Fast Breaks Newsfront: March 12, 2001
Lots of Francs
France Telecom made the largest corporate bond offering to date, issuing $16.4 billion in debt last week. The deal drew more than $30 billion in investor interest, the company said. France Telecom expects to pay off debts and fund new wireless services.
Intel Cuts Jobs
The demand for PCs has dropped off a cliff, and now its Intels turn to bleed. The chipmaker last week said it will trim 5,000 jobs, about 6 percent of its work force, over the next nine months. The company warned that its first-quarter revenue will be down about 25 percent. Meanwhile, computer networking giant Cisco Systems said it will cut 5 percent of its staff.
EToys filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and shut down its site last week; it will likely be delisted from the Nasdaq soon. EToys drew more customers than the sites of Toys "R" Us and Amazon.com during the 1999 holiday season, but was pummeled in 2000.
Iridium, the satellite phone business recently saved from bankruptcy, has signed on 13 service providers to sell its service. While the original company was criticized for targeting business travelers, the new Iridium is focusing on industrial and government markets in remote regions of the world. It will relaunch service next month.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation warned about hackers in Eastern Europe breaking into computers, stealing credit-card numbers and threatening blackmail. Also, a pornographic e-mail virus, "Naked Wife," appeared on computers last week.
The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating stock sales by Amazon.com Chief Executive Jeff Bezos shortly before a negative report came out about the company, published reports said.