September 2006 Archives

Recent IPO Filings

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Recent IPO Filings. Check it out:
(Comtex Business Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)
Filing Est. Amt
Date Company Name (Mil.)
------ ------------ --------
09/29 Altra Holdings Inc. (Quincy, MA) $172.5
Is a leading global designer, producer and marketer of a wide
range of mechanical power transmission.
09/28 Mellanox Technologies Ltd. (Yokneam, ) $86.2
Is a leading supplier of semiconductor-based, high-
performance interconnect products.
09/28 AeroVironment Inc. (Monrovia, CA) $115.0
Designs, develops, produces and supports a technologically-
advanced portfolio of small unmanned aircraft systems.
09/27 Switch & Data Inc. (Tampa, FL) $150.0
Is a leading provider of network neutral interconnection and
colocation services.
09/26 CVR Energy Inc. (Sugar Land, TX) $300.0
Is an independent refiner and marketer of high value
transportation fuels.
09/22 Carrols Holdings Corp. (Syracuse, NY) $210.0
Is one of the largest restaurant companies in the United
States.
09/21 NewStar Financial Inc. (Boston, MA) $100.0
Is a commercial finance company.
09/21 St. Francis Medical Technologies Inc. (Alameda, $86.2
Is a medical device company.
09/20 Paradigm Ltd. (George Town,Grand Cayman, ) $200.0
Is a leading provider of enterprise software solutions.
09/19 Danaos Corp. (Piraeus, ) $259.3
Is an international owner of containerships, chartering our
vessels to the largest liner companies.
# # #
This information is provided AS-IS, without any warranty of any kind.
IPO Monitor makes no claims concerning the accuracy or validity of the
information, and shall not be held liable for any errors, delays,
omissions or use thereof.

Copyright 2006 (c) IPO Monitor. All rights reserved.
Wacoal Holdings Annual Report to Shareholders, 'Transition to a Course of Growth'. Check it out:
(Comtex Business Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Tokyo, Japan, Sep 29, 2006 (JCN Newswire via COMTEX) --Wacoal Holdings (TSE:3591; NQ: WACLY) has published its Annual Report to Shareholders for the year ended March 31, 2006. The Company reported an increase in consolidated net sales of 2.0% year on year, to JPY 164.1 billion. Operating and net income decreased due to the recording of extraordinary factors, however excluding these factors, operating income was up 57.0% year on year.



Wacoal laid the foundations for new medium-to-long-term growth through initiatives such as the transition to a holding company system and the introduction of a special voluntary retirement scheme. To raise business value by stepping up the pace of growth, the Company vigorously enhanced the operations of existing businesses, expanded its share of Japan's innerwear market, continued to rebuild and strengthen overseas operations, and developed peripheral businesses.

To download the Wacoal Holdings 2006 Annual Report, please visit the Company IR website at http://www.wacoal.co.jp/w-holdings/aboutcom_e/ir/index_e.html

Wacoal Holdings Annual Report to Shareholders, 'Transition to a Course of Growth'

Yoshikata Tsukamoto, Wacoal Representative Director, speaks about the launch of the Holding Company system, strategies for the future, corporate governance and his outlook for the Company in his 2006 Address to Shareholders.

"In October 2005, the Company changed its name from Wacoal Corp. to Wacoal Holdings Corp., which became the parent company of subsidiaries in the Wacoal Group. Under the holding company system, the roles of Wacoal Holdings and such Group operating subsidiaries as Wacoal are clearly defined. The holding company manages the Group and oversees operating subsidiaries, while the operating subsidiaries implement operations. This system enables the holding company to target growth and deploy resources on a Groupwide basis. Also, the delegation of authority and responsibility to the operating subsidiaries enhances the efficiency and dynamism of operational implementation. Moreover, because it facilitates reorganization by business type or function, the holding company system is the most suited to pursuing business tie-ups and mergers and acquisitions aimed at achieving corporate structural reform to reflect the times.

Medium-to-Long-Term Strategies

"At present, Wacoal Holdings and its operating subsidiaries are taking steps based on the Corporate Activation Project 21 (CAP21), which sets out medium-to-long-term strategies for enhancing business value. CAP21 (Medium-to-Long-Term Growth Strategies) formulates new business strategies that will enable the Company to make a fresh start and step up the pace of growth. Our transition to the holding company system resulted from the implementation of one such strategy. Guided by CAP21 (Medium-to-Long-Term Growth Strategies), we are reorganizing and strengthening existing businesses. Those efforts focus on rigorously heightening the efficiency of management systems and operational processes to bolster competitiveness and create an unshakable platform for growth. Further, not limiting ourselves to independent business development, we are cultivating businesses in areas that promise growth through the active pursuit of mergers and acquisitions, strategic operational tie-ups, capital tie-ups, and OEM. For example, in June 2006 the Company entered into an operational and capital tie-up with Peach John Co., Ltd., which mainly conducts mail-order sales of innerwear. Very popular among women in their teens and 20s, Peach John has grown rapidly in recent years.

The Company's overriding management goal is to benefit society at large by enabling women the world over to express their beauty. Also, in our business and management activities we seek to create value and establish a reputation befitting an international brand. Mindful of those management goals, we will implement the strategies of CAP21 (Medium-to-Long-Term Growth Strategies), aiming to surpass consolidated net sales of JPY 200 billion, ROE of 6%, and an operating income margin of 9% by the year ending March 2011. To meet those targets, we will implement a strategy of actively investing in businesses to realize new operational expansion. We aim to increase sales in markets in Japan, the United States, China, and Europe. Moreover, we will mull forays into markets in new regions.

Business Review

"In fiscal 2006, consolidated net sales increased 2.0% year on year, to JPY 164.1 billion, operating income was down 88.7%, to JPY 1.3 billion, and net income decreased 58.5%, to JPY 2.8 billion. The decline in operating income was mainly due to the recording of a government subsidy of JPY 7.1 billion in the previous fiscal year and the November 2005 recording of JPY 6.9 billion associated with special retirement related expenses.

Excluding such temporary increases and decreases in income due to the recording of extraordinary factors, operating income was up 57.0% year on year. The main contributions to higher net sales came from brisk sales of Wacoal-brand Hip Walker and Wing-brand Style Up Pants. Also-a focus of our promotional efforts in winter-sales of innerwear products designed for cold weather were favorable, centered on the Kaiteki NAVI lineup, which we launched in response to the Japanese government's "Warmbiz" environmental initiative to encourage the wearing of thermal business apparel to minimize the use of heaters in winter. On the other hand, net sales growth was held back by generally sluggish sales of mainstay brassieres and continuing weak mail-order catalog sales. Overseas, business grew favorably, with the exception of operations in France, where consumer spending remained flat. Wacoal America, Inc., posted particularly strong growth, with sales up more than 15% year on year.

Corporate Governance

"The basic corporate governance policy of Wacoal Holdings is to continue heightening enterprise value by enhancing the efficiency and transparency of management from the perspective of all of the Company's stakeholders. In 2003, we established the Disclosure Committee to strengthen corporate governance and ensure the reliability of financial and other information that we issue. That committee checks the propriety of internal controls and-pursuant to Section 302 of the U.S. Sarbanes-Oxley Act-the propriety of disclosure with respect to annual reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the accuracy of disclosed information.

In 2005, due to the discovery of potential defects in certain products sold, the Company provided replacements or refunds. In addition, there was a leakage of the personal info-rmation of certain customers of Wacoal's Internet shopping service. To restore customer confidence, we strengthened our quality control system through stringent implementation of an ISO quality management system and other measures. Further, aiming to deal with overall management risks, we changed our Crisis Management Committee to the Risk Management Committee, under which we established a subcommittee responsible for measures relating to accidents and disasters. Also, we created a system to counteract information security risks based on the establishment of a new department that is dedicated to addressing such risks.

In addition, by introducing the holding company system we clearly separated the role of the holding company, which undertakes Group management and oversees operating subsidiaries, and the role of the operating subsidiaries, which implement operations. We plan further development of systems for oversight and operational implementation.

Returns to Shareholders

"Our basic policy for returns to shareholders is to continue steady cash dividend payments, invest actively to enhance earnings and business value, and increase earnings per share. The Company intends to invest retained earnings to increase profit, raise business value, and enhance future returns to shareholders. Those activities will concentrate on the creation of new sales areas through the development of SPA shops, the development of new points of contact with customers, aggressive investment in overseas operations, and investment in new businesses.

Despite a significant decrease in earnings associated with such factors as the recording of special retirement related expenses, in the fiscal year under review we maintained cash dividends per ADR at the previous fiscal year's level of JPY 100.

Outlook

"In Japan, the women's fashion apparel industry promises robust growth as economic recovery bolsters consumer confidence. As the second year of the government's "Coolbiz" environmental initiative, 2006 will likely see stepped-up efforts to encourage the wearing of light business apparel to curb the use of air conditioners in summer. Amid those business conditions, the Company will redouble efforts to develop products that earn customer endorsement by fortifying new strategic product categories, such as Style Science lineups. At the same time, we will decisively implement measures aimed at expanding SPA operations and increasing new points of contact with customers. And, we will accelerate growth by implementing the strategies of CAP21 (Medium-to-Long-Term Growth Strategies).

In the current fiscal year, ending March 31, 2007, we project increases of 2% in consolidated net sales, to JPY 168.0 billion; 9.5 times in operating income, to JPY 12.6 billion; and 2.8 times in net income, to JPY 8.0 billion. The main factors contributing to the significant increase in operating income will be: improved return on sales through the reduction of such items as selling, general and administrative expenses; the absence of the JPY 6.9 billion special retirement related expenses, which was temporarily incurred due to the October 2005 implementation of the special voluntary retirement scheme; the absence of a JPY 0.6 billion additional retirement benefit expense that was recorded in the year under review stemming from the dissolution of Fukushima Wacoal Sewing Corp.; and lower personnel costs resulting from special voluntary retirement."

(Excerpts from the 2006 Wacoal Annual Report to Shareholders)

To download the Wacoal Holdings 2006 Annual Report, please visit the Company IR website at http://www.wacoal.co.jp/w-holdings/aboutcom_e/ir/index_e.html or the JCN Network Annual Report Gallery at http://www.japancorp.net/reports.asp

About Wacoal Corporation

Wacoal (TSE:3591; NQ: WACLY) has led the Japanese market for women's innerwear since its establishment in 1949. Still holding a dominant share of the home market, the Company is steadily growing sales in North America, Europe, and Asia. In October 2005, the Company changed its name from Wacoal Corp. to Wacoal Holdings Corp., which became the parent company of subsidiaries in the Wacoal Group. For more information, please visit www.wacoal.co.jp.

Contact:

Wacoal Holdings Corp.
Tadahiro Kondo
Tel: +81-75-682-1028
Fax: +81-75-672-3219
Email: t-kondo@wacoal.co.jp

Copyright (C) 2006 JCN Newswire. All rights reserved. A division of Japan Corporate News Network K.K.

**********************************************************************

As of Tuesday, 09-26-2006 23:59, the latest Comtex SmarTrend(SM) Alert,
an automated pattern recognition system, indicated an UPTREND on
11-22-2005 for WACLY @ $68.83.

For more information on Comtex SmarTrend Alert, contact your market data
provider or go to CSTADirect.com

SmarTrend is a registered trademark of Comtex News Network, Inc.
Copyright 2004-2006 Comtex News Network, Inc. All rights reserved.
Kaine says Va. poised for bright economic future: For the state to realize its potential, the governor said, it must first settle its transportation problems.. Check it out:
(Roanoke Times, The (Roanoke, VA) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 30--Gov. Tim Kaine disclosed his administration's economic development strategy Friday in Roanoke, saying Virginia has a highly rated business climate with strong air and sea connections to other countries.



Those strengths were not helped by the General Assembly's transportation special session, which "came to a very ignominious end" Thursday in Richmond, Kaine told the Virginia Economic Developers Association meeting in Roanoke.

Lawmakers failed to adopt a transportation funding plan during the three-day session.

Still, Kaine said he was optimistic about Virginia's economic potential 10 to 20 years from now.

"I believe we are in a very powerful position here in Virginia," Kaine said, because of opportunities in global trade.

Virginia was formed, he pointed out, with English investors backing the Jamestown colony 400 years ago.

Today, some Virginia communities that have lost textile and other manufacturing jobs have reason to fear global competition, Kaine said, but companies on other continents are willing to invest in any American states that compete for them.

"We have to embrace that competition and win," Kaine said.

That could mean an attractive incentives package for a select few types of businesses, Kaine said. Virginia can't afford the dollars some states put into incentives, he said, but the right prospect might be worth a generous package.

Virginia's business climate was endorsed this year by Forbes magazine's first rating of states for their business climate. No other state "was even a close second" to Virginia's No. 1 ranking, Kaine said.

Two things in Virginia's favor are Dulles International Airport and the ports of Virginia, he said.

Dulles has direct flights to every continent, and few states can match that, Kaine said. The problem that keeps Dulles from reaching its potential, Kaine said, is congestion on the roads leading to it.

Virginia's ports already are the second-busiest on the East Coast, and can surpass New York because Virginia's bays can be dredged to accommodate ever-larger ships.

New York Harbor has a rock bottom, and making it deeper would be difficult, Kaine said.

Virginia needs better highway and rail connections with the ports, Kaine said.

"I look at the power of our education system and the connections we have in transportation that other states don't have," Kaine said.

But there are some "flies in the ointment," he said, and a major one is that the legislature, after nine months of talking about transportation, has "ended up with very little to show for it."

A compromise plan that was developed over the summer by Republican legislators from Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads was shot down Tuesday, the first day of the special session, Kaine said.

"On the critical issue of investing dollars in what we need, there has been zero progress," he said.

Kaine said the transportation issue isn't settled yet.

"I don't have any doubt we will deal with it in the course of my term," he said. But the delay means inflation will reduce what Virginia can afford for a solution, Kaine said.

His presentation in Roanoke also attracted a protest.

A newly formed group called Free Enterprise Watch, headed by Michael Reynold in Richmond, posted a mockup of a Trojan horse near the Hotel Roanoke, where Kaine spoke.

The group said Kaine favors organized labor because he received 10 times more campaign contributions from labor groups that did his predecessor, Gov. Mark Warner.

Free Enterprise Watch also noted Kaine appointed two people from labor groups to his administration: former AFL-CIO president Daniel LeBlanc to be his senior work force adviser; and Jean Bankos, former president of the Virginia Education Association teachers' group, as his senior adviser for education projects.

Copyright (c) 2006, The Roanoke Times, Va.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
Former executives get 6 to 8 years: Baptist Foundation pair maintain their innocence. Check it out:
(Tribune, The (Mesa, AZ) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 30--Two former executives of the bankrupt Baptist Foundation of Arizona maintained their innocence Friday as a judge gave them eight- and sixyear prison terms for their roles in one of the largest collapses of a non-profit organization ever.



Former president William Crotts, 61, and former general counsel Thomas Grabinski, 46, said they always believed they were following the letter and spirit of the law in structuring the foundation's finances and they never tried to steal anyone's investments.

"There's no pot of gold hidden away," Grabinski said, addressing Judge Kenneth Fields of Maricopa County Superior Court, who imposed upon him a six-year prison term.

Fields, the prosecutor and defense attorneys agreed that the case was unusual as far as fraud cases go because there was no intent to steal, and many of the victims came to the defense of the defendants.

A jury convicted them in July on three counts of fraud and one count of knowingly conducting an illegal enterprise, but acquitted them of 23 counts of theft.

Fields gave them harsher penalties than what the law typically calls for, saying the circumstances calling for a tougher sentence outweighed those for a lighter one by a "small degree."

Fields said some of the reasons for the tougher sentence were the high number of victims -- most of them elderly -- the emotional and financial harm they endured, and the two former executives exploited their religious beliefs for many years to get them to invest.

"I thought it was a fair judgment," said Katy Moss, 81, of Scottsdale, who invested $250,000 before recouping about 53 percent of her loss in the bankruptcy proceedings.

Grabinski's father, Dale Grabinski, said his son refused to take a plea deal like five other defendants did because any admission to committing a crime would have been a lie.

The foundation, which was formed in 1948 to raise money for Baptist causes, declared bankruptcy in November 1999, owing 11,000 to 13,000 investors between $500 million to $600 million.

Investors were able to regain up to 70 percent of their money after the sale of assets and lawsuit settlements.

Prosecutor Donald Conrad said the foundation continued to seek investors even as Crotts and Grabinski knew it was sinking financially, telling them it was financially sound.

Conrad said the men misled investors by hiding the foundation's losses in associated companies.

Copyright (c) 2006, The Tribune, Mesa, Ariz.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
University doctors' offices sprouting in the northwest. Check it out:
(Columbia Daily Tribune (Columbia, MO) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 30--Construction is under way on a 15,000-square-foot one-level medical office building on the northwest corner of Smiley Lane and Oakland Gravel Road for a University Physicians Family Medicine Clinic slated to open in about a year.



The property is near Lange Middle School and the Springdale Estates subdivision. Bruce and Elizabeth Odle purchased the land in April from Drew Properties LLC, according to county records.

The sprouting medical complex is a project of the Odle family's Trittenbach Development LLC.

Officials at the University of Missouri-Columbia approached the Odles and pitched a deal to lease the entire building to house the clinic, Nathan Odle said. The deal is a classic win-win, he said.

"It's going to be really good for that area because it is going to be family medicine," Odle said. "It's a good use for that corner."

The Odles develop commercial and residential property and have forged a niche in medical office buildings near Columbia Regional Hospital. Construction is under way on their four-level, 60,000-square-foot 303 N. Keene St. medical building, part of their Columbia Medical Plaza.

The sprouting complex, expected to open at the end of this year, will feature covered parking, high-speed elevators, a private workout facility and outdoor patios.

GODAS GRACIOUS

Lakeview Mall, a 27,000-square-foot retail center north of Interstate 70 just off the Lake of the Woods exit, recently bagged a store expansion and a new tenant.

La Acapulquena Supermarket, which opened this month in a 1,700-square-foot leasehold, will expand 3,300 square feet to stock more goods and launch a taqueria, a small eatery for shoppers to take a break and have a snack, co-owner Brandie Garay said.

The Garay family enterprise sells fresh fruits and vegetables and canned goods. Fresh meat is coming soon. Plans for the additional space include a Mexican bread shop and a sports store specializing in soccer clothing and gear.

The expanded area is expected to open early next year.

And Chris Daly of Cape Girardeau plans to open a gardening store called Let it Grow in a 1,700-square-foot leasehold. The store will sell indoor and outdoor gardening products and supplies.

Lakeview Mall is owned by local businessman and real estate developer George Godas. Leasing agent John John of Re/Max Boone Realty said about 12,000 square feet remains available for lease.

WE'LL SEE

Here's more on what's happening along the burgeoning Range Line Street, aka Highway 763, corridor.

A Commerce Bank branch at the southeast corner of Range Line and Brown School Road is under construction and slated to open by the end of the year, said Teresa Maledy, the bank's president and market manager for the Central Missouri Region.

Across the street is a planned phase of the commercial and residential Auburn Hills development, owned by a group that includes local developer Rob Wolverton.

Last year, a local company linked with the Grindstone Parkway Wal-Mart Supercenter bought an option to buy land in the development, fueling speculation that the land would someday sprout a Supercenter. Mum is still the word on that deal.

On Brown School Road just east of Range Line, a UMB Bank branch and a 20,000-square-foot retail center is planned, or so says a sign posted on the property.

Brian Neuner, president of UMB's three Columbia branches, said it might be time to take that sign down. He said the bank has taken a "wait-and-see" attitude about the location and could end up selling its 1-acre parcel.

"We're waiting to see what's going to happen up there," Neuner said. "There are so many factors that we can't control," he said.

A PEnOS BY ANY OTHER NAME

Would you buy a house on a street named Point Penos?

That street name in the sprouting 102-lot Monterey Hills residential subdivision was changed to "San Mateo," Planning and Development Director Tim Teddy told the city's Planning and Zoning Commission last week.

The development, off Stadium Boulevard just north of Interstate 70, is named after the Monterey Bay area of California with street names that include Cannery Row Court, Spanish Bay Drive, Carmello Rock Drive and the like.

The name change notice from Teddy drew muted laughter and shoulder bobs from Commissioners David Brodsky and Glenn Rice, who likely thought the obvious -- add a Missouri drawl and the name could be trouble.

Teddy let out a polite chuckle this week when he heard about the heehaw going on over the name. Maintaining proper decorum, Teddy chose the higher ground and stuck to the official explanation: The street name was changed to avoid having two streets in the development that start with "Point."

MORE GRAF

The Mexico City Council recently approved $800,000 in Chapter 100 industrial development bonds to build a new 23,000-square-foot distribution and customer service facility for homegrown Graf & Sons, a manufacturer of reloading products and accessories for the sport shooting industry, according to a news release.

Company officials said the planned expansion, expected to open in the spring, will create 20 new jobs, or a 50 percent increase from the current payroll of 40 employees.

Bond proceeds will be used by the city to buy the land and build the facility. The company leases the property from the city, and the lease payments are used to repay the bonds.

Arnold Graf and sons Bob and Howard founded the company in 1957.

QUICKIES

Local franchise owner Mark Telken wrote to say that the name of his upcoming seafood restaurant at the Shoppes at Stadium has changed to Joey's Seafood & Grill. The restaurant is expected to open in November. Veteran local travel agent Dan Stookey has left Summit Travel and teamed up with Great Southern Tiger Travel, a subsidiary of Springfield-based Great Southern Bank that has bought two local travel agencies during the past year. Last year, Summit Travel owner Jerry Price bought Cooper Travel Service from Stookey. ... Jefferson City-based Premier Bank, founded by Bruce Wiley in 1995, has reached the $1 billion in assets milestone, according to a news release. To celebrate, the bank plans to give away a vacation to Napa Valley, Calif.

Copyright (c) 2006, Columbia Daily Tribune, Mo.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
Congress repeals Wright: Love flights anywhere allowed when bill signed as early as next week. Check it out:
(Dallas Morning News, The (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 30--WASHINGTON -- Congress approved legislation late Friday to repeal the Wright amendment, potentially resolving a decades-old battle over the role of Dallas Love Field.

The bill to phase out flight restrictions at the Dallas airport cleared the House overwhelmingly in a late-night vote before lawmakers departed for a pre-election recess.

The legislation won passage in the Senate earlier Friday after months of pressure by Texas Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn to win over a final detractor, Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.

President Bush is expected to sign the measure as early as next week.

"It's a great relief to have a final solution," said Rep. Kenny Marchant, R-Coppell, whose district includes Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. "The fact that none of the parties are completely happy, and all of the parties are relieved to have it over, should be a sign that it's a good agreement."



Still, lawmakers acknowledged that the Wright battle may not be over. North Texas residents and groups that opposed the deal are expected to challenge the legislation in court.

The Wright legislation stalled this summer under criticism over its treatment of federal antitrust laws, and supporters in Congress fought hard for language to help shield the deal from a long court fight.

The legislation will repeal Wright in 2014, implementing a June agreement by the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, American Airlines, Southwest Airlines and D/FW Airport.

It would immediately allow flights anywhere from Love Field, as long as they first stopped inside the nine-state Wright perimeter.

The agreement would also cut the number of available gates at Love from 32 to 20, part of a plan to compensate for an expected increase in noise, pollution and congestion. Nineteen gates are in use now.

On Congress' last day, the House turned out to be the greatest source of contention over repealing the Wright law.

House members planned to clear their bill under suspension of normal rules, a procedure often used for uncontroversial measures that would prevent lawmakers from offering amendments.

Suspension bills often pass without recorded votes, but objections to the Wright legislation forced proponents to corral the support of two-thirds of those present.

A heated evening debate had opponents sparring over the antitrust issue, while also arguing that residents outside the existing Wright perimeter would be saddled with higher airfares as a result of the deal.

The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., said the bill "will continue vestiges of the Wright amendment" until 2025, when gate arrangements expire under the deal.

In a departure from many congressional debates, supporters and opponents of the Wright agreement weren't split by party affiliation or geography.

Rep. John Conyers of Michigan, the top Democrat on the judiciary committee, argued against a frequent ally, Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson, D-Dallas, whose district includes Love Field.

Bumper sticker

Mr. Sensenbrenner, recalling the "Don't Mess with Texas" bumper stickers in the House garage, said, "Tonight is one of the nights where we ought to mess with Texas.

"This is the most anti-consumer, anti-free-enterprise bill that has come before this House in a long time," he said.

The debate on the House floor was not expected a day earlier. North Texas lawmakers positioned the legislation to allow it to pass easily.

A tougher fight had been expected in the Senate, where rules and traditions allow a single member the power to block legislation.

By early Thursday afternoon, after House members from North Texas had forged a path for their bill to reach the House floor, the pressure had grown on Ms. Hutchison and Mr. Cornyn.

Efforts in recent weeks to find language that was acceptable to Mr. Leahy and the North Texas parties had failed, even after changing the antitrust language from an explicit to implicit exemption to win over the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Arlen Specter, R-Pa.

Word came from the Texas senators' staffs later Thursday afternoon that Mr. Leahy could come to an agreement for bringing the Wright bill up under unanimous consent, a procedure used for noncontroversial measures.

The senators and their staffs started working on statements to be read on the Senate floor.

Ms. Hutchison reached out to House members about her progress, e-mailing and talking with Rep. Kay Granger, R-Fort Worth, past midnight and into Friday morning, to ask her to wait for a Senate bill to come to the House to prevent further procedural delays.

By Friday morning, Ms. Hutchison was sitting in a cloakroom off the Senate floor working out how the bill would come up under unanimous consent.

Mr. Leahy had been pushing a wilderness bill to move under unanimous consent, a measure that largely affected Vermont and New Hampshire.

Asked later if she was holding up his bill, Ms. Hutchison smiled. "Why would someone do that?

"Let's just say that we came to an agreement to pass both bills," she said.

The bill passed the Senate in less than a minute just before 1 p.m. Dallas time.

Then Mr. Cornyn and Mr. Leahy engaged in a colloquy, a discussion on the Senate floor that allows lawmakers to share their thinking for the record.

The dialogue does not offer the force of law but gives judges an opportunity to glean congressional intent in a court challenge over the antitrust issue

"Senator Cornyn and I share a concern about providing antitrust immunity to agreements involving private parties," Mr. Leahy said. "While I would prefer greater clarity on this point in the bill, I am pleased that Senator Cornyn and I agree that this is an entirely unique situation, which should not be repeated."

Mr. Cornyn agreed that "the legislation contemplated here should not be a model for any future arrangement.

"In no way can I imagine a situation arising with a set of facts remotely similar to that created in Dallas by the passage of the Wright Amendment," he said.

Mr. Cornyn, who serves on the judiciary committee with Mr. Leahy, said later that ending the impasse was a matter of talking through the details of the Wright law and the uniqueness of the situation.

"We had to explain to him that actually this increased competition rather than decreased competition," Mr. Cornyn said. "That was one of the hard things for people to understand because of the unique nature of the Wright amendment."

Ms. Hutchison, who urged North Texas officials early in the year to come up with a solution, said the Wright legislation took "an inordinate amount of time for a bill that shouldn't have been this complicated."

"I have to say that in my 12 years in the Senate, the hardest thing that I've ever had to explain was the Wright amendment to outside people," she said.

Miller euphoric

Dallas Mayor Laura Miller was euphoric Friday afternoon. She'd feared the Senate would be the bigger obstacle.

Ms. Miller said she was confident the terms of the bill would protect Dallas from losing a court challenge, due to a dedicated North Texas delegation and attorneys who worked around the clock.

"Without the language crafted in the Senate ... we would have a huge problem," Ms. Miller said.

Friday's actions followed a nearly two-year fight over the Wright amendment and Love Field.

In November 2004, Southwest Airlines announced that it would lobby Congress to lift the flight restrictions.

Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Dallas, introduced legislation the following May to repeal Wright completely, spurring lawmakers nationwide to pick up the cause to win cheaper flights to and from North Texas.

But Mr. Hensarling decided not to back the compromise agreement, saying he could not support the nation's only congressional mandate on the number of gates at a local airport.

He sat quietly in the back row of the House on Friday evening to watch the debate. He planned to vote against the bill but did not fight the compromise agreement.

Rep. Sam Johnson, R-Plano, who co-sponsored the original Wright repeal legislation with Mr. Hensarling, said the compromise was "not perfect" but still an agreement worthy of support.

Staff writer Emily Ramshaw in Dallas contributed to this report.

E-mail sreddy@dallasnews.com

HOW THE WRIGHT AMENDMENT WOUND UP ON ITS FINAL DESCENT

Key events in the history of the Wright amendment:

1979

In an effort to protect a young Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport from competition at Dallas Love Field, Congress approves the Wright amendment, named for U.S. House Speaker Jim Wright of Fort Worth. The law, which took effect the following year, limits flights from Love Field to airports in Texas and its adjoining four states, but allows commuter planes with 56 seats or fewer to fly farther.

1997

Congress approves the Shelby amendment, adding Alabama, Kansas and Mississippi to the Wright territory.

2000

April: Legend Airlines starts service from its own terminal at Love to Los Angeles and Washington with modified 56-seat jets. Continental Airlines, American Airlines and Delta Air Lines also launch Love service.

December: Legend declares bankruptcy and stops all service. Eventually, American and Delta pull out of Love. Continental remained.

2004

September: Delta announces it will close its D/FW hub, reducing its daily schedule here from 254 nonstop flights to 21.

November: Southwest CEO Gary Kelly says the carrier considered filling some of Delta's void at D/FW, but decided against it. Instead, Mr. Kelly calls for repeal of the Wright law.

D/FW and American express strong support for continuing the Wright limits.

2005

May: U.S. Reps. Jeb Hensarling, R-Dallas, and Sam Johnson, R-Plano, introduce legislation in the House that would fully repeal Wright.

July: Nevada Republican Sen. John Ensign introduces a similar bill in the Senate.

November: Missouri becomes the ninth state outside of Texas that can be served from Love Field, when Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., tacks his state onto the Wright perimeter in a transportation-spending bill.

December: Southwest launches new service to St. Louis and Kansas City from Love.

2006

February: Republican Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn urge airline and government leaders in North Texas to come up with a compromise to settle the Wright fight.

March: American returns to Love, with service to St. Louis and Kansas City, as well as to Austin and San Antonio.

June: The cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, along with D/FW, Southwest and American, announce a compromise that would allow for immediate through-ticketing and full repeal in 2014.

July: House and Senate committees approve legislation to enact the agreement. But a lobbying effort from the owners of the former Legend terminal, set to be demolished under the deal, draws detractors in Congress. The bills stall over antitrust exemptions.

September: The Senate approves legislation reflecting the North Texas compromise. A vote was set for late Friday in the House.

REPEALING WRIGHT

Once signed into law, legislation approved in the House and Senate on Friday would:

--Immediately allow commercial travel anywhere from Dallas Love Field if planes first stop at an airport in Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, Oklahoma or Texas.

--Permit commercial flights to travel nonstop to any destination in the 50 U.S. states or the District of Columbia, beginning eight years after enactment.

--Direct the city of Dallas to reduce and cap the number of gates at Love Field at no more than 20; the airport now has 32 gates, 19 of which are in use.

SOURCE: Dallas Morning News research

Copyright (c) 2006, The Dallas Morning News
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
Football: William Hill's decision to close US operation ironic. Check it out:
(The Birmingham Post Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Despite the advertising campaign for their self-styled 'Gods of Poker' being a bit on the naff side, I like the William Hill poker website. The company has embraced the game by offering decent sign-up bonuses and $1 million prize pools every week. It sponsors a raft of professionals, has a good online poker school and a poker show broadcast on Sky each Wednesday.



Now, William Hill are not doing all of this because they're nice guys - although I'm sure they are - the company is involved in poker and other gaming activities because it wants to make a profit. Few people would contest their absolute right to do so.

The company do not force anyone to play and take a responsible approach towards gaming, so I was disappointed when they became the umpteenth company to effectively close down their US operations earlier this week.

There is a certain irony about internet poker and other gaming activities being actively discouraged in parts of the US.

America was built on free enterprise and its citizens remain justifiably suspicious of politicians and others who pursue actions in the name of the public good. Yet the world's richest, most entrepreneuri ally-focused nation insists on trying to behave like King Canute and prevent people from playing poker and participating in other forms of online gaming.

According to Hill's head honcho, Tom Singer, the fear of arrest prompted the company's decision to abandon the US market following the arrest and subsequent release of executives at Sportingbet and Bet On Sports earlier this year. Peter Dicks, the former chairman of Sportingbet, said he suspected that arrest warrants had been issued for a number of senior executives at companies involved in online poker and gaming.

In view of this, William Hill's decision was entirely understandable. As Mr Singer said: "Why do I need to live with the risk [of arrest] as a William Hill director?" He's absolutely right, yet there is evidence to suggest that the American crackdown on internet betting is set to move up a gear.

America's anti-poker crusade is being led by prosecutors in Louisiana, one of seven states that expressly outlaws online gaming. There is speculation within the gaming industry that the state has 58 arrest warrants ready to be issued should senior executives at internet gambling firms set foot on US soil.

There is further irony in the state of Louisiana's actions. The USA remains home to the world's largest gambling centre. Las Vegas, where the World Series of Poker is contested amid every conceivable gaming activity, contributes billions of tax dollars to the federal government.

But there is an even greater irony in Louisiana law-enforcers trying to prevent people playing poker. The game is a direct descendent of a French game called Poque, a name derived from the French verb pocher, to bluff. The modern form of draw poker originated in the US during the 19th century and became popular on Mississippi steamboats leaving French-speaking New Orleans. That's right: New Orleans in the state of Louisiana.

Copyright 2006 Birmingham Post & Mail Ltd.
FOOD& DRINK: Cafe's a lifestyle choice. Check it out:
(The Birmingham Post Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) It is a typical Kings Heath street. Rabbit hutches are piled up outside a pet shop, several sofas peek out of a furniture store and a couple are enjoying a fry up at a greasy spoon across the road.



But there is a hidden gem among these standard array of shops and it has got residents excited.

For those who have bemoaned the rise in charity shops and for the council, which is thinking up a strategy to make Kings Heath "more like Moseley" with a better class of shop, they may be pleasantly surprised that there is hope on the horizon.

Behind some smart iron gates and through a little alleyway off York Road lies Kitchen Garden Cafe - an enterprise set up by two passionate environmentalists keen to add something to this diverse community.

"People seek us out when they come in and tell us this is exactly what Kings Heath needs," says owner Brett Rehling, who gave up his job as an IT manager for Cadbury's to create this cafe and garden shop.

"Within two weeks of opening we were getting 60 to 70 covers and that was without a single bit of advertising. The great thing about Kings Heath and Moseley is that people speak to each other and our business has come from word of mouth," he adds.

Brett, who met his wife Tracey Fletcher while volunteering at Birmingham Friends of the Earth, greets me with a wide smile, keen to show off the huge renovation of this former hardware shop.

He now works at the cafe full time, with Tracey chipping in whenever possible in between working for WWF and caring for their two-year-old son, Sacha.

"This was the old hardware store," he says pointing at the shiny new kitchen where a cheery chef is busy dishing out breakfasts. "And this was an old greenhouse full of rubbish," he says as we walk among the wooden tables. "And over here was Kings Heath's former blacksmiths. When we came, it had been used as a saw mill and was knee deep in sawdust."

It is clear the couple's passion to make such a venture work is reflected in the way they have renovated this old building.

The original brick walls and Victorian windows have been restored, and blue bricks from the former blacksmith's have been used to create a Mediterranean style patio and courtyard.

Chunky wooden tables have been created from scaffolding boards and the chairs and cabinets have been bought from local auctions.

Work from local artists adorn the walls and in the corner a mum and toddler enjoy a quiet moment in the specially created children's play area.

As Brett shows off the building work, Tracey bounds in, keen to explain why the pair decided to embark on this ambitious project.

Both are so enthused, it is soon clear their business is more about creating a sustainable community than it is about making money.

"We want it to be attractive to everyone," says Tracey. "It is a cool place for young people and a nice environment for families."

"When you go to Spain you get restaurants which are like meeting places for families, there is a real mixed bunch of people," Brett chips in.

"Now we have got a child we know what people with young children want - they want to go somewhere other than a Wacky Warehouse," adds Tracey.

The pair are desperate to move away from the chunky cardigan, sandal wearing image an organic cafe might attract and hope the diverse community of Kings Heath will find something here for them.

"It would be the end of the world if the fact we were organic meant we only attracted posh, rich people," says Tracey.

"The cafe dispels two common misconceptions: first, that organic food is an exclusive, over-priced niche market' and second, that organic is boring, all lentil loaves and curd cheese. We wanted to give our customers the opportunity to experience the creativity that is possible with organic, seasonal and local food, at prices they can afford."

But the pair find it difficult to cover costs and overheads without pushing up their prices.

"We are not breaking even yet, and people seem surprised when we tell them that," Tracey explains.

"But we are confident we will get there," Brett adds, as he sets out a vision for evening events from cabaret acts to cheese and wine tasting.

"We are not in the city centre or in Brighton or London - this is Kings Heath and people are not going to spend a lot on lunch. So we have to be very resourceful," he adds.

It is 11am and the cafe is gearing up for what they hope will be a busy lunch. An aroma of tomato soup and marrow fritters flows from the kitchen while a chef's assistant slices thick chunks of fresh organic bread.

The marrow has been taken off a plant grown in the garden, where a variety of plants from olive trees to courgettes are up for sale.

"I always liked food and being a host.

"We used to have a lot of parties, and so we were used to doing it for nothing," says Brett as he explains what made him give up his job for this new competitive world of hospitality.

For Tracey, it was a desire to do more for her local community which prompted the move.

"I started working for WWF eight-and-a-half years ago, which was really fulfilling, but for the last few years it has not been enough for me - I wanted to do something really practical.

"We were doing a regional strategy for WWF, but I wanted to look at what is actually happening in the community - getting real results. I had lots of ambition to have a real sustainable community, have a central meeting point where people can come and relax."

As well as the cafe, the couple have created a small shop and deli selling local foods, such as Fowlers' cheese from Warwickshire and yoghurt from the Dairy House in Herefordshire.

There is also an array of organic veg from a Malvern farm, packs of Tyrrells Crisps, ice-cream from September Dairies in Herefordshire and Frank's hand-made biscuits, also from Herefordshire.

Tracey coaxes me into the garden shop, where everything related to organics can be found.

"I was just fed up of going into garden centres and seeing such a pathetic section on organic gardening," she says.

Everything from bird boxes to organic fertilisers can be found, with both organic and non organic plants scattered around the entrance.

"We wanted to link growing and eating organically," she says.

"We are going to have an apple day soon and next year we hope to stock lots of seeds for the allotment holders around here," she adds.

Their vision had been to find a venue where they could create a community one stop shop, a space for a creche, restaurant and, at one stage, a launderette.

To some it may seem like another, if not attractive looking, cafe. But to them it is a lifestyle they want to share with the rest of Kings Heath.

"We want it to be a community place. In some areas mums meet up in these grim community centres because there is no where else to go," says Tracey. "I hope we have created somewhere attractive for all sorts of people within the community."

Copyright 2006 Birmingham Post & Mail Ltd.

Recent IPO Filings

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Recent IPO Filings. Check it out:
(Comtex Business Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)
Filing Est. Amt
Date Company Name (Mil.)
------ ------------ --------
09/29 Altra Holdings Inc. (Quincy, MA) $172.5
Is a leading global designer, producer and marketer of a wide
range of mechanical power transmission.
09/28 Mellanox Technologies Ltd. (Yokneam, ) $86.2
Is a leading supplier of semiconductor-based, high-
performance interconnect products.
09/28 AeroVironment Inc. (Monrovia, CA) $115.0
Designs, develops, produces and supports a technologically-
advanced portfolio of small unmanned aircraft systems.
09/27 Switch & Data Inc. (Tampa, FL) $150.0
Is a leading provider of network neutral interconnection and
colocation services.
09/26 CVR Energy Inc. (Sugar Land, TX) $300.0
Is an independent refiner and marketer of high value
transportation fuels.
09/22 Carrols Holdings Corp. (Syracuse, NY) $210.0
Is one of the largest restaurant companies in the United
States.
09/21 NewStar Financial Inc. (Boston, MA) $100.0
Is a commercial finance company.
09/21 St. Francis Medical Technologies Inc. (Alameda, $86.2
Is a medical device company.
09/20 Paradigm Ltd. (George Town,Grand Cayman, ) $200.0
Is a leading provider of enterprise software solutions.
09/19 Danaos Corp. (Piraeus, ) $259.3
Is an international owner of containerships, chartering our
vessels to the largest liner companies.
# # #
This information is provided AS-IS, without any warranty of any kind.
IPO Monitor makes no claims concerning the accuracy or validity of the
information, and shall not be held liable for any errors, delays,
omissions or use thereof.

Copyright 2006 (c) IPO Monitor. All rights reserved.
Wacoal Holdings Annual Report to Shareholders, 'Transition to a Course of Growth'. Check it out:
(Comtex Business Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Tokyo, Japan, Sep 29, 2006 (JCN Newswire via COMTEX) --Wacoal Holdings (TSE:3591; NQ: WACLY) has published its Annual Report to Shareholders for the year ended March 31, 2006. The Company reported an increase in consolidated net sales of 2.0% year on year, to JPY 164.1 billion. Operating and net income decreased due to the recording of extraordinary factors, however excluding these factors, operating income was up 57.0% year on year.



Wacoal laid the foundations for new medium-to-long-term growth through initiatives such as the transition to a holding company system and the introduction of a special voluntary retirement scheme. To raise business value by stepping up the pace of growth, the Company vigorously enhanced the operations of existing businesses, expanded its share of Japan's innerwear market, continued to rebuild and strengthen overseas operations, and developed peripheral businesses.

To download the Wacoal Holdings 2006 Annual Report, please visit the Company IR website at http://www.wacoal.co.jp/w-holdings/aboutcom_e/ir/index_e.html

Wacoal Holdings Annual Report to Shareholders, 'Transition to a Course of Growth'

Yoshikata Tsukamoto, Wacoal Representative Director, speaks about the launch of the Holding Company system, strategies for the future, corporate governance and his outlook for the Company in his 2006 Address to Shareholders.

"In October 2005, the Company changed its name from Wacoal Corp. to Wacoal Holdings Corp., which became the parent company of subsidiaries in the Wacoal Group. Under the holding company system, the roles of Wacoal Holdings and such Group operating subsidiaries as Wacoal are clearly defined. The holding company manages the Group and oversees operating subsidiaries, while the operating subsidiaries implement operations. This system enables the holding company to target growth and deploy resources on a Groupwide basis. Also, the delegation of authority and responsibility to the operating subsidiaries enhances the efficiency and dynamism of operational implementation. Moreover, because it facilitates reorganization by business type or function, the holding company system is the most suited to pursuing business tie-ups and mergers and acquisitions aimed at achieving corporate structural reform to reflect the times.

Medium-to-Long-Term Strategies

"At present, Wacoal Holdings and its operating subsidiaries are taking steps based on the Corporate Activation Project 21 (CAP21), which sets out medium-to-long-term strategies for enhancing business value. CAP21 (Medium-to-Long-Term Growth Strategies) formulates new business strategies that will enable the Company to make a fresh start and step up the pace of growth. Our transition to the holding company system resulted from the implementation of one such strategy. Guided by CAP21 (Medium-to-Long-Term Growth Strategies), we are reorganizing and strengthening existing businesses. Those efforts focus on rigorously heightening the efficiency of management systems and operational processes to bolster competitiveness and create an unshakable platform for growth. Further, not limiting ourselves to independent business development, we are cultivating businesses in areas that promise growth through the active pursuit of mergers and acquisitions, strategic operational tie-ups, capital tie-ups, and OEM. For example, in June 2006 the Company entered into an operational and capital tie-up with Peach John Co., Ltd., which mainly conducts mail-order sales of innerwear. Very popular among women in their teens and 20s, Peach John has grown rapidly in recent years.

The Company's overriding management goal is to benefit society at large by enabling women the world over to express their beauty. Also, in our business and management activities we seek to create value and establish a reputation befitting an international brand. Mindful of those management goals, we will implement the strategies of CAP21 (Medium-to-Long-Term Growth Strategies), aiming to surpass consolidated net sales of JPY 200 billion, ROE of 6%, and an operating income margin of 9% by the year ending March 2011. To meet those targets, we will implement a strategy of actively investing in businesses to realize new operational expansion. We aim to increase sales in markets in Japan, the United States, China, and Europe. Moreover, we will mull forays into markets in new regions.

Business Review

"In fiscal 2006, consolidated net sales increased 2.0% year on year, to JPY 164.1 billion, operating income was down 88.7%, to JPY 1.3 billion, and net income decreased 58.5%, to JPY 2.8 billion. The decline in operating income was mainly due to the recording of a government subsidy of JPY 7.1 billion in the previous fiscal year and the November 2005 recording of JPY 6.9 billion associated with special retirement related expenses.

Excluding such temporary increases and decreases in income due to the recording of extraordinary factors, operating income was up 57.0% year on year. The main contributions to higher net sales came from brisk sales of Wacoal-brand Hip Walker and Wing-brand Style Up Pants. Also-a focus of our promotional efforts in winter-sales of innerwear products designed for cold weather were favorable, centered on the Kaiteki NAVI lineup, which we launched in response to the Japanese government's "Warmbiz" environmental initiative to encourage the wearing of thermal business apparel to minimize the use of heaters in winter. On the other hand, net sales growth was held back by generally sluggish sales of mainstay brassieres and continuing weak mail-order catalog sales. Overseas, business grew favorably, with the exception of operations in France, where consumer spending remained flat. Wacoal America, Inc., posted particularly strong growth, with sales up more than 15% year on year.

Corporate Governance

"The basic corporate governance policy of Wacoal Holdings is to continue heightening enterprise value by enhancing the efficiency and transparency of management from the perspective of all of the Company's stakeholders. In 2003, we established the Disclosure Committee to strengthen corporate governance and ensure the reliability of financial and other information that we issue. That committee checks the propriety of internal controls and-pursuant to Section 302 of the U.S. Sarbanes-Oxley Act-the propriety of disclosure with respect to annual reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the accuracy of disclosed information.

In 2005, due to the discovery of potential defects in certain products sold, the Company provided replacements or refunds. In addition, there was a leakage of the personal info-rmation of certain customers of Wacoal's Internet shopping service. To restore customer confidence, we strengthened our quality control system through stringent implementation of an ISO quality management system and other measures. Further, aiming to deal with overall management risks, we changed our Crisis Management Committee to the Risk Management Committee, under which we established a subcommittee responsible for measures relating to accidents and disasters. Also, we created a system to counteract information security risks based on the establishment of a new department that is dedicated to addressing such risks.

In addition, by introducing the holding company system we clearly separated the role of the holding company, which undertakes Group management and oversees operating subsidiaries, and the role of the operating subsidiaries, which implement operations. We plan further development of systems for oversight and operational implementation.

Returns to Shareholders

"Our basic policy for returns to shareholders is to continue steady cash dividend payments, invest actively to enhance earnings and business value, and increase earnings per share. The Company intends to invest retained earnings to increase profit, raise business value, and enhance future returns to shareholders. Those activities will concentrate on the creation of new sales areas through the development of SPA shops, the development of new points of contact with customers, aggressive investment in overseas operations, and investment in new businesses.

Despite a significant decrease in earnings associated with such factors as the recording of special retirement related expenses, in the fiscal year under review we maintained cash dividends per ADR at the previous fiscal year's level of JPY 100.

Outlook

"In Japan, the women's fashion apparel industry promises robust growth as economic recovery bolsters consumer confidence. As the second year of the government's "Coolbiz" environmental initiative, 2006 will likely see stepped-up efforts to encourage the wearing of light business apparel to curb the use of air conditioners in summer. Amid those business conditions, the Company will redouble efforts to develop products that earn customer endorsement by fortifying new strategic product categories, such as Style Science lineups. At the same time, we will decisively implement measures aimed at expanding SPA operations and increasing new points of contact with customers. And, we will accelerate growth by implementing the strategies of CAP21 (Medium-to-Long-Term Growth Strategies).

In the current fiscal year, ending March 31, 2007, we project increases of 2% in consolidated net sales, to JPY 168.0 billion; 9.5 times in operating income, to JPY 12.6 billion; and 2.8 times in net income, to JPY 8.0 billion. The main factors contributing to the significant increase in operating income will be: improved return on sales through the reduction of such items as selling, general and administrative expenses; the absence of the JPY 6.9 billion special retirement related expenses, which was temporarily incurred due to the October 2005 implementation of the special voluntary retirement scheme; the absence of a JPY 0.6 billion additional retirement benefit expense that was recorded in the year under review stemming from the dissolution of Fukushima Wacoal Sewing Corp.; and lower personnel costs resulting from special voluntary retirement."

(Excerpts from the 2006 Wacoal Annual Report to Shareholders)

To download the Wacoal Holdings 2006 Annual Report, please visit the Company IR website at http://www.wacoal.co.jp/w-holdings/aboutcom_e/ir/index_e.html or the JCN Network Annual Report Gallery at http://www.japancorp.net/reports.asp

About Wacoal Corporation

Wacoal (TSE:3591; NQ: WACLY) has led the Japanese market for women's innerwear since its establishment in 1949. Still holding a dominant share of the home market, the Company is steadily growing sales in North America, Europe, and Asia. In October 2005, the Company changed its name from Wacoal Corp. to Wacoal Holdings Corp., which became the parent company of subsidiaries in the Wacoal Group. For more information, please visit www.wacoal.co.jp.

Contact:

Wacoal Holdings Corp.
Tadahiro Kondo
Tel: +81-75-682-1028
Fax: +81-75-672-3219
Email: t-kondo@wacoal.co.jp

Copyright (C) 2006 JCN Newswire. All rights reserved. A division of Japan Corporate News Network K.K.

**********************************************************************

As of Tuesday, 09-26-2006 23:59, the latest Comtex SmarTrend(SM) Alert,
an automated pattern recognition system, indicated an UPTREND on
11-22-2005 for WACLY @ $68.83.

For more information on Comtex SmarTrend Alert, contact your market data
provider or go to CSTADirect.com

SmarTrend is a registered trademark of Comtex News Network, Inc.
Copyright 2004-2006 Comtex News Network, Inc. All rights reserved.
Fitch affirms ProCredit Bank Ukraine at 'BB-'. Check it out:
(Interfax News Agency Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) MOSCOW. Sept 28 (Interfax) - Fitch Ratings on Thursday affirmed ProCredit Bank Ukraine's ("ProCredit Ukraine") ratings at foreign currency Issuer Default 'BB-' (BB minus), Short-term foreign currency 'B', local currency Issuer Default 'BB', Short-term local currency 'B', Individual 'D', and Support '3', the ratings agency said in a release.



The Outlooks on the Issuer Default ratings ("IDR") are Stable. The national rating is affirmed at 'AAA(ukr)'.

The IDRs, Short-term and Support ratings of ProCredit
Ukraine are
based on Fitch's view of the potential support from its
owners,particularly ProCredit Holding AG ("PCH"; rated 'BBB-' (BBB minus)), its 60% owner, in case of need. However, the 'BB-' (BB minus) Country Ceiling of Ukraine limits the extent to which support can be factored into the IDRs. The ratings also take into account PCH's centralized control and risk management and ProCredit Ukraine's high degree of integration within the ProCredit group. The Stable Outlook on ProCredit Ukraine's IDRs reflects that of Ukraine's IDRs.

Fitch notes that any movement in the Country Ceiling for Ukraine would have implications for ProCredit Ukraine's IDRs. Downward movement in the Country Ceiling would also result in a change to the bank's Support rating.

"Upside potential for the Individual rating is currently limited by ProCredit Ukraine's small size," says Tomasz Walkowicz, an analyst at Fitch's Financial Institutions Group. "A significant deterioration in asset quality, capitalization and liquidity leading to a need for support would contribute to a downgrade."

ProCredit Ukraine is the 35th largest bank by total assets in Ukraine. In addition to PCH, its other shareholders include the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and Western NIS Enterprise Fund (a U.S. body), which have a 20% stake each.

PCH was set up as an equity investment company in 1998 by Frankfurt-based Internationale Projekt Consult GmbH to invest in the global network of ProCredit banks, which provide financing to micro-and small and medium-sized enterprises in emerging markets. At end-May 2006, the group consisted of 19 banks in Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America and Africa, while the group's total assets were around EUR2.5 billion. PCH is responsible for group administration, strategy, risk management controls and supervision. PCH is not regulated as a banking group, but the ProCredit banks are regulated in their home countries.

Copyright 2006 Interfax News Agency. Source: Financial Times Information Limited.

The mothers of re-invention

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The mothers of re-invention. Check it out:
(China Daily Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Before China started its reforms and opened up to the outside world, many foreigners had the notion that Chinese women enjoyed unprecedented independence from men and high participation in the public sphere. This liberation for women, however, worked as a double-edged sword. Very often, it forced them to juggle jobs and families with great difficulty. Things are different today in a market economy in which masculinity is measured by the amount of money a man makes. A husband's higher income has taken the pressure off many working wives. Urban Chinese women, particularly in the middle-class, now have more options on how to spend their time. Some women feel their social identity is no longer contingent on them staying in the workforce. Instead, they see family as the primary commitment, and are proud to play a supporting role to the husband. Although it is a relatively recent phenomenon, it is no longer uncommon to see a small number of "full-time wives" (quan zhi tai tai) in Chinese cities, particularly within the rich and privileged echelon. The reasons behind this new phenomenon are many and diverse. Some believe such a trend has become possible simply because a growing number of families can afford not to have two incomes. Others point out that their lifestyle and choices owe not only to the economic boom but also to increasing social stratification, with the availability of migrant and laid-off workers as home-making helpers.



Meng Baili, a manager in an IT company in Beijing, is still looking for "Mrs Right," and in the meantime has his apartment cleaned by a local Beijing woman, a former factory worker who lost her job due to enterprise restructuring. Would he want his future wife to work? Meng said he was happy either way. "She does not have to work, as my salary is good enough to support her. But if she wants to work, it's her choice. As long as she fulfils her duties as a wife, I have no objection," he said.

When asked how he preferred to see his wife spending her time, Meng replied: "She can do community or charity work or work out in the gym to stay slim and fit but she shouldn't do housework. That's the maid's job." Indeed, very few full-time wives quit jobs to do housework. Hua Ruiling is in her late 30s and has two children, 15 and 3. Her husband is a real estate developer, and the family live at an expensive address in Haidian District, Beijing. Hua employs two full-time domestic helpers; one cooks while the other works as a nanny. Hua said that her husband was often away on business, sometimes abroad, but she had her own network of friends. She attends adult education classes and yoga classes, and drives her children to school and childcare. Currently she is attending an adult education course designed for women like herself. Offered by a prestigious university at a price which labourers and migrant workers would find astronomical more than 30,000 yuan (US$3,700) for one participant the course covered a wide range of subjects including literature, history, home science, and child development.

"There is a lot of useful knowledge and information out there. I feel that I can become a more cultivated person. I also meet a lot of new friends by going to these activities," Hua said.

Pros and cons Feminists debate the pros and cons of women returning home to become full-time mothers and wives. Some see this move as socially regressive because women run the risk of losing their independence and becoming socially disempowered. Others see it as a positive change for women, as they now have the option of not working, thus having more autonomy to follow their own dreams.

"Some women decide to quit man's world so that they can pursue their own idea of work. Stopping working for money doesn't mean that they disappear from public sphere. For instance, doing volunteer work, charity work, and running parents' groups online is also an important way of making contribution to society," said Wang Gan, an anthropologist who has written extensively on the topic of work and motherhood. While some women decide to become full-time wives because they bring clout and "face" to their husband, some men consider it a status symbol to keep their wives at home. Other women have decided to leave the workforce because they see fit to adjust their priorities in the face of changed domestic circumstances. This shift tends to happen when a couple is starting a family. Jiang, who declined to give her full name, worked as an accountant in a German-owned company in Beijing but stopped working after giving birth to her son. However, she stressed this may be an interim plan and she may not want to stay away from work permanently. "I read many books on parenting, and most of them point to the importance of bringing your child up on your own instead of using a nanny, especially during the first couple of years. So for the sake of my child's future, I am happy to stop working for a year or two," Jiang said.

In spite of the glamour of the "full-time wife," to most middle-class urban women, it is more desirable to have a foot in both worlds. In constructing a profile of the archetype "Vogue" woman, Liu Dan, from Conde Nast, which produces the Chinese Vogue magazine, said: "The archetypical Vogue woman is not a full-time wife, nor is she stressed out with work. She balances work and family, successfully and effortlessly." Xia Jun, 31, HR consultant with a trans-national corporation in Beijing, had a baby boy six months ago, and is currently still on unpaid maternity leave. With the help of a full-time live-in maid, Xia divides her maternity leave between her baby and trying to finish a research project for her Master's thesis. She will go back to work in eight-months. "It never occurred to me to become a full-time mother. It's important to have my own social life, to be exposed to smart people and exciting things," Xia said.

Xia also believed it was risky for a woman to build her sense of security around a man, especially considering the growing infamy of married rich men betraying their wife and taking on lovers and mistresses. "During the last few months since I had the child and stayed at home, I noticed I have become emotionally more dependent on my husband, more demanding of his attention and understanding, and more insecure about his feelings for me," Xia said. "This is because he has a whole world outside home, and I have nothing else to talk about apart from home. When I was working, I was not like this," she said. Although pleased with the time off during her maternity leave, Xia fears she can't afford to stay away from work for too long. "Things change fast, and organizational cultures and structure changes fast too. If you don't keep up, you may not be able to cope with the change," Xia added. "In my company, organizational structures are altered every half a year. I also know that if I stay away for too long, say for two or three years, there will be new people coming in, younger and with more credentials." From what Xia can see, the full-time wife phenomenon is a symptom of a patriarchal society. "It never occurs to my husband that he could quit work and look after the child. That's almost unheard of in China. I know it's quite common with Westerners. At work, I have quite a few European female colleagues whose husbands are here to look after children. But that's almost unheard of among Chinese men," she said. Both the birth of the "full-time wife" and the emergence of the "vogue woman" have taken place in Chinese cities not in spite of, but precisely because of, growing social and economic stratification over the last couple of decades. Social stratification To be sure, urban middle-class women can afford to choose between working and not working, but they cannot do it without cheap labour provided by rural women and laid-off factory workers who work as their domestic helpers. The latter are not blessed with these options. While some women in the cities are thinking of quitting jobs or cutting down work hours to spend time with their family, more and more rural women are leaving home and their families in order to work in cities as domestic workers. Currently there are at least 200,000 domestic workers in Beijing, and another 200,000 vacancies waiting to be filled. Xie Hong is one of the thousands of women in Beijing who leave her children behind in the village in order to make money working as a baomu. A young woman from Sichuan and in her late 20s, she works as a part-time domestic cleaner. Xie said she missed her own children badly and talked to them on the phone whenever she could. "City kids are so spoilt and live like princes and princesses. Each time I look at them, especially those who are at a similar age to my own children, I get upset. I am also a mother, but why can't I cuddle my children and buy them their favourite treats every day?" Xie said. "I know I am doing this for my kids, but I am also missing out on so much by being away. Last time I went home to see my kids, they looked at me as if I was a stranger and wouldn't come close to me," Xie added, her eyes filled with tears. Because of migrant women such as Xie, and thanks to the growing trend of outsourcing domestic work in urban China, middle-class urban women across the board are increasingly able to tailor their lifestyles and work patterns to suit their individual needs, thereby freely negotiating between working and not working, between full-time and part-time work, or between working for money and working to fulfil one's dreams. For many single professional women, life without a man is just fine, as long as she has the help of a maid. Similarly, for married women, their lifestyle either as a full-time wife or professional is hardly sustainable without the availability of paid domestic work.

Copyright 2006 China Daily. Source: Financial Times Information Limited - Asia Intelligence Wire.

Live from Comdex, it's Enable

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Live from Comdex, it's Enable. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) COMDEX is the premier showcase of the latest breakthroughs and innovations in the IT marketplace. Many leading companies use COMDEX to launch their newest and next flagship products. In the IT arena, COMDEX is the place to see and be seen.



COMDEX is also where you will come in contact with the next big thing before it actually becomes the next big thing. For example, today the buzz is all about Tablet PCs. Yet, I saw the first Tablets at COMDEX two years ago. The same is true for smart phones and WIFI.

The next edition of Enable will be coming at you live from COMDEX and will let you in on the next big things. Until then, the COMDEX web site is chock full of added value and today's Enable looks at two such added value sections Research and White Papers.

Research Reports For Free

COMDEX is committed to providing the IT community with FREE quality research on the most important technology and business segments to help buyers and sellers make crucial decisions. The COMDEX Reports series includes market studies on technologies such as IT security, development environments and wireless, as well as buyer segments such as enterprise businesses and women in technology. To access the reports, just provide an email address when prompted. You should also check back often as new FREE reports are posted regularly.

The following are highlights of a few of the reports: COMDEX Report on Small Business - Home Office vs. Commercial Office Workers One of the key findings of the COMDEX Research Panel Small Business study is that small business respondents who work from home are very different from respondents who work at an office outside the home. This paper will develop an in-depth profile of these two groups and help foster an understanding of the differences between home office workers and those who work in an office outside the home.

COMDEX Report on Women Technology Buyers COMDEX, in partnership with WITI (Women In Technology International), commissioned a study on the involvement of women in purchasing technology for their businesses and organizations. This study explored the role of women in IT, technology products women purchase and the amount they are authorized to spend.

COMDEX/FORTUNE 1000 Technology Decision Maker Study The COMDEX/FORTUNE 1000 Technology Decision-Maker Survey was conducted to provide a snapshot of how technology influencers in the largest US companies feel about the economy, the prospects of a turnaround, and how the current downturn has affected budgets and decision-making processes within their companies. In addition, the study examines the importance of a range of business issues to companies today, and how these companies have fared in dealing with these important issues.

