The biggest music-streaming service in the world, Spotify, has signed a new major partnership with Samsung, the biggest smartphone producer in the world. Spotify will now be the official music service provider for all of Samsung’s products, including smartphones, televisions, tablets, watches, and speakers. In the future, when you purchase a Samsung product, Spotify will be integrated into the set-up process on new devices, as well as merged into Samsung’s voice assistant program and Samsung’s smart-home apps.Although never directly addressed by Spotify CEO Daniel Ek, there is now a clear competition between Spotify and Apple‘s Apple Music, as the latter app comes readily installed on all of Apple’s iPhones and also just landed a deal to give Verizon smartphone customers six months of free service. With Samsung being the biggest smartphone producer in the world, Spotify should have a less strenuous battle reaching smart-phone users around the world. Plus, unlike Apple Music’s subscription-only service, Spotify offers an ad-supported listening tier that costs nothing for the consumer, allowing a more pleasant experience for first-time Spotify users unfamiliar with the app’s interface.In a recent Q&A with his own company, CEO Daniel Ek explained that the partnership,Reduces the friction for users to get Spotify up and running on multiple Samsung devices once the accounts have been linked” and “allows us to create a seamless music listening experience together for the user that would be hard for either of us to build alone.” He added, “We believe that this significant long-term partnership will provide Samsung users across millions of devices with the best possible music streaming experience, and make discovering new music easier than ever — with even more opportunities to come.So what does this mean for Spotify? It’s likely we will see a rise in overall Spotify users and artists joining the platform. It also could mark the transition out of a completely Apple-product dominated world, but we’ll just have to wait and see. [H/T Rolling Stone]
Storms common to the Midwest in summer create the same ozone-damaging chemical reactions found in polar regions in winter, according to a new Harvard study. And with extreme weather on the rise, people living in the region could face an increased risk of UV radiation.Powerful storms in the Great Plains inject water vapor that, with temperature change, can trigger the same chemistry eroding the Arctic ozone, according to a new paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.The paper was led by James G. Anderson, the Philip S. Weld Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences.Graphic: James Anderson/Harvard UniversityResearchers tracked on average 4,000 storms each summer penetrating into the stratosphere over the central U.S., a rate far more frequent than previously thought, sparking a call from the paper’s authors for weekly forecasts of ozone loss.“These developments were not predicted previously and they represent an important change in the assessment of the risk of increasing UV radiation over the (region) in summer,” said Mario J. Molina of the University of California San Diego, the 1995 Nobel Prize winner in stratospheric chemistry, who was not involved in this research.The study’s authors say the lack of data recorded on ozone loss in the Midwest has curtailed researchers’ ability to forecast increases in UV radiation in the region, heightening risk for residents of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri, the Dakotas and states that border the Great Plains.“Rather than large continental-scale ozone loss that occurs over the polar regions in winter characterized, for example, by the term Antarctic ozone hole, circumstances over the central U.S. in summer are very different,” Anderson said.Stratospheric ozone is one of the most delicate aspects of habitability on the planet, researchers point out, with only marginally enough to protect humans, animals and crops from UV radiation.“Every year, sharp losses of stratospheric ozone are recorded in polar regions, traceable to chlorine and bromine added to the atmosphere by industrial chlorofluorocarbons and halons,” said Steven C. Wofsy, the Abbott Lawrence Rotch Professor of Atmospheric and Environmental Science at SEAS and co-author of the study. “The new paper shows that the same kind of chemistry could occur over the central United States, triggered by storm systems that introduce water, or the next volcanic eruption, or by increasing levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide. We don’t yet know just how close we are to reaching that threshold.”
