Senate Committee Spurns HASC Approach to Bolster Base Budget

first_imgIn contrast to the budget maneuver employed by its House counterpart, the Senate Armed Services Committee does not rely on DOD’s wartime account to sidestep the statutory spending caps and bolster the Pentagon’s base budget, under the fiscal 2017 defense authorization bill the panel approved Thursday.After the committee finished marking up its annual defense policy bill in closed session, Chairman John McCain (R-Ariz.) told reporters he planned to seek additional funding when the measure goes to the Senate floor, reported Defense News.“We went to the president’s mark, and then we will be looking to increase funding for much-needed programs on the floor,” McCain said.The committee adhered to the Obama administration’s request and shifted only $5 billion from the overseas contingency operations (OCO) account, which is not subject to the Budget Control Act limits. The House Armed Services dedicated an additional $18 billion from the uncapped account to base budget needs in an effort to restore shortfalls in military readiness.The Senate version, however, would authorize an increase of $2 billion for additional training, depot maintenance and weapons sustainment.“While the committee believes this is a positive step in the right direction, these additions were not enough to address the nearly $23 billion in unfunded requirements identified by the military services, almost $7 billion of which alone were considered readiness-related,” according to a committee summary of the measure.“Artificial budget constraints … have limited the committee’s ability to authorize a strategy-based level of defense funding demanded by the threats facing the nation and the ever-growing demands they impose on our military service members,” the committee said.The Pentagon and White House have criticized the budget maneuver employed by House Armed Services, saying it would shortchange overseas operations and force the next administration to request supplemental war funding before it runs out at the end of April.The conflicting approaches to funding the Pentagon adopted by the two panels could be difficult to resolve and likely set up a contentious budget battle at the end of the year.“This is a hard thing to resolve,” Todd Harrison, director of defense budget analysis at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, told Defense News. “We have a significant disagreement, and looking at the legislative calendar, there will not be that much time to resolve it.” Dan Cohen AUTHORlast_img read more

NSA reportedly recommends retiring phone surveillance program

first_imgThe National Security Agency has recommended the White House abandon a controversial program that collects and analyzes data on millions of Americans’ domestic calls and texts, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.The recommendation against renewing the program represents a dramatic reversal from the longstanding position of the agency, which had argued that the program was vital to identifying and disrupting terrorist activities. The program, which was put in place after the 2001 terrorist attacks, has legal and logistical burdens that outweigh its value to national security, sources told the Journal.The reported recommendation comes a little more than a month after a national security advisor revealed that the NSA hasn’t used the system in months. Luke Murray, an advisor for Republican House minority leader Kevin McCarty of California, also said at the time the White House might not seek to renew its legal authority to operate the program.The NSA had been collecting large amounts of metadata, the digital information that accompanies electronic communications, under a controversial national security policy put in place by the Patriot Act in 2001. That information included what phone numbers were on the call, when the call was placed and how long it lasted, which was then saved in a database.The already heated debate over the Patriot Act programs intensified in 2013 when former NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked documents detailing the ways in which the secretive US government agency was collecting data. A new system put in place by Congress in 2015 required federal agencies to seek a court order on a case-by-case basis to obtain call data from telephone companies.The USA Freedom Act of 2015, legislation designed to curtail the federal government’s sweeping surveillance of millions of Americans’ phone records, is set to expire at the end of year, if the Trump administration doesn’t ask Congress to renew its authority to continue the program.The NSA and White House didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. 6 Now playing: Watch this: 4:25 NSA Security Tech Industrycenter_img Share your voice Comments Yes, Facebook is still tracking you (The 3:59, Ep. 541) Tagslast_img read more

