News story: Developing cutting-edge commercial ideas: apply for funding

first_imgFind out more about our open funding programme. Find out more about this competition and apply. Get more information on KTPs. Innovate UK has up to £20 million to invest in cutting-edge ideas that could have an economic impact.Projects can work on disruptive and game-changing ideas in any sector of the economy or any field of technology.They can be of various kinds from small feasibility studies to longer industrial research or experimental development projects. the competition opens on 10 May 2018, and the deadline for applications is at midday on 11 July 2018 it is open to businesses working alone or with other businesses and researchers projects must include at least one micro, small or medium-sized enterprise we expect projects to range in size between £25,000 and £2 million and for them to last between 6 and 36 months businesses could attract up to 70% of their project costs a briefing event will be held on 14 May 2018 Competition information Alongside this competition, there is also an opportunity for businesses to apply for Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs).last_img read more

Entergy announces new team to lead Vermont Yankee

first_img# In response to numerous concerns and issues that have been raised by Governor Douglas, Vermont Department of Public Service Commissioner O’Brien, state and federal legislative leaders and the public at large, Entergy Corporation has pledged to place the highest priority on restoring trust with Vermonters.Curt L Hébert, Jr, a past chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has been designated to lead a team of Entergy specialists addressing Vermont Yankee matters. Hébert serves as Entergy’s executive vice president for external affairs and reports directly to J. Wayne Leonard, Entergy’s chairman and chief executive officer.The team has already begun to meet with public, business, labor and civic leaders in Vermont. Two Entergy officials with long experience in Vermont will play expanded roles on the team. They are Brian Cosgrove, who will manage relations with state government, and Larry Smith, who will coordinate communications and media relations.Among members of the team are Arthur Wiese, Entergy Corporation’s vice president for corporate communications; Kenneth Theobalds, vice president for government relations for Entergy’s Northeastern nuclear operations; Donald Vinci, vice president of business development for Entergy Nuclear; James Steets, vice president for Northeastern nuclear communications; and Allison Graves, director of federal energy policy.“This situation needs to be fixed and through Curt’s leadership and direct engagement with Vermont leaders, I have every confidence it will be fixed as quickly as possible.  We must and will do better.  Entergy’s own standards, and our duty to Vermonters, demand it,” said Leonard. Meanwhile, DPS Commissioner David O’Brien told a legislative commission yesterday that he thought that removing lead negotiator Jay Thayer from his senior position at Vermont Yankee was “tokenism” on the company’s part. He said Entergy would have to do something “miraculous” to win back the trust of state officials earn the approval of the Legislature to relicense the plant.Entergy Vermont Yankee is seeking a 20-year extension to its license beyond its 2012 decommissioning. On January 7, Yankee officials reported tritium was found in a monitoring well at the plant in Vernon. An underground cement trench and another well, just this week, were also found to contain the radioactive isotope. Tritium is associated with nuclear fission. Yankee officials acknowledge it must be leaking from the plant, but have yet to find the source. Since the first finding, it was revealed that Yankee officials in 2008 and 2009 made inaccurate statements, some under oath, saying that there were no underground piping systems carrying radioactive material. That revelation eventually led to the state’s congressional delegation going straight to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to ask for an investigation, and then, last week, to Governor Douglas pulling his support for the plant until the leak is found and fixed and the company earning back the state’s trust. Douglas had been one of Yankee’s strongest supporters. Following that political pressure, Thayer was removed.“Entergy values and deeply respects our relationship with the state of Vermont and its business community and we are committed to Vermont for the long-term.  Since buying the plant in 2002 we have made more than $190 million in long-term investments at Vermont Yankee to make it a world-class nuclear facility,” said Hébert.“We are placing the highest priority on finding the cause of the tritium and remediating any contamination.  