Palais Stephanie, located in the center of the famous La Croisette just steps from the beach, is offering the tempting Azur Evasion and Azur Sky Discovery packages for an unforgettable experience of Cannes valid for travel through December 2010. Palais Stéphanie’s recent 38 million Euro renovation transformed this classic hotel into a vibrant and stylish hotspot reflecting its glamorous film heritage as it sits on the original site of the Palais des Congrès, where the first Cannes Film Festivals were held.The AZUR Evasion package includes accommodations, daily continental breakfast, and in-room gift of Champagne and gourmet chocolates. Rates start from 210 Euros per room, per night, based on double occupancy including VAT and city tax.The Azur Sky Discovery package includes accommodations, daily continental breakfast and a thrilling 45-minute private jet flight over Cannes. Rates start from 285 Euros per room, per night, based on double occupancy including VAT and city tax with a minimum five-night stay.Guests can also take advantage of all that Palais Stephanie has to offer. After the renovation, the hotel features 261 spacious rooms and suites with upgraded flat screen TVs and high-speed Internet access; A heated rooftop swimming pool, Jacuzzis and Panorama bar; La Scena Lounge Bar and Restaurant featuring specialties from Italy, Japan and France and a full casino offering 150 slot machines and 19 gaming tables.www.PalaisStephanie.com
A prefab house in Liopetri was damaged by a fire shortly after midnight on Wednesday.The fire was detected at 00.15am in the Limnia area of Liopetri.The house is owned by a 44-year-old man from Deryneia who during the day on Tuesday carried out work to insulate the roof of the residence.The damage has been estimated at €5,000 by the owner.Investigations into the causes of the fire are ongoing while the scene has been cordoned off and is being guarded.You May LikeHearClearWanted: 500 People For Free Hearing Consultation (Worth $175)HearClearUndoThis magazineFoods against bad breath which really workThis magazineUndoIdealHer5 Things Women Do That Most Men Find UnattractiveIdealHerUndo Korkolis brings magic to the stageUndoFilm review: Child’s Play ***UndoGreece to overturn law that made universities no-go zone for policeUndoby Taboolaby Taboola
Categories: Howrylak News,News Rep. Martin Howrylak of Troy introduced legislation today that seeks to significantly lower the tax burden for retirees.“I came to Lansing with the desire to provide taxpayers in Troy and Clawson and across the state with tax relief,” Howrylak said. “The retirement income tax exclusion was eliminated several years ago and my goal is to significantly lessen the retiree tax burden.”In 2011, Michigan made several changes to the tax code, including eliminating the pension and retirement exemption. If enacted, Rep. Howrylak’s proposal will significantly increase the retirement income subtractions for both single and joint filers. As a result, this legislation will reduce the portion of one’s retirement income that is subject to state tax and lower the tax obligation for all Michigan retirees and seniors.“Most senior citizens are dependent on a fixed income and this policy change had a significant impact on their pocketbooks,” Howrylak said. “My bill will greatly reduce the tax burden placed on these hard-working citizens and allow them to keep more of their earned income during their retirement years.”This legislation is the reintroduction of House Bill 5801, which Howrylak authored in 2016.HB 4159 has been referred to the Tax Policy Committee for consideration.##### 02Feb Rep. Howrylak introduces bill to reduce taxes for retirees, seniors
Categories: Frederick News 10Mar Horvath, Lamb address House panel on truck length legislation Rep. Frederick bill enhances worker safety, cuts costsBusinesses hauling agricultural field drainage tubing on Michigan’s state highways could employ safer, more efficient truck and trailer combinations under legislation sponsored by state Rep. Ben Frederick that is under consideration by the Michigan House Agriculture Committee.Frederick’s bill creates an exemption for businesses hauling the drainage tubing to use vehicle combos up to 75-feet-long, versus the current 59- to 65-feet limit.Rick Lamb, Advanced Drainage Systems plant manager, and Justin Horvath, president and CEO of the Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership, joined the Owosso legislator Tuesday to provide testimony to the House Agriculture Committee on the legislation.“Our company currently uses proprietary industry-specific vehicles in many jurisdictions in the U.S. and Canada,” Lamb said. “The advantages include the ability to haul increased payloads and use an automatic unloading technology that enhances our employee’s safety.”Lamb added that the updated hauling vehicles are less expensive to build, operate and maintain than the traditional semi-trailers his company now uses.“I’m pleased that a business in our community has identified a better way of operating and has reached out to me to help ensure their success,” Frederick said. “It’s important that our laws enable businesses to thrive and create jobs using the safest, most-efficient technology available.”The current transportation law already has exemptions of 70 feet truck/trailer lengths for saw logs, pulpwood or tree-length poles, and 75 feet for transporting motor vehicles, recreational vehicles and boats.“I want to thank Rep. Frederick for introducing this much needed legislation, which would have the double benefit of enhancing safety on Michigan’s roadways as well as spurring new business investment and job creation in our state,” said Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership President/CEO Justin Horvath.House Bill 4167 remains under consideration by the committee.###
