Warriors Looking Forward: When will Stephen Curry return?

first_imgWarriors beat writer Mark Medina reports that Stephen Curry will sit out Golden State’s game against Orlando Magic on Monday as he continues to make progress recovering from his groin injury.Curry’s first practice back may happen Tuesday in preparation for a return against the Toronto Raptors on Thursday, Nov. 28. If not then, maybe in Detroit on Saturday against the Pistons or Atlanta next week.According to coach Steve Kerr, the team is taking a “wait and see” approach Curry, Draymond …last_img

‘He’s an MVP candidate, he really is’: Despite roster chaos, Marcus Semien continues to excel at the plate

first_imgKANSAS CITY — Babies, beanballs and lengthy IL stints had the A’s in a bit of a roster jumble.The A’s beat the Royals on Thursday, 9-8. It secured a nice little 3-1 series win to bounce off of into a gut-check three-game series in Yankee Stadium. The Royals are in last place in the AL Central, they aren’t contenders. They aren’t that good, though they put up a good fight after Monday’s rout.But the A’s are without Ramon Laureano, Stephen Piscotty. Wednesday they lost Khris Davis to paternity …last_img

Congo welcomes SA farmers

first_imgA sunflower field in South Africa’s westernFree State region.(Image: Graeme Williams,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. For more freephotos, visit the image library.)Wilma den HartighWith South African farmers considered to be among the best in the world, the Republic of Congo is enlisting their help to improve food security and social development by inviting them to set up agricultural operations in that country.Andre Botha, chair of Congo Agriculture, an organised agriculture body affiliated to South Africa’s Agri SA, said this is an ideal opportunity for local farmers to diversify their operations.Lying on the western border of the much larger Democratic Republic of Congo, the central African country desperately needs a viable agricultural sector. It currently has to import most of its food from France and China, food that is often expensive and of low quality.It’s a win-win arrangement: the Congo offers South African farmers free land, exemption from taxes and import duties for five years, and they can take profits out of the country. Farmers also have the option of selling their Congo businesses, or leaving them to heirs. In return, the farmers’ responsibility is to establish commercial farms that will guarantee food security within five years.Botha is confident local farmers can meet these conditions, helping create a successful farming industry that would have major benefits for the Congo’s economy and people.“Currently the country’s total debt is 70% of its GDP, so this does not leave much for development of the economy,” he said. “With this initiative, one year’s good crop has the potential to reduce total debt to 40% in a year.” Not only would it provide a reliable local source of food, but prices would be lower and food quality would improve.Social development initiatives are also on the cards. “Farmers have to get involved in empowerment of local people and skills development, and this is why there are already plans to establish a preschool, primary school and agricultural academy there.”Fertiliser manufacturers, equipment suppliers and financing institutions have also expressed interest in the venture and are considering setting up branches in the Congo.Why South Africa’s farmers?Ernst Janovsky, an agricultural economist and general manager for Absa Agribusiness, said there is no doubt that South African farmers have earned their stripes.“I can say for sure that they are of the best in the world. They are capable of farming without government support, can compete against the rest of the world and even with our scarce resources they produce profitably.”He said it is encouraging that government policy on the continent is shifting its focus to food security. “Basic food production is important across Africa now,” he said.  Instead of only cultivating high-value crops such as roses for export to European markets, there is a renewed focus on developing primary agriculture.Professor Andre Louw, agribusiness specialist at the University of Pretoria Department of Agricultural Economics, said South African farmers had proven their ability to thrive in difficult conditions.“They are doing well considering all the challenges.” An erratic climate, drought and floods, high interest rates and input costs, and crime are a few of the difficulties South African farmers face.“If you put all these challenges on a scorecard, it is clear that our farmers have to be very solutions-driven and resilient to cope,” he said.Food security for the worldBotha said the world is increasingly looking to Africa for food security. With the global population growing, countries such as China and India need more food.“The food requirement for the world will increase and Africa is the only place where this can be done,” he said. “We have the land, rainfall and right climate to do it.”With optimal conditions, grain production can be significantly increased – and the Congo’s farming conditions are far better than South Africa’s.“If we can produce what we currently are under semi-desert conditions, imagine what our farmers can do in a high-potential area,” Botha said. Farmers already in the Congo can produce some 10 tons of maize per hectare in dryland (unirrigated) conditions, while South African dryland farming can only produce 3.4 tons per hectare.Janovsky said subtropical African countries have some of the best farming land and seasonality is more defined. Although the tropical conditions of the Congo could be problematic for crops that need cold units for production, he said it is still possible to grow many other types of crops there.All that’s needed now is rural infrastructure improvements. But Janovsky said even this is not an insurmountable problem, as agriculture could piggyback off infrastructure developments by mining companies in the Congo.Farmers aren’t leaving South AfricaBotha emphasised that the Congo’s invitation does not mean South African farmers are abandoning their country. “This initiative is not a ‘great trek’ for farmers to run away,” he said. “Of the 70 farmers who are already there, no one has sold their farm in South Africa.”He added that farmers have a good working relationship with the South African government.“There has been a lot of pressure from the G8 countries for South Africa to fulfil their role as Africa’s powerhouse.  We are supporting the government’s African initiatives with the skills we have.”Useful linksAgri SA Congo Government Portal (French)South African National Department of Agriculture South African Agriculture Portal LandbouWeekblad (Afrikaans)Farmer’s Weekly Grain South Africa SA Studbooklast_img read more

