Price cuts impact Morrisons’ sales and profits

first_imgMorrisons has unveiled plunging profits and like-for-like sales (LFLs) for the first half of the year, following its price cutting strategy.first half of the year, following its price cutting strategy.The company said underlying profit before tax had dropped by 51% from £371m to £181m for the period to 3 August 2014 and that LFLs were down by 7.4%.Earlier this year Morrisons embarked on a three-year £1bn investment programme to cut prices and plans to open 200 new sites.Sir Ian Gibson, non-executive chairman, said: “Our first-half results reflect the reset of the business we announced in March. Morrisons is now well under way with building the foundations for a better future. The board is confident of the new strategy and Morrisons’ financial position remains strong.”last_img read more

A wellspring of hope

first_img The local economy of Pinalito in the Domican Republic is based on agriculture. Community leader Luis Ciprian grows potatoes in this field. Photos courtesy of Christopher Lombardo/SEAS Ramos later examined a broken tap stand to be replaced. Crossing borders with water Christopher Lombardo (left) and William Jameson ’16 tested the flow rate from one of the newly installed tap stands. Harvard student Manuel Ramos ’15 and Luis Ciprian discussed construction plans.center_img The relief in Pinalito is palpable. The water is clean again.For the past 2½ years, students in the Harvard University chapter of Engineers Without Borders have been rehabilitating and improving a potable water system in the rural town in the Dominican Republic. After the most recent visit, the students returned to campus in late August having successfully worked with the community to upgrade the water quality and distribution system.“The residents now have a clean source of water, something they haven’t had for five or more years,” said the group’s adviser, Christopher Lombardo, assistant director for undergraduate studies in engineering sciences at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS). “The well that was built by a government contractor had failed; it had been improperly installed and was clogged with clay. The new, productive, and clean water well can produce 27 gallons a minute.”When the Harvard team first arrived, the community was skeptical. By working with translators and speaking with people who lived there, the students built the trust needed to move the project forward in the most beneficial way for the town.“From the beginning, we designed a system with the community,” said Leah Gaffney ’15, the Harvard chapter president, who had visited on two of the five earlier excursions. The new water main provides a more reliable supply of water to the village. “We walked around with community members and talked about water sources and options. We did an extensive analysis of options: Should we dig a new well or pipe water from the existing spring? We acted as consultants to determine the best way to go forward,” said Gaffney, who studies biomedical engineering at SEAS.Indeed, community-driven development programs comprise the heart of the mission of Engineers Without Borders-USA, a humanitarian organization working worldwide to design and build sustainable engineering projects in full partnership with host communities. SEAS, for its part, encourages students to take advantage of such opportunities abroad.“We want our students to be aware that although we’re teaching them engineering in Cambridge, there are many other perspectives they’ll need to consider when they go further afield — and they won’t always have access to a state-of-the-art lab,” said Fawwaz Habbal, executive dean for education and research at SEAS. “The role of an engineer is to help solve problems, to improve life. But it’s only by listening and engaging with the stakeholders that a sustainable solution can take root.”After each field research visit, the student team returned to Harvard and consulted with engineering faculty and staff in the SEAS Teaching Labs, as well as other professionals in the Engineers Without Borders network. A technical advisory committee reviewed all of the visitors’ work.“We also worked on education,” said Gaffney, explaining that she and her fellow students visited local schools and talked with children about water purification and the importance of good sanitation.“I’m most proud of the relationships we have fostered in the community, and the mutual pride in the project,” she said.Located in a mountainous region in central Dominican Republic, Pinalito’s modest houses are made of tin, wood, and concrete. The homes perch on a hillside that slopes down to a river.The students knew going in that poor water quality is linked to gastrointestinal illness and larger public health concerns.“A critical part of the project was to pipe water into people’s homes. Before that, they were taking buckets down to the river and carrying water back up,” said Tunde Demuren ’15, a mechanical engineering concentrator and project leader who made four trips to the area.The team’s largest design improvement involved changing the site of the well.“It made sense to drill a well on the opposite side of the river where there are the highest density of houses,” said Lombardo.After consulting with the community, it was agreed that the well and pipes would be located on property owned by a community leader, Luis Ciprian, primarily because he had paperwork to show ownership of the land.William Jameson ’16, an electrical engineering concentrator and project leader, had designed wiring for the electrical pump systems on a previous visit. He returned in August to add additional piping to improve the water pressure and reliability of the system, and to construct more robust metal-and-concrete tap stands.Students worked for 12 hours a day, from dawn until dusk, and were integrated into the life of the community.“We had lunch in the community every day. We bought groceries, and Luis’ wife, Daisy, would make chicken, rice, beans, and avocado,” said Jameson.“It was a really great experience, more personable and enjoyable than I thought it would be,” said Sylvia Percovich ’15, who visited for the first time in August as one of the team’s translators. “I saw the community embrace the people as much as the project. I felt like I was coming home to a family that my friends were part of.“I thought I was only going to translate, but was completely immersed in the project. It was a crash course, a very hands-on experience. I didn’t know how to fix a pipe, but I could pass tools to people or go to the grocery store,” Percovich said.The most recent quality test determined the water was clean, and the well was deemed to satisfy community demands. To ensure that the system will continue to operate successfully, the community has voted to pay a small monthly fee to an elected treasurer to maintain the project.At the final community meeting, Manuel Ramos ’15, a Dominican national, announced the project’s success in Spanish: “La agua es igual que el botellón.” (“The water is just like bottled water.”) The residents applauded. They threw a party for the team and asked about future community infrastructure projects.“Engineers Without Borders shows there are people out there trying to make the world a slightly better place,” said Percovich.last_img read more

