Toyota Returns To Number 1 In Global Auto Sales

TOKYO — Toyota Motor sold a record 9.75 million vehicles last year, according to an official tally released Monday, roaring past General Motors and Volkswagen to reclaim its title as the world’s top automaker in 2012.

General Motors, which held the top spot in 2011, mustered 9.29 million vehicles in global sales last year.  The U.S. company had been the top-selling automaker for decades before losing its lead to Toyota in 2008.

Volkswagen sold 9.1 million vehicles last year, a record for the German automaker, which has expanded its presence in emerging markets.  VW also outsold Toyota in 2011.

Read more:  http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/29/business/global/toyota-returns-to-no-1-in-global-auto-sales.html?hp&_r=0

Report: Sony To Axe 10,000 Jobs In Turnaround Bid

 

The logo of Sony is not considered a "wor...

The logo of Sony is not considered a "work of authorship" because it only consists of text in a simple typeface, so it is not an object of copyright in respect to US law. However, this logo is still protected by trademark laws. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Japan’s Sony Corp. is cutting 10,000 jobs, about 6 percent of its global workforce, the Nikkei newspaper reported on Monday, as new CEO Kazuo Hirai looks to steer the electronics and entertainment giant back to profit after four years in the red.

The job cuts would be the latest downsizing in Japan Inc where companies from cellphone maker NEC Corp. to electronics firm Panasonic Corp. are trimming costs in the face of a strong yen and competition from rivals like Apple and Samsung Electronics.

TV makers in particular have been hit hard by the tough business climate as well as sharp price falls, with Sony, Panasonic and Sharp expecting to have lost a combined $17 billion in the fiscal year just ended.

Read more: http://www.mcall.com/business/chi-sony-to-axe-10000-jobs-in-turnaround-bid-20120409,0,38906.story

Karen Rodriguez Goes Home On American Idol

The lovely and talented Karen Rodriguez was sent packing tonight on American Idol.  Karen was in the bottom three again this week.  Unfortunately, even after a great performance of “Hero” by Mariah Carey, she was not saved by the judges.  Randy said it was not a unanimous decision so at least one judge wanted to save her.  All three judges must be in agreement to use their save.

Lee DeWyze, last year’s American Idol winner, performed a song from his new album titled “Beautiful Like You”.  It was a nice song with an alternative feel.  Lee’s presence was a reminder of how much has changed on Idol since he was crowned the winner last season.  Only Randy Jackson remains on the panel of judges.

The Black Eyed Peas performed their new song, which they dedicated to the people of Japan, titled “Just Can’t Get Enough”.  Not sure if it was just me but people did not seem all that thrilled they were making a guest appearance based on reaction from the audience.  However, when they finished singing their new song, the cheering was loud.

Rounding out the bottom three this week were Haley Reinhart and Naima Adedapo.  Both received some criticism from the judges after Tuesday’s performances.  Haley is not a stranger to the bottom three.

Buena suerte, Karen!

Earthquake Shortens Day, Shifts Earth’s Axis: NASA

The NASA insignia.

Image via Wikipedia

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory says the March 11, magnitude 9.0 earthquake in Japan may have shortened the length of each Earth day and shifted its axis, but it says you shouldn’t notice the difference……

Read the rest of this interesting article here:

http://newsroomamerica.com/story/109755/9.0_japan_earthquake_shortens_day,_shifts_earth’s_axis:_nasa.html

7-Eleven Stores Pass 40,000 Locations – More Stores Than McDonald’s!

7-Eleven grows at the rate of a new store opening every three and a half hours.  Really…is that even necessary?  According to 7-Eleven brass, they will add another 2,000 to 2,500 more stores worldwide in 2011.  Five hundred of those will be in the U.S. and Canada.

7-Eleven said they have significant room to grow.  Amazingly, 7-Eleven only operates in 30 U.S. states.  7-Eleven is a subsidiary of Seven-Eleven Japan.  Yes, you read that correctly.  The chain started in Dallas, Texas in 1927.  7-Eleven is now looking to buy existing convenience stores and convert them to 7-Eleven’s.  They are the Borg of the convenience store world.  Resistance is futile.

Another head-scratching factoid is that with a gazillion stores, 7-Eleven stores make up only 5% of the total number of convenience stores in our great nation.  Again, you read that correctly.  Cigarettes are 7-Eleven’s biggest selling item; however, customers can expect to see more hot food and bakery items down the road. 

The chain also has a large private-label program thereby allowing them, sometimes, to only sell the 7-Eleven brand of a particular product.  Less than half of 7-Eleven’s stores sell gasoline, which helps the company open stores faster and in smaller spaces.  On the other hand, 80% of U.S. convenience stores sell fuel.

Oh thank heaven for 7-Eleven…evidently.