Paying for Fiat's five-year, €48B ($64B) growth plan could be a challenge. Marchionne says a decision on a capital increase will be made in October after the new FCA shares are trading hands.
What to watch: Chrysler has had strong sales in the U.S. this year and is tipped by Kelley Blue Book to show double-digit growth for August. Automobile industry analysts think the NYSE listing could provide another jolt for the brand and help reinforce the trend of the Big Three (GM, F) out-performing some foreign automakers (Volvo, Volkswagen, Hyundai) unable to compete at scale.
RadioShack (NYSE:RSH) shares have racked up four straight double-digit percentage gains on surging volume since speculation began Tuesday that the company would get a rescue financing package to help stave off bankruptcy.
On Thursday more than 50M RSH shares changed hands, the single highest one-day amount for the stock since at least 1984, and another 40M traded today, indicating a heavy retail trade plus a big short squeeze.
Analyst sentiment remains heavily negative: RSH “needs much more than just a refinance in order to correct the overhanging issue of ongoing fundamental weakness," said B. Riley’s Scott Tighman, the analyst with a $0 price target on the stock.
Shortly after the NYT and others reported Time Warner has ended talks to buy a stake in Vice Media, the FT has reported Vice is wrapping up a deal to sell a 10% stake to A&E Networks for $250M. The deal's $2.5B valuation is well above the $1.4B valuation Vice received while selling a 5% stake to Fox last year.
Disney (NYSE:DIS) and Hearst each own 50% of A&E. Thus, the deal would give Disney a 5% indirect stake in Vice. The media giant only 5 months removed from agreeing to buy YouTube content provider Maker Studios for up to $950M.
Vice's assets include the Vice.com site, a large network of online content channels, a TV studio, and a branding agency. Its viewer base skews young.
The FT adds Vice will "produce digital and cable programming for A&E as part of the deal," but won't take over any of A&E's channels.
Vice CEO Shane Smith: "It’s a great deal for us ... It means we can preserve our independence and it gives us a war chest for another three years of dramatic growth."
Coca-Cola Life made its U.S. and Mexico debut this week in a limited roll-out.
The company is using The Fresh Market (TFM -0.7%) selling channel to test U.S. response to the stevia-sweetened soda drink, while a broader launch in Mexico is underway.
By the numbers: Coca-Cola Life contains 60 calories per 8-ounce can vs. 93 calories for regular Coke.
What to watch: The new drink is an attempt by Coca-Cola to create a mid-calorie segment splash which has been a losing proposition for beverage industry peers in the past. Execs think a different marketing spin will take Coca-Cola Life over the top.
Kandi Technologies (KNDI -8.5%) announces it entered into an agreement with select institutional investors for a $71M registered placement of common stock at a price of $17.20 per share.The company says the proceeds from the offering will be used for general working corporate purposes.