Kobe wants to be presented in Hall of Fame by Michael Jordan or Phil Jackson

first_imgBrace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH MOST READ Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:28Groups urge swift passage of bill on higher tax on e-cigs, liquor01:15DOH wants a drug rehab center in every region01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasacenter_img View comments QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Read Next Although they didn’t always see eye to eye on some matters, the duo formed one of the most celebrated player-coach relationships in all of sports.Bryant, meanwhile, has also been referred to as the closest player to Jordan, and was considered his heir apparent during his career.The two played the same position and displayed a seemingly frenzied drive and passion for the game.Other big-name stars eligible for the loaded Hall of Fame Class of 2021 include Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett.  Khristian Ibarrola /raADVERTISEMENT Warriors come back to beat Wizards; Green, Beal ejected John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Kobe Bryant gestures to fans as he takes the court for his last game for the Los Angeles Lakers against Utah Jazz in their season-ending NBA western division matchup n Los Angeles, California, on April 13, 2016.  AFP PHOTO/FREDERIC J. BROWNKobe Bryant is definitely a shoo-in in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame when he becomes eligible in four years’ time.In a storied career that span 20 seasons, the five-time NBA champion has worked with and played against some of the biggest names in basketball.ADVERTISEMENT But when it comes to the person he wants to present him come the historic day, “The Black Mamba” already has two people in mind.“For me it’s two people: Michael Jordan or Phil Jackson,” Bryant told Complex’s Liz Levy.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“They’ve been the greatest mentors, not only in my career as an athlete but also as a person. And what I might say is just a lot of thank yous. ‘Cause I’ve had a lotta help along the way. A lotta lotta help.”Jackson, of course, steered the ship for Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers’ championship dynasty from 2000 to 2002, and again in 2009 and 2010.last_img read more

