Lufthansa recently organised the Startup Expo, 2016, in partnership with The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE). The largest initiative of its kind, the Expo brought startups, mentors, investors, industry partners and government to the same platform, supported by a corporate in partnership with TiE, a leading entrepreneurial organisation.The expo provided an opportunity to 200 aspiring entrepreneurs to showcase their ventures, attend insightful workshops, expert talks, mentoring sessions.The event witnessed participation from entrepreneurs ranging from women entrepreneurs, social entrepreneurs, student entrepreneurs, service providers, technology and food entrepreneurs. The participating startups interacted with 30 investment decision makers in investor zones where 700 meetings between the investors and startups took place. They also got the opportunity to network with top business experts like Sanjeev Bikhchandani, Vice Chairman, Naukri.com, Deep Kalra, Founder and Group CEO, Make My Trip India Pvt Ltd, Alok Mittal , Founder, Indifi Technologies, O P Manchanda, CEO, Dr Lal Path Labs Pvt Ltd and more, besides investors, VCs, accelerators, industry associations, service organisations and corporates to be successful entrepreneurs.The Startup Expo received a widespread support and participation from organisations such as Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce & Industry, GOI, Department of Science & Technology, Nasscom, CII, PHD Chambers, NEN, Indian Angel Network, SheTheStory, Yourstory, LetsVenture, SIDBI, PadUp Ventures, IvyCamp, AWS, CIIE, Microsoft Ventures etc.Wolfgang Will, Director, South Asia, Lufthansa Passenger Airlines, highlighted, “The Startup Expo pays tribute to the entrepreneurial energy in India driving one of the largest startup systems in the world. It is another link in Lufthansa Runway to Success, which has grown over the past four years into one of the biggest SME platforms in the country. We are delighted with the overwhelming response to the initiative, an affirmation of the fact that India is very close to our heart and that as a brand we are more Indian than you think.”
Acquisition of May Buell Park, which is nearly an acre of property to establish a public day-use park on Bear Lake. The site has 148 feet of frontage and is located in the northeast corner of the lake. The east shore of Bear Lake provides a sandy, shallow, relatively weed-free swimming area that is popular with local residents during the summer months. Categories: News,VanderWall News 15Jun Rep. VanderWall announces local recreation projects State Rep. Curt VanderWall today announced three local recreation developments are included in legislation passed by the Michigan House.VanderWall, of Ludington, said the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund uses dedicated money to fund land acquisitions and development of parks, trails and other recreational facilities across the state. The projects are paid for by a combination of Trust Fund revenues from gas and oil leases and local matching funds. The local projects are:Development of a kayak and canoe launch on Portage Lake in Onekama Township. The launch will be a prefabricated, high quality and universally accessible unit and will include amenities such as restrooms, pathways and parking. The project is part of the Explore the Shores program and will be located at an existing DNR site where a long-term lease will enable Onekama Township to operate and maintain the site in an effort to attract 1 million more people to the Manistee County by 2020 to enjoy Explore the Shores sites. Development of the Stearns Beach Recreation Area Water Trailhead in Ludington for Lake Michigan Water Trail West. Improvements will transform a dead-end street into a plaza for events, viewing and trailhead facilities including a canoe/kayak launch and boat storage. The site is located between several city parks, city boat launch and municipal marina all of which are connected by the city Waterfront Walkway. “We are blessed with an abundance of natural resources and scenic beauty in western and northwest Michigan, and these projects will increase the opportunities families have to go outside and play,” VanderWall said. “In addition, increasing the number of tourists will contribute to our local economies, which is good for job creators in the area.”The funding is comprised of revenue from the lease of state land and is designated on an annual basis in partnership with local governments for the projects.The bill is Senate Bill 76, and now goes to the Senate for consideration.#####
21Jul Rep. Noble invites students to be “Rep. for a Day” Categories: Noble News State Rep. Jeff Noble of Plymouth announced his essay contest for students in Plymouth, Canton and Northville.The contest is open to students in grades six to twelfth. Students are asked to write a minimum of 250 words and no more than 500. The topic is “Why do you like living in Michigan?”Essays should be submitted by mail or email by Sept. 1 and must include student’s name, address, email or phone number, school and grade level.“I am challenging the students of our community to put their thoughts into words,” Rep. Noble said. “This contest is a great way to keep your writing skills sharp during the summer and offers a unique opportunity for the winner to come to Lansing and see their state government in action.”The winner will be announced on Sept. 18 and invited to Lansing to be a Rep. for a Day in the fall.Essay submissions should be sent toJeffNoble@house.mi.govorN-699 House Office BuildingP.O. Box 30014Lansing, MI 48909#####
