New Porsche mistakenly put on sale at bargain price in China

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Fri, 3rd Feb 2023) London, Uk – –

Potential car buyers in China have found that an online advert for a luxury sports car was just too good to be true.

A Porsche dealership in the the city of Yinchuan listed the brand new vehicle for 124,000 yuan ($18,300, £15,000).

That is just a fraction of what it should have been. The Panamera has a starting price of $148,000.

The promotion attracted hundreds of would-be buyers who rushed to secure what appeared to be a bargain.


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A spokesperson for the German car maker told the BBC that the promotion “contained a serious mistake in the listed retail price”, which was taken down immediately.

“As there was only one vehicle in stock, in accordance with the sales process, Porsche Centre Yinchuan has communicated with the first customer who made an online refunded reservation fee and has negotiated an agreeable outcome”, they added.

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The dealership also contacted “every bidder individually and explained the situation with apology”.

The incorrect information was posted on 30 January and customers who paid the 911 yuan reservation fee have been refunded, Porsche said.

The incident caused a stir on Chinese social media, with one commentator posting “This is why I don't buy Porsche lol”.

Others thought that it was just a promotional strategy that was “well conducted”.

It was also suggested that the company had been “irresponsible” and should have honoured the cut-price offer.

Another social media user claimed to be the first person to try to buy the car but had cancelled their order when they were told the real price. They said it would have been wrong to try to take advantage of a mistake.

Porsche started selling cars in mainland China more than 20 years ago.


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In recent years the company expanded its footprint in the world's second largest economy as it opened new dealerships.

The country is now Porsche's largest single market globally, with sales totalling $6.2bn in the first six months of last year.

By Monica Miller

Apple, Amazon and Google all offer gloomy outlooks in quarterly results

(qlmbusinessnews.com via news.sky.com– Fri, 3rd Feb 2023) London, Uk – –

Fears of a recession have dampened explosive growth enjoyed by tech companies throughout the pandemic.

Three of Silicon Valley’s largest companies posted disappointing financial results on Thursday, compounding concerns about a slowdown in the tech sector.


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Recession fears have hit both corporate and consumer spending globally, leading to the likes of Apple, Alphabet and Amazon all signalling a tough recovery from the highs of 2021.

Alphabet, the parent company of Google, reported subdued quarterly revenues as spending on digital advertising was reduced amid economic uncertainty.

Revenue from Google’s advertising business, which includes Search and YouTube, dropped from £52bn to £48bn. Shares in the company fell by more than 5% in after-hours trading.

Last month, Alphabet announced 12,000 workers would be made redundant globally.T

The “difficult news” about the job losses – about 6% of the total workforce – was revealed by Alphabet chief executive Sundar Pichai in an email to employees.

Similarly, Apple missed both sales and profits targets in the last quarter, hampered by production issues and lower demand for the company’s flagship iPhone.

The company’s sales dropped by 5% to £95bn, and were down across all product categories except iPads and services, which saw modest growth.

Apple also missed its first Wall Street profits forecast since 2016, delivering earnings per share of £1.54 against analyst estimates of £1.59 per share.

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Google job fears in UK and Ireland as parent firm slashes 12,000 staff globally

But there was one silver lining for the company: chief executive Tim Cook said production was now “back where we want it to be” following the relaxing of China's zero-COVID policies.
Meanwhile, e-commerce giant Amazon posted a positive quarter for the holiday period, but issued a warning about the pace of growth in its critical cloud computing division.

The company, which cut 18,000 jobs at the beginning of January, defied Wall Street expectations and reported sales of £121bn, a jump of 9% compared to the same period last year.

It also predicted that sales for the current quarter would be in line with analyst estimates.

But more concerningly, Amazon’s long-time profit engine has started to show signs of a sharp slowdown.

Amazon Web Services sales growth slowed to 20% in the last three months, the lowest rate of expansion since the company began publishing numbers on the division.


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After exploding in popularity during the pandemic and hiring some additional 800,000 workers, the current chief executive Andy Jassy has tried to sharply reduce spending, cutting non-essential business arms and slowing hiring, after Amazon’s share price fell by nearly 50% last year.

The drop wiped about £678bn from the company’s market valuation.

Twinkl education provider close to £500m joint venture with Vitruvian

(qlmbusinessnews.com via news.sky.com– Wed, 1st Feb 2023) London, Uk – –

Jon and Susie Seaton are close to agreeing the sale of a stake in Twinkl to private equity investor Vitruvian Partners in a deal that will land them a windfall of more than £150m, Sky News learns.