Toyota and CATL are partnering up on battery production

first_img Now playing: Watch this: Post a comment 29 Photos Car Industry Auto Tech 2020 Lincoln Aviator plug-in hybrid first drive: This changes everything Tags More From Roadshow Toyota Enlarge ImageSoon the batteries for Toyota’s many hybrids, PHEVs and hydrogen cars could be coming from Chinese supplier CATL. Nick Miotke/Roadshow If you’re a major automotive manufacturer, it’s pretty much mandatory that you be working on some kind of electric vehicle development right now, especially if you do a lot of business in China.That’s certainly the position in which Toyota finds itself, so it’s had to go out, beat the bushes and find itself a sizable Chinese EV battery provider — which it did in the form of CATL, according to an announcement made by Toyota on Wednesday.If CATL sounds familiar, it’s because it’s also working with Volvo to provide batteries for that brand and its Polestar subsidiary. CATL is also working with Honda and was in talks with Tesla for a while to provide cells for Gigafactory Shanghai, though that ended up not working out.”To further promote the widespread use of electrified vehicles, CATL and Toyota agree that a stable supply of batteries is critical and that battery technology must be further developed and advanced,” Toyota representatives said in a statement.Stable is the key word there. Batteries are a volatile business, especially considering the vast amounts of relatively rare and expensive minerals they require. Thankfully for companies like CATL, many of those minerals are being mined inside China’s borders, but other firms elsewhere in the world haven’t been so fortunate.This news of Toyota’s battery partnership comes hot on the heels of its announcement that it plans to offer an electrified version of every single Lexus model by 2025 as well as receiving half of its revenue from the sale of electrified vehicles by 2025. Share your voice 2020 Ford Explorer Hybrid first drive: A new kind of Explorer 0 9:29 2019 Land Rover Range Rover P400e review: A hard hybrid to recommend The 2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid requires few sacrifices to save gas On the road: Toyota Mirai Toyota Volvolast_img read more

Sensex gains touch twomonth high

first_imgWhile it should have been a week of heavy selling in the domestic stock markets, given the interest rate hike in the US for the first time in over a decade, the benchmark indices, instead, posted biggest weekly gains in more than two-months.The markets had factored-in the US Federal Reserve rate hike and as a result there was no panic selling.For the week ended 18 December, the BSE S&P Sensex rose 474 points or 1.90% to end at 25,519 points, while the 50-share Nifty index gained 151 points or 1.99% to close at 7,761 points.As expected, the US central raised the interest rates by 25 basis points (bps) for the first time in nearly a decade at its two-day meeting on 15-16 December, bringing an end to speculation that persisted across the global markets over the past two years.”After being under pressure for two consecutive weeks and falling over 5%, the Indian equity markets have staged a strong come back during the week only to come tumbling down on Friday​. The world and its market seem to have rejoiced after the Fed moved on expected lines,” said Amar Ambani, Head of Research, IIFL.Meanwhile, domestic markets were also partly underpinned by positive economic data releases earlier this week. The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) for October released last week showed that the industrial output surged 9.8% in the month, reaching its highest level since October 2010. A recovery in the rupee against the US dollar also supported the markets.On the sectoral front, IT index came under selling pressure during early sessions of the week, as the US government proposed to double the fee on work permit visas offered to other countries. IT companies are among the top users of H-1B and L-1 visas.Share prices of domestic IT major like Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) witnessed a sell-off, as analyst raised concerns over the fee hike hitting their margins. Warning on Q3 earnings issued by TCS and Wipro in the wake of recent floods in Chennai also weighed on their stocks.Another notable event for the markets this week is the ban imposed by the Supreme Court on sale on luxury diesel cars with over 2,000 cc engine capacity in Delhi till 31 March, 2016, in a bid to reduce pollution levels in the national capital city.Following the ban, stock prices of Mahindra & Mahindra fell sharply, as its entire range of utility vehicles have more than 2,000 cc engine capacity. Responding to the SC ruling, Mahindra Group chairman Anand Mahindra tweeted that the company will comply with the order.But the investor optimism seen in the four traded session of the week turned negative in the last trading day after the government sharply reduced its growth forecast for the current fiscal year, while presenting mid-year economic review.The government slashed its India’s GDP growth forecast to 7-7.5% in 2015-16 from a earlier estimate of 8.1-8.5%.”The weather may be getting pleasant but the market tantrums seem to be on the upswing as Friday’s sharp correction broke the winning streak of last four sessions. Despite recent correction, investors appear ready to bet even on counters that are fairly valued given the long-term growth potential of stable companies. Trend in global markets, movement of rupee against the dollar, and crude oil price will dictate near-term trend,” said Ambani.last_img read more

Schoolgirl gang raped in Gaibandha

first_imgRapeA schoolgirl was allegedly gang raped at Naldanga village in Gaibandha’s Sadullapur upazila on Friday night.The victim, a student of class VII, was admitted to Gaibandha Modern Hospital, said Sadullapur police station officer-in-charge Borhan Uddin.He said when the girl was returning home alone after escorting her mother to Naldanga Bazar some local youths including Shohag, Babu and Shariful forcefully took her to an adjacent sugarcane field and raped her one after another.Locals rushed in hearing the scream of the girl and caught three youths and handed them over to police, added the OC.Victim’s uncle Halim Miah filled a rape case with the Sadullapur police station in this connection.last_img