Categories: Howrylak News 12Oct Rep. Howrylak to host consumer education event on Oct. 20 State Rep. Martin Howrylak of Troy is partnering with the Michigan Attorney General’s office to host a consumer education event on Friday, Oct 20.This month’s event focuses on home repair and improvement scams and offers ways to protect yourself from these criminal practices. Attendees will learn how to select a contractor, resolve disputes, and avoid decisions that could have long term and expensive consequences. Lunch will be provided and reservations are not required for this free event.“This event provides a valuable opportunity for citizens of all ages to learn about the latest home repair scams and how to avoid being victimized by a contactor,” Rep. Howrylak said.For more information regarding this event, please contact Rep. Howrylak’s office at (517) 373-1783 or via email at MartinHowrylak@house.mi.gov.
14Jun House approves Rep. Noble’s plan to create the Innovative Transportation Grant Fund Categories: News,Noble News Measure continues House effort to fix Michigan’s crumbling roadsThe state House this week approved legislation introduced by state Rep. Jeff Noble to create the Innovative Transportation Grant Fund to help fix Michigan roads.“There are many local road agencies that want to test alternative materials, but lack the resources,” said Noble, of Northville. “This plan will help local road agencies and give them the funds they need to complete projects.”Money would be appropriated for a program to provide grants to be awarded by the Michigan Innovative Transportation Board to cities and county road commissions for road or street construction and maintenance projects using innovative materials.A list of current projects under consideration would be publicly available online, and a clear application process would exist for anyone to submit ideas directly to the board overseeing the fundingHouse Bill 6015 advances to the Senate for consideration.###
08Mar Rep. Eisen votes to support recreation opportunities for Harsens Island State Rep. Gary Eisen voted this week in favor of a plan to complete a recreation project from Harsens Island along the Krispin Blueway and Harsen’s Island bike trail in St. Clair County.The legislation approved by the Michigan House of Representatives, with Eisen’s support, includes $86,200 to acquire approximately nine acres located on Harsens Island along the Krispin Blueway and Harsen’s Island bike trail.Plans are to add an accessible kayak launch with a wetland boardwalk, parking, bathrooms, nature trail and a 25-foot-high observation tower looking out over the marsh.“Harsen’s Island is a great place to enjoy St. Clair County,” said Eisen, of St. Clair Township. “This plan will allow for needed updates and give our residents more outdoor opportunities.”The full plan includes $26 million for 34 recreational development projects and 30 land acquisition projects statewide, including the Harsens Island Kayak Access project.The project investments outlined in the proposal were recommended by the Natural Resources Trust Fund Board in December. Recommendations are subject to approval by the Michigan Legislature, a process started in the House Appropriations Committee last week. House Bill 4244 next advances to the Senate for further consideration.Money in the Natural Resources Trust Fund comes from the development of minerals on state land and is designated on an annual basis in partnership with local governments.### Categories: Eisen News
ShareTweetShareEmail0 SharesJune 9, 2014; Wall Street JournalIn October 2010, Lois Lerner, then Director of the Exempt Organizations Division of the IRS, arranged to provide the FBI with 21 disks containing over 1.1 million pages of information on 501(c)(4)s. The FBI says it did not act on the information contained in the disks and has returned the disks to the IRS. According to the IRS, the disks included confidential taxpayer information about 33 nonprofits included among the 12,000 organizations with records included.NPQ has reported on previous incidents of accidental disclosure of confidential data from nonprofit tax filings, and this may be another example of the need for better data security at the IRS. However, the circumstances of this disclosure make it appear to be more sinister.In a June 9 letter to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen, House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Subcommittee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) express anger and frustration. The House issued a subpoena to the IRS a year ago demanding all correspondence involving Lois Lerner, which would include the emails cited in the letter. However, the existence of the confidential information included