Tag Archives: management

Western Australia’s $ 40 million native sandalwood industry is at risk of collapse, industry groups warn | Instant News


Members of Western Australia’s $ 40 million native sandalwood industry have warned that the industry could collapse under the weight of an increased market supply and over-harvesting of illegal stocks.

Each year 2,500 tonnes of wild or native Australian sandalwood, Santalum spicatum, harvested from most of the semi-arid and arid grassland areas of WA.

It is one of the state’s oldest exports, dating back to 1844, and is valued for its oil and by the agarbatti, or incense market.

But proponents of illegal industry and plantations have warned that without a change in management, the market will suffer from oversupply when the harvests of millions of plantations begin this year. Santalum spicatum a sandalwood tree grows across from Central Wheatbelt.

A letter, signed by 12 groups including Forest Communities, Dutjahn Sandalwood Oil and WA Sandalwood Plantation, was sent to the WA Government late last year, calling for the significant reduction of the annual harvest quota of wild sandalwood, and for the role of the Forest Products Commission (FPC) in the sandalwood industry was transformed.

Keith Drage and Darren Farmer of Dutjahn Sandalwood Oils.(Source: Jody D’Arcy)

In danger of depletion

The FPC has overseen the commercial harvesting, regeneration, marketing and sale of illegal timber, a role the letter defines as an “inherent conflict of interest”.

WA Sandalwood Plantations managing director Keith Drage, which manages 19 million trees growing on more than 13,000 hectares, said that the commercial status of FPC profits for illegal timber should be removed, and FPC should shift to the plantation timber sector.

“I think it has been well marked over the years that when plantation resources come into operation, there needs to be a transition away from the reduction in wild harvests that are lauded by the plantation resources, and what happens is that there is no reduction in wild harvests,” he said.

Drage said the timber from his company’s plantation trees will start flowing this year, and will increase to 6,000 tonnes a year.

The sheep stand facing the camera, surrounded by sandalwood trees
Sandalwood planting along Wheatbelt WA began in the late 1990s.(Source: Jody D’Arcy)

Drage, also director of native wood distillation company Dutjahn Sandalwood Oils, pointed to a 2008-2020 industrial development plan which he said foresees the scenario the industry faces if illegal harvests are not reduced.

The FPC manages around 6,000 hectares of sandalwood plantations, which are expected to begin harvesting by 2026.

Letters to ministers Dave Kelly, Ben Wyatt, Stephen Dawson and Alannah MacTiernan also signaled environmental concern for fragrant native wood.

“Under current harvest quotas, this species is in danger of significant depletion, and, at worst, is on an inexorable path to extinction in the wild.”

Sandalwood pile in the shed
The sandalwood pile is ready to be processed.(Source: Jody D’Arcy)

Review before 2026

Ministers Kelly and Dawson were contacted for comment. Minister Kelly’s Office provided a written statement.

“Sustainable harvesting of wild sandalwood occurs within limits set by the 2015 Sandalwood Council (Limits for the Removal of Sandalwood), and requirements under the 2016 Biodiversity Conservation Act and the 2018 Biodiversity Conservation Regulation,” the statement said.

“The annual harvest quotas will be reviewed before the end of the Order in the current Council in 2026.

“[We] will work with the plantation and illegal sandalwood sector to review all aspects of the sandalwood industry. “

Close-up shot of a man looking out of the camera
Clinton Farmer said he was concerned about the future of the sandalwood industry.(ABC: Chris Lewis)

Important job provider

Harvesting sandalwood provides employment and income for a number of Aboriginal groups, including Clinton Farmer of the Kutkabubba Aboriginal Corporation.

Mr Farmer continues the business his father started on traditional land in the Gibson Desert.

He said he was concerned about the original sandalwood being over-harvested and questioned the effectiveness of the government’s regeneration program.

“We harvest according to the knowledge that was passed on to us in a sustainable manner, that’s what we want on the spot, so it doesn’t get harvested,” said Pak Farmer.

He supports calls for reduced illegal timber harvests.

“We try to create jobs for our people and stay connected and keep our families out of trouble in the city.

“We can’t do that if our economy is threatened by the government flooding the market – it needs to be scaled back so we have a chance.”

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The director of Crown Resorts Australia quit because of his relationship with a billionaire shareholder | Instant News


FILE PHOTOS: The Crown Casino complex pictured in Melbourne 19 March 2016. REUTERS / Jason Reed / File Photo

(Reuters) – Australian casino operator Crown Resorts Ltd said on Monday that director John Poynton was stepping down from the board after regulators ruled he was not sufficiently independent from the company’s largest shareholder, James Packer.

Poynton’s departure is the latest in a series of executive exits at a casino operator that is one-third owned by billionaire Packer, after investigations accused him of money laundering and widespread governance issues.