Media statement: Department of Trade and Industry launches Industrial Policy Action Plan 2016/17 – 2018/19

first_imgAt the launch of the eighth iteration of South Africa’s Industrial Policy Action Plan, Minister of Trade and Industry Rob Davies said there is now an even more pressing need for structural change in the economy, to break out of commodity dependence and move to a more diversified base.TO: ALL JOURNALISTS AND EDITORSBuilding on achievements: a higher-impact IPAP• Download media statement in PDFThe Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies says there is now an even more pressing need for structural change in the economy, to break out of commodity dependence and move to a more diversified base in which increasing manufacturing-based value addition, employment creation and export-intensity come to define South Africa’s growth trajectory.Minister Davies was speaking at the launch of the 8th iteration of Industrial Policy Action Plan – IPAP2016/17-2018/19 (IPAP) on Monday 9 May 2016, at Guestro Naledi Inhlanganiso Group Foundry (NI-Forge), in Benoni.Launching IPAP 2016 at NI-Forge emphasises the importance that government attaches to developing close cooperation with cutting-edge local industrial (and especially black-owned) companies involved not just in infrastructure development, transport and logistics, but in the widest range of technologically sophisticated, export-ready and labour-intensive sectors of the SA economy. Speaking at the launch, Minister Davies indicated that economic growth should not be based on unsustainable models and that Industrial Policy is key for inclusive growth.“Inclusive growth cannot be achieved by sticking to an imbalanced and unsustainable economic model based on the service sectors growing at twice the rate of the productive sectors, on the back of credit-fuelled consumption and import-intensity. Especially in tough times, there can be no retreat from Industrial Policy. It must be strengthened, deepened and embraced by all the social partners,” specified Davies.Achievement highlights 2015/16Public procurement: the impact of designations and localisationClothing, Textiles, Leather and Footwear – After having set a 100% local content requirement – we have seen the re-introduction of products where local production had been discontinued. These include technical fabrics, protective footwear, protective fabrics and chambray fabrics.The value of public procurement of locally produced clothing and textile products recorded by National Treasury increased from R264m in 2013/14 to R479m in 2015/16 – an increase of 82%. This intervention, supported also by our Clothing and Textile Competitiveness Improvement Programme has contributed to turning the sector around. Similar lessons have been applied to the Leather and Footwear sector, with 4 new factories having opened in the last six months.Designation of bus bodies has led to the local manufacture and assembly of more than 700 bus bodies.Alongside the rejuvenation of the bus industry for the various Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) systems, there has been a substantial increase in medium and heavy commercial vehicle exports. In 2012, South Africa exported just R1.3bn worth of these vehicles. By 2014, this had almost tripled to R3.7bn and we expect the performance in 2015-16 to have improved even further.Local production of locomotives At the present time, the supply chain supports 14,000 jobs, and many supply companies have not only rebuilt their fabrication capabilities but developed niche capabilities in high value and complex systems such as traction and propulsion motors and bogie systems.Local procurement requirements provide a framework for achieving a minimum local content of 55%, rising to 85% in different rolling stock classes and involving 4 OEMs in the Transnet, Transnet Freight Rail and PRASA procurement programmes.The fact that many domestic Tier 1, 2 and 3 suppliers have the capability to produce components to the required standard – at a competitive price and within ‘just in time’ manufacturing principles – demonstrates that these companies now have the possibility of entering the global supply chains of these same OEMs.Ship and boat buildingUnder the Oceans Economy Operation Phakisa, SA Shipyards (SAS) won a R1.4 bn tender to build nine Tugboats for Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA). The contract has to date created approximately 200 new jobs and more than 60 apprentice artisans and mine engineers are being trained. More than R700 million has been earmarked for the Supplier Development agreement entered into by SAS and Transnet’s local suppliers, employees and graduates.Automotive sector investments The automotives sector has performed exceptionally well. For example, R7.8 billion in government incentives has yielded R28.5 bn worth of investments by OEMs. At the same time, exports grew to R151.5 billion in 2015, while 113,360 jobs are currently supported in the sector.Agro-processing highlightsNestlé has committed to help revive South Africa’s chicory industry by committing to increase its local sourcing of the plant for use in its Nescafé Ricoffy brand.Ice Cream: A R600m Unilever Ice Cream factory was opened in Midrand, supported by the dti to a value of R350 million.Grain staples: FABCOS was funded by the dti to establish and market the Home Grown brand. The brand (bread, mealie meal) has become well-established and has continued to be regularly stocked by leading retailers.Cassava: The Cassava Programme is a vehicle designed to improve the productivity, profitability and market access of small-scale and emerging farmers through support provided by the Transfer of Technology Innovation Agency (TIA).Business Process ServicesSouth Africa’s Business Process Services (BPS) sector continued to maintain its status as a leading global outsourcing destination, whilst steadily moving up the value chain in terms of service offerings. BPS already accounts for 200,000 jobs nationally and is one of the country’s fastest growing sectors, with double digit growth over the past five