The husband-and-wife team who founded one of Britain's biggest privately owned educational resources providers are close to sealing a deal that will propel them into the ranks of the country's richest entrepreneurs.


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Sky News has learned that Jon and Susie Seaton, who established Twinkl in 2010 in a bedroom in their Sheffield home, are in advanced talks with the private equity firm Vitruvian Partners about the sale of a minority stake.

One source said the couple were negotiating the sale of a large minority shareholding in a transaction that would value Twinkl at approximately £500m.

If they sold a 30% stake, that would hand the Seatons a pre-tax windfall of close to £170m.

Twinkl provides digital teaching resources to millions of educators around the world, and according to its website had 4m users globally by the year of its tenth anniversary.

That number is said to have grown substantially since then.

According to accounts filed at Companies House for the year ended 30 April, 2022, it recorded turnover of just over £55m and operating profit of £28.2m.


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At the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, Twinkl made its entire library of content free to the teaching profession for three months.

Later in 2020, Mr Seaton was awarded an MBE for services to technology and education during the pandemic in the Queen's Birthday Honours List.

Twinkl could not be reached for comment, while Vitruvian did not respond to enquiries.

By Mark Kleinman

 

‘Google it’ no more? How AI could change the way we search the web

(qlmbusinessnews.com via news.sky.com– Mon, 30th Jan, 2023) London, Uk – –

The rapid rise of ChatGPT has accelerated an AI arms race that could change the way we search the web. As Google looks to its past for inspiration and Microsoft makes a multibillion dollar bet, could there still be room for someone new to make an impression?

It's hard to imagine the internet without Google.

The tech giant has become so synonymous with searching the web that it has become a verb – we don't look it up, we “Google it”.


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Google ended 2022 as it ends every year, as the most visited website in the world. Its estimated share of the search engine market stands at 92% (Microsoft's Bing is its closest rival, on 3%).

On the surface, it might not like a landscape that's ripe for change but don't be so sure.

The launch of ChatGPT, an AI chatbot, last year threatened to upend how people prepare for job interviews, journalists write stories, and children do homework.

Trained on a huge amount of text from across the internet, with the ability to provide human-like responses to almost any prompt, it sparked speculation it could pose a threat to Google.

Search engines ready to bet big on AI

The New York Times reports Google founders, Larry Page and Sergei Brin, have been brought back to help add ChatGPT-like features to the search engine they launched more than 25 years ago.

Google boss Sundar Pichai reportedly wants to speed up the firm's plans for conversational AI in its products and services, which go far beyond a chatbot that pretends to be a tennis ball (seriously, we tried it and it was really odd).

It comes as Microsoft makes a multibillion dollar investment in ChatGPT creator OpenAI, raising the possibility that it could find its way into products like Office (welcome back, Clippy and friends?) and – yes – Bing.

The potential AI arms race is one predicted by former Google advertising tsar Sridhar Ramaswamy, who wants to use what he learned during 15 years at the company, to get ahead of this potentially game-changing trend.

“We are at an interesting juncture,” he tells Sky News from his home in California, from where he co-founded startup search engine Neeva.

“Where large language models and AI offer unprecedented ability to peer into information, to sift through things and deliver answers in a way that simply was not possible before. This is a really exciting time for search – and I think it's going to be disrupted in multiple ways by multiple companies.”

How AI could change how you search the web

Among those would-be disruptors are the likes of You.com, a search engine launched out of California (where else) back in 2021, which added a bot called YouChat in December; and Neeva's own new AI.

Neeva, which launched in the UK in October, aims to provide informative and reliable search results without being driven by user data and advertising.

Its AI functionality is being added for UK users in February. The AI trawls the web for information, produces a single, written answer to the query, and – like YouChat – cites each of its sources for users to find out more.

And it works in real time, meaning it stays up to date with current affairs and provides references accordingly for its admittedly small pool of more than one million monthly users.

“It gives search the power to be a lot more fluid to what it's been so far,” says Ramaswarmy, who believes the advertising model he led at Google – which accounts for the majority of its revenue – needs to be challenged.

“The entire search experience becomes focused on just getting you to click on an ad,” he says.

“But there is a bigger reason – the obsession with ads on the internet has also steered the Google algorithm in a way that focuses on engagement, so more and more you see ‘made for Google' sites that game how to get on top.”

YouChat launched in December 2022, as an addition to search engine You
But is it all upside?

Neeva's commitment to being ad-free comes at a premium – £5.49 a month, or £44.99 a year.