GBA to host ‘Shuttle Time’ programme from today

first_imgTHE Guyana Badminton Association runs off its Badminton World Federation & Pan American Shuttle Time programme today at the National Gymnasium and the Guyana Olympic Association.The programme, which will run from June 23 to 25, 2017 is expected to feature two sessions, the first of which is theoretical and will take place during the mornings from 09:30hrs to 12:30hrs at the GOA officeThe afternoon sessions will take a practical approach at the National Gymnasium with today’s activity commencing at 15:00hrs and going until 19:00hrs. Sessions on Saturday and Sunday start at 13:30hrs and end 17:00hrsThe course will be facilitated by Mr Richard Wong (BWF Shuttle Time tutor & coach).The course teachers will have access to free resources, training and equipment, to support the teaching of enjoyable, safe and inclusive badminton activities to children aged 5-15 years old.Shuttle Time lessons are designed to provide children with a positive image of badminton through many opportunities to have fun, engage with others, and experience success.last_img read more

Syracuse rides bumpy road to victory over RIT, closes in on conference summit

first_img Related Stories Greco adds confidence to veteran leadership, finds form as second-line forward With 2:07 left on the game clock and her team skating with an empty net, Rochester Institute of Technology’s Kristina Moss’s shot left her stick just above the right faceoff circle. The puck flew through the crowd of her teammates and SU defensemen, thrashing around in front of Kallie Billadeau’s goal and over her right shoulder, lasering toward the corner of the net.The Tigers’ traveling fans standing atop the near bleachers leaned forward, ready to celebrate. Instead, a loud clank, groans and more desperate dicing of skates filled Tennity Ice Pavilion. The Orange held on for a 2-1 win that moves SU within a point of the College Hockey America conference summit. The RIT fans sang “Happy Birthday,” taunting the “gift” of a deflection SU so gladly accepted.“I was like ‘Oh s***, I just got really lucky,” Billadeau said.The final two-plus minutes were a chaotic testament to a game in which the Orange (18-11-1, 12-3-1 CHA) proved its quality, but lost its cool under fire from chippy and intentional RIT penalties, both called and uncalled. The early lead and control from Akane Hosoyamada’s well-crafted opener was muddied and lost, as the contest slipped in and out of broken end-to-end play and trips to the penalty box for both teams. Though the Orange attack created better and more frequent chances, when needed, the defense threw itself in front of shots, preserving the narrow win.But there was no foreshadowing the nervy win. SU won the opening faceoff and skated like a team fresh and peaking at the perfect time in the season. Danielle Leslie and Hosoyamada passed back and forth around the perimeter, setting up SU’s offense. Leslie skated off to the left, just beneath the blue line and squared the puck over to Hosoyamada at the point. She hesitated, stepped to her right and let loose a slow, placed shot that snuck inside the left post of RIT’s goal.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSU looked set to cruise as RIT could hardly skate out of its own half in response.“It was awesome,” senior forward Jacquie Greco said. “There’s nothing better than having all the energy out on the ice in your favor so it was really awesome having the momentum the first period.”Outshot 13-4 to start, RIT turned to an uglier brand of hockey. Just 3:30 into the game, Tenecia Hiller pounced on SU defender Nicole Renault, lying on the ice. Hiller punched Renault’s torso twice before getting up, skating off and dragging her stick along Renault’s collar.There was more to come, as the second period lit up the scoreboard with penalties. But SU’s offense was still ticking at a pace the Tigers could not keep up with, and the game spun out of control. When Holly Carrie-Mattimoe slipped a drop-off pass breaking down the right wing to a surging Julie Knerr, RIT goalkeeper Ali Binnington skated 15 feet out of her crease. Knerr tried to duck past Binnington, but ran into her left shoulder instead, sending Binnington three feet in the air, perpendicular to the ice.Knerr was whistled for charging. After the play, when her momentum took her into the boards behind the goal, Hiller, Moss and Melissa Bromley kicked and punched Knerr as she lay on the ice.“That’s their M.O., that’s the way they play,” head coach Paul Flanagan said. “We know it. That’s the fourth time we’ve played them.”The Orange couldn’t punish RIT on any of the five power plays, but more importantly, it limited the Tigers to its lone power-play goal. Carrie-Mattimoe, Shiann Darkangelo and their teammates jumped in front of shots all night, Carrie-Mattimoe doing so crucially on a Danielle Read attempt in the final minute as RIT scrambled together its longest, most threatening possession, skating six on five.The game fell badly from the smooth passing grace with which it opened, but at 9:10 p.m. Saturday night, both teams resigned to their locker rooms. The ice was empty and hadn’t yet been cleaned, and it still showed the skated scars and small mounds of grinded ice from the game’s conclusion.And tellingly, in a valley of finely ground ice chips and skate marks, the puck sat behind Billadeau’s goal. Not in it.“We’re the team that’s trying to get first place, not them. They’re just trying to get points,” Greco said. “That’s the difference between us, we were trying to get first place out there.” Comments Published on February 11, 2013 at 12:24 am Contact Jacob: [email protected] | @Jacob_Klinger_center_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Jim Boeheim addresses Syracuse’s search for a third assistant coach