US Senator Sessions did not disclose Russia contacts Wash Post

first_imgUS Sen. Sessions is sworn in to testify at a Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing to become US attorney general on Capitol Hill in Washington. Photo: ReutersJeff Sessions, while still a US senator, spoke twice last year with Russia’s ambassador, encounters he did not disclose when asked during his confirmation hearing to become attorney general about possible contacts between Donald Trump’s campaign and Russian officials, The Washington Post reported on Wednesday, citing Justice Department officials.One of the meetings was a private conversation between Sessions and Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak that took place in September in the senator’s office, at the height of what US intelligence officials say was a Russian cyber campaign to upend the US presidential race, the Post reported.The previously undisclosed discussions could fuel new congressional calls for the appointment of a special counsel to investigate Russia’s alleged role in the 2016 presidential election, the Post said.Trump’s first national security adviser, Michael Flynn, was fired last month after he discussed US sanctions on Russia with Kislyak before Trump took office and misled Vice President Mike Pence about the conversations.As attorney general, Sessions oversees the Justice Department, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which have been leading investigations into Russian meddling and any links to Trump’s associates. Sessions has so far resisted calls to recuse himself.When Sessions spoke with Kislyak in July and September, he was a senior member of the influential Senate Armed Services Committee as well as one of Trump’s top foreign policy advisers, according to the Post.Sessions played a prominent role supporting Trump after formally joining the campaign in February 2016.At his 10 Jan Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing, Sessions was asked by Democratic Senator Al Franken what he would do if he learned of any evidence that anyone affiliated with the Trump campaign communicated with the Russian government in the course of the 2016 campaign, the Post reported.“I’m not aware of any of those activities,” Sessions responded, according to the Post. He added: “I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians.”Officials said Sessions did not consider the conversations relevant to the lawmakers’ questions and did not remember in detail what he discussed with Kislyak, according to the Post.“There was absolutely nothing misleading about his answer,” Sarah Isgur Flores, Sessions’ spokeswoman, told the Post.The Department of Justice and the White House did not respond immediately to requests by Reuters for comment.Justice officials said Sessions met with Kislyak on 8 Sept in his capacity as a member of the armed services panel rather than in his role as a Trump campaign surrogate, the Post reported.“He was asked during the hearing about communications between Russia and the Trump campaign – not about meetings he took as a senator and a member of the Armed Services Committee,” Flores told the Post.last_img read more

Afghanistan accuses Pakistan of air strikes

first_imgAn Afghan child receives treatment at a hospital after Monday`s airstrike in Kunduz province, Afghanistan 3 April, 2018. Photo: ReutersAfghanistan on Thursday accused Pakistan of air strikes causing “huge financial damages” in its province of Kunar bordering Pakistan, highlighting long-standing mistrust between the neighbours, even as both seek ways to improve security.The incident came ahead of a visit to Kabul on Friday by Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi for talks with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on cooperation to halt militant attacks.Pakistani jets dropped four bombs on Wednesday evening in Kunar’s Dangam district, Afghanistan’s ministry of foreign affairs said in a statement, without elaborating on the damage or making any mention of casualties.”Afghanistan warns that continuing violations of international norms … will have further consequences on the relations between the two countries,” the ministry added.Pakistan rejected as “baseless” the allegation that it violated Afghan airspace, however.In a statement, its foreign affairs ministry said Pakistan’s security forces were countering militant groups based in Afghanistan that launch attacks across the border.Military officials of the two countries met on Thursday in the Pakistani city of Rawalpindi, where Pakistan shared details of the operations with Afghanistan, it added. The operations took place on the Pakistani side of the border, Pakistan said.Afghanistan should focus on plugging gaps on its side of the border and refrain from the “blame game”, the ministry said.Afghanistan’s Western-backed government has long accused Pakistan of harbouring Afghan Taliban insurgents, a charge that Islamabad denies.Islamabad, in turn, accuses Afghanistan of not doing enough to eradicate Pakistani Taliban militants, many of whom are based in Afghanistan and mostly carry out attacks inside Pakistan.last_img

