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Business news briefs — Sept. 29

retail

Deen sales continue

Despite Wal-Mart’s July announcement that it ended its relationship with television celebrity cook Paula Deen, the world’s largest retailer says it expects to keep her branded cookware on the shelves through the end of the year.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said it had contracts with suppliers and expects to stock Deen’s items for the next three months.

The Southern chef lost many sponsorship deals earlier this year after acknowledging that she’d used racial slurs.

The cable channel Food Network decided to not renew Deen’s show, Smithfield Foods dropped her as a spokeswoman and her name was removed from buffet restaurants at four casinos owned by Caesar’s.

Wal-Mart’s website still has a section devoted to Paula Deen cookware and other items. Some of Wal-Mart’s Paula Deen stock is discounted.

VIDEO

Netflix expands

Netflix Inc. seeks to put its streaming-video service on more cable set-top boxes, Chief Financial Officer David Wells said.

The company’s service is being offered in the United Kingdom through cable-TV operator Virgin Media. 
Netflix, based in Los Gatos, Calif., has had an open offer to U.S. cable operators for two years, Wells said.

Netflix is still willing to forge more partnerships, Wells said.

TECHNOLOGY

Intel TV update

Intel Corp., shifting strategy for its planned Web-based television service, is now seeking partnerships to jumpstart the project, Bloomberg News learned.

The company may miss a stated goal of starting service by year-end, said a person, who asked not to be named because the plans are private. Intel, based in Santa Clara, Calif., is looking for a partner with a base of Internet subscribers or rights to films and television shows, the person said.

Intel’s TV efforts have slowed under Chief Executive Officer Brian M. Krzanich, according to the person. The new CEO, who took the reins in May, has emphasized getting Intel chips into mobile devices. The shift in strategy for its TV effort reflects a view within Intel that the company, which has built an advanced set-top box, needs a partner with existing customers and marketing experience to be successful.

“For Intel or anyone else to launch and pay the networks what they’re getting from the cable companies makes it a very difficult proposition,” said Bernard Gershon, a New York-based digital television consultant.

— Bloomberg News



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