At the same time, we must reconcile the conflicting statements made to the Department of Public Service. To this end we have engaged the services of an independent, outside law firm to fully investigate the matter, and most importantly, to make sure it does not happen again,” said Hébert.The work of the specialized team dedicated to the company’s interaction with the Vermont officials is concurrent with Entergy’s ongoing investigation to identify the source of the elevated tritium concentrations in monitoring wells. That investigation is overseen by Entergy Nuclear senior management, including Michael Balduzzi, senior vice president and chief operating officer, and Timothy Mitchell, senior vice president for engineering and technical services.Entergy Corporation reiterated a number of other steps it is taking to address these matters, including the following items.   · Entergy retained an outside law firm to conduct a thorough, independent investigation pertaining to the company’s communications with the Vermont Department of Public Service. · Entergy is cooperating with all state and federal inquiries that the relevant agencies are conducting.· Entergy has installed additional testing wells at Vermont Yankee to monitor for tritium and increased the frequency of testing in order to conclusively determine the source of the tritium so that a remediation plan can be proposed to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.· Entergy has dispatched a project team of more than 20 highly skilled professionals to Vermont Yankee to ensure a fast, comprehensive assessment of the tritium situation.· Entergy has unequivocally acknowledged its responsibility for the controversy. One Entergy executive involved has issued a public apology.  He has been permanently relieved of his Vermont responsibilities and placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the full investigation.Entergy Reports Fourth Quarter EarningsEntergy Corporation (NYSE:ETR) of New Orleans, LA, yesterday reported fourth quarter 2009 as-reported earnings of $313.8 million, or $1.64 per share, compared with $170.6 million, or 89 cents per share, for fourth quarter 2008. On an operational basis, Entergy’s fourth quarter 2009 earnings were $334.9 million, or $1.75 per share, compared with $190.7 million, or 99 cents per share, in fourth quarter 2008. For the year, Entergy’s as-reported earnings were $1.2 billion, or $6.30 per share, and operational earnings were $1.3 billion, or $6.67 per share. These results compare with 2008 as-reported earnings of $1.2 billion, or $6.20 per share, and operational earnings of $1.3 billion, or $6.51 per share. Operational Earnings Highlights for Fourth Quarter 2009Utility, Parent & Other’s results were higher due to lower income tax expense, lower non-fuel operation and maintenance expense and higher net revenue.Entergy Nuclear’s earnings decreased as a result of higher income tax and non-fuel operation and maintenance expenses, partially offset by higher net revenue and other income.Entergy’s Non-Nuclear Wholesale Assets’ results improved due to lower income tax expense.“Both our utility and non-utility nuclear businesses delivered strong operational performance during a period of extraordinary global economic and financial uncertainty,” said J. Wayne Leonard, Entergy’s chairman and chief executive officer. “Looking ahead, signs of an improving economic environment, our market-based point-of-view, adherence to our disciplined risk management and the strength of our cash position provide a foundation that supports our strategic, operational and financial goals.”Other Business HighlightsEntergy Texas completed storm recovery for Hurricane Ike in November when it executed $545.9 million of securitization financing. Also, a stipulation agreement was reached with the Louisiana Public Service Commission staff in the storm proceedings in Louisiana.Entergy Texas made a new rate case filing with the Public Utility Commission of Texas at the end of December.The Nuclear Regulatory Commission agreed to extend the expiration date for the spin-off approval to Aug. 1, 2010.Entergy will host a teleconference to discuss this release at 10:00 a.m. CT on Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2010, with access by telephone, 719-457-2080, confirmation code 6584600. The call and presentation slides can also be accessed via Entergy’s Web site at www.entergy.com(link is external). A replay of the teleconference will be available through Feb. 9, 2010, by dialing 719-457-0820, confirmation code 6584600. The replay will also be available on Entergy’s Web site at www.entergy.com(link is external).Utility, Parent & OtherIn fourth quarter 2009, Utility, Parent & Other’s as-reported earnings were $107.0 million, or 56 cents per share, compared to a loss of $82.6 million, or 38 cents per share, in fourth quarter 2008. On an operational basis, fourth quarter 2009 earnings were $116.2 million, or 61 cents per share, compared to a loss of $62.5 million, or 33 cents per share, in fourth quarter 