Venture capital funds invest €60m
Irish venture capital funds supported by Enterprise Ireland invested a total of €60m last year, despite the ongoing difficulties in the economy. That was a 43pc increase on the value of investments made in 2010, with the funding spread across 131 investments in 93 companies. Seed funding available to Irish companies rose by €27m, lifted by a new €22m AIB Accelerator Fund, while Bank of Ireland's Seed and Early Stage Equity Fund grew by €5m.
Microsoft posts its first loss
Microsoft has reported its first quarterly loss as a public company as it took a previously announced hit for writing down the value of its ailing online unit, but held up better than expected in the face of stagnant computer sales. Excluding the multibillion-dollar writedown, which was signalled earlier this month, and factoring in some deferred Windows revenue, the world's largest software company actually exceeded Wall Street's expectations, boosting its shares.
US drought sends food prices soaring
The world is facing a new food crisis as the worst US drought in more than 50 years pushes agricultural commodity prices to record highs. Corn and soyabean prices surged to record highs yesterday, surpassing the peaks of the 2007-08 crisis that sparked food riots in more than 30 countries. Wheat prices are not yet at record levels but have rallied more than 50pc in five weeks.
Heineken in battle for Tiger beer maker
A battle for control of Asia Pacific Breweries, maker of Tiger beer, has erupted after Dutch brewer Heineken made a S$5.1bn (€3.2bn) offer to buy out its joint venture partner in the brewery, Singapore-listed Fraser and Neave. Heineken said yesterday's offer of S$50 a share for the stake represented a 45pc premium over the one-month volume-weighted average price.
Yahoo chief in line for $100m payout
Marissa Mayer, Yahoo's new CEO, could receive more than $100m (€82m) in stock awards if she remains as Yahoo chief for the next five years -- or longer than her four predecessors put together.
The award is based in part on tenure as well as performance.