Poynton has been on Crown’s board since 2018 as a representative of the private Packer company. After regulators rebuked Packer’s control of the board, Poynton said last month that he was ending his arrangement with Packer and would remain as independent director.

But on Monday, Crown Executive Chairman Helen Coonan said the regulator, the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority (ILGA), considered it appropriate that Poynton was stepping down “because of a perceived lack of independence arising from his past relationship” with Packer.

Poynton agreed to resign “despite no adverse findings by the commissioners in the ILGA investigation with respect to its suitability, integrity or performance”, said Coonan.

Three Australian states have detained or said they would launch an investigation into Crown because Australian media reports accused the company of doing business with tour operators linked to organized crime.

Crown initially denied the allegations but admitted at a Sydney 2020 investigation that some of the claims were true.

Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Edited by Diane Craft, Byron Kaye and Daniel Wallis

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CEO of ‘Builderman’ Roblox Goes to Wall Street with Troop of Young Gamers | Instant News


Chief Executive Roblox Corp. David Baszucki won the loyalty of tens of millions of videogamers with a do-it-yourself gaming approach that defies industry-specific formulas for success.

Roblox is slated to make its public market debut March 10 through direct listing, an unconventional process that allows companies to trade on the stock exchange without raising new capital. The company based in San Mateo, California, was founded in 2004, rotated from traditional public offerings last year after

By Dash Inc.

and

Airbnb Inc.

jumped beyond expectations in their IPO.

Roblox founder and CEO David Baszucki, pictured in 2018, is a frequent presence on the platform, under the name ‘Builderman.’


Photo:

Steve Jennings / Getty Images for TechCrunch

Roblox’s debut is coming as the coronavirus pandemic has prompted people to do so spend more money and time on video games than before. Tech valuations have surged over the past year – Roblox was personally worth $ 29.5 billion in January, up more than seven times from early 2020 – although the stocks have recently faltered amid shifting investor sentiment that an improved economy will benefit the sector other.

Instead of relying on Hollywood-like budgets and rock star talent to produce a few blockbuster games each year, Roblox is shifting game development to its own players. These players, especially teenagers and preteens, in turn produce their own hits and earn 70% of the revenue their work generates.

“We are like YouTube, except our content is a game, and our content allows everyone to play together,” Baszucki said in 2018 while speaking at his alma mater, Stanford University. The 58-year-old man himself often appears at Roblox, using the name “Builderman”.

This approach has earned Roblox an estimated 33 million daily users who can choose between tens of millions of multiplayer games, ranging from obstacle challenges and catch the flag iterations to contests based on popular characters like Peppa Pig and Sonic the Hedgehog. The company provides free tools and instructions that players – even those with no coding experience – can use to create games for its platform.

Samuel Jordan of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, took a hiatus from college about a year ago to focus on creating games and other digital content for Roblox with his business partners. The 21-year-old, who participated in the company-run accelerator program in the summer of 2019, says he made about $ 600,000 last year from his Roblox creations, up from $ 30,000 in 2019.

“This is crazy,” Jordan said, adding that the pandemic was likely to contribute to a tremendous increase. More than 300 Roblox developers made $ 100,000 or more last year, the company said.

The health crisis provided significant fuel for Roblox’s business. Revenue grew 82% last year to $ 923.9 million, while orders – sales of virtual items on the platform – more than doubled to about $ 1.9 billion.

Samuel Jordan of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, says he made an estimated $ 600,000 last year from his Roblox creations.


Photo:

Maria Alejandra Cardona for The Wall Street Journal

London’s Alan and Sinéidin Cooper said their two daughters, ages 5 and 10, and 7-year-old son each spent about five hours a week at Roblox before the pandemic. Now that time is doubled because they are using the platform to connect with friends. The couple treated their kids to Robux worth around $ 40 to $ 45 per month.

“It’s a great way for them to socialize,” Mr said. Cooper.

Roblox hasn’t been able to turn user loyalty into profit, as its net loss in 2020 swelled to $ 253.3 million from $ 71 million a year earlier. The company has said it plans to continue investing in the platform, which can be used for distance learning, conferences and other group experiences, such as concerts.

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Like other online hangouts featuring user-generated content, Roblox has to contend with predators and troublemakers who target children with inappropriate material – a particular concern given that more than half of the platform’s users are under 13. The company says it has made significant steps to keep users safe, such as by adding a communication filter to eliminate offensive speech.

Supporters include the large venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, Altos Ventures and Greylock Partners. David Sze, a Greylock partner, said the company invested in Roblox partly because of Mr. Baszucki. While other CEOs may have switched from business models after modest initial growth, Mr. Baszucki remains confident in Roblox’s user-created mission, says Sze.

“It’s like 10 years walking through the desert without anyone trusting you,” he said. “Dave against all odds.”

