Alia Atkinson sets second world record

first_imgAlia Atkinson Jamaican swim queen, Alia Atkinson, has broken the 50 meters breaststroke short course world record at the FINA World Cup Tour in Tokyo, Japan.Atkinson won the event in 28.64 seconds, in the process shaving 16 hundredths of a second off the old mark of 28.80 seconds which was set by Jessica Hardy in Berlin in 2009.This is Atkinson’s second world record as she is currently tied with Ruta Meilutyte for the 100 metres breaststroke record.Atkinson won the event ahead of Russia’s Yulia Efimova and American Molly Hannis.She is one of only three women ever to have broken the 29-second barrier in the 50 metres breaststroke.A US$10,000 bonus will be presented to Atkinson from FINA for breaking the world record, along with 20 points towards her cluster bonus.last_img

GraceKennedy contemplates local production of “Bully Beef”

first_imgJamaican manufacturing and distribution company, GraceKennedy is exploring contemplating producing corned beef.This follows the recent implementation of a ban on the importation of the product from Brazil based on reports that several major meat processers were “selling rotten beef and poultry”.Jamaica and other countries in the region have since lifted the ban but GraceKennedy is now interested in producing a “home grown” product.“We recognize that innovation requires thinking outside of the box and because we priorities local production and pursue every opportunity to do so, I have asked the innovation team to look at what it would take to produce corned beef at Grace Food Processors –  our meat processing plant in Westmoreland,” said GraceKennedy CEO, Don Wehby.The company’s meat processing plant produces a wide range of products including Grace Vienna Sausages, frankfurters and ham.“It would be great if we could deliver to our consumers “Grace Bully Beef”, manufactured in Savanna-La-mar, Jamaica,” he said adding that the team will explore this innovation and “provide a report to me as soon as possible.”However, Agriculture Minister Karl Samuda says the proposal might not be practical.“I don’t think at the moment that we are in a position to produce our own corned beef.  When you talking about the production 4,800 factories in Brazil produce at a volume that the economies of scale would strip us dry, we wouldn’t be able to competitive ….. so we import those things,” Samuda said.The ban on corned beef manufactured in the South American country was lifted following a report that was submitted by a Jamaican delegation that went to Brazil to meet with authorities and inspected operations.Based on the positive findings, the ban was lifted.According to Wehby, the government’s decision is reflective of the due diligence in protecting the health and safety of Jamaica’s citizens .last_img read more

T&T union plans to file contempt of court proceedings against state-oil…

first_imgPORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, CMC – The Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU), says it intends to file contempt of court proceedings against the state-owned PETROTRIN, after accusing the oil company of failing to discuss the manner through which new staff will be employed at two new companies.The government has announced plans to shut down the loss-making PETROTRIN and replace it with three new companies, including Heritage Petroleum Company Ltd, and Paria Fuel Trading Company.Contempt of court “The company refused to say what criteria are being used in the hiring process and what is the whole structure of the new company. It constitutes contempt of court and we will be going for contempt of court proceedings in respect of their refusal to answer those questions,” OWTU President General, Ancel Roget told reporters.Last week, the Industrial Court ruled that the company violated the Industrial Relations Act by failing in good faith to treat and to enter into negotiations with the union for the purpose of collective bargaining, particularly, the shutdown of the company and the retrenchment of its 4,700 employees.The Court ordered PETROTRIN to meet with the union to discuss the “issues related to the terms and conditions of employment of the workers for which the company had a duty to discuss with the union.”The Court had given the parties until Tuesday to discuss the matter.But Roget told reporters that two members of the PETROTRIN board are also members of the new company “and therefore are duty bound to provide answers to the questions coming from the court.”New employment not sustainable The OWTU said it believes that while the retrenched workers are being offered new employment, these jobs are not sustainable and the workers would most likely be paid minimum wages with inadequate terms and conditions of employment.“Essentially it is to get the union out because it is their belief that if they get the union out they can wreak havoc. That is what they will consider to be profitable and successful,” Roget said, expressing concern also at the existing pension plan for the workers.He said the government had indicated that the plan was sufficiently funded but that the trustee, Republic Bank says otherwise.Roget said that PETROTRIN could not say whether all workers will collect their severance packages on Friday.last_img read more

