An Exclusive Tour of Samsung’s Global Headquarters in South Korea

Source: CNBC

You may know Samsung for its smartphones and household appliances, but how about its insurance arm or holiday resorts? CNBC’s Uptin Saiidi gets a rare look inside the headquarters of one of the world’s largest companies.

NYC Kid’s $7 Million Dream Home With A Zipline And Slide

Source: Insider

INSIDER tours a $7 million New York City dream apartment that has a zipline, spiral slide, climbing wall, monkey bars, and more. It’s a kid’s dream home in the middle of Manhattan! Aly Weisman goes to the SoHo loft to get a tour of the most unique apartment in the city.

Tesla’s chief executive, Elon Musk chooses Berlin for engineering and design centre

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Wed, 13th Nov 2019) London, Uk – –

Tesla's chief executive, Elon Musk, has said Berlin will be the site of its first European factory as the carmaker's expansion plans power ahead.

“Berlin rocks,” Mr Musk said, adding Tesla would build an engineering and design centre in the German capital.

Tesla previously said it aimed to start production in Europe in 2021.

The moves come as the firm, which has also invested heavily in a Chinese factory, faces intensifying competition in the electric vehicle industry.

Mr Musk made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Germany on Tuesday.

“Everyone knows that German engineering is outstanding and that's part of the reason we are locating our Gigafactory Europe in Germany,” he said.

Mr Musk also cited risks surrounding the UK's exit from the EU for his decision, according to AutoExpress.

“Brexit [uncertainty] made it too risky to put a Gigafactory in the UK,” he told the trade magazine.

Mr Musk said the facility would be located near the new Berlin airport and later gave more details on what the factory would produce on Twitter.

The focus on Germany comes amid rising appetite for electric cars in Europe.

Over the coming years, the biggest electric car production plants will be in Germany, France, Spain and Italy, industry analysis showed.

Some 16 large-scale lithium-ion battery cell plants are confirmed or due to begin operations in Europe by 2023.

China push

Tesla's European plan comes as the carmaker also moves ahead with a $2bn (£1.6bn) factory in Shanghai.

The firm is looking to ramp up production in China, the world's biggest car market, where sales have been hurt by tariffs triggered by the US-China trade war.

The Shanghai facility will produce Model 3 and Model Y cars. The automaker reportedly showed off its new China-made vehicles to local media this week.

Still, Tesla has struggled with years of losses, fuelling investor doubts and casting a shadow over its shares in recent years.

The firm has yet to turn an annual profit, although it recorded positive results in the final two quarters of 2018.

Last year, Tesla took aggressive steps to slash expense, cutting thousands of jobs and reining in other spending.

Next Gen Farming Growing Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Without Soil and 90% Less Water

Source: Grateful

Aeroponics grows fruits and vegetables faster, cheaper and better. Vertical farming with Tower Gardens is on the ‘rise' and rightfully so. You can grow a variety of plants without ANY soil and 90% LESS water. It also requires 10x less space so you can do a lot more in a smaller area. That means easily growing fresh herbs, fruits, vegetables, and flowers both indoors and out. And because everything is grown and picked fresh, the flavor is unbelievable!

A Tour of Entertainment Legend Tyler Perry’s 300-Acre Studio Compound in Atlanta

Source: AD

Today we take you to Atlanta, Georgia to tour the sprawling Tyler Perry Studios. Home to productions like Marvel’s “Black Panther” and AMC Networks’ “The Walking Dead,” the self-made entertainment legend’s production compound is larger than Warner Bros. and Walt Disney’s Burbank studios combined.

12 newly-dedicated sound stages are joined by an entire backlot neighborhood called “Maxineville,” featuring a perfect replica of Madea’s house. Tyler Perry Studios is the centerpiece of Georgia’s burgeoning film industry and a testament to the vision, success, and generosity of its founder.

London’s Crossrail project delayed until 2021 as costs increase

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Fri, 8th Nov 2019) London, Uk – –

The opening of London's Crossrail project will be delayed until 2021 as Europe's biggest infrastructure scheme is set to go another £650m over budget.

The route, to be known as the Elizabeth Line, was originally due to open in December 2018.

Crossrail Ltd chief executive Mark Wild said services would be delayed to allow time for more testing.

He also said the cost of the project could reach £18.25bn, an increase of £650m on the previously agreed total.

The budget was originally set at £15.9bn for the scheme, which will connect major landmarks such as Heathrow Airport and the Canary Wharf business district.

However, Mayor Sadiq Khan, the Government and Transport for London (TfL) had since agreed a figure of £17.6bn.

