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January 13, 2014
06:22 EDTSSNLF, SNEDan Loeb 'seems happy' with Sony CEO's progress, NY Post says
After seeing Sony (SNE) CEO Kazuo Hirai reveal many new products at the CES conference, activist investor Dan Loeb "seems happy" with Hirai's progress and said that although he was planning to buy Samsung (SSNLF) products for his AV system, he changed his mind after seeing Sony's new Ultra-HDTVs, according to the New York Post, citing comments from Loeb Reference Link
News For SNE;SSNLF From The Last 14 Days
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September 29, 2015
12:29 EDTSNEGoogle announces Nexus 6P smartphone
The Nexus 6P features an all-metal body and a 5.7-inch AMOLED display. The phone is manufactured in cooperation with Huawei, and includes a USB-C port that can charge the device twice as fast as an Apple (AAPL) iPhone 6 Plus, according to Google (GOOG). The 6P uses a 12.3 megapixel rear-facing Sony (SNE) camera, as well as a 5 megapixel front-facing camera. The phone also includes Nexus Imprint, an advanced fingerprint authentication technology. Google executives are speaking at the company's Nexus 2015 event.
08:01 EDTSNEGlobal Eagle strikes worldwide IFE agreement with Sony Music
Global Eagle (ENT) announced a global licensing agreement with Sony Music Entertainment to add thousands of songs from Sony (SNE) Music's iconic catalog to GEE's leading inflight entertainment portfolio. The broad-based deal is Sony Music's first licensing pact with an inflight entertainment content service provider and gives Global Eagle access to hit songs from leading recording labels, including Columbia, Epic, RCA, Masterworks, Legacy, Sony Music Nashville for use in its airline inflight entertainment systems around the globe.
08:00 EDTSSNLFNuance, Samsung extend strategic partnership agreement
Nuance Communications (NUAN) announced an extension to the strategic partnership with Samsung Electronics (SSNLF) to provide Nuance document imaging solutions. Specifically the expansion includes rights for Samsung to sell and distribute Nuance AutoStore, Equitrac Office/Express and SafeCom. In addition, Nuance will provide service and support to qualifying customers.
06:31 EDTSSNLFApple, Samsung agree to court-supervised mediation in patent dispute
According to a court filing, Apple (AAPL) and Samsung (SSNLF) have agreed to participate in court-supervised mediation of their years-long dispute over patents. "Pursuant to the September 18, 2015, Case Management Order, the parties jointly submit this update on alternative dispute resolution. The parties are willing to mediate with Judge Spero with a settlement conference deadline of November 15, 2015, and are conferring on scheduling," the court document says. Reference Link
06:25 EDTSSNLFSamsung to shutter Milk Video service in November
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September 28, 2015
19:40 EDTSSNLFSamsung, TSMC confirmed as Apple SoC manufacturers, Apple Insider says
Samsung (SSNLF) and TSMC (TSM) have both been confirmed as Apple (AAPL) A9 system-on-chip manufacturers for the latest iPhone 6s and 6s Plus handsets, according to Apple Insider. Apple Insider also noted that the Samsung version of the chip is 10% smaller than the TSMC version. Reference Link
09:31 EDTSSNLFSamsung Pay debuts for MasterCard cardholders
Beginning today, Samsung Pay (SSNLF) is now available to MasterCard (MA) cardholders for everyday purchases. Samsung device owners can use their MasterCard credit, debit and select prepaid and small business cards from participating banks directly through Samsung Pay.
09:06 EDTSSNLFGlobal Payments announces full support for Samsung Pay in the U.S.
Global Payments Inc. (GPN) is pleased to offer its merchants in the United States the ability to accept Samsung Pay (SSNLF). As a Samsung Pay-qualified payment provider, Global Payments' suite of payment solutions is fully enabled for acceptance, allowing merchants to offer their customers the convenience of Samsung Pay.
