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LG To Close Mobile Phone Business Worldwide

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South Korean electronics giant LG on Monday became the latest legacy phone-maker to exit “the incredibly competitive mobile phone sector” as it struggles in a market dominated by Apple, Samsung and growing Chinese manufacturers. 

In a statement released on Monday, the company said it will close its mobile business unit by the end of July. Instead of smartphones, it will focus on smart home products — an area where it’s one of the biggest providers.

The statement reads, “LG’s strategic decision to exit the incredibly competitive mobile phone sector will enable the company to focus resources in growth areas such as electric vehicle components, connected devices, smart homes, robotics, artificial intelligence and business-to-business solutions, as well as platforms and services.

“LG will provide service support and software updates for customers of existing mobile products for a period of time which will vary by region. LG will work collaboratively with suppliers and business partners throughout the closure of the mobile phone business. Details related to employment will be determined at the local level.”

LG’s decision to wind down its phone business reflects the struggles faced by many companies in the market. Apple and Samsung have long been the only companies that make significant amounts of money from smartphones, and even they have struggled at times.

Other legacy phone brands such as BlackBerry and Nokia have faced their own struggles, and neither company now exists in its original form. HMD sells phones under Nokia branding, while TCL sold BlackBerry-branded phones before ending that partnership last year.

Nokia and BlackBerry, the leaders in the QWERTY phone world, failed to transition quickly to touchscreen smartphones, which doomed their chances in the mobile market. LG, too, struggled in the move to smartphones. While consumers and reviewers have generally liked its devices, LG didn’t have near the marketing might of Samsung or the cult following of Apple.

A spokesman for AT&T said in a statement that the wireless provider is “aware of LG’s decision to exit the mobile business,” adding that “as a commitment to our customers, we’ll continue to support those using LG devices on our network as LG makes this transition.” 

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2021 Maltina Teacher Of The Year Contest Begins

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The Nigerian Brewery Plc, on Tuesday in Lagos, announced the commencement of entries for the 2021 edition of the Maltina Teacher of the Year competition.

Entries for the 7th edition of the competition begin today, Tuesday 20th April to Friday, June 25th, 2021.

Mrs. Shade Morgan, Corporate Affairs Director, Nigerian Breweries Plc, organiser and sponsor of the competition, announced the kick-off at a press conference in Lagos.

Morgan declared that the seven-year-old initiative had continued to impact, motivate teachers, promote the teaching profession and quality learning across the country.

The competition that had been on the Felix Ohiwerei Education Trust Fund, is to identify, showcase and celebrate exemplary teachers in both the public and private secondary schools nationwide.

The 2021 winner of the competition would go home with a trophy and a N6.5million cash prize.

Besides, the winner would also benefit from an all-expense paid capacity development training abroad, while the school represented would equally get a block of six classrooms or computer laboratory depending on the needs of the school.

A breakdown of the winning prize shows that aside from the N500,000 as state champion, the winner also wins N1 million as a national champion and would also be paid N1 million yearly for the next five years provided he or she remains in the teaching profession.

Morgan explained that all participants must be certified by the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN).

According to her, the first and second runner-ups would receive N1 million and N750,000 respectively, in addition to another N500,000 as champions from their respective states, saying that other state champions would go home with N500,000 each.

Since its inception, the Maltina Teacher of the Year initiative has produced six grand winners; Rose Nkemdilim Obi, Anambra (2015), Imoh Essien, Akwa Ibom (2016), Felix Ariguzo, Delta State (2017), Olasunkanmi Opeifa, FCT (2018), Ezem Collins (2019) and Anani Olubunmi Adamawa (2020).

At the hybrid event, Registrar of the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN), Professor Josiah Ajiboye, in his remarks online, lauded NBL through the Felix Ohiwerei Education Trust Fund for sustaining the competition that had promoted excellence and put the names of teachers in Nigeria in the global arena.

Ajiboye described the Maltina Teacher of the Year Competition as a permanent feature in the nation’s education calendar and pledged continued support of TRCN in uplifting the rating of teachers in the country.

In the same vein, the National President of the Nigeria Union of Teachers(NUT), Dr. Idris Nasir, represented by Mr. Segun Raheem, the National Treasurer urged other corporate organisations to take a queue from the NBL initiative that had become a platform for demonstration of excellence by teachers in Nigeria.

Besides, the reigning champion, Anani Oluwabunmi of Concordia College, Jimeta, Yola, Adamawa State, who was part of the briefing online, said the award had added to her confidence and enhanced her rating as a teacher.

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MILO Cereal Launches New Online Campaign, ‘Beast Mode – Activated’

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MILO Cereal has launched its first major marketing campaign for its newly launched Protein cereal, via independent creative communications agency Connecting Plots.

Building on MILO’s brand message of fuelling active kids, the new campaign platform, ‘Beast Mode – Activated’, evolves the master brand’s focus on team sports.

This aims to celebrate how MILO Protein helps active kids unleash their own full potential, take their training to the next level and successfully compete with their peers.

The campaign launched on 16 April and will run across various social channels and online videos.

Connecting Plots creative partner Dave Jansen said the approach to the MILO Protein cereal campaign was about tapping into the teen mindset and being less overt and more authentic.

“Creating advertising that doesn’t feel like a ‘sell’ is the challenge when targeting teens,” Jansen said in a statement.

“We’ve shied away from the polished tropes of traditional, achievement driven sports ads to bring this to life in a way that hopefully gives life to a teenager’s desire to do their best, feel like they are stepping into their future adult self and showing how MILO Protein Cereal can help on that journey.”

Cereal Partners Worldwide’s marketing manager, Keara Deignan, added: “Aussies grew up with MILO cereal, it’s a staple of every Australian pantry.

“However, we’ve seen that as teens start to carve out their own identities, their consumption habits change so this product aims to keep pace with their active on-the-go lifestyle.”

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Venmo Launches Cryptocurrency Trading

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Venmo, owned by PayPal, is launching cryptocurrency trading for four major coins: Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Litceoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH).

This service set to be widely available within the new few weeks, Venmo’s 70 million+ customers will be able to buy, hold and sell crypto directly within the Venmo app. The launch is offering users access to in-app guides to help them to better navigate the cryptocurrency trading space and will encourage them to share their cryptocurrency experiences via the Venmo feed.

Venmo users will be able to buy as little as $1 worth of cryptocurrency and can use either funds from their Venmo balance or from a linked bank account or debit card to buy and sell their holdings.

Over 30% of Venmo customers have already begun to purchase cryptocurrency or equities, according to the company’s research into 2020 customer behavior. Of these, 20% began their purchase during the COVID-19 pandemic, suggesting that the public health and concurrent economic crisis has accelerated trends in digitization and experimentation with new financial technologies.

Support for cryptocurrency on Venmo is facilitated through a partnership with Paxos Trust Company, a regulated provider of crypto products such as its stable coin and other services. Venmo owner PayPal is also the holder of a conditional Bitlicense from the exacting New York State Department of Financial Services. Conditional licensees, such as PayPal, are required to pair off with firms that have already been granted full-blown licenses — as, in this case, has Paxos.

Just under a week ago, PayPal CEO Dan Schulman hinted at developments underway since the payments giant first went live with its crypto offering in the United States in November of last year. Schulman said that PayPal aims to support the use of crypto for everyday transactions and to tap into smart contracts and other, more expansive features of blockchain technology. He also pitched the company’s vision of leveraging crypto for the attainment of a more “inclusive economy,” in which “things will be done much differently than today.”

 

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