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Business, Financial & Legal Posts - Page 12

220 Skype jobs at risk as Microsoft consolidates offices

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 19, 2016 10:19 pm

Microsoft's multiple Skype offices in London are to be no more as the company consolidates them into one while merging engineering roles. In turn, the moves put 220 jobs at risk.

 

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"Microsoft is consolidating offices across London, moving employees to Microsoft's new office at Paddington," the company's statement reads. "As part of this effort, Microsoft reviewed some London-based roles and made the decision to unify some engineering positions, potentially putting a number of globally focused Skype and Yammer roles at risk."

 

"We are deeply committed to doing everything we can to help those affected through this process. Microsoft will be entering into a consultation process and [it will] offer opportunities where possible."

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AMD-based Lenovo systems donated to students in Jamaica

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 17, 2016 9:27 am

It's not everyday that companies like AMD and Lenovo donate a bunch of laptops, so when the news that they donated some AMD-based Lenovo ThinkPad E-series notebooks to The Jamaica Positive Foundation - but it was when I discovered it all happened thanks to a simple Facebook post.

 

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Jamaica Prime Minister Andrew Holness posted on Facebook, where he donated a notebook to a student in his constituency. Lenovo GAM VP David Bennett followed Holness on Facebook, and together with his Jamaican heritage, noticed that the Lenovo laptop Holness was giving away in Jamaica was an AMD-powered one.

 

AMD and Lenovo were then in contact with the Jamaican PM, who agreed to talk with the companies and over a courtesy call, PM Holness gave his gratitude for the donation saying that there was a digital divide in the country, so the notebooks would make some rather large differences in students lives.

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Religion in US worth more than Google, Apple combined

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 17, 2016 2:39 am

We all know religion is big business, but did you know that the mostly tax-free religion industry in the US is an absolute profit monster? According to the latest numbers, there are around $1.2 trillion (yes, that's trillion with a 't') in religious "healthcare facilities, schools, daycare and charities; media; businesses with faith backgrounds; the kosher and halal food markets; social and philanthropic programmes; and staff and overheads for congregations".

 

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The report comes from The Socio-economic Contribution of Religion to American Society: An Empirical Analysis, co-authored by Georgetown's Brian J Grim and Newseum's Melissa E Grim, and published in the Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion. The authors say that the $1.2 trillion estimate is "conservative", noting that religion as a whole has been declining in the US, and that spending on religious "social programs" has tripled since 2001, to a huge $9 trillion.

 

The report notes: "Grim and his co-author Melissa Grim of the Newseum Institute in Washington came up with three estimates of the worth of US religion. The lowest, at $378bn, took into account only the revenues of faith-based organisations. The middle estimate, $1.2tn, included an estimate of the market value of goods and services provided by religious organisations and the contributions of businesses with religious roots".

 

"The top estimate was based on the household incomes of religiously affiliated Americans, and placed the value of faith to US society at $4.8tn annually", the report added, continuing: "The analysis did not take account of the value of financial or physical assets held by religious groups. Neither did it account for "the negative impacts that occur in some religious communities, including... such things as the abuse of children by some clergy, cases of fraud, and the possibility of being recruitment sites for violent extremism".

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Tesla suing oil executive for impersonating Elon Musk

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 15, 2016 11:03 pm

Tesla Motors is suing an oil company executive said to have impersonated its CEO Elon Musk in order to obtain financial information on the company.

 

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The lawsuit names Todd Katz, CFO for Quest Integrity Group, and claims he used a similar email address to Musk's (elontesla@yahoo.com) to achieve his goal. Quest is partnered with BP, Chevron, and ExxonMobil, among other notable companies.

 

"The point of this action is that this was perceived as an effort to gain inside information, non-public information," said LA attorney John Hueston, representing the car maker. "Although it was caught here, Tesla is worried about this happening in some other form. This could have resulted in highly valuable information being improperly disclosed."