years.By the end of 2015 a further 18,000 jobs had been created as a direct result of the BPS incentive, representing a growth rate of 26% per annum.Green industry investmentsOn the back of the highly successful Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers Programme (REIPPPP) the very strong flow of new investments in the sector continued throughout 2015-16 – too many to mention individually here. The major areas of investment were in solar and wind, with interesting new developments in own- and co-generation.Fuel cells: Working in conjunction with key industry stakeholders, government has made significant progress in accelerating the development of the fuel cell industry. A number of ground-breaking initiatives are under way which promise to put SA at the forefront of the technology development (and pilot implementation) of static and mobile fuel cell generation, placing the country in an optimal ‘first mover’ position to ensure that clean energy production with associated industrial benefits is secured.dti incentive schemesAcross the dti’s main incentive schemes – the AIS, 12i, CIP, Film, MCEP & ADEP – R57.1 bn in private-sector investment was leveraged in FY 2015-16, on the back of R10 bn in incentives (on-budget R4bn + R6bn in 12i tax allowances). Support is being provided to 1,770 local companies – i.e. at a rate of 7 new or established firms every working day in 2015-16.A national industrial effortIPAP 2016 envisages nothing less than a massive, concerted and focused national industrial effort, intimately involving all the key stakeholders and economic partners.This must be built on four pillars:1. Policy coherence and policy certainty across government;2. A close collaborative effort between government, business and labour;3. A commitment to ensure that the linkages between the primary and secondary productive sectors of the economy are maximised; and4. A combined and constructive drive to overcome the key constraints to manufacturing-led, value-adding growth and labour-intensive manufacturing.IPAP 2016/17–2108/19: Key Focal Areas1. Public procurement – greatly enhanced and enforced compliance with localisation targets set for government departments and SOCs.2. A strong focus on spill-over and labour-intensive sectors – In particular: agro-processing; the CTLF sector; the component manufacturing and sub-assembly sub-sectors in automotives; rail, light manufacturing and engineering in the metals sector; plastics and associated sub-sectors; electro-technical assembly, sub-assembly and component manufacturing; downstream timber and pulp products, including furniture and boatbuilding.3. Carefully targeted Industrial financing and incentives – including a) much stronger export credit and export credit insurance support, in combination with a wide range of sector-specific incentives; and b) energetic implementation of the recently launched Black Industrialists Incentive.4. Leveraging the devaluation of the Rand to make South African manufactured products more globally competitive and create opportunities for the expansion and further development of SA’s domestic manufacturing capabilities.5. Growing exports: There are four main pillars to the IPAP export strategy:• Building partnerships with global Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) focused on transferring technologies and growing our exports in OEM value chains; partnering with national export champions to catalyse increased national technology absorption for the development of high value exports.• Strengthening existing Industry Associations and Export Councils; including establishing a dedicated new Export Council for Africa.• Developing export-orientated production hubs in SEZs and Regional Clusters and fostering industrial decentralisation.6. Automotives: the dti has established a team of technical experts to develop a post-2020 Automotives Master Plan.The mandate of the team is to examine the entire automotive sector and not just the existing Automotive Policy Development Plan (APDP) – which means that it will now include light, medium and heavy vehicles and motorcycles.The purpose of this work will be to ensure that in the context of long term policy certainty a post-2020 Master Plan will create a framework to secure even higher levels of investment and production, higher exports, deepening localisation and expanding employment.7. Gas-based industrialisation: IPAP 2016 introduces a medium term programme to ensure that gas-based industrialisation increasingly develops into one of the spines of our industrial strategy – leveraging natural gas as both a source of power generation and a driver of industrial diversification.8. Minimising red tape: to open up space for much more streamlined and business-friendly governance processes. These efforts will include:• Establishment of an inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on Investment to tighten up the intra-governmental coordination required to underpin South Africa’s new One-Stop Investment Centres.• A rapidly expanding partnership between the CIPC (Companies and Intellectual Property Commission) and all the major banks to provide official company registration facilities within their branches and online.Overcoming constraints – moving forwardIPAP 2016 will be renewing its efforts to overcome lingering structural obstacles to development and industrialisation, focussing on:• Working to stabilise electricity supply constraints, whilst creating an enabling environment for own- and co-generation and fuel cell technology development;• Continuing efforts to secure port and rail network reforms in order to overcome inefficiencies and associated high costs and robustly support exports; and• Concerted intra-governmental efforts to address deep-seated and serious skills deficits and mismatches that impact on the capacity of the economy to grow faster and diversify more effectively.ENDSEnquiries:Sidwell Medupe – Departmental SpokespersonTel: (012) 394 1650Mobile: 079 492 1774E-mail: [email protected] by: The Department of Trade and IndustryFollow us on Twitter: @the_dtilast_img read more

