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News Cafe opens in India

first_imgSouth African food and entertainment chain News Cafe has opened its first branch outside the African continent. News Cafe New Delhi in India is getting rave reviews. (Image: News Cafe) MEDIA CONTACTS • Alan van der WesthuizenNews Cafe+27 11 452 8770RELATED ARTICLES • Nando’s blazes into the US • South African food • SA chilli sauce bites the world • Mes Ball’s chutney comes homeJanine ErasmusSouth Africa’s popular food and entertainment chain, News Cafe, opened its first venue in India in November, joining the ranks of other well-known local brands such as Nando’s, Spur and Steers, which have all branched out overseas.This is the first News Cafe branch to open off the African continent.The first sub-continental branch of News Cafe opened its doors in the capital city of New Delhi. Before taking the adventurous step the company conducted intensive market research to establish the pattern for overseas expansion.Research was carried out in three key areas in India – the densely populated cities of Mumbai, New Delhi and Hyderabad. But this country is not the only one in Asia to be targeted by News Cafe – the company also has China in its sights.The second News Cafe, currently in the final stages of fitting, is due to open early in 2010 in Hyderabad, known as the pharmaceutical and ICT capital of the country.The third one will open in Mumbai, the world’s second biggest city in terms of population, in March 2010.To get the most out of its Indian market penetration, the South African franchise has partnered with Numbers Only, a multinational company with extensive hospitality experience in the US and India, and therefore sound knowledge of the industry. Numbers Only also has a separate hotel and restaurant division.News Cafe GM Alan van der Westhuizen said the company was extremely excited to be branching out into new territory.“Unlike other parts of the globe, there is much money and potential within the Indian economy,” he said. “An enormous expatriate community exists with the presence of major corporations utilising the country’s colossal workforce. As such, initial reactions to the contemporary News Cafe brand have been incredibly positive.”He added that New Cafe is hoping to give other similar international brands, such as T.G.I. Friday’s, Hard Rock Cafe and Smokehouse Grill, a run for their money. Rave reviewsThe 200-seater New Delhi News Cafe operates in the upmarket residential suburb of Vasant Kunj, in the DLF Promenade which is fittingly situated on Nelson Mandela Road.Reviews posted on food websites have not been sparing with praise for News Cafe.“This place rocks,” wrote one enthusiastic diner. “They have the best burgers in town, and the drinks are good … their menu is casual continental.”Customers can experience the well-established South African vibe with décor very similar to that of local News Cafes.To be more compatible with the Indian clientele, however, subtle changes have been made, such as the use of brighter, jewel-like colours in fabrics. The familiar wood counter tops have been replaced with locally quarried granite, which is also seen on the floors and walls.There are also slight changes to the menu. In South Africa News Cafes open very early, some by 07h00, but because the New Delhi one trades between 10h00 and 02h00 the breakfast menu has been reduced accordingly.In addition to the normal fare, a few local favourite dishes such as paneer kathi, kakori keema sandwich, falafel, and Thai green, green prawn and Thai red vegetable curries, are available. The staple food of rice also appears on the menu.Hindu customers have been accommodated with a variety of non-beef dishes, but beef has been left on the menu for the growing international community. All dishes are clearly marked as vegetarian or non-vegetarian, or containing beef and pork.Steady growthThe first News Cafe opened in 1995 in Hatfield, Pretoria, and since then the franchise has expanded throughout South Africa and across the country’s borders. There are now 37 venues in Africa, including franchises in Nigeria and Botswana.The unique News Cafe lifestyle concept has earned it many awards in the food, beverage and service sector. Success is attributed to astute, high-profile location, versatility, innovation, trend-setting, aesthetics, positive energy and a multi-cultural clientele.The versatile food chain presents itself as a stylish coffee shop in the morning, switching to a bistro ambience at lunch time, and later in the evening, serves cocktails and light snacks. Occasionally there are music and promotional events for product suppliers.Customers can make themselves at home at all times of the day at a News Cafe, according to the holding company Fournews Developments.The company’s international expansion strategy includes not only Asia, but also the Middle East, Europe and North Africa.last_img read more

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BRICS grouping ‘remains a dynamic force’

