Archive for: October, 2019

LeBron fails to close for Cavs in NBA

Oct 13 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

Arguably the best closer in the game, LeBron James failed to deliver when it mattered most.

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James scored 37 points but missed a pair of free throws with 4.2 seconds left in overtime, and the Houston Rockets held on for a 105-103 victory over the visiting Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday, in a physically intense playoff-type matchup.

“There is no excuse, I didn’t come through,” said James, who shot 15-of-35 from the floor and just 3-of-11 from the stripe.

“Guys put us in position to win, but I missed the two biggest free throws of the game to put us up with seconds on the clock. I failed my teammates.”

League top scorer James Harden had 33 points, eight rebounds and five assists, while Terrence Jones netted 19 for Houston (41-18), winners of five in a row.

“It was a good, physical, hard-fought game,” Rockets coach Kevin McHale said. “It was kind of a gritty win for us.”

In other matches the visiting LA Clippers beat Chicago Bulls 96-86.

Chris Paul had 28 points and 12 assists, while league top rebounder DeAndre Jordan grabbed 26, helping the Clippers (39-21) beat the injury-decimated Bulls.

Montenegrin rookie big man Nikola Mirotic scored a career-high 29 for Chicago (37-23), playing without Derrick Rose (right knee surgery) Taj Gibson (left ankle sprain) and losing All-Star Jimmy Butler (left elbow sprain) early in the third quarter.

Portland Trail Blazers also had a win on the road, downing the Sacramento Kings 110-99.

Damian Lillard dropped in 31 points, LaMarcus Aldridge added 26 with 15 rebounds, and the visiting Trail Blazers (39-19) beat the Kings for a third straight victory.

Rudy Gay scored 24 points for Sacramento (20-37), playing without All-Star centre DeMarcus Cousins (ankle sprain and bruised hip) for the second straight game.

Indiana Pacers had too much in the tank for the Philadelphia 76ers with a 94-74 victory.

George Hill scored 17 points, Roy Hibbert had 14 with 15 rebounds and five blocked shots as the Pacers (25-34) used a 17-3 closing run to beat the visiting Sixers (13-46) for their eighth win in the last 10 games.

Also Charlotte Hornets beat Orlando Magic 98-83, Oklahoma City Thunder edged the LA Lakers 108-101 and New Orleans Pelicans enjoyed the same margin over Denver Nuggets 99-92.

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Myer shares tumble on change of CEO

Oct 13 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

Myer shares have tumbled after the dual resignations of its chief executive and chief financial officer triggered fears the department store giant will deliver a horror half year earnings result.

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Bernie Brookes is leaving Myer after nine years at the helm of the struggling retailer, with supply chain boss and former supermarket executive Richard Umbers parachuted in as his replacement.

Mr Brookes’ exit coincides with that of chief financial officer Mark Ashby, who will leave in May for a job overseas.

News of their departures rattled investors, who pushed Myer’s shares down 20 cents, or 10.8 per cent, to $1.655.

Market analysts say the management shake-up just two weeks before Myer reports its half year earnings has stoked fears of a weak result.

“It suggests that the fact they have brought in Richard Umbers, giving him three weeks of clear air to tell the world that the results coming up on March 19 won’t be brilliant,” IG markets strategist Evan Lucas said.

But chairman Paul McClintock rejected the suggestion.

He said Myer had been carrying out a strategic review aimed at reshaping the business and it had become clear a new chief executive was needed to oversee the multi-year turnaround project.

“The board and management team have agreed that the transformation work has reached a pivotal point and it is appropriate for a new CEO to be given the opportunity to own, lead and drive the transformation program over the coming years,” he said.

Myer has been battling disappointing sales growth for several years amid weak consumer sentiment and growing competition both from online and international retailers.

Its first quarter sales for 2014/15 were flat and well short of market expectations of a 2.5-3.0 per cent rise, with womenswear particularly disappointing.

In his new role, Mr Umbers will be charged with overseeing a significant program of change, indicating the top level executive departures mark the start of a change in direction for the retailer.

Mr Umbers was executive general manager for Australia Post’s parcel and express services, where he led an ecommerce initiative designed to take advantage of the online shopping boom.

The 48-year-old Brit was also an Aldi executive in England before running the grocery operation of Woolworths New Zealand.

He moved to Australia in 2006 to take on the role as Woolworths’ general manager.

Speaking to reporters on Monday, he was reticent to give any details about how he’ll turn around Myer’s flagging sales.

“We are looking to reshape the business in response to changing customer behaviour and to make sure we are well positioned to take advantage of these changes rather than be knocked over,” he said.

Mr McClintock described Mr Umbers as a “lifetime retailer” with the right leadership and ecommerce skills for the role.

Mr Brookes wished him the best in revitalising the brand and building a sustainable business.

“It’s the right time for me to go because that would take a while, therefore signing on for extended period was not on my agenda,” he said.

Mr Brookes was reappointed as Myer’s boss in February 2014.

He had been due to retire in August that year, but the board extended his contract indefinitely so he could focus on a merger with rival David Jones – a deal that ultimately failed.

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Nuclear waste dump search restarts

Oct 13 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

The federal government has called for voluntary nominations of sites for a national nuclear waste dump.

