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Microsoft focuses on Apple – Business News




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Microsoft's big cloud computing payout is paying off as Apple overcomes Apple as the world's most valuable publicly traded company.

The software maker's looks looked bleak several years ago as Windows system licenses dropped with a sharp drop in PC sales.

But under CEO Satya Nadelou, Microsoft has found stability by focusing on software and services over the Internet or cloud with long-term business contracts.

The fact that the computer power plant in 1990 has a renaissance moment will take on Facebook, Google, Amazon and other techies from the end of the decade.

Apple has been the most successful company in the world since it has been claiming to be the first place from Exxon Mobil since the beginning of this decade. Microsoft surpassed Apple shortly this week but did not stop until Friday. Microsoft was not at the top of the boom dot-com in 2000.

Microsoft has once again become an unnecessary bidder because Apple has dropped sharply this month while Microsoft has done nothing worse than the rest of the stock market. But the fact that it did not get wrong is a reflection of its constant focus on business customers in recent years.

Microsoft has lost its shine because people have avoided computers in favor of smartphones. In 2013, computer sales dropped 10 percent to about 315 million, the worst year-on-year decline, according to research firm Gartner and IDC. This did not help Microsoft's efforts to make computers more like Windows 8, was widely perceived.

However, the reversal began when Redmond, Washington, promoted Nadel as CEO in 2014. He succeeded Microsoft's longtime CEO, Steve Ballmer, who initially attempted to assume that people would be willing to pay $ 500 or more for the Apple iPhone.

This bet was paid off. Windows is now a falling fraction of Microsoft's business. While the company continues to run consumer-focused businesses such as Bing and Xbox, it favors business-related services such as the office line and other desktop software as well as newer add-ons such as LinkedIn and Skype. But its greatest growth has happened in the cloud, especially the cloud platform called Azure. Cloud computing now accounts for more than a quarter of Microsoft's revenue, and Microsoft is competing with Amazon as the leading provider of such services.

Wedbush analyst Dan Ives said Azure is still in its infancy, which means there is room for growth, especially with regard to the company's large customer base and other products.

"While the technological bloodshed that has been seen in the last month has been brutal, shares (Microsoft) continue to hold off like the Rock of Gibraltar," he said.

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30 November 2018 / 11:02 | Story:
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Alberta has taken steps that prohibit employers from requiring people to wear high heels at work.

Labor Minister Christina Gray says the province is changing the Occupational Health Insurance Act, which currently allows employers to make high heels.

"Our government has every worker's back and today we are also looking for our feet," Gray said Friday.

Ontario and British Columbia banned high heels in 2017 and Manitoba the same this year. Alberta's changes will come into force on January 1.

Gray said she had heard from servers that say high heels cause them pain and put them at risk of falling.

Lisa Caputo, co-owner of the Cibo Bistro building in Edmonton, said her previous experience in the restaurant industry included two heels.

"The work of almost half of my career at the workplace, which demanded dangerous and uncomfortable footwear, left my feet in the form of diamonds from the boots I wore for eight to ten hours," she said.

She did not have to wear her heels for eight years, but she still feels pain in her legs, she said.

"You're working in an environment where you look and dress the trumps and food, you're losing your position as a woman," Caputo said. "You are quite an object and we felt it."

Gray said that no one should be forced to wear any footwear that could cause health or safety problems. She said the change would prohibit all employers in every sector from requiring workers to use shoes that could pose a risk.

"Women still have the ability to wear high heels, but they can not be forced, especially in dangerous working environments," she said.


30 November 2018 / 10:44 | Story:
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BRP Inc. recorded record sales of $ 1.39 billion for the third quarter, 14 percent more than last year and slightly above analysts' estimate, as demand for second-hand commercial vehicles and Sea-Doos boosted revenue growth.

The net income attributed to shareholders in Quebec, which makes Ski-Doo snowmobiles, recreational craft and off-road vehicles, was $ 90.3 million or 92 cents per share.

It rose from $ 70 million or 67 cents per share in the third quarter, with sales of $ 1.23 billion.

The increase in revenue was largely due to higher wholesale of all-year products and a favorable exchange rate change of $ 31 million.

BRP's revenues fell slightly to $ 102.9 million or $ 1.04 per share, well above the Thomson Reuters Eikon analyst's estimate of 98 cents per share.

Chief Executive Jose Boisjoli said that Can-Am off-road line-up saw a year-on-year increase in sales of up to 20% in a sector that grew in a single figure. Strong demand helped increase revenue for year-round products to $ 562 million, a 21 percent increase in its largest product category.

In the meantime, Sea-Doos has passed the third quarter of sales wax by 30 percent over last year, Boisjoli told a conference call with investors Friday.

BRP shares jumped six percent at mid-morning on the Toronto stock exchange, with the company rising to $ 46.77 as the company kept its top end.

