Marseille start negotiations with Aston Villa for wantaway midfielder

first_imgMarseille have begun negotiations with Aston Villa over a loan move for Idrissa Gueye.The midfielder only moved to Villa Park last summer after spending five years with Lille.But the 26-year-old could already be on his way back to France as, according to RMC, Marseille want to take him on loan.The Ligue 1 club have now contacted Villa and the pair have begun talks ahead of a summer switch.Gueye is keen to leave Villa after they were relegated to the Championship and the club are happy to let him go as they look to reduce their wage bill. Idrissa Gueye is looking to leave Aston Villa this summer 1last_img read more

Integration ‘key to Africa’s growth’

first_img9 May 2013 Closer regional integration will be crucial for addressing underlying weaknesses in Africa’s long-term competitiveness and ensuring that the continent delivers on its massive growth promise, according to the Africa Competitiveness Report 2013. The report, jointly produced by the African Development Bank, the World Bank and the World Economic Forum, was released on the opening day of the World Economic Forum on Africa meeting in Cape Town on Thursday. According to the report, despite the impressive growth strides made by many African economies, the continent’s competitiveness as a whole trails other emerging regions – especially in quality of institutions, infrastructure, macroeconomic policies, education and technological adoption – while large gaps persist between its highest and lowest ranked economies. “Africa’s growth needs to be seen in the wider international context, where encouraging gains in economic growth belie an underlying weakness in its long-term competitiveness,” WEF chief economist Jennifer Blanke said in a statement on Thursday. “Regional integration is key to addressing this weakness through the delivery of wider social and economic benefits, and should be prioritised by Africa’s leaders as they look to ensure that Africa delivers on its promise.” Regional integration, according to the report, will be a key vehicle for helping Africa to diversify its economic base and create enough jobs for its young, fast-urbanising population. Gaiv Tata, Africa region director for the World Bank Group, said that Africa had been enjoying an economic transformation, with growth rates of more than 5% annually over the past decade. “To turn its economic gains into sustainable growth and shared prosperity, Africa’s public and private sectors must work together to connect the continent’s markets, deepen regional integration, and adopt reforms that enhance national competitiveness.” According to the report, Africa’s share of world trade remains low, despite numerous regional economic communities and market liberalisation at the domestic level, with intra-African trade being particularly limited. The report identifies cumbersome and non-transparent border administration, limited use of information communication technologies, and a persistent infrastructure deficit as the major barriers to higher levels of regional integration. Africa’s infrastructure deficit is identified as a particularly serious impediment, made more pronounced by growth in consumer markets and urbanisation. “Developing adequate and efficient infrastructure will assist African economies to increase productivity in manufacturing and service delivery, contribute to improvements in health and education, and help deliver more equitable distribution of national wealth,” the report states. Mthuli Ncube, chief economist at the African Development Bank, said that sustained high economic growth “often occurs in an environment where there is a meaningful infrastructure development. “It is therefore imperative that planning for both national and regional infrastructure projects is coupled with the requisite legal and regulatory framework that will allow for increased involvement of the private sector in infrastructure development on a public-private partnerships model,” Ncube said. SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Para-canoeist Stu Hogg leads the way

