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first_imgNEW YORK – The Topps Co., maker of baseball cards and Bazooka bubble gum, said Tuesday that it accepted a $385.4 million takeover offer from a buyout group that includes former Disney CEO Michael Eisner, but the deal drew immediate opposition from one of Topps’ own board members. Topps board member Arnaud Ajdler, along with the investment firm Crescendo Partners II, launched a campaign to kill the deal. Crescendo owns about 6.6 percent of the company’s shares, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Ajdler is also a managing partner of Crescendo. Ajdler said Tuesday that he had not yet been in touch with other major shareholders but thought the deal should be abandoned because negotiations did not go through a proper process and the Eisner-led offer undervalues the company. “I believe that the process that led to the signing of the merger agreement was flawed in that the board of directors did not shop the company and thus failed to maximize the competitive dynamics of a sale transaction that would have garnered the highest price available,” Ajdler wrote in a letter sent to other board members Tuesday. As part of the merger agreement, CEO Arthur T. Shorin agreed to retire within 60 days of the close of the deal. He would remain as a consultant, according to an SEC filing. Shorin, 70, has been CEO of Topps and its predecessor since 1980, according to the company Web site. Eisner was CEO of The Walt Disney Co. for two decades until he stepped down in 2005. Disney owns theme parks, movie studios and the ABC, ESPN and Disney TV networks. Topps, founded in 1938, makes trading cards featuring athletes of Major League Baseball, the NFL and NBA. In addition to Bazooka bubble gum, it owns the Ring Pop and Push Pop brands.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! The deal was approved in a 7-3 vote by the board with Ajdler and two others voting against it. Ajdler was joined by board members John Jones and Timothy Brog, president of Pembridge Capital Management LLP. Pembridge had earlier pressed the company to solicit acquisition proposals. The buyout group, which includes The Tornante Co. LLC, founded by Eisner, and the Chicago-based private equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners LLC, has agreed to pay $9.75 for each Topps shares, which represents a premium of 9.4 percent over the stock’s Monday closing price of $8.91 on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange. In a sign that some investors think the bidding could go higher, Topps shares rose 90 cents, or 10 percent, to close at $9.81 on the Nasdaq Stock Market. Its shares have traded between $7.50 and $10 over the past 52 weeks. The company said in its announcement that it will solicit better offers over the next 40 days. The deal requires regulatory approval and a vote by Topps shareholders, but the company said it could close by the third quarter. last_img read more

first_imgDave Marshall, the popular parking czar for big events in downtown Long Beach and former SF Giants player, loved life — but he loved his wife, Carol, even more.“Dave just adored Carol,” Tom Marcoux, Marshall’s boss at the Long Beach Convention Center, said Thursday, June 13. “She meant everything to him. He would brag about how upbeat and positive she was despite her illness.”Carol, you see, suffered from multiple sclerosis for many years. But Dave was always by her side.Recently, however, …last_img read more