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on March 20, 2017 at 9:57 pm Contact Paul: [email protected] | @pschweds With the dust settling after Mike Hopkins’ departure for Washington and Jim Boeheim’s contract extension, the next step for Syracuse is to hire a third assistant coach to replace Hopkins on its coaching staff.Boeheim, the Orange’s 41-year head coach, said he’s not worried about filling Hopkins’ void because of his confidence in SU’s two other assistants, Adrian Autry and Gerry McNamara. Still, Hopkins was Boeheim’s longest-tenured assistant and a key to Syracuse’s recruiting efforts.“He knew a lot of ins and outs of things. Contacts (for recruits), just his attitude, what he brought was great,” Boeheim said of what Hopkins provided SU. “It’ll be tough (to replace) so we’re going to look for an experienced guy that can duplicate some of those things if he can.”Hopkins, who had been an assistant with Syracuse for 22 years, worked with the Orange’s centers while Autry primarily works with the forwards, and McNamara with guards. Both Autry and McNamara were hired as assistants in 2011, but Autry previously worked as an assistant coach at Virginia Tech. Without a head coach-designate, Syracuse promoted Autry to associate head coach because of his experience over McNamara. Boeheim said it was “an easy decision.”While Boeheim said “ideally” he hires someone to work with the centers, he’s open to bumping someone to that spot to best fit all three. Boeheim mentioned how both himself and Hopkins started as assistant coaches working with guards before moving to big men. He added that because of Autry and McNamara’s proven skills as recruiters, “we probably don’t need a great recruiter.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textFollowing Hopkins accepting the head coaching job at Washington, it was important to Boeheim to retain both Autry and McNamara with the Orange to keep continuity in the program and with recruits. He said both assistants received offers from other schools since Saturday. Neither planned to leave with Hopkins, Boeheim said. The UW coaching staff will be filled by former Syracuse player Jason Hart, Tim O’Toole and Will Conroy, who was already with the Huskies, according to The Seattle Times.Between Boeheim, Hopkins, Autry and McNamara, Syracuse’s staff consisted entirely of SU alumni. But Boeheim said having previous ties to the program isn’t a prerequisite for the new assistant while mentioning prior assistants who didn’t fit that criteria either.“Never has. We try to get the best guy. If he happens to be a Syracuse guy, that’s great,” Boeheim said. “He doesn’t have to be. Troy Weaver was a great assistant coach as was Rob Murphy. I could name a few others. We will get the best we can get for this position.”Boeheim said he’s not in a rush to hire the new assistant, saying it could happen either “tomorrow” or within the next two weeks.Boeheim plans on calling whomever he wants to hire and seeing if they’re interested rather than interviewing candidates.“I learned a long time ago you bring three people in for an interview and you like all three, then how do you decide?” Boeheim said. “So I don’t like to confuse myself.”Compared to earlier in his career, Boeheim said each assistant talks to their respective position groups more during practices and games. But in terms of making in-game decisions and running practice, nothing has changed in his head coaching career.Boeheim didn’t single any candidates he has in mind, but said he thinks Syracuse is in a good position no matter who he hires.“We will get somebody else in here,” Boeheim said. “We will hire a very good assistant coach and move forward.”Senior Staff Writer Connor Grossman contributed reporting to this article. Commentslast_img read more

