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Global business travel group, inc. (gbtg).

  • Previous Close 6.44
  • Bid 6.23 x 2200
  • Ask 6.79 x 1300
  • Day's Range 6.45 - 6.61
  • 52 Week Range 4.49 - 7.47
  • Volume 1,103,484
  • Avg. Volume 706,719
  • Market Cap (intraday) 3.105B
  • Beta (5Y Monthly) 0.62
  • PE Ratio (TTM) --
  • EPS (TTM) -0.28
  • Earnings Date Aug 8, 2024 - Aug 12, 2024
  • Forward Dividend & Yield --
  • Ex-Dividend Date --
  • 1y Target Est --

Global Business Travel Group, Inc. Overview Software - Application / Technology

Global Business Travel Group, Inc. provides business-to-business (B2B) travel platform in the United States and internationally. The company's platform offers a suite of technology-enabled solutions to business travelers and clients; travel content suppliers, such as airlines, hotels, ground transportation, and aggregators; and third-party travel agencies. It also provides consulting, meetings and events planning, and outsourced services. Global Business Travel Group, Inc. is based in New York, New York.

Full Time Employees

December 31

Fiscal Year Ends

Software - Application

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Global business travel group inc (gbtg) (q1 2024) earnings call transcript highlights: record ....

Global Business Travel Group, Inc. Just Missed Earnings; Here's What Analysts Are Forecasting Now

Global Business Travel Group, Inc. Just Missed Earnings; Here's What Analysts Are Forecasting Now

Global Business Travel Group, Inc. (NYSE:GBTG) Q1 2024 Earnings Call Transcript

Global Business Travel Group, Inc. (NYSE:GBTG) Q1 2024 Earnings Call Transcript

Global Business Travel Group First Quarter 2024 Earnings: Misses Expectations

Global Business Travel Group First Quarter 2024 Earnings: Misses Expectations

Amex Global Business Travel Sees Big Gains From Tech Customers

Amex Global Business Travel Sees Big Gains From Tech Customers

Global Business Travel Group Inc (GBTG) Q1 2024 Earnings: Aligns with Analyst Revenue Projections

Global Business Travel Group Inc (GBTG) Q1 2024 Earnings: Aligns with Analyst Revenue Projections

Global Business Travel Group, Inc. (GBTG) Reports Break-Even Earnings for Q1

Global Business Travel Group, Inc. (GBTG) Reports Break-Even Earnings for Q1

Performance overview: gbtg.

Trailing total returns as of 7/11/2024, which may include dividends or other distributions. Benchmark is S&P 500 .

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Statistics: GBTG

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Research Analysis: GBTG

Analyst recommendations.

  • Underperform

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American Express Global Business Travel SPAC deal closes

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  • 30 May, 2022
  • Author John Baguios
  • Theme Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals Real Estate Technology, Media & Telecom Banking Fintech Insurance

American Express Co.'s travel management joint venture, American Express Global Business Travel, will start trading as a public company on the NYSE following the completion of its business combination with special purpose acquisition company Apollo Strategic Growth Capital.

Apollo Strategic Growth Capital shareholders approved the deal May 25, with the transaction closing May 27.

Concurrently with the closing of the business combination, American Express Global Business Travel received proceeds from cash in trust and PIPE investments, including investments by strategic investors Zoom Video Communications Inc. and Sabre Corp. as well as new investors Apollo Global Management Inc., Ares Management Corp. and HG Vora Capital Management LLC.

The class A common stock and warrants of the newly combined company, Global Business Travel Group Inc., will trade on the NYSE under the new ticker symbols GBTG and GBTG WS, respectively, beginning May 31.

  • John Baguios
  • Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals Real Estate Technology, Media & Telecom Banking Fintech Insurance

About American Express Global Business Travel 

American Express Global Business Travel (Amex GBT) is the world’s leading B2B travel platform, providing software and services to manage travel, expenses, and meetings and events for companies of all sizes. We have built the most valuable marketplace in B2B travel to deliver unrivalled choice, value and experiences. With travel professionals in more than 140 countries, our customers and travelers enjoy the powerful backing of American Express Global Business Travel.

Visit amexglobalbusinesstravel.com for more information about Amex GBT, and follow @amexgbt on Twitter , LinkedIn and Instagram .

