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Wednesday, 1 October


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Jornal de Negocios

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The Economist

  • Samsung: Waiting in the wings

    pdiv class=content-image-full img src=http://cdn.static-economist.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/full-width/images/print-edition/20140927_WBP005_0.jpg alt= title= width=595 height=335 / /div“CHANGE everything except your wife and children.” Thus spoke Lee Kun-hee, the boss of Samsung, two decades ago at an emergency meeting with his senior managers. He wanted the conglomerate (whose name means “Three Stars”, implying that it would be huge and eternal) to stop churning out vast quantities of cheap products and focus on quality, to become one of the world’s leading firms.Mr Lee (pictured, left) accomplished his mission, probably beyond his wildest dreams. Today the Samsung group, whose 74 companies have estimated annual revenues of more than 400 trillion won ($387 billion) and 369,000 employees, is into everything from washing-machines and holiday resorts to container ships and life insurance. But it is the group’s predominant electronics division that has made its patriarch particularly proud: Samsung has overtaken its Japanese rivals to become the world leader in this industry by revenues, outselling everyone in memory chips, flat-panel televisions and smartphones.Now Samsung is again at a point in its 76-year history at which much has to change. This will be underlined if, as expected, Samsung Electronics issues a fresh profit warning shortly. The.../p
  • Schumpeter: The look of a leader

    pdiv class=content-image-full img src=http://cdn.static-economist.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/full-width/images/print-edition/20140927_WBD000_0.jpg alt= title= width=595 height=335 / /divIN GORILLA society, power belongs to silverback males. These splendid creatures have numerous status markers besides their back hair: they are bigger than the rest of their band, strike space-filling postures, produce deeper sounds, thump their chests lustily and, in general, exude an air of physical fitness. Things are not that different in the corporate world. The typical chief executive is more than six feet tall, has a deep voice, a good posture, a touch of grey in his thick, lustrous hair and, for his age, a fit body. Bosses spread themselves out behind their large desks. They stand tall when talking to subordinates. Their conversation is laden with prestige pauses and declarative statements.The big difference between gorillas and humans is, of course, that human society changes rapidly. The past few decades have seen a striking change in the distribution of power—between men and women, the West and the emerging world and geeks and non-geeks. Women run some of America’s largest firms, such as General Motors (Mary Barra) and IBM (Virginia Rometty). More than half of the world’s biggest 2,500 public companies have their headquarters outside the West. Geeks.../p
  • Oracle’s boss resigns: Transition, not succession

    pdiv class=content-image-float-290 img src=http://cdn.static-economist.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/290-width/images/print-edition/20140927_WBP002_0.jpg alt= title= width=290 height=390 / span class=captionLarry has not left the building/span /divNOTHING has changed, except for the titles. That was the word from Oracle after Larry Ellison said on September 18th that he was resigning as chief executive. The firm he founded in 1977 is now the world’s biggest maker of business software, with annual sales of $38 billion. Mr Ellison will stay on as executive chairman and focus on his main interest—technology. His old job will be split between Safra Catz and Mark Hurd, who already run the firm’s operations.Though there may be little immediate effect, the title-shuffling may one day be seen as the start of an upheaval like the one IBM had to go through when smaller computers dethroned the mainframe in the 1980s and early 1990s. Big Blue almost went under in the process. Big Red—the colour of Oracle’s logo—is unlikely to run such a risk, but the shift will not be easy.Other than when Oracle’s sponsored boat won the America’s Cup last year, the company has not been in the headlines much since it bought a bunch of other business-software firms in the mid-2000s. It seems to be doing a decent job of integrating those acquisitions. But they are less.../p
  • Tesco’s accounting problems: Not so funny

    pIT IS too soon to say whether the accounting misstatement at Tesco was cock-up or conspiracy. The source of the discrepancy is already clear, however, and it is as old as book-keeping itself: the premature recognition of revenue.Suppliers make payments to supermarkets that meet certain sales targets for their products, run promotions or place the goods in eye-catching places, such as at the end of aisles. Tesco managers appear to have been too ambitious in forecasting these “rebates”. They may also have underreported the costs of stolen and out-of-date produce.In a study of accounting scandals at American companies by the Committee of Sponsoring Organisations, a business-ethics body, the misrecording of revenues was to blame in 60% of cases. Manipulation generally falls into one of two categories. In the first, involving “timing differences”, the revenue is genuine but, say, sales at the start of a quarter are booked as having been struck in the previous one. The flipside of this is “cookie jar” accounting: pushing today’s revenue into tomorrow so it can be dipped into to shore up weak quarters.In the second, more serious category, the sales are fake: often, a related party poses as a customer to generate phoney invoices. Examples include Gowex, a Spanish technology firm that folded earlier this year, and Satyam Computer of India, whose boss compared the escalation of the $.../p
  • Tesco’s crisis: A hard rain

    pdiv class=content-image-full img src=http://cdn.static-economist.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/full-width/images/print-edition/20140927_WBP003_0.jpg alt= title= width=595 height=335 / span class=captionComing to a high street near you/span /divOF ALL the dark days that Tesco has seen recently, September 22nd was the blackest. That was when Britain’s biggest grocer—and the world’s third-largest retailer—confessed that it had overstated its already dismal profits for the first half of its fiscal year. They were £850m ($1.4 billion), not £1.1 billion, as Tesco had said in August. Its share price has slumped by about 15% since the disclosure. Credit-rating agencies have put its debt on watch for a possible downgrade.Tesco’s accounting fiasco (see a href=http://www.economist.com/news/business/21620227-booking-revenues-comedy-all-about-timing-not-so-funny target=_self rel=nofollowarticle/a) follows a series of profit warnings and the ousting in July of its boss, Philip Clarke. His successor, Dave Lewis, has promised “a comprehensive independent investigation” and suspended four executives, including the chief of the company’s British business, its biggest unit.Serious questions are being asked about how such a huge, established company could get into such a mess. Do its directors know too little about selling groceries? None of the ten.../p
  • The legal business: The default choice

