Updates from Barclays, Heritage Oil and Apple
Asian stocks - buoyed by Friday's 2.2% leap by the Dow Jones - continued to climb today with the Nikkei rising 0.3%; the Australian S&P/ASX 200 saw a 1% rally.
First off, we start with Barclays - and a high profile resignation. Barclays chairman Marcus Agius has confirmed his intention to quit Barclays following its £290m fine in the Libor scandal, though he's likely to stay on until his successor is found.
Barclays share price crashed 16% last week, shearing £3.7bn off the total value of the bank. Currently Barclays shares are valued at 166p. The Agius resignation is likely - Barclays will hope - remove some heat from boss Bob Diamond. But Barclays investors will be concerned of future lawsuits that may cost billions in compensation.
Bob Diamond's position still looks highly exposed. Patience Wheatcroft, a former non-executive director of Barclays, has now also joined the growing chorus for Diamond to resign.
Next, Heritage Oil. The FTSE 250 player has announced its intention of a $850m takeover of Nigerian oil assets, OML 30. "The acquisition of OML 30," says Heritage chief exec Tony Buckingham, "is transformational for Heritage, providing a material change in production and reserves whilst pursuing our strategy of generating shareholder value."
Buckingham claims OML 30 should provide significant production and cash flow, "thereby de-risking Heritage's financial profile, and our technical expertise will provide a comparative advantage in creating additional value."
The OML 30 lease extends to June 2019 and, based on current Nigerian law, Heritage expects it to be renewed thereafter.
Lastly Apple appears to have settled its Chinese Proview dispute. Proview had claimed it owned the rights to the iPad name after registering it back in 2000. It later transpired Apple had bought the global rights to the "iPad" name from Proview's Taiwanese affiliate.
Proview claimed its affiliate could not sell the rights for China - a huge market for Apple. A Chinese court now claims Apple is wiling to pay $60m to Proview.