Beyond Meat expands to 800 Woolworths stores in Australia

MarketWatch - 13min

Beyond Meat Inc. announced expanded distribution in Australia with 800 Woolworths stores now carrying the flagship Beyond Burger. Beyond Meat began selling in Australia in 2018, but this is the first time the product is available at Woolworths. Earlier this month, Coles, the first Australian retailer to carry Beyond Meat, added Beyond Meatballs to more than 300 stores. Beyond Meat stock has gained 16.3% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up nearly 11% for the period.


51job to go private in a buyout deal valued at $5.7 billion

MarketWatch - 43min

51job Inc. announced Monday an agreement in which it the China-based human resources services company will be acquired by Garnet Faith Ltd. in a deal valued at $5.7 billion. Under terms of the deal, 51job shareholders will receive $79.05 in cash for each American depositary share they own. That price is 5.9% above Friday's closing price of $74.65. 51job's stock was up fractionally prior to a trading halt for news, with the stock set to resume trading at 8:45 a.m. Eastern. The stock had closed at $61.33 on May 3, then shot up 11.2% on May 4, after the company said it received an updated "going-private" proposal. The stock has gained 6.6% year to date through Friday, while the iShares MSCI China ETF has slipped 0.8% and the S&P 500 has gained 10.9%.


Gilead says real-world data show COVID-19 drug Veklury can reduce the risk of death

MarketWatch - 54min

Shares of Gilead Sciences Inc. gained 0.3% in premarket trading on Monday after the drug manufacturer said retrospective research shows that Veklury, its COVID-19 treatment, reduces mortality among people who have been hospitalized with COVID-19. Veklury, which received full approval from the Food and Drug Administration last year, can be prescribed to people who have COVID-19, are hospitalized and are at least 12 years old. The new research examined real-world data from three databases that included roughly 98,000 patients who had been hospitalized with COVID-19, finding that the drug could reduce the risk of death. The Phase 3 clinical trial that was used to inform the FDA approval of Veklury found that the drug could help reduce the amount of time patients spent in the hospital but the data did not demonstrate that the therapy could reduce death at that time. Gilead's stock is up 14.3% so far this year, while the S&P 500 has gained 12.4%.


MicroStrategy bought nearly $500 million worth if bitcoin as prices fell

MarketWatch - 57min

MicroStrategy Inc. said Monday it spent about $489 million in cash to buy an additional 13,005 bitcoins for an average price of about $37,617 per bitcoin, including fees. The purchase comes on a day that bitcoin tumbled 9.3%, which puts it on track for the lowest close in 4 1/2 months, and is now about 49% below its record close in April. Shares of the enterprise software and bitcoin play, which has said it uses bitcoin as its primary treasury asset, dropped 7.5% in premarket trading. The company said as of June 21, it has spent about $2.74 billion to buy 105,085 bitcoins, at an average price of $26,080. MicroStrategy's stock has run up 66.4% year to date through Friday, while bitcoin has advanced 11.7% and the S&P 500 has gained 10.9%.


Cloud company Intapp to offer 10.5 million shares in IPO, priced at $25 to $28 each

MarketWatch - 1hr

Intapp Inc. , a cloud-based software provider for the professional and financial services industries, set terms for an initial public offering on Monday with plans to offer 10.5 million shares priced at $25 to $28 each. The company would raise $294 million at the top of that range. The company has applied to list on Nasdaq under the ticker "INTA." There are eight banks underwriting the deal, led by JP Morgan, BofA Securities and Credit Suisse. Proceeds will be used to repay debt and for general corporate purposes, including potential acquisitions. The Renaissance IPO ETF has gained 0.1% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 11%.


L Brands to call new company Victoria's Secret & Co.

MarketWatch - 1hr

L Brands Inc. announced Monday that Victoria's Secret & Co. will be the new name of the spun-off lingerie brand. L Brands is in the process of separating Bath & Body Works from Victoria's Secret to create two different businesses. The company announced last week that Victoria's Secret is taking a new women-focused and inclusive direction with the creation of the VS Collective, a panel of brand ambassadors that includes soccer star Megan Rapinoe and actor/producer Priyanka Chopras Jonas, and a new board that's majority women. Victoria's Secret & Co. will include Victoria's Secret Lingerie, PINK and Victoria's Secret Beauty. L Brands has set a goal for low-to-mid-single digit comp store growth in the U.S and Canada for the new Bath & Body Works company, high-single digit to mid-teens digital sales growth, and total sales growth of mid-to-high-single digits. L Brands stock has rallied 68.8% for the year to date while the benchmark S&P 500 index is up nearly 11% for the period.)


