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MBA Slow Growth Still Expected Despite Positive Signs

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first_img January 21, 2013 434 Views Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Federal Reserve GDP Investors Lenders & Servicers Mortgage Bankers Association Refinance Service Providers 2013-01-21 Tory Barringer in Data, Origination Sharecenter_img MBA: Slow Growth Still Expected Despite Positive Signs Washington may have (arguably) successfully avoided 2013’s budgetary landmines so far, but the “”Mortgage Bankers Association””:http://www.mbaa.org/default.htm (MBA) reports everything it has seen so far suggests economic growth will be modest in 2013.[IMAGE]In its most recent “”Economic and Mortgage Finance Commentary””:http://www.mortgagebankers.org/files/Bulletin/InternalResource/83150_.pdf, the association forecasts slow economic gains in the first half of 2013 “”as the effects of the payroll tax increase and the spending cuts from sequestration or a similar decline in government spending kicks in.”” As a result, the MBA projects a 0.9 percent increase in real GDP in the fourth quarter of 2012, resulting in a 1.8 percent average quarterly growth for the year. GDP growth is expected to accelerate–albeit modestly–throughout 2013 and 2014, reaching quarterly averages of 2.0 percent and 2.5 percent, respectively.Meanwhile, residential investment is expected to stall after reaching an anticipated annualized growth rate of 20.6 percent in Q4 2012. According to the MBA’s predictions, residential investment growth will nearly halve in the first half of 2013 (dropping to an annualized rate of 10.6 percent in the first quarter and 7.9 percent in the second) before slowly climbing back up (until the last quarter of 2014, when it is expected to drop to 8.0 percent).In the mortgage arena, expectations for long-term interest rates have been shifted up to reflect “”minutes””:http://www.federalreserve.gov/monetarypolicy/fomcminutes20121212.htm from the “”Federal Open Market Committee’s””:http://www.federalreserve.gov/monetarypolicy/fomc.htm (FOMC) December meeting, which revealed most members favor reducing the “”Federal Reserve’s””:http://www.federalreserve.gov/ asset purchasing programs by the end or even the middle of 2013.Housing is also looking positive at the moment, “”with home sales continuing on an upward trend, purchase applications showing small but steady year over year growth, and refinance activity starting to rebound after a holiday-driven dip.”” Most encouraging was the increase in starts: Single-family starts saw an increase of 23 percent throughout 2012, while multifamily starts rose 38 percent–a trend that “”is likely to continue into 2013 as housing permits also continued on a healthy upward trajectory.””The MBA’s forecast for originations was mostly unchanged from its previous expectations. The group estimates mortgage originations totaled $1.7 trillion in 2012 and will decline to $1.4 trillion in 2013 as rates rise and refinances lose steam.last_img read more

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Thanks to everyone who took part in our Spot the

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first_imgThanks to everyone who took part in our ‘Spot the Difference’ competition. Here are the answers! RelatedSpot the Difference – Dubai: the answersDid you manage to find them all?Spot the Difference – Pisa: the answersDid you manage to find them all?Spot the Difference – Spain: the answersDid you manage to find them all? ReturnOne wayMulti-cityFromAdd nearby airports ToAdd nearby airportsDepart14/08/2019Return21/08/2019Cabin Class & Travellers1 adult, EconomyDirect flights onlySearch flights Maplast_img

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Rep Kahle bill to attract skilled trade teachers signed into law

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first_img Categories: Kahle News,News 27Jun Rep. Kahle bill to attract skilled trade teachers signed into law State Rep. Bronna Kahle today announced her legislation to expand professional trade and career-oriented instruction has been signed into law.Kahle’s new law, as a part of a four-bill bipartisan measure, will permit schools to hire skilled trade instructors to teach career technical education classes tied to their professional expertise where they have a license or certificate.“Good teachers have a tremendous impact on their students,” said Kahle, of Adrian. “We need to open the door to experienced skilled trade professionals to share their experience in our classrooms. These courses are growing in demand, so local districts should have the flexibility to make the call on who teaches their own students and helps build their future.”Mark Haag, superintendent of the Lenawee Intermediate School District; Dan Garno, executive director of Staff Resources at the Lenawee ISD; and Dan Rogers, director of Center for Science and Industry in Hudson all joined Kahle in Lansing to testify in support of the Career Pathway bills.In addition, the new laws will:Create a K-12 model program that emphasizes career learning and themes for each grade level, while focusing on engaging with parents, community businesses and industry interests;Provide continuing education and professional development credit for teachers who spend time engaging with local employers and professional trade centers.The Michigan Career Pathways Alliance, which includes state K-12 education and employment leaders working together to help strengthen Michigan’s future, also played a key role in developing and advancing the new plan.“There are good-paying jobs and bright careers available in Lenawee County in the professional trades, and skilled professionals can help build Michigan’s future to meet the growing need,” said Kahle, of Adrian. “Providing young people with more opportunities to get this kind of specialized instruction will help expand their education and career options, while adding practical real-world instruction and training.”House Bill 5141 is now Public Act 235 of 2018.#####last_img read more

