Business News at a Glance
Posted June 4, 2018 9:51 p.m. EDT
Schultz at Starbucks: Coffee, Activism and Controversy
After more than three decades managing Starbucks’ growth from a tiny local chain into a global coffee giant, and wading into touchy political topics along the way, Howard Schultz is leaving the company. The move is likely to fuel speculation that Schultz is preparing to run for office. Schultz, 64, joined Starbucks as its marketing director in 1982, was inspired to turn it into a community hub after a trip to Italy in 1983, and purchased the chain in 1987. Starbucks now has more than 28,000 stores globally. His departure comes on the heels of Starbucks’ shutting down 8,000 U.S. stores for employee anti-bias training in May.
Facebook Back on the Defensive, Now Over Data Deals With Device Makers
Facebook endured a new wave of criticism from lawmakers and regulators in the United States and Europe on Monday after disclosures that the social media giant had allowed dozens of hardware manufacturers access to its trove of personal user data. Just months after being forced to explain its privacy measures and pledging reforms in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook found itself on the defensive once again, fending off questions about whether company executives had misled elected officials and why it had not fully disclosed the data-sharing agreements during recent testimony in the United States and Europe.
Microsoft Buys GitHub for $7.5 Billion, Moving to Grow in Coding’s New Era
Microsoft, fully embracing a model it once saw as a threat, said Monday that it was buying GitHub, an open software platform used by 28 million programmers, for $7.5 billion. The deal is a bid by Microsoft to gain ground in the internet era of software development, where applications increasingly run on remote data centers — on so-called cloud computing. Amazon is the leader in the cloud market so far, but Microsoft has transformed itself in recent years to become a strong No. 2 as a supplier of cloud computing services. Its vital Office productivity applications and database software are available in cloud versions.
Volkswagen Vows to End Experiments on Animals
The German automaker Volkswagen is promising that it will no longer support the use of animals in testing the effects of diesel exhaust, as the company tries to move past an emissions-cheating scandal in which it was found to have helped finance experiments on monkeys. The pledge was made in a letter to the German branch of the animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. It is part of a push by Volkswagen, Europe’s biggest car manufacturer, to cope with the toll of a scheme that has resulted in tens of billions of dollars in settlements and fines and the arrest and imprisonment of top company officials.
Apple Tells Developers It Still Wants to Be Different
At its annual conference for developers Monday, Apple reminded the world that it is very much a software company, with a new version of the operating system that runs the iPhone and the iPad and an update for the software that runs its Watch. The company also hewed to a theme company executives have been talking about for some time: It cares about privacy and whether technology is becoming too much of a time waster. The most notable new feature in the next version of the iPhone’s operating system, iOS 12, is called Screen Time, a tool to help iPhone customers manage the time they spend on their devices.