Inside these posts: Asia

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McDonald’s boosts exports to Japan after quake

McDonald’s Corp. has been forced to step up imports to Japan of items like sauces, oil and lettuce by between 10 percent and 20 percent to counter supply-chain disruptions and damage from the earthquake and resulting tsunami. Get the full story »

U.S. property companies assess damage in Japan

U.S. real estate companies said on Monday they were trying to assess the damage that last week’s earthquake and tsunami may have inflicted on the hotels, warehouses and outlet centers they own in Japan.

The companies, including four real estate investment trusts (REITs), are expected to incur some property damage from the disaster. With a highly dense population in one of the world’s wealthiest countries, Japan is a favorite among U.S. real estate investors. Get the full story »

McDonald’s India franchisee plans 30 more stores

McDonald’s Corp.’s Indian franchisee plans to set up 30 new restaurants in the southern and western parts of the country this year, as part of the restaurant chain’s expansion plans in Asia’s third-largest economy.

Speaking to Reuters in an interview, Hardcastle Restaurants Private Ltd Vice Chairman Amit Jatia said the franchisee would invest $111 million in India over the next three to four years. Get the full story »

Caterpillar plans Thailand mining equipment plant

Caterpillar Inc. said Monday it will open a plant in Thailand to produce underground mining equipment in the midst of increasing demand for mined commodities by developing countries. Get the full story »

Groupon buys 3 Asia sites as part of shopping spree

Chicago-based Groupon has offices at 600 W. Chicago, pictured here on Nov. 30, 2010. (Phil Velasquez/Chicago Tribune)

Daily deal startup Groupon is on a shopping spree of its own, even amid feverish speculation that Google is on the verge of making a big offer for the Chicago company.

Groupon said late Tuesday it has bought three daily deal sites based in Asia, moving the company into Hong Kong, Singapore, the Philippines and Taiwan. Terms of the deals with uBuyiBuy, Beeconomic and Atlaspost were not disclosed. Groupon’s first foray into Asia was in August, when it acquired a Japanese rival. The company said it is now in 35 countries.

Closer to home, Groupon has acquired Ludic Labs, a Silicon Valley technology company, for an undisclosed amount. Groupon said Ludic Labs’ most well-known products are Offer Foundry, an advertising and promotional platform for local businesses, and Diddit, a Web-based community where members can browse through local activities and attractions. Ludic Labs and Groupon have both raised money from Accel Partners, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm. Get the full story »

U.S., South Korea trade chiefs to meet on deal

Top U.S. and South Korean trade officials will meet Tuesday and Wednesday in Columbia, Maryland to try again to resolve differences blocking U.S. approval of a free trade agreement, U.S. officials said. Get the full story »

Dollar dealt another blow

The dollar fell sharply against a broad range of currencies Thursday as prospects for Asian economic growth contrasted with the likely need for more stimulus in the U.S.

A monetary-tightening move overnight by the Monetary Authority of Singapore accelerated the dollar’s slide, knocking the greenback to long-term lows against rivals in Asia, Europe and North America before regaining some poise in New York trading. Get the full story »

Ex-RR executive tapped to head Burger King

Burger King’s soon-to-be new owners have named a former Latin American railroad executive to be CEO of the fast-food chain after the $3.26 billion deal goes through.

The appointment of Bernardo Hees by 3G Capital is a signal that the investment firm is serious about expanding the Burger King brand further into Latin America and elsewhere abroad. Get the full story »

With Cadbury, Kraft pushes into China

Kraft Foods Inc. is seeking to raise the profile of Cadbury products in China as the U.S. food giant ramps up investments in developing markets, particularly the Asia-Pacific region, which has become Kraft’s key growth driver following its multi-billion dollar acquisition of the British confectioner earlier this year. Get the full story »