Friday, March 1, 2019

business news

business news


Shares Decline After Trump-Kim Summit Halts Without a Deal - U.S. News & World Report

Posted: 28 Feb 2019 12:50 AM PST

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Shares Decline After Trump-Kim Summit Halts Without a Deal  U.S. News & World Report

BANGKOK (AP) — Asian shares are mixed as investors fret over the status of China-U.S. trade talks after U.S. benchmarks closed mostly lower.

SunOpta shakes up leadership | 2019-02-27 - Food Business News

Posted: 27 Feb 2019 06:02 AM PST

TORONTO — The changes keep coming at SunOpta Inc.

A day after announcing the sale of its specialty and organic soy and corn business to Pipeline Foods, SunOpta on Feb. 26 said it has terminated the tenure of David J. Colo as president and chief executive officer, citing disappointing financial results and desire for a change in leadership. Mr. Colo's service as a member of SunOpta's board of directors also has been terminated.

Stepping into Mr. Colo's role on an interim basis will be Katrina L. Houde. A SunOpta director since 2000, Ms. Houde served as interim c.e.o. of the company in late 2016, which coincided with the development and launch of SunOpta's Value Creation Plan. Ms. Houde is expected to serve as interim c.e.o. to facilitate an orderly transition while the company's board of directors forms a search committee to work alongside an executive search firm to identify Mr. Colo's successor.

"The board is moving quickly to identify the next c.e.o. who will accelerate our efforts to drive long-term, sustainable, shareholder value through the Value Creation Plan," Ms. Houde said. "In the interim, I am confident that our talented senior leadership team will continue to execute on our key strategic objectives."

Despite the turnover at the top, Ms. Houde said SunOpta remains committed to its purpose and key strategies.

"Our purpose is to be the most innovative, integrated provider of organic ingredients and healthy fruit solutions across multiple channels," she said during a Feb. 26 conference call with analysts. "SunOpta is well aligned with consumer trends towards organic and non-G.M.O. foods, and I believe the acceleration in growth that we delivered in the fourth quarter affirms our right to win in this attractive market.

"Our strategy to accomplish our purpose is, first, to innovate and grow in healthy fruit and beverage categories. For example, we've long been a leader in the fast-growing category of non-dairy beverages, and we expect to continue to grow in this category with innovation such as oat and hemp milk. Second, to invest in and grow efficient, integrated supply chains, which are in our organic ingredient sourcing business, we can quickly identify consumer trends and leverage our sourcing expertise to deliver field-to-table innovation to our Consumer Products customers while benefiting from a vertically integrated supply chain.

"And third, to focus on food safety and quality and best-in-class operational performance. Since 2016, we've made substantial investments in food safety and quality, which have resulted in meaningful improvements to third-party audit scores of our manufacturing facilities."

Ms. Houde said SunOpta's top priority in 2019 is to drive long-term margin improvements through the company's fruit margin optimization plan.

"Under this plan, we will intensely focus on optimizing our cost base, leveraging existing capabilities to improve mix and driving innovation in the category, all with the objective of returning our Healthy Fruit business to historical margin performance over the next two crop cycles," she said.

SunOpta sustained a loss of $117,114,000 in the year ended Dec. 29, 2018, which compared with a loss of $143,129,000 in fiscal 2017. Revenues slipped to $1,260,852,000 from $1,279,593,000.

Nelnet reports lower profit - Lincoln Journal Star

Posted: 27 Feb 2019 03:00 PM PST

Nelnet's fourth-quarter income was less than half of what it was in the same period last year.

The Lincoln-based student finance company said it earned $21.6 million, or 53 cents a share, in the final three months of the year. That's compared with $48.1 million, or $1.17 per share, for the same period a year ago.

The fourth-quarter per-share profit number was 60 cents less than what analysts were forecasting.

Nelnet said the profit decline was due primarily to losses recognized from changes in the fair values of derivative instruments that do not qualify for hedge accounting under generally accepted accounting principles.

When those derivative instruments were excluded along with foreign currency transaction adjustments, Nelnet's fourth quarter profit was $58.8 million, or $1.44 per share, compared with $45.6 million, or $1.11 per share, a year ago.

"We are pleased with our financial performance for the fourth quarter and year," Jeff Noordhoek, chief executive officer of Nelnet, said in a news release. "Throughout 2018, we invested significant capital into the long-term success of each of our businesses and increased our customer bases in each of the three core fee-based businesses. Importantly, we ended the year with strong momentum and many opportunities going into 2019."

Among the capital the company has invested is the money it has spent building out its Allo Communications network. Nelnet reported spending another $20.7 million during the fourth quarter, bringing its capital expenditures for Allo for 2018 to $87.5 million.

The company said last week that its fiber-optic build-out in Lincoln is nearly complete. However, the company continues to build networks in Hastings and Fort Morgan, Colorado, and said it expects to spend $50 million this year.

Nelnet said its number of Allo customers was 37,351 at the end of 2018, an increase of 83 percent over a year ago.

Allo continues to lose substantial amounts of money, however, even though its revenue has increased.

The company had sales of $13.3 million in the fourth quarter, up from $8.1 million in the same period a year ago. However, its loss grew to $5.9 million, compared with a net loss of $5.4 million for the same period in 2017.

Worries That China Trade Talks Are Stalling Weigh on Stocks - U.S. News & World Report

Posted: 27 Feb 2019 02:10 PM PST

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Worries That China Trade Talks Are Stalling Weigh on Stocks  U.S. News & World Report

TOKYO (AP) — Asian shares rose in muted trading Wednesday as investors awaited the outcome of a summit between President Donald Trump and North ...

Canada Ex-Attorney: Government Tried to Interfere in Case - U.S. News & World Report

Posted: 27 Feb 2019 06:27 PM PST

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Canada Ex-Attorney: Government Tried to Interfere in Case  U.S. News & World Report

Canada's former attorney general is testifying she experienced a consistent and sustained effort by many people in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government ...

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