Share1TweetShareEmail1 SharesOctober 28, 2015; Jerusalem PostOne of the recent controversies floating around the Beltway involves the decision of the Center for American Progress to host a major address by Benjamin Netanyahu on November 10th, giving the Prime Minister of Israel an important platform for reconnecting with American liberals after his campaign against the nuclear treaty with Iran and his Republican-sponsored speech to Congress. According to multiple sources, the CAP decision came after much lobbying from the Israeli government and the powerful lobbying group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).The decision of CAP to host the Prime Minister isn’t going down well in some circles. One former CAP staffer, unnamed in the press coverage, was quoted to say (to the Huffington Post), “[Netanyahu’s] looking for that progressive validation and they’re basically validating a guy who race-baited during his election and has disavowed the two-state solution, which is CAP’s own prior work.” The race-baiting undoubtedly refers to Netanyahu’s campaign warning to Israeli voters that leftwing nonprofits were busing Arabs to the polls in Israel’s recent elections to turn him out of office.Another former CAP staff person, Ali Gharib, wrote in The Nation about pressure from AIPAC and others on CAP’s positions on Israel that led CAP to quietly change its stance and what it would say publicly:I worked at CAP for more than a year, from 2011 through much of 2012, writing for the site ThinkProgress, mostly on Middle East policy. My stint there was defined by an attack on my and my colleagues’ work by pro-Israel groups; our taking a progressive stance on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and pointing at pro-Israel figures as leading the charge for a war with Iran in Washington had attracted the attention of some of the Israel lobby’s nastiest apparatchiks. Though there was no evidence to back up the charge, we were smeared as anti-Semites. It’s a long story—I suggest reading accounts of the affair by Joshua Holland and Glenn Greenwald—but suffice it to say for our purposes that AIPAC played a significant role in the affair. And CAP’s positions moving forward from the attacks—including but not limited to virtually banishing criticisms of Israel and Netanyahu from our writings and, in at least one case, needlessly censoring a piece after publication—were guided by how to return to AIPAC’s good graces, often in coordination with AIPAC itself.Netanyahu’s appearance at CAP on November 10th will include a Q&A with CAP president and CEO Neera Tanden. But Gharib doesn’t hold much hope CAP and Tanden will turn the Netanyahu speech into an opportunity to grill the Prime Minister. Gharib adds that with the U.S. presidential campaign underway, “CAP is in a mode now of switching from being Obama’s think tank to being Hillary Clinton’s; the gravitational pull of an election is too great for the think tank’s ideological imperative (progressivism) to outweigh its unstated partisan mission.” CAP’s original director was John Podesta, who served as President Bill Clinton’s chief of staff and now is heading Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Tanden was a domestic policy advisor in the Clinton White House and, among other relationships with Hillary Clinton, served as her policy advisor in the 2008 presidential campaign.To be clear, CAP isn’t Netanyahu’s only major speech scheduled for his upcoming tour. He will also be addressing the conservative American Enterprise Institute. Some conservative-leaning pro-Israel groups are actually concerned because Netanyahu is speaking to the liberal organization that some saw as anti-Semitic in its criticisms of Israeli policies not too long ago. But the conservative criticisms seem to pale against the liberal side’s concerns about Netanyahu at CAP. “This is someone who is an enemy of the progressive agenda, who has targeted Israeli human rights organizations throughout his term, and was re-elected on the back of blatant anti-Arab race-baiting,” said Matt Duss, a former staff person at CAP who heads the Foundation for Middle East Peace. “The idea that CAP would agree to give him bipartisan cover is really disappointing.”Here’s hoping that despite some of the strongly pro-Israel types supporting the Clinton campaign (Haim Saban comes to mind),Hillary Clinton’s own history of, as Gharib describes it, “mildly hawkish” positions on the Middle East conflict, and AIPAC’s having paid for trips of CAP staff members to Israel, Neera Tanden will give Netanyahu a tough grilling on a variety of issues. It would be a pleasant counterpoint to the award Netanyahu is scheduled to receive at AEI.—Rick CohenShare1TweetShareEmail1 Shares
Share24TweetShare6Email30 SharesBy Thomas Altfather Good (Own work) [GFDL or CC BY-SA 4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia CommonsMarch 15, 2017; TechNewsWorldFacebook took a significant step on Monday to shield users from surreptitious monitoring on its social media sites Facebook and Instagram, announcing that it was prohibiting developers from mining data on those platforms for surveillance purposes. Application developers typically use automated data feeds from social media sites, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter in commercial surveillance products used by law enforcement throughout the country to track criminal activity, but also as it turns out, spy on protesters and labor unions, with the potential to use these tools to track any individual or organization using social media. Facebook is apparently responding to a controversy brought to light by the American