AmEx Global Business Travel to go public via $5.3 bln Apollo SPAC deal

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Rating Action Commentary

Fitch Assigns Global Business Travel Group and GBT US III LLC First-Time 'BB' IDR; Outlook Stable

Tue 09 Jul, 2024 - 10:02 AM ET

Fitch Ratings - New York - 09 Jul 2024: Fitch Ratings has assigned Global Business Travel Group, Inc. (NYSE: GBTG) and GBT US III LLC a first-time Long-Term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of 'BB'. Fitch has also assigned issue-level ratings of 'BBB-' with a Recovery Rating of 'RR1' to GBT US III LLC's senior secured revolver and term loans. The Rating Outlook is Stable.

The rating reflects Fitch's expectations that GBTG will maintain EBITDA leverage appropriate for the rating in the medium term, fueled by transaction growth and margin expansion. Prudent balance sheet management somewhat offsets the industry volatility and uncertainty around the future of corporate travel. The meaningful improvement in leverage during 2023 positioned the company for interest savings and accretive acquisition opportunities.

Fitch considers GBTG's successful M&A integration record when assessing natural execution risk for its CWT acquisition, scheduled to close in 2H24. We expect the company to achieve incremental cash interest savings post refinancing, along with a revolver upsize and lengthened maturity schedule.

Market Position: Amex GBT is a leading B2B software and services company for travel and expense, supported by strong client retention and the long-term nature of its contracts. Client retention was 96% for the year ended 2023, with an average contract duration of three to five years and 15 years for the top-10 global multinational business clients. GBTG is deemed as controlled by American Express for the purposes of the Bank Holding Company Act and therefore subject to certain bank regulatory requirements and restrictions.

Business Travel Recovery: Fitch expects GBTG to benefit from the headroom in recovery for business transient in the near-term, given its focus on corporate travelers. Business transient has lagged in recovery post the Covid-19 pandemic relative to leisure travel amid economic uncertainty and ensuing conservative corporate spend. The rise of work-from-home and online meetings also poses risk to the return of corporate travel; however, long-term effects are uncertain.

GBTG's revenue was down 63% in 2020, but has steadily improved in the last couple of years, exceeding 2019 levels for the first time in 2023. Strength in performance continued into 1Q24 with share gains and margin expansion. Amex GBT anticipates full-year revenue growth at a midpoint of 7.5%, which is in line with revenue growth of 6% in 1Q24, with faster growth from multinational clients than SMEs. This trend differs from 2023, when SMEs saw outpaced growth.

Refinancing Strengthens Liquidity : The refinancing of the outstanding term loans due in 2025 and 2026 and the revolving credit facility strengthens GBTG's liquidity position. The company can focus on EBITDA growth after refinancing its next major maturity is July 2031, when the $1.4 billion term loan comes due. The refinancing also offers interest cost savings that will improve FCF, while the revolver upsize enhances financial flexibility to take advantage of accretive M&A and reinvestment to drive shareholder return.

Improved Leverage Profile: GBTG has demonstrated a commitment to deleveraging, with a notable improvement in the company's leverage profile during 2023. This resulted in annual interest rate savings of $25 million from a step down of 150 bps in the applicable term loan rate. Fitch expects GBTG's leverage trajectory to continue downward in the medium term as a function of EBITDA growth and debt paydown. Prior to the pandemic, GBTG had minimal debt and took on debt to withstand the downturn.

Fitch expects GBTG to maintain conservative financial policy in terms of leverage targets and capital allocation. This is consistent with the company's recent actions to lower its leverage policy to 1.5x-2.5x net debt to adjusted EBITDA. Fitch views GBTG on a gross EBITDA leverage basis, which was at 4.6x at end-2023. We expect the ratio to reach mid-2.0x by 2025. Management's focus on the balance sheet and the Fitch-projected leverage profile support the rating.

Strategic M&A: Strategic acquisitions have been key to GBTG's platform and product expansion since its formation in 2014. These investments have increased the breadth of offerings to gain market share in the fragmented third-party travel management industry. Consolidation offers upside opportunities, as evidenced by GBTG's record of prior acquisitions, such as Hogg Robinson Group and Egencia. Similarly, the CWT acquisition offers an opportunity to expand the client base and drive cost synergies. Fitch expects GBTG to be opportunistic in assessing M&A for opportunities accretive to existing operations.

