Category Archives: News

Merger Boosts Legg Mason’s Position as a Top Asset Manager

In what will be seen as a clever business move, Legg Mason, Inc. has signed new deals with three firms, agreeing to acquire equity interests in those firms. The three firms, Clarion Partners, EnTrust Capital and Precidian Investments are involved in real estate, exchange traded funds and hedge funds respectively. This move is likely to bolster Legg Mason as one of the top asset management firms in the world.

Legg Mason will acquire a majority equity interest in Clarion Partners and a minority stake in Precidian Investments. EnTrust Capital will be merged with Legg Mason’s Permal Group, resulting in an increase in hedge business assets to about 26 billion US dollars. Mary Athridge confirmed these business deals. Mary is a spokesperson for Legg Mason.

Clarion Partners

Legg Mason will part with 585 million US dollars to acquire 83 percent ownership stake in Clarion Partners. Clarion Partners will become the real estate investment subsidiary of Legg Mason and will operate independently as a private equity and debt real estate investment manager.

The remaining 17 percent ownership stake will be retained by the management team of Clarion partners. Most members of Clarion’s management team will retain their roles after the deal is completed, including the chairman, Stephen J. Furnary.

EnTrust Capital

To merge Permal Group with Entrust Capital, Legg Mason will pay an amount in the region of about 400 million US dollars. The merger will give birth to a new company, EnTrustPermal. Combining Permal Group’s 14.5 billion US dollars and EnTrust Capital’s 12 billion US dollars will make the new company one of the world’s largest hedge fund investors. Precisely, EnTrustPermal will become the fifth largest hedge fund investors in the world, according to data obtained from an annual survey by Pensions & Investments.

Gregg S. Hymowitz, the managing partner of EnTrust Capital, will get a 35 percent ownership stake from the merger. Mr. Hymowitz will also manage the new company in the position of chairman and chief executive officer. The merger is expected to finalize by the end of 2016.

Precidian Investments

In the deal with Precidian Investments, Legg Mason purchased preferred equity for an undisclosed amount. This will make Legg Mason a holder of 19.9 percent common equity, with an option to purchase more without limits. Mary Athridge did not disclose any additional details of this particular deal.

United Arab Emirates Air Force Increases as Industry Grows

The UAE air force (http://www.uaeusaunited.com/story/air-force-desert-falcons/) has been growing for some time, and it is now becoming one of the finest security forces in the world. The UAE has been building its air force into a large unit that ensures the safety of the airspace around the country. This article explains how the air force has grown over time to make the country safe. They are training more pilots, and they are building a core of pilots who make their country stronger.

The Pilots
The UAE has many pilots they are training to do the work they need, and they are ensuring that the pilots are given the finest training possible. Someone who wants to fly with the air force is asked to complete compulsory service with the military, and they will fly the borders of the country to ensure that it is safe. The pilots that are produced by the air force will become civilian pilots in the future, and they inspire kids to become pilots in the future.

Increasing Their Military Presence
The military presence of the UAE is one that is growing every day. They must have a presence when the ISIL is moving around the region, and there are quite a few people whose lives will be saved because of what the air force does. They must grow their air force to reach the outer regions of their country where the ISIL may move in, and they hope to find ways to protect their country’s border before anyone ever comes in.

The Growing Air Industry
The air industry in the country is one that depends quite a lot on the air force. The civilian airlines in the country are flying around the country knowing that they are protected by the UAE air force, and they will have the assurance that the UAE air force is on standby. The country depends on air travel for commerce, and they are trusting the air force to give them the peace of mind they need.

Someone who is willing to fly for the air force will find that they are doing the country a great service. They will help to protect the country in a number of ways, and they will build a military presence that makes the country a much safer place to live (http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/gulf/uae-af.htm). Everyone who lives in the UAE benefits from what their air force does.

Google Acquires Newborn Bengaluru-Based AI Startup Halli Labs

Google has acquired Halli Labs, a Bengaluru-based company that started its journey barely four months ago. The startup focuses on solutions based on artificial intelligence and machine learning.

 Halli Labs says it will be joining Google’s Next Billion Users team, the Mountain View-based company’s initiative that is working to bring the next billion users online from emerging markets like India. Over the past one year, Google has announced several services to better serve the untapped Indian market. Some of these include improved translation services and better voice recognition support for local languages.
 It’s not entirely clear how large Halli Labs is, but its core team members including Pankaj Gupta, and Pradhuman Jhala, were previously at marketplace Stayzilla. Gupta, who founded Halli Labs and assumes CEO position, was the chief product officer and chief technology officer at Stayzilla, while Jhala was the chief architect.

Read more here.

Source: gadgets.ndtv.vom

UAE’s Bright Outlook for Future Space Mission

There is a great deal of excitement in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) these days as the country is poised to become involved in space exploration. In July 2020, the UAE will launch its Hope spacecraft on a mission to Mars. The spacecraft is scheduled to reach the Red Planet in 2021, just in time to mark the 50th anniversary of UAE’s founding. The outlook is very bright for the mission’s success because Earth and Mars will be at their closest point during the launch window. The mission will mark a significant turning point in the UAE’s development.

The country’s development of space technology is just one sign of its new diversified economic growth. The mission to Mars will enrich Emirati capabilities and increase human knowledge of distant planets and space exploration. It’s also part of the UAE’s drive to increase their intellectual and technical capabilities in the aerospace industry. The country’s production of space technology is designed to enhance its development plans. Meeting the epic challenge of traveling to Mars will inspire and motivate people throughout the country to move forward with technological advances in many other areas.