Civil Liberties Union in a report last fall revealing that an intermediary developer Geofeedia was provided access to data feeds by Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and used that information to monitor protesters in Baltimore and Ferguson, Missouri. The ACLU provides details on contractual arrangements between the social media companies and Geofeedia, including the latter’s access to Facebook data:Facebook had provided Geofeedia with access to a data feed called the Topic Feed API, which is supposed to be a tool for media companies and brand purposes, and which allowed Geofeedia to obtain a ranked feed of public posts from Facebook that mention a specific topic, including hashtags, events, or specific places. Facebook terminated this access on September 19, 2016.ACLU stated that Geofeedia claimed to have 500 law enforcement and public safety clients. The report also notes that surveillance companies such as Geofeedia marketed their products with advice to police to monitor hashtags linked to Black Lives Matter and noted the “overt threats” posed by activist groups and unions.Nicole Ozer, Technology & Civil Liberties Policy Director of ACLU of Northern California, described the vital societal benefit of free and open communication provided by social networks and the latter’s responsibility to protect its users against invasive scrutiny, stating “We depend on social networks to connect and communicate about the most important issues in our lives and the core political and social issues in our country […] Now more than ever, we expect companies to slam shut any surveillance side doors and make sure nobody can use their platforms to target people of color and activists.” Malkia Cyril, executive director of the Center for Media Justice, warned that when social media networks grant access that facilitates governmental surveillance, ” it chills democratic dissent and gives authoritarianism a license to thrive.”Many recognize that social media sites are uniquely effective tools for people of color to communicate about bias and discrimination. Brandi Collins, campaign director for Color of Change, stated that “Social media platforms are a powerful tool for black people to draw attention to the injustices our community faces.” The Center for Media Justice and Color of Change have joined with the ACLU of California in a coalition whose chief goal is to urge social media companies to put effective systems in place to block surveillance efforts using their sites and data.The ACLU in their report gives credit to social media companies and their leaders who “have expressed support for activists, movements, and free speech,” noting Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s endorsement of Black Lives Matter and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s trip to Ferguson, Missouri after the killing of Michael Brown and protests brought national attention to that city and to Black Lives Matter. However, the ACLU called attention to the CEOs’ apparent hypocrisy, stating judiciously that “a severe disconnect” existed between their public gestures and “the data access they have provided.”Data is gold to everyone involved, according to attorney and privacy and data security expert Timothy Toohey. There is, Toohey points out, a core existential conflict for Facebook and Twitter because of the value of information which social media companies control, “which puts them in very difficult positions balancing their commercial interests with other interests.”Facebook’s and Twitter’s policy modification itself will not stop all surveillance using their ubiquitous social media products; rather, their assiduous devotion to the letter of their stated intent, as demonstrated through careful monitoring and legal action, is the most effective and genuine means of maintaining social media as a genuinely open forum for communication and dialogue on a local and national level.– Louis AltmanShare24TweetShare6Email30 Shares
The DVB has approved the commercial requirements for version 1.4 of the CI Plus specification. Separately the DVB has formed a partnership with the 3D@Home Consortium to encourage the development of standards for 3D TV and to share knowledge.The commercial requirements for CI Plus version 1.4 build on the current version 1.3 of CI Plus by adding support for dual-stream operation with a single module – meaning that a dual-tuner DVR host can be supported – as well as support for DRM-protected IP delivered content. Other features include CI Plus browser extensions, additional uniform resource identifiers, signaling and extensions and clarifications for module applications running on host middleware.The move follows an agreement with CI Plus LLP that DVB will take responsibility for future development of the CI Plus specification. It is anticipated that the technical work will take a year. Following its publication CI Plus LLP will adopt the specification.The DVB has also formed a partnership with the 3D@Home Consortium. The consortium was formed in 2008 with the mission to speed the commercialisation of 3D and provide the best possible viewing experience by facilitating the development of standards. In February 2011, the DVB Steering Board approved the specification for a first phase 3DTV delivery system based on the commonly used ‘frame-compatible’ system.“3D@Home is an important organisation for 3DTV. They have many areas of interest, including the study of ‘human factors’ associated with 3DTV viewing that we are hoping to learn from. For our part, our work developing delivery specifications for 3DTV, will be helpful for 3D@home. Both organizations have things to share with each other,” said David Wood, chair of DVB’s Commercial Module on 3DTV.