The majority of its users are on its free tier, which limits them to 50 searches per month.

Allowing limitless searches via powerful AI isn't a particularly cost-effective business model, with OpenAI CEO Sam Altman admitting the computing costs to run ChatGPT are “eye-watering”.

Dr Andrew Rogoyski, from the Institute for People-Centred AI at the University of Surrey, says the infrastructure required to run such a service at the scale of a Google would be enormous.

“There is some way to go in streamlining conversational AI in a way that we can afford,” he tells Sky News.

“AI is getting bigger and consuming more energy, and that's the wrong direction – it's pushing it into the hands of big organisations.”

But there are more fundamental challenges that any search engine seeking to leverage AI will need to consider.

‘Incorrect or nonsensical'

Like ChatGPT, NeevaAI is a large language model, meaning it is trained on huge amounts of information.

But OpenAI acknowledges its answers can be “overly verbose” and “incorrect or nonsensical”.

“It doesn't know right from wrong, it doesn't know authoritative from gossip,” says Ramaswarmy.

Of course, it's one thing for a nascent ChatGPT to make mistakes, another entirely if a firm like Google rolls out a commercial product with similar failings. As Microsoft found out after its 2016 chatbot was taught to say offensive things.

“Conversational AI is very believable, certainly in short bursts, and that will improve over time, but because it's so believable and plausible, people will not necessarily challenge it,” Rogoyski says.

TOP RISKS IN USING AI FOR SEARCH ENGINES (ACCORDING TO CHATGPT)
Bias: AI-powered search engines can perpetuate and even amplify existing biases, particularly if the data used to train the model is biased
Privacy: AI-powered search engines can collect and store large amounts of personal data, which can be used for targeted advertising or other purposes
Censorship: AI-powered search engines may be used to censor or suppress certain types of information
Misinformation: AI-powered search engines may return misinformation or fake news, particularly if the AI model is trained on unreliable sources
Job loss: AI-powered search engines may lead to job loss for certain types of jobs, such as librarians or research assistants
Security: AI-powered search engines may be vulnerable to hacking or other types of cyber attacks, which could compromise user data or disrupt search results
Dependence: People may become too dependent on AI-powered search engines, which could lead to a lack of critical thinking and research skills
Monopoly: AI-powered search engines may lead to the creation of powerful monopolies, which could lead to a lack of competition and innovation
Are we really ready for change?

Seeing the potential for a shake-up on the internet is one thing, but seeing it through is another entirely.

Elon Musk's tumultuous takeover of Twitter hasn't upended people's habits to the extent experts predicted, with the rapid rise in users at would-be rival Mastodon having stalled.


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Ramaswarmy admits causing an internet “mass movement” is difficult, but views ChatGPT's breakthrough as evidence that “a platform shift” is on the cards.

“Think of how we saw Microsoft, Nokia and Blackberry disappear from the mobile world and let Google and Apple become the dominant players,” he says.

“It feels like this is one of these face-off moments.”

By Tom Acres, technology reporter

 

Why Wealthy Americans Love AmEx

Source: CNBC

Armed with impressive rewards and a loyal customer base, Amex has achieved impressive growth over the years. The company’s revenue has increased over 32% since 2017 and shares of the company have shown resilience and growth in a tumultuous market. Yet Amex is far from dominating the credit card industry compared to the likes of Visa and Mastercard. So what is the secret to Amex’s success and where is it headed next? Watch the video to find out.

 

Ethereum Scaling Tool Polygon’s MATIC Token Surges Amid Spike in Transactions

(qlmbusinessnews.com via coindesk.com — Fri, 27th Jan 2023) London, Uk – –

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The token is up 48% this year. The blockchain has the second most daily active users, according to one research group.

Ethereum scaling tool Polygon’sMATIC token has surged 12% over the past 24 hours, continuing its strong momentum this year.

MATIC was recently trading at $1.11. It is up 48% since Dec. 31 amid a spike in daily transactions that have made the blockchain the second largest for daily active users (DAU), according to data from Token Terminal.


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The rally comes amid a January upturn in the crypto market that has seen Aptos’ APT token skyrocketing more than 400%, Fantom’s FTM jumping about 145% and bitcoin rising nearly 40%.

The Polygon platform ranks second behind Binance’s BNB chain recording 344,000 DAU’s, ahead of Solana and Ethereum.

Polygon’s announced partnerships and launches over the last month that have increased DAUs may also be behind the price increase, along with anticipation of Polygon’s mainnet launch of its zero knowledge-EVM. The mainnet launch is scheduled for early 2023. Its zk-EVM public testnet went live in October.

