The chief checks out China.
Apple's Chief Visits iPhone Factory in China -- Following a string of critical reports about its contracting practices in China, Apple's chief executive, Timothy D. Cook, visited Foxconn Technology's manufacturing plant for the iPhone earlier this week, media reports said on Thursday. Details about Mr. Cook's visit to the plant, in the city of Zhengzhou, located in the province of Henan, were not immediately available. Reuters reported that photographs provided to the news service by Apple dated Wednesday showed Mr. Cook smiling and meeting workers in the facility. The plant, located at the Foxconn Zhengzhou Technology Park, employs 120,000 people, Bloomberg News reported.
Starbucks keeps growing.
Starbucks adding energy drinks, U.S. factory jobs -- Starbucks Corp is expanding into the fast-growing energy drink category and plans to add manufacturing jobs in the United States, the world's biggest coffee chain said on Wednesday. Starbucks' new line of "Refreshers" beverages targets the $8 billion U.S. energy drink market that includes products such as Red Bull and Rockstar. The fruit-flavored drinks are made with a virtually flavorless extract of green, unroasted coffee, and pack less caffeine kick than coffee drinks made from roasted beans.
Uh oh, gas leak...
North Sea Gas Leak Could Cost Billions -- A major gas leak at the Elgin field in the North Sea could cost its owners billions of dollars in the worst-case scenario, analysts said this week. The gas leak, which started Sunday, forced Total SA TOT -1.68% --the field's operator and largest shareholder--to shut down operations at the platform. The French oil and gas producer hasn't said whether it has determined how to stop the gas leak or extinguish a flare, which is still burning on the platform.
Airline Carriers Can't Buy What Boeing and Airbus are Selling – Part Two -- As we outlined in Part One, Boeing and Airbus -- and their supply chains -- are optimistic that they can keep cranking out planes and sell them. On the other side of the equation, airline carriers need new planes, as a growing percentage of the planes in their fleets are nearing 20 years old. The WSJ article linked to above quoted Henri Courpron, chief executive of International Lease Finance Corp. "Addressing the recent spate of big orders of 100 to 400 airplanes by individual carriers, Mr. Courpron joked that they are 'proof that there are still a number of egos running airlines around the world.'"