Demand Media Is a Page View Generating Machine – And it’s Working

first_img8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Tags:#New Media#NYT#Product Reviews#web Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts Demand Media was founded in 2006 by Shawn Colo and the former chairman of MySpace.com, Richard Rosenblatt. ReadWriteWeb first profiled Demand Media in November 2006, at which point we somewhat cynically concluded: “[the] next generation of new media it may be, but it all comes down to quantity in the end.” Which is pretty much how it’s panned out. As of November 2008, Demand Media claimed to power 3 billion monthly social media interactions and was the #1 YouTube contributor. According to comScore, in July 2009 Demand Media had 31 million unique visitors.Where Does the Content Come From?Demand Media sources a lot of its content through freelancers, via its Demand Studios. The company has gotten content from over 10,000 people and uses a proprietary editorial system (apparently including “predictive algorithms”) to publish it. As of May 2009, Demand Media claimed to have created more than 500,000 unique pieces of content – at a staggering rate of about 2,000 pieces of content per day! [Update: Demand Media contacted us to say that the total figure is now “nearly 1M pieces of content.”] From YouTube alone, Demand Media garners 2 million impressions per day.BusinessWeek explains the economics for contributors, but basically there is a set fee and percentage of ad revenues. Conclusion: Demand Media Will Continue to Move up comScore’s ChartsIt’s easy to be cynical about Demand Media – it creates truckloads of content very cheaply, uses social websites like YouTube to make it viral, and gets tons of page views as a result. But… it works. Demand Media earns more than $200 million in annual revenues, according to BusinessWeek.Whether we like it or not, success on the Web mostly comes from quantity and not quality. One does have to admire the system that Demand Media has built up to create content at little expense, make it viral and monetize it. The company’s rise up the comScore Top 50 shows that this strategy is paying off big time. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Demand Media near the top 10 in comScore within a couple of years. As long as search engines like Google continue to rank niche, topical content highly – and we see absolutely no reason why they wouldn’t – then Demand Media will continue to pump out thousands of articles a day to feed that page view generating machine.center_img In our recent post about the top 50 web properties in the U.S. according to comScore, we noted that Demand Media is on the rise – moving from #36 to #24 in the past 12 months. Demand Media owns a number of successful sites, including ehow.com, Pluck and eNom (the second or third-largest domain registrar in the world). The company also proclaims itself to be “the leader in social media solutions.” Demand Media provides social media platforms to corporations and has a strong SEO business, creating niche website content tailored to search engines.In short, Demand Media knows how to get page views.Demand Media’s original plan in 2006 was to buy up millions of domain names and stick content on them in order to monetize. Further into 2006 it added social media to the mix and since then the company has grown from strength to strength.Demand Media operates based on a simple formula for success on the Web: create a ton of niche, mostly uninspired content targeted to search engines, then make it viral through social software. Demand Media has been heavily funded to carry out that mission, to the tune of $355 million. So yes, brute force – quantity of content + money/power – works more often than we’d like to think on the Web. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… richard macmanus Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostinglast_img read more