in the 21 disks was discovered through the Justice Department, not the IRS. The letter notes that emails from the same period indicate that Lerner was involved in attempts to generate media coverage sympathetic to criminal investigations of 501(c)(4) organizations possibly engaging in excessive political activities. Testimony to House investigators quoted in the letter document that Justice Department lawyers did not allow a Justice Department official to answer House Oversight investigators’ questions about the 21 disks.This isn’t the first time that inquiries to other agencies have turned up information on Lois Lerner and IRS actions regarding social welfare organizations before subpoenaed information was supplied by the IRS. NPQ reported that a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request made to the Federal Election Commission (FEC) resulted in the disclosure of emails between Lerner and FEC officials concerning the sharing of Form 1024 applications for tax exemption by 501(c)(4) organizations whose applications had not yet been approved by the IRS, a possible violation of federal law.In their letter, Issa and Jordan demand that Koskinen “immediately” disclose all IRS information relating to the 21 disks prepared by the IRS for the FBI, including why their existence “was withheld from the Committee for a year.” The longer it takes for information to be provided by the IRS, the more it looks like potentially incriminating information is being hidden or consciously withheld. The IRS has committed significant resources to complying and cooperating with the various investigations of the IRS scandal, but maybe it needs to commit still more. The investigators aren’t going away, and other agencies are providing relevant information about the scandal that is making the IRS look even worse that it already does.—Michael WylandShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
Share41TweetShare12Email53 SharesOctober 5, 2015; Imagine CanadaYesterday, Canadians went to the polls to elect a new government, which appears to have vaulted the Liberal Party to a governing majority, making Justin Trudeau the Prime Minister-designate. Going into the election, the Conservatives held the majority in the House of Commons, making Stephen Harper the Prime Minister. For the past couple of years, Canadian nonprofits have bumped up against the Harper government’s “stepped up” audits of the political advocacy activities of nonprofits. What initially started as heightened scrutiny of environmental nonprofits has broadened to include nonprofits engaged in anti-poverty and humanitarian work.Prior to the election, Imagine Canada issued a thoughtful brief addressing its efforts and those of Canadian nonprofits in general to “overcome what some have described in recent years as a ‘chill’ in charities’ public policy engagement.” For nonprofit engagement in policy advocacy, the Imagine Canada brief notes the work of several nonprofits that have joined together to advocate for improved federal protections for persons with disabilities, a number of health charities asking candidates for commitments on resources and policies regarding specific diseases, and the David Suzuki Foundation providing voters with information about the candidates’ and parties’ positions on environmental issues. In the arena of civic engagement, the examples comprise efforts to stimulate electoral participation ABC Life Literacy Canada (for literacy practitioners), the Assembly of First Nations People (getting Canada’s most politically underrepresented population group to turn out to vote), Barrier Free Canada (on election-related issues facing persons with disabilities), and the Ontario Nonprofit Network in conjunction with Samara Canada (to encourage nonprofits to get involved in the election).Without engaging in exaggerated self-congratulatory hoopla, the Imagine Canada report describes a number of policy areas where nonprofit political engagement—by law, nonpartisan, fact-based, and “subordinate to the activities on which…[the nonprofits’] charitable status is based”—has achieved demonstrable results with commitments from the various political parties:A new endowment incentive fund to match individual contributions to museums;A doubling of the federal investment in the Canada Council for the Arts;For persons with disabilities, expansion of the Registered Disability Savings Health Plan;Extensions to compassionate care benefits in employment insurance;Commitment to expand and accelerate Canada’s openness to accepting and settling refugees from Syria;A new National Housing Strategy;An increase to Guaranteed Income Supplement;Tax credits for people who pay membership fees to certain nonprofits; andA commitment to clarify the currently chilling rules affecting nonprofit public policy advocacyElection-time effectiveness for nonprofits doesn’t need to be limited to busting out of the sector’s nonprofit nonpartisanship to endorse one party or another, especially when the election results may yield a party that’s not to one’s liking but which must be dealt with anyhow. Nonetheless, one of the election-time issues that may be of importance to nonprofits is where