Spotify hits 40 million subscribers

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 14, 2016 10:00 pm

Earlier this year, Spotify's subscriber base sat at an impressive 30 million (out of 100 million total users).

 

 

Now, the company's CEO and founder Daniel Ek has indicated on Twitter that subscriber number has drastically increased to 40 million. Given the rapid ascent, it appears then this is the point at which the service truly begins to take off.

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Warcraft, Diablo co-creator Chris Metzen retires

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 13, 2016 7:02 pm

Co-creator of Blizzard Entertainment's Diablo, Warcraft, and Starcraft franchises Chris Metzen has retired at age 42. Starting his career as an animator and artist at the then-startup company, he rose the ranks and eventually found himself the senior vice president of story and franchise development.

 

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Metzen says his decision was motivated by a desire to spend more time with his family, including his newborn baby. In a farewell forum post on Battle.net, he speaks fondly of his 22-year history with Blizzard, describing it as "the time of my life" and says his fellow employees were a "second family" (complete with all the ups and downs).

HP acquires Samsung's printer business for $1.05 billion

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 13, 2016 2:51 am

Samsung has just exited the printer business, selling its printer division to HP for $1.05 billion, where HP says the purchase is intended to "disrupt and reinvent" the $55 billion printing industry, something that "hasn't innovated in decades".

 

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HP said in a statement: "Copiers are outdated, complicated machines with dozens of replaceable parts requiring inefficient service and maintenance agreements". Samsung will spin its printing business into a separate company that will be sold to HP, with 6000 employees included. Samsung will continue selling printers branded as Samsung on its home turf in South Korea, but it will source them from HP.

John McAfee sues Intel over the right to use his name

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 6, 2016 6:32 pm

John McAfee is in the headlines again, this time, the founder of McAfee is suing chipmaker Intel, claiming that they don't have the right to use his name, throwing trademark issues into the mix.

 

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McAfee recently joined MGT Capital Investments, an online gaming company, as its CEO and chairman, and had planned to rename the company to John McAfee Global Technologies Inc., but Intel owns McAfee's "trademarks, tradenames, and associated goodwill" and warned that McAfee would be infringing on those properties.

 

MGT and McAfee argued in a complaint to the New York District Court that "at no point in the Agreement did McAfee assign the rights to his personal name [...] or agree to restrict his right to do business using his own name", and that the agreement with Intel "did not contain any non-compete provisions of any kind".

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Warner Bros. flags its own websites as pirate sites

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 5, 2016 2:33 pm

If the mess that was Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice wasn't enough for Warner Bros. to cry itself to sleep at night, then the news that the company reported its own websites as piracy sites should be.

 

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Warner Bros. and many other major Hollywood studios think that Google is making it way too easy for people to find pirated content, so they want to hand Google mountains of money in order to remove torrent sites like The Pirate Bay from search results entirely, reports TorrentFreak.

 

Thanks to its anti-piracy partner Vobile, Warner asked Google to censor a bunch of URLs, including some of its own. TorrentFreak has some screenshots from its DCMA notice, which lists some of Warner Bros. own pages, including The Dark Knight and Matrix websites. Not only are some of Warner's websites on the DCMA notice, but there are links to Amazon stores where you can buy or rent copies of The Dark Knight, but Google noticed their mistakes and didn't take any action against Amazon or IMBd links.

Apple ordered to pay €13bn in back taxes to Ireland

By: Sean Ridgeley | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Aug 30, 2016 8:29 pm

Apple is facing a record €13bn ($14.5bn) fine after a probe by the European Commission, which found the company was routing profits through Ireland to minimize taxes.

 

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According to the probe, Apple's scheme allowed it to pay as little as 0.005% on its European profits, or £50 in taxes for every £1m of profit (a "completely made-up number", according to Chief financial officer Luca Maestri). It's said to have achieved its goal by setting up virtual offices with no employees, offices, or real activity and enacting provisions of Irish law no longer in use.

 

Meanwhile, Apple CEO Tim Cook says his company has done no wrong and he doesn't expect the decision to stick.

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