BRP expects that the diluted earnings per share diluted in the year will increase by 30 to 35 percent compared to the previous year, relying on previous growth by 24 to 30 percent.

Acquisition of AlumaCraft Boat Co. and Manitou Pontoon Boats this year helped increase the company's revenue from marine products by 30 percent to $ 139 million.

Aluminum fishing boats and pontoons – an unknown water for BRP – account for more than half of the US vessel market, Boisjoli says when the company sets its line for 700 million fishermen in the world.

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30 November 2018 / 10:39 | Story:
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Sleep Country Canada is a $ 88.7 million purchase of a Canadian mattress start-up Endy will not mean that the two will be merged or that the brand stops selling the products from the end of the box in the Endy box.

Sleep Country in Toronto said on Friday that these two will work separately and that Sleep Country will not abandon the Bloom-in-a-box mattress launched in May 2017.

"Bloom is not sold anywhere, we sell it from our stores and we sell it online and we plan to continue," said David Friesema, Managing Director of Sleep Country, on the phone with analysts. "It's one of our fastest growing products we've ever had."

Friesema said Sleep Country is interested in buying Endy – built by two friends who met high school students in Calgary and broke the mattress industry when they started their business in 2015 – due to the synergy between these two brands.

Despite the fact that Endy and his American rival Casper are increasing competition in the sleep products industry, he said that the purchase of Endy was not meant to be a "defensive step".

"We are watching and talking for a while," Friesema said. "It's the right time to buy."

The directors say the two companies are interested in the acquisition because they will benefit. Endy will be able to use Sleep Country logistics, warehousing and shipping expertise, while Sleep Country will be able to use Endy's e-commerce technology and digital marketing skills.

They said it was unlikely that Endy products would land in Sleep Country stores, even though they admitted that the leaders were discussing this option, but they decided to leave the decision to the end in the future.

Their partnership comes at key time for both brands. Sleep Country has long been struggling with boxing competitors and growing e-commerce. The company began offering online sales only a year ago and paid attention to how it can revive its bricks and mortar and increase the sale of sleeping accessories.

Meanwhile, Endy last year said that this target will earn $ 50 million in earnings this year, though it has also been attacked by competitors. Casper is expanding aggressively in Canada and slowly opening retail outlets – a feature that Endy still did not have.

Friesema said Endy will continue to evaluate whether to jump into bricks and mortar.

Rajen Ruparell, co-founder and chairman of Endy, added that for the time being, the company has been focusing on enhancing online traffic, because 100% of its sales are made through e-commerce.

He further said that the 38-employee company was determined to remain "as lean and efficient as possible."


November 30, 2018 / 5:40 | Story:
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The rate of economic growth in Canada slowed down in the third quarter as spending on corporate investment declined and household spending grew slower.

Canadian statistics indicate that the Canadian economy grew by 2.0% this year.

This compared with the annual rate of 2.9% in the second quarter.

The result was in line with the expectations of economists, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.

This step was due to the fact that non-investment investments in buildings and civil engineering works decreased by 1.3 percent, as oil and gas spending slowed down. Investments in machinery and equipment fell by 2.5 percent.

Household spending growth slowed to 0.3 percent month on month, down from 0.6 percent in the second quarter.


November 30, 2018 / 5:37 | Story:
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Keep your friends close … and close friends closer?

Instagram adds a feature that makes it easy to share photos and videos with fewer people.

This feature, called Close Friends, lets users share stories – photos and videos that disappear after 24 hours – with people who save on a special list. The idea is that people can feel more comfortable sharing things with close friends, rather than with all the followers.

Regular posts would still appear to everyone, even if users have the opportunity to approve followers in advance. Facebook already allows people to restrict audiences for individual posts, but Facebook does not have Instagram.

Social media companies are quickly learning that a higher audience for users may mean reluctance to share more personal things. They add ways to communicate with smaller groups. This is why Facebook strengthens its Group function and why messaging applications are so popular.


November 30, 2018 / 5:27 | Story:
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Information on the 500 million people staying in Starwood hotels was threatened, and Marriott claims to have uncovered an unlawful approach that has taken place since 2014 on Starwood.

The company said on Friday that credit card numbers and expiration dates for some guests may be accepted. For some 327 million people, the information revealed by a certain combination of name, address, phone number, e-mail address, passport number, Starwood Preferred Guest account, date of birth, sex, arrival and departure information, booking date and communication preferences. For some guests, information was limited to a name and sometimes to other information such as a mailing address, email address, or other information.

Marriott reported that its database had been broken in September when Starwood reservation information was available prior to September 10.


November 29, 2018 / 4:55 | Story:
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Lyft completed the acquisition of Motivate, the largest bicycle sharing company.

This agreement is part of the San Francisco-driven roadmap that offers a range of transport options within a single application and reduces individual ownership of the car. Financial data was not disclosed.