first_imgThe Shangana Cultural Village has secured second spot in the 2005 Conde Nast Traveler magazine’s Green List, which recognises the best in ecotourism around the world.Shangana is a cluster of traditional villages midway between the Blyde River Canyon and the southern Kruger National Park, where residents invite guests to share in the way of life of the Shangaan people. (Image: Shangana)Brand South Africa ReporterThe Shangana Cultural Village in the South African province of Mpumalanga has secured second spot in the 2005 Conde Nast Traveler magazine’s Green List, which recognises the best in ecotourism around the world.Announcing the win in the magazine’s September 2005 issue, Conde Nast gave Shangana a score of 79%. This put it in second place after Bunaken National Marine Park in Indonesia, which scored 83%, and ahead of the 68% scored by the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve in Mexico.The winners were selected for their preservation of the environment, contribution to local culture and the quality of the guest experience.“Tours and feasts with the chief at this model village introduce visitors to the Shangaan way of life, complementing the natural attractions of the nearby Kruger National Park and Panorama Route,” Conde Nast reported. The village scored 68% for nature preservation, 82% for guest experience and 88% for local contribution.Owned by the Mapulana community, the venture has created over 200 jobs in an area which once had an unemployment rate of 80%.Shangana is a cluster of traditional villages midway between the Blyde River Canyon and the southern Kruger National Park, where residents invite guests to share in the way of life of the Shangaan people. The villages are set in the shade of ancient trees in a reserve of forest and grassland, and are open every day.An African market village forms the centre of Shangana, where local craftspeople make and trade their craft. From here, trained guides lead guests down to villages on daytime tours, midday tours with lunch, and a magnificent evening festival at the chief’s kraal.Marula MarketThe Marula Market has been described by many visitors as the most beautiful in Africa. A wide circle of huts looks down towards the Kruger Park, with trees all around. It is the central village at Shangana.The market is a gathering place for the region’s craftspeople, offering a variety of traditional handcrafted art. Many of the artists work at home in nearby villages and leave their work at the market to be sold, making Marula an important source of income for the people of the area.In the centre of the market are clay and stone pieces, including carvings, statues and pots, and an oven used for firing clay work. The surrounding huts house the work of different crafters.Daytime toursDuring the day, small groups are led from the Marula Market through the bush and past fields, where a trained guide shows how the Shangaan people collect food from their environment, and explains a little about traditional farming. The route leads up to a village, the home of a Shangaan headman, his wives and children.In the village, the guide explains different facets of the Shangaan way of life, including their history and customs, initiation ceremonies, the practice of polygamy, the outfits and weapons of masocho (warriors), the construction of homes, ornate beadwork clothing, and food preparation. Guests are encouraged to touch, feel and participate, while the guide explains the etiquette necessary to ensure the privacy of the family.Guests then visit the kraal of the sangoma, a registered member of the Traditional Healers Association, who explains different medicines – and may throw his bones on request.Over lunchtime, a full traditional meal is served in the village with the family. The wives of the chief wash the hands of the guests, and pots of food are brought from the fire and served. Guests are given portions of each item they choose on a carved wooden plate, and eat with an elegantly crafted wooden spoon.Evening festivalAs the sun sets over the mountains, guests are led through the bush towards the kraal of Chief Soshangana. As they approach, beating drums and warriors usher them through a passage of stone towers and flaming torches to the fire-lit circle of royal huts under the trees.During the evening festival choirs, actors and dancers tell the story of the Shangaan people. During the show, traditional beer and great wooden trays with local delicacies are passed around.Halfway through the show, the wives of the chief invite guests to divide into small groups to share a traditional feast in their houses with them.After this, guests return for the second half, which tells the more modern story of the Shangaans, and at the end guests are led out through a tunnel of singing choristers.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

first_img South Africa has been identified as a key emerging market for global investors, moving up to fourth position in a new survey conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit for UK Trade & Investment, the British government’s international business development agency. Addressing an emerging markets forum hosted by the Economist Intelligence Unit on Wednesday, UK Secretary of State Lord Mandelson revealed the findings of the report, which examined global business attitudes to emerging markets in light of the global downturn.UK business ‘must look abroad’ Commissioned by UK Trade & Investment, the “Survive and Prosper: emerging markets in the global recession” report gives fresh insights into the opportunities and longer-term strategic importance offered by emerging economies. “Businesses should be strategic about their exports and plan for the long term,” Mandelson said. “Many emerging markets are outperforming developed economies, and are expected to grow strongly for years to come. “The global recession was a wake-up call for companies to diversify their export base and seek out new opportunities in the emerging world,” Mandelson said. “We are encouraging UK business to look abroad and find new business in these exciting new markets.”Emerging markets outperform developed countries The report, based on a survey of more than 540 high-level business executives across 19 business sectors, found that emerging market economies, on the back of the continued high growth and market size of China and India, had outperformed those of developed countries in 2009. The report found 60 percent of companies surveyed expected to derive more than 20 percent of their total revenues from emerging markets in five years’ time – almost double the current figure of 31%. According to the report, political risk (including the risk of nationalisation and expropriation) was cited by 50 percent of survey respondents as the greatest government-related obstacle to doing business in emerging markets.‘Share in SA construction boom’ In the equivalent report by the Economist Intelligence Unit in 2008, titled “Tomorrow’s Markets”, South Africa was ranked eighth in a top 10 list of “new wave” investment markets. The latest report – in which South Africa moves up to fourth position – is part of a wider push by UK Trade & Investment to raise awareness about the potential trade and investment opportunities for British companies in high-growth markets. It follows the release on Friday of another UK Trade & Investment report, titled “Building South Africa: opportunities for the UK construction sector”, which highlights opportunities stemming from the South African government’s multi-billion rand infrastructure development plans. “South Africa is a fast growth economy with infrastructure plans to match,” UK Trade & Investment CEO Andrew Cahn said in a statement on Friday. “With investment opportunities in both private and public sectors, coupled with a severe skills shortage, now is the time for UK companies to take advantage of the construction boom.”‘Gain a foothold in sub-Saharan Africa’ Cahn said South Africa’s infrastructure spending plan was set to accelerate the annual growth of the economy by between 4.5% and 6%. “Its ambitious plans for mass transport, water projects, prisons, hospital and prison upgrades provide plenty of opportunities for UK companies,” Cahn said. “This investment, and events like the 2010 football World Cup, are acting as a catalyst for growth in the private construction sector. Opportunities include hotel and residential development as well as urban regeneration projects. “By establishing a business in South Africa, UK companies can gain a foothold into sub-Saharan Africa.” Several UK companies are already actively involved in major infrastructure projects for South Africa, including Bombardier Transportation UK Ltd, which is providing the new train fleet for the Gautrain project, and Mott MacDonald, which is involved in state logistics company Transnet’s rail and port expansion programme. UK Trade & Investment’s presence in South Africa “is stronger than ever, with 34 staff based in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban to support these opportunities and expansions,” the agency said on Friday.South African Press Association (Sapa), with additional reporting by SAinfo 15 October 2009last_img read more

