Air New Zealand Holidays marks return to Aus

first_imgIn addition to the campaign, Air New Zealand Holidays is also in the process of developing a 100 page New Zealand brochure, a dedicated Cook Islands brochure, a Fiji brochure and also a South Pacific brochure that includes Tahiti, Samoa, Norfolk Island, Vanuatu, Tonga, Niue and New Caledonia. New campaign to re-establish Air New Zealand Holidays in the Australian market. Source = ETB News: NJ Hoping to make “big noise” in the market place, the wholesaler said it is committed to the Australian market, as well as growing holidays arrivals into New Zealand and the South Pacific.center_img Returning to the Australian market after a six year absence, Air New Zealand Holidays has launched a new campaign to re-establish itself across the country. Launching in August and running through September, the new campaign will include national press, magazine and digital advertising to feature holiday deals and showcase New Zealand as a holiday destination.last_img read more

In light of Chile recently becoming a major hot sp

first_imgIn light of Chile recently becoming a major hot spot for Australian travellers, andBeyond has released the details of its ‘Wild Side of Chile’ tour. Visiting the vibrant sights of Santiago and immersing themselves in the natural wonders of Chilean Patagonia, the eight-day journey gives travellers a unique opportunity to explore some of the highlights of this increasingly popular destination.The Wild Side of ChileEmbark on an amazing eight-day journey through the vast, pristine wilderness of Patagonia – one of Chile’s most beautiful landscapes. Your clients’ adventure kicks off in the capital city of Santiago, a modern, sprawling and vibrant metropolis that is flanked on each side by the Andes and coastal mountain ranges. It is here that they can enjoy a series of tours that range from historical and cultural explorations to specialised excursions focused on food, architecture and art. After exploring the vibrancy of Santiago, they will head to the awe-inspiring beauty of Patagonia. Over 500 years after the arrival of the first European seafarers in Patagonia, the words to describe it are the same: exotic, faraway, vast, infinitely beautiful, wild and indomitable.Situated in the heart of the National Park, the Torres del Paine Mountains are one of the main attractions of the region and an icon of Chilean Patagonia. The immensity of the ice floes, the majesty of the mountains and the expanse of the lakes are a constant source of wonderment – undeniably a photographer’s and nature lover’s dream destination. End the incredible tour with a fantastic wine tasting experience in Casablanca, which sits just outside of Santiago. Enjoy a guided tour around the Veramonte Vineyard, sample some of its finest wines and learn more about the estate’s wine-making process.HighlightsAn interpretive guided city tour of SantiagoPick and choose from a range of half or full-day Awasi adventures to scenic destinations within Patagonia such as the Grey Peninsula, the Blue Lagoon, Horns Viewpoint and Frenchman’s ValleyAn interpretive introductory talk about the dramatic wilderness of PatagoniaPrivate, expert guides throughout the journey through PatagoniaA close encounter with the wildlife of Patagonia – with the opportunity to encounter pumas, condors, southern deer, guanacos, foxes and rheas or ñandues (to name a few) during the journey.Embark on full-day photographic safaris in PatagoniaExclusive access to a restricted area of the Torres del Paine National Park to observe the wild horses of Baguales in their natural habitat, accompanied by an expert biologist and veterinarianWalking photographic safari designed to ensure that photographers capture the best of PatagoniaWine tour and tasting, accompanied by a local resident guide, in Santiago.InclusionsWelcome and assistance service at all airportsTwo nights’ accommodation in Santiago with breakfastFive nights’ accommodation in Torres del Paine Area on a full-board basisAll transport and excursions as mentioned in private luxury vehicleDomestic air tickets with airport taxesMuseum and national park entrance fee where applicableAdministration fees where applicableFull board in Patagonia and all meals where indicatedRatesFully inclusive rate per person sharing:1 August 2016 – 31 July 2017 US $8732last_img read more

