The Importance Of Technology In Online Retailing

black friday

Black Friday was phenomenal in the United Kingdom with online retailers having to deal with the sheer volume of clicks on their websites. However, online retailers still have to go through a lot of immense pressure with the coming holidays since UK shoppers are expected to spend an overwhelming £7.4 billion to £17.4 billion on online shopping. How will retailers cope up after the mad rush of Black Friday and Cyber Monday? Technology will come to their rescue.

The importance of technology in online retail operations

The physical side of retailing must be optimized and orders have to be processed in two hours and not two days. Optimization of retailing is a challenge that has to be faced because customers have to be provided with a seamless shopping experience whether they do it online or in brick and mortar stores. Retailers need to know what to stock and one of their sources of information is social media. Mining social media will allow retailers to know what is trending and what products consumers are planning to buy for the holidays. Retailers need to come up with the best sources for fast distribution and delivery and instead of using the stocks coming from their own store, they can get it from an outsourced supplier to save on time. Orders must arrive as fast as possible at the most convenient time and place to ensure that customers are happy.

Technology options to ensure fast delivery

Today’s stiff competition among couriers is giving retailers a lot of choices when it comes to delivery. MetaPack which handles most of the delivery for online stores in the UK uses technology to work out the available options in every location for the goods that have been ordered. It decides on the carrier that will offer the best value to retailers and handles all the tracking data so that consumers will know exactly where their parcels are during its journey. Two-hour windows are now becoming commonplace because it is a better incentive for online shoppers. Their convenience is extremely important and accuracy in delivery must be ensured to keep customers loyal. Other technology-driven innovations are expected to provide consumers a better shopping experience for this holiday season.

Share Button

Creating Innovative Office Designs For International Companies In Singapore

Creating Innovative Office Designs For International Companies In Singapore

In the last few decades, many international companies have established their presence in Asia by opening a local office in Singapore. It is not surprising for global companies to choose Singapore because it is a thriving financial and creative hub in the Southeast Asian region. Adding to its appeal as an attractive destination to investors is the significant geographical location and high living standards of Singapore.

Because of the large number of international companies that are putting up offices in Singapore, a demand for innovative office designs has been created. Traditional office spaces have to be transformed with long term sustainability in mind. An appealing office design must be effective for the recruitment and retention of talents at the same time that interior design must be able to create a space with a strong sense of corporate culture and identity.

In order to achieve an effective but highly appealing office design, many global companies have made the effort to reach out to architects and designers who can address the needs of the workplace. The primary goal of office design must enhance the company’s brand values and optimize workplace space. One example of a successful collaboration that has resulted into a great design solution was between design practice Aplusi Asia and workplace strategist MCM Architecture of London.  Both companies worked together to create a design for DBS Bank Ltd.’s new training and learning facility. The collaboration resulted into a traditional training facility with an interactive environment that allows open conversations.

So that workplaces will be relevant to their specific context, global companies have recognized the importance of establishing workplace design solutions in local culture. Most of the designs created were a mix of local culture and international styles with some diversity of theme in certain areas. Traditional building materials and furnishings are used in the design to achieve a sophisticated yet distinct feel.

Interior design Bangkok can bring a touch of elegance and sophistication to your home. The design idea is not merely to create a visually appealing space but an environment with a soothing effect that can improve your mood. Interior Design Bangkok is prepared to create a design that is truly special.

Share Button

How You Can Become A Plumber In The UK

How You Can Become A Plumber In The UK

Plumbing isn’t a glamorous profession but you can be assured the plumbing is always in demand which means that there is always steady work as well as advancement opportunities. Before you can become a qualified plumber, know that you would have to dedicate a number of years. Plumbing would also require a passion for lifelong learning because with the rapid advancements in technology, you can expect new and modern ways to plumbing.

To become a plumber, you would need to understand Math and Science and understand tools or equipment that comes with the profession. A plumber would also need to have a good physical body, one that focuses on endurance as plumbing is a very physical profession and enhanced stamina would be needed for you to function day by day.

When it comes to career advancements, you can say that the world of plumbing offers a diverse career path as well as good wages. In fact, highly experienced plumbers, especially Master Plumbers, can have the opportunity to start their own businesses. Plumbers can progress to design, teaching, management and even consultancy. With plumbing, it is safe to say that your future is safe.