the parties and their leaders stand on policies designed for or impacting the nonprofit sector itself.A Charity Village blog posting last month by Andy Levy-Ajzenkopf took a stab at divining where Canada’s political parties stood on policies affecting or shaping the future dimensions of the Canadian charitable sector. Neither the Liberal nor Conservative parties officially responded to the Charity Village request for information on their charity-specific policies. However, Harper’s Conservative Party announced on its website a commitment for tax relief for service club members, a “First-Time Donors Super Credit” for donations up to $1,000 before 2018, a reduction in the administrative burden facing nonprofits, and allowing charities to diversify their investments. The Liberal Party statement was much shorter but made a powerful point, calling for “ending the [Canada Revenue Agency] (CRA) political harassment of charities, as well as clarifying rules to affirm the important role that charities can and should play in developing and advocating for public policy in Canada.”Both the Green Party and the New Democratic Party responded to Charity Village’s enquiry, unlike the Liberals and Conservatives. The NDP called for the eliminating of the excessive use of the CRA as a “political tool to punish charities that dare to pursue interests” that don’t conform to the government’s agenda” and advocated for “clearer definitions of what counts as acceptable activities, and enabling new methods of financing, such as social finance and social enterprise.” The Greens endorsed the Conservatives’ “Stretch Tax Credit to provide an incentive to give more.” It also attacked the political use of the CRA to intimidate political dissent as “Orwellian.”Could that kind of political scrutiny be done in the U.S., with nonprofits examining their politicians’ policies as they might affect the sector? It would take a cultural change among many national nonprofit leadership organizations away from judging political candidates for their “I (HEART) nonprofits” statements. It might be timely for the national nonprofit leadership organizations to take a harder look at all of the presidential candidates stumbling and bumbling through the debates right now to examine whether their enunciated policy positions will advance and improve the image of nonprofits, whether they would bring more clarity to the work of public charities, whether they would stem the avalanche of anonymous dark money sweeping into politics, whether they are up for the political challenge of reinvesting in and rebuilding the tax-exempt unit of the IRS, and whether they are willing to correct the anti-nonprofit biases embedded in several sections of American law and policy. If Canadian charities could ask it of the parties that gave Canada nine years of Prime Minister Harper and now has replaced him with Prime Minister-designate Trudeau, U.S. nonprofits ought to be able to administer those questions to the know-nothings, know-somethings, and hopefully a couple of know-a-lots running for president.—Rick CohenShare41TweetShare12Email53 Shares
Bouygues Telecom is working with NDS to provide the technology platform for the next generation of its Bbox IPTV set-top.NDS is providing integration services for the launch of the new platform, together with integration consultancy and a selection of critical software components to enable an enhanced pay TV experience.The NDS set-top box software components to be deployed by Bouygues include a graphical engine to power a user interface with HD and 3D capability and an application manager engine to enable the development and management of new apps based on HTML5 and Flash.Yves Caseau, executive vice-president, technologies, services and innovation, Bouygues Telecom, said: “We are exceptionally proud of our new platform – and more so in the collaborative nature of the development process. We were very selective in the partners that we chose for this project, and with their extensive track record of innovation and integration expertise, NDS is the perfect choice to support us in creating a TV experience that will greatly satisfy the needs of our subscribers.”
Finish telco and cable operator DNA ended 2011 with 602,000 cable TV subscribers, up slightly on 598,000 at the end of 2010.The company launched a pay TV service over the country’s DTT network in August, and while it didn’t reveal subscriber numbers, it said it would expand its terrestrial HDTV network to cover 85% of the Finnish population in early 2012.
South African news network eNews is to launch in the UK after striking a deal with pay TV platform BSkyB. The channel will take the slot on Sky’s electronic program guide previously held by Africa Channel +1. The channel is expected to change its name from eNews to ENCA for its UK launch. “Due to our expansion we will have to rebrand our service to make it relevant to viewers abroad and here at home,” Patrick Conroy, group head of news at e.TV told local press. “It will be more of a brand tweak than an overhaul, viewers need not be concerned. It will still be the same news service with the same content. The only difference will be our appearance.”
