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Trump reaches $375M deal to sell DC hotel – WSJ

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November 14, 2021

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Former President Donald Trump’s family hotel company has reached a deal to sell the rights to its Washington, D.C., hotel for $375 million, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Miami-based investment firm CGI Merchant Group is in contract to acquire the lease, the newspaper said.

The Trump International Hotel is in a historic building a few blocks from the White House that the Trump Organization leases from the U.S. government. The hotel has been a popular gathering spot for Trump supporters and foreign dignitaries.

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The newspaper said CGI intends to remove the Trump name and has reached an agreement with Hilton Worldwide Holdings to have the property managed and branded by Hilton’s Waldorf Astoria group.

The Trump organization, CGI Merchant and Hilton did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment on Sunday.

Last month, the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Reform said newly obtained government documents raised “troubling” questions about the hotel.

According to the Democratic-controlled committee, Trump reported that the hotel earned him more than $150 million during his time in office but actually lost more than $70 million.

The committee found that the hotel received more than $3.7 million in payments from foreign governments – equal to more than 7,400 nights at the hotel, raising a potential conflict of interest.

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The hotel is in the city’s second-tallest structure, after the Washington Monument. The building previously housed the U.S. Post Office Department Headquarters.

(Reporting by David Shepardson in Washington and Kanishka Singh; Editing by Daniel Wallis)

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Canada’s Shopify records Black Friday sales up 21%

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November 27, 2021

(Reuters) – Canadian e-commerce company Shopify Inc recorded worldwide sales of nearly $2.9 billion on Black Friday, an increase of about 21% in comparison to last year, the company said Saturday.

New York, London and Los Angeles were among the top-selling cities, the company said, while apparel and accessories was the top-selling product category.

Shopify also said it funded 23,000+ tonnes of carbon removal to counteract emissions from the delivery of every order placed on its platform on Black Friday.

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(Reporting by Aakriti Bhalla in Bengaluru; Editing by Nick Zieminski)

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Xiaomi to open car plant in Beijing with annual output of 300,000 vehicles – Beijing govt

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November 27, 2021

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi Corp will build a plant that can produce 300,000 vehicles annually in Beijing for its electric vehicle unit, authorities in the capital said on Saturday.

The plant will be constructed in two phases and Xiaomi will also built its auto unit’s headquarters, sales and research offices in the Beijing Economic and Technological Development Zone, the government-backed economic development agency Beijing E-Town said on its official WeChat account.

Beijing E-Town said it anticipated the plant reaching mass production in 2024, a goal announced by Xiaomi’s Chief Executive Lei Jun in October.

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In March, Xiaomi said it would commit to investing $10 billion in a new electric car division over 10 years. The company completed the business registration of its EV unit in late August.

The company has been opening thousands of stores to spur domestic sales growth for its smartphone business but eventually intends to use these shops as a channel for its plans to sell electric vehicles.

(Reporting by Brenda Goh; Editing by William Mallard)

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Eni sells Snam 49.9% stake in Algeria gas pipelines for 385 million euros

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November 27, 2021

MILAN (Reuters) -Italian energy group Eni has agreed to sell gas group Snam 49.9% of its stake in strategic pipelines carrying Algerian gas into Italy for 385 million euros ($436 million), the two companies said on Saturday.

The pipelines will be jointly controlled by the two companies, they said in a joint statement.

Italy imports more than 90% of its overall gas needs and Algerian gas currently accounts for around 30% of flows.

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“This transaction allows us to free up new resources to be used on our energy transition path,” Eni Chief Executive Claudio Descalzi said.

Eni is working on spinning off a series of oil and gas operations into new joint ventures to help reduce debt and fund its shift to low-carbon energy.

Snam, which owns a 20% stake in the TAP pipeline that carries Azeri gas into Italy, makes most of its money from managing Italy’s gas transport grid.

It has pledged to spend more on new green business lines such as hydrogen and, like other gas grid operators in Europe, is upgrading its gas network to be hydrogen ready.

“In the future, North Africa could also become a hub for producing solar energy and green hydrogen,” Snam CEO Marco Alvera said.

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The pipeline companies involved in the deal posted net income of around 90 million euros in 2020.

($1 = 0.8836 euros)

(Reporting by Stephen Jewkes, editing by Giselda Vagnoni)

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