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Joel Penhorwood has accepted a job with Select Sires and will no longer be contributing his considerable talents with the OCJ/OAN team. We are sad to see Joel move on but wish him well as he takes on a new chapter in his career. Thanks Joel for your hard work and best of luck in your future endeavors. Here are some of our favorite posts from Joel:Super Bowl corn syrup controversy commentarylast_img

first_imgA new client called me, saying that his insulation contractor urged him to contact me about some moisture problems in the home before they actually embarked on a major energy upgrade. (That was gratifying.) The home was actually moved many years ago off of a failing rubble foundation to a new concrete masonry unit (CMU) foundation on a different site.Image #2 (bottom of page) shows the home from the front. Image #3 shows the bare CMU on the above-grade portion of CMU foundation.But it is Image #1 (right) that is the real puzzle. Here are the puzzle pieces:Puzzle Piece #1:The client is certain that the blue-green staining on the CMU column built to support the massive fireplace in the living room predates their switch to a woodstove insert in the fireplace (photo 4).Puzzle Piece #2:The middle of the CMU column is hollow and filled with ash mounded up around the clean-out. (See the small black cast-iron door in the photo.) RELATED ARTICLES Efflorescence = Water DamagePreventing Water Entry Into a HomeDealing with Rising Damp in Building ReconstructionCapillary Breaks Above Footings In addition to acting as GBA’s technical director, Peter Yost is the Vice President for Technical Services at BuildingGreen in Brattleboro, Vermont. He has been building, researching, teaching, writing, and consulting on high-performance homes for more than twenty years. An experienced trainer and consultant, he’s been recognized as NAHB Educator of the Year. Do you have a building science puzzle? Contact Pete here. You can also sign up for BuildingGreen’s email newsletter to get a free report on avoiding toxic insulation, as well as regular posts from Peter. The solution?My recommendations to the homeowner on this moisture issue, along with some others, were:1. Clean out the bottom ash, scrub off the blue-green efflorescence, and wait a bit before priming and painting the block, just to be sure the problem is licked.2. Confirm that the footing perimeter drainage system is working, that it is relieving any moisture pressure around the foundation (I located the drain-to-daylight for the foundation perimeter drainage system; see Image #7).3. Seal the above-grade portion of the CMU foundation system so it is not taking on splash-back moisture. It sure looked to me as though the blue-green stain was a sort of efflorescence caused by water wicking up the CMUs and carrying some sort of salt with it. But where is the water that is wicking coming from?Puzzle Piece #3:I always start by considering bulk water, so I thought: maybe the chimney is not capped and enough bulk water is coming down the chimney to feed the wicking. Darn — a quick check outside reveals a staunch chimney cap (see Image #5, below). Could be that this is a problem that predates the chimney cap?Puzzle Piece #4:The next place I always look for water is from capillary continuity with soil moisture; maybe there is no moisture barrier underneath the concrete basement slab. Before drilling a hole in the slab somewhere, I discovered a slab hole for what used to be a functioning sump. I reached down and felt a heavy plastic sheet just beneath the 4-inch concrete slab.Puzzle Piece #5:Stumped. It’s got to be either bulk water coming down or wicking water coming up; but how can there be soil moisture moving up into the blocks of the column when the basement slab has a moisture barrier underneath it?When would the CMU column get built? At the same time as the perimeter walls of the foundation. Is the CMU support column on a separate footing? And was the CMU work done before the slab flatwork? You got it; it’s very likely that the moisture barrier under the slab is continuous except under the CMU fireplace column.OK, so now we are pretty sure about the moisture source. But what about the blue-green efflorescence? Efflorescence from salts in the mortar or block is always white, not this striking blue-green.Puzzle Piece #6:I remember from high school chemistry that nearly all copper salts are blue or green, so a good guess is that some source of copper is inside that CMU column (or maybe from the soil below).Remember that the blue-green staining pretty much follows the mound of the ash… So is the source of the copper salts related to what they were burning in the fireplace?Maybe they were burning pressure-treated lumber in the fireplace; that contains copper salts, right? I sure hope not! What else would someone burn with a lot of metallic salts in it? (Remember the title: “Fanciful Fuel”?)I can’t prove that this is the answer, because we don’t know enough about the prior occupants, but I am convinced that they spent a lot of time staring into a beautiful and colorful log fire…Metallic salts like copper chloride, potassium chlorate, and lithium carbonate “burn” with blue, green, and reddish hues. These chemicals can be found in commercial products like Mystical Fire (see Image # 6).last_img read more

