Review Category : Business

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick resigns

Uber(NEW YORK) — Travis Kalanick, the embattled CEO of the ride-hailing company Uber, resigned on Tuesday, a company spokesperson told ABC News.

The resignation comes amid a decision by company shareholders who pushed for his exit.

“I love Uber more than anything in the world and at this difficult moment in my personal life I have accepted the investors request to step aside so that Uber can go back to building rather than be distracted with another fight,” Mr. Kalanick said in a statement.

Already before his resignation, Kalanick last week announced that he would be taking an indefinite leave of absence that he said would give him time to work on becoming a better leader. He also said that he needed the time away to grieve the loss of his mother, who died in a boating accident less than a month ago.

While Kalanick launched Uber into one of the world’s most ubiquitous companies, his tenure has been marked by a number of controversies.

His leave of absence came shortly after former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder released a 13-page list of recommendations on how the company could improve its business culture.

Holder, now a partner at the law firm Covington & Burling, was tapped by the company to conduct a review of the company’s workplace environment after a former employee alleged that she had been sexually harassed and discriminated against while working there.

About 20 employees were fired as a result of that investigation, according to the company.

Separately, Uber board member David Bonderman, one of the first to invest in the company, stepped down last week after he was accused of making sexist remarks toward fellow board member Arianna Huffington.

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Cartier Tank watch owned by Jacqueline Kennedy going up for auction

Christie’s Images LTD. 2017(NEW YORK) — The watch once owned by former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy — and worn by the fashion icon in many prominent photos — is being auctioned in New York Wednesday.

The Cartier Tank watch was originally given to Kennedy by her brother-in-law Prince Stanislaw “Stas” Radziwill, and is engraved with “Stas to Jackie 23 Feb. 63 2:05 am to 9:35 pm.”

The time in the engraving marked the start and stop times for the 1963 50 Mile Hike in Palm Beach, Florida, that Radziwell completed, according to Christie’s, the auction house overseeing the sale. The 50 Mile Hike was a challenge that President John F. Kennedy briefly promoted to encourage building the mental and physical toughness needed to walk 50 consecutive miles.

A painting that Jacqueline Kennedy made in 1963 will be accompanying the sale of her watch, according to Christie’s. At the bottom of the painting, the former first lady wrote, “February 23, 1963 2:05 am to 9:35 pm Jackie to Stas with love and admiration.”

“The Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Cartier Tank is a watch full of emotion, love and history,” John Reardon, international head of Christie’s Watches, said in a statement. “Together with Jackie’s painting, these two objects capture the spirit of another era, a time where friendship and the ‘can-do’ optimism of the generation seemed to make anything possible.”

Reardon added that the consignor of the watch has “offered to donate a portion of the proceeds to the National Endowment for the Arts.”

Christie’s estimates that the watch and painting will bring in between $60,000 and $120,000 at auction.

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9-year-old gets a taste of corporate life

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Elementary school student Alex Múnoz has quite a story to share with his Boston-area classmates.

The 9-year-old spent June 19 in New York City, hanging out with the founder and chief executive of Kind Snacks.

Alex said he and his family buy the company’s fruit and nut bars (his favorite is peanut butter dark chocolate) and wanted to one day invest money in the company.

But once he realized Kind Snacks was not publicly traded, his mother, Dara Múnoz, encouraged him to write a letter to Daniel Lubetzky, Kind’s founder and CEO.

“I reached Daniel’s assistant and I told her I had a funny letter and I thought that it would make her laugh. I didn’t think any of this would happen,” Múnoz told ABC News.

In the letter, Alex asks if the company has plans to go public.

“Do you know when you will go public? I think you would do well,” he wrote.

To Alex’s surprise, Lubetzky was so impressed by the letter that he invited the budding investor to spend a day at Kind’s Times Square headquarters. The company paid for Alex and his mother to travel to the city to meet with Kind executives.

Alex, who was dressed in a suit, was named “honorary chief financial officer for the day” and given 10 shares in the company.

