Existing Travelscene Corporate and JTN Business Select agents, as well as non-member agencies, can join helloworld for business. JTG has combined the strengths of Travelscene Corporate and JTN Business Select to represent the next generation of corporate travel in Australia, according to JTG head of associate networks David Padman. “helloworld for business embraces that independence and the individual approaches of our agencies, while also maximising the value, support and financial reward they receive from being part of one of the most significant travel organisations in the region,” Mr Padman said. Source = ETB News: P.T. The helloworld retail brand was launched earlier this year in July 2013. Jetset Travelworld Group (JTG) has formed “Australia’s largest independent premium network of corporate travel experts”, with the launch of helloworld for business. “The interest in helloworld for business from our corporate agents and from the wider industry has been exceptional,” Mr Padman said. Clients will also gain exclusive access to the helloworld Consumer Protection Policy. helloworld for business’ core focus will be to provide purchasing advantages for agents, as well as business and systems support, while facilitating a network of like-minded corporate contacts.
A second Sydney airport would probably demand no curfew, which would not go down well with voters in south-western Sydney. Source = ETB News: T.N. There is great anticipation about the decision because travellers are keenly aware of the negatives of the Sydney Airport monopoly and its privatisation, such as flight delays and higher prices. However, the picture is not so simple in the building of a second Sydney Airport. “A decision must be made and it will be made by this government early in our first term but I do have to warn you that it’s not imminent,” Prime Minister Tony Abbott said. There is still a structural block for the second airport – Sydney Airport Corporation Limited has a right to refuse any private owners from running a second airport which means that a government body may end up owning it, thereby reducing its attractiveness to airlines. On the other hand, airlines would be very happy to see no curfew. The reason for this is that having a curfew, like the one at Sydney Airport between the hours 11am-6pm limits the profitability of airlines. When it was announced that Badgerys Creek would be home to the second Sydney Airport and that the decision to build would be announced by Cabinet, expectation had to be hosed down. The proof will be in the building of the new airport.
Port Vila’s Bauerfield International Airport. Image via WikipediaVanuatu Tourism Office (VTO), industry and top level government officials are meeting urgently this morning to confirm the funding and timeline for the permanent repair of the runway at Port Vila’s Bauerfield International Airport.Air New Zealand and Virgin Australia have suspended flights as a precautionary measure.Air Vanuatu, Fiji Airways, Solomon Airways and Aircalin are continuing their scheduled international flights operating in and out of the airport and remain satisfied, after independent assessments, that the condition of the runway is safe to continue jet operations at present.Air Vanuatu is working closely with The Civil Aviation Authority of Vanuatu (CAAV) and Airports Vanuatu Limited (AVL) to resolve the issues facing the airport.Several temporary measures including daily mechanical sweeping of the runway are in place. These are being closely monitored to ensure they adhere to the high safety standards of Air Vanuatu and associated parties.VTO General Manager Linda Kalpoi advised there will be a high level government meeting today in Port Vila at 10am local time where a more permanent solution will be confirmed.“The Minister of Tourism has called a meeting with top level officials of the Prime Minister’s office, Ministry of Civil Aviation, AVL, industry and VTO and we’ll be working together to resolve this issue quickly and effectively,” Ms Kalpoi said.“Finding the solution swiftly is of upmost [sic] importance to Vanuatu’s tourism industry and the country as a whole, and we will do everything we can to ensure suspended flights are resumed, whilst treating the safety of all travellers to Vanuatu as a paramount priority.”Vanuatu Tourism Office will continue to update the industry and key stakeholders as more information is available. Stay up to dateSource = Vanuatu Tourism Office