first_imgThe BJP is raising the issue of abrogation of certain provisions of Article 370 in the run up to the Jharkhand Assembly polls as a “ploy” to divert people’s attention from “monumental failures” of the Raghubar Das Government, JMM working president Hemant Soren alleged on Sunday. The former Jharkhand Chief Minister’s sharp attack comes days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah referred to Article 370 while listing the achievements of the NDA 2.0 government in their public addresses in the poll-bound State.Mr. Soren said the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) will raise people’s issues in the campaign and promised that if voted to power, his Government will ensure 75% reservation for the youth of Jharkhand in private jobs. In an interview to PTI, he said if JMM forms the government, it will ensure five lakh jobs within one year, unemployment allowance to those who are jobless, reserve government tender up to ₹25 crore for people from the State, implement 50% reservation for women in jobs and 27% reservation for Other Backward Classes (OBCs). Asked about the BJP raising the Article 370 issue in Jammu and Kashmir, Mr. Soren said a government which fails to address economic and social crises and key issues that affect everyday lives of citizens, resorts to “creating sharp polarisation in the society”.“Lightning doesn’t strike a place twice and similarly the BJP cannot fool the people all the time. Raising the issue of Article 370 during state assembly polls campaign is nothing but the BJP’s ploy to divert people’s attention from its monumental failures in governance in Jharkhand,” he said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi might have been successful in securing an NDA victory based on the post-Pulwama and Balakot nationalistic fervour, but the people of Jharkhand have had enough of this “apathetic” state government and are waiting to throw it out in the upcoming assembly polls, he claimed. Mr. Soren said his party’s sole aim is to free Jharkhand’s 3.5 crore people from the “insensitive” BJP government. “For this purpose, we are willing to coordinate with all like minded parties to collectively fight the BJP and its divisive policies. JMM was instrumental in the fight to achieve Jharkhand as a separate state, and if necessary, will again engage in the struggle to ensure Jharkhand shines bright on the nation’s map,” he said “The entire Opposition has already had a meeting and once I get over with the ongoing ‘Badlav Yatra’, I will sit again with all party leaders,” he added. JMM, Congress, Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik) and Rashtriya Janata Dal had contested the Lok Sabha polls in alliance earlier this year, but managed to win just two out of the 14 seats. He said conversations are ongoing to firm up the Opposition alliance and there was still time to finalise its shape. Mr. Soren, who has been touring the State as part of his ‘Badlav Yatra’ and connecting with the masses, claimed there was a lot of anger among the people of the state as the Raghubar Das Government had failed to meet their aspirations.“Farmers and farm labourers have committed suicide, families have been destroyed, anganwadi workers are on an indefinite fast, para teachers were on a statewide strike and the police brutally lathi charged them as if they were deadly criminals, youth not getting jobs are ending their lives and the state government is giving government jobs to people from outside Jharkhand,” he alleged.last_img read more

