Mark Cuban Basketball Multi-Billion Dollar Enterprise


Bloomberg Game Changers profiles Dallas Mavericks' owner Mark Cuban. See how Cuban spun his love of basketball into a multi-billion dollar enterprise.


New fuel-efficient planes about to shift global aviation map


The global aviation map is about to shift in a way we've not seen in three decades. New fuel-efficient planes mean that we could see a lot more long-haul direct flights. Bloomberg Gadfly's David Fickling explains why that could be bad for the airlines.

Electric black cab manufacturer opens a £300m plant in Coventry


The black cab manufacturer London Taxi Company has opened a £300m plant for its new electric cab.

The plant in Coventry, which has created more than 1,000 jobs, will produce the electric taxis by the end of the year.

The company is owned by Chinese carmaker Geely. Chief executive Chris Gubbey told Ian King Live there may yet be more investment.

Uk follows US by imposing ban on larger electronic devices on flights

Britain has followed in US footsteps by imposing a cabin baggage ban on larger electronic devices on passenger flights from several Middle Eastern and North African countries.

Direct inbound flights from Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia are affected by the new restrictions, amid terrorism fears.

Passengers won't be allowed to bring phones, laptops or tablets over 16 cm in length, 9.3 cm in width and with a depth of over 1.5 cm into the cabin.

Malaysia Develops World’s First Digital Free Trade Zone


The development of the Digital Free Trade Zone would offer a conducive environment for digital companies to carry out their business, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak during his opening address at the Global Transformation Forum in Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday.

UK inflation surge above 2.0 percent creates dilemma for BoE


Inflation in Britain surged again last month.

Consumer prices were up by a stronger-than-expected 2.3 percent thanks to by more expensive fuel and food.

That was up from the previous month's 1.8 percent and above the 2.0 percent target of the UK's central bank. It was the biggest annual increase in nearly three-and-a-half years.

Oil was pricier and the fall in the value of the pound linked to the Brexit vote has pushed up the cost of imported raw materials.

Google’s European Boss Apologised Over Extremist Content

( via – – Tue, 21 Mar, 2017) London, Uk – –

Google’s European chief has publicly apologised after online adverts for major brands appeared next to extremist material, but declined to say whether the company would begin actively seeking out such content and taking action against it.

Matt Brittin, Google’s head of Europe, the Middle East and Africa, told the Advertising Week Europe conference in London on Monday: “I want to start by saying sorry to the brands affected by this. I take the issue very seriously and I apologise in the instances where that may have happened.”

But his response was deemed inadequate by Yvette Cooper, Labour MP and home affairs select committee chair, who said the company was “failing to do enough” to weed out extremist content.

Brittin told an audience of advertising industry figures that the company would improve its ad placement system, which has seen ads attached to videos by extremists, including hate preachers and the former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.

The ads help fund payments to the people who post the videos, with every 1,000 clicks worth about £6.

Brittin insisted the sums involved had been “pennies not pounds” but admitted,“clearly we need to do more on that”.

He declined three times to say whether Google would start actively seeking out extremist content, rather than investigating only after users flag up inappropriate material, such as videos on YouTube, which it owns.

“Of course we’re looking again at how we improve what we’re doing on enforcement. That’s a question of resources and technology and community,” he said.

Cooper, who last week accused the company of “profiting from hatred” said she was not satisfied with Brittin’s response to the issue.

“This apology from Google doesn’t go far enough,” she said. “They need to say whether they will be paying back any of that advertising revenue and to answer our questions on what more they are doing to root out extremism or illegal activity on YouTube because they are still failing to do enough to remove illegal or hate-filled content from YouTube.

“They still don’t seem to have woken up to the seriousness and toxicity of some of the videos they are still hosting and their own responsibility to deal with that. And they still haven’t agreed to use any of their much-feted search engines to identify illegal content such as National Action videos and remove them.

“It isn’t enough for Google to respond only when their advertising revenues take a hit. They are one of the biggest and most powerful companies on the planet. They can afford to do far more, far faster to deal with illegal and hate-filled content online.”