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Why the LA Teachers Union Picketed the Opening of an Art Museum

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first_imgShare2TweetShare1Email3 SharesThe Broad (oblique) / Jay Sterling AustinSeptember 20, 2015; KNBC-TV (Loa Angeles, CA)Billionaire Eli Broad and his wife Edythe have a number of philanthropic interests, including education and the arts. Yesterday, one of his endeavors in the arts, The Broad, a $140 million vanity vessel for his collection of contemporary art, opened to a picket line protesting one of his other initiatives—his avid funding and moneyed advocacy for the advancement of charter schools, as was reported here by NPQ’s Larry Kaplan.Broad is an indefatigable philanthropist, but he is also described as something of a control freak, demanding at one point as a condition for a charter-related grant in New Jersey that Governor Chris Christie stay in office. He gets ideas and then throws a lot of money at them to make them happen. This can give him a level of influence in a place like Los Angeles that some might consider out of alignment with democracy. An excellent article by Catherine Wagley in L.A. Weekly describes the dynamic in the L.A. arts arena, where he has invested deeply in his self-described plan to transform Grand Avenue, where both The Broad and MOCA are located famously right across the street from one another, into the Champs-Elysées of Los Angeles.Those picketing were protesting Broad’s involvement in a plan to significantly increase the number of charter schools in the L.A. school district. The group comprised students, parents, educators, and others involved and invested in public schools, albeit without the ready cash to capture the riveted attention of public officials.Broad also threw his support behind efforts to defeat Proposition 30, which would have raised taxes to fund public schools, supporting in part…arts programs. You can see why the situation carries its own special sting for those protesting yesterday.The Los Angeles Unified School District’s more than 207 charters have enrolled 16 percent of the students in the district, giving L.A. more charter schools and charter students than any other school district in the country. Broad’s foundation has invested $144 million in charter schools, and local charter school representatives involved in the expansion plan say that it will be ambitious, aiming at enrolling up to half of all L.A. students over the next eight years. Those schools would be non-union and many worry both about accountability to parents and the community and about draining badly needed funds from the public schools.United Teachers Los Angeles President Alex Caputo-Pearl said, “We are of the mind that billionaires should not be running public education.”“Broad and his billionaire pals wreaked havoc on public education in New Orleans,” Caputo-Pearl said in a statement. “His education ‘reform’ there resulted in massive inequities and civil rights violations for students. Segregation was reinforced and special education students were left behind. We do not intend to stand by and let him do the same thing in Los Angeles.”“Charter schools are destroying public education,” said retired kindergarten teacher Cheryl Ortega. “Mr. Broad wants to own 50 percent of our schools. That’s untenable.”—Ruth McCambridgeShare2TweetShare1Email3 Shareslast_img read more

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Help for the Addicted or Irresponsible Government Overreach