WeWork offers business update showing occupancy improved in May

MarketWatch - 1hr

Office-sharing company WeWork, which had a spectacular failed IPO attempt in 2019 and is now planning to hit public markets via a merger with a special purpose acquisition corporation (SPAC), offered a business update on Monday and said total occupancy stood at 53% as of May, up three percentage points from March. "As vaccine distribution expands, global restrictions ease, and companies begin to action their hybrid return-to-work strategies, WeWork continues to see an improvement in leading indicators such as desk sales, churn rates and occupancy across its portfolio," the company said in a statement. WeWork was hit especially hard by the coronavirus pandemic as most workers started working from home and demand for its service evaporated. The company's real estate portfolio now comprises 767 locations across 38 countries, supporting 947,000 work stations and 505,000 total memberships. Gross desk sales came to about 39,000 in May, up from 33,000 in April. That is equal to about 4.3 million square feet of signed space in the quarter to date, marking the best two-month performance since September of 2019. The company continued to work to optimize its real estate portfolio and cost structure through lease amendments and building exits. Its IPO documents in 2019 showed it had about $50 billion in long-term leases, most without early termination provisions. "Since March, the company has completed an additional 17 exits and 51 amendments and expects to be substantially complete with its optimization efforts by the end of June," said the statement.


Integral Ad Science sets IPO terms, implying a valuation of up to $2.5 billion

MarketWatch - 1hr

Integral Ad Science Holding Corp. has set terms of its initial public offering, in which the New York-based digital advertising verification company looks to raise up to $255 million and be valued at up to $2.53 billion. The company is offering 15.0 million shares in the IPO, which is expected to price between $15 and $17 a share. Integral Ad expects to have 148.96 million shares outstanding after the IPO. The stock is expected to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "IAS." There are 14 underwriters, led by Morgan Stanley, Jefferies, Barclays and Evercore ISI. The company recorded a net loss of $28.0 million on revenue of $240.6 million in 2020, after a loss of $50.9 million on revenue of $213.5 million in 2019. The company is looking to go public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has inched up 0.1% year to date while the S&P 500 has gained 10.9%.


Vir, GSK say new data confirms their COVID-19 treatment can reduce hospitalization and death

MarketWatch - 2hr

Shares of Vir Biotechnology Inc. gained 1.4% in premarket trading on Monday after the company said the COVID-19 antibody treatment it developed with GlaxoSmithKline cut the risk of hospitalization and death among adults at high risk. The confirmatory data came from a Phase 3 clinical trial that was used to inform the emergency-use authorization granted last month to sotrovimab, the companies' COVID-19 monoclonal antibody treatment. Vir also said the National Institutes of Health updated its guidelines to recommend using the monoclonal antibody in people with mild or moderate forms of the disease who are at high risk for disease progression. The companies say there are 450,000 doses of the treatment "on hand" in the U.S. at this time. Vir's stock is up 6.6% so far this year, while the broader S&P 500 has gained 12.4%.


LegalZoom sets terms for 2nd attempt at IPO, to value company at up to $5.2 billion

MarketWatch - 2hr

LegalZoom.com Inc. has set terms for its initial public offering, as the California-based online legal and compliances services company takes another shot at going public with a valuation of up to $5.2 billion. The company had previously filed to go public in 2012, with terms implying a valuation of up to about $484 million, but filed in January 2014 to withdraw the filing. The company is looking to raise up to $516.3 million by offering 19.12 million shares in the IPO, which is expected to price between $24 and $27 a share. The stock is expected to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "LZ." There are 14 underwriters, led by J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley and Barclays. The company expects to have 194.11 million shares outstanding after the IPO. LegalZoom recorded net income of $9.9 million on revenue of $470.6 million in 2020, after net income of $7.4 million on revenue of $408.4 million in 2019. The company is going public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has ticked up 0.6% over the past three months while the S&P 500 has gained 6.5%.


