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    Business Wire India

    The Valence Group, the world's largest chemicals and materials investment banking boutique, has hired Matthew Page as Director. Matthew, who will be based in the firm's New York office, brings extensive senior-level M&A experience across multiple sub-sectors of the chemical industry in the Americas, Europe and Asia.

     

    Matthew has over 15 years of chemicals investment banking experience and >$50 billion worth of announced transactions as an M&A investment banker, including most recently at Evercore, and earlier at Lazard and Morgan Stanley. He also holds a Masters’ degree in Chemistry from the University of Exeter, England.

     

    Peter Hall, Partner, said: "We are excited to have Matthew become the latest senior level addition to our growing global team. Our clients will benefit from the combination of his geographically diverse client base, transactional track record in both commodities and specialties, and deep knowledge of the chemicals industry.”

     

    Matthew commented: "I am very pleased with the opportunity to join The Valence Group and help further accelerate its already impressive growth. Industry-focused investment banking firms are clearly gaining market share from the more generalist bulge bracket firms. As the only truly global chemicals and materials investment banking firm, The Valence Group is positioned to offer its clients a level of insight and transaction expertise not otherwise available in the marketplace. I look forward to working with the Valence team to leverage my experience and technical skills for the benefit of the firm's clients."

     

    About The Valence Group

     

    The Valence Group is a specialist investment bank offering M&A advisory services exclusively to companies and investors in the chemicals, materials and related sectors. The Valence Group team includes a unique combination of professionals with backgrounds in investment banking and strategic consulting within the chemicals and materials industries, all focused exclusively on providing M&A advisory services to the chemicals and materials sector. The firm’s offices are located in New York and London.

     

    http://www.valencegroup.com

     

     

     

     

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    Business Wire India

    TSYS (NYSE: TSS)  announced it has completed its acquisition of TransFirst, a leading U.S. merchant solutions provider. TransFirst and TSYS’ existing merchant businesses will be combined under the TSYS brand to create the 6th largest merchant acquirer in the U.S. based on revenue and the 3rd largest integrated payments provider in the U.S. TransFirst’s president and chief executive officer, John Shlonsky, has been elected as Senior Executive Vice President of TSYS, and will lead the combined businesses reporting to Pam Joseph, president and chief operating officer-elect of TSYS.

     

    TransFirst is a market leader with its partner-centric distribution model supporting more than 1,300 integrated technology and referral partners in strategically attractive areas that include integrated software vendors (ISVs), healthcare, not-for-profit, referral banks, associations and e-commerce.

     

    The combined businesses serve some 645,000 merchant outlets in the U.S. with approximately $117 billion in transaction volume. The business will continue its focus on the large and growing small and medium size business (SMB) market, enhancing TSYS’ offering and position in the high-growth areas of integrated payments, e-commerce and omni-channel services.

     

    “The acquisition of TransFirst, gives us the technology, scale, and distribution capabilities that propel us to a leadership position within merchant acquiring similar to the scale and strength we have in issuer processing and prepaid program management. Our position and strength in these three key areas of payments further diversifies our business and makes TSYS unique among its peers,” said M. Troy Woods, chairman, president and chief executive officer, TSYS. “We are excited to have John and his team on board, and believe the growth and expansion of services to the business community will drive long-term shareholder value.”

     

    “Moving forward from the excitement of this day, and becoming a part of TSYS, our mission is to leverage our joint capabilities and products seamlessly, so our customers are able to rely on just one provider for their processing services,” said John Shlonsky, president and chief executive officer, TransFirst. “We will combine automation and technology to support an integrated platform to deliver relevant products and solutions to our partners and merchants — not just process transactions.”

     

    TransFirst previously operated as a privately held company, under the ownership of Vista Equity Partners.

     

    "We are delighted that with John's continued leadership, the technology, scalability and talent that TransFirst is bringing to TSYS will be integrated to drive further innovation and leadership in the industry," said Robert F. Smith, founder, chairman and chief executive officer of Vista Equity Partners.

     

    Additional details about the acquisition, as well as revised 2016 guidance for TSYS, will be discussed on the company’s first-quarter analyst call on April 26, 2016.

     

    About TSYS

     

    TSYS® (NYSE: TSS) unlocks opportunities in payments for payment providers, businesses and consumers. Our headquarters are in Columbus, Georgia, USA, and we operate in more than 80 countries with local offices across the Americas, EMEA and Asia-Pacific.

     

    We provide seamless, secure and innovative solutions across the payments spectrum — from issuer processing and merchant acquiring to prepaid program management — delivered through partnership and expertise. We succeed because we put people, and their needs, at the heart of every decision. It’s an approach we call ‘People-Centered Payments®’.

     

    Our industry is changing every day — and we’re leading the way towards the payments of tomorrow. We routinely post all important information on our website. For more, visit us at tsys.com.

     

    About Vista Equity Partners

     

    Vista Equity Partners is a U.S.-based investment firm with offices in Austin, Chicago and San Francisco, with more than $20 billion in cumulative capital commitments. It currently invests in software, data and technology-based organizations led by world-class management teams with long-term perspective. Vista is a value-added investor, contributing professional expertise and multi-level support that enables companies to realize their full potential. Vista’s investment approach is anchored by a sizable long-term capital base, experience in structuring technology-oriented transactions and proven management techniques that yield flexibility and opportunity in private equity investing. For more information, please visit www.vistaequitypartners.com.

     

    Forward Looking Statements

     

    This press release contains “forward-looking statements” – that is, statements related to future, not past, events. Forward-looking statements often address our expected future business and financial performance and often contain words such as “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “believe,” “should,” “plan,” “potential,” “will,” “could,” and similar expressions. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, among others, statements about TSYS’ belief that the acquisition of TransFirst will drive long-term shareholder value. These statements are based on the current beliefs and expectations of TSYS’ management and are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties. We believe these forward-looking statements are reasonable; however, undue reliance should not be placed on any forward-looking statements, which are based on current expectations. Actual results may differ materially from those contemplated by these forward-looking statements. A number of important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements, including our ability to achieve expected synergies and successfully complete the integration of TransFirst, and the other risks and uncertainties discussed in TSYS’ filings with the SEC, including its 2015 Annual Report on Form 10-K. We do not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise.

     

     

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    Business Wire India

    EIG Global Energy Partners (EIG) today announced that Rex Chung has joined the firm as a Managing Director and Co-Head of Asia, based in the firm’s Hong Kong office. As a senior member of EIG’s team, Mr. Chung will be responsible for overseeing investor relations, coordinating co-investment, and helping to source transactions and develop EIG products for the Asia-Pacific Region.

     

    "Rex brings a diverse and truly global perspective of our industry to EIG and we are fortunate to have him join our team," said EIG CEO R. Blair Thomas. "With the Asia Pacific region likely to drive global demand for energy for the next several decades we believe it’s imperative to have strong relationships with the leading energy companies and financial players in the region. Having senior leadership in Rex Chung and his Co-Head Yangyang Liu underscores our commitment across Asia and Australia."

     

    "I have known and respected EIG for years and the opportunity to contribute to the firm’s strategic vision and growth is tremendously exciting,” said Chung. “EIG is unique in its depth of industry experience and its long track record, identifying investments and managing assets during various market cycles. Energy demand in Asia-Pacific continues to grow and EIG has a great opportunity to work with investors and companies across the region as it expands its regional presence. I look forward to working with EIG’s management and global team and contribute to the firm’s ongoing success.”

     

    Previously, Mr. Chung was the Head of both the Asian Client and Partner Group and the Capital Markets teams at KKR. Prior to joining KKR, he spent 16 years at UBS Investment Bank and its predecessor firms (including SG Warburg) in both the equity and investment banking divisions based in New York, London, and Hong Kong. Mr. Chung holds a B.Soc.Sc. from the University of Ottawa and an M.A. from the Graduate School of International Studies of Yonsei University. Mr. Chung also serves as a trustee for several nonprofit organizations, including Greenwich Academy, the Trinity School of New York City, the Advisory Board for the Korean American Community Foundation, and as Chairman of the Fencers Club of New York.