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first_imgShare22Tweet8Share4Email34 SharesApril 7, 2017; NJ.comIn his seventh State of the State address on January 10th, New Jersey’s Republican governor, Chris Christie, challenged the state legislature to send him a bill addressing the opioid epidemic. Several weeks later, Christie signed the bill into law—the toughest in the country, setting a five-day limit on initial prescriptions for pain-killing opioids. The law also mandates insurance companies to accept addicts into treatment without delay and to pay for up to six months of inpatient and outpatient addiction treatment.On March 29th, President Trump named Christie as chair of a new commission to fight the opioid crisis in America. The commission will be accountable to the White House Office of American Innovation established several days earlier.Last Thursday, Christie repeated his warning (first declared in his February budget address) to Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey that it must either contribute $300 million from its reserves to help fund the state’s new opioid law or forfeit its nonprofit status.“You can’t have it both ways, Horizon,” Christie said during a press conference at a drug treatment center. “You can’t pay your executives huge, multimillion-dollar salaries, and have them driven around in chauffeured cars. You can’t hire multimillion-dollar lobbyists, both in-house and outside, to fight what your mission is supposed to be.”“I’m not advocating at the moment for conversion (to a for-profit company),” the governor added. “But if they continue to fight this, then why should they continue to be a nonprofit?”Founded in 1932, Horizon is New Jersey’s largest insurance carrier, with 3.8 million members. It is the only licensed Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association plan in New Jersey. As such, there are no shareholders. Horizon has a board of directors, which governs the company for its premium-paying members. Horizon’s reserves are there for the benefit of its members, not to necessarily fund the governor’s new initiative, as commendable as it may be.NPQ has long examined the ambiguous nonprofit status of some hospitals and insurers. How often do these IRS designations amount to “legal fictions”? Are nonprofit health insurers (or, rather, their policyholders) required to be charitable even though they are not public charities? As well as being a nonprofit entity under section 501(m) of the Internal Revenue Code—most tax exempt entities, including charities, are covered in section 501(c)—Horizon is also a tax-paying health service corporation once known (until its restructuring in 1992) as the “insurer of last resort” for the poor. According to its website, Horizon paid about $515 million in federal and state taxes and insurance assessments in 2015. Horizon has looked at converting to a for-profit company several times through the years. The governor’s threat may reinvigorate that proposal.Horizon and other healthcare “nonprofits” are easy to criticize, but it’s more lack of bed space than lack of money that’s the primary barrier to treatment for the addicted. To meet the rising need of delivering vital services to opioid addicts, we’ll need many treatment providers and other stakeholders.Chris Christie concludes his second and final term on January 16, 2018. In January 2017, a Quinnipiac poll found that Christie has a 78 percent disapproval rating, one of the lowest approval ratings for a state governor in nearly 20 years. Is an unpopular governor’s attempt to raid Horizon policyholder premiums a reckless proposal that undermines the integrity of the insurance market, or is it a valid challenge to insurers’ warehousing of cash that could be used to meet urgent needs? Is a governor known for his aggressive behavior the right leader to help bring good government and fiscal responsibility to combat the opioid epidemic?—James SchafferShare22Tweet8Share4Email34 Shareslast_img read more

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News broadcasters Euronews and BBC World News have

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first_imgNews broadcasters Euronews and BBC World News have increased their reach, according to new EMS research.Euronews’s TV channel reaches 15% more viewers than a year ago, while its website has increased its reach by 19%. Each month, 15.2 million Europeans access Euronews on TV, online or via a tablet or smartphone, with digital platforms accounting for 22% of users.Managing director of Euronews sales, Olivier de Montchenu said, “The right content, at the right place, at the right time is the aim of Euronews since 2011. The brands which communicate on Euronews know that the channel as well as its multiplied service offer, enable each advertiser to deliver the most effective message to their audience everywhere in the world. This strategy is today confirmed by the EMS study which analyses the media usage habits of 49 million upmarket Europeans.  Besides its TV, online, mobile or even digital terminals offer, Euronews holds its lead on the global scale also thanks to its number one position in the Smart TV world.”The latest EMS survey also shows that BBC World News has increased its daily reach by 14% and its weekly reach by 5%. Growing numbers of people are accessing BBC News on mobiles and tablets. In an average month, the BBC News sites and apps are visited by around 8.5 million users worldwide on mobile and tablet devices.Colin Lawrence, commercial director, BBC World News, said, “The BBC’s audience goes from strength to strength across Europe with BBC World News demonstrating a growing and increasingly loyal audience and BBC.com outperforming all other international news sites. But most importantly, viewers in Europe and around the world turn to BBC World News and BBC.com because we provide high quality international news they can trust.”last_img read more

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Three French local authorities have become shareho

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first_imgThree French local authorities have become shareholders in news broadcaster Euronews.The allocation of shares to the Rhône-Alpes Region, the department of Rhône and the Greater Lyon Urban Community was unanimously approved at a general meeting of shareholders last week. Each authority will take a 1.5% stake in Euronews.Michael Peters, CEO of Euronews, said, “As CEO, but also as a long-time resident of Lyon, I am particularly delighted and proud of this event, which is exceptional and a first in France. It further strengthens our historic ties with the local area. Like Atlanta, London and Doha, our goal is to make Lyon, the Department and Region a world media capital. Our channel and all of our digital platforms will ensure a high profile for Lyon, thanks in particular to the quality and variety of major international events held in the city and region.”last_img read more