Roddick out, Federer sets major mark at Australian Open

first_imgDefending champion Roger Federer matched a Grand Slam record which magnifies his extraordinary consistency over eight years, while Francesca Schiavone established a record for endurance in a women’s singles match.Day 7 at Melbourne Park was a day of record marks for the majors.Roger Federer returns to Tommy Robredo during their fourth round match at the Australian Open on Sunday. APFederer equalled Jimmy Connors’ mark for consecutive Grand Slam quarterfinals appearances when he beat Tommy Robredo 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 on Sunday. The 16-time Grand Slam winner has now reached the quarterfinals at 27 majors in a row since 2004.He’ll next play Stanislas Wawrinka in the first all-Swiss quarterfinal at a major in the Open era. Wawrinka had a 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 win over Andy Roddick in the last match Sunday, meaning there’ll be no Americans in the men’s or women’s quarterfinals.”Obviously wasn’t the showing that we wanted, you know, but I’m doing what I can,” said Roddick, who said Wawrinka completely outplayed him. He planned to book a flight home first thing Monday.On the women’s side, French Open champion Schiavone established a Grand Slam record, needing 4 hours, 44 minutes for her 6-4, 1-6, 16-14 fourth-round win over Svetlana Kuznetsova.Schiavone saved six match points, then converted on her third match point in the longest women’s match at a major in terms of time in the Open era. The previous record was set here last year when Barbora Zahlavova-Strycova beat Regina Kulikova 7-6 (5), 6-7 (10), 6-3 in a match lasting 4:19.The 30-year-old Italian battled exhaustion but, “at the end, you have something more, always.”advertisement”Was for me, fantastic,” she said. “When you’re in a situation like this, every point is like a match point. You have to keep going. You know that physically you’re tired. Mentally just keep going.”Kuznetsova said the match was so long she was forgetting the score or who should serve.Schiavone said it wasn’t quite that bad for her, “but I was watching the clock, and I say – ‘Bravo, Francesca, you are tough!'”Schiavone will meet top-ranked Caroline Wozniacki in the quarterfinals.Shortly after, 2008 champion Maria Sharapova lost 6-2, 6-3 to Andrea Petkovic, who had a relatively easy run into the fourth round when Venus Williams – the last American in the women’s draw – retired after just four minutes in their third-round match. Sharapova attributed her loss to just a “bad day in the office.” She took one positive – it was better than her first-round exit last year.Petkovic will now take on China’s Li Na, a semifinalist here last year, in the quarterfinals.Federer didn’t concede a point on his serve in the first set, but had a lapse in the second when Robredo’s serve was dominant and he took a set off Federer for only the third time in 10 matches.Federer, seeking a fifth Australian title, regained control in the third set and dominated after getting an early break to lead 2-0.”It’s a lot of hard work. I’m sweating bullets right now,” he said. “I’m excited to be in the next round.”He admitted he’d had a tough first week, including a five-set win over Gilles Simon.”I’m in another quarterfinal. Got all the chances to make it to the semis again,” Federer said, “so I’m very pleased.”Connors reached the quarterfinals in 27 consecutive majors he entered between 1973 to 1983 – although he missed 13 Grand Slam tournaments during that period of time either through injury or because he didn’t travel to Australia.No. 3-ranked Novak Djokovic is aiming for his second Australian crown. The 2008 champion advanced to the quarterfinals for the 13th time in the last 15 majors with a 6-3, 6-4, 6-0 win over No. 14 Nicolas Almagro and will next play last year’s Wimbledon finalist Tomas Berdych, who beat Fernando Verdasco 6-4, 6-2, 6-3.Wozniacki moved into the Australian Open quarterfinals for the first time with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Anastasija Sevastova and is just one victory from ensuring she’ll retain the top ranking.The 20-year-old Dane, playing her first major as world No. 1, can keep her top ranking with an appearance in the semis.The questions about Wozniacki’s worthiness of the top ranking are starting to diminish. Asked which player she feared most, she said: “I don’t fear anyone actually.””I’m feeling confident. I feel like I can beat anyone on a good day. I think they have to fear me when they’re playing me,” she said. “I just go out there and do my best. If they’re better than me that day, it’s just too good.”advertisementWozniacki lost three of the first four games of the match before reeling off six in a row to take control.She now has reached the quarterfinals at all four majors, and she’s navigated some troublesome ground. According to the WTA, only one of the last five women to be ranked No. 1 went beyond the first round in the first major they played with the top ranking.She also steered herself in and out of trouble after telling a false story in a post-match news conference about being scratched by a kangaroo.After her match, she described an up-close encounter with a baby kangaroo that had scarred her.She said she tried to pet the kangaroo and it scratched her, and noted she had seen a doctor and rejected advice to get stitches.But she later tweeted: “Round 2 with the media:) hope you enjoyed my kangaroo story, hope you know i was just kidding:) see you on tuesday for round 3!”She later returned to Melbourne Park to clarify she’d made up the story and to apologize, saying she didn’t think anyone would believe it.last_img read more

Creamline makes it 3 straight, downs Motolite

first_imgPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hosting View comments LATEST STORIES Kawhi Leonard lifts Raptors within one win of NBA title dream Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess Two-day strike in Bicol fails to cripple transport MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Catholic schools seek legislated pay hike, too Duterte wants probe of SEA Games mess With comebacking coach Tai Bundit calling the shots once again, Creamline was caught flatfooted as it ran smack against a determined Motolite side in the first frame.But the Cool Smashers gathered their wits, out-attacking in the second set, 12-6, and then witnessing the Motolite Spikers self-destruct with  13 unforced errors in the third set.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, logisticsKaewpin scored two of her points in the later fourth set when Motolite was trying to get back racing from 21-17 to 24-23.Motolite suffered its fourth defeat in as many games. ‘Rebel attack’ no cause for concern-PNP, AFP MANILA, Philippines—Creamline got its act together after a disastrous opening set to defeat Motolite, 13-25, 25-19, 25-16, 25-23, Saturday for its third straight win in the  Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference at FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.Kuttika Kaewpin banged in 17 points for the Cool Smashers who improved to 3-1, just behind the unbeaten leader PetroGazz Angels.ADVERTISEMENT DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd PLAY LIST 02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:42PH 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 Krausslast_img read more