2008. Operational earnings for Utility, Parent & Other in fourth quarter 2009 reflect lower income tax expense associated with the net effect of annual consolidated income tax adjustments across the Entergy companies. A favorable tax reserve adjustment also contributed following issuance by the Louisiana Department of Revenue of a private letter ruling related to securitization of Katrina and Rita storm costs. In addition, the absence of regulatory charges associated with rate proceedings at Entergy Arkansas in 2008 was the primary driver of lower non-fuel operation and maintenance expense, as well as a contributor to the lower income tax expense compared to fourth quarter 2008. Also contributing to the earnings improvement versus the same quarter last year was higher net revenue.Residential sales in fourth quarter 2009, on a weather-adjusted basis, increased 4.6 percent compared to fourth quarter 2008. Commercial and governmental sales, on a weather-adjusted basis, increased 3.0 percent year over year. Industrial sales in the fourth quarter increased 7.1 percent compared to the same quarter of 2008.Residential, commercial and industrial classes reflected sales growth as a result of increasing economic activity in Entergy’s service territory. The improvement in industrial sales in fourth quarter 2009 was driven by the large industrial customer group, particularly in chemicals and refining. Small and mid-sized industrial customers are slowly showing signs of recovery from the recession, but their usage continued to be negatively affected in the current quarter. Also, a portion of the quarter-over-quarter increase in sales for all customer classes was the result of the absence of outages for the September 2008 hurricanes, most notably in the industrial segment. Industrial customers are typically billed at the beginning of the month, and as such these outages for hurricanes Gustav and Ike were reflected in October sales. Near normal weather versus warmer-than-normal weather in fourth quarter 2008 also provided a modest increase in sales volume.For the year 2009, Utility, Parent and Other earned $561.4 million, or $2.88 per share, on an as-reported earnings basis, compared to $422.0 million, or $2.22 per share, in 2008. Operational earnings in 2009 were $588.4 million, or $3.02 per share, compared to $477.4 million, or $2.43 per share, in 2008. The increase in operational earnings in 2009 was driven by higher Utility net revenue with the absence of hurricanes Gustav and Ike in 2008 contributing. Another factor in the improved results at Utility, Parent & Other was lower operation and maintenance expense, due primarily to the absence of Entergy Arkansas regulatory charges noted above. Also contributing to the earnings improvement was a lower overall effective tax rate for Utility, Parent & Other in 2009 versus 2008. Partially offsetting these items was an increase in depreciation and amortization expense in the current year due to increased plant in service.Entergy NuclearEntergy Nuclear earned $169.5 million, or 89 cents per share, on an as-reported basis in fourth quarter 2009, compared to as-reported earnings of $226.6 million, or $1.14 per share, in fourth quarter 2008. On an operational basis, fourth quarter 2009 Entergy Nuclear earnings were $181.5 million, or 95 cents per share, versus $226.6 million, or $1.18 per share, in the last quarter of 2008. Entergy Nuclear’s operational earnings decreased as a result of higher income tax expense in the current quarter due primarily to the net effect of the annual consolidated tax adjustments. Also contributing to the lower results was higher operation and maintenance expense during the quarter due to the absence of refueling outages in the quarter and associated deferral of costs. Partially offsetting these items was higher net revenue as a result of higher generation due to 32 fewer refueling outage days in the current quarter and increased pricing. Higher other income associated with decommissioning trusts also provided an offset to decreased earnings. A smaller impairment recognized on Entergy Nuclear’s decommissioning trust funds in the current period contributed to higher other income, as well as higher earnings realized on decommissioning trust investments in 2009.For the year 2009, Entergy Nuclear earned $631.0 million, or $3.22 per share, on an as-reported basis and $675.0 million, or $3.45 per share, on an operational basis. This compares to as-reported earnings of $797.3 million, or $3.97 per share, and operational earnings of $797.3 million, or $4.07 per share at Entergy Nuclear in 2008. The decline in Entergy Nuclear’s operational earnings in 2009 was due primarily to a higher effective income tax rate as well as an increase in operation and maintenance expense. Impairments on Entergy Nuclear’s decommissioning trust funds in 2009 exceeded amounts recognized in 2008, and were partially offset by higher realized earnings on