IN THE PAPERS
In The Papers 29 March
YouTube set for celeb revamp | eBay to acquire GSI Commerce
The Irish Times reports that the Gardai have confirmed they found no evidence that the phone system at the Moriarty tribunal offices in Dublin Castle was tapped or otherwise compromised.
The paper also reports that Hewlett-Packard has made one of its key Belfast facilities into a new global centre of software engineering excellence. The new centre will focus on cloud computing and will give HP's StorageWorks facility in the North the opportunity to play a lead role in developing next generation products. It is also likely to deliver a substantial jobs boost, although HP has been coy on that subject.
The same paper notes that Dutch electronics giant Philips has said it would likely miss a target to break even at its television business in 2011. Philips said the TV business would report an operating loss of up to EUR120 million for the first quarter, more than double the fourth quarter 2010 operating loss of EUR67 million, due to severe pricing pressure and high inventories. "We have a guidance for the full-year to break even and because of the loss in the first quarter it's unlikely we will reach that target," said spokesman Joost Akkermans.
The Irish Examiner says that YouTube is set for a major revamp and is enlisting celebrities to provide original content for the online video site. Google, which owns YouTube, is understood to have been in talks with numerous Hollywood talent agencies, offering cash advances to stars in exchange for attaching their names and overseeing content for a suite of new channels on the site. The new channels will be based on certain themes or categories of interest such as video, food, music and video games.
The Financial Times reports that eBay has agreed to acquire GSI Commerce, an interactive marketing company, for about USD2.4 billion, including debt. eBay will pay USD29.25 a share, a premium of 51 percent over GSI's closing share price last week, for the company, which handles e-commerce activities for large brands and retailers, including the National Football League, Toys R Us and Ralph Lauren. Under the terms of the deal, GSI will have 40 days to solicit higher offers from other potential buyers.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Amazon.com is planning to start a 'locker service' that would allow users to store music and video online and access it from various digital devices, according to sources. Amazon is still working out key legal issues related to the service, these people said. Most notably, Amazon has yet to secure content licences from some major record labels and movie studios.
The paper also says that one of Twitter's founders is returning to be its product chief, two years after he was asked to step aside as chief executive. Jack Dorsey was in 2008 replaced as CEO by another co-founder, Evan Williams. The two men have had personal differences, people familiar with the company have said. Dorsey will take over as product chief and serve as executive chairman of the messaging service, reporting to current CEO Dick Costolo. Meanwhile, Williams, who stepped down as CEO in October, will pull back from day-to-day duties, Twitter said.