Category Archives: Cloud Computing

A Disney-Fox deal is not just about Netflix — it also has major ad sales ramifications

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  • While Disney seems to want some of 21st Century Fox’s content assets primarily as part of its budding war with Netflix, don’t forget about ad sales.
  • The combined media entity would immediately boast a broader array of TV networks to sell to marketers, allowing it to command more clout in the market and deliver elaborate cross-network packages.
  • Fox’s ad team could also help nudge Disney ahead in data-driven ad sales, where it’s fallen behind, ad buyers say.

Investors, commentators, and stakeholders alike are watching closely as Disney closes in on a deal to acquire a collection of valuable assets from 21st Century Fox — a deal that would alter the existing media landscape as we know it.

It would help Disney battle accelerated cord cutting, give it an even bigger repository of content, and help prepare it to take on Silicon Valley giants including Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Apple.

But less examined thus far is the fact that the merger would make Disney all the more attractive in the eyes of media buyers purchasing ads on behalf of marketers.

Disney is expected to snap up not only Fox’s film and television studio but also cable channels including National Geographic and FX worth $8.7 billion. That represents a massive boost to Disney’s TV advertising portfolio, whose cable-channel assets have been limited to Freeform and the very niche (and mostly ad-free) Disney Channel.

“From a cable point of view, Fox brings in rich assets in the form of FX and National Geographic, an area in which Disney has so far been limited,” one TV ad buyer told Business Insider. “It sounds like a very synergistic compilation of companies and broadens its appeal to marketers.”

Jason Maltby, the president and co-executive director of national broadcast at Mindshare, agreed, saying that Fox presented Disney with a much broader range of networks to sell to giant advertisers. “From a marketplace standpoint, fundamentally what this does is that it allows Disney to become a bigger player in the cable arena,” he said.

The combined entity would also be able to provide advertisers more opportunities to purchase custom, complex ad packages that include a mix of TV and digital ads, said Jim Fosina, the founder and CEO of Fosina Marketing Group.

It also helps that the Disney-ABC TV Group reorganized earlier this year, laying the precedent for what comes ahead. The restructuring put ad sales for its entire portfolio, which includes ABC, Disney Channel, Freeform, and Radio Disney, under the company’s sales chief, Rita Ferro. Buyers expect Fox’s assets to be incorporated under Ferro as well.

“A consolidated Disney where they go to one place for all their needs is far more attractive to marketers,” a TV ad buyer added. “A broader portfolio and reduced competition also allows Disney to attempt to garner a higher premium.”

In other words, Disney could promise one-stop shopping and would set itself up to be one of the few big TV ad players left standing.

Ad buyers have been pushing for such streamlining for years, said Steven Piluso, the head of media and integration at Media Storm. He recalled having to go through numerous sales reps and silos within 21st Century Fox and News Corp, with it being common “to talk to eight to nine different reps to get a deal done.” Consolidation is welcome, he said.

A combined arsenal of Disney-Fox assets might also enable marketers to chalk out larger-scale ad programs that could tap into Disney and Fox’s intellectual property — and its data.

For example, recently the Nissan Rogue was promoted in conjunction with “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” across Disney’s networks, stations, and shows like “Jimmy Kimmel Live” — even on ESPN, which is typically run independently. Campaigns like that could become bigger and more common.

“They have more leverage in the marketplace, more insight into how budgets are allocated, and, ultimately, a tighter grip on the future,” Mindshare’s Maltby said.

That grip could be strengthened by more data. Advertisers have increasingly pushed the TV industry to embrace elements of digital advertising — in terms of audience targeting using data and software — an area where Disney has been seen as lagging.

Fox recently formed a consortium with Turner and Viacom to launch OpenAP — through which advertisers can mix and match data sets to be used for ad targeting on multiple TV networks.

The deal could bring Disney into that fold.