A newly-formed US pension scheme body – Global Peer Financing Association (GPFA) – set up to increase and encourage peer-to-peer trading activity in the securities lending and repo markets, is looking for international members.The group – formed by California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP), Ohio Public Employees Retirement System (OPERS), and State of Wisconsin Investment Board (SWIB) – is looking to create a “more efficient and actionable way to increase and encourage peer-to-peer trading activity in the securities lending and repo markets for the benefit of asset owners,” it said.Although the initial GPFA founding members are all US pension funds, the group is interested in expanding membership to include other global pension schemes, large asset managers, insurance companies and “other beneficial owners who share a common interest in the business of peer-to-peer securities lending or repo”, it added.“We are excited to increase participation in GPFA,” said Rob Goobie, assistant vice president of collateral management, derivatives & fixed income at HOOPP. GPFA’s members also include independently owned third-party securities lending agent eSecLending, law firm Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP and financial data analytics company Credit Benchmark.“We believe it is important to promote the interest of members in making the financing market more efficient and effective. We see GPFA as a central connection point to foster collaboration and information sharing within the buy-side community,” he added.Dan Kiefer, investment manager at CalPERS, said the current members came together as a group of “like-minded peers” and recognised that there was a need for more information and support related to securities lending and repo activities.“By transacting with our peers, we have been able to increase revenue generated from our securities lending and repo activities while also expanding sources of liquidity for our plan,” he said.“GPFA is focused on educating beneficial owners about credit approval solutions for non-rated counterparties and ways to navigate challenges through central connection points that allow peers to trade with each other efficiently,” said Jerry May, senior portfolio manager at OPERS.He added: “We recognise each beneficial owner has different factors to consider when evaluating alternative counterparties. GPFA has developed a framework of resources to help other peers understand and navigate the approval process as well as the ongoing administration of trades for those that do not have internal resources to support securities lending or repo activity directly.”Looking for IPE’s latest magazine? Read the digital edition here.
Race relations are a critical fault line in South Africa, with over 500 racism-related cases reported to the South African Human Rights Commission in the past year alone.The United Nations has recently warned that racism, intolerance and discrimination are increasing in many parts of the world. There has been a resurgence of overt racism in South Africa.The Nelson Mandela and Ahmed Kathrada Foundations – both with long histories of facilitating critical dialogue on issues of race relations – have partnered with other civil society organisations to respond to and better understand race relations in the country. Both organizations want to ensure that anti racism strategies are mainstreamed across all sectors of the country. The anti racism network’s ultimate vision is of a South Africa free of racism.
