Business & Finance

Citing the concerns of its shareholders, multimedia giant VNU of the Netherlands said it's negotiating to cancel or at least amend the terms of its $7 billion takeover of IMS Health Inc. of Fairfield, Conn. Their deal was agreed to in July, but VNU said in a statement Monday that interests who own 48 percent of its stock "would not support the transaction under any circumstances." The merger was attractive to VNU because its takeover target sells information to clients on how their pharmaceutical or other products in the medical field are used - a profile that matches those of other VNU units. VNU is the parent of Nielsen Media Research, the TV ratings service.

In a deal valued at $3 billion, the largest oil-exploration company in Japan, Inpex Corp., agreed to acquire smaller rival Teikoku. But while the merger aims to give Inpex the scale it lacked to bid for drilling rights in Asia, the combined company still will be eight times smaller than PetroChina Co. and more than twice as small as India's Oil & Natural Gas Corp., Bloomberg.com reported.

Japan Airlines said it will impose a 10 percent pay cut on all full-time employees and has abandoned plans to offer a dividend to stockholders, blaming the record cost of fuel and a drop in passengers due to recent safety concerns. It also projected a loss of about $400 million for the year ending next March. Since June, planes operated by JAL or a subsidiary have lost tires and metal engine fragments while in flight, resulting in injuries to passengers or people on the ground. In another incident, a pilot attempted to take off without approval from air-traffic controllers.

FLYi Inc. and its low-fare subsidiary, Independence Air, announced Monday that they've filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. FLYi, which once operated under the banners of United and Delta, launched Independence Air about 18 months ago. It offers 220 daily departures to 36 destinations. FLYi is based in Dulles, Va.

The builder of Subaru cars and sport/utility vehicles, Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan, refused to comment on a published report that it will cut 700 jobs by next March. The Nihon Keizai newspaper of Tokyo said most of the layoffs will come via voluntary retirements.

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