COMDEX Report on Biometrics Biometrics is one of the newest security technologies available. While clearly an immature market, biometric technologies are sure to become more widely used in the future as costs decrease and companies'

Wireless Technology: The Big Picture COMDEX panelists are involved users and evaluators of wireless technology. The COMDEX Panel survey on Wireless Technology found significant differences between how companies of different sizes are using and implementing wireless technology.

Small Business: Online vs. Non-online Businesses Among small businesses, those that consider themselves online businesses have a distinct profile from those who do not. The COMDEX Research Panel Small Business study seeks to develop a profile of online businesses and understand the key differences between online and non-online small companies.

Security Information security is one of the most important issues facing businesses today. The COMDEX Panel study on security aims to explore what security measures companies are taking and how panelists feel about the trade-off between privacy and security. This study found that while security is important to all panelists, companies of different sizes face different challenges when implementing security measures.

White Papers

COMDEX prides itself on community, content and commerce. In the White Paper section of the website you can search for in-depth information from the leading technology vendors and analyst groups. The White Papers are free, but you will have to pay for the Analyst reports.

White Paper topics include: Hardware Electronic Commerce Enterprise Applications IT Management Networking Software Development Telecommunications

Take advantage of the information provided by COMDEX. It is for the most part free and provides you with a wealth of information.

Next week we are LIVE from Las Vegas at COMDEX

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Invest In The Hiring Process

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Invest In The Hiring Process. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) As we continue with our roadmap for success, we move on to the issue of hiring employees for your new enterprise. Hiring new employees is another example of a critical situation facing startups that if not handled correctly from the onset - will probably never be rectifiable. In today's Internet paced world, time is everything. Many new companies simply do not have the time or the personnel to properly hire new employees. Yet, a proper investment of your time during the hiring process will save you a lot if time in the future, and more importantly will prevent major headaches and even catastrophes for you and your company. Today's Enable provides you with some tips that will help you hire the right person for the job. The key is to invest a little time now - to save a lot of time later on.



What Is The Cover Letter Like?

Most companies try to weed out candidates as quickly as possible. A good method for doing this is via the cover letter. Does it show that the candidate investigated the firm in any way? Are there spelling or grammar mistakes? If it was faxed, was it sent from the potential employees current place of business (check the header of the fax)? Is there some kind of a statement that stands out and demonstrates that this candidate is serious? Is the cover letter a little too haughty? No cover letter at all could be an indication of either laziness or lack of experience. A very well done, professional cover letter is an excellent indication that the candidate is serious.

Resumes Are Sometimes Wish Lists

It is very easy for almost anyone to put together an impressive looking resume. As you review a potential employee's resume, take nothing for granted. You must check each and every "fact" very carefully because many items may be exaggerated or even a figment of the potential employees imagination. A friend of mine once told me that his rule for drafting a resume was - "if it could have been true, I put it in."

Check References!!

One of the most important, yet often ignored ways of insuring that you hire the best person for the job is to check their references. Use the telephone and email to contact each and every reference and try to learn as much as you can about the prospective employee. Other than simply checking to make sure everything on the resume is true, you should also ask questions like: What is the candidate's greatest asset? How did the candidate add value to the company? How did the candidate interact with co-workers? Is there anything negative you can say about the candidate? Why did the candidate leave?

The most important question you must ask is: "Can you give me names of other people at your company, or outside of the company (like clients or suppliers), whom I can speak with?". This will help you learn more and will enable you to deal with "cherry picked" references.

The Turndown - Be Professional

It is highly professional to send out "rejection" letters to all candidates that sent you their resumes. Most companies, especially those in Israel fail to do this. Business is all marketing. The candidates that you have decided not to hire - for whatever reason will all most likely find jobs at other companies in your industry. Do not use obvious form letters and the like. If you do not have time for a professional letter, at least send an email. Israel is a very small country, and your paths will cross with many of the candidates. Your reputation is very important and a professional turndown can pay off in the future.

Next week we will deal with executive search firms and with using the Internet to find potential employees.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on January 10, 2000.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Those Who Do - Should Teach

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Those Who Do - Should Teach. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) When I was in law school, my favorite courses were taught by lawyers who were not professors but who simply like to teach. They typically taught at night and most of the time gave us all kinds of war stories. They lived it and were giving us real examples from the real world. They talked about everything we wanted to do - and they were doing it!



Today's Enable incorporates this concept via Joe Hadzima, a senior lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Director and General Counsel to the MIT Enterprise Forum, Inc., and Managing Director of Main Street Partners LLC, a venture investing and technology commercialization firm located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He is a former partner and founder of the High Tech/ New Ventures Group and Sullivan & Worcester LLP, a major Boston-based law firm.

Hadzima writes a column called Starting Up for the Boston Business Journal. The column is written about real life problems and experiences faced by new and emerging companies in the New England area - but the topics covered are relevant to startups around the globe. The column, like my favorite law school professors, provides practical information to entrepreneurs.

Enable has reviewed the column, including the archives. Today we'll see how Hadzima deals with a crucial issue - the Board of Directors.

Don't Bore the Board of Directors - How To Use A Board Effectively tells you how to get the most out of your Board and how to ensure you don't waste their time. The ins and outs include:

Board Size Size and the resulting group dynamics will dictate much of how you deal with the Board. Most entrepreneurial private companies have Boards comprised of 3 to 5 Directors. Some have advisory boards (e.g. a Science Advisory Board) which are larger but the legal Board usually does not exceed 5 in number and rarely is greater than 7. Larger public companies usually have larger Boards, partly because of the need to have specialized committees (e.g., Audit Committee, Compensation Committee).

Outside of the Board Meeting In recruiting a Director you should have worked out the Director's level of activity and attention both in terms of the number of Board Meetings expected and, if the "job description" includes it, interactions outside of the Board room. These outside interactions with individual Directors are your opportunity to obtain individual advice and assistance. Establish a format which works for the individual Director and for you- a weekly breakfast, a monthly lunch, twice a week telephone call, frequent email, a tennis match followed by a half hour discussion by the juice bar-whatever works.

The Board Meeting The strength of the Board of Directors system comes from the collective action of experienced and informed people. It follows that the Board Meeting has to be a combination of information transfer processes and resulting decision making. Board Meetings rarely last all day unless some major event is being considered such as an acquisition. For a normal Board Meeting plan on a minimum of 12 to 2 hours, more typically 3 to 4 hours.

Information Because time is limited, you should "offload" as much of the background information transfer process as possible so that the Meeting can focus more on decision making. The "Board Package" is the main method of off-line information transfer and should be distributed to the Board with enough time for the Directors to be able to read and digest the material but not so far in advance that the information is out of date. Plan on getting the materials to the Directors about 3 days before the Meeting. A typical package will contain the following: An Agenda, Draft Minutes of the Last Meeting, Financial Reports with Management Commentary, Other Relevant Information. Be sure to keep the Directors informed of general developments between meetings- e.g., include the Directors on press release lists, product mailings etc. It can be very annoying to a Director to find out something about the Company from a source outside of the Company.

Knowledge@Wharton Revisited

As promised, we now return to Knowledge@Wharton to finish our overview of this excellent site. As mentioned last week, this is an online resource that offers the latest business insights, information and research from a variety of sources, including an in-depth searchable database.

In completing our look at this site, we move to the section entitled: Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Here, you will find an excellent piece called Uncertainty, Technological Turbulence, Competition - What's a Manager to Do? Thrive on It, that teaches the concept of "habitual entrepreneurs." Habitual entrepreneurs have made careers out of starting businesses either within existing firms or independently. You will learn that they passionately seek new opportunities and pursue them with enormous discipline. Furthermore, they pursue only the best opportunities, and avoid exhausting themselves and their organizations by chasing every option. They focus on execution and change direction if necessary. And they engage the energies of everyone who works with them. You will also be provided with a detailed plan, based on these qualities, for you to apply to your own company.

In the same section you will also find an article entitled: Mercenaries vs. Missionaries: John Doerr Sees Two Kinds of Internet Entrepreneurs. John Doerr is a legend in the venture capital industry and you should pay very close attention to what he has to stay.

Doerr believes that as the new economy develops, several trends are emerging. Among his forecasts for the future: IP, or internet protocol, will be as important as the car or television. The web will become the standard communications platform in healthcare. Charter schools, and educational portals for the home and school, will transform education. Bandwidth will be crucial. Despite current skepticism about business-to-consumer e-commerce, it will remain a big trend, as will business-to-business e-commerce. Wireless information appliances will be big in the future. "That's how a billion Chinese will get onto the Internet," Doerr says. Genomics will be "fabulous" after 2005, as the human genome is fully mapped.

Doerr also predicts that the Internet will evolve into what he calls "the Evernet," which is "always on, high speed, ubiquitous and available in multiple formats." These formats will include a "voiceweb" for voice communications, a "handweb" for hand-held devices, a "PC web" for PCs, a "videoweb" for video and an "e-web" in which machines will communicate with machines. These changes will consolidate the foundations of the new economy.

Read the entire section and learn from one of the leading venture capitalist in Silicon Valley.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on September 26, 2000.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Wireless For Everyone

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Wireless For Everyone. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) As we continue our focus on added value wireless related sites, Enable takes a look at www.wirelessdata.org. This site has something for everyone - from novice to expert.

Beginners will benefit from the site's wireless data primer. Developers will glean a lot of value from the developers green house section, and virtually anyone interested in the industry will be able to benefit from the free market research available on the site.



These and other features are described in detail below. This description is followed by a brief look at the organization behind the site - The Wireless Data Forum.

Wireless Data Primer

The last twenty years have seen an explosion in wireless communications and computer technology. The last five years have seen the explosion of the Internet. Standing at the center of this convergence is the wireless data industry. The primer provides a general overview of the industry and its key components.

The primer is in beta version, and is still not searchable. When I used it, the primer was bug free. However, be aware that some of the information is not exactly up to date.

Developers Greenhouse

This section is for those that want to join the Wireless Revolution. It provides a slew of resources to help you successfully develop applications for Wireless Data. This includes: Ardis Wireless Software Developers Program CDMA Online GSM World, the web home of the GSM Association, features the GSM Data Window. The RIM Developer Zone Sierra Wireless Developers Toolkit WAP Forum (Wireless Application Protocol) WAP.NET Wireless Developer Wireless Developer Network

Market Research

In the section called Market Index, you can look up over 100 reports, forecasts, and articles about Wireless Data. You can search by categories like new applications, international, enterprise, or consumer - or simply by keyword.

You only receive short blurbs, but the information contained in the blurb provides you with enough background to get a general idea of the particular market, product, etc, that you searched for.

For example, when I searched the word "palm", the following (among others) came up:

"Future of Palm VII dim. [6/9/99]"

"Analysts at the Wheaton, Md.-based consultancy Herschel Shosteck Associates aren't so sure and say the future is not bright for Palm VII. They predict sales of 100,000 units in the first year, a mere fraction of the projected 3.9 million personal digital assistants that will be sold in the United..."

"IBM Makes Wireless Deal; Suggested: Wireless devices to outnumber PCs on Internet, IBM expects [1/24/00]"

"IBM will design, build and run a global wireless Internet portal for Vodafone AirTouch PLC, the world's largest mobile phone operator, the companies announced earlier this month. The portal, which will be launched in July in Europe, North America and Australia, is based on software from..."

When I clicked on the above link, this is what I got:

"Summary: IBM will design, build and run a global wireless Internet portal for Vodafone AirTouch PLC, the world's largest mobile phone operator, the companies announced earlier this month. The portal, which will be launched in July in Europe, North America and Australia, is based on software from the Sun-Netscape Alliance and InfoSpace.com Inc. It will give users of mobile phone and handheld devices from Nokia Corp., Ericsson Inc. and Palm Computing Inc. access to messaging and calendaring functions, in addition to travel information and financial services."

The Wireless Data Forum

The Wireless Data Forum is a new organization with a new focus. Dedicated to publicizing successful wireless data applications and customer communities, the WDF is composed of network service providers, wireless device and infrastructure equipment manufacturers and vendors, computer software and hardware developers, and information services content providers. New members are actively being recruited from the wireless telecommunications, mobile computing, and Internet industries. The Wireless Data Forum's leadership is committed to being an industry-building mechanism. The Wireless Data Forum's work will focus on consensus building and promoting the entire wireless data industry.

It seems that the Forum means well and its current site does provide added value. Enable will continue to check on any updates and will keep you posted on the progress of this site, especially the Primer.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on June 20, 2000.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

A Developer's Dream

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(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Today's Enable is dedicated to developers. You guys and gals don't get the credit you deserve and are typically blamed for product bugs and problems. Are these product faults really your fault?



You are being pushed from all sides. You need prototypes, beta sites, etc. Your marketing "friends" are pushing you to get the product to market in record time. You feel the pressure every day - but where can you turn for help? Can the Internet help you like it seems to be helping everyone else?

If you are a wireless developer, you're in luck. AnywhereYouGo.com provides you with online tools and other information to help you develop applications that work without bugs and other problems - fast.

The solutions AnywhereYouGo.com provides are crucial because, according to the IGI group, by the year 2003 more people will access the Internet via a mobile phone than via PC. This will drive mobile e-commerce, which Strategy Analytics forecasts will reach a total 14 billion transactions in 2005 for a total market of $200 billion. The challenge is for today's wireless developers to build applications for multiple technologies, devices, and country standards.

AnywhereYouGo.com is the largest independent community of wireless application developers. The AnywhereYouGo.com web site provides industry and product news, developer tools and resources, industry reports, online application testing, directories of developers and applications, training and tutorials, and discussion groups covering wireless application development:

The entire site is excellent - especially the newsletters which I subscribe to personally. But today is dedicated to developers only, and as such Enable only focuses on the developer tools and application testing sections.

Five Steps To WAP Development

Anywhereyougo.com provides developers with a five step process for WAP development.

The steps are summarized below: Step 1 - Understand WAP: Step 2 - Get The Tools You Need Step 3 - Write Your First Application Step 4 - Write advanced applications Step 5 - Test Your Application

Online WAP Testing Tool

This section is specifically designed to ensure that your WAP users seeing the application you wrote, the way you intended. You can test your existing WAP applications using the online utility for code errors, common mistakes, and valid links.

You can choose from the following tests to run against your site: Check the document's content type header Validate the document against the DTD declared in it Check the document for formatting tags that are not commonly supported Check the compiled size of the document Follow links that lead off of your site to other sites?

Developer's Notebook

The site also has a very detailed developer's notebook which contains articles submitted by members of the community - people who are working in the trenches to make wireless work around the world.

Some sample articles include:

Real-Time Debugging Highly Integrated Embedded Wireless Devices by David Ruimy Gonzales In this installment of the Developer's Notebook, Motorola's David Gonzales examines the trend toward reducing the number of components in these systems as it relates to cost, overall power consumption and manufacturing complexity.

Dual Core Architecture for Cellular Handsets by David Ruimy Gonzales The exponential growth of the wireless communications industry has created a multitude of new products with advanced features that allow users to stay in touch with every aspect of their lives wherever they may be. These new products are quite diverse, require more system performance with no exceptions to power conservation and have short product life cycles.

Introduction to Location Services and Location-Based Services by John Davies AnywhereYouGo.com community member John Davies provides part one in a three-part series on location and location-based services.

Seven Steps to Success in the Mobile Wireless Enterprise by Tanya Candia In a Developer's Notebook white paper, F-Secure VP Tanya Candia explains why companies who are looking to make it in the m-commerce space have to make changes in the way they do business.

All of the above are only brief highlights of what the site has to offer. Take the time to go to AnywhereYouGo.com and check it out thoroughly. Enable guarantees that you will return - again and again.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on September 5, 2000.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Now is a good time to "Buy"

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Now is a good time to "Buy". Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) We have ample experience in the local stock market and listen carefully to the opinions of local analysts. We don't doubt that foreign investment banking firms may have superior analyst abilities. However, their direct contacts with the managements of local companies are minimal. The local analyst may find that he knows several heads of companies as they are his buddies in his reserve unit. The local grapevine is an invaluable supply of information. Some even went to school together.



The local daily press, available in English, is a good source of information. The daily newspapers have Internet web sites that publish the most important news that appears in the printed newspaper.

We believe that now is a good time to invest in Israel and would like to review various avenues open to the investor.

The Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange has several hundred securities listed for trading. The Exchange has a web site (http://www.tase.co.il); prices are posted daily and in near-real time. We favor companies whose activities are international and whose products are internationally recognized.

Most Israel interested investors have heard off Check Point, Converse and Teva but how many know about Aladdin? Aladdin Knowledge Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: ALDN) is recognized as the worldwide leader in Software Digital Rights Management (DRM) and USB-based authentication solutions. The company, is an innovator in enterprise secure content management (Enterprise Security). Its shares are traded on Nasdaq and the company has just reported record quarterly earnings of $3.59 million for the second quarter. This represents a 73.4 percent growth year-over-year and revenues of $20.06 million, representing 21.4 percent growth year-over-year.

AudioCodes Ltd. (Nasdaq: AUDC:) whose shares are traded on Nasdaq, designs, develops, and markets enabling technologies and system products for the transmission of voice, data, and fax over packet networks. The company's products are unique and its sales are growing as the Voice over the Internet. However, it should be kept in mind that AudioCodes sales are only at the $100m. level and profits are under 3%. The shares are favorably priced at $10 and appear to have good support at that level and upside potential. In the second quarter revenues Increase to $28.5 Million, Up 6% Sequentially and 49% year-over-year. Net Income was$3.1m, or $0.07 per share.

Ormat Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:ORA) is a vertically integrated company primarily engaged in the geothermal and recovered energy power business. It designs, develops, builds, owns and operates geothermal power plants. Additionally, the company designs, manufactures and sells geothermal and recovered energy power units and provides related services. More than 70 patents cover Ormat products and systems. Ormat currently has operations in the United States, Israel, the Philippines, Guatemala, Kenya, and Nicaragua. The company was founded by the Bronickis, husband and wife, and has been managed by them since its inception in 1965.

NICE-Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: NICE; TASE:NICE) is a vehicle that enables the investor to participate in the burgeoning security industry. NICE Systems (NASDAQ: NICE) headquartered in Ra'anana, Israel, is a leader of multimedia digital recording solutions, applications and related professional services for business interaction management. NICE products and solutions are used in contact centers, trading floors, air traffic control (ATC) sites, CCTV (closed circuit television) security installations and government markets.

NICE's subsidiaries and local offices are based in the United States, Germany, United Kingdom, France and Hong Kong. The company operates in more than 100 countries through a network of partners and distributors.

Other interesting companies, worthy of investment consideration, include CheckPoint (CHKP: Nasdaq) leader in computer protection software, Comverse (CMVT: Nasdaq) messaging, Teva Pharmaceuticals (TEVA:Nasdaq), world's largest generic drug manufacturer and Retalix (RTLX: Nasdaq) computerization at the check out counter.

None of the companies described above are "cheap". Most have p/e ratios of more than 30. However, they are in active in highly exciting technology fields. We were not able to pinpoint neither any biotechnology companies nor those in the medical instrumentation field. Most of the participants in these industries are young companies that have as yet to prove their investment worthiness.

For investors who are prepared to undertake the risks in private equity there are venture capital funds that are prepared to accept investments of $100,000 or more. However, for the greater part, and partially due to the dot.com debacle these have not, for the greater part, outstanding track records.

We believe that a portfolio of the above-described companies would yield above average results.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on October 6, 2005

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Israeli VCs miss the mark

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Israeli VCs miss the mark. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Venture capital provides a source of funds through investment, usually for companies or projects that are un the start-up or at a very early stage of product development. These projects and organizations generally would not attract sources of finance such as loans and could not raise money in the major public stock markets.



The role of venture capital in enterprise development in developing countries is critical. The collateral of emerging enterprises is not incorporated in fixed tangible assets like plant and machinery, but more on elements like market access, human capital, intellectual property and goodwill. Manpower and financial needs in new companies are generally focused on research, development and introduction of a product into the marketplace, production and manufacturing. This results in initial low or negative cash flows and the need to finance these companies rests on potential future earnings rather than current profits. These factors make it difficult for new and emerging companies to obtain traditional financing.

We believe that in the area of financing start-ups the Israeli venture capital industry is lagging sadly behind its overseas counterparts. According to a recent IVC Center Research report Israeli venture capital companies thirteen seed companies attracted $34 million, 10 percent of the total amount raised in Q3. During the first three quarters of the year, seed companies attracted eight percent of the total funds, compared with six percent in Q1-Q3 2004.

By contrast American seed and early stage companies accounted for 36.8% of all companies funded in the second quarter, according to the PricewaterhouseCoopers/Thomson Venture Economics/National Venture Capital Association MoneyTree Survey. These figure indicate that the Israeli venture capital financing industry is far from being venturesome and that it underperforms in the area, which is basic to its tenets. There is a yawning chasm between its funding of local start ups as compared with the American industry.

Notwithstanding the industry has badgered the Government for preferential conditions for foreign investors. Perhaps most damning are the poor returns that the industry provides for its investors. Many of the venture capital companies are still stuck with the unprofitable investments from the dot.com era. Had the rate of investments in start ups been higher in previous years we would see a parade of initial public offerings in a period when the stock markets are absorbing them so successfully.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on February 15, 2006

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

When money grew on trees

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When money grew on trees. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Bonsai growing is the art of dwarfing trees or plants and developing them into an aesthetically appealing shape by growing, pruning and training them in containers. True Bonsai take years to grow... and are usually priced accordingly, and there's the rub.



Israelis by nature are impatient, and it would never occur to them to initiate an enterprise that might take several years before achieving a saleable product. They love flowers, and will travel to greenhouses to buy flowers and seedlings for their gardens.

The Israeli bonsai industry (and mind you, at one time there was a bonsai industry in this country), is now defunct. I remember seeing no fewer than one million bonsai plants in various forms and shapes, sitting neatly on shelves at a growing area just outside of Tel-Aviv.

Their elegant shapes were beautiful. They were being prepared for shipment to Britain to be sold at Marks & Spencer. No further proof of the industry's existence was needed.

The origin of the Israeli bonsai industry goes back to the period when a demobbed Israeli soldier decided to take a post army service trip to the Far East. In Japan he worked at various jobs, mostly physical labor. His life took a major turn when he came across a bonsai farm. The one time soldier was taken back to his childhood days when he lived on a kibbutz farm. He loved trees and flowers. By then he knew some Japanese and asked whether he could be hired. It was there that he learned the art of bonsai growing. He also fell in love with a Japanese girl who agreed to move with him to Israel.

Back in Israel, a friend, on hearing the story, and having some idea of the value of bonsais, suggested that they establish a bonsai growing farm.

It was a miracle of modern Israel. The seedlings grew to bonsai plants in a matter of weeks. Father time had been conquered and only a few insiders knew how it was done. The shaping, the twisting of the roots were done quite openly in the daytime. However, only a few were aware that the Israelis were taking advantage of modern science and technology to enhance the growing progress.

The height of a bonsai plant can range from six inches to approximately 36 inches. To reach the appropriate size in record time, the grower turned to the Agricultural Research Institute of a major Israel university. They were happy to comply and told him which accelerator he must spray on the seedling to set it on its way to adulthood. But that was not all. When the plant reached its desired height, the growing process had to be arrested. The scientists at the Agricultural Research Institute were happy to comply. They supplied a growth retardant and with the help of these two substances one million bonsai came into being in record time

However, the business partner of the enterprise walked away with a major money investment, spelling the death of the bonsai enterprise.

What further proof was needed to show how modern agricultural science with its accelerators and growth suppressants could help Mother Nature and enhance the ancient art of bonsai growing?

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on March 28, 2006

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

A shortcut to insight

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A shortcut to insight. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) A new trend among informative websites: less is more. This is a welcome change from the early days of the Internet where every site wanted to be the next Amazon.com and tried to provide as much information on a particular subject as their website could hold. I for one stop going to sites where I was inundated with way too much information. I now look for sites that provide quality - not simply quantity.



Today's Enable looks at such a site. It is called CIObriefcase and it provides CIOs as well as businesspersons with valuable information in a short and sweet format. While the site stresses topics for CIOs, it is worth it for anyone in business to check this site out. As demonstrated by the examples below, you will not have to spend a lot of time to glean critical information.

What's Hot

The site begins with a section called what's hot. Currently you will see three topics:

Security: Shared knowledge is key to security success Outsourcing: Five classic outsourcing blunders Systems Integration: The hidden costs of data integration

The key feature here is that you simply choose a topic and then you only get the five most valuable news stories, white papers and peer discussion groups for that topic. You probably do not need any more information on the particular topic and if you are a typical business person - you definitely do not have time to read more.

The site is your filter - choosing the most relevant information for you.

In Depth Archive

Another nice feature of the site is its archive. Here you will find new stories and white papers on topics ranging from Security, Outsourcing and Systems Integration to Web Services, CRM and Storage Area Management.

Click on any of the topics and you are provided with links to five news stories and five white papers on the particular topic.

I did a search of Business Continuity and came up with the following stories and white papers:

Stories

The ABCs of disaster recovery Security enters disaster-recovery maze Sept. 11 attacks prompt decentralization moves Skilled for business continuity

White Papers

A guide to business continuity planning: Protection and recovery services Netsourcing: There's no upside to downtime Cyberterrorism: Take effective action while you still can Business continuity for today's manufacturing enterprise Ensuring e-business continuity for financial services

Take advantage of CIObriefcase's brevity - it saves you time by providing your with short and sweet information in areas critical to your ongoing success.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on 26 March 2002

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

How Israeli High-Tech Happened

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How Israeli High-Tech Happened. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Israel became a high-tech hothouse because she had to. True, she enjoys favorable conditions for the growth of high-tech industries; chief among them, well-educated, inventive, enterprising people. Relative to the size of her population, Israel has more engineers, and sees more scientific articles published, than any other country in the world (Israel has 135 engineers per 10,000 people; the US has 85). However, the stimulus for the industry's growth has been national survival, both military and economic.



David among Goliaths

As a small country in a hostile neighborhood, Israel must strive to maintain a qualitative military edge over her potential enemies. Experience in a series of wars has taught Israel that she needs to develop that edge independently as far as she can. In large part, Israel's high-tech industries are a spin-off from that process.

Israel fought the 1967 Six Day War largely with French weaponry. When President de Gaulle imposed an arms embargo after that war, Israel turned to the United States, and to herself. The commercial consequences can be seen today. Blades Technology, for example, a company originally set up to manufacture engine parts for the Israel Air Force's Mirage aircraft, now has annual sales of $90 million, and joint ventures with Pratt & Whitney and Rolls Royce.

In the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Israel was surprised by the technological capabilities of her enemies, and also experienced difficulty in obtaining vital materiel from her foreign suppliers, spurring efforts for technological supremacy and self-sufficiency. The Kfir jet fighter, based on the French mirage, was one of the first large-scale projects in this effort.

Lavi grounded, high tech takes off

The effort for military self-sufficiency reached its limits in the 1980s, when Israel tried to develop the Lavi jet fighter. The cost proved beyond her and the project was abandoned, but this meant that, in the mid-eighties, hundreds of engineers with experience at the cutting edge ofaerodynamics, avionics, computers and electronics were released onto the market. The Lavi project's demise has been described as one of the greatest ever boosts to Israeli high-tech industry.

Since the Lavi, Israeli defense industries have focused more on components, electronics, avionics and other systems that are installed on American or other platforms. Israel has arranged many reciprocal procurement agreements with leading aerospace and military manufacturers, which help sustain high-tech industries. The development of these auxiliary systems has also given Israeli high-tech industries an edge in civilian spin-offs in security, electronics, computers, software and the burgeoning Internet sectors.

Into space

The military imperative has not disappeared. Even in the era of the peace process, Israel must keep up her guard. In response to the Iraqi Scuds that hit Tel Aviv in the 1991 Gulf War Israel began development of the Arrow anti-missile missile. The Arrow program began as part of the US SDI (Star Wars) program, requiring considerable advances in electronics, computers and ballistics. The Arrow will soon be ready for operational deployment. In general, the search for better systems in the areas of weapons, intelligence gathering, and command and control, goes on apace.

In the 1990s, Israel became only the eighth country in the world to develop and launch satellites, beginning with the Amos civilian communications satellite, followed by the Ofek military satellites and the Eros civilian photo-reconnaissance satellite. Israel now partners with NASA, the ESA and the Russian space program, building component and complete satellites for scientific and civilian uses.

In 2002, two of Israel's six largest industrial companies by turnover were high-tech companies: Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), Intel Electronics, as well as pharmaceutical company Teva (Nasdaq: TEVA; TASE:TEVA). The largest exporters in terms of sales included high-tech companies Teva, IAI, Intel Electronics, and Vishay Intertechnology (Israel), with over $1 billion in exports each.

Economic imperative

In part, the economic necessity derives from the military one. Israel's defense budget is inadequate for her to maintain her military advantage. One solution is export. Israel is both a highly successful defense and civilian high-tech exporter.

However, the global defense market is shrinking. Civilian applications of the skills in software, communications, imaging, process control, etc., derived from military industries, have therefore become increasingly important. For example, the need for better night-vision equipment led to local engineers becoming trained in the field of image processing, and to the establishment of two trailblazing Israeli high-tech companies: Scitex (Nasdaq: SCIX; TASE:SCIX), and Elscint. Because Israel is such a small market, export is essential for civilian products too, providing a further incentive to maintain technological excellence, particularly in certain niche markets - network security, for example, where Check Point (Nasdaq: CHKP) is a world leader; Mercury Interactive Corporation (Nasdaq: MERQ) is a leader in enterprise testing and performance management solutions; and Amdocs (NYSE: DOX) is a leader in customer relations management, billing and order management solutions.

Pharmaceuticals

In the 1990s, pharmaceuticals and medical devices became a rising high-tech sector. Teva has become a leading global generic drug maker, followed by Taro Pharmaceutical Industries (Nasdaq: TARO) and Agis Industries (TASE:AGIS). Medical device company Given Imaging (Nasdaq: GIVN) and biopharmaceutical companies such as Savient Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:SVNT) are becoming prominent players, listed on Nasdaq and European bourses.

Immigration

The wave of immigration from the countries of the former Soviet Union in the 1990s provided an influx of skilled scientists and engineers. The government's technology incubator program was largely a response to the need to provide these newcomers with employment, and harness their talents to the needs of industry. The immigrants helped fuel Israel's phenomenal growth rate between 1991 and 1994, and helped man the high-tech boom after 1998. In the late 1990s, Israeli high-tech began suffering from a shortage of skilled manpower. The government and industry have been expanding educational and vocational programs to meet the demand. The high-tech slump since late 2000 has slowed demand for trained personnel, but not ended the shortage altogether.

Liberalization

Israel has few natural resources. The aspiration of her population for a Western standard of living can only be satisfied through integration into the global market. Israel's transition from a State-dominated, centralized, protectionist economy to a free market means that traditional industries such as textiles are disappearing, losing out to low-cost overseas competition. How far and how fast this transition should go is a matter of debate, but there is no doubt that high-tech, where Israel enjoys a relative advantage, will be a mainstay of Israel's economic future. As Israel's economy restructures from traditional industries for the local market to export-oriented high-tech, high-tech exports as a percentage of total exports has been steadily increasing, rising from 45% in 1995 to 57% in 2000.

Exports of electronics communications components, electronic components, medical equipment and software and IT products soared to over $13 billion 2000. Although the onset of the high-tech crisis in late 2000 caused a sharp contraction in exports and production,electronics, communications, monitoring and control equipment, and avionics are still key exports. Pharmaceuticals and medical devices and equipment are also becoming increasingly important. High-tech is still the key growth engine for the Israeli economy and a mark of its integration into the global economy.

Foreign investment

An important aspect of Israel's integration into the world economy has been increasing inward investment, particularly in the high-tech industry. Companies like Cisco Systems, Motorola, Intel, IBM, Nortel, Microsoft, Mitsubishi, Deutsche Telekom, aviation and space companies, to mention just a few, have recognized that Israel is a fount of high-tech innovation they cannot afford to ignore. They have set up subsidiaries and research centers here, invested in Israeli companies, technology incubators, and venture capital funds, or found Israeli strategic partners.

Annual foreign investment in Israel grew from $400 million in 1992, to peak at $5.0 billion in 2000. Foreign investment subsequently contracted, due to the high-tech crisis, the global economic slowdown and political tensions in the Middle East, but is still substantial. Foreign venture capital investment grew apace, rising from $587 million in 1998, peaking at $3.1 billion in 2000, before falling to $982 million in 2002, still higher than the level of five years previously. Investment by Israeli venture capital funds followed the same pattern: peaking at $1.27 billion in 2000, but totaling only $481 million in 2002, including $62 million in foreign companies. (Sources: MonetyTree and IVC). The Bank of Israel reported that total foreign investment in Israel amounted to $2.6 billion in 2002, including $1.2 billion in direct foreign investment.

Start-up country

With 3,000 start-ups, the Global Competitiveness Report 2000 ranked Israel second behind the US in the number of start-ups and first relative to population. The weight of start-ups of GDP was 3% in 2000, compared with 0.4% in 1997. The comparable figures for the US was 0.3% and 0.1%, respectively. Israel was was highly ranked in terms of the number of engineers and education, but poorly in terms of physical infrastructure, a situation the government is trying to remedy.

Israel was ranked second in civilian R&D expenditure as a percentage of GDP, rising from 2.7% in 1994 to 4.2% in 1999. Total R&D expenditure in 2000 was $4.2 billion and NIS 23.9 billion in 2001. State expenditure on civilian R&D has been rising faster than GDP through the 1990s, mostly being invested in high-tech, but also agriculture, manufacturing and biotechnology.

Next steps

In any discussion of the future of Israeli high-tech, the following points tend to emerge:

The limiting factor on the sector's growth is a shortage of engineers and managers. Although training programs at universities, colleges and government and industry sponsored retraining courses have been expanding, plus attempts to expand the labor pool by tapping haredi (ultra-orthodox) and other communities, demand continues to outstrip supply, even in the wake of the cutbacks due to the high-tech crisis since mid-2000. Demand to allow the entry of foreign skilled engineers and programmers for the high-tech sector have abated, the issue may re-emerge when the industry recovers and if the Israeli labor pool remains insufficient.

The industry needs to consolidate through company mergers.

The government's role needs to be reviewed. Many argue that government support for civilian R&D is not sufficiently discriminating, resulting in financial and human resources becoming too thinly spread.

Tax reform to ease mergers and acquisitions, better reward employees, and encourage foreign investment. Although progress has been made on these issues, stumbling blocks remain.

New directions: Biotechnology and medical devices are seen as coming fields. While Israel is well placed to exploit it, with outstanding life sciences and medical research institutions, this will mean a departure from the military-industrial symbiosis which has done so much to sustain high-tech development up to now. Nevertheless, Israel has a number of outstanding and growing start-ups and companies in these fields, including many new listings on Nasdaq and European exchanges. Israel is ranked third in the world in biotechnology start-ups.

In 2000 there were 160 biotechnology and 400 medical device companies in Israel, compared with 25 in 1988, employing 4,000 people and generating $800 million in turnover. 20 companies are publicly traded, half in the US and half in Europe. Investment in biotechnology has been growing steadily, reaching totaled $1.7 billion in 2000, including about $200 million in venture capital. There are 15 life sciences venture capital funds operating in Israel.

Some figures

In 2000, exports of high-tech products accounted for 55% of all exports, up from 23% in 1991. Exports of electronics communications components, electronic components, medical equipment and software and IT products peaked at over $13 billion, before the onset of the high-tech crisis in late 2000 caused a sharp contraction in exports and production.

In 2000, 195,000 people were employed in the various high-tech sectors, compared with 148,870 people a decade earlier. Demand for engineers and technicians is estimated at 2,000-3,000 a year. The various academic institutions currently supply 1,000-1,300.

National expenditure on civilian R&D amounted to NIS 23.9 billion (over $5 billion) in 2001, 4.2% of GDP. Spending on civilian R&D has remained stable despite the recession since 2000, although the focus on research has been shifting from Internet and software to new fields such as biotechnology, nanotechnology. Chemical and chemical products, electronic components, communications components, supervision, monitoring, and medical equipment accounted for 87% of industrial R&D expenditure in 2001.

Israel issues the largest number of companies in the US after the US itself and Canada. According to the Bank of Israel, investment by foreign residents totaled $9.4 billion in 2000, up from $3 billion in 1995. Israeli companies raised $4.2 billion overseas in 2000, mostly on Nasdaq, but also including $800 million raised on European exchanges. The 2000 figure is 13 times the amount raised only five years earlier, in 1995, reflecting the immense growth by Israeli high tech and its emergence as a global player. Foreign investment and the raising of capital by Israeli companies overseas has since fallen to a fraction of the 2000 figure.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Technology Incubators

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Technology Incubators. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) On this page: Background Incubator Directory

1. Background

The incubator program aims to turn technological ideas into commercial successes. It operates under the aegis of the Chief Scientist at the Ministry of Industry and Trade. The incubators provide fledgling enterprises with a supportive framework, including administrative back-up and consulting services, while the Office of the Chief Scientist provides finance. An enterprise can generally remain within an incubator for two years, within which time it is expected to complete development of its product and find independent sources of finance.



An incubator may be independent, or backed by an investor, or part of an established company. Government support is given on different terms in each case.

Most of the incubators are located outside the central Tel Aviv-Gush Dan area.

There are about 200 projects in the independent incubators. The main R&D fields are chemical and electrochemical, mechanical and electromechanical, software, electronics, biotechnology, and computers. The applications for the technologies being developed are predominantly in industrial and control processes, medicine and cosmetics, and transport and communications, with agriculture also a significant beneficiary.

The incubator program began as a response to the influx of scientists and engineers from the countries of the former Soviet Union at the beginning of the 1990s, when immigration from those countries was at its height. Immigration has since abated, and the effectiveness of the scheme, and of other aspects of government support for R&D, is now being questioned, though the Office of the Chief Scientist claims a high success rate for incubator enterprises, and the scheme has been held up internationally as a model of its kind.

For further details, see Investment Incentives. The Office of the Chief Scientist site provides a full guide to the incubator scheme and to the incubators themselves, plus a project database . The site does not include incubators that operate within companies.

2. Incubator Directory

Advanced Technologies Center (ATC) Rotem Industrial Park, Mishor Yemin, 206 Oron Road Arava, 86800 Tel: 972 8 655 8796 Fax: 972 8 655 6106 E-mail: atctemed@netvision.net.il

Am-Shav Technological Applied Development Center Midreshet Sde-Boker 84990 Tel: 972 8 653 2726; Fax: 972 8 653 2266; E-mail: amshav

Ashkelon Technological Industries (ATI) 7 Haofa Street, South Industrial Zone POB 7284 Ashkelon 78172 Tel: 972 8 671 1852/3/4 Fax: 972 8 671 1855 E-mail: ati

DIMOTECH at the Technion

HiTEC Technology Enterpreneurship Center Har Hotzvim POB 45010 Jerusalem, 91450 Tel. 972 2 587 0710 Fax 972 2 581 2386 E-mail: yirmi@hitec.co.il

Incentive Technological Incubator PO Box 3, Ariel 44837 Tel: 972-3-936-4754, Fax: 972-3-936-6873 E-mail: Info

The Initiative Center of the Negev 15 Yehoshua Hatzoref St. Beersheva 84106 POB 844 Tel: 972 8 623 1212 Fax: 972 8 623 1246 E-mail: ceo

Incubator for Technological Entrepreneurhsip (ITEK) Kiryat Weizmann Science Park, Bldg.13A, Ness Ziona 70400 Tel: 972-8-940-9086 Fax: 972-8-940-8085 E-mail: itek@itek.co.il J.C. Technologies 21 Havaad Haleumi St. PO Box 16120, Jerusalem 91160 Tel: 972-2-675-1123 Fax: 972-2-675-1195 E-mail: info

Kinarot Jordan Valley Technology Incubator Zemach, Jordan Valley 15132 Tel: 972 4 670 9018, Fax: 972 4 670 9014 E-mail: kinarot

Lab-One Innovations Formerly Nitzanim Initiative Center. Affiliated with StageOne Ventures 6 HaNehoshet St., Ramat Hahayal, Tel Aviv 69710 Tel: 972-3-6475788 Fax: 972-3-6473819 E-mail: Lab-One

Jerusalem Software Incubator POB 45125 Jerusalem, 91450 Tel: 972 2 587 0012 Fax: 972 2 587 0015 E-mail: ceo

Maayan Technology Ventures 3 Azrieli Center, Triangle Tower, 42nd Floor, Tel Aviv 67023 Tel. 972-54-4555219 4 HaNachtom St., PO Box 844, Beltec Building, Beer-Sheva 84106 Tel. 972-8-6231212 Fax: 972-8-6231246 E-mail: info

Magnet Program Ministry of Industry and Trade Office of the Chief Scientist.

MATAM Advanced Technology Center, Haifa Haifa 31905 Tel: 972 4 855 0066 / Ext. 126 Fax: 972 4 855 0888 E-mail: matam@netvision.net.il

Not itself an incubator, MATAM is an industrial park that provides services to tenants.

Meytag Technology Incubator Katzrin Industrial Zone POB 12 Katzrin 12900 Tel: 972 4 696 2561 Fax: 972 4 696 2564

Meytav - Technological Enterprises Initiation Center POB 408, Kiryat Shmona10200 Tel: 972 4 681 8800 Fax: 972 4 681 8806 E-mail: meytav

Misgav Carmiel Incubator MP Misgav 20179 Tel: 972 4 999 1991 Fax: 972 4 999 1901 E-mail: misgavtc

Mofet B'Yehuda - Technology and Business Incubator POB 80, Kiryat Arba 90100 Tel: 972 2 996 3880 Fax: 972 2 996 1571 E-mail:info

Mofet also manages an enviromental division: GreenTech that focuses on start-up entrepreneurs and investors interested in meeting the growing global demand for new ecological and environmental technologies.

New Generation Technology (NGT) Nazareth Industrial Area, P.O. Box 2252, Nazareth 16000 Tel: 972-4-656-4118, Fx: 972-4-656-4129, E-mail: Sharon Dvir, CEO

A high-tech incubator founded by a group of Israeli Arab and Jewish businesspeople.

Naiot Technological Center Affiliated with Ofer Brothers. POB 732 Nazareth Illit 17106 Tel: 972 4 650 0764/564-092 Fax: 972 4 656 6735 E-mail: info

Ofek LaOleh Jezre'el Valley Initiative Center POB 73, Migdal Ha'emek 23100 Tel: 972 4 654 3081 Fax: 972 4 654 3082 E-mail: Avraham Maoz

Ofakim Innovative Technologies (O.I.T.) 7 Betsalel St., POB 633, Ofakim 80300 Tel: 972 8 992 5580 Fax 972 8 992 6581 E-mail: oitech

Orit Technological R&D Center Affiliated with the Ofer Brothers Group P.O. Box 3 Ariel 44837 Tel: 972-3-936-4754 Fax: 972-3-936-6873 E-mail: orit

Patir R&D Center Incubator 21 Havaad Haleumi St. PO Box 16120, Jerusalem 91160 Tel: 972-2 675 1123 Fax: 972 2 675 1195 E-mail: info@patir.co.il

Rad-Ramot 2a Katzir Street, Tel Hashomer Ramat Gan 52656 Telefax: 972 3 531 2600 E-mail: info

Rad-Ramot is a joint venture of Rad Data Communication Ltd. and Ramot, the commercial arm of Tel Aviv University. It focuses on bio-medical and life-science projects.

Targetech Innovation Center Poleg Industrial Area, POBox 8027, Netanya, 42101 Tel: 972-9-885-1116 Fax: 972-9-885-1090 E-mail: Azriel Kadim

Targetech Innovation Center Poleg Industrial Area, POB 8027, Netanya 42101 Tel: 972 9 885 1116; Fax: 972 9 885 1090 E-mail: info

TEIC, The Technion Entrepreneurial Incubator Company Science Park Technion, Nesher, POB 212 Nesher 36601 Tel: 972 4 830 8333 Fax: 972 4 821 0531 E-mail: info

Western Negev Initiative Center POB 321 Neve Dekalim, 79779 Tel: 972 8 684 2983 Fax: 972 8 684 6457 E-mail: dov

Xenia Ventures Technology Incubator Gat High Tech Center (Matmag) Kiryat-Gat New Industrial Zone 1 Leshem St., Kiryat Gat 82000 Tel: 972-8-6811761/2 Fax: 972-8-6811763 E-mail: Hagay

YEDA Research and Development of the Weizmann Institute of Science Incubator for Technological Entrepreneurship - Kiryat Weizmann Ltd. Building No. 3, Kiryat Weizmann Science Park, Ness Ziona 70400 Tel: 972 8 940 9086 Fax: 972 8 940 8085

Yozmot - Granot Initiative Center Mobile Post Hefer 38100 Tel: 972 6 632 1390-1, Fax: 972 6 632 1392 E-mail: elizo@trendline.co.il

Yozmot Ha'Emek Ofek La'Oleh Technological Incubator PO Box 73, Migdal Ha'Emek 23100 Israel Tel: 972-4-6544800 Fax: 972-4-6543082 E-mail: Avraham (Avri) Maoz, Managing Director

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Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Investment Incentives

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Investment Incentives. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) On this page: Government Incentives - Overview Approved Enterprises Other Government Incentives Research and Development Incubators Free Trade Agreements International R&D Funds Free Trade and Free Processing Zones Further Information



1. Government Incentives - Overview

The Israeli government provides various incentives to encourage economic development, and overseas investors may benefit from these. Indeed, incentives are enhanced for projects in which there is foreign involvement. There are generally no restrictions on the extent of foreign ownership in an enterprise, except in the security sector.

Incentives take the form of cash grants, loan guarantees, and tax benefits. Research and development attracts special assistance. There is also an technology incubator scheme which nurtures new ideas, providing practical as well as financial aid to entrepreneurs.

2. Approved Enterprises

The main incentives are set out in the Law for the Encouragement of Capital Investments, 1959. Assistance provided under this law is administered by the Investment Center, which is part of the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

The Investment Center Ministry of Industry and Trade 30, Agron St. Jerusalem. Tel: 972-2-6220373/4/5 Fax: 972-2-6250442

Most assistance relates to projects awarded "approved enterprise" status by the Ministry of Industry and Trade. In general, projects that will help to develop the economy, generate employment, or improve the balance of payments, qualify for such status. An additional criterion is that projects must have paid-up capital amounting to 30% of the total investment required.

An approved enterprise may be owned by a foreign company.

Types of assistance available

Note:

Enterprises must select an assistance track at the outset. It is not possible to change from one type of assistance to another.

In some circumstances, assistance may be available to expand an existing enterprise as well as start a new one.

Cash grant

Grants are available for investment in tangible fixed assets. The rate of grant varies according to the enterprise's location. Outlying areas attract higher rates; the central area no grant at all. The current (1998) range is 10-20% for those areas that qualify for grants.

Loan guarantee

The State guarantees loans from Israeli banks at regulated interest rates covering up to two-thirds of project outlays.

Tax holiday

A total exemption from company tax on undistributed profits for between four and ten years, depending on location.

Composite assistance - grant and loan guarantee

Enterprises may elect to receive a reduced rate of grant topped up by State guaranteed loans. The total amount of grant plus loan may be up to two-thirds of the outlays on fixed assets and working capital.

Composite assistance - tax holiday and loan guarantee

A company that elects to take a tax holiday may also obtain a State guaranteed loan, but the period of tax exemption is then reduced.

Tax Benefits

Approved enterprises that do not choose a tax holiday nevertheless enjoy a reduced rate of company tax for a period of seven years. Approved enterprises may also claim accelerated depreciation rates on fixed assets and buildings for the first five years of their use.

Foreign Investors' Companies (at least 25% foreign owned) benefit from reduced company tax rates for a period of ten years. Moreover, the higher the level of foreign ownership, the greater the reduction in the rate.

Companies that do choose a tax holiday receive the general tax benefit between the end of the holiday and the end of the applicable tax benefit period if the tax holiday expires first.

3. Other Israel Government Incentives

"Industrial Enterprises"

A project that does not qualify for approved enterprise status may nevertheless come within the definition of an "industrial enterprise" for the purposes of the Law for the Encouragement of Industry (Taxes) 1969, in which case it can claim special depreciation and amortisation rates on tangible and intangible fixed assets.

Small Business Loan Fund

The fund provides loans and guarantees for the establishment or expansion of enterprises employing up to 75 people. Projects receiving other forms of government support are not eligible for assistance from the fund.

Exporters

Exporters can obtain a range of benefits, including relief on import duties on materials incorporated into exported products, accelerated VAT refunds, support for offering credit to overseas customers, and insurance covering various kinds of overseas trading risk.

Special Incentive for Overseas Investors - "Capital Intensive Companies"

This incentive applies only to companies in which share ownership is restricted to non-residents.

Under the Law for the Encouragement of Investments (Capital Intensive Companies) 1990, companies awarded capital intensive company status by the Minister of Finance benefit from a 25% corporate tax rate on retained profit, and their shareholders are exempt from capital gains tax upon sale of their shares. These benefits apply for 30 years.

A company may benefit from capital intensive company and approved enterprise status at the same time.

Besides being foreign owned, to receive capital intensive company status a company must have paid-up capital of at least $30 million, 75% of which must be invested in qualifying activities. Qualifying activities include, inter alia, the establishment or expansion of an enterprise dealing in communications infrastructure or computers, or engaging in R&D in these fields.

4. Research and Development

Grant Aid

The Office of the Chief Scientist at the Ministry of Industry and Trade administers various forms of grant aid to encourage innovation all the way from pre-industrial academic research to beta-site testing of new products. Rates of grant range from 20% to 66%. The definition of approved expenditure attracting grant aid is reasonably wide.

If an R&D program results in a commercial product, the grant becomes repayable by way of a royalty payment. Other conditions include a stipulation that products resulting from government supported R&D be manufactured in Israel, and restrictions on the transfer of know-how to third parties.

R&D Tax Benefits

Accelerated amortisation rates apply to R&D expenditure.

5. Incubators

Incubators provide a supportive framework for entrepreneurs with ideas but without the necessary resources or business experience to develop them. The assistance goes beyond grants, and includes practical help - administrative back-up, business planning, finding sources of finance, and so on. In essence, the incubator scheme give enterprises two years in which to develop a marketable product and become self-sustaining.

An incubator may have backing from an established company or an investor, or it may be independent. Incubator projects attract especially high levels of grant aid from the Office of the Chief Scientist for two years. After that, they may obtain aid under the regular R&D grant system mentioned above.

The assistance available includes a market feasibility study carried out by the Office of the Chief Scientist, or a grant towards a privately conducted study. Projects in incubators with industrial or investor may obtain a grant of 66% of R&D costs. For projects in independent incubators, the grant available is 100% of labour costs and 75% of other approved costs. There is a grant ceiling in each case. Independent incubators themselves receive up to 100% grants towards establishment and operating costs.

In most cases, the same payback rules apply to incubator projects as apply to R&D assistance in general.

See also Technology Incubators

International Aspects

6. Free Trade Agreements

Israel enjoys the unique advantage of having free trade agreements with the US, the European Union, and EFTA. Apart from the direct benefits this confers, it also means that Israel can act as an efficient bridging country between these markets. For example, components may be imported into Israel from the US tariff-free, and incorporated into products sold, again tariff free, to EU countries.

Israel has General System of Preferences status for developing countries in Australia, Canada, and Japan, giving Israeli exports to those countries customs duty reductions. Israel also enjoys most-favoured-nation status in the Chinese market.

7. R&D Funds

R&D Funds are discussed here in terms of the State financing available through them. For a more complete guide to agencies promoting international R&D cooperation, see Research and Development.

Israel has agreements with several countries for joint R&D financing.

The Israel-United States Binational Industrial Research and Development Foundation (known as BIRD F) promotes partnerships between Israeli and US companies. This typically means a US company utilising or distributing an Israeli company's innovative technology. BIRD F is administered by the Chief Scientist in conjunction with the US Standards Institute. It will contribute up to 50% of the cost of R&D projects over one to three years. The grant becomes repayable if the project succeeds. Projects cannot obtain BIRD F funding and Office of the Chief Scientists support at the same time.

The Canada-Israel Industrial Research & Development Foundation (CIIRDF) operates on similar lines. Israel also operates bilateral funds with Germany (GICT) and Singapore (SIIRD).

In addition, Israel has signed memoranda of understanding on R&D co-operation with several countries. The Office of the Chief Scientist site provides a complete list.

R&D Co-operation with European Union

Israel is a member of the European Union's Fifth Framework Programme of scientific research and technical development. Israel also has a Public Procurement Agreement with the EU, which provides, among other things, that the EU will not apply preferences to EU companies against Israeli companies in telecommunications tenders, and that the Israeli government act similarly vis-a-vis EU companies.

For further information, see the Delegation of the European Commission to the State of Israel and CORDIS sites.

8. Free Trade and Free Processing Zones

The city of Eilat, on the Red Sea at the point where Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt meet, is a free port and free trade area. Enterprises in Eilat enjoy company tax concessions, and most goods imported into Eilat, and transactions within the Eilat free trade area, are exempt from import taxes and VAT. Most goods purchased from elsewhere in Israel are zero-rated for VAT.

Recent legislation provides for the setting up of Free Processing Zones. Enterprises in these zones will enjoy certain tax benefits, and most transactions within the zones will be zero-rated for VAT.

9. Further information

The Ministry of Finance site (International Division) gives up-to-date information on the investment incentives available.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.
Start-up Reviews - Computing, Internet. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Click company name to obtain Arena's write-up. Links automatically open a new browser window. You may need to scroll down the new window to find the article on the company you are looking for.



Computing, Internet

AbirNet SessionWall-3, network security and employee monitoring (April '98) EXIT: Acquired by Memco Software in 1998.

Acceloop Internet traffic control software (October 2001)

Actimize Software for server load-balancing (July 2001)

Adyoron Intelligence Systems Video compression and streaming technology on Texas Instruments DSP chips (January 2001)

Aliroo User-friendly encryption systems (November '98)

Appilog Monitoring and control software for electronic systems (June 2001)

AudioCodes Voice compression chips and boards for Internet Protocol telephony (February '99) EXIT: Nasdaq and TASE IPOs in 1999.

Balisoft Technologies Software products to support Internet trading and customer services (June '98) EXIT: Balisoft merged with ServiceSoft Corporation to form Servicesoft Technologies Inc., which was I acquired by Broadbase Software now Kana (Nasdaq:KANA) in December 2000.

Bridges for Islands Enterprise integration software (December '99) EXIT: Accquired by Attunity (Nasdaq:ATTU) in February 2000.

BroadLight Technology for 3G passive optical access communications networks (June 2001)

BuildCom Electronic Commerce International electronic market place for the A/E/C industry (May 2000)

Bug-Life Animation technology for various platforms (April 2001)

Business Layers Enterprise digital resources & services management (October '99) EXIT: Acquired by Netegrity (NETE) DEcember 2003.

cSafe Technology preventing pictures from being copied from the Internet. (Demo99 March '99) EXIT: Renamed Alchemedia Technologies, and acquired by Finjan Technologies in January 2003.

Informative Inc. (formerly Cahoots) Live web-wide communications network (May 2000)

CommerceMind Infrastructures for directory services and e-commerce (March 2002)

Congruency Server system to centralize Internet-based communications applications for small businesses (January '99) EXIT: Telrad Tenecs to merge with Congruency (March 2002)

Cobrador Enterprise security system based on both software and hardware (February 2002)

Corigin Still in the mainframe (February 2003)

Correlate Technologies (US start-up) Project management software (May '99)

Cyber-Ark Comprehensive information security solution (June 2001)

Cydoor Desktop Media Server-Client system for displaying ads on Internet (January '99)

Cyota Secure online purchases system (November 2001)

Digital Fuel Technologies Enterprise sourcing relationship management software solutions.

Doc Witness Anti-piracy device for CDs. (June 2002)

DVDemand Technologies Engine for assembling a multimedia DVD online (October 2000)

Enbaya 3D compression and streaming technology (June 2001)

eplication Content delivery system (May 2001)

Extent Technologies Applications-on-demand technology (June 2001)

GlobaLoop Internet access solution for high concentration of users (May '99)

Firebit.net Next generation Internet network service platforms (October 2000)

Hello Tech Technologies Voice operated m-commerce systems (March 2002)

Hotbar.com Internet infrastructure utility (December '99)

ibetcha.com Internet betting site (April 2000) EXIT: Acquired by Uproar in August 2000.

idcide.com Browser add-on that displays the attempts of visited sites to track the user and blocks such attempts. (May 2000)

Idium Systems e-commerce security software (January 2002)

i-Labs Internet traffic analysis and forecasting (May '98)

InfoCyclone High-speed information retrieval (April 2001)

ClearForest (formerly Instinct Software) Advanced text information retrieval (March 1999)

Intellipen Electronic pen (February 2002)

AlwaysOn.com (formerly LightPC.com) Application service provider (May 2000)

Mango DSP Multiprocessor DSP development environment software and hardware solutions. (April '99)

MaxBill Telecom billing systems (January 2001)

Mercado Software E-commerce catalog integration (July 2000)

Midbar Tech Copyright protection solutions (January 2001) EXIT: Acquired by Macrovision (Nasdaq:MVSN) in November 2002.

Monosphere Software for managing storage networks (June 2001)

Identity Software (formerly MuTek Solutions) (August software black-box tool (June 1999)

Oblicore A service level management solution for ASPs (April 2001)

P-Cube IP service management and provisioning platform (April 2001) Exit: Acquired by Cisco Systems for $200 million in August 2004

ProActivity E-processing solutions for enterprise systems (August 2000)

Quiver Human powered web directory (March 2000) EXIT: Acquired by Inktomi in July 2002 for $12 million. Yahoo! acquired Inktomi in March 2003.

RichFX Compression of high-quality video for quicker downloading (July 2000)

Riverhead Networks Denial of attack (November 2002) EXIT: Acquired by Cisco Systems for $40 million in March 2003.

Sanctum (Formerly Perfecto) Application-level security software for e-business companies (September '99) Acquired by Watchfire in July 2004

Sanrad IP-based Storage Area Network (SAN) solutions (February2002)

Security-7 Security software systems (August '98) EXIT: Acquired by Computer Associates (NYSE:CA) in June 1999.

SoftWatch Internet customer relationship management (June '99)

Shopping.com (formely DealTime) E-commerce price comparison website (March 1999).

TopTier Software Making relational databases & Internet compatible (September '98) EXIT: Acquired by SAP (NYSE; LSE: SAP; XETRA:SAPG) in 2001.

Trivnet Digital payment system (June 2000)

Unicorn Connectivity software (June 2001)

VisionTech MPEG-2 method video compression encoder (March '98) EXIT: Broadcom buys VisionTech for $800 mln in shares (November 2000)

Whale Communications Internal network security via physical Internet disconnection (May 2001)

XACCT Technologies Infrastructure product for network service providers (January 2000) EXIT:Acquired by Amdocs in 2003.

Xpert IP infrastructure solutions and consultancy and implementation services (April 2001)

Zend Technologies PHP development tools (February 2002)

Zoomix Data conversion technology for information systems (November 2001)

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Venture Capital Firms G-J

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Venture Capital Firms G-J. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Galram POB 14, Haifa 31000 Tel: 972-4-877-1117 Fax: 972-4-879-4415 E-mail: info@galram.co.il

Affiliated with Rafael Development Corporation.

Gemini Israel Funds 11 Galgalei Haplada St., POB 12548, Herzliya 46733 Tel: 972-9-958-3596 Fax: 972-9-958-4842 E-mail: hazel@gemini.co.il

Gemini Israel Fund; Gemini Israel II Gemini focuses on early stage Israeli companies in enterprise software, Internet and e-commerce, communications, semiconductor and industrial equipment, and medical technology.

Genesis Partners P.O.B. 23722 Tel-Aviv 61231 Tel: 972-3-526-2644 Fax: 972-3-526-2696 E-mail: office@genesispartners.co.il Funds: Genesis I & II. Investment focus: Communications and wireless, Internet infrastructure, enterprise software, Internet software and other industries.



Gilbridge Holdings 4 Maskit St., PO Box 12853 Herzliya 46733 Tel.: 972-9-956-7040 Fax: 972-9-956-7010 E-mail: Michelle Mayan Investment focus: Seed stage therapeutics, medical devices and telecom companies.

Giza Venture Capital Ramat Aviv Tower - 12th floor, 40 Einstein St., POB 17672, Tel Aviv 61172 Tel: 972-3-640-2323 Fax: 972-3-640-2300 Email: esoref@giza.co.il Giza GE Venture Fund III. The ABS GE Capital Giza Fund (BT Alex. Brown and GE Capital Corporation) and First Israel Fund are fully invested. Investment focus: Early stage communications, Internet-enabling, software and healthcare.

GlenRock Israel 85 Medinat Hayehudim St., Herzliya Business Park,Tower G, 8th Floor Tel: 972-9-9701800 Fax: 972-9-9701866 E-mail: info A private equity investment company affiliated with the GlenRock Group making investments in life sciences and high-tech companies, and makes buyouts. It has also invested in the Maayan Technology Ventures incubator.

Global Catalyst Partners A US incorporated fund. Israel office: 1 Eliahu House, 2 Ibn Gvirol St., Tel Aviv 64077 Tel: 972-3-696-8224 Fax: 972-3-695-6847 E-mail: Eliezer Manor, or Janice Rebibo Investment focus: Seed and start-up investments in IT, telecommunicatIons and Internet companies. Investment focus: Israeli biotechnology, medical devices and healthcare services companies expanding into the US.

Hadar Weitzman Management Group 68 Ahuza St., Eliav Center, Ra'anana 43212 Tel.: 972-9-745-1010 Fax: 972-9-745-2030 E-mail: info@hadarweitzman.com Investment focus: Israeli and Israeli related telecommunications, data communications and semiconductor companies.

HB Investments 32 Magal St., Savyon Tel.: 972-3-645-9609 Fax: 972-3-534-2698 E-mail: Zohar Heiblum Investment focus: All high-tech telecom, industrial technology, semiconductor, medical technology biotechnology sectors.