“We’re starting to see users and interest come back to these kinds of networks and seeing activity again,” Charles Storry, head of growth at crypto index platform Phuture, told CoinDesk.

“There’s also a lot of projects that have built on top of Polygon that haven’t released their tokens yet, which will be coming out soon and add to the already increasing activity levels,” Storry added.


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Polygon currently has around $1.1 billion total value locked (TVL) according to data from DeFi Llama, “We are seeing mass TVL increases for riskier projects and early stage applications,” Storry said. “In a bear market investors are more conservative and don't want to take on huge risk, but now prices have picked up a little, they are more open to newer and riskier ecosystems like Polygon.”
“We will see more of that come through as the market continues to pick up.”

By Lyllah Ledesma

Amazon UK employees stage first formal walkout

(qlmbusinessnews.com via news.sky.com– Wed, 25th Jan 2023) London, Uk – –

Darren Westwood speaks to Sky News about corralling colleagues to strike over low pay and conditions that see staff stand on their feet all day and get warnings if they fail to sort through a set number of items per hour.

Darren Westwood knows how to stick up for himself.

As a kid, he was bullied in the playground and beaten up in his local town centre. Now he doesn't take stick from anyone, no matter how big or strong they appear, even if they happen to be one of the biggest companies in the world.


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Mr Westwood believes his employer, Amazon, is a bully.

Having slowly grown fed up with pay and working conditions at the company's warehouse in Coventry – where workers are on their feet all day sorting through goods to send to other warehouses – he has been corralling colleagues to support a strike.

After some initial reluctance, he gradually won them over and almost 300 workers are poised to walk out today – marking the first formal strike on British soil for the online giant.

“I don't get fazed by things. I spent my life growing up and I'm at that stage where I'm not intimidated or worried,” the 57-year-old said.

“During the pandemic, people were thanking us and we appreciated that but Amazon were still making money, while we feel like we've been left behind.”

“The money is there. I know people say that it's the politics of envy but we're not asking for his [Jeff Bezos'] yacht or his rocket. We just want to be able to pay our way. And that's all we're asking.”

Unions have traditionally had a hard time penetrating Amazon but the mood among the company's workforce shifted in August after it offered its workers what many considered to be a paltry pay rise. The online giant lifted the hourly wage by 50p to £10.50 an hour.

Upon hearing the news, workers staged an informal walkout. They were expecting more, especially as the company has enjoyed stellar profits in recent years and inflation is rising at its fastest pace in 40 years.

The GMB union seized the opportunity and helped arrange a strike, with workers voting in favour of formal action just before Christmas.

It's not just about money, however. Amazon has long been criticised for employing tough productivity targets that require workers to sort through a set number of items per hour.

Failure to do so can result in an “adapt”, a type of warning. Staff are given two 30-minute breaks a day, only one of which is paid.

“When you think you've got to queue up to clock out and then queue up to go through the metal detectors and security, and queue to get your food, that time does evaporate very, very quickly,” Mr Westwood said. “I've been one minute late back from a break before and have been given an adapt.”

The loss of up to 300 of its 1,400 workforce in Coventry is unlikely to cause Amazon any major operational problems but management will be keeping a close eye on developments. Across the globe, its workforce has started agitating. In the US, workers at a New York warehouse recently voted to start the company's first-ever labour union.

The GMB union is calling on Amazon to pay its UK workers £15 an hour to bring their wages in line with their American counterparts, who earn $18 an hour. However, Mr Westwood accepted that it would probably take a lot less than that to settle the dispute.

‘£2 an hour extra would be acceptable'

“I'd be happy if they just increased it by £2. I think £2 an hour extra or £2.50 an hour extra would be acceptable. I think everyone would stop then and people would be happy,” he said.

The company told Sky News that it pays a competitive local wage that has risen by 29% since 2018.

A spokesperson added: “We appreciate the great work our teams do throughout the year and we're proud to offer competitive pay which starts at a minimum of between £10.50 and £11.45 per hour, depending on location.

“Employees are also offered comprehensive benefits that are worth thousands more – including private medical insurance, life assurance, subsidised meals and an employee discount, to name a few.”

However, workers accuse it of cutting other benefits in the process. Crucially, the 5% pay rise it has given its staff amounts to a real-terms pay cut because inflation, which peaked at over 11% last year, has risen at more than double the pace.

Mr Westwood pointed out that the company has put the cost of its services up to reflect higher rates of inflation, while neglecting to fairly share the spoils with its workforce.