Platform Diversification: Amex GBT operates in more than 140 countries, but the U.S. and U.K. represented 70% of total 2023 revenue. The B2B platform serves corporate travel clients and suppliers, with 80% of revenue coming from travel in 2023 and the rest from products and professional services. The concentrated offering is somewhat offset by limited concentration in the client and supplier base, as no single client represented more than 2% of 2023 revenue. The client base is also comprised of a multitude of industry verticals, with M&A enhancing the diversification.

Competitive and Cyclical Industry: GBTG serves clients and suppliers in the travel management industry, both of which are sensitive to macroeconomic events. The cyclical nature of the travel industry weighs on GBTG's credit profile. Economic cycles, as well as exogenous events, such as acts of terrorism and pandemics, have historically caused large drops in revenue and profitability for the global travel industry. As an intermediary within this industry, changes in airlines, hotels and car rental companies also influence GBTG's revenue.

Amex GBT's rating reflects its solid liquidity position and leverage profile, supported by prudent balance sheet management. However, this is offset by concentrated corporate offerings in the fragmented travel management industry. The company has significant exposure to economic cyclicality, with uncertainty around economic softening and geopolitical risk that could affect transaction volume.

GBTG is committed to maintaining a solid balance sheet, as demonstrated by its recently lowered net leverage policy of 1.5x-2.5x. Fitch-rated peer, Expedia Group, Inc. (BBB-/Positive) has a gross leverage policy of 2.0x and is much larger in scale, but operates at similar margins with a leisure travel focus, against GBTG's focus on the corporate segment.

Factors that could, individually or collectively, lead to positive rating action/upgrade:

--Demonstrate continued ability to gain new clients and increase penetration into the SME segment.

--Successful integration of CWT, demonstrated by realized cost synergies and increased transaction volume.

--EBITDA leverage sustained below 3.0x.

--Margin sustained in the high teens.

Factors that could, individually or collectively, lead to negative rating action/downgrade:

--Continued drag on business corporate travel recovery.

--EBITDA leverage above 3.5x for a sustained period.

Best/Worst Case Rating Scenario

International scale credit ratings of Non-Financial Corporate issuers have a best-case rating upgrade scenario (defined as the 99th percentile of rating transitions, measured in a positive direction) of three notches over a three-year rating horizon; and a worst-case rating downgrade scenario (defined as the 99th percentile of rating transitions, measured in a negative direction) of four notches over three years. The complete span of best- and worst-case scenario credit ratings for all rating categories ranges from 'AAA' to 'D'. Best- and worst-case scenario credit ratings are based on historical performance. For more information about the methodology used to determine sector-specific best- and worst-case scenario credit ratings, visit https://www.fitchratings.com/site/re/10111579 .

Liquidity and Debt Structure

Solid Liquidity Position: Amex GBT had $475 million in cash and cash equivalents and $43 million available on its $50 million revolving credit facility net of $7 million letters of credit as of March 31, 2024. The Term Loan B refinancing will enhance GBTG's financial flexibility, pushing out 2025 and 2026 term loan maturities to 2031 and allowing it to capture organic and inorganic growth. This is further supplemented by the increase in revolver capacity to $360 million. The refinancing also offers cash interest expense savings, which will further supplement GBTG's FCF position.

Issuer Profile

American Express Global Business Travel (Amex GBT) is a B2B travel platform, providing software and services to manage travel, expenses, meetings and events for companies of all sizes.

Date of Relevant Committee

13 June 2024

REFERENCES FOR SUBSTANTIALLY MATERIAL SOURCE CITED AS KEY DRIVER OF RATING

The principal sources of information used in the analysis are described in the Applicable Criteria.

Click here to access Fitch's latest quarterly Global Corporates Macro and Sector Forecasts data file which aggregates key data points used in our credit analysis. Fitch's macroeconomic forecasts, commodity price assumptions, default rate forecasts, sector key performance indicators and sector-level forecasts are among the data items included.