The Personal Touch Wins the DayI have recently had two equally engaging yet opposing interactions , both very applicable to travel.The second one was about data . A little bit dry.The first one was a handwritten thank you card that arrived in the post.It came from Movember. I was captain of my #DoJoMo team, we raised a stack of cash. I got the card and posted it to acknowledge all of the other guys and girls who had participated. I had a pink moustahce for a week.A few of them then wrote back to talk about their own customised, personal, hand written notes. Some quick maths said lots of these cards had been sent. I looked closely at my card with a much more analytical eye. It was legit.Movember have written tens of thousands of these cards. By hand. then posted them. roomsXML connect today here www.roomsxml.com roomsXML.comdiscover more here Connect TodayroomsXML.com Source = roomsXML People versus machines – the personal touchBack to the “travel agent versus big online travel agency” discussion. Travel agents can be personal. Websites cannot. A website might be able to analyse your data, but it cannot pick up on the nuances of your body language, what you really want and what you really need. It can’t share a laugh with you. It can’t dream with you.Agents need to leverage the fact they can apply personal touch over the top of what a machine can deliver.Why does it work?When someone takes the opportunity to write something by hand, it says a whole lot more. They’ve actually pulled out a pen, sat down, devoted some time and thought about it. Lets them know that you value them.So how do you make this work in your day-to-day business?Personalization into actionWe live in a process world. It’s incredibly time efficient to put together electronic itineraries. There is just no way around it. It’s a numbers game, we only have so many hours in the day and we need to get things done as quickly as possible.But we also do our job to make money, on this job and to stimulate the next job. In the perfect world we generate more business simply by doing a fantastic job.How about handwriting your Christmas cards. I know it really peeves my staff when we send out nearly 1000 these but I also know that our customers love it. We rely on them to pay our staff, our rent, buy food. So they really matter!So when you send that itinerary, leave a space so you can write your own little smudged message.Under personalized communication goes wrongBack to the analytics conference, these are the emails I received from the system. Sorry did I say system, I meant “Laura” .Dear Mark…. Laura here… Would you be interested in an exciting…..Dear Mark….. Laura again…. Just a reminder that if you want to register….Dear Mark…. Thank you for your registration…..Dear Mark…. I just want to personally thank you for registering and here is your tax invoice….Dear Mark…. If you want to check in fast tomorrow just present this barcode and your ticket will automatically be issued…Dear Mark… I just want to personally thank you for coming along…..When I arrived at the hotel for the convention the automated system had broken down.They were handwriting our name cards.The personal interaction was fantastic.
AccorHotels movers and shakersAccorHotels is pleased to announce the following new General Manager appointments in Australia:Lorraine Mercuri has been appointed General Manager at Swissotel Sydney. Lorraine started with AccorHotels in 1992 at Novotel Wollongong Northbeach, working in various restaurant and banquet management roles. In 1994, Lorraine was one of two to be accepted into the first Accor National Management Trainee Programme (now AELP) for Australia, aimed at preparing candidates for future General Manager roles. Lorraine has held various management positions across 4 and 5 star hotels as well as Special Projects Manager at AccorHotels Sydney Corporate Office. Lorraine was Executive Assistant Manager at Novotel and ibis Sydney Olympic Park, Sofitel Sydney Wentworth and Accor’s Darling Harbour Hotels. Lorraine started in her first General Manager position at Novotel Canberra after which she was Area General Manager for Greater Sydney, based at Sydney Olympic Park. Lorraine has enjoyed many successful General Manager placements at AccorHotels Darling Harbour Hotels, Pullman Sydney Hyde Park and most recently with the redevelopment of Mercure Sydney International Airport.Belinda Paterson has been appointed General Manager at Pullman Magenta Shores Resort. Following the completion of her tertiary studies, Belinda joined Columbia Sussex Corporation as the Regional Director of Rooms and Corporate Acquisitions and Taskforce – Rooms Operations, to then in 2007 be appointed Acquisition & Conversion Director of Rooms at Sanibel Harbour Resort & Spa. In 2008, Belinda secured her first General Manager position at the Courtyard by Marriott Columbus West, prior to being appointed General Manager at the Atlanta Marriott Downtown, in 2009. Belinda joined Mirvac in 2011 as General Manager at Pullman Quay Grand Sydney Harbour, prior to transitioning the property to AccorHotels in 2012. In 2013, Belinda moved to The Sebel Kirkton Park as General Manager. Most recently, Belinda has assisted with a General Manager secondment at Novotel Sydney Parramatta, before being appointed General Manager, Mercure Newcastle Airport.Zayne Boon has been appointed General Manager at Mercure Sydney International Airport. Zayne joined AccorHotels in 1992 working across various hotels in Australia and New Zealand. In 2012, Zayne was appointed General Manager at Novotel Bangkok Impact, and in 2014, was successfully appointed General Manager of Pullman Saigon Centre and Area General Manager – Southern Vietnam. Zayne moved to Thailand in 2016 as Area General Manager – Southern Thailand and General Manager, Pullman Phuket Panwa Beach Resort followed by Pullman Kuala Lumpur City