Game 5 brings a big win, but a bigger loss for the Warriors

first_imgCan championship mettle overcome the most unfortunate of circumstances and bring the Warriors back from a three-games-to-one deficit?Related Articles TORONTO — Can heart win a title?Can guile carry the Warriors to two more wins? Warriors resemble team of old, Kevon Looney isn’t ready, and other thoughts from loss to Trail Blazers Why the Warriors want … Click here if you’re unable to view the video or photo gallery on your mobile device.last_img

After hitting ‘wall,’ Sharks’ lineup may have more traditional look

first_imgSAN JOSE — Sharks coach Pete DeBoer said he might go back to dressing 12 forwards and six defensemen for Friday’s game against the Los Angeles Kings even if Tomas Hertl is unavailable to play.DeBoer labeled Hertl, who has missed the last four games with a lower body injury, as doubtful to play against the Kings. The team will know more Friday morning with the game, the Sharks’ last at home this month, at 1 p.m.The Sharks looked lethargic in their 5-1 loss to the Winnipeg Jets on Wednesday …last_img read more

Nedbank comes to community’s aid

first_imgRay Maota Nedbank donated 200 blankets to the Little Stars and Poelano early childhood learning centres. Afro-Pop sensation Zahara, Councillor Siphiwe Mshaisa of Ward 2 Orange Farm, Flory Nxumalo of Poelano, Kone Gugushe of Nedbank, Josephine Mofokeng of Little Stars, and, Dennis O’Donnell, station manager of SAfm, were on hand to celebrate the occasion. Kone Gugushe of Nedbank is confident that this year’s campaign will be successful. Lebogang Ntsoereng, a housing beneficiary, helping to build her new home.(Images: Ray Maota) MEDIA CONTACTS • Nkosinathi Msiza  Nedbank senior communications manager  +27 11 295 5360 RELATED ARTICLES • Needy pupils kitted out for school • Career guidance initiative launched • Nedbank achieves carbon neutrality • Nedbank invests in water projectBanking group Nedbank kicked off its annual winter campaign for this year by giving blankets to young children in Orange Farm, in the south of Johannesburg, and building houses for the area’s motivated volunteers.Now in its third year, the programme was launched at Stratford Ext 2, an area of the township that has a high unemployment rate, on Tuesday 5 June.Bringing hope where there is littlePupils at Little Stars and Poelano centres, who were given a total of 200 blankets to get them through the chilly season, were only too happy to receive some reprieve from the cold weather.The no-fee centres take in orphans and children whose parents cannot afford to pay crèche fees. Little Stars looks after 98 children while Poelano has 48 pupils under its care.Later in the day came the unveiling of a housing project in which Nedbank partnered with insurance companies Old Mutual and Mutual and Federal as well as non-profit organisation Habitat for Humanity to build 11 homes for some of the special residents in the area.The beneficiaries of the houses, which are near completion, have helped build houses for other disadvantaged families since the start of the campaign in 2009.“There are 533 stands here at Stratford Ext 2 in Orange Farm and Habitat for Humanity has built 233 houses,” said Michael Mamabolo of Habitat.How does it work?Habitat, which was founded in 1976, builds houses for communities living in poverty in South Africa, by focusing on simple, decent designs that are also practical to live in. They have branches in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town.The initiative has several criteria for choosing beneficiaries within their volunteer programme. Some of the prerequisites are that:• the total monthly income for the family must be no more than R3 500 ($415);• the famliy must be living in sub-standard housing, but own the land on which the house will be built as per the standards of the housing department;• they must qualify for a government housing subsidy; and• family members must perform sweat equity in terms of Habitat standards – this involves spending a minimum of 60 hours helping other families to build their homes.“Sweat equity means they must have worked at least 60 hours helping build other homes before they can be helped to build their own,” said Mamabolo.Why Orange Farm?Orange Farm is a relatively under-developed settlement that lies 50km south of Johannesburg. It was initially established by residents who settled in the area in 1988 and grew exponentially before its status was turned into that of a formal township by the City of Johannesburg two years later.Residents were then given ownership of the land and were free to build their own homes if they wished to do so.The area has a 50% unemployment rate and an average income per household of about R1 500 (US$170).Nedbank and Old Mutual are both sponsoring the building of five houses each, and Mutual and Federal is sponsoring one. Habitat’s involvement comes in the form of gathering volunteers to do the actual building.This year Nedbank is investing R500 000 (US$59 373) towards its nationwide drive and is further encouraging its employees, clients and all South Africans to donate blankets, which can be dropped off at Nedbank branches across the country.Multi-award winning singer Zahara, who is also Nedbank’s financial fitness ambassador, made an appearance, along with the municipality’s ward councillor for the area, Siphiwe Mshaisa.Nedbank’s executive for corporate social responsibility, Kone Gugushe, said they are honoured to be able to make this contribution to the community of Orange Farm.“Social sustainability is the key to a prosperous nation,” she said, adding that over the past two years, the company has received amazing support for its winter project.Through the generosity and support of Nedbank employees, its clients and ordinary South Africans, she said, this year’s campaign will be an even greater success.National radio station SAfm, which is the media sponsor of the campaign, was represented by station manager Dennis O’Donnell, who said: “It gives SAfm great pleasure to partner on a campaign of this magnitude.“We look forward to bringing you live coverage from the nine provinces that we will be visiting where people will be telling their stories that will awaken us as a society to do more in our communities.”Zahara, who expressed her familiarity with the conditions in which disadvantaged families live, recounted a childhood for her and her siblings in which they sometimes had to go to school with no shoes.“That’s what makes me so happy to be part of a campaign that makes a difference in the lives of ordinary people.”The next stop for the campaign is the Free State, one of the coldest provinces in South Africa.last_img read more