HK Catalyst Portview Communications Partners 10 Hayetsira St. POB 2197 Ra'anana 43650 Tel: 972 9 741 3140 Fax: 972 9 741 3240 E-mail: Robin Hacke or Julie Kunstler Investment focus: Early stage Internet infrastructure and communications software, wireless, broadband companies. Honeycomb Ventures c/o AsiaGate, 12 Yehuda Hamaccabi St., PO Box 4029 Herzliya 46140 Tel.: 972-9-956-6885 Fax: 972-9-955-1345E-mail: ching@netvision.net.il or avilir@netvision.net.il Investment focus: M&A strategic partnerships in IT, telecom, Internet and service companies.

Hyperion Israel Advisors 11 Ha'amal St., Afek Park, Rosh Ha'ayin 48092 Tel.: 972-3-903-9988 Fax: 972-3-903-6688 E-mail: yes@hyperionisrael.com Investment focus: Seed and later stage investments in Israeli wireless communications, telecommunications and Internet companies.

InnoMed Ventures Globus Communication Center, Suite 220, Neve Ilan 90850 Tel: 972-2-5332808 Fax: 972-2-5702352 E-mail: Dr. Dalia Megiddo Investment focus: Seed through mezzanine investments in life sciences companies in cardiology, diabetes, neurological disorders, orthopedics, women's care, geriatrics and other medical sectors.

Incutech 12 Zvi St., Ramat Gan 52504 Tel.: 972-3-752-5216 Fax: 972-3-752-5120 E-mail: Nehemiah Kaben Investment focus: Incubation and early stage financing for Israeli biotechnology, medical devices, agrotechnology, healthcare and applied materials companies.

Infineon Ventures Germany: St.-Martin-Str. 53, 81541, Munich Tel: +49 89-234-26359 Fax: +49 89-234-27483 E-mail: ventures@infineon.com USA: 1730 North First St., San Jose, CA 95112 Pre-IPO investments in pace-setting technologies or establish new applications in areas where microelectronics is or will be a key enabling technology. Innomed E-mail: info@innomed.co.il Innomed is managed by Jerusalem Global Ventures, focusing on medical device companies.

Intel Capital In Israel: Har Hotzvim Park, PO Box 3173, Jerusalem Tel.: 972-2-589-7111 or 972-3-607-4701 Fax: 972-2-589-7712 E-mail: Shlomo Caine or Uri Arazy Investment focus: Internet economy companies.

Israel Cleantech Ventures E-mail: info

Israel Healtchare Ventures (IHVC) 32 Habarzel St., Ramat Hahayal, Tel Aviv 69710 Tel.: 972-3-648-8566 Fax: 972-3-648-8474 E-mail: ihvc@ihvc.co.il Investment focus: Medical devices, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and medical-related IT.

Israel Infinity Fund 3 Azrieli Center, Triangle Tower, 42nd fl., Tel Aviv 67023 Tel: 972-3-607-5456 Fax: 972-3-607-5455 E-mail: info@israel-infinity.com or anatk@clal.co.il Israel Infinity Fund is in association with Clal, and Banque Nationale du Paris (BNP). It focuses on early-stage IT, medical and other high-technology products companies.

Integrated Technologies of Israel Ltd Aviv Towers Tower A, 46 Petach Tikva Rd., Tel Aviv 66184 Tel: 972 3 639 7850 Fax: 972 3 639 7851

Jointly owned by Israel Aircraft Industries and a group of Israeli and US entrepreneurs, bankers and industrialists.

Inventech Investment Company Shalom Mayer Tower, 9 Ahad Haam Street, Tel Aviv Tel: 972 3 517 5273 Fax: 972 3 517 5275 E-mail: office@inventech.co.il A private venture capital company investing in high-tech start ups.

Israel R&D Corporation 4 Weizmann St., Tel Aviv 61336 Tel: 972 3 697 2857 Fax: 972 3 695 3177

Israel Seed Partners 64 Emek Refaim St., Jerusalem Tel: 972 2 561 2090 Fax: 972 2 561 1955 E-mail: info@israelseed.com Investment focus: Seed stage Internet, e-commerce, enterprise software, communications, semiconductor and electronics and life sciences start-ups. Isratech; Reico Ventures is Isratech's Israeli branch. 11 Cross Keys Close, London W1M 5FY, England Tel: 44 171 935 2070 Fax: 44 171 935 2680 40 Einstein St. Ramat Aviv 69101 Tel: 972-3-643-9986 Fax: 972-3-643 E-mail: reico@netvision.net.il Funds: Astra, First Isratech, Millennium I & II Life sciences, biotechnology, medical devices, Internet and software.

JAFCO Investments (Asia Pacific) JAFCO Investments (Asia Pacific) is part of JAFCO Co. Ltd. of Japan, which is a member of Nomura Securities Ltd. 6 Battery Rd. #42-01, Singapore 049909 Tel: 65-224-6383 Fax: 65-221-3690 E-mail: byron@njiasia.com.sg Byron Askin Investment focus: Assist Israeli companies to penetrate Asian markets and/or find Asian strategic partners.

Janney Montgomery Scott 1801 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103 Tel. 215-665-6180 Fax 215-665-6197 Investment focus: Internet, IT and business services, telecommunications and broadband, medical technology, life sciences and biotechnology, and other manufacturing, retail and financial, consumer services and utilities fields.

JC Technologies JC Technologies is affiliated with Patir high-tech incubator. 21 Havaad Haleumi St., PO Box 16120 Jerusalem 91160 Tel.: 972-2-675-1123 Fax: 972-2-675-1195 E-mail: Jay Kalish Investment focus: Incubation, seed and early stage financing for Israeli start-ups.

Jerusalem Capital Partners E-mail: Managing partner Jacob Ner-David Tel. 972-54-480-7334 E-mail: Principle Michael Brous Tel. 972-54-797-1071 Investment focus: Jerusalem-based technology-driven companies.

Jerusalem Global Ventures Jerusalem Technology Park, Building 98, P.O. Box 82, Malcha, Jerusalem 96951 Tel: 972-2-649-0750 Fax: 972-2-649-0740 Email: skalish@jgv.com Jerusalem Global Ventures is a venture capital fund that invests in early stage Israeli related companies developing technology solutions for the consumer, enterprise, service provider, and government markets. Jerusalem Venture Partners Jerusalem Tech Park, Bldg. 1, Malha, Jerusalem 91487 Tel: 972 2 679 7270 Fax: 972 2 679 7273 E-mail: erel@jvp.co.il Jerusalem Pacific Ventures; Jerusalem Venture Partners LP JVP invests in early-stage companies in five core areas: Optical communications, data communications, wireless communications, e-commerce infrastructure and service infrastructure.

Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation Corporate venture arm of Johnson & Johnson Israel address: Kibbutz Shefayim 60990 Tel.: 972-9-959-1176 Fax: 972-9-951-9797 E-mail: Zeev Zehavi Investment focus: Biotechnology, medical devices, drug discovery and pharmaceuticals companies.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Venture Capital Firms A-C

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Venture Capital Firms A-C. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Accel Partners 428 University Avenue, Palo Alto, CA 94301 Tel: (650) 614-4800 Fax: (650) 614-4880 Investment focus: communications; Internet/Intranet

Accelerate Technology & Business 33 Jabotinsky St. Ramat Gan 52511 Tel.: 972-3-575-1575 Fax: 972-3-2770 E-mail: info@accelerate-tech.com A start-up accelerator focusing on supporting early stage high-tech companies in the semiconductor, new materials, electronics and opto-electronics and IC equipment fields. ADC Ventures The investment arm of ADC Telecommunications P.O. Box 1101, Minneapolis, MN 55440-1101 Tel: (612) 946-3333 Fax: (612) 946-3292 Contact: Robert Switz, ADC Sr. Vice President, CFO and Head, Business Development Investment focus: Next generation broadband technologies.



AG-Tech Fund Managed by Nessuah Zannex 3 Abba Hillel St., Ramat Gan 52522 Tel: 972-3-753-2020 Fax: 972-3-753-2022 E-mail: mail@agtechfund.com Investment focus: Biotechnology, e-health, healthcare and medical devices.

Agilent Ventures The venture capital arm of US-based Agilent Technologies. Israel office: Agilent Technologies Israel, Azorim Business Park, 94 Em Hamoshavot Rd., Petah Tikva 49527 Tel.: 972-3-928-8555 fax: 972-3-928-8501 Contact: E-mail: Noam Zahav Investment focus: Telecommunications, biotechnology, informationa technology, test equipment, and semiconductors

AIG-Orion Venture Capital Advisors 3 Hayetzira St., Ramat Gan Tel: 972-3-753-8890 Fax: 972-3-753-8895 E-mail: gary@orion.co.il AIG Orion invests in Internet software and information technology.

Alice Ventures Tel Aviv office: Ziv Towers, Building D, 24 Raoul Wallenberg St., Tel Aviv 69719 Tel.: 972-3-766-6547 Fax: 972-3-766-6559 E-mail: Hillel Milo A multinational venture capital fund based in Milan and Tel Aviv. Investment focus: Early stage communications, software and life science companies. Alon Technology Ventures Jointly managed by Gaon Asset management owned by B. Gaon Holdings and the Jupiter Group of the UK and CAIB Bank of Austria. Gibor Bldg. 14th fl., 6 Kaufman St. Tel Aviv 68012 Tel: 972-3-795-4121 Fax: 795-4122 E-mail: dangalit@gaon.com or E-mail: sylvie@gaon.com Investment focus: High-tech

See: Arena Feature -Alon Technology Ventures: The European investor is more trustworthy

Amanet Technologies Business, Real Estate Development and Entrepreneurship Division 34 Habarzel St., Tel Aviv 69710 Tel: 972-3-765-9555/02 Fax: 972-3-644-0125 E-mail: amanet@amanet.co.il Incubation, seed and start-up investment in IT, telecommunications, Internet and software companies. Ampal-American Israel Corporation (Bank Hapoalim group) 111 Arlozorov St. Tel Aviv 62098 Tel.: 972-3-608-0100 Fax: 972-3-608-101

Anschutz Investment Company US: 555 17th St., Suite 2400, Denver, CO 80202 Tel: (303)298-1000 Fax: (303) 299-8881 Europe: Polarisavenue 53, PO Box 2030, 2130 GE Hoofdorp, The Netherlands Tel: +31 (0)23 568 59 70 Fax: +31 (0)23 568 59 74 Investment focus: High-tech, telecommunications, Internet and software services companies.

Apax Partners(Israel) 2 Maskit St. P.O. Box 2034 Herzilya 46120 Tel: 972-9-958-6330 Fax: 972-9-958-8366E-mail: info@apax.co.il Funds: Apax Israel II; Israel Growth Fund Invests in privately-held Israel affiliated companies in Internet and information technology, telecommunications, services, healthcare and life sciences and management buyouts.

Apropos IT Ventures Jerusalem Technology Park, Malcha, Building 1, Entrance B, 1st Floor P.O. Box 48180, Jerusalem 91481 Tel: 972-2-648-2350 fax: 972-2-679-9931 US eFax: (775)-993-3039 E-mail: Business plans Investment focus: Internet and information technology companies with Israel Talent.

Arba Finance Company America House, 3rd fl., 35 Shaul Hamelech Blvd., P.O. Box 33406 Tel Aviv 61333 Tel.: 972-3-696-4420 Fax: 972-3-695-0029 E-mail: arbafin@arbafin.com Investment focus: Incubation, seed stage, start-up, mezzanine and bridging financing for telecommunications, Internet, software, robotics, medical technology and other high-tech companies.

Aria Ventures 85 Medinat Hayehudim St., P.O.Box 12245, Herzliya 46733 Tel: 972-9-956-7484 Fax: 972-9-951-4152 E-mail: amit@ariaventures.com Investment focus: Seed stage companies in the IT, enterprise hardware and software, communications infrastructure and applications, Internet &intranet, telecommunications technologies, software products and applications.

Ascend Technology Ventures 14a Ahimeir Street, Ramat Gan 52587 Tel: 972 3 751 3707 Fax: 972 3 751 3706 E-mail: info@ascendvc.com

Ascend invests in communications, internet and internet infrastructure, software, semiconductors and medical devices.

Asiagate Herzliya Business Park P.O.Box 4029, Herzliya 46140 Tel: 972-9-970-1886 Fax: 972-9-970-1887 E-mail: info@asiagate.co.il A spin-off of Jerusalem Global Ltd. for Asian and Japanese entities wishing to establish connects with Israeli high-tech companies and for Israeli companies seeking to enter Far Eastern markets.

Astra Technological Investvestments Atidim Tower, Kiryat Atidim P.O.B 58177, Tel Aviv 61580 Tel.: 972-3-649-1990 fax: 972-3-649-1992 Contact: E-mail: CEO Gil Klopman Investment focus: Acquiring minority interests in Israeli or US high-tech start-ups with a strong biotechnology or biomedical focus.

Atara Technology Ventures Atara is the venture capital investment arm of Israel Phoenix Assurance Company. 30 Levontin St., Tel Aviv 65116 Tel.: 972-3-7141-793 Fax: +972-3-7141-165 E-mail: David Furst Investment focus: Early stage, seed and start-up financing for Internet, IT, telecommunications and software companies.

Aviv Venture Capital Aviv Building, 49th floor 7 Jabotinsky St., Ramat Gan 52520 Telephone: 972-3-6114050 fax: 972-3-6114051 E-mail: info Investment focus: Early and mid-stage Israeli related companies.

AxcessNet AxcessNet is the Israeli affiliate of Broadview. P.O. Box 3587, Ramat Hasharon 45930 Tel: 972-9-743-4710 Fax: 972-9-742-3889 E-mail: eyal@axcess-net.com E-mail: michal@axcess-net.com A facilitator of the Israeli IT and the global industry and the exclusive representative of Broadview for transactions with Israeli companies.

Azritech Ventures A subsidiary of the Azrieli Group. Azrieli Center 1, Tel Aviv, 67021 Tel: 972-3-608-1300 Fax: 972-3-608-1380 E-mail: Zeev Zeevi Investment focus: Seed through third-stage start-ups in telecommunications, IT and medical equipment companies.

BCS Investment Company 3 Daniel Frisch St., Tel Aviv 64731 Tel.: 972-3-696-3221 Fax: 972-3-696-8828 E-mail: Yariv Caspi Investment focus: high-tech, media and communications companies from seed capital to mezzanine stage.

Benchmark Capital 9 Hamanofim St. Herzliya Pituach 46725 Tel.: 972-9-9617600 Fax: 972-9-9617601 E-mail: israelinfo@benchmark.com Focus: Early-stage high-technology

Biomedical Investments Golda House, 23 Shaul Hamelech St., Tel Aviv 64367 Tel: 972 3 696 6557 Fax: 972 609 5322 E-mail: biomedical@biomed.co.il

Investment areas: Medical equipment, biotechnology

See: Arena Feature - Pay n Tell

Biocom VC 40 Einstein St., Ramat Aviv Tower, Tel Aviv Tel.: 972-3-643.8890; fax: 972-3-643-6662 E-mail: David Schlachet Investment focus: Biotechnology, enabling platform technologies, biopharmaceutical and medical device companies.

Boticelli Venture Funds 28 Bezalel St. Gibor Sport Building (15th floor), Ramat Gan 52521 Tel.: 972-3-575-3222 Fax 972-3-575-3666 E-mail: Judith Investment focus: Advertising, interactive and media enabling technologies.

BRM Capital Israel Office: Akerstein Towers, 11 Hamenofim St., Herzliya Pituach 46725 Tel.: 972-9-954-9555 Fax: 972-9-954-9557 Email: info@brm.com

Britech Israel office: Gibor Sport Tower, 28 Betzalel St., Ramat Gan 52521 Tel.: 972-3-754-9581 Fax: 972-3-754-9582 E-mail: britech@actcom.co.il The Britain-Israel Technology Foundation fosters collaborative R&D links between British and Israeli companies.

Canada-Israel Opportunity Funds 1090 Don Mills Rd., Toronto, Ontario M3C 3R6 Tel: (416) 444-6660 E-mail: info@ciofund.com The Funds participate in direct investments with entities in the Shrem Fudim Kelner Group and the Polaris II Fund. Investment focus: Israeli high-tech companies.

Carmel Ventures Delta House, 16 Hagalim Avenue, Herzeliya 46725 Tel: 972-9-959-4894 Fax: 972-9-959-4898 E-mail: contact@carmelventures.com Investment focus: post-seed, companies developing software platforms and applications for the digital economy.

Catalyst Fund 3 Daniel Frish St., Tel Aviv 64731 Tel: 972-3-695-0666 Fax: 972-3-695-0222 E-mail: info@catalyst-fund.com Investment focus: Late-stage Israeli companies in the IT, software, telecommunications, semiconductor, biotechnology and medical devices sectors.

Cedar Fund 9 Keren Hayesod St., POB 505, Herzliya 46105 Tel: 972 9 957 7227 Fax: 972 9 957 7228 E-mail: info@cedar.co.il The Challenge Fund Etgar 1 Hashikma St., P.O. Box 55 Savyon 56530 Tel: 972-3-562-8555 Fax: 972-3-562-1999 E-mail: etgar@challenge.co.il Two funds for early-stage high-tech and non-high-tech companies.

Clal Industrial Investments 3 Azrieli Center, Triangle Tower 45th fl. Tel Aviv 67023 Tel.: 972-3-6075777 Fax: 972-3-607-5778 E-mail: cii@cii.co.il Funds: Venture Capital Fund focuses on IT, telecommunications, software and life sciences (biotechnology and medical devices); Israel Infinity Fund focuses on early-stage high-tech telecommunications, IT and healthcare; Millennium Materials Technologies Fund specializes in the development and commercialization of novel advanced materials and industrial processes; Clalit Venture Capital Fund focuses on diversified mezzanine investment opportunities in Israel and Israeli related technology companies; the Harvest Fund (with Evergreen) is a secondary venture capital fund; IJT Technologies (with Evergreen) focuses on high-tech; Peace Technology Fund, jointly managed with Virginia-based International Capital Advisors, to invest in the Palestinian economy and encourage Israeli-Palestinian cooperation; Israelseed III; Periscope I (with Evergreen) focuses on high-tech.

Clal Biotechnology Industries 3 Azrieli Center, Triangle Tower 45th fl. Tel Aviv 67023 Tel.: 972-3-6075733 Fax: 972-3-607-5734 E-mail: Ophir Shahaf or David Haselkorn Tel: 972 3 765 0306 Fax: 972 3 765 0329

Clalit Capital & Investments 5 Druyanov St., Tel Aviv Tel: 972 3 526 3370 Fax: 972 3 528 0769 E-mail: Manpikim@netvision.co.il

Clalit Capital Fund

Comverse Investments Efrat-Comverse House, 23 Habarzel St., Ramat Hachayal, Tel Aviv 69710. Tel: 972 3 645 4910 Fax: 972 3 645 4916 E-mail: comin@icomverse.com

ComSor Investment Fund

Columbine Ventures Top Tower, 22nd fl., 50 Dizengoff St. Tel Aviv 64332 Tel.: 972-3-620-9010 Fax: 972-3620-9011 E-mail: Carine Wiener Investment focus: Early stage financing for Israel and Israel-related biotechnology, therapeutics, medical devices, bioinformatics and diagnostic technology companies.

Concord Ventures 85 Medinat Hayehudim St., P.O.Box 4011, Herzeliya 46140 Tel: 972-9-960-2020 Fax: 972-9-960-2022 E-mail: office@concordventures.com Investment focus: datacom and telecommunications, Software applications and Internet infrastructure, medical technologies and biotechnology.

Coral Ventures Main office: 60 South Sixth St., Suite 3510, Minneapolis, MN 55402 Tel: (612) 335-8666 Fax: (612) 335-8668 A private venture capital company focusing on technology (communications, Internet, software, information and systems) and healthcare (biotechnology, medical devices and diagnostics) industries.

Investment focus: Healthcare and high-tech.

Corex Industries Management Corex Building, Maskit St., Herzliya Pituah 46733 Tel: 972 9 957 2777 Fax: 972 9 957 2772 E-mail corex@corex.co.il Investment focus: Expansion, mezzanine and bridging investments in IT, telecommunicaitons, Internet, electronics and software companies.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Venture Capital Firms P-T

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Venture Capital Firms P-T. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Pamot Rehovot Advisors Weizmann Institute Campus, POB 2439, Rehovot 76123 Tel: 972 8 936 5431 Fax: 972 8 946 0484 E-mail: pamot@netvision.net.il

Pamot has a first right of refusal on investment in projects being developed at the Weizmann Institute of Science

Partech International Israel office: 39 Derech Haganim. PO Box 9129, Kfar Shmaryahu 46910 Tel: 972-9-951-4189 Fax: 972-9-951-5782 E-mail: Ami AMir Investment focus: Communications

Peregrine Ventures 6 Yoni Netanyahu St. Or Yehuda 60376 Tel: 972-3-6349990 Fax: 972-3-6349910 E-mail: contact@peregrinevc.com Investment focus: Part venture fund and part technology incubator for communications, e-commerce, software and medical equipment start-ups.



Persys Investment 7 Ha'marpe St., Har Hotzvim, P.O.Box 45036, Jerusalem 91450 Tel: 972-2-5322-779 Fax: 972-2-5322-673 E-mail: yaron@persystech.com Yaron Kimchi or, E-mail: mati@persystech.com Investment focus: Seed-stage investments in advanced technology start-ups in healthcare, testing technologies, wireless communications and IT companies. Pitango Venture Capital Formerly Polaris Venture Capital 11 HaMenofim St., Building B, Herzliya 46725 Tel: 972-9-971-8100 Fax: 972-9-971-8102 E-mail: polaris@polarisvc.com Pitango has offices in Menlo Park, California and London Investment focus: Communications, Internet infrastructure and related technologies, software, medical devices and biotechnology. Platinum Neurone Ventures Israel office: 21 Ha'arba'ah St., 15th Floor, Tel Aviv 64739 Tel.: 972-3-684-5700 Fax: 972-3-686-9535 E-mail: Asi Investment focus: First and second round investments in enterprise software, communications, IT and semiconductor companies.

Plenus Technologies Delta House, 16 Hagalim Ave., Herzeliya 46725 Tel.: 972 9-957-4944 Fax: 972-9-957-8770 E-mail: contact@plenus.co.il Bridge loans to late emerging high-tech companies. POC Technostart Azrieli Center #1, Tel Aviv 67021 Tel.: 972-3-608-1616 Fax: 972-3-608-1617 E-mail: infor@poc.co.il Investment focus: Post seed-stage investment in early-stage communications and Internet companies.

Polar Investments Formely Poalim Investments, and a member of the Shrem Fudim Kelner Group. 21 Ha'arba'ah St., Tel Aviv 64739 Tel: 972-3-6845666 Fax: 972-3-6850857 E-mail: pil@poalim-investments.co.il Investment focus: Software, robotics, biotechnology and agro-technology.

Potalium Ventures EDS Building, second floor, 7 Sapir St., Herzliya Pituach, 46852 Tel: 972-9-970-8158 Fax: 972-9-958-0897 E-mail: Portalium Investment focus: Portalium provides services for European and other venture capital and private equity funds seeking to invest in Israel, including locating, screening and compiling suitable high-tech investment opportunities.

Portview Communications Partners See HK Catalyst ProSeed Venture Capital Fund 10 Planut St. Sciecen Bldg. #1, Rehovot 76122 Tel.: 972-8-948-4966 Fax: 972-8-948-4967 E-mail: mail@proseedco.il

ProSeed Venture Capital calls itself "the angels' venture capital fund". Investment focus: Israeli and Israel-related seed and early stage medical devices and IT companies

ProSeed Capital Holdings CVA Israel office: A' Aviv Tower, 48 Petach-Tikva Rd., Tel Aviv 66184 Tel.: 972-3-537-1173 Fax: 972-3-548-8069 E-mail: Ori Shilo

ProSeed Capital Holdings focuses on early stage high-tech startups in Israel, Europe, the US, Canada and India.

Rafael Development Corporation (RDC) Ltd. Ramat Aviv Tower, 5th floor, 40 Einstein St. P.O. Box 15, Tel Aviv 61172 Tel: 972-3-643-9912 Fax: 972-3-643-9916 bldg 7, New Indusrial Park, P.O. Box 258, Yokne'am 20692 Tel: 972-4-959-9511 Fax: 972-4-959-0720 E-mail: rubenk@rdc.co.il Investment focus: Start-up, seed and incubator investment in software, telecommunications, data communication, semiconductors, healthcare and medical devices.

Samurai Web Ventures Israel office: 1 Korazin St., Givataim 53583 Tel: 972-3-571-0222 Fax: 972-3-571-0225 E-mail: info@samurai.co.il Investment focus: Initiate and manage start-up companies in the areas of Internet and Information Technology.

Sequoia Capital Seed Fund Israel contact: Tel: 972-9-957-9440 Fax: 972-9-957-9443 E-mail: Hagit Avneri Investment focus: Israeli and Israel-related companies in the communications and Internet sectors. Shalom Equity Fund Israel office: Shalom Tower, 9 Ahad Ha'am St., Tel Aviv 65251 Tel.: 972-3-510-8581 Fax: 972-3-516-3413 E-mail: info@shalom.com Investment focus: Early-stage high-tech and Internet companies.

Shamrock Holdings Israel & Europe office: 28 Grosvenor St., London W1K 4QR, UK Tel: 44 (20) 7917-9755 Fax: 44 (20) 7917-9654 E-mail: mgeiger@shamrock.com Michael Geiger Investment focus: Media, technology and communications.

Shirat Enterprises Ltd. Eliahu House, 2 Ibn Gvirol St., Tel Aviv 64077 Tel: 972 3 696 8224 Fax: 972 3 695 3847 E-mail: shirat@netvision.net.il

Shrem Fudim Kelner 21 Haarbah St. Tel Aviv 64739 Tel: 972-3-684-5555 Fax: 972-3-684-5554 E-mail: miri@sfk.co.il Funds: Canada Israel Opportunity Fund; CMS/DS Israel Fund; Dovrat, Shrem Skies '92 Fund; Dovrat, Shrem Founders Group; Dovrat Shrem Rainbow Fund; Horizon Fund. Investment focus: Venture Capital management, Finance, investments in High-Tech & Telecommunications, and long-term investments in traditional industries.

Siemens Venture Capital Siemens Venture Capital invests in Israel through Carmel Ventures, Millennium Materials Management Fund, Portview Communications Partners, Rama Partners and SVM Star Ventures Capital Management. Israeli operations director: Asriel Eisinger Tel: +49 89 636 41084 E-mail: asriel.eisinger@mch11.siemens.de Investment focus: Seed, early, and mezzanine stages in the fields of IT, telecommunications, medical engineering, automation and microelectronics.

StageOne Ventures Levinstein Tower, 29th fl., 23 Petach Tikva Rd. Tel Aviv 66182 Tel.: 972-3-710-0140 Fax: 972-3-710-0150 E-mail: contact@stageonevc.com StageOne is sponsored by Bezeq and Discount Capital Markets. Investment focus: Very early stage communications technology companies.

Star Ventures A Munich-based venture capital fund with a branch in Israel. 11 Galgaley Haplada St., P.O. Box 12600, Herzliya Pituah 46733 Tel: 972-9-951-2888 Fax: 972-9-951-2889 E-mail: mail@star-ventures.com Investment focus: Early-stage high-tech companies in the communications, Internet, software and medical devices fields.

Steps Investments in Technology Midgal Shalom, 26th fl., P.O. Box 29161, Tel Aviv 61291 E-mail: info@steps-ventures.com Investment focus: Early-stage telecommunications, software and semiconductor start-ups.

STI Ventures 85 Medinat Hayehudim St., Herzliya Pituach 46851 Tel: 972-9-971-0710 Fax: 972-9-971-0711 E-mail: info@stiventures.com Investment focus: Partnerships in wireless and communications technologies, Internet infrastructure, and enterprise software start-ups.

Syntek Capital Israel branch: E-mail: info.telaviv@syntekcapital.com Investment focus: European, Israeli and US start-ups in the IT, software, telecom and media fields.

Tamar Technology Ventures Israel office: 50 Ramat Yam St., Herzliya Pituach 46851 Tel: 972-9-954-3555 Fax: 972-9-954-3423 E-mail: info@tamar-vc.co.il Investment focus: start-up, early stage and mezzanine financing in IT, data communications, telecommunications, Internet &intranet, electronics, software, multimedia, semiconductors, medical devices, biotechnology and healthcare companies.

Tamir Fishman Ventures Alrov Tower,46 Rothschild Blvd., Tel Aviv 66883 Tel: 972-3-7148444 Fax: 972-3-5605010 E-mail: info@tfventures.com Funds: Eucalyptus Ventures (fully invested) and Tamir Fishman Ventures II Investment focus: Early-stage communications. Internet and software companies focusing on B2B services and infrastructure solutions.

TDA Capital Partners Formerly: Templeton Direct Advisors Israel office: 19 St., Ramot Zahala, Tel-Aviv 69358 Tel: 972-3-649-9817 Fax: 972-3-649-9827 E-mail: info@tdacapital.com Investment focus: Seed, early-stage and mezzanine financing in IT, telecommunications, Internet & intranet, semiconductor and medical device companies. Tecc-IS plc Levinstein Tower, 23 Petah Tikva Rd. Tel Aviv 66182 Tel.: 972-3-566-4464 fax: 972-3-566-4465 E-mail: Simon Larah Investment focus: Seed and early stage investments in Israeli telecom, Internet and software technology companies.

Technolplus Ventures Ziv Towers, 24 Raoul Wallenberg St., Tel-Aviv 69719 Tel: 972-3-766-6555 Fax: 972-3-766-6556 E-mail: info@technoplusvc.com A Tel Aviv Stock Exchange-listed company (TASE: TNPV), infrastructure and enabling technologies, data communications and enterprise software.

Technorov Holdings 46 Rothschild Blvd.. Alrov Tower Tel Aviv 66883 Tel: 972-3-714-7770 Fax: 972-3-714-7772 E-mail: technorov@interent-zahav.net

Al-Rov Technologies (1983) Ltd; Technorov Holdings (1993) Ltd

TeleSoft Partners Israel office: 14 Shenkar St., Herzliya Pituah 46733 Tel.: 972-9- 954-0828 Fax: 972-9- 958-9695 E-mail: Avi Mazor or Ron Hiram Investment focus: Early, development/expansion, bootstrapped/later stage next generation communications services, software, and Internet companies.

Teuza Management and Development 49 Hahistadrut Boulevard, POB 25266 Haifa 31250 Tel: 972 4 872 8788 Fax: 972 4 872 9393 E-mail: teuza@teuzafund.com A Fairchild Technology Venture Ltd Early-stage seed companies in the communications, advanced manufacturing equipment, semiconductors, software and biotechnology and healthcare sectors.

Trinet Investment in High Tech Ltd Tel: 972-3-751-3707 Fax: 972-3-751-3706. Investment focus: Early-stage, seed and start-up capital for IT, telecommunications, Internet & intranet, multimedia, software, semiconductors, biotechnology, medical devices and healthcare companies.

TopNotch Capital Vered Tower, 20th Floor, 53 Hashalom Rd., Givatayim 53454 Tel: 972-3-732-6616 Fax: 972-3-731-3340 E-mail: info Investment focus: An investment banking boutique specializing in early stage life science companies.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.
To sustain rate, push reforms, core sector. Check it out:
(Indian Express Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) With GDP growth of 8.9 per cent in the first quarter of 2006-07, the Indian economy continues to do well. While manufacturing and services kept their momentum of growth, the high growth in agriculture at 3.4 per cent helped attain the nearly 9 per cent growth. While the news is great, the first question that most people ask is whether the country will be able to sustain this rate of growth. The rapid upswing witnessed in recent years has been a combination of a higher trend and the high of a business cycle. In the last few years, the economy has seen an increase in the trend growth rate to about 6.25 per cent. This trend has had a cycle around it so that the growth rate moved in a band of around -2 and +2 percentage points. In other words, the rate has ranged from 4.5 to 8.5 per cent. The GDP growth rate of this quarter is an improvement on this. When the economy is at the high of a business cycle, it is natural to be concerned about a downturn. But while the cycle can turn down due to a number of factors - both domestic and international - there is reason to be optimistic about the higher trend growth path. This is a consequence not of the government setting a target and investing and producing more. It is, in fact, the result of the taking away the restrictions that the government had put on private enterprise for nearly 30 years, from the 60s to the early 90s. By slapping various restrictions, licences and controls, the government had constrained individual initiative and prevented higher growth. Now that it is trying to create a supportive environment with better infrastructure and facilities for private initiative, every individual who does better for himself does better for the country, too. Indeed, this is India's main strength in contrast to China's, where there is an attempt to develop private enterprise. This is not to say that the we can take high growth rate for granted. There will be a need to focus on two things. One is to remove the remaining restrictions on movement of goods and on factors of production - labour, capital and land - so that they can move freely across uses and be available for use in the most efficient and productive way. This will mean bringing changes in land use policies, exit policies, labour laws and the financial sector. The second is improving infrastructure. The first can be attained by the stroke of a pen, though it needs political consensus which may take a little time to come about. It is building infrastructure that will take time and resources. But as and when it gets done, and sooner or later it will, the world can bet on India for even faster growth than it has seen this quarter.



Copyright 2006 The Indian Express Online Media Ltd.. Source: Financial Times Information Limited.
Purdue-Indiana University Team Selected as National Cancer Institute Proteomics Center. Check it out:
(Ascribe Newswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind., Sept. 29 (AScribe Newswire) -- Purdue and Indiana universities' proteomics team has been selected as one of five national centers for cancer research.

The National Cancer Institute announced Wednesday (Sept. 27) its selection of the Purdue-IU Analytical Proteomics Team for inclusion in a new consortium to assess proteomic technology and its applications for diagnosis and treatment of cancer.



The NCI awarded a $7 million grant to the Purdue-IU team, which pairs Purdue's experts in mass spectrometry and proteomics technology with the expert clinical team of cancer researchers from Indiana University School of Medicine. Together they will focus on technology to diagnose breast and prostate cancer through blood samples.

This is the future of cancer detection in America, said Fred Regnier, Purdue's John H. Law Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and principal investigator for the team. Proteomics, the study of proteins, holds great promise for more precise diagnosis and tailored cancer therapies through the identification of proteins specific to cancer and other diseases, called 'biomarkers.'

However, more work needs to be done to establish protocols for these approaches and the technology used. The NCI program creates a consortium for this purpose and is a great advancement for the field. Remarkably, all five centers included breast cancer as an area of study, which will allow for incredible scientific collaboration and evaluation of data from patients nationwide.

The consortium will receive $35.5 million in awards and is one of three components of the NCI's $104 million five-year clinical proteomic technologies initiative for cancer national program.

This program is a critical component of NCI's strategy for leveraging the diagnostic and therapeutic potential of proteomics for cancer patients, said NCI deputy director Anna D. Barker. I am confident that the complementary proteomic expertise of the awardees, and their commitment to interinstitutional collaboration and real- time data sharing, will enable the development of biomarkers to contribute to a new generation of molecularly based interventions to diagnose, treat and prevent cancer.

The team, based at Purdue's Bindley Bioscience Center at Discovery Park, will develop protocols and standards for mass spectrometry- based cancer proteomics relating to breast and prostate cancer. The endeavor will involve close cooperation between Purdue and Indiana University experts in proteomics, informatics and cancer biology and treatment.

This is a perfect example of how great things will happen in Indiana when IU, Purdue and the private sector collaborate on life sciences research, said Dr. D. Craig Brater, dean of the IU School of Medicine and vice president of IU with responsibility for life sciences.

Four hundred clinical samples will be collected for breast cancer analysis by the Hoosier Oncology Group, an Indiana statewide network of cancer physicians chaired by Christopher Sweeney, an oncologist and associate director of clinical research at the IU Cancer Center. Prostate cancer samples also will be collected from the NCI-sponsored Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group trial.

As co-principal investigators, Sweeney and Harikrishna Nakshatri, the Marian J. Morrison Investigator in Breast Cancer Research in the IU Department of Surgery, and others will conduct cancer biology research. Discovery Park's Oncological Sciences Center played a key role in connecting clinical and basic science researchers in the project.

The goals of the program are to define existing technologies and identify emerging technologies that will enable precise and reproducible measurement of biomarkers in cancer, said Jiri Adamec, a Purdue research assistant professor and lead scientist at Bindley Bioscience Center and co-principal investigator. Other Purdue team members include research assistant professor Xiang Zhang and chemistry professor Scott McLuckey.

The team will employ both electrospray ionization and matrix assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry platforms.

Mass spectrometry-based proteomic approaches have the advantage of excellent sensitivity and high analytical precision, Adamec said. Our team will focus on the use of this technology in providing insight into breast and prostate cancer biomarkers. These biomarkers will have dramatic impact for cancer diagnostics and therapeutics.

The team will use the emerging bioCD technology invented at Purdue and commercialized by QuadraSpec, a Purdue Research Park company, to expand the detection and quantification of specific candidate cancer protein biomarkers. The technology enables evaluation of hundreds of proteins of interest from hundreds of samples in minutes by incorporating specific antibodies on a microfabricated optical disk that is read by spinning disc inferometry, said Charles Buck, director of operations for Bindley Bioscience Center.

In Bloomington, the startup company Predictive Physiology and Medicine will work with David E. Clemmer, the firm's scientific co- founder and chairman of the IU Department of Chemistry, and Clemmer's team at IU Bloomington to provide ion mobility spectrometry evaluation. This proprietary technology greatly broadens the range for cancer biomarker proteomics studies, Buck said.

In Indianapolis, proteomics work will be conducted by the Protein Analysis and Research Center, the academic service component of the Indiana Centers for Applied Protein Sciences (INCAPS), said Mu Wang, director of PARC and an assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the IU School of Medicine. That work will include planning and execution of the projects to identify and validate targeted biomarkers for breast and prostate cancers.

Statistical analysis and processing of the data will be overseen by Jake Chen, assistant professor of informatics at IU and co-principal investigator.

For a large NCI program such as this, data is going to be generated and collected from clinical laboratories, individual research labs at Purdue, Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis, IU School of Medicine, IU Bloomington, and various contracting companies across the state, Chen said. Therefore, it's essential for a team of computational scientists to work together, linking data, storing them, and analyzing them using computational and statistical tools. The work ahead will be very exciting.

The team will take advantage of Purdue's discovery pipeline for high- complexity data handling to deal with the challenge of data collection, management, and analysis. This discovery pipeline was developed from cooperation among the Bindley Bioscience, e-Enterprise and Cyber centers at Discovery Park.

The NCI's Clinical Proteomic Technology Assessment for Cancer awardees were chosen based, in part, on the broad expertise of their proteomic research teams and their familiarity with and regular use of a wide range of proteomic technologies. The five teams define a cross-institutional and multidisciplinary network of assessment centers that will evaluate and compare different commercially available proteomic platforms and analysis software packages in the context of their potential applicability to cancer. They will also work together to develop a comprehensive approach to assess intra- platform and inter-laboratory variability in these measurement technologies.

CPTAC is one of three major Clinical Proteomic Technologies Initiative program components integrated by the National Institutes of Health NCI to address the fundamental scientific requirements that must be met in order to realize the promise of proteomics for cancer diagnosis and therapy. Together, they have been charged with providing the scientific community with an assessment of current proteomic technologies, developing and assessing novel technologies and computational methods, and creating a central repository of the resources needed to use these proteomic tools.

RELATED WEB SITES:

Bindley Bioscience Center: http://discoverypark.purdue.edu/wps/portal/ Bioscience

Discovery Park: http://discoverypark.purdue.edu/wps/portal

Purdue University: http://www.purdue.edu

Indiana University School of Medicine: http://www.medicine.iu.edu

Indiana University: http://www.Indiana.edu

Clinical Proteomic Technologies Initiative for Cancer and the Clinical Proteomic Technologies Assessment for Cancer awards: http:// proteomics.cancer.gov

National Cancer Institute: http://www.cancer.gov

- - - -

CONTACTS:

Sources - Fred Regnier, 765-494-3878, fregnier@purdue.edu

Jiri Adamec, jadamec@purdue.edu

Charles Buck, 765-494-2208, cbuck@purdue.edu

Christopher Sweeney, 317-274-3515, chsweene@iupui.edu

Jake Chen, 317-278-7604, jakechen@iupui.edu

Writers - Elizabeth Gardner, 765-494-2081, ekgardner@purdue.edu

Phillip Fiorini, 765-496-3133, pfiorini@purdue.edu

Eric Schoch, 317-274-8205, eschoch@iupui.edu

AUDIO: Audio clips from Charles Buck, director of operations for Bindley Bioscience Center, and publication-quality photos are available at http://news.uns.purdue.edu/UNS/html3month/ 2006/060928RegnierNCI.html

PHOTO: A publication-quality photo is available at http:// news.uns.purdue.edu/images/+2006/regnier-proteomics.jpg

PHOTO CAPTION: Jiri Adamec, from left, a research assistant professor, discusses the results of an experiment with Fred Regnier, Purdue's John H. Law Distinguished Professor of Chemistry, in the Bindley Bioscience Center's Proteomics Lab. The Purdue-IU Analytical Proteomics Team, led by Regnier, has been approved as a national center in the National Cancer Institute's Consortium for Proteomics Technology Assessment for Cancer. The team studies the detection and prediction of cancer through analysis of blood samples. (Purdue News Service photo/David Umberger)

Copyright 2006 AScribe inc.
'Roadmap' aims to make county better. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) A NEW 'roadmap' for Yorkshire and Humber's economic growth, the Regional Economic Strategy 2006-2015 (RES), has just been launched by Yorkshire Forward.

The RES provides a ten year outline of what the region needs to do to grow its GBP75 billion economy. The overall aim is to make Yorkshire and Humber a better place to live, work and invest.

To outline how this can be achieved, the document offers a straightforward guide to economic development and investment - unique to the region and its circumstances, diversity and places. It also specifies who needs to take responsibility for delivering each action and calls on the public, private, voluntary and community sectors to pool their efforts.



The strategy highlights three key areas as being essential to Yorkshire and Humber's future economy: business, people and the environment.

Business objectives outline that the region needs 'more businesses that last', placing emphasis on the need to encourage enterprise in groups to drive productivity, while 'more competitive businesses' highlights that innovation activity is core to economic growth.

People objectives focus on 'skilled people - benefiting business and individuals' as this drives productivity and has knock-on benefits on quality of life, while 'connecting people to good jobs' will tackle worklessness and remove barriers to work.

Environment objectives consider 'transport, infrastructure and the environment', looking at transport schemes of economic priority, the role of the private sector in utilities and infrastructure, plus activity to enhance and utilise the environment and natural resources. A final objective stresses a drive for 'stronger towns and cities' and the role of their renaissance in driving the economy.

Underpinning all six objectives are three themes which aim to achieve quality of delivery. 'Sustainable development' aims to grow business via a long term approach that benefits the environment and enhances quality of life, 'diversity' aims to ensure all people and businesses realise their potential, while 'leadership and ambition' acknowledges that the region needs to raise its sights and promote a culture where people, businesses and agencies aim high, drive change and make the most of their abilities.

Produced by Yorkshire Forward on behalf of the region, the new strategy is the second to be launched by the RDA since its inception. It is the product of the ideas of more than 5,000 people, from three rounds of extensive and inclusive consultation.

Yorkshire Forward chairman Terry Hodgkinson said: "Our region has come a long way since the launch of the first Regional Economic Strategy in 2000, and as a result our economic landscape has changed. This new RES recognises these changes and has refocused our priorities accordingly.

"If people are looking to start or expand a business, want to achieve their potential or transform the place in which they live, then this strategy exists to make this possible." Copies of the RES are available at www.yorkshire-forward.com or by telephoning Yorkshire Forward on 0113 3949600.

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited
Do you deserve to win a prestigious Queen's Award?. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) THE Queen's Awards for Enterprise are the UK's most prestigious awards for business performance.

They recognise and reward outstanding achievement by UK companies. They are presented in three separate categories: l International Trade - recognising companies that have demonstrated growth in overseas earnings.

l Innovation - recognising companies that have demonstrated commercial success through innovative products or services.

l Sustainable Development - recognising companies that have integrated environmental, social, economic and management aspects of sustainable development into their business.

The awards are made each year by The Queen, on the advice of the Prime Minister, who is assisted by an Advisory Committee that includes representatives of Government, industry and commerce, and the trade unions. Outstanding businesses from all sectors are currently being invited to apply for the 2007 awards. The deadline for this year's awards is October 31.



In 2006, 145 companies - large and small - won a Queen's Award. The main benefits of winning are recognition, publicity, staff motivation and use of The Queen's Award Emblem for five years - and, impressively, 92 per cent of the 137 award winners last year said they thought winning a Queen's Award had brought added commercial value to their firm, with 22 per cent noticing a significant increase in new business since winning the award.

"This is a chance for a company to be recognised as a leader in its market and one of the top businesses in the UK," says Stephen Brice, secretary to The Queen's Awards office.

"There is no limit to the number of awards available each year - if a company's achievements are deemed truly outstanding for its sector, then it stands a good chance of winning an award." Over the next few months, officials from The Queen's Awards office will be touring the country to promote the awards, supported by talks and presentations. They will also be inviting nominations for The Queen's Award for Enterprise Promotion - an award for individuals helping and inspiring tomorrow's entrepreneurs.

Judging is thorough, so apply only if you can answer a definite 'yes' to these questions: l Does your business have a UK base? l Does your business employ at least two full-time workers (or part-time equivalent)? l Do you believe your business is one of the best? l Can you demonstrate commercial success? For details visit: www.queensawards.org.uk.

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited
Hat maker a top ten business hero. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) A WETHERBY woman who turned her life from tragedy to triumph has been crowned one of Britain's top ten business heroes by setting-up her own hat-making enterprise.

Milliner Woody Whittick, who set up She's All That a year ago, was presented with her winner's trophy by GMTV presenter Fiona Phillips at a glittering gala dinner in London on Wednesday.

The hat maker beat off fierce competition from hundreds of applicants, to finish as a finalist in the Barclays Trading Places Awards, launched this year to people who have overcome personal adversity to positively change their lives by setting up a thriving business.



Woody has fought a battle with ill health since suffering from ME in her teens. She suffered a paralysing spine injury at only 30, and was made redundant during her recovery when her employer went bankrupt.

But after a change of direction she found her calling.

Since opening She's All That last Summer, Woody has designed hats for hundreds of women, including celebrities and catwalk models, featured at Royal Ascot, designed the crown for Miss York 2006 and been elected vice-chair of the British Hat Guild.

Barclay's John Davis said: "The quality of entries made judging extremely difficult but all the judges felt She's All That shone out as a real-life example of an outstanding business that has thrived despite what seemed like impossible odds.

"We congratulate Woody Whittick on being crowned a 2006 National Finalist."

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited

Inside Business Pink

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Inside Business Pink. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) WELCOME to the September edition of our 12-page Business Pink supplement, which contains a wealth of business stories, features with members of the business community, appointments, opinions and advice.



Business Pink is published every two months with each title in the Harrogate Advertiser Series and focuses on businesses and individuals throughout the districts of Harrogate, Ripon, Knaresborough, Wetherby, Nidderdale and Northallerton.

This supplement also features a four-page On Location section, brought to you in conjunction with Harrogate Borough Council, which provides infomation to help businesses develop and succeed within the district.

If you have any stories or information which you think may be appropriate for the next issue of Business Pink, due out in November, please contact business editor Katie Moulds on 01423 707509 or by emailing katie.moulds@ypn.co.uk.

For the On Location section, please contact Harrogate Borough Council's Economic Development Unit on 01423 556077 or by email to edu@harrogate.gov.uk.

Page 2 - HARROGATE-based Avenir properties has reaped more than one reward from its recent development of land at Cardale Park. State-of-the-art offices making up the Greengate site have proved so successful that the company is now planning on replicating the project elsewhere in Yorkshire.

Page 3 - THE Oscars of the food and drink industry saw dozens of companies from the Harrogate district pick up presitigious awards. Among them was Masham firm Rosebud Preserves, which was crowned Yorkshire champion.

Page 4 - MARK Leather had no idea how much the internet would benefit his business until he was persuaded by website design company Extreme Creations to develop his website into an online shop. Now selling 1,500 natural food products online, Mark says the website has played a major part in his company's 100 per cent rise in turnover in less than two years.

Page 5 - THE first page of the On Location section takes a closer look at a council-led scheme which aims to help businesses comply with new EU regulations on food. Since January this year, all food businesses are required by law to put in place documented food safety management procedures - but many companies are still unaware of or ignoring the regulations.

Page 6 - RECOGNISING and rewarding outstanding achievement by UK companies is the aim of the prestigious Queen's Awards for Enterprise. Outstanding businesses from all sectors are being invited to apply for the 2007 awards - find out how you can take part.

Page 7 - LOOKING for hassle-free office space in Harrogate? On Location tells you what's on offer with regards to serviced office accommodation in the town, from rooms in traditional, converted buildings to modern, newly-built flexible offices.

Page 8 - ARE you prepared for the worst? What would you do if your business was affected by flood, fire or even terrorism? We tell you why a business continuity plan is so important, and explain what it should contain, how to test it - and how to prevent a disaster happening in the first place.

Page 9 - FOLLOWING the success of last year's inaugural Ackrill Media Group Business Awards, the event has now become an annual celebration of the best that businesses have to offer in our district. We begin a three-page look at the launch of this year's awards by introducing the categories and the criteria and, of course, giving you details on how to enter.

Page 10 - MEET the sponsors of the Ackrill Media Group Business Awards. Find out who is sponsoring which award, and learn what they are looking for in their winner.

Page 11 - THE second page introducing you to the category sponsors of the Ackrill Media Group Business Awards.

Page 12 - LOOKING back at ten years in the notoriously difficult Harrogate nightlife industry, Jason Smith, below, admits there have been some tough times. But the owner of Monteys Rock Cafe credits consistency and determination as the secrets of his business survival, as well as, of course, maintaining a good bar.

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited

Women's group success

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Women's group success. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) THE inaugural meeting of a new Harrogate-based business networking group for women has proved a huge success.

Around 40 members of WiRE (Women in Rural Enterprise) attended this week's event at Evans Easyspace Ltd on Hartwith Way, Harrogate.

WiRE is a national business club for women operating in rural areas, offering a dynamic package of practical services and assistance.

The Harrogate group, one of a number of regional networks, aims to provide localised support for members and increase their business activities across the region.

Members will meet once a month to enjoy talks from expert speakers and the chance to chat and discuss business opportunities.

Group co-ordinator Sarah Manby, of Mango Mutt, said: "It's great that so many WiRE members are supporting a local network - the response clearly shows there is the need for one.

"We are looking forward to getting to know each other and helping each other succeed in our various enterprises. We're all women trying to run businesses in rural areas, so we have a shared bond in understanding how difficult this can sometimes be." All members of WiRE are welcome to attend the meetings, but places must be booked in advance.



For more information contact Sarah Manby on 01423 545787 or email info@mangomutt.co.uk.

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited

The Denver Post Al Lewis column

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The Denver Post Al Lewis column. Check it out:
(Denver Post, The (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 29--After losing her job and getting dragged into a congressional inquiry, Hewlett-Packard's deposed chairwoman Patricia Dunn can't make up her mind.

Is it OK to impersonate people and steal their phone records -- or not?

"I still do not understand whether it is legal or not, as opinions vary," Dunn told Congress on Thursday.

Even Silicon Valley lawyer Larry Sonsini's opinions vary. Acting as HP's outside counsel, Sonsini had advised that this practice, known as pretexting, is "not generally unlawful." On Thursday before Congress, though, Sonsini said pretexting is probably illegal but that there ought to be a new law to make this clear.



Wouldn't disbarment or a legal-malpractice lawsuit also make this clear?

And what about existing laws against deceptive trade practices, criminal impersonation, identity theft or wire fraud?

Don't they provide clarity?

Could Dunn and Sonsini really be this dumb? Do they really think the people watching their charades are dumb, too?

What's not ostensibly clear to Dunn and Sonsini seemed abundantly clear to HP general counsel Ann Baskins.

Hours before Baskins was scheduled to testify, she resigned from her 24-year career at HP and invoked her Fifth Amendment right against self- incrimination.

Also taking the Fifth were a host of others involved in HP's cloak-and-dagger investigation of boardroom leaks to reporters. They included Ronald DeLia, who runs the detective firm that HP used; Anthony R. Gentilucci, who managed HP's global investigations unit in Boston; and Kevin T. Hunsaker, HP's former chief ethics officer, who was fired apparently for a lack of ethics in this matter.

Then there's HP chief executive Mark Hurd, who did not take the Fifth. Congress cut Hurd way too much slack Thursday, allowing him to testify alone, without his suspicious-looking colleagues at his side.

Everybody seems to love Hurd because HP stock has soared since he became CEO last year. And at least Hurd was apologetic about HP's misadventure, describing it as a "rogue investigation that violated HP's own principles and values." But Hurd also did a fine job of playing dumb. He told Congress he had had discussions about the investigation but was not involved in it and did not know the details. Maybe he didn't know because he didn't want to know.

"I understand there is also a written report of the investigation addressed to me and others, but unfortunately I did not read it," Hurd said in prepared testimony. "I could have, and I should have." But somehow, he just didn't.

How dumb is that?

So everyone involved in HP's investigation either took the Fifth, said they didn't know or said they were assured that what went on was legal.

Dunn, I think, explained it most eloquently: "Reliance on representations from trusted sources is a bedrock concept in board governance." Here's another "bedrock concept" if you ever want to run a complex enterprise like HP: Question everything. But don't try to look smart when prosecutors are watching your every facial twitch on C-SPAN. Better to play dumb.

Like Bryan Wagner of Littleton, who once worked for Action Research Group.

Wagner, 29, is the nephew of private investigator James Rapp, who pleaded guilty in 1999 after selling information about Los Angeles organized-crime detectives to the Israeli mafia.

Denver Post reporter Kimberly Johnson approached Wagner on Wednesday outside his apartment as he waited for a shuttle to take him to the airport for his flight to Washington. "Action (Research Group) has lawyers to make sure that we're doing everything legally," he told Johnson. "I never thought I was doing anything wrong." Wagner, however, took the Fifth on Thursday before Congress. And well before that, he reportedly took a hammer to his computer.

"I'm not going to say any more about the computer," he said. "I'm afraid I'll be charged with destruction of evidence."

OK, so I'll take it back. Wagner may be the one guy in the HP affair who is not playing dumb. Everyone else -- please!

Al Lewis' column appears Sundays, Tuesdays and Fridays. Respond to him at denverpostbloghouse.com/lewis, 303-954-1967 or alewis@denverpost.com.

To see more of The Denver Post, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.denverpost.com.

Copyright (c) 2006, The Denver Post
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
PurdueIndiana University Team Selected as National Cancer Institute Proteomics Center. Check it out:
(Ascribe Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Purdue and Indiana universities' proteomics team has been selected as one of five national centers for cancer research.

The National Cancer Institute announced Wednesday (Sept. 27) its selection of the Purdue-IU Analytical Proteomics Team for inclusion in a new consortium to assess proteomic technology and its applications for diagnosis and treatment of cancer.



The NCI awarded a $7 million grant to the Purdue-IU team, which pairs Purdue's experts in mass spectrometry and proteomics technology with the expert clinical team of cancer researchers from Indiana University School of Medicine. Together they will focus on technology to diagnose breast and prostate cancer through blood samples.

"This is the future of cancer detection in America," said Fred Regnier, Purdue's John H. Law Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and principal investigator for the team. "Proteomics, the study of proteins, holds great promise for more precise diagnosis and tailored cancer therapies through the identification of proteins specific to cancer and other diseases, called 'biomarkers.'"

"However, more work needs to be done to establish protocols for these approaches and the technology used. The NCI program creates a consortium for this purpose and is a great advancement for the field. Remarkably, all five centers included breast cancer as an area of study, which will allow for incredible scientific collaboration and evaluation of data from patients nationwide."

The consortium will receive $35.5 million in awards and is one of three components of the NCI's $104 million five-year clinical proteomic technologies initiative for cancer national program.

"This program is a critical component of NCI's strategy for leveraging the diagnostic and therapeutic potential of proteomics for cancer patients, " said NCI deputy director Anna D. Barker. "I am confident that the complementary proteomic expertise of the awardees, and their commitment to interinstitutional collaboration and real- time data sharing, will enable the development of biomarkers to contribute to a new generation of molecularly based interventions to diagnose, treat and prevent cancer."

The team, based at Purdue's Bindley Bioscience Center at Discovery Park, will develop protocols and standards for mass spectrometry- based cancer proteomics relating to breast and prostate cancer. The endeavor will involve close cooperation between Purdue and Indiana University experts in proteomics, informatics and cancer biology and treatment.

"This is a perfect example of how great things will happen in Indiana when IU, Purdue and the private sector collaborate on life sciences research," said Dr. D. Craig Brater, dean of the IU School of Medicine and vice president of IU with responsibility for life sciences.

Four hundred clinical samples will be collected for breast cancer analysis by the Hoosier Oncology Group, an Indiana statewide network of cancer physicians chaired by Christopher Sweeney, an oncologist and associate director of clinical research at the IU Cancer Center. Prostate cancer samples also will be collected from the NCI-sponsored Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group trial.

As co-principal investigators, Sweeney and Harikrishna Nakshatri, the Marian J. Morrison Investigator in Breast Cancer Research in the IU Department of Surgery, and others will conduct cancer biology research. Discovery Park's Oncological Sciences Center played a key role in connecting clinical and basic science researchers in the project.

The goals of the program are to define existing technologies and identify emerging technologies that will enable precise and reproducible measurement of biomarkers in cancer, said Jiri Adamec, a Purdue research assistant professor and lead scientist at Bindley Bioscience Center and co-principal investigator. Other Purdue team members include research assistant professor Xiang Zhang and chemistry professor Scott McLuckey.

The team will employ both electrospray ionization and matrix assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry platforms.

"Mass spectrometry-based proteomic approaches have the advantage of excellent sensitivity and high analytical precision," Adamec said. "Our team will focus on the use of this technology in providing insight into breast and prostate cancer biomarkers. These biomarkers will have dramatic impact for cancer diagnostics and therapeutics."

The team will use the emerging "bioCD" technology invented at Purdue and commercialized by QuadraSpec, a Purdue Research Park company, to expand the detection and quantification of specific candidate cancer protein biomarkers. The technology enables evaluation of hundreds of proteins of interest from hundreds of samples in minutes by incorporating specific antibodies on a microfabricated optical disk that is read by spinning disc inferometry, said Charles Buck, director of operations for Bindley Bioscience Center.

In Bloomington, the startup company Predictive Physiology and Medicine will work with David E. Clemmer, the firm's scientific co- founder and chairman of the IU Department of Chemistry, and Clemmer's team at IU Bloomington to provide ion mobility spectrometry evaluation. This proprietary technology greatly broadens the range for cancer biomarker proteomics studies, Buck said.

In Indianapolis, proteomics work will be conducted by the Protein Analysis and Research Center, the academic service component of the Indiana Centers for Applied Protein Sciences (INCAPS), said Mu Wang, director of PARC and an assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the IU School of Medicine. That work will include planning and execution of the projects to identify and validate targeted biomarkers for breast and prostate cancers.

Statistical analysis and processing of the data will be overseen by Jake Chen, assistant professor of informatics at IU and co-principal investigator.

"For a large NCI program such as this, data is going to be generated and collected from clinical laboratories, individual research labs at Purdue, Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis, IU School of Medicine, IU Bloomington, and various contracting companies across the state," Chen said. "Therefore, it's essential for a team of computational scientists to work together, linking data, storing them, and analyzing them using computational and statistical tools. The work ahead will be very exciting."

The team will take advantage of Purdue's discovery pipeline for high- complexity data handling to deal with the challenge of data collection, management, and analysis. This discovery pipeline was developed from cooperation among the Bindley Bioscience, e-Enterprise and Cyber centers at Discovery Park.

The NCI's Clinical Proteomic Technology Assessment for Cancer awardees were chosen based, in part, on the broad expertise of their proteomic research teams and their familiarity with and regular use of a wide range of proteomic technologies. The five teams define a cross-institutional and multidisciplinary network of assessment centers that will evaluate and compare different commercially available proteomic platforms and analysis software packages in the context of their potential applicability to cancer. They will also work together to develop a comprehensive approach to assess intra- platform and inter-laboratory variability in these measurement technologies.

CPTAC is one of three major Clinical Proteomic Technologies Initiative program components integrated by the National Institutes of Health NCI to address the fundamental scientific requirements that must be met in order to realize the promise of proteomics for cancer diagnosis and therapy. Together, they have been charged with providing the scientific community with an assessment of current proteomic technologies, developing and assessing novel technologies and computational methods, and creating a central repository of the resources needed to use these proteomic tools.

RELATED WEB SITES:

Bindley Bioscience Center: http://discoverypark.purdue.edu/wps/portal/ Bioscience

Discovery Park: http://discoverypark.purdue.edu/wps/portal

Purdue University: http://www.purdue.edu

Indiana University School of Medicine: http://www.medicine.iu.edu

Indiana University: http://www.Indiana.edu

Clinical Proteomic Technologies Initiative for Cancer and the Clinical Proteomic Technologies Assessment for Cancer awards: http:// proteomics.cancer.gov

National Cancer Institute: http://www.cancer.gov

- - - -

CONTACTS:

Sources - Fred Regnier, 765-494-3878, fregnier@purdue.edu

Jiri Adamec, jadamec@purdue.edu

Charles Buck, 765-494-2208, cbuck@purdue.edu

Christopher Sweeney, 317-274-3515, chsweene@iupui.edu

Jake Chen, 317-278-7604, jakechen@iupui.edu

Writers - Elizabeth Gardner, 765-494-2081, ekgardner@purdue.edu

Phillip Fiorini, 765-496-3133, pfiorini@purdue.edu

Eric Schoch, 317-274-8205, eschoch@iupui.edu

AUDIO: Audio clips from Charles Buck, director of operations for Bindley Bioscience Center, and publication-quality photos are available at http://news.uns.purdue.edu/UNS/html3month/ 2006/060928RegnierNCI.html

PHOTO: A publication-quality photo is available at http:// news.uns.purdue.edu/images/+2006/regnier-proteomics.jpg

PHOTO CAPTION: Jiri Adamec, from left, a research assistant professor, discusses the results of an experiment with Fred Regnier, Purdue's John H. Law Distinguished Professor of Chemistry, in the Bindley Bioscience Center's Proteomics Lab. The Purdue-IU Analytical Proteomics Team, led by Regnier, has been approved as a national center in the National Cancer Institute's Consortium for Proteomics Technology Assessment for Cancer. The team studies the detection and prediction of cancer through analysis of blood samples. (Purdue News Service photo/David Umberger)

((AScribe - The Public Interest Newswire / http://www.ascribe.org))

Copyright 2006 M2 Communications Ltd.. Source: Financial Times Information Limited.
Health, energy issues discussed at Illinois chamber of commerce briefing. Check it out:
(News-Gazette, The (Champaign-Urbana, IL) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 27--CHAMPAIGN -- There's no consensus among Illinois employers about what government should do to make health care more affordable, the president of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce says.



