Monthly Archives: May 2019

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Revlon ceases operations in China costing 1100 jobs

Cosmetics maker Revlon will cease operations in China and eliminate about 1100 positions, including 940 beauty advisers, as it restructures its struggling business.

China makes up about 2 per cent of Revlon’s net sales. The restructuring would result in about $US22 million ($24.7 million) of pre-tax charges, the company said in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The changes are expected to reduce costs by about $US11 million a year.

The company, which posted profit declines in 2011 and 2012, has been making acquisitions and introducing products as sales in some of its larger brands slow.

Early in 2013, it bought Colomer Group, giving it Creative Nail professional and Shellac nail polishes, as well as American Crew men’s hair-care products.

”Revlon was unable to gain scale and relevance in the important Chinese beauty market,” said Connie Maneaty, an analyst at BMO Capital Markets in New York.

Colomer chief executive Lorenzo Delpani took over as Revlon’s CEO in November. The reorganisation was not related to the acquisition, Revlon said.

The addition of Colomer helps Revlon expand sales in the more-profitable salon sector, an aim shared by competitors such as Procter & Gamble and Unilever. Revlon rose 1.6 per cent to $US24.96 at the close in New York on Tuesday. The shares surged 72 per cent in 2013, outstripping the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, which rose 30 per cent.

China, where skin-care products are in particular demand, is an important yet challenging market for many Western beauty companies.

In its third-quarter sales release on October 30, L’Oreal called China’s market ”slowing, although still dynamic” and said sales in the quarter grew 11 per cent.

Procter & Gamble said in May it had been losing market share in China. Avon Products said in October that possible fines related to bribery probes in China and elsewhere might hurt its profits.

In 2012, 44 per cent of Revlon’s revenue came from outside the US.


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Bumper coffee crop to cut prices further after three years of falls

Global coffee production is set to push inventories to a five-year high. Photo: Jane DysonCoffee futures lost further ground this week, capping the longest run of annual declines since 1993, on concerns that a global glut will increase as crop conditions improve in Brazil, the world’s biggest producer and exporter of arabica beans.

Arabica coffee for March delivery fell 3.5 per cent to $US1.107 a pound on the ICE Futures in New York, the biggest drop since November 22. The price fell 23 per cent in 2013, the third straight annual decline. The commodity is now down 54 per cent since the end of 2010.

Widespread rain in the next several days in Brazil’s Sao Paulo and Parana states would aid plants by increasing soil moisture, MDA Weather Services in the US said.

Brazil’s crop is expected to reach 49.2 million bags (a bag weighs 60 kilograms), higher than a previous estimate of 47.5 million bags, according to Conab, the government’s forecasting agency.

Global production is set to exceed demand for the fourth straight season, pushing inventories to a five-year high, the US Department of Agriculture says. The glut is helping to cut costs for US cafe chains, such as Starbucks and Green Mountain Coffee Roasters.

”There’s just too much coffee around,” said Michael Smith, president of T&K Futures and Options in Florida. ”A better crop outlook in Brazil is certainly pushing prices lower.”

Global production, including the robusta variety that accounts for about 42 per cent of supply, would exceed demand by 6.04 million bags in the 2013-14 season, compared with a surplus of 11.06 million a year earlier, the US Department of Agriculture said. Inventories would reach 36.33 million bags, the highest since the 2008-09 season.

Arabica, grown mainly in Latin America, is brewed by specialty companies, including Starbucks. Robusta, used in instant coffee, is harvested in Asia and parts of Africa.

Robusta futures for March delivery fell 0.6 per cent to $US1683 a tonne on the NYSE Liffe exchange in London. The robusta price dropped 13 per cent in 2013 after climbing 6.3 per cent in 2012. Vietnam is the biggest producer, followed by Brazil.

The arabica premium to robusta averaged US42.41¢ a pound in 2013, down from US84.16¢ in 2012.


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Stars fight back to quieten Thunder

The Sydney Thunder’s lot could be summed up in one cruel moment.

Defending a moderate score but very much in the hunt against the powerful Melbourne Stars, Brad Hodge smashed one back towards Thunder import Tillakaratne Dilshan.

The Sri Lankan veteran had had a tough debut, out for a duck in the home side’s 6-155. But in this instant he grabbed the ball, turned, and threw down the stumps behind him, catching David Hussey just out of his ground.