“We’re pleased to gift Alex 10 shares, making him our youngest owner to date. If KIND were ever to go public, Alex would reap the benefits just as our team would. I’m personally energized by young entrepreneurs who think business can make this a better world,” said Lubetzky.

Alex also met one-on-one with the current chief financial officer, Zahir Ibrahim, who gave Alex advice on what it takes to be a great CFO. But Alex, showing his age, yawned during the conversation, eliciting laughter from everyone in the room.

Earlier in the day, Alex sampled different Kind snack bars and rated them on a scale of 1 through 10. He also received official business cards with his honorary title.

When asked what was the biggest lesson he learned from the day, Alex replied, “Be kind.”

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Wall Street closes lower as oil drops

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A drop in oil prices pulled U.S. stocks lower on Tuesday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 61.85 (-0.29 percent) to finish at 21,467.14.

The Nasdaq slid 50.98 (-0.82 percent) to close at 6,188.03, while the S&P 500 finished at 2,437.03, down 16.43 (-0.67 percent) from its open.

Crude oil was more than 2 percent lower with prices at $43 per barrel.

Winners and Losers: Shares of Sprint climbed 3 percent amid a report that T-Mobile’s parent company Deutsche Telekom is in favor of a merger.

According to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Chipotle Mexican Grill plans to raise its second-quarter marketing and promotion costs as the fast food chain continues to try to recover from food safety issues in 2015. Chipotle’s stock tumbled more than 7 percent.

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Amid sweltering heat, dozens of flights canceled in Phoenix

iStock/Thinkstock(PHOENIX) — With sweltering temperatures in Phoenix, American Airlines has canceled some 43 flights at Phoenix’s Sky Harbor International — just as broiling residents are likely wanting to get the heck out of dodge.

That’s because American’s regional aircraft, the Bombardier CRJ, has a maximum operating temperature of 118 degrees at Phoenix’s elevation level.

Experts say hot air affects engine output and increases the length of runway needed for takeoff — and since the CRJ, a Canadian plane, has not been tested under those conditions, it hasn’t been verified as safe.

American’s bigger jets, like Airbus and Boeing planes, have higher maximum temperatures (127 and 126 degrees, respectively) and aren’t affected by Phoenix’s weather forecast.

Delta was also forced to cancel three flights due to weather conditions at Sky Harbor — two involving Bombardier CRJs and one involving another regional jet, the Embraer 175. In addition, United had to delay one of its flights, an Embraer 175.

Temperatures in Phoenix are expected to hit a high of 120 degrees on Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service.

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Unemployment Insurance Claims Dropped Last Week

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Jobless claims fell lower last week, decreasing by 14,000, according to the latest figures released Thursday by the Labor Department.

For the week ending Jan. 28, the number of people filing for benefits dropped from a revised level of 260,000 the previous week to 246,000.

The Labor Department said there were no “special factors” impacting that week’s figures.

The four-week moving average, however, increased by 2,250 to 248,000.

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The Best of the Super Bowl LI Commercials Released So Far

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Another Super Bowl, another reason to tune into the biggest American sporting sideshow of the year: the commercials.

A 30-second spot in Super Bowl LI is costing advertisers $5 million this year, Variety reported in December. At that price, the ads go for $166,666.67 per second.

Keeping up with tradition, advertisers have begun to leak their Super Bowl masterpieces in the days leading up to the big game.

Here are the most notable Super Bowl commercials that have hit the internet so far:

Buick Featuring Cam Newton and Miranda Kerr

Car commercials featuring a celebrity endorser are a dime a dozen during the Super Bowl, but Buick’s 2017 commercial features two stars: an NFL quarterback and a world-famous supermodel.

In the commercial, two dads are watching their sons play in a pee wee football game. One of the fathers cheers on his quarterback son after he gets sacked and coaches shake their heads in disappointment.

A red convertible then pulls into the parking lot, catching the fathers’ attention.

“Whoa,” one father says to the other. “Check out that Buick.”

“Wow, that’s nice,” the other father says. “But if that’s a Buick, then my kid’s Cam Newton.”

