Retailer Up Against It
Leading Australian retailer David Jones yesterday warned of a 35% to 40% slide in profit this year as it struggles to survive the retail crunch and a shift to online shopping.
Warning of “moderate” growth over the next few years, chief executive Paul Zahra has decided that making significant investment in the business is the best path to recovery. David Jones will pump $160 million into the business over the next two years to add 300 new service staff and expand its online offering.
The retailer will also add 6 new stores to its network while reducing administration costs by slashing office jobs.
“We had two paths” Zahra says, “to have death by 1000 lashes or take the pain this year, invest significantly and transform the company into an omni-channel retailer in 2013.” Brave move.
China Passes the US in Smart Phone Use
In what is surely a leading economic indicator in today’s tech savvy world, China has passed the US in the adoption of smart phones and tablets powered by Apple or Google software.
According to mobile analytics firm Flurry, China took the lead in “smart device” adoption in February this year to become the fastest growing smart device market in the world.
Flurry has projected that March will see China account for a whopping 24% of all Apple and Android gadget activations around the world. The US is forecast to have 21% of the market share.
Police Capture Australia’s Most Wanted
After a nearly seven year manhunt NSW Police have pinned down Australia’s most wanted man.
Former abattoir worker Malcolm Naden was wanted in relation to a murder of a Dubbo woman, the disappearance of another Dubbo woman, aggravated indecent assault, shooting a police officer and a range of property offences.
The armed and dangerous Naden was finally caught in thick bush on a private property in northern NSW, ending a long, multi-million dollar search operation.
NSW Police Commissioner Phillip Scipione praised the role of community tip-offs in the capture.
“This result could not have been achieved without the cooperation of communities in northern NSW whose assistance and vital information has helped police over a long period of time.” Commissioner Scipione said.
First School of Laughter Opens in Africa
World Laughter Champion Belachew Girma has opened Ethiopia, and Africa’s, first laughter school. The school teaches people that laughter is the best medicine and exactly how to administer this medicine.
In Germany in 2008 laughter guru Girma laughed non-stop for three hours and six minutes to win his crown as the chuckliest chump around.
“You feel as carefree as a baby, and all you want to do is go to sleep” Girma says of his laughing marathons. Students at his school learn that a day without laughter is a lost day. It’s been almost ten years since Girma lost a day.
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