News Corporation or News Corp. was an American multinational mass media corporation headquartered in New York City. It was the world's second-largest media group in 2011 in terms of revenue, and the world's third largest in entertainment in 2009.News Corporation was a publicly traded company listed on the NASDAQ. Formerly incorporated in Adelaide, South Australia, the company was re-incorporated under Delaware General Corporation Law after a majority of shareholders approved the move on 12 November 2004. News Corporation was headquartered at 1211 Avenue of the Americas, New York, in the newer 1960s–1970s corridor of the Rockefeller Center complex.On 28 June 2012, Rupert Murdoch announced that, after concerns from shareholders in response to its recent scandals and to "unlock even greater long-term shareholder value", News Corporation's assets would be split into two publicly traded companies, one oriented towards media, and the other towards publishing. The split formally took place on 28 June 2013; where the present News Corp. was renamed 21st Century Fox and consists primarily of media outlets, while a new News Corp was formed to take on the publishing and Australian broadcasting assets .Its major holdings at the time of the split were News Limited , News International , Dow Jones & Company , the book publisher HarperCollins, and the Fox Entertainment Group . Wikipedia.
Russian entrepreneur and venture capitalist Yuri Milner arrives on the red carpet during the second annual Breakthrough Prize Awards at the NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, California November 9, 2014. REUTERS/Stephen Lam More MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIF. (Reuters) - Academia just turned a little more glitzy for a select group of scientists. Russian billionaire Yuri Milner on Sunday handed out seven Breakthrough Prizes, the award for scientific accomplishment he created three years ago alongside technology giants including Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, 23andme founder Anne Wojcicki and Google co-founder Sergey Brin. The prizes are worth $3 million, around three times the sum a Nobel Prize winner receives. For one group of Breakthrough recipients, the honor will carry more prestige than cash. Some 1370 physicists are being honored as part of a single $3 million prize for their work confirming the theory of neutrino oscillation, a phenomenon in quantum mechanics. Seven team leaders will split two-thirds of the prize. That leaves $1 million to split among the others, or around $700 to each physicist. "I would love to give $3 million to each one, but we're not there yet," Milner said in an interview on Friday. Increasingly, he added, breakthroughs are made through vast consortiums rather than a handful of scientists working in relative isolation, raising the chances of such shared prizes in future. Five prizes went to researchers in life sciences for advances in areas ranging from optogenetics to sequencing of ancient genomes. A prize in mathematics went to a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, for work in low dimensional topology and geometric group theory. Eight scientists early in their mathematics and physics careers won awards of $100,000. Milner has set his sights on giving the sciences the same cultural resonance as sports or entertainment, but on Friday, he said it was too early to see if his work was having any effect. He pointed to the ceremony's broadcast on a major U.S. network, Fox, for the first time as a sign things were moving in the right direction. A onetime physics PhD student in Moscow who dropped out to move to the United States in 1990, Milner has backed some of the world’s biggest technology companies, including Facebook. Seth MacFarlane, creator of the hit TV series “Family Guy,” is hosted the black-tie ceremony, held at the NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif. Hollywood celebrities like pop star Christina Aguilera hobnobbed with Silicon Valley celebrities like Theranos chief Elizabeth Holmes, whose blood-testing company has come under fire in recent weeks. News Corp.O> chief executive Rupert Murdoch sat next to Gen. David Petraeus. Singer Pharrell Williams serenaded the audience before dinner, created by chef Thomas Keller. Other celebrities milling about included actress Hilary Swank and cast members of the TV show "Silicon Valley." Earlier this year, Milner said he would spend $100 million looking for intelligent life in space by searching for radio and light signals.