     

    About EIG

     

    EIG specializes in private investments in energy and energy-related infrastructure on a global basis and had $14.7 billion under management as of December 31, 2015. During its 34-year history, EIG has invested $21.5 billion in the sector through more than 300 projects or companies in 35 countries on six continents. EIG is headquartered in Washington, D.C. with offices in Houston, London, Sydney, Rio de Janeiro, Hong Kong and Seoul. For more information, please visit www.eigpartners.com.

     

     

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    Business Wire IndiaMax Life Insurance, one of India’s leading non-bank promoted private life insurers, a joint venture between Max Financial Services Ltd and Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Co. Ltd, has been conferred with the prestigious Outlook Money Award 2015 in the category 'Life Insurance Provider of the Year'. The award was given by Mr. N K Singh, Former Parliamentarian and Senior Bureaucrat, at a function held in Mumbai on 1st April 2016.

    The Outlook Money Awards are given to the best providers of financial products and services in the Country. The Award is given basis a comprehensive set of measures including business performance, customer satisfaction parameters and corporate governance.

    Acknowledging the Award, Mr. Rajesh Sud - Executive Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Max Life Insurance, said, “We are delighted and extremely proud to be conferred with the Outlook Money Award 2015 in the category 'Life Insurance Provider of the Year. In our 15 year journey, we have focused on building a quality life insurance business. This award is an acknowledgement of our efforts to build a customer centric franchise which believes in doing what is right for its customers. The Award will encourage us to recommit the company to further improve in the areas of customer retention, cost management, corporate governance, compliance and customer service including claims management.”

    To reach a decision on the winner, Outlook Money followed a comprehensive selection process, before selecting Max Life Insurance as the winner as ‘Life Insurance Provider of the Year’. The data and information shared by all participating companies was verified by CARE and the Outlook Money editorial team. These applications were then reviewed by a jury headed by Mr. Vinod Rai, former Auditor and Comptroller General of India to arrive at the winners.

    About Max Life Insurance Co. Ltd. (www.maxlifeinsurance.com)

    Max Life Insurance, the leading non-bank promoted private life insurer, is a joint venture between Max Financial Services Ltd. and Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Co. Ltd. Max Financial Services Ltd. is part of the Max Group, which is a leading Indian multi-business corporation, while Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance is a member of MS&AD Insurance Group, which is amongst the leading insurers in the world. Max Life Insurance offers comprehensive long term savings, protection and retirement solutions through its high quality agency distribution and multi-channel distribution partners. A financially stable company with a strong track record over the last 15 years, Max Life Insurance offers superior investment expertise. Max Life Insurance has the vision 'To be the most admired life insurance company by securing the financial future of our customers'. The company has a strong customer-centric approach focused on advice-based sales and quality service delivered through its superior human capital.

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    Business Wire India

    A consortium of leading financial institutions and investors today announced a new partnership under the Catalytic Finance Initiative (CFI) to direct $8 billion in total commitments toward high-impact sustainable investments. Partners joining the CFI include AllianceBernstein (AB); Babson Capital Management LLC, a subsidiary of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual); Crédit Agricole CIB; European Investment Bank (EIB); HSBC Group; International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group; and Mirova, a subsidiary of Natixis Group, all of which have pledged capital and expertise to develop and advance innovative financing structures for investments in clean energy and other sustainability focused projects. In addition, the Aligned Intermediary, representing a group of long-term institutional investors, will collaborate on specific investment opportunities with members of the partnership. This announcement follows last year’s ratification of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and the historic climate agreement in Paris. It aims to promote the SDG objectives, including acting on climate change and advancing access to clean energy and water.

     

    The CFI was originally launched by Bank of America in 2014 with a $1 billion commitment and a goal to stimulate at least $10 billion in new investment into high-impact clean energy projects through additional partnerships. Today, it has expanded to include several leading financial organizations with their own capital commitments. By working together, this leading group of global financial institutions and investors can combine their efforts to increase funding and significantly accelerate the transition to clean energy solutions and advancing the SDGs.

     

    CFI partners bring expertise in a broad range of financial specialty areas. This includes clean energy infrastructure finance, green bonds, project finance, green asset-backed securities, emerging markets investment and advisory assistance, and approaches to blending public and private finance.

     

    In a joint statement, CFI partners highlight the importance of this initiative:

     

    “Financial innovation and capital play a critical role in the transition to a low-carbon economy. Through the Catalytic Finance Initiative and this joint partnership, together we can support the transition to a low-carbon economy and sustainable growth. By providing $8 billion in commitments, we can help to advance new investment opportunities in clean energy as well as other sustainable development goals and achieve the necessary scale for a positive impact on climate change.”

     

    The Aligned Intermediary
    The Aligned Intermediary (AI) is a new investment advisory group created to help large scale, long-term investors (LTIs) channel significant amounts of institutional capital into climate infrastructure investments including clean energy, water infrastructure, and waste-to-value projects. The AI will guide its LTI partners — sovereign funds, pension funds, endowments, insurance companies, family offices, and foundations — around all levels of capital investment; early-stage, growth and project finance.

     

    Specifically, AI will source, screen, conduct due diligence, and structure transactions that satisfy specific goals related to risk-adjusted financial rates of return for each partner, as well as assist in deal monitoring and facilitating post-close value creation for the life of an investment when requested.

     

    Additional information about AI can be found at www.alignedintermediary.org.

     

    AB
    AB is a leading global investment management firm that offers high-quality research and diversified investment services to institutional investors, individuals and private wealth clients in major world markets.

     

    At December 31, 2015, AB Holding owned approximately 36.7% of the issued and outstanding AB Units and AXA, one of the largest global financial services organizations, owned an approximate 62.8% economic interest in AB.

     

    Additional information about AB may be found on our website, www.abglobal.com.

     

    Babson Capital Management LLC
    Babson Capital Management LLC is one of the world’s leading asset management firms, with approximately $223 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2015. Through proprietary research, analysis and a focus on investment fundamentals, the firm and its global affiliates develop products and strategies that leverage its broad expertise in global fixed income, structured products, middle market finance, commercial real estate, alternatives and equities. A member of the MassMutual Financial Group, Babson maintains a strong global footprint with operations on four continents and clients in over 20 countries. MassMutual Financial Group is a marketing name for Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual) and its affiliated companies and sales representatives. MassMutual is a leading mutual life insurance company that is run for the benefit of its members and participating policy owners. Learn more at www.babsoncapital.com and www.massmutual.com.

     

    Bank of America
    Bank of America is one of the world's leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 47 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 4,700 retail financial centers, approximately 16,000 ATMs, and award-winning online banking with approximately 32 million active users and approximately 19 million mobile users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and more than 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

     

    Bank of America Merrill Lynch is the marketing name for the global banking and global markets businesses of Bank of America Corporation. Lending, derivatives, and other commercial banking activities are performed globally by banking affiliates of Bank of America Corporation, including Bank of America, N.A., member FDIC. Securities, strategic advisory, and other investment banking activities are performed globally by investment banking affiliates of Bank of America Corporation (“Investment Banking Affiliates”), including, in the United States, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated, which is a registered broker-dealer and member of SIPC, and, in other jurisdictions, a locally registered entity. Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated and Merrill Lynch Professional Clearing Corp. are registered as futures commission merchants with the CFTC and are members of the NFA. Investment products offered by Investment Banking Affiliates: Are Not FDIC Insured * May Lose Value * Are Not Bank Guaranteed.

     

    Visit the Bank of America newsroom for more Bank of America news, and click here to register for news email alerts.

     

    www.bankofamerica.com

     

    Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank
    Crédit Agricole CIB is the Corporate and Investment Banking arm of the Crédit Agricole Group, the world’s No. 9 largest bank by total assets (The Banker, July 2015). The Bank offers its clients a comprehensive range of products and services structured around six major divisions:

     
    • Client Coverage & International Network
    • Global Investment Banking
    • Structured Finance
    • Global Markets
    • Debt Optimisation & Distribution.
    • International Trade & Transaction Banking

    The Bank provides support to clients in large international markets through its network with a presence in major countries in Europe, America, Asia Pacific and the Middle East.