Coronavirus tally: Global cases of COVID-19 top 178.5 million as Brazil's death toll tops 500,000

MarketWatch - 2hr

The global tally for the coronavirus-borne illness headed above 178.5 million on Monday, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University, while deaths climbed above 3.86 million. The U.S. continues to lead the world in total cases at 33.5 million, while deaths total 601,825. The number of fully vaccinated Americans rose to 149.7 million, or 45% of the total population, according to the latest data from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), with the number of U.S. adults receiving at least one dose increasing to 65.4%. But the pace of vaccination varies from state to state and at least 30 states will probably not meet President Joe Biden's goal of having 70% of adults receiving at least one vaccine dose by July 4,the New York Times reported. And at least a handful of states are unlikely to meet that goal by year-end, according to the paper's analysis. That could prolong the pandemic and cause another wave of cases later in the year. On a global basis, India is second in total cases at 29.9 million and third by fatalities at 388,135, although those numbers are expected to be undercounted given a shortage of tests. Brazil has the third-highest caseload at 17.9 million, according to JHU data, and is second in deaths at 501,825, after passing 500,000 over the weekend.. Mexico has fourth-highest death toll at 231,187 and 2.5 million cases. The U.K. has 128,240 fatalities and 4.6 million cases, the highest number of deaths in Europe and fifth-highest in the world.


SentinelOne sets IPO terms, to raise up to $928 million

MarketWatch - 3hr

SentinelOne Inc. has set terms of its initial public offering, in which the California-based cybersecurity software company could be valued at up to $7.36 billion. The company is looking to raise up to $928.0 million, as it is offering 32.0 million shares in the IPO, which is expected to price between $26 and $29 a share. The stock is expected to list on the NYSE under the ticker symbol "S." Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs are the lead underwriters. For the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2021, the company recorded a net loss of $117.6 million on revenue of $93.1 million, after a loss of $76.6 million on revenue of $28.1 million in the year-ago period. SentinelOne is looking to go public at a time of relatively tepid investor demand for IPOs, as the Renaissance IPO ETF has edged up 0.6% over the past three months, while the ETFMG Prime Cyber Security ETF has gained 8.8% and the S&P 500 has tacked on 6.5%.


Xometry to offer 6.9 million shares in planned IPO priced at $38 to $42 each

MarketWatch - 3hr

Xometry Inc. , a AI-driven marketplace for on-demand manufacturing, set terms for its initial public offering on Monday, with plans to offer 6.9 million shares priced at $38 to $42 each at a valuation of up to $1.5 billion. The company has applied to list on Nasdaq under the ticker "XMTR." There are nine banks underwriting the deal, led by Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan and UBS. Proceeds of the deal will be used for generate corporate purposes. The company had a net loss of $39.9 million in 2020, wider than the loss of $30.9 million posted for 2019. revenue climbed to $141.4 million from $80.2 million.


U.S. stock futures turn around and now point to opening gains

MarketWatch - 3hr

U.S. stock futures advanced on Monday after declining on Sunday night. Futures on the S&P 500 contract and the Nasdaq 100 contract each rose 0.5%. There wasn't much news overnight to spark the turnaround, though the Bank of Japan did announce purchases of exchange-traded funds after the Nikkei 225 sank over 3%. U.S. stocks fell sharply on Friday after hawkish comments from St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, who is due again to speak on Monday.


Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies slump on Monday

MarketWatch - 5hr

The cryptocurrency complex was sliding in European hours on Monday. Bitcoin fell over 6%, to $33,318.63, and Ethereum dropped 8%, to $2,025.14, according to Coindesk. Bitcoin's high of the year was $63,381.20, reached on April 15.