Extensive road funding bills pass House led by committee chair Rep Wayne

first_img08May Extensive road funding bills pass House led by committee chair Rep. Wayne Schmidt Categories: News Package moves to Senate for considerationHouse Transportation Committee Chair Rep. Wayne Schmidt, R-Traverse City, today announced the House approved Speaker Bolger’s package of bills aimed at rebuilding Michigan’s transportation infrastructure through efficient, fiscally responsible measures for building and maintaining safer roads for Michigan families.“Today marks the culmination of a year-and-a-half-long bipartisan effort to implement concrete solutions and address the immediate problems facing our state’s roadways,” Schmidt said.This year, the Legislature approved a budget supplemental from surplus revenue that included $215 million for roads statewide. Including these funds, the House has invested $584.8 million in existing resources into Michigan’s roads. The package that passed the House today addresses four key components of reforming Michigan’s transportation infrastructure: quality, fairness, efficiency and responsible use of current resources.“This legislation streamlines and creates efficiencies to ensure that money spent on roads is used as effectively as possible,” Schmidt said. “These reforms move us one giant step closer to having the safe, reliable roads that hard-working Michiganders expect.”Legislation passed today intends to start making up for years of underfunding by increasing annual road funding to more than $500 million. Bills from Schmidt and his colleagues will redirect current revenue from the use and sales taxes, replace the outdated flat excise with a 6-percent revenue neutral wholesale tax, address plate transfer fee inconsistencies, streamline and dedicate registration fees and fines, as well as increase the cost of overweight and oversize load permits. Competitive bidding and disclosure of appropriate road warranties would also be required under the new laws.“The time for political games is over. We are addressing this issue now,” Schmidt said. “The taxpayers of this state demand real action, not gimmicks and diversions. Good roads equal good jobs, and getting Michiganders to work is something we can all agree on.”The Build Better Michigan Roads package garnered bipartisan support and now heads to the Senate for consideration.###last_img read more

Lyons domestic violence protection bill heads to governor

first_img19Apr Lyons’ domestic violence protection bill heads to governor Lyons: Legislation sends message to offenders that Michigan will not tolerate domestic violence and sexual assaultLegislation establishing clear and sensible protections for victims or potential victims of domestic violence has been sent to the governor for his signature.House Bill 4481, introduced by Rep. Lisa Posthumus Lyons would allow a victim of sexual assault that results in pregnancy to present clear and convincing evidence in order to have the right to parenting time and custody taken away from the assailant.“Michigan needs to send a message that we stand with the victims and survivors of domestic violence and rape,” said Rep. Lyons, R-Alto. “Too often in cases of sexual assault and domestic violence, a rapist will use the threat of seeking custody of the child to intimidate pregnant victims into not pressing criminal charges of the attack. It is unthinkable that we would allow this to occur when we have the ability to provide victims with the protection and peace of mind they need in order to heal.“My bill allows the victim of rape the ability to present clear and convincing evidence—a standard already accepted in child protection and custody cases—in order to have parenting and custody time removed from the rapist.” Categories: Newslast_img read more

