luxury automaker forecast lower-than-expected annual adjusted core earnings due to delays in shipments of its limited-edition Valkyrie sports car.
Aston Martin said 10 Valkyries were shipped in the fourth quarter, fewer than previously planned.
Aston Martin, fictional agent James Bond’s carmaker of choice, said it expected annual adjusted core earnings to be about 15 million pounds ($20 million) lower than expected.
However, it said the Valkyries that had not yet been shipped were already allocated to customers, with significant deposits.
“The Valkyrie programme is now running at rate for 2022 having focused on delivering with no compromises in the face of supply chain challenges and huge complexity in the production ramp-up which resulted in a timing impact for 2021,” Chief Executive Officer Tobias Moers said in a statement.
2.MC DONALDS: Japanese customers will have to settle for a small serving of McDonald’s fries for the next month or so after the fast-food chain said it was limiting portions due to shipping problems.
McDonald’s Holdings Company Japan said in a statement on Friday that the impact of flood damage on the port of Vancouver and other disruptions since last year would delay an expected shipment of potatoes from North America.
Global shipping operations continue to be severely affected by a mix of factors including COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns, extreme weather and a rapid recovery in demand.
As a result, McDonald’s said that from Sunday it would sell only S-sized fries for about a month “to make sure we have plenty of inventory and our customers can enjoy McDonald’s fries without interruption.”
The fast-food chain took the same step for a week at the end of December at its roughly 2,900 branches in Japan.
3.SHELL:- Royal Dutch Shell said it will pursue “at pace” a $7 billion share buyback largely funded from the sale of its U.S. shale business as it faces liquefied natural gas(LNG) outages and slower fuel sales due to the economic hit from Omicron.
Shares in Shell, the world’s largest trader of LNG, were down 0.32% on Friday after a trading update ahead of its quarterly results on Feb. 3. This compared with a 0.12% rise in the broader European energy index.
4.SAMSUNG: -Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said on Friday its fourth-quarter operating profit likely jumped 52% on-year to its highest for the quarter in four years, helped by solid demand for server memory chips and higher margins in chip contract manufacturing.
The world’s largest memory chip and smartphone maker estimated October-December profit at 13.8 trillion won ($11.5 billion), which would be tech giant’s highest fourth-quarter operating profit since Q4 2017.
The result missed a Refinitiv SmartEstimate of 15.2 trillion won, which analysts attributed to items such as employees’ bonuses, marketing costs for its mobile business, and ramp-up costs for new display panels being included in the quarter.
“It looks like a shock because it came out less than the consensus, but I don’t think it’s as bad as it looks. It seems they reflected various costs in the fourth quarter,” said Park Sung-soon, analyst at Cape Investment & Securities.
5.QATAR AIRWAYS:-Qatar Airways is seeking more than $600 million in compensation from Airbus over surface flaws on A350 jetliners, according to a court document shedding new light on an escalating business feud worth $4 million a day.
The Gulf carrier is also asking British judges to order France-based Airbus not to attempt to deliver any more of the jets until what it describes as a design defect has been fixed.
The two companies have been locked in a row for months over damage including blistered paint, cracked window frames or riveted areas and erosion of a layer of lightning protection.
Qatar Airways says its national regulator has ordered it to stop flying 21 out of its 53 A350 jets as problems appeared, prompting a bitter dispute with Airbus which has said that while it acknowledges technical problems, there is no safety issue.
Now, financial and technical details associated with the rare legal spat have emerged in a court filing at a High Court division in London, where Qatar Airways sued Airbus in December.
The Gulf airline is calling for $618 million in contractual compensation from Airbus over the partial grounding, plus $4 million for each day the 21 jets remain out of service.
The claim includes $76 million for one aircraft alone – a five-year-old A350 that was due to be re-painted in livery for the 2022 World Cup, which Qatar is hosting later this year.
That aircraft has been parked in France for a year needing 980 repair patches after the aborted paint job exposed gaps in the lightning shield, industry sources say.
The largest customer for Europe’s premier long-haul jet claims Airbus failed to provide a valid root-cause analysis.
The jets feature a layer of copper mesh under the paint to prevent lightning – which strikes planes on average once a year – from damaging the carbon-composite fuselage, which is lighter but less conductive than traditional metal.