Burst of earthquakes felt in Leeward Islands

first_imgPORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, CMC – The Trinidad-based Seismic Research Centre (SRC) of the St. Augustine campus of the University of the West Indies Saturday said that a burst of 54 earthquakes occurred north of St. Kitts during a 21-hour period. The biggest had a magnitude of 4.1In a brief statement, SRC said that the quakes were recorded during the period 4.28 pm (local time) on Friday to 9.50 am (local time on Saturday.It said that the 54 earthquakes were in the magnitude range of 1.2 to 4.1, the SRC said, adding “there have been no felt reports thus far”.Several residents on St. Kitts reported an earthquake being felt on the island on Friday night.The earthquakes were reported felt in the British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Saint Martin, Saint Maarten, Guadeloupe, Montserrat, Puerto Rico, United States Virgin Islands, Caribbean Netherlands, Saint Barthélemy, Antigua and Barbuda, and Anguilla.last_img read more

Venezuela Government Backs Out of Talks After US New Sanctions

first_imgBRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – The Venezuela government has withdrawn from talks with the opposition to protest the decision by the United States to impose new sanctions on the Maduro government earlier this week.Last week, Norway said representatives of the Venezuelan government and the opposition would continue to hold talks here in an effort to find a solution to the economic and political crisis in the South American country.“Τhe parties have reiterated their willingness to advance in the search for an agreed-upon and constitutional solution,” Norway’s Foreign Ministry said then.Norway has been acting as a mediator to end the political crisis that has gripped the South American country ever since Opposition Leader Juan Guaido declared himself interim president and received the backing of several western countries led by the United States.President Nicolas Maduro, who has the backing of Cuba, China, and Russia, was sworn into office for a second consecutive term earlier this year and has rebuked Guaido’s attempt at unseating him.But the Trump administration earlier this week announced that it was freezing the US assets of the Venezuelans government.“We Venezuelans have watched with profound indignation how the chief of the opposition, Juan Guaido, celebrates, promotes and supports these harmful actions against our nation’s sovereignty and our peoples’ most basic human rights,” the government said in a statement.The statement stopped short of stating that Caracas would abandon the talks, adding it would “review the mechanisms of this process to ensure its continuation is truly effective and harmonious with the interests of the people”.Maduro said that while he favours dialogue, he will not stand by idly as his opponents cheer on punitive measures by Washington that he believes will worsen hardships in the country.“Under these conditions, no,” he said promising to lead a “counteroffensive” from the constitutional assembly to “bring justice to the sellouts and traitors.”last_img read more