ESG Considerations

The highest level of ESG credit relevance is a score of '3', unless otherwise disclosed in this section. A score of '3' means ESG issues are credit-neutral or have only a minimal credit impact on the entity, either due to their nature or the way in which they are being managed by the entity. Fitch's ESG Relevance Scores are not inputs in the rating process; they are an observation on the relevance and materiality of ESG factors in the rating decision. For more information on Fitch's ESG Relevance Scores, visit www.fitchratings.com/topics/esg/products#esg-relevance-scores

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VIEW ADDITIONAL RATING DETAILS

Additional information is available on www.fitchratings.com

PARTICIPATION STATUS

The rated entity (and/or its agents) or, in the case of structured finance, one or more of the transaction parties participated in the rating process except that the following issuer(s), if any, did not participate in the rating process, or provide additional information, beyond the issuer’s available public disclosure.

APPLICABLE CRITERIA

  • Corporates Recovery Ratings and Instrument Ratings Criteria (pub. 13 Oct 2023) (including rating assumption sensitivity)
  • Corporate Rating Criteria (pub. 03 Nov 2023) (including rating assumption sensitivity)
  • Sector Navigators – Addendum to the Corporate Rating Criteria - Effective from 3 November 2023 to 21 June 2024 (pub. 03 Nov 2023)

APPLICABLE MODELS

Numbers in parentheses accompanying applicable model(s) contain hyperlinks to criteria providing description of model(s).

  • Corporate Monitoring & Forecasting Model (COMFORT Model), v8.1.0 ( 1 )

ADDITIONAL DISCLOSURES

  • Dodd-Frank Rating Information Disclosure Form
  • Solicitation Status
  • Endorsement Policy

ENDORSEMENT STATUS

global business travel group i

global business travel group i

Announcing This Year’s Skift Global Forum Theme: Travel’s Great Renewal

Brian Quinn , Skift

July 11th, 2024 at 9:23 AM EDT

Join us this September as we explore how travel is taking on a greater significance globally for consumers and simultaneously needs to embrace change to adapt to a more fragmented and complex world.

Brian Quinn

As the velocity of change increases and we are on the cusp of a new era of technology and human connection, the future of travel seems bright with both new opportunities and heightened challenges. 

This September, as we convene leaders from across the travel industry for our 11th annual Skift Global Forum , we will delve into the heart of travel’s evolving purpose in a world that often feels fragmented and divisive. We are excited to unveil our global theme for the year: Travel’s Great Renewal .

As travel as it continues to grow amidst global climate change, economic and political uncertainties, and rapid technological advancements, this theme will serve as a lens for our discussions with industry CEOs, thought leaders, and Skift’s own editors and research analysts as we examine these big questions and other topics at the center of travel’s future: 

  • How is Online Travel Evolving as Search and Discovery are Upended? 
  • What Lies Ahead for Hospitality as Brands Look to Global Growth? 
  • How Will Data and Technology Reshape Industry Operations and Labor? 
  • Why is Sports and Entertainment Tourism More Important Than Ever?
  • How Will Airlines Manage Rising Costs and Supply Chain Pressures? 
  • As Consumers Seek More Personalized Experiences , Can Travel Deliver? 
  • What is the Industry Doing to Adapt in an Increasingly Unpredictable Climate Future ?

Travel’s Great Renewal is more than a theme; it’s a call to action. It’s about redefining travel’s role in connecting us, preserving our planet, and fostering a deeper understanding across cultures. We invite you to join us and 1,000+ travel innovators at the Forum this September 17-19 and be a part of shaping the future of travel.

Ticket prices will be increasing by $500 next week. Lock in at a lower rate today.

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Bring the team and take your company to the next level.

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  • Top Luxury Hotel Brands in Global Market

"We Envision Growth Strategies Most Suited to Your Business"

Expansion of Travel and Tourism Sector: New Heights in the Hospitality Management by Top Luxury Hotel Brands

July 11, 2024 | Consumer Goods

Tourists are increasingly choosing to spend their time in luxury when on vacation. They view it as a vacation experience that is utterly rejuvenating and tranquil. Families on vacation and business travelers’ desire for luxury lodging has largely sustained the luxury hotel industry. Luxury hotels are constantly improving the quality of what they have to offer. There is a tendency for sports teams and spectators attending the tournament from different places to reserve accommodations in these hotels, contributing to increased reservations. The rapid expansion of the travel and tourism sector and rapid changes in the standard of living are the key drivers boosting industry progress.

As per a report by Fortune Business Insights™ , the market for luxury hotel reached USD 140.28 billion in 2023 and is set to reach USD 369.36 billion by 2032 with a CAGR of 11.5% during 2024-2032. The market size stood at USD 154.32 billion in 2024.