Polish satellite pay TV operator ‘n’ has launched an OTT service. The service – nVOD NET – will give ‘n’ subscribers access to thousands of additional TV series and movies; it launched on November 28.The platform will include Hollywood films, series and documentaries as well as video-on-demand libraries from Polish broadcaster TVN and US premium broadcaster HBO. It will initially be available to around 50% of the company’s subscribers by connecting their decoder to the internet via cable or WiFi and will be free until the end of February 2012.Christian Anting, vice-president and chief operating officer of ‘n’, said: “Today’s news continues our strategy of providing our customers with the best premium content and latest technology innovations. With the launch of nVOD NET, ‘n’ will give subscribers the ultimate in-home movie viewing experience, taking video functionality to a whole new level. We are able to offer access to the best content from leading television producers like TVN and HBO, as well as local and thematic programme offerings via broadband connection.”
French regulator the CSA has officially approved the launch of the six new free-to-air channels to be launched on the country’s digital-terrestrial platform. Chérie HD, L’Equipe HD, HD 1, RMC Découverte, Tvous La Télédiversité and 6ter will launch in HD from December 12. All of the channels except L’Equipe HD will undertake to support domestic content creation from 2013, with four channels – RMC Découverte, Chérie HD, HD1, 6TER – committing to support content creation to the tune of €40 million over 2013-15, including €17 million devoted to domestic content creation.
Dean Possenniskie, A+E Networks’ managing director for Europe, spoke to DTVE about growing audience reach, the importance of marketing and how to successfully extend existing channel brands.What are your strategic priorities?2012 has seen the strongest year ever of audience growth across our local channel portfolios. History in particular has grown more than 50% year-on-year in prime time audiences across key western European markets such as the UK, Germany and Italy. Continuing to reach our growing audiences in new ways will remain a priority for our local channels in 2013 and we will continue to invest in new interactive and social media products in 2013. Local commissioning is key to the local positioning and success of our channels. In 2012 we produced more local hours than ever before in Europe across History, Crime & Investigation Network and Bio, and plan to do even more in 2013. Crime and Investigation Network has proven a ratings success in recent launches in Spain, Holland and Poland – we aim to launch the channel into new markets across EMEA in 2013. We have exciting new channel brands in Lifetime and H2 that we are working to launch in Europe in 2013.Is the balance between free-to-air and pay TV revenues shifting?Across Europe we are seeing positive growth in our core pay TV business. Pay penetration is growing, Germany has been a highlight as both DTH and cable subscriber numbers grow, while we see very strong growth in CEE markets such as Poland. We manage a complimentary free-to-air content distribution business alongside our pay channels and are seeing greater demand than ever for our programming.Are you seeing much success from alternative revenue streams?We operate successful local advertising businesses across key markets such as the UK, Spain, Germany and Italy. 2012 has seen the creation of local advertising windows on both History and Crime & Investigation in Poland and has already emerged into a significant revenue stream. We have an active home entertainment distribution business in Europe with direct partnerships and licensing deals in place throughout the region.How are A+E Networks’ brand values communicated?We work hand-in-hand with the marketing, on-air, digital and programming teams from our joint ventures and licensing partners to ensure that locally produced trade and consumer materials appeal to local tastes and cultures, while adhering to the brand proposition. We firmly believe that nothing beats face-to-face communication, so representatives from our corporate office in New York travel frequently to meet with the local teams, and the local teams send reps to New York to meet with their US counterparts. We also hold a yearly conference with representatives from our channels around the world to talk about what’s new for the brands, share success stories and exchange ideas.What marketing efforts have you undertaken with local partners? It is critical for programming providers to utilise