MENA-focused telco QTel is launching a premium video-on-demand service, On Demand Club.QTel runs the Mozaic IPTV service and its VOD offer will comprise movies, TV series, music videos and kids content. It will be launched by On Demand Group. The first movie available on the service will be X Large, which will cost Qatari customers QAR35 (€7.80).
Russian pay TV broadcaster NTV Plus has launched a TV Everywhere service aimed at sports fans, available to subscribers to its Sport and Supersport channels.The service normally costs RUB75 (€1.85) a month. Subscribers to the Sport channel will have access to a package of sports, general interest, entertainment, factual and kids channels including a number of NTV Plus sports services and Eurosport’s two channels. Supersport customers will have access to a wider range of services, including eight NTV Plus sports channels.
LG Electronics’ new 77-inch Ultra HD Curved OLED TV (model 77EC9800) will be on display at CES 2014.LG is gearing up to show off what it claims is “the most comprehensive OLED TV lineup on the planet” at the CES trade show next week, amid rumours that it will unveil its webOS software on smart TVs for the first time.Officially, LG has said it will showcase its new 77-inch Ultra HD Curved OLED TV, along with various new 55- and 65-inch OLED TV models.However an image leaked on Twitter of what appears to be an LG TV running the firm’s webOS software – and apps from firms like YouTube, Facebook and Skype – has caused speculation that the firm will show off its new smart TV interface at the show.LG has agreed to buy HP’s webOS software last February, in a deal that it said would enhance and support its next-generation smart TV offerings.Originally designed as a smartphone and tablet operating system by Palm, HP took ownership of the webOS software after buying out Palm for US$1.2 billion (€900 million) in 2010. The LG webOS deal was agreed for undisclosed terms.
Amazon will launch all episodes of its upcoming scripted series Transparent simultaneously, taking a lead from its chief rival Netflix, which has had notable success releasing original shows in this way.Amazon has been investing heavily in original series, but has released episodes of these in batches and on a weekly basis, eschewing the all-at-once model pioneered by Netflix. “It’s possible there is a middle-ground hybrid model,” Roy Price, director, Amazon Studios, told DTVE’s sister publication TBI last year.However, it will make all ten episodes of upcoming comedy-drama Transparent available simultaneously. The series, about a dysfunctional LA family, was created by Jill Solloway, who announced the Netflix-style release at the summer TCA event in the US.Neither Netflix or Amazon release any viewing data for content on their services, but Netflix’s originals, which include House of Cards and Orange is the New Black, have garnered much greater critical and press attention than Amazon’s offerings, which have included Alpha House and Betas.Amazon has not committed to launching all of its original series using the Netflix binge model.
Anders NilssonSwedish cable operator Com Hem has introduced a free upgrade to 50Mbps for broadband customers who currently can only access a lower speed. The move has enable the operator to claim that its minimum speed is five times that offered by competitors. Com Hem said that all customers would be able to take advantage of the upgrade, with no additional charge to their monthly fee.Additionally, process for new subscribers have been reduced by up to 15% across the board to encourage new sign-ups.Com Hem says that over half of new customers already opt for speeds above 100Mbps. The new prices and speeds will be effective from tomorrow.“New habits and consumer behaviour patterns demand faster broadband speeds. We think every household and business should be entitled to a fast and stable broadband service, and we have the network to realize this vision,” said Com Hem CEO Anders Nilsson.“Within Sweden, we are not only ahead of all other operators in delivering the fastest broadband service to most households, but now, even our lowest speed is five times faster than those of our competitors.”