Thaksins plea to restore passport rejected

first_imgA Thai court on Wednesday rejected former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra`s plea to have his Thai passports restored. Photo: CollectedA Thai court on Wednesday rejected former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s plea to have his Thai passports restored.The Supreme Administrative Court said that it agreed with the Central Administrative Court’s decision to dismiss Thaksin’s petition, reports Xinhua news agency.In 2016, the Central Administrative Court rejected a lawsuit filed by Thaksin after the Thai government revoked his two regular Thai passports.Thaksin accused the Department of Consular Affairs of revoking the passports illegally on 26 May 2015.Thaksin served as Thailand’s prime minister from 2001 to 2006, when his government was overthrown in a coup.His supporters, the Pheu Thai Party led by his sister Yingluck Shinawatra, won the general election in 2011 and then was again toppled in a coup in 2014.last_img

Johnson loses first byelection test as British PM

first_imgBritain`s prime minister Boris Johnson, accompanied by Britain`s home secretary Priti Patel, speaks at the first meeting of the National Policing Board at the Home Office in London, on 31 July. Photo: AFPBritain’s Boris Johnson lost his first test as prime minister on Friday after his candidate was edged out by a pro-EU rival in a by-election that slims his parliamentary majority to one.Thursday’s vote in the Welsh sheep farming community of Brecon and Radnorshire offered a stark choice between a Brexit-backing candidate from Johnson’s Conservative party and a Liberal Democrat who wants to preserve Britain’s four-decade stay in the EU.Johnson dropped by the region on Tuesday to help out Chris Davies — a Conservative MP who was forced to step down after becoming embroiled in an expanses scandal.Davies protested his innocense and contested the seat again but the Liberal Democrats’ Jane Dodds received 13,826 votes to Davies’ 12,401 after having two smaller pro-EU parties back her bid.The result extends a recent revival for the Liberal Democrats at the major parties’ expense.Its firm stand against Britain’s split from the European Union saw it come a surprise second behind populist eurosceptic Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party in the European Parliament elections in May.Farage’s candidate ate into the Conservative’s support by picking up 3,331 votes. The main opposition Labour Party — once a dominant force in Wales — came in a distant fourth with just 1,680.”My very first act as MP when I arrive in Westminster will be to find Boris Johnson wherever he is hiding and tell him loud and clear — stop playing with the futures of our communities and rule out no-deal Brexit,” a visibly relieved Dodds said.Test of strengthThe election was viewed as a test of strength for the “Boris bounce” that has helped the Conservatives regain a slim lead in some national opinion polls.Control of Brecon and Radnorshire has swung between the Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives since the 1990s. It voted 52 per cent to leave the European Union in the 2016 vote — mirroring the UK-wide result.But the controversies surrounding Davies turned this into an unusual contest whose outcome might not reflect either Johnson’s or Brexit’s true level of wider support.The defeat still leaves Johnson in danger of being unable to control parliament in the crucial runup to Britain’s scheduled departure from the EU on October 31.MPs are already plotting ways to thwart his threat to take Britain out by the twice-delayed deadline without a divorce deal.Johnson also needs to be able to pass legislation to make the potentially chaotic “no-deal” outcome as smooth as possible — and to pass any compromise he might suddenly strike with Brussels.The 650-seat chamber is fractured and includes MPs who at times switch sides or abstain at pivotal moments.This leaves Johnson dependent on the whims of just a few legislators at one of the most crucial points in British history since World War II.Fears of a no-deal divorce have already pushed the pound to its lowest levels since Britons first voted to leave in June 2016.The Bank of England warned Thursday that a messy split would drop the pound even further and slow growth this year and next to 1.3 percent from around 1.5 percent.Brexit PR blitzThe pound’s slump reflects broader business jitters both in Britain and its main trading partners in Europe.Johnson’s government is trying to boost its negotiating hand with Brussels by showing that the country is ready for any outcome.Finance minister Sajid Javid announced Wednesday an extra £2.1 billion ($2.6 billion, 2.3 billion euros) to prepare for leaving without an agreement.Politico reported that part of the money would be spent on a Europe-wide media blitz that included adverts in major continental newspapers aimed at convincing EU governments about the strength of Britain’s no-deal resolve.Some analysts questioned how much of the funding was new and whether it would actually be used in the 90 days remaining before Brexit.”We have to be prepared because we will be leaving on 31 October,” Javid said on Thursday.The main opposition Labour Party’s finance spokesman John McDonnell branded the funding an “appalling waste of taxpayers’ cash”.The Labour MP who heads parliament’s spending watchdog also pledged to investigate how the money was being spent.last_img

