The suit charges that the companies sent solicitations without indicating subscription expiration details, so consumers were paying fees without realizing their subscriptions weren’t actually up for renewal. Other consumers said they paid for subscriptions they never received. Other companies named in the suit are Liberty Publishers Service, Inc., Express Publishers Service, Inc., Associated Publishers Network, Inc., Publishers Payment Processing, Inc., Adept Management, Inc., Customer Access Services, Inc., Consolidated Publishers Exchange, Inc., Magazine Clearing Exchange, Inc., and Henry Cricket Group, LLC. The suit alleges that Orbital and a group of other companies have been sending illegal solicitation notices as far back as 2010. Orbital and its principal, Laura Lovrien, were named in a similar suit brought by Wisconsin AG J.B. Van Hollen in late 2014. Lydia Pugsley, alleged owner of Adept Management, was also named in the New York suit. In an affidavit filed as part of the New York lawsuit, Dow Jones said it spent $3.5 million to deal with the scam. Part of that money went toward free subscriptions. American City Business Journals estimates its subscribers collectively lost as much as $120,000 from the scam. According to court documents, the companies received payments from the customers and then sent checks to the publishers, pocketing the difference. Some Consumer Reports subscribers were being charged $59.95 for a one-year subscription that actually cost $29.95. The New York Attorney General’s office, along with the Attorneys General of Oregon, Minnesota, Missouri and Texas, have filed a lawsuit against Orbital Publishing Group, Inc.—a periodical subscription agency—and a number of other related businesses for mailing millions of allegedly misleading subscription and renewal notices. The notices were being sent without the permission or knowledge of publishers. At least 44 publications were used in the scheme, according to the suit. Customers receiving the notices were being told they were getting the lowest possible rates when in fact Orbital and a network of other entities were often charging more than double the subscription price. For their part, publishers had been sending cease and desist letters to the companies. Others ran full-page ads and alerts on their websites to warn customers of the illegal solicitations. “It is illegal under New York law to trade on the name of reputable publications and use deceptive advertising to trick consumers into overpaying for goods and services,” says New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. “New York is home to the largest media market in the country and serves as headquarters to many of our nation’s most important newspapers and magazines. My office will work hard to protect New Yorkers from swindlers and to protect the business of reputable companies who play by the rules.” The publications that Orbital Publishing Group allegedly used to overcharge customers: 1. America Magazine 2. American Association Individual Investor 3. Car & Driver 4. Catholic Digest 5. Country Woman 6. Daily Word 7. Discover 8. Entertainment Weekly 9. Farm Show 10. Forbes 11. Foreign Affairs 12. Harvard Business Review 13. Kiplinger’s Personal Finance 14. Mother Earth News 15. National Geographic 16. New York Magazine 17. New York Times 18. Old Cars Weekly 19. People 20. Popular Science 21. Science News 22. Shooting Times 23. Smithsonian 24. Southern Living 25. Sports Illustrated 26. The Atlantic 27. The Economist 28. The Nation 29. The New Yorker 30. The Sun 31. The Wall Street Journal 32. The Word Among Us 33. Time 34. Turkey & Turkey Hunting 35. TV Guide 36. US Catholic 37. W Magazine 38. Woman’s World 39. Consumer Reports 40. The Nation 41. Kansas City Star 42. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 43. Tulsa World 44. Omaha World Herald
Raghavendra NDr Reddy’s Laboratories is leading an Indian charge of the $130 billion Chinese pharma market, which is the world’s second largest. The likely liberalisation of the market by the Chinese regulator CFDA will benefit Indian pharma companies that have a solid presence in China, which is the world’s second largest pharma market, a report by Edelweiss Group says.Dr Reddy’s, which maintains a robust presence in China through a joint venture, is evolving a strategic plan to increase its revenue from the current $100 million. The company plans to achieve this by introducing new products and including more segments.The market has responded positively to the report with pharma stocks continuing their strong rally in the National Stock Exchange (NSE). Nifty Pharma