Practicality is needed in plumbing and is an important quality to possess. You would need to have a love for the craft and be satisfied with the work you are doing. Engineering, science and math all play an important factor in plumbing so you should at least have a good understanding of these subjects. Another quality that you would need to possess is good communication skills. You would need to communicate effectively so that you are able to fully understand your customers and their needs so that you can address them. Lastly, you would need to be trustworthy because customers want someone they can trust.

Taking a plumbing course is necessary to become a plumber. This course should be aimed at S/NVQ level 2/3. Technical Colleges often offer these courses.

Know that the training could take a few years in the least. In fact, to attain an NVQ level 3, it would take about at least 2 to 3 years so you would need to be patient and dedicated if you want to become a highly qualified plumber like those of Richards Plumbing.

Share Button

Want To Give A Great Gift To Your Significant Other? Here’s How

Want To Give A Great Gift To Your Significant Other -Here’s How

They say that gifts are a gesture of love and when it comes to your significant other, they truly are. People can’t blame you if you want to give the best and only the best to your partner. However, one of the biggest challenges that couples face is finding the right gift to give. Naturally you would want to give something that would last, something that would represent you and your emotions or feelings towards the other person. You would want to give something that would resonate through to your partner and something that he/she can truly appreciate.

Sadly, there is no such thing as a perfect gift. But when it comes to couple, anything that is given with love is perfect. So if you want to give a great gift to your significant other, it would definitely help you if you consider the following:

  1. How long have you been together? Gift giving for couples tend to change depending on the length of time their relationship had lasted. For couples who are still in the early stages of their relationship, you probably want to impress your significant other. However, by doing so, you are opening rooms for expectation and in the long run, it can get quite overwhelming. Go with something simple. Trust your instincts and bear in mind the things your partner is interested in.
  2. Financial trouble. Sometimes, couples are unable to give gifts to one another due to financial issues. But when they do it becomes even more special. Try saving at least 20 dollars a day if possible or a week.
  3. You can never go wrong with personalized gifts. Through personalized gifts, you would be able to your own personal touch which makes the gift more special and more meaningful.
  4. The quality of the gift is always important. While you may think quantity is better, quality actually matters more. Whether you go for personalized gifts or even a short trip, make sure to choose based one quality because quality adds to the specialness of the gift.
Share Button

Shipping Crisis In Puerto Rico

Alejandro Garcia Padilla

Tensions regarding a 95 year old shipping law have been reignited when the governor of Puerto Rico said that it has contributed to the dire fiscal situation of the island. This charge met a fierce resistance coming from the shipping industry in the US but at the same time had support from some economists and oil companies.

Governor Garcia Padilla of Puerto Rico said in a speech that the $72 billion debt of Puerto Rico called for the island’s exemption from the Jones Act which required ships that carried goods and products from one US port to another to be constructed in the US have US owners and should be staffed mostly by US crews. Since Puerto Rico is an island, it relied heavily on ships to bring goods from the United States to its ports. A report released in 2012 authored by two University of Puerto Rico economists made the conclusion that the policy translated to a $537 million hit to the economy of the island in the year 2010 and recommended that the policy be phased out.

Discussion in the Jones Act came after the governor shocked all of the bond-holders by telling them that he wants the huge debt be restructures and postpone the payments of bonds after a decade long recession which was characterized by high unemployment. The role that the Jones Act has played in the recent fiscal crisis of Puerto Rico is still being hotly debated. Shipping companies are saying that the island has benefited from several years of reliable service. Critics also say that it has unfairly raised prices to the loss of the Puerto Rican people and businesses.

One official at the Crowley Maritime Corporation said that it is quite unfortunate that the Jones Act is used by Puerto Rico as one of its excuse for the financial crisis it was experiencing which was brought about by too much spending and borrowing in the public sector.

This crisis in the shipping industry in Puerto Rico is an issue that really needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Paper Mart shipping supplies or even other companies engaged in shipment are affected as long as the issue does not go away.

Share Button

A Simple Guide To Choosing A Home Security System

A Simple Guide To Choosing A Home Security System

If there is one thing that people value the most, it would have to be privacy and security. For some people, privacy and security are the biggest luxuries in the world especially if one could get this at the comfort of their own homes. While it is possible to achieve full privacy at home, security however remains a clouded issue. There will always be threats to your family’s security at home no matter what you but you should also know that there are a few ways for you to prevent or alleviate these threats and one of the best ways to do so is by installing a home security system.