Mr. Baszucki, who declined to be interviewed for this article, started and then sold a software company that specialized in physics simulation before founding Roblox with fellow programmer Erik Cassel, who died of cancer in 2013. They started making games for the platform, but soon invite other players to create their own. Roblox was released to the public in 2006.

“We immediately realized what they were building was much more interesting and exciting than anything we had ever made,” Baszucki wrote in a Roblox securities filing. Mr Baszucki is the largest shareholder of the company and holds 70% of the voting rights. He will forego cash and equity compensation for seven years after Roblox goes public, and in return qualify for a performance-based stock award, which he intends to donate for philanthropic causes.

Mr. Baszucki was an investor in Friendster, an early competitor for

Facebook Inc.,

and he sees Roblox as a combination of Second Life’s social networking platform and online virtual world, said Matt Dusek, a Roblox start-up employee who left the company in 2019. “He sees things as further away than anyone else around him often does,” Said Mr. Dusek.

Samuel Jordan and his business partner Kyle Hulse outside their shared office space in Fort Lauderdale on Thursday.


Photo:

Maria Alejandra Cardona for The Wall Street Journal

In the following years, Roblox gradually expanded its user base. Mr. Baszucki, as “Builderman,” will greet new players digitally, appearing as one of the platform’s signature box avatars and offering tips on how to get started. Popular games inspire players to become developers, who then make more games, attracting more users – the so-called network effect.

Roblox’s user-generated gaming strategy has won praise from industry leaders. Tim Sweeney, CEO of “Fortnite” creator of Epic Games Inc., credits the company for helping gamers become game makers. “Roblox has done a tremendous job building the ecosystem,” he said in an email.

Although the company has warned that people may spend less time with its games as the pandemic fades, it wants to continue to add to its base of more than 8 million developers. Similar to other videogame publishers, Roblox is also looking to join more brands like

Nike Inc.

and

Mattel Inc.

about marketing promotions.

Write to Sarah E. Needleman at [email protected]

Copyright © 2020 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8

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Ashley Graham on How the Fashion Industry Fails on Normal Sized Women | Instant News


Updated Feb 23, 2021 10:08 am ET

On Monday night, supermodel and businessman Ashley Graham joined forces WSJ. Magazine editor-in-chief Kristina O’Neill for intimate talks as part of the magazine’s conversation series, The One.

Graham, 33, who appears on the cover from WSJ.Spring Women’s Style Issues, addresses her return to the runway recently during Milan Fashion Week, where she featured for Fendi and Etro. It was a milestone not only because of the pandemic, but because it marked her first appearance since becoming a mother; her baby, Isaac, is nearly 13 months old. He also talked about how much progress the fashion industry needs to make in terms of inclusiveness. “There are many changes that have occurred. I have to say it’s still not enough, the fact that we’re still complimenting designers for one curvy girl for that one season…. The designer wants to say, This is our sample size and here is the size. But they are the ones who really structure the way they do business. ”

In his assistance Questionnaire OneGraham has also said that one thing he was taught last year is that he needs to slow down, and the one thing that surprises people the most when he finds out about him is that he is obsessed with tiny houses.

Watch the full interview below, and be sure to subscribe WSJ. Magazine on Youtube for more.

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Taman Safari management is told to ensure the welfare of the animals | Instant News



Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) administrator Laeeq Ahmed has directed Safari Park management to ensure animal welfare.

Safari parks around the world are meant to protect wildlife and provide natural habitats for the animals, he said during a visit to the park on Monday. The Safari Park in Karachi is one of the most beloved spots in the city and will be uplifted, said Ahmed, adding that he visited the park after fake news circulated on social media about the deteriorating health of the female elephant there.

KMC Senior Director Khalid Khan, Senior Director Sports, Culture and Recreation Mansoor Qazi, Safari Park Director Aftab Qaimkhani and other officials also attended the occasion.

Ahmed inquired about the elephant’s health, and he was told that the animal’s health was satisfactory.

He directed officers to carry out animal health checks by veterinarians. He said legal action would be taken against those who spread fake news against the KMC and its officers. “The FIR will be presented to such people,” he warned.

The administrator said the KMC was taking all possible measures to provide facilities for animals in zoos and parks. He also visited KMC’s aviary, which was set up for bird breeding, and a playground. He directed his subordinates to complete the Safari Park upgrade scheme under the Annual Development Program at the earliest.

Ahmed said the Karachi community wanted to see wildlife in the natural habitat of the park, adding that a large number of saplings would also be planted in the park in the plantation campaign.

He also gives directions for cleanliness, timely pruning of trees for beauty. He hopes that people who visit the park will also cooperate with park managers to keep it neat and clean.

“KMC will continue its efforts to make Taman Safari better with the help of visitors,”

he added.

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