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Team work boosts Telkom Kenya

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Paul Booth.

Paul Booth.

Ultimate Software going private for $11 billion dominated the international ICT market last week, while at home it was comparatively quiet.

* An interim loss from Net 1 UEPS Technologies, with revenue also down (34.5%).
* A positive trading update from MTN.
* Negative trading updates from Alaris Holdings and Silverbridge Holdings.
* The 51% acquisition by Dynamic Technologies, a software and technology group, of DotModus, a cloud solutions firm.
* The 37.45% investment by the Reatile Group, an investment holding company, in Pragma, an enterprise asset and facilities management company.
* The announcement that Kingson Capital, a Section 12J venture capital company, has a R400 million fund to invest in high-growth tech and black-owned start-up companies in SA.

* Ethio Telecom will be the first company to be privatised partially from among the four state-owned companies the Ethiopian government has decided to privatise.
* Lava International Limited, a multinational mobile phone manufacturer, has entered into the Nigerian market through the launch of its Champion series (C1, A1, N1) and smartphones Z series (Z81 2GB, Z81 3GB) and the Iris 5.
* Bharti Airtel’s Kenyan unit has agreed to combine operations with Telkom Kenya, creating the second-largest telecommunications operator in the East African nation after Safaricom.
* The appointments of Henry Craukamp as MD of Rockwell Automation Sub-Saharan Africa; and Pedro Guerreiro as MD of SAP Africa’s newly-formed Central African region.

* The acquisition by Barracuda Networks of Avast Software’s Managed Workplace, giving the former its first remote monitoring and management platform.
* The $618.5 million acquisition by Carbonite of Webroot, a leading cyber security company.
* The $11 billion acquisition by Hellman & Friedman, a private equity firm, of Ultimate Software Group, a cloud-based human resources applications developer.
* The acquisition by Kofax, a leading supplier of intelligent automation software to automate and digitally transform end-to-end business processes, of Top Image Systems, a global innovator of on-premises and cloud-based applications that optimise content-driven business processes.
* Microsoft bought DataSense, a platform for collecting and managing data within schools that is used by education-focused solution providers.
* Pegasystems purchased Infruid Labs, a business analytics and data visualisation software company.
* The acquisition by Spotify of podcast companies Gimlet and Anchor as it looks to take on Apple’s popular iTunes podcasting platform.
* STMicroelectronics purchased a majority stake in Swedish silicon carbide wafer manufacturer Norstel AB.
* The $218 million acquisition by Tesla of Maxwell Technologies, which will help the electric car-maker beef up its battery technology.

The acquisition by Spotify of podcast companies Gimlet and Anchor as it looks to take on Apple’s popular iTunes podcasting platform.

