News In Brief

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Welcome to our ‘News In Brief’ column in which we digest all the news releases for you in no more than five paragraphs. Below are snippets of all the media releases we received from Aug 7 till the end of the week.

Taylor’s University Unveils Taylor’s Urban Farm

Left to right: Sean Lee (Co-Founder of NewGen Agronomy and E-Farm, Master of Food Studies student), Associate Professor Dr Yap Wei Hsum (Associate Professor, School of Biosciences), Emeritus Professor Dr P.T. Thomas (Executive Dean, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences), Professor Dr Pradeep Nair (Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer), Associate Professor Dr Phelim Yong (Head of School, School of Biosciences), Angie Ng Sok Ping (Pro Vice–Chancellor, Planning and Academic Development), Dr Victoria Ng (Senior Lecturer, School of Biosciences), Kelvin Liew (Farm Manager of Taylor’s Urban Farm, Master of Science student).

Subang Jaya, Aug 8: Taylor’s University has inaugurated the Taylor’s Urban Farm (TUF), an integral component of the Food Security and Nutrition Impact Lab. With a mission to galvanize its community as change agents within the food system, TUF encompasses a one-acre “field of inquiry” at the Lakeside Campus, driving innovation and technology-driven responses to food system transformation.
TUF employs vertical towers, grow beds, and autopots to cultivate over 20 varieties of vegetables, fruits, and herbs. Its sustainable closed-loop system minimizes external inputs, reducing runoff and promoting a nutrient cycle. Through IoT technology, the semi-automated farm optimizes factors like water pH, nutrient solutions, and climatic conditions.
Associate Professor Dr. Phelim Yong envisions TUF as a multidisciplinary living lab, nurturing food literacy and supporting agricultural research. The Minor in Sustainable Urban Farming offers practical education in crop development, hydroponics, sustainable agriculture, and data management.
Approximately 80 per cnet of TUF’s produce will supply academic kitchens, enriching the culinary and hospitality curricula. Amidst Malaysia’s food security challenges highlighted by the Economist Impact’s 2022 Global Food Security Index, TUF contributes to solutions and aligns with Taylor’s commitment to United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
In concert with the Food Security and Nutrition Impact Lab, TUF bolsters Taylor’s University’s dedication to propelling positive change within the nation’s food and agriculture landscape.

Intel, Samsung Deliver Innovative vRAN Solutions

Sydney, Aug 9: Intel and Samsung have unveiled a new chapter in their partnership, marked by a product innovation agreement leveraging 4th Gen Intel® Xeon® Scalable processors with Intel® vRAN Boost.
This strategic fusion of Samsung’s vRAN 3.0 and 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, equipped with Intel vRAN Boost, offers operators a robust solution that caters to their rigorous capacity, coverage, quality, and cost-efficiency demands.
The collaboration establishes a modern, fully virtualized architecture as the bedrock for network operations.Cristina Rodriguez, Vice President and General Manager of Intel’s Wireless Access Networking Division, emphasized the industry’s trajectory toward comprehensive network virtualization. She stated, “Intel and Samsung have a long-standing collaboration with a shared commitment to deliver highly integrated, virtualized RAN solutions.
This new agreement will deepen that collaboration, enabling both companies to jointly speed up operators’ vRAN deployments at scale and to deliver a strong combination of flexibility, performance and power efficiency.”
The collaboration between Samsung and Intel has been ongoing since 2017, notably focused on advancing vRAN (virtual radio access network) innovation.
The fruits of this partnership have already been showcased through successful integration in commercial networks of Tier One operators across the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan.
This track record underscores the practical viability and impact of their integrated solutions.

Stripe Expands Unified Commerce

Sydney, Aug 9: Stripe, a financial platform for businesses, announced an expansion of its offerings for Australian businesses at the Stripe Tour Sydney conference.
Soon, Tap to Pay on iPhone will be available to Stripe users in Australia, marking the first time this technology is offered outside the United States.
This move reflects Stripe’s commitment to helping Australian businesses optimize revenue and streamline operations.
Karl Durrance, Managing Director for Australia and New Zealand at Stripe, highlighted the company’s growth in the region.
Stripe’s new offerings aim to enhance customer experience and conversion rates. With Tap to Pay on iPhone and the Stripe Terminal SDK, businesses can accept contactless payments on their iPhones without extra hardware.
Stripe’s unified commerce solutions blend online and in-person commerce for a comprehensive view of sales trends.
Stripe Reader S700, a versatile handheld device with premium features, was introduced, while Link, Stripe’s one-click checkout, improves the shopping experience.Stripe also focuses on helping businesses improve revenue and finance automation.
Stripe Data Pipeline will soon allow businesses to sync Stripe data with Amazon Redshift or Snowflake Data Cloud for insights.
Stripe Tax for platforms offers a flexible tax automation solution, ensuring compliance for businesses running on platforms.
The Stripe Tour Sydney provided attendees with product updates and insights from industry leaders, including Mike Cannon-Brookes, CEO of Atlassian, and Shay Hamama, Chief Product & Technology Officer of Lux Group.
The conference highlighted Stripe’s commitment to customer-centric solutions and the growth of Australian businesses.
The new offerings reinforce Stripe’s role as a valuable partner for businesses seeking to enhance revenue and streamline operations.