Boeing's biggest 737 Max begins test program, completes first flight

MarketWatch - 2d

Boeing Co. said late Friday that its 737-10, the largest jet in the 737 Max family, completed its "successful" first flight, kicking off a test program for the plane. The plane is expected to begin service in 2023 after testing and certification. "The 737-10 is an important part of our customers' fleet plans, giving them more capacity, greater fuel efficiency and the best per-seat economics of any single-aisle airplane," said Stan Deal, chief executive of Boeing's commercial airplanes unit. The 737-10 can carry up to 230 passengers, with environmental improvements such as fewer carbon emissions, and less noise. Shares of Boeing were flat in the extended session Friday after ending the regular trading day 0.8% lower. Boeing flagged a new, electrical-related problem with 737 Max jets in early April. The Max jets were grounded for nearly two years following two deadly crashes in late 2018 and early 2019 connected to a faulty anti-stall feature.


Dow drops more than 500 points on Fed worries

MarketWatch - 2d

Stocks fell Friday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average posting its biggest weekly decline since October on worries the Federal Reserve might begin lifting rates sooner than previously expected. The Dow fell around 532 points, or 1.6%, to close near 33,291, according to preliminary figures. The blue-chip gauge fell 3.5% for the week, its biggest since a drop of more than 6% in the week ending Oct. 30, according to FactSet. The S&P 500 fell around 55 points, or 1.3%, to close near 4,166, while the Nasdaq Composite declined around 131 points, or 0.9%, to finish near 14,030. The S&P 500 suffered a weekly fall of 1.9%, while the Nasdaq saw a loss of 0.3%.


Oil futures end higher, up a 4th straight week

MarketWatch - 2d

Oil futures ended higher on Friday, with U.S prices posting a gain for a fourth week in a row. Prices shook off much of the losses they saw Thursday on the back of strength in the dollar, which followed the Federal Reserve's suggestion that it may raise interest rates sooner than it previously expected. Traders continued to get a boost from expectations for stronger energy demand and eyed prospects for an Iran nuclear deal that would likely lead to more oil on the global market. Most appeared unconvinced that an agreement can be reached before the inauguration of a new Iran president in August. West Texas Intermediate oil for July delivery rose 60 cents, or 0.8%, to settle at $71.64 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices based on the front-month contract tacked on 1% for the week.


Gold prices settle at 7-week low, with biggest weekly loss since March 2020

MarketWatch - 2d

Gold futures declined on Friday to mark their lowest settlement in seven weeks, with most-active contract prices marking their largest weekly percentage loss since March of last year. Prices spent part of the day trading higher, but St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard said Friday he expects the central bank to raise its benchmark interest rate in 2022, sending gold prices back toward session lows, said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda. The Fed's "hawkish tilt made the bond market scramble this week and that chaos has been supportive for the dollar, which was terrible news for bullion," he said. August gold fell $5.80, or 0.3%, to settle at $1,769 an ounce, the lowest finish since April 30. Prices based on the most-active contract lost 5.9% for the week, the biggest decline since the week ended March 13, 2020, FactSet data show.


Baker Hughes data show a second-straight weekly climb in U.S. oil-drilling rigs

MarketWatch - 2d

Baker Hughes on Friday reported that the number of active U.S. rigs drilling for oil was up by eight at 373 this week. That marked a second weekly rise in a row. Last week, the oil rig count rose by six. The total active U.S. rig count, which includes those drilling for natural gas, rose by nine to stand at 470, according to Baker Hughes. July West Texas Intermediate crude continued to trade higher for the session. The contract was up 60 cents, or 0.8%, to $71.64 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.


Dow futures sink over 300 points as Fed's Bullard estimates that initial rate increase could happen in late 2022

MarketWatch - 2d

U.S. stock-index futures saw losses deepen Friday morning as St. Louis Federal Reserve President Jim Bullard said, during a CNBC interview, that the central bank could lift benchmark interest rates, which currently stand at a range between 0% and 0.25%, as early as late next year. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were down more than 300 points, or 1%, at 33,366, those for the S&P 500 index were off 0.8% at 4,180, while Nasdaq-100 futures were trading 0.6% lower at 14,068. The Dow and S&P 500 are headed for weekly declines, while the Nasdaq Composite Index was headed for a weekly gain after the Federal Reserve delivered its most recent policy update on Wednesday. Bullard's comments mark the first from a Fed member since the conclusion of its rate-setting meeting. Bullard is not currently a member of the Federal Open Market Committee, which helps to set rates. Bullard told CNBC that he thinks "it's natural that we've tilted a little more hawkish to contain inflationary pressures." He also said that comments from Fed Chairman Jerome Powell have opened the door to tapering the Fed's $120 billion montly asset-purchases, which include $40 billion of mortgage-backed securities.