     

    For more information, please visit its website at www.ca-cib.com.

     

    European Investment Bank (EIB)
    The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the European Union's bank. They are the only bank owned by and representing the interests of the European Union Member States. The EIB works closely with other EU institutions to implement EU policy.

     

    As the largest multilateral borrower and lender by volume, the EIB provides finance and expertise for sound and sustainable investment projects which contribute to furthering EU policy objectives. More than 90% of activity is focused on Europe but also supports the EU's external and development policies.

     

    www.EIB.org

     

    The HSBC Group
    HSBC Holdings plc, the parent company of the HSBC Group, is headquartered in London. The Group serves customers worldwide from around 6,000 offices in 71 countries and territories in Asia, Europe, North and Latin America, and the Middle East and North Africa. With assets of US$2,410bn at 31 December 2015, HSBC is one of the world’s largest banking and financial services organisations.

     

    HSBC Global Banking & Markets
    HSBC Global Banking & Markets is an international wholesale business serving major corporate, institutional and government clients. It has a broad international network with offices in more than 60 countries and territories, with strong expertise across developed and emerging economies. Global Banking & Markets has deep knowledge across a wide range of products and services including: financing; debt and equity capital markets; acquisition, project and export advisory and financing; foreign exchange, fixed income and equities; payments and cash management and securities services.

     

    IFC
    IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our capital, expertise, and influence, to create opportunity where it’s needed most. In FY15, our long-term investments in developing countries rose to nearly $18 billion, helping the private sector play an essential role in the global effort to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. Since starting to track the climate-smart components of its investments and advisory services in 2005, IFC has provided more than $13 billion in long-term financing for renewable power, energy efficiency, sustainable agriculture, green buildings and private sector adaptation to climate change. For more information, visit www.ifc.org

     

    Mirova
    Mirova, a subsidiary of Natixis Asset Management, S.A. (Natixis AM), is operated in the U.S. through Natixis Asset Management U.S., LLC (Natixis AM US). Natixis AM US is a US-based investment adviser, that is a wholly owned entity of Natixis AM. Natixis AM US utilizes the investment and research expertise of Mirova, which Natixis AM US then combines with its own expertise, and services from Natixis AM when providing advice to clients.

     

    Mirova offers a global responsible investing approach involving Equities, Fixed Income, General and Renewable Energy Infrastructure, Impact Investing, and Voting and Engagement. It has €6.1 billion in assets under management and €42.9 billion in Voting and Engagement. Its team of circa 60 multidisciplinary experts includes specialists in thematic investment management, engineers, financial and environmental, social and governance analysts, project financing specialists and experts in solidarity finance.

     

    Limited liability company –Share capital A 7 461 327.50 – Regulated by AMF under n° GP 02-014 – RCS Paris n°394 648 216

     

    MIROVA is a NATIXIS ASSET MANAGEMENT subsidiary

     

    Source: Mirova – 31/12/2015

     

     

     

     

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    Business Wire India 

    Brickwork Ratings is pleased to announce Dr. M Govinda Rao as the Chief Economic Advisor.
     
    Dr. M Govinda Rao is an economist with an outstanding record as a policy maker and institution builder. He was a Member of the Fourteenth Finance Commission and prior to that, a member of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister of India.  His other engagements include Emeritus Professor, National Institute of Public Finance Policy, New Delhi and Non-resident Senior Fellow at the National Council of Applied Economic Research, New Delhi, Advisor, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India LLP.  His past positions include Director, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, New Delhi (2003-13), Director, Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bangalore (1998-2002), and Fellow, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia.  Presently, he is a Member of Executive Council of Takshashila Institution, Member, Board of Governors, Institute of Economic Growth, New Delhi and Member, of the Governing Body of Madras School of Economics.
    Dr. Rao has been a consultant to the World Bank, IMF, Asian Development Bank, UNDP, UN (ESCAP) on matters relating to fiscal decentralization and federalism, tax policy and reforms and expenditure management in a number of countries including Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Laos, Mongolia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Russia, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam. 
     
    "Having worked in World Bank, IMF, Planning Commission etc. in addition to his impressive academic achievements, Dr. Rao is uniquely suited to help us advice on matters relating to economy  and provide innovative excellence in leading our research,” said Mr. Vivek Kulkarni, IAS (Retd.) Managing Director of Brickwork Ratings. “Dr. Rao brings first-hand experience in public finance and will be a terrific asset to the institution.”
     
    Dr. Rao has had a number of advisory roles in India and abroad.  He is currently a Member of the Independent Commission for the Reform of International corporate Taxation, an international Commission constituted by the Coalition of Tax Justice.   He is also Member of the Research Advisory Panel of the South Asia Network of Economic Research Institutions (SANEI).  He was a Member of Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission (FSLRC) (2011-13) Government of India; Member, High Level Expert Committee on Universal Health Coverage (2011) Government of India; Member, High Level Expert Committee on Efficient Management of Public Expenditure (2011-12) Government of India; Member, Advisory Group of Eminent Persons to Advise the Finance Minister on G-20 matters (2011-12) Government of India; Chairman, Expert Group on Taxation of Services (2001/02), Government of India  Chairman, Expert Committee on VAT Compensation (2004), Government of India and Member, Expert Group on Decentralized Planning, Member, Tax Reforms and Revenue Reforms Commission, Government of Karnataka (2001-2004).
     
    “I am happy to be associated with Brickwork Ratings, a credit rating agency based in Bengaluru. I look forward to working with a set of people with intellectual bent of mind,” said Dr. M Govinda Rao.
     
    About Brickwork Ratings
     
    Brickwork Ratings was incorporated in August 2007 and has been registered as a credit rating agency with the Securities and Exchange Board of India and has also been recognized by the Reserve Bank of India & approved by NSIC. With these approvals in place Brickwork has been rating all market related instruments and Bank Loan limits under Basel II guidelines as required by Reserve Bank of India and have completed rating and grading assignments for a number of major public sector organizations and private players in the market
     
    Brickwork Ratings is an independent organization backed entirely by Bankers, Credit Rating Agency Professionals and Professors.  Brickwork has a highly independent External Rating Committee with Shri. K N Prithviraj, former CMD of Oriental Bank of Commerce, as the Chairman, Ms. Bharati Rao, former Deputy Managing Director of State Bank of India & Dr. K R S Murthy, former Director of IIM Bangalore, as members. Brickwork has its Corporate Office in Bengaluru and branch offices at Mumbai, New Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Guwahati, besides having representatives in 80 other locations in India.

    Photo Caption: Mr. Vivek Kulkarni greets Dr. M Govinda Rao,  in his new role as Chief Economic Advisor of Brickwork Ratings 

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    Business Wire India

    QNB Group, a leading bank in the Middle East and Africa, announced its results for the three months ended 31 March 2016.

     

    This Smart News Release features multimedia. View the full release here: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160406005757/en/

     
    QNB Group HQ Building in Doha (Photo: ME NewsWire)

    QNB Group HQ Building in Doha (Photo: ME NewsWire)

    For the first three months of 2016, Net Profit was QAR2.9 billion (USD787 million), up by 7.1% compared to last year.

     

    The Group’s prudent cost control policy and strong revenue generating capability allowed it to maintain an efficiency ratio (cost to income ratio) of 22.7%, which is considered one of the best ratios among financial institutions in the region.

     

    Total assets increased by 9.7% from March 2015 to reach QAR550 billion (USD151.1 billion), the highest ever achieved by the Group. This was driven by a growth rate of 16.4% in loans and advances to reach QAR402 billion (USD110.4 billion).

     

    The growth of the Group assets and liabilities has been affected by the sharp devaluation in the Egyptian Pound currency, in which total assets and customer deposits were negatively impacted by QAR7 billion (USD1.8 billion) and QAR5 billion (USD1.4 billion) respectively.

     

    The Group was able to maintain the ratio of non-performing loans to gross loans at 1.4%, a level considered one of the lowest amongst banks in the Middle East and Africa, reflecting the high quality of the Group’s loan book and the effective management of credit risk. The Group’s conservative policy in regard to provisioning continued with the coverage ratio reaching 120% on 31 March 2016.