Bosses said in April that services would begin between October 2020 and March 2021.

Announcing the latest delay, Mr Wild insisted services would begin “as soon as practically possible in 2021”.

He added: “The central section will be substantially complete by the end of the first quarter in 2020, except for Bond Street and Whitechapel stations where work will continue.

“We will provide Londoners with further certainty about when the Elizabeth line will open early in 2020.”

The delay will allow more time to complete software development and allow safety systems to be tested.

Analysis

Tom Edwards, BBC London Transport Correspondent

Just weeks ago I spoke to businesses up and down the Crossrail line and there was very little confidence with anything they were being told by the company.

Well they were right. We are getting a drip drip of delay and uncertainty.

Crossrail's hopeful “opening window” of between Oct 2020 and March 2021 just got slammed shut. Now it'll open “as soon as possible in 2021”.

This has gone beyond embarrassing into the ridiculous.

And then there's the extra cost. I suspect that will again come from London businesses through the precept, which was meant to be earmarked for other transport projects like the second phase of Crossrail.

Yes, this will be an incredible project when it's finished. But at the moment businesses will despair.

The line will make use of some existing track, but involves 26 miles of new tunnels connecting Paddington and Liverpool Street stations to improve rail capacity crossing the capital.

Mr Khan said he was “deeply frustrated” by the new delay.

A spokesman for the Mayor said “Further work is taking place immediately to assess Crossrail's latest cost estimates.

“TfL and the Department for Transport, as joint sponsors, will continue to hold the Crossrail leadership to account to ensure it is doing everything it can to open Crossrail safely and as soon as possible.”

An estimated 200 million passengers will use the new underground line annually, increasing central London rail capacity by 10% – the largest increase since World War Two.

Crossrail says the new line will connect Paddington to Canary Wharf in 17 minutes.

In May, Crossrail was criticised by the National Audit Office for running late and over budget, suggesting that bosses had clung to an unrealistic opening date.

‘No shortcuts'

A TfL spokesman called the delay “disappointing”.

In a statement TfL said: “It is only over the last year that the new Crossrail leadership has established the full complexity of finishing the software development and signalling systems, while getting the necessary safety approvals to complete the railway.

“Full testing is due to get underway next year and there can be no shortcuts on this hugely complex project.”

Airbnb to verify every single property on its platform 11 years after launch

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Thur, 7th Nov 2019) London, Uk – –

Airbnb says it will verify every single property on its platform after a news website found a series of scams.

In October, Vice News uncovered a pattern of false or misleading property listings posted on the rentals site.

Airbnb said it would review every property by December 2020, and also promised to refund customers if they were misled by inaccurate listings.

It is the first time Airbnb, which launched in 2008, has pledged to verify every home promoted on its platform.

During its investigation, Vice News spoke to several people who had booked accommodation on Airbnb and been scammed.

When the guests arrived for their holiday, they typically received a last-minute phone call from the landlord saying the property was no longer available, due to an emergency or double-booking.

They would then be moved to another property, often in a different area and without the amenities promised in the original booking.

In many cases the guests felt they had no option but to stay at least one night, after arriving late at night in a city far from home.

But they say Airbnb then refused to give them a full refund despite the misleading bookings.

In a series of tweets, Airbnb chief executive Brian Chesky said: “Airbnb is in the business of trust. We are making the most significant steps in designing trust on our platform since our original design in 2008.”

He pledged:

  • to review every home and host on Airbnb, aiming to verify every listing by December 2020
  • to refund guests the entire cost of their booking if the accommodation does not meet “accuracy standards”, and if the company cannot find another property “that is just as nice”
  • to launch a phone line so “anyone can call us any time, anywhere in the world and reach a real person”

Adam French, a consumer rights expert from Which?, told the BBC: “Holiday booking fraud is on the rise, with people losing millions every year to fraudsters tricking them out of their money with holiday lettings that do not actually exist.

“Steps from Airbnb to finally verify all of its listings are positive, but the industry must do more to ensure people are no longer being stripped of their money and having their holiday plans left in tatters.”

On 2 November, Airbnb said it would ban “party houses” after a mass shooting at a California home rented through the company left five people dead.

And in 2017, it changed its security policy, after a BBC investigation found criminals were hijacking accounts and burgling homes.

Santander in 350 million pound deal for stake in UK’s trade and foreign exchange facilitator Ebury

(qlmbusinessnews.com via uk.reuters.com — Tue, 5th Nov 2019) London, UK —

MADRID (Reuters) – Santander (SAN.MC) has taken a 350 million pound ($453 million) majority stake in UK-based Ebury as part of a digital strategy to boost growth through new ventures, the Spanish bank announced on Monday.

