DIBPL, Porsche Pak enter strategic alliance

KARACHI (PR): Dubai Islamic Bank Pakistan Limited (DIBPL) and Porsche Pakistan have entered into a Strategic Alliance agreement enabling a landmark luxury automobile experience platform for their respective customer base nationwide.

The signing ceremony was held at DIBPL head office in Karachi in the presence of senior officials from both organizations including Abuzar Bokhari (CEO, Porsche Pakistan), Junaid Ahmed (CEO, DIBPL) and Khawaja Asif (Head of Consumer Banking, DIBPL).

CEO – DIBPL said, “This is one of the most important initiatives of this year, as DIBPL is privileged to be the first and exclusive Bank in the industry to enter this strategic business alliance with Porsche Pakistan. This business venture will surely benefit both DIBPL &Porsche Pakistan as this collaboration will improve DIBPLs market leading footprint and help to further grow its share in Pakistan’s Auto Finance and Priority Banking business”.

Abuzar Bokhari (CEO, Porsche Pakistan) said “We see a huge potential for luxury and sport cars in Pakistan and I am delighted to have DIBPL as our first and exclusive strategic alliance Islamic Bank. Together we are offering best value proposition to DIBPLand our customers, which will help them in their automobile purchase, financing and priority banking needs”.

Huawei set to reveal P9 smartphone

LAHORE (PR): Leading technology manufacturer, Huawei Technologies has planned to reveal its next member of P series soon. Although the dates for the design revelation or the images have not been intimated by the company, yet there are rumors regarding the possible design, hardware and software combinations in the upcoming smart phone.

P9 will be another best selling product to be unveiled this year, as Huawei has already brilliantly invaded the markets, especially here in Pakistan, with some great high technology smart products. The most notable among these products is the Huawei Mate 8 phablet, the recently launched Huawei Honor 5X and the Y6 Pro (that will be launched in the current month).

P9 is rumored to be the superior quality smart phablet, most probably larger than 5.2” display screen and real time vibrant color holder. P9 is also said to have dual camera and a dual flash on the rear of this precedent of technological innovation. Moreover, it may also be fitted with the Huawei made kirin 950 chipset that was already available in Huawei Mate 8 as well. Huawei kirin 950 chipset has proven to be the best solution and the success is indeed appreciable.

PSO announces upswing in profitability for 1HFY16

KARACHI (PR): The Board of Management (BoM) of Pakistan State Oil Company Limited (PSOCL) met at the PSO head office the other day to review the performance of the company for the first half of financial year 2015-16 (1HFY16).

During the period under review i.e. 1HFY16; PSO’s market share stood at 55.5% with 46.9% share in White Oil (Mogas, HSD, SKO, JP-1) and 69.6% share in Black Oil (FO, LDO).

The company’s sale volume of motor gasoline grew by 26% over same period last year (SPLY) mainly due to decrease in price of gasoline and subsequent increase in customer demand. Additionally, HSD sales recorded an increase of 0.7% over SPLY while 5.7% growth was witnessed in JP-1 on account of increased upliftment by PIA and international airlines. FO volumes declined by 4.3% due to lower upliftment by IPP’s primarily due to shifting from FO to natural gas.

The company’s profitability for 1HFY16 witnessed marked improvement and rose by 57% to Rs 6.7 billion as compared to Rs 4.3 billion during SPLY. This increase in revenue was mainly due to growth in sales volume and margins of white oil products and decreased inventory losses. A significant drop in operating and finance costs by 18% and 39% respectively also contributed to enhancement in the Company’s profitability. However, decrease in black oil margins owing to reduction of 48% in the OPEC price of crude oil per barrel had an adverse impact on profitability of the Company.

During the subject period, the cash flows and liquidity position of the Company improved, though they remain critical as a consequence of outstanding receivables of Rs 219 billion (June 30, 2015: Rs 230 billion) from the power sector, PIA and SNGPL against supplies of Furnace Oil, Aviation Fuels and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) respectively. The Board directed the Management to continue working closely with the concerned government departments and customers for timely realization of due payments against fuel supplies.