their brands and content to help drive value for the pay TV platform. Our expertise is connecting with consumers through compelling content, and by utilising this connection to help our partners sell their products and services, we derive mutually beneficial results for our businesses. We’ve done this successfully in a number of markets. In the UK, BSkyB utilised The Kennedys to help drive subscriptions to the pay environment by targeting viewers on the free-to-air platform. This show delivered History UK’s highest ever audience. A+E Networks UK partnered with Ziggo to announce the launch of Crime & Investigation in the market. Ziggo utilised the launch to drive awareness of the package and increase subscriptions. They promoted it internally through their call centres and staff trainings and externally through their retail stores and platform promotional inventory.What are the risks of developing spin-off versions of core channel brands?The biggest risk to developing a spin-off version of a core brand is for the new brand to be viewed as a ‘lite’ version of the original, and that you water down your core brand if the spin-off voice is not distinct. But it can work. As History has catapulted into one of the leading pay TV brands in the US, we saw some opportunities in the landscape that we could leverage. We transitioned our History International (HI) brand to H2 last year, and we built off the success of HI with an increased investment in original programmes that allow viewers to immerse themselves more deeply into topics they enjoy on History. The strategy worked from go. We did not see a drop in viewership from History. In fact the channel has continued its growth streak, while H2 has built upon the HI audience significantly and has climbed the charts. Both brands are stronger than ever.How are plans to launch Lifetime internationally developing? Our strategy is to launch Lifetime in all markets worldwide. We had our first international launch for the brand in Canada in August. We are in active discussions with partners worldwide to launch the channel and expect to make more announcements later this year.When does it make sense to localise programming?A channel brand such as History can present strong local stories, heritage and characters, which we have invested in more heavily than ever in 2012. It’s important that we have strong distribution in a market backed by a talented local team as we have done in markets such as the UK, Germany and Spain.
Music network Vintage TV has launched on Virgin Media’s cable platform in the UK. The channel went live on the platform yesterday at number 343 on the EPG and is available to subscribers of Virgin’s premium XL channel package – which includes more than 200 channels and 30 HD stations.Vintage TV airs a range of original music programming, classic concert footage, and interviews and documentaries. It also airs on the Sky and Freesat platforms in the UK and says it plans to launch on more shortly.Vintage TV is broadcast from the UK, on Eurobird 1 at 28.8 degrees East on transponder C2 Lower.
BSkyB has launched its planned Sky Store ‘Buy & Keep’ service, allowing users to buy as well as rent movies.Buy & Keep provides the ability to purchase digital copies of HD movies along with the original DVD sent by post.The service offers brand new movies at the same time as their DVD release, with many titles available for digital early release, according to Sky.Sky unveiled details of the service at the beginning of the month.Titles at launch include Warner Bros’ The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Ben Stiller comedy The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, family animation Turbo and Richard Curtis romantic comedy About Time, as well as other titles from 20th Century Fox and NBCUniversal.Forthcoming titles include The Wolf of Wall Street, Mandela and Lone Survivor.The service will be further enhanced over the next year with customers being able to access the movies they’ve bought via tablets and smartphones, according to Sky. In the future, TV box sets will be available to buy and Sky Store Buy & Keep will become accessible to non-Sky subscribers with the Now TV Box, Roku and YouView boxes as well as via the Sky Store website.“Buying movies straight from your sofa becomes even easier with Sky Store from today. Our customers love to watch their favourite movies again and again, and with ‘Buy & Keep’ they get the benefit of being able to watch in minutes with the HD digital download, as well as receiving the original DVD in the post,” said Nicola Bamford, director of Sky Store.