     

    At the same time QNB Group increased customer funding by 10.1% to QAR403 billion (USD110.7 billion). This led to the Group’s loan to deposit ratio reaching 99.7%.

     

    Total Equity increased by 11.1% from March 2015 to reach QAR60 billion (USD16.6 billion) as of 31 March 2016. Earnings per Share reached QAR3.4 (USD0.9), compared to QAR3.2 in March 2015.

     

    Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) calculated as per the QCB and Basel III requirements stood at 15.8% as of 31 March 2016, higher than the regulatory minimum requirements of the Qatar Central Bank and Basel Committee. The Group is keen to maintain a strong capitalisation in order to support future strategic plans.

     

    QNB Group has maintained its position as one of the strongest rated financial institutions in the region. This is a result of QNB Group’s strong financial position, high quality of its assets and its leading position in the financial sector.

     

    Based on the Group’s continuous strong performance and its expanding international presence, QNB maintained its position as the most valuable bank brand in the Middle East and Africa. This continues to recognise QNB’s position as the leading financial institution across the Middle East and Africa and the value inherent in the QNB brand.

     

    QNB Group is present, through its subsidiaries and associate companies, in more than 27 countries and 3 continents providing a comprehensive range of products and services. The total number of staff is more than 15,300 operating from over 640 locations and with an ATM network of more than 1,400 machines.

     

    *Source: ME NewsWire

     

     

     

     
    MULTIMEDIA AVAILABLE :
    http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160406005757/en/

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    Business Wire India

    Klaus Nyengaard,the former CEO of JustEat, has thrown his weight behind local services marketplace StarOfService (www.starofservice.com). Nyengaard has been appointed Head of Advisory Board, and joins the founders of BlaBlaCar as a fellow investor in the French start-up as it embarks on an ambitious global expansion.

     

    StarOfService helps consumers to find local services to meet their specific needs, including more niche ones like photographers, language teachers or DJs. It has been growing at 600% year-on-year since it was founded two years ago and is the biggest marketplace of its kind in France; more than 100,000 requests are made through the site, and around 10,000 new businesses signing up, each month.

     

    The company is now looking to stamp its mark on new territories in the next six-months including India (www.starofservice.in), Turkey (www.starofservice.web.tr), Australia (www.starofservice.com.au) and Canada (www.starofservice.ca). It is also hoping to have a UK sales and support team in place in London in the next two weeks (www.starofservice.co.uk).

     

    Nyengaard, who led JustEat for five years and laid the groundwork for its eventual £1.5 billion flotation, said: “The unit economics in terms of customer visits and subsequent conversion rates for the site is unprecedented. But what’s really exciting is the next phase.

     

    “While France has provided all that growth and momentum to date, the first data from other embryonic target markets, like the UK, suggests the potential for growth elsewhere is even bigger than in France,” he adds.

     

    “We’ve reached a tipping point in the local services space and I’m convinced someone is rapidly going to take the global lead in this huge marketplace, estimated to be worth $400bn. We are going to ensure that the frontrunner is StarOfService.”

     

    Lucas Lambertini, co-founder and CEO of StarOfService, said: “We are glad to welcome Klaus on-board. He brings with him a wealth of experience in high-growth marketplace businesses as we look to accelerate our plans in France and beyond.

     

    “We have set ourselves very ambitious and aggressive targets, and are confident in achieving those. Our figures show we’re growing almost ten times faster than Thumbtack, the biggest local service marketplace out there right now, recently valued at $1.38bn, but it caters solely for the USA market.

     

    “Our goal is to roll out across 80 countries and become the leading global provider of local services within the next two years. We want to be the Uber of local services,” he says.

     

    StarOfService has raised €1.5m in two funding rounds to date. Investors include BlaBlaCar founders Frédéric Mazzella and Francis Nappez; former eBay and mobile.de executive Ralph Werner; former CEO of Fotolia Oleg Tscheltzoff, plus Point 3 Capital and Kima Ventures. A new Series A funding round is in the pipeline.

     

    The company already has an established presence in key markets such as Italy (www.starofservice.it), Spain (www.starofservice.es), Germany (www.starofservice.de), Brazil (www.starofservice.com.br) and Russia (www.starofservice.ru).

     

     

     

     

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    Business Wire India

    Fitch Solutions announces Fitch Connect, a powerful integrated information platform, delivering Fitch Ratings and Research along with Fundamental Financials, economic data and analytics. Fitch Connect enables credit professionals to make risk management decisions with efficiency and ease.

     

    ‘Fitch is committed to providing credit professionals with transparent, timely and insightful information,’ said Paul Taylor, President and CEO, Fitch Group. ‘We are strengthening our information business with Fitch Connect, which delivers high quality research and data through a sophisticated and flexible platform.’

     

    Analysis conducted by financial professionals receives more scrutiny today than ever before. Demands from new regulations and internal and external compliance audits are adding pressure on risk managers and IT departments to do more with less. The Fitch Connect platform offers a suite of capabilities such as a web interface, data feed, API and Microsoft Excel add-in which are designed to make it easier for users to access, consume and integrate information into their workflows.

     

    ‘We work with credit professionals and bankers every day and have developed a strong understanding of what content and capabilities they need most,’ said Brian Filanowski, Global Head of Product, Fitch Solutions. ‘The Fitch Connect Platform is built using next-generation technology which provides us the ability to quickly respond to our clients’ needs.’

     

    Powered by the same proprietary data used by many of the Fitch Ratings analysts, the Fitch Connect platform offers a robust set of interlinked data and content including:

     
    • Fundamental Financials – the industry’s most comprehensive and high quality data source for bank fundamental financial content in the industry today. The data set covers 30,000+ public and private banks, 11,600 insurance firms, and economic and forecasting data for the majority of the world’s sovereigns.
    • Fitch Credit Ratings – 9,000 rated entities plus the entire Fitch universe of 1.34 million current and historical credit ratings, including four levels of market sector indexing, and 25 rating types.
    • Fitch Research – independent credit research and market commentary from industry and regional specialists who assess the health of issuers across the world’s capital markets covering 31 countries, 24 sectors and 140,000+ research reports.

    All financial data is subject to rigorous quality assurance processes, which provides credit risk managers with the timely and reliable data they need to assess risk. Formerly available from third parties for the last 15 years, Fitch’s Fundamental Financials will now only be offered through Fitch Connect.

     

    About Fitch Solutions

     

    Fitch Solutions is a world-leading provider of credit intelligence and the primary distributor of Fitch Ratings content. Today, 90% of the world’s leading financial institutions, multinational companies, governmental bodies, and consulting firms based in more than 118 countries depend on Fitch content to inform their business decisions. Fitch Solutions is part of Fitch Group. For more information, please see www.fitchsolutions.com.

     

    About Fitch Group

     

    Fitch Group is a global leader in financial information services with operations in more than 30 countries. Fitch Group is comprised of: Fitch Ratings, a global leader in credit ratings and research; Fitch Solutions, a leading provider of credit market data, analytical tools and risk services; BMI Research, an independent provider of country risk and industry analysis specializing in emerging and frontier markets; and Fitch Learning, a preeminent training and professional development firm. With dual headquarters in London and New York, Fitch Group is majority owned by Hearst.

     

     

     

     

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    Business Wire India

    Liquidnet, the global institutional trading network, today announced record global performance in its EMEA, APAC and Canada regions, while also posting strong results in the US.

     

    “As many firms are retrenching, we have been focused on creating differentiated offerings for our buy-side Members in every one of our regions. This strong performance around the globe is confirmation that they are not only valuing these offerings but also taking more advantage of them,” said Seth Merrin, Founder and CEO of Liquidnet.

     

    Liquidnet EMEA

     

    The first quarter of 2016 represented a record quarter for Liquidnet EMEA in overall principal traded as well as algorithm trading, which was up 380% year-over-year. In total, Liquidnet’s buy-side Members traded $39.6 billion in European equities, surpassing the previous best quarter (Q4 2015) by 6.2%. These quarterly results reflect 23% growth compared to the same quarter last year.