Fortune Business Insights™ Profiles Top 5 Luxury Hotel Brands

1) marriott international, inc..

Headquartered in the U.S., Marriott International, Inc. is the top player in the luxury hotel industry. This group made USD 20.77 billion in net revenues in 2022. As of 2022, the company is working with almost 8,288 hotel properties and 1.52 million hotel rooms across various countries globally. The business provides accommodations for different room types, including luxury rooms, upper-upscale rooms, and upscale rooms. It has allocated approximately 40% of its rooms to high-value luxury and finest brands. In 2022, Marriott International, Inc. added over 65,000 hotel rooms to increase business in 138 countries and regions. Almost 39% of the company’s gross room additions in a similar year were in the U.S. and Canada. The company is intensifying its hospitality base broadly by inaugurating newer hotels in emerging countries, including China and Southeast Asia. In 2023, the company declared plans to start 47 hotels in greater China. These hotels will include about 12,000 rooms. With this expansion, the company is expected to increase its guest accommodation portfolio of luxury, superior, and select service brands in the region.

2) Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Founded in 1919 and based in the U.S., Hilton Hotels & Resorts is the second-largest player in the top luxury hotel brands. In 2022, the business’s net revenue came to USD 8.77 billion. The company welcomed 200 guests across the globe in 2023 and displayed a portfolio of 7,165 properties with 1.12 million rooms. The company emphasizes acquisitions of luxury hotel operators to boost its position in the luxury and upper upscale hotel sector segments. For instance, in August 2021, Hilton Hotels & Resorts purchased Diamond Resorts International, Inc. to add the partner company’s 154 resorts and luxury properties to its portfolio.

3) Hyatt Hotels Corporation

Being the third-largest player in the luxury hotel sector, Hyatt Hotels Corporation generated USD 5.89 billion in net revenues in 2022. In December 2022, the company had 304,108 rooms spread across 1,263 hotels and all-inclusive resorts across the globe in its portfolio. Park Hyatt, Grand Hyatt, Hyatt Regency, and others are among its primary brands. The business is divided into four hotel segments: luxury, upper-upscale, vacation ownership, and upscale. As of March 2023, resort, luxury, or lifestyle rooms make upto 40% of the company’s portfolio mix. To reach a wider audience in the international market, the company concentrates on expanding its distribution network. In April 2023, Hyatt Hotels Corporation purchased Mr & Mrs Smith, a travel booking platform situated in London, U.K., in an effort to expand its clientele throughout Europe. In February 2023, the business secured Dream Hotel Group’s lifestyle management platform to introduce Dream Hotels, The Chatwal, and Unscripted Hotel brands into its portfolio.

4) InterContinental Hotels Group plc

The U.K.-based fourth biggest player in the global luxury hotel industry is InterContinental Hotel Group plc. The company’s hospitality services brought in a net revenue of USD 3.89 billion.   As of 2021, 10% of the company’s 880,000 hotel rooms fell into the luxury category, 22% into the upscale segment, and 68% into the midscale/upper midscale segment. Six Senses, Regent, Voco Hotels, avid hotels, and Atwell Suites are among the brands under the company’s portfolio. To improve its brand image, it is concentrating on forming alliances with other hotel chains. In November 2022, to expand its lodging offerings, InterContinental Hotels Group plc. entered into a long-term strategic partnership with Iberostar Group, bringing the partnered company’s 70 hotels to its accommodation portfolio. These hotels are situated in various countries, including Mexico, Jamaica, Brazil, and Spain. In July 2023, InterContinental Hotels Group plc, associated with Hotel Indigo Satu Mare, will inaugurate its three hotel properties in Romania by the end of 2025.

5) Kempinski Hotels S.A

Established in 1897, a Germany-based company named Kempinski Hotels S.A. is the fifth-largest participant in the luxury hotel sector. The business concentrates on making partnerships with management and hospitality organizations to boost its portfolio of hotel products globally. For instance, in December 2022, the company performed two new luxury hospitality and residential projects in Turkey to accelerate its business there.  Moreover, in 2022, the company approved a management contract to open Kempinski Residences in the 30,000 sq.m. lush green valley site in Istambul.