Millennials Bring Bipartisan Message to Congress

first_imgShare2TweetShareEmail2 Shares December 1, 2014;Roll Call“What conference has everyone from Sen. Ted Cruz to the actress Ashley Judd coming to speak?” asked Steven Olikara, the co-founder of the Millennial Action Project. Cruz, as conservative a Republican as there is in Congress, and Judd, a Democrat who briefly considered challenging Mitch McConnell for the Kentucky senate seat, were joined by other politicians such as Rep. Aaron Schock (R-IL), Rep. John Delaney (D-MD), Rep. Todd Young (R-IN), Rep. Joe Kennedy (D-MA), and Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA) at the Congressional Summit on Next Generation Leadership on Tuesday, a program focused, according to Roll Call’s coverage, on “forging bipartisan bonds.”“We wanted to send a strong message that bipartisanship for millennials is not reserved for the centrists or for the moderates…[It] also includes those on the far left and the far right,” Olikara told Roll Call.Why millennials as the bridge over troubled political parties? Because “the core value that this generation can bring is pragmatism,” Olikara added.The speakers’ list for the program is much more than lawmakers. A number of young or young-ish philanthropic leaders were also on the bill, including, among others, Sarah Stranahan (formerly with the Needmor Fund, a family foundation of the Stranahan family—that is, the Champion Spark Plug fortune), Zac Russell (Russell Family Foundation, with a strong interest in environmental issues), Sergio Fernández de Córdova (chair of the PVBLIC Foundation, focused on media-related grantmaking), Stephanie Cordes (Cordes Foundation), Patrick Gage (Carlson Family Foundation, the family foundation from the Radisson Hotels money, emphasizing youth mentoring), Ariana Snowdon (Hill-Snowdon Foundation), and Melissa Bradley (whose bio in the program oddly skips over her leadership of the Tides Foundation, which she left as CEO in 2013).   //Among the legislators, participants Schock and Young as well as Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) are the co-chairs of the Congressional Future Caucus, which is sponsored by the Millennial Action Project, according to MAP’s website. Given the near invisibility of the Congressional Philanthropy Caucus, launched by the Council on Foundations in 2007 or so, the Future Caucus seems to have grabbed the philanthropy mantle, united with the concept of millennials, notably functioning as the Capitol Hill promoters of Giving Tuesday.For many people, the notion that Ted Cruz and Joe Kennedy could sit down and think bipartisan thoughts is a heartfelt wish, but the reality is that the arenas for bipartisan agreement may be limited—just imagine the two legislators’ bipartisan conversation about the Affordable Care Act or immigration reform or any of a whole series of critically important issues in American society. The program agenda for the Summit reveals where the business and philanthropic millennials behind the event see actual opportunities for bipartisan conviviality. Specific themes emerge from the program agenda:As an issue, human trafficking seems to be an arena for millennial bipartisan action. The “Bipartisanship on Human Trafficking” panel featured Rep. Karen Bass and the Carlson Family Foundation’s Patrick Gage. The “End Slavery Now” panel had Rep. Carolyn Maloney plus Diana Mao of the Nomi Foundation (presumably the Nomi Network).Women’s issues and the role of women in philanthropy were the topics of panels and presentations involving Ariana Snowdon, Jessica Houssian (Women Moving Millions), Sarah Ojjeh (Women’s Investment Network), and, notably, Ashley Judd.Not surprisingly, there was a generous sampling of discussions of entrepreneurship and social enterprise, including panels on impact investing both at the inaugural Nexus USA Youth Summit the day before the Congressional summit “The Promise of Entrepreneurship” with Melissa Bradley and at the Summit itself, as well as plenty on public-private partnerships, including one with representatives Delaney and Young, both Future Caucus members, who are cosponsoring legislation to promote Social Impact Bonds (touted on the Millennial Action Project website).Overall, philanthropy is clearly on the post-partisan agenda of this movement. At the Youth Summit, on the day before the Congressional Summit, Ted Hart of the Charities Aid Foundation released a report on government incentives for charitable giving in 193 countries, noting that giving is higher in countries that offer tax incentives and that 77 percent of the nations in the study give tax incentives for corporate charitable giving and 66 percent for individual giving.Ultimately, while the notion that somehow millennials are hardwired toward pragmatism and bipartisan consensus and, implicitly, we Gen-X’ers, Boomers, and beyond are tragically unable to communicate beyond politics and ideology is off-putting, there’s clearly no harm in convening people to talk about issues where both sides might exchange ideas, even if they might not achieve consensus. We might have enjoyed, for example, watching representatives of the Charles Koch Foundation, the American Conservative Union, the Public Welfare Foundation, and the Open Society Foundations find common ground on criminal justice reform (which we think is an area where there are some possibilities), or imagining how Sarah Stranahan might find areas of agreement with Hans von Spakovsky, a former Federal Elections Commission official now with the Heritage Foundation, and the Carlson Family Foundation’s Patrick Gage, himself a young Republican activist, on issues of transparency of nonprofit and political funding (the Kauffman Foundation’s John Tyler was also on that panel, probably playing a moderating role between the transparency camps). We might have been actually worried about the direction of discussion on a panel on “The Future of Education Reform” focused on how “social entrepreneurs, thought leaders, and donors are changing the game.”Nonetheless, don’t get too carried away with the idea of a post-partisan polity. There is a huge need for dialogue and thought, and while it is tempting to imagine that it’s possible to sing kumbaya if we’re all somehow nice and millennial, some issues reveal major fault lines in U.S. political beliefs that don’t lend themselves to entrepreneurial, technological, or millennial fixes.—Rick CohenShare2TweetShareEmail2 Shareslast_img read more