     

    “We continue to see consistent growth in total principal traded in European equities, which is in stark contrast to the overall market decline in Q1,” said Mark Pumfrey, Head of Liquidnet EMEA. “As institutions gear up for MiFID II where best execution is paramount and natural block liquidity becomes even more valuable, we expect to see further growth in our core business, Next Gen Algos and Fixed Income offering.”

     

    Liquidnet APAC

     

    Liquidnet’s APAC region also witnessed record trading with buy-side Member firms trading US $7.3 billion in principal, and surpassing the previous best quarter (Q3 2015) by 7%. The region’s recently-launched algos saw tremendous growth, trading in excess of US $1 billion. The first quarter of 2016 also included Liquidnet’s latest market launch with the introduction of Taiwan, Liquidnet’s 12th market in the region and 44th equity market worldwide.

     

    “Despite major industry headwinds, 2015 was a record year for us and we’re happy to see that momentum continue into the first quarter of 2016,” said Lee Porter, Head of Liquidnet Asia Pacific. “While others in our industry may be shying away from the region, we see a lot of potential and remain committed to growing our footprint as evidenced by our recent expansion of our algo offerings and opening up the Taiwanese equity market.”

     

    Liquidnet Americas

     

    Liquidnet Canada also showcased a noteworthy start to the year up 77% from the same quarter last year, with a record average daily volume of 3.6 million shares traded for the first quarter. In the US, Liquidnet reported solid growth with average daily volume of 46 million shares, up 21% compared to the same quarter in 2015. The US EQS team also celebrated a strong quarter, with algo volume up 77% from Q1 2015.

     

    ABOUT LIQUIDNET

     

    Liquidnet is the global institutional trading network where more than 800 of the world’s top asset managers and other like-minded investors come to execute their large trades with maximum anonymity and minimum market impact. As the global leader in large block trading, Liquidnet provides access to unique trading opportunities in 44 markets across five continents. Liquidnet approaches every market with the same bold vision to provide a better, more efficient way to trade on a massive scale. It is this focus on size, combined with the strength of its network, disruptive technology, and commitment to transparency, that is revolutionizing the way equities and corporate bonds are traded. For more information, visit www.liquidnet.com and follow us on Twitter @Liquidnet.

     

    © 2016 Liquidnet Holdings, Inc. and its subsidiaries. Liquidnet, Inc. is a member of FINRA/SIPC. Liquidnet Europe Limited is authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK, is licensed by the Financial Services Board in South Africa, and is a member of the London Stock Exchange and a remote member of the Warsaw Stock Exchange and SIX Swiss Exchange. Liquidnet Canada Inc. is a member of IIROC and a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund. Liquidnet Asia Limited is regulated by the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission as a licensed dealer and a provider of automated trading services pursuant to the Securities and Futures Ordinance and is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore as a Recognized Market Operator. Liquidnet Japan Inc. is regulated by the Financial Services Agency of Japan and is a member of JSDA/JIPF. Liquidnet Australia Pty Ltd. is registered with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission as an Australian Financial Services Licensee, AFSL number 312525, and is registered with the New Zealand Financial Markets Authority as a Financial Service Provider, FSP number FSP3781.

     

     

     

     

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    Business Wire IndiaTata AIA Life Insurance Pvt. Ltd. (Tata AIA Life), the life insurance joint venture promoted by the Tata Group and AIA Group,  has been recognised by Aon Hewitt, the global talent, retirement and health solutions business of Aon plc (NYSE: AON), as a Best Employer for the year 2016. The Aon Best Employers Programme measures and recognises employer excellence worldwide.
     
    “We are truly excited to receive this prestigious recognition. We are proud that we are the only Life Insurer in the country to receive the award this year. In a service industry like ours employees are our only assets. Happy and motivated employees make for happy consumers and distributors. We will continue to build an organisation which respects integrity, is consumer oriented, celebrates innovation and nurtures entrepreneurship.” Said Kristyl Pais Bhesania, Senior Vice President & Head of Human Resource, Tata AIA Life. “At Tata AIA Life, good is at the heart of everything we do. Daily, our employees stretch that extra mile and go beyond to make good happen for our customers and our distribution forces, and we are committed to them. This award generates energy and motivation to further provide a delightful experience to our consumers and distributors,” She added further.
     
    The Aon Best Employers India 2016 study covered 113 companies, cumulatively employing approximately 950,000 employees. A rigorous analysis is run to measure the alignment between intent, design and experience, assessed through:
     

    • CEO survey
    • CEO interview
    • People practices survey
    • Employee opinion survey
    • A shortlisted set taken through an intense on-site audit to validate the details; client names are masked during this process
    • An external panel of unbiased jury to evaluate the participants
     
    Tata AIA Life has taken several initiatives to ensure that its employees enjoy their job, understand clear business goals and deliver to the optimum. The company strongly believes that ‘pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work’. The Company has an innovative performance management and recognition process that ensures that the employees consistently deliver on time with the highest quality.   
     
    “We congratulate Tata AIA Life Insurance on being adjudged an Aon Best Employer. In the difficult times that the insurance industry is going through, Tata AIA ensures due focus on existing talent through nimble and effective practices. Creating a cohesive work environment as indicated by employees in such difficult times is true testimony to being a Best Employer,” Tarandeep Singh, Partner, Talent and Performance Consulting, Aon Hewitt (India)
     
    With more than 15 years of experience in best employer studies across the world, and backed by more than 20 years of experience in employee research, the Aon Best Employers programme compares organisations to identify those that strive to create a competitive advantage through their people and become employers of choice.
      
    About Tata AIA Life
     
    Tata AIA Life Insurance Company Limited (Tata AIA Life) is a joint venture company, formed by Tata Sons Ltd. and AIA Group Ltd. (AIA). Tata AIA Life combines Tata’s pre-eminent leadership position in India and AIA’s presence as the largest, independent listed pan-Asian life insurance group in the world spanning 18 markets in Asia Pacific.
     
    About the Aon Best Employers Study
     
    The Aon Best Employers programme is a global study which was first conducted in 2001. In Asia, it is run in 12 markets: China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Australia and New Zealand. Participation in the programme helps define what makes a winning workplace.

    The Aon Best Employers India 2016 Study, in partnership with BW Businessworld and Bloomberg TV India, covered 113 companies across 12 industries, cumulatively employing approximately 950,000 employees.

    A rigorous analysis is run to measure the alignment between “Intent-Design-Experience” assessed through CEO survey and interview, people practices survey and employee opinion survey for all participating organisations. A shortlisted set is taken through an intense on-site audit to validate the details provided. Client names are masked during this process, and revealed to the jury only post final selection. An external panel of unbiased jury comprising corporate and academic community evaluated the participants and arrived at the final list of India’s 25 Best Employers of 2016.

    About Aon

    Aon plc (NYSE:AON) is a leading global provider of risk management, insurance and reinsurance brokerage, human resources solutions, and outsourcing services. With more than 72,000 colleagues worldwide, Aon unites to empower results for clients in over 120 countries via innovative risk and people solutions. For further information on our capabilities and to learn how we empower results for clients, please visit: http://aon.mediaroom.com
     
    DISCLAIMER:
     
    • Tata AIA Life Insurance Company Limited (IRDA of India Regn. No. 110)                                                 

    CIN U66010MH2000PLC128403;registered and corporate address: 14th Floor, Tower A, Peninsula Business Park, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel, Mumbai – 400 013
     
    • For complete details please contact our insurance advisor or visit the nearest branch office of Tata AIA Life or call 1-860-266-9966 (local charges would apply) or 1-800-267-9966 (toll-free no) or write to us at customercare@tataaia.com. Visit us at: www.tataaia.com or SMS 'LIFE’ to 58888
     
     
    BEWARE OF SPURIOUS PHONE CALLS AND FICTITIOUS/FRAUDULENT OFFERS
    • IRDA or its officials do not involve in activities like sale of any kind of insurance or financial products nor invest premiums
    • IRDA does not announce any bonus. Public receiving such phone calls are requested to lodge a police complaint along with details of phone call and number
     
     

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    Business Wire India

    Bank of America today reported its first-quarter 2016 financial results. The news release, supplemental filing and investor presentation can be accessed in the following ways:

     

    This Smart News Release features multimedia. View the full release here: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160414005764/en/

     

    The company will review these results with investors today at 8:30 a.m. ET. For a listen-only connection to the conference call, dial 1.877.200.4456 (U.S.) or 1.785.424.1732 (international), and the conference ID is: 79795. Please dial in 10 minutes prior to the start of the call.