A similar story is playing out across the economy, especially in the public sector, where industrial relations are fracturing under the strain of rampant inflation. Nurses, ambulance drivers, railway workers, teachers and postal workers have all voted to down their tools and march out.

‘Some nights I can't sleep'

Like some of Amazon's employees, many of them were repeatedly reminded of their value during the pandemic, when they went out to work when others stayed at home.

“These are good people,” Mr Westwood said. “I know that some people think that we're unskilled and this is a minimum wage for a ‘minimum job'. But you need us during the pandemic. You applauded us and painted rainbows in the street. We're the same people.”

“It's 10 hours a day, standing on your feet. I do 18,000 steps and it takes its toll on people. I've got an injury to my shoulder. Some days it's just so painful. Some nights I can't sleep, it just keeps me awake. And that's from the repetitive strain of doing the same job over and over and over and over.”


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While Mr Westwood is hopeful that both sides can thrash out a deal, he believes that the major gain will be to increase unionisation within the Amazon workforce to ensure workers continue to stick up for themselves.

He accepts that working for Amazon comes with benefits and many people enjoy their time there but believes the company has a long way to go.

“Colleagues are struggling to pay their bills,” he said. “But we work for one of the richest men in the world, at one of the richest companies in the world, in one of the richest countries in the world… it's not fair.”

Rupert Murdoch scrap Fox and News Corp merger

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Wed, 25th Jan 2023) London, Uk – –

Rupert Murdoch has called off a proposal to reunite his broadcasting and publishing media empire.

Mr Murdoch and his eldest son Lachlan Murdoch have announced the decision not to go ahead with the plan because it “is not optimal for shareholders of News Corp and FOX at this time”.


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The idea was suggested last autumn, almost a decade after the two companies split.

The Murdoch family trust owns about 40% of both companies.

A majority of non-Murdoch family members would have had to approve the deal for it to move forward.

In similar press statements issued by both companies, the Murdochs said special committees set up at Fox and News Corp to review the proposal have been dissolved.

Fox Corp owns the cable network Fox News and Fox Broadcasting Network in addition to the American streaming content platform Tubi. News Corp is the parent company of Dow Jones, which owns the Wall Street Journal, news organisations in the UK and Australia, and HarperCollins Publishers.

It is unclear why the 91-year-old media mogul decided not to move ahead with the merger. However, the suggestion reportedly received resistance from several top shareholders.

News Corp is looking to sell its digital real estate assets. According to people close to the discussion, News Corp is in talks to sell Move Inc, which runs Realtor.com in the US, to its rival CoStar Group.


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A company spokesperson would not confirm the discussion. However, he told the BBC that they “continuously evaluates M&A opportunities across a broad range of companies to maximise shareholder value”.

News Corp also owns almost two-thirds of Australia's digital real estate company REA.

By Monica Miller

 

Microsoft confirms multibillion dollar investment in firm behind ChatGPT

(qlmbusinessnews.com via theguardian.com – – Tue, 24th Jan 2023) London, Uk – –

Company says deal with OpenAI will involve deploying artificial intelligence technology across its products

Microsoft has announced a deepening of its partnership with the company behind the artificial intelligence program ChatGPT by announcing a multibillion dollar investment in the business.


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It said the deal with OpenAI would involve deploying the company’s artificial intelligence models across Microsoft products, which include the Bing search engine and its office software such as Word, PowerPoint and Outlook.

ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence chatbot, has been a sensation since it launched in November, with users marvelling at its ability to perform a variety of tasks from writing recipes and sonnets to job applications.

It is at the forefront of generative AI, or technology trained on vast amounts of text and images that can create content from a simple text prompt.

It has also been described as “a gamechanger” that will challenge teachers in universities and schools amid concerns that pupils are already using the chatbot to write high-quality essays with minimal human input.

In a blogpost announcing “the third phase” of its partnership, Microsoft said the investment would include additional supercomputer development and cloud-computing support for OpenAI via Microsoft’s Azure platform.

It has been previously reported that Microsoft was considering a $10bn (£8bn) investment in OpenAI this time round.

“We formed our partnership with OpenAI around a shared ambition to responsibly advance cutting-edge AI research and democratise AI as a new technology platform,” said Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s chairman and chief executive.

“In this next phase of our partnership, developers and organisations across industries will have access to the best AI infrastructure, models, and toolchain with Azure to build and run their applications.”

Monday’s announcement is Microsoft’s third investment in San Francisco-based OpenAI, which was co-founded by Elon Musk and the investor Sam Altman. As part of the investments, Microsoft has since built a supercomputer to power OpenAI’s technology, among other forms of support.