first_img“Straight away, when I went to rehab, what kept me going was the thought of paddling again. They were telling me that I might not walk again. My mental drive was to try and get back in a boat, and to walk out of the hospital.” Feeling normal “The paddling guys have been a big help to me. Everyone has been really nice.” South Africa had just one participant at the first ever ICF Para-Canoe World Championships in Duisberg, Germany in August. Stu Hogg is taking the country’s rich paddling tradition in a new direction. 4 October 2013 ‘A big disadvantage’ “Luckily, the guy who operated on me, one of the top neuro-surgeons, was available that next morning,” Hogg, now 24, told SAinfo during an interview this week. “He and another neuro-surgeon did the operation, and apparently it was quite a thing because they had to operate through the front and the back of my neck. They had to put a cage-like device into my neck to fuse the vertebrae. Looking back on his experiences at the first ICF Para-canoe World Championships, Hogg said: “This year it was very hard to compete because they put me in a very difficult class. I was racing with guys who had, for example, a problem with a leg, and it’s very hard for me to have half my body – an arm, my trunk and leg issues – to compete with someone missing a foot, especially because of a lot of spasticity in the nerve function. It’s a big disadvantage. Someone with a leg problem has an upper body that is still 100 percent. The reward for Hogg’s hard work has been wonderful, he said. “Now, being able to compete, once I am on the water and training I don’t really feel disabled anymore. I feel like part of the paddling community again, regardless of my disability. I feel like a normal paddler now. “My results this year weren’t great, but all I wanted this year was to get in the system. They have spoken about changing my class. I’ll know about that next year.” Vertebrae fused Hogg had won national colours as a junior, but wearing them again appeared to be a distant memory because para-canoeing did not exist when he suffered his injury. And it took some time before he was able to take to the water again.center_img “That feeling helps me with the rest of my life because if I feel normal on the water I can feel a bit more normal when I am not on the water. In Duisberg, Hogg was back in the green-and-gold, and after all the effort it had taken to once again represent South Africa he truly appreciated the experience. “I had really missed that feeling [of sporting the national colours]. It was special,” he said. “I am a lot slower than I used to be, but other than that everyone treats me the same as they did before the accident. I would rather be treated how they treated me before than have people trying to make special arrangements for me. They help out, but make me feel that I’m just one of the guys again.” “Then I found out about para-canoeing. It was a new sport, so I thought I might as well give that a bash, so last year I started training – just very basic, getting into a boat, but I was very weak. It took me a long time to just being able to paddle.” “In the long term, I am hoping that they change the whole classification system by putting in more classes for guys with different disabilities, just to try and even the competition out,” he said. “It took me a good three years to get walking. I could walk within a couple of months, but not comfortably. It took me a while to get walking properly and comfortable with myself,” he explained. Five years ago, while studying in Durban, Hogg was asleep as a passenger in a car when it was involved in an accident. He was thrown out of the back window of the vehicle, suffering a broken neck, broken ribs, fractured vertebrae in his lower back and a head injury. He was in a deep coma for a short while. He has since undergone two operations on his neck. Competing in the K1 200 metres LTA (legs, trunk, arms), he finished eighth in his heat and missed the semi-finals by one place. Walking “This year was a start. I know where I stand, what I’ve got to work on. For now I’m going to work to get as fast as I can be. If they change the classes, that’s a bonus. If not, I am just going to have to work harder.”last_img read more

Your Client Didn’t Abandon You. You Abandoned Them.

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Now When you lose a long time client, it can feel like you’re being abandoned. You’ve stood together through what seems like a lifetime of battles and challenges, always finding a way, no matter how difficult. You had a relationship. Now it’s over.But it isn’t likely that your client abandoned you. It’s more likely that you abandoned them. One of the three following reasons is at the root of your loss. Study them, make changes, and prevent the loss of another client.NeglectThe most common way to lose a client is through neglect. Relationships require careful care and feeding. Ignoring your clients is a form of neglect.You used to call. You used to make appointments for face-to-face visits. You used to send articles that your client would find helpful in thinking about their business. Now . . . nothing. It’s been a long time. Too long.Neglect is form of abandonment. When you discover that your client has opened a new relationship with your competitor, they didn’t abandon you. You abandoned them.ComplacencyAnother way you can abandon your client is to become complacent.Remember how you used to ensure that all of your client’s problems and challenges were taken care of? Remember how you used to follow up to make sure that they were getting the results that they needed? Well they remember too. And they can feel the empty space where the salesperson that cared about them used to be.Because you have a client now doesn’t mean you are entitled to keep them. Just because you created tremendous value for them in the past doesn’t mean you have a right to their business in perpetuity.Complacency is a form of arrogance or a form of laziness, and either leads to abandonment.Failure to GrowYour client’s needs are going to change over time. They are growing and their needs are growing along with them. And if they’re struggling, their needs are changing too. In order to help your clients take advantage of the opportunities they come across, you have to grow. If they have greater challenges than ever, you have to grow big enough to help them overcome those challenges.If you don’t continue to grow, you aren’t going to have the ability to help your clients keep growing. If you are going to keep your client for life, you have to match—or exceed—their growth.Failure to grow is another form of abandonment. You force your clients to need a new partner?In all of these cases, you might feel as if your client abandoned you. The truth of the matter is that your neglect, your complacency, or your failure to grow was your abandonment of your client.QuestionsDid your client abandon you or you them?How does neglect lead to lost clients?How does complacency lead to lost clients?How does a failure to grow lead your clients to need someone new?How do you prevent abandoning your clients?last_img read more