* The $185 million acquisition by Tyler Technologies, the public sector juggernaut that has been a big player in state and local government digital transformation, of MicroPact, a software company that focuses on the federal market. In addition, it has acquired MyCivic, a rapidly growing provider of citizen engagement applications.
* VMware bought AetherPal, a technology partner that enables IT administrators to remotely monitor and update devices in the field.
* Xerox purchased Vader Systems, a provider of 3D printing technology.
* The investment by NTT’s Docomo in Hatch, a spin-off of Angry Birds game-maker Rovio, in order to bring 5G gaming to Japanese consumers.
* Apple has reached a deal with France to pay an undeclared amount of back-dated tax, with French media putting the sum at around EUR500 million.
* Facebook has been ordered to curb its data collection practices in Germany after a landmark ruling that the world’s largest social network abused its market dominance to gather information about users without their consent.
* TPx Communications, formerly known as TelePacific Communications, is going public as part of a complex deal involving a special purpose acquisition company, Pensare Acquisition, which will help TPx become a Nasdaq-listed public company. The transaction values the combined companies at approximately $1.1 billion, with the new company being known as TPx Corp.
* Excellent quarterly results from Cabot Microelectronics (back in the black), IEC Electronics (back in the black) and Take Two Interactive Software.
* Very good quarterly figures from Microchip Technology (back in the black), Shutterfly, Tableau Software (back in the black) and Viavi Solutions (back in the black).
* Good quarterly numbers from Alphabet (back in the black), Carbonite (back in the black), CSG Systems International, EA (back in the black), eGain (back in the black), Entegris, Fabrinet, Fortinet (back in the black), GoPro (back in the black), Motorola Solutions (back in the black), Paycom Software, Presidio, Spotify (back in the black), Trimble (back in the black), Twitter, Ubiquiti Networks (back in the black), Ultimate Software and Vishay Intertechnology.
* Satisfactory quarterly results from Arrow Electronics, Cerner, Cognizant Technology Solutions (back in the black), Euronet Worldwide, FormFactor, Gartner, Genpact, Manhattan Associates, Radware, Rudolph Technologies, ScanSource, Sensata Technologies, Sonos, Teradata (back in the black) and VeriSign.
* Mediocre quarterly results from DXC Technology, First Data, Lumentum and NXP Semiconductors.
* Mixed quarterly figures from Amdocs, Axcelis Technologies, BCE, Brooks Automation, CDK Global, CDW, ePlus, Esco Technologies, Fiserv, Internet Initiative Japan, MTS Systems, Nuance Communications, Pitney Bowes, Quantenna Communications, Softbank, Swisscom, T-Mobile, TechTarget and Zynga, with revenue up but net income down; and, from Alliance Data, Benchmark Electronics (but back in the black), Qorvo, PC Connection, Seagate Technology, Skyworks Solutions, Snap-On, Synaptics (but back in the black), TTM Technologies and Zayo Group, with revenue down but net income up.
* Quarterly losses from A10 Networks, Aerohive Networks, Allot Communications, Alpha & Omega Semiconductor, Amtech Systems, Arlo Technologies, FireEye, ForeScout Technologies, Glu Mobile, MACOM Technology Solutions, MaxLinear, Mercari, Millicom, MobileIron, NCR, Netgear, pdvWireless, Pixelworks, Plantronics, Rapid7, RealNetworks, Snap, Tenable, Viad, ViaSat, Vocera Communications, Vodafone Idea, Westell Technologies and Zendesk.
* The appointments of Mike Baur as chairman of ScanSource (already CEO); Kevin Campbell as CEO of Backoffice Associates; Francisco D’Souza as executive vice-chairman of Cognizant Technology Solutions; Brian Humphries as CEO of Cognizant Technology Solutions; and Sanjay Mirchandani as president and CEO of CommVault Systems.
* The retirement of Steve Fischer, chairman of Scan Source; and Paul J Tufano, president and CEO of Benchmark Electronics.
* The departure of Christopher North, CEO of Shutterfly.
* An IPO filing in the US from Slack, the business messaging service provider.
* A disappointing IPO in Hong Kong from Tencent-backed Maoyan Entertainment, China’s biggest movie-ticketing platform by sales.

* JSE All share index: Down 1.3%
* FTSE100: Up 0.7%
* DAX: Down 2.4%
* NYSE (Dow): Up 0.2%
* S&P 500: Up 0.1%
* Nasdaq: Up 0.5%
* Nikkei225: Down 2.2%
* Hang Seng: Up 0.1%
* Shanghai: No change

International:
* Palo Alto Networks acquiring Demisto, a US-Israeli information security firm.
* Switzerland’s Sunrise Communications Group buying Liberty Global’s Swiss business UPC Schweiz, a broadband provider.
* Dell Technologies selling SecureWorks.

South Africa:
* More re the listing of the MultiChoice Group.