first_img24 January 2014The BRICS group of influential emerging countries should not be counted out as dynamic forces in the global economy, panelists argued during a special session at the World Economic Forum’s (WEF’s) annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland on Thursday.While Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa have all been hit to varying degrees by fallout from the global financial crisis, the leaders responsible for economic management in these countries predicted on Thursday that they will rebound over the next few years.Concerns that China’s economy will run out of steam are unfounded, Liu Mingkang, distinguished fellow at the Fung Global Institute in Hong Kong, said. Growth rates have come down 30% over the past three years, but the authorities are confident that the country will maintain its economic momentum on a more sustainable course at a rate of 6% to 7% through to 2020. China’s breakneck growth in the past came at significant environmental cost.According to Mingkang, the new government’s focus is on three priorities: reducing overcapacity, notably in heavy industry; lowering borrowing by provincial governments and increasing transparency in the markets for their debt; and reducing China’s dependence on export markets by stimulating internal demand.“In the short term, tapering of quantitative easing will create huge volatility in capital flows,” Mingkang said. “We will certainly be hit by this volatility but, hopefully, not shocked.”Brazilian Finance Minister Guido Mantega said the country would not return to its pre-crisis growth levels soon, but that it was already consolidating reforms introduced over the past decade that have raised the incomes of the poorest people in society. Efforts to promote private investment would also continue, with licences worth US$250-billion about to go for auction, Mantega said. These cover railways, ports and airports, motorways and other infrastructure.Indian Finance Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram attributed his country’s growth decline over recent years to “the adverse external environment and … some decisions we took.” He was confident, however, that India would grow at 6% this year, 7% in 2015 and 8% in 2016.Questioned about the role of the state in the Indian economy, Chidambaram said: “New space in the economy is reserved substantially for the private sector, but state enterprises cannot be dismantled overnight or simply wished away. As long as the public sector is competitive and run on commercial terms, there is no reason to take state enterprises apart.”Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said his country’s slow rate of growth was partly due to the economic conditions of its main trading partners, Europe and the China. He added that internal constraints were the main impediments to progress. “The business environment is not good enough. There is too much red tape and bureaucracy, and insufficient support for SMEs and other enterprises that will provide the high-tech jobs of the future.”South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said his country had achieved a lot in the past two decades and was now headed towards “the new normal”. The global financial crisis, “which was not of our making, did huge damage,” Gordhan said. “We now need to enhance the skills of our citizens and improve our infrastructure to take advantage of the opportunities ahead.”Source: World Economic Forumlast_img read more

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Big cats, badgers and coy wolves: Will a snowy winter offer wildlife tracking opportunities?

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest As we settle in for what many believe will be a cold winter, I am ready for some snow.After limited snowball fights, almost no opportunities to take the kids sledding and nary a snowman in the last couple of winters, I am hoping for some snow and frosty weather in the months ahead. Along with opportunities for some outdoor fun, I always am fascinated to walk the fields surrounding my house to look for wildlife tracks with the children.What seem to be empty fields during daylight hours turn into wildlife highways by night around my house. I never realize how much critter traffic there really is until I pull on my boots and take a crisp winter stroll in the snow and see the vast array of tracks from opossums, raccoons, skunks, mink, fox, and coyotes (among other things) that have traveled the landscape the previous night. My son, especially, loves to find and identify the tracks, and I am always surprised about the volume of them out there.Of course, Ohio is home to an increasingly diverse number of critters as reforestation efforts and conservation practices are being implemented. Ohio has seen rising populations of black bears, wild turkeys, bobcats, and other native species in recent years. It is no surprise that there are more close encounters with wildlife and people in Ohio that include many of the standard wildlife fare, but there are also rumblings of critter encounters of a more exotic nature.With dreams of the long snowy nights ahead and the increased potential for spotting signs of some of Ohio’s more unique animal residents, here is a recap of some of the more unique recent wildlife stories that may inspire you to take a snowy hike this winter (or maybe not).BadgersYou probably do not want to stumble across one, but there are viable populations of badgers living in Ohio.Rarely seen and largely unknown to most Ohioans, reports of buckeye badgers have increased over the past couple of decades, according to Suzie Prange, state carnivore specialist, furbearer biologist, and mammalogist for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. The badger is a vigorous, burly, strong critter that is a member of the weasel family. Weighing between 12 and 24 pounds and measuring approximately two feet long, badgers have a white stripe that extends back over the head from the nose and characteristic black cheek patches, or “badges.”Short-legged and flat to the ground, it has powerful feet and claws that it uses for digging. A burrowing creature that is nearly as wide as it is long, the badger, as naturalist Marty Stouffer puts it, resembles a “digging doormat…it lives to dig and digs to live…Its whole existence depends on its burrowing habits. It digs for defense, shelter, food, and sometimes just for fun.”MinkA mink is surely among the top few creatures that roam the wilds of Ohio that you do not want to encounter in close quarters. Minks are rarely seen but widely known for their beautiful pelts. They are also cunning, ferocious and have a musky odor that almost rivals a skunk. In short, a mink is not something you hope to find in your home — which is what happened to my brother and his family last winter. Yikes!Coyotes and the coy wolfOf course, coyote sightings are not that uncommon. There is no shortage of them around Ohio. One winter night a few years ago, I went out to refill my outdoor wood burner about midnight and heard an unearthly sound coming from the road. It turned out to be the claws of a running pack of coyotes on the icy road as they ran by the house. I see them occasionally, but hear their unsettling howls often throughout the year.And there has been more discussion recently about dogs crossbreeding with coyotes, resulting in larger, more fearsome versions of the woodland creatures. Have you ever had a run in with one of these?Mountain lionsThough wildlife officials may tell you otherwise, Ohio does not have a shortage of suspected sightings and encounters with big cats. This fall, northeast Ohioans were abuzz about a big cat in the Mahoning Valley. And, at ocj.com we have heard MANY more stories about big cats roaming the wilds of Ohio.BearsBears have been found not too far from my house. In 2015, a black bear was hit on the road in the southeastern part of the county. And while they are mostly tucked in during the winter months, there are some bruins that call Ohio home.With December almost here and Christmas just around the corner, I am really looking forward to winter and all of the outdoor recreation opportunities it can offer, including the chance to check in on some of my wildlife neighbors in rural Ohio. Happy winter ramblings.last_img read more