Despite Hurricane Dorian, Bahamas Records Historic Tourist Arrivals in 2019

first_imgNASSAU, Bahamas – Despite several islands being battered by Hurricane Dorian in September 2019, A resilient Bahamas still managed to record the highest number of stopover visitors ever from the United States, and a whopping 7.2 million in total arrivals.Following the devastating category five hurricane that wrecked much of the archipelago, tourism was expected to slow down as the island, and the rest of the world, sprung into action to assist in recovery. But the Bahamas government recently announced that, surprisingly, that was not the case.In January, the country’s tourism and aviation minister, Dionisio D’Aguilar, said some 1.78 million stopover visitors vacationed on the islands of The Bahamas in 2019 while more than five million cruise ship passengers visited the ports.With a population of merely 400,000 persons, the country is boasting its strongest recorded numbers in history.“This is a tremendous accomplishment, particularly in light of the challenging year that we as a country just endured,” D’Aguilar stated, reminiscing on the September hurricane that ravaged two of its islands, Freeport and Abaco.He attributed the immediate rebound to solidarity of the workers at all levels in the archipelago’s tourism industry as well as the robust marketing efforts led by the tourism ministry, media partners, and “friends of The Bahamas”.D’Aguilar credited the coming together of the nation, combined with data-driven, agile marketing and airlift strategies, as the key components of the country’s compelling success.“We are in awe of our country and deeply grateful for the outpouring of support from friends, partners, and even strangers from around the world.”In detailing the strategies, D’Aguilar noted that the Ministry of Tourism had moved with alacrity to get the word out that the country was open for business, a sentiment he said that was embraced wholeheartedly, sparking international headlines and encouraging travel to the islands.“We began our campaign in the days immediately following Hurricane Dorian and have remained diligently aggressive ever since. Ministry executives have travelled to New York, Miami, Canada, London, Paris, and even Australia, speaking at top tourism conferences and dealing with travel partners, media, and influencers to spread the message that The Bahamas is open, beautiful, and ready to welcome all with open arms,” he explained.The tourism minister said The Bahamas was looking forward to continuing the momentum of its $US35 million per year marketing efforts throughout 2020 and pointed out that before Hurricane Dorian, the country’s tourism was already thriving at a record level.“Last year, we saw many accomplishments. We hosted 41 media and influencers across several islands to generate compelling stories about The Bahamas. Together, with our industry partners, the Ministry of Tourism hosted sales and media missions in many of our key designated marketing areas,” he said.“We hosted a very successful marketing campaign with the legendary rock star Lenny Kravitz, graced the cover and pages of Sports Illustrated’s highly anticipated swimsuit issue, and witnessed the production of a prime time television show, ‘Come to Life in Nassau’, on screens across the US – the main goal: inspire travel to our remarkable country,” he added.last_img read more

AUDIO: Ighalo Dispels Zambia, Promise Eagles’ Victory.

first_img “IGHALO ON MINDGAMES OCT 5” “IGHALO ON MINDGAMES OCT 5” “They are playing mind games because they know they are playing against a different and better team than the ones they’ve played, and for the fact that they know It’s going to be a difficult game for them, so they just want to talk and I believe they’re just talking to boost their morale that they can get something here(Uyo),” the former Watford goal poacher said.“For me, on Saturday, at the start of the game, it’s going to be eleven against eleven, and after the game,  we’re going to see what happens, but I believe that we’re going to win the game”. A win for Nigeria will ensure their qualification for the 2018 World Cup in Russia while a draw or win for Zambia, who trail the Eagles by 3pts, will enhance their chances of advancing to their first appearance at the Mundial.RelatedIghalo Distraught Over Missing South Africa ClashNovember 10, 2018In “National Team”Video: Watch Super Eagles Arrive Cameroon Ahead Of World Cup Qualifier Return LegSeptember 3, 2017In “Africa”2018 World Cup Qualifier: FOURmidable Eagles Stay Top After Trashing Cameroon In UyoSeptember 1, 2017In “National Team” read more