Some employers want government-provided health care. Others are seeking a solution from free enterprise. Still others aren't providing health insurance at all.

"There's not a clear answer to what the state can and should be doing," chamber President Douglas Whitley told 35 business people at a briefing in Champaign that tied in with the chamber's endorsement of Republican Judy Myers for the 52nd Senate District seat.

Myers faces Democrat Mike Frerichs and Socialist Equality candidate Joe Parnarauskis in the Nov. 7 general election. The winner will succeed Republican Sen. Rick Winkel.

At the chamber's briefing at the Hawthorn Suites Hotel, audience member Carol Timms asked what the state could do to help small businesses with mounting health insurance costs.

Myers said a tax credit could help to some extent. Whitley said employers would be helped if the state made fewer mandates for health care coverage.

He said the state has 26 different health insurance mandates, and the chamber believes insurance decisions "ought to be more like a smorgasbord. You ought to be able to pick and choose."

Whitley, who grew up in Atwood, said the state chamber has also endorsed Republican Judy Baar Topinka over Democratic Gov. Rod Blagojevich. Whitley chided Blagojevich for "very anti-business policies," namely imposing new taxes on business.

Whitley claimed the Blagojevich administration thinks it is "OK to increase the costs of doing business" because employers have "deep pockets" that can absorb taxes.

Specifically, Whitley assailed the state's delay of payments to medical providers and its failure to meet public employee pension obligations. He said some Illinois doctors are fleeing to Indiana and Wisconsin to avoid the high costs of doing business here.

Audience member Andrew Timms asked Myers how the state's budget problems could be solved if taxes are cut, as she advocates.

"If you have a strong business community and an attractive business climate, then the revenue will come," Myers said.

Earlier, Whitley sounded the same theme, saying "the only way out of (the state's budget woes) is to grow the economy. The current administration does not do this."

Whitley did credit Blagojevich with realizing the importance of energy to Illinois, specifically with regard to the $1 billion FutureGen project to demonstrate clean-coal technology.

A private-public partnership is trying to decide whether the FutureGen plant should be built in Illinois at either Mattoon or Tuscola or at one of two sites in Texas.

Responding to a question from real estate developer Brett Benso about the plant's eventual location, Whitley said the "only issue" appears to be what position, if any, President Bush takes on the matter.

Bush is a Texan, and Whitley said public officials leaving office sometimes steer federal projects to their home states. Whitley called the practice "the Lyndon Johnson syndrome."

He said Texas wound up with the superconducting supercollider project during the presidency of George H.W. Bush, after fierce competition with Illinois.

"FutureGen is research, and whether that (project) goes to Illinois or goes to Texas, the research done there will benefit Illinois coal," he said.

With regard to economic development, Whitley said the state must move away from government-controlled solutions and toward more public-private partnerships.

"In Illinois, we've had a top-down economic development focus the last 30 years ... Some years we've had genuine success, but for the most part, it's been muddling," he said.

To see more of The News-Gazette, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.news-gazette.com.

Copyright (c) 2006, The News-Gazette, Champaign-Urbana, Ill.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
Unless you're creating and editing high-resolution video, NAS might be all you need.. Check it out:
(www.enterprisestorageforum.com Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)
Streaming data technology has become ubiquitous in recent years. Just about everyone from CNN.com to your local cable company uses it. On demand video, music, news broadcasts and security cameras are just a few examples of streaming data.



Since you're likely to run into the technology at some point, it's probably worth a closer look. Let's say you want to set up a streaming server; what are the issues you'll face, and how do you go about determining what to buy and how to configure it?

Once again, we'll begin with the issue of requirements. The requirements for gaining an understanding of streaming data (video or audio) can be complex or simple, depending on a number of factors:

The number of simultaneous users; The required data rate to the users compared to caching for example, MS Windows Media Player and RealPlayer both cache the stream and do not begin playing until enough data is cached to begin playback; Is the data stream real-time, cached or both real-time data might require less of some system resources and more of others than playing back already captured data, and vice versa; Will the playback be sequential for non-real-time data, this will definitely affect storage and file system performance. We can divide much of the common streaming applications into two separate and distinct categories:

High-performance playback and editing, which is used for high-definition streams. This is very uncommon and an example of this type of work is the animation done by the movie industry, especially for animation; and Low-resolution playback or capture the most common type of streaming application, with one of the new areas needed for data capture being security cameras. High-Performance Streaming Architecture

High-performance streaming is much harder to develop an architecture for since the requirements are much greater. The data rates needed for streaming I/O can exceed 30 MB/sec, and multiple streams are active simultaneously. Shared file systems are often used, which require even more complex architectural analysis since multiple systems are accessing the storage system. A number of shared file systems were actually developed in the late 1990s specifically for editing streaming video.

Even with 4Gb Fibre Channel and high-performance storage, the problem is still complex and requires careful attention to file system allocation and tuning, RAID tuning and a myriad of other data path tuning issues.

Luckily for most sites, requirements such as these are uncommon, and people working on this type of problem have years of experience in this area. These environments are often made even more complex because of the need to have massive amounts of data that is maintained by a hierarchical storage management system ( HSM ).

If this is your type of environment, you have a great deal of hard work ahead of you to ensure that your environment can meet the performance requirements. Nothing on the storage horizon is going to make it any easier in the near future, given that file systems and storage devices cannot communicate topological information about the location of the data and file system metadata. This can severely limit the performance of the environment, especially if many large files (most systems of this type only write large files) are being written at the same time, given the inherent file system fragmentation.

The only good news for this type of architecture is that it is not that common except in places like Hollywood and other high-resolution visual environments. Personally, I think working on these types of systems is a lot of fun given the complexity of the problems and the large amount of hardware and specialized software needed to meet the operational requirements.

Lower-Performance Architecture

Creating or developing an architecture for lower-performance/resolution environments is much easier for a number of reasons: the data rates are much lower; most of the applications cache the data, so real-time streaming is not that important; and network latency is very high and the relative performance is low.

Lower rates: For these environments, data rates tend to be in kilobytes rather than in megabytes. When the required data rate is three orders of magnitude less, this simplifies the architecture enormously.

Applications : The applications in these environments are often products like Windows Media Player and RealPlayer. These applications measure the income data rate and cache the data before beginning playback. If the network performance changes, these products stop and wait for the data rate to catch up and begin playback again.

Network latency and performance: In most of these environments, it is all about network latency and bandwidth. If you are streaming video from sites such as Yahoo, CNN and the like, the local bandwidth and latency at these sites is far greater than what you have at home with high-speed cable. The fastest common home network connection I have seen is 5 Mbits/sec. This far exceeds the rate needed to play most visual video streams, but the latency between you and the video stream can be high, especially if what you want to look at is a hot news or sports item. The latency is caused by contention for the video stream and a lack of bandwidth to the outside world from where the data is stored.

Choosing the Right Architecture

Obviously, since high- and low-performance streaming environments are so different, different architectures are needed for each. Using an HPC architecture for a low-performance environment would be overkill, unless the low-performance architecture was so large that an HPC architecture might make sense.

HPC Architecture

For the high-performance architecture, I would be looking at a 4Gb Fibre Channel environment, high-speed RAID controllers, PCI Express -based HBAs , a server with a great deal of memory bandwidth, and a-high performance file system with HSM capabilities.

A number of vendors develop solutions specifically for these types of environments. In the 1990s, both Apple and SGI dominated this market segment, but their domination has waned given the commoditization of everything. Some companies will still pay big bucks to ensure that they can meet their requirements because not getting a movie out on time can cost a lot of money.

Today, companies such as Quantum/ADIC, Sun and a myriad of others provide solutions in this market space. It's not a big market, but it is prestigious.

Low-Performance Architecture

For low performance needs, the first thing I would consider is NAS . Since the problem is all about low-resolution video data, NAS is often the best solution because it is easy to use, configure, maintain and manage. A number of vendors have optimized systems for exactly this type of application, such as Isilon, NetApp and others.

Managing content delivery of streaming data is not that difficult, given the latency, applications and file sizes, because the applications have addressed the network latency. Streaming I/O is not that big a deal over the Internet, and is often a function not of the storage system, but the interface to the Internet. Most NAS devices can handle the requirement without much architectural work, and this is true even for delivery of content within an intranet. The streams just are not that demanding of bandwidth and can be addressed by NAS technology.

On the other hand, editing and creating content is not that easy and requires careful attention to architectural planning and usually high-performance hardware and file systems. All of this might change over time as hardware gets faster and software gets more efficient, but for the time being, that's the way it is.

Henry Newman, a regular Enterprise Storage Forum contributor, is an industry consultant with 26 years experience in high-performance computing and storage. See more articles by Henry Newman .

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The ServerWatch newsletter for Friday, September 29, 2006. Check it out:
(www.serverwatch.com Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)
*********************************** ServerWatch Newsletter upt_http://www.serverwatch.com/ Friday, September 29, 2006 **********************************

---------------------- New on ServerWatch ----------------------

1. Virtually Speaking: Management Is the Key September 29, 2006 When it comes to virtualization, bad planning and poor management will merely replace a headache with a toothache.

http://www.serverwatch.com/news/article.php/3634966

------------------------------------------------------------ 2. The Hows and Whys of Server Virtualization September 28, 2006 How does virtualization work, and why is now a good time to check it out?

http://www.serverwatch.com/tutorials/article.php/3634911

------------------------------------------------------------ 3. SMB Space Gets High-End Feature Boost September 28, 2006 There's nothing small about virtualization for the SMB space. Dell's newest systems aim to serve this and other high-end features to the SMB market.



http://www.serverwatch.com/news/article.php/3634861

------------------------------------------------------------ 4. Getting Back to Business September 27, 2006 Security and advanced tools are cool, but day-to-day routines have an even bigger impact on server security and reliability.

http://www.serverwatch.com/tutorials/article.php/3634671

------------------------------------------------------------ 5. Enterprise Unix Roundup: Unix Buzz Defies Prognosis September 27, 2006 The research firms may be reading the end of Unix in their tea leaves, but word on the street says otherwise.

http://www.serverwatch.com/eur/article.php/3634546

------------------------------------------------------------ 6. Linux Developers Reject GPL 3 September 26, 2006 Top Linux kernel developers, Torvalds included, vote version 3 of the GPL a no-go.

http://www.serverwatch.com/news/article.php/3634131

------------------------------------------------------------ 7. Tip of the Trade: DTrace September 26, 2006 DTrace is considered by many to be one of the best features in Solaris 10. The troubleshooting tool is a powerful dynamic tracing utility for observing, debugging and tuning system behavior. The one downside? Its complexity.

http://www.serverwatch.com/tutorials/article.php/3634126

------------------------------------------------------------ 8. Hardware Today: Building an Uninterruptible Data Center September 25, 2006 In the next five years, power failures and power availability limitations may halt data center operations in more than 90 percent of companies. A UPS and a strategy for reducing power output is one way to be in the other 10 percent.

http://www.serverwatch.com/hreviews/article.php/3634071

------------------------------------------------------------ 9. Squid Internet Object Cache vs. InterGate September 25, 2006 Non-Windows proxy servers are a rare breed. Here are two to get you started on your search.

http://www.serverwatch.com/news/article.php/313890_Ext

------------------------------------------------------------ 10. IBM Takes Tape Storage Into Overdrive September 22, 2006 Big Blue adds long-distance disaster recovery and grid tools to its enterprise-class tape system.

http://www.serverwatch.com/news/article.php/3633771

------------------------------------------------------------

--------------------------------- Server Updates ---------------------------------

Updated Mailtraq, a 4 star Mail server, to version 2.9.0.2082. - Sep 29, 2006 http://www.serverwatch.com/stypes/server/index.php/17171

Updated Axigen Mail Server, a 4 star Mail server, to version 1.2.6. - Sep 29, 2006 http://www.serverwatch.com/stypes/server/index.php/17187

Updated Merak Mail Server, a 5 star Mail server, to version 8.5.0-8. - Sep 25, 2006 http://www.serverwatch.com/stypes/server/index.php/16181

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Congress repeals Wright: Love flights anywhere allowed when bill signed as early as next week. Check it out:
(Dallas Morning News, The (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 30--WASHINGTON -- Congress approved legislation late Friday to repeal the Wright amendment, potentially resolving a decades-old battle over the role of Dallas Love Field.

The bill to phase out flight restrictions at the Dallas airport cleared the House overwhelmingly in a late-night vote before lawmakers departed for a pre-election recess.

The legislation won passage in the Senate earlier Friday after months of pressure by Texas Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn to win over a final detractor, Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.

President Bush is expected to sign the measure as early as next week.

"It's a great relief to have a final solution," said Rep. Kenny Marchant, R-Coppell, whose district includes Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. "The fact that none of the parties are completely happy, and all of the parties are relieved to have it over, should be a sign that it's a good agreement."



Still, lawmakers acknowledged that the Wright battle may not be over. North Texas residents and groups that opposed the deal are expected to challenge the legislation in court.

The Wright legislation stalled this summer under criticism over its treatment of federal antitrust laws, and supporters in Congress fought hard for language to help shield the deal from a long court fight.

The legislation will repeal Wright in 2014, implementing a June agreement by the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, American Airlines, Southwest Airlines and D/FW Airport.

It would immediately allow flights anywhere from Love Field, as long as they first stopped inside the nine-state Wright perimeter.

The agreement would also cut the number of available gates at Love from 32 to 20, part of a plan to compensate for an expected increase in noise, pollution and congestion. Nineteen gates are in use now.

On Congress' last day, the House turned out to be the greatest source of contention over repealing the Wright law.

House members planned to clear their bill under suspension of normal rules, a procedure often used for uncontroversial measures that would prevent lawmakers from offering amendments.

Suspension bills often pass without recorded votes, but objections to the Wright legislation forced proponents to corral the support of two-thirds of those present.

A heated evening debate had opponents sparring over the antitrust issue, while also arguing that residents outside the existing Wright perimeter would be saddled with higher airfares as a result of the deal.

The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., said the bill "will continue vestiges of the Wright amendment" until 2025, when gate arrangements expire under the deal.

In a departure from many congressional debates, supporters and opponents of the Wright agreement weren't split by party affiliation or geography.

Rep. John Conyers of Michigan, the top Democrat on the judiciary committee, argued against a frequent ally, Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson, D-Dallas, whose district includes Love Field.

Bumper sticker

Mr. Sensenbrenner, recalling the "Don't Mess with Texas" bumper stickers in the House garage, said, "Tonight is one of the nights where we ought to mess with Texas.

"This is the most anti-consumer, anti-free-enterprise bill that has come before this House in a long time," he said.

The debate on the House floor was not expected a day earlier. North Texas lawmakers positioned the legislation to allow it to pass easily.

A tougher fight had been expected in the Senate, where rules and traditions allow a single member the power to block legislation.

By early Thursday afternoon, after House members from North Texas had forged a path for their bill to reach the House floor, the pressure had grown on Ms. Hutchison and Mr. Cornyn.

Efforts in recent weeks to find language that was acceptable to Mr. Leahy and the North Texas parties had failed, even after changing the antitrust language from an explicit to implicit exemption to win over the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Arlen Specter, R-Pa.

Word came from the Texas senators' staffs later Thursday afternoon that Mr. Leahy could come to an agreement for bringing the Wright bill up under unanimous consent, a procedure used for noncontroversial measures.

The senators and their staffs started working on statements to be read on the Senate floor.

Ms. Hutchison reached out to House members about her progress, e-mailing and talking with Rep. Kay Granger, R-Fort Worth, past midnight and into Friday morning, to ask her to wait for a Senate bill to come to the House to prevent further procedural delays.

By Friday morning, Ms. Hutchison was sitting in a cloakroom off the Senate floor working out how the bill would come up under unanimous consent.

Mr. Leahy had been pushing a wilderness bill to move under unanimous consent, a measure that largely affected Vermont and New Hampshire.

Asked later if she was holding up his bill, Ms. Hutchison smiled. "Why would someone do that?

"Let's just say that we came to an agreement to pass both bills," she said.

The bill passed the Senate in less than a minute just before 1 p.m. Dallas time.

Then Mr. Cornyn and Mr. Leahy engaged in a colloquy, a discussion on the Senate floor that allows lawmakers to share their thinking for the record.

The dialogue does not offer the force of law but gives judges an opportunity to glean congressional intent in a court challenge over the antitrust issue

"Senator Cornyn and I share a concern about providing antitrust immunity to agreements involving private parties," Mr. Leahy said. "While I would prefer greater clarity on this point in the bill, I am pleased that Senator Cornyn and I agree that this is an entirely unique situation, which should not be repeated."

Mr. Cornyn agreed that "the legislation contemplated here should not be a model for any future arrangement.

"In no way can I imagine a situation arising with a set of facts remotely similar to that created in Dallas by the passage of the Wright Amendment," he said.

Mr. Cornyn, who serves on the judiciary committee with Mr. Leahy, said later that ending the impasse was a matter of talking through the details of the Wright law and the uniqueness of the situation.

"We had to explain to him that actually this increased competition rather than decreased competition," Mr. Cornyn said. "That was one of the hard things for people to understand because of the unique nature of the Wright amendment."

Ms. Hutchison, who urged North Texas officials early in the year to come up with a solution, said the Wright legislation took "an inordinate amount of time for a bill that shouldn't have been this complicated."

"I have to say that in my 12 years in the Senate, the hardest thing that I've ever had to explain was the Wright amendment to outside people," she said.

Miller euphoric

Dallas Mayor Laura Miller was euphoric Friday afternoon. She'd feared the Senate would be the bigger obstacle.

Ms. Miller said she was confident the terms of the bill would protect Dallas from losing a court challenge, due to a dedicated North Texas delegation and attorneys who worked around the clock.

"Without the language crafted in the Senate ... we would have a huge problem," Ms. Miller said.

Friday's actions followed a nearly two-year fight over the Wright amendment and Love Field.

In November 2004, Southwest Airlines announced that it would lobby Congress to lift the flight restrictions.

Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Dallas, introduced legislation the following May to repeal Wright completely, spurring lawmakers nationwide to pick up the cause to win cheaper flights to and from North Texas.

But Mr. Hensarling decided not to back the compromise agreement, saying he could not support the nation's only congressional mandate on the number of gates at a local airport.

He sat quietly in the back row of the House on Friday evening to watch the debate. He planned to vote against the bill but did not fight the compromise agreement.

Rep. Sam Johnson, R-Plano, who co-sponsored the original Wright repeal legislation with Mr. Hensarling, said the compromise was "not perfect" but still an agreement worthy of support.

Staff writer Emily Ramshaw in Dallas contributed to this report.

E-mail sreddy@dallasnews.com

HOW THE WRIGHT AMENDMENT WOUND UP ON ITS FINAL DESCENT

Key events in the history of the Wright amendment:

1979

In an effort to protect a young Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport from competition at Dallas Love Field, Congress approves the Wright amendment, named for U.S. House Speaker Jim Wright of Fort Worth. The law, which took effect the following year, limits flights from Love Field to airports in Texas and its adjoining four states, but allows commuter planes with 56 seats or fewer to fly farther.

1997

Congress approves the Shelby amendment, adding Alabama, Kansas and Mississippi to the Wright territory.

2000

April: Legend Airlines starts service from its own terminal at Love to Los Angeles and Washington with modified 56-seat jets. Continental Airlines, American Airlines and Delta Air Lines also launch Love service.

December: Legend declares bankruptcy and stops all service. Eventually, American and Delta pull out of Love. Continental remained.

2004

September: Delta announces it will close its D/FW hub, reducing its daily schedule here from 254 nonstop flights to 21.

November: Southwest CEO Gary Kelly says the carrier considered filling some of Delta's void at D/FW, but decided against it. Instead, Mr. Kelly calls for repeal of the Wright law.

D/FW and American express strong support for continuing the Wright limits.

2005

May: U.S. Reps. Jeb Hensarling, R-Dallas, and Sam Johnson, R-Plano, introduce legislation in the House that would fully repeal Wright.

July: Nevada Republican Sen. John Ensign introduces a similar bill in the Senate.

November: Missouri becomes the ninth state outside of Texas that can be served from Love Field, when Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., tacks his state onto the Wright perimeter in a transportation-spending bill.

December: Southwest launches new service to St. Louis and Kansas City from Love.

2006

February: Republican Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn urge airline and government leaders in North Texas to come up with a compromise to settle the Wright fight.

March: American returns to Love, with service to St. Louis and Kansas City, as well as to Austin and San Antonio.

June: The cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, along with D/FW, Southwest and American, announce a compromise that would allow for immediate through-ticketing and full repeal in 2014.

July: House and Senate committees approve legislation to enact the agreement. But a lobbying effort from the owners of the former Legend terminal, set to be demolished under the deal, draws detractors in Congress. The bills stall over antitrust exemptions.

September: The Senate approves legislation reflecting the North Texas compromise. A vote was set for late Friday in the House.

REPEALING WRIGHT

Once signed into law, legislation approved in the House and Senate on Friday would:

--Immediately allow commercial travel anywhere from Dallas Love Field if planes first stop at an airport in Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, Oklahoma or Texas.

--Permit commercial flights to travel nonstop to any destination in the 50 U.S. states or the District of Columbia, beginning eight years after enactment.

--Direct the city of Dallas to reduce and cap the number of gates at Love Field at no more than 20; the airport now has 32 gates, 19 of which are in use.

SOURCE: Dallas Morning News research

Copyright (c) 2006, The Dallas Morning News
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
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Football: William Hill's decision to close US operation ironic. Check it out:
(The Birmingham Post Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Despite the advertising campaign for their self-styled 'Gods of Poker' being a bit on the naff side, I like the William Hill poker website. The company has embraced the game by offering decent sign-up bonuses and $1 million prize pools every week. It sponsors a raft of professionals, has a good online poker school and a poker show broadcast on Sky each Wednesday.



Now, William Hill are not doing all of this because they're nice guys - although I'm sure they are - the company is involved in poker and other gaming activities because it wants to make a profit. Few people would contest their absolute right to do so.

The company do not force anyone to play and take a responsible approach towards gaming, so I was disappointed when they became the umpteenth company to effectively close down their US operations earlier this week.

There is a certain irony about internet poker and other gaming activities being actively discouraged in parts of the US.

America was built on free enterprise and its citizens remain justifiably suspicious of politicians and others who pursue actions in the name of the public good. Yet the world's richest, most entrepreneuri ally-focused nation insists on trying to behave like King Canute and prevent people from playing poker and participating in other forms of online gaming.

According to Hill's head honcho, Tom Singer, the fear of arrest prompted the company's decision to abandon the US market following the arrest and subsequent release of executives at Sportingbet and Bet On Sports earlier this year. Peter Dicks, the former chairman of Sportingbet, said he suspected that arrest warrants had been issued for a number of senior executives at companies involved in online poker and gaming.

In view of this, William Hill's decision was entirely understandable. As Mr Singer said: "Why do I need to live with the risk [of arrest] as a William Hill director?" He's absolutely right, yet there is evidence to suggest that the American crackdown on internet betting is set to move up a gear.

America's anti-poker crusade is being led by prosecutors in Louisiana, one of seven states that expressly outlaws online gaming. There is speculation within the gaming industry that the state has 58 arrest warrants ready to be issued should senior executives at internet gambling firms set foot on US soil.

There is further irony in the state of Louisiana's actions. The USA remains home to the world's largest gambling centre. Las Vegas, where the World Series of Poker is contested amid every conceivable gaming activity, contributes billions of tax dollars to the federal government.

But there is an even greater irony in Louisiana law-enforcers trying to prevent people playing poker. The game is a direct descendent of a French game called Poque, a name derived from the French verb pocher, to bluff. The modern form of draw poker originated in the US during the 19th century and became popular on Mississippi steamboats leaving French-speaking New Orleans. That's right: New Orleans in the state of Louisiana.

Copyright 2006 Birmingham Post & Mail Ltd.
FOOD& DRINK: Cafe's a lifestyle choice. Check it out:
(The Birmingham Post Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) It is a typical Kings Heath street. Rabbit hutches are piled up outside a pet shop, several sofas peek out of a furniture store and a couple are enjoying a fry up at a greasy spoon across the road.



But there is a hidden gem among these standard array of shops and it has got residents excited.

For those who have bemoaned the rise in charity shops and for the council, which is thinking up a strategy to make Kings Heath "more like Moseley" with a better class of shop, they may be pleasantly surprised that there is hope on the horizon.

Behind some smart iron gates and through a little alleyway off York Road lies Kitchen Garden Cafe - an enterprise set up by two passionate environmentalists keen to add something to this diverse community.

"People seek us out when they come in and tell us this is exactly what Kings Heath needs," says owner Brett Rehling, who gave up his job as an IT manager for Cadbury's to create this cafe and garden shop.

"Within two weeks of opening we were getting 60 to 70 covers and that was without a single bit of advertising. The great thing about Kings Heath and Moseley is that people speak to each other and our business has come from word of mouth," he adds.

Brett, who met his wife Tracey Fletcher while volunteering at Birmingham Friends of the Earth, greets me with a wide smile, keen to show off the huge renovation of this former hardware shop.

He now works at the cafe full time, with Tracey chipping in whenever possible in between working for WWF and caring for their two-year-old son, Sacha.

"This was the old hardware store," he says pointing at the shiny new kitchen where a cheery chef is busy dishing out breakfasts. "And this was an old greenhouse full of rubbish," he says as we walk among the wooden tables. "And over here was Kings Heath's former blacksmiths. When we came, it had been used as a saw mill and was knee deep in sawdust."

It is clear the couple's passion to make such a venture work is reflected in the way they have renovated this old building.

The original brick walls and Victorian windows have been restored, and blue bricks from the former blacksmith's have been used to create a Mediterranean style patio and courtyard.

Chunky wooden tables have been created from scaffolding boards and the chairs and cabinets have been bought from local auctions.

Work from local artists adorn the walls and in the corner a mum and toddler enjoy a quiet moment in the specially created children's play area.

As Brett shows off the building work, Tracey bounds in, keen to explain why the pair decided to embark on this ambitious project.

Both are so enthused, it is soon clear their business is more about creating a sustainable community than it is about making money.

"We want it to be attractive to everyone," says Tracey. "It is a cool place for young people and a nice environment for families."

"When you go to Spain you get restaurants which are like meeting places for families, there is a real mixed bunch of people," Brett chips in.

"Now we have got a child we know what people with young children want - they want to go somewhere other than a Wacky Warehouse," adds Tracey.

The pair are desperate to move away from the chunky cardigan, sandal wearing image an organic cafe might attract and hope the diverse community of Kings Heath will find something here for them.

"It would be the end of the world if the fact we were organic meant we only attracted posh, rich people," says Tracey.

"The cafe dispels two common misconceptions: first, that organic food is an exclusive, over-priced niche market' and second, that organic is boring, all lentil loaves and curd cheese. We wanted to give our customers the opportunity to experience the creativity that is possible with organic, seasonal and local food, at prices they can afford."

But the pair find it difficult to cover costs and overheads without pushing up their prices.

"We are not breaking even yet, and people seem surprised when we tell them that," Tracey explains.

"But we are confident we will get there," Brett adds, as he sets out a vision for evening events from cabaret acts to cheese and wine tasting.

"We are not in the city centre or in Brighton or London - this is Kings Heath and people are not going to spend a lot on lunch. So we have to be very resourceful," he adds.

It is 11am and the cafe is gearing up for what they hope will be a busy lunch. An aroma of tomato soup and marrow fritters flows from the kitchen while a chef's assistant slices thick chunks of fresh organic bread.

The marrow has been taken off a plant grown in the garden, where a variety of plants from olive trees to courgettes are up for sale.

"I always liked food and being a host.

"We used to have a lot of parties, and so we were used to doing it for nothing," says Brett as he explains what made him give up his job for this new competitive world of hospitality.

For Tracey, it was a desire to do more for her local community which prompted the move.

"I started working for WWF eight-and-a-half years ago, which was really fulfilling, but for the last few years it has not been enough for me - I wanted to do something really practical.

"We were doing a regional strategy for WWF, but I wanted to look at what is actually happening in the community - getting real results. I had lots of ambition to have a real sustainable community, have a central meeting point where people can come and relax."

As well as the cafe, the couple have created a small shop and deli selling local foods, such as Fowlers' cheese from Warwickshire and yoghurt from the Dairy House in Herefordshire.

There is also an array of organic veg from a Malvern farm, packs of Tyrrells Crisps, ice-cream from September Dairies in Herefordshire and Frank's hand-made biscuits, also from Herefordshire.

Tracey coaxes me into the garden shop, where everything related to organics can be found.

"I was just fed up of going into garden centres and seeing such a pathetic section on organic gardening," she says.

Everything from bird boxes to organic fertilisers can be found, with both organic and non organic plants scattered around the entrance.

"We wanted to link growing and eating organically," she says.

"We are going to have an apple day soon and next year we hope to stock lots of seeds for the allotment holders around here," she adds.

Their vision had been to find a venue where they could create a community one stop shop, a space for a creche, restaurant and, at one stage, a launderette.

To some it may seem like another, if not attractive looking, cafe. But to them it is a lifestyle they want to share with the rest of Kings Heath.

"We want it to be a community place. In some areas mums meet up in these grim community centres because there is no where else to go," says Tracey. "I hope we have created somewhere attractive for all sorts of people within the community."

Copyright 2006 Birmingham Post & Mail Ltd.
Determina Announces Immediate Availability of Protection from Critical Microsoft Zero-Day Vulnerability. Check it out:
REDWOOD CITY, Calif. --(Business Wire)-- Determina(R) Inc. today announced that it is making a free VPS Shield available for the latest Microsoft zero-day vulnerability announced on September 28, 2006. This vulnerability does not have a vendor patch available, potentially exposing customers to attacks that exploit this zero-day vulnerability.



The previous VPS Shield that Determina produced for the WMF vulnerability was a huge success. Thousands of individuals and enterprises downloaded and deployed the Shield, which can be installed directly onto an affected system without any modifications to critical Windows files, configuration, or functionality. Once the patch is available and the user deploys it on their system, Determina VPS automatically detects the patch and no longer applies the Shield. Determina intends to continue to deliver free shields when there are critical zero-day outbreaks for which there are no patches available.

Determina customers who have the Vulnerability Protection Suite (VPS) are not threatened by these vulnerabilities and have true "zero-day" threat protection from any attacks.

Third-party patches -- yes, there is a difference

Unlike other so called "third-party patches" available from other vendors and researchers, Determina's Shields do not modify any system files or configuration of a system, and do not disable any critical system functionality on the affected system. In some cases, "patches" from other vendors can result in permanent modification to the system, making it hard or impossible to revert back to the original system configuration when the "patch" is removed.

Determina's Shields are also based on the vulnerability itself, and not on any specific attack vector. Therefore, any malware that utilizes these vulnerabilities to infect a system will be stopped, even if the attacker changes the attack. Unlike other attack-oriented security products from other vendors, Determina VPS is the only system that provides customers with true "vulnerability protection" that directly fixes the vulnerability in the code itself.

"Users remain vulnerable to these zero-day vulnerabilities until Microsoft releases a patch. Today's anti-virus and anti-spyware products are already known to be ineffective in preventing attackers from compromising systems using "drive-by" and other techniques -- the signatures simply cannot keep up with the large number of malware variants," said Sandy Wilbourn, VP of Engineering and Customer Support, Determina.

Free downloadable fix available

As reported in a Sept. 28, 2006 Determina Security Advisory, a remote code execution vulnerability exists in the Internet Explorer WebViewFolderIcon ActiveX control that could allow remote attackers to hijack an affected system to execute malicious code or install spyware. Determina's VPS Memory Firewall, by default, protects users against code execution that may result from exploitation of the memory corruption based vulnerabilities reported in this advisory. The full advisory is available at http://www.determina.com/security_center/security_advisories/ securityadvisory_0day_09282.asp. (Due to its length, this URL may need to be copied/pasted into your Internet browser's address field. Remove the extra space if one exists.)

Determina has also released a free, downloadable Shield to the general public. This standalone Shield for Internet Explorer will prevent this critical vulnerability from being exploited until Microsoft is able to issue a patch. Desktop users without proactive protection against vulnerability exploits may consider installing this Shield if they believe they might have exposure to web-based attacks.

The Shield can be downloaded from Determina's Security Research website at http://www.determina.com/security.research/. The Shield applies to all currently known affected versions of Windows. The Shield fixes the flawed code in memory when a vulnerable version of the ActiveX control in Internet Explorer is running, without affecting the installation of the web browser on disk or disabling any browser functionality. It should also not interfere with the installation of a Microsoft patch when one becomes available.

Determina Vulnerability Protection Suite (VPS): Real-Time Vulnerability Protection

Determina VPS' unique ability to protect against 100 percent of critical Windows vulnerabilities has earned positive reviews in leading publications, including InfoWorld, PC Magazine, and Secure Enterprise. The company also received the InfoWorld 2005 Innovators Award for its pioneer work in mitigating critical Windows vulnerabilities.

Unlike attack-oriented security technologies, vulnerability protection offers customers the ability to comprehensively address the security and operational issues around security and patching. The Determina VPS suite offers comprehensive vulnerability protection though its two products: Memory Firewall(TM), which provides proactive, zero-day protection for the most dangerous class of vulnerabilities, and LiveShield(TM), which provides precise vulnerability protection in real-time.

Further product information is available at www.determina.com, and requests for evaluation of Determina VPS may be made at www.determina.com/sales/request_info.html.

About Determina

Determina(R) is a leading provider of proactive host intrusion prevention solutions (HIPS) for servers and desktops based on breakthrough technology developed at M.I.T. Determina Vulnerability Protection Suite(TM) (VPS(TM)) is the only solution to address the root cause of attacks -- the software vulnerabilities themselves. Through this unique approach, it is the only solution for continuous protection from the latest worms, malicious code, and directed attacks, eliminating the need for reactive security patching. VPS consists of two products providing complimentary vulnerability coverage: Memory Firewall(R), which provides proactive, zero-day protection for the most dangerous class of vulnerabilities without the need for updates, and LiveShield(R), which provides precise vulnerability protection in real-time.

Determina is headquartered in Redwood City, CA with development offices in Cambridge, MA. Determina VPS has been rapidly and broadly deployed by enterprise customers in industries demanding the highest level of security and availability.

Oracle joins Itanium Alliance.

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Oracle joins Itanium Alliance.. Check it out:
(www.internetnews.com Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)
SAN FRANCISCO -- Ten years ago, Unix was all about proprietary chipsets and Unix flavors. Since then, HP, SGI and IBM have ditched their homegrown chips and Unix in favor of the Itanium processor from Intel and Linux.

This migration has picked up steam, with Itanium now accounting for 11.2% of all non-x86 server revenue, according to IDC.

Here at the Intel Developer Forum, the Itanium Solutions Alliance (ISA) held its first Itanium Solutions Summit this week to discuss the growth of Itanium 2-based solutions. There are now 10,000 Itanium applications, doubling the number in the past year.



The newest supporter of the ISA is Oracle . The database software giant announced it will work with the Alliance to certify Oracle software on Itanium platforms. Oracle said it will certify the next major releases of its database and Oracle Fusion middleware across a range of operating systems for Itanium.

For applications that haven't made the move, Transitive has announced QuickTransit, which lets applications native to different operating systems run on Itanium-based systems. The demo at the show featured Solaris applications running natively on an Itanium-based computer.

With Itanium sales in the first half of 2005 up 40 percent over the first half of 2005, Itanium appears to be finding a home after a bumpy start. That was due to misperceptions of what the Itanium was for, said ISA members.

"There was this misconception that the Itanium would be a volume chip and would displace x86 CPUs and that's not the case," said Stephen Howard, director of Enterprise Solution Alliances at HP .

HP recently refreshed its Itanium server offerings with the new dual core Itanium2 9000 chips, which came out in July .

"Although mission critical computing doesn't put out the volume of mass market CPUs, mission critical servers make up more than half the revenue for the total market," added Tony DeVarco, senior manager for global technology partnerships at SGI .

Itanium is finding a home with HP customers who bought SuperDome servers as well as old DEC Alpha customers, a legacy platform that HP inherited with its acquisition of Compaq. SGI, which recently expanded its offerings to include Intel Xeon-based systems, also has a strong Itanium portfolio for customers of its older MIPS-based Origin servers

As part of this migration, HP and SGI offered up parts of their respective Unixes, HP-UX and IRIX, to the open source community. This included real-time support, SGI's XFS file system and numerous other tools and core Unix services.

Internet.com Corp.

Copyright 2003 Jupitermedia Corp. All rights reserved.
Republication and redistribution of Jupitermeida Corp. content is
Expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Jupitermedia
Corp.. Jupitermedia Corp., shall not be liable for any errors
or delays in the Content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Copyright 2006 Jupitermedia Corp.
Qenos Selects UNIPOL APC+(TM) for Its Alkatuff Plant. Check it out:
HOUSTON --(Business Wire)-- Qenos Pty Ltd has selected Univation Technologies' Advanced Process Control software (APC+) for use at its Alkatuff plant in Botany, Sydney, Australia.

APC+, a tool specifically engineered for the UNIPOL(R) PE Process, has been proven to improve plant performance by limiting process variability, reducing unplanned downtime, and increasing aim-grade production while maximizing throughput.



"We selected APC+ for implementation in our UNIPOL PE reactor because it's a cost-effective way to significantly improve plant performance while working within our already-existing facility constraints. We expect to start realizing immediate payback when the software becomes operational sometime in the first quarter 2007," said Rod Campbell, Qenos Product Technology Manager.

Univation APC+ software runs on a Microsoft(R) Windows platform for easy integration into already-existing third-party technologies and enterprise resource planning systems. Having already been implemented at many other UNIPOL commercial operations worldwide, the software has been shown to increase production rates by as much as 9%, improve transition efficiency by as much as 35%, and raise on-stream time by up to 2 percentage points. These improvements can translate into millions of dollars in savings yearly.

The Alkatuff plant produces 120 kta of primarily LLDPE for domestic Australian consumption and has been operational since 1992.

Univation Technologies, LLC is the world leader in licensing gas phase polyethylene technology. Univation has comprehensive technology programs focused on the UNIPOL(R) PE gas-phase process, conventional catalysts (UCAT(R) catalysts), and metallocene catalysts (XCAT(R) catalysts and PRODIGY(R) catalysts).

Visit Univation's website for more information at www.univation.com.
Intel layoffs to hit 159 Folsom, Calif., workers. Check it out:
(Sacramento Bee, The (CA) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 28--Intel Corp. will lay off 159 workers from its Folsom campus over the next several months, a fraction of roughly 7,000 employees worldwide expected to be let go in the first phase of a major restructuring the company announced last month.



With this wave of layoffs, Intel has accomplished about 70 percent of its goal of paring more than 10,000 people from its global work force by the middle of 2007, said Intel spokeswoman Teri Munger.

Locally, the largest contingent of laid-off workers, 117, comes from Intel's Folsom-based information technology department, which handles the company's internal network operations.

In a letter sent to Folsom and Sacramento County officials Wednesday, Intel human resources manager Matthew Smith said the company has already started informing workers of their fate, but the bulk of the cuts will come Oct. 26.

It's not clear if most of the job cuts in Folsom will come during this phase, or in the first half of 2007, when the remainder of the job reductions are planned.

In the letter, Smith told government officials that the workers can volunteer for immediate separation from the company or look for other work at Intel. But it's uncertain how successful those job searches would be given the company's downsizing efforts.

Those who depart immediately will receive two months of salary, plus additional weeks based on years of service. They also will receive a lump sum to pay for four months of health coverage.

Workers who elect to search for other Intel jobs can receive two months of salary and benefits during their job hunt. If they don't find work in two months, they will be terminated and receive additional weeks of pay based on years of service.

Those positions -- which range from hourly workers to management -- pay between $45,000 and $120,000 a year, said Peter Finn, who left Intel in August to form his own IT consulting firm, Gold Rush Media.

Finn said he expected many of the workers would have to leave the region to find comparable work. "There's really only 10 or 15 decent (IT) jobs that open up here every month," he said. "One of the reasons I left Intel early is that I didn't want to be in a pool competing for a finite number of jobs."

Oleg Kaganovich, chief executive of the Sacramento Area Regional Technology Alliance, said he expected the most skilled Intel workers will be able to land jobs in the area.

"There are a lot of companies that are always looking for good people," he said. "If they see someone they can add to their staff that will bring immediate value, there's no reason not to bring them on board."

While IT operations take the biggest hit, others are affected, too.

Folsom's digital enterprise group will shed 31 jobs between now and October 2007. Its technology and manufacturing group will cut 10 jobs late next month. Intel Capital, which invests in technology companies, will cut one job on Oct. 13.

The number of cuts is smaller than some had anticipated after Intel's announcement during the summer that it planned to trim 10 percent of its worldwide work force as it sought to reverse disappointing financial results and fight off challenges from Silicon Valley rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc.

"Any reduction is an important issue, and we feel for the workers and their families," said Joe Luchi, Folsom's economic development director. "Fortunately the number isn't bigger."

While the most recent cuts are the largest Intel has announced, they aren't the only jobs that have been eliminated from Folsom this year.

In July the company laid off 1,000 managers worldwide including an estimated 77 in Folsom. In late June it sold a division that makes chips for cellular phones to Marvell Technology Group of Santa Clara for $600 million. Intel would not disclose the number of Folsom employees in that unit, but it's estimated to be more than 100. Marvell was expected to keep the majority of those workers in a new office it is opening in the region.

And earlier this month it sold a piece of its optical networking division that employed 125 workers, including an undisclosed number in Folsom.

To see more of The Sacramento Bee, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.sacbee.com.

Copyright (c) 2006, The Sacramento Bee, Calif.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
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Bank targets Hispanic customers

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Bank targets Hispanic customers. Check it out:
(High Point Enterprise (NC) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 29--ASHEBORO -- "Bienvenidos al Primero Banco de Asheboro" is what customers may hear when First Bank's first Hispanic branch opens.

First Bank Executive Vice President Anna Hollers is in charge of planning the new bank. Hollers said bank officials are converting documentation and procedures into Spanish and finding the right people to place in positions. The Hispanic bank will be the first in Asheboro and the second in the state. People's Bank opened the first all-Spanish speaking branch in Charlotte. First Bank also is slated to open another Hispanic branch in Montgomery County at the same time as the Asheboro branch.



"We've been talking about it all this year," Hollers said. The new branch will be staffed by people who speak Spanish. Those employed will be able to speak English as well. Randolph Community College Small Business Center Director Victor Dau said the bank is an ideal opportunity not just for the Hispanic community, but for everyone.

"We all need to work together. We are one community with smaller units," Dau said.

According to Hollers, the growth of the Latino/Hispanic population in recent years will continue and prompted First Bank to open the new branches.

"The bank will serve the Hispanic population and perhaps make them more 'bankable,'" Dau said, adding the community can use the banking services and help Hispanic businesses financially. "We felt it would be a natural fit. There is already (Hispanic) industry and community in the area," Hollers said.

The bank will be on N. Fayetteville Street in Asheboro in an existing building. There are Hispanic tiendas, or stores, and churches near the location. Educational and cultural training seminars will be provided to First Bank staff prior to the bank's opening, which will be sometime at the end of this year.

To see more of the High Point Enterprise, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.hpe.com.

Copyright (c) 2006, High Point Enterprise, N.C.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
Mingkwanwill be hard act to follow: MCOT shares down 28.75% since coup. Check it out:
(Bangkok Post (Thailand) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 29--The successor to Mingkwan Saengsuwan, the former president of the SET-listed broadcaster MCOT Plc, will be under pressure to restore investor and employee confidence in the company, analysts say.



Mr Mingkwan and the MCOT board members announced their resignations on Tuesday. They acted in order to accept responsibility for the airing of a state of emergency declaration by former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra on MCOT's Channel 9, hours before he was ousted by the military on Sept 19.

On Tuesday, MCOT shares on the Stock Exchange of Thailand dropped 4.3 percent to 33.50 baht, as reports of the resignations spread. They plunged a further 11.9 percent on Wednesday before steadying yesterday to close unchanged at 29.50 baht, in trade worth 523.5 million baht. The shares had been at 40 baht the day of the coup and had traded in a range of 37.75 to 40.50 baht since the start of August.

The analysts said it was clear that in investors' minds, Mr Mingkwan had a strong influence over MCOT.

He left Toyota (Thailand) in 2002 to take the top position at the state-run organisation, where he proceeded to make dramatic and successful changes.

In Mr Mingkwan's first four-year term (2002-05), he successfully privatised MCOT, listing it on the stock exchange in late 2004. He also transformed Channel 9 into Modern 9 TV, as well as adopting a niche market strategy for a knowledge-based society.

Television revenue increased by 145 percent and radio revenue by 71 percent. At the same time, the company's total revenue grew by 86 percent and net profit by 48 percent.

An analyst from SCB Securities said Mr Mingkwan was unlikely to return to his job in the future as MCOT was the only channel that had broadcast Mr Thaksin's announcement on the night of the coup.

They agreed that his resignation would have a short-term impact on the company and may affect its business strategy. However, thanks to its strong business foundations, MCOT would not suffer in the long run.

"In the long term, if the new president of MCOT continues with existing business policy, there will be no effects," an analyst at KGI Securities said in a report.

An analyst at Sicco Securities Plc said Mr Mingkwan had a strong leadership image at MCOT and his successor would have to work hard to make the same impression. But the new president should not throw away the current business model laid down by Mr Mingkwan, because it worked well, said analysts.

Patchara Sarapimpa, the president of the state enterprise labour union of MCOT, accepted that the former president's working performance was outstanding. The successor was expected to be as good as Mr Mingkwan.

"As employees, we will not be involved in the selection process of the new president. But we would love to see that our leader is a competent and honest person. As a communication organisation, good communication is important because we have a responsibility to the public," said Mr Patchara.

He explained it would likely take two or three months to appoint a new president.

As a state enterprise under the Office of the Prime Minister, the newly appointed board will be in charge of the selection process, unfortunately, it has to wait until the country has an interim government.

Wasin Teyateeti, president of Media Intelligence Co, a media agency, was still wondering whether the new president would be able to run MCOT as well as Mr Mingkwan. Channel 9 had become more popular among audiences thanks to his skilful management, he added.

Analysts were also concerned that the station's revenue would drop in line with advertising spending by government departments, a major source of MCOT's revenue for years, accounting for 30-35 percent of total revenue.

Analysts said the interim government was unlikely to spend much on advertising.

According to Nielsen Media Research, among the six free TV stations, government departments spent the most advertising money through Channel 9, at 547 million baht in the first eight months of the year, followed by Channel 5 at 339 million and Channel 11 at 219 million baht.

To see more of the Bangkok Post, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.bangkokpost.com.

Copyright (c) 2006, Bangkok Post, Thailand
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
CAT bid procedure questioned: Relaxed terms could favour Huawei. Check it out:
(Bangkok Post (Thailand) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 29--CAT Telecom has called bids for three transmission infrastructure projects worth a total of 3.3 billion baht without setting conditions of past performance.

A source at the state enterprise said CAT had hastily sold terms of reference documents to bidders on Wednesday for fibre-optic networks linking all regions of the country and worth 2.2 billion baht, an automatic switching optical network worth 606 million, and a next-generation network (NGN) project worth 500 million baht.



The documents did not call for past performance records, such as in SDH transmission and fibre-optic projects, as a requirement for bidders, which has been standard procedure in the past.

Some bidders interpreted the move as an attempt by CAT to allow the Chinese telecom giant Huawei to enter the bids.

Huawei was the only bidder that did not have SDH (synchronous digital hierarchy) or fibre-optic project experience in Thailand, the source said.

The Chinese company last year won the contract to build a nationwide CDMA mobile phone network for CAT, involving 1,600 base stations, with a bid of 7.2 billion baht bid through an electronic auction.

Rival bidders at the time questioned the technical specifications and low price, which was almost half the amount quoted in earlier bids that were later annulled.

The source said that if Huawei won new bids by cutting prices, or if the terms was later amended to avoid fines for late completion, it would only damage CAT's reputation further.

Hutchison CAT Multi Media, the 75:25 joint venture of Hong Kong's Hutchison Telecom and CAT Telecom that provides the Hutch mobile-phone service, is currently being investigated by the Office of the Auditor-General.

Another source said that CAT's new board, chaired by Kraisorn Pornsuthee, the permanent secretary of the Information and Communications Technology Ministry, had agreed to waive fines for Huawei's late delivery of 800 base stations in Phase 1 of the CDMA project.

The contract terms allow CAT to fine the company 90 million baht a day for late delivery.

Huawei delivered 800 base stations 42 days after the Jan 26, 2006 deadline. It cited flooding in several northern provinces, as well as unrest in the South as reasons. CAT board members reportedly disagree over whether Huawei should be fined. However, the latest meeting concluded not to impose fines, the source said.

The source said that Huawei had established strong connections with the former Thaksin government because it had constructed Advanced Info Service's mobile-phone prepaid-service network. It also offered to create the network first and bill later in accordance with the number of users.

To see more of the Bangkok Post, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.bangkokpost.com.

Copyright (c) 2006, Bangkok Post, Thailand
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
Australian independent forges new link with Indonesia. Check it out:
(Lloyds List Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) AN ALLIANCE between two privately owned freight forwarders for door-to-door services between Australia and Indonesia has been welcomed by shipowning, port and rail companies.

Independent Australian enterprise Northline has signed a memorandum of understanding with Mitra Intertrans Forwarding, a subsidiary of Pelayaran Meratus (Meratus Line) in Surabaya.

The alliance hopes to create a A$30m ($20m) market for end-to-end freight forwarding using Darwin and Surabaya as the main ports which will eventually take in points further north in Asia.

It aims to carry project cargo for the mining and energy sectors northward and provide just-in-time transport for Indonesian manufactured exports south.

Northline chief operating officer Phillip Taylor said: 'Many of our existing clients require an end-to-end service throughout Asia, so now Northline can provide that single-supplier service.

'Our focus will be on expediting the freight process between Indonesia and Darwin, then using our national freight network to transport goods throughout Australia.

'This overrides the delays and warehousing costs of shipping through Sydney or Melbourne.'

Though a test run has not been made, Northline head of strategic development Paul Booth told Lloyd's List that times posted by other companies doing a similar job indicated a saving of 10-14 days.

Port of Darwin trade development manager Garry Scanlan said the port was very happy with the development and would do anything it could to help it succeed.

Shipowner Swire, the only other line that serves Darwin, would not comment until meeting the alliance.

Shipping services from southeast Asia to Darwin now take in Singapore (Swire) or Dili (Perkins). Sources familiar with the deal said Meratus was unlikely to be able to spare its own container and breakbulk tonnage due to weight of work on its existing routes.



'We have already started giving quotes and we are talking to a shipping line at the moment about frequency of service,' Mr Booth said.

'A lot of it is dependent on volume coming through. As volumes increase we hope to gain the frequency and more of a direct service between Darwin and Surabaya.'

Though Northline recently retreated from rail, now carrying only 10% of its goods by train, rail company Freight- Link was keen to see the alliance succeed.

Freightlink chief executive John Fullerton said the partners should be congratulated on being the first to make this long-talked about move.

Mr Booth said: 'We have met with FreightLink... and been assured that we will be offered some good rates for full container load cargo straight through on the rail.'

Northline said it expected opportunities for the international freight forwarding alliance to include:

- A mining and resources supply base in Darwin to service mines in Indonesia and beyond.

- A reliable import hub for products manufactured in Indonesia, with onward distribution to all Australian markets on a 'just in time' basis.

- Reverse logistics, especially for equipment maintenance and repairs from Indonesian mines.

Northline is completing construction of a A$4m, 4,000 sq m distribution centre in Darwin in addition to its existing 10,000 sq m of contract logistics warehousing.

Copyright 2006 Informa Martime Trade and Transport
Foundation investors speak on sentencing of execs: Ex-president, ex-counsel were convicted of fraud. Check it out:
(Tribune, The (Mesa, AZ) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 29--The investors of the bankrupt Baptist Foundation of Arizona all suffered financial losses, but on Thursday, they were divided by the sentiments they had for the men convicted of defrauding them.



The victims of the scandal came from all over Arizona to a downtown Phoenix auditorium to tell Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Kenneth Fields of the impact the loss had on their lives and to recommend a sentence for William Crotts, the foundation's former president, and Thomas Grabinski, its former general counsel.

"These men have damaged a lot of lives and ruined a lot of lives," said Patricia Srader of Sonoita, who invested more than $1 million into the foundation.

Srader and her husband eventually got back 70 percent of their loss, as did most of the 13,000 investors who lost an estimated $500 million to $600 million when the foundation collapsed in November 1999.

Crotts, 61, and Grabinski, 46, sat at the front of the auditorium, where about 100 investors -- most of them elderly--could see the live feed of the proceedings on three giant screens suspended from the ceiling.

Mesa resident Clara Jo Ziervogel, a former foundation employee who was fired, said she lost a nominal amount of money, but she once believed in the organization and had persuaded friends and family to invest significant amounts.

"I have had to overcome a significant amount of guilt," Ziervogel said.

But Barbara Secrest, a friend of the defendants who invested about $50,000 in the foundation, said it would be a waste of taxpayer money to incarcerate the men, who are facing prison terms of six to 86 years.

"We feel we're a victim of the state of Arizona," she said.

She believes that if the state hadn't shut down the organization, then all of investors would have all of their money today.

By lunch recess, 21 of the 34 investors -- including family members of the defendants -- had taken the podium.

The nonprofit Baptist Foundation of Arizona was founded in 1948 to raise money for Southern Baptist causes, such as building churches.

Prosecutor Donald Conrad alleged in court that the group's sales pitch was based on religious faith, and investors were told the nonprofit was solvent, even though Crotts and Grabinski knew it was losing millions of dollars.

In July, a jury found each man guilty of three counts of fraud and one count of knowingly conducting an illegal enterprise, but acquitted each of 23 counts of theft.

Fields is expected to impose sentences today.

Copyright (c) 2006, The Tribune, Mesa, Ariz.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
For reprints, email tmsreprints@permissionsgroup.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA.
OnLine Distribution and Symbol Technologies celebrate four years of partnership. Check it out:
(Al Bawaba Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Symbol Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:SBL), the enterprise mobility company, and its value added networking distributor, Online Distribution, have registered substantial business success in the region and will continue to work together to offer end to end networking solutions across the Middle East.



The Symbol distributorship agreement enables Online to be a Symbol channel partner that qualifies to provide complete value-added services to resellers. These services include finance, logistics, sales, marketing, configuration, technical support and professional services in support of Symbol products.

"We are proud of what we have achieved with Online Distribution in the region over the past four years," said Tarek Hassaniyeh, sales manager, Symbol Technologies Middle East and Africa. "This demonstrates our shared commitment to improving our partner relationships, and to creating a market opportunity through partner collaboration. We believe in a value driven channel strategy and Online Distribution shares our corporate vision." As a result of a successful partnership in Europe, Middle East and Africa, Symbol extended the agreement to cover the Indian Sub-Continent (ISC) countries of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal in March this year.

"The relationship with Symbol is a critical part of Onlines future," explained Keith G Rich, managing director, Online Distribution. "Symbol is the brand leader in enterprise mobility, and we look forward to leveraging their experience and skills in delivering world class solutions to our resellers." About Online Distribution: OnLine Distribution Ltd. is a value-added distributor for data networking products and services covering the Middle East, Western Asia and North Africa. It is a subsidiary of Datatec, an international networking and IT services group.

Based in the Jebel Ali Free Trade Zone of Dubai, the company has stocking locations and offices in both Jebel Ali and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. It provides its partners with technical expertise, network design solutions, logistics and sales support for all its vendors, as well as their large inventory of products.

About Symbol: Symbol Technologies, Inc., The Enterprise Mobility Company, is a recognized worldwide leader in enterprise mobility, delivering products and solutions that capture, move and manage information in real time to and from the point of business activity. Symbol enterprise mobility solutions integrate advanced data capture products, radio frequency identification technology, mobile computing platforms, wireless infrastructure, mobility software and world-class services programs under the Symbol Enterprise Mobility Services brand. Symbol enterprise mobility products and solutions are proven to increase workforce productivity, reduce operating costs, drive operational efficiencies and realize competitive advantages for the world's leading companies.

2006 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

Copyright 2006 Al-Bawaba.com, Inc.
Satyam stages first cross-border country outage and business continuity operation in Singapore. Check it out:
(Al Bawaba Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Satyam Computer Services Ltd. (NYSE:SAY), the leading global consulting and information technology services company, has completed what is believed to be a first-of-its-kind, cross-border country outage recovery.



Satyam simulated a nationwide outage in India, and revived business operations from its Global Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Center in Singapore. The exercise showcased Satyams ability to ensure seamless business continuity for its customers, as well as its disaster recovery capabilities. It also highlighted the complex processes involved in an event of such magnitude.

On the morning of September 25, Satyam initiated a three-day mock drill, a simulation of a national disaster that disrupted Satyams business. Network control and command resumed almost instantaneously from Satyams Global Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery site in Singapore.

Additionally, in less than 24 hours, Satyam deployed more than 30 mission-critical engineers to Singapore. The entire exercise was facilitated by the Singaporean Government, which provided pre-approved employment passes for the engineers who were flown in on Singapore Airlines.

"This landmark event is further proof of Satyams commitment to our global customers and their business continuity," said B. Ramalinga Raju, Satyams founder and chairman, who witnessed the drill from Singapore. "It ensures that their businesses will never stop for any issues related to the services that Satyam, as an organisation is providing to them." Raju added: "This initiative and investment are extremely strategic for Satyam. Our demonstration today enables the organisation to leverage the Singapore facility as a new, global offshoring centre outside India. It also places Singapore in an important position with respect to our global operations. We are deeply grateful for the support shown by the Singapore authorities over the last few years to enable this expansion." Upon arriving at the Global Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Centre (in the Overseas Union Bank Centre) in downtown Singapore, Satyams Hyderabad-based business continuity team connected to the customers network and commenced business via an enhanced bandwidth. The engineers also ensured Satyams capabilities to monitor its network, network security, and exchange and enterprise applications servers. They also assured immediate availability of a secondary monitoring capability, availability of a global help desk, replication of mission-critical associates email boxes, automatic forwarding of transactions to the new server, and availability of business data.

Satyams Global Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Centre, the only facility of its kind outside India, is validated by the Disaster Recovery Institute of Asia, and enables replication between servers in Hyderabad and Singapore. Data stored within both servers is synchronised every four hours.

"We are very pleased with the support and proactive engagement of the Singaporean government," said Virender Aggarwal, senior vice president and director at Satyam.

"The Economic Development Board, especially, has been a driving force and constant source of support. Singapore is ideally positioned to benefit from the shift we perceive will take place in the back offices of major global multinational and financial corporations, and Satyam is determined to support and benefit from that shift." As Asia Pacific gains momentum as the global innovation hub in the coming years and hence becomes a critical component and one of the main focus areas in Satyams global growth plan, Singapore gains strategic value. Its quality infrastructure, economic and political stability and security make it an ideal hub that can double as a secondary command and control centre for controlling global network operations and ensuring that Satyams customers are serviced seamlessly, in case of business disruption.

About Satyam Computer ServicesSatyam Computer Services Ltd. (NYSE: SAY) is a global IT consulting and services provider, offering a range of expertise aimed at helping customers reengineer and reinvent their businesses to compete successfully in an ever-changing marketplace. More than 28,000* highly skilled professionals in Satyam work onsite, offsite, offshore, and near shore, to provide customized IT solutions for companies in several industries. Satyams ideas and products have resulted in technology-intensive transformations that have met the most stringent international quality standards. Satyam has Development Centers in the USA, the UK, the UAE, Canada, Hungary, Malaysia, Singapore, India, China, Japan, and Australia. These centers serve 469* global companies, of which 156* are Fortune Global 500 and Fortune US 500 corporations. Satyams presence spans 53 countries, across six continents.

*As of March 31, 2006 2006 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

Copyright 2006 Al-Bawaba.com, Inc.

TMCnet's SIP Week in Review

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TMCnet's SIP Week in Review. Check it out:
September is coming to an end, but no need to be sad. October is inching closer, and you know what that means-- time for IT Expo West! INTERNET TELEPHONY Conference & Expo, WEST, the leading VoIP Expo, will be held October 10-13, 2006, in San Diego- this is an event you won't want to miss.


 
This week in SIP news, Patton Electronics and Corp. announced SIPxNano, a new IP-PBX (News - Alert) for businesses with fewer than 30 extensions and designed to bring enterprise quality SIP-based VoIP to SMBs.
 
According to a report by TMCnet's Patrick Barnard, the new services now available via the SIPxNano are a combination of "Patton's NanoServ ultra-compact server technology with a tailored version of Pingtel's (News - Alert) SIPxchange ECS software."
 
CounterPath, provider of SIP-based telephony software solutions, was highlighted this week in an article by TMCnet's Mae Kowalke. Mae spoke with Donovan Jones, the company's President and Chief Operations Officer about Counterpath's happenings over this past year. The conversation covered topics like their headquarters move, their marketing focus shift, recent contracts, and even discussed X-Lite, the company's free SIP softphone. This is what Jones had to say about X-Lite during the conversation: 
 
"This phone is what we consider to be a feature core version because it doesn’t have the ability to brand the interface in terms of changing the look and feel."
 