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Music channel Djazztv has secured carriage with H

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first_imgMusic channel Djazz.tv has secured carriage with Hungarian service provider Magyar Telekom.Magyar Telekom will broadcast the standard definition version of the channel on cable, satellite and IPTV as part of its Pulse thematic package.Netherlands-based Jazz-focused Djazz.tv launched a year ago and is distributed in HD on the Canalsat platform in France, the Caribbean and Africa.last_img

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Fox International Channels has moved several of it

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first_imgFox International Channels has moved several of its senior executives in Europe into new positions following a restructure that has seen it split its business into new regional divisions.FIC veteran Adam Theiler becomes executive VP of the Southern Europe & Africa unit, which covers Turkey, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Israel and Africa.Within that regional group there have also been several changes at FIC’s Turkish operation. Cenk Soner becomes general manager, reporting to Theiler. He was previously the deputy finance chief of FIC Turkey.Yadigar Belbuken has been elevated to VP and deputy general manager of the Turkish operation. She will also continue in her role as head of content for Fox in Turkey as well as expanding that remit to the wider southern Europe and Africa region.Mehmet Icagasioglu has been upped from ad sales manager in Turkey to vice president, ad sales, Africa and deputy general manager, FIC Turkey. He will run ad sales and sponsorship for FIC channel in Turkey and Africa across the sports, lifestyle, general entertainment and factual entertainment genres.“In a relatively short period time, FIC Turkey has become a rich source of original ideas and innovation, demonstrating a collective expertise in multi-media brand management that rivals our best Fox teams around the world,” said Theiler. “Now integrated in the new regional structure of FIC Southern Europe and Africa, the Turkish office will enjoy further prominence in deciding our strategic path for the region.”FIC Turkey operates channels including Foxlife, FX, Foxcrime, National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo Wild, Nat Geo People, 24Kitchen, Foxsports and BabyTV.last_img read more

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Struggling Russian independent news channel TV Doz

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first_imgStruggling Russian independent news channel TV Dozhd topped the viewing table of news and information channels added to Latvian telecom operator Lattelecom’s extended TV service over the last few weeks.TV Dozhd, which is struggling in its native Russia after controversially being expelled from the line-ups of major pay TV operators, attracted an average of 34,000 viewers a day in Latvia, which has a significant Russian-speaking minority.RTVi came second in the line-up  with 24,500 unique viewers a day, folowed by BBC World with 18,000.CNN International, which is also available on Lattelecom’s basic package, trailed with 6,000 viewers.Ukrainian general channel Inter+, which is currently available in test mode, attracted 20,000 viewers a day.last_img

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The Irish subsidiaries of Sony Music Warner Music

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first_imgThe Irish subsidiaries of Sony Music, Warner Music and Unviersal Music have called for legal action to force Liberty Global-owned UPC Ireland to combat illegal downloading on lines that have already been agreed with the country’s largest telco Eircom.The music groups are taking legal action after UPC declined to adopt a so-called ‘three strikes’ policy where copyright infringers are given two warnings to desist before their internet service is terminated. UPC has said that any such policy should be the result of legislation.The case, expected to last eight days, has already heard evidence of alleged copyright infringement by UPC subscribers.last_img

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KaiChristian Borchers OTT TV specialist 3 Screen

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first_imgKai-Christian BorchersOTT TV specialist 3 Screen Solutions has joined Metrological’s preferred content partnership programme to develop new applications and services for pay TV operators.The partnership will help content providers to design, develop and deliver new apps to enrich the pay TV viewing experience for consumers, according to 3 Screen Solutions.3 Screen Solutions-developed apps will be published in the Metrological App Library, giving operators the ability to choose app line-ups that are best suited for their customer base. By using the Metrological Application Platform and open source SDK, apps only need to be developed once to run on all set-top boxes across more than 20 million homes, according to the company.“We welcome 3 Screen Solutions as a preferred application development partner company that will have access to all our tools and solutions to create new personalized TV app experiences,” said Jeroen Ghijsen, CEO of Metrological.“We are excited to have 3SS develop new inventive applications for pay TV operators and look forward to helping more content providers benefit from our open SDK as well as the reach of our 20-plus million cross operator network.”Kai-Christian Borchers, 3 Screen Solutions managing director, said: “With its powerful app store platform, Metrological has already played an important role in helping service providers build loyalty and improve the entertainment experience for consumers. Our view is that 3 Screen Solutions can use the Metrological Application Platform to deliver truly revolutionary innovations that will enhance the TV watching experience.”last_img read more