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Dan Ives, analyst at the US financial services firm Wedbush Securities, said: “With ChatGPT being one of the most innovative AI technologies seen in the industry, [Microsoft] is clearly being aggressive on this front and not going to be left behind on what could be a potential gamechanging AI investment.

“In the AI race today, Nadella & Co are ahead of the rest of Big Tech and this investment is a major notch on the AI belt.”

By Dan Milmo

 

AstraZeneca boss says Technology can help the NHS

(qlmbusinessnews.com via bbc.co.uk – – Mon, 23rd Jan 2023) London, Uk – –

The chairman of Covid vaccine giant AstraZeneca has said that investment in technology can help the NHS cut costs.

Leif Johansson said more spending on areas such as artificial intelligence and screening could prevent illness and stop people going to hospital.

The NHS is under severe pressure, with A&E waits at record levels and strike action exacerbating ambulance delays.


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Mr Johansson said about 97% of healthcare costs come from “when people present at the hospital”.

He said only the remaining 3% is made up of spending on vaccination, early detection or screening.

Mr Johansson told the BBC at the World Economic Forum in Davos: “If we can get into an investment mode in health for screening or prevention or early diagnostics on health and see that as an investment to reduce the cost of sickness then I think we have a much better model over time that would serve us well.”

Commenting on the UK, he said: “All countries have different systems and the NHS is one which we have learned to live with and I think the Brits, in general, are quite appreciative about it.”

He said he was not talking about “breaking any healthcare systems down”. Rather, he said, “we should embrace technology and science”.

Mr Johansson said that artificial intelligence, or AI, could be used to diagnose lung cancer through X-rays by “just running them through software”. Or technology could be used to screen diabetes or cardiovascular diseases.

“All of that can be done within the institution of the NHS and would still have a very beneficial impact,” he said.

The NHS is facing more industrial action on Monday when ambulance workers in some parts of England and Wales, who are members of the Unite union, go out on strike in a dispute over pay.

There are further strikes planned by ambulance workers and nurses later this month and in February.

Following the UK's exit from the European Union, Mr Johansson had expressed concern about whether AstraZeneca would continue investing in the country.

But he now says that the UK has the opportunity to innovate in technology for the healthcare sector outside of European regulations.

“The UK already has a very, very good life science sector academically but also industrially with a couple of very large players, ourselves included.

“Anything that we can do in the UK would be beneficial for the country on a broader aspect than only using it in the UK.”


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Mr Johansson will step down as non-executive chairman of AstraZeneca in April.

He will be replaced by Michel Demaré, currently a non-executive director at the pharmaceutical company who holds similar roles at Vodafone among others.

By Dearbail Jordan & Faisal Islam

 

Digital nomad’ visas are easier to get than ever — especially if you’re rich

Source: CNBC

Money can buy many things — a tasty meal, a nice car, a luxurious home.

But what about a long-term stay as a digital nomad on the beautiful Indonesian resort island of Bali? Well, for people with $130,000 to spare in their bank account, that could become a reality too.

Digital nomads are “people who choose to embrace a location-independent, technology-enabled lifestyle that allows them to travel and work remotely, anywhere in the world,” according to one firm that links independent consultants with clients.

As of June 2022, more than 25 countries and territories had issued digital nomad visas to draw remote workers, whose number has increased since the pandemic started.

The Indonesian government, however, is taking a slightly different approach through a “second home visa” that permits wealthy foreigners, professionals, investors and retirees to stay in the country for up to 10 years.

Watch the video above to learn how this visa stacks up against the ones issued by other countries, and to learn about the difficulties policymakers face in making it a success.

 

Crypto lender Genesis preparing to file for bankruptcy

(qlmbusinessnews.com via uk.reuters.com — Thur, 19th Jan, 2023) London, UK —

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Cryptocurrency lender Genesis Global Capital is planning to file for bankruptcy as soon as this week, Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday, citing people with knowledge of the situation.

A bankruptcy filing has been expected for weeks, after the company froze customer redemptions on Nov. 16 following the downfall of major cryptocurrency exchange FTX.


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The collapse of FTX in November has claimed several victims including crypto lender BlockFi and Core Scientific Inc , one of the biggest publicly traded crypto mining companies in the United States, both of which filed for bankruptcy protection in the following months.

Genesis, its parent Digital Currency Group and creditors have exchanged several proposals, but have so far failed to come to an agreement, the Bloomberg report said, adding that Kirkland & Ellis and Proskauer Rose have been advising groups of creditors.