Xtreme Motor Sports IMCA Modifieds – 1. Lance Mari, Imperial, Calif., 750; 2. Chaz Baca, Mesa, Ariz., 733; 3. Brian Schultz, Casa Grande, Ariz., 666; 4. Cody Laney, Torrance, Calif., 635; 5. Ethan Dotson, Bakersfield, Calif., 627; 6. Jordan Grabouski, Beatrice, Neb., 560; 7. Matt Guillaume, Haslet, Texas, 536; 8. John P. Gober, Poolville, Texas, 517; 9. Ricky Thornton Jr., Harcourt, Iowa, 506; 10. Paul Stone, Winton, Calif., 505; 11. Jason Noll, Peoria, Ariz., 489; 12. Hunter Marriott, Brookfield, Mo., 482; 13. Tim Ward, Harcourt, Iowa, 469; 14. Kyle Brown, State Center, Iowa, 455; 15. Cody Shoemaker, Paradise, Texas, 447; 16. Tyler Frye, Belleville, Kan., 436; 17. Michael Martin, Gilbert, Ariz., 417; 18. Darryl Campbell, Everman, Texas, 409; 19. Brent Schlafmann, Bismarck, N.D., 405; 20. Jason Batt, Harker Heights, Texas, 401.IMCA Late Models – 1. Rob Toland, Davenport, Iowa, 118; 2. John Emerson, Waterloo, Iowa, 117; 3. Todd Cooney, Des Moines, Iowa, 114; 4. Matt Ryan, Davenport, Iowa, 102; 5. Andy Nezworski, Buffalo, Iowa, 100; 6. Ben Seemann, Waterloo, Iowa, 93; 7. Tyler Bruening, Decorah, Iowa, Jason Rauen, Farley, Iowa, and Luke Goedert, Guttenberg, Iowa, each 76; 10. Darren Ackerman, Elk Run Heights, Iowa, 75; 11. Jon Merfeld, Dubuque, Iowa, 74; 12. Joel Callahan, Dubuque, Iowa, 73; 13. Travis Smock, West Des Moines, Iowa, 71; 14. Jeremiah Hurst, Dubuque, Iowa, 69; 15. Jonathan Brauns, Muscatine, Iowa, 68; 16. Joe Zrostlik, Long Grove, Iowa, and Thad Wilson, Moline, Ill., both 65; 18. Jeff Tharp, Sherrill, Iowa, 64; 19. Ray Guss Jr., Milan, Ill., Eric Pollard, Peosta, Iowa, and Mike Zemo Jr., Davenport, Iowa, each 61.IMCA EMI RaceSaver Sprint Cars – 1. Michelle Melton, Flower Mound, Texas, 375; 2. Robert Vetter, Wolfe City, Texas, 374; 3. Chase Parson, Abilene, Texas, 365; 4. Logan Scherb, Decatur, Texas, 356; 5. Marcus Thomas, Corsicana, Texas, 325; 6. Chad Wilson, North Richland Hills, Texas, 320; 7. Zach Blurton, Quinter, Kan., 294; 8. Raven Culp, Mesquite, Texas, 289; 9. Andy Shouse, Mustang, Okla., 268; 10. John Ricketts, Burleson, Texas, 263; 11. Chip Graham, Lewisville, Texas, and Bryan Debrick, Irving, Texas, both 249; 13. Tucker Doughty, Heath, Texas, 239; 14. Justin Fifield, Mesquite, Texas, 237; 15. Junior Jenkins, Greenville, Texas, 236; 16. Justin Melton, Flower Mound, Texas, Weston Gorham, Colleyville, Texas, and Payton Williams, North Richland Hills, Texas, each 229; 19. Mark Klis, Waxahachie, Texas, 225; 20. Ryan Hall, Midlothian, Texas, 222.IMCA Sunoco Stock Cars – 1. Kirk Martin, Weatherford, Texas, 743; 2. Westin Abbey, Comanche, Texas, 724; 3. Steven Orebaugh, Fort Worth, Texas, 519; 4. Eric Jones, Troy, Texas, 516; 5. Ryan Powers, Crowley, Texas, 508; 6. Gregory Gutt, Burns Flat, Okla., 503; 7. Juston McCullough, Waco, Texas, 481; 8. April Phillips, Abilene, Texas, 479; 9. Damon Hammond, Burleson, Texas, 476; 10. Andy Roller, Waco, Texas, 461; 11. Casey Woken, Norton, Kan., 427; 12. Greg Gill, Muscatine, Iowa, 403; 13. Jody York, Lubbock, Texas, 398; 14. Aaron Corley, Meadow, Texas, 387; 15. Manny Baldiviez, Yuma, Ariz., 372; 16. George Fronsman, Surprise, Ariz., 354; 17. Aaron Benedict, Fort Worth, Texas, 334; 18. Jimmy Davy, Yuma, Ariz., 331; 19. Jay Bransom, Burleson, Texas, 328; 20. Cody Center, Mesa, Ariz., 