Today - Thursday, January 29, 2015
- The approval for an $8.2B Sysco (NYSE:SYY)-U.S. Foods deal is being delayed again after the FTC sent a subpoena to a third-party food distributor this week asking for more information.
- "I think it’s shockingly unclear” at this point whether the FTC is preparing to clear the merger," a source told the NY Post.
- Antitrust concerns are focused on whether the deal will drive up costs, as the two are the only ones with geographic reach to offer nationwide contracts for a wide variety of goods.
- Previously: Sysco to divest assets to win merger approval (Nov. 21 2014)
- Previously: FTC questions Sysco, US Foods merger (Sep. 23 2014)
1:31 AM| Comment!
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
- The CEO change at McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) is a signal to investors the company is serious about changing the status quo, according to analysts.
- The restaurant giant, which is coming off a 4.1% comp slide in 2014 and has already warned on pressure through the first half of the year, has also hired a new CFO and created a Chief Administrative Officer position.
- Much of the skepticism over the ability of the 36K-store chain to grow sales again hinges on a brand viewed by consumers as in decline (bloated menu, poor service, unhealthy) and being passed over by millennials.
- Irony check: Greasy burgers are still selling, just not at McDonald's
- Numbers check: Mickey D's Dec. U.S. comps -1.7% vs. +3.1% for the sector.
- Shares of MCD rose 3.39% to $91.79 in after hours trading.
- With just days to spare before Sunday's Super Bowl, NBCUniversal (CMCSA -3.1%) says it's sold out of ad inventory for the big game, and will feature more than 70 national commercials.
- That's a little closer than they might have liked -- much later than last year's sellout, which Fox (NASDAQ:FOX) achieved almost two months beforehand -- but this year at a higher price, a record $4.5M average per 30-second spot, and record total dollar volume.
- Auto advertisers in particular had been objecting to the premium pricing over the past year. Fifteen "rookie" advertisers join the ranks in 2015.
- Pre-show and post-show ads (cheaper than during the game, but still dear) are sold out as well.
- The last time it broadcast the Super Bowl, in 2012, NBC sold out ads on Jan. 3 (for $3.5M/30-second spot), but had slightly more inventory this time around.
- Previously: Madison Avenue cautious with Super Bowl XLIX (Jan. 07 2015)
7:09 PM| 1 Comment
- General Motors (NYSE:GM) again rejects a request by U.S. senators to extend its Jan. 31 deadline to file claims from its ignition switch compensation fund.
- Two senators - Blumenthal of Connecticut and Markey of Massachusetts, who have been particularly critical of GM - sent a letter yesterday to CEO Mary Barra urging an extension of the deadline until the Justice Department completes its probe into the GM's recall delay, but the company says it has "conducted extensive outreach about the program and contacted more than 5M current and former owners of the recalled vehicles."
- The compensation program had received 3,068 claims as of last Friday, and has confirmed 50 eligible death claims and 75 eligible injury claims.
5:45 PM| 36 Comments
4:45 PM| Comment!
- A 16% drop in revenue at Sands China took its toll on Las Vegas Sands (NYSE:LVS) in Q4.
- Macau casino revenue was off more than room revenue on softer VIP traffic.
- The company also saw a 6% drop in revenue from its Las Vegas operations during the quarter.
- Adjusted EBITDA property margin for Vegas was down 140 bps to 21.5%.
- Marina Bay Sands in Singapore accounted for more than a third of Las Vegas Sands' EBITDA growth.
- LVS +2.5% after-hours
4:12 PM| Comment!
4:09 PM| Comment!
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