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Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane says any landholder could nominate a site to store intermediate level radioactive waste and dispose of low-level waste.

Australia has 4248 cubic metres of low level and 656 cubic metres of intermediate level waste in temporary storage across more than 100 sites.

The waste has been generated by medical, research and industrial processes.

An independent advisory body will assess the nominated sites against a number of criteria.

These include community well-being, stable environment, environmental protection, health, safety and security and economic viability.

At the end of the assessment and public consultation the government will negotiate with the landholder of the selected site.

Site nominations close on May 5.

The South Australian government’s royal commission into the nuclear industry is looking at the prospects of nuclear waste facilities in that state.

Northern Territory chief minister Adam Giles has also shown an interest in putting forward a site.

But last year he said it would not be done without “full information and dialogue with Territorians”.

In June 2014 the Northern Land Council withdrew its nomination for a section of Muckaty Station, north of Tennant Creek, as the site for Australia’s first nuclear waste dump amid a legal dispute.

Further talks on alternative sites failed, triggering the new selection process.

Australian Conservation Foundation nuclear campaigner Dave Sweeney says the decision should not be rushed.

“We have time to get this issue right,” he said.

“The minister’s revised process is significantly better than the previous one, but we are still a long way short of where we should be.”

The first concerted effort to build a dump occurred under the Labor government in 1992, identifying a site near Woomera in SA.

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Warrnambool buys leading cheese brands

Oct 13 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

One of Australia’s best known cheese brands, COON, is about to change from Japanese to Canadian ownership.

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Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Factory, which is majority-owned by Canadian dairy giant Saputo Inc, is set to acquire the everyday cheese business of Lion Dairy and Drinks for $137.5 million.

The everyday cheese business includes the cutting and wrapping, distribution, and sales and marketing of the COON, Cracker Barrel, Mil Lel and Fred Walker brands.

Lion Dairy and Drinks is part of Japanese beverages and pharmaceuticals giant Kirin Holdings.

COON cheddar cheese has been manufactured in Australia since 1935 and was originally made by Kraft.

The brand is named after Edward William Coon who developed the “cooning process” of cheese making.

“The transaction will enable Warrnambool Cheese and Butter to increase its presence in consumer branded everyday cheese products segment in Australia, with strong market positions in this segment,” Warrnambool said on Monday.

The everyday cheese business generates annual sales of about $160 million.

Lion Dairy and Drinks said the everyday cheese business was performing very well in the market, but Lion wanted to focus on higher-value categories such as milk-based beverages, specialty cheese and yoghurt.

The cut-and-wrap operations of the everyday cheese business are located in a building owned by Warrnambool which is next to its cheese making facility at Allansford in Victoria.

Lion said Warrnambool had indicated that it will run the cut-and-wrap facility as a going concern and retain the staff of about 170 employees.

The acquisition is subject to approval by Warrnambool shareholders under sharemarket listing rules on related party transactions.

Lion holds just over 10 per cent of the shares of Warrnambool Cheese and Butter.

Canadian dairy giant Saputo holds a stake of 87.92 per cent of Warrnambool shares.

Warrnambool said Saputo had advised that it would vote in favour of the acquisition.

Warrnambool shares gained 10 cents to $8.30.

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Quickflix suffers another big loss

Oct 13 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

As Australia’s nascent online video streaming sector finally comes to life, the company that pioneered the local industry has suffered a massive first half loss.

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Quickflix posted an $8.6 million loss for the six months to December 31, more than double the size of its loss a year ago and almost two and a half times the company’s entire current market value.

The company has now accumulated total losses of nearly $61 million since its establishment, originally as a mail DVD rental service, in 2004.

The dismal result comes as the company faces an onslaught of competition from media heavyweights Netflix, Foxtel, Seven West Media, Fairfax and Nine.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission on Monday gave the all clear for Channel Seven owner Seven West to take a 50 per cent stake in Foxtel’s Presto TV streaming service.

Foxtel CEO Richard Freudenstein said the move would boost TV streaming offering and help grow its broader Presto offering.

“We have big plans for Presto Entertainment to be a leading player in the SVOD (Subscription Video on Demand) space and are excited we can accelerate plans for Presto TV with our partners Seven West Media now that the ACCC has given their consent to our joint venture,” he said.

Fairfax and Nine launched their joint venture Stan on Australia Day with a marketing campaign focused on Breaking Bad prequel Better Call Saul.

And Netflix will make its entry to the Australian market this month, using the third season of House of Cards to headline its offering.

Quickflix founder Stephen Langsford has publicly welcomed the competition, arguing it will help grow awareness of streaming in Australia.

But the company is very much at risk of being overtaken by its rivals: Stan is already on track to have 100,000 subscribers by mid-March, according to its owners.

By comparison, Quickflix had 117,000 paying customers at the end of December, which represented a five per cent decline since June.

Quickflix has also taken the unusual step of asking its customers to buy shares after investors snubbed its $5.7 million capital raising in December.

The capital raising, which was to be used to fund working capital and buy new content, ended up securing just $650,000.

Quickflix shares closed steady at 0.2 cents.

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