No Standstill… Scientific Games acquires 11% of NYX Gaming shares

first_imgShare Related Articles Esports Entertainment bolsters tournament capacity by acquiring EGL August 27, 2020 William Hill accelerates transformation agenda to overcome COVID realities August 5, 2020 Issuing a market note, Nasdaq-listed gambling technology group Scientific Games Corporation (SGC) has moved to acquire 11.6 million ordinary shares in acquisition target NYX Gaming Group.The transaction represents approximately 10.72% of NYX’s current shareholding, with SGC governance paying CAD$2.22-2.35 per share, representing a purchase price of circa CAD $27 million (£18 million).Further to today’s share purchase transaction, SGC governance has further detailed that it has agreed to amend its takeover proposal of Toronto TSX-listed NYX Gaming.Agreeing terms, NYX governance has dropped deal provisions set on 20 September, requiring SGC to acquire ‘at least 75% of shares’ in the company to complete its acquisition.Under a new arrangement, SGC and NYX governances have “agreed that should the acquisition of NYX by Scientific Games not be approved by shareholders at pending vote in December or not move forward for other specified reasons, Scientific Games will commence a contractual takeover offer to NYX shareholders.”In its market update, SGC governance states that its share purchase reaffirms its commitment to move the acquisition of NYX Gaming forward following a recent standstill.SGC’s planned $630 million takeover of NYX hit a roadblock this November when NYX minority shareholder William Hill Plc demanded to convert its ‘preference shares’ gained through co-funding NYX’s £270 million buyout of OpenBet technologies in 2016.William Hill states that should its ‘preference shares’ be converted (no later 4 December), the FTSE bookmaker would have an aggregate 31.9% equity in NYX Gaming, gaining a significant vote on the sale of NYX.SGC and NYX have filed individual lawsuits against William Hill, stating that the company is in breach of ‘attempting to stifle competition in the US gambling market’, and in further contravention of existing US anti-trust laws.William Hill refutes the charges relating to US competition laws. The company states that it is reviewing the SGC’s takeover of NYX Group, but has made no formal decision with regards to its position. Share Submit StumbleUpon SBC Magazine Issue 10: Kaizen Gaming rebrand and focus for William Hill CEO August 25, 2020last_img read more

The Stars Group promotes Christopher Coyne to Group Marketing lead

first_img Toronto TSX-listed online gambling firm The Stars Group Inc has confirmed the promotion of Christopher Coyne to the leadership position of Group Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) with immediate effect.Coyne has previously served as Chief Customer Officer (CCO) since September 2017, joining The Stars Group executive team from Australian casino & leisure operator Crown Resorts Ltd, where he served as group marketing leader.The appointment will see The Stars Group merge customer insights and analysis responsibilities within Coyne’s group CMO remit.Moving forward Coyne will oversee the management and performance of The Star Group’s marketing divisions for PokerStars and BetStars products and services.Entering 2018, The Stars Group has moved to restructure its senior leadership team.The January the TSX enterprise announced the appointment of former William Hill Digital Director Andrew Lee as new Managing Director of its BetStars sports betting division, replacing former incumbent  Zeno Osskó StumbleUpon Share Related Articles Submit Tabcorp expects $1bn hit as ‘COVID and retail contractions’ take effect August 3, 2020 Share Ashkenazi joins BlueRibbon as strategic advisor July 27, 2020 ‘Deal maker’ Rafi Ashkenazi ends Flutter tenure  August 27, 2020last_img read more

Duncan Keene – ContentSquare – Big Bet… rethinking & re-evaluating user-experience