To read more about what Counterpath is working on and has accomplished CLICK here for the full article.
 
TMC President and Editor-in-Chief Rich Tehrani wrote an interesting article on SIP this week titled, "Quality SIP Trunking Comes to VoIP" In the article, Rich discusses SIP trunking's move to VoIP and details how SIP has changed telephony and added flexibility for IP based operations across the world.
 
Commenting on the enhancements and improvements being made in the SIP trunking world, Rich wrote:
 
"But are we at the point where businesses should start adopting SIP? According to Conrad Allenbach and Chris Dunk. They have cracked the SIP trunking quality problem. The two work for Bandtel as Channel Manager and President respectively and in a recent meeting about their service were beaming with more enthusiasm than a parent with a newborn baby. Although they didn’t pass out any cigars they were generous about telling me why their platform is so great."
 
To find out more, read the full article here.
 
Other SIP related news was brought to this week by Samsung and Avaya, who announced the completion of interoperability testing for integrated data, voice and security solutions, products and services targeted at mid-sized enterprises. TMCnet's Anuradha Shukla  reported, "The companies have created an intelligent business solution for mid-sized enterprises by combining Samsung's Ubigate iBG and the Avaya (News - Alert) Session Initiation Protocol-based IP telephony infrastructure."
 
Using the new combination, companies are able to gain mobility and utilize messaging applications to deliver "a simple and secure high performance solution to the mid-market."
 
"Implementation of the Ubigate iBG series combines with Avaya SIP Enablement Service and Avaya Communications Manager telephony software will allow businesses to gain competitive advantage and keep costs under control," reported Anuradha.
 
Interactive Intelligence (News - Alert) also made SIP-related news this week when they announced their new IP-based predictive dialer, Interaction Dialer.
 
The solution is for contact centers, teleservices firms and collection operations. TMCnet's Susan Campbell wrote, "Now based on the SIP standard, this latest release of Interaction Dialer can operate in an all-software, all-VoIP environment in order to help reduce costs and simplify management. The release includes an all new SIP gateway called Interaction Gateway (News - Alert) which is an application connecting legacy phone trunks (T1s) to VoIP networks."
 
For more from Interactive Intelligence be sure to visit TMCnet's VoIP Contact Center Channel and Contact Center Research.
 
SIP's not just in the news this week either, check out the latest SIP-related Blogging happening on TMCnet:
 
 
That's all for this week. More next week as IT Expo nears, and SIP news keeps on coming.
 
Want SIP at IT Expo?
Attend the SIP Workshop to see what all the buzz is about!
 
More SIP:
 
-----
 
Stefania Viscusi is an established writer and avid reader. To see more of her articles, please visit Stefania Viscusi’s columnist page.

Economy: American contagion?

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Economy: American contagion?. Check it out:
(Business Asia Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) South Koreas economy is more vulnerable than it appears to a US slowdown

South Koreas relations with the US have been looking increasingly fraught recently, what with differences of opinion over how to handle North Korea, planned changes in military procedures and the difficulties of negotiating a bilateral free-trade agreement. But the prospect of a sharp slowdown in the US economy next year also deserves to be a concern for Seoul, especially since South Korea is in some ways less well equipped to take such an event in its stride than neighbouring Japan, with which it competes directly in many major export sectors.



The Economist Intelligence Unit recently lowered its forecast for US GDP growth in 2007, to 2.1% (from 2.2% in our previous forecast). This will constitute a considerable weakening in US growth compared with our forecast for 2006, when we expect the US economy to expand by an average of 3.4% despite an expected slowdown in the second half of the year.

At first glance, South Korea has little to worry about. In headline terms, the country is becoming less exposed to the US economy. Although the US remains a key market for South Korean exports, it has been overtaken by China and is now only the second-largest buyer of South Korean goods. Over the past five years, the USs share of South Koreas total exports has steadily declined, to 13.6% in mid-2006 from around 21% in 2001. Meanwhile Chinas share has increased, from 12% in 2001 to 21% today. Indeed, perhaps no other countrys export sector has benefited as directly from Chinas rapid GDP growth as has South Koreas. Chinas booming economy, which is generating enormous import demand, therefore insulates South Koreas export sector to some extent from any fluctuations in US demand. As our core forecast scenario envisages China continuing to grow very rapidly next yearby about 10%, after expected growth of almost 11% in 2006there are convincing reasons to believe that South Koreas supposed immunity to a US slowdown ought to continue.

However, the picture is not quite so simple. Although South Korea sells relatively more of its exports to China and less to the US than does Japanand therefore ought to be more resilient to a US slowdownit is fundamentally less able than Japan to withstand any sort of slowdown in external demand, no matter what the source.

There are several reasons for this. The first is that South Korea currently cannot expect domestic demand to take up the slack in the event of a shock to the external sector. For the past three years domestic demand in the country has grown considerably more slowly than GDP, meaning that the economy in essence has relied on exports to make up the difference. This is quite unlike Japan, where the domestic economy is looking more robust than it has done for many years. As a result, the gap between domestic demand growth and GDP growth in Japan is much smaller than in South Korea, implying that exports are less crucial. (Indeed, exports in Japan, though indirectly playing an important role in stimulating the domestic economy, directly account for only around 14% of GDP, compared to well over 40% for South Korea.) In 2007, just as the US slows, Japanese domestic demand is actually forecast to grow slightly more rapidly than headline GDP; thereafter both should grow at almost identical rates until 2010.

SME wobbles

Why does South Koreas domestic sector look more vulnerable than Japans? One of the key reasons is the difference between the small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) sectors in the two countries. Although both countries are better known overseas for high-profile large manufacturers like Hyundai, Samsung Electronics, Toyota and Sony, SMEs play a pivotal role, for example providing the bulk of employment. Yet whereas Japans economic recovery now looks to be filtering through successfully to the SME sector, South Korean SMEs have been less adept at restructuring. For an illustration of the anaemic condition of South Korean SMEs, consider industrial production: in overall terms this has been rising strongly, often at double-digit rates, for the past year, but industrial production by SMEs alone has not matched this performance, with growth generally limping along at 2% year on year or less.

Weakness in the SME sector, in turn, is likely to have a big negative impact on consumer sentimentparticularly given SMEs importance for employment. The latest national consumer sentiment survey, published by the Korea National Statistical Office, shows that confidence declined for the seventh month in a row in August. The uncertain domestic political situation and security fears in the wake of North Koreas missile launches in July are also likely to have damaged sentiment.

Currency divergence

All this would be less worrying if it werent for the fact that there are also clouds over South Koreas export sector. One of the main concerns for South Korean exporters is the decoupling of the won and the yen. South Korea and Japan compete directly in a number of key export sectors, cars and electronics being just two examples. But whereas the two currencies often move somewhat in sync with each other relative to the US dollar, in the past couple of years there has been a divergence in their trajectories, with the won appreciating sharply against the US dollar as the yen has weakened. This, obviously has made it far more difficult for South Korean exporters to compete with their Japanese counterparts on price. So, for example, Hyundai Motor, South Koreas largest carmaker, reported a 37% drop in second-quarter net profit, partly because of strikes that hit production but also because of the stronger won. Japans Toyota, in contrast, reported a 39% rise in net profit.

None of this disastrous just yet, and the severity of South Koreas difficulties should not be overstated. Our core forecast still envisages domestic demand growth of 3.1% next year and GDP growth of just under 4%considerably higher than in Japan, in fact. Moreover, the country is lucky to be able to continue to rely on strong Chinese demand for its exports. However, were China suddenly to experience some economic upheaval that slowed GDP growth sharply and reduced its appetite for imported goods, then the picture would quickly look much gloomier.

Copyright 2006 Economist Intelligence Unit
Mobile Content and Media Expert, D.P. Venkatesh, to Lead Panel at TiE-DC Event ``In the Crystal Ball: Beyond the Ringtones (Future of Media and Wireless)''. Check it out:
VIENNA, Va. --(Business Wire)-- mPortal CEO and Founder, D.P. Venkatesh, will lead a panel of all-stars to examine the space and determine what the mobile and media world might look like in the future, on October 3, from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. at the Sheraton Premier at Tysons Corner. "In the Crystal Ball: Beyond the Ringtones," sponsored by TiE-DC, will assemble executives from Sprint Nextel, Core Capital Partners and other media companies to discuss current and future trends.



With mobile phone penetration reaching two billion people per year, mobile phone technology and its potential have become a hot topic for IT entrepreneurs. But beyond just being cool, how does one make money off of it? And who makes that money? If video killed the radio star, the Internet killed the video star, will wireless kill the Internet star? This is latest in the successful series of forward-looking opportunities for entrepreneurs that examine the unique wireless space: where content is king, distribution is queen, and the interrelationship between the two will provide the keys to the kingdom.

As CEO and Founder of mPortal, a leading enabler of mobile content and applications, Mr. Venkatesh is a well-recognized expert and thought leader on mobile content, wireless operator execution and enhancing the mobile user experience. With more than seventeen years of experience in the telecommunications industry across Wireless, Internet and Media sectors, his roles have varied from executive management to strategic planning and business development.

For more information on or to register for the event, visit: http://guest.cvent.com/EVENTS/Info/Summary.aspx?e=2579da2b-214f-4318- 9804-9efa25e58830 (Due to its length, this URL may need to be copied/pasted into your Internet browser's address field. Remove the extra space if one exists).

About mPortal

mPortal Inc., founded in 2000, enables mobile content and applications for Mobile Network Operators (MNOs), Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs), Content Providers and Enterprises. mPortal's products and services assist its customers to create, launch, manage, and monetize mobile content and applications across multiple mobile devices and networks. As a total solution provider and strategic partner, mPortal eliminates the complexities involved in launching mobile content and applications. mPortal has offices in the US and India and serves a variety of global customers. mPortal's customers include top tier mobile operators, leading MVNOs, content providers, and Fortune 500 enterprise customers such as Alltel, AOL, Disney Mobile, Mobile ESPN, Reliance Infocomm, TV Guide, Verizon Wireless, and XEROX. For more information, please visit www.mportal.com.
Sweden: Business environment at a glance. Check it out:
(EIU Viewswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) COUNTRY VIEW

FROM THE ECONOMIST INTELLIGENCE UNIT

Policy towards private enterprise and competition

2007-08: State's role in the economy will be reduced. Sale of government's stakes in Scandinavian Airlines, Nordea, TeliaSonera and OMX are planned. Product markets (such as healthcare and education) opened up to private-sector competition.



2009-11: Further moves to liberalise areas of the economy under state control. Greater competition between private and public companies to provide local goods and services.

Policy towards foreign investment

2007-08: Increased drive to attract more foreign investment and to prevent the relocation of company headquarters abroad.

2009-11: Sweden will continue to promote itself as an important hub in the dynamic Baltic Sea region.

Foreign trade and exchange controls

2007-08: Reform of EU common agricultural policy (CAP), with agricultural subsidies decoupled from food production. Imports of Chinese textile products to be fully liberalised from 2008.

2009-11: Agricultural protection will continue, but may diminish slightly as a result of reforms to the CAP.

Taxes

2007-08: Skr37bn (US$5bn) package of income tax cuts for low-income earners. Employers' payroll tax to be halved for employees aged 20-25 and abolished for employees aged under 20. Abolition of wealth tax likely. Reform of property tax.

2009-11: Further reform and possible abolition of property tax, to be replaced with local tax and rise in capital gains tax.

Financing

2007-08: Alliance to introduce measures to encourage venture capital and private-equity industries. Swedish institutions will continue to be a driving force in the consolidation of the region's financial markets.

2009-11: Crossborder consolidation continues. Stockmarket expected to gain in importance as a source of capital.

The labour market

2007-08: Reduction in employers' payroll tax to encourage hiring, particularly of younger workers. Abolition of payroll tax in parts of service sector. Cuts in unemployment benefit. Rise in individual contributions to social insurance schemes.

2009-11: Trade unions will continue to oppose any major reforms to Sweden's traditionally restrictive labour laws. Lower spending on government-funded labour market schemes.

Infrastructure

2007-08: Investment in high-quality infrastructure, especially for information technology (IT) and broadband capability.

2009-11: Government investment in research and development to maintain and even increase the lead in IT infrastructure.

Copyright 2006 Economist Intelligence Unit
Argentina: Business environment at a glance. Check it out:
(EIU Viewswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) COUNTRY VIEW

FROM THE ECONOMIST INTELLIGENCE UNIT

Policy towards private enterprise and competition

2006-07: Contract renegotiations with privatised utilities make slow progress. Further state interventionism through price controls and wage renegotiations. Incentives for investment and subsidised credit lines for local investors.

2008-10: Distortions from interventionist policies impair efforts to restore confidence in institutions and propertyrights.

Policy towards foreign investment

2006-07: Welcoming of foreign investment, tempered by encouragement of increased domestic ownership.

2008-10: As foreign direct investment (FDI) will be critical to long-term growth, policy will focus on broadening inflows.

Foreign trade and exchange controls

2006-07: Targeting of an unofficial exchange rate weaker than Ps3:US$1. Trade policy will be occasionally used as an anti-inflationary tool. Occasional resort to protectionism against Brazil. Control on short-term capital inflows.

2008-10: Emphasis on improving export finance and infrastructure; deepening of subregional integration within the Mercado Comun del Sur (Mercosur, the Southern Cone customs union).

Taxes

2006-07: The system to remain complex. Financial transactions tax and export levies will persist, but rates may be reduced.

2008-10: An increased likelihood that the rates of temporary taxes could be reduced. Although a comprehensive tax reform is unlikely, the government will attempt to change the tax structure towards a major share of direct taxes in tax revenue.



Financing

2006-07: Although lending will recover, the availability of investment finance will be limited.

2008-10: Availability of long-term credit will continue to increase gradually from a low base, but lingering distortions in financial markets will restrain expansion. Slow progress in improving the lending practices of state-owned banks.

The labour market

2006-07: Union influence will inhibit government attempts to curb wage rises, but informal-sector wages to remain low.

2008-10: Dollar cost of labour rises. Possible re-examination of severance costs and payroll taxes. Some skills shortages.

Infrastructure

2006-07: Demand management and state intervention to avert energy shortages. Interim tariff deals struck with utilities.

2008-10: New investments set to improve energy supply and to upgrade export infrastructure.

Copyright 2006 Economist Intelligence Unit
South Korea: Business environment at a glance. Check it out:
(EIU Viewswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) COUNTRY VIEW

FROM THE ECONOMIST INTELLIGENCE UNIT

Policy towards private enterprise and competition

2007-08: The ruling Uri Party pushes for chaebol (conglomerate) reform, but the weakness of its parliamentary position may make it difficult for the party to achieve radical change. The privatisation of banks is completed.

2009-11: Privatisation of utilities, now shelved, may resume.

Policy towards foreign investment

2007-08: A backlash against perceived foreign dominance in the financial sector may lead to non-Korean bidders being disadvantaged in future privatisations in this sector, at least temporarily.

2009-11: Foreign capital will increasingly be accepted as a normal part of economic life.

Foreign trade and exchange controls

2007-08: Free-trade agreement (FTA) negotiations with the US, but differences remain over agriculture in particular; FTA negotiations with Japan continue to struggle, and may even be shelved.

2009-11: Pressure from the US and the EU to remove lingering quasi-subsidies and non-tariff barriers will intensify. China will wield anti-dumping suits.

Taxes

2007-08: Tax breaks are used to assist small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and start-ups, in particular to encourage job creation. Social security contributions from employers may be raised to fund social welfare programmes.

2009-11: A rapidly ageing society will require increased contributions to the national pension system. Taxes may also have to be raised to fund the urgent upgrading of North Korea's infrastructure and capital stock.

Financing

2007-08: Lending to consumers recovers as the credit-card crunch eases and a wider range of products (such as mortgages) is introduced. SMEs continue to struggle to obtain loans. The chaebol increasingly raise funds overseas.

2009-11: Consolidation and mergers in both banking and non-bank areas will grow. Private-equity funds will emerge as sources of corporate finance. A more sophisticated range of savings vehicles, pensions and insurance will be offered.

The labour market

2007-08: Militant trade unions lose influence but retain their ability to disrupt. Greater protection is afforded to irregular workers, but elsewhere more flexibility in hiring is sought. The five-day working week spreads.

2009-11: A five-day week will become the norm. More women will join and remain in the workforce. Efforts will be made to tackle youth unemployment. The growing availability of North Korean labour will reduce costs for some SMEs.

Infrastructure

2007-08: If the nuclear issue is settled, South Korean firms will become involved in upgrading North Korean infrastructure to galvanise the North's economy and build a transport network for the North-east Asian economic region.

2009-11: Work may begin on the new administrative capital in South Chungcheong province.

Copyright 2006 Economist Intelligence Unit
MultiChoice deal to be built on broad-based shareholder base. Check it out:
(Business Day (South Africa) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) MultiChoice deal to be built on broad-based shareholder base NASPERS has carried out a black economic empowerment deal through MultiChoice. SA's biggest media group has agreed to sell a 15% stake in the lucrative pay-TV unit to black investors for R2,25bn.



Last night Face to Face's spoke to Gavin Joubert from Coronation Fund Managers and to Koos Bekker from Naspers about the new deal.

Gavin, you're a big fan of Naspers what do you make of this deal? It seems fairly straightforward, and an important step Yes, I think it's a reality of doing business in SA that every big corporate will get a black economic empowerment (BEE) deal done. From the BEE participant's point of view I think the R15bn effective valuation of MultiChoice SA is a very good price. Obviously, for shareholders there is some dilution that would be below what we would value MultiChoice SA at. But we were expecting it, and it's not too far off the dilution that we were expecting. Therefore it doesn't change our view on the company and the share. What do you value MultiChoice SA at? Our valuation for MultiChoice SA, which is where the deal has been done, is just over R22bn or quite substantially ahead of the R15bn. The R15bn includes about 29% of M-Net Supersport and 100% of M-Web SA; but the bulk of that R15bn would be MultiChoice SA so that's about R22bn compared to R15bn. They gave an enterprise value of about R17,5bn as well. Naspers has been very busy with a big deal in Brazil recently, and there have been a few other things besides do you think they are going in the right direction? Yes, their stated strategy is to invest within their core competencies pay-TV, print media and internet within the Bricsa countries that include Brazil, Russia, India, China and sub-Saharan Africa. In those countries typically gross domestic product (GDP) growth rates are far above what you would see in most countries round the world typically with a GDP of about 5%-7% as opposed to about 2%-3% in the developed markets. Advertising spend is growing at a much faster rate in those countries, employment is growing at a faster rate, and so is disposable income. So I think those are good countries to have media exposure to. The key is valuations. With their most recent acquisition in Brazil the valuation was reasonable. I think the strategy of investing in high-growth countries at reasonable multiples will serve shareholders well in the years ahead. Koos, can you tell us a little bit more about the mechanics of the MultiChoice deal? Yes. We have in mind to create a broad-based scheme. We don't want a single mogul but a broad spread of teachers, clerks and ordinary people and hopefully in the tens of thousands. We've set aside 15% of MultiChoice, which was announced today, and hopefully tomorrow you'll hear a similar announcement for Media24. At this stage we intend to sell 15% of all the South African companies. The idea is that we will fund 80% of it by way of preference shares, with the participants funding 20%. So it's going to have a dilutionary effect? Yes, definitely. There is no way you can avoid it. I've just been speaking to Gavin Joubert. He values MultiChoice at R22bn whereas you value it at R15bn with an enterprise value of R17,5bn why the discrepancy? Gavin is more optimistic. He is a highly respected and very experienced commentator, so I ought to be careful. We got Investec to value the companies. Clearly, we want to reach a fair value, one which is fair to the participants entering the deal, but which is also fair to the current investors. Their decision was R15bn which I think is just about fair. If it were too expensive, no one would participate, and if it were too cheap we would be eroding our current investors. Can you tell us about the choice of partner? We want ordinary people as partners, and the happy circumstance in both MultiChoice and what you'll hear tomorrow at Media24 is that both companies are profitable, so we can pay dividends. The idea is that we will pay dividends from day one. We have run three schemes so far the Phuthuma scheme in M-Net in 1995, another one in 1998, and now we have the Welkom scheme in Naspers. All of them closed out in the money, and all of them made, I think, a very good return. One problem we've always experienced is that when you do a scheme and five years elapse at the end of it you find some people have divorced, some have moved and some have died and you've lost contact. So the idea with paying dividends which is quite a novelty is to keep contact with people every year. We have to pay an amount into their accounts, and consequently we need to trace them and connect to their physical address. New entrants have been proposed for the pay-TV arena in SA would you welcome the new competition or would that be a threat? Although MultiChoice has always been fairly competitive, it is not something you need to have because one can see a movie either in a cinema, get it from a video rental shop, or one could wait for free TV. We slot into a distribution chain where we compete against the other members so the competition will be more direct, but it will not really change the architecture of the industry we're in. Gavin, Koos seemed fairly sanguine about competition. Do you think there could be a player who could take a chunk of the subscribers? I think it would be very difficult for a competitor to come in and take a decent chunk. There is room for a second player, but MultiChoice owns the content so it depends on how much regulatory interference there is. The Naspers N shares closed at R122 today, up 1,3%. Do we stay long or should we add here? We would be adding. Summit TV is broadcast each weekday from 7pm to 11pm.

Copyright 2006 Times Media Ltd.. Source: Financial Times Information Limited - Europe Intelligence Wire.

DA seeks 'one-stop' business aid

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DA seeks 'one-stop' business aid. Check it out:
(Business Day (South Africa) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) DA seeks 'one-stop' business aid Political Correspondent CAPE TOWN A one-stop shop for enterprise development with a national branch network would go a long way to addressing the institutional duplication and confusion in government services among small businesses, Democratic Alliance (DA) deputy trade and industry spokesman Les Labuschagne said yesterday.



He was speaking on the release of the DA's Helping Small Business policy document which proposes the consolidation of the plethora of existing institutions and services into a single, focused entity.

Small business development is not on track in SA, Labuschagne said at a media briefing. There is a multitude of small business development agencies with limited geographical coverage and mandates that complicate small business development rather than promote it. Institutions operating in this field included the microfinance Apex Fund, Khula Enterprise, the National Empowerment Fund, the Industrial Development Corporation and the Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda), the only one with an extensive, national footprint.

The problem with government's response is not the range of services it has sought to provide but its lack of success in implementing them, Labus-chagne said. The vast array of small business development institutions out there is daunting. There is no sense that government seeks to co-ordinate, or promote co-operation or proper communication among the various small business development agencies, he said. While the coverage in terms of product or service offerings seem to be fairly comprehensive, they often do not seem to be accessible to people living outside main metropolitan areas and people who do not have access to the internet.

There is room for simplification of the process, for co- ordination and integration, he said.

Government established Seda in an attempt to overcome problems of duplication but this was not the answer. Its offices were often not accessible and it did not appear to offer printed information pamphlets or walk-in services to potential entrepreneurs without an appointment.

Labuschagne said a one-stop shop for enterprise development with broad geographical representation could contribute to small business development and the fight against unemployment.

Small businesses were estimated to generate 40% of all new jobs compared with only 10% by the large, established businesses.

The aim of the one-stop shop would be to provide guidance and mentoring, he said. It would recruit potential entrepreneurs to establish small businesses and provide support to them; provide potential entrepreneurs with access to enterprise development services in an integrated manner; and broker access to, and facilitate surety for, enterprise development services, products, and assistance packages.

Labuschagne said the branches should be staffed by trained and qualified enterprise development consultants.

Copyright 2006 Times Media Ltd.. Source: Financial Times Information Limited - Europe Intelligence Wire.

Area is truck country

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Area is truck country. Check it out:
(Press-Enterprise, The (Riverside, CA) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 29--A cooling housing market and soaring gasoline prices took their toll on one of the automotive industry's most profitable branches this year, analysts say.

But sales of pickup trucks, while down this year, have bounced back recently in the Inland region, dealers say, largely because of the recent decline in gas prices.

Marshall Gordon, general sales manager at Toyota of Riverside, said sales of the full-size Tundra pickup truck were off by about 40 percent over the summer compared with the year before.

"But now with the lower gas prices and the incentives we've been offering, sales have picked back up," Gordon said.

Average gas prices nationwide hit record highs in the spring and summer, but since then have fallen about 23 percent, according to the American Automobile Association.

Some analysts blame the fall in pickup sales on the softening housing market, which slowed construction work throughout the country. Nationally, sales of big trucks are down 14 percent this year.

Big trucks account for about 25 percent of all sales at General Motors, 27 percent at Ford and 17 percent at DaimlerChrysler AG's Chrysler. For Toyota, big trucks make up about 4.6 percent of total sales.

A recent report by an analyst at Credit Suisse in New York found that the strength of nation's home-resale market moves in step with full-size pickup sales. Home resales account for about 85 percent of all residential sales in the country, and when those sales rise, pickups sales rise as well, analyst Chris Ceraso wrote.



Home resales dropped nearly 13 percent last month compared with August 2005, the National Association of Realtors said this week, and the Commerce Department reported new-home sales in the Western states were down 17 percent.

Over the past three months, trucks in Southern California sold at the same rate as those in the rest of the country, said Tom Libby, an analyst with J.D. Power & Associates' Power Information Network. The group tracks how long a vehicle sits on a dealership lot before being purchased. In Southern California, the average was three months.

Still, Inland dealers say the region is different.

"The Inland Empire has been a little bit resilient to the real estate slowdown," said Nick DePasquale, general manager at Fairview Ford in San Bernardino. He said the region tends to lead the country in truck sales.

"This is a big truck community, so a lot of people bought trucks in spite of the gas prices," he said.

DePasquale said during the peak gas prices, pickup sales were off about 25 percent from the previous year. However, he said fleet sales remained the same.

"Some of the big clients don't have any choice -- they have to buy work trucks," he said.

Bill Hatfield, owner of Hatfield Buick and GMC Truck in Redlands, said pickup sales remained steady despite the higher summer gas prices.

"There is a love affair with trucks in California," he said.

Bloomberg News contributed to this report.

To see more of The Press-Enterprise, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.PE.com.

Copyright (c) 2006, The Press-Enterprise, Riverside, Calif.
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
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Boeing bolsters India operations

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Boeing bolsters India operations. Check it out:
(Financial Express Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Looking at the fast expanding Indian market, Boeing has decided to strengthen its presence by appointing two additional senior executives here. The company announced the appointments of two senior executives to a newly expanded enterprise-wide management team to be based in Boeing's New Delhi office. "The responsibility of this team would be to manage Boeing's current industry partnerships, strengthen its ability to pursue new business opportunities, and establish closer ties with government and industry groups here. India is a priority market for Boeing," said Boeing chairman, president and CEO Jim McNerney. Larry Coughlin has been named managing director of India Operations, Boeing Commercial Airplanes and will be responsible for coordinating and integrating in-country operations to strengthen the growing partnership between Boeing and India's civil aviation industry. Mike Devers has been appointed vice-president India Operations, Integrated Defence Systems. He will report to Mark Kronenberg, vice-president, Asia-Pacific, Integrated Defence Systems. He will be responsible for overseeing India strategy and business development activities. "The people we selected to lead our presence in India and drive our business are talented professionals with proven track records for generating results," McNerney said adding, "We have a solid business plan and a long-term view of the market. With this approach we are going to create even greater value for Boeing and our customers and partners in India." Apart from these, Anil Shrikhande, vice-president of Boeing International and president of Boeing India, will continue to be responsible for coordinating the company's enterprise-wide business strategy and in-country Boeing activities, according to an official release. Boeing is the world's leading aerospace company and the largest manufacturer of commercial jetliners and military aircraft. The company also manufactures rotorcraft, electronic and defense systems, missiles, satellites, launch vehicles and advanced information and communication systems.



Copyright 2006 The Indian Express Online Media Ltd.. Source: Financial Times Information Limited.
What About Selling Real Estate at Auction?. Check it out:
From 2004 to 2005, residential real estate auction sales grew 8.4 percent

(EMAILWIRE.COM, September 29, 2006 ) By Frank T. Pietrzak -- Pleasant Valley, NY -- Property owners have many decisions to make when planning to sell their assets. One option more sellers are choosing these days is the auction method. In fact, according to an ongoing MORPACE International study commissioned by the National Auctioneers Association, revenue increases in all three primary real estate auction categories were reported for last year.



From 2004 to 2005, residential real estate auction sales grew 8.4 percent, land and agricultural auctions grew 7.0 percent, and commercial and industrial auctions grew 4.9 percent. Residential real estate is still on the rise, increasing 4.4 percent for the first half of 2006, with no signs of a slowdown.

As a result of this steady growth, real estate has become a sizeable source of revenue for the auctioneering industry. According to the MORPACE study, between 2003 and 2005, real estate auctions comprised 22.3 percent of total revenue, second only to automobile auctions, which comprised 37.8 percent of total revenue. According to Susan A. Doyle, principle broker of Absolute Auctions and Realty, Inc. (AAR) of Pleasant Valley, New York, which brokers the largest number of real estate auctions in New York State each year, I see this percentage rising even more in the near future. Our offices have received an increasing number of phone calls over the past few months from property owners looking to sell via the auction method. These people are informed, prepared, and motivated to sell.

What is it about the auction method that attracts so many sellers? The most obvious benefit is the no commission guarantee offered by many auctioneers. By earning their profit on the buyer side of the transaction via a buyers premium, the auctioneer is able to offer their client a no-commission sale. A buyers premium is a percentage of the high bid (often 10%) that is added onto the high bid once the bidding ends. The high bid plus the buyers premium then becomes the official sale price of the property.

The other highly attractive feature for sellers is the no-contingencies contract. Both the seller and the buyer execute the contract immediately after the auction. This, coupled with the fact that the buyer has already posted a first downpayment with the Auctioneer during registration and will fund a second downpayment within 48 hours of the auction, gives the seller peace of mind that the sale will proceed efficiently, free from the last-minute negotiations that typically delay a sale. Conversely, the buyer is guaranteed a property free of liens and encumbrances at closing. Once the contract is executed, the closing process is the same for auction as it is for private-treaty brokering, except that the auction closing timeframe is considerably shorter, usually 60 days or less. What differs most between auction and private-treaty is the method of arriving at the purchase price.

This difference in methodology emphasizes a benefit unique to the auction processthe opportunity to have all interested players competing at the same time. The average real estate auction takes about six minutesits pretty hard to beat that level of intensity, notes Robert A. Doyle, AARs principle auctioneer. Its also mutually beneficial for sellers and buyers. Sellers know their property will sell on a specific date at a specific time, and buyers dont have to guess at how much to offer. They simply bid one increment higher than the last person, and once the bidding stops, the highest bidder has arrived at the fair market value for that property on that day. Its really the purest form of free enterprise.

Once a property owner has decided to sell at auction, he or she usually chooses one of two formats: a subject to confirmation auction, in which the seller sets a reserve to establish a minimum selling price, or an absolute auction, in which the property is offered to the highest bidder regardless of price. Though it seems an absolute auction would be disadvantageous to a seller, Susan Doyle explains, In reality, it tends to draw a large crowd looking for a steal. Thats an ideal atmosphere for our client, because bidders compete more enthusiastically when a property is selling absolute. At the end of the day, the seriously interested buyers who have done their homework will always ensure market value is reached.

The best candidates for real estate auction are motivated sellers who owe less on their property than what the current market is expected to pay. Of course, condition, location and amenities are also significant factors. On the other side of the transaction, the ideal buyer is one who prequalifies for financing, reviews all of the property information provided by the auctioneer, has all third-party testing done prior to auction, and is prepared to fund the downpayments in accordance with the terms of the auction.

In the end, real estate at auction is appealing because it is a win-win opportunity for sellers and buyers. The condensed timeframe, the no-contingencies contract and the assurance of fair market value create an environment of temporal and financial efficiency that benefits everyone involved.

Published by ASMarketingCenter.com a division of http://www.auctionservices.com and the http://www.nationalauctionlist.com.

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Strategies for Nigerian SMEs to Grow Economy - Prof. Chibundu. Check it out:
(Vanguard (Nigeria) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Director NISER and Chairman Consultancy Committee, Nigerian Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (NASME), Sir (Prof.) Enmmanuel Chibundu in this interview with Vanguard identified why Nigerian SMEs are not engine of growth as in other economies, and proffer solutions which he thinks if addressed properly will make Nigerian SMEs catalysts of growth and development.



Excerpts:

On constraints of the Nigerian SMEs:

The role of Small and Medium-Scale Enterprise (SMEs) in the national economy cannot be underestimated. These enterprises are being given increasing policy attention in recent years, particularly in third world countries partly because of growing disappointment with results of development strategies focusing on large scale capital intensive and high import dependent industrial plants. The impact of SMEs is felt in the following ways: Greater utilisation of local raw materials, employment generation, encouragement of rural development, development of entrepreneurship, mobilisation of local savings, linkages with bigger industries, provision of regional balance by spreading investments more evenly, provision of avenue for self-employment and provision of opportunity for training managers and semi-skilled workers.

On the challenges encountered by Nigerian SMEs

He said: "The fact that has emerged from the appraisal of the various past and policy initiatives on the promotion of SMEs in Nigeria is that although finance is a major constraint to the development of SMEs in Nigeria, it is by no means the only or most important constraint. The effective utilisation of substantial financial resources provided under the various past programmes, was constrained by such factors as lack of adequate entrepreneurship and managerial skills as well as absence of the enabling environment for investment in small and medium scale industries."

On constrained access to money and capital markets

The banking sector tends to be lukewarm in meeting the credit requirements of SMEs. This is because project proposals are poorly prepared, financial documentation and inadequate collateral are not provided, as well as the inability of the promoters of SME projects to raise the required equity contribution.

Moreover, the banks regard many SMEs as high risk ventures because of absence of succession plan in the event of the death of the proprietor. As a result, working capital is still a major constraint on production, as most SMEs are restricted to funds from family members and friends and are therefore unable to respond to unanticipated challenges in a timely manner. More worrisome is SMEs' inability to adequately tap available finance from the capital market. This had been attributed to by their aversion to disclosure and ownership dilution, although many SMEs blamed this phenomenon on the cumbersome requirements and procedures for listing on the Stock Exchange. The establishment of the second-tier security markets of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, which was expected to solve this problem, has been shunned by most of the SMEs.

On high rate of enterprise mortality

The incidence of inadequate working capital, which constrains productive capacities of the SMEs as well as absence of succession plan in the event of the death of the proprietor, leads in many cases to frequent early demise of SMEs. Moreover, the persistence of unstable macro-economic environment, arising mainly from fiscal policy excesses has often smothered many SMEs.

Shortage of skilled manpower

Inadequate financial resources, as well as desire to operate with limited openness on the part of proprietors lead many SMEs to employ semi-skilled labour. This of course, affect productivity, restrains expansion and hinders competitiveness.

Financial indiscipline: Some SME proprietors deliberately divert loans obtained for project support to ostentatious, expenditure. Others refuse to pay back as and when due, the interest and the principal, because of political involvement and the misconceived notion of sharing the so-called national cake.

There are however, genuine cases of loan defaults arising from operational difficulties and macro-economic shocks.

Lack of infrastructural facilities: Inadequate provision of essential services such as telecommunication, access roads, electricity water supply constitutes one of the greatest constrains to SME development. Most SMEs resort to private provisioning of these at great expense. A World Bank Study (1989) estimated that such cost accounted for 15-20 per cent of the cost of establishing a manufacturing enterprise in Nigeria. Contemporary evidence has shown that the relative burden of the private provisioning of infrastructural facilities is much heavier on SMEs than on large-scale enterprise.

Poor implementation of policies: The poor implementation of policies including administration of incentives and measures aimed at facilitating SMEs growth and development have had unintended effects on the sub-sector. This had resulted for instance, into confusion and uncertainty in business decisions and planning as well as weakened the confidence by the SMEs on government's capacity to execute faithfully its programme.

Poor management practices and low entrepreneurial skill: Many SMEs do not keep proper accounts of transaction. This hinders effective control and planning. Moreover, lack of relevant educational background and thorough business exposure constrains their ability to seize business opportunities that may lead to growth and expansion.

Restricted market access: Insufficient demand for the products of the SMEs also imposes constraint on their growth. Although many SMEs produce some inputs for larger industrial enterprises, the non-standardisation of their products, the problem of quality assurance as well as weak purchasing power, arising from consumers' dwindling real incomes, effectively restrict their market access. This is further compounded by the absence of knowledge about the existence of fringe markets by SMEs.

Overbearing regulatory and operational environment: The plethora of regulatory agencies, multiple taxes cumbersome importation procedure, and high port charges have continued to exert pressures on the industrial sector in general and SMEs in particular.

On the strategies for survival of Nigerian SMEs:

Over the years, the Federal Government has taken various steps, including monetary, fiscal and industrial policy measures to promote the development of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs). Specifically, the government has been active in the following areas:

*Funding and setting up of industrial estates to reduce overhead costs.

*Establishing specialised financial institutions, including the Small Scale Industry Credit Scheme (SSICSs), Nigerian Industrial Development Bank (NIDB), Nigerian Bank for Commerce and Industry (NBCI) to provide long-term credit;

*Facilitating and guaranteeing external finance by the World Bank, African Development Bank and other international financial institutions;

*Facilitating the establishment of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE), which also initiated the setting up of new SMEs;

*Establishment of the National Economic Reconstruction Fund (NERFUND) to provide medium to long-term local and foreign loans for small, and medium scale businesses, particularly those located in the rural areas; and

*Provision of technical training and advisory services through the Industrial Development Centres.

*Small and Medium Industry Equity Investment Scheme (SMIEIS)

What is SMIEIS?

The scheme requires all banks in Nigeria to set 10 per cent of their profit before tax (PBT) for equity investment and promotion of small and medium industries.

What are the activities covered by the scheme?

The range of activities in respect of which funds shall be applied are those in the real sector of the economy as listed below with the exclusion of trading, agro-allied, information technology, telecommunication, manufacturing, educational establishments, services, tourism and leisure, solid minerals, construction, any activity as may be determined from time to time by the Banker's Committee.

SME promoters and private sector effort to ensure survival of SMEs.

It is unfortunate that in Nigeria the full potential of SMEs is not being fully realized. This is partly related to harsh operating environment. But the major reasons inhibiting the growth and competitiveness of Nigeria SMEs according to extensive studies in NISER is managerial incompetence.

This incompetence is brought about by low quality of skills critically needed for successful business operations. Also discussions with top officials of the Banking and Financial Sector have revealed that part of the reasons for not financing some SME project is because of high risk and failure rate associated with low managerial know-how.

On proposed contents of survival core management principles for SMEs

Prof. Chibundu recommended the following policy stategy: Developing sound financial/accounting system, cost control measures i.e identifying key success factors for effective cost control, iInventory/working capital management, marketing management,the marketing environment, marketing strategies for SMEs (penetrating local and export market).

Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media. (allafrica.com)

Copyright 2006 Accra Mail. Distributed by Allafrica Global Media.

Mkts open in green, subdued

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(The Economic Times (India) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) The market opened in the green on Friday with the BSE benchmark index--Sensex gaining further by over 44 points in early morning on the back of sustained buying by funds in blue-chip shares. However, the trading was subdued as the participants adopted a cautious stance.



At 11.00 am, the Sensex was trading 35 pts up, at 12,412 while, Nifty was up 9.70 pts, at 3581.

The major indices opened in the green, marginally up but the metal stocks stole a march over others, up 2.20 per cent.

Amongst the individual stocks major gainers on the BSE were Tata Steel up 2.30 per cent at 530.90, Hindalco up 1.65 per cent, at 173 and Tata Motors up 1.55 per cent, at 855.55. Maruti also opened well after being in the negative the whole day on Thursday at 954.85 up 1.32 per cent.

On the NSE, the top gainers were SAIL up 2.92 per cent at 77.55, VSNL at 401 up 2.48 per cent and Tata Steel at 530.50 up 2.21 per cent.

Some of the losers on the BSE in the morning trade were ICICI Bank down 1.23 per cent at 699.70 and Hero Honda down almost 2 per cent at 780.60.

Auto stocks were trading higher, with Maruti, Punjab Tractors, Tata Motors and TVS Motor all up leading the pack of gainers. M&M, will be acquiring a 67.9 per cent stake in Jeco Holding AG, a German forging company, at an enterprise value of Rs 8.3 billion. The company will be acquired through the Mauritius subsidiary of M&M and will be subsequently integrated with Mahindra Automotive Steels Limited (MASL).The stock was trading higher by 1 per cent.

The US markets closed higher on Thursday evening, with the Dow Jones clocking its second-highest close ever. In fact, during the course of the day's trade, the Dow actually surpassed its record closing high of 11,723 hit on January 14, 2000 amid optimism that falling oil prices and the hope that that will help the United States avoid a sharp slowdown.

The Asian indices were currently trading mixed. The Asian markets struggled to match gains on the Wall Street. The Nikkei was up 0.4 per cent at the mid session break, after touching its highest level since September 8 in the morning session.

Oil fell around half a percent, as swelling U.S. inventories outweighed concerns producer cartel OPEC may cut output to defend prices that have fallen around 20 percent over the past two months. NYMEX crude fell 33 cents to $62.43 a barrel. Gold, tracking oil prices in recent weeks, eased to around $599.80 an ounce.

Share markets in Seoul and Taiwan were flat, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 0.3 per cent but Singapore's Straits Times STI fell by the same amount.

Copyright 2006 The Economic Times of India, Coleman & Co Ltd. Source : Financial Times Information Limited
Fitch affirms ProCredit Bank Ukraine at 'BB-'. Check it out:
(Interfax News Agency Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) MOSCOW. Sept 28 (Interfax) - Fitch Ratings on Thursday affirmed ProCredit Bank Ukraine's ("ProCredit Ukraine") ratings at foreign currency Issuer Default 'BB-' (BB minus), Short-term foreign currency 'B', local currency Issuer Default 'BB', Short-term local currency 'B', Individual 'D', and Support '3', the ratings agency said in a release.



The Outlooks on the Issuer Default ratings ("IDR") are Stable. The national rating is affirmed at 'AAA(ukr)'.

The IDRs, Short-term and Support ratings of ProCredit
Ukraine are
based on Fitch's view of the potential support from its
owners,particularly ProCredit Holding AG ("PCH"; rated 'BBB-' (BBB minus)), its 60% owner, in case of need. However, the 'BB-' (BB minus) Country Ceiling of Ukraine limits the extent to which support can be factored into the IDRs. The ratings also take into account PCH's centralized control and risk management and ProCredit Ukraine's high degree of integration within the ProCredit group. The Stable Outlook on ProCredit Ukraine's IDRs reflects that of Ukraine's IDRs.

Fitch notes that any movement in the Country Ceiling for Ukraine would have implications for ProCredit Ukraine's IDRs. Downward movement in the Country Ceiling would also result in a change to the bank's Support rating.

"Upside potential for the Individual rating is currently limited by ProCredit Ukraine's small size," says Tomasz Walkowicz, an analyst at Fitch's Financial Institutions Group. "A significant deterioration in asset quality, capitalization and liquidity leading to a need for support would contribute to a downgrade."

ProCredit Ukraine is the 35th largest bank by total assets in Ukraine. In addition to PCH, its other shareholders include the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and Western NIS Enterprise Fund (a U.S. body), which have a 20% stake each.

PCH was set up as an equity investment company in 1998 by Frankfurt-based Internationale Projekt Consult GmbH to invest in the global network of ProCredit banks, which provide financing to micro-and small and medium-sized enterprises in emerging markets. At end-May 2006, the group consisted of 19 banks in Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America and Africa, while the group's total assets were around EUR2.5 billion. PCH is responsible for group administration, strategy, risk management controls and supervision. PCH is not regulated as a banking group, but the ProCredit banks are regulated in their home countries.

Copyright 2006 Interfax News Agency. Source: Financial Times Information Limited.

The mothers of re-invention

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(China Daily Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Before China started its reforms and opened up to the outside world, many foreigners had the notion that Chinese women enjoyed unprecedented independence from men and high participation in the public sphere. This liberation for women, however, worked as a double-edged sword. Very often, it forced them to juggle jobs and families with great difficulty. Things are different today in a market economy in which masculinity is measured by the amount of money a man makes. A husband's higher income has taken the pressure off many working wives. Urban Chinese women, particularly in the middle-class, now have more options on how to spend their time. Some women feel their social identity is no longer contingent on them staying in the workforce. Instead, they see family as the primary commitment, and are proud to play a supporting role to the husband. Although it is a relatively recent phenomenon, it is no longer uncommon to see a small number of "full-time wives" (quan zhi tai tai) in Chinese cities, particularly within the rich and privileged echelon. The reasons behind this new phenomenon are many and diverse. Some believe such a trend has become possible simply because a growing number of families can afford not to have two incomes. Others point out that their lifestyle and choices owe not only to the economic boom but also to increasing social stratification, with the availability of migrant and laid-off workers as home-making helpers.



Meng Baili, a manager in an IT company in Beijing, is still looking for "Mrs Right," and in the meantime has his apartment cleaned by a local Beijing woman, a former factory worker who lost her job due to enterprise restructuring. Would he want his future wife to work? Meng said he was happy either way. "She does not have to work, as my salary is good enough to support her. But if she wants to work, it's her choice. As long as she fulfils her duties as a wife, I have no objection," he said.

When asked how he preferred to see his wife spending her time, Meng replied: "She can do community or charity work or work out in the gym to stay slim and fit but she shouldn't do housework. That's the maid's job." Indeed, very few full-time wives quit jobs to do housework. Hua Ruiling is in her late 30s and has two children, 15 and 3. Her husband is a real estate developer, and the family live at an expensive address in Haidian District, Beijing. Hua employs two full-time domestic helpers; one cooks while the other works as a nanny. Hua said that her husband was often away on business, sometimes abroad, but she had her own network of friends. She attends adult education classes and yoga classes, and drives her children to school and childcare. Currently she is attending an adult education course designed for women like herself. Offered by a prestigious university at a price which labourers and migrant workers would find astronomical more than 30,000 yuan (US$3,700) for one participant the course covered a wide range of subjects including literature, history, home science, and child development.

"There is a lot of useful knowledge and information out there. I feel that I can become a more cultivated person. I also meet a lot of new friends by going to these activities," Hua said.

Pros and cons Feminists debate the pros and cons of women returning home to become full-time mothers and wives. Some see this move as socially regressive because women run the risk of losing their independence and becoming socially disempowered. Others see it as a positive change for women, as they now have the option of not working, thus having more autonomy to follow their own dreams.

"Some women decide to quit man's world so that they can pursue their own idea of work. Stopping working for money doesn't mean that they disappear from public sphere. For instance, doing volunteer work, charity work, and running parents' groups online is also an important way of making contribution to society," said Wang Gan, an anthropologist who has written extensively on the topic of work and motherhood. While some women decide to become full-time wives because they bring clout and "face" to their husband, some men consider it a status symbol to keep their wives at home. Other women have decided to leave the workforce because they see fit to adjust their priorities in the face of changed domestic circumstances. This shift tends to happen when a couple is starting a family. Jiang, who declined to give her full name, worked as an accountant in a German-owned company in Beijing but stopped working after giving birth to her son. However, she stressed this may be an interim plan and she may not want to stay away from work permanently. "I read many books on parenting, and most of them point to the importance of bringing your child up on your own instead of using a nanny, especially during the first couple of years. So for the sake of my child's future, I am happy to stop working for a year or two," Jiang said.

In spite of the glamour of the "full-time wife," to most middle-class urban women, it is more desirable to have a foot in both worlds. In constructing a profile of the archetype "Vogue" woman, Liu Dan, from Conde Nast, which produces the Chinese Vogue magazine, said: "The archetypical Vogue woman is not a full-time wife, nor is she stressed out with work. She balances work and family, successfully and effortlessly." Xia Jun, 31, HR consultant with a trans-national corporation in Beijing, had a baby boy six months ago, and is currently still on unpaid maternity leave. With the help of a full-time live-in maid, Xia divides her maternity leave between her baby and trying to finish a research project for her Master's thesis. She will go back to work in eight-months. "It never occurred to me to become a full-time mother. It's important to have my own social life, to be exposed to smart people and exciting things," Xia said.

Xia also believed it was risky for a woman to build her sense of security around a man, especially considering the growing infamy of married rich men betraying their wife and taking on lovers and mistresses. "During the last few months since I had the child and stayed at home, I noticed I have become emotionally more dependent on my husband, more demanding of his attention and understanding, and more insecure about his feelings for me," Xia said. "This is because he has a whole world outside home, and I have nothing else to talk about apart from home. When I was working, I was not like this," she said. Although pleased with the time off during her maternity leave, Xia fears she can't afford to stay away from work for too long. "Things change fast, and organizational cultures and structure changes fast too. If you don't keep up, you may not be able to cope with the change," Xia added. "In my company, organizational structures are altered every half a year. I also know that if I stay away for too long, say for two or three years, there will be new people coming in, younger and with more credentials." From what Xia can see, the full-time wife phenomenon is a symptom of a patriarchal society. "It never occurs to my husband that he could quit work and look after the child. That's almost unheard of in China. I know it's quite common with Westerners. At work, I have quite a few European female colleagues whose husbands are here to look after children. But that's almost unheard of among Chinese men," she said. Both the birth of the "full-time wife" and the emergence of the "vogue woman" have taken place in Chinese cities not in spite of, but precisely because of, growing social and economic stratification over the last couple of decades. Social stratification To be sure, urban middle-class women can afford to choose between working and not working, but they cannot do it without cheap labour provided by rural women and laid-off factory workers who work as their domestic helpers. The latter are not blessed with these options. While some women in the cities are thinking of quitting jobs or cutting down work hours to spend time with their family, more and more rural women are leaving home and their families in order to work in cities as domestic workers. Currently there are at least 200,000 domestic workers in Beijing, and another 200,000 vacancies waiting to be filled. Xie Hong is one of the thousands of women in Beijing who leave her children behind in the village in order to make money working as a baomu. A young woman from Sichuan and in her late 20s, she works as a part-time domestic cleaner. Xie said she missed her own children badly and talked to them on the phone whenever she could. "City kids are so spoilt and live like princes and princesses. Each time I look at them, especially those who are at a similar age to my own children, I get upset. I am also a mother, but why can't I cuddle my children and buy them their favourite treats every day?" Xie said. "I know I am doing this for my kids, but I am also missing out on so much by being away. Last time I went home to see my kids, they looked at me as if I was a stranger and wouldn't come close to me," Xie added, her eyes filled with tears. Because of migrant women such as Xie, and thanks to the growing trend of outsourcing domestic work in urban China, middle-class urban women across the board are increasingly able to tailor their lifestyles and work patterns to suit their individual needs, thereby freely negotiating between working and not working, between full-time and part-time work, or between working for money and working to fulfil one's dreams. For many single professional women, life without a man is just fine, as long as she has the help of a maid. Similarly, for married women, their lifestyle either as a full-time wife or professional is hardly sustainable without the availability of paid domestic work.

Copyright 2006 China Daily. Source: Financial Times Information Limited - Asia Intelligence Wire.

Live from Comdex, it's Enable

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Live from Comdex, it's Enable. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) COMDEX is the premier showcase of the latest breakthroughs and innovations in the IT marketplace. Many leading companies use COMDEX to launch their newest and next flagship products. In the IT arena, COMDEX is the place to see and be seen.



COMDEX is also where you will come in contact with the next big thing before it actually becomes the next big thing. For example, today the buzz is all about Tablet PCs. Yet, I saw the first Tablets at COMDEX two years ago. The same is true for smart phones and WIFI.

The next edition of Enable will be coming at you live from COMDEX and will let you in on the next big things. Until then, the COMDEX web site is chock full of added value and today's Enable looks at two such added value sections Research and White Papers.

Research Reports For Free

COMDEX is committed to providing the IT community with FREE quality research on the most important technology and business segments to help buyers and sellers make crucial decisions. The COMDEX Reports series includes market studies on technologies such as IT security, development environments and wireless, as well as buyer segments such as enterprise businesses and women in technology. To access the reports, just provide an email address when prompted. You should also check back often as new FREE reports are posted regularly.

The following are highlights of a few of the reports: COMDEX Report on Small Business - Home Office vs. Commercial Office Workers One of the key findings of the COMDEX Research Panel Small Business study is that small business respondents who work from home are very different from respondents who work at an office outside the home. This paper will develop an in-depth profile of these two groups and help foster an understanding of the differences between home office workers and those who work in an office outside the home.

COMDEX Report on Women Technology Buyers COMDEX, in partnership with WITI (Women In Technology International), commissioned a study on the involvement of women in purchasing technology for their businesses and organizations. This study explored the role of women in IT, technology products women purchase and the amount they are authorized to spend.

COMDEX/FORTUNE 1000 Technology Decision Maker Study The COMDEX/FORTUNE 1000 Technology Decision-Maker Survey was conducted to provide a snapshot of how technology influencers in the largest US companies feel about the economy, the prospects of a turnaround, and how the current downturn has affected budgets and decision-making processes within their companies. In addition, the study examines the importance of a range of business issues to companies today, and how these companies have fared in dealing with these important issues.

COMDEX Report on Biometrics Biometrics is one of the newest security technologies available. While clearly an immature market, biometric technologies are sure to become more widely used in the future as costs decrease and companies'

Wireless Technology: The Big Picture COMDEX panelists are involved users and evaluators of wireless technology. The COMDEX Panel survey on Wireless Technology found significant differences between how companies of different sizes are using and implementing wireless technology.

Small Business: Online vs. Non-online Businesses Among small businesses, those that consider themselves online businesses have a distinct profile from those who do not. The COMDEX Research Panel Small Business study seeks to develop a profile of online businesses and understand the key differences between online and non-online small companies.

Security Information security is one of the most important issues facing businesses today. The COMDEX Panel study on security aims to explore what security measures companies are taking and how panelists feel about the trade-off between privacy and security. This study found that while security is important to all panelists, companies of different sizes face different challenges when implementing security measures.

White Papers

COMDEX prides itself on community, content and commerce. In the White Paper section of the website you can search for in-depth information from the leading technology vendors and analyst groups. The White Papers are free, but you will have to pay for the Analyst reports.

White Paper topics include: Hardware Electronic Commerce Enterprise Applications IT Management Networking Software Development Telecommunications

Take advantage of the information provided by COMDEX. It is for the most part free and provides you with a wealth of information.

Next week we are LIVE from Las Vegas at COMDEX

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Invest In The Hiring Process

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Invest In The Hiring Process. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) As we continue with our roadmap for success, we move on to the issue of hiring employees for your new enterprise. Hiring new employees is another example of a critical situation facing startups that if not handled correctly from the onset - will probably never be rectifiable. In today's Internet paced world, time is everything. Many new companies simply do not have the time or the personnel to properly hire new employees. Yet, a proper investment of your time during the hiring process will save you a lot if time in the future, and more importantly will prevent major headaches and even catastrophes for you and your company. Today's Enable provides you with some tips that will help you hire the right person for the job. The key is to invest a little time now - to save a lot of time later on.



What Is The Cover Letter Like?

Most companies try to weed out candidates as quickly as possible. A good method for doing this is via the cover letter. Does it show that the candidate investigated the firm in any way? Are there spelling or grammar mistakes? If it was faxed, was it sent from the potential employees current place of business (check the header of the fax)? Is there some kind of a statement that stands out and demonstrates that this candidate is serious? Is the cover letter a little too haughty? No cover letter at all could be an indication of either laziness or lack of experience. A very well done, professional cover letter is an excellent indication that the candidate is serious.

Resumes Are Sometimes Wish Lists

It is very easy for almost anyone to put together an impressive looking resume. As you review a potential employee's resume, take nothing for granted. You must check each and every "fact" very carefully because many items may be exaggerated or even a figment of the potential employees imagination. A friend of mine once told me that his rule for drafting a resume was - "if it could have been true, I put it in."

Check References!!

One of the most important, yet often ignored ways of insuring that you hire the best person for the job is to check their references. Use the telephone and email to contact each and every reference and try to learn as much as you can about the prospective employee. Other than simply checking to make sure everything on the resume is true, you should also ask questions like: What is the candidate's greatest asset? How did the candidate add value to the company? How did the candidate interact with co-workers? Is there anything negative you can say about the candidate? Why did the candidate leave?

The most important question you must ask is: "Can you give me names of other people at your company, or outside of the company (like clients or suppliers), whom I can speak with?". This will help you learn more and will enable you to deal with "cherry picked" references.

The Turndown - Be Professional

It is highly professional to send out "rejection" letters to all candidates that sent you their resumes. Most companies, especially those in Israel fail to do this. Business is all marketing. The candidates that you have decided not to hire - for whatever reason will all most likely find jobs at other companies in your industry. Do not use obvious form letters and the like. If you do not have time for a professional letter, at least send an email. Israel is a very small country, and your paths will cross with many of the candidates. Your reputation is very important and a professional turndown can pay off in the future.

Next week we will deal with executive search firms and with using the Internet to find potential employees.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on January 10, 2000.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Those Who Do - Should Teach

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Those Who Do - Should Teach. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) When I was in law school, my favorite courses were taught by lawyers who were not professors but who simply like to teach. They typically taught at night and most of the time gave us all kinds of war stories. They lived it and were giving us real examples from the real world. They talked about everything we wanted to do - and they were doing it!



Today's Enable incorporates this concept via Joe Hadzima, a senior lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Director and General Counsel to the MIT Enterprise Forum, Inc., and Managing Director of Main Street Partners LLC, a venture investing and technology commercialization firm located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He is a former partner and founder of the High Tech/ New Ventures Group and Sullivan & Worcester LLP, a major Boston-based law firm.

Hadzima writes a column called Starting Up for the Boston Business Journal. The column is written about real life problems and experiences faced by new and emerging companies in the New England area - but the topics covered are relevant to startups around the globe. The column, like my favorite law school professors, provides practical information to entrepreneurs.

Enable has reviewed the column, including the archives. Today we'll see how Hadzima deals with a crucial issue - the Board of Directors.

Don't Bore the Board of Directors - How To Use A Board Effectively tells you how to get the most out of your Board and how to ensure you don't waste their time. The ins and outs include:

Board Size Size and the resulting group dynamics will dictate much of how you deal with the Board. Most entrepreneurial private companies have Boards comprised of 3 to 5 Directors. Some have advisory boards (e.g. a Science Advisory Board) which are larger but the legal Board usually does not exceed 5 in number and rarely is greater than 7. Larger public companies usually have larger Boards, partly because of the need to have specialized committees (e.g., Audit Committee, Compensation Committee).

Outside of the Board Meeting In recruiting a Director you should have worked out the Director's level of activity and attention both in terms of the number of Board Meetings expected and, if the "job description" includes it, interactions outside of the Board room. These outside interactions with individual Directors are your opportunity to obtain individual advice and assistance. Establish a format which works for the individual Director and for you- a weekly breakfast, a monthly lunch, twice a week telephone call, frequent email, a tennis match followed by a half hour discussion by the juice bar-whatever works.

The Board Meeting The strength of the Board of Directors system comes from the collective action of experienced and informed people. It follows that the Board Meeting has to be a combination of information transfer processes and resulting decision making. Board Meetings rarely last all day unless some major event is being considered such as an acquisition. For a normal Board Meeting plan on a minimum of 12 to 2 hours, more typically 3 to 4 hours.

Information Because time is limited, you should "offload" as much of the background information transfer process as possible so that the Meeting can focus more on decision making. The "Board Package" is the main method of off-line information transfer and should be distributed to the Board with enough time for the Directors to be able to read and digest the material but not so far in advance that the information is out of date. Plan on getting the materials to the Directors about 3 days before the Meeting. A typical package will contain the following: An Agenda, Draft Minutes of the Last Meeting, Financial Reports with Management Commentary, Other Relevant Information. Be sure to keep the Directors informed of general developments between meetings- e.g., include the Directors on press release lists, product mailings etc. It can be very annoying to a Director to find out something about the Company from a source outside of the Company.

Knowledge@Wharton Revisited

As promised, we now return to Knowledge@Wharton to finish our overview of this excellent site. As mentioned last week, this is an online resource that offers the latest business insights, information and research from a variety of sources, including an in-depth searchable database.

In completing our look at this site, we move to the section entitled: Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Here, you will find an excellent piece called Uncertainty, Technological Turbulence, Competition - What's a Manager to Do? Thrive on It, that teaches the concept of "habitual entrepreneurs." Habitual entrepreneurs have made careers out of starting businesses either within existing firms or independently. You will learn that they passionately seek new opportunities and pursue them with enormous discipline. Furthermore, they pursue only the best opportunities, and avoid exhausting themselves and their organizations by chasing every option. They focus on execution and change direction if necessary. And they engage the energies of everyone who works with them. You will also be provided with a detailed plan, based on these qualities, for you to apply to your own company.

In the same section you will also find an article entitled: Mercenaries vs. Missionaries: John Doerr Sees Two Kinds of Internet Entrepreneurs. John Doerr is a legend in the venture capital industry and you should pay very close attention to what he has to stay.

Doerr believes that as the new economy develops, several trends are emerging. Among his forecasts for the future: IP, or internet protocol, will be as important as the car or television. The web will become the standard communications platform in healthcare. Charter schools, and educational portals for the home and school, will transform education. Bandwidth will be crucial. Despite current skepticism about business-to-consumer e-commerce, it will remain a big trend, as will business-to-business e-commerce. Wireless information appliances will be big in the future. "That's how a billion Chinese will get onto the Internet," Doerr says. Genomics will be "fabulous" after 2005, as the human genome is fully mapped.

Doerr also predicts that the Internet will evolve into what he calls "the Evernet," which is "always on, high speed, ubiquitous and available in multiple formats." These formats will include a "voiceweb" for voice communications, a "handweb" for hand-held devices, a "PC web" for PCs, a "videoweb" for video and an "e-web" in which machines will communicate with machines. These changes will consolidate the foundations of the new economy.