Yuri Milner, founder of DST Global, speaks at the Wall Street Journal Digital Live (WSJDLive) conference at the Montage hotel in Laguna Beach, California, October 21, 2015. REUTERS/Mike Blake/fILES More MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIF. (Reuters) - Academia just turned a little more glitzy for a select group of scientists. Russian billionaire Yuri Milner on Sunday handed out seven Breakthrough Prizes, the award for scientific accomplishment he created three years ago alongside technology giants including Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, 23andme founder Anne Wojcicki and Google co-founder Sergey Brin. The prizes are worth $3 million, around three times the sum a Nobel Prize winner receives. (nL1N1312ZM) For one group of Breakthrough recipients, the honor will carry more prestige than cash. Some 1370 physicians are being honored as part of a single $3 million prize for their work confirming the theory of neutrino oscillation, a phenomenon in quantum mechanics. Seven team leaders will split two-thirds of the prize. That leaves $1 million to split among the others, or around $700 to each physicist. "I would love to give $3 million to each one, but we're not there yet," Milner said in an interview on Friday. Increasingly, he added, breakthroughs are made through vast consortiums rather than a handful of scientists working in relative isolation, raising the chances of such shared prizes in future. Five prizes went to researchers in life sciences for advances in areas ranging from optogenetics to sequencing of ancient genomes. A prize in mathematics went to a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, for work in low dimensional topology and geometric group theory. Eight scientists early in their mathematics and physics careers won awards of $100,000. Milner has set his sights on giving the sciences the same cultural resonance as sports or entertainment, but on Friday, he said it was too early to see if his work was having any effect. He pointed to the ceremony's broadcast on a major U.S. network, Fox, for the first time as a sign things were moving in the right direction. A onetime physics PhD student in Moscow who dropped out to move to the United States in 1990, Milner has backed some of the world’s biggest technology companies, including Facebook. Seth MacFarlane, creator of the hit TV series “Family Guy,” is hosted the black-tie ceremony, held at the NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif. Hollywood celebrities like pop star Christina Aguilera hobnobbed with Silicon Valley celebrities like Theranos chief Elizabeth Holmes, whose blood-testing company has come under fire in recent weeks. News Corp.O> chief executive Rupert Murdoch sat next to Gen. David Petraeus. Singer Pharrell Williams serenaded the audience before dinner, created by chef Thomas Keller. Other celebrities milling about included actress Hilary Swank and cast members of the TV show "Silicon Valley." Earlier this year, Milner said he would spend $100 million looking for intelligent life in space by searching for radio and light signals.
News Article | August 21, 2015
SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--With heavy hearts, the Silicor Materials team confirms the sudden passing of its beloved Chairman, John Correnti, at the age of 68. Mr. Correnti is best known for his innovations in the steel industry, expertise he brought to Silicor's metals-based process. John most recently served as the Chairman and CEO of Arkansas-based Big River Steel. "John was a revolutionary thinker, a respected leader, and a dear friend," said Silicor CEO Theresa Jester. "His profound impact on Silicor Materials—not just on our business, but also on the men and women he guided along the way—will be forever felt. Like so many others, we are fortunate to have known John, and we will miss him immensely." Ms. Jester will assume Mr. Correnti's role on the Silicor Board of Directors. Silicor Materials produces solar silicon to meet the unique cost and performance needs of PV manufacturers. The company’s novel manufacturing process unlocks significant cost reduction without sacrificing quality, and its products achieve performance on par with global industry standards. Silicor is based in San Jose, California, with additional locations in Ontario, Canada and Berlin, Germany. Investors include Hudson Clean Energy Partners, Advanced Technology Ventures and Globespan Capital Partners. For more information, please visit silicormaterials.com.
