Infographic: South Africa’s small businesses see growth ahead

first_imgA survey by South Africa’s National Small Business Council reveals that the country’s entrepreneurs are upbeat about the health and future success of their companies.        Small business remains the engine of growth in South Africa. They created 50% of all new jobs and contributed 45% of GDP. (Image: Brand South Africa)Words by Sulaiman PhilipDesign by Sandile KhumaloSouth Africa’s National Small Business Council recently released its survey of entrepreneurs’ take on the country’s business environment. Despite tough economic times, 90% of respondents were optimistic about the health and future success of their companies. Other findings from the survey of almost 18 000 business owners were:• 56% of small business owners thought trade with Africa was the way to growth for any small business• Most thought marketing was the skill they lacked the most• 69% of small businesses did not have business insurance• Access to funding was the biggest challenge for businesses younger than five yearsAccording to NSBC founder and chief executive Mike Anderson, small business can unlock job opportunities – to make a positive and lasting impact on South Africa. The NSBC encourages entrepreneurship through regional workshops and support services for small business owners. With campaigns like campaigns like Small Business Friday, the council also encourages consumers to choose local small businesses over large companies.Here are some of the findings from the NSBC study.Click on the image for a larger view:last_img read more

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Dairy market update

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Milk prices continued a generally solid recovery from their late-spring low through August, when the U.S. average all-milk price reached $17.10 per hundredweight. The rise was powered largely by a strong increase in Class III skim milk prices, which also drove up Class I skim prices. However, Class III and Class IV prices dropped in September, and milkfat prices have been drifting downward for the past few months. That indicates milk prices may have reached a ceiling for the time being. The Margin Protection Program monthly feed cost calculation dropped steadily from June through August, and the monthly MPP margin rose by more than $3.50 per hundredweight from its low in June to $9.26 per hundredweight in August.U.S. exports of cheese and lactose are continuing to drop year-over-year, but the rate of decline has decreased steadily in recent months. A similar pattern of decreasing losses turned positive during June–August for nonfat dry milk, skim milk powder and dry whey, as well as for the percent of all U.S. milk solids exported. Exports of whey protein concentrate and isolate have been growing at a steadily increasing pace for most of 2016. These are all strong indications that the long slide in U.S. exports could be bottoming out and a modest recovery is under way. World demand for imported dairy products has picked up recently, and world dairy product prices are reacting positively. Also helping world prices is the recent stalling of the past year’s explosive growth in European Union milk production.U.S. cheese imports dropped during June–August after increasing during the first half of 2016. Casein imports have dropped by double-digit percentages all year, but the percent of total U.S. production represented by imports continues to rise by single-digit percentages.Milk production picked up steam during the summer after rising year-over-year by 1% or less for much of the previous year. Nationwide, production was up 1.6% over a year earlier during June-August. Much of the increase stemmed from faster growth in production per cow, although cow numbers nationally are starting to rise after being virtually flat during the winter and spring. Like the past year, changes at the national level have been an combination of quite varied state patterns.last_img read more

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Lost Credit Card? Suspicious Charges? ClairMail’s Fraud Solution Could Save You Some Trouble

first_imgmike melanson Tags:#Finance#security#web Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… We’ve all been there: You’re making the last purchase of a long day of shopping and the clerk tells you that your card has been declined. Only hours later (and perhaps after embarrassingly arguing with the clerk that you surely have money in your account) do you find out that the bank cut off your account because it suspected fraud. Situations like this point to the obvious need for a better line of communication between you and the people in charge of handling your money. ClairMail, a mobile banking and payment solutions company, has announced a new mobile fraud management solution that would make this situation obsolete. Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… The situation described above is just one of many situations where a whole lot of hassle, and hours on the phone with confusing, automated menus, could be avoided if your bank could quickly just say “Hey, we see a suspicious charge – was it you?”That’s exactly what ClairMail’s “Fraud Solution” does. “Mobile banking has largely been viewed as an extension of online banking,” explains the company in its press release. By using a system like ClairMail’s Fraud Solution, however, banks can “reduce servicing and risk management costs, enhance customer loyalty and acquisition and increase mobile banking adoption.”A recent study by analyst firm Forrester examined exactly this problem, noting that in order to continue seeing growth in mobile banking, banks would need to “enhance today’s functionality significantly.” “While more consumers are adopting mobile banking, the full value of the mobile channel has yet to be realized,” said ClairMail CEO Pete Daffern. “Enabling consumers to monitor, respond and resolve fraudulent transactions on their mobile device not only deepens the relational trust between that customer and their bank, it reduces costs for everyone by reducing false positives and minimizing the cost and time of fraud resolution.” 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

