PepsiCo Inc (PEP.O) said on Wednesday it will change the name and brand image of its Aunt Jemima pancake mix and syrup, dropping a mascot that has been criticized for a racist history, amid a national debate over racial inequality in the United States. The offensive caricature is rooted in a stereotype of a friendly black woman working as a servant or nanny for a white family.
The chief executive of CrossFit has quit after causing offence with remarks about the death of George Floyd and the resulting protests. Greg Glassman stepped down after athletes, gyms and sportswear firms cut ties with his $4bn (£3.1bn) brand.Mr Glassman acknowledged having caused a “rift” in the CrossFit community. His exit came on the day of Floyd’s funeral in Texas.
Zoom (ZM) said Tuesday that its revenue skyrocketed 169% from the prior year to $328 million for the three months ending in April, as it became the go-to video-conferencing service for many stuck at home during the pandemic. The company reported an even more astronomical spike in business customers. There were roughly 265,400 companies with more than 10 employees using its platform.
Apple has been fined a record €1.1bn (£990m) by antitrust regulators in France for engaging in anti-competitive agreements with two wholesalers. The penalty imposed on the US tech giant is the largest ever handed out to a company by the Autorité de la Concurrence. The regulator alleged that Apple favored certain wholesalers more than others, allocating them more stock when new products were launched.
The French-based perfume maker LVMH recently announced plans to convert its cosmetics factories into hand sanitizer producers while distilleries in the U.S. are repurposing alcohol to make sanitizing solutions and giving them to customers for free. Companies that usually make liquor and perfume are shifting into hand sanitizer production as people seek ways to disinfect their palms in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
Jack Welch, a titan of American business who transformed General Electric (GE) into America’s most valuable company, has died aged 84. He ran the US conglomerate from 1981 until 2001, and was once named “manager of the century” for his achievements. Nicknamed “Neutron Jack” for his cost-cutting, he became a best selling author and confidante of US presidents.
Nissan is suing Carlos Ghosn for $90m (£70m), stepping up the legal battle against its former chairman after his arrest and dramatic flight from Tokyo to Lebanon. The Japanese carmaker said it was seeking to recover costs from Ghosn’s “corrupt” actions, including the personal use of private jets, using residential property without paying rent and making payments to his sister and personal lawyer using company accounts.
SoftBank profits have been almost entirely wiped out, as the company continues to feel the pain from big losses in its massive tech fund. The Japanese tech conglomerate on Wednesday reported operating income of 2.59 billion yen ($23.6 million) for the three months ended in December, a plunge of 99% compared to the same period a year earlier. SoftBank (SFTBF) founder and CEO Masayoshi Son’s closely watched $100 billion Vision Fund was the biggest driver of those losses.
A wanted notice was delivered to Lebanese authorities on Thursday by Interpol for Carlos Ghosn, three days after the former head of Nissan jumped bail in Japan and surreptitiously fled to Beirut via Turkey. In addition, seven people suspected of being accomplices in Ghosn’s escape to Lebanon have been detained in Turkey. Lebanese Justice Minister Albert Serhan says Ghosn may be called in for questioning.
Disgraced businessman Carlos Ghosn said Tuesday he had escaped Japan and arrived in Lebanon, raising questions about how he fled months before trial. Ghosn had been under “strict surveillance” by authorities in Japan and had surrendered his passports while on bail. “I have not fled justice, I have escaped injustice and political persecution,” the former Nissan chief said in a statement.