Sub-Sahara Africa. Sudan, in light green, is also classified as North Africa.Pay TV revenues in Sub-Saharan Africa will more than triple in the decade starting 2010, reaching US$6.22 billion (€5.27 billion) in 2020, according to Digital TV Research. The new figures claim that pay TV revenues in the region will climb from US$1.92 billion in 2010 and US$3.54 billion last year, with South Africa and Nigeria to account for more than half of Sub-Saharan Africa’s pay TV revenues by 2020.According to the research, pay TV revenues in South Africa alone are set to climb from US$1.81 billion in 2014 to US$2.1 billion in 2020, and in Nigeria from US$449 million to US$1.15 billion over the same time period.Satellite TV accounted for 92% of Sub-Sahara African 2014 pay TV revenues last year, though DTT is expected to make inroads in the coming years, quadrupling its revenue over the next six years and accounting for US$802 million in 2020.Digital TV Research said there were 9.65 million pay satellite, 2.81 million pay DTT customers and a total of 12.92 million pay TV subscribers at the end of 2014.It predicted that the pay total will more than double to 27.95 million by 2020, with satellite TV contributing 16.21 million and pay DTT another 9.44 million.“Three companies [Multichoice (DStv and GOtv), Canal Plus and StarTimes] accounted for more than 90% of pay TV subscribers in Sub-Saharan Africa by end-2014. However, we have outlined plans for at least 30 major platform launches in 2015 throughout this report – at least twice as many as in 2014,” said Simon Murray, principal analyst at Digital TV Research.
Youth-focused media outfit Vice UK has won an appeal against a determination by ATVOD that the Vice (Video) section of its website was subject to regulation by the UK video-on-demand regulator.Vice secured its case by presenting evidence to Ofcom, which ATVOD said was not available at the time of its ruling, that its parent company, Vice Media, held editorial responsibility for the video website. Ofcom concluded that the provider was not within the jurisdiction of the UK and did not meet the statutory requirements that would have put in ATVOD’s jurisdiction.ATVOD CEO Pete Johnson said the regulator would “consider the appeal decision carefully and analyse the implications for future decisions as to whether a particular service is, or is not, subject to regulations designed to protect consumers”.
The UK TV industry generated revenues of £13.2 billion (€18.9 billion) last year, up 3.1% year-on-year despite changing viewing habits and an increasing reliance on smartphones and tablets, according to Ofcom.The UK broadcast regulator’s twelfth annual Communications Market Report claims that the overall increase was due to gains across all revenue sources – namely a 5.1% increase in BBC income allocated to TV, a 3.9% increase in net advertising revenue, a 1.9% increase in subscription revenue and a 0.9% increase in all other revenue.Pay TV revenue climbed 1.9% from £5.9 billion in 2013 to £6 billion in 2014, but this growth slowed from the 6.5% annual increase in revenue seen between 2012 and 2013.Online TV revenue by contrast has “increased rapidly in the past five years” but still represents only a small proportion of total TV revenues, said Ofcom.Online TV revenues grew by 38% in 2014 to £793m, with income from online TV subscriptions increasing by 53% to £317m.According to the report, the TV is the device that adults said they would miss the most, cited by 37%. However, Ofcom also highlighted changing TV viewing patterns, with most 16-24 year olds found to watch on-demand and catch up programmes on computers and smartphones rather than on a TV connected to a set-top box.Some 57% of young people said they regularly watch on demand and catch-up TV on their laptop or PC, 45% watch on a smartphone, while 40% switch on a set-top box.Ofcom described the UK as a “smartphone society” and said that smartphones have overtaken laptops as the most popular device for getting online.Two thirds of people now own a smartphone and using it for an average of nearly two hours every day, according to the report, while 54% of households now also have a tablet, marking a “rapid rise in popularity from just 2% in 2011.”
Your Family Entertainment-owned kids channel Fix&Foxi has secured carriage on UAE telecom operator Etisalat’s eLife TV platform, taking the channel to the Gulf state for the first time.The channel will be added to the Etisalat’s eLife TV Western basic package.Rashed Al Abbar, Etisalat’s Vice President Consumer Product Innovation said, “eLife offers the best in entertainment for all ages and audiences by partnering with international channels enriching the content portfolio. The addition of the kids channel Fix&Foxi will add value to the plethora of offerings available today for kids in UAE.”Paul Robinson, EVP International Channels of YFE said, “Fix&Foxi Channel’s blend of high quality, entertaining and learning based programming with good positive values and a strong family appeal will be appreciated by audiences in the UAE and we are honoured to be partnering with Etisalat to bring this channel into their homes.”