With Customer Convenience and Immersive Experiences, Luxury Hotel Brands are All Set to Build a Strong Brand Identity

Innovation in new marketing campaigns helps the industry establish a strong brand identity and boost internet advertising spending. The industry is being greatly impacted by technological advancements. Smart rooms, high-speed internet, and advanced mobile applications are quickly becoming standard requirements for visitors. These hotels are using data analytics to learn about customer behavior, which allows for better service optimization and marketing. Top luxury hotel brands are establishing reliable connections with high-end hotel owners to secure long-term partnerships. The increasing acclaim of guests for cutting-edge technologies is pushing luxury hotels to provide a smooth and inventive visitor experience.

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Western financial institutions in China have cut their investment banking workforce by the most in years after a market slowdown hit profits and halted years of expansion in the country.

The cuts in 2023 came as five of the seven Chinese securities units that are part of Wall Street and European banks either made a loss or reported tumbling profits, according to recently released annual reports. The seven units employed 1,781 people last year, a fall of 13 per cent from 2022.

China ’s capital markets activity has slowed in a weaker economy dominated by a prolonged property slowdown and the fallout from rising geopolitical tension between Washington and Beijing.

“Western investment banks are caught in a vicious cycle,” said Han Lin, China country director at consultancy The Asia Group. “Weak deal flow means less investment in onshore capability, which limits further deal flow.”

Some banks “are running out of patience when the opportunities in India, south-east Asia and the US are looking more promising”, he said.

International financial groups have been able to take full control of their mainland securities houses since a wave of regulatory changes in 2020. The units represent a small part of the global profits at the banks, which declined to comment.

Banks eliminated more than 60,000 jobs worldwide in 2023, as a decline in dealmaking and public listings caused fees to plummet. The declines in China contrast with earlier hopes that their business in the country would continue to grow even if it slowed elsewhere.

Jamie Dimon, chief executive of JPMorgan, said at a conference in May that part of its investment banking business in China had “fallen off a cliff”.

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Staff numbers had been rising almost constantly since 2018. Even in 2020, as Covid-19 restrictions made hiring difficult, the headcount at the units fell by less than 3 per cent.

At Credit Suisse’s unit, which UBS took over after buying the bank last year, the number of employees fell 46 per cent to 126. UBS agreed to sell the unit to a state-backed fund this month. Staffing numbers at UBS’s own mainland unit held steady at 383, the only one not to reduce headcount last year.

Morgan Stanley’s China unit recorded a loss for the first time since 2019, while at JPMorgan’s venture in the country, profits fell 55 per cent to Rmb119mn ($16mn). Morgan Stanley’s unit said in its annual report that the environment had been “challenging”.

Column chart of Total employee numbers at the mainland securities units of seven global banks* showing Western banks reduce staff in China

Staffing numbers fell far less at JPMorgan and Deutsche Bank than at rival China units. Deutsche Bank only owns 33 per cent of Zhong De Securities, its mainland joint venture.

Goldman Sachs China, which last year separated from a joint venture partner, recovered from a lossmaking 2022, but its profit of Rmb193mn was lower than in any other year since 2018.

The number of employees in its China securities unit fell from 500 to 370 as the bank cut jobs worldwide. Some employees were moved to other units in the bank, and some stayed with its former joint venture partner Beijing Gao Hua Securities, a spokesperson said. Goldman Sachs previously outlined a plan to double its workforce in China to 600, the Financial Times reported in 2021 .

Dealogic data as of May showed just $8.3bn of initial public offerings in China, the lowest total over the same period since 2009. Overseas listings need approval from China’s regulators, under rules introduced last year . Cross-border activity including mergers and acquisitions has also remained weak.

The performance of the investment bank units may not capture the full picture of the banks’ business in China. Some banks have other units in the country, and many use relationships formed through the mainland business to generate revenue that is booked in Hong Kong or elsewhere.

The 2023 figures are in sharp contrast with 2021, a record year for investment banks globally, when six of the seven made a profit in their mainland operations.

HSBC’s mainland unit bucked the trend, making a profit for the first time. “This momentum has come from HSBC’s growing client base and expanded product capabilities,” a spokesperson said.