Genesis did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Genesis is also locked in a dispute with Gemini, founded by the identical twin crypto pioneers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss.

Gemini offered a crypto lending product called Earn in partnership with Genesis, and now says Genesis owes it $900 million in connection with that product.


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The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission last week said it had charged Genesis and Gemini with illegally selling securities to hundreds of thousands of investors through their crypto lending program.

Reporting by Niket Nishant and Mehnaz Yasmin 

Adidas loses court battle against fashion designer Thom Browne over stripes

(qlmbusinessnews.com via news.sky.com– Mon, 16th Jan 2023) London, Uk – –

Adidas sued Thom Browne after claiming the designer's four-bar and “Grosgrain” stripe patterns on its shoes and high-end activewear violated the sportswear giant's three-stripe trademark rights.

Adidas has lost a court case against New York fashion designer Thom Browne after suing over a stripe design.

A jury in Manhattan said Adidas had failed to show Thom Browne had infringed the sportswear giant's signature three-stripe trademark.


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The jury found the fashion house's parallel stripe designs were not likely to cause consumer confusion with Adidas's products.

Thom Browne had argued that, among other things, its designs have a different number of stripes and stripes are a common design element for clothing.

The designer's sportswear features four parallel stripes wrapping around the arm or leg of shorts and sweatshirts.

Adidas sued the brand in 2021, claiming its four-bar and “Grosgrain” stripe patterns on its shoes and high-end activewear violated its three-stripe trademark rights.

The German company has filed more than 90 lawsuits and signed more than 200 settlement agreements since 2008 related to the trademark, according to court documents in the case.

Thom Browne previously used a three-bar design on its clothing, changing it to the four-stripe design after Adidas objected in 2007.

An Adidas spokesperson said the company was disappointed with the jury's decision but will “continue to vigilantly enforce our intellectual property, including filing any appropriate appeals”.

A spokesperson for Thom Browne Inc said the company was pleased with the verdict.


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The fashion house said confusion between the companies' designs was unlikely because they “operate in different markets, serving different customers, and offer their products at strikingly different price points”.

Adidas had planned to ask the jury for more than $7.8m in damages, plus additional punitive damages and a cut of Thom Browne's infringing sales, according to a court filing.

It also requested a court order stopping Thom Browne from using the designs.

 

How Tech Is Betting Big On AI Generated Art

Source: CNBC

Silicon Valley is abuzz over a new kind of artificial intelligence — generative AI. It's a somewhat new field that exploded in popularity and attention in recent weeks, thanks to a steady stream of novel — and sometimes very weird — pieces of digital art hitting social media.

The art was made by generative AI software, using simple text prompts from humans. These kinds of tools not only produce unique pieces of art, they can also generate audio, text and video based on user prompts. While their results are less than perfect, the AI tools can turn what were once hours-long projects into minutes-long tasks.

Proponents of generative AI software say the tools could one day replace the armies of visual effects artists who work on major blockbuster films. In a shorter time frame, they could help white-collar workers whip up slideshow presentations, design corporate logos and even craft written content such as blog posts or social media posts.

 

Will Flippy The Robot Be The New Face Of Fast Food?

Source: CNBC

This robot named Flippy runs the fry station at a White Castle outside of Chicago. With a mechanical arm and using computer vision technology Flippy can cook everything from french fries and onion rings to cheese sticks. White Castle said it plans to add 100 Flippy’s to its kitchens’ nationwide. Up to 82% of restaurant positions could, to some extent, be replaced by robots. Automation could save U.S. fast food restaurants over $12 billion in annual wages. And restaurants are also struggling to find workers. American restaurants are down more than 560,000 jobs or about 4.6% of its workforce from their pre-pandemic levels. So what impact will robots have on the fast food industry and the livelihood of its workers? CNBC got a behind the scenes look at restaurant robot maker Miso Robotics to find out.

 

Apple boss to take 40% pay cut after investor backlash

(qlmbusinessnews.com via news.sky.com– Fri, 13th Jan 2023) London, Uk – –

Apple says he requested the move after just 64% of investors supported his pay arrangements at the company's last annual meeting.

Apple chief executive Tim Cook is to take a pay cut of more than 40% after shareholders turned on the size of his awards last year.


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The company said he requested the move after fewer than two-thirds of Apple investors supported his pay package at the tech firm's annual meeting in 2022.

Regulatory filings on Thursday showed his basic salary and bonus would remain the same at $3m (£2.45m) and $6m (£4.9m), respectively.

