Boeing won a $1.26 billion contract to build 10 passenger jets for a start-up budget airline in India. SpiceJet, the buyer, also took out an option for 10 more 737-800s, reports said. The new airline is scheduled to begin service in May, using leased 737s until the first new models are delivered next year. India's two other discount carriers have bought Airbus jets. While air travel in India is growing at about 25 percent a year, analysts say only a small fraction of its more than 1 billion people have flown so far.
The company that controls the two largest airlines in Mexico has abandoned plans to merge them for sale as a single company and instead will privatize them separately. Government-owned Cintra SA said Tuesday it will hire an investment bank in the next three weeks to organize the sell-offs of Aeroméxico and Mexicana. The former is the stronger carrier in serving the domestic market; Mexicana leads in international flights. Mexican law allows foreign investors to own no more than a 25 percent stake in either carrier, and cash-strapped US airlines reportedly have shown little or no interest in them so far.
The new management of Playtex Inc., a leading maker of personal- and baby-care products, said it will initiate or continue cost-saving efforts aimed at eliminating more than 3,000 jobs by year's end. Aside from the layoffs, the company said Tuesday it will reduce office space at its Westport, Conn., headquarters, reorganize divisions, and outsource the manufacture of rubber gloves to Malaysia. The moves are expected to result in savings of at least $12 million this year.
Struggling Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc., said it can't borrow money and needs to implement austerity measures that will save $7.4 million a year. The company announced it will cut the payroll at its Winston-Salem, N.C., headquarters and plants by 25 percent and will sell a jet used for managerial travel. The decisions are among the first by new chief executive Stephen Cooper, a restructuring specialist. The once-glamorous company has lost money in two of the last three quarters, is behind in delivering financial statements, and has become the target of shareholder lawsuits and a federal investigation. The layoffs of an estimated 125 employees will not affect its 360 US stores, which are owned and operated by franchisees.