Centre as General Manager. Zayne most recently was General Manager at Novotel Darwin CBD.Jessica James has been appointed General Manager at ibis Styles Mt Isa Verona Hotel. Jessica began her career in hospitality at Mantra Group in 2010 as a Team Leader working across multiple departments including Front Office, Events and Food & Beverage. In 2014, Jessica joined AccorHotels in various roles including Assistant Manager & Marketing and Events Coordinator at Mercure Townsville and Assistant Front Office Manager at Novotel & Mercure Darwin Airport Resort. In 2017, Jessica was selected to participate in the AccorHotels Executive Leadership Program (AELP). Her first placement was at Novotel Darwin Airport as Front Office Manager followed by Operations Manager at The Sebel Quay West Brisbane.Adriette Meyer has been appointed General Manager at ibis Mackay. Adriette has worked in numerous facets of the hospitality industry since 2002, including remote lodges, resorts and international hotel brands. In 2008, Adriette joined AccorHotels at the Novotel Barossa Valley Resort and held various leadership roles including Restaurant & Bar Manager, Night Manager and Front Office Manager. Adriette was selected to be a part of the AccorHotels Executive Leadership Program (AELP) in 2013, with her first placement as Rooms Division Manager at Novotel Forest Resort Creswick. She then moved to Cairns Harbour Lights as Front Office Manager and on completion of her AELP program, Adriette was promoted to Property Manager.Benjamin Brown has been appointed General Manager at Cooinda Lodge Kakadu. Benjamin began his hospitality career as a Duty Manager at the Intercontinental Hotel Group Gagudju Lodge in 2008. Benjamin progressed through various leadership roles including Credit Manager at Couran Cove Resort and Guest Relations Manager at the Outrigger Twin Towns Resort. In 2012, Benjamin joined the Mantra team as an Assistant Manager at Peppers Salt Resort & Spa and was promoted to Area Front Office Manager across Peppers Salt Resort & Spa, Peppers Bale and Mantra on Salt. In addition, Benjamin has been General Manager at several Mantra hotels including; Breakfree Diamond Beach, Mantra Wings Resort, and Mantra Hervey Bay and Great Sandy Straits.Ross Buchanan has been appointed General Manager at Mercure Sydney Parramatta. Ross has an extensive career in the tourism and hospitality industry, starting out in the airline industry in reservations. Ross has since progressed through sales and reservations departments, holding several key leadership positions such as National Conference & Incentive Director for the previously known Mirvac Hotels & Resorts, and Director of Sales & Marketing for the Sydney Marriot Hotel. Ross joined the Swissotel Sydney team in 2011 as Director of Revenue & Marketing and in 2016 Ross was promoted to General Manager.Rens Breur has been appointed General Manager of Sofitel Gold Coast Broadbeach. Rens has worked across multiple luxury hotel brands including Sofitel, Fairmont and The Langham. Starting in Food & Beverage, Rens has held several management positions including Assistant Director, Food & Beverage at The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise and Director of Food & Beverage at The Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge. In 2010, Rens was part of the pre-opening team of Sofitel Bahrain Zallaq Thalassa Sea & Spa as Hotel Manager, holding various other Executive Assistant Manager and Hotel Manager positions at Sofitel Melbourne on Collins, Sofitel Macau at Ponte 16 and The Langham Melbourne. In 2017, Rens re-joined AccorHotels as Hotel Manager for Sofitel Sydney Darling HarbourSource = AccorHotels
The Department of Tourism of the Government of Karnataka has unveiled the newly formed Bengaluru Tourism Advisory Committee (BTAC) under the chairmanship of Priyank Kharge, Minister for Tourism and IT & BT. The committee will consist of the top officials in the Tourism Department and also experts from verticals such as heritage, urban, landscape, hospitality, architecture and conservationists who can contribute towards branding Bengaluru and making it a global city in the true sense.Understanding the tourism potential of Bengaluru and to brand it as a global city and the most favourable urban tourism destination, BTAC was formed after a month of brainstorming sessions and deliberations. The scope of the committee is to provide quick action plans for developing Bengaluru region as a tourist destination by creating brand Bengaluru, identifying different circuits and trails, offering tourism technologies, drawing a calendar of events, promoting art and culture, attracting PPP projects and engaging in inter-city-cooperation concepts.Further, the committee will help in positioning the state capital as a well connected holiday destination by involving local talent pool and the effective development of local employment and subsequent revenue generation. The committee will also be responsible in enhancing positive perceptions about the city through engagements with travellers across the world which, in turn, will help drive tourism, thus making Bengaluru a smart global city.