Deal between Los Angeles Mayor and Two Utility Nonprofits Going South

first_imgShareTweetShareEmail0 SharesFebruary 11, 2015; Los Angeles TimesThe Los Angeles Times reports that a deal between the mayor of Los Angeles and the city’s utility workers union to audit two controversial Department of Water and Power (DWP) nonprofit trusts “has ground to a halt.”The agreement came last fall after an ongoing fight between Mayor Eric Garcetti and the DWP’s main employee union over access to the trusts’ financial records, giving city auditors “unfettered access” to them. The mayor is questioning how more than $40 million in public ratepayer money donated to the groups has been spent.But the paper reports that in late December, City Controller Ron Galperin’s office stopped work, citing a lack of cooperation from the nonprofits for unspecified reasons, and there has been no progress since then, as confidential discussions have continued.A spokesman for the mayor repeated his position: “These audits are important to bring transparency to these trusts and accountability for ratepayers.” But the union leader, who supported the mayor’s opponent in the 2013 election, has dragged his feet on a comprehensive review of the spending records, and did not respond to the Times.“The lack of progress raised the possibility that last year’s deal could unravel and the long-running legal and political clash over the nonprofits could resume,” says the article.The groups have been mired in controversy since September 2013, when the Times reported that the city-owned utility had very little information on how the trusts had been spending ratepayer money given to them annually for the past 10 years; the DWP’s general manager at the time couldn’t even recite their accomplishments, even though he served on their boards of directors.The Joint Training Institute and the Joint Safety Institute were created to improve safety and management-labor relations at the nation’s largest municipal water and power agency, but there has never been any detailed, public accounting of their expenditures. The nonprofits are jointly controlled by DWP executives and the union, which plays an active role in their management.Union leaders are saying that since the nonprofits aren’t government entities, they are not subject to public records laws or an audit by the city controller. Last year, they sued to block a city subpoena demanding five years of detailed financial records, but a Superior Court judge sided with the city, ruling the public has a right to know how its money is spent. The union has filed an appeal, which is pending.When the controller refused to withhold last year’s city donation to the trusts until it agreed to open their books, “some city council members brokered a compromise that the mayor praised as a means to finally settle questions about whether ratepayer money was properly spent,” the paper says.That deal was an agreement by the city to back off its demand “to place key Garcetti allies on the nonprofit boards” and by the union to drop labor claims against the city. In exchange, city auditors were to be given access to the non-profits’ financial records; if no improprieties were found, the annual payment would be released. That’s the deal that seems to be unraveling now.Keeping a brave face, the Times reports that the city’s administrative officer and current DWP manager issued a joint statement saying the agreement stands, and that both sides “are committed to resuming the work of the fiscal auditors as soon as possible.”—Larry KaplanShareTweetShareEmail0 Shareslast_img read more

