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Archive for June 25th, 2012

Qatar Launches Discussions on Sustainability at Rio + 20

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RIO DE JANEIRO, June 22, 2012 /PRNewswire-Asia/ — Qatar’s vision for innovative green growth and development took center stage at the Qatar National Pavilion at Rio + 20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development. His Excellency Dr. Saleh Al-Nabit, Secretary General of the General Secretariat for Development Planning (GSDP) set the tone for the days discussions and stressed the importance of Qatar’s National Vision 2030: “We return to Rio de Janeiro twenty years later to discuss the challenges of the 21st century. Sustainable development is crucial to Qatar’s National Vision 2030, and we are here to showcase how Qatar will fulfill this ambition”.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120621/SP28742 )

By combining smart infrastructure, progressive social programs, ambitious education systems and world-class research and development, Qatar’s Vision 2030 serves as an example for emerging nations committed to economic diversity, sustainable growth and opportunities for its people. Through the leadership of His Highness the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Qatar has committed to investing its resources in sustainable growth and development, building a foundation for long-term prosperity for this independent Gulf state.

“Qatar’s National Vision 2030 outlines the strategies for balancing economic growth with social and environmental progress,” said Datuk Dr. Richard Leete, the GSDP Social Development Department Director said. “It is important that the public and private sectors move ahead in step, pursuing their goals together.”

An exceptionally rapid rise in population — averaging 15 percent per year between 2004 and 2008 — has generated challenges that cut across all segments of society and infrastructure, Leete explained. Addressing these issues in nations like Qatar requires a comprehensive environmental management system that mitigates the impacts of rapid population growth and the high levels of urbanization in Doha.

“The nation has already made leaps forward in terms of sustainable operations of its key industries,” shared Director of Qatar Petroleum’s Health, Safety and Environment Regulations and Enforcement Directorate Saif Saeed Al-Naimi. By recovering emissions that were once flared and re-processing those gases in the system, hydrocarbon facilities in Qatar are well on their way to measurable reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. These significant investments in developing new technologies in the field and laboratory are promising returns in high-value services and products for the industry — a win for Qatar’s economic diversification strategy, as well as the environment.

In addition to the progress led by the industrial sector, Qatar’s research and development programs are producing technologies and advancements in science that are establishing the Nation as a center of excellence on the most critical problems of our time. “The Qatar Science and Technology Park is engaged in research that ranges from alternative fuels to robotic surgery,” said Mohammad Al-Khaldy of QSTP. Not only are these initiatives improving standards of living throughout the world, but they are also diversifying the Nation’s economy.

“We are proud to share these examples of Qatar’s leadership on sustainable development in Rio,” said His Excellency Dr. Saleh Al-Nabit, “This is a collaborative effort to implement a vision that helps our nation continue to take advantage of the opportunities it has for progress while also insuring that the society and environment we live in remains the kind of place we are all proud to call home.”

About GSDP

The Qatar General Secretariat for Development Planning (GSDP) sights are set on the long term, pursuing initiatives that make a difference in the lives of Qatar’s citizens and people, and that are sustainable over many years. In everything it does, GSDP recognizes the important interdependencies and trade-offs among development goals and constraints and accordingly aims to integrate all national development efforts so that they are mutually reinforcing and sustainable.

GSDP’s relevance to Qatar’s national development hinges on its ability to consult, involve, convene and influence a whole range of stakeholders and to initiate and guide dialogue on important issues. GSDP is therefore committed to communicating with and engaging stakeholders in order them keep them abreast of development progress and strengthen its partnerships with them, while building understanding of the purpose of the national development strategy and how it will bring tangible benefits for the people of Qatar.

PR Contacts:
FSB Comunicacao / http://www.fsb.com.br +55 21 3206 5050
Mariana Pinheiro (mariana.pinheiro@fsb.com.br)
Henrique Dias (riomais20.qatar@fsb.com.br)
Ana Duek (ana.duek@fsb.com.br)
http://www.facebook.com/QatarRio20
@QatarRiomais20

SOURCE﹛Qatar

Written by asiafreshnews

June 25, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Luminator Technology Group selected to acquire DRI Corporation

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PLANO, Texas, June 22, 2012 /PRNewswire-Asia/ — Luminator Technology Group (LTG), parent company to Luminator, LAWO and FOCON, leading manufacturers of destination signs and passenger information equipment, is pleased to announce that we have been selected to acquire the operating assets of DRI Corporation.