A home security system would not only keep you and your loved ones safe from intrusion and burglary, it will also be able to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning and fires. Security systems would also provide security for your valuables. Knowing you have a security system in place would give you peace of mind. So if you plan on getting 4th response alarms and install full-proof security systems in your home, here is a simple guide to choosing one.

Before anything else, it is important that when going for a home security system, you should always know your options.

  1. Reputable Companies. If you want a comprehensive and even a customized security system for your home, you may want to get one from a well established and highly reputable company. There are numerous local companies who would send out representatives in order to present a wide selection of security system options and you may choose the one that would fit your lifestyle the most as well as the type of home you live in. You would also have the benefit of getting access to their call centers for problems.
  2. Security Bundles. When you already have a company that manages your Internet as well as your cable services, then you may also want to avail security systems from them because you might save a whole lot more when you do so.
  3. DIY Systems. The good thing with technology nowadays is that you are now being given the option of choosing to opt for DIY alarm systems which are considerable much cheaper.
Share Button

Here’s How You Can Open A Restaurant Business


If you have a passion for cooking and eating, then you should probably make money out of this passion of yours. However, getting into a restaurant business can also be very difficult. When you do decide to open a restaurant, you should say good bye to your weekends and say hello to long days and long nights. Having a restaurant would require hard work and dedication. You would also need to be flexible and organized as well as being friendly and accommodating. But know that even with its difficulties, a restaurant business can be very lucrative in the long run.

If you are interested in opening a restaurant, here’s how:

  1. Find a location. Location is everything for a restaurant. Know that your restaurant’s location could either make or break you. That is why it is important that you choose the perfect location. However, the word perfect can be defined in a number of ways. You should consider your restaurant’s location carefully. Normally, it would do you good to find a busy location, particularly one that is at the center of a business district because of the high concentration of people visiting and living there.
  2. Choose a concept. There are many kinds of restaurant concepts that you can choose from. You can go for a café, an eatery, a pizzeria, etc. Remember that your restaurant’s concept will drive everything about the restaurant, from its menu to its look and decorations.
  3. Choose a menu. The menu is the one responsible for setting the tone of the restaurant. It is also the main customer driver. Make sure your menu is connected with your restaurant concept. As a beginner, you should also think about offering a standard or general price range.
  4. Secure finances. Finding financing for your business can be difficult since banks don’t normally trust loaning to restaurants. However, if you’re eager enough, then you might find the necessary finances to fund your restaurant.
  5. Stock your restaurant. Find out what your restaurant needs from equipment, to facilities and even staff. You should also think about making a website so that you would also become exposed to the numerous opportunities online just like what Two Fat Indians did with their
Share Button

Find Out How You Can Find The Perfect Gift This Christmas Season


Christmas has been often dubbed as the most wonderful time of the year. With all the festivities, the laughter, the food and the gifts, this may all be true in a sense, but you should also keep in mind that Christmas can become the most stressful time of the year as well. Not only would you have to keep a good budget on the food, the decors, the expenses of having your entire family coming over for a visit, and buying gifts.

Now, speaking of gifts, it can also be quite frustrating having to find the perfect ones to give to your loved ones, especially if your loved ones consist of a long list of friends and family.

To help you out, here are some tips that you can use to find the perfect Christmas gifts.

  • Consider all the interests of the recipient. Now, what are they interested in? Do they love sports? Music? Or are they a fan of a particular TV series or book? It is always important that you find a gift that the recipient can truly appreciate and to do this, you must base your gift on the things he loves to do.
  • Consider the past. Have you known the recipient for a long time? If so, then maybe you can use this to your advantage. If you have old photos of your childhood together, or a particular item you gave each other, then why not place them inside a black gift box and decorate them. This would not only be the best gift but it can also bring in the feeling of nostalgia.
  • Consider what they need. Yes, everyone is in need of something but you must think beyond that and find something that they can actually use. Try to consider their profession. For example, you have a friend who is a doctor. What you can do is to find something that a doctor is sure to use.
  • Consider stalking. If all else fails, you have the option of stalking them day and night in order to find what they can appreciate the most. Yes, this maybe extreme but Christmas is special and you want your gifts to be special too.
Share Button

Go Ahead Retailers, You Can Start Your Christmas Deals

While some people complain about the premature holiday push, there are actually shoppers who embrace the Christmas creep.