Lalu’s home presents a picture of 1996 CBI raid

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Devendra Fadnavis tightens grip on Maharashtra BJP

first_imgThe big mystery of the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance — how many seats each party will get and who will get more — may have shifted focus from the clout of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in the Maharashtra unit of the BJP. Last week, however, as some spurts of rebellion arose in the Mumbai unit following the finalisation of some city seats, the true extent of Mr. Fadnavis’ dominance of the party in his State, a five-year project, was revealed.The list of candidates released by the Maharashtra BJP saw the sidelining of several bigwigs, many of whose relations with Mr. Fadnavis had soured of late. The fact that the high command in Delhi backed him fully on the list, though some of those replaced (like Ghatkopar MLA Prakash Mehta) are considered close to Union Home Minister Amit Shah, is significant.Eased outOne of the biggest names to be excluded was Education Minister Vinod Tawde, who was denied ticket from Borivili, one of the safest seats for the BJP. Relations between Mr. Fadnavis and Mr. Tawde have not exactly been rosy since 2014, when the former became a surprise choice of Chief Minister. The seat was given to Sunil Rane, considered close to both Mr. Fadnavis and Union Roads and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari, ensuring that the latter too provided support to the candidate, in the face of obvious hurt feeling among Mr. Tawde’s supporters.Within Mumbai, the choices for Colaba (replacing sitting MLA and local strongman Raj Purohit with Nationalist Congress Party turncoat Rahul Narvekar) and Ghatkopar East (replacing veteran Prakash Mehta with Parag Shah) were decisions that led to much heartburn and even some acts of violence by supporters of Mr. Mehta.Mr. Rajpurohit, considered a strong leader with his origins in Rajasthan, had embarrassed the Fadnavis government with certain utterances. His replacement with Mr. Narvekar, who has only recently joined the BJP from the NCP, however was the blow that hurt the most, according to his supporters.BJP sources, however, say Mr. Narvekar is the perfect replacement not just because his brother Makarand Narvekar is a BJP corporator but more importantly because he is the son-in-law of Ramraje Naik Nimalkar, senior NCP leader and Chairperson of the Maharashtra Legislative Council. “Nimbalkar is one of the biggest supporters for [NCP leader] Sharad Pawar, and this move has neutralised an aggressive NCP move on that seat,” a BJP source said.In Mr. Mehta’s case, it was a relationship that began on a promising note with Mr. Fadnavis being helped by the former to move into the late Gopinath Munde’s turf, turning sour after 2016-17 when certain corruption allegations were levelled against Mr. Mehta who was Housing Minister. Considered a strong leader among the city’s Gujarati community, he has been replaced by young gun Parag Shah.The most tricky replacement was that of Jalgaon strongman Eknath Khadse, who was placated after ticket was given to his daughter, Rohini Khadse-Khewalkar, instead.In one fell swoop, there has been a generational and factional shift in the Maharashtra BJP. Mr. Fadnavis has stamped his authority on the Maharashtra BJP.last_img read more