    pdiv class=content-image-float-290 img src=http://cdn.static-economist.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/290-width/images/print-edition/20140927_WBP001_0.jpg alt= title= width=290 height=406 / span class=captionGet me my lawyer!/span /divRARE is the finance minister of a developing country who does not have Cleary Gottlieb Steen Hamilton on speed-dial. Cleary, based in New York, has long been the go-to law firm for governments in debt crises. Since 1983 the firm has advised 28 sovereign debtors in 54 restructurings. Its recent clients include Greece and Iraq, as well as sturdier places like South Korea. Cleary’s lawyers have reaped both fame and fortune as a result: a survey of 17,000 lawyers by Vault, a jobs site, ranked it America’s seventh most prestigious firm. Its profit per partner of $2.9m last year ranks it 12th, according to em class=ItalicAmerican Lawyer/em magazine.In 2014, however, the firm’s sovereign litigation clients have had a year to forget. In July arbitrators in The Hague ruled that Russia had illegally expropriated Yukos, a big oil company. They ordered the government to pay shareholders $50 billion, 20 times the previous record for arbitration. Argentina has suffered three setbacks at America’s Supreme Court. In March the justices reinstated a $185m award against the country. Three months later, they let a ruling.../p

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Financial Times — Europe

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Portugal-US Chamber of Commerce - slideshow image

Pan-European Days at the New York Stock Exchange, May 2014

Chamber board member Ricardo Caliço attended the event on behalf of the Chamber and reports back that the three-day conference was aimed at showcasing investment opportunities in Europe. This year, the program included the European Economic Forum at the New York Stock Exchange, featuring representatives from European Union, chief economists from major financial institutions, and other high-level thought-leaders to discuss the latest developments in the major European economies. The Program also included an investor conference at the Waldorf Astoria hotel organized by, ING, KBC Securities, Millennium BCP/Auerbach Grayson and Societe General. The investor conference provided opportunities for Euronext-listed companies from Portugal, Belgium, France, and Netherlands to meet privately with North America based institutional investors. The 13 Portuguese companies presented in the event were: BES, BPI, CTT, EDP, EDPR, Espirito Santo Saude, Galp, Impresa, Jerónimo Martins, Millennium BCP, Mota Engil, REN and Zon. The Portuguese Government was represented by Isabel Castelo Branco, Secretary of State of Treasury, and by the Treasury and Debt Management Agency. See more details here.

Posted on 2 Jun 2014
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Portuguese Artist Julião Sarmento to Exhibit in New York City

The Sean Kelly Gallery will host an exhibition by Portuguese artist Julião Sarmento, from March 28 - May 3, 2014. Further details can be found here.

Posted on 21 Mar 2014
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Chamber Attends Workshop on the New York Nonprofit Revitalization Act of 2013

New York State’s laws governing charitable and other nonprofit organizations date from the 1960s. The New York State Attorney General’s Office has undertaken revisions in the form of the New York Nonprofit Revitalization Act of 2013. The changes have two main purposes: reducing burdens on nonprofits through the modernization of statutory requirements; and increasing public trust in the nonprofit sector by strengthening board governance and enhancing Attorney General enforcement powers. Most provisions will take effect effective July 1, 2014. As a 501c4 nonprofit corporation, the Portugal-US Chamber of Commerce will also need to adhere to new regulations. More information about the Revitalization Act of 2013 can be found here.

Posted on 6 Mar 2014
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Vista Alegre Exhibits at the 2014 San Francisco International Gift Fair

Visit Vista Alegre’s booth at the San Francisco International Gift Fair, 15-18 February 2014. More information about the Fair can be found here.


Posted on 17 Feb 2014
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Eight Portuguese companies to visit New York City, 4-6 February 2014

In collaboration with the Associacao Comercial de Lisboa (ACL) and the Confederacao Internacional de Empresarios Portugueses (CIEP), the Chamber is hosting eight Portuguese companies from the textile, technology, artisanal foods, olive oil, wine, spirits, shoe wear, and lighting design sectors. The firms will meet with U.S partners based in New York and New Jersey, and will also meet with Portuguese and U.S. officials and representatives of the Portuguese business communities. For further details, contact the Chamber at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Posted on 28 Jan 2014
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Our Organization

The Portugal–US Chamber of Commerce in New York was founded in 1979 to stimulate economic development, trade and investment, and cultural exchange between the United States and Portugal. As a member of the Association of Portuguese-American Chambers of Commerce (APACC), it works closely with its counterparts in Portugal, Canada, and across the United States to promote shared interests in Portugal and expose the vast economic opportunities of the country. The Chamber provides its members ongoing opportunities to network with individuals also engaged in Portugal-US affairs as well as numerous channels by which they can obtain essential bilateral support and information.

Membership Benefits

Membership in the Chamber is open to all individuals who are interested in building a strong economic partnership between Portugal and the United States. Current members range from small businesses to large corporations in the fields of banking and finance, construction, communications, education, import/export, law, and transportation, to name a few.

Membership benefits include:

  • Frequent Chamber events that promote networking and foster strong community ties
  • Access to prominent business and government leaders
  • Alerts of noteworthy cultural and social events in New York City
  • Business luncheons and seminars to expose members to exciting new economic opportunities
  • Access to online resources and members-only directory