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BUSINESS NEWS

03 Jan 09. Finmeccanica (SIFI.MI) will maintain dividend levels this year and sees only a slight impact on margins from sterling’s weakness, its chairman said in a newspaper interview. “I can say to investors that the 2009 dividend will be equal to that of 2008,” Pier Francesco Guarguaglini told Milano Finanza newspaper in an interview published on Saturday.
Finmeccanica paid a dividend of 0.41 euros a share on 2007 results. (Source: Google)

28 Dec 08. South Korea’s Hanwha Group has been given an extra month to sign a $4.5bn deal to buy a majority stake in Daewoo, the world’s third biggest shipbuilder. It plans to use the time to raise cash by selling assets. Korea Development Bank, the state-run lead shareholder of Daewoo, said its decision to postpone a deadline due on Monday was in the national interest. “Given the importance of the successful conclusion of this deal to the national economy, the sellers can hold off from exercising their rights until January 30,” KDB said. Hanwha was selected in October as the preferred bidder for a 50.4 per cent stake in Daewoo. However, the conglomerate has been hit by the global financial crisis and has asked Daewoo’s shareholders to ease the terms and allow payment in flexible instalments. Hanwha has already paid 5 per cent of the bidding price as a guarantee. KDB’s concession means it could now have until January 30 to pay another 5 per cent. KDB said the remaining 90 per cent should be paid by March 30. (Source: FT.com)

29 Dec 08. Serco Group plc. has completed the acquisition of SI International, Inc. (NASDAQ:SINT), a provider of information services, technology, and network solutions to the U.S. government, following the receipt of all regulatory approvals and satisfaction of customary closing conditions. SI International will be combined with Serco’s existing North American business and will enhance Serco’s ability to deliver integrated solutions to the $290bn U.S. federal government services market, with:
* Scale and increased resources to bid on larger U.S. government contracts. Serco North America and SI International will have combined annual revenue of $1.3bn and approximately 11,500 employees.
* Depth of capabilities to enhance Serco North America’s offerings, encompassing information technology, professional services, human capital management, engineering and logistics, national security, and intelligence.
* Access to higher growth areas, such as improved information sharing, cyber security, systems engineering, program management, business process reengineering and homeland security.
* New customer relationships. With Serco North America and SI International having highly complementary customer bases, the combined company now serves every branch of the military, numerous federal civilian agencies, and the intelligence community. Major customers include: U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, U.S. Postal Service, and the intelligence community. Under the terms of the definitive merger agreement, Serco acquired SI International for $32 per share in cash, valuing its fully diluted share capital at approximately US$422m. Including the assumption of SI International’s net debt, the consideration values SI International at US$524m. The acquisition, which was financed from multi-currency bank facilities, is expected to be accretive to Serco’s Adjusted earnings in its first full year of ownership, and its returns are expected to meet Serco’s cost of capital in the third full year of ownership. Serco will announce its preliminary results for the full year ending December 31, 2008 on February 26, 2009.

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