07:28 EDTSSNLFSamsung to pay customers up to $120 for buying new Galaxy phone, Verge says
Samsung's (SSNLF) new promotion in the U.S. will pay the rest of a customer's monthly payments in 2015 towards a new Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, S6 Edge+, or Galaxy Note 5, the Verge reports. The promotion will result in $120 off the price of any of those phones if users buy one under a new carrier installment plan between now and October 9, the report says. AT&T (T) will sit the promotion out, the report says. Reference Link
September 27, 2015
19:39 EDTSNE'Hotel Transylvania 2' bites down in record-setting debut
Animated children's film "Hotel Transylvania 2" set a domestic record for September while "Maze Runner" and "Black Mass" dropped in their second weekends at the box office. WEEKEND LEADER: Sony's (SNE) computer animated comedy "Hotel Transylvania 2" grossed $47.5M during its domestic open for the weekend of September 27, beating expectations for $35M-$40M and setting a new record for September box office debuts. Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, and others returned to provide voice acting for the monster-themed movie, which saw the biggest open yet for Sony Pictures Animation. BOX OFFICE RUNNERS-UP: With Robert DeNiro and Anne Hathaway in leading roles, Time Warner (TWX) subsidiary Warner Bros.' "The Intern" opened at $18.2M against estimates sales of $15M-$20M. Fox's (FOX, FOXA) "Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials" came in third with $14M after grossing $30.3M domestically during last weekend's debut. Meanwhile, Comcast (CMCSA, CMCSK) subsidiary Universal's "Everest" jumped to $13.1M after significantly expanding its screen count, while Warner Bros.' "Black Mass" rounded out this weekend's Top 5 at $11.5M.
September 25, 2015
16:35 EDTSNEStocks end week lower as biotechs sink, Volkswagen crashes
Stocks ended the week lower after concerns about drug prices were reignited, sinking biotech stocks, an emissions scandal engulfed Volkswagen (VLKAY), dragging down shares of automakers and their suppliers, and Caterpillar (CAT) announced that it may eliminate as many as 10,000 jobs in the next three years as commodity prices continue to slump. MACRO NEWS: Following the Federal Reserve's decision last week to wait before raising rates, the central bank made a concerted effort to give the market more clarity this week. Over last weekend, three Federal Reserve officials - San Francisco Fed President John Williams, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard and Richmond Fed President Jeffrey Lacker - all argued that an interest-rate increase is still warranted this year. Then, on Thursday night, Fed Chair Janet Yellen said during a speech at UMass Amherst that the central bank remains inclined to hike rates this year. Yellen's remarks were incrementally hawkish, but welcomed by the market, since they helped clarify the message the Fed delivered a week ago... In the U.S., Markit's flash manufacturing purchasing manager's index was flat at 53.0 in September, which was slightly better than the expectation for it to dip to 52.8. Durable goods orders for August declined 2.0%, versus expectations for a drop of 2.3%. When transportation items were removed, the core reading was breakeven, versus expectations for a rise of 0.1%. The third estimate of second quarter GDP showed the economy grew 3.9% quarter-over-quarter, versus expectations for the GDP growth estimate to stay at 3.7%. Personal consumption in Q2 is now believed to have grown 3.6%, up from the prior estimate of 3.1%. The final University of Michigan consumer sentiment reading for September came in at 87.2, which was down from August's 91.9 but above the expected 86.2 reading... The Asian Development Bank cut its growth forecast for the region, citing a weaker outlook for China and India and a delayed recovery in the world's advanced economies. The bank now sees the Chinese economy growing 6.8% this year and 6.7% next year, down from its previous forecasts of 7.2% and 7%, respectively. Markit's flash manufacturing PMI for China fell to 47.0 in September from 47.3 last month. Meanwhile, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe unveiled new economic targets, including a goal for a 20% increase in the target size of the Japanese economy to 600T yen, though he gave no timeframe for achieving this aspiration... In Europe, Markit's composite PMI for the eurozone came in at 53.9 in the first look for September, down from 54.3 in August and below expectations for a reading of 54.1. COMPANY NEWS: Biotech stocks declined after privately-held Turing Pharmaceuticals made headlines by enacting a 5,000% price increase on its treatment for toxoplasmosis, reigniting a debate around drug prices that previously embroiled costly Hepatitis C drugs including AbbVie's (ABBV) Viekira Pak and Gilead's (GILD) Sovaldi and Harvoni. Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton sent the debate to center stage by criticizing the "outrageous" prices of specialty drugs and laying out a plan to tackle "price gouging" in the specialty drug market. The NASDAQ Biotechnology index fell roughly xxx% for the week amid the attention paid to Turing's drug and Clinton's response... Volkswagen (VLKAY) shares trading in New York fell sharply to begin the week and ended the week far from where they'd been last Friday before the EPA said it found manipulations that violate U.S. environmental standards while testing certain of the automaker's diesel cars. The EPA said Volkswagen may face civil penalties of $37,500 for each vehicle not in compliance with federal clean air rules, which could total as much as $18B, according to Reuters. In the wake of the scandal, Chief Executive Officer Martin Winterkorn resigned, with the company's supervisory board subsequently praising the decision and selecting Matthias Mueller, the former head of Porsche (POAHY), as Winterkorn's successor as the company's new CEO... Caterpillar (CAT) shares dropped after the heavy machinery maker announced plans for job cuts and lowered its revenue guidance for this year and next. Caterpillar said that it would lay off 4,000-5,000 of its employees between now and the end of 2016 and could lay off up to 10,000 employees by 2018. Caterpillar cut its fiscal year 2015 revenue forecast by $1B and said its sees its fiscal year 2016 revenue to be 5% below this year, adding that it expects revenue declines in all three large segments next year... Online and mobile deal provider Groupon (GRPN) said it plans to cut 1,100 jobs relating primarily to the company's international operations... Nike jumped after the athletic gear giant reported better than expected earnings and futures orders, prompting numerous price target hikes and at least one upgrade at Street research firms. Among other companies reporting earnings this week, BlackBerry (BBRY), ConAgra (CAG), Carnival (CCL), and CarMax (KMX) fell immediately following their quarterly reports... Apple (AAPL), which has previously been reported to be working on an electric car via its "Project Titan," is speeding up those efforts and setting 2019 as a target to ship its first vehicle, according to The Wall Street Journal... Against the backdrop of China's President Xi Jinping visiting the U.S., Boeing (BA) announced deals to sell 300 planes to three Chinese companies and set up an aircraft factory in in the Asian nation, while Cisco (CSCO) announced a partnership with Chinese server maker Inspur Group... Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman Sachs (GS) Chairman and CEO, disclosed that he was diagnosed with lymphoma. "Fortunately, my form of lymphoma is highly curable and my doctors' and my own expectation is that I will be cured," Blankfein stated in an open letter that was shared by the bank... GoPro (GPRO) finished the week about xxx% lower after Barron's contended in a feature article last weekend that the company's stock could plunge another 30% to $25 as Apple, Sony (SNE) and others pressure the company's "one-hit wonder" products... On the M&A front, Atmel (ATML) agreed to be acquired by German chipmaker Dialog Semiconductor in a deal valued at roughly $4.6B and Starwood Waypoint (SWAY) announced a stock-for-stock merger agreement with Colony American Homes. INDEXES: The Dow lost about 0.43% to close at 16,314.67, the S&P 500 fell about 1.35% to close at 1,931.34, and the Nasdaq declined about 2.89% to close at 4,686.50.
13:17 EDTSNEFly Watch: 'Hotel Transylvania 2' expected to top weekend box office
Sony's (SNE) animated sequel "'Hotel Transylvania 2," which is opening in 3,600 theaters, is expected to win this weekend's box office with a domestic gross of $35M-$40M. The next bunch of films are all expecting similar grosses in the mid-to-high teens. Time Warner (TWX) subsidiary Warner Bros.' comedy "The Intern," starring Robert DeNiro and Anne Hathaway, is estimated to open in the $15M-$20M range in 3,305 theaters. Comcast (CMCSA, CMCSK) subsidiary Universal's "Everest," which opened last weekend on IMAX (IMAX), is expanding to over 3,000 theaters this weekend and is estimated to gross in the range of $15M-$17M. Fox's (FOX, FOXA) "Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials," which grossed $30.3M domestically for the weekend of September 20, is expected to earn an estimated $16M in its second weekend of release. Warner Bros.' Whitey Bulger biopic "Black Mass," which took in $23.4M in its domestic opening last weekend, is expected to gross $12.5M-$13M this weekend. Additionally, Lions Gate's (LGF) drug cartel drama "Sicario" is playing in about 50 theaters ahead of the film's wide release on October 2.