Brittin admitted that the company “need[s] to do better” but also appeared to blame advertisers for failing to deploy tools designed to ensure their ads do not appear next to extremist content.

“What we found is that there are many controls available but they’re not always being used so we need to make sure they’re simpler and easier to use,” said Brittin.

Google executives have been summoned to the Cabinet Office later this week to explain to ministers what they plan to do about extremist content and ads attached to it on YouTube and Google’s wider network.

But a date for the meeting has yet to be arranged, according to Whitehall sources, while Brittin was unable to say what measures the company will promise to take.

“You’ll have more detail from us very soon on that. We’re working to get it right and if we need some improvement we will do,” he said.

The government and several high-profile companies have suspended adverts, or are reviewing whether to do so, after it emerged that extremists including Duke were able to profit from adverts on Google’s network.

Marks & Spencer became the latest company to pull advertising from Google on Monday, adding its name to a growing list that includes government departments, major advertising agencies and well-known companies. McDonald’s, the BBC, L’Oréal, HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland, Lloyds, the Guardian, Audi and Channel 4 are among the firms to suspend advertising.

BT and Sky said they were reviewing their relationship with Google.

Unilever’s chief marketing officer, Keith Weed, who was speaking alongside Brittin at the Advertising Week Europe seminar, said the consumer goods company has not pulled its adverts from Google and had not yet been affected.

Brittin’s public apology comes after he was urged to do so by Rob Norman, chief digital officer at GroupM, part of the world’s largest advertising group WPP.

While Brittin admitted that Google had work to do to mend fences with advertisers, he also pointed out that it handles a huge volume of content, including 400 hours of YouTube video uploaded every minute.

By Rob Davis

Brazil Authorities Attempt to Quell Fears over Tainted Meat Scandal


In Brazil, authorities allege that major meat processing companies bribed officials in order to allow them to sell rotten beef and poultry. The government is now attempting to save the country's reputation as one of the world's top meat exporters. Also today, we take a look at last year's champagne sales.

Private companies cancel home care contracts with 95 Councils


Bournemouth Council/flickr

( via – – Mon, 20 Mar, 2017) London, Uk – –

Ninety-five councils have had home care contracts cancelled by private companies, an investigation has found.

BBC Panorama found that agencies were struggling to deliver the care required with the funding offered, forcing the companies to end their contracts.

Numerous authorities across south London have raised council tax this year in a bid to ease the social care crisis, including Kingston, Merton and Croydon.

It found that a quarter of the country's 2,500 home care providers were at risk of insolvency, and almost 70 had closed down in the last three months.

The agencies – which provide help for people living independently at home – also struggled to recruit and retain staff, Panorama reported.

One home care company – Cymorth Llaw in Bangor, Wales – was forced to hand back its contract with Conwy council because it felt unable to provide adequate care with the council's funding offer of £15 per hour.

Ken Hogg, co-director of the company, told the programme: “We didn't think we could do it for the money – it was as simple as that.”

He said the company has always paid employees above the national minimum and living wage.

But with pension contributions, National Insurance and training – among other costs such as mileage and travel time – the amount the council were paying “doesn't leave a great deal”.

BBC Panorama also found a similar issue at home care company Mears, who cancelled a contract with Liverpool City Council in July saying £13.10 per hour was not enough to cover the costs, and at least £15 an hour was needed.

Alan Long, executive director at Mears, told the programme: “That was a terrible thing to do for both service users and for care staff, we absolutely did not take that lightly, but frankly what choice did we have?

“We just cannot do the two most basic things that you need to do in home care – one, pay staff the absolutely minimum of a living wage and, two, be able to recruit people, enough people to deliver the service that Liverpool Council actually expected from us.”

The Local Government Association warned in January that the number of people who had “unmet basic needs”, such as getting washed, dressed or getting out of bed, could rise because of “continued underfunding” of social care.

It said those who got care could face shorter visits from carers.