Read the entire section and learn from one of the leading venture capitalist in Silicon Valley.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on September 26, 2000.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Wireless For Everyone

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Wireless For Everyone. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) As we continue our focus on added value wireless related sites, Enable takes a look at www.wirelessdata.org. This site has something for everyone - from novice to expert.

Beginners will benefit from the site's wireless data primer. Developers will glean a lot of value from the developers green house section, and virtually anyone interested in the industry will be able to benefit from the free market research available on the site.



These and other features are described in detail below. This description is followed by a brief look at the organization behind the site - The Wireless Data Forum.

Wireless Data Primer

The last twenty years have seen an explosion in wireless communications and computer technology. The last five years have seen the explosion of the Internet. Standing at the center of this convergence is the wireless data industry. The primer provides a general overview of the industry and its key components.

The primer is in beta version, and is still not searchable. When I used it, the primer was bug free. However, be aware that some of the information is not exactly up to date.

Developers Greenhouse

This section is for those that want to join the Wireless Revolution. It provides a slew of resources to help you successfully develop applications for Wireless Data. This includes: Ardis Wireless Software Developers Program CDMA Online GSM World, the web home of the GSM Association, features the GSM Data Window. The RIM Developer Zone Sierra Wireless Developers Toolkit WAP Forum (Wireless Application Protocol) WAP.NET Wireless Developer Wireless Developer Network

Market Research

In the section called Market Index, you can look up over 100 reports, forecasts, and articles about Wireless Data. You can search by categories like new applications, international, enterprise, or consumer - or simply by keyword.

You only receive short blurbs, but the information contained in the blurb provides you with enough background to get a general idea of the particular market, product, etc, that you searched for.

For example, when I searched the word "palm", the following (among others) came up:

"Future of Palm VII dim. [6/9/99]"

"Analysts at the Wheaton, Md.-based consultancy Herschel Shosteck Associates aren't so sure and say the future is not bright for Palm VII. They predict sales of 100,000 units in the first year, a mere fraction of the projected 3.9 million personal digital assistants that will be sold in the United..."

"IBM Makes Wireless Deal; Suggested: Wireless devices to outnumber PCs on Internet, IBM expects [1/24/00]"

"IBM will design, build and run a global wireless Internet portal for Vodafone AirTouch PLC, the world's largest mobile phone operator, the companies announced earlier this month. The portal, which will be launched in July in Europe, North America and Australia, is based on software from..."

When I clicked on the above link, this is what I got:

"Summary: IBM will design, build and run a global wireless Internet portal for Vodafone AirTouch PLC, the world's largest mobile phone operator, the companies announced earlier this month. The portal, which will be launched in July in Europe, North America and Australia, is based on software from the Sun-Netscape Alliance and InfoSpace.com Inc. It will give users of mobile phone and handheld devices from Nokia Corp., Ericsson Inc. and Palm Computing Inc. access to messaging and calendaring functions, in addition to travel information and financial services."

The Wireless Data Forum

The Wireless Data Forum is a new organization with a new focus. Dedicated to publicizing successful wireless data applications and customer communities, the WDF is composed of network service providers, wireless device and infrastructure equipment manufacturers and vendors, computer software and hardware developers, and information services content providers. New members are actively being recruited from the wireless telecommunications, mobile computing, and Internet industries. The Wireless Data Forum's leadership is committed to being an industry-building mechanism. The Wireless Data Forum's work will focus on consensus building and promoting the entire wireless data industry.

It seems that the Forum means well and its current site does provide added value. Enable will continue to check on any updates and will keep you posted on the progress of this site, especially the Primer.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on June 20, 2000.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

A Developer's Dream

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A Developer's Dream. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Today's Enable is dedicated to developers. You guys and gals don't get the credit you deserve and are typically blamed for product bugs and problems. Are these product faults really your fault?



You are being pushed from all sides. You need prototypes, beta sites, etc. Your marketing "friends" are pushing you to get the product to market in record time. You feel the pressure every day - but where can you turn for help? Can the Internet help you like it seems to be helping everyone else?

If you are a wireless developer, you're in luck. AnywhereYouGo.com provides you with online tools and other information to help you develop applications that work without bugs and other problems - fast.

The solutions AnywhereYouGo.com provides are crucial because, according to the IGI group, by the year 2003 more people will access the Internet via a mobile phone than via PC. This will drive mobile e-commerce, which Strategy Analytics forecasts will reach a total 14 billion transactions in 2005 for a total market of $200 billion. The challenge is for today's wireless developers to build applications for multiple technologies, devices, and country standards.

AnywhereYouGo.com is the largest independent community of wireless application developers. The AnywhereYouGo.com web site provides industry and product news, developer tools and resources, industry reports, online application testing, directories of developers and applications, training and tutorials, and discussion groups covering wireless application development:

The entire site is excellent - especially the newsletters which I subscribe to personally. But today is dedicated to developers only, and as such Enable only focuses on the developer tools and application testing sections.

Five Steps To WAP Development

Anywhereyougo.com provides developers with a five step process for WAP development.

The steps are summarized below: Step 1 - Understand WAP: Step 2 - Get The Tools You Need Step 3 - Write Your First Application Step 4 - Write advanced applications Step 5 - Test Your Application

Online WAP Testing Tool

This section is specifically designed to ensure that your WAP users seeing the application you wrote, the way you intended. You can test your existing WAP applications using the online utility for code errors, common mistakes, and valid links.

You can choose from the following tests to run against your site: Check the document's content type header Validate the document against the DTD declared in it Check the document for formatting tags that are not commonly supported Check the compiled size of the document Follow links that lead off of your site to other sites?

Developer's Notebook

The site also has a very detailed developer's notebook which contains articles submitted by members of the community - people who are working in the trenches to make wireless work around the world.

Some sample articles include:

Real-Time Debugging Highly Integrated Embedded Wireless Devices by David Ruimy Gonzales In this installment of the Developer's Notebook, Motorola's David Gonzales examines the trend toward reducing the number of components in these systems as it relates to cost, overall power consumption and manufacturing complexity.

Dual Core Architecture for Cellular Handsets by David Ruimy Gonzales The exponential growth of the wireless communications industry has created a multitude of new products with advanced features that allow users to stay in touch with every aspect of their lives wherever they may be. These new products are quite diverse, require more system performance with no exceptions to power conservation and have short product life cycles.

Introduction to Location Services and Location-Based Services by John Davies AnywhereYouGo.com community member John Davies provides part one in a three-part series on location and location-based services.

Seven Steps to Success in the Mobile Wireless Enterprise by Tanya Candia In a Developer's Notebook white paper, F-Secure VP Tanya Candia explains why companies who are looking to make it in the m-commerce space have to make changes in the way they do business.

All of the above are only brief highlights of what the site has to offer. Take the time to go to AnywhereYouGo.com and check it out thoroughly. Enable guarantees that you will return - again and again.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on September 5, 2000.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Now is a good time to "Buy"

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Now is a good time to "Buy". Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) We have ample experience in the local stock market and listen carefully to the opinions of local analysts. We don't doubt that foreign investment banking firms may have superior analyst abilities. However, their direct contacts with the managements of local companies are minimal. The local analyst may find that he knows several heads of companies as they are his buddies in his reserve unit. The local grapevine is an invaluable supply of information. Some even went to school together.



The local daily press, available in English, is a good source of information. The daily newspapers have Internet web sites that publish the most important news that appears in the printed newspaper.

We believe that now is a good time to invest in Israel and would like to review various avenues open to the investor.

The Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange has several hundred securities listed for trading. The Exchange has a web site (http://www.tase.co.il); prices are posted daily and in near-real time. We favor companies whose activities are international and whose products are internationally recognized.

Most Israel interested investors have heard off Check Point, Converse and Teva but how many know about Aladdin? Aladdin Knowledge Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: ALDN) is recognized as the worldwide leader in Software Digital Rights Management (DRM) and USB-based authentication solutions. The company, is an innovator in enterprise secure content management (Enterprise Security). Its shares are traded on Nasdaq and the company has just reported record quarterly earnings of $3.59 million for the second quarter. This represents a 73.4 percent growth year-over-year and revenues of $20.06 million, representing 21.4 percent growth year-over-year.

AudioCodes Ltd. (Nasdaq: AUDC:) whose shares are traded on Nasdaq, designs, develops, and markets enabling technologies and system products for the transmission of voice, data, and fax over packet networks. The company's products are unique and its sales are growing as the Voice over the Internet. However, it should be kept in mind that AudioCodes sales are only at the $100m. level and profits are under 3%. The shares are favorably priced at $10 and appear to have good support at that level and upside potential. In the second quarter revenues Increase to $28.5 Million, Up 6% Sequentially and 49% year-over-year. Net Income was$3.1m, or $0.07 per share.

Ormat Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:ORA) is a vertically integrated company primarily engaged in the geothermal and recovered energy power business. It designs, develops, builds, owns and operates geothermal power plants. Additionally, the company designs, manufactures and sells geothermal and recovered energy power units and provides related services. More than 70 patents cover Ormat products and systems. Ormat currently has operations in the United States, Israel, the Philippines, Guatemala, Kenya, and Nicaragua. The company was founded by the Bronickis, husband and wife, and has been managed by them since its inception in 1965.

NICE-Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: NICE; TASE:NICE) is a vehicle that enables the investor to participate in the burgeoning security industry. NICE Systems (NASDAQ: NICE) headquartered in Ra'anana, Israel, is a leader of multimedia digital recording solutions, applications and related professional services for business interaction management. NICE products and solutions are used in contact centers, trading floors, air traffic control (ATC) sites, CCTV (closed circuit television) security installations and government markets.

NICE's subsidiaries and local offices are based in the United States, Germany, United Kingdom, France and Hong Kong. The company operates in more than 100 countries through a network of partners and distributors.

Other interesting companies, worthy of investment consideration, include CheckPoint (CHKP: Nasdaq) leader in computer protection software, Comverse (CMVT: Nasdaq) messaging, Teva Pharmaceuticals (TEVA:Nasdaq), world's largest generic drug manufacturer and Retalix (RTLX: Nasdaq) computerization at the check out counter.

None of the companies described above are "cheap". Most have p/e ratios of more than 30. However, they are in active in highly exciting technology fields. We were not able to pinpoint neither any biotechnology companies nor those in the medical instrumentation field. Most of the participants in these industries are young companies that have as yet to prove their investment worthiness.

For investors who are prepared to undertake the risks in private equity there are venture capital funds that are prepared to accept investments of $100,000 or more. However, for the greater part, and partially due to the dot.com debacle these have not, for the greater part, outstanding track records.

We believe that a portfolio of the above-described companies would yield above average results.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on October 6, 2005

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Israeli VCs miss the mark

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Israeli VCs miss the mark. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Venture capital provides a source of funds through investment, usually for companies or projects that are un the start-up or at a very early stage of product development. These projects and organizations generally would not attract sources of finance such as loans and could not raise money in the major public stock markets.



The role of venture capital in enterprise development in developing countries is critical. The collateral of emerging enterprises is not incorporated in fixed tangible assets like plant and machinery, but more on elements like market access, human capital, intellectual property and goodwill. Manpower and financial needs in new companies are generally focused on research, development and introduction of a product into the marketplace, production and manufacturing. This results in initial low or negative cash flows and the need to finance these companies rests on potential future earnings rather than current profits. These factors make it difficult for new and emerging companies to obtain traditional financing.

We believe that in the area of financing start-ups the Israeli venture capital industry is lagging sadly behind its overseas counterparts. According to a recent IVC Center Research report Israeli venture capital companies thirteen seed companies attracted $34 million, 10 percent of the total amount raised in Q3. During the first three quarters of the year, seed companies attracted eight percent of the total funds, compared with six percent in Q1-Q3 2004.

By contrast American seed and early stage companies accounted for 36.8% of all companies funded in the second quarter, according to the PricewaterhouseCoopers/Thomson Venture Economics/National Venture Capital Association MoneyTree Survey. These figure indicate that the Israeli venture capital financing industry is far from being venturesome and that it underperforms in the area, which is basic to its tenets. There is a yawning chasm between its funding of local start ups as compared with the American industry.

Notwithstanding the industry has badgered the Government for preferential conditions for foreign investors. Perhaps most damning are the poor returns that the industry provides for its investors. Many of the venture capital companies are still stuck with the unprofitable investments from the dot.com era. Had the rate of investments in start ups been higher in previous years we would see a parade of initial public offerings in a period when the stock markets are absorbing them so successfully.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on February 15, 2006

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

When money grew on trees

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When money grew on trees. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Bonsai growing is the art of dwarfing trees or plants and developing them into an aesthetically appealing shape by growing, pruning and training them in containers. True Bonsai take years to grow... and are usually priced accordingly, and there's the rub.



Israelis by nature are impatient, and it would never occur to them to initiate an enterprise that might take several years before achieving a saleable product. They love flowers, and will travel to greenhouses to buy flowers and seedlings for their gardens.

The Israeli bonsai industry (and mind you, at one time there was a bonsai industry in this country), is now defunct. I remember seeing no fewer than one million bonsai plants in various forms and shapes, sitting neatly on shelves at a growing area just outside of Tel-Aviv.

Their elegant shapes were beautiful. They were being prepared for shipment to Britain to be sold at Marks & Spencer. No further proof of the industry's existence was needed.

The origin of the Israeli bonsai industry goes back to the period when a demobbed Israeli soldier decided to take a post army service trip to the Far East. In Japan he worked at various jobs, mostly physical labor. His life took a major turn when he came across a bonsai farm. The one time soldier was taken back to his childhood days when he lived on a kibbutz farm. He loved trees and flowers. By then he knew some Japanese and asked whether he could be hired. It was there that he learned the art of bonsai growing. He also fell in love with a Japanese girl who agreed to move with him to Israel.

Back in Israel, a friend, on hearing the story, and having some idea of the value of bonsais, suggested that they establish a bonsai growing farm.

It was a miracle of modern Israel. The seedlings grew to bonsai plants in a matter of weeks. Father time had been conquered and only a few insiders knew how it was done. The shaping, the twisting of the roots were done quite openly in the daytime. However, only a few were aware that the Israelis were taking advantage of modern science and technology to enhance the growing progress.

The height of a bonsai plant can range from six inches to approximately 36 inches. To reach the appropriate size in record time, the grower turned to the Agricultural Research Institute of a major Israel university. They were happy to comply and told him which accelerator he must spray on the seedling to set it on its way to adulthood. But that was not all. When the plant reached its desired height, the growing process had to be arrested. The scientists at the Agricultural Research Institute were happy to comply. They supplied a growth retardant and with the help of these two substances one million bonsai came into being in record time

However, the business partner of the enterprise walked away with a major money investment, spelling the death of the bonsai enterprise.

What further proof was needed to show how modern agricultural science with its accelerators and growth suppressants could help Mother Nature and enhance the ancient art of bonsai growing?

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on March 28, 2006

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

A shortcut to insight

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A shortcut to insight. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) A new trend among informative websites: less is more. This is a welcome change from the early days of the Internet where every site wanted to be the next Amazon.com and tried to provide as much information on a particular subject as their website could hold. I for one stop going to sites where I was inundated with way too much information. I now look for sites that provide quality - not simply quantity.



Today's Enable looks at such a site. It is called CIObriefcase and it provides CIOs as well as businesspersons with valuable information in a short and sweet format. While the site stresses topics for CIOs, it is worth it for anyone in business to check this site out. As demonstrated by the examples below, you will not have to spend a lot of time to glean critical information.

What's Hot

The site begins with a section called what's hot. Currently you will see three topics:

Security: Shared knowledge is key to security success Outsourcing: Five classic outsourcing blunders Systems Integration: The hidden costs of data integration

The key feature here is that you simply choose a topic and then you only get the five most valuable news stories, white papers and peer discussion groups for that topic. You probably do not need any more information on the particular topic and if you are a typical business person - you definitely do not have time to read more.

The site is your filter - choosing the most relevant information for you.

In Depth Archive

Another nice feature of the site is its archive. Here you will find new stories and white papers on topics ranging from Security, Outsourcing and Systems Integration to Web Services, CRM and Storage Area Management.

Click on any of the topics and you are provided with links to five news stories and five white papers on the particular topic.

I did a search of Business Continuity and came up with the following stories and white papers:

Stories

The ABCs of disaster recovery Security enters disaster-recovery maze Sept. 11 attacks prompt decentralization moves Skilled for business continuity

White Papers

A guide to business continuity planning: Protection and recovery services Netsourcing: There's no upside to downtime Cyberterrorism: Take effective action while you still can Business continuity for today's manufacturing enterprise Ensuring e-business continuity for financial services

Take advantage of CIObriefcase's brevity - it saves you time by providing your with short and sweet information in areas critical to your ongoing success.

Published by Israel's Business Arena on 26 March 2002

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

How Israeli High-Tech Happened

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How Israeli High-Tech Happened. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Israel became a high-tech hothouse because she had to. True, she enjoys favorable conditions for the growth of high-tech industries; chief among them, well-educated, inventive, enterprising people. Relative to the size of her population, Israel has more engineers, and sees more scientific articles published, than any other country in the world (Israel has 135 engineers per 10,000 people; the US has 85). However, the stimulus for the industry's growth has been national survival, both military and economic.



David among Goliaths

As a small country in a hostile neighborhood, Israel must strive to maintain a qualitative military edge over her potential enemies. Experience in a series of wars has taught Israel that she needs to develop that edge independently as far as she can. In large part, Israel's high-tech industries are a spin-off from that process.

Israel fought the 1967 Six Day War largely with French weaponry. When President de Gaulle imposed an arms embargo after that war, Israel turned to the United States, and to herself. The commercial consequences can be seen today. Blades Technology, for example, a company originally set up to manufacture engine parts for the Israel Air Force's Mirage aircraft, now has annual sales of $90 million, and joint ventures with Pratt & Whitney and Rolls Royce.

In the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Israel was surprised by the technological capabilities of her enemies, and also experienced difficulty in obtaining vital materiel from her foreign suppliers, spurring efforts for technological supremacy and self-sufficiency. The Kfir jet fighter, based on the French mirage, was one of the first large-scale projects in this effort.

Lavi grounded, high tech takes off

The effort for military self-sufficiency reached its limits in the 1980s, when Israel tried to develop the Lavi jet fighter. The cost proved beyond her and the project was abandoned, but this meant that, in the mid-eighties, hundreds of engineers with experience at the cutting edge ofaerodynamics, avionics, computers and electronics were released onto the market. The Lavi project's demise has been described as one of the greatest ever boosts to Israeli high-tech industry.

Since the Lavi, Israeli defense industries have focused more on components, electronics, avionics and other systems that are installed on American or other platforms. Israel has arranged many reciprocal procurement agreements with leading aerospace and military manufacturers, which help sustain high-tech industries. The development of these auxiliary systems has also given Israeli high-tech industries an edge in civilian spin-offs in security, electronics, computers, software and the burgeoning Internet sectors.

Into space

The military imperative has not disappeared. Even in the era of the peace process, Israel must keep up her guard. In response to the Iraqi Scuds that hit Tel Aviv in the 1991 Gulf War Israel began development of the Arrow anti-missile missile. The Arrow program began as part of the US SDI (Star Wars) program, requiring considerable advances in electronics, computers and ballistics. The Arrow will soon be ready for operational deployment. In general, the search for better systems in the areas of weapons, intelligence gathering, and command and control, goes on apace.

In the 1990s, Israel became only the eighth country in the world to develop and launch satellites, beginning with the Amos civilian communications satellite, followed by the Ofek military satellites and the Eros civilian photo-reconnaissance satellite. Israel now partners with NASA, the ESA and the Russian space program, building component and complete satellites for scientific and civilian uses.

In 2002, two of Israel's six largest industrial companies by turnover were high-tech companies: Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), Intel Electronics, as well as pharmaceutical company Teva (Nasdaq: TEVA; TASE:TEVA). The largest exporters in terms of sales included high-tech companies Teva, IAI, Intel Electronics, and Vishay Intertechnology (Israel), with over $1 billion in exports each.

Economic imperative

In part, the economic necessity derives from the military one. Israel's defense budget is inadequate for her to maintain her military advantage. One solution is export. Israel is both a highly successful defense and civilian high-tech exporter.

However, the global defense market is shrinking. Civilian applications of the skills in software, communications, imaging, process control, etc., derived from military industries, have therefore become increasingly important. For example, the need for better night-vision equipment led to local engineers becoming trained in the field of image processing, and to the establishment of two trailblazing Israeli high-tech companies: Scitex (Nasdaq: SCIX; TASE:SCIX), and Elscint. Because Israel is such a small market, export is essential for civilian products too, providing a further incentive to maintain technological excellence, particularly in certain niche markets - network security, for example, where Check Point (Nasdaq: CHKP) is a world leader; Mercury Interactive Corporation (Nasdaq: MERQ) is a leader in enterprise testing and performance management solutions; and Amdocs (NYSE: DOX) is a leader in customer relations management, billing and order management solutions.

Pharmaceuticals

In the 1990s, pharmaceuticals and medical devices became a rising high-tech sector. Teva has become a leading global generic drug maker, followed by Taro Pharmaceutical Industries (Nasdaq: TARO) and Agis Industries (TASE:AGIS). Medical device company Given Imaging (Nasdaq: GIVN) and biopharmaceutical companies such as Savient Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:SVNT) are becoming prominent players, listed on Nasdaq and European bourses.

Immigration

The wave of immigration from the countries of the former Soviet Union in the 1990s provided an influx of skilled scientists and engineers. The government's technology incubator program was largely a response to the need to provide these newcomers with employment, and harness their talents to the needs of industry. The immigrants helped fuel Israel's phenomenal growth rate between 1991 and 1994, and helped man the high-tech boom after 1998. In the late 1990s, Israeli high-tech began suffering from a shortage of skilled manpower. The government and industry have been expanding educational and vocational programs to meet the demand. The high-tech slump since late 2000 has slowed demand for trained personnel, but not ended the shortage altogether.

Liberalization

Israel has few natural resources. The aspiration of her population for a Western standard of living can only be satisfied through integration into the global market. Israel's transition from a State-dominated, centralized, protectionist economy to a free market means that traditional industries such as textiles are disappearing, losing out to low-cost overseas competition. How far and how fast this transition should go is a matter of debate, but there is no doubt that high-tech, where Israel enjoys a relative advantage, will be a mainstay of Israel's economic future. As Israel's economy restructures from traditional industries for the local market to export-oriented high-tech, high-tech exports as a percentage of total exports has been steadily increasing, rising from 45% in 1995 to 57% in 2000.

Exports of electronics communications components, electronic components, medical equipment and software and IT products soared to over $13 billion 2000. Although the onset of the high-tech crisis in late 2000 caused a sharp contraction in exports and production,electronics, communications, monitoring and control equipment, and avionics are still key exports. Pharmaceuticals and medical devices and equipment are also becoming increasingly important. High-tech is still the key growth engine for the Israeli economy and a mark of its integration into the global economy.

Foreign investment

An important aspect of Israel's integration into the world economy has been increasing inward investment, particularly in the high-tech industry. Companies like Cisco Systems, Motorola, Intel, IBM, Nortel, Microsoft, Mitsubishi, Deutsche Telekom, aviation and space companies, to mention just a few, have recognized that Israel is a fount of high-tech innovation they cannot afford to ignore. They have set up subsidiaries and research centers here, invested in Israeli companies, technology incubators, and venture capital funds, or found Israeli strategic partners.

Annual foreign investment in Israel grew from $400 million in 1992, to peak at $5.0 billion in 2000. Foreign investment subsequently contracted, due to the high-tech crisis, the global economic slowdown and political tensions in the Middle East, but is still substantial. Foreign venture capital investment grew apace, rising from $587 million in 1998, peaking at $3.1 billion in 2000, before falling to $982 million in 2002, still higher than the level of five years previously. Investment by Israeli venture capital funds followed the same pattern: peaking at $1.27 billion in 2000, but totaling only $481 million in 2002, including $62 million in foreign companies. (Sources: MonetyTree and IVC). The Bank of Israel reported that total foreign investment in Israel amounted to $2.6 billion in 2002, including $1.2 billion in direct foreign investment.

Start-up country

With 3,000 start-ups, the Global Competitiveness Report 2000 ranked Israel second behind the US in the number of start-ups and first relative to population. The weight of start-ups of GDP was 3% in 2000, compared with 0.4% in 1997. The comparable figures for the US was 0.3% and 0.1%, respectively. Israel was was highly ranked in terms of the number of engineers and education, but poorly in terms of physical infrastructure, a situation the government is trying to remedy.

Israel was ranked second in civilian R&D expenditure as a percentage of GDP, rising from 2.7% in 1994 to 4.2% in 1999. Total R&D expenditure in 2000 was $4.2 billion and NIS 23.9 billion in 2001. State expenditure on civilian R&D has been rising faster than GDP through the 1990s, mostly being invested in high-tech, but also agriculture, manufacturing and biotechnology.

Next steps

In any discussion of the future of Israeli high-tech, the following points tend to emerge:

The limiting factor on the sector's growth is a shortage of engineers and managers. Although training programs at universities, colleges and government and industry sponsored retraining courses have been expanding, plus attempts to expand the labor pool by tapping haredi (ultra-orthodox) and other communities, demand continues to outstrip supply, even in the wake of the cutbacks due to the high-tech crisis since mid-2000. Demand to allow the entry of foreign skilled engineers and programmers for the high-tech sector have abated, the issue may re-emerge when the industry recovers and if the Israeli labor pool remains insufficient.

The industry needs to consolidate through company mergers.

The government's role needs to be reviewed. Many argue that government support for civilian R&D is not sufficiently discriminating, resulting in financial and human resources becoming too thinly spread.

Tax reform to ease mergers and acquisitions, better reward employees, and encourage foreign investment. Although progress has been made on these issues, stumbling blocks remain.

New directions: Biotechnology and medical devices are seen as coming fields. While Israel is well placed to exploit it, with outstanding life sciences and medical research institutions, this will mean a departure from the military-industrial symbiosis which has done so much to sustain high-tech development up to now. Nevertheless, Israel has a number of outstanding and growing start-ups and companies in these fields, including many new listings on Nasdaq and European exchanges. Israel is ranked third in the world in biotechnology start-ups.

In 2000 there were 160 biotechnology and 400 medical device companies in Israel, compared with 25 in 1988, employing 4,000 people and generating $800 million in turnover. 20 companies are publicly traded, half in the US and half in Europe. Investment in biotechnology has been growing steadily, reaching totaled $1.7 billion in 2000, including about $200 million in venture capital. There are 15 life sciences venture capital funds operating in Israel.

Some figures

In 2000, exports of high-tech products accounted for 55% of all exports, up from 23% in 1991. Exports of electronics communications components, electronic components, medical equipment and software and IT products peaked at over $13 billion, before the onset of the high-tech crisis in late 2000 caused a sharp contraction in exports and production.

In 2000, 195,000 people were employed in the various high-tech sectors, compared with 148,870 people a decade earlier. Demand for engineers and technicians is estimated at 2,000-3,000 a year. The various academic institutions currently supply 1,000-1,300.

National expenditure on civilian R&D amounted to NIS 23.9 billion (over $5 billion) in 2001, 4.2% of GDP. Spending on civilian R&D has remained stable despite the recession since 2000, although the focus on research has been shifting from Internet and software to new fields such as biotechnology, nanotechnology. Chemical and chemical products, electronic components, communications components, supervision, monitoring, and medical equipment accounted for 87% of industrial R&D expenditure in 2001.

Israel issues the largest number of companies in the US after the US itself and Canada. According to the Bank of Israel, investment by foreign residents totaled $9.4 billion in 2000, up from $3 billion in 1995. Israeli companies raised $4.2 billion overseas in 2000, mostly on Nasdaq, but also including $800 million raised on European exchanges. The 2000 figure is 13 times the amount raised only five years earlier, in 1995, reflecting the immense growth by Israeli high tech and its emergence as a global player. Foreign investment and the raising of capital by Israeli companies overseas has since fallen to a fraction of the 2000 figure.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Technology Incubators

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Technology Incubators. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) On this page: Background Incubator Directory

1. Background

The incubator program aims to turn technological ideas into commercial successes. It operates under the aegis of the Chief Scientist at the Ministry of Industry and Trade. The incubators provide fledgling enterprises with a supportive framework, including administrative back-up and consulting services, while the Office of the Chief Scientist provides finance. An enterprise can generally remain within an incubator for two years, within which time it is expected to complete development of its product and find independent sources of finance.



An incubator may be independent, or backed by an investor, or part of an established company. Government support is given on different terms in each case.

Most of the incubators are located outside the central Tel Aviv-Gush Dan area.

There are about 200 projects in the independent incubators. The main R&D fields are chemical and electrochemical, mechanical and electromechanical, software, electronics, biotechnology, and computers. The applications for the technologies being developed are predominantly in industrial and control processes, medicine and cosmetics, and transport and communications, with agriculture also a significant beneficiary.

The incubator program began as a response to the influx of scientists and engineers from the countries of the former Soviet Union at the beginning of the 1990s, when immigration from those countries was at its height. Immigration has since abated, and the effectiveness of the scheme, and of other aspects of government support for R&D, is now being questioned, though the Office of the Chief Scientist claims a high success rate for incubator enterprises, and the scheme has been held up internationally as a model of its kind.

For further details, see Investment Incentives. The Office of the Chief Scientist site provides a full guide to the incubator scheme and to the incubators themselves, plus a project database . The site does not include incubators that operate within companies.

2. Incubator Directory

Advanced Technologies Center (ATC) Rotem Industrial Park, Mishor Yemin, 206 Oron Road Arava, 86800 Tel: 972 8 655 8796 Fax: 972 8 655 6106 E-mail: atctemed@netvision.net.il

Am-Shav Technological Applied Development Center Midreshet Sde-Boker 84990 Tel: 972 8 653 2726; Fax: 972 8 653 2266; E-mail: amshav

Ashkelon Technological Industries (ATI) 7 Haofa Street, South Industrial Zone POB 7284 Ashkelon 78172 Tel: 972 8 671 1852/3/4 Fax: 972 8 671 1855 E-mail: ati

DIMOTECH at the Technion

HiTEC Technology Enterpreneurship Center Har Hotzvim POB 45010 Jerusalem, 91450 Tel. 972 2 587 0710 Fax 972 2 581 2386 E-mail: yirmi@hitec.co.il

Incentive Technological Incubator PO Box 3, Ariel 44837 Tel: 972-3-936-4754, Fax: 972-3-936-6873 E-mail: Info

The Initiative Center of the Negev 15 Yehoshua Hatzoref St. Beersheva 84106 POB 844 Tel: 972 8 623 1212 Fax: 972 8 623 1246 E-mail: ceo

Incubator for Technological Entrepreneurhsip (ITEK) Kiryat Weizmann Science Park, Bldg.13A, Ness Ziona 70400 Tel: 972-8-940-9086 Fax: 972-8-940-8085 E-mail: itek@itek.co.il J.C. Technologies 21 Havaad Haleumi St. PO Box 16120, Jerusalem 91160 Tel: 972-2-675-1123 Fax: 972-2-675-1195 E-mail: info

Kinarot Jordan Valley Technology Incubator Zemach, Jordan Valley 15132 Tel: 972 4 670 9018, Fax: 972 4 670 9014 E-mail: kinarot

Lab-One Innovations Formerly Nitzanim Initiative Center. Affiliated with StageOne Ventures 6 HaNehoshet St., Ramat Hahayal, Tel Aviv 69710 Tel: 972-3-6475788 Fax: 972-3-6473819 E-mail: Lab-One

Jerusalem Software Incubator POB 45125 Jerusalem, 91450 Tel: 972 2 587 0012 Fax: 972 2 587 0015 E-mail: ceo

Maayan Technology Ventures 3 Azrieli Center, Triangle Tower, 42nd Floor, Tel Aviv 67023 Tel. 972-54-4555219 4 HaNachtom St., PO Box 844, Beltec Building, Beer-Sheva 84106 Tel. 972-8-6231212 Fax: 972-8-6231246 E-mail: info

Magnet Program Ministry of Industry and Trade Office of the Chief Scientist.

MATAM Advanced Technology Center, Haifa Haifa 31905 Tel: 972 4 855 0066 / Ext. 126 Fax: 972 4 855 0888 E-mail: matam@netvision.net.il

Not itself an incubator, MATAM is an industrial park that provides services to tenants.

Meytag Technology Incubator Katzrin Industrial Zone POB 12 Katzrin 12900 Tel: 972 4 696 2561 Fax: 972 4 696 2564

Meytav - Technological Enterprises Initiation Center POB 408, Kiryat Shmona10200 Tel: 972 4 681 8800 Fax: 972 4 681 8806 E-mail: meytav

Misgav Carmiel Incubator MP Misgav 20179 Tel: 972 4 999 1991 Fax: 972 4 999 1901 E-mail: misgavtc

Mofet B'Yehuda - Technology and Business Incubator POB 80, Kiryat Arba 90100 Tel: 972 2 996 3880 Fax: 972 2 996 1571 E-mail:info

Mofet also manages an enviromental division: GreenTech that focuses on start-up entrepreneurs and investors interested in meeting the growing global demand for new ecological and environmental technologies.

New Generation Technology (NGT) Nazareth Industrial Area, P.O. Box 2252, Nazareth 16000 Tel: 972-4-656-4118, Fx: 972-4-656-4129, E-mail: Sharon Dvir, CEO

A high-tech incubator founded by a group of Israeli Arab and Jewish businesspeople.

Naiot Technological Center Affiliated with Ofer Brothers. POB 732 Nazareth Illit 17106 Tel: 972 4 650 0764/564-092 Fax: 972 4 656 6735 E-mail: info

Ofek LaOleh Jezre'el Valley Initiative Center POB 73, Migdal Ha'emek 23100 Tel: 972 4 654 3081 Fax: 972 4 654 3082 E-mail: Avraham Maoz

Ofakim Innovative Technologies (O.I.T.) 7 Betsalel St., POB 633, Ofakim 80300 Tel: 972 8 992 5580 Fax 972 8 992 6581 E-mail: oitech

Orit Technological R&D Center Affiliated with the Ofer Brothers Group P.O. Box 3 Ariel 44837 Tel: 972-3-936-4754 Fax: 972-3-936-6873 E-mail: orit

Patir R&D Center Incubator 21 Havaad Haleumi St. PO Box 16120, Jerusalem 91160 Tel: 972-2 675 1123 Fax: 972 2 675 1195 E-mail: info@patir.co.il

Rad-Ramot 2a Katzir Street, Tel Hashomer Ramat Gan 52656 Telefax: 972 3 531 2600 E-mail: info

Rad-Ramot is a joint venture of Rad Data Communication Ltd. and Ramot, the commercial arm of Tel Aviv University. It focuses on bio-medical and life-science projects.

Targetech Innovation Center Poleg Industrial Area, POBox 8027, Netanya, 42101 Tel: 972-9-885-1116 Fax: 972-9-885-1090 E-mail: Azriel Kadim

Targetech Innovation Center Poleg Industrial Area, POB 8027, Netanya 42101 Tel: 972 9 885 1116; Fax: 972 9 885 1090 E-mail: info

TEIC, The Technion Entrepreneurial Incubator Company Science Park Technion, Nesher, POB 212 Nesher 36601 Tel: 972 4 830 8333 Fax: 972 4 821 0531 E-mail: info

Western Negev Initiative Center POB 321 Neve Dekalim, 79779 Tel: 972 8 684 2983 Fax: 972 8 684 6457 E-mail: dov

Xenia Ventures Technology Incubator Gat High Tech Center (Matmag) Kiryat-Gat New Industrial Zone 1 Leshem St., Kiryat Gat 82000 Tel: 972-8-6811761/2 Fax: 972-8-6811763 E-mail: Hagay

YEDA Research and Development of the Weizmann Institute of Science Incubator for Technological Entrepreneurship - Kiryat Weizmann Ltd. Building No. 3, Kiryat Weizmann Science Park, Ness Ziona 70400 Tel: 972 8 940 9086 Fax: 972 8 940 8085

Yozmot - Granot Initiative Center Mobile Post Hefer 38100 Tel: 972 6 632 1390-1, Fax: 972 6 632 1392 E-mail: elizo@trendline.co.il

Yozmot Ha'Emek Ofek La'Oleh Technological Incubator PO Box 73, Migdal Ha'Emek 23100 Israel Tel: 972-4-6544800 Fax: 972-4-6543082 E-mail: Avraham (Avri) Maoz, Managing Director

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Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Investment Incentives

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Investment Incentives. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) On this page: Government Incentives - Overview Approved Enterprises Other Government Incentives Research and Development Incubators Free Trade Agreements International R&D Funds Free Trade and Free Processing Zones Further Information



1. Government Incentives - Overview

The Israeli government provides various incentives to encourage economic development, and overseas investors may benefit from these. Indeed, incentives are enhanced for projects in which there is foreign involvement. There are generally no restrictions on the extent of foreign ownership in an enterprise, except in the security sector.

Incentives take the form of cash grants, loan guarantees, and tax benefits. Research and development attracts special assistance. There is also an technology incubator scheme which nurtures new ideas, providing practical as well as financial aid to entrepreneurs.

2. Approved Enterprises

The main incentives are set out in the Law for the Encouragement of Capital Investments, 1959. Assistance provided under this law is administered by the Investment Center, which is part of the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

The Investment Center Ministry of Industry and Trade 30, Agron St. Jerusalem. Tel: 972-2-6220373/4/5 Fax: 972-2-6250442

Most assistance relates to projects awarded "approved enterprise" status by the Ministry of Industry and Trade. In general, projects that will help to develop the economy, generate employment, or improve the balance of payments, qualify for such status. An additional criterion is that projects must have paid-up capital amounting to 30% of the total investment required.

An approved enterprise may be owned by a foreign company.

Types of assistance available

Note:

Enterprises must select an assistance track at the outset. It is not possible to change from one type of assistance to another.

In some circumstances, assistance may be available to expand an existing enterprise as well as start a new one.

Cash grant

Grants are available for investment in tangible fixed assets. The rate of grant varies according to the enterprise's location. Outlying areas attract higher rates; the central area no grant at all. The current (1998) range is 10-20% for those areas that qualify for grants.

Loan guarantee

The State guarantees loans from Israeli banks at regulated interest rates covering up to two-thirds of project outlays.

Tax holiday

A total exemption from company tax on undistributed profits for between four and ten years, depending on location.

Composite assistance - grant and loan guarantee

Enterprises may elect to receive a reduced rate of grant topped up by State guaranteed loans. The total amount of grant plus loan may be up to two-thirds of the outlays on fixed assets and working capital.

Composite assistance - tax holiday and loan guarantee

A company that elects to take a tax holiday may also obtain a State guaranteed loan, but the period of tax exemption is then reduced.

Tax Benefits

Approved enterprises that do not choose a tax holiday nevertheless enjoy a reduced rate of company tax for a period of seven years. Approved enterprises may also claim accelerated depreciation rates on fixed assets and buildings for the first five years of their use.

Foreign Investors' Companies (at least 25% foreign owned) benefit from reduced company tax rates for a period of ten years. Moreover, the higher the level of foreign ownership, the greater the reduction in the rate.

Companies that do choose a tax holiday receive the general tax benefit between the end of the holiday and the end of the applicable tax benefit period if the tax holiday expires first.

3. Other Israel Government Incentives

"Industrial Enterprises"

A project that does not qualify for approved enterprise status may nevertheless come within the definition of an "industrial enterprise" for the purposes of the Law for the Encouragement of Industry (Taxes) 1969, in which case it can claim special depreciation and amortisation rates on tangible and intangible fixed assets.

Small Business Loan Fund

The fund provides loans and guarantees for the establishment or expansion of enterprises employing up to 75 people. Projects receiving other forms of government support are not eligible for assistance from the fund.

Exporters

Exporters can obtain a range of benefits, including relief on import duties on materials incorporated into exported products, accelerated VAT refunds, support for offering credit to overseas customers, and insurance covering various kinds of overseas trading risk.

Special Incentive for Overseas Investors - "Capital Intensive Companies"

This incentive applies only to companies in which share ownership is restricted to non-residents.

Under the Law for the Encouragement of Investments (Capital Intensive Companies) 1990, companies awarded capital intensive company status by the Minister of Finance benefit from a 25% corporate tax rate on retained profit, and their shareholders are exempt from capital gains tax upon sale of their shares. These benefits apply for 30 years.

A company may benefit from capital intensive company and approved enterprise status at the same time.

Besides being foreign owned, to receive capital intensive company status a company must have paid-up capital of at least $30 million, 75% of which must be invested in qualifying activities. Qualifying activities include, inter alia, the establishment or expansion of an enterprise dealing in communications infrastructure or computers, or engaging in R&D in these fields.

4. Research and Development

Grant Aid

The Office of the Chief Scientist at the Ministry of Industry and Trade administers various forms of grant aid to encourage innovation all the way from pre-industrial academic research to beta-site testing of new products. Rates of grant range from 20% to 66%. The definition of approved expenditure attracting grant aid is reasonably wide.

If an R&D program results in a commercial product, the grant becomes repayable by way of a royalty payment. Other conditions include a stipulation that products resulting from government supported R&D be manufactured in Israel, and restrictions on the transfer of know-how to third parties.

R&D Tax Benefits

Accelerated amortisation rates apply to R&D expenditure.

5. Incubators

Incubators provide a supportive framework for entrepreneurs with ideas but without the necessary resources or business experience to develop them. The assistance goes beyond grants, and includes practical help - administrative back-up, business planning, finding sources of finance, and so on. In essence, the incubator scheme give enterprises two years in which to develop a marketable product and become self-sustaining.

An incubator may have backing from an established company or an investor, or it may be independent. Incubator projects attract especially high levels of grant aid from the Office of the Chief Scientist for two years. After that, they may obtain aid under the regular R&D grant system mentioned above.

The assistance available includes a market feasibility study carried out by the Office of the Chief Scientist, or a grant towards a privately conducted study. Projects in incubators with industrial or investor may obtain a grant of 66% of R&D costs. For projects in independent incubators, the grant available is 100% of labour costs and 75% of other approved costs. There is a grant ceiling in each case. Independent incubators themselves receive up to 100% grants towards establishment and operating costs.

In most cases, the same payback rules apply to incubator projects as apply to R&D assistance in general.

See also Technology Incubators

International Aspects

6. Free Trade Agreements

Israel enjoys the unique advantage of having free trade agreements with the US, the European Union, and EFTA. Apart from the direct benefits this confers, it also means that Israel can act as an efficient bridging country between these markets. For example, components may be imported into Israel from the US tariff-free, and incorporated into products sold, again tariff free, to EU countries.

Israel has General System of Preferences status for developing countries in Australia, Canada, and Japan, giving Israeli exports to those countries customs duty reductions. Israel also enjoys most-favoured-nation status in the Chinese market.

7. R&D Funds

R&D Funds are discussed here in terms of the State financing available through them. For a more complete guide to agencies promoting international R&D cooperation, see Research and Development.

Israel has agreements with several countries for joint R&D financing.

The Israel-United States Binational Industrial Research and Development Foundation (known as BIRD F) promotes partnerships between Israeli and US companies. This typically means a US company utilising or distributing an Israeli company's innovative technology. BIRD F is administered by the Chief Scientist in conjunction with the US Standards Institute. It will contribute up to 50% of the cost of R&D projects over one to three years. The grant becomes repayable if the project succeeds. Projects cannot obtain BIRD F funding and Office of the Chief Scientists support at the same time.

The Canada-Israel Industrial Research & Development Foundation (CIIRDF) operates on similar lines. Israel also operates bilateral funds with Germany (GICT) and Singapore (SIIRD).

In addition, Israel has signed memoranda of understanding on R&D co-operation with several countries. The Office of the Chief Scientist site provides a complete list.

R&D Co-operation with European Union

Israel is a member of the European Union's Fifth Framework Programme of scientific research and technical development. Israel also has a Public Procurement Agreement with the EU, which provides, among other things, that the EU will not apply preferences to EU companies against Israeli companies in telecommunications tenders, and that the Israeli government act similarly vis-a-vis EU companies.

For further information, see the Delegation of the European Commission to the State of Israel and CORDIS sites.

8. Free Trade and Free Processing Zones

The city of Eilat, on the Red Sea at the point where Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt meet, is a free port and free trade area. Enterprises in Eilat enjoy company tax concessions, and most goods imported into Eilat, and transactions within the Eilat free trade area, are exempt from import taxes and VAT. Most goods purchased from elsewhere in Israel are zero-rated for VAT.

Recent legislation provides for the setting up of Free Processing Zones. Enterprises in these zones will enjoy certain tax benefits, and most transactions within the zones will be zero-rated for VAT.

9. Further information

The Ministry of Finance site (International Division) gives up-to-date information on the investment incentives available.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.
Start-up Reviews - Computing, Internet. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Click company name to obtain Arena's write-up. Links automatically open a new browser window. You may need to scroll down the new window to find the article on the company you are looking for.



Computing, Internet

AbirNet SessionWall-3, network security and employee monitoring (April '98) EXIT: Acquired by Memco Software in 1998.

Acceloop Internet traffic control software (October 2001)

Actimize Software for server load-balancing (July 2001)

Adyoron Intelligence Systems Video compression and streaming technology on Texas Instruments DSP chips (January 2001)

Aliroo User-friendly encryption systems (November '98)

Appilog Monitoring and control software for electronic systems (June 2001)

AudioCodes Voice compression chips and boards for Internet Protocol telephony (February '99) EXIT: Nasdaq and TASE IPOs in 1999.

Balisoft Technologies Software products to support Internet trading and customer services (June '98) EXIT: Balisoft merged with ServiceSoft Corporation to form Servicesoft Technologies Inc., which was I acquired by Broadbase Software now Kana (Nasdaq:KANA) in December 2000.

Bridges for Islands Enterprise integration software (December '99) EXIT: Accquired by Attunity (Nasdaq:ATTU) in February 2000.

BroadLight Technology for 3G passive optical access communications networks (June 2001)

BuildCom Electronic Commerce International electronic market place for the A/E/C industry (May 2000)

Bug-Life Animation technology for various platforms (April 2001)

Business Layers Enterprise digital resources & services management (October '99) EXIT: Acquired by Netegrity (NETE) DEcember 2003.

cSafe Technology preventing pictures from being copied from the Internet. (Demo99 March '99) EXIT: Renamed Alchemedia Technologies, and acquired by Finjan Technologies in January 2003.

Informative Inc. (formerly Cahoots) Live web-wide communications network (May 2000)

CommerceMind Infrastructures for directory services and e-commerce (March 2002)

Congruency Server system to centralize Internet-based communications applications for small businesses (January '99) EXIT: Telrad Tenecs to merge with Congruency (March 2002)

Cobrador Enterprise security system based on both software and hardware (February 2002)

Corigin Still in the mainframe (February 2003)

Correlate Technologies (US start-up) Project management software (May '99)

Cyber-Ark Comprehensive information security solution (June 2001)

Cydoor Desktop Media Server-Client system for displaying ads on Internet (January '99)

Cyota Secure online purchases system (November 2001)

Digital Fuel Technologies Enterprise sourcing relationship management software solutions.

Doc Witness Anti-piracy device for CDs. (June 2002)

DVDemand Technologies Engine for assembling a multimedia DVD online (October 2000)

Enbaya 3D compression and streaming technology (June 2001)

eplication Content delivery system (May 2001)

Extent Technologies Applications-on-demand technology (June 2001)

GlobaLoop Internet access solution for high concentration of users (May '99)

Firebit.net Next generation Internet network service platforms (October 2000)

Hello Tech Technologies Voice operated m-commerce systems (March 2002)

Hotbar.com Internet infrastructure utility (December '99)

ibetcha.com Internet betting site (April 2000) EXIT: Acquired by Uproar in August 2000.

idcide.com Browser add-on that displays the attempts of visited sites to track the user and blocks such attempts. (May 2000)

Idium Systems e-commerce security software (January 2002)

i-Labs Internet traffic analysis and forecasting (May '98)

InfoCyclone High-speed information retrieval (April 2001)

ClearForest (formerly Instinct Software) Advanced text information retrieval (March 1999)

Intellipen Electronic pen (February 2002)

AlwaysOn.com (formerly LightPC.com) Application service provider (May 2000)

Mango DSP Multiprocessor DSP development environment software and hardware solutions. (April '99)

MaxBill Telecom billing systems (January 2001)

Mercado Software E-commerce catalog integration (July 2000)

Midbar Tech Copyright protection solutions (January 2001) EXIT: Acquired by Macrovision (Nasdaq:MVSN) in November 2002.

Monosphere Software for managing storage networks (June 2001)

Identity Software (formerly MuTek Solutions) (August software black-box tool (June 1999)

Oblicore A service level management solution for ASPs (April 2001)

P-Cube IP service management and provisioning platform (April 2001) Exit: Acquired by Cisco Systems for $200 million in August 2004

ProActivity E-processing solutions for enterprise systems (August 2000)

Quiver Human powered web directory (March 2000) EXIT: Acquired by Inktomi in July 2002 for $12 million. Yahoo! acquired Inktomi in March 2003.

RichFX Compression of high-quality video for quicker downloading (July 2000)

Riverhead Networks Denial of attack (November 2002) EXIT: Acquired by Cisco Systems for $40 million in March 2003.

Sanctum (Formerly Perfecto) Application-level security software for e-business companies (September '99) Acquired by Watchfire in July 2004

Sanrad IP-based Storage Area Network (SAN) solutions (February2002)

Security-7 Security software systems (August '98) EXIT: Acquired by Computer Associates (NYSE:CA) in June 1999.

SoftWatch Internet customer relationship management (June '99)

Shopping.com (formely DealTime) E-commerce price comparison website (March 1999).

TopTier Software Making relational databases & Internet compatible (September '98) EXIT: Acquired by SAP (NYSE; LSE: SAP; XETRA:SAPG) in 2001.

Trivnet Digital payment system (June 2000)

Unicorn Connectivity software (June 2001)

VisionTech MPEG-2 method video compression encoder (March '98) EXIT: Broadcom buys VisionTech for $800 mln in shares (November 2000)

Whale Communications Internal network security via physical Internet disconnection (May 2001)

XACCT Technologies Infrastructure product for network service providers (January 2000) EXIT:Acquired by Amdocs in 2003.

Xpert IP infrastructure solutions and consultancy and implementation services (April 2001)

Zend Technologies PHP development tools (February 2002)

Zoomix Data conversion technology for information systems (November 2001)

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Venture Capital Firms G-J

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Venture Capital Firms G-J. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Galram POB 14, Haifa 31000 Tel: 972-4-877-1117 Fax: 972-4-879-4415 E-mail: info@galram.co.il

Affiliated with Rafael Development Corporation.

Gemini Israel Funds 11 Galgalei Haplada St., POB 12548, Herzliya 46733 Tel: 972-9-958-3596 Fax: 972-9-958-4842 E-mail: hazel@gemini.co.il

Gemini Israel Fund; Gemini Israel II Gemini focuses on early stage Israeli companies in enterprise software, Internet and e-commerce, communications, semiconductor and industrial equipment, and medical technology.

Genesis Partners P.O.B. 23722 Tel-Aviv 61231 Tel: 972-3-526-2644 Fax: 972-3-526-2696 E-mail: office@genesispartners.co.il Funds: Genesis I & II. Investment focus: Communications and wireless, Internet infrastructure, enterprise software, Internet software and other industries.



Gilbridge Holdings 4 Maskit St., PO Box 12853 Herzliya 46733 Tel.: 972-9-956-7040 Fax: 972-9-956-7010 E-mail: Michelle Mayan Investment focus: Seed stage therapeutics, medical devices and telecom companies.

Giza Venture Capital Ramat Aviv Tower - 12th floor, 40 Einstein St., POB 17672, Tel Aviv 61172 Tel: 972-3-640-2323 Fax: 972-3-640-2300 Email: esoref@giza.co.il Giza GE Venture Fund III. The ABS GE Capital Giza Fund (BT Alex. Brown and GE Capital Corporation) and First Israel Fund are fully invested. Investment focus: Early stage communications, Internet-enabling, software and healthcare.

GlenRock Israel 85 Medinat Hayehudim St., Herzliya Business Park,Tower G, 8th Floor Tel: 972-9-9701800 Fax: 972-9-9701866 E-mail: info A private equity investment company affiliated with the GlenRock Group making investments in life sciences and high-tech companies, and makes buyouts. It has also invested in the Maayan Technology Ventures incubator.

Global Catalyst Partners A US incorporated fund. Israel office: 1 Eliahu House, 2 Ibn Gvirol St., Tel Aviv 64077 Tel: 972-3-696-8224 Fax: 972-3-695-6847 E-mail: Eliezer Manor, or Janice Rebibo Investment focus: Seed and start-up investments in IT, telecommunicatIons and Internet companies. Investment focus: Israeli biotechnology, medical devices and healthcare services companies expanding into the US.

Hadar Weitzman Management Group 68 Ahuza St., Eliav Center, Ra'anana 43212 Tel.: 972-9-745-1010 Fax: 972-9-745-2030 E-mail: info@hadarweitzman.com Investment focus: Israeli and Israeli related telecommunications, data communications and semiconductor companies.

HB Investments 32 Magal St., Savyon Tel.: 972-3-645-9609 Fax: 972-3-534-2698 E-mail: Zohar Heiblum Investment focus: All high-tech telecom, industrial technology, semiconductor, medical technology biotechnology sectors.

HK Catalyst Portview Communications Partners 10 Hayetsira St. POB 2197 Ra'anana 43650 Tel: 972 9 741 3140 Fax: 972 9 741 3240 E-mail: Robin Hacke or Julie Kunstler Investment focus: Early stage Internet infrastructure and communications software, wireless, broadband companies. Honeycomb Ventures c/o AsiaGate, 12 Yehuda Hamaccabi St., PO Box 4029 Herzliya 46140 Tel.: 972-9-956-6885 Fax: 972-9-955-1345E-mail: ching@netvision.net.il or avilir@netvision.net.il Investment focus: M&A strategic partnerships in IT, telecom, Internet and service companies.

Hyperion Israel Advisors 11 Ha'amal St., Afek Park, Rosh Ha'ayin 48092 Tel.: 972-3-903-9988 Fax: 972-3-903-6688 E-mail: yes@hyperionisrael.com Investment focus: Seed and later stage investments in Israeli wireless communications, telecommunications and Internet companies.

InnoMed Ventures Globus Communication Center, Suite 220, Neve Ilan 90850 Tel: 972-2-5332808 Fax: 972-2-5702352 E-mail: Dr. Dalia Megiddo Investment focus: Seed through mezzanine investments in life sciences companies in cardiology, diabetes, neurological disorders, orthopedics, women's care, geriatrics and other medical sectors.

Incutech 12 Zvi St., Ramat Gan 52504 Tel.: 972-3-752-5216 Fax: 972-3-752-5120 E-mail: Nehemiah Kaben Investment focus: Incubation and early stage financing for Israeli biotechnology, medical devices, agrotechnology, healthcare and applied materials companies.

Infineon Ventures Germany: St.-Martin-Str. 53, 81541, Munich Tel: +49 89-234-26359 Fax: +49 89-234-27483 E-mail: ventures@infineon.com USA: 1730 North First St., San Jose, CA 95112 Pre-IPO investments in pace-setting technologies or establish new applications in areas where microelectronics is or will be a key enabling technology. Innomed E-mail: info@innomed.co.il Innomed is managed by Jerusalem Global Ventures, focusing on medical device companies.

Intel Capital In Israel: Har Hotzvim Park, PO Box 3173, Jerusalem Tel.: 972-2-589-7111 or 972-3-607-4701 Fax: 972-2-589-7712 E-mail: Shlomo Caine or Uri Arazy Investment focus: Internet economy companies.

Israel Cleantech Ventures E-mail: info

Israel Healtchare Ventures (IHVC) 32 Habarzel St., Ramat Hahayal, Tel Aviv 69710 Tel.: 972-3-648-8566 Fax: 972-3-648-8474 E-mail: ihvc@ihvc.co.il Investment focus: Medical devices, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and medical-related IT.

Israel Infinity Fund 3 Azrieli Center, Triangle Tower, 42nd fl., Tel Aviv 67023 Tel: 972-3-607-5456 Fax: 972-3-607-5455 E-mail: info@israel-infinity.com or anatk@clal.co.il Israel Infinity Fund is in association with Clal, and Banque Nationale du Paris (BNP). It focuses on early-stage IT, medical and other high-technology products companies.

Integrated Technologies of Israel Ltd Aviv Towers Tower A, 46 Petach Tikva Rd., Tel Aviv 66184 Tel: 972 3 639 7850 Fax: 972 3 639 7851

Jointly owned by Israel Aircraft Industries and a group of Israeli and US entrepreneurs, bankers and industrialists.

Inventech Investment Company Shalom Mayer Tower, 9 Ahad Haam Street, Tel Aviv Tel: 972 3 517 5273 Fax: 972 3 517 5275 E-mail: office@inventech.co.il A private venture capital company investing in high-tech start ups.

Israel R&D Corporation 4 Weizmann St., Tel Aviv 61336 Tel: 972 3 697 2857 Fax: 972 3 695 3177

Israel Seed Partners 64 Emek Refaim St., Jerusalem Tel: 972 2 561 2090 Fax: 972 2 561 1955 E-mail: info@israelseed.com Investment focus: Seed stage Internet, e-commerce, enterprise software, communications, semiconductor and electronics and life sciences start-ups. Isratech; Reico Ventures is Isratech's Israeli branch. 11 Cross Keys Close, London W1M 5FY, England Tel: 44 171 935 2070 Fax: 44 171 935 2680 40 Einstein St. Ramat Aviv 69101 Tel: 972-3-643-9986 Fax: 972-3-643 E-mail: reico@netvision.net.il Funds: Astra, First Isratech, Millennium I & II Life sciences, biotechnology, medical devices, Internet and software.

JAFCO Investments (Asia Pacific) JAFCO Investments (Asia Pacific) is part of JAFCO Co. Ltd. of Japan, which is a member of Nomura Securities Ltd. 6 Battery Rd. #42-01, Singapore 049909 Tel: 65-224-6383 Fax: 65-221-3690 E-mail: byron@njiasia.com.sg Byron Askin Investment focus: Assist Israeli companies to penetrate Asian markets and/or find Asian strategic partners.

Janney Montgomery Scott 1801 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103 Tel. 215-665-6180 Fax 215-665-6197 Investment focus: Internet, IT and business services, telecommunications and broadband, medical technology, life sciences and biotechnology, and other manufacturing, retail and financial, consumer services and utilities fields.

JC Technologies JC Technologies is affiliated with Patir high-tech incubator. 21 Havaad Haleumi St., PO Box 16120 Jerusalem 91160 Tel.: 972-2-675-1123 Fax: 972-2-675-1195 E-mail: Jay Kalish Investment focus: Incubation, seed and early stage financing for Israeli start-ups.

Jerusalem Capital Partners E-mail: Managing partner Jacob Ner-David Tel. 972-54-480-7334 E-mail: Principle Michael Brous Tel. 972-54-797-1071 Investment focus: Jerusalem-based technology-driven companies.

Jerusalem Global Ventures Jerusalem Technology Park, Building 98, P.O. Box 82, Malcha, Jerusalem 96951 Tel: 972-2-649-0750 Fax: 972-2-649-0740 Email: skalish@jgv.com Jerusalem Global Ventures is a venture capital fund that invests in early stage Israeli related companies developing technology solutions for the consumer, enterprise, service provider, and government markets. Jerusalem Venture Partners Jerusalem Tech Park, Bldg. 1, Malha, Jerusalem 91487 Tel: 972 2 679 7270 Fax: 972 2 679 7273 E-mail: erel@jvp.co.il Jerusalem Pacific Ventures; Jerusalem Venture Partners LP JVP invests in early-stage companies in five core areas: Optical communications, data communications, wireless communications, e-commerce infrastructure and service infrastructure.

Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation Corporate venture arm of Johnson & Johnson Israel address: Kibbutz Shefayim 60990 Tel.: 972-9-959-1176 Fax: 972-9-951-9797 E-mail: Zeev Zehavi Investment focus: Biotechnology, medical devices, drug discovery and pharmaceuticals companies.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Venture Capital Firms A-C

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Venture Capital Firms A-C. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Accel Partners 428 University Avenue, Palo Alto, CA 94301 Tel: (650) 614-4800 Fax: (650) 614-4880 Investment focus: communications; Internet/Intranet

Accelerate Technology & Business 33 Jabotinsky St. Ramat Gan 52511 Tel.: 972-3-575-1575 Fax: 972-3-2770 E-mail: info@accelerate-tech.com A start-up accelerator focusing on supporting early stage high-tech companies in the semiconductor, new materials, electronics and opto-electronics and IC equipment fields. ADC Ventures The investment arm of ADC Telecommunications P.O. Box 1101, Minneapolis, MN 55440-1101 Tel: (612) 946-3333 Fax: (612) 946-3292 Contact: Robert Switz, ADC Sr. Vice President, CFO and Head, Business Development Investment focus: Next generation broadband technologies.



AG-Tech Fund Managed by Nessuah Zannex 3 Abba Hillel St., Ramat Gan 52522 Tel: 972-3-753-2020 Fax: 972-3-753-2022 E-mail: mail@agtechfund.com Investment focus: Biotechnology, e-health, healthcare and medical devices.

Agilent Ventures The venture capital arm of US-based Agilent Technologies. Israel office: Agilent Technologies Israel, Azorim Business Park, 94 Em Hamoshavot Rd., Petah Tikva 49527 Tel.: 972-3-928-8555 fax: 972-3-928-8501 Contact: E-mail: Noam Zahav Investment focus: Telecommunications, biotechnology, informationa technology, test equipment, and semiconductors

AIG-Orion Venture Capital Advisors 3 Hayetzira St., Ramat Gan Tel: 972-3-753-8890 Fax: 972-3-753-8895 E-mail: gary@orion.co.il AIG Orion invests in Internet software and information technology.