Two distinct surveys reported last week showed that there are in fact shoppers who already started purchasing gifts. Few even are done purchasing Christmas sweaters, black gift box, fancy gift boxes and toys. They have basically crossed out all the items in their Christmas list.


A survey done on Labor Day by revealed that approximately one out of seven Americans have now started purchasing for the festive season. The early birds equate to 32 million shoppers. Two percent of the early birds which accounts to 4.6 million shoppers are already finished with their Christmas gift list.


A separate survey by Rubicon project revealed more robust results. Thirty percent of buyers from Canada, U.K and U.S. have begun their holiday shopping by this time.


Matt Schulz, the chief analyst of one of the surveys remarked that we whine that stores place their holiday items earlier every year. But in fact millions of citizens begin with their Christmas shopping way before the stores start to have holiday displays.


The timing of holiday purchase tends to depend on different buyer groups. As observed by, parents are two times more inclined to have begun purchasing compared to those with no children. Gramps and grannies are way ahead than everyone else with their holiday shopping; seven percent from the 65 years old and above group are already done shopping. In contrast, only one percent from the 64 year old and below group is done.


The income of an individual also affects the timing of shopping. People with lesser income tend to start crossing out their lists earlier. Findings from the first survey showed that 19% of shoppers with $75,000 annual income believe to end their gift shopping before the Christmas month. Meanwhile, 30% of shoppers with $30,000 annual income expect to do the same.


Starting Christmas shopping as early as possible is a wise idea for someone on a budget, Schulz remarked. Layaway plans are availed easier if shopping is done ahead of time.


Rubicon’s survey was done online while did it over the phone.

Share Button

Internet Effect On Modern Day Businesses

More and more companies are leveraging the internet to increase revenue like them Information technology has indeed transformed the way various companies do their business. Advance technologies allow businesses to automate the process information and manual operations. While business technology was previously focused through server storage, cash register systems, and point of sale, a huge technological advancement is the internet. The internet has created new forms of communication and other methods of conducting businesses that companies use when processing information.


The internet has made an entire empire in the online world known as e-commerce or e-business. The e-commerce represents the use of online technology in the operations of the company. Most companies competing in the business world have implemented some form of internet technology in their daily business operations.


A major feature of electronic commerce is the ability to transfer and communicate information through online platforms. A lot of companies use email servers which allow employees and managers to send messages internal messages through email communication mediums. Companies have also launched business websites which allow potential customers to review information about a certain company and their products and services before making a decision. The websites also provide a channel of communication of consumers with the company.


The internet has also successfully allowed various companies to look for ways in lowering their operational costs and saving capital on services and production of goods. Companies usually implement software for their operation in order to track the different operations in business and review the effectiveness as well as efficiency of every department. These software packages help the managers review the information and make better decisions regarding the effectiveness of operations.


A lot of companies that are still operating in the traditional environment were not able to directly sell services and goods to businesses and other consumers. These companies like the intermediate goods producers and manufacturing companies need a middleman in order to help sell the goods. The internet allows these traditional companies set up websites in order to sell their products and generate a pipeline for business sales.

Share Button

The Things You Should Know Before Starting A Web Design Business

Perth – September 5, 2015 – So you want to get into the world of Perth web? But before you do that, you should know that web design is not an easy business. There are things that would need to be considered in order for you to fully establish yourself as an effective freelancer and successful web designer. You should know that most of the time, it’s not all about the love for the work but more like a responsibility that you would have to keep up.

So before you go ahead and build a web design business, here are some interesting points that you should first ponder on.

  1. The first thing that you would need to know and determine what ‘freelancing’ means to you. If you think of it as a getaway or a vacation wherein you can just pop in whenever you want to, then this business is probably not for you. Take note that you can work from anywhere you want but that doesn’t mean you get to have fun all the time. You should remember that when you engage in freelancing, you would have to be consumed by it in the beginning. All you would need to care about is your work and although it may be stressful and frustrating, it’ll all pay off when you have fully established yourself.
  2. The second thing to remember is that not all sales have the same value even if they are priced the same. Just think about it. In the beginning, it is natural for you to be hungry for sales. When potential customers make contact with you, you would definitely give it your all to win his or her business. Unfortunately, you may have priced your sales all the same but you cannot say that in terms of value. How much time have you invested, or even wasted, in a single sale? If you spent too much time on a single customer, the value of the sale decreases. In contrast to that, when you make an easy sale, saving up much time as possible that is a highly valuable sale.
  3. The last thing for you to ponder on is how you don’t always get to do the thing that you love. Sure you may have entered this business because you just love to design websites. But in the long while, you will understand that you cannot do this on your own. You should accept the fact that you will need help.
Share Button