Italian luxury cruise liner Costa Cruises in collaboration with Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) and Mumbai Port Trust announced the launch of India’s first domestic luxury cruise ‘Costa NeoClassic’ on the Mumbai-Kochi route commencing from November 2017.Commenting over the development, Jaykumar Raval, Minister, Maharashtra Tourism, said, “Indians are increasingly embracing luxury and leisure lifestyles and the domestic cruise tourism industry is estimated to grow to 1.50 million by 2031.”The Mumbai-Kochi cruise will take four nights. “The Costa NeoClassic has a total of 654 cabins including sea-view and suites with private balconies, a casino, theatre, discotheque, ballroom grand bar, gym with treatment rooms, sauna, jacuzzi and steam, an outdoor jogging track and two swimming pools, besides a huge duty free shopping arcade,” said Buhdy Bok, President, Carnival Asia.Enhancing the cruising experience for Indians will be a library, Italian regional gastronomical experiences with vegetarian, non-vegetarian cuisine and even a Jain menu, besides the original famous Neapolitan Pizzas at Pizzeria ‘Pummid’Oro.’
Turkey’s tourism sector has made a fast start in 2018, as the recent positive early booking figures and demand across the globe suggests that the country expects 40 million tourists and over USD 30 billion in tourism revenue this year. Taking into account the favourable demands from Europe, which is defined as the country’s main market, and the Commonwealth of Independent States, tourism experts predict that Turkey is to witness record-breaking arrivals in 2018. Firuz Bağlıkaya, Chairman of Travel Agencies Association (TÜRSAB) said as a result of a favourable demand from abroad this year, the sector expects to see an all-time high.Bağlıkaya also added that within the scope of the tourism revenue at the end of 2018, they anticipate that the average tourism income per capita will reach USD 750. While the country welcomed 32.4 million last year, according to Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat) data.Numan Kurtulmuş, Minister Of Culture and Tourism, Republic of Turkey stated that Turkey tourism’s next five-year target is to welcome 50 million tourists and generate USD 50 million income by 2023. According to the Culture and Tourism Ministry, Turkey welcomed 3 million foreign visitors in the first two months of 2018 during its winter period, which increased by 34.91% year-on-year in the first two months. Bağlıkaya revealed that demands from Germany and Russia, which are Turkey’s main tourism market, are very positive. Germany’s demand increased by 60% whereas Russia’s by 30%. From its European neighbours, Turkey expects the number of visitors from the UK and the Netherlands to rise. In terms of outbound arrivals to Turkey from Russia, the country is forecasting an increase of 20%. According to British flight search app, Skyscanner data, April 30 – May 9 flight bookings from Russia to Istanbul have increased by 102% compared to the same period last year.
in Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing April 9, 2012 419 Views Agents & Brokers Barack Obama Investors Lenders & Servicers OCC Processing Service Providers 2012-04-09 Ryan Schuette New Comptroller of the Currency Assumes Office Share An old hand from the banking regulatory community took office Monday as the nation’s newest comptroller of the currency.[IMAGE]The Senate confirmed “”Thomas Curry””:http://www.occ.gov/about/who-we-are/comptroller-of-the-currency/bio-thomas-curry.html to helm the Office of the “”Comptroller of the Currency””:http://www.occ.gov/ (OCC) in March.””I want to express my sincere appreciation to President Obama, Secretary Geithner, and the United States Senate for their [COLUMN_BREAK]confidence in my abilities to serve as Comptroller of the Currency,”” Curry said in a statement.He added that “”[i]ts mission of ensuring the safety and soundness of America’s national banks and federal savings associations has never been more important or more challenging.””President “”Barack Obama””:http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/president-obama first nominated Curry, an “”FDIC””:http://www.fdic.gov/ director, last year. He then served as chairman of the agency’s assessment appeals and case review committees.His record of service includes stints as first deputy commissioner and assistant general counsel in the Massachusetts banks division, positions he assumed after taking up the role of attorney at the secretary of state’s office.Before arriving at the OCC, Curry filled the role of chairman of the Conference of State Bank Supervisors in the early 2000s, taking up terms on the state liaison committee ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô and at one time chairing ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council.The OCC recently assumed more prominence as a federal regulatory agency since undertaking transfers of authority from the now-defunct Office of Thrift Supervision.