Alice Ventures Tel Aviv office: Ziv Towers, Building D, 24 Raoul Wallenberg St., Tel Aviv 69719 Tel.: 972-3-766-6547 Fax: 972-3-766-6559 E-mail: Hillel Milo A multinational venture capital fund based in Milan and Tel Aviv. Investment focus: Early stage communications, software and life science companies. Alon Technology Ventures Jointly managed by Gaon Asset management owned by B. Gaon Holdings and the Jupiter Group of the UK and CAIB Bank of Austria. Gibor Bldg. 14th fl., 6 Kaufman St. Tel Aviv 68012 Tel: 972-3-795-4121 Fax: 795-4122 E-mail: dangalit@gaon.com or E-mail: sylvie@gaon.com Investment focus: High-tech

See: Arena Feature -Alon Technology Ventures: The European investor is more trustworthy

Amanet Technologies Business, Real Estate Development and Entrepreneurship Division 34 Habarzel St., Tel Aviv 69710 Tel: 972-3-765-9555/02 Fax: 972-3-644-0125 E-mail: amanet@amanet.co.il Incubation, seed and start-up investment in IT, telecommunications, Internet and software companies. Ampal-American Israel Corporation (Bank Hapoalim group) 111 Arlozorov St. Tel Aviv 62098 Tel.: 972-3-608-0100 Fax: 972-3-608-101

Anschutz Investment Company US: 555 17th St., Suite 2400, Denver, CO 80202 Tel: (303)298-1000 Fax: (303) 299-8881 Europe: Polarisavenue 53, PO Box 2030, 2130 GE Hoofdorp, The Netherlands Tel: +31 (0)23 568 59 70 Fax: +31 (0)23 568 59 74 Investment focus: High-tech, telecommunications, Internet and software services companies.

Apax Partners(Israel) 2 Maskit St. P.O. Box 2034 Herzilya 46120 Tel: 972-9-958-6330 Fax: 972-9-958-8366E-mail: info@apax.co.il Funds: Apax Israel II; Israel Growth Fund Invests in privately-held Israel affiliated companies in Internet and information technology, telecommunications, services, healthcare and life sciences and management buyouts.

Apropos IT Ventures Jerusalem Technology Park, Malcha, Building 1, Entrance B, 1st Floor P.O. Box 48180, Jerusalem 91481 Tel: 972-2-648-2350 fax: 972-2-679-9931 US eFax: (775)-993-3039 E-mail: Business plans Investment focus: Internet and information technology companies with Israel Talent.

Arba Finance Company America House, 3rd fl., 35 Shaul Hamelech Blvd., P.O. Box 33406 Tel Aviv 61333 Tel.: 972-3-696-4420 Fax: 972-3-695-0029 E-mail: arbafin@arbafin.com Investment focus: Incubation, seed stage, start-up, mezzanine and bridging financing for telecommunications, Internet, software, robotics, medical technology and other high-tech companies.

Aria Ventures 85 Medinat Hayehudim St., P.O.Box 12245, Herzliya 46733 Tel: 972-9-956-7484 Fax: 972-9-951-4152 E-mail: amit@ariaventures.com Investment focus: Seed stage companies in the IT, enterprise hardware and software, communications infrastructure and applications, Internet &intranet, telecommunications technologies, software products and applications.

Ascend Technology Ventures 14a Ahimeir Street, Ramat Gan 52587 Tel: 972 3 751 3707 Fax: 972 3 751 3706 E-mail: info@ascendvc.com

Ascend invests in communications, internet and internet infrastructure, software, semiconductors and medical devices.

Asiagate Herzliya Business Park P.O.Box 4029, Herzliya 46140 Tel: 972-9-970-1886 Fax: 972-9-970-1887 E-mail: info@asiagate.co.il A spin-off of Jerusalem Global Ltd. for Asian and Japanese entities wishing to establish connects with Israeli high-tech companies and for Israeli companies seeking to enter Far Eastern markets.

Astra Technological Investvestments Atidim Tower, Kiryat Atidim P.O.B 58177, Tel Aviv 61580 Tel.: 972-3-649-1990 fax: 972-3-649-1992 Contact: E-mail: CEO Gil Klopman Investment focus: Acquiring minority interests in Israeli or US high-tech start-ups with a strong biotechnology or biomedical focus.

Atara Technology Ventures Atara is the venture capital investment arm of Israel Phoenix Assurance Company. 30 Levontin St., Tel Aviv 65116 Tel.: 972-3-7141-793 Fax: +972-3-7141-165 E-mail: David Furst Investment focus: Early stage, seed and start-up financing for Internet, IT, telecommunications and software companies.

Aviv Venture Capital Aviv Building, 49th floor 7 Jabotinsky St., Ramat Gan 52520 Telephone: 972-3-6114050 fax: 972-3-6114051 E-mail: info Investment focus: Early and mid-stage Israeli related companies.

AxcessNet AxcessNet is the Israeli affiliate of Broadview. P.O. Box 3587, Ramat Hasharon 45930 Tel: 972-9-743-4710 Fax: 972-9-742-3889 E-mail: eyal@axcess-net.com E-mail: michal@axcess-net.com A facilitator of the Israeli IT and the global industry and the exclusive representative of Broadview for transactions with Israeli companies.

Azritech Ventures A subsidiary of the Azrieli Group. Azrieli Center 1, Tel Aviv, 67021 Tel: 972-3-608-1300 Fax: 972-3-608-1380 E-mail: Zeev Zeevi Investment focus: Seed through third-stage start-ups in telecommunications, IT and medical equipment companies.

BCS Investment Company 3 Daniel Frisch St., Tel Aviv 64731 Tel.: 972-3-696-3221 Fax: 972-3-696-8828 E-mail: Yariv Caspi Investment focus: high-tech, media and communications companies from seed capital to mezzanine stage.

Benchmark Capital 9 Hamanofim St. Herzliya Pituach 46725 Tel.: 972-9-9617600 Fax: 972-9-9617601 E-mail: israelinfo@benchmark.com Focus: Early-stage high-technology

Biomedical Investments Golda House, 23 Shaul Hamelech St., Tel Aviv 64367 Tel: 972 3 696 6557 Fax: 972 609 5322 E-mail: biomedical@biomed.co.il

Investment areas: Medical equipment, biotechnology

See: Arena Feature - Pay n Tell

Biocom VC 40 Einstein St., Ramat Aviv Tower, Tel Aviv Tel.: 972-3-643.8890; fax: 972-3-643-6662 E-mail: David Schlachet Investment focus: Biotechnology, enabling platform technologies, biopharmaceutical and medical device companies.

Boticelli Venture Funds 28 Bezalel St. Gibor Sport Building (15th floor), Ramat Gan 52521 Tel.: 972-3-575-3222 Fax 972-3-575-3666 E-mail: Judith Investment focus: Advertising, interactive and media enabling technologies.

BRM Capital Israel Office: Akerstein Towers, 11 Hamenofim St., Herzliya Pituach 46725 Tel.: 972-9-954-9555 Fax: 972-9-954-9557 Email: info@brm.com

Britech Israel office: Gibor Sport Tower, 28 Betzalel St., Ramat Gan 52521 Tel.: 972-3-754-9581 Fax: 972-3-754-9582 E-mail: britech@actcom.co.il The Britain-Israel Technology Foundation fosters collaborative R&D links between British and Israeli companies.

Canada-Israel Opportunity Funds 1090 Don Mills Rd., Toronto, Ontario M3C 3R6 Tel: (416) 444-6660 E-mail: info@ciofund.com The Funds participate in direct investments with entities in the Shrem Fudim Kelner Group and the Polaris II Fund. Investment focus: Israeli high-tech companies.

Carmel Ventures Delta House, 16 Hagalim Avenue, Herzeliya 46725 Tel: 972-9-959-4894 Fax: 972-9-959-4898 E-mail: contact@carmelventures.com Investment focus: post-seed, companies developing software platforms and applications for the digital economy.

Catalyst Fund 3 Daniel Frish St., Tel Aviv 64731 Tel: 972-3-695-0666 Fax: 972-3-695-0222 E-mail: info@catalyst-fund.com Investment focus: Late-stage Israeli companies in the IT, software, telecommunications, semiconductor, biotechnology and medical devices sectors.

Cedar Fund 9 Keren Hayesod St., POB 505, Herzliya 46105 Tel: 972 9 957 7227 Fax: 972 9 957 7228 E-mail: info@cedar.co.il The Challenge Fund Etgar 1 Hashikma St., P.O. Box 55 Savyon 56530 Tel: 972-3-562-8555 Fax: 972-3-562-1999 E-mail: etgar@challenge.co.il Two funds for early-stage high-tech and non-high-tech companies.

Clal Industrial Investments 3 Azrieli Center, Triangle Tower 45th fl. Tel Aviv 67023 Tel.: 972-3-6075777 Fax: 972-3-607-5778 E-mail: cii@cii.co.il Funds: Venture Capital Fund focuses on IT, telecommunications, software and life sciences (biotechnology and medical devices); Israel Infinity Fund focuses on early-stage high-tech telecommunications, IT and healthcare; Millennium Materials Technologies Fund specializes in the development and commercialization of novel advanced materials and industrial processes; Clalit Venture Capital Fund focuses on diversified mezzanine investment opportunities in Israel and Israeli related technology companies; the Harvest Fund (with Evergreen) is a secondary venture capital fund; IJT Technologies (with Evergreen) focuses on high-tech; Peace Technology Fund, jointly managed with Virginia-based International Capital Advisors, to invest in the Palestinian economy and encourage Israeli-Palestinian cooperation; Israelseed III; Periscope I (with Evergreen) focuses on high-tech.

Clal Biotechnology Industries 3 Azrieli Center, Triangle Tower 45th fl. Tel Aviv 67023 Tel.: 972-3-6075733 Fax: 972-3-607-5734 E-mail: Ophir Shahaf or David Haselkorn Tel: 972 3 765 0306 Fax: 972 3 765 0329

Clalit Capital & Investments 5 Druyanov St., Tel Aviv Tel: 972 3 526 3370 Fax: 972 3 528 0769 E-mail: Manpikim@netvision.co.il

Clalit Capital Fund

Comverse Investments Efrat-Comverse House, 23 Habarzel St., Ramat Hachayal, Tel Aviv 69710. Tel: 972 3 645 4910 Fax: 972 3 645 4916 E-mail: comin@icomverse.com

ComSor Investment Fund

Columbine Ventures Top Tower, 22nd fl., 50 Dizengoff St. Tel Aviv 64332 Tel.: 972-3-620-9010 Fax: 972-3620-9011 E-mail: Carine Wiener Investment focus: Early stage financing for Israel and Israel-related biotechnology, therapeutics, medical devices, bioinformatics and diagnostic technology companies.

Concord Ventures 85 Medinat Hayehudim St., P.O.Box 4011, Herzeliya 46140 Tel: 972-9-960-2020 Fax: 972-9-960-2022 E-mail: office@concordventures.com Investment focus: datacom and telecommunications, Software applications and Internet infrastructure, medical technologies and biotechnology.

Coral Ventures Main office: 60 South Sixth St., Suite 3510, Minneapolis, MN 55402 Tel: (612) 335-8666 Fax: (612) 335-8668 A private venture capital company focusing on technology (communications, Internet, software, information and systems) and healthcare (biotechnology, medical devices and diagnostics) industries.

Investment focus: Healthcare and high-tech.

Corex Industries Management Corex Building, Maskit St., Herzliya Pituah 46733 Tel: 972 9 957 2777 Fax: 972 9 957 2772 E-mail corex@corex.co.il Investment focus: Expansion, mezzanine and bridging investments in IT, telecommunicaitons, Internet, electronics and software companies.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.

Venture Capital Firms P-T

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Venture Capital Firms P-T. Check it out:
(Israel Business Arena Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Pamot Rehovot Advisors Weizmann Institute Campus, POB 2439, Rehovot 76123 Tel: 972 8 936 5431 Fax: 972 8 946 0484 E-mail: pamot@netvision.net.il

Pamot has a first right of refusal on investment in projects being developed at the Weizmann Institute of Science

Partech International Israel office: 39 Derech Haganim. PO Box 9129, Kfar Shmaryahu 46910 Tel: 972-9-951-4189 Fax: 972-9-951-5782 E-mail: Ami AMir Investment focus: Communications

Peregrine Ventures 6 Yoni Netanyahu St. Or Yehuda 60376 Tel: 972-3-6349990 Fax: 972-3-6349910 E-mail: contact@peregrinevc.com Investment focus: Part venture fund and part technology incubator for communications, e-commerce, software and medical equipment start-ups.



Persys Investment 7 Ha'marpe St., Har Hotzvim, P.O.Box 45036, Jerusalem 91450 Tel: 972-2-5322-779 Fax: 972-2-5322-673 E-mail: yaron@persystech.com Yaron Kimchi or, E-mail: mati@persystech.com Investment focus: Seed-stage investments in advanced technology start-ups in healthcare, testing technologies, wireless communications and IT companies. Pitango Venture Capital Formerly Polaris Venture Capital 11 HaMenofim St., Building B, Herzliya 46725 Tel: 972-9-971-8100 Fax: 972-9-971-8102 E-mail: polaris@polarisvc.com Pitango has offices in Menlo Park, California and London Investment focus: Communications, Internet infrastructure and related technologies, software, medical devices and biotechnology. Platinum Neurone Ventures Israel office: 21 Ha'arba'ah St., 15th Floor, Tel Aviv 64739 Tel.: 972-3-684-5700 Fax: 972-3-686-9535 E-mail: Asi Investment focus: First and second round investments in enterprise software, communications, IT and semiconductor companies.

Plenus Technologies Delta House, 16 Hagalim Ave., Herzeliya 46725 Tel.: 972 9-957-4944 Fax: 972-9-957-8770 E-mail: contact@plenus.co.il Bridge loans to late emerging high-tech companies. POC Technostart Azrieli Center #1, Tel Aviv 67021 Tel.: 972-3-608-1616 Fax: 972-3-608-1617 E-mail: infor@poc.co.il Investment focus: Post seed-stage investment in early-stage communications and Internet companies.

Polar Investments Formely Poalim Investments, and a member of the Shrem Fudim Kelner Group. 21 Ha'arba'ah St., Tel Aviv 64739 Tel: 972-3-6845666 Fax: 972-3-6850857 E-mail: pil@poalim-investments.co.il Investment focus: Software, robotics, biotechnology and agro-technology.

Potalium Ventures EDS Building, second floor, 7 Sapir St., Herzliya Pituach, 46852 Tel: 972-9-970-8158 Fax: 972-9-958-0897 E-mail: Portalium Investment focus: Portalium provides services for European and other venture capital and private equity funds seeking to invest in Israel, including locating, screening and compiling suitable high-tech investment opportunities.

Portview Communications Partners See HK Catalyst ProSeed Venture Capital Fund 10 Planut St. Sciecen Bldg. #1, Rehovot 76122 Tel.: 972-8-948-4966 Fax: 972-8-948-4967 E-mail: mail@proseedco.il

ProSeed Venture Capital calls itself "the angels' venture capital fund". Investment focus: Israeli and Israel-related seed and early stage medical devices and IT companies

ProSeed Capital Holdings CVA Israel office: A' Aviv Tower, 48 Petach-Tikva Rd., Tel Aviv 66184 Tel.: 972-3-537-1173 Fax: 972-3-548-8069 E-mail: Ori Shilo

ProSeed Capital Holdings focuses on early stage high-tech startups in Israel, Europe, the US, Canada and India.

Rafael Development Corporation (RDC) Ltd. Ramat Aviv Tower, 5th floor, 40 Einstein St. P.O. Box 15, Tel Aviv 61172 Tel: 972-3-643-9912 Fax: 972-3-643-9916 bldg 7, New Indusrial Park, P.O. Box 258, Yokne'am 20692 Tel: 972-4-959-9511 Fax: 972-4-959-0720 E-mail: rubenk@rdc.co.il Investment focus: Start-up, seed and incubator investment in software, telecommunications, data communication, semiconductors, healthcare and medical devices.

Samurai Web Ventures Israel office: 1 Korazin St., Givataim 53583 Tel: 972-3-571-0222 Fax: 972-3-571-0225 E-mail: info@samurai.co.il Investment focus: Initiate and manage start-up companies in the areas of Internet and Information Technology.

Sequoia Capital Seed Fund Israel contact: Tel: 972-9-957-9440 Fax: 972-9-957-9443 E-mail: Hagit Avneri Investment focus: Israeli and Israel-related companies in the communications and Internet sectors. Shalom Equity Fund Israel office: Shalom Tower, 9 Ahad Ha'am St., Tel Aviv 65251 Tel.: 972-3-510-8581 Fax: 972-3-516-3413 E-mail: info@shalom.com Investment focus: Early-stage high-tech and Internet companies.

Shamrock Holdings Israel & Europe office: 28 Grosvenor St., London W1K 4QR, UK Tel: 44 (20) 7917-9755 Fax: 44 (20) 7917-9654 E-mail: mgeiger@shamrock.com Michael Geiger Investment focus: Media, technology and communications.

Shirat Enterprises Ltd. Eliahu House, 2 Ibn Gvirol St., Tel Aviv 64077 Tel: 972 3 696 8224 Fax: 972 3 695 3847 E-mail: shirat@netvision.net.il

Shrem Fudim Kelner 21 Haarbah St. Tel Aviv 64739 Tel: 972-3-684-5555 Fax: 972-3-684-5554 E-mail: miri@sfk.co.il Funds: Canada Israel Opportunity Fund; CMS/DS Israel Fund; Dovrat, Shrem Skies '92 Fund; Dovrat, Shrem Founders Group; Dovrat Shrem Rainbow Fund; Horizon Fund. Investment focus: Venture Capital management, Finance, investments in High-Tech & Telecommunications, and long-term investments in traditional industries.

Siemens Venture Capital Siemens Venture Capital invests in Israel through Carmel Ventures, Millennium Materials Management Fund, Portview Communications Partners, Rama Partners and SVM Star Ventures Capital Management. Israeli operations director: Asriel Eisinger Tel: +49 89 636 41084 E-mail: asriel.eisinger@mch11.siemens.de Investment focus: Seed, early, and mezzanine stages in the fields of IT, telecommunications, medical engineering, automation and microelectronics.

StageOne Ventures Levinstein Tower, 29th fl., 23 Petach Tikva Rd. Tel Aviv 66182 Tel.: 972-3-710-0140 Fax: 972-3-710-0150 E-mail: contact@stageonevc.com StageOne is sponsored by Bezeq and Discount Capital Markets. Investment focus: Very early stage communications technology companies.

Star Ventures A Munich-based venture capital fund with a branch in Israel. 11 Galgaley Haplada St., P.O. Box 12600, Herzliya Pituah 46733 Tel: 972-9-951-2888 Fax: 972-9-951-2889 E-mail: mail@star-ventures.com Investment focus: Early-stage high-tech companies in the communications, Internet, software and medical devices fields.

Steps Investments in Technology Midgal Shalom, 26th fl., P.O. Box 29161, Tel Aviv 61291 E-mail: info@steps-ventures.com Investment focus: Early-stage telecommunications, software and semiconductor start-ups.

STI Ventures 85 Medinat Hayehudim St., Herzliya Pituach 46851 Tel: 972-9-971-0710 Fax: 972-9-971-0711 E-mail: info@stiventures.com Investment focus: Partnerships in wireless and communications technologies, Internet infrastructure, and enterprise software start-ups.

Syntek Capital Israel branch: E-mail: info.telaviv@syntekcapital.com Investment focus: European, Israeli and US start-ups in the IT, software, telecom and media fields.

Tamar Technology Ventures Israel office: 50 Ramat Yam St., Herzliya Pituach 46851 Tel: 972-9-954-3555 Fax: 972-9-954-3423 E-mail: info@tamar-vc.co.il Investment focus: start-up, early stage and mezzanine financing in IT, data communications, telecommunications, Internet &intranet, electronics, software, multimedia, semiconductors, medical devices, biotechnology and healthcare companies.

Tamir Fishman Ventures Alrov Tower,46 Rothschild Blvd., Tel Aviv 66883 Tel: 972-3-7148444 Fax: 972-3-5605010 E-mail: info@tfventures.com Funds: Eucalyptus Ventures (fully invested) and Tamir Fishman Ventures II Investment focus: Early-stage communications. Internet and software companies focusing on B2B services and infrastructure solutions.

TDA Capital Partners Formerly: Templeton Direct Advisors Israel office: 19 St., Ramot Zahala, Tel-Aviv 69358 Tel: 972-3-649-9817 Fax: 972-3-649-9827 E-mail: info@tdacapital.com Investment focus: Seed, early-stage and mezzanine financing in IT, telecommunications, Internet & intranet, semiconductor and medical device companies. Tecc-IS plc Levinstein Tower, 23 Petah Tikva Rd. Tel Aviv 66182 Tel.: 972-3-566-4464 fax: 972-3-566-4465 E-mail: Simon Larah Investment focus: Seed and early stage investments in Israeli telecom, Internet and software technology companies.

Technolplus Ventures Ziv Towers, 24 Raoul Wallenberg St., Tel-Aviv 69719 Tel: 972-3-766-6555 Fax: 972-3-766-6556 E-mail: info@technoplusvc.com A Tel Aviv Stock Exchange-listed company (TASE: TNPV), infrastructure and enabling technologies, data communications and enterprise software.

Technorov Holdings 46 Rothschild Blvd.. Alrov Tower Tel Aviv 66883 Tel: 972-3-714-7770 Fax: 972-3-714-7772 E-mail: technorov@interent-zahav.net

Al-Rov Technologies (1983) Ltd; Technorov Holdings (1993) Ltd

TeleSoft Partners Israel office: 14 Shenkar St., Herzliya Pituah 46733 Tel.: 972-9- 954-0828 Fax: 972-9- 958-9695 E-mail: Avi Mazor or Ron Hiram Investment focus: Early, development/expansion, bootstrapped/later stage next generation communications services, software, and Internet companies.

Teuza Management and Development 49 Hahistadrut Boulevard, POB 25266 Haifa 31250 Tel: 972 4 872 8788 Fax: 972 4 872 9393 E-mail: teuza@teuzafund.com A Fairchild Technology Venture Ltd Early-stage seed companies in the communications, advanced manufacturing equipment, semiconductors, software and biotechnology and healthcare sectors.

Trinet Investment in High Tech Ltd Tel: 972-3-751-3707 Fax: 972-3-751-3706. Investment focus: Early-stage, seed and start-up capital for IT, telecommunications, Internet & intranet, multimedia, software, semiconductors, biotechnology, medical devices and healthcare companies.

TopNotch Capital Vered Tower, 20th Floor, 53 Hashalom Rd., Givatayim 53454 Tel: 972-3-732-6616 Fax: 972-3-731-3340 E-mail: info Investment focus: An investment banking boutique specializing in early stage life science companies.

Copyright 2006 Globes. Source : Financial Times Information Limited.
To sustain rate, push reforms, core sector. Check it out:
(Indian Express Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) With GDP growth of 8.9 per cent in the first quarter of 2006-07, the Indian economy continues to do well. While manufacturing and services kept their momentum of growth, the high growth in agriculture at 3.4 per cent helped attain the nearly 9 per cent growth. While the news is great, the first question that most people ask is whether the country will be able to sustain this rate of growth. The rapid upswing witnessed in recent years has been a combination of a higher trend and the high of a business cycle. In the last few years, the economy has seen an increase in the trend growth rate to about 6.25 per cent. This trend has had a cycle around it so that the growth rate moved in a band of around -2 and +2 percentage points. In other words, the rate has ranged from 4.5 to 8.5 per cent. The GDP growth rate of this quarter is an improvement on this. When the economy is at the high of a business cycle, it is natural to be concerned about a downturn. But while the cycle can turn down due to a number of factors - both domestic and international - there is reason to be optimistic about the higher trend growth path. This is a consequence not of the government setting a target and investing and producing more. It is, in fact, the result of the taking away the restrictions that the government had put on private enterprise for nearly 30 years, from the 60s to the early 90s. By slapping various restrictions, licences and controls, the government had constrained individual initiative and prevented higher growth. Now that it is trying to create a supportive environment with better infrastructure and facilities for private initiative, every individual who does better for himself does better for the country, too. Indeed, this is India's main strength in contrast to China's, where there is an attempt to develop private enterprise. This is not to say that the we can take high growth rate for granted. There will be a need to focus on two things. One is to remove the remaining restrictions on movement of goods and on factors of production - labour, capital and land - so that they can move freely across uses and be available for use in the most efficient and productive way. This will mean bringing changes in land use policies, exit policies, labour laws and the financial sector. The second is improving infrastructure. The first can be attained by the stroke of a pen, though it needs political consensus which may take a little time to come about. It is building infrastructure that will take time and resources. But as and when it gets done, and sooner or later it will, the world can bet on India for even faster growth than it has seen this quarter.



Copyright 2006 The Indian Express Online Media Ltd.. Source: Financial Times Information Limited.
Purdue-Indiana University Team Selected as National Cancer Institute Proteomics Center. Check it out:
(Ascribe Newswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind., Sept. 29 (AScribe Newswire) -- Purdue and Indiana universities' proteomics team has been selected as one of five national centers for cancer research.

The National Cancer Institute announced Wednesday (Sept. 27) its selection of the Purdue-IU Analytical Proteomics Team for inclusion in a new consortium to assess proteomic technology and its applications for diagnosis and treatment of cancer.



The NCI awarded a $7 million grant to the Purdue-IU team, which pairs Purdue's experts in mass spectrometry and proteomics technology with the expert clinical team of cancer researchers from Indiana University School of Medicine. Together they will focus on technology to diagnose breast and prostate cancer through blood samples.

This is the future of cancer detection in America, said Fred Regnier, Purdue's John H. Law Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and principal investigator for the team. Proteomics, the study of proteins, holds great promise for more precise diagnosis and tailored cancer therapies through the identification of proteins specific to cancer and other diseases, called 'biomarkers.'

However, more work needs to be done to establish protocols for these approaches and the technology used. The NCI program creates a consortium for this purpose and is a great advancement for the field. Remarkably, all five centers included breast cancer as an area of study, which will allow for incredible scientific collaboration and evaluation of data from patients nationwide.

The consortium will receive $35.5 million in awards and is one of three components of the NCI's $104 million five-year clinical proteomic technologies initiative for cancer national program.

This program is a critical component of NCI's strategy for leveraging the diagnostic and therapeutic potential of proteomics for cancer patients, said NCI deputy director Anna D. Barker. I am confident that the complementary proteomic expertise of the awardees, and their commitment to interinstitutional collaboration and real- time data sharing, will enable the development of biomarkers to contribute to a new generation of molecularly based interventions to diagnose, treat and prevent cancer.

The team, based at Purdue's Bindley Bioscience Center at Discovery Park, will develop protocols and standards for mass spectrometry- based cancer proteomics relating to breast and prostate cancer. The endeavor will involve close cooperation between Purdue and Indiana University experts in proteomics, informatics and cancer biology and treatment.

This is a perfect example of how great things will happen in Indiana when IU, Purdue and the private sector collaborate on life sciences research, said Dr. D. Craig Brater, dean of the IU School of Medicine and vice president of IU with responsibility for life sciences.

Four hundred clinical samples will be collected for breast cancer analysis by the Hoosier Oncology Group, an Indiana statewide network of cancer physicians chaired by Christopher Sweeney, an oncologist and associate director of clinical research at the IU Cancer Center. Prostate cancer samples also will be collected from the NCI-sponsored Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group trial.

As co-principal investigators, Sweeney and Harikrishna Nakshatri, the Marian J. Morrison Investigator in Breast Cancer Research in the IU Department of Surgery, and others will conduct cancer biology research. Discovery Park's Oncological Sciences Center played a key role in connecting clinical and basic science researchers in the project.

The goals of the program are to define existing technologies and identify emerging technologies that will enable precise and reproducible measurement of biomarkers in cancer, said Jiri Adamec, a Purdue research assistant professor and lead scientist at Bindley Bioscience Center and co-principal investigator. Other Purdue team members include research assistant professor Xiang Zhang and chemistry professor Scott McLuckey.

The team will employ both electrospray ionization and matrix assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry platforms.

Mass spectrometry-based proteomic approaches have the advantage of excellent sensitivity and high analytical precision, Adamec said. Our team will focus on the use of this technology in providing insight into breast and prostate cancer biomarkers. These biomarkers will have dramatic impact for cancer diagnostics and therapeutics.

The team will use the emerging bioCD technology invented at Purdue and commercialized by QuadraSpec, a Purdue Research Park company, to expand the detection and quantification of specific candidate cancer protein biomarkers. The technology enables evaluation of hundreds of proteins of interest from hundreds of samples in minutes by incorporating specific antibodies on a microfabricated optical disk that is read by spinning disc inferometry, said Charles Buck, director of operations for Bindley Bioscience Center.

In Bloomington, the startup company Predictive Physiology and Medicine will work with David E. Clemmer, the firm's scientific co- founder and chairman of the IU Department of Chemistry, and Clemmer's team at IU Bloomington to provide ion mobility spectrometry evaluation. This proprietary technology greatly broadens the range for cancer biomarker proteomics studies, Buck said.

In Indianapolis, proteomics work will be conducted by the Protein Analysis and Research Center, the academic service component of the Indiana Centers for Applied Protein Sciences (INCAPS), said Mu Wang, director of PARC and an assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the IU School of Medicine. That work will include planning and execution of the projects to identify and validate targeted biomarkers for breast and prostate cancers.

Statistical analysis and processing of the data will be overseen by Jake Chen, assistant professor of informatics at IU and co-principal investigator.

For a large NCI program such as this, data is going to be generated and collected from clinical laboratories, individual research labs at Purdue, Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis, IU School of Medicine, IU Bloomington, and various contracting companies across the state, Chen said. Therefore, it's essential for a team of computational scientists to work together, linking data, storing them, and analyzing them using computational and statistical tools. The work ahead will be very exciting.

The team will take advantage of Purdue's discovery pipeline for high- complexity data handling to deal with the challenge of data collection, management, and analysis. This discovery pipeline was developed from cooperation among the Bindley Bioscience, e-Enterprise and Cyber centers at Discovery Park.

The NCI's Clinical Proteomic Technology Assessment for Cancer awardees were chosen based, in part, on the broad expertise of their proteomic research teams and their familiarity with and regular use of a wide range of proteomic technologies. The five teams define a cross-institutional and multidisciplinary network of assessment centers that will evaluate and compare different commercially available proteomic platforms and analysis software packages in the context of their potential applicability to cancer. They will also work together to develop a comprehensive approach to assess intra- platform and inter-laboratory variability in these measurement technologies.

CPTAC is one of three major Clinical Proteomic Technologies Initiative program components integrated by the National Institutes of Health NCI to address the fundamental scientific requirements that must be met in order to realize the promise of proteomics for cancer diagnosis and therapy. Together, they have been charged with providing the scientific community with an assessment of current proteomic technologies, developing and assessing novel technologies and computational methods, and creating a central repository of the resources needed to use these proteomic tools.

RELATED WEB SITES:

Bindley Bioscience Center: http://discoverypark.purdue.edu/wps/portal/ Bioscience

Discovery Park: http://discoverypark.purdue.edu/wps/portal

Purdue University: http://www.purdue.edu

Indiana University School of Medicine: http://www.medicine.iu.edu

Indiana University: http://www.Indiana.edu

Clinical Proteomic Technologies Initiative for Cancer and the Clinical Proteomic Technologies Assessment for Cancer awards: http:// proteomics.cancer.gov

National Cancer Institute: http://www.cancer.gov

- - - -

CONTACTS:

Sources - Fred Regnier, 765-494-3878, fregnier@purdue.edu

Jiri Adamec, jadamec@purdue.edu

Charles Buck, 765-494-2208, cbuck@purdue.edu

Christopher Sweeney, 317-274-3515, chsweene@iupui.edu

Jake Chen, 317-278-7604, jakechen@iupui.edu

Writers - Elizabeth Gardner, 765-494-2081, ekgardner@purdue.edu

Phillip Fiorini, 765-496-3133, pfiorini@purdue.edu

Eric Schoch, 317-274-8205, eschoch@iupui.edu

AUDIO: Audio clips from Charles Buck, director of operations for Bindley Bioscience Center, and publication-quality photos are available at http://news.uns.purdue.edu/UNS/html3month/ 2006/060928RegnierNCI.html

PHOTO: A publication-quality photo is available at http:// news.uns.purdue.edu/images/+2006/regnier-proteomics.jpg

PHOTO CAPTION: Jiri Adamec, from left, a research assistant professor, discusses the results of an experiment with Fred Regnier, Purdue's John H. Law Distinguished Professor of Chemistry, in the Bindley Bioscience Center's Proteomics Lab. The Purdue-IU Analytical Proteomics Team, led by Regnier, has been approved as a national center in the National Cancer Institute's Consortium for Proteomics Technology Assessment for Cancer. The team studies the detection and prediction of cancer through analysis of blood samples. (Purdue News Service photo/David Umberger)

Copyright 2006 AScribe inc.
'Roadmap' aims to make county better. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) A NEW 'roadmap' for Yorkshire and Humber's economic growth, the Regional Economic Strategy 2006-2015 (RES), has just been launched by Yorkshire Forward.

The RES provides a ten year outline of what the region needs to do to grow its GBP75 billion economy. The overall aim is to make Yorkshire and Humber a better place to live, work and invest.

To outline how this can be achieved, the document offers a straightforward guide to economic development and investment - unique to the region and its circumstances, diversity and places. It also specifies who needs to take responsibility for delivering each action and calls on the public, private, voluntary and community sectors to pool their efforts.



The strategy highlights three key areas as being essential to Yorkshire and Humber's future economy: business, people and the environment.

Business objectives outline that the region needs 'more businesses that last', placing emphasis on the need to encourage enterprise in groups to drive productivity, while 'more competitive businesses' highlights that innovation activity is core to economic growth.

People objectives focus on 'skilled people - benefiting business and individuals' as this drives productivity and has knock-on benefits on quality of life, while 'connecting people to good jobs' will tackle worklessness and remove barriers to work.

Environment objectives consider 'transport, infrastructure and the environment', looking at transport schemes of economic priority, the role of the private sector in utilities and infrastructure, plus activity to enhance and utilise the environment and natural resources. A final objective stresses a drive for 'stronger towns and cities' and the role of their renaissance in driving the economy.

Underpinning all six objectives are three themes which aim to achieve quality of delivery. 'Sustainable development' aims to grow business via a long term approach that benefits the environment and enhances quality of life, 'diversity' aims to ensure all people and businesses realise their potential, while 'leadership and ambition' acknowledges that the region needs to raise its sights and promote a culture where people, businesses and agencies aim high, drive change and make the most of their abilities.

Produced by Yorkshire Forward on behalf of the region, the new strategy is the second to be launched by the RDA since its inception. It is the product of the ideas of more than 5,000 people, from three rounds of extensive and inclusive consultation.

Yorkshire Forward chairman Terry Hodgkinson said: "Our region has come a long way since the launch of the first Regional Economic Strategy in 2000, and as a result our economic landscape has changed. This new RES recognises these changes and has refocused our priorities accordingly.

"If people are looking to start or expand a business, want to achieve their potential or transform the place in which they live, then this strategy exists to make this possible." Copies of the RES are available at www.yorkshire-forward.com or by telephoning Yorkshire Forward on 0113 3949600.

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited
Do you deserve to win a prestigious Queen's Award?. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) THE Queen's Awards for Enterprise are the UK's most prestigious awards for business performance.

They recognise and reward outstanding achievement by UK companies. They are presented in three separate categories: l International Trade - recognising companies that have demonstrated growth in overseas earnings.

l Innovation - recognising companies that have demonstrated commercial success through innovative products or services.

l Sustainable Development - recognising companies that have integrated environmental, social, economic and management aspects of sustainable development into their business.

The awards are made each year by The Queen, on the advice of the Prime Minister, who is assisted by an Advisory Committee that includes representatives of Government, industry and commerce, and the trade unions. Outstanding businesses from all sectors are currently being invited to apply for the 2007 awards. The deadline for this year's awards is October 31.



In 2006, 145 companies - large and small - won a Queen's Award. The main benefits of winning are recognition, publicity, staff motivation and use of The Queen's Award Emblem for five years - and, impressively, 92 per cent of the 137 award winners last year said they thought winning a Queen's Award had brought added commercial value to their firm, with 22 per cent noticing a significant increase in new business since winning the award.

"This is a chance for a company to be recognised as a leader in its market and one of the top businesses in the UK," says Stephen Brice, secretary to The Queen's Awards office.

"There is no limit to the number of awards available each year - if a company's achievements are deemed truly outstanding for its sector, then it stands a good chance of winning an award." Over the next few months, officials from The Queen's Awards office will be touring the country to promote the awards, supported by talks and presentations. They will also be inviting nominations for The Queen's Award for Enterprise Promotion - an award for individuals helping and inspiring tomorrow's entrepreneurs.

Judging is thorough, so apply only if you can answer a definite 'yes' to these questions: l Does your business have a UK base? l Does your business employ at least two full-time workers (or part-time equivalent)? l Do you believe your business is one of the best? l Can you demonstrate commercial success? For details visit: www.queensawards.org.uk.

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited
Hat maker a top ten business hero. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) A WETHERBY woman who turned her life from tragedy to triumph has been crowned one of Britain's top ten business heroes by setting-up her own hat-making enterprise.

Milliner Woody Whittick, who set up She's All That a year ago, was presented with her winner's trophy by GMTV presenter Fiona Phillips at a glittering gala dinner in London on Wednesday.

The hat maker beat off fierce competition from hundreds of applicants, to finish as a finalist in the Barclays Trading Places Awards, launched this year to people who have overcome personal adversity to positively change their lives by setting up a thriving business.



Woody has fought a battle with ill health since suffering from ME in her teens. She suffered a paralysing spine injury at only 30, and was made redundant during her recovery when her employer went bankrupt.

But after a change of direction she found her calling.

Since opening She's All That last Summer, Woody has designed hats for hundreds of women, including celebrities and catwalk models, featured at Royal Ascot, designed the crown for Miss York 2006 and been elected vice-chair of the British Hat Guild.

Barclay's John Davis said: "The quality of entries made judging extremely difficult but all the judges felt She's All That shone out as a real-life example of an outstanding business that has thrived despite what seemed like impossible odds.

"We congratulate Woody Whittick on being crowned a 2006 National Finalist."

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited

Inside Business Pink

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Inside Business Pink. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) WELCOME to the September edition of our 12-page Business Pink supplement, which contains a wealth of business stories, features with members of the business community, appointments, opinions and advice.



Business Pink is published every two months with each title in the Harrogate Advertiser Series and focuses on businesses and individuals throughout the districts of Harrogate, Ripon, Knaresborough, Wetherby, Nidderdale and Northallerton.

This supplement also features a four-page On Location section, brought to you in conjunction with Harrogate Borough Council, which provides infomation to help businesses develop and succeed within the district.

If you have any stories or information which you think may be appropriate for the next issue of Business Pink, due out in November, please contact business editor Katie Moulds on 01423 707509 or by emailing katie.moulds@ypn.co.uk.

For the On Location section, please contact Harrogate Borough Council's Economic Development Unit on 01423 556077 or by email to edu@harrogate.gov.uk.

Page 2 - HARROGATE-based Avenir properties has reaped more than one reward from its recent development of land at Cardale Park. State-of-the-art offices making up the Greengate site have proved so successful that the company is now planning on replicating the project elsewhere in Yorkshire.

Page 3 - THE Oscars of the food and drink industry saw dozens of companies from the Harrogate district pick up presitigious awards. Among them was Masham firm Rosebud Preserves, which was crowned Yorkshire champion.

Page 4 - MARK Leather had no idea how much the internet would benefit his business until he was persuaded by website design company Extreme Creations to develop his website into an online shop. Now selling 1,500 natural food products online, Mark says the website has played a major part in his company's 100 per cent rise in turnover in less than two years.

Page 5 - THE first page of the On Location section takes a closer look at a council-led scheme which aims to help businesses comply with new EU regulations on food. Since January this year, all food businesses are required by law to put in place documented food safety management procedures - but many companies are still unaware of or ignoring the regulations.

Page 6 - RECOGNISING and rewarding outstanding achievement by UK companies is the aim of the prestigious Queen's Awards for Enterprise. Outstanding businesses from all sectors are being invited to apply for the 2007 awards - find out how you can take part.

Page 7 - LOOKING for hassle-free office space in Harrogate? On Location tells you what's on offer with regards to serviced office accommodation in the town, from rooms in traditional, converted buildings to modern, newly-built flexible offices.

Page 8 - ARE you prepared for the worst? What would you do if your business was affected by flood, fire or even terrorism? We tell you why a business continuity plan is so important, and explain what it should contain, how to test it - and how to prevent a disaster happening in the first place.

Page 9 - FOLLOWING the success of last year's inaugural Ackrill Media Group Business Awards, the event has now become an annual celebration of the best that businesses have to offer in our district. We begin a three-page look at the launch of this year's awards by introducing the categories and the criteria and, of course, giving you details on how to enter.

Page 10 - MEET the sponsors of the Ackrill Media Group Business Awards. Find out who is sponsoring which award, and learn what they are looking for in their winner.

Page 11 - THE second page introducing you to the category sponsors of the Ackrill Media Group Business Awards.

Page 12 - LOOKING back at ten years in the notoriously difficult Harrogate nightlife industry, Jason Smith, below, admits there have been some tough times. But the owner of Monteys Rock Cafe credits consistency and determination as the secrets of his business survival, as well as, of course, maintaining a good bar.

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited

Women's group success

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Women's group success. Check it out:
(Harrogate Advertiser Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) THE inaugural meeting of a new Harrogate-based business networking group for women has proved a huge success.

Around 40 members of WiRE (Women in Rural Enterprise) attended this week's event at Evans Easyspace Ltd on Hartwith Way, Harrogate.

WiRE is a national business club for women operating in rural areas, offering a dynamic package of practical services and assistance.

The Harrogate group, one of a number of regional networks, aims to provide localised support for members and increase their business activities across the region.

Members will meet once a month to enjoy talks from expert speakers and the chance to chat and discuss business opportunities.

Group co-ordinator Sarah Manby, of Mango Mutt, said: "It's great that so many WiRE members are supporting a local network - the response clearly shows there is the need for one.

"We are looking forward to getting to know each other and helping each other succeed in our various enterprises. We're all women trying to run businesses in rural areas, so we have a shared bond in understanding how difficult this can sometimes be." All members of WiRE are welcome to attend the meetings, but places must be booked in advance.



For more information contact Sarah Manby on 01423 545787 or email info@mangomutt.co.uk.

Copyright 2006 Johnston Press Plc. Source: Financial Times Information Limited

The Denver Post Al Lewis column

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The Denver Post Al Lewis column. Check it out:
(Denver Post, The (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sep. 29--After losing her job and getting dragged into a congressional inquiry, Hewlett-Packard's deposed chairwoman Patricia Dunn can't make up her mind.

Is it OK to impersonate people and steal their phone records -- or not?

"I still do not understand whether it is legal or not, as opinions vary," Dunn told Congress on Thursday.

Even Silicon Valley lawyer Larry Sonsini's opinions vary. Acting as HP's outside counsel, Sonsini had advised that this practice, known as pretexting, is "not generally unlawful." On Thursday before Congress, though, Sonsini said pretexting is probably illegal but that there ought to be a new law to make this clear.



Wouldn't disbarment or a legal-malpractice lawsuit also make this clear?

And what about existing laws against deceptive trade practices, criminal impersonation, identity theft or wire fraud?

Don't they provide clarity?

Could Dunn and Sonsini really be this dumb? Do they really think the people watching their charades are dumb, too?

What's not ostensibly clear to Dunn and Sonsini seemed abundantly clear to HP general counsel Ann Baskins.

Hours before Baskins was scheduled to testify, she resigned from her 24-year career at HP and invoked her Fifth Amendment right against self- incrimination.

Also taking the Fifth were a host of others involved in HP's cloak-and-dagger investigation of boardroom leaks to reporters. They included Ronald DeLia, who runs the detective firm that HP used; Anthony R. Gentilucci, who managed HP's global investigations unit in Boston; and Kevin T. Hunsaker, HP's former chief ethics officer, who was fired apparently for a lack of ethics in this matter.

Then there's HP chief executive Mark Hurd, who did not take the Fifth. Congress cut Hurd way too much slack Thursday, allowing him to testify alone, without his suspicious-looking colleagues at his side.

Everybody seems to love Hurd because HP stock has soared since he became CEO last year. And at least Hurd was apologetic about HP's misadventure, describing it as a "rogue investigation that violated HP's own principles and values." But Hurd also did a fine job of playing dumb. He told Congress he had had discussions about the investigation but was not involved in it and did not know the details. Maybe he didn't know because he didn't want to know.

"I understand there is also a written report of the investigation addressed to me and others, but unfortunately I did not read it," Hurd said in prepared testimony. "I could have, and I should have." But somehow, he just didn't.

How dumb is that?

So everyone involved in HP's investigation either took the Fifth, said they didn't know or said they were assured that what went on was legal.

Dunn, I think, explained it most eloquently: "Reliance on representations from trusted sources is a bedrock concept in board governance." Here's another "bedrock concept" if you ever want to run a complex enterprise like HP: Question everything. But don't try to look smart when prosecutors are watching your every facial twitch on C-SPAN. Better to play dumb.

Like Bryan Wagner of Littleton, who once worked for Action Research Group.

Wagner, 29, is the nephew of private investigator James Rapp, who pleaded guilty in 1999 after selling information about Los Angeles organized-crime detectives to the Israeli mafia.

Denver Post reporter Kimberly Johnson approached Wagner on Wednesday outside his apartment as he waited for a shuttle to take him to the airport for his flight to Washington. "Action (Research Group) has lawyers to make sure that we're doing everything legally," he told Johnson. "I never thought I was doing anything wrong." Wagner, however, took the Fifth on Thursday before Congress. And well before that, he reportedly took a hammer to his computer.

"I'm not going to say any more about the computer," he said. "I'm afraid I'll be charged with destruction of evidence."

OK, so I'll take it back. Wagner may be the one guy in the HP affair who is not playing dumb. Everyone else -- please!

Al Lewis' column appears Sundays, Tuesdays and Fridays. Respond to him at denverpostbloghouse.com/lewis, 303-954-1967 or alewis@denverpost.com.

To see more of The Denver Post, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.denverpost.com.

Copyright (c) 2006, The Denver Post
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Business News.
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8x8 Chairman & CEO to Deliver Keynote Address at Internet Telephony Conference & Expo. Check it out:
SANTA CLARA, Calif., Sept. 29 -- 8x8, Inc. , provider of Packet8 residential, business and video Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone services, today announced that Chairman and CEO Bryan R. Martin will deliver the opening Keynote Address at the Internet Telephony Conference and Expo, October 10-13, 2006 at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, California.



Mr. Martin's presentation will take place on Tuesday, October 10 at 11:30 a.m. PDT. His address will summarize the tremendous progress that has been made in the first decade of the IP communications revolution and offer insight into how the VoIP industry can expand the boundaries of innovation in applications and services that were never realized in the legacy, copper networks of the "Ma Bell" era. Mr. Martin was recently named one of the "Top 100 Voices" in IP Communications, as selected by the editorial team of Internet Telephony magazine. More information about the Internet Telephony Conference & Expo can be found at http://www.tmcnet.com/voip/conference/ .

About 8x8, Inc.
VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) service provider 8x8, Inc. offers internet-based telephony solutions (http://www.packet8.net/ ) for individual residential and business users as well as small- to medium-sized business organizations. In addition to regular Packet8 VoIP service plans priced as low as $19.99 per month for unlimited anytime calling to the U.S. and Canada, 8x8 offers the Packet8 DV 326 VideoPhone, the industry's first stand-alone broadband consumer videophone, and accompanying monthly service plans also priced at $19.99 per month. Packet8 Virtual Office, 8x8's VoIP system for small- to medium-sized businesses, is a hosted PBX solution comprised of powerful business class features. Companies subscribing to Virtual Office pay just $39.99 per month per extension for enterprise class PBX functionality along with unlimited local and long distance calling in the U.S. and Canada. Packet8 Softalk(TM), 8x8's PC-based soft phone client, offers high quality voice and video in-network calling as well as outbound calling to the PSTN. For additional company information, visit 8x8's web site at http://www.8x8.com/ .

NOTE: 8x8, the 8x8 logo, Packet8, the Packet8 logo and Packet8 Virtual Office are trademarks of 8x8, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

8x8, Inc.

CONTACT: Joan Citelli of 8x8, Inc., +1-408-687-4320, orjcitelli@8x8.com

Web site: http://www.packet8.net/http://www.8x8.com/
Portellus Makes Web-Based Correspondent Transaction Management Solution Available. Check it out:
IRVINE, Calif. --(Business Wire)-- Portellus Inc., a leading provider of technology solutions for the financial services industry, announced that its correspondent origination and investor transaction management solution is now commercially available for general market evaluation and licensing. The solution enables correspondents or conduits to offer a seller-facing portal that enables secondary market participants to electronically submit data on flow, bulk and mini-bulk delivery. Additionally, the platform also provides more robust modules for managing forward and master commitments.



Portellus' correspondent transaction management solution works in conjunction with its enterprise rules management (ERM) system to deliver instant product eligibility; best-ex pricing; automated underwriting approvals complete with stips and conditions; rate locking and extensions; exceptions management; and up-to-date pipeline visibility and status. The solution streamlines the e-delivery of loans with common attributes, improves the consistency and accuracy of investor due diligence, and accelerates the processing and acquisition of loans by secondary market investors/participants.

The solution is currently in use by Clayton Services, one of the largest providers of mortgage-based due diligence, who engaged and collaborated with Portellus in October of 2005 to use the system to enhance its conduit services technology business. It is also in production with a tier one Wall Street firm and a top five mortgage banker.

"The complex automation this solution offers is changing the way buyers and sellers do business on the secondary market," said John N. Le, chairman and CEO of Portellus. "Investor and lender profits are being pinched, and now more than ever sustainability is about data quality, compliance and due diligence. Portellus' correspondent solution offers the respective clients of secondary market investors an alternative to the capital intensive business of delivering in bulk and mini-bulk. Conversely, these same investors are now afforded an opportunity to service a broader market of small-to-midsize sellers with a higher margin market opportunity in the flow business. Because our solution is already in use by several of the industry's biggest names, it is tried, tested and trued."

Driving the intelligence behind Portellus' correspondent solution is the company's ERM system, which houses investor-specific underwriting guidelines to govern loan quality and return instant decisioning to sellers via the portal. The back-end system empowers non-technical business users with the ability to maintain changes to products, pricing and underwriting guidelines in plain English via a simple user interface.

Officials at Portellus say the solution creates ease of deal structuring, facilitates seller-investor trust and establishes a new medium to reach more sellers and buyers. As a result, loan quality is controlled for investors and the funding process is dramatically accelerated for sellers.

About Portellus

Headquartered in Irvine, Calif., Portellus Inc. is a leading provider of next-generation technology solutions for the financial services and insurance industries. The company's Decision Management, Enterprise Rules Management (ERM), Loan Origination and Portal solutions utilize a service-oriented approach to deliver loosely coupled applications and flexible solutions, enabling clients to gain competitive advantages, reduce costs, mitigate risk, increase profitability, comply with regulatory requirements and swiftly respond to changing marketplace conditions. For more information, visit www.portellus.com or call 949-250-9600.

Portellus will be offering demonstrations of its correspondent solution at the 93rd Mortgage Bankers Association Exposition and Conference in Chicago, October 22 - 24, in its private meeting room. Contact the company to arrange a discussion time at 949.250.9600, ext. 2250 or e-mail them at info@portellus.com.
China's M-Commerce Generates CNY5.8bn Output Value in 2005. Check it out:
(SinoCast Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) BEIJING, Sep 29, 2006 (SinoCast via COMTEX) --Mobile commerce is leading the tide of Internet and enterprise management and becomes a shining sector of IT market growth, along with the increasing need for mobile office and real-time management and communication.



CCID Consulting, a leading IT market researcher in China, says in a report that excluding hardware, the mobile commerce industry generated total output value of CNY 5.85 billion (USD 1 = CNY 8.00) in 2005, increasing 19.4% from a year earlier.

The growing speed is lower than other sectors of mobile telecom industry and the mobile telecom carriers' revenue made up 69.3% of the total output value. The other parts in the chain of mobile commerce have not fully realized their value.

When the 3G era comes, the advanced technologies will facilitate the development of mobile commerce, which just includes four parts at present: short messaging service, mobile payment, mobile e-mail, and mobile searching service.

From eNet, Page 1, Thursday, September 28, 2006
info@SinoCast.Com

Copyright (C) 2006 SinoCast, All rights reserved
Minister scolds laggardly financiers. Check it out:
(The Herald Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) SCOTTISH financiers came under fire from the man in charge of official efforts to improve Scotland's anaemic growth rate for allegedly not doing their bit to boost the economy.

Nicol Stephen, minister for enterprise, said private sector funders were hampering the drive to improve the number of successful start-ups by starving companies of the kind of risk capital that could make a vital difference to early-stage ventures.



He used an address to the globalscot conference of successful Scots to reopen the debate about the adequacy of private support for Scotland's hopefuls.

Small business lobbyists have complained about an "equity gap" affecting small firms that slipped beneath the radar of venture capitalists, which they say are focusing on big deals.

Some specialists in areas like technology say they have plenty of money to invest in small fry with the potential to achieve rapid growth but can not find enough good firms to back.

However, noting that the Scottish Executive had committed public sector funds to leverage in private sector money through the Scottish Coinvestment Fund, Stephen said: "Lots of people will tell you there's a shortage of good ideas and good management teams; I disagree with that.

"Some of our companies struggle to achieve that initial venture capital investment."

Highlighting the fact that on some measures investment by Scottish businesses in research and development that may be essential to improving productivity lagged well beyond more successful areas, he pointed the finger again. "In Scotland it tends to be . . . that R&D is often an area you want to be able to put a red line through. That is very dangerous and shortsighted and ultimately damaging for the economy."

The criticisms got short shrift from the venture capital industry. "As an industry we invest in every sector of the economy across all regions. In 2005, in Scotland we invested GBP114m in 96 companies, " said the British Venture Capital Association. "We are always looking to make a good investment. If the opportunity is there we will take it."

Copyright 2006 Newsquest Media Group Source: Financial Times Information Limited - Europe Intelligence Wire.
SNP plans to cut rates for small businesses. Check it out:
(The Herald Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) THE SNP yesterday announced plans to cut rates for small businesses, and the party's enterprise spokesman, Jim Mather, told parliament the small business bonus scheme would make the Scottish economy more competitive.



He told MSPs that red tape would also be reduced, with small businesses only having to apply for this on a fiveyearly basis to coincide with revaluation.

"Scotland can grow, Scotland can move forward. People are coming to that conclusion right, left and centre, " he said.

Mather added that Scottish Enterprise chairman John Ward had recently claimed that a 3.5-per cent rate of growth is required. He said: "That requires radical change.

"Our proposals are putting that radical change in place and we are persuading more and more people that we can end an era of relative decline which has lasted all my business lifetime.

"We are entering an era where we can have perpetual improvement and the personal and national economic cakes get progressively bigger."

He said this was in line with the success which Ireland has seen in recent years. "We can match what Ireland's doing because we are starting from a better place. We've got better infrastructure. We've got better and more universities, we've got stronger industry sectors and we've got fantastic natural resources, " he said.

A key objective for an SNP administration would be to become one of the top 15 most competitive countries in the western world and matching the 4-per cent per annum growth of small European nations, he added.

The SNP claims that its new small business bonus scheme will abolish business rates for 120,000 companies across the country.

Under the plans, business rates for firms with a rateable value of GBP8000 a year or less would be abolished.

Businesses with a rateable value of GBP8000 to GBP10,000 a year would get rates relief of 50-per cent while those with a rateable value of between GBP10,000 and GBP15,000 would have their bills cut by 25-per cent.

Mather also said that reducing the application for the scheme to once every five years, it would save the sector GBP10m.

Deputy Enterprise Minister Allan Wilson told the chamber that 98-per cent of Scottish firms fell into the small business category.

He claimed that the Scottish economy has performed well, with a GDP growth over the year to the first quarter of 2006 of 1.9-per cent.

He said: "This is above our long-term annual average and our most recent quarterly growth rate of 0.5-per cent is the strongest first-quarter performance for the Scottish economy since 2001.

"The Scottish labour market continues to perform exceptionally well, with over 160,000 Scots having entered employment since the creation of the Scottish parliament.

"Employment levels are at their highest since quarterly records began."

The minister added that 40-per cent of all private sector jobs were in small businesses.

Scottish corporate statistics show that the number of small businesses has risen from 226,510 in 1999 to 264,660 in 2004.

Total employment in small businesses is now 759,500.

He said: "That's real progress. That's real people in real, growing small businesses here in Scotland.

"Those businesses have an encouraging turnover of some GBP52bn here in Scotland and those are all positive aspects of our support for Scottish businesses."

Since 2003, about 70-per cent of nondomestic subjects in Scotland have benefited from a rates reduction of up to 50-per cent, the minister added, through the small business rates relief scheme.

"I believe that we have devised a scheme which significantly assists those small businesses who need help with paying their rates bill, " he said.

Copyright 2006 Newsquest Media Group Source: Financial Times Information Limited - Europe Intelligence Wire.
CNSIC and Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Invest in Salt Chemical Base. Check it out:
(SinoCast Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) SHANGHAI, Sep 29, 2006 (SinoCast via COMTEX) --Zhenjiang Salt and Chemical Co. Ltd of China National Salt Industry Corporation (CNSIC), which is the largest salt production and sales enterprise in Asia, Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Chemical Co., Ltd, the leading company in China's chlor-alkali industry, and Dantu District People's Government have reached an Agreement on Salt and Alkali Integration Project, to invest CNY 2.8 billion in establishing the largest salt chemical base in domestic China.



This project can be divided into two phases. Phase I project includes installation of vacuum salt making plant, brine mining and transportation project, diaphragmatic alkali plant, thermal power plant and corresponding wharf and utility facility. Phase II project includes ion membrane caustic soda plant and propylene oxide plant.

From stocknews.com.cn, Page 1, Thursday, September 28, 2006
info@SinoCast.Com

Copyright (C) 2006 SinoCast, All rights reserved
Leading Industry Visionaries and Global Customers to Deliver Real-World Best Practices at Plateau's 11th Annual User Conference. Check it out:
ARLINGTON, Va. --(Business Wire)-- Plateau Systems, a leading provider of software for developing, managing and optimizing organizational skills and talent, today announced its 11th annual user conference, Insights 2006. The conference, themed "Building a High Performance Workforce," will be held October 15-18 at Disney's Contemporary Resort in Orlando, and will feature an extensive customer-focused agenda with an impressive line-up of industry visionaries, customer presenters as well as hands-on educational tracks.



More than 200 customers are expected to attend the invitation-only conference which will also include the presentation of Plateau's annual Customer Excellence Awards. The company announced that it has received a record number of entries for the prestigious awards, which will be announced at the Insights Gala, sponsored by Deloitte at Disney's Animal Kingdom(R). Deloitte again heads an impressive list of Plateau partners scheduled to participate and exhibit, including WeLocalize, WebEx, Adobe and Thomson NETg.

Keynote Speakers

Featured keynote speaker Claire Schooley, senior analyst in Forrester's Information Delivery Research Group, will discuss the challenges of a dynamic workforce and the critical role learning, performance management, and succession planning play in addressing these challenges. Plateau executives including Paul Sparta, chairman and chief executive officer; Ed Cohen, chief technology officer; Joe Herman, senior vice president of product management and alliances; and Shelly Heiden, senior vice president of Plateau Global Services, will deliver keynote presentations focusing on Plateau's vision, product roadmap and customer innovation. Industry thought leaders and Plateau customers from pioneering global organizations including GE and The Walt Disney Company, and leading government agencies including NASA and the U.S. Air Force, will present case studies and best practices that focus on how Plateau is helping them create a high performance workplace.

-- Claire Schooley, Senior Analyst in Forrester's Information Delivery Research Group, will deliver a keynote entitled "Preparing for Future Workforce Transformation" focused on how effective learning, performance management, and succession planning strategies can help organizations address the challenges surrounding their changing workforce.

-- Colonel Thomas Giattino, U.S. Air Force, Chief, Aircrew Training & Standardization Division for AETC, will discuss best practices for leveraging Plateau's flexible software delivery options to deploy large-scale global training programs to service personnel worldwide.

-- Jill Honerlaw from GE will present "The Value of Integrated Learning and Performance" which will highlight the integrative advantages and cost/time savings benefits of deploying a unified learning and performance management solution that leverages a single data repository for both applications.

-- Barbara Howes, vice president, Enterprise Learning Strategy, The Walt Disney Company, will deliver a presentation titled, "Enterprise Learning Vision & Best Practices at Disney," highlighting lessons from Disney's recently launched enterprise-wide learning management system and discussing how it has enabled the company to align employee career development with the company's strategic initiatives."

-- Jason Averbrook, CEO of Knowledge Infusion, will present "Market Trends in Talent Management," which will explore the necessity for and benefits of aligning strategic corporate goals with individual results, with an emphasis on how a holistic view of people, processes, technology can enable organizations to achieve organizational success.