first_img Submit Luckbox: How the return of live sport has affected esports betting July 10, 2020 Related Articles StumbleUpon Share Winning Post: UK racing must put its best foot forward … July 20, 2020 GG.Bet scores ESL Counter-Strike & Dota 2 global partnerships July 15, 2020 Share Duncan Keene – ContentSquareEntering 2018, next-generation digital insights platform ContentSquare has secured £30 million in series B funding. ContentSquare seeks to become the leading user insights technology for all businesses, developing profitable UX actions that increase engagement, reduce operational costs and maximise conversion rates.SBC speaks to UK Managing Director Duncan Keene, on ContentSquare’s platform dynamics and UX vision for the saturated gaming/betting sectors.____________________SBC: Hi Duncan great to catch up. Why are user-experience (UX) dynamics and competencies so valued in 2018, by all digital stakeholders?Duncan Keene: To put it simply, user experience (UX) is a key differentiator for brands in any sector. The gaming and eSports market is a crowded one, with Goldman Sachs valuing the eSports industry at a huge $500 million in 2016 and predicting the market to grow at 22% annually.It often comes down to two objectives. One is creating a better user experience, the other is making more money and increasing conversion and brands are finally waking up to the fact that a basic understanding of visitors is not enough to achieve these goals. They need to really understand why and how they behave. This gives them the opportunity to test based on behaviours, not intuition. For any brand, employing UX analytics in the right way can be the difference between placing a bet or not, between choosing an accumulator or moving off of the site. With the nature of gaming sites fluid, the UX needs to be just right to persuade users to place bets and navigate.SBC: In 2018 it appears that the UX debate has shifted beyond initial design dynamics? How does UX now impact further core corporate functions such as retention and operational disciplines?DK: Retention is critical for gaming brands in 2018. Contentsquare analysis shows the sector has a particularly volatile user base, with average bounce rates more than twice as high (35% compared to 15%) than other industries. In a highly competitive market, the consequences of a poor customer experience are often grave, with customers less likely to return than ever. Offers and incentives are a great way to generate traffic, but a seamless customer experience is what makes people return again and again.However, the regulated nature of the industry can generate significant friction in the user journey. Users have to absorb several pieces of information and fill out forms which are often not designed with the customer in mind. Users don’t know where to look, and they often become frustrated. And this is where many gambling sites see customers drop off the radar.A better user experience is key in increasing retention, many operators have a betting site as well as a casino site. If customers are able to use both and seamlessly move between the two for example, they are more likely to spend more and stay on the site for longer, thus the gaming site retains that customer.SBC: ContentSquare seeks to deliver operationally smart UX functions and data. To date, why have digital enterprises, found it hard to apply consistent and effective UX frameworks for their operations?DK: Gaming is an incredibly competitive market and a majority of operators simply just copy others. If one aspect of the site seems to work for a competitor, it’s likely it is going to get copied by another operator. This means that very few aspects of user experience are actually based on what their own users react to. Combine lack of data-driven decisions with traditional analytics that do not offer depth or speed to insight and it is very difficult for brands to explain the how and why their digital and app visitors behave the way they do. It also limits the effectiveness of their multivariate testing as they are simply taking a stab at what might be a useful hypothesis to test.Traditional analytics simply do not provide definitive answers to questions such as ‘do you know why conversion increased or decreased on a given day?’ Most teams use traditional analytics tools to inform their optimisation decisions, but technologies such as Google Analytics or heat mapping tools only provide a limited overview of visitor behaviours. Much of it becomes a change of mindset as well as a technology change when it comes to improving UX.SBC: Leading ContentSquare’s UK initiatives, you have highlighted UK betting and gaming as a sector of particular interest. What intricacies does ContentSquare see in this market and its current trends? DK: Gaming sites are complex and dynamic with a huge amount of visual content. Unlike an ecommerce site where users can see clearly what they are looking for, there can be everything from videos to spinning roulette wheels which can easily distract users and make it difficult to focus on one piece of content. This makes these sites the worst place for traditional analytics as these basic technologies cannot provide the granular information required to see how users behave and interact with different pieces of content.SBC: From your personal experience, what advice would you give betting sector stakeholders, when rethinking or re-evaluating internal UX strategies?DK: Stop being a sheep and become a leader! It’s time for betting and gaming sites to focus on their own optimisations strategies instead of copying their competitors. A UX analytics platform takes the guesswork out of optimisation and provides the granular level of detail that egaming companies need to inform not only their UX but also their A/B testing. Look at your own visitor base and use your own data to drive your roadmap. If you are slow to surface to the insight, you’ll get left behind. Finally, how do you see ContentSquare growing its services within the UK and EU in the coming months?DK: It’s going to be an exciting year for ContentSquare. We have just won £29.87 ($42m) in series B funding and also released our AI Auto-Zone product at the start of the year. Our goal is to become a leader in digital experience insights and help organisations improve their UX and empower their digital teams. Following the launch of Auto-Zone, we will continue to focus on the development of our AI offering as the core of our product. We currently have 70 developers and we plan on investing more in this team, adding data scientists and talents that can improve the solution.We also plan to expand internally as brands all over the world are looking to improve their UX and dealing with digital transformation. Our latest office has just opened in Germany in addition to our offices in London, New York and Paris. We will continue to invest in new offices around Europe and Asia as our team expands.last_img read more