in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing NAHB Improving Market Index Reaches All-time High September 9, 2013 396 Views Share Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Home Prices Housing Permits Investors Jobs Lenders & Servicers National Association of Home Builders Processing Service Providers 2013-09-09 Krista Franks Brock The “”National Association of Home Builders/First American Improving Markets Index””:http://www.nahb.org/reference_list.aspx?sectionID=2223 reached its highest level on record in September with a little more than 80 percent of markets qualifying as “”improving.”” [IMAGE]The index, released Monday, tracks 361 metropolitan areas for improvement in housing permits, employment, and house prices. Markets have to demonstrate improvement in all three areas for six consecutive months to make it on the list. Of the 291 markets that made it onto the latest Improving Markets Index, 242 were repeats from the previous month, and 49 were new to the list. Five markets dropped off the list over the past month. Those markets include Kankakee, Illinois; Burlington, North Carolina; Jacksonville, North Carolina; Winston, North Carolina; and Danville, Virginia.[COLUMN_BREAK]””While there is still plenty of room for growth, this is an excellent indication of how the housing recovery has begun to take hold across more geographical areas,”” “”said Rick Judson, chairman of the NAHB and a home builder from Charlotte, North Carolina. The NAHB pointed out that markets new to the index this month spanned several regions of the country, including such metros as Macon, Georgia; St. Cloud Minnesota; Brownsville, Texas; Spokane, Washington; and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. However, NAHB’s chief economist, David Crowe, pointed out that “”[t]he dramatic increase in markets qualifying for the IMI in September was partly due to a recent improvement in the way that Freddie Mac measures home prices.”” NAHB relies on Freddie Mac’s housing data for its index. “”Even so, the broadened list of metros on the IMI continues to demonstrate the slow but steady gains that individual housing markets are making to bolster the national outlook,”” he added. In fact, all 50 states have at least one county represented on the index, and 23 states have at least one new market on the index this month. Salinas, California, outranks all other metros on the index in terms of permit growth from its trough with a 44.2 percent rise. Phoenix, Arizona, ranked highest for price growth with a 41.5 percent increase from its trough. Midland, Texas, has experienced the greatest employment growth of any market on the index–a 33.5 percent rise from the market trough.
Existing-Home Sales Fall as Investors Retreat Existing-Home Sales Investors National Association of Realtors 2014-09-22 Tory Barringer September 22, 2014 713 Views in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, Headlines, News Share Sales of existing homes fell in August to their second highest pace this year as investors pulled back from the market.According to transaction data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), existing-home sales last month were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.05 million, a decrease of 1.8 percent from July’s sales pace of 5.14 million and a drop of 5.3 percent compared to last year.A consensus forecast from economists called for a slight month-over-month pickup in sales to a rate of 5.18 million.The group’s chief economist, Lawrence Yun, pinned August’s slower pace to a decline in all-cash purchases made by investors. According to NAR, all-cash sales represented 23 percent of August transactions, marking the lowest share since December 2009.”On the positive side, first-time buyers have a better chance of purchasing a home now that bidding wars are receding and supply constraints have significantly eased in many parts of the country,” Yun said. “As long as solid job growth continues, wages should eventually pick up to steadily improve purchasing power and help fully release the pent-up demand for buying.”According to NAR’s data, the share of first-time homebuyers in August remained unchanged from July at 29 percent.Regionally, existing-home sales moved up in the Northeast and Midwest, climbing 4.7 percent and 2.5 percent from July, respectively. The usually more active South and West regions both posted declines, with sales falling 4.2 percent and 5.1 percent, respectively.Year-over-year, sales were down in all regions.Looking only at single-family transactions, the association reported home sales fell 1.8 percent to an adjusted rate of 4.46 million, putting sales nearly 5 percent short of where they were a year ago.Including all housing types, the median existing-home price in August was $219,800, an increase of 4.8 percent over August 2013. It was the 30th straight month of annual price gains, NAR reported.