Awayco Raises $11M for Retail Transformation

Sydney, Aug 10: Australian e-commerce firm, Awayco, secures $11 million funding led by Thorney Investment Group and high-net-worth individuals.
This investment empowers Awayco to expand its suite of e-commerce tools and strengthen its local team.
The platform’s integrated solution, tested with retailers like Patagonia and embraced by PETstock, Star Discount Pharmacy, Cheap as Chips, and Firewire Surfboards, streamlines retail, rentals, and appointments.
Traditionally, modern retailers grapple with bridging physical and digital channels, leading to disjointed customer experiences and complex tech systems.
Awayco addresses this with a unified e-commerce solution, including retail Point of Sale (POS), rentals, and appointments.
Founder Gideon Gut-Silverman notes the platform’s adaptability to existing systems and its capability to aggregate data and transactions, catering to changing consumer behavior.
PETstock, boasting 140+ stores across Australia and New Zealand, exemplifies how Awayco enhances operations.
The acquisition of Barcode Solutions bolsters Awayco’s expertise and introduces Shanti Kumar as CEO of Awayco POSConnex, enriching its value to retailers.
POSConnex ensures coherent customer, inventory, and transaction records, fostering personalized customer relationships.
Shanti Kumar emphasizes leveraging customer data for loyalty and differentiation.
Awayco’s visionary founder, Gideon Gut-Silverman, continues to steer global expansion for both Awayco Enterprise and POSConnex. Chairman of Thorney Investment Group, Alex Waislitz, commends Awayco’s progress and its unique ability to address various e-commerce challenges.Former CEO/Managing Director of Godfreys Group and Awayco Advisory Board Member, Tom Krulis, highlights Awayco’s distinctive approach in providing holistic e-commerce solutions.

Tourism Ministry Signs Collaboration

Kuala Lumpur, Aug 10: The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC), through Kraftangan Malaysia, today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Royal Selangor International Sdn Bhd. The memorandum was signed by Ainu Sham Ramli, Director General of Kraftangan Malaysia, and Yong Yoon Li, Managing Director of Royal Selangor International Sdn. Bhd.
The signing ceremony of this memorandum of understanding was witnessed by Khairul Firdaus Akbar Khan, Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, and Datuk Roslan Abdul Rahman, Secretary General of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture.
This memorandum of understanding aims to establish a two-way strategic collaboration through initiatives covering product development, marketing and promotion, as well as training.
During the same event, Royal Selangor also launched the new Heritage Royal Selangor product collection that showcases Malaysia’s identity.
In addition, demonstrations of wood carving, batik painting, rattan weaving, songket weaving, and ceramics by IKN students were held at the Royal Selangor Visitor Centre during weekends, throughout the National Day and Malaysia Day celebrations from Aug 10 to Sept 17, 2023.
Present at the event were Mohd Yusri Mohd Yusoff, Deputy Secretary General (Culture) of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Dr Tan Awang Besar, Secretary of the Cultural Policy Division of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, and Chen Tien Yue, Executive Director of Royal Selangor Marketing Sdn. Bhd.

First-Timer Explores Sabah

Bangkuai (right) speaking to Steve Kane, (centre) and Sail Malaysia managing director Sazli Kamal Basha (left).

Lahad Datu, Aug 13: Seventy year old Steve Kane from Las Vegas, Nevada, embarked on a first-time journey to Sabah just four weeks ago via the Sail Malaysia rally.
Kane’s visit marked his inaugural experience in North Borneo and Southeast Asia, leaving him impressed by Sabah’s safety and charm.
Praising the Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) for ensuring maritime safety, Kane confidently declared, “I have no fear of pirates,” reinforcing Sabah’s secure reputation.Invited by a friend to join Sail Malaysia, Kane explored multiple locations along Sabah’s coastal areas during the rally.
At a cultural dinner hosted for rally participants by W Bay Payang, Deputy Tourism, Culture, and Environment Minister of Sabah, Datuk Joniston Bangkuai, highlighted the event’s importance for the region’s rural districts.
Bangkuai’s visit included engaging with tourism stakeholders and inaugurating a floating jetty base for the Dusun Segamo community.
This year’s Sail Malaysia featured 20 boats from various countries, contributing to Sabah’s maritime tourism growth.

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