Indonesia Open: Kidambi Srikanth stuns World No. 1 Son Wan Ho to enter final

first_imgIndian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth booked his place in the Indonesia Open Super Series Badminton tournament finals after producing a spectacular performance to defeat Son Wan Ho of Korea in an intense semi-final contest here in Jakarta on Saturday.In a gruelling last-four contest that lasted for 73 minutes, Srikanth defeated the second-seed 21-15, 14-21, 24-22 to set up the summit clash against Japan’s Kazumasa Sakai.The Indian shuttler, who had produced a rich vein of form as he swept aside Tzu Wei Wang of Chinese Taipei 21-15, 21-14 in a one-sided quarterfinal clash yesterday, came out with a strong performance as he won the first game rather comfortably 21-15 against Wan Ho.Srikanth continued his form in the second game as well leading 5-2 before the World No. 1 made a comeback to close the gap to a solitary point at the break, Srikanth leading 11-10.The Korean then went along in the second half of the game as he dominated Srikanth, and eventually closed the game 21-14.The third game went on neck and neck as Wan Ho took a slender lead at the break, 11-10 and then a three point lead at 13-10.However, both matched each other point for point as they were tied 15-all and later 18-all.A HawkEye call by Wan Ho was overruled with the 22nd ranked Indian trailing 20-19 at match point and the third game was tied at 20-all.Srikanth then had three match points but the Wan Ho showed why he is the number one ranked player with his grit and class and came back every time to level the match up.advertisementThe 24-year-old from Hyderabad, however, brought an end to what was a marathon match on his fourth match point and entered his second consecutive Super Series final.Earlier, Sakai defeated India’s HS Prannoy 21-17, 26-28, 18-21 in a gruelling last-four contest that lasted for one hour and sixteen minutes to enter the finals.The Indian shuttler, who had stunned World and Olympic Champion Chen Long of China to enter the semifinals, won the first game 21-17 but his Japanese opponent came out with a more aggressive approach in the second game to build an early lead.However, Prannoy stuck to his natural game and clawed his way back to take an 18-17 lead. From then on the lead kept shuttling between the two till the Japanese edged out the mammoth game 28-26.Sakai, who is ranked 20 places lower to Prannoy, came out strong in the final game and built a healthy lead. However, the Indian came back again and took the lead which Sakai, holding on is nerves in the final stages, won the game 21-18 to seal the final berth.Both Prannoy and Sakai were appearing in their first Super Series semi-final. Their only previous meeting was at the Indonesia Open in 2013, where Sakai won 21-13, 14-21, 21-17.last_img read more

Alabama Football: Nick Saban’s Daughter Got Married At Alabama’s Bryant-Denny Stadium Last Night and It Looked Awesome

first_imgNick Saban Wedding Bryant-Denny StadiumNick Saban Wedding Bryant-Denny StadiumNick Saban’s daughter, Kristen, got married last night. We’ll give you one guess at the venue. Yes, it was Alabama’s Bryant-Denny Stadium. And it looked awesome.  Congrats to Mr and Mrs Setas #SabanToSetas #SetOnSetasA photo posted by Ann Marie Theis (@annmarietheis) on May 30, 2015 at 9:11pm PDT  The lovely bride! #setonsetas #sabantosetasA photo posted by Ann Marie Theis (@annmarietheis) on May 30, 2015 at 6:56pm PDT  #SabanToSetas #SetOnSetasA photo posted by Ann Marie Theis (@annmarietheis) on May 30, 2015 at 9:14pm PDT So Nick Saban’s daughter got married last night. Why am I not surprised at the venue!? 😉 pic.twitter.com/IPZVrETCxM— Belle Es You (@SouthernbeLLSU) May 31, 2015 RT @MarisaLeeMartin: Only Kristen #Saban could pull this off at her wedding #SabanToSetas pic.twitter.com/uUPN1zx4Pa— Brent Dougherty (@brentdougherty) May 31, 2015 All weddings of people related to college football coaches should be held at college football stadiums.last_img read more