Marissa Mayer, the spirited chief executive enticed from a top spot at Google, was supposed to be the answer. She was expected to boost advertising revenue, pivot the company toward mobile, staunch the loss of users to rival sites and inject some energy into a depressive corporate culture. More than three years later, Yahoo continues to slog along, no transformation in sight. Its planned spinoff of its 15 percent stake in Chinese Internet giant Alibaba remains controversial and Yahoo's board is reportedly meeting this week to consider selling its core Internet search and advertising business, under pressure from an activist investor. Industry analysts have grown impatient. They say Mayer's future at the helm of the Sunnyvale, Calif., company could be in jeopardy and the company's days as a stand-alone, publicly traded company may be numbered. "Yahoo's core business is in seemingly permanent decline," Pivotal Research's Brian Wieser wrote in a research note Wednesday. "CEO Marissa Mayer is under pressure given continued declines within the core business and the departure of key executives," echoed Cowen and Co. analyst John Blackledge. "We believe it is prudent to reassess all options," said SunTrust Robinson Humphrey's Robert Peck. One of the main problems: Just about everything that Yahoo does, someone else can do better. Its email service and search functions have been cast aside by droves of users. Yahoo Maps, once highly popular, was long ago overtaken by Google Maps, and finally shut down this year. Yahoo Screen, its YouTube competitor, has shown concerts and exclusive episodes of TV series "Community," debuted original series and even broadcast an NFL game. But none of the content has been good enough to steal market share. And Yahoo News faces strong competition from fresh news sources such as Facebook, Snapchat and Apple News. Mayer, 40, faced a daunting task when she took over as CEO in July 2012. "She came into an extraordinarily difficult situation, one a lot of people would have said was a no-win situation," said Paul Sweeney, a media industry analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence. Even so, she led some significant improvements at the company, hiring top-tier talent and adjusting policies to make Yahoo a cool place to work again, he said. She invested in online video content, mobile apps and the social media service Tumblr. Yahoo has stayed in tune with hot trends in technology under Mayer, more so than in previous years, he added. For instance, according to people familiar with the company's strategy, Yahoo is exploring opportunities in e-sports, a fast-growing sector of the video game industry centered on gaming competitions. And Yahoo has invested heavily in developing a yet-to-be-unveiled mobile search tool. The bets are aimed at reversing the decline in Yahoo's online advertising business, which hasn't adapted quickly to technologies that have changed how ads are priced and sold. Some analysts are already starting to bat around names for a potential successor. Former Yahoo CEO Ross Levinsohn, Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg, YouTube's Susan Wojcicki and CBS Interactive CEO Jim Lanzone were among the top 10 names offered by Peck in a note to investors Monday. "We are unclear what the board and CEO might do," Peck said, "and compile this list merely to address the investor questions we are getting on ' ... if not Ms. Mayer, then who?'" The heightened chatter surrounding Yahoo began Nov. 19, when activist investor Starboard Value sent a letter to Yahoo suggesting that the proposed spinoff of its Alibaba stake was not the right move, and urged Yahoo to explore the sale of its core business. Then on Tuesday, the Wall Street Journal reported that Yahoo's board was set to do just that in a series of meetings this week. That pushed Yahoo shares up 6 percent to $35.65 on Wednesday. Yahoo's core advertising-driven business includes a search engine and properties such as Yahoo Mail, Yahoo News, Tumblr and Flickr. Blackledge estimated that the search and display business is worth $3.84 billion. Much of Yahoo's future hinges on what happens with its Alibaba stake. "From the day she came on board, this story has almost been exclusively about what happens to Alibaba," Sweeney said. "The stock never traded up or down based on quarterly results." In January, Yahoo said it would spin off its stake in Alibaba, then worth about $40 billion. At the time, Yahoo said that all of its 384 million Alibaba shares would be transferred tax-free to a separate, publicly traded company called SpinCo, saving it billions in taxes that would have been due had it sold the shares on the open market. That plan has run into a major hitch, though, with the IRS giving no assurances about whether the transaction would be tax-free. The uncertainty could lead to a court battle between the two sides; if Yahoo loses and wants to complete the