Wall Painting And The Plans Of Berger Paint India

Painting has been a significant addition to homes and when you need a painting job to be carried out perfectly, ask the help of experts at Fitzhugh Decorators. The decorators at this renowned company have at least several decades of professional experience in the industry. Customers are sure not to go wrong when seeking for their expertise.

Even in India, the industry of paint is in an obvious boom. The Berger Paints just recently announced that it is planning two new production facilities in North East India. They are currently at the stage of contemplating to build two new units in Assam. One unit will be under Berger while the other will be under the British Paints brand. This news was confirmed by the Berger chairman who is Kuldip Singh Dhingra.

The chairman further announced that they will place the proposal and inform the board of directors immediately. The managing director of Berger Paints further gave concrete figures. According to Abhijit Roy, the total land area is expected to be about 12 acres while the investment in the initial phase of the project is expected to be in the amount of Rs 60 crore.

The Berger chairman also told media that the company had also received invitations from Russia to build another plant. He further said that the company already had an existing plant in Russia. They were offered with land at a very competitive and tempting offer. The company will launch another production plant in the country when there is already enough volume.

Texture painting walls

If you are planning to do some texture painting in walls, here are some useful tips for you.

– Homes that have expansive natural views, textured walls will allow the interior look of your home to match the outdoor scenery. Texture painting will connect the rooms with their surroundings.

– The textured walls look best with organic colors as well as with warmer colors because they usually are tied up to their natural roots. You can proceed in experimenting with gold, brown, gray and other warm colors.

– Texture painting the wall will not hide the damage on the wall; however, it is still the best choice in covering time worn out surfaces.

Share Button

Growth Of Eye Correction Market Expected To Be At 3.25% By 2020


Vision correction through lasik eye surgery Belfast has seen an increase in recent years coupled also with an increase in corrective eyewear. In fact, a study conducted by the Grand View Research suggests that the global eyewear market will have an expected value of about $142.18 billion by the year 2020

The market was shown to have an amount of 2750.3 million units in 2012. This amount is also expected to increase to about 3507.7 million by 2020. Such a growth of 3.25% in the amount of units of eyewear is the greatest factor for enlargement of the market.

The research shows that this market will continue to expand due to children having entered into corrective eyewear and surgeries at very early ages. The increase of tablet and mobile device usage among children as well as more exposure to television and computers tend to contribute to how children now have to eyes that need correction.

In fact, the region that shows the highest demand in this industry is North America, where the population is comparatively younger to that of its European and Asian counterparts.

The study also suggests that rural and developing areas that do not have easy access to vision correction as of the current date will see a large increase of market targeting of eye care services and companies because of their potential in terms of having corrective eye surgeries or corrective lenses. Thus, these rural areas would greatly contribute to the increasing size of the eyewear market.

Advancements in the medical field and steady diets have also contributed to having large elderly populations in several countries like Japan and several other European nations. This ageing population also contributes to an increase in the global size of the eyewear and corrective surgery market.

In line with that, Asia seems to be the fastest growing in this industry with about a 3.7% growth expected by 2020. On the other hand, Europe remains to be the largest sharer in the global market with a contribution of about 40% because of its ageing population and because of the comparatively higher prices of surgeries and eyewear.

Share Button

Online Tutoring Through Skype For A Thousand Dollars An Hour


Bee Academic Tutoring offers online tutoring for all subjects and students can connect to their tutors through different platforms like Skype, Google, Hangouts, Go to Meeting or Facetime. Anthony Green who is a SAT and ACT tutor to the offsprings of some of the wealthiest in the country claims that all his sessions are conducted through Skype for a whopping fee of $1,000 per hour.

In a recent interview with Insider, Green said that no one should take the new SAT in 2016 because SAT returns to a 1600-point test. It has combined the current 800-point Reading and Writing sections back to the single 800-point verbal section that was used in the old exam. He is recommending to his students not to take the first three rounds of SAT in March, May and June 2016 so that they will not be used as guinea pigs for the College Board’s marketing campaign.