DRI is the parent company of TwinVision, Digital Recorders and Mobitec.

Products marketed under the Luminator, Lawo, Focon, Digital Recorders, Mobitec, and TwinVision brand names provide the best-in-class bus signage and passenger information systems. LTG plans to maintain these products and brands independently to ensure continued support to our customers.

“This acquisition will enable LTG to move forward as a stronger business and provide our valued customers with the latest technology and superior service. We anticipate closing this transaction in the very near future,” stated Avi Zisman, President and CEO of LTG.

About Luminator Technology Group, (LTG): Based in Plano, Texas, LTG is the industry leader in lighting, destination signs and passenger information technology for the mass transit and aerospace marketplace.

Website: http://www.luminatorusa.com

SOURCE﹛Luminator Technology Group

Written by asiafreshnews

June 25, 2012 at 12:10 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Goodman Enters North American Market with Birtcher Development and Establishes US$1.5 billion Investment Partnership

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SYDNEY, June 20, 2012 /PRNewswire-Asia/ — Goodman Group (Goodman or Group) today announces that it has entered into an agreement with California-based, Birtcher Development & Investments (Birtcher), focused on the development of, and investment in, prime quality logistics and industrial facilities in key locations across North America. Additionally, Goodman is in final stages of due diligence with regard to a capital partnership targeting approximately US$800 million (A$800 million) of equity commitments.

Key features of Goodman’s North American market entry are:

— Strategic and timely entry into the world’s largest, most liquid and transparent real estate market.

— Capital partnership focusing on the key North American logistics and industrial property markets. Initial equity commitment targeting approximately US$800 million (A$800 million).

— Deployment of a highly experienced team, combining Birtcher’s local market expertise with Goodman’s global funds management capability, to establish the Group’s North American operations. Birtcher will have a management carried interest, post a Goodman preferred return.

— Development led investment strategy focused initially on the development of prime logistics and industrial facilities in key logistics hubs, with the ability to invest in stabilised properties over time.

— Secured four development sites, two in the Inland Empire (Los Angeles area), Oakland (San Francisco Bay Area) and Lehigh Valley (Philadelphia), with in excess of 900,000 sqm (9.8 million sq ft) of gross lettable area and a combined total completion value of more than US$700 million (A$700 million).

Strategic rationale

The US is the world’s largest, most liquid and transparent real estate market. The current market remains highly fragmented with obvious capital constraints, making this an attractive time to enter key logistics and industrial locations and access top tier development sites to deliver new investment product for global and local customers in partnership with our global capital partners.

Goodman’s Group Chief Executive Officer, Greg Goodman said, “Today’s announcement reinforces Goodman’s position as a leading global logistics property group. With A$19 billion (US$19 billion) of assets under management throughout Asia Pacific and Europe, our entry into North America is a logical step in the expansion of our operating platform to service our global customers and equity partners in the world’s largest logistics and industrial market. Over time we also see North America growing to be one of Goodman’s largest markets in terms of assets under management.”

Capital partnership approach

Goodman is establishing a new North American logistics and industrial partnership, to provide funding to invest in the properties developed and sourced by the Group’s North American platform. Initial equity commitments will be approximately US$800 million (A$800 million).

“The investment strategy for the partnership will be to target investment in logistics and industrial property in key North American markets, focusing initially on development led opportunities, with value add and stabilised asset acquisitions to be considered over time in line with market conditions,” said Mr Goodman.

Goodman is in final stages of due diligence with a major capital partner. Commercial terms have been agreed and documentation is anticipated to be completed shortly.

Goodman will fund its interest in the partnership from retained earnings and proceeds from the recycling of assets.

Management company

The management company combines Goodman’s global expertise as a leading specialist fund manager of industrial property and business space, extensive global customer and capital partner relationships, with the strength of Birtcher’s local knowledge, long established track record and reputation in North America.

Goodman’s Group Chief Executive Officer, Greg Goodman said, “A key success factor to entering a new market is ensuring you have the requisite local knowledge and expertise. In this regard, we are delighted to have sourced the local expertise of such a highly regarded property group as Birtcher to drive the expansion of our international operating platform into key logistics markets in North America. This local expertise will be supported by a group of Goodman’s international employees who will be joining the management group to help provide operational expertise and compliance.”

Birtcher is a Los Angeles area based, privately-owned industrial and logistics real estate developer which has built a solid reputation as one of the most innovative and successful developers on the West Coast of the United States. Birtcher has developed more than 5.6 million sqm (60 million square feet) of warehouse, distribution, manufacturing and office projects throughout the Western and Southern United States for leading customer names including Kroger, Nike, Xerox and General Electric.