Game Of Thrones Natalia Tena Supports Survival International Campaign

first_imgGame of Thrones and Harry Potter star Natalia Tena has lent her support to a Survival International campaign to finally bring the killers of three Colombian Indian leaders to justice.Twenty-two years ago, in November 1990, Angel María Torres and two other leaders of Colombia’s Arhuaco tribe were kidnapped, tortured and killed. They were travelling from their home in Colombia’s northern Sierra Nevada region to the capital Bogotá when they were detained by the army. Shortly after their disappearance, their corpses were found with signs of severe torture.In a rare interview, Angel María Torres’s widow Dilia has spoken of the grief and despair of the last 22 years.‘My husband’s hair was gone and his fingers were missing (…) I have lost my husband and all hope of a life with my partner and family.’ Dilia Torres told Survival.The appeal is supported with a voice-over by Game of Thrones and Harry Potter star Natalia Tena.Following an international campaign by Survival, its supporters and the Arhuaco, the United Nations and the Colombian government upheld the army’s responsibility for the men’s death. However no-one has been punished for the crime.Colombia’s indigenous peoples are caught in the cross-fire of Colombia’s civil war, and attacks on them continue. In November, Arhuaco leader Rogelio Mejia was driving in a car with a Survival researcher when the vehicle was attacked by gunmen. Mejia escaped with three gunshot wounds, but the case remains unresolved.Natalia Tena said, ’Dilia’s story of the loss of her husband touched me deeply, which is why I am supporting Survival’s campaign against impunity for crimes against Colombia’s indigenous people.’Survival’s Director Stephen Corry said, ‘Rarely is there a more explicit and stomach-churning example of government-sponsored violence against tribal peoples. And yet there are those that continue to promulgate the lie that tribal peoples fare better when the state is imposed upon them. Arhuaco tribeswoman Dilia Torres would vehemently disagree.’Source:Survival Internationallast_img read more

NWAC board to meet Saturday to decide fate of president

first_imgThe NWAC board will meet Saturday in downtown Ottawa to vote on whether to keep Francyne Joe as president. Photo: Amber Bernard/APTN.Kathleen MartensAPTN NewsAs the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) prepares to vote on the future of its current president, a former executive is speaking out.Allegations of a toxic workplace at the Ottawa office have reached the ears of former president Marilyn Buffalo in Edmonton.“One question I have is, ‘Why did the executive let this go for so long?’” Buffalo asked in a telephone interview with APTN News.“They have the ultimate authority to correct problems as they’re arising.”APTN has learned a special meeting is scheduled Saturday in Ottawa to decide the fate of President Francyne Joe.Joe, who was elected to a three-year term in 2017, is at the centre of what anonymous sources describe as a personality conflict with NWAC Chief Executive Officer Lynn Groulx.Groulx confirmed the problem in a statement to APTN.“While I cannot discuss the details, I can say there is tension in the relationship between Francyne Joe and myself,” she said.Read more:Future of NWAC president to be decided at special meeting in coming weeksBuffalo, who was president from 1997 to 2000, said a mediation process is needed to “work through the process.“The situation unfolding is not something that happened overnight.”However, unnamed employees say there is more.They cite a toxic workplace inside the organization, which they blame on Groulx.NWAC has about six members per province and territory.It’s those members APTN has learned will vote at Saturday’s special meeting.Groulx said problems between her and Joe remain “in spite of every effort” she has made to resolve them – including an intervention with Elders and a healing circle.She said the board of directors continues to support her in running the organization.(NWAC President Francyne Joe will have her fate decided at a board meeting Saturday in Ottawa.)Joe is banned from the office and police were called when she showed up unannounced there last month.“There needs to be a mediation process set up. Put the cards on the table of what the problems are and work through the process,” said Buffalo.“It’s hard for the board to see what the issues are if you’re only hearing from one side, which is the CEO,” she added.“By the time your staff has left and signed non-disclosures it’s hard for them to see what’s really going on.Joe declined to comment when contacted by APTN.She didn’t attend the closing ceremony for the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Monday in Gatineau, Que. Groulx went instead.NWAC was formed “on the collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of First Nations, Métis and Inuit women, girls and gender-diverse people within First Nations, Métis and Inuit Canadian societies,” its website said.NWAC’s report Sisters in Spirit is largely responsible for putting the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous women on the national radar.Michele Audette, one of the commissioners of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, is a former president of NWAC.kmartens@aptn.ca@katmartelast_img read more

TMX to launch cryptocurrency brokerage through Shorcan subsidiary

first_imgTORONTO – The TMX Group Ltd. says it’s launching a cryptocurrency brokerage service through the launch of its Shorcan Digital Currency Network subsidiary.The Toronto Stock Exchange owner says it’s partnering on the brokerage with Toronto-based Paycase Financial Corp., which specializes in decentralized financial services including a mobile-based remittance platform.TMX says the brokerage is designed to leverage Shorcan Brokers Ltd. background in providing brokerage services with Paycase’s cryptocurrency data aggregation platform and will focus on the Bitcoin and Ether cryptocurrencies.The partnership will also create cryptocurrency benchmarks based on consolidated data from the world’s leading crypto exchanges as well as over the counter brokered volume.TMX says the brokerage is a significant step in the execution of the company’s digital strategy as it looks to new ways to address client needs in both traditional and non-traditional markets.last_img read more