10 months agoSchalke centre-back Matija Nastasic excited by Man City reunion

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Schalke centre-back Matija Nastasic excited by Man City reunionby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveSchalke centre-back Matija Nastasic has welcomed their Champions League draw with Manchester City.Nastasic spent three seasons at City between 2012 and 2015:He said, “I’m pleased we have drawn Manchester City. “These will be two very special matches for me as I played for City before signing for FC Schalke 04. Consequently, I will get to meet a few familiar faces. We know how strong our opponents are but we will give it our best shot.”The tie also means a reunion for City winger Leroy Sane. last_img

Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the

first_imgTORONTO – Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week:The House is backThe House of Commons resumes sitting on Monday. The Trudeau government is expected to face pointed questions from the opposition on a number of fronts including its purchase of the Trans Mountain pipeline and the ongoing trade talks with the United States and Mexico.Communications reformThe Senate’s transport and communications committee hears from experts on Tuesday about how federal legislation can be modernized to account for the evolution of the broadcasting and telecommunications sectors in the last decades. The CRTC recently reversed a decision that would have decreased the amount private-sector television groups are required to spend on Canadian programming.Back to school for Bay streetRestaurant Brands International Inc. presents at Scotiabank Back to School conference on Tuesday. The Toronto conference will also feature speakers from other retail and consumer-oriented companies such as Canadian Tire, Empire Co., Saputo, Loblaw and Hudson’s Bay.National real estate updateThe Canadian Real Estate Association releases its monthly numbers for August and quarterly outlook on the housing market on Monday. CREA’s report for July found that the Canadian housing market was finding its footing after a prolonged stumble in the first half of the year, shaking off the impact of stricter mortgage rules and rising interest rates.InflationStatistics Canada reports the consumer price index data for August on Friday as well as the retail sales data for July. The annual rate of inflation hit 3.0 per cent in July, the highest level since September 2011 and the top end of the Bank of Canada’s target range of one to three per cent.last_img read more

Climate talks pause as battle over key science report looms

first_imgKATOWICE, Poland — Negotiators at the U.N. climate summit are resting after the first week of talks ended on a sour note Saturday when the U.S. sided with Russia, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait in blocking endorsement of a key scientific report on global warming.Scientists and campaigners expressed frustration Sunday at diplomats’ inability to welcome the recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change laying out the consequences of a 1.5 Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit) rise in average global temperatures.A leading author of the study, Valerie Masson-Delmotte, asked in a tweet Sunday: “What is so disturbing in our (report) that four governments cannot even ‘welcome’ its findings?”Alden Meyer of the Union of Concerned Scientists said high-level talks next week will likely see “more contentious discussions like we saw last night.”The Associated Presslast_img read more

Smith in best physical condition of his life Langer

first_imgBrisbane: Australia coach Justin Langer has said that Steve Smith is in the “best physical condition of his life.” Smith showed ominous form in Australia’s practice matches against New Zealand scoring an unbeaten 91 on Friday to lead Australia to victory. This was after he had scored an unbeaten 89 off 77 balls in the previous match. Langer said one of Smith’s goals when he started serving his one-year ban following the 2018 Newlands ball tampering scandal was to return to the squad in better physical shape. The 48-year-old former opener said that Smith has certainly done that in his time out. “I think his skin folds are the lowest they’ve ever been and they’re talking elite level,” Langer told SEN. “I certainly slept a lot better last night. It warmed my heart to be honest. I actually watched him on the weekend, he had a nets session on Sunday night and I was sitting with a couple of coaches and I just said ‘How good is this kid’.” Langer said that Smith’s innings in the second practice match was a “tutorial in batting.” He also stated that David Warner, who is also returning to the squad after a one-year ban has done the same. Both players had recently undergone elbow surgery with Smith’s being a more serious case than Warner’s. “They’re in pretty good shape, they’re not throwing like Nathan Coulter-Nile or Jason Behrendorff at the moment or Glenn Maxwell, but they’re certainly working their way up to it and that’s good for us,” said Langer. While Warner was his typical ballistic self while playing for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League, he was not able to translate that form into the practice matches. In the three games he scored 39, 0 and 2 with the first score coming when he went in one down.last_img read more