Suddenly, the North Carolina Panthers’ starting quarterback is dominating the field.

Newton then sees a dark-colored SUV pull into the parking lot and says to the coach, “That’s a good-looking Buick right there.”

“If that’s a Buick, then I’m a supermodel,” the coach replies, before transforming into former Victoria’s Secret Angel Miranda Kerr.

Brett Favre’s All-Time Interception Record Re-imagined as a Conspiracy

Buffalo Wild Wings capitalized on a statistic that no quarterback would ever want to be a part of: Brett Favre’s all-time interception record.

The extended cut of the commercial opens up in a rural setting with the retired hall of famer displaying his throwing accuracy by lobbing footballs directly at players made of straw.

“Just doesn’t make any sense,” he says to himself after delivering the football to his latest target square in the chest.

Two men wearing dark suits and fedoras then pull up to the field and ominously tell Favre that they need to talk to him. Once back at the former quarterback’s home, they show him footage of a ball he threw moving on its own after it left his hands.

“Not all of those interceptions were your fault,” the man tells Favre, who then begins to obsess about who is responsible for his shameful record.

Melissa McCarthy’s ‘Hero’s Journey’ for the 2017 Kia Niro

In a hilarious commercial for Kia, actress Melissa McCarthy shows off her comedic chops while trying to save the world.

The ad opens up to McCarthy driving in a 2017 Kia Niro when a phone call comes in, telling her, “The whales need your help.”

“I love whales,” McCarthy says, visibly distressed by the news.

In the following scenes, McCarthy is constantly getting hurt in her hero’s quest. When she goes to save the whales, she gets thrown into the side of a ship. Next, McCarthy clings to the top of a tree as a worker using a chainsaw cuts it down. And as she plants a “Save The Ice Caps” sign, the ice underneath her cracks, sending her into the freezing water below.

Budweiser’s Take on Immigration

Budweiser is a staple in Super Bowl advertising, but its signature Clydesdale horses were noticeably missing from perhaps its most patriotic commercial ever, which tells the story of the founder of Anheuser-Busch’s journey to becoming an American.

“You don’t look like you’re from around here,” a man in a bar says to Adolphus Busch at the beginning of the 60-second ad.

The next scene shows Busch being thrown from his bunk in the lower deck of a ship sailing across the Atlantic from Europe to the U.S. during rough seas.

“Why leave Germany,” Busch is asked as a man treats his injury with stitches.

“I want to brew beer,” he answers.

After his documents are stamped, Busch is faced with crowds of men who tell him he isn’t “wanted here” and to “go back home.”

Then flashes of Busch’s life appear, including his struggles to adapt to his new home and his journey St. Louis, the birthplace of the company.

Skittles Reinvents Romance

Skittles’ Super Bowl commercial has already made the rounds through the internet with almost 4.5 million views on YouTube as of Tuesday.

In the commercial, a teen throws Skittles at the bedroom window of his love interest to get her attention.

Little does the love-struck teen know that each member of the family inside takes turns picking off the flying Skittles with their mouths.

After each person gets a Skittle, they scoot over, keeping the rotation moving so that the neighborhood burglar, a patrolling police officer and a visiting groundhog each get their turn.

The ad ends with the catchphrase “Romance the Rainbow.”

Avocados from Mexico’s Subliminal Advertising

Bring on the guacamole. Saturday Night Live alum Jon Lovitz makes a quick appearance in an Avocados from Mexico Super Bowl commercial.

The ad begins with several members of a secret society, all dressed in robes and masks, standing in a circle in a dark hall discussing the possibility that someone is leaking information, which includes them faking the moon landing and that there are actually only “49 shades of grey.”

“Have they figured out we deflated footballs?” a member asks, referring to the much-talked-about Deflategate scandal that plagued the New England Patriots before the start of the season.

“No, we found a fall guy for that one,” the leader says.

According to the leader, the fact that avocados have “good fat” is also a secret that has been released. He then turns to a member named Kyle, who is apparently streaming the meeting, and they realize he is the culprit.

