November 2, 2012 |
BEIJING - At 49, Wang Zeqiang has achieved the Chinese equivalent of the American dream. Raised in the cornfields of eastern China's Shandong province, he founded an auto parts business that today has several dozen employees. He has two houses, two cars and, because he's rich enough to pay the fines for defying the country's family planning policy, two children. Now, all that is missing - what he covets most - is a foreign passport. "In China, there is so much pressure," said Wang, who recently hired a consulting firm to advise him on his first choice, Australia.
September 29, 2012 |
BEIJING - With the Mid-Autumn Festival fast approaching, Yang Haijuan dropped by the posh China World Hotel to pick up three deluxe sets of mooncakes, gifts for her friends. She'd chosen the eight-cake "Autumn Elegance" boxes, covered in golden fabric and embroidered flowers, at a cost of $63. Each came in a thick, sparkly, gold and red shopping bag with rope-like handles. "I'm buying more this year and spending more than last year," said Yang, a human resources specialist. But she'll get even more boxes of pastries than she'll give: Yang expects to receive up to 20 boxes, from colleagues, friends and family members as gifts for the festival, which is Sunday.
September 25, 2012 |
Maybe the attraction is Silicon Beach, the swath of Los Angeles that is home to so many tech start-ups. Or maybe it's just the beach. Either way, Northern California technology titans and wannabes increasingly are sinking money into trophy homes from the Hollywood Hills to the beach in a kind of Silicon Valley south. Making tsunami-like waves so far this year are three Westside transactions: •Billionaire venture capitalist and hedge fund manager Peter Thiel cherry-picked a house in the Hollywood Hills this spring for $11.5 million.
July 24, 2012 |
After the coffee. Before hearing NBC's spin. The Skinny: I need to take a crash course on the Olympics so I can at least pretend to know what I'm talking about. Send me your cheat sheets. Tuesday's headlines include Fox's landing of Mariah Carey as a judge on "American Idol," former News of the World editor Rebekah Brooks is to be officially charged in the phone hacking scandal that took that tabloid down, and Thursday may no longer be the most important night for the TV business.
March 23, 2012 |
Robert DeNiro co-owns restaurants and Jennifer Lopez sells perfume and clothes, but the most coveted job for multihyphenate celebs these days is something a bit less glitzy and a lot more geeky - tech entrepreneur. Thanks in large part to the success of Ashton Kutcher, a prolific angel investor who has funded dozens of start-ups and plugs them to his nearly 10 million Twitter followers, stars are looking beyond Hollywood for business opportunities. Now A-listers are leveraging their considerable celebrity clout and finances to form their own start-ups, launch mobile applications, fund companies or serve as creative directors to major tech brands.
March 19, 2012 |
Apple says it will spend some of its nearly $100 billion in ready cash on a quarterly dividend and a three-year stock buyback program. The dividend is probably a good idea -- investors have been thirsting for a bigger taste of the company's success. The stock buyback, not so much. "A quarterly dividend will provide recurrent income to our shareholders, and we also believe it will broaden Apple's investor base by attracting new investors who don't currently own Apple stock," says Apple CEO Tim Cook.