sectoral benchmark hit a high of 9,278.70 after opening at 9,193.30. The index that benefited from the strong showing of Glenmark, Lupin and Aurobindo Pharma closed at about 9,263, up about 83 points or 0.91 per cent. Dr Reddy’s surged to an intraday high of 2792.55 from the previous close of 2765.20 to close 4.80 or 0.17 per cent up at 2,770.The company will strengthen its presence by scaling up the joint venture business and increasing the number of “dossier submissions and entries into new therapeutic areas,” MV Ramana, CEO, branded markets (India and emerging markets) of Dr Reddy’s, told Financial Express. According to Edelweiss, Dr Reddy’s, the largest foreign player in China, is poised to benefit from regulatory changes in the country. Dr Reddy’s plans to launch about 60 products and improve revenue significantly over the next seven to eight years, according to the report. PixabayThe company’s strong local partnerships have helped it commercialise some of the imported brands, the report says. The company’s revenue in FY18 was $100 million, with the help of its Canada-based joint venture Kunshan Rotam Reddy.”The size and growth of the market, our long presence and also the recent changes in China’s regulatory framework make this an attractive space for Dr Reddy’s. In terms of market size and expanded generic opportunity, China is the second largest pharma market with $130 billion in size, and generics form 65 per cent of the hospital market. About 22 per cent of the market is with off-patent innovators. While shortening the market access and reimbursement timelines for innovative drugs, China intends to replace the off-patent innovators with high-quality generics that opens up this share of the market to generic firms,” Ramana said.Dr Reddy’s US/EU portfolio mostly comply with Chinese regulations, while additional China-specific studies might be required in the case of some. “While in the past five years, we have had some good pipeline of filings, the plan is to scale this up and file a good number of dossiers in next few years,” he said.The Edelweiss report states that a growing Chinese pharma market and a relaxed Chinese drug regulator, CFDA, are likely to attract many Indian generic players. The relaxed norms may allow Indian companies to file their USFDA-approved products in China and get CFDA approval within months in the normal course. Among the drugs in demand, the most prominent are those for obesity, diabetes, respiratory illness and cancer.”While the regulations have been aligned with International Council of Harmonisation (ICH), there are China-specific requirements, which could pose challenges. Dr Reddy’s will continue to work to build strong regulatory capability and build on our experience to increase the probability of success for any new filing,” the report quoted Ramana as saying.
Lockheed Martin Corp has won a US Army contract worth $1.09 billion to build PAC-3 missiles for the US Army, South Korea, Qatar and Saudi Arabia for use in Raytheon Co’s Patriot missile defence system, the Pentagon said on Monday.The contract runs through 30 June 2019, the US Defense Department said in its daily digest of major arms contracts.Lockheed, the Pentagon’s Number one supplier, said the contract includes Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) missiles and PAC-3 Missile Segment Enhancement (MSE) missiles for the US Army, as well as PAC-3 missiles for the other countries.Lockheed won a similar contract valued at $1.5 billion in July.The Pentagon’s Defence Security Cooperation Agency announced the possible sale of up to $1.75 billion in PAC-3 missiles and associated equipment to Saudi Arabia last October, followed by another deal valued at up to $5.4 billion for more missiles in July.The US government approved PAC-3 missile sales worth up to $1.41 billion with South Korea in November 2014, and the sale to Qatar of PAC-3 missiles in November 2012.Other countries that have ordered the Lockheed missile include the United States, the Netherlands, Germany, Japan, the United Arab Emirates, Taiwan and Kuwait.Scott Arnold, Lockheed’s vice president of PAC-3 programs, welcomed the news and said the company’s missile defence interceptors utilized advanced technology that enabled “better accuracy, enhanced safety and improved reliability when it matters most.”The PAC-3 Missile is a high-velocity interceptor that defends against incoming threats including tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and aircraft.Lockheed said the PAC-3 MSE missile uses a two-pulse solid rocket motor that increases altitude and range to meet evolving threats.