325.IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stocks – 1. Wesley Warren, Fairfield, Texas, 521; 2. Jason Beshears, Yuma, Ariz., 422; 3. Cody Williams, Minneapolis, Kan., 383; 4. John Watson, Des Moines, Iowa, 371; 5. August Bach, Newton, Iowa, 360; 6. Jim Robinson, Yuma, Ariz., 355; 7. Matt Bice, Austin, Texas, 353; 8. Shannon Anderson, Des Moines, Iowa, 348; 9. Francisco J. Cordova, Somerton, Ariz., 338; 10. Brady Bencken, Oakley, Kan., 335; 11. Eric Stanton, Carlisle, Iowa, 299; 12. Harvey Quinn, Yuma, Ariz., 298; 13. Brent Wofford, Yuma, Ariz., 289; 14. Ryan Wilkerson, Midland, Texas, 280; 15. Shay Simoneau, Damar, Kan., 271; 16. Jacob Olmstead, Overton, Neb., 270; 17. Gerald Spalding Jr., Abilene, Texas, 269; 18. Larry Underwood, Temple, Texas, 267; 19. Gerald Spalding Sr., Stamford, Texas, 266; 20. Jeremy Oliver, Chilton, Texas, 260.Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center Southern SportMods – 1. Jeffrey Abbey, Comanche, Texas, 808; 2. Ronnie Welborn, Princeton, Texas, 667; 3. Cory Williams, Slaton, Texas, 662; 4. Kamera Kaitlin McDonald, Keller, Texas, 509; 5. James Skinner, Burleson, Texas, 505; 6. Thomas Walp, Olney, Texas, 367; 7. Justin Nabors, Kemp, Texas, 351; 8. Dean Abbey, Roanoke, Texas, 347; 9. Jon White Jr., Red Oak, Texas, 328; 10. Taylor Florio, Copperas Cove, Texas, 326; 11. Robert Scrivner, Waco, Texas, 296; 12. James Hanusch, Belton, Texas, and Austin Gooding, Fort Worth, Texas, both 284; 14. Frank Lackey, Joshua, Texas, 281; 15. Bradley Poor, Abilene, Texas, 271; 16. Justin Long, Haslet, Texas, 263; 17. Calen Mohler, Fort Worth, Texas, 254; 18. Jake Upchurch, Grand Prairie, Texas, 253; 19. David Sanford, Abilene, Texas, 252; 20. T.J. Green, Robinson, Texas, 243.Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMods – 1. Dennis Gates, Claypool, Ariz., 538; 2. Jason George, Laveen, Ariz., 428; 3. Chris Toth, Holtville, Calif., 427; 4. Jake McBirnie, Boone, Iowa, 403; 5. Nick Spainhoward, Bakersfield, Calif., 395; 6. Nelson Vollbrecht, Stanton, Neb., 391; 7. Kyle Prauner, Norfolk, Neb., 385; 8. Daniel Gottschalk, Ellis, Kan., and Carter VanDenBerg, Oskaloosa, Iowa, both 377; 10. Zach McKinnon, Antigo, Wis., 370; 11. Gary Dutton, Bakersfield, Calif., 365; 12. Ray Czumaj, Gold Canyon, Ariz., 357; 13. Eric Winemiller, Casa Grande, Ariz., 350; 14. Adolfo Noriega, Yuma, Ariz., 345; 15. Brandon Spanjer, Crete, Neb., 337; 16. Tim Reese, Yuma, Ariz., 334; 17. Corey Clayton, El Centro, Calif., and Miles Morris, Yuma, Ariz., both 333; 19. Kyle Smith, Yuma, Ariz., 331; 20. Brian Davidson, Bennington, Kan., 328.Mach-1 Sport Compacts – 1. Ramsey Meyer, Pierce, Neb., 352; 2. Scott Spellmeier, Beatrice, Neb., 332; 3. Levi Heath, Wilton, Iowa, 323; 4. Nick Lindblad, Beatrice, Neb., 263; 5. Kimberly Abbott, Camp Point, Ill., 259; 6. Danny Baggerly, Joshua, Texas, 255; 7. James Lochabay, Azle, Texas, 253; 8. Jake Benischek, Durant, Iowa, 251; 9. Jeff Toler, Cleburne, Texas, 234; 10. Julia Childs, Weatherford, Texas, 223; 11. Brandon Lambert, Carthage, Ill., 219; 12. Tyler Thompson, Sioux City, Iowa, 217; 13. Daniel Cunningham, Azle, Texas, 215; 14. Brandon Segura, Weatherford, Texas, 213; 15. James Roose, Grandview, Iowa, 211; 16. Darin Weisinger Jr., Mendon, Ill., 210; 17. Brooke Fluckiger, Columbus, Neb., 201; 18. Daniel Campbell, Muscatine, Iowa, 195; 19. James Morehead, Cleburne, Texas, 193; 20. Shannon Pospisil, Norfolk, Neb., 184.