FHFA Raises Maximum Loan Guarantee Limits Conforming Loan Limit Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac 2016-11-23 ScottMorgan1 The Federal Housing Finance Agency on Wednesday announced that it will raise the amount Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac can guarantee on mortgage loans next year.The new maximum conforming loan limits for mortgages acquired by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 2017 will increase from $417,000 to $424,100 in most parts of the country. It will be the first time the baseline loan limit has increased since 2006.The baseline of $417,000 had been set by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008, with the requirement that the limit be adjusted annually in order to reflect the changes in the national median home price. The recession, however, got in the way. A long period of declining home prices nationally stifled the growth of the baseline, and HERA stated that the loan limit could not rise again until the average U.S. home price returned to pre-decline levels.“The 2017 conforming loan-limit increase announced today was prompted by the fact that house prices have surpassed the pre-decline level established in the third quarter of 2007, according to the FHFA index. Nominally, the price recovery is officially complete, but in real purchasing-power adjusted terms, houses prices are still far below the pre-decline peak. The underlying story is consumer house-buying power is better than it has been in a generation,” said Mark Fleming, chief economist at First American.Along with the news of the baseline increase, FHFA published its third quarter 2016 House Price Index, showing that for the first time since Q3 of 2007, U.S. average home values are finally in a place where the baseline limit can increase. According to the FHFA, that average for Q3 of this year was roughly 1.7 percent above the value for the third quarter of 2007. this allows the baseline loan limit will increase by that percentage.According to FHFA, the prerequisite for increasing the maximum limit occurred in all but 87 U.S. counties in Q3.The new limit of $424,100 is the limit for most of the country, but some high-cost areas will see an accordingly higher ceiling. Areas were local median values are between 115 and 150 percent higher than the national median, the limit will rise to meet the higher price point. FHFA capped the baseline at $635,100 for properties in Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.In its September 2016 Mortgage Monitor released in early November, Black Knight Financial Services discussed the possible effects of the FHFA raising the conforming loan limit for GSEs.“Our analysis shows that there are approximately 17 times as many originations—roughly 100,000 in total over the past 12 months—right at the conforming limit compared to preceding dollar amount buckets, and that originations drop off by about 70 percent immediately above the limit,” Black Knight Data & Analytics EVP Ben Graboske said. “In addition, the data shows that a GSE loan originated right at the conforming limit is nine times more likely to carry a second lien than one that is not. One example scenario shows that, with all else being equal, raising the conforming loan limit by $10,000 could result in a one percent increase in originations—approximately 40,000 new loans and $20 billion in new loan balances.” November 23, 2016 660 Views Share in Daily Dose, Headlines, News, Secondary Market
New Zealand-based fruit company Seeka Limited [NZX:SEK] has announced a new capital raising strategy to be implemented over the course of the next three years.The scheme includes a Rights Issue, an issuance of shares under a new Grower Share Scheme and an issuance of shares under Seeka’s existing Employee Share Ownership Scheme.The purpose of this capital raising strategy is to strengthen its balance sheet and provide Seeka with the financial flexibility and freedom to pursue its growth strategy of becoming New Zealand’s leading orchard-to-market business, the company said in an NZX filing.Seeks to raise approximately NZ$50 million of new equity via a pro rata 1 for 1.5 Rights Offer at NZ$4.25 per share.The company also announced it would introduce a new Grower Share Scheme and Employee Share Scheme in the first quarter of 2019, as many employees and grower suppliers are shareholders.“We are excited about Seeka’s plans for growth and our continual pursuit towards being New Zealand’s leading orchard-to-market business,” said Fred Hutchings, chairman of Seeka.“Seeka will use the capital raised to strengthen our balance sheet, repay bank debt, undertake planned capital expenditure and give us greater financial flexibility and freedom to deliver better value for our shareholders.”Further sales of the Northland orchard portfolio are expected to take place in the next twelve months, which together with other initiatives will further reduce net debt during the 2019 financial year.Photo: Shutterstock.com November 13 , 2018 NZ: Seeka’s profits soar in 2018 as kiwifruit volu … You might also be interested in
Ireland-based Total Produce has said that for the first time the company’s participation at Fruit Logistica in Berlin this year will be carbon-neutral.The initiative will see Vita – an Irish development partner – independently calculate and total the estimated carbon emissions associated with the construction and operation of the Total Produce stand, long haul and short haul travel to the event and accommodation for all of the company’s attendees. January 24 , 2019 You might also be interested in Total Produce announces board changes … Total Produce’s 2018 revenues rise 18% on back of … “Total Produce has committed to invest in Carbon Credits to the value of the total tonnage of CO2 emissions estimated by Vita, the revenue from which will fund Vita projects,” the company said.It added that by removing the need for many additional trips to growers, customers and sister companies throughout the year, Fruit Logistica is already an instrument for reducing international travel.Vincent Dolan, the group’s marketing director said: “In working with Vita, we in Total Produce are striving to reduce still further the impact of carbon emissions associated with unavoidable travel across a global group while simultaneously contributing to worthwhile carbon reduction and water preservation projects in Africa.”
Captain Cook CruisesSeaLink Travel Group SeaLink Travel Group yesterday launched twin passenger catamarans, MV Blackwattle Bay and MV Cockle Bay in Sydney – the first of their kind to join the Captain Cook Cruises Sydney fleet, and representing a $2 million investment. “At a time when Sydney’s road congestion is creating significant challenges for both government and commuters, MV Blackwattle Bay and MV Cockle Bay will offer a welcome solution, opening new inner city routes and offering regular high speed travel to commuters,” said managing director Jeff Ellison.The twin boats will operate services for Captain Cook’s Hop On Hop Off, White Bay ferry service, and act as a regular transport service for conference delegates to Sydney’s new International Convention Centre, providing easy access between Darling Harbour and Circular Quay.