     

    A replay will be available via webcast through the Bank of America Investor Relations website. A replay will also be available beginning at noon ET on April 14 through 11:59 p.m. ET on April 21 by telephone at 1.800.753.8546 (U.S.) or 1.402.220.0685 (international).

     

    Bank of America
    Bank of America is one of the world's leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 47 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 4,700 retail financial centers, approximately 16,000 ATMs, and award-winning online banking with approximately 33 million active users and approximately 20 million mobile users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and more than 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

     

    Visit the Bank of America newsroom for more Bank of America news, and click here to register for news email alerts.

     

    www.bankofamerica.com

     

     
    MULTIMEDIA AVAILABLE :
    http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160414005764/en/

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    Business Wire India

    WEX Inc. (NYSE: WEX), a leading provider of corporate payment solutions, announced several key milestones as part of its expanding fleet services in Asia, where it has been serving oil companies for nearly a decade.

     

    WEX’s white label solution has expanded from providing hosting and transaction management services for processing fleet payments in Asia to offer a new suite of services including funding of receivables, customer service, and collections for oil companies.

     

    Leveraging WEX’s success and strength in Australia and New Zealand, the company has now expanded its services to Guam, Saipan and Singapore in Asia.

     

    George Hogan, SVP International, of WEX, said: “We are thrilled to better serve the oil companies in Asia that are using our new solutions and continuing to trust us to represent their brands as the partner behind their white label fuel card programs.” Hogan continued, “Our industry-changing solutions and award-winning customer service are meeting the needs of current and future customers in Asia who turn to WEX to help simplify complex payment environments.”

     

    About WEX Inc.

     

    WEX Inc. (NYSE: WEX) is a leading provider of corporate payment solutions. From its roots in fleet card payments beginning in 1983, WEX has expanded the scope of its business into a multi-channel provider of corporate payment solutions representing more than 9 million vehicles and offering exceptional payment security and control across a wide spectrum of business sectors. WEX serves a global set of customers and partners through its operations around the world, with offices in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Italy, France, Germany, Norway, and Singapore. WEX and its subsidiaries employ more than 2,000 associates. The Company has been publicly traded since 2005, and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “WEX.” For more information, visit www.wexinc.com and follow WEX on Twitter at @WEXIncNews.

     

     

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    Business Wire IndiaTweet: @MasterCardAP & @YourSingaporeIN launch #FullfilAPromise bringing exclusive offers for Indian vacationers in #Priceless #Singapore <http://news.mstr.cd/1oIdQHg>

    MasterCard and Singapore Tourism Board (STB) announced a new campaign recently to entice Indian visitors travelling to Singapore. The initiative was launched through a new digital campaign #FulfilAPromise featuring Indian actors’ father-daughter duo Anil Kapoor and Sonam Kapoor.

     
    The MasterCard and STB cross-border campaign offers a chance to fulfil the promise of a holiday to your family by winning a grand prize of a trip for a family of four to Singapore.

    With this collaboration, MasterCard and Singapore Tourism Board will target Indian travellers exploring international destinations for their annual vacations and promote Singapore as a preferred travel destination this Holiday season.
     
    “With summer vacations on the anvil, consumers in India get ready for the upcoming holiday-travel season. We wanted to bring the best of experiences and delight for our cardholders that truly money cannot buy. Experiences like such can be shared and enjoyed with people who matter to you,” said Mr. Parag Bhatnagar, Vice President, Marketing, South Asia, MasterCard. “We are excited to strengthen our partnership with the Singapore Tourism Board to enhance the Priceless experience for visitors to Singapore. Through the campaign and Priceless Surprises, cardholders will stand a chance to win a grand prize vacation in Singapore to fulfil the promises they have made to their loved ones and create memories that will last a lifetime.”
     
    The recent MasterCard Asia Pacific Destinations Index (APDI) revealed that Asia Pacific cities have increasingly dominated as the fastest growing and most visited destinations in the world. Singapore was ranked the second top destination by arrival in Asia Pacific in terms of arrivals, total night stayed and in total expenditure. With Priceless Singapore, MasterCard aims to surprise and delight its Indian cardholders with exclusive experiences and privileged access, designed to be shared and enjoyed with the people who matter to them. MasterCard’s Priceless Singapore will connect people with their passions –shopping, travel, food and entertainment – and gives select access to a collection of exceptional experiences across the city.
     
    “India is an important growth market for us. Having seen a steady increase in tourist numbers from India over the last decade, we crossed the million mark in terms of Indian visitor arrivals in 2015. We want to continue to make every trip to Singapore a memorable one, and are excited to partner with MasterCard to provide exclusive privileges to Indian travellers to enhance the Singapore experience,” said Mr. Chang Chee Pey, Executive Director, Singapore Tourism Board.

                                                  

    As part of the campaign, MasterCard invited its cardholders to submit entries on the MasterCard India and/or Singapore Tourism Board Facebook page by sharing their stories on the promises they have made to their families and how they would like to fulfil these promises in Singapore. The campaign will be held till 6th May 2016. One grand prize winner of the campaign will get a curated stay experience in Singapore and 10 minor reward winners will be awarded with a three night’s getaway in Singapore. The minor rewards will be announced for every week of the campaign period and a grand prize winner will be announced in the second week of May 2016.
                                                
    Echoing his thoughts, Mr. Anil Kapoor, Actor & Producer said “I am delighted to be a part of the campaign as it easily captures the struggle of working parents and their responsibilities towards their families. The campaign is a gentle reminder to all the parents who are busy with their work life and are unable to keep up their promises they make to their families.”
     
    “As a kid, I remember how disappointed I felt when a much-awaited vacation was cancelled due to my father’s busy schedule. The campaign will make the working parents realise that before it’s too late and you regret what you have missed with your family, it’s time to make each moment count and fulfil the promises you have made to the people you love.” said, Ms. Sonam Kapoor, Actress and Anil Kapoor’s daughter.
     
    Exclusive MasterCard Privileges

    The offer will allow MasterCard users to avail special offers with select merchants such as Starwood Hotels, Makemytrip, The Entertainer, Silkair, Gaadit, Accor and Resorts World Sentosa.
                                           
    Singapore is a melting pot of various cultures, eclectic lifestyles and a preferred destination for many Indians while choosing a foreign trip with their families. According to data from the Singapore Tourism Board, Singapore received over one million Indian travellers last year, an increase of 7.4 per cent travellers from 2014. MasterCard’s partnership with STB is to boost the experience of MasterCard cardholders travelling to Singapore.
                          
    About MasterCard
     
    MasterCard (NYSE: MA), www.mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. MasterCard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MasterCardAP and @MasterCardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau.
     
    About the Singapore Tourism Board

    The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is a leading economic development agency in tourism, one of Singapore’s key service sectors. Known for partnership, innovation and excellence, the Board champions tourism and builds it into a key economic driver for Singapore. STB aims to differentiate and market Singapore as a must-visit destination offering enriching experiences through the “YourSingapore” brand. For more information, please visit www.stb.gov.sg and www.yoursingapore.com.
     
    Photo Caption: 
    MasterCard #FulfilAPromise
    MasterCard #FulfilAPromise

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    Business Wire IndiaDHFL, one of India’s leading housing finance companies in the private sector, has been awarded the Golden Peacock Innovative Product and Service Award (GPIPSA) for its innovative “Wealth2Health Fixed Deposit” product.  With this win, DHFL joins the league of large financial institutions that have been past recipients of this award. The awards jury was under the Chairmanship of Justice M. N. Venkatachaliah, former Chief Justice, Supreme Court of India.
     