The light on the bail went off, as it does in this rock and roll form of the game when stumps are struck. But, unbelievably, the bail fell back into place, rendering the appeal null and void.

They say you make your own luck. But the Thunder was a bit stiffed in this clash. Playing a team consisting of 10 international players, the battlers were on the receiving end of another crucial moment, when Matt Wade stood his ground and was given not out after a huge appeal from Dirk Nannes for a catch by wicketkeeper Ryan Carters when Wade was on zero.

Wade went on to make 44 to get the Stars to within 67 of victory with 6.4 overs remaining. He later admitted of the Nannes appeal that he “smashed it, but I’m not walking”. The Thunder was left to take on Hodge and Hussey after Wade left if it were to gain its first win since December 2011 in front of a small crowd of 10,902.

Then came that cruel moment and another case of so close yet so far for the men in green.

Hodge continued his classy knock and chipped away at the target, bringing up his 50 of 30 deliveries, including four sixes and three fours.

He smashed another six over cover from Scott Coyte and then another boundary to take the wind from the Thunder’s challenge and hit the winning run off Dilshan with five balls to spare to ensure a seven-wicket victory and finish with 64 not out.

The win gave the Stars a clean sweep of the Sydney teams and put them on top of the league table with three wins from three matches. After winning the toss, Thunder’s top order frailty continued when they lost 2-27, including Dilshan, whose hyped arrival faded away with a four-ball duck when he thick edged John Hastings to wicketkeeper Wade.

Sydney Thunder D HUGHES c White b Hastings 16 T DILSHAN c Wade b Hastings 0 M HUSSEY run out (Wade) 66 E MORGAN c Maxwell b Bird 31 K PATTERSON c Maxwell b Hastings 18 J FLOROS c Hastings b McKay 18 R CARTERS not out 3 S COYTE not out 0Sundries (1b, 1lb, 1w) 3Total (6 wkts – 20 overs) 155Fall of wickets: 6 (Dilshan), 25 (Hughes), 82 (Morgan), 123 (Patterson), 135 (Hussey), 153 (Floros)Bowling: J Bird 4-0-17-1, J Hastings 4-0-31-3 (1w), G Maxwell 3-0-17-0, L Malinga 4-0-33-0, C McKay 4-0-43-1, L Wright 1-0-12-0

Melbourne Stars L WRIGHT c Morgan b Nannes 9 C WHITE c Patterson b Feldman 21 M WADE c Morgan b Sandhu 44 B HODGE not out 64 D HUSSEY not out 16Sundries (1lb, 1w) 2Total (3 wkts – 19.1 overs) 156Fall of wickets: 17 (Wright), 51 (White), 89 (Wade)Bowling: D Nannes 4-0-15-1 (1w), L Feldman 4-0-34-1, G Sandhu 4-0-31-1, S Coyte 4-0-45-0, T Dilshan 3.1-0-30-0Result: Stars won by 7 wicketsMan of the Match: Brad Hodge (Stars)Points: Stars 2 Thunder 0This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on 苏州美甲美睫培训学校.

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High climbers destined to meet in treetops

IT’S been dubbed Tarzan in the boardroom – or having a business meeting in a treehouse.

TreeTop Adventure Park is branching out to build a ‘‘suspended conference room’’ between three trees.

The park operates three sites – at Minmi, Sydney and Wyong Creek on the Central Coast.

The conference room will be built at the Wyong site early this year.

Park operations manager Scott Browne said the floor height would be four metres above the ground and the conference room would hold a maximum of 30 adults at a time.

As well as business meetings, it is planned to be used for birthday parties.

‘‘Once a climbing group finishes, they can go up there and have their cake,’’ he said.

‘‘Corporate and team-building groups can use it as a meeting area and have lunch after they’ve done their climb.’’

Activities at the parks include climbing, swinging, leaping and flying on rope networks among the trees.

There are flying foxes, rope bridges and ladders between tree platforms and participants are carefully locked in to harnesses to ensure safety.

Park co-owner Sandrine Gaymard said more than 100,000 children had completed courses at the three parks.

She said parents ‘‘typically raise children in cotton wool, but the challenge is to find ways to get them life skills in a safe way’’.

‘‘I’ve found that kids learn best when they’re out of their comfort zone.’’

While some people were sitting around drinking beer and watching the cricket over the festive season, others were testing their limits at the parks.

Steve Webb, of Kotara, took on the Minmi site for the second time on an outing for a friend’s birthday.