The UAE Mars mission team includes:

  • EMM deputy project manager and science lead Sarah Amiri
  • EMM deputy project manager for spacecraft development Suhail Al Mheiri
  • EMM launch segment lead Mohammad Abdulrahim
  • EMM deputy project manager for mission operations Zakariyya Al Shamsi, Adnan Al Rais
  • EMM Deputy Project Manager Ground Station
  • EMM deputy project manager for strategic planning Ibrahim Hamza
  • Khulood Al Harmoodi, EMM deputy project manager for Product Assurance and Logistics
  • Nour Al Teneiji EMM Liaison Officer and Omran Sharaf EMM Project Manager

The final agreements were recently signed, marking the first major event in a 7-year journey giving the UAE a presence in international space exploration activities. The journey will be made in an unmanned space probe named Hope. It is a compact, hexagonal-section spacecraft made out of aluminum. The probe will be a honeycomb structure that’s stiff yet lightweight and its surface will be covered with a very strong composite face sheet. The spacecraft is about the size and weight of a small car. It measures 2.3 meters wide and is 2.90 meters tall. When filled with fuel the probe will have an overall weight of 1,500 kilograms. The groundbreaking undertaking is the first mission to Mars by an Arab country.

TV from the sun: ‘Now I am connected to the whole world’

Stanley Gikonyo says his life has been transformed by satellite TV. “I am connected to the whole world,” he says.

But what’s extraordinary is that his house, where he lives with his wife and two children in Mwea, central Kenya, has no access to mains electricity.

Instead, the power for Mr Gikonyo’s new TV service comes directly from the sun. He is one of the early adopters of AzuriTV – a new solar-powered satellite TV service that gives his family access to 50 channels.

He says the system is already making his life easier, and has opened new doors for his farming business.

“I had been using other solar panels and normal batteries, which gave me a hell of a time in charging them, and with acid spills,” he says.

Read the complete article here.

Source: BBC.com

Drug Detecting Nail Polish Coming in 2017

Date rape drugs are commonly used in bar and club settings to put (mainly) females in a state of submission so they can be taken advantage of. With rape and sexual harassment cases on the rise, Undercover Colors (Twitter.com), invented by graduates of North Carolina State University, aims to lash out at those who want to make victims of women in particular by introducing nail technology that can literally potentially save lives.

With an anticipated introduction in 2017, the product line features nail polish that changes colors when it is exposed to liquids that have been laced with common date rape drugs. This means women can ‘test’ their drinks for tampering while being discreet, and they can feel more confident in crowded or questionable situations where they can potentially be exposed to the drugs.

Undercover Colors came to life when its main inventors decided that 1 in 6 women facing sexual assault in their lives was not acceptable. Wanting to put their skills to positive use, co-founders, Steve and Tyler worked for years to come up with the ingenious nail polish that can help keep women and teenage girls out of harms’ way when they simply want to go out and have a good time.

Within just a few seconds a woman can tell if her drink has been tampered with, which can save her life and keep her from years of emotional and physical despair. In a time where women are tired of being statistics, an answer in Undercover Colors gives females around the world the power to maintain control of what goes into their bodies without having to scrupulously eyeball their beverages all night long.

The goal of this product is simple: to protect women (and men) from being victims when they simply want to go out and have fun with their friends, sisters, or colleagues. As it becomes harder and harder to slip a date rape drug into an unsuspecting victim, hopes are high that fewer women will be victims of sexual assault as the nail polish becomes available to the public. Who knew that fashion could be so life-saving and essential?

Entrust Capital and Permal Group Merge

Entrust Capital and Permal Group announced plans of a merger to create EntrustPermal whose assets are valued at $29billion, and $26billion in pro-forma AUM. This merger comes as good news as it joins the biggest alternative firms for asset management. The announcement was made on January 22nd, 2016 as Permal got into agreement talks with Entrust Capital on the said issue.
Entrust is one of the leading hedge fund and asset management firms based in New York. It has $12billion worth of assets which it will mix with Permal. The EntrustPermal group has a diverse offering of investment products with high-end investors willing to take their risk with the new group. Legg Mason, the mother company of Entrust Capital, will now own 65% of the new company, Entrust Permal while the rest of the share is owned by Gregg Hymowitz. Gregg is the Managing Director and Co-founder of Entrust Capital. He will be the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of EntrustPermal.
The key investment and business professionals of the company will continue to provide services for the new entity. As the new company is formed, it creates bigger global opportunities for investment, infrastructure, and investments for the investors to utilize. Some of the key investment capabilities that Entrust Capital holds include:

  1. A bigger team of 55 key experts sourced from both companies to create a stronger team of investment professionals.
  2. More investment opportunities for EntrustPermal that include 150 new investment offerings which come from 18 different investment strategies.
  3. A larger investment platform which has customized investment solutions, opportunistic co-investments, and tail-risk hedging strategies.
  4. More alternative and innovative products and business lines. These include, private debt offerings, and direct hedge funds.
  5. The ability to increase the existing Management Account Platform.

The CEO of Legg Mason, Joseph A. Sullivan, expressed optimism when he spoke on the combination as he sees meaningful opportunities. The Entrust team has a proven track record for growth through product innovation. In his speech, Mr. Sullivan said that the company expected to create significant potential growth engine by bringing the two leading names together.
The CEO of Permal Group, Omar Kodmani, also showed optimism that the two companies operating as one would achieve more success. He commented on the industry stating that it required the best alternative solutions which needed scale and talent. Entrust Permal has no shortage of both as it paired up the best in the industry.