Motivate operates bicycle sharing systems in New York, Washington, DC, San Francisco and elsewhere. Last year, Motivate was 80% of motorcycle rides in the US.

Caroline Samponaro, chief of motorcycle, scooter and pedestrian for Lyft, says the company plans to invest $ 100 million in New York to triple its fleet to 40,000 and twice the track of the system.

Rival Uber has been awarded the Jump Bikes Jumper at the beginning of this year. Uber also invested in Lime, a bicycle and scooter-sharing company.


November 29, 2018 / 10:33 | Story:
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The MoneySense personal finance website was Rogers Communications Inc. sold to Ratehub Inc. for an undisclosed amount.

Ratehub is a Toronto-based company that owns an internet comparison site for financial products.

His ratehub.ca earns most of its commission revenue paid by the company after the reader clicks to learn more about the specific product.

MoneySense was one print magazine with an online presence. Starting in 2016, it continues exclusively as a digital publication, attracting approximately 700,000 unique visitors per month.

Rogers Media President Rick Brace says in his statement that it is important to find a "good home" for MoneySense.

Ratehub and MoneySense have previously worked together to introduce a credit card comparison tool for Canadians.

"We see this acquisition as a way to extend our partnership even further and provide Canadians with additional benchmarking tools in areas such as mortgages, investment and savings vehicles and insurance products," said James Laird, co-founder of Ratehub Inc. CanWise Financial.


29 November 2018 / 10:19 hrs | Story:
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Canada says it is about to sign a new North American free trade agreement on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Argentina, but Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland would not provide a solid confirmation on Thursday.

Freeland, who spoke on the sunny terrace at a hotel in Buenos Aires shortly after the Canadian delegation landed Thursday, said details needed to be completed on a "huge" tripartite solution.

"Our goal was always to sign this agreement on 30 November and we are on our way to this goal," Freeland said.

Canada has been in contact with Americans and Mexicans since the end of their stay in Buenos Aires, she added.

"A huge amount of technical details need to be cleaned and packaged," she said. "The fact that this is an agreement in three languages ​​contributes to the level of technical complexity, and at this level we are sure that all Iz is dotted and all Ts are exceeded."

The minister is part of a Canadian delegation to attend the high-stakes G20 Summit, which should start on Friday and capture global attention on trade tensions between China and the United States.

Liberal government is also addressing the issue of international security after Canada and its allies have condemned the seizure of three Ukrainian naval vessels near the Crimea on Monday.

Freeland said she had spoken to the Ukrainian Foreign Minister and is in close touch with the other G7 countries.

It is expected that Ukraine will be the subject of a "strong conversation" next week in Brussels at the NATO Foreign Ministers' Summit in Brussels.


November 29, 2018 / 6:30 | Story:
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Another increase in price is Netflix Canada's subscribers, as competition is among the largest streaming video services.

The company for "Narcos" and "Orange is new black" presented its biggest increase in prices for new customers as well as for current members.

Netflix's standard plan will now cost $ 3 – or $ 13.99 a month – to track content on two screens at a time.

The basic plan – which does not offer high definition video and allows only one stream – raises the dollar to $ 9.99 a month.

Subscribers to premium plans pay another $ 3 – or $ 16.99 a month – for up to four current streams and 4K high definition video.

Netflix says higher prices are immediately effective for new subscribers, while existing users will be informed by e-mail before their accounts increase in the coming weeks.

The company last year raised the price of most plans by a dollar a year and a half ago.

Netflix says that this step will help fund upcoming TV series and movies and overall Netflix platform improvements.

But the company will face intense competition next year as the number of channels on the Canadian market with attractive offers is on the rise.

Earlier this month, Bell Media introduced a higher level of its Crave streaming service, including the selection of recent Hollywood films and new HBO programs. The pack, called Crave +, costs about $ 20 a month.

The next year Disney will enter the market with its own streaming platform. Disney + is expected to be supplied with movies and original series as the predecessor of "Star Wars: Rogue One" and superhero Marvel show based on Loki from "Thor" and "The Avengers".

Other platforms could come in the future, including a new service run by Criterion specializing in classic movies, and CBS All Access, dedicated to its library of original shows that include "Tell Me A Story" and "Strange Angel" .


November 29, 2018 / 5:34 | Story:
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Consumers increased their spending in September at the fastest rate in seven months, while their revenue rose by the highest amount in nine months. Both are good signs of future economic growth.

The Department of Trade says consumer spending grew 0.6 percent last month. It was the biggest increase from a similar profit in March and was three times faster than 0.2 percent in September. Revenues that provide fuel reached 0.5 percent in October, a significant increase from 0.2 percent in September.

The key measure of consumer price inflation was 2 percentage points higher than in the previous year, which hit a 2 percent annual inflation target set by the Federal Reserve.

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