Problems arranging social care in the community have also led to an all-time high level of delayed discharges in the NHS, with patients who are medically fit to leave hospital unable to do so.

There have been repeated calls for more money for social care, with charities, local councils and think tanks saying the gap in funding is between £1.3bn to £2bn.

In this month's Budget, Chancellor Philip Hammond announced £2 billion of extra funding for social care over the next three years, and said the system was “clearly under pressure”.

By Jonathan Mitchell

Vodafone to merger with India telecoms operator Idea Cellular

( via – – Mon, 20 Mar, 2017) London, Uk – –


Vodafone has announced the merger of its Indian business with rival mobile operator Idea Cellular to create one of the world’s largest telecoms operators.

The announcement ends months of speculation over a possible tie-up.

The combined company will have an enterprise value of around £19bn and be the biggest telecoms operator in India with almost 400m customers and a market share of 35pc.

The deal, which means that Vodafone has gone into business with the powerful Birla dynasty, has been triggered by a mobile price war that was kickstarted by India’s richest man, Mukesh Ambani, and his new operator Reliance Jio.

Following the merger, which is expected to close in 2018, Vodafone will own 45.1pc of the combined company, while the Aditya Birla Group will own 26pc.

The Aditya Birla Group, which is Idea’s parent company, has the right to acquire more shares from Vodafone “with a view to equalising the shareholdings over time,” the companies said.

Vittorio Colao, Vodafone’s chief executive, added: “The combination of Vodafone India and Idea will create a new champion of Digital India founded with a long-term commitment and vision to bring world-class 4G networks to villages, towns and cities across India.

“The combined company will have the scale required to ensure sustainable consumer choice in a competitive market and to expand new technologies – such as mobile money services – that have the potential to transform daily life for every Indian.”

The companies said they expect cost and capex synergies of about £8bn after integration costs, with operating cost savings representing 60pc of the expected savings.

The Aditya Birla Group has the sole right to appoint the company’s chairman, which will be Kumar Mangalam Birla, the group’s chairman. Vodafone will appoint the chief financial officer, while the two groups will jointly agree on the appointments of the chief executive and the COO.

Shares in Idea rose almost 15pc immediately after the announcement of the news but quickly reversed, plummeting back down by around 15pc.

By Sam Dean

Dawoon Kang Coffee Meets Bagel Co-Founder


Dawoon cofounded Coffee Meets Bagel along with her sisters Arum and Soo. As COO & Head of Marketing, Dawoon oversees the company’s overall vision, strategy, branding, and marketing. Dawoon explains why her sisters started Coffee Meets Bagel and how their dating service empowers women. She also tells the story of rejecting Mark Cuban’s 30 Million Dollar offer on Shark Tank and the up’s and down’s of starting a business with her family.

IAG to Launch Low-cost Airline Named Level


Keith Mason/flickr
( via – – Fri, 17 Mar, 2017) London, Uk – –

The owner of British Airways is entering the fray of the burgeoning low-cost long-haul market with a new airline to be named Level in a bid to take the wind out of rivals such as Norwegian and WestJet.

International Airlines Group said Level will launch in June with an initial two new Airbus A330 aircraft flying from Barcelona to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Buenos Aires and Punta Cana, in the Dominican Republic.

Willie Walsh, IAG chief executive, said Level would become IAG’s fifth main airline brand alonside Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia and Vueling.

Mr Walsh added Barcelona was “just the start” and that other European destinations would be added.

Level will be initially staffed by Iberia’s flight and cabin crew, creating up to 250 jobs in Barcelona, the launch city for the brand.

Fares will start from €99 for a one-way ticket. Checked luggage, meals and seat selection will be among the perks for those willing to pay for one of the 21 premium economy seats each aircraft will have.

The remaining 293 seats will be economy, where passengers will be able to choose what they want to pay for.

Norwegian’s website has flights from Barcelona to San Francisco from €162 in the winter months, meaning Level could become a serious competitor.

By  Bradley Gerrard