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Network International and Mastercard partner to transform UAE’s commercial payments landscape

  • The two companies have achieved another milestone in their long-term partnership with the launch of new Business Payment Solutions, offering innovative business-to-business payment experiences for Network International’s corporate clients in UAE
  • The new Program will enable Network International’s clients to more effectively manage business expenses, payables and receivables, and enhance overall cash flow.

UAE, 10 July, 2024: Network International (Network), the leading enabler of digital commerce across the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region, has announced the introduction of new Business Payments Solutions for businesses, corporations, and travel industry companies in the UAE.

Launched in partnership with Mastercard, the new solutions will enable Network International to tap into Mastercard’s global digital payment expertise including card offerings, expense management and virtual card innovations; enabling Network International’s commercial clients in UAE to digitize business expenses, streamline company payables and receivables processes, enhance payment security and improve cash flow.

The digital commercial payments landscape in the UAE is shifting, with corporate clients looking for ways to improve both payment operations and working capital; accelerating the region’s digital economy ambitions. The new program aims to deliver better visibility and efficiency in commercial payment flows, simplifying transactions across a variety of spend categories ranging from day-to-day expenses and supplier payments, to managing travel expenses and other business-to-business transactions.

Nandan Mer, Group CEO of Network International commented: “We are delighted to achieve yet another milestone in Network’s 30-year journey of creating world-class digital payments infrastructure and services for clients in the UAE and the wider region. By launching the new Business Payment Solutions for the first time, Network aims to unlock further growth opportunities for businesses and corporations in the UAE. By making progressive inroads into digitisation of commercial payments, Network continues to contribute towards the UAE’s aspirations for a cashless economy.”

J.K. Khalil, Division President, East Arabia, Mastercard commented: “At Mastercard, we are committed to removing fragmentation and complexity from commercial payments, and we are delighted to strengthen our long-standing collaboration with Network to support commercial customers in the UAE. Building on our shared commitment to driving digitisation and innovation, we are embedding Mastercard’s digital payment expertise, expense management and card technologies into the new Commercial Card Program. By combining our capabilities and reach, more companies across UAE will be able to pay and get paid quickly and securely, boosting liquidity and removing friction from the system.”

As part of the Program, Network will offer a range of commercial payment solutions targeted at merchants and general businesses in the UAE with a variety of applications and use cases:

  • The Corporate Executive Card will provide businesses of all sizes with a range of benefits and robust controls for expense management.
  • The Incontrol Digital Business Payments virtual card for domestic and cross-border payments will offer the first-ever net-zero foreign transactions in the UAE.
  • Meanwhile, the Mastercard Wholesale Program Digital Travel Payments , will help travel industry customers secure, streamline, and automate B2B travel payment transactions.

The solution is designed to reduce the costs for travel businesses payments through an innovative pricing model and efficiency through Mastercard’s virtual card technology.

  The landmark announcement follows the recent approval of Network’s Stored Value Facility (SVF) license by the Central Bank of the UAE. In addition to its Business Payment Solutions, as an SVF licensee, Network will enable its partners and customers to support prepaid card issuing and wallet provisioning, among other capabilities.

  About Network International

Network International is the Middle East and Africa’s largest and leading digital payments company. Our purpose is to help businesses and economies grow by simplifying payments and commerce. We operate in 50+ countries serving governments, banks, fintechs, merchants and public sector companies. We have 2,000+ employees based in our markets serving over 200 financial institutions and 120,000+ merchants. 

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Srishti Soni asda’a bcw; Dubai, UAE Tel: 971-4-4507600; Fax: 971-4-4358040 Email: [email protected]

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Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry. Our mission is to connect and power an inclusive, digital economy that benefits everyone, everywhere by making transactions safe, simple, smart and accessible. Using secure data and networks, partnerships and passion, our innovations and solutions help individuals, financial institutions, governments and businesses realize their greatest potential. Our decency quotient, or DQ, drives our culture and everything we do inside and outside of our company. With connections across more than 210 countries and territories, we are building a sustainable world that unlocks priceless possibilities for all. Follow us on Twitter: @MastercardMEA and @MastercardNews

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$2.65 Billion Saks-Neiman Marcus Acquisition Will Create a Luxury Retail Giant

The deal, a vote in favor of the future of brick-and-mortar retail on the high end, could reshape the retail landscape.

A woman stands on the sidewalk of a busy street holding a white shopping bag with the words Neiman Marcus on it.

