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Metro May Become a Predator

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CEOCEO Eckhard Cordes says Metro is not under pressure to make acquisitions, but “we're paid to be managers not simply to react to things, but perhaps to get things started sometimes.” Cordes confirms consumer electronics as a core business but seems to wants an IPO for Media Markt and Saturn to add more “strategic manoeuvrability.”

An IPO “need not necessarily happen in the next 2-3 years,” Cordes told FT recently, as he suggested such a move could make Media-Saturn a predator in Europe. All eyes turn to rival DSG which could add around €10bn to Media-Saturn's €17bn annual revenues.

Go Metro Tells FT

Longshine Hands It to You: The E-Book

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Longshine 01Thomas Grashoff, VP of Longshine Technologie Europe GmbH, demonstrates the portability of the new 6” E-book.

Users can read books, play MP3, store photos, and view documents in this thin, handheld format. With 1GB NAND flash, 128MB SDRAM, SD Card (up to 8GB), WiFi and USB, the E-Book is fully featured to keep up with mobile life. Batteries conveniently go on stand-by if you are not turning pages.

Go Read, Store & Listen 

 

Longshine

 

Longshine Hands It to You: The E-Book

PDF Print E-mail

Longshine 01Thomas Grashoff, VP of Longshine Technologie Europe GmbH, demonstrates the portability of the new 6” E-book.

Users can read books, play MP3, store photos, and view documents in this thin, handheld format. With 1GB NAND flash, 128MB SDRAM, SD Card (up to 8GB), WiFi and USB, the E-Book is fully featured to keep up with mobile life. Batteries conveniently go on stand-by if you are not turning pages.

Go Read, Store & Listen 

 

Longshine

 

BenQ Projector Featuring Short-Throw Lens

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BENQThe launch of BenQ MP771 marks the debut of BenQ’s upcoming projector series that features a short-throw lens for big-screen viewing without space constraints.

The BenQ MP771 is a high-brightness XGA projector, features a short-throw lens, a high 3,000 ANSI lumens, BrilliantColor Technology, UNISHAPE, 3D Color Management and Wall Color Correction Technology.

The BenQ MP771 makes big-screen viewing possible in smaller spaces, such as departmental meeting rooms, classrooms, or living rooms. (or for example, in our office where it projects a 74-inch picture from just a meter away.) The short-throw ratio also makes it more practical and safe for presenters to stand between the projector and audience, avoiding the annoyance and health risks of the bright projector lamps shining into one’s eyes.

The BrilliantColorTM technology brings a 50% increase in brightness of mid-tone color, resulting in highly saturated images. Featuring UNISHAPE lamp lighting technology, the MP771 is able to vary the intensity of the projector lamp in synchronization with its Digital Micro mirror Device (DMD) and color wheel, allowing an increase of 40% in brightness (and, says maker, boosting specific colors in different application modes.) The 3D Color Management, allows users to fine-tune the six colors (R/G/B/C/M/Y) independently for hue, saturation and gain to suit personal preferences or meet the requirements of specific applications.

Furthermore, the Wall Color Correction Technology allows users to use walls—even non-white ones—as a projection screen. The BenQ MP771 offers a Splash Screen Lock function, a 12V trigger, Quick Auto Search function, Power On/Off Ringtones, On-screen FAQ and a Presentation Timer.. Other thoughtful features include a detachable key pad, Off-and-Go function and top access lamp door for easy lamp replacement and maintenance.

For more info, go to BenQ Short Throw

Blockbuster Bids for Circuit City

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To reinvent its outdated video-rental business, Blockbuster has offered up to $1.35 billion in cash for struggling electronics retailer Circuit City.

 

But Circuit City, with nearly $12 billion from more than 1500 (680 large format) stores in USA, questioned the financing of the deal because the $5.5 billion Blockbuster had only $184m in cash and cash equivalent at the end of Q1.

 

Now activist shareholder Carl Icahn, fresh from his victory in getting Motorola to split up, steps in to offer his support to the Blockbuster offer.

 

Blockbuster operates 4800 small format rental stores in USA (and 2000+ in the rest of the world) and wants to save a business dinosaured by Netflix and other new online movie delivery companies. Blockbuster thinks it can transform itself into the one-stop entertainment center that Circuit City should have been. Combining with Circuit City would significantly increase Blockbuster's retail footprint and give it a wider customer base to sell a range of video and electronics products.

 

But most analysts don’t see any synergy as Blockbuster would take on a troubled company in a different business with a greater market value than its own.

 

The alternative?: the former CEO of Hollywood Entertainment video rental chain, Mark Wattles, who disclosed a 6.5% stake in Circuit City and forced his own people onto the board. Yet what other direction can Wattles go besides widening the video rental giant to consumer hardware? That question stares at every video rental chain and suggests traditional PC and CE storefronts can have another wave of new competitors.

 

Can the Minnow Eat the Whale?

 
 CIRCUIT CITYBLOCKBUSTER
2007 Annual Sales$11.74 billion$5.54 billion
2007 Net Loss$321.4 million$74.2 million
No. of Outlets1,5007,800
Sells in EMEA?NOYES
Approx. Market Value $750 million$630 million
Headquarters Virginia USATexas USA
 

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