S&P 500 skids 1% lower Friday, putting stock-market benchmark on brink off first close below 50-day average since March

MarketWatch - 2d

The S&P 500 index on Friday was on the verge of marking its firt close below its short-term moving average since early March, amid a sharp slump in the stock market. The S&P 500 index was trading down 1% at 4,177, with its 50-day moving average standing at 4.181.95, according to FactSet data. A close below that level would mark the first such decline since March 8, according to Dow Jones Market Data. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was off 1.5%, down more than 500 points, while the Nasdaq Composite Index was trading 0.7% lower at 14,066. The decline for the market accelerated after St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard said that he saw benchmark interest rates rising as soon as late 2022, in an interview on CNBC Friday morning. Market participants use moving averages to help gauge the long-term and short-term momentum in an asset.


Dow falls 400 points as stocks open lower

MarketWatch - 2d

U.S. stocks opened lower Friday, set to end the week on a negative note as investors continue to digest a change in tone by the Federal Reserve. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 402 points, or 1.2%, at 33,420. The S&P 500 shed around 39 points, or 0.9%, to trade at 4,183. The Nasdaq Composite dropped around 78 points, or 0.6%, to trade at 14,083. A Fed meeting saw policy makers on Wednesday pencil in two rate hikes by the end of 2023, while raising their inflation forecast and discussing the eventual tapering of monthly asset purchases. Losses for stock-index futures deepened ahead of the opening bell Friday after St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, who isn't a voting member this year of the Fed's policy making Federal Open Market Committee, said it was “natural” for the Fed to tilt hawkish at the meeting given recent strong inflation readings.


AstraZeneca says EU defeated in legal bid over vaccine supplies

MarketWatch - 2d

AstraZeneca , the British-Swedish pharmaceutical group and developer of the world's most used COVID-19 vaccine, had a positive outcome in a court case brought by the European Union over its contract to deliver vaccine to the bloc. The European Commission, the EU's executive body, had requested 120 million vaccine doses cumulatively by the end of June 2021, and a total of 300 million doses by the end of September 2021. AstraZeneca said the judge ordered delivery of 80.2 million doses by 27 September 2021. All other measures sought by the European Commission have been dismissed, and in particular the Court found that the European Commission has no exclusivity or right of priority over all other contracting parties. The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, also claimed victory saying: "This decision confirms the position of the Commission: AstraZeneca did not live up to the commitments it made in the contract."


Roku says its original shows drove new records for the Roku Channel

MarketWatch - 2d

Roku Inc. said Friday that its new original programming helped drive a "record number" of unique viewers to its Roku Channel ad-supported platform in the first two weeks since the company released 30 original series there. Roku built a base of original shows by buying more than 75 shows and documentaries from Quibi, a short-form video company that launched with much fanfare but had to shut down due to limited traction. In the first two weeks since Roku dropped the initial batch of original series onto its own platform, the company saw its original content make up all of the top 10 programs on the Roku Channel, which also aggregates ad-supported content from other media companies. The company didn't disclose actual viewership numbers for the programming. Roku's programming vice president Rob Holmes said in a release that the viewership trends were "a further demonstration of The Roku Channel flywheel, with great content driving record engagement that's appealing to advertisers seeking to reach the streaming audience."


Edesa Biotech shares jump 14% premarket after early review of COVID treatment finds it should continue trial

MarketWatch - 3d

Edesa Biotech Inc. shares jumped 14% premarket on Friday, after the Canadian biotech, which is listed on Nasdaq, said an interim review of its one-dose COVID-19 treatment candidate found it should continue the study as planned. Toronto-based Edesa said an independent data and safety monitoring board made that determination after an initial review of the first patients enrolled in its Phase 2/3 study evaluating the drug candidate as a treatment for hospitalized patients. "While it is not possible yet to draw conclusions, we are encouraged by the monitoring board's findings as well as the robust enrollment we have achieved to date," Edesa said in a statement. The company has filed a trial amendment with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to streamline the U.S. protocol and align it with other jurisdictions. More than 370 patients are enrolled in the trial. The drug, called EB05, is a monoclonal antibody that Edesa believes can treat acute respiratory distress syndrome, which is one of the main causes of death from COVID. Edesa shares have gained 34% in the year to date, while the SPDR S&P Biotech ETF has fallen 4% and the S&P 500 has gained 12.4%.


