March 26 - Inditex SA, the owner of the Zara brand, said it plans to increase its number of Chinese stores by 150 to 425 and launch an online shop for Zara in the country by the end of this year.
March 23 - Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc (NYSE: HOT) said it plans to open six Westin hotels in China this year and another four next year to bring the total number to 24 in the country by the end of 2013.
March 22 - China's securities regulator gave approval to Diageo PLC's (NYSE: DEO) ¥6.3 billion purchase of a 60.29% stake in Sichuan Swellfun Co (SHA: 600779), a liquor distiller.
March 22 - China passed the US in February in new activations of iOS and Android smartphones and tablets, Bloomberg reported, citing Flurry Inc. In the month, 23% of the activations of mobile devices based on Apple Inc's (NASDAQ: APPL) iOS or Google Inc's (NASDAQ: GOOG) Android software occurred in China, compared with 22% in the US. Just a month earlier, China accounted for 8% of the world's activations, while the US led with 28%.
March 21 - Caterpillar Inc (NYSE: CAT) said it plans to invest $100 million expanding its production base by 80% in Xuzhou, Jiangsu province. The augmentation project is expected to be completed by 2016.
March 21 - JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE: JMP) agreed to buy a 19.9% stake in Zhengzhou, Henan province-based Bridge Trust Co, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing a person familiar with the situation. Bridge Trust is majority owned by state-controlled China Power Investment Financial Co. Trust companies in China offer services in wealth management, private equity and securities investments. Foreign investment in China's trust companies is limited to 20%.
March 20 - PayPal Inc, a subsidiary of eBay Inc (NASDAQ: EBAY), said it plans to make a foray into China to tap its 193 million e-commerce service users. It will directly take on Alipay.com, Alibaba Group's third party billing firm that controls 47% of the Chinese market, which recorded ¥738.6 billion worth of e-commerce transactions in Q4 2011.
March 20 - Mining giant Rio Tinto PLC (NYSE: RIO) said it plans to buy $100 million worth of goods and services from Chinese firms this year to upgrade its electrolytic aluminum plant in British Columbia, Canada.
$1 = ¥6.29
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