According to Green, the College Board is trying to claim that the new SAT is a “people’s exam” in a more democratic and user-friendly version that accurately reflects on the current American high school curriculum. This is exactly what they claimed in the last version that turned out to be a total catastrophe.

More students are now taking ACT instead of SAT because ACT is a reliable and predictable exam that is actually focused on academic merit rather than random logical reasoning and esoteric vocabulary words. Since the SAT is seen by many as a joke, the new version of SAT is regarded with suspicion that is why more and more students are opting for ACT.

The College Board is actually losing its share that is why there is the last-ditch effort to create a new version of SAT but it is basically a poorly disguised marketing gimmick. The College Board is trying to make SAT look like ACT from the test format to the material. It is also an attempt to make people forget that SAT is being used as a mechanism to gauge student’s income level. The test is based on scale and if everyone got 1600, there is no point to the test at all.

Share Button

How A Fire Can Start From A Washing Machine


The recent fires in Sydney have brought to the forefront the importance of electrical and appliance repair. Surprisingly, some of the appliances that catch fire are faulty washing machines and tumble dryers not TV’s or flat irons. There are also brands that are more prone to catching fire than others and manufacturers are dragging their feet in pulling out their products from the market. It is crucial for products that are dangerous to be pulled out as quickly as possible and not wait for a fire to occur.

Last May, two more homes caught fire in NSW due to faulty Samsung washing machines. More than 83,000 of these washing machines are still being used in Australia. Fire & Rescue NSW confirmed a fire on Sainsbury Street in Saint Mary’s but it was extinguished by tradespeople who were working on the building. Another fire occurred on William Street in Granville and was put out by firefighters.
According to Fire & Rescue NSW Investigator Michael Forbes, anyone with a Samsung top loader washing should have their appliance checked as a matter of priority.

These products are often left unattended when in use and the risks to people and property are high if the appliance fails. If smoke or smell comes out of the washing machine, turn it off at the power point and call for electrical and appliance repair. If a fire does occur, stay out and call Triple Zero (000).
There have been 181 incidents nationwide as a result of faulty Samsung washing machines. According to Samsung the reasons were over-heating, smoking or catching fire. The fires in NSW brought the number of total fires caused by the faulty machines to 20 since the April recall.

Samsung has confirmed that there are 83,686 machines out of nearly 150,000 that were sold in Australia that have not yet been serviced to prevent the water leakage fault that is the cause of the fires. Samsung is providing free in-home service to fix the issue but Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is concerned about the low take-up of Samsung’s repair services. ACCC is also considering if the results of the national recall are adequate.

Share Button

Scottish Home Awards 2015 Revealing Best House Building Industries

Luxury holiday homes in Scotland and other kinds of recreational properties are popularly advertised in different mediums. Scotland and the whole of UK is not only known for its unique cabin or cottage homes, but also apartments that have exquisite design – the most popular in the news recently being the most expensive one in the market in London, UK.

The 8th annual Scottish Home Awards, sponsored by Ross & Liddell – a company offering a wide array of services such as surveying, residential management, and residential lettings was held last June 18, 2015. The said event that was hosted by comedian Des Clarke and broadcaster Cat Cubie, presented twenty awards under different categories as judged by the best housing experts in the region.

The Scottish Housebuilder of The Year 2015, the most important award given out that evening was awarded to CALA Group. The CALA group is known to be UK’s most upmarket major homebuilder, operating in Scotland, the Midlands and the Southern part of England. Meanwhile, the Springfield Properties bagged two major awards, namely: House of the Year and Best Customer Care. S1 Developments, previously winning in 2012 the Small Housebuilder of the Year category, was awarded once again the same award for this year as well as the Housing Development of the Year for their special project – the terraced renovation of Malta Terrace in the capital. Meanwhile, Hillcrest won the Housing Association of the Year award.

From the affordable sector, companies like Parkhead Housing Association, Sanctuary Scotland, and Places for People were some of the awardees.

After congratulating the recipients of the different awards, the director of the sponsoring Ross and Liddell, Andrew Cunningham, said that the company is always pleasured by supporting this annual event as it recognizes the talent, effort, and achievements of the brilliant minds behind these innovative housing industries. Cunningham ended his speech by wishing all the winners of the evening continued success in the years to come.

