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Nintendo forms alliance with mobile game company DeNA in about face on

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TOKYO – After years of scoffing at the threat from smartphones, Nintendo Co. is doing an about face and entering an alliance with Japanese mobile game company DeNA Co. to develop games for mobile devices.The announcement Tuesday means that Nintendo’s trademark game characters such as Super Mario and Pokemon could finally feature on smartphones and tablets. Such characters have been fiercely protected by Nintendo, appearing only on Nintendo platforms such as the Wii home console and 3DS mobile machines.Both sides said they will build a global membership service for various devices including personal computers, smartphones and Nintendo machines. The service is set to launch in the fall of 2015.They said the mobile games won’t be mere adaptations of the games already out for the Nintendo machines but developed especially for the smartphone experience.The alliance will be combining Nintendo’s intellectual property and game development skills with DeNA’s expertise in mobile games, the announcement said.Under the alliance, Kyoto-based Nintendo will acquire about 15 million DeNA shares or a 10 per cent stake. In return, DeNA will acquire about 1.759 million Nintendo shares, or 1.24 per cent of the company. Both acquisitions are worth 22 billion yen ($182 million). The payment is due April 2, they said.Nintendo has run into trouble in the past few years as people increasingly turned to mobile phones to play games and spend time on social networks. The company is expecting to turn a profit for the fiscal year ending later this month, a turnaround from red ink the previous year.Tokyo-based DeNA, founded in 1999, has a reputation as an innovator and is one of the most successful of a new generation of Japanese technology companies. It develops and operates a broad range of mobile and online services including games and e-commerce.___Follow Yuri Kageyama: http://twitter.com/yurikageyama by Yuri Kageyama, The Associated Press Posted Mar 17, 2015 3:15 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Nintendo forms alliance with mobile game company DeNA in about face on smartphone strategy read more

As cider booms Brocks CCOVI continues to be a key industry partner

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Grocery stores across the province are vying to be one of 95 new retailers authorized to sell cider to Ontario consumers next year.With Ontario’s thirst for cider far from quenched, Brock University’s Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute (CCOVI) continues to be at the forefront of advancing the booming industry.CCOVI is the only institution in Canada to offer a certification in cider production through the Cider Institute of North America, and it also provides analytical testing services to help cider makers deliver the best product possible.CCOVI’s Continuing Education Manager Barb Tatarnic says that pairing the foundational educational program with testing services brings a holistic approach to the learning process.Denise Flynn, an apple grower from Church Point, N.S., left, learns the intricacies of the yeast addition process of cider production from Brock University PhD candidate Andréanne Hébert-Haché during CCOVI’s Cider and Perry Production course earlier this year.“CCOVI has been able to branch out into an industry that is important here in Niagara and all across Canada,” Tatarnic says. “By delivering the foundational learning elements and then providing the opportunity to test the finished product, we are ensuring cider makers are delivering the quality of product their communities are looking for.”Maintaining quality from the orchard through to the consumer’s glass is especially crucial when dealing with cider because the product is less established with consumers, adds CCOVI’s Steven Trussler.“If a consumer tries a faulted product they may simply decide they don’t like cider and that’s a lost customer,” says Trussler, who is the CINA certified instructor in the institute’s cider program. “Having that baseline of knowledge across the country helps producers make a higher-quality product and increases the number of cider consumers, which benefits everyone.”Cole Ford, lead cider maker at Shiny Apple Cider in Niagara-on-the-Lake, uses a range of services provided by CCOVI as a quality control measure for his products.“The services provided by CCOVI allow us access to fast, reliable and consistent results, which, for a small-to-medium-sized business like Shiny Apple, is key in providing our consumer the kind of cider they have come to expect from us,” he says.Denise Flynn, an apple grower from Church Point, Nova Scotia, left, was among the dozens of cider-makers and soon-to-be-cider makers who attended CCOVI’s last sold-out Cider and Perry Production – A Foundation course.Ford also says the industry is changing as fast as it is expanding. This forces producers like him to constantly learn new things in order to provide cider products that satisfy changing consumer demands.“Education is key to improving any industry, and having more courses and more diversity in those courses can only help improve Ontario’s cider industry,” he adds.With that in mind, CCOVI will be expanding its cider offerings to include more advanced courses in the near future. This would add to the growing number of continuing education courses now offered by the institute, which has more than tripled over the past year. The number of people accessing those courses has also increased significantly, rising from 77 in 2016 to 247 in 2017.“You can’t stand still when it comes to the direction the industry is evolving,” says Tatarnic. “They always want to learn more, and we want to be at the forefront for those next offerings and learning opportunities.”After attending a masterclass in advanced cider production last month, taught by renowned cider expert Peter Mitchell at Cornell University, Tatarnic says the seeds were sown for CCOVI to take that next step in further educating the industry.Mitchell says he’s glad to see such significant growth in the Canadian cider industry and that Brock is in the perfect position to further drive that industry forward.“As part of the Cider Institute of North America, Brock is uniquely placed and appropriately resourced to take a leading role in Canada in the provision of training, skills and technology development and transfer to new and aspiring cider and perry production enterprises,” he says. read more

Banks exceeding arrears targets but some customers have no clarity

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first_imgTHE SIX BANKS that have been set targets to engage with their mortgage customers who are in arrears are a cumulative 13 per cent ahead of target.That is according to new figures released today by the Central Bank.The Central Bank has set six Irish lenders: AIB, Bank of Ireland, Permanent TSB, Ulster Bank, ACC Bank and KBC Bank, a target of having offered mortgage arrears solutions to 30 per cent of their customers by the end of the third quarter of this year.The figures show that the banks are at 43 per cent of their customers, as of the end of September.In an audit of the Quarter Two results, however, the Central Bank found problems with how the banks were engaging with customers.Key issues identified include short-term loan modifications were proposed in some cases where there was: The Central Bank’s director of credit institutions Fiona Muldoon said the figures showed signs of progress in tackling the problem.“We are now starting to see some signs of progress in addressing the significant issue of mortgage arrears.We expect that lenders will continue to progress and develop their approaches to ensure that future sustainability targets will be achieved. With indications the banks are now offering long term sustainable solutions to customers, the Central Bank continues to encourage meaningful engagement between lenders and borrowers.Read: Banks brought 2,300 legal proceedings against mortgage holders in Q3Read: Number of mortgage accounts in arrears FELL last quarter no tangible evidence of a borrower’s circumstances improvingno clarity on the ultimate long-term solution;an absence of requisite information, such as verification of borrower income or property value; anda lack of evidence of legal follow up in cases counted under legal heading.last_img read more

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