first_imgNewcastle United manager Rafa Benitez has praised their 1-0 win at Huddersfield as “really important” as the Magpies moved six points clear of the relegation zone.Salomon Rondon scored the only goal of the game at the John Smith’s Stadium on Saturday as Newcastle United claimed all three points and moved further away from the relegation zone.“It was a really important for us, and them, so to get three points here in the way that we did, with a big effort from every player, is always something you have to be satisfied with,” Benitez told Sky Sports.“We tried to play on the counterattack and defend well, against a good team.“They were pushing, with a lot of crosses, balls in the air and when they wouldn’t do that they tried to do it with penetrating passes through the middle instead.Roberto Firmino, LiverpoolVirgil van Dijk praises Roberto Firmino after Liverpool’s win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Virgil van Dijk hailed team-mate Roberto Firmino after coming off the bench to inspire Liverpool to a 3-1 comeback win against Newcastle United.“We had to deal with all these situations, but in the first half we gave the ball away a little bit cheaply.“We were stronger in the second half and they didn’t have the space, it wasn’t easy for them, and we knew we would have to play on the counterattack.“We scored a goal, we had another which was not offside, but that’s it – we got the three points.“They are a good team, they worked hard and will do until the end. We have to carry on and I’m sure they will do too.”last_img read more

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Below is the latest news from the offices of Congressman Seth Moulton, Senator Ed Markey, and Senator Elizabeth Warren.Congressman Seth MoultonRecent Press Releases and Statements from Congressman Moulton’s Office:Statement on Trump’s Decision To Withdraw From The Iran Nuclear DealSenator Ed MarkeyRecent Press Releases and Statements from Senator Markey’s Office:Senator Markey Urges FTC To Require Additional Privacy Safeguards At FacebookSenator Markey Statement On President Trump’s Decision To Withdraw From Iran Nuclear DealSenate Democrats Take Final Step Necessary To Force A Vote To Reinstate Net NeutralitySenator Elizabeth WarrenRecent Press Releases and Statements from Senator Warren’s Office:Warren and Perdue Introduce Bipartisan Bill To Improve Military Sexual Assault Treatment Warren Statement On President Trump Withdrawing From The Iran DealWarren, Daines, Shea-Porter Kelly Introduce Bipartisan Bill To Streamline National Guard Promotion ProcessLike Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWASHINGTON TO WILMINGTON: The Latest News From Moulton, Markey & WarrenIn “Government”WASHINGTON TO WILMINGTON: The Latest From Moulton, Markey & WarrenIn “Government”WASHINGTON TO WILMINGTON: The Latest News From Moulton, Markey & WarrenIn “Government”last_img read more

first_imgHound Labs caught a boost in Series D funding to create a device it says can detect THC on a subject’s breath.  Canva A company looking to create the first THC breathalyzer said Tuesday it’s raised $30 million in Series D funding. Hound Labs is aiming to enable law enforcement and employers to conduct quick drug screenings with the device, which is on track to be released this winter. The device has raised concerns about accuracy and legal implications, however.  “In order to solve the challenge of determining recent marijuana use, we spent five years developing new technology that enables unparalleled low levels of detection in a portable device,” Hound Labs co-founder Dr. Mike Lynn said in a release earlier this year. “We have been testing this technology in collaboration with one of the world’s premier research universities. After years of research and development, we are excited to have validated the Hound science and technology that will advance our collective understanding of THC in breath.”In July, Hound Labs paid researchers to get 20 people high. Once the subjects smoked cannabis, researchers tested them and found THC could be detected in minute amounts in the breath after the subjects smoked. Hound Labs said the device can also detect THC ingested via cannabis-infused foods.  4 Marijuana tech is evolving Comments Share your voice Tags 5:37 Now playing: Watch this: Sci-Tech Politicslast_img read more