spinoff, Peck estimated the tax bill could be about $20 billion, wiping out most of the current value of the stake. A sale of Yahoo's operating business would be "the simplest, least risky move the company could make at this point," he said. Some say Mayer could have acted more quickly, or laid out a clearer vision early on. Critics point to AOL, which Tim Armstrong took over as chief executive in 2009 when it was facing similar problems as Yahoo. Armstrong had a head start on Mayer, but he's credited with turning around AOL's ad business more wholesale than Mayer has done at Yahoo. Armstrong's efforts culminated in May when Verizon Communications agreed to buy AOL for $4.4 billion. Colin Gillis, an analyst at BGC Partners, said none of Yahoo's several CEOs in recent years have been willing to swallow a short-term revenue hit in hopes of spurring long-term growth in the ad business by swapping in new technologies and strategies. Yahoo's reported third-quarter revenue of $1.2 billion is up 6.8 percent from the same quarter a year earlier. "I would like personally the story to end where the company goes into private equity hands, and gets turned around out of the scrutiny of the public market's eyes," Gillis said. Analysts expect sizable interest in buying Yahoo. Private equity firms with stakes in technology and media, including Providence Equity Partners, Silver Lake and TPG Capital, could be potential acquirers. Corporate buyers could include media giants like Comcast, AT&T/DirecTV, Verizon, News Corp, Disney and CBS. Sweeney said it was unlikely that Yahoo would sell for much more than $5 billion, unless multiple buyers place a premium on the Yahoo brand name, helping drive up value. "There's not many Yahoo-like brands," he said. "It's kind of like the last of its breed." Explore further: Yahoo gives Alibaba spinoff a name: Aabaco
News Article | November 17, 2015
In early 2007, Fast Company senior writer Ellen McGirt got a rush assignment from the magazine's editor, Bob Safian. Both were newcomers to the publication, having recently decamped from Fortune. Safian, who had decided to kill the planned cover story for the May issue, asked McGirt to fly to Silicon Valley and do a piece on Facebook and its 22-year-old CEO, Mark Zuckerberg. With 19 million users, Facebook was clearly a startup on the rise. But it wasn't clear to all observers that Zuckerberg's determination to keep the company independent was a sage strategy. After all, MySpace had sold out to News Corp less than two years earlier for $580 million, and that deal seemed pretty sweet. The deadline was tight: McGirt would travel on Wednesday, report on Thursday, and write through the weekend so she could file her article on Monday. She was not entirely sure that she could make it happen in time, or at all. "I was nervous that they were going to pull out at the last moment," she says. "I ended up sitting outside Facebook the day before I was supposed to go in." She observed Zuckerberg departing the premises, walking his bike: "Okay, that was creepy, but at least I can say I've seen him." When the formal interview began the next day, as McGirt recalls, Zuckerberg arrived with a bowl of Cheerios in hand. She asked him about a tale she'd heard involving a man who'd approached him at a gas station, ranting and brandishing a gun. "That is not relevant to the story," he snapped. "It is if I say it is," she replied. "He burst out laughing, and we were fine after that," she says. "I liked him immediately, and liked him tremendously." McGirt made her deadline, with a story the magazine ended up calling "Hacker. Dropout. CEO." It was the first of six times Zuckerberg and Facebook have made our cover, including our new issue, which features my deep dive into the company's plan to extend its mission of connecting the world—which now includes wildly ambitious efforts in artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and Internet drones. Herewith, a look at those six issues, each of which captures Facebook at a different point in its history. This first Fast Company cover story on Facebook came early enough in the game that it was not unreasonable to point out, as the article did, that social-networking pioneer Friendster had spurned Google's offer to buy it for $30 million in 2002, and went on to struggle as an independent entity. Was Mark Zuckerberg—who had reportedly turned down a $750 million bid from Viacom and a $1 billion one from Yahoo—being greedy? "I'm here to build something for the long term," Zuckerberg told McGirt. "Anything else is a distraction." History has shown that he meant what he said, and that he was wise to spurn advances from acquisitive media giants. Just six months later, McGirt wrote another major feature, "Facebook Is The 'It' Company Of 2007." This one wasn't the issue's cover story, but the fact we returned to the company so quickly was a sign of how rapidly it was growing, evolving, and