Final word

Fortune magazine has published its 2019 list of ‘The world’s most admired companies’. In the list from a technology perspective are:
* 1 Apple (no change)
* 2 Amazon (no change)
* 6 Microsoft (was 7)
* 7 Alphabet (was 3)
* 8 Netflix (was 11)
* 14 Salesforce (was 15)
* 34 Alibaba (new entrant)
* 36 Accenture (was 40)
* 40 IBM (was 35)
* 44 Facebook (was 12)
* 50 Samsung Electronics (new entrant)

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African News

Trump allows attorney general to declassify information about origins of Russia probe

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FILE PHOTO – U.S. Attroney General William Barr passes President Donald Trump as he heads to the podium to speak during the presentation of Public Safety Medals of Valor to officers in the East Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., May 22, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday issued an order allowing Attorney General William Barr to declassify any information Barr sees fit during his review of the events that prompted the FBI to open an investigation into links between the Trump campaign and Russia.

The order also directed leaders of the U.S. intelligence community and other departments and agencies to cooperate with Barr during his review.

Reporting by Steve Holland and Makini Brice; Editing by David Alexander

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Botswana To Resume The Hunting Of Elephants : NPR

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Elephants eat foliage at Botswana’s Mashatu game reserve in 2010.

Cameron Spencer/Getty Images


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Elephants eat foliage at Botswana’s Mashatu game reserve in 2010.

Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

Botswana’s government is lifting a ban that protected its elephants from being hunted, part of a series of decisions that could have lasting impacts on the country’s conservation efforts.

In a letter to reporters, the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism referred to elephants as predators and said their numbers “appear to have increased.” It said a subcommittee found that conflicts between humans and elephants had risen, harming livestock and the livelihoods of Botswana’s people.

The announcement marked a sharp departure from the policies of former President Ian Khama, who suspended elephant hunting after data showed the population in decline. The ban took effect in 2014 but did not stop hunting in registered game ranches.

In May, Botswana’s newly elected president, Mokgweetsi Masisi, made international headlines for giving three African leaders stools made of elephant feet.

In June, he requested a review of the ban on hunting elephants.

His study group recommended “regular but limited elephant culling,” in addition to establishing elephant meat canning for pet food and other products. Among other conclusions, it recommended the government expand Botswana’s safari hunting industry.

Authorities said Thursday that the government accepted all recommendations except the regular culling of elephants and the establishment of meat canning. “This was rejected because culling is not considered acceptable given the overall continental status of elephants. Rather, a more sustainable method such as selective cropping should be employed,” the government said.

Conservationists around the world took to social media to denounce the government’s reversal on elephant hunting.

“Horrific beyond imagination,” said Paula Kahumbu, CEO of the Kenya-based WildlifeDirect. She said hunting was an archaic way to address the problems of living with mega fauna. “Africa, we are better than this,” she tweeted.

German organization Pro Wildlife wrote that hunting was a bloody sport, “#cruel, outdated, unethical and often undermining” conservation.

Other groups celebrated Botswana’s announcement, including Safari Club International, a U.S.-based organization that supports regulated trophy hunting.

President Paul Babaz called it “heartening” in a statement. “These findings clearly show that hunting bans actually hurt wildlife conservation; hunting is the key to providing the necessary revenue to fund anti-poaching efforts and on-the-ground conservation research,” he said.

Fewer than 400 elephant licenses will be granted annually, the government of Botswana announced on Twitter Thursday. It said it was planning for “strategically placed human wildlife conflict fences” and compensation for damage caused by wildlife. All migratory routes for animals that are not considered “beneficial” to Botswana’s conservation efforts will be closed, including an antelope route to South Africa.

Northern Botswana is home to Africa’s largest elephant population, according to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. The population grew steadily from 80,000 in 1996 to 129,000 in 2014.

It happened as habitat loss and poaching devastated elephant populations across Africa. Between 2010 and 2012 alone, poachers slaughtered 100,000 African elephants, National Geographic reported.

Last September, the carcasses of 87 elephants were found close to a protected sanctuary in Botswana. They had been killed for their tusks.

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With both Houses of Parliament in place, it’s all eye…

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