decommissioning trust investments, also reflected in other income.Non-Nuclear Wholesale AssetsEntergy’s Non-Nuclear Wholesale Assets business earned $37.2 million, or 19 cents per share, on both as-reported and operational bases in fourth quarter 2009 compared to $26.5 million, or 13 cents per share, on an as-reported basis, and $26.5 million, or 14 cents per share, on an operational basis, a year ago. Income tax benefits were the primary drivers in both quarters. The current quarter reflects a tax benefit recognized on a capital loss associated with the sale of stock of a merchant fossil generation subsidiary to a third party. In the fourth quarter 2008, a closing agreement was reached with the Internal Revenue Service allowing a capital loss. As a result, a provision for tax uncertainties that existed on this item was reversed.For the year 2009, Entergy’s Non-Nuclear Wholesale Assets business earned $38.7 million, or 20 cents per share, compared to earnings of $1.3 million, or one cent per share, in 2008. As-reported and operational results were the same in both periods. The earnings increase in 2009 was driven by a decrease in income tax expense due to the fourth quarter 2009 benefit noted above, plus a second quarter decrease in valuation allowance on loss carryovers. Quarterly income tax effects in 2008 were largely offsetting.OutlookEntergy is affirming 2010 earnings guidance in the range of $6.15 to $6.95 per share on an as-reported basis, assuming a business as usual operation for the full year. Operational earnings per share guidance ranges from $6.40 to $7.20 per share and excludes $(0.25) per share of projected dis-synergies associated with the spin-off of Entergy’s non-utility nuclear business and plans to enter into a nuclear services joint venture. Guidance for 2010 does not incorporate a special item for expenses anticipated in connection with outside services provided to pursue the spin-off. The level of these charges in 2010 will vary depending upon resolution of the spin-off.Business SeparationThe announced spin-off of Entergy’s non-utility nuclear business will establish a new independent, publicly traded company, Enexus Energy Corporation. In addition, Entergy and Enexus intend to enter into a nuclear services joint venture, with equal ownership, with the joint venture being named EquaGen LLC. The state regulatory decisions and financing continue as the critical path items in finalizing the spin-off transaction. The transactions are subject to various approvals. Final terms of the transactions and spin-off completion are subject to the approval of the Entergy Board of Directors.Entergy Corporation is an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, and it is the second-largest nuclear generator in the United States. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.7 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of more than $10 billion and approximately 15,000 employees.Additional information regarding Entergy’s quarterly results of operations, regulatory proceedings, planned spin-off of its non-utility nuclear business and other operations is available in Entergy’s investor news release dated Feb. 2, 2010, a copy of which has been filed today with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Form 8-K and is available on Entergy’s investor relations Web site at www.entergy.com/investor_relations(link is external).In this news release, and from time to time, Entergy Corporation makes certain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Except to the extent required by the federal securities laws, Entergy undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.Forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties. There are factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements, including (a) those factors discussed in (i) Entergy’s Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008, (ii) Entergy’s Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, June 30 and September 30, 2009, and (iii) Entergy’s other reports and filings made under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, (b) the uncertainties associated with efforts to remediate the effects of Hurricanes Gustav and Ike and the January 2009 Arkansas ice storm and recovery of costs associated with restoration, and (c) the following transactional factors (in addition to others described elsewhere in this news release and in subsequent securities filings): (i) risks inherent in the contemplated spin-off, joint venture and related transactions (including the level of debt to be incurred by Enexus Energy Corporation and the terms and costs related thereto), (ii) legislative and regulatory actions, and (iii) conditions of the capital markets during the periods covered by the forward-looking statements. Entergy cannot provide any assurances that the spin-off or any of the proposed transactions related thereto will be completed, nor can it give assurances as to the terms on which such transactions will be consummated. The transaction is subject to certain conditions precedent, including regulatory approvals and the final approval by the Board of Directors of Entergy.View Complete Earnings Release [PDF]Privacy Policy | Legal Information©1998-2009 Entergy Corporation, All Rights Reserved.Source: Entergy. 2.3.2010last_img read more