Attendees will enjoy access to more than 30 additional presentations focused on various aspects of Talent Management, including learning, performance, talent management, competencies and development, training, technology integration (including SCORM, AICC, hosting and infrastructure design, software validation and implementation). Conference sessions are aligned across three tracks - Learning, Performance, and Products & Services and will feature real-world customer case studies presented by HR and learning practitioners as well as developer and consultant-led product education sessions. To view the full conference agenda, visit http://www.plateau.com/insights/agenda.htm

Sessions will include the following topics:

-- Performance Management Trends and Systems

-- On-Demand Talent Management Suites

-- Integrated Learning and Performance

-- Competency-Based Talent Management Systems

-- Best Practices for leveraging Learning and Performance

-- Learning Management in Federal and Local Law Enforcement

-- Next Generation Content Integration

-- Skills and Competency Development for the Real-World

Sponsors & Partners

Plateau consistently leverages its alliances with leading business partners to deliver best-in-class solutions to its customers. Throughout the conference, attendees will have access to the Insights Partner Expo, featuring the latest in learning and IT solutions from Plateau's alliance partners. For a complete list of Insights sponsors and exhibitors, please visit http://www.plateau.com/insights/expo.htm

For complete event details and registration information, please visit the Plateau Insights 2006 Web site at http://plateau.com/insights

About Plateau

Plateau is a leading provider of adaptable Web-based software for developing, managing and optimizing organizational skills and talent to increase workforce productivity and business operations performance. Plateau's software is being used by some of the world's largest, most successful enterprises, including the American Red Cross, General Electric, Internal Revenue Service, and Wendy's International. Industry analysts, including Forrester Research and Bersin & Associates, have rated Plateau a leader in functionality, technology, and customer satisfaction. The company is headquartered in Arlington, Va. For more information, please visit www.plateau.com
Kyodo economic news summary -6-+. Check it out:
(Japan Economic Newswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) TOKYO, Sept. 29_(Kyodo) _ ---------- Mitsui Chemicals to buy Daiichi Sankyo's pesticide unit

TOKYO - Mitsui Chemicals Inc. said Friday it will buy Daiichi Sankyo Co.'s pesticide manufacturing unit Sankyo Agro Co. with the aim of strengthening its agrichemical business.

Mitsui Chemicals said it has reached an agreement with the Daiichi Sankyo group to purchase all outstanding shares in Sankyo Agro, with the stock transfer scheduled for March 30 next year. The company declined to reveal the acquisition cost.



---------- Japan's housing starts up 1.8% in Aug., 1st rise in 2 months

TOKYO - Japanese housing starts in August rose 1.8 percent from a year earlier to 111,187 units for the first increase in two months, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport said Friday.

The ministry attributed the rebound to increases in starts of both owner-occupied houses and homes for sale, which outweighed the effects of a decline in starts of homes for rent.

---------- Takefuji to stop having borrowers' lives insured

TOKYO - Consumer loan firm Takefuji Corp. said Friday it will stop on Sunday the practice of having borrowers' lives insured, and will not purchase such policies for new lending contracts as of Nov. 1.

The announcement came after consumer loan companies were criticized for using borrowers' lives to recover loans. The firms have bought group life insurance contracts upon lending to borrowers in a bid to recover loans in the form of insurance money when borrowers die before completing repayments.

---------- Japan stays out of currency markets in Sept. for 30th month

TOKYO - Japan's currency authorities did not intervene in foreign exchange markets in September for the 30th straight month, the Finance Ministry said Friday.

The ministry said it conducted no market intervention via the Bank of Japan from Aug. 30 to Sept. 27, extending the intervention-free period since March 17, 2004.

---------- Mitarai, 3 others named for key gov't economic panel

TOKYO - Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuhisa Shiozaki said Friday the government has picked Japan Business Federation Chairman Fujio Mitarai and three others as new private-sector representatives at its powerful Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy.

The other three are Uichiro Niwa, chairman of trading house Itochu Corp., Takatoshi Ito, professor at the University of Tokyo Graduate School of Economics, and Naohiro Yashiro, professor of economics at the International Christian University.

---------- Toshiba to recall 830,000 Sony-made batteries for computers

TOKYO - Toshiba Corp. said Friday it will recall about 830,000 lithium-ion batteries made by Sony Corp. for its notebook personal computers on a global basis.

Toshiba's move, the first among Japanese computer makers, will deal another blow to Sony and is likely to prompt other laptop manufacturers to recall some of their products on concerns over possible overheating.

---------- Japan needs to amend negative views on foreign labor: experts

TOKYO - Experts including a former Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau chief agreed Friday in a symposium that more Japanese need to have a positive image toward foreign workers.

"Japanese people need to welcome" foreign workers as we "receive them as helpers" for solving issues related to Japan's declining population, Hidenori Sakanaka, who retired from the Justice Ministry last year, said at the symposium held in Tokyo.

---------- Yoshinoya lowers interim earnings estimate

TOKYO - Restaurant chain operator Yoshinoya D&C Co. said Friday it will book smaller-than-expected sales for the just-ended first half of the current business year due to the effects of preparations to put "gyudon" beef-on-rice dishes back on its menu.

Yoshinoya, once Japan's No. 1 provider of gyudon dishes, said it expects to register group sales of 62.24 billion yen for the March-August period, down from its projection of 63.40 billion in April.

---------- METI eyes loans, consultation to give small firms 'second chance'

TOKYO - The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, which oversees policies to support small businesses, is seeking a new loan system and consultation services to give failed entrepreneurs a "second chance," ministry officials said Friday.

The Small and Medium Enterprise Agency under METI has urged the government to create a special loan and credit guarantee system to encourage those who once failed in their businesses to make a fresh try, they said.

---------- Gov't plans tax waivers to help turn around Skymark Airlines

TOKYO - The transport ministry said Friday it has decided to help turn around the struggling business of Skymark Airlines Co. by invoking special industrial revival legislation.

The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport will take advantage of the law, which took effect in 1999 amid a prolonged recession, to grant the carrier tax wavers worth some 8.4 million yen on its new share issuance over the next three years, ministry officials said.

Copyright 2006 Kyodo News International, Inc.

Piper Jaffray Lands on Shanghai

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Piper Jaffray Lands on Shanghai. Check it out:
(SinoCast Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) SHANGHAI, Sep 29, 2006 (SinoCast via COMTEX) --Piper Jaffray & Co., the principal operating subsidiary of the America-based investment bank Piper Jaffray Companies (PJC), set up its third overseas branch in Shanghai on September 26 after the branches in London and Bombay.



Andrew Duff, the CEO of the bank revealed the move in Shanghai is a key part of the comprehensive development strategy of the bank, which would enhance its strength in the international medium-size investment and security market.

The bank, established in 1895 in Minneapolis, US, specializes in serving medium enterprises, investment groups, institutions, non-profit-making associations and institutional investors.

Since 2000, it had tapped into Asian financial markets and undertaken the first public placement of the Chinese enterprise UTStarcom in US.

From China Securities, Page 1, Thursday, September 28, 2006
info@SinoCast.Com

Copyright (C) 2006 SinoCast, All rights reserved
Corporate Performance Management (CPM) Market Set to Transform as Product Focus and Functionality Broaden. Check it out:
DUBLIN, Ireland --(Business Wire)-- Research and Markets (http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c42880) has announced the addition of Corporate Performance Management 2006 to their offering.

Corporate Performance Management (CPM) solutions today focus on finance: Financial Consolidation, Budgeting and Planning, and Scorecards and Dashboards. This is understandable. Finance Departments need to handle the pressures for better and faster business performance numbers for regulatory compliance, transparency with stakeholders, and for business management. However, the CPM world is all set for radical change.



Enlightened CPM suppliers are re-positioning their offerings away from "only finance" and are embracing "enterprise performance management". These solutions model and measure not only the effects of actions across all enterprise departments, but also the underlying root causes and drivers using management methodologies like Balanced Scorecard. Performance Management software is set to become a means to provide business agility, alignment and accountability, not just finance metrics alone. OK, the vendors have talked about this for sometime - but the reality is that customers did not "buy into" the promise. Now the time is right as the business drivers and the technology readiness are aligned.

This report "Corporate Performance Management" introduces a fresh new way of looking at emerging customer requirements for CPM and profiles the solutions of the top 21 CPM technology providers. Using the graphic visualisation of our unique Bullseye(TM) diagrams, the author provides insight into how the vendors position their products and services in the marketplace - and how they compare in 10 different areas - be they implementation, support, or value for money for example. This report will prove to be an invaluable guide for end users evaluating suppliers' CPM offerings. The CPM report complements the Research report on Business Intelligence http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reportinfo.asp?r=339696 published in June 2006.

For more information visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c42880
Twisted Pair Solutions, Inc. Secures $9 Million in Series a Funding from Ignition Partners, Core Capital Partners and Chart Venture Partners. Check it out:
SEATTLE --(Business Wire)-- Twisted Pair Solutions, Inc., a leading software company that designs and builds IP-based group communications software, today announced it has closed its first round of venture capital funding, receiving $9 million from an investment group syndicate co-led by Ignition Partners and Core Capital Partners, and to include Chart Venture Partners. This investment will be used to accelerate the company's rapid growth through an extended focus on sales, marketing and partner development, as well as further advancement of its core WAVE technology.



"This investment allows us to accelerate our response to the incredible demand we are seeing from our partners and end customers, powering additional products, services and solutions with our core software technology," said Tom Guthrie, President and CEO of Twisted Pair Solutions. "Ignition, Core and Chart bring a wealth of experience that allows us to significantly increase the breadth of market-specific solutions as well as the depth of software components and development tools for our worldwide partners."

"The global communications environment has become increasingly complicated with new technologies and standards which are constantly evolving," said Adrian Smith, Principal at Ignition Partners. "We see a significant opportunity for a company like Twisted Pair that has the technical competence and experience to make these technologies work together to allow people to seamlessly communicate in any situation.

"Twisted Pair's solution has been tried and tested in some of the most demanding, mission-critical communications environments in the military and government. We believe that they are ideally positioned to solve communication interoperability challenges in many commercial segments."

Started in 1999, the WAVE software technology has been broadly accepted as the leading solution of choice for enabling and managing group communications and achieving interoperability. Thousands of customers in defense, public safety, finance, and utilities leverage the advantages of WAVE to connect people using disparate and often incompatible communications technologies into a single, interoperable and manageable communications system. WAVE specializes in managing and configuring group communications to meet an organization's needs while avoiding a fork-lift upgrade of existing communications equipment. Today, WAVE software technology is sold worldwide as bundled product suites through Twisted Pair's systems integration partners as well as OEM partners who build their own products and services using the WAVE Software Development Kit.

"Interest in WAVE software technology is at an all time high and increasing with each deployment," said Rene Grossrieder, Vice President of Sales and Marketing of Twisted Pair. "Our ability to harness this growth and establish aligned business processes with crisp execution is significantly enhanced with this round of funding. New marketing, sales and business development initiatives are already underway and will be a driving force in achieving previously unattainable levels of growth, profitability and partner development."

"Twisted Pair represents the perfect convergence of technology and the needs of homeland security and public safety," commented Tom Wheeler, Managing Director at Core Capital. "The WAVE technology, which is now deployed with our forces in Iraq to help them communicate, can do the same for fire fighters, police, hospitals and other emergency service providers. Gone is the tragedy of September 11, when fire fighters and police could not communicate with each other, the WAVE platform allows all radios, cell phones, and laptops to communicate with each other regardless of the technology used or frequency on which they operate."

In addition, Ted Hobart from Chart Venture Partners added, "Twisted Pair's WAVE technology addresses an immediate and pressing need for interoperability among military communications networks, particularly for units deployed in theater, which is among the most challenging markets and operating environments. We believe the Company's leading technology can also be leveraged more broadly for civilian and military communications programs, as well as large commercial markets and that the team is well positioned to execute its strategy for growth."

The new board will be comprised of Tom Guthrie, President and CEO of Twisted Pair Solutions, Shaun Botha, Chief Technology Officer of Twisted Pair Solutions, Tom Wheeler, Partner of Core Capital and Adrian Smith, Principal of Ignition Partners.

About Twisted Pair Solutions, Inc.

Twisted Pair Solutions, Inc. designs and builds enterprise software solutions that enable interoperable group communications. Our WAVE software manages real-time, secure, group communications over the IP network, linking in people and devices. The application suite serves an unlimited variety of devices including radios, personal computers, cell phones, and IP phones and allows previously incompatible systems to work together seamlessly. In addition, Twisted Pair's management server capabilities enable robust device and user management leveraging IP as the protocol of choice for open, reliable and highly scaleable communications. Twisted Pair Solutions is headquartered in Seattle, Washington USA with offices in the Netherlands, UK and Australia. Visit us at www.twistpair.com

About Ignition Partners

Ignition Partners, headquartered in Bellevue, Wash., is a premier venture capital firm dedicated to helping the best entrepreneurs seize opportunity - from turning their early stage idea into a business, to hiring the right team, providing the right industry and functional insight and connections, and growing their business strategically, globally, and financially to realize the best ultimate outcome. Ignition invests in emerging and future leaders in communications, Internet, software, and services across business and consumer targets. Ignition brings together an unparalleled combination of domain focus, technical expertise, and global operational experience. Ignition's partners are proven business leaders who have built some of the world's most successful businesses of the last two decades, including Microsoft Windows and Office, McCaw Cellular Communications, AT&T Wireless, and Starbucks. www.ignitionpartners.com

About Core Capital Partners

Core Capital is a Washington, DC-based venture fund with over $370 million under management. The firm invests in a wide range of disruptive technologies, with a particular focus on telecommunications hardware and software, wireless applications, enterprise software, network security, ecommerce, and web and communications services. Core invests in both early-stage and later-stage companies. Sample portfolio companies include InPhonic, Sourcefire, NexTone Communications, buySafe, RoundBox, Trust Digital, Trinity Convergence, and IXI. www.core-capital.com

About Chart Venture Partners

Chart Venture Partners concentrates its investments in the homeland defense and security markets, with an emphasis on dual-use technologies (government and commercial). Through an exclusive Strategic Partner Agreement with InSitech, Inc., the sole Partnership Intermediary for US Army's Picatinny Arsenal/ARDEC (Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center), Chart Venture Partners has unique access to research facilities and potential customers in the military and homeland security arenas. www.chartventures.com
Wave to Present at The New York Society of Security Analysts' ''Small Cap Innovators'' Conference, Thurs., October 5th at 3:50 p.m.. Check it out:
LEE, Mass. --(Business Wire)-- Wave Systems Corp. (Nasdaq: WAVX) (www.wave.com) announced today that Wave CFO, Gerard T. Feeney, will be presenting at The New York Society of Security Analysts' Small Cap Innovators Conference on Thursday, October 5th, 2006 in New York City. Wave's presentation is scheduled for 3:50 p.m. EDT and will made available for replay on the NYSSA website (www.nyssa.org) a few days following the presentation. The conference will take place in New York City at The New York Society of Security Analysts, 1177 Avenue of the Americas, 2nd Floor (between 45th & 46th Streets)



New York Society of Security Analysts

Since 1937, The New York Society of Security Analysts (NYSSA) has educated and informed investment professionals, providing them with a vibrant forum for the exchange of ideas and information. NYSSA promotes awareness and understanding of securities analysis, investing, and the operation of the securities markets. For more information, visit www.nyssa.org or contact them at (212) 541-4530.

About Wave Systems

Wave Systems solves the most critical security problems for enterprises and government with software solutions that are trustworthy, reliable, easy to use, and offer a speedy return on investment. Wave's trusted computing software solutions include strong authentication, data protection, advanced password management and enterprise-wide trust management services. For more information about Wave, visit http://www.wave.com.

All brands are the property of their respective owners.
PHILIP MORRIS KUBAN'S H1 NET PROFITS SIX TIMES UP TO 87,862,000 RUBLES. Check it out:
(Tobacco Briefing Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)
The enterprise has declined to comment on the reasons behind
this growth in net profits. A press release by Philip Morris
notes that this year the enterprise plans introducing a new
tobacco drying technology.

Copyright 2006 Federal News Service, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Does virtualization drive the future?. Check it out:
(EDN Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Over the 50 years since the first tabloid issue of
Electrical Design News
, underlying forces
have driven the evolution of the electronics industry. Since manufacturers
first fabricated transistors using photolithography, the inexorable shrinking
that process enabled has changed the world. Since it first became viable to put
a stored-program computer on a few chips, the shift of functions from hardware
to software has changed the world, as well.

These forces have been obviouswith obvious results. But consider
a more abstract and less obvious driving force that has, arguably, also been
important, and in the future may unleash a revolution as great as those of the
IC and microprocessor.

You could call that underlying trend "virtualization." The word is not
susceptible to a one-line definition, so let's digress for a moment. When you
use electrical quantities to perform physical work or release light, you say
the system is electrical. When you use the same quantitiescharge,
current, or voltageto convey information rather than merely to do work,
you say that the system is electronic. Virtualization is, in this sense, a step
beyond electronics. A systembe it a physical process, an object in the
real world, or an imaginary personis virtualized when it has undergone
three key steps. First, a boundary must isolate the system from its
environment. Second, designers identify the inputs and outputs that cross the
boundary, along with the transforms that produce the outputs, thus modeling the
system. Third, designers produce a functionally equivalent blockone
that accepts the same inputs and produces the same outputs under the same
circumstanceswith an electronic system.

From at least the mid-1960s, engineers have used electronic systems to
virtualize physical thingseither components of the electronic system
itself or objects in the outside worldand incorporate those models in
place of the real objects. This virtualization has made it possible for
electronic systems to behave as if they had hardware that they did not have. It
has also allowed systems to behave as if they were interacting with a world
from which they were isolatedeither by distance or by the fact that
that world didn't exist. These capabilities have accelerated the growth of
electronics and in the future are likely to lend electronic systems
capabilities that in the past were the province of humans alone.

In the beginningOne of the earliest exercises in virtualization waslike many a
breakthrough that later became standard practice in computer
architecturean advance in the IBM (
www.ibm.com
) 360 mainframe family. Before that
time, machine-code instructions in computers referenced memory through physical
addressesnumbers representing physical locations on the surface of a
drum or, after the development of magnetic cores, physical locations within the
array of small ferrite cores.

The development of virtual memory rested on the idea that the addresses
that machine instructions created needn't be the last word. If arithmetic
hardware were fast enough, it could translate addresses from the computer
program on the fly into physical addresses using some prearranged mapping. This
feature allowed a program that was assembled to run at one location in physical
memory to execute in another locationeven if the programmer had not
made all the memory references relative to the contents of a base register.
More important, it also meant that programs could run on a machine whose
physical memory was many times smaller than the virtual-address range the
program used. A portion of the operating systema well-developed concept
by this timecould allocate portions of the physical memory as necessary
for the immediate needs of the program, swapping blocks of information onto and
off of disk drives as necessary. By extension, this ability meant that a
modest-sized machine could concurrently run a number of large programs,
convincing each of them that it had access to all the physical memory it wanted
when in fact it was borrowing small blocks of memory on an as-needed basis.
Severing the link between the program's address spacewhich now became
virtualand the physical-address space was a huge and vital step in the
creation of modern data processing. But it was far from the last one.

At first glance, it might appear that this scenario has little to do
with the definition of "virtualization." However, the process executes all of
the steps in virtualization. IBM's designers isolated physical memory from the
rest of the mainframe system. They identified the inputsaddresses and
write dataand the outputstiming signals and read
datathat characterized the system. And they constructed a combination
of hardware, which would become a memory-management unit, and software, which
would become the virtual-memory manager that created a virtual main memory.

Virtualizing the IT worldRich Lechner, vice president of IBM Virtualization (
www-03.ibm.com/systems/ virtualization
), defines
the term as "the logical representation of resources not constrained by
physical devices." He points out that, when you use virtualization in this way,
it can "either treat one physical resource as if it were many or treat many,
possibly dissimilar, resources as if they were one." Lechner traces the
beginnings of virtualization to the 360 family's virtual-memory-system debut 40
years ago. But he says the practice has become far broader today than simply
virtualization of memory, which is now a common practice even in
microprocessors. "At one level, we can gather all of the storage assets
available to a network into a single pool of storage," Lechner says. In this
way, any program executing in the environment has access to all of the storage
assets of the network through a single interface.

But if you are not careful, you will face chaos. The location of stored
data does make a differencein access time, cost, persistence, and
coherence. So, for storage, virtualization has come to mean more than just
providing a mapping from a single mass-storage API (application-programming
interface) to a diverse set of storage devices. "The next level involves the
routine cleansing and deduplicating of the storage system," Lechner explains.
The virtualization system must make sure to remove stale copies of data,
propagate updates, eliminate duplicate data sets, and keep data in a place that
is most convenient to its clients. "This all by itself is a significant
benefit," Lechner says. "Our field studies indicated that, before
virtualization, the average midsized enterprise stores the same data in at
least 20 places around the network."

The process does not stop with storage systems. In just the same way,
system programmers can identify the computing resources in a network, give them
wrappers that present a common API, and hence virtualize them. In this way, the
computing power available to an application becomes a slice of the entire
computing community on the network, not simply the power of the machine on
which the application happens to be running.

The next step in this process is even a bit more abstract. You can
virtualize storage devices and servers, but what about applications? In exactly
the same way, system programmers can draw a wrapper around each application,
provide it with a set of APIs, and make it available to the network as a
virtual applicationsay, a virtual database. Thus, when an application
program executes in the network, it may be interacting with virtual-storage
devices on a number of storage networks, running on a virtual processor when
parts of the code are executing on a half-dozen servers around the network, and
calling virtual applications that may be data-bases from different vendors with
different organizations.

IT to embedded computingAll this virtualization might seem to be irrelevant to anything outside
the IT (information-technology) world. But if you think of a multicore embedded
systembased on the IBM Cell processor, for exampleas a
heterogeneous collection of computing resources, storage assets, and
interconnects, perhaps the relevance becomes more clear. As has so often been
the case, the IT solution of today is the SOC (system-on-chip) solution of
tomorrow. Virtualization may be the concept that makes SOCs with diverse
computing sites usable in real applications.

In fact, we are already seeing indications that this is the case. At
IMEC (Interuniversity Microelectronics Center,
www.imec.be
) in Leuven, Belgium, researchers
have created a virtual model of a runtime-configurable, multicore-computing
system for software-defined radio. Antoine Dejonghe, a principal scientist at
IMEC, describes the situation: "IMEC's M4 project is creating a radio system
that can be agile in real time across wireless protocols and media types," he
says. "We believe that technology scaling by itself won't be enough to bridge
the energy gap between what our configurable architecture requires and what
batteries will be able to provide. So, the viability of the system depends on
being able to model the entire system, from analog front end through the
media-access-controller software, in terms of its energy consumption. We will
use this model to establish the optimum trade-off between energy and quality of
user experience at runtimeperhaps as often as every 10 msec."

Today, the models are under constructionusing the same sequence
of stepsto create a virtual software-defined radio. Designers have
theoretically modeled the analog front end, for instance, with approximately 11
control bits as inputs, along with theoretically calculating output power,
distortion, and energy consumption. The designers are now calibrating these
models against actual silicon measurements. They will construct similar models
to predict the performance and energy consumption of the configurations of
IMEC's ADRES (architecture-for-dynamically
reconfigurable-embedded-system)-computing cores in the radio project.

The result will be a virtualization of the radio that should execute in
software, consuming less than 5% of an ARM9 and continually optimizing the
radio for current traffic, link quality, and application variables (Figure 1
). This process, Dejonghe believes, can bridge
the gap between what batteries can deliver and what battery life users will
demand.

Creating a virtual worldIMEC's work creates a virtualization of a physical system. However,
designers are virtualizing larger and more complex systems. Another easy place
to find excitement in virtualization is in the world of electronic games.
Traditionally, that virtualization did not exist. Most video games today have a
lot more in common structurally with a Walt Disney cartoon than with a
simulation of the physical world. Games, like cartoons, have story lines. The
choices of the player do not directly interact with the world of the game;
players merely choose story lines, and the game proceeds down one of the paths
the scriptwriters designed for it.

This scenario is true even at the macro level. When you slip around the
corner and level the four-eyed alien from the planet Grr
with your super halitosis blaster, you unleash a
sequence of animation frames, in which the Grrien satisfyingly rips open,
tumbles through the air, and lands as a puddle of unfamiliar proteins. This
sequence is almost the reverse of motion estimation in video-compression
algorithms: It begins with a set of key frames and animates incremental motions
of objects against a relatively fixed back ground. To the player, the result is
much the same no matter which way he triggers the sequence, unless he
misses.

As games become richer and players become more sophisticated, this
situation causes a problem, according to Manju Hegde, chief executive officer
and chairman of gaming "physics-engine" developer Ageia. He has a vested
interest in this problem because Ageia supplies software and hardware
accelerators for performing the dynamic computations necessary for eliminating
the animation sequences and computing the trajectories of the spinning Grrien
bits.

No oneleast of all, the animatorswould dispute that it
is better to do a dynamics-based simulation of the objects in the game world
than to rely on animation sequences. However, the greatest benefit would be to
the game architects. Because of the labor involved in producing animation
sequences from key frames, a game can have only a limited number of animation
sequences. So, architects must confine the action of the game so that only a
limited number of outcomes are possible at any time. The art of game design
today is to make the game feel rich and unscripted without causing an
exponential explosion in the number of key frames that developers must
prepare.

Hegde illustrates with a rather less violent example: a basketball game.
"If you want a realistic slam-dunk sequence in your game, you start out by
rigging lights all over your star player and then you record him doing some
dramatic dunks," Hegde explains. "Then, back in the lab, you extract from the
recording key frames and interpolate the movement of the image edges to produce
animation. This animation can look natural on the screen, but, any time you
push the slam-dunk button in the right context, you are going to see the same
sequence."

The alternative approach is to build a physics-based model of our
herothat is, to virtualize him. "We create a physics-based model of the
body," Hegde says. "Today, it can be as detailed as having approximately 200
bones connected by six kinds of joints. We then model each of these bones and
joints according to the laws of physics. You apply forces to them, and they
respond. Now, the dunk becomes the dynamics of the individual bones and joints
in the model person. If you view a game from a distance during fast action, a
game might use just 20 bones to reduce the calculations, but it looks 'right.'"
Hegde thus describes a scenario that fits this article's definition of
virtualizationin this case, of a basketball forward.

This virtualization has so many advantages over conventional animation
that manufacturers wouldexcept for a couple of issuesproduce
all games in this way. One of these issues goes back to scripting. If the
outcome of the player's input depends on both physics and the game script, the
sequence of play can quickly become unmanageable. What if physics dictates that
the player breaks his wrist on the rim of the basket and leaves the court
writhing in pain? Game architects who employ physics-based models often
intervene in the simulation to direct it to allowable outcomes, so that the
game stays within its script. This delicate business blends physical simulation
and animation.

A more brutal problem is the amount of computing requirements. "Today,
an AMD FX-62 dual-core CPU running at 2.8 GHz may be able to handle a couple of
characters with extensive bone models," Hegde says. "But you couldn't do
physics-based simulation with a large number of characters on the screen at
once. The bursts of computation necessary to support a number of characters all
running, for instance, would overwhelm the processors."

Microsoft's Robotics Studio (
www.microsoft.com/robotics
) is developing a
similar application, also using Ageia's technology. Rather than playing games,
the Microsoft group provides a virtual-development environment for the
programmingand, eventually, the designof robots. Tandy Trower,
general manager of the group, says that the need for such an environment is
obvious across the spectrumfrom industry to education. On one end, with
a KUKA (Keller und Knappich Augsburg) Robotics (
www.kuka.com
) robotic arm selling for more than
$100,000, industrial developers need a low-cost environment in which to develop
and test programs. At the other extreme, robotics has proved to be one of the
few endeavors that can attract US students to engineering and mathematics. Even
simple robots, however, are far beyond the reach of most secondary schools,
even though students have proved capable of programmingand even
designingthem. So an affordable virtualization of a robot and its
surroundings would be a big win, and Microsoft is attempting to achieve that
goal.

Building a virtual world behind the Direct-X graphics environment, the
company has provided libraries of models for popular robots; primitives for
constructing physical objects, machines, and other robots; and a physics-driven
simulation engine to animate them. "There are two ways of creating entities,"
Trower explains. "Developers can write them directly as codein C,
Visual Basic, Python, and the likethrough a managed code interface or
assemble them from basic geometric shapes and assign them physical
characteristics, such as mass, hardness, and so on" (Figure 2
). Once you set them in motion, the robots,
which are themselves entities, can interact with other entities, including
other robots, in a world that physical laws govern.

Trower points out that, although Microsoft's work in this area is on one
level similar to the physics-based modeling that is starting to appear in
games, it differs dramatically at another level. "Games take place in a
well-defined environment," he says. "Robot simulation does not. You have to
work out everything that happens based on physics, because there is no script."
Trower says that the virtualization technology could move from the development
tool into the robots themselves. For example, you can blend the simulation with
real-world sensor data. A robot that can include an optionaland
expensivelaser range finder, for example, might instead have a
virtualized range finder; fusing other sensor inputs to generate the range
data. In the future, you may see the next step: robots virtualizing the world
around them, a scenario that Brooke Williams, DSP-automotive-vision-marketing
manager at Texas Instruments (
www.ti.com
), sees before his own eyes.

"We are starting to see automobile-safety systems fusing sensor data to
create a virtual model of the car's surroundings," Williams says. "This model
can either be presented to the driver as warning information, or it can be used
to take control of the vehicle." For example, TI is combining radar, a good
tool for detection and ranging but poor for forming images, with machine-vision
systems, which are great at finding edges and bearings but poor at ranging or
detection. This combination of tools will allow the creation of virtual models
of the objects surrounding a car. "The object is to predict a crash; prepare
the vehicle by tightening seat belts, arming air bags, and closing the windows,
for instance; and attempting to take evasive action," Williams says.

But to achieve this goal, simple proximity warning is insufficient. The
tools must identify objects from their surroundings and track and categorize
them; the insurance industry must know that the system can distinguish between
pedestrians and shrubbery, for instance. You want to neither turn away in panic
from a car that can't physically reach your trajectory nor mow down a
pedestrian to avoid destroying a hedge. "Manufacturers are even talking about
external air bags that could deploy to protect pedestrians in collisions,"
Williams says. Such decisions require not just a measurement, but also an
understanding of the car's surroundings.

Therein lies a possible endpoint for the trend of virtualization:
electronic systems that can not only sense, but also model and predict their
environment. Such systems exhibit artificial intelligence and also express
virtualization. These systems, protecting drivers from their own folly,
exploring the otherwise-inaccessible reaches of the physical world, and using
their virtual models to reason about their surroundings, represent another
major expansion in the role of electronics.

You can reach Executive Editor Ron Wilson at 1-408-345-4427 and
ronald.wilson@reedbusiness.com.

Software I/O, virtual I/O, or software-assisted I/O?By David Fotland, Ubicom IncTypical microprocessor families have dedicated hardware for each I/O

function. This difference leads to families of chips with the same CPU but
different I/O mixes. Cost is higher because the semiconductor company must make
many chip versions, and mask costs are high in state-of-the-art process
technology. The alternative is to create an SOC (system on chip) with all of
the I/O hardware on the same chip. This approach also leads to higher cost,
because the customer is paying for silicon to implement I/O that he won't use
in his application.

The solution to this problem is software I/O. Some 8-bit
microcontrollers use this technique, called "bit-banged" I/O. If the
microcontroller has on-chip memory and deterministic execution, the software
can directly control I/O pins to implement the I/O protocol. A simple example
is a UART. The start bit causes an interrupt, and software reads the input pin
to receive the data. While the data is arriving, the CPU cannot do anything
else, so this technique is useful only for I/O that is infrequent or
intermittent. The interrupt-response time limits the use of this technique to
low-speed I/O.

Some 32-bit processors, such as those from ARM (
www.arm.com
) or MIPS (
www.mips.com
), can't use software I/O because
code execution is far from deterministic. Pipeline hazards and cache misses
make it impossible to use instructions for accurately timed external events.
Operating systems such as Linux turn off interrupts for milliseconds at a time,
making real-time I/O response impossible.

Ubicom (
www.ubicom.com
) has the only 32-bit CPU that
uses software I/O. The multithreaded CPU has a hardware scheduler that can
select a thread for execution during every clock. Real-time threads have a
fixed schedule and deterministic execution, even if other threads have
mispredicted branches or cache misses. The unit has 10 threads, so it can
allocate one real-time thread to each I/O port to manage that port.

The instruction set supports software I/O and packet processing. An
instruction can move data between memory and I/O. MIPS and ARM CPUs, in
comparison, need two instructions: a load and a store. Single instructions can
set, clear, or test any I/O bit. Interrupt-response time from an I/O event to
scheduling instructions in the managing thread takes only a few CPU clocks.
When an I/O port is idle, it suspends its managing thread, using no CPU
resources.

The high-performance, 32-bit CPU can use software-I/O for functions
more complex than a UART. Ubicom has implemented a full PCI bus at 27 MHz, MPEG
Transport Stream, IDE, and Utopia in software. It has also implemented MII
(media-independent interface) for 10/100-Mbps Ethernet, USB, SPI, GPSI
(graphics-processor software interface), and other serial interfaces with a
combination of hardware and software. By spending 10 to 20% of the CPU
throughput on software I/O, the company dramatically reduced the die area
necessary for I/O, resulting in a flexible single chip to cover a wide range of
applications.

Author's biographyDavid Fotland is chief technology officer of
Ubicom, where he led the architecture of the Ubicom multithreaded processor for
packet processing and software I/O. He is responsible for all aspects of
architecture and definition of processors and solutions.

Previously, Fotland spent 21 years at
Hewlett-Packard Co (
www.hp.com
) as lead engineer, project manager,
and system architect. He was a key participant in the PA-RISC instruction-set
definition and was lead designer of the first PA-RISC processor and system. He
was a leader in the development of the HP-Intel (
www.intel.com
) Itanium instruction
set.

Immersed in engineering, advanced 3-D visualization promotes
insightBy Jeff Brum, Fakespace SystemsAs electronics speed into an era in which manufacturers fabricate not

just circuits, but also physical structures themselves in nanoscale geometries,
the role of computer-based simulation as a design tool is increasingly
important. Correspondingly, the benefits of visualization in the review and
analysis of simulations play a growing role. Looking to the future, immersive
stereoscopic display tools will amplify the power of visualization.

The adoption of immersive visualization in electronics design revolves
around several factors. Atomic-scale phenomena, which are major concerns as the
semiconductor road map extends beyond the 65-nm-process node, have been major
players in advanced visualization techniques. Scientists at NIST (National
Institute for Standards and Technology,
www.nist.gov
), for example, use a stereoscopic
displaytwo walls and a floorto gain insight into the molecular
bonding of "smart-gel" polymers (Figure A and Reference A).

Similarly, researchers at LANL (Los Alamos National Laboratory,
www.lanl.gov
) use a range of immersive
environmentsfrom wall-sized to a 43-million-pixel, five-walled
projected roomto view terascale data sets (Figure B). Bob Green,
visualization specialist at LANL, notes that the researchers "are viewing
simulations based on computations that generate more data than is contained in
the entire print collection of the Library of Congress in one calculation."

In engineering, visualization has had its largest impact to date in
macroscale CAD programs, such as automotive and aerospace design, and the
evaluation of complex structures for interferences that are not readily
apparent in simpler graphical representations. As simulation and visualization
data accumulate in MEMS (microelectromechanical-system) design, this type of
modeling and simulation will grow in importance. The ability to visualize and
"fly through" transistor-scale structures and even large segments of a complex
microcircuit design will also benefit from advanced 3-D visualization that
blends multiple streams of data, including device characteristics,
interconnects, and material behavior.

Wall- or even room-sized immersive displays support a more
collaborative, more intuitive, style of work than do graphics processors. A
major benefit in the review of complex structures is the ability to "move"
freely along all three axes of an image and still maintain the visual acuity of
high-resolution desktop processors. (Today's projectors support resolution of
14001050 pixels or higher.) Viewing nanoscale design can feel like
taking a helicopter tour over a dense city center with the ability to identify
and zoom into landmarks. Improved insight and collaboration lead to faster and
better decisions, speeding time to market and reducing development costs.

Although researchers are just beginning to measure the benefits of
immersive visualization (Reference B), they generally agree that they bring new
levels of insight to engineers and scientists. In immersive visualizations,
groups of users can view the inner workings of devices and gain deeper
understanding of electromagnetic effects and the relationships between elements
of a design. With the availability of dual PC clusters and advanced graphics
cards, these types of virtual environments no longer require specialized
graphics supercomputers. The increased accessibility of immersive visualization
makes its addition to the tool kit of electronic engineers practical and
inevitable.

References"Recipe for a Shake Gel," National Institute for Standards and
Technology, Aug 27, 2003,
www.nist.gov/public_affairs/newsfromnist_smartgels.htm
.

Kraak, Menno Jan, "Beyond Geovisualization,"
IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications
,
May/June 2006, Volume 26, No 3, pg 6.

Author's biographyJeff Brum is a vice president at Fakespace
Systems (www.fakespace.com), a division of Mechdyne Corp with a 15-year history
of developing and supporting advanced systems for immersive visualization in
science, engineering, and public-exhibition applications.

Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information. All Rights Reserved.
Motorola Set for $3.9B Symbol Purchase. Check it out:
(Electronic News Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) In a move that brings together a shared vision of a digital, mobile world for enterprises, http://www.motorola.com/Motorola Inc. is set to acquire all outstanding shares of enterprise mobility technology provider Symbol Technologies Inc http://www.symbol.com/.



Under terms of the agreement, Motorola will pay $15 per share in cash, for a total equity value of approximately $3.9 billion on a fully-diluted basis the companies noted.

As of June 30, Symbol had approximately $200 million of net cash.

Upon completion of the transaction, Symbol will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Motorola and will be the cornerstone of Motorola's networks and enterprise business.

Motorola said it intends to maintain Symbol's Holtsville, N.Y. headquarters, which will be the new core of Motorola's global enterprise mobility business.

Symbol designs, develops, manufactures and services products and systems used in end-to-end enterprise mobility solutions featuring rugged mobile computing, advanced data capture, radio frequency identification (RFID), wireless infrastructure and mobility management.

"Motorola and Symbol share the same vision of a digital, mobile world for enterprises that matches the world people enjoy at home and at play," Motorola's chairman and CEO, Ed Zander, said in a statement.

The transaction is expected to be accretive to Motorola's earnings per share in the first year following closing, excluding certain non-cash charges relating to amortization associated with acquired intangibles and other one- time accounting and transaction-related costs.

The acquisition is subject to customary regulatory approval and the approval of Symbol's stockholders, and is expected to be completed late this year or early next year.

Motorola said the acquisition of Symbol will not affect the pace of its share repurchase activity http://www.edn.com/article/CA6355665.html.

In July, the company completed the $4 billion share buyback program that it first announced in May 2005, which had authorized the buyback of up $4.5 billion of its outstanding shares of common stock over the next 36 months.

Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information. All Rights Reserved.

AMD Opens Socket Specs

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AMD Opens Socket Specs. Check it out:
(Electronic News Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Advanced Micro Devices http://www.amd.com/us-en/ is ready to open up. This week, the microprocessor provider unveiled the Torrenza Innovation Socket Initiative for many of their current and future server platforms.



This approach is expected to allow OEMs to consolidate server offerings for multiple processors to potentially a single platform, and allow third-party silicon makers to create their own socket-compatible chips for AMD's x86 base.

While AMD did not specify the terms of future licensing contributions, its newest specification is approaching an open industry standard: OEMs will be able to contribute to and obtain the Torrenza Innovation socket specification and associated design documentation.

This weeks debut is the latest addition to AMDs Torrenza initiative http://www.edn.com/article/CA6340364.html, which provides a way for others to connect their technology directly to AMD chips through the company's HyperTransport interface. At its debut in June, the Torrenza initiative opened up AMDs processors by letting companies plug in their coprocessors via an external connection called "HTX."

Previously, a separate design was typical in coprocessors; with AMD's approach, the time and cost of taking the coprocessor route can potentially be reduced.

The new program already has a serious fan base. Server OEMs that develop silicon or intend to design products uniquely enabled by the Torrenza initiative, including Cray http://www.cray.com/, Fujitsu Siemens Computers http://www.fujitsu-siemens.com/, HP http://www.hp.com/, IBM http://www.ibm.com/, Dell http://www.dell.com/ and Sun Microsystems http://www.sun.com/, have endorsed Torrenza as an open innovation initiative, and plan to evaluate the Torrenza Innovation Socket.

The chip maker is anticipating the latest Torrenza development to make a big splash. "Together, we recognize that the impact of Torrenza can be far-reaching across the industry in reducing complexity for customers while increasing the pace of innovation both in silicon and platforms, Marty Seyer, senior VP of AMDs commercial segment, said in a statement.

Datacenter managers will immediately recognize the impact of the Torrenza open environment, he added.

The finance world is recognizing AMDs progress as well. AMDs latest moves have bolstered its profile in the enterprise, Wall Street watcher Lehman Brothers said in a statement and the firm expects to see AMD trending solidly for Q3.

Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information. All Rights Reserved.

An Individualistic Island

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An Individualistic Island. Check it out:
(Business & Finance Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) An Individualistic Island

Tony O'Reilly

In the concluding part of the interview, Sir Anthony O'Reilly tells Constantin Gurdgiev about his views on the future of Ireland, the influence of the EU, our regulatory climate and competitiveness.

CONSTANTIN GURDGIEV: You've mentioned ComReg. Some would say that, so far, ComReg has been mostly a conduit for EU regulation implementation in Ireland rather than an original player in the marketplace. What is your feeling about this spread of Brussels's remit over local regulation?



TONY O'REILLY: There are very few regulators who would go 100% against what Brussels wants. There is a degree of flexibility in the overall remit from Brussels that can be interpreted at the regional level by individual regulators, but I think all of them are moving in the same direction, and I think Comreg latterly has done a good job for the industry and the consumer against this criterion.

Fundamentally, the word that dominated Irish political thinking for many years has been sovereignty - the abstract idea that ruled our State for some 70 years. But what does it mean?

In relation to Brussels we substantially reduced our sovereignty to act unilaterally. That has been the price that we've paid, so that now 70% of all laws and regulations are not being set by the Dail, they are made by Europe. When we joined Europe, I don't think we fully understood what this menu really contained, nor do we fully understand it today.

But because our joining of the EU was lubricated by substantial transfers of assets and money, we ate prepared to accept it almost categorically.

There is certainly a case for questioning this - and I am sure in time there will be a party in Ireland that will do so. There is a view that the European Union was launched on the basis of a number of ideas, among them that it will be able to control economic activity and that French farmers, for example, would never be exposed to world competition.

CCS: There is a third dimension of trade - trade in services - that also crashed at the walls of Europe. The initial rejection of the Services Directive and subsequent watering down of its provisions - this was also driven by France.

TOR: Well, the French are very clever, very centralist.

They will always look after their own interest.

The CAP was set up basically to favour French farmers interests and it will continue to be shaped along these lines. All international trade movements, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the rest of the market reforms will collide with the rock of the agricultural subsidies in Europe. Globalisation will affect everything that is industrial, but it will not change agriculture substantially.

I always believed that Europe will be run in the German image, but it will be Franco-centric in its policies - de Gaulle's famous "Europe Des Patrie". This is fair - we know who we are playing against and what the rules of the game are, and our civil servants in Dublin and Brussels are very astute, but Brussels is not a collection of jolly people sitting around the table and thinking - "how can we integrate with the world economically?"

It is a collection of jolly people sitting around the table and thinking - "how can we protect France or how can we improve Germany?"

Yet, I still think that despite these problems, there are many areas where the main thrust of Brussels is positive. And we are the beneficiaries of it in Ireland.

Flight path for Aer Lingus

CG: You spoke earlier about capital mobility and the threats this presents if we were to fail to assure fair return on imported capital. Are you optimistic about the possibility for the successful sale of Aer Lingus, given the conditions of partial privatisation - the share retained by the unions and the State?

TOR: The Esot played a pivotal - and under the leadership of Con Scanlon - a very constructive part in the Eircom story, and the Esot will pay a very important part in the attractiveness of Aer Lingus going to market.

I am conscious that there are enormously important intrusions by some governments in the process of private ownership of companies.

Take South Africa, where the government now demands that 25% of all companies must be owned by black investors or employees. While socially laudable, this does have an effect on foreign investment there.

In the case of Aer Lingus, people will look at the prospectus and they will ask themselves what rate of return on capital can they get over the next 10 years by investing in an Irish airline and what kind of risks do these returns contain.

Ryanair probably will give them a sense of encouragement because it was able to do something that no one else could.

I think Ryanair is a poster-child for Irish private capitalism and they have done a remarkable job and I think Michael O'Leary is a remarkable leader. So I feel that people will look at Aer Lingus from a pure return on capital point of view, risk adjusted for the share ownership structure and for the growth prospects of the airline.

The unions are not the key to everything. When you look at foreign investment in Ireland, multinational companies sidelined the issue of the unions and built on this.

In the case of Eircom, the injection of money into Esot did help us to reduce the size of the workforce from around 10,700 to some 7,000 employees.

We paid a big price for this, but I believe that this is yet another form of risk that one has to deal with.

International capital lessons

CG: Going back to the Eircom story - after the IPO, you stayed on as chairman, even though you were neither a majority shareholder nor were you earning an exceptional salary from this. If investing in State-owned enterprises is all about return on the capital, why did you choose to make such a decision?

TOR: I felt a strong sense of responsibility to the new board of directors and the incoming shareholders. I had made money out of Eircom through my investment in the Valentia consortium and there was, at the time, talk about venture capitalists coming in, making money and getting out, with the accusation that they somehow left an underfunded and a weakened company behind.

This was not so - just look at the subsequent stock performance relative to the broader telecom markets. I think it was very important that there was an orderly return of Eircom to the market and it was equally important that as chairman I should act as an entirely impartial party.

At Valentia, the challenge was allocating resources, and all of the partners - Providence Capital, George Soros and Goldman Sachs - brought precise discipline to the whole process of capital allocation and cost management. And I think we proved our point - we satisfied the demands of the shareholders, built a leaner and more efficient company and refloated it, and the people who bought it from us recently sold on to Babcock & Brown and made 62% in 18 months.

And as I said two weeks ago, only airlines - Ryanair and I might add Aer Lingus - have reduced their prices over the last seven years.

Everything else - gas, electricity, road tolls, food, etc - has gone up in price during that period.

So it was not the case of venture capitalists deciding to take everything out of the company and squeeze the assets.

It has been a really successful process for both consumers and the investors. But most importantly, it's been a progressive process for the watching international financial community who now have that little bit more confidence in investing in Irish assets than they had some years ago.

Competitive advantage

CG; In your view, then, Eircom is part of the story of the important drivers of Irish growth - privatisations, development of the markets, inflow of capital and improvements in the way global financial markets view Ireland. Taxation is yet another factor. After years of success, with other countries - most significantly those of eastern Europe - moving fast into our space, do we still hold a competitive edge?

TOR: I think our competitive advantage is seriously threatened today and I feel that Ireland must be made aware that the current prosperity can obscure for us the fact that everyone in the new Europe has woken up to the anatomy of the Irish miracle.

These new countries set out to replicate our success and they know full well that it was largely founded on the basis of low taxes. I am trying to articulate the need for reproducing the low-tax regime found in the Republic of Ireland and bringing it to Northern Ireland. I recently met Gordon Brown to advance this argument and said that the introduction of a standard rate of tax across the island at 12.5% would make investment on this island location-indifferent.

In fact every party in Northern Ireland agrees on this point - a low-tax regime in Northern Ireland can bring about a huge spurt of economic activity. So the answer is that it is going to get tougher and tougher for Ireland because new European countries are going to strive for lower tax rates than us.

Again, if you can make a product, say Dell computers, and you are indifferent in your business to things like the language spoken by the workers, then look at Estonia - it gives you productive young workers at no tax at all. There will be pressure on the companies operating in Ireland today to go east. But an additional problem is that, with the rising cost of doing business here and shortages of labour, we are actually losing our competitiveness vis-a-vis the old European states.

Models for growth?

CG: There is a penchant in Ireland to compare ourselves to the two main models -the Nordic and the US. Yet another model that is almost never mentioned in Ireland is that of Hong Kong. Like Ireland, it is a small, open economy adjoining a giant one. From your point of view, would you rather see Ireland moving closer to Hong Kong or to Stockholm?

TOR: I think if you visit Hong Kong, you must be excited by how energetic the place really is. You cannot but notice also how just beyond the perimeter, there is that great country called China. There is a pulsating appetite from the mainland for everything produced in Hong Kong.

On the other hand, there are many social problems, such as uncontrolled immigration and the fact that it is a somewhat artificial world, along the lines of Malaysia and Singapore.

I don't think that these are viable models for us - they lack the same sense of individualism that we have, they are more centralised, and the state, ideologically, not welfare-wise, plays a far more central role there.

Ireland is a very individualistic country, we take a more competitive approach to running our business and we are more personal in the way we run our own lives. Chinese and Asian cultures in general are more docile, so a "strong man" approach to management can work there on a larger scale than it can in Ireland.

I do like the Swedish model in terms of the welfare it provides, but I dislike it in terms of taxation. I think it is very interesting to see that the big Swedish companies now primarily operate outside Sweden, and the country's growth must inevitably have been impacted over recent years.

What is important is that Ireland should not take its new prosperity for granted, for it might become a very shortterm thing unless we find new innovative ways to support it.

The only way we really can galvanise the economy for the next 25 years is to attract more and more international capital - both human and financial - into Ireland. That is why I think the issues of immigration and capital should be central to how we think about the future of this country.

Immigration

CG: On immigration, just few weeks ago Labour Party leader Pat Rabbitte repeated his comments about the danger of an "open doors" immigration policy toward eastern European workers. Do you share his concerns?

TOR: Ask yourself: what made America grow? Immigration is the answer. The skills of the world came to America, seized new opportunities and even today the debate about Mexican workers recognises this. It is unavoidable that we are going to have immigration as long as we have new physical and financial capital coming into the country. This is the main benefit of being a member of the common market.

So what Pat Rabbitte is really saying is that the unions are hugely challenged by this, by events like the Irish Ferries dispute. We can slam shut the doors on immigration the way the French did with their Polish plumber campaign.

There are certain countries in Europe that do hold a different view of immigration than we do. But your question is whether we can sustain our open door policy.

My view is that yes, we should be able to sustain our policy on immigration. But this does not apply to everyone. For example, where do secularism and religion come into it? It is an entirely new debate, which Ireland, inevitably, will have to face.

CG: Yet the Irish Ferries dispute taught us also about the lack of proper policy debate in Ireland. In the majority of western democracies, the debate is quite often being driven by business leaders, openly speaking about their views on Government policies, as well as by intellectuals.

In Ireland, it is virtually unheard of that a businessperson would stimulate a debate about policies. We seem to be more comfortable with sponsoring festivals and golf events than with sponsoring research into social policies and promoting alternative views and ideas. Do you feel that, as we become more comfortable with our newly acquired wealth, we will see the emergence of more policy-conscious and more proactive business leaders?

Think tanks

TOR: When you asked the question about why I stayed at Eircom, I answered it by saying that I wanted to be a champion of the capacity of Ireland to build real public ownership of companies through the marketplace. This was a statement of my belief in that debate and certainly the wider audience, the City of London or US capital markets for example, will have no doubt now that it is possible to get a fair deal in Ireland.

Of course in the US, for example, you have the Brookings Institution, the American Enterprise Institute, the Hoover Institute and many other think tanks that span the whole political spectrum. These are very important catalysts for the way the American political system works. We don't have these here. We should have them. I think the ESRI is a fine starting point.

We need centres for catalysing the debate - not just the employers or Ibec's views or the unions' views, but think tanks and our business schools expressing trenchant views of our society and structures. So far we have a rather simplistic adversarial relationship between, say, the trade unions and the employers.

Yet, when you ask Irish people, "What do you class yourself as?", the vast majority of the people believe that they are "middle class." I often wonder who represents them at the partnership table?

Copyright 2006 Belenos Publications Ltd Source: Financial Times Information Limited - Europe Intelligence Wire.

Glanbia Ploughs Global Fields

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(Business & Finance Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Glanbia Ploughs Global Fields

As EU agricultural subsidies disappear, the domestic market gets more challenging.

Glanbia's John Moloney explains its strategies to John Walsh.

Glanbia is one of those companies that offers a good insight into the changing face of Irish society. Born out of the merger of Waterford and Avonmore Co-ops, it is steeped in the dairy industry that once dominated the Irish economic landscape. In the days before the current boom, farmers were seen - rightly or wrongly - as being one of the few economically advantaged groups in society. How times have changed.



Developments in the domestic economy put the agri-sector in perspective. And the changing dynamics of the global trade environment have forced significant changes on Irish farming.

The level of subsidies handed down to Irish farmers as part of the EU's Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) was the subject of much heated debate during the 1980s and the early part of the 19905. But as soon as the first General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) agreement was hammered out in 1994, it set in motion a chain of events that would eventually open up European markets to much cheaper produce from developing countries.

And in tandem with open trade policies, European farmers had to learn how to survive without the generous support funding that had helped prop up many areas within the agri-sector.

Inevitably, there was a huge backlash from farmers' organisations. The wholesale demise of Irish farming was seen as inescapable reality. And if the ground was shifting under Irish farmers, then that meant that companies like Glanbia also faced increasing uncertainty.

After all, a secure supply of dairy produce is needed to be a successful dairy processor and food manufacturer. Over the past decade, spiralling property prices have lured many farmers away from agri-pursuits.

The complexion of the farming sector once this speculative boom dies down is causing widespread concern.

Glanbia group managing director John Moloney acknowledges these difficulties: "The ingredients business is challenging currently because we have reforms of the dairy sector across Europe, where the support prices are being reduced by the order of 25% over a three-year period. That is through '04, '05 and '06 and a partial one in '07. So I think the big issue in the first half of this year has been that we have seen two parts of that come together.

Effectively last year's impact was defrayed because you had high international prices for dairy products. They have come off a bit - not dramatically. But it did mean that you had to catch up from last year's reform and this year's coming together in one year, and that has led to an impact on ingredients in Ireland in terms of dairy market returns. At the same time, you have costs moving in the other direction."

Moloney argues that the reform period is coming to an end and that from now on there will be a period of adjustment at both farm level and processing level. But it is this period of adjustment that has prompted some speculation that there will be a supply shock if too many farmers quit the dairy sector.

"If you take any of the studies that have been done, Ireland has 25,000 dairy farmers currently and if you look at AgriVision 2015 report done by the Department of Agriculture based on Teagasc economic forecasts, you could get down to 12,000 dairy farmers who would have scaled up - producing the quota or close to it and would be compensating for the price effect through increased scale and efficiency and that or some level of that is going to happen.

It is important that you bear in mind as well that there are significant differences in efficiency between the top 20% and the bottom 20% - of the order of 45 cents per gallon. That far exceeds the level of milk price reduction that is being implemented in the industry to date."

Moloney points to the quota exchange set up by the Department of Agriculture as a step in the right direction and a move that Glanbia had lobbied for to ensure a smooth transition and prevent a supply shock. "Historically farmers who wish to expand have had the resources in terms of land and capital but are constrained by their ability to get quota at reasonable value.

We hope that the exchange mechanism when the first one is introduced in December will begin to contribute to that."

Moloney expects a smooth transition. He says it will be very difficult for families that have been lifelong dairy farmers to jettison their livelihoods. "But I think you also have to see it in the context that Ireland is also different.

There are far greater opportunities. Land values have generally kept pace with the property market which is an important backdrop in terms of the farm balance sheet," he adds.

Glanbia has been running workshops for every 18-20 suppliers from across its supply base in order to provide assistance and support while the trading environment remains challenging.

Glanbia comprises a plc and a co-op. The co-op has a 54% holding in the plc. And in a move to cushion the removal of support prices, the dividend from the plc accruing to co-op shareholders is used to compensate for loss of earnings. Even though it is only on an anecdotal level, Business & Finance has sounded out a number of dairy farmers about the future of the sector in Ireland. They were much more pessimistic than the Teagasc report. They argue that new nitrate and waste water management directives coming from Brussels will put too much burden on farmers to make it tenable in the longer term.

Moreover, they claim that there will be big problems with succession issues as the next generation of farmers are taking up much more lucrative positions outside the industry.

Government dig-out

The Government has chipped in with a plan to help smooth over the transition to the post-CAP environment by announcing a EUR300m-aid package for the industry. Although Moloney points out that only EUR100m will come from the Government's coffers - which will be run jointly by the Department of Agriculture and Enterprise Ireland - with the remaining EUR200m coming from the industry.

"But it does give us a chance to invest and diversify. So Glanbia as well as other operators in the sector are looking to options around new product development and around rationalisation.

We'll also be happy once we complete that part of the exercise to talk to other parties. If there are joint projects that it makes more sense to do, we'll keep an open mind about that. We will come to a view about that in October.

"I think on balance we may end up with a mix of internal projects and maybe some joint projects and they'll be across the area of cheeses and specific protein derivatives from milk for export."

That potentially includes building a new milk-drying and filtration plant, adds Moloney.

Milking overseas opportunities

The latest set of Glanbia's interim results was a bit of an anomaly in the Irish corporate earnings season. As most other companies posted double-digit growth, Glanbia stood still with pretax profits roughly unchanged at EUR30.2m compared with the same period in 2005, operating e profits were down 5% at EUR36.4m and revenues down marginally at EUR922.8m compared with EUR926.1m for the year earlier period.

The company attributed much of the poor performance to the sluggish Irish ingredients business.

Similar to Kerry Group and other companies in that sector, future growth hinges on carving out markets abroad.

"We've had an international presence for some time. We have a significant business in the US. We have expanded that with a joint venture in New Mexico. That will make us the largest producer of cheddar-type cheese in the US when we get to full capacity in New Mexico by the middle of next year.

"So when you look at the Glanbia profit and loss sheet going forward, you will see the returns from the wholly owned subsidiaries, but the share from the associates line will also become much more important.

In a similar vein, we have set up a joint venture in Nigeria with Cussons. That business is currently annualising $100m.

So if you look at growth, you have $100m there, and New Mexico has $350m. And with the acquisition [Glanbia forked out $105m for US nutritional business Seltzer on September 7th] we will grow the nutritionals group to over $150m.

So you are looking at close to $600m in new business over the next two-to-three years."

Glanbia has also opened a sales and marketing office in China. Moloney says the company is linking China with the ingredients business: "and indeed to the acquisition we announced [Seltzer] in terms of infant formula etc in Asia".

And even though Glanbia is limited to a sales and marketing presence in China as it stands, the company is likely to build rather than buy if that policy changes in the future, he adds.

After a hectic few years on the mergers and acquisitions trail around the globe, Moloney says that it is time to consolidate on its recent acquisitions. That will include adapting the plants in New Mexico to meet extra demands if needed, he adds.

"We have room to make some modest acquisitions in 2007, and it is important to keep that pipeline going because there is a lead time in starting these things up."

Watergate?

Moloney says there is no outcome yet to the investigation in allegations that farmers in the Kilmeaden area ("Watered-down milk?" Business & Finance, July 27th) inflated milk supplies by adding water. "That [investigation] is ongoing. Obviously that is a fraud on the company rather than an issue for our consumer so far as it costs the company more to extract water. Obviously a very serious view is taken on that."

Some of Glanbia's milk suppliers that Business & Finance has spoken to claim there is not enough dialogue between the company and dairy farmers in terms of international markets.

One farmer says there is not enough emphasis on the different types of nutrients that can be used to produce high-quality milk which, in turn, can be used to manufacture high-quality products.

That is a pattern that is happening throughout Europe, he claims. Geraldine Kearney, a spokeswoman for Glanbia, to extract water. Obviously a very serious view is taken on that."

Some of Glanbia's milk suppliers that Business & Finance has spoken to claim there is not enough dialogue between the company and dairy farmers in terms of international markets.

One farmer says there is not enough emphasis on the different types of nutrients that can be used to produce high-quality milk which, in turn, can be used to manufacture high-quality products.

That is a pattern that is happening throughout Europe, he claims.

Geraldine Kearney, a spokeswoman for Glanbia, says Glanbia has always been very progressive in opening up channels of communication with its milk suppliers. She cites the company's various workshops as well as its regional committee structure, which are aimed at keeping on top of industry developments.

"There will always be more work to be done, but we are engaging with our suppliers at a number of different levels," she says.

One other area of concern for some shareholders is that the members of the board of the plc comprise the board of the co-op. Moloney argues the value of the co-op and the level of the dividend each year is determined by the growth of the plc. "Therefore everybody is aligned in growing the value of the plc.

That has become clear to shareholders over the past year. So there are no plans to change that [the structure of the plc and co-op] currently."

What about the relationship between the plc and the co-op changing some time in the future?

"I suppose you can never say never - you can't rule it out at any point in time - but not today."

Glanbia has always been very progressive in opening up channels of communication with its milk suppliers. She cites the company's various workshops as well as its regional committee structure, which are aimed at keeping on top of industry developments. "There will always be more work to be done, but we are engaging with our suppliers at a number of different levels," she says.

One other area of concern for some shareholders is that the members of the board of the plc comprise the board of the co-op. Moloney argues the value of the co-op and the level of the dividend each year is determined by the growth of the plc. "Therefore everybody is aligned in growing the value of the plc.

That has become clear to shareholders over the past year.

So there are no plans to change that [the structure of the plc and co-op] currently."

What about the relationship between the plc and the co-op changing some time in the future?

"I suppose you can never say never - you can't rule it out at any point in time - but not today."

Copyright 2006 Belenos Publications Ltd Source: Financial Times Information Limited - Europe Intelligence Wire.

What's Hot ?

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(Business & Finance Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) What's Hot ?

Up and coming countries such as South Africa and Brazil are being watched keenly by potential Irish investors, writes Stephen Tormey.

Despite a frustrating and difficult year in 2005, Pakistan is one country that is coming to the attention of foreign investors. Foreign direct investment in Pakistan increased from $484.7m in 2001 to $1.5bn in 2005, but the earthquake last October was a sever shock to the economy.



However, nobody disagreed with prime minister Shaukat Aziz when he said that "the earthquake may have a slight effect in the short-term, but will not rock the economy in the long-term."

In the shorter term, the challenges facing Pakistan are inflation and interest rates, but with a population of almost 166 million, the opportunities for foreign investment continue to attract attention.

Another upcoming investment hotspot is South Africa. Since its successful transition to democracy in 1994, there have been many positive economic indicators.

"Inflation is under control, foreign exchange reserves have increased tenfold, positive real GDP growth has been recorded for nine years in succession, and strong growth has occurred in fixed capital formation, to name but a few," says Colin Beggs, CEO of PricewaterhouseCoopers in South Africa.

The Irish economy has come a long way in the past three decades. Attracting some of the world's top multinational corporations, and fostering a strong indigenous entrepreneurial cult