San Antonio — The Progressive Retailers Organization was at the Westin La Cantera Hill Coun
Palo Alto, Calif.— Hewlett-Packard said it incurred about $177 million in “workforce rebalancing charges within certain business segments, primarily for severance and related costs,” in the company's fiscal first quarter, and $59 million in its second fiscal quarter, for a total of $236 million over the six months, ended April 30. As a result of these cutbacks, HP said it expects to “reduce headcount” by about 3,000 employees worldwide. Already, 1,600 employees had been terminated as of April 30. The remaining employees are expected to leave the company by the end of the fiscal year, ending Oct. 30. About $81 million of the severance charges had been paid by April 30, and the remainder is expected to be paid by the end of the fiscal year. HP, which formalized its restructuring charges and subsequent workforce changes in its 10-Q filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission earlier this month, said for the three and six months ended April 30, the restructuring charges are included in the company's business segment results. Beginning with the third quarter, these charges, which include involuntary workforce reductions and voluntary severance incentives, will not be included in business segment results.
San Diego— Sony Corporation of America and specialty department store Neiman Marcus have entered into a marketing agreement under which Sony will be the exclusive provider of consumer electronics products made available to Neiman Marcus InCircle Rewards Program members. Additionally, Sony will provide memberships to Sony Cierge for select InCircle Rewards platinum and Chairman's Circle members, and will provide Neiman Marcus with marketing access to all Cierge members and VIP clients. Sony Cierge is an exclusive, by-invitation personal shopping program. Under terms of the agreement, select Sony electronics products will be featured in a variety of Neiman Marcus marketing vehicles. The initial agreement is effective through March 2006, while financial terms were not disclosed.
Washington— XM Satellite Radio is making a public offering of about 9.7 million shares of common stock, which is expected to result in gross proceeds of about $300 million. The company said it will use the amount raised for working capital and general corporate purposes. This may include launch payments for satellite XM-4 in mid to late 2006, construction payments for satellite XM-5, payments for third-party programming, repayment of debt, and other strategic initiatives, said XM. The closing had been scheduled for mid-June. XM has about 211.8 million common shares outstanding.
Seoul, South Korea— An LG.Philips LCD offering of $400 million in zero coupon convertible bonds, due 2010, through a sale outside the United States, has been sold out, and a 30-day option to buy up to an additional $75 million aggregate principal amount of the bonds has been exercised in full. The bonds are redeemable at maturity or are convertible to LG.Philips common stock. The initial conversion price is equivalent to a premium of 30 percent above the company's reported stock closing price per share on the Korean exchange as of April 12. LG.Philips, a maker of TFT-LCD panels, intends to use net proceeds from the offering to fund capital expenditures in Korea.