Turner’s cable news net CNN International has hired Owen Wyatt for a newly-created digital and affiliate sales role.Wyatt joins from YouTube channel operator Base79. At CNN International he will be tasked with growing the range of affiliates the news channel works with and developing its training and consultancy services.CNN’s new recruit will report to Greg Beitchman, CNN International’s vice president, content sales and partnerships who joined the company from Reuters late last year. He said: “With Owen on-board CNN’s partners can expect even more innovation and enterprising commercial opportunities.”Wyatt said: “As the leading global player in news, CNN also has a huge opportunity to grow our distribution with out of home partners in mutually beneficial relationships that takes CNN content to an even greater audience on new and innovative platforms.”Prior to Base79, Wyatt was head of video at newswire Reuters and a producer at Sky Sports.CNN’s international said his appointment marked another step in Rani Raad’s restructuring of the commercial business since becoming chief commercial officer in February 2013.
Ukrainian broadcaster 1+1’s international channel 1+1 International is now available on Orange Poland’s platform.The deal with Orange give 1+1 International coverage of the entire territory of Poland via IPTV and DTH. Orange TV has about 700,000 subscribers in the country.1+1 International TV channel is available in Poland via Eutelsat’s Hotbird at 13° East and the Astra 4A satellite platform.1+1 said it planned to launch the international channel in Germany, Canada, the US and Cyprus in the near term.“We consider our cooperation with the Orange Polska as an essential step in development of distribution channels of 1+1 International in Poland. The country with one of the largest Ukrainian diasporas in Europe that, according to various sources, amounts to from 350 000 to 500 000 people is very important for us. Additionally, this step expands cooperation of 1+1 Media Group with Polish media companies in general. We hope that in the near future this cooperation will open new possibilities and allow us to approach not only the Ukrainian-speaking audience in Poland,” said Vladyslav Svinchenko, the channel’s general producer.
LG’s Ultra HD Curved OLED TVShipments of 4K TVs jumped by 699% year-on-year in 2014 to 11.6 million units, according to estimates by research firm Futuresource Consulting.The new research forecasts that by 2018, 100 million 4K sets will ship per annum, with 4K TV ownership to exceed 20% in leading markets.“Falling premiums and 4K in smaller screen sizes will drive 4K adoption, while consumers will want to future-proof for 4K content when it becomes available,” according to Futuresource.Last year, China accounted for 70% of 4K TV set demand, down from 84% in 2013, according to the estimates.Futuresource said that the a sustained flow of 4K content will be “critical to the long term success of 4K.” It also said that OTT video services are driving the early rollout of 4K, with “several further propositions are set for launch in 2015/6 from both standalone providers and traditional pay TV platforms.“We are seeing several 4K video services now available in the market, driven by over-the-top (OTT) video services, and we are beginning to see signs that broadcasters support will be forthcoming. However, with 8K on the horizon, there is speculation as to whether the window for 4K will be short-lived,” said Sarah Carroll, Futuresource Consulting director of sales and marketing.The figures follow reports from last week that the Rio 2016 Olympic games will not be broadcast in 4K.Olympic Broadcast Services CEO, Yiannis Exarchos, told the Hollywood Reporter “In my opinion 8K is much more of a game-changer than 4K,” adding that the International Olympic Committee has “no plans for 4K TV broadcasting” and that “there is no demand from our rights holders for 4K.”
Pay TV operator Canal+ Group has reshuffled executive roles after naming René Saal as director of broadcast channels and premium strategy for its Canal+ Overseas arm, effective March 2.Saal will report to Canal+ Overseas president Jacques Le Puy on strategy for premium channels and to content chief François Deplanck on broadcasting matters.The broadcaster has named Thierry Langlois, currently head of thematic channels, as director of broadcast channels for Canal+, replacing Saal, also effective March 2. He will report to Maxime Saada, deputy CEO of Canal+ in charge of pay TV channels.Claire Basini will replace Langlois in his current role as director of thematic channels, taking up her post on July 1 after working with Langlois in the interim. Whe will also report to Saada.Basini joined Canal+ in 2011 from L’Oréal in 2011 with responsibility for advertising and partnerships, taking charge of Canalsat’s advertising and partnership activities a year later.
Irish telco, Eircom, said that its TV service continued to gain traction in the quarter ending March 31 with 37,000 TV customers, representing 26% of its consumer fibre base. Announcing results for its fiscal third quarter, the operator said that 22% of customers now have TV/mobile bundles and that the rollout of its next generation access network continues at pace.“Our network has now passed 1.2 million homes and businesses, representing more than 50% of all premises in Ireland,” said Eircom group CEO Richard Moat.Last year, Eircom set a June 2014 target of 24,000 customers for its then recently-launched eVision IPTV service.Overall in its latest quarter, the company reported revenues of €311 million, down 1% year-on-year. EBITDA was €120 million, an increase of 8% year-on-year.