Ebury is a trade and foreign exchange facilitator for small and medium-sized companies which operates in 19 countries and 140 currencies, Santander said in a statement.

Santander said it is acquiring 50.1% of Ebury for 350 million pounds, of which 70 million will be new primary equity to support Ebury’s plans to enter new markets in Latin America and Asia.

The bank said it expects a return on invested capital (RoIC) higher than 25% in 2024.

“Small and medium-sized businesses are a major engine of growth around the world, creating new jobs and contributing up to 60% of total employment and up to 40% of national GDP in emerging economies,” said Santander executive chairman Ana Botin.

Like banks across Europe, Spanish lenders have turned to more profitable enterprise lending in a bid to lift earnings as low interest rates squeeze financial margins.

Santander is also focusing on emerging economies while cutting costs to counter squeezed margins from ultra-low interest rates in mature European markets.

Santander said Ebury’s existing investors, including co-founders and management, would reinvest in the transaction and the current management team will remain.

Ebury has generated average annual revenue growth of 40% in the last three years, Santander said in its statement.

By Jesús Aguado

Why Champagne is Often Double The Price of Other Sparkling Wines

Source: BI

Champagne is only true champagne if it's made in the Champagne region of northern France. All other sparkling wines made outside of this region, even those from neighboring parts of France, must be labeled differently. Champagne often costs double the price of other sparkling wines, such as prosecco or cava. A decent-quality bottle of it can cost you anywhere from $50 to $300, and vintage bottles often sell for thousands.

Can Desalination of Sea Water Save The World?

Source: CNBC

Today, one out of three people don’t have access to safe drinking water. And that’s the result of many things, but one of them is that 96.5% of that water is found in our oceans. It’s saturated with salt, and undrinkable. Most of the freshwater is locked away in glaciers or deep underground. Less than one percent of it is available to us. So why can’t we just take all that seawater, filter out the salt, and have a nearly unlimited supply of clean, drinkable water?

Uk business minister Nadhim Zahawi welcomes Spirit AeroSystems’ purchase of Bombardier’s Belfast site

(qlmbusinessnews.com via uk.reuters.com — Thur, 31st Oct, 2019) London, UK —

LONDON (Reuters) – British business minister Nadhim Zahawi on Thursday welcomed Spirit AeroSystems’ (SPR.N) purchase of Bombardier’s (BBDb.TO) plant in Belfast as great news for workers and a welcome investment in the United Kingdom.

Canada’s Bombardier said on Thursday it had agreed to sell its aerostructures business to Spirit for more than $700 million in cash and debt, including the Short Brothers Belfast plant which is the largest high-tech manufacturer in Northern Ireland with a workforce of around 3,500.

“I’m pleased that Spirit AeroSystems is boosting its investment in the UK,” Zahawi said in a statement.

“This will be great news for Short Brothers and its highly skilled and dedicated workforce, at one of the most important aerospace facilities in the country. I look forward to seeing this successful and ambitious business continue to go from strength to strength.”

Reporting by Kate Holton

Fiat Chrysler and Peugeot owner exploring merger

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Wed, 30th Oct 2019) London, Uk – –

PSA Group, the French owner of Peugeot, is exploring a merger with its US-Italian rival Fiat Chrysler, it has confirmed.

A deal between the two carmakers would create a business with a combined market value of nearly $50bn (£39.9bn).

This is Fiat Chrysler's second attempt at a merger this year after it pulled out of an agreement with Renault in June.

Fiat Chrysler shares jumped 7.5% on Wall Street.

The potential merger would face significant political and financial hurdles.

Discussions remain in the early stages and there is no guarantee of a final deal.

However, if the two companies do combine, PSA chief executive Carlos Tavares is expected to lead the enlarged group.

John Elkann, Fiat Chrysler's chairman and the head of Italy's Agnelli industrial dynasty which controls the business, would retain the same position at the new company.

A merger of the two groups would bring a number of brands under one roof including Alfa Romeo, Citroen, Jeep, Opel, Peugeot and Vauxhall.

The talks come months after a proposed tie-up between Fiat Chrysler and French carmaker Renault collapsed.

Fiat Chrysler had described its bid for Renault as a “transformative” proposal that would create a global automotive leader.

Industry shifts toward electric models, along with stricter emissions standards and the development of new technologies for autonomous vehicles, have put increasing pressure on carmakers to consolidate.