Birtcher President and CEO, Brandon Birtcher commented, “This represents a new chapter in Birtcher’s 73-year history and we are excited by the tremendous opportunity that comes through working as part of one of the world’s leading industrial property groups. We look forward to utilising the wealth of our local market knowledge and relationships, together with our considerable development and investment experience to drive the growth of the company.”

The management team will be incentivised through its carried interest in the management company, post a Goodman preferred return.

Investment strategy

A targeted geographic investment strategy will be implemented to secure opportunities on a ‘through the cycle’ basis, by focusing on developing and investing in A-grade logistics and industrial facilities. A development-led approach will initially be pursued to maximise returns given the under supply of quality space in specific target logistics markets.

In this regard, opportunities will be sought in the key West Coast logistics hubs of Los Angeles (Inland Empire), San Francisco and Seattle, with New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia to be targeted on the East Coast. Other key logistics hubs based around inland ports, intermodals and tier one ports will also be considered.

Secured development sites

Initial development opportunities have been identified in California through three prime land sites. Two sites have been secured in the Inland Empire, California’s largest industrial market, with a third site acquired in the San Francisco Bay Area of Oakland, in close proximity to the city’s air and sea ports. A fourth site is under offer in the Philadelphia Lehigh Valley industrial market. The four sites are capable of delivering a total combined gross lettable area in excess of 900,000 sqm (9.8 million sq ft) and a total completion value of more than US$700 million (A$700 million).

Mr Goodman said, “Having secured these significant land sites, we are well positioned to take advantage of the very positive market dynamics in the Inland Empire, Oakland and Philadelphia. These regions are experiencing an undersupply of high quality logistics space, providing us with a compelling opportunity to meet the strong customer demand that exists for A-grade ‘big box’ facilities.”

“We are separately assessing further development opportunities in our other target North American locations and we expect to be in a position to announce these shortly,” Mr Birtcher added.

For more information on Goodman’s entry into the North American market, refer to Section 2 in the Investor Update presentation( http://media.corporate-ir.net/media_files/IROL/16/167466/Investor%20update.pdf ) available from the Investor Centre section of Goodman’s website.

About Goodman

For more information visit www.goodman.com or us.goodman.com

About Birtcher Development & Investments

Since 1939, the Birtcher name has been synonymous with enduring design and performance in project execution. Birtcher has developed more than 60 million square feet of industrial, office and retail projects throughout the United States, achieving national expertise and strong reputations in development and construction. Today, Birtcher Development & Investments is solely owned by Brandon Birtcher who carries on the family’s five-generation development legacy.

Birtcher’s core focus is on providing warehouse and build-to-suit solutions for logistics service providers, manufactures and retailers throughout North America. This is achieved by maintaining land inventory through control of the best sites in America’s most attractive logistics markets.

For further information, please contact Goodman:

Greg Goodman Group Chief Executive Officer +61-2-9230-7400

SOURCE Goodman Group

Written by asiafreshnews

June 25, 2012 at 11:04 am

Media Statement from VTech

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HONG KONG, June 22, 2012 /PRNewswire-Asia/ — VTech Holdings Ltd (HKSE: 303) today responded to certain allegations made by the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights regarding operations of its factories in mainland China. The Group categorically rejects these allegations and is now considering taking appropriate legal action.

(Logo: http://www.prnasia.com/sa/2009/06/15/200906151846.jpg )

VTech is a responsible and caring employer wherever it has operations, and this includes mainland China. The Group and its subsidiaries abide strictly by the legal requirements relating to employment in all jurisdictions where it operates, including mainland China. Emphasis is placed on people-oriented management to ensure harmonious staff relations, especially in the Group’s manufacturing facilities. VTech takes care to ensure that the work environment is safe and that employees are adequately housed and cared for.

VTech is widely acknowledged for its excellent human resources management and has a long track record of good labour relations in mainland China, where it is a pioneer among Hong Kong companies in establishing operations and where it currently employs approximately 33,000 people.

For further information, please contact:

Grace Pang VTech Holdings Ltd (852) 2680-1000 (office) (852) 2680-1788 (fax) grace_pang@vtech.com (email)

SOURCE VTech Holdings Ltd

Written by asiafreshnews

June 25, 2012 at 10:19 am

Posted in Business & Finance