US brands suffer collateral damage in Chinese corporate war

first_imgSHANGHAI – It was looking like a banner year for business in China. The U.S. clothing company was expecting a 20 per cent jump in online sales on Alibaba’s Tmall, thanks to the e-commerce giant’s massive reach.But executives soon learned that what Alibaba gives, it can also take away.The company refused to sign an exclusive contract with Alibaba, and instead participated in a big sale promotion with its archrival, JD.com Inc. Tmall punished them by taking steps to cut traffic to their storefront, two executives told The Associated Press. They said advertising banners vanished from prominent spots in Tmall sales showrooms, the company was blocked from special sales and products stopped appearing in top search results.The well-known American brand saw its Tmall sales plummet 10 to 20 per cent for the year.“Based on our sales record, we should have been in a prominent position, but we were at the bottom of the page,” said the brand’s e-commerce director, who spoke only on condition of anonymity for fear of further retaliation. “That’s a clear manipulation of traffic. That’s a clear punishment.”As the Trump administration pushes China to play by fair trade rules, companies are caught in a quieter but no less crucial struggle for fair access to a $610 billion online marketplace, an AP investigation has found.Executives from five major consumer brands told the AP that after they refused to enter exclusive partnerships with Alibaba, traffic to their Tmall storefronts fell, hurting sales. Three are American companies with billions in annual sales that rely on China for growth.In a statement, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. said pursuing exclusive deals is a common industry practice and called the charges of coercion “completely false.”“Alibaba and Tmall conduct business in full compliance with Chinese laws,” Alibaba said. “Like many e-commerce platforms, we have exclusive partnerships with some of the merchants on Tmall. The merchant decides to choose such an arrangement because of the attractive services and value Tmall brings to them.”Imagine a company twice as profitable as Amazon that each year serves more people than live in all of North America. That’s Alibaba. It claims to be the marketplace for nearly $550 billion a year in sales — more than is sold online in the entire U.S. economy.The trials of the affected companies offer a rare window onto a bruising business culture forged in China that could spread as Alibaba takes its aggressive, innovative and hugely profitable model of e-commerce global. To the extent that their products are manufactured in the United States — and some are — constricting sales in China’s critical growth market can also deepen the imbalance of trade between China and the U.S., a gap that is a top concern for the Trump administration.The competition between Alibaba and JD.com is so infamous in China — and so dirty — it’s been dubbed the “great cat-and-dog war,” after Tmall’s black-cat mascot and JD.com’s white dog.The executives spoke to the AP only on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals, but their concerns were echoed by a U.S. industry group, brand consultants and policy makers in China and JD.com itself.In a speech about cyberspace last week, Chinese president Xi Jinping said ensuring free and fair competition online was a regulatory priority, citing the need “to cultivate a fair market environment, strengthen intellectual property protection, and oppose monopoly and unfair competition,” state media reported.In its months-long investigation, the AP interviewed more than 30 people and reviewed two contracts from Alibaba that contained previously unreported exclusivity clauses. The AP found that the platforms that control access to Chinese consumers online wield such enormous power that even multibillion-dollar foreign companies can have trouble fighting back.“We urge the authorities to quickly investigate and take steps to ensure such practices are eliminated from the growing Chinese marketplace,” said Stephen Lamar, executive vice-president of the American Apparel & Footwear Association, adding that members of his industry group had complained about unfair competitive practices by Alibaba.JD.com is a member and sponsor of the trade group.Wang Hongbo, a consultant who helps Chinese brands sell online abroad, echoed the problems cited by the companies who spoke to AP.“Many brands complained about this to us. Because they didn’t fall in line, they faced restrictions on Tmall,” he said.It’s not clear whether Alibaba’s actions would be illegal, nor is it certain that the evidence of coercion that brands have managed to collect would hold up in court. Under China’s anti-monopoly laws, companies that dominate a market cannot demand exclusivity without justification. A 2015 regulation also specifically bars e-commerce platforms from restricting brands’ participation in promotions on other platforms.The rules are designed to prevent dominant players from squeezing out the competition, which could ultimately hurt both brands and consumers by giving a single, monopolistic player absolute control over prices.JD.com said that over 100 Chinese brands defected last year due to pressure from its main rival, an assertion Alibaba and some brands have contested. The exodus appears to have had a lasting impact.“Based on the feedbacks we received from these merchants, the move was mainly due to the coercive tactics from our competition, which if proven true would be illegal and clearly against the merchants’ will,” said Sidney Huang, JD.com’s chief financial officer, said in a November earnings call.Peacebird, a Chinese fashion company, is among those that left JD.com last year. But Weng Jianghong, the company’s general manager of e-commerce, said Alibaba had not coerced them and the decision to focus on Tmall was strategic.“We will centralize and develop the limited resources of our company on Tmall,” he said.Many companies, including JD.com, do exclusive deals. However, JD.com maintains that it doesn’t strategically push merchants for exclusivity.