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AE Networks UK has signed a new carriage deal wit

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first_imgA+E Networks UK has signed a new carriage deal with BT TV, in a move that will see new HD channels for Lifetime and H2 launch later this year.Under the new partnership, Lifetime will move to BT’s basic pay package, ‘Entertainment Starter’.The deal also secures the long-term availability on BT of A+E’s channel portfolio – History, H2, Lifetime and Crime + Investigation.“A+E Networks UK has a long-standing and close partnership with BT so I am delighted that we have not only agreed a new long-term carriage deal, but that we have also expanded our offering on this fast-growing UK platform,” said A+E Networks UK’s senior vice-president of distribution and strategy, Adrian Pilkington.Tony Singh, Business Affairs Director for BT TV and BT Sport, added:  “We’ve got a great and growing line up of channels on BT TV and we’re thrilled to extend our partnership with A+E. “BT’s customers love great factual programming and we’re delighted that they’ll now be able to enjoy all their favourite HISTORY, H2, C+I and Lifetime shows in HD.”last_img read more

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ProSiebenSat1 P7S1 and Discovery Communications

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first_imgProSiebenSat.1 (P7S1) and Discovery Communications have joined forces to push OTT in the German market with a combined streaming service.The pair are also looking to add third party channels to a new joint venture streaming service.German TV and media giant P7S1 and global channel operator Discovery will stream a raft of their channels and content under the 7TV brand, which will be a 50/50 joint venture.P7S1 channels on 7TV will ProSieben, Sat.1, Kabel Eins, Sixx, ProSieben Maxx, Sat.1 Gold and Kabel Eins Doku. Discovery’s free-to-air German channels DMAX and TLC will be included.7TV exists already as P7S1’s mobile offering and has registered six million downloads since 2014.The new version of the service will utilise the same app and underlying tech, but the expanded streaming service will have a wider selection of content. Discovery and P7S1 added that they would “welcome talks with other content providers to participate”.P7S1’s SevenOne Media will sell the new service’s ad inventory when it launches later this year. A CEO for the new service will be recruited.Discovery is expanding its free TV profile in Germany soon after resolving a bitter dispute over carriage fees for its pay TV channels with the Sky.“Our new agreement with Sky in the key UK and German markets includes new opportunities to launch new channels and services,” Discovery CEO David Zaslav told analysts in the wake of that agreement.Discovery said it will bundle 7TV with its direct-to-consumer Eurosport Player service in Germany, which recently secured Bundesliga soccer rights.“Germany is a priority market for us and poised for new growth fuelled by our recent investments,” said J.B. Perrette (pictured left), president and CEO of Discovery Networks International. “We are excited to be partnering with ProSiebenSat.1 and eventually other media groups to provide German fans with a robust offering of their favourite content.”Christof Wahl, chief digital entertainment officer of ProSiebenSat.1, said: “This initiative with Discovery Communications is an important step forward which will allow us to develop top technology and over time include additional channels.“Our viewers will benefit from an enhanced, premium range of content.”last_img read more

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Mobile distribution will be the overriding factor

