Loss-making Cathay Pacific Cuts 600 Jobs; Largest Layoff in 20 Years

Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd, a flag carrier of Hong Kong, announced a few days ago that it was cutting 600 jobs, its biggest layoff in nearly two decades. The company seeks to return to its prominence and profitability in an industry marked by declining ticket prices. The scissor is being moved over jobs of 18 percent of non-managerial positions and 25 percent of management staff at its head office in Hong Kong. However, the company said that cabin crews, pilots, and frontline employees will not be affected by job cuts. As of March 2017, Cathay Pacific had nearly 33,700 employees across the globe.

More Players to Jump on Bandwagon

Cathay Pacific, last year, reported its first annual loss since 2008 and is expected to write off losses this year again. The loss is mainly being attributed to the competent pricing of tickets and the increasing capacity and routes due to declining fuel prices.

This reduction in headcount is the first step in a three-year reorganization plan announced this year by the airlines. Its shares increased by two percent after the news and have climbed over 13 percent for the year to date. The layoff is anticipated to save it at least US$64 mn annually, or about six percent of total staff costs. In addition to sacking employees, it will also consider cutting down routes flown and shifting more routes to its short-haul arm. Industrial experts believe that other players in the industry will also have to take this bold step. Singapore Airlines, which has also incurred a loss in its latest quarter, announced a strategic evaluation.

Eco-friendly Packaging Providers Benefit from Aseptic Processing

San Francisco, California, May 22, 2017 : TMR Research notes down the key factors of influence currently affecting the demand for aseptic processing solutions, in “Aseptic Processing Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Trends, Analysis, Growth, and Forecast 2017 – 2025.” Aseptic packaging implies the use of processes and materials that promote a completely sterile and aseptic packaging of products. One of the key applications of aseptic packaging comes from the global pharmaceutical industry due to a high priority given to the sterile packaging for drugs and medicines. Sterility is often obtained through a process known as flash heating, where the packaging undergoes a rapid increase in temperature which can help reduce empty spaces between packaging and product, while maintaining the nutritive qualities of the product. This also employs a lower rate of energy consumption as opposed to methods such as retort, canning, or hot-fill methods.

One of the leading factors promoting the growth of the global aseptic processing market is the increasing preference of eco-friendly packaging. Despite the complications faced by eco-friendly packaging in the context of terminal sterilization as well as canning, the growing demand for it from convenience foods manufacturers and pharmaceutical suppliers is creating a spur in the rate of technological advancements. Aseptic processing allows longer shelf life and therefore generates a greater demand. While the cost of aseptic processing can be higher than conventional processing, the increasing disposable income of consumers can create a heightened demand for various products, driving the global aseptic processing market.

Players in the global aseptic processing market are also expected to witness a high rate of growth over the coming years through improvements in their production capacities. The increased demand for aseptic processing of goods has required manufacturers to expand their business and production capacities in various regions. The cosmetics and dairy sectors are two additional segments that are demanding a greater volume of aseptic processing, thus pushing the growth of the market.

On the basis of geography, the global aseptic processing market can be said to be spurred over the coming years by the growing demand from the nations of China, India, Brazil, and Argentina. Emerging economies are therefore expected to play a pivotal role in the growth of the global aseptic processing market in the near future. This increase in demand can be attributed to the increasingly hectic lifestyle led by the growing urban populations in these regions. As their demand for ready-to-eat meals and modern pharmaceuticals increases, so does the scope of growth of players in the global aseptic processing market based in these regions.

The leading players in the global aseptic processing market at the moment, include JBT Corporation, Greatview Aseptic Packaging Co. Ltd., GEA Group, Amcor Limited, Becton, Dickinson and Co., GEA Group, Tetra Laval International S.A., E.I. Du Pont De Nemours and Company, and Robert Bosch GmbH.

Recycled Plastic and Plastic Waste to Oil Pull Demand from Fuel Generation

San Francisco, California, May 22, 2017 : The global recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market is prophesied to gain momentum from an increasing focus on novel waste-conversion technologies, according to a report by TMR Research. The report bears the title “Recycled Plastic and Plastic Waste to Oil Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Trends, Analysis, Growth, and Forecast 2017 – 2025.” Besides the rising need for plastic waste reduction, in the coming years, the popularity of efficient and clean fuel generation with the engagement of plastic waste is expected to set the tone for a reliable growth in demand in the global recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market.

An influx of new entrants in the worldwide recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market is foreseen by the analysts on account of a snowballing awareness about the benefits of converting plastic waste to oil and recycled plastic. Prominent participants in the worldwide recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market are envisioned to be advantaged by lucrative growth prospects with the advent of newer technologies and a strong focus on R&D activities. The growth in the worldwide recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market could be accelerated on the back of promising government initiatives. Other key aspects that could fortify the demand in the worldwide recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market include the accessibility to required funds and infrastructure.

Europe is envisaged to fetch attractive business opportunities in the world recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market for players operating therein. The need to manage the mammoth amount of plastic debris invading municipal waste streams (MWS) in Europe could be a major growth factor for the regional recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market. The U.S. companies that convert landfill-bound plastics or plastic debris to synthetic oil are predicted to gain traction as government initiatives to dismiss landfill disposal fees take shape across the country. Asia Pacific could be another rewarding recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market which rides on the modernization of various plastic-to-fuel technologies.

African renewable energy firm, Alternative Energy Systems has recently cut the ribbon of the first commercial plastic waste to synthetic fuel oil conversion plant in Kenya. Funded by the Commercial Development Corporation (ICDC), the plant is capable of recycling an almost 16 tons of different plastic wastes, including thin-gauge plastic waste, on a daily basis.

The worldwide recycled plastic and plastic waste to oil market could witness the domination of key players such as Nexus Fuels, Clean Blue Technologies, Inc., Vadxx Energy LLC, Agilyx, Inc., and Cynar Plc.

Paytm Now US$7 Bn Strong; Gains US$1.4 Bn from SoftBank

While 2016 banknote demonetization affected billions of people and caused grave trouble to some, Indian government’s aggressive strategy to curb corruption and encourage digitalization overall received a thumps up from the citizens. One of the biggest gainers of that demonetization was a start-up called Paytm, who via persistent advertising were already gaining popularity as a cashless app or mobile wallet in the Indian market.

Paytm Now India’s Second Most Valuable Startup
Paytm’s stocks skyrocketed after demonetization and now, Japanese Internet and Telecom giants SoftBank have acknowledged Paytm as India’s premier option against cash. Softbank has pledged an investment of US$1.4 bn to gain 20% stake in the company, which now pushes the valuation of Paytm past US$7.0 bn, making it the second most valuable startup in the country, only behind Flipkart.

Paytm is owned by One97 Communications, which has 45% stakes belonging to China’s Alibaba and its online payment affiliate Alipay. They are now chalk and cheese ahead of other e-wallet portals in India including Citrus Pay, ICICI Pockets, LIME, and PayUMoney.

SoftBank’s Strategic Investment in India’s Digital Commerce
While this development is a major boon for Paytm, it also is a clear indication of SoftBank’s keen interest in India’s ecommerce. In the recent past, Masayoshi Son-led Company has put his weight behind Snapdeal, rides the country with Ola App, and offers home delivery services such as Grofers and Oyo. In total, SoftBank has poured in US$3.5 bn in the Indian market, and are in talks to sell Snapdeal to India’s biggest online retailer Flipkart. If that deal goes through, SoftBank will have stakes in both of India’s largest internet companies – Paytm and Flipkart.