Florida Lawyer Charged With Extorting N.F.L. Player in Robbery Case

first_imgMr. Baker, 23, whom the Giants selected as the 30th overall pick of the 2019 N.F.L. draft and started in 15 of 16 games in his rookie season last year, was charged on Aug. 5 with four counts of armed robbery and four counts of aggravated assault. He was released by the team in early September. On Monday, Broward County prosecutors dropped all charges against Mr. Baker.- Advertisement – The charges stem from the incident in May in Miramar, Fla., where, witnesses claimed, three men robbed people at a cookout of $70,000 in cash and jewelry after one of the men pulled a gun. The witnesses identified New York Giants cornerback DeAndre Baker, Seattle Seahawks safety Quinton Dunbar and a man wearing a red mask as the perpetrators. The man in the red mask was never identified, and charges against Mr. Dunbar were dropped in August, according to The Miami Herald. The lawyer representing three men who accused two N.F.L. players of robbery and assault in Florida was arrested on Monday morning and charged with attempting to extort roughly $800,000 from one of the athletes in exchange for having his clients alter their testimony.Four men accused the players of robbing them at gunpoint at a cookout on May 13, but three of them later recanted their testimony and the fourth refused to answer prosecutors’ questions, according to a statement from the Broward County state attorney.- Advertisement – The Broward County Sheriff’s Office said on Monday that investigators believed that Mr. Dean wanted Mr. Baker to pay each of his clients more than $266,000 in exchange for either changing their testimony or refusing to cooperate further with prosecutors in the case. “Evidence in the case reveals that Dean told Baker’s attorney that his clients would do ‘anything you want, so long as the money is right,’” the sheriff’s office said in a statement.Mr. Dean was arrested by Broward County sheriff’s deputies and U.S. marshals in North Miami Beach early Monday morning.Citing a continuing investigation by the Broward State Attorney’s Office and the Broward Sheriff’s Office, a spokeswoman for Broward County declined to comment further about the case against Mr. Dean.Bradford Cohen, Mr. Baker’s lawyer, said on Monday that his client was the victim of a shakedown, and that Mr. Dean had originally sought $1.5 million. No money ever changed hands, Mr. Cohen said.“These guys wanted money to go away,” Mr. Cohen said of the men who accused Mr. Baker, noting that the accusers’ testimony changed over time. “I hope the N.F.L. will look at this case and let cases play out before they decide to suspend a player.”Asked why the case was filed against Mr. Baker when there supposedly were dubious witnesses, Mr. Cohen said: “Because it was a high-profile case. Your fame is a detriment when you have a criminal case against you.” A spokesperson for the New York Giants declined to comment via email. Mr. Dunbar, 28, still plays for the Seattle Seahawks, but the team announced on Nov. 13 that he was out with a knee injury.The case against Mr. Baker unraveled as the men who accused him began to change their story, or became uncooperative altogether. According to the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, Mr. Dean came under investigation in August after information emerged that he was trying to extort Mr. Baker.“The alleged victims and the known witnesses have become uncooperative and their credibility is inalterably tarnished,” Assistant State Attorney Paul R. Valcore said in a statement on Monday. One of Mr. Baker’s accusers refused to answer questions, and prosecutors moved to have that accuser held in contempt of court, Mr. Valcore said. William A. Dean, 50, the managing partner of the Florida law firm Ford, Dean & Rotundo, was charged in Broward County on Monday with soliciting payments for three clients in exchange for their changing their testimony or ceasing to cooperate with prosecutors. A woman who answered the phone at Ford, Dean & Rotundo said Mr. Dean was unavailable to speak. Further calls asking the firm for comment on Mr. Dean’s arrest resulted in the line being disconnected. – Advertisement – William DeanCredit…Broward County Sheriff’s Office – Advertisement –last_img read more

Cohen: Nassib plays shining role in leading Syracuse to 2nd bowl game under Marrone