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first_imgMobile distribution will be the overriding factor in the take up of OTT television services in Sub-Saharan Africa, Digital TV Research has forecast.With the number of fixed broadband homes only expected to reach 13 million by 2022, the estimated 486 million smartphones users in the region will be the key demographic for operators.“It is very important to stress the power that mobile operators have over the future of Sub-Saharan African OTT TV and video,” said Digital TV Research principal analyst Simon Murray.SVOD is already the main revenue driver for OTT TV and video in Sub-Saharan Africa, the new data shows.While they were just US$22 million, they are set for exponential growth by 2022, when they are predicted to reach US$475 million.In total, there will be an estimated 10.12 million SVOD customers, up from 525,000 at end-2016. South Africa will contribute 2.7 million of these, followed by Nigeria with 2.64 million.Advertising-funded VOD will also experience a boom, up from US$17 million in 2016 to US$64 million, while download-to-own will grow from US$10 million to US$79 million. Rental revenues will also grow multiple times.“The mobile operators know that they are in a powerful position. Not only can they give OTT players access to their extensive subscriber pools, but they can also conduct the billing (thus foregoing the need for SVOD platforms to insist on credit card payments).“Most importantly, many mobile operators currently charge high data prices for OTT access – which can add considerable costs to subscribers. However, a distribution deal with a mobile operator can substantially cut these costs.”Revenues from TV and movies will reach US$640 million in the region by 2022, which is up twelve times on the US$52 million figure Digital TV Research quoted in its study.South Africa will account for 40% of regional revenues, with Nigeria bringing in 22%.last_img read more

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Spanish broadcaster Mediapro has secured the right

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first_imgSpanish broadcaster Mediapro has secured the rights to Italian top-tier football from under the noses of Sky and Mediaset in a deal worth €3.15 billion for the next three seasons.Mediapro’s deal with the Italian football league to secure Serie A rights for the 2018-21 seasons has already provoked a response from Sky, which has indicated it may take legal action.Under Italian regulations, rights to Serie A cannot be held by a single buyer. However the league sold the rights to all games to Mediapro as part of a package provided for independent intermediaries, in the absence of adequate bids for its other five packages.Sky claims that Mediapro is not an independent intermediary but an operator of services, which could reserve games for its own thematic channels.Mediapro for its part has committed to distributing the rights on as many distribution platforms as possible. Luigi de Siervo, the CEO of Infront Sports and Media, which is responsible for marketing the rights on behalf of the league, has also said that the “current operators” would not be excluded from football and would have the opportunity to sit down with Mediapro to hammer out a deal.The deal, which is subject to approval by the Italian competition regulator, marks the first time that the Italian football authorities have sold the rights to Serie A games centrally.Mediapro has secured the rights to cover Serie A games in the Italian market only. While the deal is greater in value than the €2.7 billion that the Catalonia-based group paid for Spanish La Liga rights, it is only €1,000 beyond the minimum threshold set by the Italian league. Mediapro’s bid was however well ahead of what either Sky or Mediaset were willing to offer for the rights, according to local reports.last_img read more

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Ordeal by Innocence Agatha Christie murder mystery

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first_imgOrdeal by InnocenceAgatha Christie murder mystery Ordeal by Innocence was the most-watched programme on the BBC iPlayer service in April, according to the latest statistics from the public broadcaster on its catch-up and on-demand offering.The first episode of Ordeal by Innocence attracted two million requests on iPlayer, with the second episode securing 1.2 million requests.Overall, BBC iPlayer saw 277 million requests across the month, and 9.2 million daily requests, up on the performance for the same month last year.Drama series Come Home and soap opera EastEnders attracted a strong audience on the service. Episodes one and two of Come Home attracted over one million requests each, while EastEnders accounted for 12 of the top 20 most-requested episodes for the month.Other shows attracting a strong iPlayer audience included drama series The Split, comedy series Cunk on Britain, period drama The Woman in White and documentary series Stephen: The Murder That Changed a Nation.Dan McGolpin, controller of programming for the BBC, said: “It’s our unique range of high quality British new programmes that keep people coming back to BBC iPlayer and April was no exception with top-requested drama series Ordeal By Innocence and Come Home, top-requested comedy series Cunk On Britain and top-requested documentary series Stephen: The Murder That Changed A Nation.”last_img read more

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Cable and telecom group Altice Europe plans to sel

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first_imgCable and telecom group Altice Europe plans to sell a stake in its fibre infrastructure in its latest drive to reduce its indebtedness, according to local reports.According to French financial daily Les Echos, the new fibre joint venture could be worth over €3 billion. In addition to reducing the company’s debt pile, securing investment partners could help the company finance the deployment of five million fibre lines in mid-sized conurbations. Altice has committed to deploying 2.7 million lines over the next two years to meet the French government’s digital society goals.According to Les Echos, about 10 candidates are expected to submit proposals, valuing the JV at between €3-4 billion.The move comes three months after Altice secured a deal to sell a 49.99% stake in its French transmission towers business to private equity outfit KKR.In the case of the fibre business, participants are likely to have to commit to raising new finance alongside Altice to fund the build-out. According to Les Echos, Altice boss Patrick Drahi is likely to want to retain majority control of the new outfit, or failing that, to secure an option to buy out the partners at a future data.last_img read more