OrcaM is new kid on block for 3D data capture

first_img The OrcaM system involves a large sphere, likened by one viewer as a giant maw, inside which one places the desired object for 3-D scanning. Once the object is placed inside, the sphere is sealed shut and the seven cameras and lights go to work. The cameras take simultaneous high-definition photos of the object at different angles. Serving to define the object’s geometry, various combinations of lights illuminate the object differently for every shot, capturing the finest details. After the photo processing, computer processing of the image creates the 3-D model. Observers say the end result is a highly impressive agreement of the real object. © 2011 PhysOrg.com Explore further OrcaM Reconstruction Sequences The system is also identified on the DFKI site as having been developed “in the context of a project” of the Augmented Vision arm of DFKI, which stands for Germany’s Research Center for Artificial Intelligence.NEK sees the camera system as a way to conduct automated transfers of real objects into high-quality digital representations for media such as on the “Internet, cinema, and computer games.” The DFKI envisions its application being to create super-accurate models of museum and art objects, models that are good enough to be used instead of the originals. The 3-D models produced by OrcaM are said to be fully textured and of high enough quality for the archives of valuable artifacts from museums.A useful selling point for both the above two applications is that, with the OrcaM system, key tasks are automatic. The user does not have to calibrate the cameras or lighting system, which the system performs automatically. According to the web site I Programmer, which assessed the video, the wire frame model used 20,000 triangles based on 300 million measured points “accurate to less than a millimeter.” The camera system, said the report, is worth the look when accuracy is paramount.A camera system of this size and scope may seem easily destined for the confines of powerhouse R&D labs in the sciences, but OrcaM is also generating interest in how it is being promoted.Developers of the camera system are identified as NEK. According to the company, “Within the range equipment construction we developed and finished an automated photograph station (OrcaM) for digital visualizations and reconstructions of objects.” Citation: OrcaM is new kid on block for 3-D data capture (2012, January 21) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-01-orcam-kid-block-d-capture.htmlcenter_img More information: www.nek-kl.de/de_DE/produkte/o … bital-camera-system/ (PhysOrg.com) — Call it automated photograph station, seven-camera system, 3-D model showcase, or digital reconstruction tool. OrcaM is being described as all these things. Whatever the tag, the “OrcaM” name stands for Orbital Camera System, according to its Germany-based developers NEK GmbH. A video demo was making the rounds of web gadget blogs and news sites this week as a camera system to watch. Creating 3D models with a simple webcam (w/ Video) This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Some People Are Great At Recognizing Faces Others…Not So Much

first_img“The guy just froze,” says Julie Doerschlag, Marty’s wife, who was with him for all of these incidents. “It was probably 15 years before. And [the waiter] said, ‘Yeah, you’re right.’” Doerschlag began to recognize his talent well into adulthood, after a series of strange encounters and sightings. There was the man he recognized in the Dallas-Fort Worth airport, someone he’d sat behind three years earlier at a Michigan vs. Ohio State football game. (Doerschlag remembered the man but not the score of the game.) There were the company Christmas parties where he could always remember exactly who was whose spouse. And there was the time he asked a waiter serving him in a Las Vegas restaurant if he’d also served tables many years earlier at a particular restaurant in Columbus, Ohio. Every day, Marty Doerschlag moves through the world armed with what amounts to a low-level superpower: He can remember a face forever.center_img But here’s the thing. Just as some humans are spectacularly skilled at recognizing faces, others are completely incompetent. Read the whole story: NPR “If I spend about 30 seconds looking at somebody, I will remember their face for years and years and years,” he says.last_img read more

Teach toddlers emotions to help them behave better

first_imgHelping your toddler understand and express emotions may reduce behavioural problems later on, says a new study.“Our findings offer promise for a practical, cost-effective parenting strategy to support at-risk toddlers’ social and emotional development and reduce behavioural problems,” said lead investigator of the study Holly Brophy-Herb, professor at Michigan State University in the US.The research, part of a larger study funded by a grant from the US Department of Health and Human Services, involved 89 toddlers (ages 18 months to about two years) from low-income families.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Mothers were asked to look at a wordless picture book with their toddlers. The book included many emotional undertones as illustrations depicted a girl who lost and found a pet.Brophy-Herb and her fellow researchers focused on mothers’ “emotion bridging” with the child. That involves mothers not only labelling the emotion (for example, sad) but also putting it into context and tying it back to the child’s life.During a follow-up visit with the families, about seven months later, the researchers found fewer behavioural problems in the higher-risk children. This might be because emotion bridging acts as a tool through which toddlers can begin to learn about their emotions and gradually learn simple words to express emotions, needs and wishes, instead of acting out physically, Brophy-Herb said.The findings appeared in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioural Pediatrics.last_img read more