    These prestigious awards were presented at a specially organized 'Golden Peacock Awards Ceremony' at Hotel "The Meydan" in Dubai (UAE), in the presence of a distinguished gathering of business leaders, academics, boardroom professionals and policy makers. His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Hon'ble Cabinet Minister of Culture & Knowledge Development, Govt. of UAE was the Chief Guest.
     
    On the win, Mr. Harshil Mehta, CEO DHFL said, “This prestigious award validates DHFL’s efforts to foment innovation in the retail liability space and is testimony to the strong customer understanding it has gained over the past three decades by enabling access to home ownership.”
     
    He further added, “I dedicate this award to my entire team who work diligently towards ensuring that DHFL becomes India’s preferred financial partner providing innovative products and services.”
     
    DHFL’s unique “Wealth2Health Fixed Deposit” product enables instant liquidity in case of a health emergency, besides offering best interest rates. The scheme is bundled with attractive features such as Cashless access to network hospitals, discounts ranging from 5 to 25% on various medical services, Access to a doctor 24/7 on call, free second opinion from a panel of specialists and all other existing benefits received by DHFL’s deposit-holders. The DHFL Fixed Deposit Products are rated CARE AAA and BWR (FAAA) ensuring high safety.
     
    Golden Peacock Awards (GPA) was established by the Institute of Directors in 1991. It has not only won wide acceptance among businesses & industry, but also its 'Awards Certification' has achieved recognition and patronage among peers, globally. Golden Peacock Awards Secretariat receives over 1,000 entries per year for various awards, from over 25 countries worldwide. Today, they are recognized worldwide as the hallmark of excellence. GPA helps reward exemplary enterprises for their pioneering efforts. The award assessment process has always been very rigorous, transparent, independent and meticulously defined. The assessment is conducted at three different levels by experienced and trained assessors in respective fields.
     
    About DHFL

    DHFL was founded in 1984 by Late Shri Rajesh Kumar Wadhawan with a vision to provide financial access for Indians to own a home of their own. Today, led by Mr. Kapil Wadhawan, CMD, DHFL, the company is CARE AAA rated and reckoned as one of India’s leading financial institutions with a large presence across the country, in addition to representative offices in Dubai and London.

    Throughout its years of growth, DHFL has stayed true to its core vision of financial inclusion, especially to the low and middle income customers across India. The company’s wide network, coupled with insights into local customer needs, has enabled the company to provide meaningful financial access to customers even in India’s smallest towns. With a strong business foundation, an extensive distribution network, proven industry expertise and a deep understanding of the Indian customer, DHFL is a respected and trusted financial services company in India with a concerted focus towards enabling home ownership to the low and middle income customer. For further information, please visit www.dhfl.com.

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    Business Wire IndiaMillennium Alliance, a multilateral consortium led by India recognized and awarded 33 Indian social enterprises selected through a rigorous year-long process to identify technologies and innovations that impact bottom of the pyramid population in India and could also be successfully deployed in other developing countries in Africa and South East Asia.  

    Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) jointly with the Technology Development Board (Department of Science and Technology, Government of India); United States Agency for International Development (USAID), UK’s Department for International Development (DFID); ICCO Cooperation; ICICI Foundation for Inclusive Growth; Wadhwani Initiative for Sustainable Health (WISH) and the World Bank organized the Millennium Alliance Awards Ceremony for Round 3 on 14 April 2016 at the Federation House in Delhi. The 33 selected enterprises will benefit from multilateral grants totaling Rupees 26 crores.

    A national platform to identify, test, award and scale innovations which bring improvements at the Bottom of the Pyramid (BOP), Millennium Alliance takes an innovation-driven and impact-focused approach to development. The Alliance provides financial as well as capacity building support to Indian entrepreneurs working at the grassroots level.

    The 33 enterprises were awarded under the focus sectors of basic education, affordable healthcare, agriculture/food security, clean energy/climate change and water & sanitation. The projects will be implemented in several Indian states including Bihar, Odisha, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh. From the awarded enterprises, six (6) enterprises are especially picked under South-South category to take these proven innovative solutions from India to other parts of the developing world. These projects will be implemented in Rwanda, Kenya, Uganda, Bangladesh and Nepal.

    The Millennium Alliance has so far received and evaluated over 3000 applications as a result of over 100 pan India roadshows conducted to extensively engage with the social enterprise sector in Tier I, II and III cities.

    Welcoming the guests, Dr. A. Didar Singh, Secretary General, Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) said “Millennium Alliance is a unique partnership to provide financial as well as non-financial support to innovation driven social enterprises to help them test and scale their innovative models in India and other developing countries. Such models should be scaled in national interest and also be replicated in other developing countries through knowledge sharing”.

    In a message shared by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Hon'ble Union Minister for Science & Technology & Earth Sciences, he stated "MA identifies and scales frugal and targeted interventions for Bottom of the Pyramid or poor. I am very happy that the steps followed through the various stages in the Millennium Alliance rounds fall in line with our Honourable Prime Minster's programs like Start-Up, Stand Up, Make in India, Swachh Bharat, Swasth Bharat, Digital India and financial inclusion."

    Sharing his vision, H.E. Shri Richard R. Verma, United States Ambassador to India said “The Millennium Alliance is a testament to the power of the U.S.- India strategic relationship, and the vast opportunities that can be harnessed when governments, citizens, and enterprises come together to solve the most pressing development challenges of our time, both locally and globally.”

    Speaking on Department of Science and Technology’s partnership in the MA, Dr. Bindu Dey, Secretary, Technology Development Board stated “Millennium Alliance is an incredible model for amalgamation of technology with social entrepreneurship”.

    Ms. Bhavna Bhatia, South Asia Regional Program Coordinator, Leadership, Learning & Innovation, World Bank Group also shared that “The Millennium Alliance program is a unique platform to crowd-source and catalyze innovations and grow social entrepreneurs to deepen impact for the poor and underserved.  As knowledge partners to this program, the World Bank is bringing its global experience of crowdsourcing innovative ideas for development challenges, piloting, and helping them to scale-up. This includes sharing innovative business models for last-mile and more cost effective delivery of services such as health, education and water - with other Indian states as well as with other developing countries.  MA can help to surface ideas and solutions to some of the toughest challenges and priority programs of the government today”.

    Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Soumitro Ghosh, CEO, WISH Foundation said “India despite being the hotbed of innovations, has so far very few scale-ups. WISH Foundation in partnership with Millennium Alliance is committed to address this gap and help accelerate hundreds and thousands of scale-ups in healthcare”.

    For further details, please visit: www.millenniumalliance.in

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    Business Wire IndiaWorld-wide recognition for the business excellence and quality service will be the greatest achievement of every organization in the modern competitive era. The leading financial enterprise, UAE Exchange India has attained the victory of recognition and appreciation with the esteemed and most renowned Golden Peacock Business Excellence Award 2016. The consistent and innovative strategies for excellence drive the entire organization to add the most precious feather to its crown.

                              

    Dr. BR Shetty, Chairman of UAE Exchange India and Mr. V George Antony, Managing Director, UAE Exchange India together received the renowned Golden Peacock Business Excellence Award from His Highness Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Honourable Cabinet Minister of Culture & Knowledge Development, Government of UAE, at a gala function held in Dubai on 19th April 2016.
     
    “In the midst of a most prideful moment in the life of UAE Exchange India, we are extremely thankful for the panel to recognize us for the outstanding business excellence award and I congratulate each and every employee, for making this success through their dedication and hard work” said Mr. V George Antony, Managing Director, UAE Exchange India. 
     
    UAE Exchange India has a wider presence of 374 locations spread across the nation, serving with versatile financial products like Foreign Exchange, Travel & Tours, Loans, Money Transfer, Insurance, XPay and Share trading. The Long saga of UAE Exchange India, started more than a decade ago, has accomplished a good stance in the industry with the ardour of 4000 employees serving more than ten million satisfied customers across the nation.