But stock bonuses would depend more, in future, on how well the iPhone maker's shares perform relative to market peers.

Mr Cook's compensation for Apple's financial year to the end of September 2022 was $99.4m – up slightly on the previous year's $98.7m.

Elon Musk breaks world record for largest loss of personal fortune in history

That would likely be achieved, Apple said, through stock awards of around $40m, with $30m of those being tied to share price performance.

Many of the big US tech firms have seen sharp share price falls over the past year – linked to the inflation-led slowdown in the global economy.


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In Apple's case, supply chain woes – particularly in China – have contributed to its decline.

A year ago, it became the first US company to achieve a $3trn market value but it currently stands at $2.1trn.

 

Goldman Sachs to cut 3,200 jobs as part of their biggest restructuring efforts

(qlmbusinessnews.com via news.sky.com– Wed, 11th Jan 2023) London, Uk – –

Employees of the US-based multinational financial services company await their fate as the investment bank embarks on its biggest cost-cutting programme since the global financial crash.


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Up to 3,200 jobs are to go at Goldman Sachs as part of the biggest restructuring efforts at the company since the global financial crash.

The US-based multinational financial services company and investment bank is embarking on a series of cost-saving measures after the deal making and market boom of the COVID-19 pandemic dried up and net profit dropped 44% in the first nine months of this financial year.

It is understood job cuts will be made to the company's global workforce with UK staff to be impacted as a result.

More than 6,000 staff are employed by Goldman Sachs in the UK.

Reports say the majority of employees are to hear of their fates from Wednesday and that more than a third of cuts are likely to be from core trading and banking units.

The job losses are to be equivalent to about 6% of the 49,100 total work force recorded at the end of September.

Earnings for the final quarter of the year are to be published next Tuesday with analysts forecasting earnings per share to have fallen around 8% during the three-month period compared to a year earlier.

The company recruited extensively during the pandemic years and in 2020 paused its routine firing of the least productive employees.

The uncertain global financial outlook is also behind the move to cut the workforce as is the slowdown in business operations and a costly foray into consumer banking.

Staff had been braced for job losses following the end of year message from the Goldman Sachs chief executive.


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“There are a variety of factors impacting the business landscape, including tightening monetary conditions that are slowing down economic activity,” David Solomon said in an audio message to staff in late December.

Goldman Sachs has not commented on the reports.

 

 

Three UK warehouses, employing 1,200 staff to be shut by Amazon

 

(qlmbusinessnews.com via uk.reuters.com — Tue, 10th Jan, 2023) London, UK —

Amazon (AMZN.O) plans to shut three warehouses in Britain in a move that will impact 1,200 jobs, but workers will be given the chance to transfer to other units, the online retail giant said on Tuesday.


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The company said it opened a consultation to close three older British warehouses this year in Hemel Hampstead, Doncaster and Gourock, sites employing 1,200 people in one of Amazon's biggest markets outside the United States.

Those employees will be given the chance to move jobs internally, said Amazon, with those from the first two sites moving to other warehouses nearby. Amazon says it operates 30 large warehouses across the United Kingdom.

Amazon said it planned to open two new warehouses in central and north east England over the next three years, a move it said will create 2,500 new jobs.

The Seattle-based online retailing giant said earlier in January it wants to shed 18,000 roles globally, bracing for slower growth as consumers and businesses cut spending as a result of high inflation.

The planned closing of the British warehouses are not part of the wider restructuring which mainly covers non-warehouse roles in e-commerce and human resources.


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Separately, Amazon's UK business has also faced demands for better pay from its warehouse staff, about 300 of whom plan to go on strike on Jan. 25.

Reporting by Akash Sriram, Sachin Ravikumar and Sarah Young

The $18 Billion Global Commercial Aviation Aircraft Paint Market

Source: CNBC

Dean Baldwin Painting, founded in 1965, is an aircraft painting company with five facilities across the U.S. It has painted aircraft for some of the largest airlines in the world, including United, Delta and JetBlue. The cost to manufacture, operate, maintain and fly commercial aircraft is generally expensive, but not many think about the expense that goes into painting one.

The average cost falls between $175,000 and $200,000, according to the company. The entire painting process can take up 10 days and involves multiple engineers, painters and inspectors, all of whom are responsible for meeting the standards set by the Federal Aviation Administration.

The market itself is a growing one: The global commercial aviation aircraft paint market was estimated at nearly $18.5 billion in 2020 and is expected to grow to a $65 billion by 2027.