“Until this point, Disney could not have played in behavioral marketing,” Maltby said. “This really gives them the opportunity to play in that space and go beyond targeting based on gender and age and do it based on purchase behavior.”

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NOW WATCH: 13 details you might have missed in ‘Stranger Things’ season 2

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Box CEO Aaron Levie thinks going public helps enterprise startups compete with the big dogs (BOX)

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  • When Aaron Levie took Box public in 2015 — nearly a year after first filing — critics wondered if it was too soon for what was once the hottest startup in enterprise technology. 
  • Three years later, Levie said he’s “really happy” Box is public — particularly because enterprise clients like to know what’s going on at the companies they work with.
  • Also, he said, quarterly earnings reports have helped Box mature into a more financially disciplined organization.


Many corporate executives love to grouse about the difficulties involved in running a public company — from the regulatory red tape involved to the market’s intense focus on quarterly results to being at the beck and call of often short-term investors.

But don’t count Aaron Levie among the complainers. Instead, Levie, the founder and CEO of cloud service provider Box, is “really happy” to be running a public company. Among other things, being public has helped reassure Box’s big corporate clients.

“We have a lot more transparency, so our customers know exactly how we’re doing,” Levie said. “They see the underlying financial viability of the company. That’s often fairly opaque to large enterprise customers when you’re selling enterprise software.”

It’s not obvious that Levie would be a fan of running a public company. It took nearly a year for Box to go public after it filed to do so, thanks to concerns about whether it was ready for the public markets and worries about its spending and losses.

After its shares finally hit the public markets in January 2015, Box’s stock price has been on a roller coaster ride. It hit a high of more than $24 a share on its first day of trading, then fell continuously until it bottomed out near $9 a share little more than a year later — before heading right back up again.

But despite all that, Levie says going public has been great for Box. 

Being public has helped Box compete with Microsoft and IBM

When Box was still private, clients would often ask Levie whether it was financially stable. It’s really important to enterprises that their technology providers don’t suddenly shut down. Even for Fortune 500 companies, the failure of such a provider could significantly hurt their business, especially if they are sharing their data and proprietary assets with that provider.

“This is why, often times, for large enterprises it’s easier to just work with the big incumbents in the technology market,” Levie said. “It’s easier to just go to Microsoft or IBM or Google, because you know they’re going to be around.”

But going public helped quell customers’ questions and put Box in a better position to compete with the market giants, Levie said.

“By being public, we look a lot more like those bigger incumbents than we do startups,” he said.

Quarterly earnings reports have made his team more disciplined 

But being a public company has had other benefits for Box. It’s encouraged the company to be financially disciplined, he said.

“When you are public, every single quarter your numbers are going to be public, everyone’s going to see them, and Wall Street’s going to dissect every single element of them,” Levie said. “Having that many more eyeballs on your business just forces you to really, really run your company and operate in a different way.”

Public accountability has also prompted Box to be more strategic and efficient when it makes changes, he said.

“Because we know that in three months, we’ll have to show up again on Wall Street,” Levie said.

Having a publicly traded stock help with morale

Being public has had one other big benefit — it’s helps with employee morale, Levie said.

For many tech industry employees, stock options and other forms of equity compensation are a key component of their compensation. If a company stays private for too long, those options and stock holdings can become a point of frustration for employees, because it can be unclear what those holdings are worth, Levie said. Employees at public companies don’t have that problem.

“It’s helpful to just say, ‘Here’s what the stock-price is. We’re going to work really hard, and hopefully it will go up over time,'” Levie said. “‘But you at least know what the price is and there is no confusion about that.'”

SEE ALSO: Michael Dell doesn’t buy the hype about killer artificial intelligence and tech dystopias

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NOW WATCH: Why Korean parents are having their kids get plastic surgery before college

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The best career advice of 2017

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2017 is almost over. A new year is nearly upon us. It’s a time for resolutions and reflection.

So it’s not a bad time to think about improvements and tweaks we can make to our own careers.

