The digital business week

20 Feb 2012

A digest of the top business and technology news stories from the past week.

Eircom misses payment to lenders

Incumbent telecoms operator Eircom said it has not made the bond payment to lenders that was scheduled for 12 February.

Eircom, which is lumbering under a massive €3.65bn debt, is expecting to receive offers by potential buyers in mid-March.

“Further to the announcement on 9 February 2012, ERC Ireland Finance confirmed it has not made the FRN coupon payment scheduled for 15 February 2012.”

Floating rate note (FRN) coupons are bonds that pay out interest every few months.

Eircom said the non-payment does not impact on the continued operation of the Eircom business.

“All Eircom and Meteor services and payments to suppliers continue as normal.

“The Eircom Group continues to work closely with its senior lenders on the balance sheet remediation process to provide a sustainable capital structure for the group,” Eircom said.

Zynga reports fourth-quarter net loss

While social games developer Zynga reaped quarterly revenues of US$311.2m, it also made a net loss of $435m for the quarter. The performance took full-year revenue to $1.1bn with a loss of $404m.

Zynga, the provider of popular games such as CityVille to social network Facebook, also reported increases in the number of people playing its games.

Daily active users (DAUs) increased from 48m in the fourth quarter of 2010 to 54m in the fourth quarter of 2011, up 13pc.

Monthly active users rose from 195m in the fourth quarter of 2010 to 240m in the fourth quarter of 2011, an increase of 23pc.

Monthly unique users increased from 111m in the fourth quarter of 2010 to 153m in the fourth quarter of 2011, up 38pc.

Zynga launched 12 games during 2011, including four titles on web-based platforms and eight titles on mobile platforms.

iPad ban in China would be tough – customs authorities

Chinese customs authorities have told Proview Technology it would be difficult to impose a ban on the import or export of the iPad because of the size of the market. It’s the latest move in the dispute between the Chinese company and Apple over who owns the iPad name.

That’s according to a report on Reuters. Proview Technology and Apple have been engaged in a legal battle over which company owns the iPad trademark in mainland China.

Proview Technology is claiming ownership of the iPad trademark in China and it’s aiming to shop shipments of Apple’s tablet computer.

Apple said it bought Proview Technology’s worldwide rights to the trademark in 10 different countries, including China.

Apple looking to ban Samsung Galaxy Nexus in the US

Apple is attempting to get a preliminary injunction against the Samsung Galaxy Nexus in the US, alleging it infringed four of its patents.

FOSS Patents reports that Apple has requested a preliminary injunction against the device at a US District Court for the northern district of California. Apple claimed it infringed a ‘data tapping’ patent, a patent related to its voice assistant Siri and unified search, a slide-to-unlock patent and a word-completion patent.

The court is expected to make a ruling within a few months.

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