Shares of ICICI Bank, State Bank of India (SBI), Punjab National Bank (PNB) and Axis Bank rose sharply on Monday on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) in response to Essar Oil announcing 98 percent stake sale to Russian Rosneft-led consortium for $12.9 billion. The deal will enable the Essar Group to repay loans to these lenders.ICICI Bank was the top gainer, rising almost 7 percent to Rs 258.50 on the BSE in early trade, while SBI and Axis Bank shares were up 1.59 percent and 1.87 percent respectively, to trade at Rs 255.90 and Rs 530.40 apiece. Read: Essar Oil sells 98% stake to Rosneft, Trafigura, United Capital Partners for $12.9 billionThe multi-billion deal announced last Saturday during the BRICS 2016 summit, is an opportunity to trim debt both at the Group level and at the operating level for the company, according to Prashant Ruia, Chairman, Essar Oil.The company will be repaying $5 billion debt of Essar Oil and an equal amount at the Group level, Ruia said. The Essar Group has interests in steel, ports and logistics. It will retain a small stake in the oil company. A few days ago, Axis Bank sold Essar Steel debt worth Rs 1,000 crore to Edelweiss Asset Restruction Company at a discount of about 45 percent, according to the Financial Express. “Most PSU banks have declared Essar Steel as an NPA (non-performing asset) in the last few quarters and hence such a large deleveraging would be positive for Essar Group lenders, in our opinion. In our coverage universe, ICICI Bank, SBI and Axis Bank are the largest lenders to Essar Group,” Nomura said in a note.Russia’s Rosneft and two other firms, commodity trading firm Trafigura and private investment group United Capital Partners, will be paying about $3.5 billion each to acquire the stake in Essar Oil, comprising a refinery and port owned by Essar Oil worth around $10 billion and $2.9 billion, respectively.Essar Oil owns India’s second largest single-site refinery at Vadinar, Gujarat, with a capacity of 20 MMTPA, or 405,000 barrels per day.The company has about 2,500 Essar-branded oil retail outlets across India, in addition to the 2,600 that are in various stages of commissioning.It also has onshore and offshore oil & gas blocks with about 1.7 billion barrels of oil equivalent in reserves and resources.The BSE Sensex was trading at 27,739, up 66 points, at around 11.20 am.
The draft National Online Media Guideline-2017 has been approved in the cabinet. Photo: Focus BanglaDraft National Online Media Guideline-2017 gets cabinet nodStaff CorrespondentThe cabinet on Monday gave the go-ahead to the draft National Online Media Guideline-2017, making mandatory the registration of online-based media outlets with the proposed Broadcast Commission.The information ministry will discharge the functions of the Broadcast Commission until the commission is set up.The draft guideline also stipulates that the online version of a newspaper does not require the registration.The cabinet meeting was held in parliamentary complex with prime minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair. Cabinet secretary Md Shafiul Alam briefed newsmen at Bangladesh Secretariat about the outcome of the meeting.The cabinet secretary said newspapers registered under the Printing Presses and Publication (Declaration and Registration) Act 1973 would not require the registration again for their online versions.But, the newspaper authorities should inform the commission about its online version and will have to pay the registration fees, he added.He said the commission will fix the registration fees.The cabinet secretary said the guideline has been drafted in light with the National Broadcast Policy.He said there are some 1,800 online media outlets in the country now and some of them were given approval.UNB adds: Besides, the commission will make recommendations to the government for giving licences to television, radio, internet TV or other digital broadcast stations and it will issue licences upon the government’s approval.Alam said the commission could issue show cause notice, initiate investigation, recommend to the government for further proceedings against online media outlets if they broadcast something in violation of the National Broadcast Policy-2014.On its own, the commission will be able to take action against online media outlets if it believes that they have violated the code of conduct and breached discipline, he said.The commission will also be given the authority to take measures against a online media outlet if any content poses a threat to security, territorial integrity, peace, public order and unity of the country or if it is vulgar, false and malicious or if the content is against the spirit of the liberation war and distorts national history and heritage.