Breakingviews - Virgin’s budget rescue buys a bit more flying time

Richard Branson has secured an economy class rescue for Virgin Atlantic. The ailing airline, 51% owned by the bearded businessman’s Virgin Group, on Tuesday unveiled what it called a “solvent recapitalisation” worth 1.2 billion pounds. The plans give Virgin Atlantic much-needed breathing space. But the rescue lacks the punch of other industry bailouts.

Breakingviews - The Exchange: Managing through the corona crisis

As companies grapple with the pandemic’s fallout, consulting firm AlixPartners has a close-up view inside boardrooms. CEO Simon Freakley discusses priorities for troubled businesses, the long-term impact of Covid-19 and what he has learned running a global business by video call.

Breakingviews - BlackRock warrants a spot on its climate watchlist

BlackRock’s green pivot now comes with hard numbers. The $6.5 trillion asset manager said on Tuesday it voted over the past 12 months against 53 companies it deemed to be dragging their feet on climate change. That’s an improvement on the six firms that earned BlackRock’s opprobrium the previous year – and is better aligned with Chief Executive Larry Fink’s call to environmental arms in January. But BlackRock’s own oversight record also requires monitoring.

Breakingviews - SoftBank will struggle to find equal love of Arm

SoftBank Group boss Masayoshi Son once called Arm Holdings his most important acquisition. Since the $128 bln Japanese group bought the UK chip designer four years ago, however, businesses have been hived off and sales growth and operating profit have underwhelmed. As Son contemplates floating a piece of the company, he may struggle to sell investors on his own hype.

Breakingviews - Benettons face only bad options in Italy road row

The Benetton family has driven into a dead end. Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has rejected the Italian sweater-to-motorway clan’s offer to end a two-year long dispute prompted by the fatal collapse of a bridge managed by infrastructure group Atlantia. That leaves the 10 billion euro company with the unpalatable choice of either giving up its key motorway unit or risking the loss of its concession.

Breakingviews - Takeda feeling uncomfortable Shire side effects

Takeda Pharmaceutical is showing signs of recovery after a mega-merger, but shareholders keep feeling the pain. Some 18 months after completing a $62 billion takeover of Irish rival Shire, the Japanese drugmaker may sell another business to further pare debt. Promised cost savings are also materialising. A weak stock performance, however, suggests Chief Executive Christophe Weber overpaid.

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