By Vanessa Friedman and Lauren Hirsch

In a move that would further consolidate the luxury retail market, the parent company of Saks Fifth Avenue has agreed to acquire Neiman Marcus in a $2.65 billion deal, creating the ultimate high-end department store behemoth, the companies announced on Wednesday.

The deal, which had been rumored since Neiman Marcus filed for bankruptcy protection during the pandemic, comes just over four years after Saks bought the license for the Barneys name following the bankruptcy of that group . It also follows a wave of luxury e-tail failures , including those of FarFetch and Matches.com. Saks is owned by HBC, a retail conglomerate that bought the American chain in 2013 — the year after HBC also acquired Lord & Taylor.

“Customers love to go to a store,” Richard Baker, the chief executive and chairman of HBC, told The New York Times. “They love to touch a product and spend time with their personal shoppers.”

Mr. Baker said that he had been envisioning this deal since he bought Saks. “Part of what excited us about acquiring Neiman Marcus was acquiring their world-class sales force,” he said. “People have forgotten how important people are. When selling luxury products, you need beautiful stores and salespeople customers trust.”

The acquisition of Neiman Marcus makes Saks Global, as the new group will be called, the dominant player in its market, with a combined 75 stores (including two Bergdorf Goodman locations), as well as 100 off-price outlets. The new group’s only real rivals in the United States will be Macy’s, which also includes Bloomingdale’s, and Nordstrom. It will be run by Marc Metrick, the current chief executive of Saks and Saks.com.

The companies said they planned to invest in technology, including artificial intelligence, as well as both legacy and emerging brands.

“Saks has remained steadfast in our commitment to be at the forefront of luxury fashion, meeting customers not just where they are but where they are going,” Mr. Metrick said. “Together, with our ongoing focus on innovation, we are primed to drive growth for our brand partners and create career development opportunities for the incredible talent across Saks Global.”

The deal is also a vote in favor of the future of brick-and-mortar retail and a sign of the importance of trophy real estate as luxury conglomerates like LVMH scour prime retail properties to pick up. Mr. Baker, who has a background in real estate, will now control a company with a retail footprint that includes Saks’s flagship store in Midtown Manhattan and Bergdorf Goodman on Fifth Avenue. The companies said this new portfolio of companies would be worth $7 billion.

The two retailers have long been viewed as potential matches, given their overlapping customer bases of high-end customers. But each has struggled financially, posing significant complications for their efforts over the years to combine.

What may have helped seal the deal is some help from Amazon, which is taking a minority stake in Saks Global. HBC, which also owns the Canadian department store chain Hudson’s Bay, is financing the acquisition with $2 billion it has raised from existing investors, while affiliates of the investment firm Apollo Global Management are providing $1.5 billion in debt.

Mr. Baker said the company was “not planning on closing any stores or digital businesses or reducing services in any way,” even though both operate in many of the same markets.

Analysts said they expected the retailers would be able to save other costs by combining.

“There will be efficiencies, without a doubt,” said Robert Burke, the founder of a luxury retail consulting firm. “Retail has been sluggish lately, and maybe there will be more investment in both stores than there has been in the past. The real question will be how do the brands react to this? Especially the LVMH and Kering brands.”

LVMH is the luxury conglomerate that owns Dior, Louis Vuitton and Fendi, among other brands; Kering owns Gucci, Balenciaga and Saint Laurent. Both groups sell their goods in Saks and Neiman Marcus, but have increasingly focused on driving consumers to their own stores and e-commerce sites.

Smaller independent brands, on the other hand, which have long relied on department stores to reach consumers across the country, will have even less choice and power in their negotiations with stores.

The Federal Trade Commission has been paying close attention to consolidation among fashion retailers. In April, it moved to block the planned acquisition of Capri (the group that owns Michael Kors, Versace and Jimmy Choo) by Tapestry (which owns Coach, Kate Spade and Stuart Weitzman). The agency argued that the planned consolidation would affect competition among the different brands. That case is expected to go to court in September.

When it comes to the Saks-Neiman deal, Mr. Burke said, “I am sure they will be looking at it closely.”

Vanessa Friedman has been the fashion director and chief fashion critic for The Times since 2014. More about Vanessa Friedman

Lauren Hirsch joined The Times from CNBC in 2020, covering deals and the biggest stories on Wall Street. More about Lauren Hirsch

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