    Photo Caption: Dr. BR Shetty, Chairman of UAE Exchange India and Mr. V George Antony, Managing Director, UAE Exchange India together received the renowned Golden Peacock Business Excellence Award 2016 from His Highness Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Honourable Cabinet Minister of Culture & Knowledge Development, Government of UAE, at a gala function held in Dubai​

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    Business Wire India

    QFB, a leading Shari’ah-compliant bank based in Qatar offering investment opportunities and innovative financial solutions with local, regional and international reach, announces the imminent listing of the bank’s shares on the QSE on the 27th April 2016; following the approval of the Qatar Financial Markets Authority (QFMA).

     

    This Smart News Release features multimedia. View the full release here: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160423005003/en/

     
    Abdulla bin Fahad bin Ghorab Al Marri - Chairman QFB (Photo: ME NewsWire)

    Abdulla bin Fahad bin Ghorab Al Marri - Chairman QFB (Photo: ME NewsWire)

    Listing of QFB will be in the Banking and Financial Services Sector with a symbol QFBQ. The guiding trading price for the first day will be QR 15 per share with a fluctuation of limit of 30% up or down which will be permitted only for the first day of listing; however, price fluctuation on the second day and thereafter will be permitted by 10% up or down.

     

    QFB was established on 04/09/2008 and licensed by the QFCRA. The Bank’s authorized capital is QR2.5 billion and the issued and paid up capital is QR2 billion.

     

    Abdulla Bin Fahad Bin Ghorab Al Marri, QFB’s Chairman, said:

     

    "This is a significant achievement for Qatar and QFB. It is the first listing of a Qatari entity licensed by the QFC, and the first listing for a private entity in 6 years. It marks the next step in Qatar’s efforts to reactivate Qatar’s stock market and encourage the participation of the private sector in all aspects of the Qatari economy and in particular the banking sector.

     

    “QFB, with a clear strategy, highly experienced team, and solid shareholder base, strives to maintain its role as a trusted advisor for high-net-worth individuals, corporate and institutional clients and a gateway to business opportunities in Qatar, the region and global markets.”

     

    Ziad Makkawi, QFB’s CEO, said:

     

    "QFB’s listing represents another significant milestone in the Bank’s quest to grow, expand its offerings and provide a ‘Signature of Excellence' to its clients.

     

    “Last year was a ground-breaking year for the bank. We confirmed our strategy and streamlined our businesses to offer innovative Shari’ah-compliant solutions ranging from corporate & institutional banking, private banking & wealth management, treasury & investments, as well as alternative investments with a focus on private equity and real estate.

     

    “Looking ahead, we are aware that there is still a great deal of work to be done on the Bank’s journey to success, and we are investing to achieve our objectives. This is the beginning of a new era, which complements our ambition to become a significant player in the Shari’ah-compliant banking arena.”

     

    *Source: ME NewsWire

     

     

     

     
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    Business Wire India

    Visa (NYSE:V) today celebrated the 100 day milestone to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. In its 30th year as the exclusive payment provider of the Olympic Games, Visa is creating and managing the entire payment system infrastructure and network throughout all venues including stadiums, press centers, point-of-sale (POS), the Olympic Village and Olympic Superstores. This year Visa will implement 4,000 POS terminals across key Olympic venues, as well as 11 ATMs in partnership with Bradesco.

     

    This Smart News Release features multimedia. View the full release here: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160426006953/en/

     
    Olympic Games: Travel & Spend (Graphic: Business Wire)

    Olympic Games: Travel & Spend (Graphic: Business Wire)

    Visa also extends the value of its sponsorship to Olympic Games host cities, facilitating the development and advancement of payment infrastructure in those markets. This year Visa will introduce acceptance of new technologies and innovation throughout Rio, focusing on new ways to pay including payment wearables and mobile phones – letting fans swipe, tap, dip or click to pay in Rio.

     

    “Visa has always stood for universal acceptance and the most secure and fast way to pay across merchants, borders and currencies,” said Jim McCarthy, executive vice president of innovation and strategic partnerships at Visa Inc. “As we prepare for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, Visa is transforming the way fans pay, giving them choice in how they want to pay for anything, anytime and everywhere.”

     

    Olympic Games Travel Forecast

     

    Visa projects that Brazil will host an estimated 400,000-500,000 international visitors during the month of August, based on trends observed in recent summer editions of the Olympics. Visa data points to 2016 inbound travel to Brazil increasing by an estimated 1.2 million travelers for the year, compared to the 2010-2015 average, primarily due to preparations for the Olympics Games.

     

    The largest share of travelers to Brazil are forecast to come from Latin America and the Caribbean region (45 percent of all international travelers), followed by Europe (30 percent) and North America (15 percent).

     

    Based on historical data from past Olympic Games, Brazil can expect to see an increase in per traveler spending. During the London 2012 Olympic Games, spending averaged $1,830 per traveler1, which was twice as much per visit than regular tourists to the United Kingdom in 2012.

     

    “This data speaks to the increase in commerce generated through the Olympic Games,” said McCarthy. “More than 200 nations, 10,000 athletes, their families, friends and fans are expected to gather in Rio this summer to enjoy this truly global celebration of sports and athletics. Visa is excited to be part of their journey.”

     

    Travel Tips for Fans Visiting Rio

     

    Visa is the only card accepted at the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games venues and for any official Rio 2016 related transactions. To help fans attending the Olympic Games, Visa has released a series of recommended travel tips, directing cardholders to:

     
    • Notify their issuing bank or financial institution of potential travel plans, including the fact that they will be using Visa debit, credit or prepaid cards abroad to avoid any issues while traveling. Issuing banks can also provide information about travel-related benefits for Visa account holders.
    • Register for SMS notification with their specific bank, or bank’s transaction notification service, allowing travelers to track transactions on their Visa accounts.
    • Opt-in for services, such as Mobile Location Confirmation via the issuer’s banking app or Visa’s Travel Authorization Tag.
    • Set up automatic bill pay for their credit cards for peace-of-mind while traveling abroad.
    • Consider paying via a chip-activated terminal with a credit or debit card upgraded with chip technology for enhanced security.
    • Look for the Visa or PLUS logo at point-of-sale to ensure international payment cards are accepted.

    About Visa Inc.: Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable electronic payments. We operate one of the world's most advanced processing networks — VisaNet — that is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second, with fraud protection for consumers and assured payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank and does not issue cards, extend credit or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa's innovations, however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: pay now with debit, pay ahead of time with prepaid or pay later with credit products. For more information, visit usa.visa.com/about-visa, visacorporate.tumblr.com and @VisaNews.

     

    1 Overseas Travel and Tourism - Monthly Release, August 2012; UK Office for National Statistics

     

     
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    Business Wire IndiaDHFL, one of India’s leading housing finance companies in the private sector, organized a Meet & Greet Event with the Mumbai Indians team players. Mr. Harshil Mehta, CEO, DHFL along with Mumbai Indian team players Kieron Pollard, Jasprit Bumrah, Parthiv Patel, Hardik Pandya, Jonty Rhodes, Robin Singh and team Captain Rohit Sharma were present at the DHFL Meet & Greet event to felicitate the DHFL Fixed Deposits Business Partners. Team DHFL also wished the Mumbai Indians team all the very best for the games ahead.

    About DHFL

    DHFL was founded in 1984 by Late Shri Rajesh Kumar Wadhawan with a vision to provide financial access for Indians to own a home of their own. Today, led by Mr. Kapil Wadhawan, CMD, DHFL, the company is CARE AAA rated and reckoned as one of India’s leading financial institutions with a large presence across the country, in addition to representative offices in Dubai and London.

    Throughout its years of growth, DHFL has stayed true to its core vision of financial inclusion, especially to the low and middle income customers across India. The company’s wide network, coupled with insights into local customer needs, has enabled the company to provide meaningful financial access to customers even in India’s smallest towns. With a strong business foundation, an extensive distribution network, proven industry expertise and a deep understanding of the Indian customer, DHFL is a respected and trusted financial services company in India with a concerted focus towards enabling home ownership to the low and middle income customer. For further information, please visit www.dhfl.com.

    Photo Caption: From Left – Kieron Pollard, Jasprit Bumrah, Parthiv Patel, Hardik Pandya, Mr Harshil Mehta, CEO at DHFL, Rohit Sharma and Robin Singh

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