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Creating an Interconnected Icon Tree in After Effects + 30 Free Icons

first_imgLearn how to make an interconnected icon tree using 30 FREE animated icons in After Effects.To build an interconnected icon tree, you first need some icons. You may choose to draw and animate your own, but in this tutorial, we’re using the excellent Technicons freebie pack from RocketStock.GET 30 FREE ANIMATED ICONS FROM ROCKETSTOCKAfter you’ve downloaded or created your icons, import them into your AE project.We will also be using a script called Connect Layers from Motion Boutique. It is available here at pay-what-you-want pricing. The script does a lot of math that connects layers with shape layer lines.Now that you have all your assets, let’s get started. Make Individual Icon CompsEach icon should have its own composition. Start by dragging the first icon you intend to use onto the new composition icon in the project panel. This will create a composition the exact size, duration, and frame rate of the source files.Inside the new composition, we will use the Time Stretch to speed up the .mov file.Select the layer, and in the top menus, go to Layer > Time > Time stretch. Enter a value of 50 to double the speed.With the .mov layer shortened, we want to trim the composition to that new layer’s length. Set the playhead at the end of the layer, and hit “n” to set the work area’s end at that point, and then trim the composition to fit the new work area.This container is also where we want to add a background circle for our icon to sit on, to separate it from the background. Make an ellipse by double-clicking on the shape layer ellipse with no layers selected (otherwise you’ll make a mask or shape on an existing layer).Twirl into the contents and ellipse parameters to access the ellipse size. Set keyframes at 0 frames and 20 frames for [0,0] and [350,350] respectively, and adjust the value graph in the graph editor as you see below to achieve a popping-on look. Don’t worry that the circle goes beyond the outside of the composition.If you’re only making a network of one type of icon, then you’re done. But otherwise, you will need icon comps with different contents. First, rename your composition something you will remember, then duplicate it.Open the duplicate and swap out the source of the .mov for another by selecting the layer to replace, holding alt, and dragging from the project window. Then rename the composition and repeat as necessary.Putting It TogetherCreate a new composition that is the same frame rate as your earlier comps — for us that’s 29.97. This is the composition where everything will come together.Drag out your first icon to the timeline and adjust where in time you want the animation to start. We want the icons to shift and drift on their own in their cloud, so we will use expressions to automate their movement. Apply the following expressions by holding alt and clicking the stopwatch to the position:wiggle(.1,100)and scale:x=wiggle(.1,10)[0];[x,x]Now we can position and scale the layers as we like, and they will still have some variance over time. Set the scale values to roughly 60%.Duplicate the first icon, and replace it using the previous method of holding alt and dragging in another comps. Continue this until you have all the icons you would like to connect.Connecting the NetworkWith your icons out on the timeline, you can now connect them with the connect layers script. Select the layers you want to connect to each other.Then run the script from the File > Scripts > Run Script file, and select the Connect Layers file you’ve downloaded previously. This will open a dialogue window with options. This will present you three modes of connecting layers. If you have only a few icons you want to connect, I recommend the tree method. Or you can use the triangulation method and delete the piece you don’t need.This will create many rectangles that are pointing from one layer to another. To animate and format the layers, twirl into the content and twirl into the stroke. Increase the stroke thickness as necessary and change the line cap and joint to round. To animate the stroke, we will use the trim paths setting keyframes on the end of the existing trim paths from 0 to 50%. Since the “line” is made of a rectangle, we only need to stroke half of the shape.If the line is animating in the wrong direction, adjust the offset to 180 degrees. Ease the trim path keyframes for smoother motion. The animation of each line may vary by length, but they should be around 10 frames.Finally, time up the lines so they emanate from an icon after it has animated on completely. The icon the line is animating to should begin animating one or two frames before the line has completed its animation.Finishing UpTo pack up the network for an easy transition, you can set keyframes on the position of all the icons so they move to the middle of the frame. Set position keyframes to end, in this case, at 960,540. As the icons are moving to the middle, have the middlemost icon (presumably the most central of the network, and the topmost layer) scale up to cover the incoming icons.At the apex of the scale, trim all the other layers to end. Then set the last remaining icon scale to zero. Adjust the keyframes in the graph editor, and set to speed graph as you see below to get a nice swell and quick out for the piece.last_img read more

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Andy Ruiz Jr. replaces Miller as opponent for Anthony Joshua

first_imgDon’t miss out on the latest news and information. Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles The 29-year-old Ruiz Jr., who is based in California, gets his second shot at a world title, having lost on points to then-WBO champion Joseph Parker in December 2016.That is his only loss in 33 professional fights. His last fight was 10 days ago, when he forced the fifth-round stoppage of Alexander Dimitrenko.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsJoshua has a 22-0 record, with 21 knockouts. He hasn’t fought since beating Alexander Povetkin at Wembley Stadium in September, and is boxing for the first time in the United States. At his best level yet, Robin Catalan confident ahead of ONE strawweight bout DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Duterte wants probe of SEA Games mess Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View comments PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss FILE – APRIL 19: Andy Ruiz Jr. poses on the scale during his official weigh-in ahead of his heavyweight bout against Alexander Dimitrenko at Sheraton Gateway Hotel on April 19, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images/AFPNEW YORK — Andy Ruiz Jr. will look to become Mexico’s first heavyweight champion after replacing Jarrell Miller as the opponent for unbeaten WBA, IBF and WBO titleholder Anthony Joshua.Miller was withdrawn from the June 1 fight at Madison Square Garden after alleged doping violations.ADVERTISEMENT Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated MOST READ Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess LATEST STORIES SEA Games hosting troubles anger Dutertelast_img read more

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