10:26 EDTSSNLFBlackBerry posts quarterly loss, says turnaround continuing
BlackBerry (BBRY) shares are lower in morning trading after the company posted a second quarter loss that was steeper than analysts' expectations. BlackBerry is in the middle of a turnaround for its smartphone business and confirmed today that it plans to launch a new device that uses Google's (GOOG) Android operating system. EARNINGS: Excluding items, BlackBerry reported a loss per share for Q2 of (13c), below analysts' consensus estimates of (9c). Revenue for the quarter was $490M, reflecting a purchase accounting write down of deferred revenue associated with the acquisition of WatchDox. The revenue result may not compare with analysts' estimate of $611M. Looking ahead, BlackBerry said it is targeting "sustainable" non-GAAP profitability in the fourth quarter and sees "modest" sequential growth in total revenue for the rest of fiscal year 2016. The company sees a "slight" uptick in third quarter revenue compared to this quarter, and announced it will change its non-GAAP income statement presentation to be "consistent with the primary practice in the software industry." BlackBerry said it believes this is necessary due to its increased emphasis on software, as well as acquisitions of software companies with material recurring revenue streams. On the company's earnings conference call, John Chen, BlackBerry's chief executive officer, announced that the board approved an increase to the current buyback program by an additional 15M shares, bringing the total available for repurchase to 21M shares. The approval was based on expectations for continued free cash flow. Chen said that he believes the company has made "good progress" moving its software business from perpetual to subscription. Chen said he is "not satisfied" as far as overall revenue and profitability, particularly in its handset business, but said the company is focused on growing device volume profitably, generating recurring revenue from IP licensing and making its software business larger. WHAT'S NOTABLE: To help strengthen its device business, Chen confirmed BlackBerry will launch a new slider device powered by Google's Android operating system later this calendar year, to be called Priv. Chen also confirmed that the company will continue to develop and enhance the BlackBerry 10 operating system and confirmed plans to release platform updates focused on security and privacy enhancements. Chen said the company is working with Google to secure Android and is not using Samsung's (SSNLF) Knox. Chen said the company is not planning another BlackBerry 10 device this year and noted that if the plan of doing the Android type of implementation "works well," it could consider replacing BB10 or merging it into Android. PRICE ACTION: BlackBerry is down 2% to $6.89 in morning trading.
08:50 EDTSSNLFBlackBerry says working with Google on securing Android
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September 24, 2015
20:04 EDTSSNLFFacebook virtual reality initiative picks up speed with $99 Samsung device
Thursday's Oculus Connect 2 event saw numerous announcements from Facebook (FB) virtual reality subsidiary Oculus VR, including content deals with major media players as well as a $99 VR headset developed in conjunction with Samsung (SSNLF). CONTENT OFFERINGS: The virtual reality firm will be partnering with Fox (FOX, FOXA) and Lionsgate (LGF) to bring more than 100 films to the Oculus Store at launch. Additionally, Netflix (NFLX), Amazon's (AMZN), TiVo (TIVO), and Hulu -- the joint venture of Disney (DIS), Fox, and Comcast's (CMCSA, CMCSK) NBCUniversal -- will be launching apps for the company's virtual reality products, bringing web TV and streaming content to early adopters of the new technology. MAINSTREAM DEVICE: Samsung joined with Oculus to reveal a new $99 "Gear VR" headset on Thursday. Standing in contrast to Oculus' own pricier devices, the Samsung headset will rely on the company's Galaxy line of smartphones to power its virtual reality experiences. Note that a major point of contention regarding the "blockbuster" potential -- or lack thereof -- of VR technology is whether consumers will be willing to pay upwards of $399 for the Oculus gadgets. Samsung's Gear VR tends more towards what Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster has called "medium immersion" devices, potentially allaying investor concern over adoption rates with its more attractive point of entry. PRICE ACTION: Facebook shares closed higher by 0.5% and continued to rise in after-hours trading, up another 0.2%.
