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Yesterday β€” October 18th 2019Your RSS feeds

Are We Ready for the Breastfeeding Father?

By Carl Cederstrom

He has intrigued and disgusted for millenniums. He has also remained largely hypothetical, until now.

Hong Kong Court Rules Against Same-Sex Unions

By Tiffany May and Gerry Mullany

The decision is a setback to efforts to expand recognition of such partnerships in Asia, after Taiwan’s recognition of gay marriage stirred hopes among many.

United Group in talks to buy Vivacom

By Julian Clover

United Group, the private equity-backed cable company, is holding exclusive talks to purchase Vivacom, Bulgaria’s largest telecoms group.

The Bulgarian entrepreneur Spas Roussev confirmed in July that the country’s largest cable operator had been put on the market.

Roussev currently owns 46% of Vivacom, with VTB (20% minus one share) and Delta Capital (19%) the two other main shareholders.

Vivacom is valued in the region of €1.2 billion.

United Group is owned by CBC Partners with a minority stake held by the buyout specialist KKR.

In June, United Group completed the €220 million purchase of Tele2 Croatia.

The company also owns SBB, Telemach Slovenia and Telemach Bosnia and Herzegovina.

United Group in talks to buy Vivacom

By Julian Clover

United Group, the private equity-backed cable company, is holding exclusive talks to purchase Vivacom, Bulgaria’s largest telecoms group.

The Bulgarian entrepreneur Spas Roussev confirmed in July that the country’s largest cable operator had been put on the market.

Roussev currently owns 46% of Vivacom, with VTB (20% minus one share) and Delta Capital (19%) the two other main shareholders.

Vivacom is valued in the region of €1.2 billion.

United Group is owned by CBC Partners with a minority stake held by the buyout specialist KKR.

In June, United Group completed the €220 million purchase of Tele2 Croatia.

The company also owns SBB, Telemach Slovenia and Telemach Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The Return of Golden Age Design

By Tim McKeough

With so many glass towers vying for attention in New York City, some developers are looking to the past for inspiration. The result: new buildings with Art Deco and neo-Georgian flourishes.

United Group in talks to buy Vivacom

By Julian Clover

United Group, the private equity-backed cable company, is holding exclusive talks to purchase Vivacom, Bulgaria’s largest telecoms group.

The Bulgarian entrepreneur Spas Roussev confirmed in July that the country’s largest cable operator had been put on the market.

Roussev currently owns 46% of Vivacom, with VTB (20% minus one share) and Delta Capital (19%) the two other main shareholders.

Vivacom is valued in the region of €1.2 billion.

United Group is owned by CBC Partners with a minority stake held by the buyout specialist KKR.

In June, United Group completed the €220 million purchase of Tele2 Croatia.

The company also owns SBB, Telemach Slovenia and Telemach Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Beto O'Rourke: Congress should block Trump from hosting G-7 at his Doral resort

By Vandana Rambaran

Former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke, one of the Democrats seeking to unseat President Trump in 2020, urged Republicans in Congress to envoke a clause of the Constitution that potentially would block President Trump from hosting the G-7 summit at a Trump resort in Doral, Fla.

Pelosi, Schumer say Trump 'is flailing' after cease-fire deal

By Morgan Phillips

Pelosi and Schumer released a statement Thursday saying President Trump is "flailing" in light of his decision to reverse sanctions against Turkey in exchange for a “sham” ceasefire. They asserted this would undermine American credibility and send a “dangerous message” to both allies and adversaries that the American word cannot be trusted. 

PPF Group closes in on CME

By Chris Dziadul

The Czech Republic’s PPF Group could be only days away from acquiring Central European Media Enterprises (CME).

According to Reuters, quoting reports published by Hospodarske Noviny and Aktualne.cz (Czech Republic) and Capital (Bulgaria), a deal would see PPF Group, which is headed by the Czech billionaire Petr Kellner, acquire the stake in CME currently held by AT&T, and formerly Time Warner. This amounts to 64% of the company’s shares but effectively 75% through preferred shares.

Although CME and PPF Group have refused to comment on the reports, the former confirmed in a conference call accompanying its latest set of results that its strategic review, which is considering the sale of all or part of the company, is still under way.

CME has been present in Central and Eastern Europe since the early 1990s and owns commercial broadcasters in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria.

Russia eyes DTH platform merger

By Chris Dziadul

Russia’ National Satellite Company, which operates under the name Tricolor, is in talks to buy a 100% stake in NTV-Plus.

Tricolor is currently the leading DTH and pay-TV operator in Russia in terms of subscriber numbers, while NTV-Plus is the country’s longest established DTH platform, having made its debut in the mid-1990s.

According to Comnews, quoting a report in Fontanka, the deal could be worth around R65 billion (€913 million) and happen at the end of this year or the beginning of 2020.

One likely scenario would then see Andrei Tkachenko, the owner of Tricolor, merge his company with NTV-Plus and then sell part of its shares to Gazprom Media Holding.

Another possibility would see NSK buy a 49% stake in NTV-Plus for between R30-36 billion.

Significantly, Tricolor could itself be sold to Sberbank.

A merged Tricolor/NTV-Plus operation would have in the region of 15 million subscribers.

PPF Group closes in on CME

By Chris Dziadul

The Czech Republic’s PPF Group could be only days away from acquiring Central European Media Enterprises (CME).

According to Reuters, quoting reports published by Hospodarske Noviny and Aktualne.cz (Czech Republic) and Capital (Bulgaria), a deal would see PPF Group, which is headed by the Czech billionaire Petr Kellner, acquire the stake in CME currently held by AT&T, and formerly Time Warner. This amounts to 64% of the company’s shares but effectively 75% through preferred shares.