Keeping into account the performance of the Company, the Board declared an interim cash dividend of Rs 5 per share as compared to nil dividend in the same period last year.

InfoTech signs agreement with EBM

LAHORE (PR): InfoTech, Pakistan’s leading systems integrator and technology solutions provider, has signed the Microsoft Enterprise Agreement for a three-year term with English Biscuit Manufacturers (EBM). EBM signed this enterprise agreement which is a manageable volume-licensing programme that offers the best value to EBM by providing the flexibility to grow on software licenses all under a single agreement and also visualize the roadmap to latest cloud services and offerings from Microsoft.

Naseer A Akhtar, CEO & President of InfoTech, said, “We are very excited to be working with English Biscuit Manufacturers”.

A service level agreement (SLA) was also signed between InfoTech and EBM for the support of Microsoft Core Infrastructure products that will help EBM to maximize their investments and bring efficiency in their IT services.

EA bags ATW’s ‘airline of year award’

LAHORE (PR): Etihad Airways, the Abu Dhabi-based national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has been presented with the coveted Airline of the Year 2016 award by the prestigious US-based aviation industry publication Air Transport World (ATW). The accolade acknowledged Etihad Airways’ strong executive leadership team in developing a profitable strategy of organic growth and unique equity partnerships; introducing ground-breaking products and services; creating the foundations for building a motivated workforce; and engaging in a diplomatic, dignified defence of its business model in the wake of fierce opposition by US carriers.

Etihad Airways was chosen for the top honour by ATW’s distinguished editorial board in a highly contested competition, with entries from more than 100 airlines around the world.

The award was presented at a Gala Dinner attended by industry peers at the 42nd edition of the annual ATW Airline Industry Achievement Awards on the eve of the Singapore Air Show.

James Hogan, Etihad Airways’ President and Chief Executive Officer, said: “This award recognises what we set out to do as an airline 13 years ago – to be safe, profitable and simply the best.

“It is a reflection of our strengths – a robust business model and innovative products and superior service delivered by our 27,000 dedicated employees. I am delighted to accept this award on their behalf. As an airline, we have offered a unique proposition to the travelling public and expanded our business to help shape the changing global aviation landscape.”

To earn the top accolade, ATW said an airline must demonstrate exceptional achievements and capabilities across its operations, financial performance, customer service, safety and employee relations. The executive leadership team must also clearly show innovation and strategic thinking that sets the company apart.

LG to herald 2016 as ‘year of innovation’

LAHORE (PR): Building a long history of award-winning designs and consistently delivering elegance and performance to the lives of the consumers, LG Electronics (LG), a global leader and technology innovator, is reaffirming its commitment by ushering in a new and exciting product line-up this year. Close on heels of the recently concluded CES 2016, the Consumer Technology Association (CTA®) recognized LG’s excellence in design and technology with 21 awards for innovative products. LG received the prestigious 2016 CES® Innovation Awards in 10 highly competitive categories.

Riding on this success and reinstating its commitment to the Middle East & Africa region, LG Electronics MEA has announced the dates for its annual “Innovation” festival – Innofest 2016.

The annual LG InnoFest 2016, which marks its first edition in the UAE and its third year in the region, represents a crucial platform for reinforcing LG’s position in the global consumer electronics and appliance industries, as well as responding to local market needs under LG’s brand identity theme of “Innovation”. The event will be held in February where over 250 regional partners, distributors and key customers will be flown in to showcase and brief them about the innovative line-up of LG’s consumer electronic products.

Commenting on the upcoming LG InnoFest 2016, Kevin Cha, Executive Vice President at LG Electronics for the MEA region said, “LG has been delving deeply into design and research that takes full advantage of the technologically advanced era.”

LSE hosts conference

LAHORE (PR): Dr Parveen Akhtar, Lecturer at Bradford University, addressed an international conference on the “Pakistani Diaspora: Strengthening linkages between host and home countries”. The event was hosted by the Lahore School of Economics from February 16-17.

Michael Kugelman, Senior Research Associate, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and Tariq Saigol, Chairman, Kohinoor-Maple Leaf Group, and other prominent speakers from outside Pakistan also addressed the conference.