The awards that had been given are said to support a small charity called ‘It’s Good 2 Give’. The charity aims to build The Ripple Retreat – a luxury residential retreat on the shores of Loch Venacher. The said property is a place to accommodate young cancer patients with their families for short stay visits.

Share Button

Self Storage Industry, Growing Generously In Asia

self storage
Self storage has become an important concept in modern living and the number of self storage Leeds facilities has increased greatly in the past years. Although self storage is more present in western countries like the US and the UK, lately it has also experienced a rapid growth in Asia.

Currently, the self storage industry is expanding rapidly in Asia as reported by a global real estate services firm, CBRE. There has been an increasing demand for storage space in Asia and this strong growth is being driven by many factors such as urbanization, changes in business activity but ultimately due to low usage per household as well as a growing middle class. This demand can be effectively seen in major Asian cities such as Tokyo, Singapore and Hong Kong.

The recent Self Storage Expo Asia which was held in Tokyo is evidence that investors are now more interested in directing their businesses in this part of the world as well the entire self storage industry itself. The Self Storage Expo had successfully gathered two hundred participants.

Darren Benson, the executive director of industrial and logistics, brokerage services of CBRE, said that the numerous investments deals on self storage in the past couple years reflects the current growth in the industry.

The economic growth plays one of the largest parts in the growth of self storage industry. According to Enst & Young, the middle class of Asia will be numbering by the billions in the next 15 years.

Now what happens when they grow in number along with an increased prosperity? Well, it can be expected that they will buy more stuff, more items for their households. And if there are more household contents, the need for storage space also increases.

More items means that there will be a point wherein they would have to subject their household into a de-cluttering process and if people want their houses cleaned while not having to permanently dispose of valuables, the only solution is to either build a storage space in their homes or hire a self storage unit from storage facilities.

Share Button

Going Green With Natural And Organic Products


There are products that include sunscreens, lip balms and Natural Hand cream that are non-toxic, organic, healing and very satisfying to the end user. Elemental Herbs is a skincare company based in Moro, California that started as a small scale project of infusing five medicinal herbs in olive and beeswax to produce a healing balm that works on anything from rough gardening hands to diaper rash.

Elemental Herbs has taken its commitment to the planet very seriously by including a range of all natural, non-toxic products that include lotions, lip balms, sunscreens, coconut oil blends and a hand sanitizer that is so natural that seems like a breath freshener. Ingredients are certified as organic and they are sourced locally and substantially to ensure that it is of the highest quality. The company also supports non-invasive wild land farming methods that endeavor to protect wildlife, conserve water and maintain the healthiness of soil.

There is nothing more important than being able to take care of the habitat of plants because it harnesses the medicinal properties that are very important when used for products. The products themselves are fabulous. Elemental Herbs is proud of its triple bottom line business gauging by the success of its environmental, social and economic vitality. Testing of products is not done on animals and neither does it support GMO’s that are genetically modified to be widely used in scientific research and to produce other products aside from food.

The sunscreen does a very job at providing protection and the tinted lip balms soothe and beautify at the same time. Scented lemongrass body lotion used after getting out of the shower is very effective. Natural Hand cream is impressive in its effectiveness on dry, cracked and irritated skin.

However, there is also a concern that has to be addressed. Coconut oils come in glass containers with metal screw tops while sunscreens, lotions and lip balms come in plastic, albeit recycled. It would be more satisfactory for consumers who are concerned about the environment if the glass containers and paper will be replaced by non-biodegradable containers which mean that the company is truly green.

Share Button

Ugly Christmas Sweater: A Brief History


During the holiday season, the ugly Christmas sweater is undoubtedly an ever-present craze. These cheap and shabby garments coming from the wardrobe of your dear aunts and parents are re-appropriated for fashion’s sake. The usual signs of ugly Christmas sweater are the use of green and red colors, adorned with comic depictions of a snowman, with Christmas lights and trees.

The icon behind the sweater

The sweater as a clothing has been in existence in the United States since the 19th century. However, the hideous looking Christmas sweaters only began to take the market by storm in the last decades. Bill Cosby is deemed as the modern-day pioneer of this craze. He is often referred to as the ugly sweater icon. In the 80’s sitcom, he starred as Cliff Huxtable and his uniform on set was a wooly pullover with unconventional or ugly patterns and color mixing. People will remember Cosby as well as Chase as they allow the sweater to ride into stardom.