Although CME and PPF Group have refused to comment on the reports, the former confirmed in a conference call accompanying its latest set of results that its strategic review, which is considering the sale of all or part of the company, is still under way.

CME has been present in Central and Eastern Europe since the early 1990s and owns commercial broadcasters in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria.

Russia eyes DTH platform merger

By Chris Dziadul

Russia’ National Satellite Company, which operates under the name Tricolor, is in talks to buy a 100% stake in NTV-Plus.

Tricolor is currently the leading DTH and pay-TV operator in Russia in terms of subscriber numbers, while NTV-Plus is the country’s longest established DTH platform, having made its debut in the mid-1990s.

According to Comnews, quoting a report in Fontanka, the deal could be worth around R65 billion (€913 million) and happen at the end of this year or the beginning of 2020.

One likely scenario would then see Andrei Tkachenko, the owner of Tricolor, merge his company with NTV-Plus and then sell part of its shares to Gazprom Media Holding.

Another possibility would see NSK buy a 49% stake in NTV-Plus for between R30-36 billion.

Significantly, Tricolor could itself be sold to Sberbank.

A merged Tricolor/NTV-Plus operation would have in the region of 15 million subscribers.

Before yesterdayYour RSS feeds

New platform from Toya

By Chris Dziadul

The Polish cable operator Toya has unveiled a new platform named Maxx.

An enriched version of its 3G platform, it includes a 4K receiver and two channels – Funbox UHD and Ultra TV 4K – in the format.

Its official launch is due to take place in November and by year’s end it will include seven-day catch-up, start over and a global search engine.

The 4K receiver is manufactured by Korea’s Arion and based on advanced software from TiVo. It can work in both IP (GPON) and HFC networks and has a built-in DOCSIS cable modem to ensure interactivity.

Commenting on the development, Jacek Kobierzycki, general director of Toya, said that preparations for the implementation of the new platform lasted nearly two years and were carried out in an international team with the key participation of its own Development Department.

New platform from Toya

By Chris Dziadul

The Polish cable operator Toya has unveiled a new platform named Maxx.

An enriched version of its 3G platform, it includes a 4K receiver and two channels – Funbox UHD and Ultra TV 4K – in the format.

Its official launch is due to take place in November and by year’s end it will include seven-day catch-up, start over and a global search engine.

The 4K receiver is manufactured by Korea’s Arion and based on advanced software from TiVo. It can work in both IP (GPON) and HFC networks and has a built-in DOCSIS cable modem to ensure interactivity.

Commenting on the development, Jacek Kobierzycki, general director of Toya, said that preparations for the implementation of the new platform lasted nearly two years and were carried out in an international team with the key participation of its own Development Department.

New platform from Toya

By Chris Dziadul

The Polish cable operator Toya has unveiled a new platform named Maxx.

An enriched version of its 3G platform, it includes a 4K receiver and two channels – Funbox UHD and Ultra TV 4K – in the format.

Its official launch is due to take place in November and by year’s end it will include seven-day catch-up, start over and a global search engine.

The 4K receiver is manufactured by Korea’s Arion and based on advanced software from TiVo. It can work in both IP (GPON) and HFC networks and has a built-in DOCSIS cable modem to ensure interactivity.

Commenting on the development, Jacek Kobierzycki, general director of Toya, said that preparations for the implementation of the new platform lasted nearly two years and were carried out in an international team with the key participation of its own Development Department.

Serbia Broadband on a roll

By Chris Dziadul

More than 200,000 households now use SBB’s Eon smart box, while the Eon application is used on more than one million mobile devices and computers in the region.

In just one year, nearly 300,000 households have chosen Eon packages, which give access to over 230 channels, 68 of which are in HD.

Separately, SBB has introduced a new Cooperative package that comes as an addition to Pink channels.

It consists of four 24-hour channels and can also be received through the Eon app on tablets, PCs and mobile.

Serbia Broadband on a roll

By Chris Dziadul

More than 200,000 households now use SBB’s Eon smart box, while the Eon application is used on more than one million mobile devices and computers in the region.

In just one year, nearly 300,000 households have chosen Eon packages, which give access to over 230 channels, 68 of which are in HD.

Separately, SBB has introduced a new Cooperative package that comes as an addition to Pink channels.

It consists of four 24-hour channels and can also be received through the Eon app on tablets, PCs and mobile.

CME’s good year continues

By Chris Dziadul

Central European Media Enterprises (CME) has posted net revenues of $138,851,000 for the third quarter, up 1.3% (actual) and 7.3% (like of like) on the same period last year.

Its OIBDA amounted to $41,411,000 (+15.8%, 23.2%), while the net income for Q3 was $13,745,000, compared to $66,571,000 in the same period last year.

In its latest set of results the company notes that year-to-date highlights making include making a €50 million debt repayment in September. This brought the total amount of debt repayments in the year, using cash generated by the business, to €150 million.

Commenting on the results, Michael Del Nin, co-CEO, said: “We head into the final months of 2019 with another outstanding set of results that improve our outlook, leading us to raise our OIBDA guidance for the third time this year. The ability of the business to generate increasing amounts of cash remains impressive, driving further deleveraging and enabling us to repay additional debt. In fact, with another payment in the third quarter, we have now repaid more than half a billion dollars of debt in the last two years.”

Christoph Mainusch, co-CEO, added: “We saw a very successful start to the fall season, resulting in higher prime time audience share in each of our country operations during the quarter, and widening our lead over our nearest competitor in three segments. On the strength of that audience performance, we grew TV ad market share in four countries, led by the Czech Republic, which continued to deliver impressive results.”

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