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AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Dutch ASML said on Thursday it had been the victim of corporate espionage in 2015 involving employees from countries including China but said it had not been the target of any “national conspiracy”. ASML said the perpetrators took “large files” on memory sticks from its Silicon Valley software subsidiary that develops software for machine optimization. It said it had since taken action to make such theft much more difficult. Following publication of a story in Dutch daily newspaper Financieele Dagblad (FD) that said ASML had been struck by Chinese espionage, the company took issue with that label.
“The suggestion that we were somehow victim of tiffany airplane cufflinks a national conspiracy is wrong,” CEO Peter Wennink said in a statement, “We resent any suggestion that this event should have any implication for ASML conducting business in China, Some of the individuals (involved) happened to be Chinese nationals,” he added, The Dutch company welcomed a Sino-European agreement earlier this week, which promised that Beijing would no longer force foreign companies to share sensitive know-how when operating in China..
“Can we prudently do business in China? Yes of course. This was a rotten apple,” ASML said in an earlier statement. ASML is the dominant maker of lithography systems, used to trace out the circuitry of semiconductor chips. Its sales to China more than doubled to 1.8 billion euros ($2 billion) in 2018 as Beijing drives growth of its domestic semiconductor industry, now accounting for about a sixth of ASML’s total sales. The FD story was based in part on ASML sources and in part on documents from the Santa Clara, California Superior Court that showed six former ASML employees, all with Chinese names, breached their employment contract by sharing information on ASML software processes with a company called XTAL Inc.
The FD reported that XTAL, which makes electrical design automation for semiconductor systems, is a subsidiary of a China-based company called Dongfang Jingyuan, which it said in turn has ties to the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology, In its reaction, ASML said tiffany airplane cufflinks XTAL’s funding came from “South Korea and China”, It said the aim of the theft was to create a competing product and sell it to an existing ASML customer in South Korea, The company confirmed the FD’s report that the court had awarded ASML $223 million in damages..
“It is unclear to what extent these damages can be collected from the now bankrupt company XTAL,” ASML said. ASML shares slipped 1.5 percent by 1210 GMT to the bottom of a flat European technology index. ASML’s major customers include Samsung of South Korea, TSMC of Taiwan and Intel of the United States. The Dutch intelligence agency has included warnings in its annual threat assessments for the past several years, saying that China is targeting tech companies in the Netherlands, as it does in other countries, for intellectual property theft.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - James Forese, president and chief executive officer of Citigroup Inc’s> institutional clients business, which contributed two-third’s of the bank’s profits last year, is retiring, according to an internal memo seen by Reuters, This would be the biggest departure from the executive team at the third largest U.S, bank tiffany airplane cufflinks since consumer banking head Manuel Medina-Mora left three years ago, The division fell short of some annual targets in 2018 and Forese was the only executive on the operating committee not to receive a raise for the year, according a recent filing..
Citi said Forese, 56, decided to retire after 34 years at the company. He has told acquaintances he was frustrated and unhappy, sources told Reuters. Forese was the second highest earner at Citi after CEO Michael Corbat. His unit, which includes treasury services, the investment bank, corporate lending and capital markets, delivered 50 percent of revenues and more than two-thirds of profits to the bank last year. Forese, who began overseeing the business in 2011, will be replaced by Paco Ybarra, global head of markets and securities services.
“Jamie has played a critical role in cultivating a client-centric mindset across the firm and driving tangible changes to make it easier for tiffany airplane cufflinks our clients to do business with us,” Chief Executive Mike Corbat said in the memo, Ybarra will take over the division on May 1, Forese will stay through the summer to help with the transition, Forese spent his entire career at Citi, He came to the bank through Salomon Brothers, which he joined in 1985, and cut his teeth in the securities trading business, eventually working his way up to become head of the markets division..