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Imagine if you could make your screen interactive

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first_imgImagine if you could make your screen interactive – how would that change your business? That’s the proposition from Spott.ai, the Belgium-based outfit which has a SaaS cloud solution allowing clients to upload any content including video and make it interactive – and shoppable.Michel de WachterSpeaking at the recent Zappware Strategy Summit in Ghent, company co-founder and co-CEO Michel de Wachter urged content owners, brands and broadcasters to look at the disruption in the media market as an opportunity rather than a danger.“The next generation of broadcasting and Smart TVs has the intent of going far beyond just applications,” he argued. “Television-based commerce, also known as T-commerce, is on the verge of transitioning our perception of a viewer’s experience by integrating the option to buy products simultaneously. The idea is that one can act on the urge of buying the product seen in a show immediately rather than forgetting about it shortly after. T-commerce is a budding solution for marketers and retailers, as the power of consumerism has shifted to the buyers themselves.”By providing contextually relevant information, Spott.ai’s software – which runs on the Microsoft Azure cloud platform and leverages Microsoft’s facial recognition and language detection software – transforms the audience’s experience of watching a live or on-demand show from a passive into an interactive one.De Wachter claimed that more than 40% of the TV audience skips ads in a nonlinear environment and that more than half of viewers watch a second screen while watching TV.“We have to create income and value in a different way,” he said. “You have to rethink the user interaction.”It all comes down to making the user experience interactive, he said.“Studies show that people still watch 2.5 hours of TV per day. Service providers invest a lot of money in content. But what you don’t allow viewers to do is what they can do on every other screen which is to tap or push, to interact. What happens if you give them a better experience?“You have to increase reach by transforming TV into an interactive marketplace. Our technology can turn every platform into a purchase platform, no longer directing viewers to the brand’s website, but having viewers complete a transaction on your platform.”Launched in 2016, Spott.ai clients include Lidl, H&M, Publicis Groupe, Decathlon, Unilever and the Eurovision Song Contest. It claims more than 60% interaction rates and greater than 3% click throughs boosting conversion to purchase.“By processing content once [using Spott.ai technology] it becomes interactive across all platforms: your websites, social media channels, third party websites, interactive video player platforms and even physical assets, such as paper magazines and boarding,” de Wachter said.The Spott.ai dashboard benchmarks performance of every unit of content on all platforms based on views, clicks and baskets.He admitted that getting Hollywood studios to part with the data about their content (movies, drama) was an uphill task and that the concept would prove itself first on genre such as reality cooking shows or music shows which have an obvious second screen interaction potential (e.g download recipe and buy ingredients or utensils/ viewer singer and buy track).“You can transform the UX directly into real dollars,” he insisted.last_img read more

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first_imgShareTweet “They are appealing to anyone who believes they may have been a victim of a burglary and who have not reported the matter to police, or anyone with any information about suspicious activity in the Skeoge Road, Gleneagles and Fern Park areas, to contact them at the Reducing Offending Unit at Strand Road on 101 quoting 1510 07/08/17.“Information can also be given anonymously through the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”MAN ARRESTED AS POLICE PROBE BURGLARY SPREE AT DERRY HOMES was last modified: August 8th, 2017 by John2John2 Tags: POLICE in Derry are appealing for information following reports of burglaries in the Skeoge Road, Gleneagles and Fern Park areas last night.A PSNI spokesperson said that sometime between 4 pm and 9 pm, entry was gained to a house in the Skeoge Road area, through an unlocked door, and a tablet device taken on Monday, August 7.“Later, at around 11 pm, a house at Gleneagles was also entered through an unlocked door, and a mobile phone stolen. “A further burglary at a house in Fern Park sometime on Monday, was reported to police today.“Police were called to the report of a male trying door handles of cars in the Gleneagles area shortly after 11pm on Monday evening and arrested a man a short time later.“The 23 year old man remains in custody at this time.“Officers have recovered property belonging to victims of the earlier burglaries from this individual. FERN PARKGLENEAGLESMAN ARRESTED AS POLICE PROBE BURGLARY SPREE AT DERRY HOMESPSNI DERRYSKEOGE ROADlast_img read more

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