LVMH Luxury goods giant eyes $14.5bn Tiffany takeover

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Mon, 28th Oct 2019) London, Uk – –

US-based Tiffany says it is “reviewing” a takeover offer worth about $14.5bn (£11.3bn) from the world's biggest luxury goods company, LVMH.

The companies confirmed the offer in separate statements on Monday, with the 182-year-old Tiffany saying there are currently no talks.

LVMH, owned by France's richest man, Bernard Arnault, has brands including Christian Dior, Givenchy, and Bulgari.

Jewellery has been one of the fastest growth spots in the luxury sector.

In a two-sentence statement early on Monday, LVMH said it “confirms that it has held preliminary discussions regarding a possible transaction with Tiffany,” adding that there is no certainty of a deal.

A few hours later Tiffany, listed on the New York Stock Exchange, said it “has received an unsolicited, non-binding proposal from LMVH” of $120 per share in cash.

Reports at the weekend said cash-rich LVMH, which also owns Kenzo, Tag Heuer, Dom Pérignon, Moet & Chandon, as well as Louis Vuitton handbags, made a preliminary offer for Tiffany earlier this month. A takeover would be LVMH's biggest deal since buying the Bulgari brand in 2011 for $5.2bn.

“LVMH's attempt to put a $14.5bn ring on Tiffany, having already added Bulgari a couple of years ago is likely to take the fight in this sector to its closest rival Richemont, who owns Cartier, and would help LVMH in gaining better access to US markets,” said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK.

As part of its push for a bigger share of the US market, LVMH has opened a factory in south Texas, which was officially inaugurated this month in ceremony attended by Mr Arnault and US President Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka.

Tiffany's flagship New York store is next to Trump Tower on 5th Avenue. Founded in 1837 by Charles Lewis Tiffany, the company's fame was sealed after the release of the 1961 film Breakfast at Tiffany's, staring Audrey Hepburn and loosely based on Truman Capote's novella of the same name.

Higher bid?

Global demand for LVMH's products has held up well in recent years, but the same cannot be said for Tiffany, which has seen worldwide sales fall.

Like several luxury firms, analysts say Tiffany may have been caught out by the US-China trade dispute and rise in tariffs. It has also been hit by lower spending in its retail outlets by Chinese tourists.

LVMH has 75 brands, 156,000 employees and a network of more than 4,590 stores. Tiffany employs more than 14,000 people and operates about 300 stores.

News of LVMH's offer sent Tiffany's shares surging 22.8% in pre-market trading ahead of the official Wall Street open later. A $14.5bn offer is worth about $120 a share, but analysts said LVMH could afford to go higher, and Credit Suisse estimated that Tiffany was worth about $140 a share.

LVMH rival Kering has been looking to expand in the jewellery sector too, and has launched high-end jewellery lines for its fashion brand Gucci.

Switzerland's Richemont, meanwhile, a sector leader with labels such as Cartier, has also been adding to its portfolio, and recently acquired Italy's Buccellati.

But, said analysts at Jefferies, “Tiffany is potentially the biggest prey and the only US global luxury brand”.

HSBC business restructuring plans fuel fears of job cuts

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Mon, 28th Oct 2019) London, Uk – –

HSBC is planning to restructure its business after the banking giant said its performance in parts of Europe and the US was “not acceptable”.

Interim chief executive Noel Quinn said plans to improve these divisions were “no longer sufficient” and that it was “accelerating plans to remodel them”.

Earlier this month, the bank, which employs 238,000 people, was reported to be planning up to 10,000 job cuts.

On Monday, Mr Quinn said there was “scope” for potential cuts,

“There is scope throughout the bank to clarify and simplify roles, and to reduce duplication,” he told Reuters. However, Mr Quinn did not provide any further details on potential job cuts.

Mr Quinn took over as HSBC's acting chief executive in August following the shock departure of John Flint.

His remarks came as the bank reported worse-than-expected third-quarter profits.

Europe's largest bank said profit before tax fell 18% to $4.8bn (£3.8bn) in the three months to September, and also warned of a “challenging” environment ahead.

HSBC has been navigating uncertainty arising from Brexit, the US-China trade war and ongoing unrest in Hong Kong.

However, Mr Quinn praised the bank's performance in Asia – the region where it makes most of its profits.

“Parts of our business, especially Asia, held up well in a challenging environment in the third quarter,” said Mr Quinn.

“However, in some parts, performance was not acceptable, principally business activities within continental Europe, the non-ring-fenced bank in the UK, and the US.”

