Day: July 30, 2022

Construction Industry

Holcim stock surges after cement maker raises sales outlook

The new logo of Swiss cement maker Holcim is seen in a block of concrete during the Holcim Capital Markets Day event in Basel, Switzerland, November 18, 2021. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

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  • CEO sees no slowdown caused by higher interest rates
  • Company has fully compensated for higher input costs
  • Q2 sales, earnings beat forecasts
  • CEO sees strong growth in the United States
  • Shares gain 5.25% in early trading

ZURICH, July 27 (Reuters) – Holcim (HOLN.S) was the biggest gainer among European construction stocks on Wednesday after the world’s biggest cement maker beat earnings forecasts and raised its full year sales outlook.

The Swiss group successfully offset higher energy costs which have been a worry for other companies, adding it expected demand from the construction industry to be unaffected by rising interest rates.

Chief Executive Jan Jenisch said the company had seen “super growth momentum” which he expected would continue in the second half of the year.

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“We had even better growth in the second quarter than in the first, and if you look where the growth comes from, it’s our Holcim business with cement, aggregates and concrete,” Chief Executive Jan Jenisch told reporters.

“The other half of the growth comes from our newly acquired companies, especially in roofing systems. We don’t see a slowdown in our markets, especially the U.S. where we have record numbers and double-digit sales growth organically.”

Holcim now expects its full-year sales to grow 10% this year on a like-for-like basis which excludes the impact of currencies and portfolio changes. Its previous forecast was 8%.

The brighter outlook and strong performance in the second quarter sent the company’s shares 5.25% higher in early trading, making Holcim the top gainer in

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Software

Apple CarPlay could be a trojan horse into the automotive

Apple is using the iPhone’s popularity to push itself into the auto industry. Automakers are a little unsure how they feel about this.

Apple announced the next generation of its car software CarPlay in June. It takes over the user interface on all interior screens, replacing gas gauges and speed dials with a digital version powered by the driver’s iPhone. It suggested CarPlay helps automakers sell vehicles.

Apple engineering manager Emily Schubert said 98% of new cars in the U.S. come with CarPlay installed. She delivered a shocking stat: 79% of U.S. buyers would only buy a car if it supported CarPlay.

“It’s a must-have feature when shopping for a new vehicle,” Schubert said during a presentation of the new features.

The auto industry faces an unappealing choice: Offer CarPlay and give up potential revenue and the chance to ride a major industry shift, or spend heavily to develop their own infotainment software and cater to an potentially shrinking audience of car buyers who will purchase a new vehicle without CarPlay.

Apple wants a seat at the table

Carmakers sell additional services and features to vehicle owners on a regular, recurring basis as cars connect to the internet, gain self-driving features, and move from being powered by gasoline to powered by electricity and batteries.

The car software market will grow 9% per year through 2030, faster than the overall auto industry, according to a McKinsey report. Car software could account for $50 billion in sales by 2030, McKinsey analysts predict.

Apple wants a piece of the pie.

GM, which wasn’t listed on Apple’s slide, already gets revenue of $2 billion per year from in-car subscriptions and expects it to grow to $25 billion per year by 2030. Tesla, which doesn’t support CarPlay, recently shifted into selling its “FSD” driver-assistance features,

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Technology Business

Why these workers left jobs like Google

Sandy Anuras, the chief technology officer of Sunrun.

Photo courtesy Sandy Anuras, the chief technology officer of Sunrun

Tech workers are walking away from high-paying jobs with great perks to help fight what they believe is the greatest existential problem of our lifetimes: climate change.

In some cases, that has meant taking a pay cut. But Sandy Anuras, who recently joined home solar provider Sunrun as its chief technology officer, says a big paycheck sometimes comes with a price.

“The tech giants have had these huge compensation packages. And it’s hard to say no to a huge compensation package,” Anuras told CNBC. “You just realize there’s a little bit more to life than maxing out your comp package. And I think people are realizing that now — and especially with some of the decisions that their companies have made to prioritize profits over democracy, for example.”

Before starting at Sunrun in March, Anuras worked at Expedia for almost three years. She believes traveling is good for society, as people who travel often experience an expanded perspective and greater compassion toward strangers. But helping people book travel efficiently did not give Anuras the internal satisfaction she had when she worked at Blokable, a startup working to make affordable housing readily available.

There’s a little bit more to life than maxing out your comp package. And I think people are realizing that now.

Sandy Anuras

Chief Technology Officer, Sunrun

When Anuras started looking for new jobs, she wrote an “intention document” expressing her desire to work at a mission-first company.

“What bigger problem is there to solve for our generation than climate change?” Anuras found herself thinking. Not only is climate change an existential-level threat to humanity, it is especially dangerous for the poorest communities around the world. “Spending my time in

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Computer Forensics

Deleted bookmark led to child pornography site depicting

Accused Dutchman Aydin Coban has pleaded not guilty to extortion, harassment, communication with a young person to commit a sexual offence and possessing child pornography

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A hard drive seized from the home of the Dutch man accused of harassing British Columbia teenager Amanda Todd contained a deleted bookmark to child pornography depicting her, a Crown attorney told B.C. Supreme Court on Friday.

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Louise Kenworthy told the jury trial of Aydin Coban that previous expert testimony showed Todd’s name and several of the online aliases used to harass her were also found on a second hard drive seized when Dutch police arrested Coban in 2014.

Coban has pleaded not guilty to extortion, harassment, communication with a young person to commit a sexual offence and possessing child pornography.

Kenworthy said she expects to finish the Crown’s closing arguments on Tuesday, when she said she would talk about an online account that was active on a computer just five minutes before police arrested Coban at his home and then seized the device.

She said evidence has shown the account was operated by the same person behind another account, under the guise of a young woman, that harassed Todd.

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There was no witness to say, “I saw Aydin Coban typing messages on his computer to Amanda Todd”

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Branding

Florida Gators QB Anthony Richardson distancing from ‘AR-15’

Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson said in a statement Sunday that he will no longer use the nickname “AR-15” as part of his personal brand because he doesn’t want to be associated with the semi-automatic rifle by the same name, which has been used in mass shootings.

An AR-15 style rifle was used in the shooting deaths of 19 children and two adults at a Uvalde, Texas, elementary school in May.

“While a nickname is only a nickname and ‘AR-15’ was simply a representation of my initials combined with my jersey number, it is important to me that my name and brand are no longer associated with the semi-automatic rifle that has been used in mass shootings, which I do not condone in any way or form,” Richardson said in a post to his official website. “My representatives and I are currently working on rebranding, which includes the creation of a new logo and transitioning to simply using ‘AR’ and my name, Anthony Richardson.”

Taking advantage of college athletes’ newfound ability to generate money from name, image and likeness deals, Richardson started an apparel line last year that included jerseys, long-sleeve shirts, wristbands and temporary tattoos.

Richardson said he will also discontinue use of the scope reticle logo.

Richardson emerged as a fan favorite and gifted playmaker as a freshman at Florida last season.

Despite backing up starting quarterback Emory Jones for most of the season and dealing with a knee injury that kept him off the field late in the year, Richardson managed nine total touchdowns — six passing and three rushing.

Jones transferred to Arizona State in the spring, clearing the way for Richardson to become the front-runner to start for the Gators this season under new coach Billy Napier.

Richardson, with only one career start, debuted at No.

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