By Francesca Fontana
Moderna wants to inject its Covid-19 vaccine deeper into sicker parts of the developing world. The drugmaker said Monday that it will supply 34 million doses in the fourth quarter of 2021 to the World Health Organization-backed Covax initiative, an international program that distributes free shots to poorer nations. The announcement comes as countries such as India and Brazil report record numbers of deaths amid a surge of coronavirus infections. Moderna shares rose 4% Monday.
Two of the world's richest people are ending their marriage after 27 years. The announcement from Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda Gates, who is co-chair of their philanthropic foundation, came on their Twitter accounts Monday. They filed a divorce petition in Washington state on Monday that indicated they have a separation agreement under which they plan to divide their assets. That same day, Bill Gates transferred stakes in a Coca-Cola bottler, Mexican broadcaster and other companies worth nearly $2.4 billion to Melinda Gates. Mr. Gates's personal stake in Microsoft is worth around $26 billion, according to FactSet. Microsoft shares fell 1.6% Tuesday.
CVS Health Corp.
CVS's vaccination efforts could use a shot in the arm. Demand, it says, has slowed as Americans' hesitancy to receive the shots outweighs expanding eligibility and access. The pharmacy chain said on Tuesday that vaccine demand has fallen by about 30% recently. Like its rivals, CVS started offering walk-in and same-day appointments for injections in a bid to improve uptake. Chief Executive Karen Lynch said stepped-up education on the vaccine's safety and efficacy is needed to address parts of the population that are afraid to get the shot. CVS has administered more than 17 million shots. CVS shares gained 4.4% Tuesday.
Peloton Interactive Inc.
Peloton is recalling its Tread+ treadmills after dozens of injuries and at least one death. The home-fitness company said on Wednesday it was also halting sales of the model. Chief Executive John Foley apologized for the company's initial refusal to comply with federal safety regulators who pushed for the action weeks ago. The Consumer Product Safety Commission told people with young children or pets in mid-April to stop using the Tread+ and urged a recall of the product. Mr. Foley initially called the CPSC advisory inaccurate and misleading and said the treadmills were safe when users followed safety recommendations. Peloton shares lost 15% Wednesday.
Uber Technologies Inc.
Hunger for food delivery is helping Uber make up for a slump in ride-sharing demand. Uber reported on Wednesday that its first-quarter bookings rose thanks to sustained growth in its food-delivery business, Uber Eats, which now accounts for nearly two-thirds of total bookings. Uber executives said they expect the ride-hailing business to bounce back as vaccinations pick up in the coming months. But the company acknowledged that it faces a shortage of drivers as some are still hesitant to ferry passengers over food. In addition to distributing free personal protective equipment, Uber is offering incentives for drivers to return, Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi said. Uber shares fell 8.9% Thursday.
A chicken shortage is causing prices to soar for some restaurants. After a year promoting takeout wings and crispy chicken sandwiches, restaurants including Yum Brands Inc.-owned KFC and Wingstop Inc. say they are paying steep prices for scarce poultry. Some are running out of or limiting sales of tenders, filets and wings, cutting into some of their most reliable sales, while owners of independent eateries and bars say they've gone weeks without wings, owners say. Chicken suppliers have been struggling to raise production because they are having trouble getting enough workers. Wingstop shares lost 1.5% Thursday.
Cinemark Holdings Inc.
A cinema giant is striking back. Cinemark said it reached new deals with some major Hollywood studios in a move designed to establish how long movies play in theaters before moving to home video. The movie-theater company on Friday said it has reached deals with Warner Bros. Picture Group, Walt Disney Co., Paramount Pictures and Sony Pictures Entertainment, building on a November pact with Universal Filmed Entertainment Group. Meanwhile, the company reported a wider first-quarter net loss because of the pandemic. In the U.S., 98% of Cinemark's theaters have reopened, Chief Executive Mark Zoradi said, but the pace of recovery has been uneven as Covid-19 cases surge in certain parts of the world. Cinemark shares gained 5.3% Friday.
Write to Francesca Fontana at firstname.lastname@example.org
(END) Dow Jones Newswires