Business Insider has interviewed numerous successful people about their career experiences and insight. We boiled down the mountain of advice to a few standouts we found particularly interesting.

Here’s some of the best advice we heard this year:

SEE ALSO: 15 powerful women share the best career advice they’ve ever received

Be intentional with your time

Facebook product design VP Julie Zhuo spends much of the day in meetings.

But before she plunges into these conversations with her teams and direct reports, she likes to make a game plan.

“I try to be very intentional about my time,” she previously told Business Insider. “It’s easy to get into the habit of reacting to what’s happening during the day.”

That means examining exactly what she wants to accomplish in every meeting.

“I go into every meeting with an idea of what I want to do or say,” she said. “That makes it much, much easier when you’re contact-switching between many different things.”

Stay humble and work hard

It’s one thing to pay lip service to humility and work ethic. But it’s another to truly demonstrate they’re in line with your values during a job interview.

Daniel Schwartz, the CEO of Restaurant Brands International — the parent company of Burger King, Tim Hortons, and Popeyes — said he always vets job candidates with a certain tricky question to get a better sense of their values.

“One question I ask is, ‘Are you smart or do you work hard?'” he told Adam Bryant of The New York Times.

And, Business Insider reported, there’s definitely a right answer.

“You want hard workers,” he said. “You’d be surprised how many people tell me, ‘I don’t need to work hard, I’m smart.’ Really? Humility is important.”

Lead with hard work and humility when presenting yourself in your professional life.

Success is about people — not plans

Plans can only get you so far. If you want to really kick your career into high gear, you’re going to need help from other people.

That’s something LinkedIn cofounder and investor Reid Hoffman learned firsthand.

In an interview with Business Insider’s podcast “Success! How I Did It,” he advised everyone to build “as strong a network as possible, because that’s the thing that most catapults you, in terms of your capabilities, in terms of your abilities to do things.”

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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What’s new in Google’s Go language

The team behind Google’s Go language has just released a beta of Go 1.10, the next version of the popular open source language.

The new features in Google Go 1.10 beta

The upgrade offers compiler tool chain and performance improvements but no substantive language changes.

To read this article in full, please click here

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Apple’s widened ban on templated apps is wiping small businesses from the App Store

 Following its Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple released updated App Store guidelines that included a new rule allowing it to ban apps created by a “commercialized template or app generation service.” The understanding at the time was this was part of Apple’s larger App Store cleanup, and the focus was on helping rid the marketplace of low-quality clone and spam apps.… Read More

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What those mysterious white stripes on chicken are — and what it means for cooking

Ever wonder what those mysterious white stripes on your chicken were? They’re turning up now more than ever before. While they don’t harm human health, scientific studies indicate they can affect the quality of your meat.

The real mystery is that no one knows what’s causing it. The National Chicken Council has funded over $250,000 in research to find the cause of white stripes and another recent abnormality called woody breast. Following is a transcript of the video.

What are those mysterious white stripes on chicken? Some chicken looks and tastes different than it used to. The proof? White stripes of fat and hardened muscle in the breast meat. The consequence? Reduced quality of raw, cooked, and marinated meat.

The culprit? Unclear. But some experts think our insatiable appetite for chicken may be a factor. In 2016, each American consumed, on average, 91 pounds of chicken. That’s over 3 times more than in 1960. To meet growing demand, the food industry now raises bigger chickens, faster. In 1960, it took 63 days to grow a 3.35-pound bird. Now, it takes about 47 days to grow a 6.1-pound bird.

White stripes and hardened muscles aren’t harmful to human health. Researchers estimate they only turn up in 5-10% of breast meat. But, researchers also found that these two abnormalities affect meat quality. In severe cases, they reduce the amount of marinade the meat absorbs. Also, hardened muscle in cooked meat is tougher to chew. The issue has not gone unnoticed by the food industry. The National Chicken Council has funded over $250,000 in research to find the cause. Whatever the reason, a bigger question is on the horizon, what could chicken look like in the near future?