Virtuoso wrapped up its Las Vegas Travel Week on Friday night with awards presented to this year’s most outstanding global travel advisors, agencies and partners,.“Virtuoso Travel Week is all about building authentic human connections that then translate into personal, more enriching experiences for clients, so it’s fitting that we close the week by recognizing those Virtuosos who put the most into their industry relationships,” said Virtuoso Chairman and CEO Matthew D. Upchurch. “The Virtuoso Awards promote the dedication of these agencies, advisors and partners, and serve as an inspiration to the entire network. Each year I’m amazed at how our members and partners go above and beyond to create a new standard, and I am very proud of these outstanding Virtuosos.” Agency/Advisor Awards (as voted by preferred partners)Most Hospitable Agency: Avenue Two Travel, Villanova, PennsylvaniaMost Innovative Advisor: Fernando Gonzalez, First in Service Travel, New York, New YorkVirtuoso Rising Star: Jessica Renshaw, Renshaw Travel, Vancouver, BC, CanadaMost Admired Advisor – Asia/Pacific: Tina Killeen, Spencer Travel, Sydney, AustraliaMost Admired Advisor – Canada: Cindy Ducasse, TTI Travel, Toronto, Ontario, CanadaMost Admired Advisor – Europe/Middle East/Africa: James Merrett, Black Tomato, London, UKMost Admired Advisor – Latin America/Caribbean: Fernanda Martin del Campo, ITG – International Travel Group, Mexico City, MexicoMost Admired Advisor – USA: Mickey Weill, Protravel International, Beverly Hills, CaliforniaPartner Awards (as voted by travel agency members)Airline of the Year: Emirates AirlineSpecialty Partner of the Year: Travelex Insurance ServicesSustainable Tourism Leadership – Partner: Wilderness SafarisCruise Line of the Year: AmaWaterways Virtuoso also honoured four outstanding cruise performers:Top Producer – Virtuoso Voyages: Gina Morovati, Northstar CruisesMost Innovative Advisor – Cruise Sales: Leah Bergner, Coastline Travel AdvisorsVirtuoso Cruise Ambassador of the Year – Member: Ruth Turpin, Cruises Etc. TravelVirtuoso Cruise Ambassador of the Year – Partner: Mark Conroy, Silversea Cruises awardsVirtuoso
appointments airlinesLufthansa Group Alain Chisari has been appointed as the new Vice President Sales Asia Pacific for Lufthansa Group Airlines, effective September 2018. Chisari will be based in Singapore and manages ales activities of the Lufthansa Group Airlines (Lufthansa German Airlines, SWISS and Austrian Airlines) and also Brussels Airlines, in Asia Pacific.For the last five years Chisari he served as Chief Commercial Officer and Member of the Management Board at Edelweiss Air AG, the sister company of Swiss International Air Lines. Prior to that he was Head of External Relations & Alliances and Head of Leisure Sales Switzerland at SWISS. He also held various positions with Delta Air Lines in Germany, Austria, South Africa and the UK after he had worked in corporate sales functions at British Airways and American Airlines.“I’m very excited to embark on this new journey in a dynamic and vibrant region. Asia Pacific is growing at an exponential rate and I’m really looking forward to being part of, driving and leading Lufthansa Group Airlines in Asia Pacific into continuing success. And few of the key objectives is to focus on current Joint Venture and partnership opportunities with the Asian carriers, as well as maximising the Lufthansa Group digitalisation and innovation initiatives in the markets,” he said.IMAGE: Alain Chisari
Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Comments Share Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke From the moment U.S. Federal Judge Susan R. Nelson ordered an end to the NFL lockout, questions started to emerge. Are players now free agents? Can they all go back to work? What the hell is going on?ESPN legal analyst Roger Cossack joined Sports 620 KTAR’s Gambo and Ash Monday to shed a little light on the situation.“It’s big, big news and there’s a lot more coming,” he said. “As of right now there is no more NFL lockout. If the players want to return to work tomorrow, today, they can. They have gone back to what was the previous collective bargaining agreement. D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ Top Stories
Top Stories Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires “The numbers just jump off the charts,” he said. “I’m having fun. And it goes all to the guys around me because they’re playing at a high level and makes me have to raise my play to a different level.” Dansby’s rise coincides with that of the entire defense, which has emerged over the course of the season as one of the best in all of football. The Cardinals are coming off a dominant performance in a 17-10 win over the Seattle Seahawks, holding the NFC West leaders to 192 net yards, a season-low 10 first downs, a third-down conversion percentage of just 15.3 as well as an average of 3.8 yards per play. It was the seventh time this season the Cardinals have allowed 15 points or fewer in a game, with the Cards winning each time. Scary thing is, Cardinals coach Bruce Arians thinks his defense could be even better.