Boston’s QuEra Computing opens – The Boston Globe

ballot paper

Package stores run ad support Question 3

The Massachusetts Package Stores Association has launched its own TV ad to challenge rival superstore chain Total Wine & More in a battle of 3, with a ballot question going before voters next Tuesday that would set new limits on how many retail locations can be under common ownership. Can sell alcohol. The ad, which is running on several cable TV stations through Comcast, aims to make it clear that Question 3 is supported by MassPack’s small-business members. This is in response to Total Wine’s advertisements that include that Question 3 is not friendly to small businesses, that it harms family-owned businesses. (Total Wine is owned by two brothers, and thus technically a family business, but has more than 200 locations nationwide.) Question 3 increases the number of locations a company can sell beer and wine to 18 from the current level. Nine, while reducing the number of locations where the company can sell hard alcohol from nine to seven. MassPack pitched the solution as a deal to food retailers that wanted the ability to sell beer and wine in multiple locations. Total Wine sees this as a restriction of free trade. The Maryland company spent more than $2.6 million this fall to fight Question 3, while MassPack spent nearly $1 million over the past two years on the campaign. – John Chesto


New executive at Suffolk Downs simulcast facility

Stirling Suffolk Racecourse has a new owner, operator of the simulcast facility at Suffolk Downs. Michael Buckley will replace Chip Tuttle as SSR’s new chief operating officer. Buckley is a principal at Belmont Capital, an investment firm run by Joe O’Donnell and one of three SSR shareholders. Tuttle will resume a full-time position at CTP, the Boston communications agency he co-owns, after 15 years as chief operating officer at Suffolk Downs, including during the final years of the great run at Suffolk Downs. The old track is being redeveloped, and SSR hopes to eventually open a new facility offering sports betting. Buckley said in a statement that he plans to lead SSR into its “next phase as the premier sports wagering company in Massachusetts.” About 50 full and part-time employees work for SSR today. – John Chesto

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The NYT added 180,000 digital subscribers last quarter

The New York Times Company said Wednesday that it gained 180,000 online subscribers in the latest quarter, and that it is improving its revenue forecast for the full year. In its latest quarterly financial results, the company said that revenue from those new subscribers made up for higher operating costs from The Athletic, the sports news website it bought in January. Overall, the Times recorded an adjusted operating profit of $69 million for the quarter, up from $65 million in the same period last year. The Athletic had an operating loss of $9.6 million. It has lost about $29 million in the three quarters since the acquisition. – New York Times

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Glencore officials reportedly flew cash to officials in West Africa on private jets

Glencore executives flew cash to officials in West Africa on private jets, British prosecutors said, setting up a web of bribery and corruption organized by the London oil trading desk. The company founded by Mark Richt has admitted seven counts of bribery in countries including Nigeria and Cameroon, following an investigation by the Serious Fraud Office. Prosecutors said the company paid more than $28 million in bribes to secure access to oil cargoes. -Bloomberg News


GSK buoyed by vaccine sales

GSK raised its outlook for a second time and expressed optimism about next year, buoyed by demand for existing vaccines and new arrivals for the common respiratory virus. Excluding some costs, operating profit could rise as much as 17 percent and sales growth could be as much as 10 percent this year, the British drugmaker said on Wednesday, above previous expectations of 15 percent and 8 percent. The upgrade comes as Shingrix, maker of the blockbuster shingles vaccine, submitted to regulators its new shot designed to protect against respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV. -Bloomberg News


The FAA gets an earful from squatted coach passengers

Back in August, Federal Aviation Administration officials asked the public their opinion on how safe they thought airline seats were in their size. Commuters flooded the agency with nearly 25,000 comments by Tuesday’s deadline as they clashed with other unhappy customers. While many balked at the FAA’s request to address whether seat width, length, pitch and other dimensions pose a direct threat to passenger safety in the event of an emergency evacuation, many also took the opportunity to slam comfort levels in standard economy cabins. . Congress in 2018 ordered the agency to issue regulations for minimum dimensions of passenger seats with respect to safety. A 2021 agency study determined that current seat sizes would be safe for 99 percent of the population when cleared. -Bloomberg News

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Electric vehicles

Tesla has chosen a showroom in Beijing

Tesla closed its flagship China showroom in Beijing last month, according to a person familiar with the matter. The US electric car maker has several showrooms in the Chinese capital, and a now-shuttered shopping center called Parkview Green, a predominantly residential area. Reuters reported the closure earlier Wednesday. Tesla largely sells its cars through a direct sales model over the Internet rather than through dealerships or its own showrooms. China is its most important market after the United States and it delivered a record 83,135 cars in September after upgrading production capacity at its Shanghai factory. -Bloomberg News


Credit Suisse stock downgraded to near junk level

Credit Suisse’s long-term rating was downgraded one notch above junk status by S&P Global Ratings, underscoring the bank’s challenges after it unveiled a radical restructuring plan last week. The Swiss bank’s long-term rating was cut from BBB to BBB, with a stable outlook. That’s just one point above the BB “fair grade”. Credit Suisse’s new strategy triggered the biggest single-day drop on record, with shares down 18 percent. -Bloomberg News


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