“We support fair and open competition because greater choice is always better for brands and users,” JD.com said in a statement. “We are winning over customers by providing a superior shopping experience, rather than by limiting the options of brands or consumers.”JD.com is still trying to get brands to return. “We do believe there will be more merchants coming back,” Huang said in a call last month with analysts. “But I do not expect a very quick fix.”PLAY OR PAYTmall controlled six of every 10 dollars spent overall for business-to-consumer sales online in China in the second half of last year — and even more for sectors like apparel — giving it enormous power over companies that rely on Alibaba for access to Chinese consumers online.The contracts reviewed by AP offered a suite of benefits in exchange for exclusivity. One contract specified that brands must not operate storefronts on other e-commerce platforms without Tmall’s written permission. The other contract mandated that new products not be launched on competing platforms and barred brands from sales promotions on other platforms without Tmall’s written permission.Such sales events are the lifeblood of online commerce in China. The country’s massive Singles Day promotion in November, which started as an anti-Valentine’s Day gimmick, is now the world’s largest e-commerce event. Last year, Alibaba said $25 billion worth of merchandise was sold on its platforms alone, compared with just $14.5 billion in total online sales in the U.S. for Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined, according to data from Adobe Systems Inc.Brands cited commercial, ideological and legal reasons for refusing to cut off business with JD.com.Some said that different people shop in different ways on JD.com and Tmall, so cutting off JD.com means cutting off access to a pool of potential shoppers.“It’s clear from the data we look at these are distinct consumer pools,” said the China head of a publicly-traded company. “If I lost the JD business I would lose a certain part of that business. Another part is on principle: This is blatant anticompetitive behaviour.”Others cited legal concerns. “We didn’t want to go for it in part because we thought it might be an illegal agreement in restraint of trade,” said an executive for a second publicly-traded company.“We’re chided when we participate in promotional events on other platforms,” he added. “What’s never said but actually happens when we don’t co-operate in the way they want us to is our traffic falls. It’s not a coincidence.”Two companies said they granted concessions to Alibaba, agreeing to exclusive product launches, raising their prices on JD.com, or removing ads promoting JD.com sales. Traffic to their Tmall shops rebounded. One company said it ultimately closed its flagship on JD.com to salvage Tmall sales.“You have to go beg,” said the China director of a multi-billion dollar publicly-traded company.THE GREAT CAT-AND-DOG WARTmall and JD.com have different business models but they are increasingly pushing onto each other’s turf.Alibaba’s online marketplaces connect buyers and sellers. Alibaba earns money from advertising, as well as commissions and fees. JD.com runs a similar marketplace but, like Amazon, also buys products from brands, then sells and distributes the merchandise itself.Alibaba has taken aim at JD.com’s long-standing dominance in electronics, while JD.com hopes to cut into Tmall’s core apparel category. Both have expanded into groceries and poured hundreds of millions of dollars into acquisitions to extend their reach into brick-and-mortar businesses.The result is an escalating turf fight that carries a chilling message for brands: Either you’re with us or against us. The Chinese have a name for this unwritten rule, “er xuan yi,” choose one of two.“‘Choose one of two’ is a tacit understanding that has been reached by everyone, but you do not say it directly,” said Zhuo Saijun, who until 2015 was a general manager of e-commerce research at Analysys Ltd., a Beijing-based big data consultancy. “This is certainly a problem for the development of retail sales channels. It is a business ethics problem, and this is how monopolies develop.”Some policymakers have raised concerns about monopolistic tendencies in Chinese e-commerce and called for more effective regulation and enforcement.“Unfair competition still exists,” Wang Bingnan, a deputy director at China’s Ministry of Commerce, said in a June speech about China’s e-commerce market. “Behaviours like forced ‘choose one of two,’” he added, “are hard for regulators to define, prove or deal with accurately.”JD.com has complained about anticompetitive tactics before. In 2015, the company filed a complaint with the State Administration for Industry and Commerce, a corporate regulator, accusing Alibaba of pressuring brands into doing exclusive Singles Day sales promotions — a charge Alibaba denied. The complaint was kicked to a regional office in Zhejiang province, where Alibaba has its headquarters.Nothing more was ever heard about it.The regulators did not respond to requests for comment.Alibaba said that while JD.com focuses “on groundless complaints to explain why they are losing brands, we at Alibaba are squarely focused on making our platform the best for our merchants.”MR. MA GOES GLOBALThe battles now being waged within China’s e-commerce sector could well impact the culture and norms of e-commerce globally — at least if Alibaba’s chairman, Jack Ma, has his way.Alibaba aims to serve 2 billion consumers by 2036 — or about one in four people now on the planet. Already, the value of goods sold on Alibaba’s platforms in fiscal year 2017 was $547 billion, larger than the gross domestic product of Sweden.In June, Ma told investors that his company will rank as the fifth largest economy in the world. “Just say USA, China, Europe, maybe Japan and us,” Ma said.The company has been aggressively recruiting foreign brands to sell on its platforms, and they have come, in droves. Alibaba said it signed up 60,000 international brands for its massive Single’s Day sale in November, up from 5,000 in 2015.Alibaba’s retail sales outside of China also are growing fast — they more than doubled last fiscal year to 7.3 billion yuan ($1.1 billion), or 5 per cent of total revenue.America remains at the heart of Ma’s ambition. He told president-elect Donald Trump in Jan. 2017 that he would create a million U.S. jobs by facilitating trade between businesses in the U.S and consumers in China — a pledge he now says is imperiled by the brewing trade war between the two countries.Brands now caught in the great cat and dog war have adopted different strategies to avoid becoming collateral damage.An e-commerce manager at a major European brand said she’d be happy to offer totally different products on Tmall and JD.com to stay out of trouble, but worries her bosses won’t go for it because it cuts off potential buyers.Sometimes, she said, it feels “like we’re working for those platforms.”___Associated Press writer Anne D’Innocenzio in Las Vegas and researchers Si Chen and Fu Ting in Shanghai contributed to this report.Follow Kinetz on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ekinetzSend news tips, documents, etc. securely and confidentially to AP at https://securedrop.ap.org/last_img read more