Will Trumps Revised Travel Ban Be Moot before SCOTUS Rules

first_imgShare16TweetShare5Email21 SharesMaxPixel. Public domain.June 12, 2017; New York TimesBoth the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco and the 4th Circuit court in Virginia have ruled against the reinstatement of President Trump’s revised temporary ban on travel from six predominantly Muslim nations. Each ruling took a different tack and used different reasoning to arrive at very similar conclusions. The Justice Department has appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to review these decisions and make a final ruling, but the possibility exists that even if the Supreme Court agrees to hear this appeal, the timing of such a decision will render it moot.The decision issued by the 9th Circuit Court on June 12, 2017, was unanimous.The ruling affirmed most of a March decision from Judge Derrick K. Watson of the Federal District Court in Hawaii. But the appeals court narrowed the injunction issued by Judge Watson in a significant way. The appeals court said Judge Watson had erred in barring the administration from conducting internal reviews of its vetting procedures while the case moved forward.This part of the ruling may be significant as the case moves forward for consideration by the Supreme Court.The 9th Circuit court ruling stated that the administration did not show that blocking citizens from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen was necessary to protect this country. They also found that the president’s order violated U.S. immigration law, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of nationality. The 4th circuit chose a different path for its ruling.Critics of the ban have asserted that the president’s order was motivated by anti-Muslim sentiment, in violation of the Constitution’s separation of church and state. The 4th Circuit’s ruling took that question head-on, agreeing that the ban officially disfavored Islam—as evidenced by Trump’s campaign statements calling for a “total and complete shutdown” on Muslims entering the U.S.—and was thus unconstitutional.In spite of the stays issued by these federal courts, immigration and tourism to the U.S. has slowed since the initial executive order. The issue of how many immigrants and refugees the U.S. will allow also hangs in this tangled web of the revised executive order and various court decisions.The Trump administration has asked the Supreme Court for an expedited review of these lower court rulings. Because this is a request from the president and the U.S. Justice Department, the Supreme Court may feel more obliged to act.Here’s the scenario:On June 1, 2017, when Supreme Court agreed to consider this appeal, they asked opponents of the travel ban to submit their briefs in defense of the lower court rulings by June 12, 2017. Those briefs have been submitted.On June 13th, following the ruling from the 9th Circuit, the Supreme Court agreed to a request from Acting U.S. Solicitor General Jeffrey Wall for more time to respond and make its case for reinstating the travel ban. They now have until June 21, 2017, to submit additional briefs.What happens next? Under normal circumstances, their session would close at the end of June and there would not be hearings until the fall of 2017. These are not normal times, so there are a few options before the Court.The Court could take the unusual step of holding a hearing in late June and trying to resolve this case before they leave town for the summer.Or, they could do nothing. This would leave the two rulings in place, effectively permanently removing this temporary travel ban.They could defer a hearing until the fall of 2017, but the hearing and subsequent decision in that time frame would have limited impact.Any way they choose to act, the timing is critical. The executive order, in both versions, is a 90-day ban in order for the administration to conduct a review of its vetting procedures from these six predominantly Muslim countries. The president revoked the initial executive order when he issued the revised executive order in March. The 9th Circuit appeals court narrowed the ruling by Judge Watson in Hawaii. Watson’s ruling halted imposition of the order and also stopped this review of the vetting process. That review can now go forward. It is possible that this review might now resume and be completed soon. The Supreme Court could then determine that the case is moot. The 90-day period would be over, and the order would no longer be in effect.The clock is ticking. By lifting the part of Judge Watson’s injunction that barred the review of internal vetting procedures, the 9th Circuit may have ensured that the case will be moot by the time it is argued, no matter how the 90 days are calculated.The terms of the revised executive order state that a ban will be applied to travelers from any country that does not cooperate with U.S. officials to determine whether that country provides sufficient information about its nationals to assure “that the individual seeking the [visa, admission, or other] benefit is who the individual claims to be and is not a security or public-safety threat.” Will we then be looking for version three of the travel ban? Only time will tell.—Carole LevineShare16TweetShare5Email21 Shareslast_img read more

Amazonowned movie streaming company Lovefilm and

first_imgAmazon-owned movie streaming company Lovefilm and Sony Pictures Television have signed a multi-year content deal giving Lovefilm customers exclusive streaming access to new and forthcoming Sony Pictures titles during the second subscription pay TV window, as well as catalogue titles and TV series, from June 2012.The agreement with Sony Pictures Television is the latest in a line of exclusive content deals announced by Lovefilm in the UK in recent months, including deals with Warner Bros, Entertainment One, Studiocanal, Disney, Momentum and Lionsgate.Lovefilm customers members will be able to stream Sony Pictures titles including The Social Network and action-thriller Salt at no extra cost and as part of their existing subscription.Simon Calver, chief executive of Lovefilm, said: “Our latest major content agreement means we’ll be able to exclusively offer our members world-class content from Sony Pictures. The number of recent high profile deals we have secured means we are able to keep expanding the service, offering our members high quality films and TV and the ability to watch as much as they want for one low monthly price.”last_img read more

