Pacific Northwest Northwest Airlines is in final negotiations to order up to 18 of Boeing's new 787 jetliners, according to an online report...

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Northwest said to be in talks for 787 order

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Northwest Airlines is in final negotiations to order up to 18 of Boeing’s new 787 jetliners, according to an online report yesterday from The Wall Street Journal. Spokesmen for Northwest and Boeing declined to confirm the story, which cited “people familiar with the situation.”

Air India also is expected to place a 50-plane order soon. Boeing’s sales chief for India, Dinesh Keskar, said in February he is confident Boeing’s 777 will beat out Airbus in an order for 23 large wide-body jets and options, worth nearly $5 billion at list prices. The rest of the order, for 27 midsize wide-bodies worth about $3 billion, could go to the 787 or to Airbus.


Senate calls for end to loans to Airbus

The U.S. Senate yesterday passed a resolution calling on European governments to stop lending funds to aircraft maker Airbus, and it endorsed reopening a case at the World Trade Organization should Europe fail to comply.

The Senate by a vote of 96-0 approved the nonbinding measure, which doesn’t carry the weight of law and is largely an endorsement of the Bush administration’s legal position that government loans to Toulouse, France-based Airbus are unfair.

The resolution was sponsored by Democratic Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell of Washington, where Boeing is the state’s largest employer.

Talks between the European Union and U.S. to resolve the dispute collapsed last month, but the two sides have said they plan to resume negotiations.


Coffee giant buying bottled-water firm

Starbucks said yesterday that it is acquiring a small, privately held bottled-water company and plans to sell the water in all its company-operated U.S. stores by the end of the summer.

The Seattle-based coffee retailer would not disclose financial terms of the deal to acquire Ethos Water, based in Santa Monica, Calif.

Starbucks also plans to continue selling Ethos water at retailers that now carry the product.

Starbucks said it plans to donate $1 million by the fall of 2006 to support water projects in developing countries, keeping a goal set by Ethos.


VP leaves Premera for post at Safeco

Safeco yesterday named Jeffrey Roe its president of distribution, sales and marketing, effective April 18.

Roe most recently was president and chief executive of a Premera Blue Cross subsidiary called LifeWise Health Plan of Washington, and simultaneously was vice president and general manager of Premera, where he led consumer, commercial group and association lines of business.


Kirkland firm raises $5 million in capital

Kirkland-based UBmatrix said yesterday that it received $5 million in a first round of venture capital from Draper Fisher Jurvetson of Redwood City, Calif. UBmatrix develops software that helps companies share financial data between different software platforms.

Compiled from Seattle Times business staff, Bloomberg News and The Associated Press