In Brief

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 10 October, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 10 October, 2007, 12:00am

Buffett offloads another batch of PetroChina shares

Berkshire Hathaway, the listed flagship of the world's second-richest man Warren Buffett, has further reduced its stake in PetroChina to 0.73 per cent from 0.93 per cent, by selling an estimated HK$4.13 billion worth of shares between September 21 and 25.

In its sixth filing to Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing in the past three months about selling down shares in the mainland oil giant, the company indicated that it disposed of 322.33 million shares in the period, of which 220.5 million shares were sold at HK$12.80 each on September 25. Assuming all the shares were sold at HK$12.80 each and they were originally bought at HK$1.50 each, Mr Buffett would have raised HK$4.13 billion and reaped a profit of HK$3.64 billion, bringing the total raised to HK$13.7 billion and profit to HK$11.97 billion. Eric Ng

CNOOC parent opens first self-run petrol station in Shenzhen

China National Offshore Oil Corp, parent of listed CNOOC, opened its first self-built and operated petrol station in Huizhou, Shenzhen where it is constructing a 12 million tonne a year refinery due to be completed next year. China National plans to build 30 stations in the city. It has also been in talks to buy or build more fuel stations in Guangdong. It already part owns 20 stations in Shanghai. Eric Ng

Contracted sales at Shimao Property surge to 3.74b yuan

Shimao Property Holdings said contracted sales reached 3.74 billion yuan in the third quarter of this year, more than the previous two quarters combined. For the three months to September, strong sales were recorded at phase one of Shaoxing Shimao Tower Dear Town near Shanghai, Beijing Shimao Olive Garden and Harbin Shimao Riviera New City. For the first nine months, the group's aggregate contracted sales rose 134 per cent to 6.92 billion yuan and its sales area increased 94 per cent to 639,902 square metres compared with the same period last year. Sandy Li

Minmetals signs co-operation deal with Jiangxi Copper parent

China Minmetals Corp, the nation's biggest base metals trader, signed a strategic co-operative agreement with the parent of Jiangxi Copper, the nation's top integrated copper producer, to jointly develop the domestic and overseas metals market. Beijing-based Minmetals said the two companies would co-operate in overseas exploration for copper, gold, lead, zinc, nickel, rare earth and iron ore. Minmetals' sales revenue reached 3.6 billion yuan for the first eight months this year, yielding a before-tax profit of one billion yuan. The company gave no comparison figures. Carol Chan

Computer products firm VST makes HK$658m placement

VST Holdings, a Hong Kong-listed computer products distributor, along with an existing shareholder, made a HK$658 million share placement yesterday, sources said. The firm sold a total of 206 million shares, of which 186 million were new shares, at an offer price of between HK$3.05 and HK$3.19 each, according to a sale document obtained by fund managers. Merrill Lynch and Macquarie handled the share sale. VST shares rose 1.5 per cent yesterday to close at HK$3.39. Wong Ka-chun

United Airlines to add daily HK-Los Angeles service

United Airlines, the world's largest transpacific passenger carrier, will add a non-stop daily service between Hong Kong and Los Angeles from October 29, the airline's third between the city and the United States. However, the new flight comes at the expense of services to San Francisco and Chicago, which have been cut back to daily from 10 times a week. Charlotte So

Cheung Kong cuts airline stake

Cheung Kong (Holdings) sold down its stake in China Southern Airlines to 12.54 per cent, raising HK$251 million last week, after the airline's shares reached a record high. It was the second time in two weeks that Cheung Kong had sold part of its stake in the Guanzhou-based airline. Charlotte So