This video was first published on August 24, 2017.

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Apple's Jony Ive will take back control of his famous design team (AAPL)

Jony Ive

Jony Ive, Apple’s chief design officer, is taking over management of Apple’s design team, Bloomberg reported on Friday. 

“With the completion of Apple Park, Apple’s design leaders and teams are again reporting directly to Jony Ive, who remains focused purely on design,” an Apple spokesperson told Bloomberg. Apple didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider. 

Ive stepped back from a day-to-day role in 2015. 

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NOW WATCH: This animation shows how terrifyingly powerful nuclear weapons have become

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How to beat out the competition and score a job at Facebook, the best place to work in America

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• Facebook is now the most desirable place to work, according to Glassdoor.

• Business Insider spoke with top execs and employees to get a sense of how to land a job at the company.

• They said it’s important to have a good grasp on Facebook’s culture.


Facebook just snagged the top spot in Glassdoor’s annual rankings of the most desirable places to work.

So it’s understandable if you’re dying to work for the tech giant. But if you’ve set your sights on a big-name company with a selective hiring process like Facebook, the whole thing can seem rather overwhelming, maybe even impossible.

Don’t get discouraged, though. You just need to know exactly what you’re getting yourself into.

Business Insider spoke to Facebook global head of recruiting Miranda Kalinowski and VP of people Lori Goler, as well as other Facebook employees, to get a better sense of what it’s like to interview at the Menlo Park, California-based company.

Here’s what they had to say:

DON’T MISS: The 50 best places to work in 2018, according to employees

SEE ALSO: Facebook was just named the best workplace of 2018 — step inside its New York office, where employees enjoy an in-house pastry chef and tons of celebrity cameos

Keep in mind, Facebook has a ton of different recruiting strategies

Kalinowski said that the process can vary based on what team you’re being hired onto. But across the board, she stressed that Facebook recruits individuals through a number of different channels, including the company’s careers site, job fairs at universities, conferences, and even TED Talks.

First, most people go through a phone screener

Generally, recruiters will first screen you over the phone to cover some basics and make sure you’re a real candidate. If you sound like you might be a good prospect, they’ll follow up with a phone interview that focuses on your technical experience and skills.

Next, you’ll meet your prospective team

After that, Kalinowski says that recruiters hand over the hiring process to employees who might be working with you directly.

“They’re the closest to the work being done, so they’re able to impart a lot of first-hand experience about what it’s like to work on that team in that role, as well as answer any questions that the candidate might have,” she told Business Insider.

If you show promise, then you’ll be invited to visit Facebook to check out the campus and go through four to six more interviews with some of your potential team members.

Area 404 prototyping engineer Spencer Burns joined Facebook in January of 2016. He went through a day’s worth of interviews with about five or six interviewers, which he said is fairly standard for the industry.

He said the interview gave him a great opportunity to connect with the company’s culture.

“I actually felt really good after it because I realized that they take it very seriously,” Burns said. “They really want the brightest and the best and they want to make sure they get the right people. I met some really cool people in my interview as well, so I was really excited about it.”

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Facebook Sound Collection lets you add effects and no-name music to videos

 The right soundtrack can make a boring video interesting. So after years of reported discussions with the record labels, Facebook is launching video editing Sound Collection for inserting “songs, vocals, noises, and instrumental tracks spanning genres like hip hop, pop, jazz, country, and more” into Facebook and Instagram clips. What you can’t add is any music you’ve… Read More

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Meet “Genies”, the lifelike personalized avatars that reenact news

 “If god forbid Donald Trump bombs North Korea, you’ll see your Genie riding a nuke to North Korea” says Nigam. Whether that idea makes you giggle or roll your eyes, this is Genies’ plan “to be the next BuzzFeed”, the 24-year-old CEO tells me. “Your Genie is the star of the show. The script is whatever happens in the world that day.” It all… Read More

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