‘‘It gets pretty scary sometimes, but it’s good fun,’’ Mr Webb said.

Mr Browne said the park allowed people to face their fears.

‘‘They’re getting scared, which is what it’s about, but in a safe environment.’’

The Minmi site was the only park with night climbs, Mr Browne said.

‘‘People can come out at sunset and climb in the dark.’’

He said the parks offered courses for everyone from three years old.

BRANCHING OUT: An image of a suspended conference room that will be built at Wyong Creek. Picture: Ryan Osland

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Fireworks explode in man’s face

A HUNTER man could lose the sight in both eyes after fireworks exploded in his face during New Year’s Eve celebrations.

The 24-year-old was taken from a property on Bullen Bullen Road, Waukivory, to Gloucester Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital after 10.30pm on Tuesday with serious facial burns and two large cuts above both eyes, a NSW Ambulance spokeswoman said yesterday.

It is believed that the fireworks exploded when the Gloucester man was attempting to light them, police said.

He was flown to John Hunter Hospital by the Westpac rescue helicopter before being transferred to the Sydney Eye Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery yesterday afternoon amid fears that he could lose the sight in both eyes.

Manning-Great Lakes duty officer Inspector Allan Fidock said the incident was a sad reminder of how dangerous fireworks could be.

‘‘Fireworks are prohibited articles in NSW requiring permits to possess them and permits to use them,’’ Inspector Fidock said.

‘‘They are very dangerous and this is a classic example of what can happen with them when things go wrong.’’

Police will continue to investigate the incident including the source of the fireworks, Inspector Fidock said.

It was one of several incidents involving fireworks across the state during the last night of 2013.

At Lockhart in the state’s south, motocross star Jackson Strong was one of two men seriously hurt in a fireworks explosion at his home.

An ambulance spokeswoman said paramedics responded to reports of a fireworks explosion just after midnight yesterday and took two patients to Wagga Wagga Base Hospital.

Strong, 22, suffered serious injuries to his leg, chest and face.

‘‘His left leg around his thigh is the worst part,’’ his father, Lyndon Strong, said. ‘‘He will pull through, no worries at all.’’

Strong, who was selected as a 13-year-old to perform with the world-famous motorcycle stunt show Crusty Demons, was flown to the burns unit at St George Hospital.

The former best tricks medallist at the X Games recently performed in his home town of Wagga Wagga with the Nitro Circus Live regional tour.

At Kanahooka near Wollongong, a 31-year-old man suffered a serious hand injury when a firework exploded about midnight.

He was initially taken to Wollongong Hospital before being transferred to a Sydney hand clinic.

Crusty Demons stuntman Jackson Strong, pictured in hospital, was hurt in a fireworks explosion at his home on New Year’s Eve.

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Spaniards divided over new olive oil ruling

Golden taste: Oil producers hope the new rules will help build stronger recognition for their brands. Photo: iStock A cafe breakfast with olive oil on toasted bread is a tradition.

Every morning, cafes in Madrid fill up with people enjoying a typical Spanish breakfast, including pouring olive oil out of a plain glass cruet onto a slice of toasted bread.

The traditional cruet, however, will be replaced by a labelled, sealed and non-reusable bottle or other type of container under stricter oil bottling rules that took effect on Wednesday.

Spain is the world’s largest producer of olive oil. The new regulations were created mainly to improve food hygiene. But oil producers also hope the rules will help them build stronger recognition for their brands and even bolster sales and exports to markets like the US, where Spanish oil has played second fiddle to Italy’s.

Spain acted on its own after Germany and other north European countries, which consume but do not produce olive oil, blocked a proposal by the European Commission last spring to impose such legislation across the 28-nation European Union.

Northern countries said tougher rules would produce additional costs and more waste, with used and half-empty bottles thrown out rather than reused. British Prime Minister David Cameron also pilloried the regulatory plan as evidence of unnecessary interventionism by Brussels bureaucrats. Olive oil, Cameron said in May, is ”exactly the sort of area that the European Union needs to get right out of”.

A similar debate has taken place within Spain. But it has been more subdued because the Madrid government clearly sided with oil producers, saying stricter rules would raise health safety, by guaranteeing the oil’s authenticity, as well as give consumers an opportunity to identify the quality and origin of their oil.

Producers have struggled to raise brand awareness among consumers – and hence the value of their product – even in the olive heartland of Andalusia, in southern Spain.