High definition TV penetration in mature TV market

first_imgHigh definition TV penetration in mature TV markets will soon reach a level that means broadcasters and pay TV operators can consider ending standard definition broadcasts, according to new research.HD-ready penetration will double from 25.9% at end-2011 to 50.9% in 2016. However, HD-ready penetration will be higher than 80% in 18 countries by 2016, Digital TV Research says.Globally, the number of HD-ready TV homes will double between now and the end of 2016, taking the total to 652 million, according to Digital TV Research. The number of ‘HD-active’ homes will, meanwhile, treble across the same time period, reaching almost 500 million.last_img read more

Al Jazeeras battle with Canal Plus over premium s

first_imgAl Jazeera’s battle with Canal Plus over premium sports rights in France looks set to enter a new phase. According to a report in Le Figaro newspaper, the Qatar-based broadcaster is close to striking a deal to acquire French rights to Spain’s La Liga football for €20 million.Rightsholder MediaPro has already rejected an offer of €6.5 million from Canal Plus. The French pay TV broadcaster and Al Jazeera have been locked in a struggle to acquire national and international football rights that most recently saw the pair agree to share Italian Serie A rights.Al Jazeera has acquired rights to some French Ligue 1 games, with Canal Plus holding the remainder, while the Qatar broadcaster also secured rights to European Champions League matches and, together with M6, Europa League games. Canal Plus retains rights to English Premier League matches.last_img read more

SESs SES4 satellite is now fully operational and

first_imgSES’s SES-4 satellite is now fully operational and ready for service at the 338° degrees East orbital position. 
SES-4 was launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on February 15. It has replaced the NSS-7 satellite and will provide replacement and incremental capacity over the Atlantic Ocean.SES-4 has 52 C-band and 72 Ku-band transponders. It has C-band beams serving the eastern hemisphere of Europe and Africa and providing full coverage of the Americas, plus a global C-band beam to support mobile and maritime customers. Four high-power, regional Ku-band beams will provide services to Europe, the Middle East, and West Africa, as well as North and South America. The satellite is designed to deliver services for 15 years or more.last_img read more

Liberty Globalowned Swiss cable operator UPC Cabl

first_imgLiberty Global-owned Swiss cable operator UPC Cablecom will launch 26 new channels, including six in HD, to its line-up nationwide from June 5. In German-speaking Switzerland, the company will add new channels RTL Nitro and Glitz HD to its line-up, with 12 existing channels also to made available in HD.UPC Cablecom will be offering the three German commercial channels Sat.1, ProSieben and Kabel Eins in HD quality for the first time in Switzerland, including in its basic Mini package. Also in HD and also in the Mini package, the Swiss entertainment channel 3+ will be included as of June 5. The other new HD channels in German-speaking Switzerland are the public service channels 3Sat HD, KiKa HD, WDR HD, NDR HD, BR HD, SWR HD – all included in the Mini package – and ZDFneo HD and RTL Nitro in the Classic package.The Comfort package will now also include 13th Street Universal in HD and female-focused channel Glitz, also in HD.last_img read more

UK channels group UKTV has committed to spending o

first_imgUK channels group UKTV has committed to spending over £100 million (€125 million) on new content each year.Announcing UKTV’s programming line-up for 2012/13, CEO Darren Childs said, “We have increased our new content investment to over £100 million per year”. He also said UKTV’s channels, which include Watch, Gold, Dave, Alibi, Yesterday, Blighty, Eden, Home, Really and Good Food, are watched by over 41 million viewers each month. “UKTV is now the nation’s fastest-growing commercial television network of 2012, growing by more than every other commercial broadcaster combined,” Childs said.UKTV, which is jointly owned by BBC Worldwide and Scripps International, recently announced plans to launch standalone VOD platforms for Dave, Really and Yesterday.last_img read more

