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The Business Week in Switzerland

The Basel-based life sciences group, Novartis, says it is setting up a joint venture in North America with US food company, Quaker Oats. The announcement was among the stories that marked the last seven days in the business world in Switzerland.

This content was published on February 12, 2000 - 13:36

The Basel-based life sciences group, Novartis, says it is setting up a joint venture in North America with US food company, Quaker Oats. The announcement was among the stories that marked the last seven days in the business world in Switzerland.

Shares on the Swiss stock exchange lost ground over the course of the week, despite gains on most other European markets. The Dollar-Swiss franc rate remained stable between CHf1.62 and CHf1.63.

Among the major development on the business front this week were:

* On Thursday, the Basel-based life sciences group, Novartis, confirmed it was setting up a functional foods joint venture with the US company, Quaker Oats. The new 50-50 joint venture will be called Altus Foods and be based in Chicago.

* The US newspaper, the Wall Street Journal, said that the US Federal Trade Commission had recommended anti-trust action against one of Novartis’s US units, the Colorado-based Geneva Pharmaceuticals, along with competitor Abbott. Novartis denied allegations that Abbott had made monthly payments to Geneva to delay production of a less expensive version of its hypertension drug, Hyrtrin.

* Credit Suisse confirmed on Tuesday press reports that it was buying the Tokyo equity team of the British financial group, Schroders, for an undisclosed amount.

* On Wednesday, a Swiss insurance group, Baloise, said it still expected its profits for last year to increase by 40 per cent to more than SFr500 million, despite the rise in insurance claims stemming from Hurricane Lothar at the end of last year.

* On the economics front, consumer sentiment for January hit an 11-year high. The federal authorities said on Thursday that the quarterly index rose to 18 points in January from just 8 points in October.

From the SRI Business Unit, Zürich








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