“I think we can grow a lot more,” he said Monday. “They’re still learning some nuances of the defense. The core of the defense is going to return.”The core, yes, but not all. Dansby, in particular, will be a free agent at the conclusion of the season, and while he says his preference is to return to Arizona, he understands there are no guarantees. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact “It all depends on the situation,” he said. “We’ll see. It’s here, it’s around the corner, really, and once the season’s over we’ll address it then.”Dansby is not the only key member of the defense not guaranteed to return next season. Defensive coordinator Todd Bowles’ name has started to pop up in head coaching rumors, and Arians said he’d “be shocked” if he doesn’t get any interviews.Granted, that does not mean he’ll get a job, but it would be understandable if a team decided to give him a shot.“I hope he’s here next year,” Dansby said. “But if opportunities present itself, you want what’s best for him and his family also, so if the opportunity presents itself and he takes it, you can’t do nothing but take your hat off to him because he’s done an excellent job.”Bowles and Dansby may be the most visible of people who could be winding down their careers in Arizona, though neither seems anxious to leave town. However, it would be unrealistic to assume every member of what has become an outstanding defense will be back in 2014, which is a reality Arians understands. As it is, six of the team’s 11 defensive starters in Sunday’s game were not with the team last season, and nine of the 15 defensive players to record a tackle in the game are in their first season in Arizona. “Change is inevitable in the NFL now,” Arians admitted. “There is no way this team will be put back together. But, we’re going to keep every component that we can possibly.“Some guys are going to test the market. Hopefully what’s happened in our locker room is worth some dollars, because if you can’t match dollars, we can at least match that.” TEMPE, Ariz. — Karlos Dansby has had an outstanding season for the Arizona Cardinals.“Definitely the Defensive Player of the Year, I think you’re looking at him,” the linebacker said Monday. “Nobody’s outplayed me, man. I’ve got stats in every category.”Dansby’s 109 solo tackles rank second in all of football, and he’s also tallied 6.5 quarterback sacks, four interceptions — two of which he’s returned for touchdowns –, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and 18 passes defensed. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Comments Share Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling
0 Comments Share So, how have the Cardinals really done?“I give it a double,” ESPN NFL insider John Clayton told Doug and Wolf Friday on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM of the Veldheer signing. “It’s not a home run; it’s not Joe Thomas, it’s not the best left tackle. But it’s a solid left tackle that can get in there and play for many, many years.“He’s a good, solid player.”Clayton said Branden Albert, who ended up in Miami, and Eugene Monroe, who stayed in Baltimore, may have been better options, but the Cardinals did well given the fact that they weren’t likely to get them anyway.So, enter Veldheer, who was a fixture along the Raiders’ offensive line at left tackle.“It’s a guy that can come in, be there for four or five years and then you make an evaluation on that,” he said. “He’s a good player, good guy, so I give it a solid double.”Given that some would say the left tackle position has more closely resembled a groundout in which the runner trips over first base, a solid double isn’t too bad.But then there’s Ginn, the former first-round pick who is expected to bring an element of speed to the Cardinals offense. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact The early returns for what the Arizona Cardinals have done in free agency, at least on a local level, have been pretty positive. Their two biggest moves, signing Raiders left tackle Jared Veldheer and Panthers receiver Ted Ginn, Jr., appear to have filled two of the team’s biggest holes.Left tackle? Check. Fast wide receiver? Check. But while the Cardinals were filling needs with seemingly capable players, many other teams around the NFL were adding Pro Bowl talents to their rosters. “I like the fact that as a third receiver he’s a guy that has some speed,” Clayton said. “He’s definitely got the ability to return.“I don’t know if he’s that much better than Andre Roberts, but I think he’s different and he has some explosion to him.”Ginn said Thursday he probably runs a 40-yard dash in around 4.38 seconds, and he averaged a career-best 15.4 yards per reception last season. His skill set would appear to be a good fit with the team’s personnel.“They’ve got Floyd, they’ve got Larry Fitzgerald, so I think it helps,” Clayton said. “Because it helps on special teams and it definitely gives another weapon on offense.” Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Your browser does not support the audio element. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires LISTEN: John Clayton, ESPN NFL Insider