Aston Martin’s turnaround plan moves up a gear with Vantage model

Luxury British carmaker Aston Martin unveiled its new Vantage model on Tuesday, as it pursues a turnaround plan designed to return it to profitability and set up a possible stock market flotation.

The central England-based firm, famed for making the sports car driven by fictional secret agent James Bond, is on course this year for its first pretax profit since 2010, spurred by sales of its new DB11 model.

With the Vantage, Aston Martin hopes to reach full capacity of 7,000 sports cars at its Gaydon plant in 2019, which would be the most cars it has produced for a decade.

“It’s important fiscally because it is the car that really moves us into that positive free cash flow territory, but I think it was also important industrially because you are now talking about a plant that is full,” Chief Executive Andy Palmer told Reuters during an interview at the firm’s headquarters.

The sleek two-seater model, which the firm says will stand out from rivals partly due to its simplistic design, will cost just over 120,000 pounds in Britain and $150,000 in the United States.

Aston is also building a new factory in Wales, where its first sports utility vehicle, known as the DBX, will roll off the production line from late 2019.

As Aston grows, Palmer has said that its owners, mainly Kuwaiti and Italian private equity firms, could sell the company to a larger car group, other private equity firms or launch an initial public offering,

“Another year of demonstrating what we are doing and then I think beyond that it’s going to depend on what the market’s doing.” he said.

source:-.thehindu

Moto Makes a Strong Comeback in the US, Enters Top 5: Counterpoint

Moto Makes a Strong Comeback in the US, Enters Top 5: Counterpoint

Lenovo brand Moto made a significant comeback in the US in the third quarter this year, almost doubling its volumes and market share annually and was the fastest growing brand, Counterpoint Research said on Saturday.

The US smartphone shipments remained flat during the third quarter. Moto, ZTE, and LG registered strong gains and Verizon remained the largest smartphone sales channel, revealed Counterpoint’s Market Monitor programme.

“Motorola jumped back into the top five rankings after a long time. Motorola’s focus on affordable devices for prepaid/unlocked market and breaking out from Verizon’s shadows helped drive growth during the quarter,” said Research Analyst Archana Srinivasan.

Motorola also benefited in terms of visibility with presence across all four of the major carriers with its Moto Z2 Force Edition in premium segment.

“The Moto E series was actually the key volume driver for Motorola during the quarter across prepaid and open channels,” Srinivasan added.

Verizon had a good quarter and remained the biggest channel for smartphone sales, followed by T-Mobile, AT&T, and Sprint.

“LG had a strong quarter recording highest ever volume for the third quarter closing on Samsung volumes, especially at T-Mobile & Sprint,” said Research Director Neil Shah.

Apple iPhone 7 was the most popular smartphone in the US. The Moto E4 and LG Stylo 3 were also solid performers. LG grew its share to 17.6 percent.

ZTE grew its smartphone volumes 34 percent (year-on-year).

[“Source-gadgets.ndtv”]

Kevin Spacey just got fired from Ridley Scott’s new movie, a month before its release

Ridley Scott will completely remove Kevin Spacey from his upcoming biopic thriller All the Money in the World — with fewer than two months to go until the movie’s scheduled December 22 release.

According to Deadline, which first reported the news, Christopher Plummer will replace Spacey in the film’s most prominent supporting role. Scott’s drastic choice to cut Spacey from the movie will put it at risk of missing its December 22 release date, thus jeopardizing its Oscar eligibility.

The news follows a wave of sexual assault allegations made against Spacey by more than a dozen people, including multiple accusations of assault on underage victims.

Based on a true story, All the Money in the World details the harrowing 1973 kidnapping of J. Paul Getty’s 16-year-old grandson, J. Paul Getty III (Charlie Plummer, no relation), and Getty’s refusal to comply with the kidnappers’ demands. Spacey was set to play the elder Getty, and the decision to reshoot his role entirely, especially so close to the film’s release date, is extremely unprecedented.

The decision to cut Spacey from the film indicates how drastically Hollywood is reacting to the allegations against the actor

Though there have been other historical instances where an actor has been replaced during a film’s production, recasting a role or conducting extensive reshoots after a film has wrapped is rare, and usually only happens to this extent in the case of an unexpected death — for example, Paul Walker’s brothers standing in for reshoots of Furious 7 after his death.

That Scott and the All the Money in the World’s producers are willing to go to such lengths to essentially erase Spacey’s presence from the film speaks to how seriously Hollywood is taking the allegations of sexual assault that have been levied against him — or at least how desperate many people in the entertainment industry are to distance themselves from a man whose behavior was allegedly a longstanding open secret.

The decision comes after the film’s production studio, TriStar, abandoned what would have been an aggressive marketing and awards season campaign built around Spacey’s performance. The studio additionally pulled the film from what would have been an Oscar-bait slot at the American Film Institute’s November film festival. Regarding that decision, TriStar issued a statement, noting, “All the Money in the World is a superb film … But given the current allegations surrounding one of its actors and out of respect for those impacted, it would be inappropriate to celebrate at a gala at this difficult time.”

All the Money in the World features an ensemble cast including Michelle Williams and Mark Wahlberg. According to Deadline, the decision to replace Spacey and reshoot all of his scenes was “unanimous” among the film’s cast and crew.

Vox has reached out to Spacey’s representatives for comment.

Source:-VOX

Insights from a rare genetic disease may help treat multiple myeloma

A new class of drugs for blood cancers such as leukemia and multiple myeloma is showing promise. But it is hobbled by a problem that also plagues other cancer drugs: targeted cells can develop resistance. Now scientists have found that insights into a rare genetic disease known as NGLY1 deficiency could help scientists understand how that resistance works — and potentially how drugs can outsmart it.

A protein called Nrf1 (shown in white in these mouse cells) can hamper promising drugs for blood cancers, but now researchers have found a possible workaround to shut Nrf1 down.
Credit: The American Chemical Society

A new class of drugs for blood cancers such as leukemia and multiple myeloma is showing promise. But it is hobbled by a problem that also plagues other cancer drugs: targeted cells can develop resistance. Now scientists, reporting in ACS Central Science, have found that insights into a rare genetic disease known as NGLY1 deficiency could help scientists understand how that resistance works — and potentially how drugs can outsmart it.

A class of compounds called proteasome inhibitors that include bortezomib and carfilzomib — both approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration — have been effective at treating certain types of blood cancers. The drugs work by jamming some of cancer cells’ machinery to induce cell death. But the drugs have been limited by cancer cells ability to development resistance, as well as the inhibitors inability to fight solid tumors effectively. Studies have suggested that resistance could be linked to a protein called Nrf1. When proteasome inhibitors go into action, Nrf1 is spurred into overdrive to restore the cells’ normal activities and keep them alive. If researchers could figure out how to block Nrf1, they might be able to address the resistance problem. Carolyn Bertozzi and colleagues, through studying NGLY1 deficiency, a seemingly unrelated condition, may have hit upon an approach to do this.

The researchers were investigating how lacking the enzyme NGLY1 causes a host of debilitating symptoms. They found that NGLY1 is responsible for activating Nrf1, the protein that is suspected of weakening proteasome inhibitors’ effectiveness against cancer. Further testing showed that dampening NGLY1 allowed a proteasome inhibitor to continue doing its work killing cancer cells without interference from Nrf1. This finding, the authors note, holds great promise for the development of combination therapeutics for blood cancers in the future.

[“Source-sciencedaily”]