Bruce TuchmanBruce Tuchman is leaving US cable group AMC after five years running its international channels operation.Tuchman is president of AMC Global and Sundance Channel Global, and one of the best-known execs in the international channels business, having built AMC’s global channels operation and done the same for US studio MGM prior to that.DTVE sister title TBI understands he will remain at AMC Networks until after MIPTV in April.Ed Carroll AMC Networks’ COO, is expected to assume his duties, with a like-for-like replacement not anticipated.AMC confirmed Tuchman’s departure.“Having been with the company since 2011, Bruce Tuchman, president of AMC Global and Sundance Channel Global, will be leaving AMC Networks this April,” AMC said.It added: “He has been instrumental in developing Sundance Channel into a global brand and successfully transitioning the MGM Channel into AMC Global, positioning the business for future growth. We wish him well in his new endeavours.”The departing executive told AMC colleagues about his exit from the US-listed business in a memo. He said he will take a “brief but welcome pause in criss-crossing the world so relentlessly” post-AMC. “This will allow me to focus on moving towards some exciting, yet different endeavours and priorities,” he added.Tuchman’s key successes at AMC include getting Sundance channel’s footprint to 70 international markets. He also oversaw the integration of the MGM channels into the fold, and their rebadging as AMC, bringing the US brand to the international market.That was made possible after AMC bought the MGM channels as part of a wider US$1 billion deal for Chyllomedia. More recently Tuchman has been at the forefront of a charge to secure key scripted series, such as Fear the Walking Dead and Into the Badlands, for the international AMC channel.This comes after several changes were announced at the AMC Networks International – Central Europe channels group last week.
Google CardboardGoogle is reportedly developing an “all-in-one virtual reality headset” that runs independent of a smartphone, games console or computer.According to the Wall Street Journal, the new VR headset will include a screen, high-power chips from startup Movidius and outward-facing cameras that track the motion of the user’s head.Citing people familiar with its plans, the paper said that Google will aim to provide a quality experience not tethered to a PC or console with the new headset.It also claimed that Google plans to develop a “more advanced” version of tis low-cost Google Cardboard VR reader, which acts as a cradle for a smartphone. This new plastic viewer will include chips and censors, according to the WSJ.The news follows a report earlier this month saying that Google-owned YouTube is planning to add support for 360-degree live-streamed video, in its latest push into the VR space.It was also recently claimed that Apple has built prototype VR headsets in a bid to take on rival devices like Facebook’s Oculus Rift headset or Microsoft’s Hololens device.In January, Google is understood to have set up a dedicated VR division and appointed company executive Clay Bavor to run the unit.
Subscription VOD service iflix has opened an office in Cape Town as it launches a plan to offer streaming content in sub-Saharan Africa.iflix Africa will be based in South Africa, and is planning initial SVOD service launches in Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania and Zimbabwe in Q2 and Q3 of this year.This is to target Africa’s young adult populations, and take advantage of rapidly improving internet services and increasing smartphone penetration.Andre de Wet, former CEO of South African shopping comparison site PriceCheck, will lead iflix Africa. “We are passionately focused on providing the broadest selection of premium content at a price everyone can afford,” he said.The African move comes two years after iflix launched in Asia, where it is now in 18 territories (including the MENA region) and has more than five million members.It also follows the completion of a US$90 million funding round that saw the likes of Liberty Global and Zain Group join Sky, Ctacha Group and Evolution Media has significant investors in the business.“The establishment of iflix Africa represents an incredibly exciting step in iflix’s growth story,” said iflix co-founder and CEO Mark Britt. “As Africa transitions from the margins to the mainstream of the global economy, there is a unique, once-in-a-generation opportunity to fundamentally shift the way a billion people consume and enjoy content.“By 2020, Africa will have 720 million smartphone users. We aim to meet the entertainment needs of those growingly connected viewers.”The iflix service offers thousands of TV shows and movies from Hollywood, Bollywood and Nollywood (Nigeria), plus other local and regional programming. iflix Africa plans to introduce exclusive series from the continent.