first_imgCOLUMBIA, Mo. — From day one, he was Nathaniel Hackett’s project.Gone was Greg Paulus, the local kid turned one-year wonder who tried and failed to bring football success to Central New York. Gone was Mike Williams, the program’s best receiver in quite some time who tried and failed to finish the season in a Syracuse uniform.Left behind was Ryan Nassib, the quiet and unassuming Pennsylvania product who waited — and waited — for the Paulus experiment to run its course. And fresh on the scene in 2010 was Hackett, the son of a coach whose meticulous preparation and offensive genius prompted Tyrone Wheatley to call him a “mad scientist.”Hackett the teacher and Nassib the pupil would be two of the principal faces in Doug Marrone’s mission to rebuild his alma mater. The innovation and cunningness of the former combined with the toughness and arm strength of the latter would reconstruct an offense that suffered through a decade of stagnation and resurrect a once-proud program.At least that was the plan.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“This was my first job,” Hackett said late Saturday night outside Memorial Stadium. “When I got him the first time and he looked at me like I was crazy as this young guy coming in with this, ‘What the heck are you doing?’ stuff to now, where we are, where our relationships has been and him buying into me. It’s been a dream for a first job.”Hackett beamed while speaking of his relationship with Nassib only minutes after the pair had conjured up another fourth-quarter comeback — two of them in fact — with the final touchdown in the closing seconds sealing an improbable victory over Missouri.His quarterback had shined from start to finish on an unseasonably warm day in what is now Southeastern Conference territory. Against a blitz-happy defense and a rowdy crowd of more than 63,000, Nassib stood tall and produced a game for the ages. His passing was masterful, his command of the offense impeccable, and by game’s end he’d passed Marvin Graves to become the all-time leading passer at Syracuse.And perhaps, quite possibly he had cemented himself as the best quarterback his school had ever seen.“I would say, you know, he’s the face of the program,” wide receiver Alec Lemon said. “He does all the right things, everyone is behind him, he’s a leader and everything he does is right.”On Saturday that meant orchestrating a seven-play, 81-yard scoring drive with 1:43 remaining in the game. Nassib threw for all 81 yards on the possession, connecting with Lemon on every pass, and remained unfazed while the Tigers threw all-out blitz after all-out blitz in his direction.But in the bigger picture, doing everything right has meant performing with a consistency that his other teammates have often failed to match. As Lemon and fellow receivers Marcus Sales and Jarrod West have faded in and out of relevancy, as the faces along his offensive line have changed over the last two seasons and as his team’s defense plays Jekyll and Hyde from time to time, Nassib just continues to compile numbers bordering on unimaginable for a Syracuse quarterback.Six games of more than 300 yards passing this season. Four games with three or more touchdowns. An upset of a top-10 team in the BCS standings.And don’t forget the two heroic comebacks, first against South Florida and most recently against Missouri.The student has impressed his teacher.“It will never be noticed enough,” Hackett said. “Nobody will ever understand how good he really is and how hard he works and how passionate he is about this game.”And because of his latest bit of magic — Nassib finished with 385 yards and two touchdowns against Missouri — he will have a chance to add a second bowl victory to his resume. Nassib broke loose with a brilliant performance in the Pinstripe Bowl in 2010, setting the stage for a follow-up season that many thought would end with a similar result — a bowl victory.But 2011 brought severe disappointment in the form of five straight losses and a 5-7 overall record. It ate at Nassib, his receivers, his coaches. They yearned to amend for their failures — both personal and medical — by washing away the awful taste that lingered in their mouths for the better part of eight months.At the head of the movement was Nassib, whose laid-back demeanor with the media is traded for fiery passion inside the Syracuse locker room. He is doing whatever it took for this team and this program to win, even if it means running a zone-read system where his mediocre foot-speed is less than ideal.“What can you say?” Marrone asked rhetorically in his postgame press conference. “I don’t really know. Ryan is getting better and better each week.”And after perhaps the best and most meaningful performance of his career — the Orange earned its first win over an SEC opponent since 2001 — Hackett’s project took the podium with a horse voice and his trademark smug smile.This was his moment after a game he’d dominated. So the face of the program grinned.Said Nassib: “It was fun.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on November 18, 2012 at 8:31 pmlast_img read more