solidifying its position as one of the industry's giants. When we ranked Facebook as the world's most innovative company, Zuckerberg returned to our cover after almost three years. He looked rather corporate on this cover, in a necktie and pinstriped shirt—because the photo shoot took place in late 2009, the year he pledged to wear a tie every year to emphasize what a serious year it was for the company. (Once the mission was accomplished, he went back to gray T-shirts.) By 2010, the era of pundits wondering if Facebook might be an acquisition target was long over. Though the company still hadn't gone all out to monetize its users, it was cash-flow positive, and Zuckerberg told McGirt that it was in a sweet spot—not too small, and not overwhelmingly large. At the time, it was focused on immediate goals such as cleaning up old code and building new features. But for Zuckerberg, managing was already about the long term, and the fact that he maintained control of Facebook gave him latitude to make mistakes, experiment, and plan for the future. "I'm not going to be fired if I have a bad year," he said. "Or a bad five years." For "The Great Tech War Of 2012," Farhad Manjoo looked at the battle between the industry's titans to be its dominant force. Rather than declaring a victor, we sneakily created four different versions of our cover: "Why Amazon Will Win," "Why Apple Will Win," "Why Facebook Will Win," and "Why Google Will Win." In the case of Facebook, Manjoo highlighted several strengths, including its success at recruiting Silicon Valley's best engineers, its place at the epicenter of digital advertising, and the vast amount of data it collected on its users and their interactions with each other. The company was also responding adroitly to what seemed like a potential threat at the time: Google's then new social network, Google+. When this issue appeared, Facebook was about to go public. McGirt drew on her more than 400 cumulative hours of reporting about the company to tell the story of how Zuckerberg and his company had—and hadn't—changed over the years. "For an idea that has turned into a company," she wrote, "Facebook has done a remarkable job of using its collaborative philosophy to develop the workforce it had into the innovators it needed." In another story on the challenges Facebook would confront after its IPO, Manjoo noted that pundits had speculated about the company taking on Amazon, Apple, or Google by building a phone, search engine, mobile operating system, or Amazon Web Services-like cloud platform. He said such copycat efforts were unlikely to work. More than four years later, Zuckerberg has flicked at some of those ideas—such as with the notably unsuccessful Facebook Home interface for Android—but has mostly chosen to follow his own path. Facebook's first stab at mobile apps is most famous for being a mistake: It started out thinking it could use web technologies to build one version of the service that would work well on any device. After dumping that plan in favor of creating full-blown native apps, it not only rebounded, but thrived. Austin Carr's feature on the company's mobile strategy focused on the company's plan to keep that momentum going, which included everything from relatively straightforward efforts—keeping Instagram growing, helping third-party developers build and monetize products—to daring gambits such as the acquisitions of WhatsApp and Oculus VR. Once upon a time, fulfilling Facebook's mission of connecting the world mostly involved getting people to sign up for Facebook, then giving them useful features. With a billion people a day now using the service, the company has already done the obvious things. What lies ahead are new challenges, such as bringing the Internet to people who aren't yet online at all, and thinking about what social networking might be like a decade or more from now. So when I spent time with Zuckerberg to hear his vision straight from the source for our new cover story, we mostly talked about the future. Besides getting ready to ship Oclulus's Rift headset, Facebook is ramping up its artificial-intelligence lab and preparing to launch test flights of Aquila, the drone it plans to use to bring connectivity to remote parts of the world. Zuckerberg does not seem interested in tamping down expectations. "These things can't fail," he told me. "We need to get them to work in order to achieve the mission." As for Ellen McGirt, her reporting has recently involved shadowing Bono on his globe-spanning charitable efforts—which, last September, took him and her to the United Nations' sustainable development summit. "All of a sudden, someone came out of a side door, and it was Mark and his entourage," she says. "I literally ran into him. And I was like, 'Mark, remember me?' From that bowl of cereal to addressing the U.N. as one of the most important business leaders in the world. He turned out just fine."