: Bank of Japan to boost funding to help fight climate change

MarketWatch - 3d

AFP via Getty ImagesThe Japanese central bank said on Friday that it would launch a special lending facility designed to help banks take action against climate change. It is a surprise move underlining the rising concerns among central bankers about the financial risks posed by global warming.The Bank of Japan (BoJ) said in a release that the scheme would “provide funds to financial institutions for investment or loans that they make to address climate change issues based on their own decisions” by the end of the year.Climate change “could exert an extremely large impact on developments in economic activity and prices as well as financial conditions from a medium- to long-term perspective,” it added.The Bank of Japan is the first major central bank to devise a lending facility especially focused on climate change.The European Central Bank and the Bank of England this year have launched special stress tests to assess exposure to climate risks in their banking systems, and the Federal Reserve in March set up two committees to evaluate the impact on “the broader financial system.”The outlook: The BoJ is the first to take direct action, but political pressure and financial realities are pushing all of the world’s central banks to contribute to the fight against global warming – and devise solutions to help mitigate its impact while avoiding being accused of mission creep.


Airline shares rise after EU lifts travel ban on Americans: report

MarketWatch - 3d

Shares of U.S. airlines rose in premarket trading on Friday after the European Union reportedly recommended the lifting of a nonessential travel ban for Americans across its member states. Governments made the decision on Friday to add the U.S. to a "white list" of countries, and each country will now be able to decide what kind of restrictions, if any, to place on U.S. visitors, The New York Times and Bloomberg reported. The European Commission was reportedly pressured by countries heavily dependent on tourism, including Italy, Spain and Portugal, who are trying to save the summer season. EU officials had agreed on Wednesday to recommend lifting those bans in place since the pandemic last year, with that decision reportedly official on Friday. Shares of Delta Airlines and United Airlines were up around 1% each in premarket trading.


Moderna to add 155 more people in high-tech manufacturing jobs in Massachusetts in 2021

MarketWatch - 3d

Moderna Inc. said Friday it remains committed to creating jobs in Massachusetts and will hire at least 155 more people for high-tech manufacturing roles this year. The biotech, which has an emergency use authorization for its COVID-19 vaccine, said it has almost doubled its workforce in the Bay State in the past year to about 1,500 workers from 830 as of March 31, 2020. The company is still expanding in Norwood and Cambridge, it said in a statement. In Norwood, a production and lab space has been expanded into an industrial technology center by growing to 650,000 square feet from about 300,000, by renovating existing space and leasing a 240,00 sq. ft. building on the same campus. That will support a 50% increase in production of the COVID-19 vaccine. Moderna has committed to increasing 2022 global capacity to up to 3 billion doses, depending on the mix between the current authorized dose level and potentially lower ones of its variant booster candidates and pediatric medicines, if those are authorized. Shares were flat premarket, but have gained 94% in the year to date, while the SPDR S&P Biotech ETF has fallen 4.6% and the S&P 500 has gained 12.4%.


Sykes Enterprises to be bought out at a 31% premium by Sitel Group

MarketWatch - 3d

Sykes Enterprises Inc. announced an agreement Friday to be acquired by Sitel Group in a cash deal for the customer experience management services valued at $2.2 billion. Under terms of the deal, Sitel will pay $54 for each Sykes share outstanding, which represents a 31.3% premium to Thursday's closing price of $41.17. Sykes' stock was inactive prior to a trading halt for news, which is expected to be lifted at 7:30 a.m. Eastern. The The deal is expected to close in the second half of 2021. "This combination marks a major milestone in our 40-plus year operating history," said Sykes Chief Executive Chuck Sykes. "In Sitel Group, I am confident that we have a valuable partner with a solid heritage of deep industry knowledge and experience, solid industry reputation, a shared vision and a people-first culture to better serve customers." Sykes' stock has gained 9.3% year to date, while the S&P 500 has advanced 12.4%.