Ukrainian cable operator Volia has signed agreemen

first_imgUkrainian cable operator Volia has signed agreements with two other operators to distribute its Smart HD OTT service over their networks. Volia has signed up network operators Miksnet and Telza in Kyiv and Zhaporozhye respectively.The Smart HD offering provides 130 linear TV channels as well as on-demand services. The first third-party network to sign up for the service is Datagroup, which operates residential services in Ukraine under the brand Domashniy Telecom.New features to be launched on the service before the end of the year include catch-up, startover and multiscreen TV.last_img read more

Video and broadband technology provider Arris has

first_imgVideo and broadband technology provider Arris has secured a contract to provide cable and IPTV infrastructure for the petrochemical industry cities of Jubai and Yanbu in Saudi Arabia.Saudi government organisation the Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu (RCJ) has commissioned Arris to deliver an overall system including a centralised video and optical headend, HFC network, IPTV middleware and IP and cable set-tops. The network will enable the RCJ to deliver enhanced internet services as well as to expand the number of channels it offers and deliver an improved user experience and programme recording functionality.Arris’s infrastructure will enable the RCJ to unify its channel line-up over HFC and GPON fibre networks from a single centralised headend covering the cities it administers.Equipment supplied by Arris includes the CAP-1000 multiplexer, the APEX 1000 edge QAM, the OmniStar GX2 optical broadband transmission platform, DreamGallery middleware, the HMC3000 IP set-top and VIP1003 HD IP set-top.“We were looking for a proven, integrated solution enabling us to cover delivery from end-to-end,” said Ahmed Hassan, director of the engineering department at the Royal Commission in Jubail. “The Arris portfolio allows us to streamline this process, while providing added business benefits such as content localisation capabilities. Furthermore, as we look to expand our geographical remit, the ability to stream from a single centralised headend will be paramount in supporting this growth.”The RCJ operates infrastructure for the petrochemical industry city of Jubai in eastern Saudi Arabia and the port of Yambu on the Red Sea coast. The Saudi government has committed to expand both centres as well as to develop a new industrial city at Ras Al-Khair, situated 60km to the north of Jubail and intended to exploit the country’s phosphate and bauxite resources, which will also be administered by the RCJ.last_img read more

Scripps Networks International has appointed Kevin

first_imgScripps Networks International has appointed Kevin Chorlins its US-based senior VP, international content and brand strategy.Chorlins has been upped from VP, marketing and communications at channel operator Scripps’ international division. Prior to joining Scripps’ international division, Chorlins was VP, marketing for Scripps’ DIY Network.In the newly created role at Scripps, he will head up international strategy and marketing for Scripps programme franchises and channels. He will also oversee communications.Chorlins will report to to Jim Samples, president of Scripps Networks International. He said: “As the company has developed experienced programmers and marketers in London, Singapore and now Brazil, it’s important that our international teams have a strong support base in the United States.”last_img read more

Viacom International Media Networks VIMN is laun

first_imgViacom International Media Networks (VIMN) is launching the Paramount Channel in Romania and increasing its distribution of the network in Hungary after striking a deal with operator RCS&RDS. A fully localised Romanian version of the 24-hour TV film channel will be available to pay TV subscribers of digital and satellite basic packages. In Hungary, the RCS&RDS deal increases the Paramount Channel’s footprint, with the channel having first gone live in this market in February of this year.Paramount Channel Hungary is already available through most of the major operators in the country, on platforms including Magyar Telekom, Tarr, PR-Telecom and Invitel.“We’re delighted to be extending the reach of Paramount Channel to our viewers in Romania and increasing our penetration in the Hungarian market so soon after the channel launch in February,” said David Lynn, managing director, VIMN UK, Australia and Central and Eastern Europe.“This deal, with our long-standing affiliate partner RCS&RDS, is a testament to the success of the Paramount Channel brand. Viewers in Romania are among the first globally to be able to access this service and we’re confident it will be just as successful as it has been in other markets and will help us continue to grow our share of key audiences in these important European markets.”The Paramount Channel launched in Spain in 2012, in France in 2013 and in Russia in 2014.last_img read more

