Posts belonging to Category entrepreneur

Trump’s election consultants filmed saying they use bribes and sex workers to entrap politicians

Dirty tricks to swing elections

Cambridge Analytica, a  company at the centre of the Facebook data breach (harvesting of more than 50 million profiles), boasted of using honey traps, fake news campaigns and operations with ex-spies to swing election campaigns around the world, a new investigation reveals.

Executives from Cambridge Analytica spoke to undercover reporters from Channel 4 News about the dark arts used by the company to help clients, which included entrapping rival candidates in fake bribery stings and hiring prostitutes to seduce them.

In one exchange, the company chief executive, Alexander Nix, is recorded telling reporters: “It sounds a dreadful thing to say, but these are things that don’t necessarily need to be true as long as they’re believed.”…  March 20, 2018

Soros: Only the EU can break Facebook and Google’s dominance

Social media giants have left the US government impotent – Europe must lead the way

The current moment in world history is a painful one. Open societies are in crisis, and forms of dictatorships and mafia states, exemplified by Vladimir Putin’s Russia, are on the rise. In the United States, President Donald Trump would like to establish his own mafia-style state but cannot, because the constitution, other institutions, and a vibrant civil society won’t allow it.

Not only is the survival of open society in question; the survival of our entire civilisation is at stake. The rise of leaders such as Kim Jong-un in North Korea and Trump in the US have much to do with this. Both seem willing to risk a nuclear war in order to keep themselves in power. But the root cause goes even deeper. Mankind’s ability to harness the forces of nature, both for constructive and destructive purposes, continues to grow, while our ability to govern ourselves properly fluctuates, and is now at a low ebb.

Facebook and Google effectively control over half of all digital advertising revenue. To maintain their dominance, they need to expand their networks and increase their share of users’ attention. Currently they do this by providing users with a convenient platform. The more time users spend on the platform, the more valuable they become to the companies.…  March 16, 2018

The store of the future

Inside Amazon Go

Long lines at checkout are common at grocery stores. But at Amazon’s new cashier-free store, you’ll only need to worry about clumps of tourists. The small test store in Seattle, which opened to the public for the first time on Monday, could be what automated shopping spaces will look like in the future. It uses cameras and sensors to detect what food you’ve taken from a shelf, then automatically charges you when you walk out. I stopped by to try out the store, located in the base of Amazon’s corporate skyscraper, on Thursday morning. Three days after its grand opening, the massive lines had mostly disappeared. There were only a handful of shoppers inside at 10:15 a.m., but business picked up at lunchtime and there was a short line to enter.

To walk in, you need a few things: an Amazon account, a recent smartphone, and the Amazon Go app. You enter the 1800-square-foot space through six high-tech turnstiles. Open the app and wave a code on your screen above a gate to open it. It’s a familiar experience to anyone who has ridden a subway or used a mobile boarding pass at the airport.…  January 29, 2018

Walmart/Rakuten deal to compete with Amazon

Walmart to launch online grocery delivery in Japan

Walmart has struck a partnership with e-commerce firm Rakuten Inc to launch an online grocery delivery service in Japan, its latest effort to forge an alliance with a popular homegrown chain to crack a competitive international market.

The world’s largest retailer, officially known as Wal-Mart Stores Inc, said on Thursday the service will launch in the latter half of 2018.

Walmart’s leadership is looking for new ways to grow its international business, which is no longer the growth engine it once was, as it has grappled with economic woes in Brazil and competition from discount retailers in Britain.…  January 26, 2018

AI is more profound than electricity or fire

 Just how big a deal is artificial intelligence?

AI is probably the most important thing humanity has ever worked on. I think of it as something more profound than electricity or fire.” That’s a bold claim for anyone to make, but even more significant given the speaker: Google(GOOGL) boss Sundar Pichai. He was giving his take on the frontier technology in a speech at the World Economic Forum inDavos, Switzerland, on Wednesday. Pichai, Google CEO since 2015, has pushed his firm deeper into developing artificial intelligence under parent company Alphabet (GOOGL).

In Davos, he described the joy his family experienced when they got their first telephone and how it changed their lives. Pichai thinks AI has the same potential for people today, with multiple positive applications such as education and renewable energy.…  January 25, 2018

Trump angers US solar installers with panel tariff

Job creator, or job killer?

U.S. President Donald Trump signed into law a steep tariff on imported solar panels on Tuesday, a move billed as a way to protect American jobs but which the solar industry said would lead to thousands of layoffs and raise consumer prices.

The 30 percent tariff on solar panels is among the first unilateral trade restrictions imposed by the administration as part of a broader protectionist agenda to help U.S. manufacturers, but which has alarmed Asian trading partners that produce lower cost goods. The administration also introduced a tariff on imported washing machines. “You’re going to have people getting jobs again and we’re going to make our own product again. It’s been a long time,” Trump said as he signed the order.

But the solar industry countered that the move will raise the cost of installing panels, quash billions of dollars of investment, and kill tens of thousands of jobs, raising questions about whether Trump’s move will backfire by triggering mass layoffs.…  January 24, 2018

What is Davos 2018?

Who is attending the World Economic Forum?

THE world’s most powerful leaders will meet tomorrow at Davos 2018 for an annual four-day elite conference known as the World Economic Forum. But what is Davos 2018 and who is attending the World Economic Forum? A global political get-together for around 2,500 movers and shakers from the worlds of business, politics, finance and media, the World Economic Forum is held annually each year in the town of Davos.

The mountain resort sits high up in the eastern Alps of Switzerland in Graubunden, the largest and and most eastern member state of the country. It is home to one of the Switzerland’s biggest ski resorts and is also the highest “town” in Europe at 1,560m. Davos 2018 will run from January 23 to 26 under the theme of “Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World” and will be the the 48th forum to date.…  January 23, 2018

The 1% grab 82% of all wealth

More than $8 of every $10 of wealth created last year went to the richest 1%

That’s according to a new report from Oxfam International, which estimates that the bottom 50% of the world’s population saw no increase in wealth.

“The billionaire boom is not a sign of a thriving economy but a symptom of a failing economic system,” said Winnie Byanyima, executive director of Oxfam International.

The head of the advocacy group argued that the people who “make our clothes, assemble our phones and grow our food” are being exploited in order to enrich corporations and the super wealthy. The study, released ahead of the World Economic Forum in Davos, was produced using data from Credit Suisse’s(CS) Global Wealth Databook. …  January 22, 2018

Which hedge funds deliver double-digit gains for 2017?

A $3 trillion industry

A handful of hedge funds ended 2017 with double digit returns, their investors said, at a time the $3 trillion industry took in fresh money and posted its best returns in years, industry data show.
Activist hedge fund Marcato Capital Management, which waged proxy fights at Buffalo Wild Wings and Deckers Outdoor Corp. last year, ended 2017 with a 25.6 percent gain at its flagship fund while its smaller Encore portfolio climbed 22.6 percent.

Atlantic Investment Management, which focuses on bets that inexpensive stocks will appreciate in value, posted a 16.4 percent gain in its Cambrian Global Fund. … Thu., 11  January 2018

Wall Street worried by the lack of worry

Some investors are acting as if the market will never go down again

The stock market is sizzling. Companies are touting the bonuses they are giving thanks to lower taxes. And consumers are spending with gusto.
But some experts are worried that a sense of invincibility is starting to creep in among investors. Some are acting as if the market will never go down again.
“Investors are starting to feel a little too overconfident for my liking,” Jamie Cox, managing partner for Harris Financial Group, said in a recent report. “There is a clearly a confidence I haven’t seen in 10 years.” … Tue., 09  January 2018