12:02 EDTSSNLFSTARZ PLAY now available on Samsung Smart TVs
Starz announced that STARZ PLAY, the authenticated online TV Everywhere service for STARZ premium subscribers, has launched on Samsung (SSNLF) Smart TVs. STARZ subscribers may now watch exclusive STARZ Original series including "Blunt Talk," "Survivor's Remorse," and "Power," among others, as well as hundreds of movies and first-run films on Samsung Smart TVs. Starting today, the STARZ PLAY App will be available in Samsung App store within the Smart Hub across select 2014 and 2015 Samsung Smart TVs.
11:21 EDTSSNLFJury says Pendrell patents not infringed on by Samsung, Google products
Pendrell announced earlier, that on September 23, a jury in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas found that certain claims of five digital rights management patents asserted by Pendrell (PCO) subsidiary, ContentGuard Holdings, against Samsung Electronics (SSNLF) and Google (GOOG) are valid, but that Samsung products and Google products accused in the lawsuit do not infringe the asserted patents. ContentGuard is assessing the jury's findings and evaluating its options to challenge the verdict. ContentGuard's claims against Samsung and Google are part of a larger lawsuit filed by ContentGuard against several companies that have not paid for a license to use ContentGuard's patented digital rights management solutions, including Apple (AAPL), DirecTV, HTC, Huawei and Motorola Mobility. The jury verdict does not impact ContentGuard's August 2015 settlement and license agreement with (AMZN); nor does ContentGuard believe the jury verdict will impact or delay ContentGuard's upcoming November trial against Apple. Shares of Pendrell are down 35.34% in morning trading.
06:34 EDTSSNLFApple 'A10' processor may switch to six-cores, AppleInsider reports
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06:08 EDTSSNLFSamsung Pay has over $30M in accumulated transaction volume in first month
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September 23, 2015
20:08 EDTSNEChinese president visits U.S. amid cybersecurity, copyright worries
As part of his first official U.S. visit, Chinese president Xi Jinping held a meeting with American business leaders on Wednesday to address concerns of copyright infringement and cybersecurity, among numerous topics. In attendance were corporate giants from both nations, including Microsoft (MSFT), Apple (AAPL), Amazon (AMZN), Cisco (CSCO), Alibaba (BABA), Tencent (TCEHY), and Baidu (BIDU), according to media reports. COPYRIGHT CONCERNS: Responding to oft-cited concerns of copyright infringement by Chinese companies, Xi said China will "stand firm to protect" the intellectual property rights of American companies, according to Wall Street Journal coverage of the event. Note that in late 2014, China began establishing specialized courts to deliberate on intellectual property rights cases, and Xi commented Wednesday that "the newly established IPR courts are working smoothly. This means there will be much stronger IPR protection which will serve the interests of foreign businesses as well as Chinese companies." Chinese consumer electronics company Xiaomi is perhaps the most talked-about firm when it comes to the matter, with media outlets frequently criticizing its alleged "copying" of Apple design sensibilities. In mid-July, Xiaomi VP of global operations Hugo Barra told Bloomberg that the company is preparing to enter U.S. markets, though he cautioned that the launch could be "much more" than a year away as it seeks to build up its patent portfolio. CYBERSECURITY TENSIONS: Wednesday's meeting comes in the wake of numerous high-profile "hack attacks," with Sony (SNE), American Airlines (AAL), Anthem (ANTM), United Airlines (UAL), and Target (TGT) all reporting digital security breaches in recent years. Xi has consistently denied the involvement of state-backed hackers, but tensions have nevertheless arisen as cybersecurity firms such as FireEye (FEYE) and Palo Alto Networks (PANW) backtrace connections to the country. Cybersecurity intrusions originating from China have recently slowed ahead of Xi's visit, according to Reuters, with Kevin Mandia of security firm Mandiant telling the publication, "In my gut, I feel like the Chinese and the U.S. over the next couple of years are going to figure this out."
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