Streaming service Netflix has greenlit an eightep

first_imgStreaming service Netflix has greenlit an eight-episode, straight-to-series comedy from The Millers and Arrested Development star Will Arnett.Flaked comes from Arnett and Mark Chappell (The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret) and follows a self-appointed “guru” in an insular Californian community those carefully crafted image and sobriety begins to unravel after he falls for the object of his best friend’s desires.Electus and Pricipato-Young coproduce with Arnett, Chappell, Ben Silverman, Peter Principato and Arrested Development creator Mitch Hurwitz executive producing.Arnett is already attached to Netflix’s animated adult comedy BoJack Horseman. He recently scored a development deal with CBS Television Studios after launching prodco Electric Avenue, though his CBS comedy The Millers was cancelled last year after two seasons.Flaked, meanwhile, is Netflix’s latest comedy. Grace and Frankie, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and F if For Family are all in the works.last_img read more

Andrus Ansip The EU will unveil plans to overahaul

first_imgAndrus AnsipThe EU will unveil plans to overahaul copyright rules and facilitate “cross-border portability of online content” according to digital single market commissioner Andrus Ansip.Delivering a speech yesterday at the University of Strasbourg, Ansip said, “Put simply, this means allowing people who subscribe to online content services in one EU country – for books, music, games, films, drama, sport – to use those services when they are travelling in another country.”He said there was a “mess of exceptions to the rules that apply across the EU’s 28 countries” and that the proposals to be unveiled would be a first step to “modernise Europe’s outdated rules on copyright”.Ansip said that the EC wanted to “widen people’s access to cultural content online” and create a situation where there was “more culture circulating across Europe”.Ansip said that the EC will also consider a review of the current Cable and Satellite Directive and how it can be extended to online TV and radio programmes.Ansip said that enabling cross-border access to content would eliminate a major incentive to view pirated content.Piracy is also a drain on Europe’s s wider economy. It just means everybody loses out. And the creators are first in line. Too many people are tempted into illegal downloads, sometimes because there is no access,” he said.“According to a recent survey, 22% of Europeans think it is acceptable to download or access copyright-protected content illegally when there is no legal alternative in their country.  This clearly shows how important it is to give people a legal alternative, by improving cross-border access. In parallel, we plan to tackle piracy by using a ‘follow the money’ process with the industry, for instance working with the big brands and advertising professionals. Our aim is to deprive commercial-scale infringers of their revenue flows.”Ansip said the Commission was “quite inspired by the French CNC model for finding legal offers of movies” and that it plans to “develop a European aggregator of online and national search tools so that people can easily find works legally available to them.”He said the EU had earmarked €1.46 billion up to 2020 to support the culture and audio-visual sectors.“We will use this funding to create catalogues of European films. We want to develop hubs to help the licensing of works not yet available in a given EU country,” he said.last_img read more

Croatiabased channel provider Fight Channel Group

first_imgCroatia-based channel provider Fight Channel Group has secured a carriage deal for its international channel Fight Channel World HD with new Czech DTH platform Flix TV.Fight Channel World HD – the group’s other channel, Fight Channel, is exclusively distributed in the former Yugoslav countries – will be offered by Flix TV as part of its extended basic offering.“The launch of Fight Channel World HD, a unique sport channel specialized in fighting sports – boxing, kickboxing and MMA – mixed martial arts – will definitely strengthen the Flix.TV portfolio and enrich its sport offer since fighting sport is the fastest growing sport in the world,” said Orsat Zovko, CEO of Fight Channel Group.‘”Fight Channel Word HD is delivered in English language in HD quality and it offers top athletes and top fighting brands – Final Fight Championship, Konfrontacija Sztuk Walki, Resurrection Fighting Alliance, Superkombat. The channel is aimed at international market having worldwide distribution rights for all platforms, currently present on dozen platforms – Croatia, Slovenia, Austria, Bulgaria, South Africa, Australia, Philippines and the Czech Republic – and aiming to significantly widen its footprint by the end of the year. Fight Channel World HD is the only channel in the world that can adapt its programming scheme by including domiciled fighters of any country since Fight Channel Group is an owner, organiser and producer of Final Fight Championship (FFC) worldwide events.“last_img read more