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12/10/20: What’s Going On

AT&T, Gilead Sciences and more from around the business world.
(Sundry Photography)
(Sundry Photography)
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“A panel of outside medical experts is set to convene Thursday to advise the Food and Drug Administration about the first Covid-19 vaccine the agency is considering for broad use among the American public. The vaccine, from Pfizer Inc. and its German partner, BioNTech SE, has already been shown in clinical research to reduce the rate of symptomatic disease by 95% and seems certain to get a thumbs-up from both the committee and the FDA…The 23-member Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee is likely to authorize use of the vaccine.”

“The European Central Bank scaled up its emergency bond-buying program to 1.85 trillion euros, equivalent to $2.2 trillion, and unveiled a new batch of ultracheap loans for banks, a bold move aimed at backstopping the region’s governments and businesses as they navigate a stubborn resurgence of the Covid-19 pandemic. The move, which takes the ECB’s monetary stimulus this year above €3 trillion, underscores the rocky path ahead for the 19-nation eurozone economy. Europe has been hit much harder than the U.S. and other advanced economies as strict lockdowns have repeatedly closed businesses and hurt the south’s large tourism industry.”

“AT&T finally reached a deal to sell off its Japanese animation fans streaming service. This evening the telecom firm announced Sony had acquired the Crunchyroll business for $1.18 billion. Sony will be pairing it with its own anime streaming service, Funimation.”

Companies Raising Capital
NameAmountDescription
HiBob$70 MillionA New Take On Human Resources
CHAI$60 MillionPayment Tech Startup
Cleo$44 MillionAI-Powered Financial Assistant
Orbex$24 MillionReusable Rockets
Infra.Market$20 MillionB2B Marketplace in India

“France’s privacy watchdog issued more than $163 million in fines to Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Amazon.com Inc. for improperly collecting information about website visitors, taking a hard line as European regulators haggle over such sanctions.”

“Gilead Sciences Inc. said Thursday it will acquire Germany’s MYR GmbH and its new hepatitis drug for about $1.4 billion, reported as 1.15 billion euros, in the company’s latest deal to jump-start revenue growth.”

“Alphabet Inc.’s Google said it is planning to lift its ban on political ads on Thursday after a blackout of more than a month because of concerns over election misinformation.”

“AT&T Inc. got bids for its DirecTV unit valuing the satellite-TV service at more than $15 billion including debt, said people familiar with the matter, as the widely watched auction winds toward a resolution.”

“SpaceX’s Starship prototype exploded while attempting to land on Wednesday after an otherwise successful test launch from the company’s rocket facility in Boca Chica, Texas, live video of the flight showed.”

“A coalition of more than 30 chief executive officers from companies including Merck & Co., International Business Machines Corp. and Nike Inc. are backing a startup that will connect employers with Black workers.”

“American homeowners are $1 trillion richer as the pandemic-driven housing boom pads their pockets. As prices rise, home equity multiplies. In the past year, homeowners with mortgages, representing about 63% of all properties, have seen their equity increase by 10.8%, according to CoreLogic.”

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