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Geocaching.com Presents: CITO – Hamburg to Prague

first_img[Editor’s note: This video is spoken in German and Czech. Click the CC button for English, German or Czech subtitles.][vsw id=”HOqobTmkbbU” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”344″ autoplay=”no”]Watch the latest Geocaching.com Presents video: CITO: Hamburg to Prague. See how geocachers from two countries unite to cleanup the environment. Dozens of geocachers from Germany and the Czech Republic attended the Hamburg to Prague CITO Event in June of 2011. They cleared trash from a Prague park, including tires, discarded cables, and bags full of litter.CITO stands for Cache In Trash Out . It’s a Geocaching.com volunteer environmental effort repeated over and over again around the world by groups of geocachers each year. Since 2002, geocachers have been dedicated to improving parks and other cache-friendly location. These volunteer efforts help preserve the natural beauty of our outdoor resources. Find a CITO Event near you by checking out the CITO calendar.The next Geocaching.com Presents video, “A Czech Geocaching Love Story” is scheduled for released on February 14th. Subscribe to our YouTube channel to be one of the first to see new videos. Watch the more than 50 videos produced by Geocaching.com on our video page. Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedGroundspeak Weekly Newsletter – April 18, 2012April 18, 2012In “Cache In Trash Out”Announcing the 2014 CITO Weekend and SouvenirJanuary 26, 2014In “Cache In Trash Out”6 steps to organize a Cache In Trash Out® (CITO) eventJanuary 26, 2017In “Environmental Initiatives”last_img read more

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The Startup Toolkit: A Canvas For You to Sketch Your Business Framework

first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Tags:#start#tips When Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey spoke at the 99% Conference in April, he shared some tips that he found key to the successful development of his own business ideas. One of Dorsey’s suggestions was to “draw it out” – to commit your ideas to paper well before you start to worry about committing those ideas to code.This impulse to “draw it out” lies behind the Startup Toolkit, a project started by Rob Fitzpatrick. The Startup Toolkit is an web-based collaboration tool, where founders can write, revise, and share their business plans and ideas.Worksheets for StartupsThe Startup Toolkit is based on the worksheets that fill Steve Blank‘s book The Four Steps to Epiphany. A proponent of Blank’s ideas, Fitzpatrick found that as he worked through these worksheets, it was sometimes difficult to track and revise information. He says, “Going through his documentation process was eye opening, but I found it very difficult to keep the documents updated. I mean, there are nearly 50 pages of them. And when you’re learning fast and changing beliefs all over the place, it’s hard to stay on top of the implications of those changes for your business.”Visualizing Your Business HypothesesThe Startup Toolkit then takes these worksheet questions and answers and arranges them in a spatial canvas. This method provides both an overview and a visualization for progress. Snapshots of the canvas can be saved, and there’s an offline PDF version as well.“As founders, we get stuck in the day-to-day details and lose sight of the big picture,” says Fitzpatrick. “My core belief for the product is that by writing down your business hypotheses (or leaps of faith or risks or whatever you call them), you focus yourself on the correct questions, which is how to validate the big mysteries as quickly and cheaply as possible. That with just that tiny touch of scaffolding, we can make smarter decisions and be more successful.”Fitzpatrick hopes that the toolkit will help translate dense business texts into an accessible format, so that startup teams can work through some of these frameworks together and can easily report on their progress to investors. Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostingcenter_img Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… audrey watters 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

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Tilt-Shift: Free After Effects Template

first_imgOur friends at MotionArray.com are giving away a tilt-shift effect FREE template for After Effects!Tilt-shift, when done by a skilled hand, can be a really impressive effect.  In the last few years, with the proliferation of DSLRs, we’re seeing tilt-shift video effects pop up more and more.  For high quality examples of tilt-shift videos check out our previous post on 12 Exceptional Tilt-Shift Videos.For those unfamiliar, tilt-shift is a photo/video effect that gives scenes the appearance of miniaturization through selective focus (created by specialized lenses, post-production focusing or a combination).  For more on the history and technical aspects of tilt-shift check out this Wikipedia entry.So, how can you create a Tilt-Shift effect?  For After Effects users, a new template by MotionArray.com gives you the tools to create this effect easily.  The FREE After Effects template provides modifiable parameters to customize the effect for your project – blur, rotation and amount.Check out the video below to see an example of this free After Effects template in action or head on over to MotionArray.com to get the template file!  *Note: You will need to sign up for the MotionArray email list to access the free files.last_img read more

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