Price offers testimony on House Bill 5560

first_img Categories: News 16May Price offers testimony on House Bill 5560 Rep. Amanda Price, R-Park Township, testifies before the House Local Government Committee regarding House Bill 5560, which modernizes public notice laws and puts taxpayer dollars to more efficient use in Michigan. The bill remains before the committee for further consideration.last_img

Hughes bill could save disabled veterans thousands

first_img State Rep. Holly Hughes, R-Montague, has sponsored House Bill 4516, which would allow disabled veterans to obtain a property tax exemption for prior tax years, so long as they file with their local unit of government by this coming December.In 2013, the Legislature passed P.A. 161, also known as the “Dannie Lee Barnes Disabled Veteran Property Tax Relief Act.” This law provides for a property tax exemption on a homestead owned by a disabled veteran who was discharged from the Armed Forces of the United States under honorable conditions. To be eligible for the exemption, a veteran must have been determined by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (USDVA) to be permanently and totally disabled as a result of military service and entitled to veterans’ benefits at the 100 percent rate, have a certificate from the U.S. Veterans’ Administration, or its successor, certifying that he or she is receiving or has received pecuniary assistance due to disability for specially adapted housing, or have been rated by the USDVA as individually unemployable.Because passage of this legislation came after tax bills were sent out in 2013, many qualified veterans were unaware of the benefit and did not file the necessary documentation with their local unit of government. In fact, many veterans still are unaware of this benefit, and those that are, have missed the opportunity to receive the exemption for the 2013 and 2014 tax years. House Bill 4516 would allow a veteran who met the criteria in 2013, 2014 or both, to provide documentation to their local taxing authority before the expiration of the December 2015 Board of Review, and the local unit would then grant the exemption retroactively.“Our veterans have given our state and nation so much and it is unfortunate that the state didn’t do more to inform them of this reasonable benefit,” said Rep. Hughes. “When officials in Fruitport Township brought this issue to my attention, I was more than happy to sponsor the legislation to help correct the oversight.”House Bill 4516 has been referred to the House Tax Policy Committee.“For veterans that deserve this exemption, they should not be penalized for things beyond their control,” said Brian Werschem, Fruitport Township supervisor. “This exemption should be afforded to them.”### 23Apr Hughes bill could save disabled veterans thousands Tags: #SB center_img Categories: Hughes News,Newslast_img read more

Private equity groups Apax Partners and Bain Capit

first_imgPrivate equity groups Apax Partners and Bain Capital have made a rival bid for Portugal Telecom following Altice’s €7 billion bid for the company and Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos’s counter-bid for the holding company for Portugal Telecom’s stake in Oi. The two private equity companies have made a €7.075 billion bid for the Portuguese assets of Portugal Telecom, rivaling Altice’s €7.025 billion bid. The joint offer includes two €400 million deferred payments that are dependent on how the assets perform in the future.Like Altice’s bid, the new bid would seek to reverse Portugal Telecom’s controversial merger with Oi. Dos Santos’s bid, on the other hand, is based on the merger going ahead.last_img

BBC Worldwide the UK public broadcasters commerc

first_imgBBC Worldwide, the UK public broadcaster’s commercial arm, has secured a deal for its Cbeebies app pre-school kids service with Mexican telecom and pay TV operator Totalplay.The deal will make Spanish-language content specifically for preschoolers, including Zingzillas, Nina y las Neuronas, Charlie y Lola, Sarah y Pato and Baby Jake, available to Totalplay subscribers.The Spanish-language Cbeebies app is available for download by Totalplay subscribers through its set-top box for a monthly fee of MXN29 (€1.40).According to BBC Worldwide, the Cbeebies app is the only channel recommended by the Mexican Pediatrics Association (AMP) for its educational potential and content.“With the integration of the CBeebies app into Totalplay’s platform, subscribers can sign in via a unique interface.   It takes CBeebies beyond linear television, enabling viewers to access their favourite programs whenever they want on their TV screen,” said Anna Gordon, executive vice-president and general manager, BBC Worldwide Latin America and US Hispanic.“Exclusive, high-quality content is a central part of our offering,” said Hugo Adrián Hernández, television and content director at Totalplay.  “We are proud to incorporate the BBC via the CBeebies app, a wholesome and entertaining tool for helping children develop their natural aptitudes.”last_img read more