You Don’t Have to Fake Your Own Death for Lower Cellphone Bills, Sprint Says

Sprint sent a message to prospective customers saying that they don’t need to go to extreme measures to save on their wireless bill.

In the 30-second commercial, a father pushes his car off a cliff, which contained a dummy in the driver’s seat that bears an uncanny resemblance to him.

The man’s children watch in fear as the car crashes into the rocky ground below, and he turns to them and says, “Well kids, daddy’s dead.” Then, Paul Marcarelli, the former Verizon Wireless spokesperson who made the phrase “Can you hear me now?” famous, appears.

“Faking your own death to get out of your Verizon contract?” Marcarelli asks.

The boy then turns to his father and says, “Isn’t that illegal?”

“What are you, a cop?” the man says to his son, with a hint of nervousness in his voice.

Marcarelli then explains to him that he “could have just switched to Sprint.”

“Shoot,” the father says sheepishly as his children look at him in bewilderment.

Nintendo’s First-Ever Super Bowl Commercial

Japanese gaming giant Nintendo took the plunge for its first Super Bowl ad to market the soon-to-be released Nintendo Switch, a hybrid gaming system due out in March.

Viewers are introduced to the Switch in the 90-second sneak peak of the spot. It can function as a portable gaming device with actual buttons on either side of the screen but can also function as a console similar to the Nintendo Wii.

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Amazon to Create 2,000 Jobs in Kentucky, Open Air Cargo Hub

Amazon(SEATTLE) — Amazon will create more than 2,000 new jobs at a facility in Kentucky, the company announced on Tuesday.

According to a press release, the company will build an air hub “to support its growing fleet of Prime Air cargo planes.” Amazon Senior Vice President of Worldwide Operations Dave Clark said that the “centralized location with great connectivity to our nearby fulfillment locations, and an excellent quality of living for employees” drew the company to Hebron, Kentucky.

Last year, Amazon agreed to lease 40 cargo airplanes to support faster shipping to Prime subscribers. Sixteen of those planes are currently in service with more rolling out over time.

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Amazon to Create 2,00 Jobs in Kentucky, Open Air Cargo Hub

Amazon(SEATTLE) — Amazon will create more than 2,000 new jobs at a facility in Kentucky, the company announced on Tuesday.

According to a press release, the company will build an air hub “to support its growing fleet of Prime Air cargo planes.” Amazon Senior Vice President of Worldwide Operations Dave Clark said that the “centralized location with great connectivity to our nearby fulfillment locations, and an excellent quality of living for employees” drew the company to Hebron, Kentucky.

Last year, Amazon agreed to lease 40 cargo airplanes to support faster shipping to Prime subscribers. Sixteen of those planes are currently in service with more rolling out over time.

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Nation’s Second-Largest Internet Service Provider Accused of Defrauding Customers

golubovy/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced a lawsuit against the second-largest Internet service provider in the nation on Wednesday, saying that Spectrum-Time Warner Cable shortchanged subscribers on Internet speed and reliability.

According to the complaint, the company has marketed its product as offering a “fast, reliable connection” since January 2012. An investigation by Schneiderman’s office, however, found that subscribers were receiving Internet speeds up to 70 percent slower than promised, with WiFi speeds even slower than that. Spectrum-Time Warner “charged New Yorkers as much as $109.99 per month for premium plans [that] could not achieve speeds promised in their slower plans,” according to a news release.

“The allegations in today’s lawsuit confirm what millions of New Yorkers have long suspected,” Schneiderman said. “Spectrum-Time Warner Cable has been ripping you off.”

“Today’s action seeks to bring much-needed relief to the millons of New Yorkers we allege have been getting cheated by Spectrum-Time Warner Cable for far too long.”

According to the investigation, the company’s executives knew that its network was not capable of providing the Internet speeds it had promised, but continued to make false promises.

Spectrum-Time Warner Cable currently serves more than 2.5 million subscribers in New York State.

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