”Traceability is important for food security, but we must also make people much more aware that olive oil is not something banal but instead noble and very special,” said Alvaro Olavarria, the managing director of Oleoestepa.

The company has annual revenue of €75 million ($115 million) and claims to have been the first Spanish producer to sell olive oil in non-reusable bottles, just more than a decade ago.

The Spanish hotel federation, which represents more than 100,000 businesses, has opposed the stricter rules, echoing the recent concerns in Germany and other northern countries.

With Spain recently emerging from a two-year recession but still struggling with anaemic household spending, ”we’re facing an unjustified and unnecessary change that adds costs at the wrong time”, federation secretary-general Emilio Gallego Zuazo said.

Cafe owners now generally fill their cruets from five-litre plastic containers. The labelling rules do not apply to olive oil used within the kitchen, but the cost of the oil that has been offered in cruets is likely to increase three to fivefold, depending on what alternative bottling and labelling is selected, Gallego Zuazo said.

Some restaurants might decide to charge for premium olive oil, but most are expected to continue providing bottled oil free. Another perhaps cheaper option is to switch to single-serve packets such as those used for tomato sauce or mayonnaise.

The olive oil sector disputes any doomsday financial forecasts. Primitivo Fernandez, the director of Anierac, Spain’s national association of bottlers and distributors of olive oil, calculated that the cost of a regular breakfast should increase by as little as a euro cent, which would also be less onerous than the cost of past packaging changes for other produce like butter.

As to the concern over waste, Fernandez said that ”if we’re really worried about environmental damage, then let us talk first about problems like the bottling of Coca-Cola”.

Overall, Fernandez said, ”the consumer has until now had no idea where the oil comes from, whether it has been blended or even how to complain if the taste isn’t right or fraud is suspected”.

Some upmarket establishments have broken ranks with the hospitality sector, welcoming the bottling rules as part of their efforts to raise the reputation of Spanish gastronomy.

”Spain is the world’s No. 1 producer but doesn’t have the consumer culture that such a ranking deserves,” said Jesus Santos, who owns a handful of restaurants in Madrid and Bilbao, serving mainly Basque cuisine.

As with wine, Santos added, ”consumers should ultimately be encouraged to order a specific oil rather than just get whatever is in the kitchen”.

The European Union produces three-quarters of the world’s olive oil, mostly around the Mediterranean. For this harvest year, Spain is set to produce 1.5 million out of the European Union’s 2.3 million tonnes of olive oil, according to estimates from the European Commission. Italy ranks second, with an estimated 450,000 tonnes, then Greece and Portugal.

Another longstanding Spanish frustration is that Italy has more successfully focused on exporting the highest-quality of olive oil, known as extra virgin, even as Italy is the largest importer of Spanish oil, which it buys mostly in bulk.

One explanation for Italy’s exporting clout is that pizzerias and other Italian restaurants in countries such as the US helped promote its oil long before Spain started targeting such markets.

Another reason is that Italy was among the six European nations that established in 1966 a common market and subsidy system for olive oil – 20 years before Spain and Portugal joined the European Union and also became eligible for such farm subsidies.

”The rules of the European oil market were tailor-made by and for Italy,” Olavarria said.

”The worldwide perception is still that olive oil is far more Italian than Spanish, so it’s been about playing catch-up and trying to get some facts straight.”

Italian and Portuguese producers have also benefited from stricter domestic labelling rules for oil, Olavarria said, ”which is something that Spanish producers have been demanding for decades but unfortunately were made to wait for until now”.

Even though the rules will still not apply throughout the European Union, ”it now also gives Spain a chance to ensure every visitor goes home with a clearer appreciation of our oil”, he said.

Spain is expected to welcome about 60 million visitors in 2013, making it one of the world’s biggest tourism destinations.

The jury is out on whether the new law and higher brand recognition can bolster sales. Gallego Zuazo said ”this compulsory change will not bring the positive effect that producers are expecting”.

In fact, ”putting oil on the table for free has been key in helping raise the popularity of oil”, he said. ”This could go against that.”

A group of people having breakfast recently at Los Chicos, a Madrid cafe, said they understood that producers wanted to increase sales but not why that required turning cruets into a serious problem.

”I’ve used them for 70 years and I’ve never been sick,” said Juan Marin, a pensioner. ”But food has gotten more and more expensive and that certainly makes me feel sick.”

New York Times

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