ED files supplementary chargesheet against former Haryana CM names immovable assets

first_imgNew Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) filed a supplementary chargesheet against former Haryana chief minister O P Chautala in connection with a money-laundering case on Thursday.The agency mentioned in the chargesheet that immovable assets worth Rs 3.68 crore were attached by it on April 13 in relation to four properties in Delhi, Panchkula and Sirsa. It said the investigation conducted so far under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) had revealed that Chautala laundered the disproportionate assets by depositing illegal cash in the bank accounts of his and his family members. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The ED said this was done to avoid the back trail of money, merge the illegal cash with genuine income and show it as untainted. This laundered money was further used to purchase new properties or carry out construction on the already acquired properties. The chargesheet was filed before special judge Kamini Lau, who posted the matter for consideration on May 16. Referring to Chautala’s affidavits filed before the 2005 and 2009 Haryana Assembly polls, the agency said he had disclosed his assets to publicly Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&Kproject the tainted properties as untainted. “During the period between May 24, 1993 and May 5, 2006, O P Chautala, while functioning as a public servant (the CM of Haryana), allegedly acquired assets disproportionate to his income to the tune of Rs 6,09,79,026. The value of the disproportionate assets acquired by O P Chautala is in the form of various movable and immovable properties which constitutes ‘proceeds of crime’ in this case. “The calculation of these accumulated disproportionate assets of Chautala was based on oral and documentary evidence collected by the CBI during investigation and included all sources of income and expenses. Chautala had invested these disproportionately acquired assets mainly in the following properties…,” the chargesheet said.last_img read more