Analysis: By Dominic Oconnell

HSBC's dual nature – listed in London and Hong Kong and standing astride the trade flows between east and west – has often been a source of comfort for investors, who like a bank that doesn't have all its eggs in one basket.

It has also, however, been a source of discomfort for the bank and its shareholders. A dozen years ago, activist investor Knight Vinke led a campaign against HSBC's board, accusing it of corporate governance failings and urging it to stop spending money on western markets and concentrate on Asia, where there were more and more profitable opportunities for growth.

Fast forward to today and those same themes run through the first financial results from Noel Quinn, the bank's interim chief executive.

Mr Quinn, a battlefield promotion after the abrupt departure of John Flint in August, is clearly making his pitch for the getting the job full-time.

Statements from bank chief executives are normally bland in the extreme, but Mr Quinn pulls no punches, saying performance in the UK, Europe and US was “not acceptable” and that restructuring plans to focus on the Asian operations would be accelerated.

The bank has also warned there will be one-off financial hits in the next quarter to pay for the restructuring – which is likely to be shorthand for big job cuts to come.

The Financial Times reported earlier this year that HSBC would cut as many as 10,000 jobs; given the language in which Mr Quinn has couched his warnings about the bank's performance, that looks a likely outcome.

‘Significant charges'

HSBC said the revenue environment was “more challenging” than in the first half of the year, and predicted “softer” revenue growth than previously anticipated.

It also warned of “significant charges” in the fourth quarter – including those related to restructuring – if the backdrop worsened further.

While HSBC warned earlier this year that profits would be hit by a slowdown in China, the broader region was profitable for the bank in the third quarter.

The bank said profit before tax in Asia rose 4% to $4.7bn in the period, citing “resilience” in Hong Kong.

It follows months of unrest in the territory that have raised concerns about the impact on the economy and the reputation of the Asian financial hub.

The Smart Car Pulled Out of The US, Now It’s Betting On China

Source:CNBC

The tiny Smart car was meant to be a revolutionary new idea in urban mobility. But more than 20 years after its creation, the Smart car pulled out of the U.S. after years of increasingly dismal sales. Now, its parent company, Daimler, is looking in a new direction.

Who Wants To Be A Trillionaire?

Source: Bloomberg

There are millions of asteroids in our solar system. Because some are full of materials that are rare on Earth, they have been valued at stupendous amounts. But the most valuable resource in space may be something that's abundant back on the ground.

UK’s mobile operators team up to tackle rural ‘not-spots

(qlmbusinessnews.com via uk.reuters.com — Fri, 25th Oct 2019) London, UK —

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s four mobile network operators have agreed to build a shared rural network, backed by government funds, banishing countryside “not-spots” where consumers are unable to get an adequate signal.

EE, Vodafone, O2 and Three will collectively spend 532 million pounds ($684 million) over 20 years, according to the plan published on Friday, potentially supported by a 500 million pound investment from the government.

The operators would invest in new and existing phone masts they would all share under the proposal, which the government hopes will be formalized early next year.

Digital Secretary Nicky Morgan said she is determined to make sure no part of the country is left behind in mobile connectivity.

“Brokering an agreement for mast sharing between networks alongside new investment in mobile infrastructure will mean people get good 4G signal no matter where they are or which provider they’re with,” she said.

“But it is not yet a done deal and I want to see industry move quickly so we can reach a final agreement early next year.”

The operators have agreed to share existing masts and infrastructure in areas where there is coverage from at least one but not all operators.

If this is delivered, the government will then commit up to 500 million pounds of investment to eliminate total not-spots – the hard-to-reach areas where there is no coverage from any operator.

The agreement will bring high-quality 4G coverage to 95% of Britain by 2025, the government said.

Poor mobile coverage in rural areas has been a problem in Britain for many years, affecting residents and visitors including former Prime Minister David Cameron, who has said he had to cut short holidays in Cornwall, in England’s south west, because of poor communications.

The government has pushed operators to come up with a solution, including proposing “in-country roaming”, where customers would switch to rival networks if they could not connect to their own.

Vodafone UK’s Chief Technology Officer Scott Petty said the networks started working on the plan a year ago, before engaging with government and the regulator Ofcom.

“It will result in great coverage for the country in the most cost-effective way,” he said. “We are sharing our infrastructure as much as possible, it’s great for consumers, who will have maximum choice wherever they live in the UK.”

The allocation of costs had been agreed between the operators, depending on existing levels of coverage, he said.

The infrastructure sharing plan was far superior to in-country roaming, which was technically difficult, would drain users’ batteries and hamper competition and investment, he said.

By Paul Sandle