The trend in the past decade

If you look back, the ugly Christmas sweater trend has picked up its pace again. There was a notable pick up in the ugly sweater trend in the year 2001, ugly sweater parties were ubiquitous and the tradition since rebounded. This was according to the book: Ugly Christmas Sweater Party Book: The Definitive Guide to Getting Your Ugly On. Most vintage stores are benefiting much from this craze; however, the trend has also reached fashion shops and high-end stores like the Nordstrom.

Those who took part in the craze several decades ago are now back in action. Today, people of all ages are riding in the fever of the ugly sweaters. There has been a significant increase of ugly sweater themed parties. Guests both young and old are outsmarting each other with unique, cheap and gauche decorations. Even TV host Jimmy Falon has started to create a segment which he called “The 12 Days of Christmas Sweaters”.

The sweater’s popularity has sky-rocketed immensely in that there are runway designs that feature the sweater. Tribal prints as well as Fair Isle knits have become popular this season.

Share Button

A Walk In 1875 St. Louis – A Step Back In Time


If you are interested on how life was in St. Louis in the 1800’s, you can find out by exploring the new 6,000 square foot exhibit “A Walk in 1875 St. Louis”. This exhibit is based on the illustrated maps that were made in 1874 by the team of Richard Compton and Camille Dry. The bird’s eye view map spans eight feet in height by 24 feet in length and shows how both the wealthy and the working class lived. What is so amazing about the map illustration is its accuracy that can be considered a historical record on how the people lived in St. Louis. Every single home, building, street including every tree was in accurate perspective.

Little is known about Camille Dry except that he was from Paris and had drawn landscapes of the United States during the Civil War. About 12 illustrative maps have been made before Dry went to St. Louis. Richard Compton was the publisher of the map illustrations which resulted into an 11 by 17 inch book that cost so much to produce that the publisher had to charge $25 – that is $500 today.

What does the exhibit feature? The three most popular places to visit are the city jail, insane asylum and the morgue. Based on the bird’s eye view city map, water then was not very clean which leads people into thinking what it tastes like. There were separate illustrated maps for individual neighborhoods like the map of Tower Grove Park with intricate drawings of each of the pavilions that still stand today.

The exhibit A Walk in 1875 St. Louis had the map art blown up to scale that has never been done before so that visitors can walk through St. Louis lavish opulence and crowded tenements. The reference materials were all in black and white and they have to figure out how to bring it to life with color. Artist Dan Zettwoch worked with exhibit architects so that graphics can fit perfectly on the walls including doorways. What started as small became 10 times more than its original size and printed on canvas wallpaper-like material for installation.

Share Button

The Growth In Global Demand For Recycled Paper Packaging


Packaging firms like Paper Mart need to increase their production of recycled paper packaging due to the growing demand among consumers. Consumers are today are becoming more environmentally conscious and their preferences for recycled packaging materials is making an impact on packaging manufacturers.
According to Research and Markets, the world’s largest market research store, the global market for recycled paper packaging is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.73% over a 5-year period from 2014 to 2019. The report is based on in-depth market analysis and input from industry experts in the America’s and the APAC and EMEA regions.

According to the report, one of the major trends in the emerging markets is the growth of recycled paper packaging in the APAC region primarily due to the increased production of paper and pulp. This allows packaging companies to increase their production of recycled paper materials to meet the demands of discerning customers in the emerging markets as well as global markets.
One of the major factors that fuel the growth of recycled packaging materials is government initiative to reduce the use of plastics in packaging. Consumers have also become more aware about recycling and the negative effects of plastic that have accumulated in landfills.

However manufacturers of recycled packaging materials are challenged by the considerable gap between supply and demand. There is an overwhelming demand from consumers and retailers; however, packaging manufacturers are unable to meet the demand because they lack proper infrastructure and equipment. Consumers therefore have no choice but to look for alternative packaging products.

Recycled paper packaging makes use of paper products that have been derived from paper waste generated by end consumers or from waste that have been generated by other paper packaging manufacturers. Paper is a material that can be recycled up to 10 times in the reproduction of new products that can be used for various applications aside from packaging. Paper recycling provides a lot of advantages to manufacturers from the reduction in the cost of packaging materials to the reduction of toxic emissions in the environment. Recycled paper packaging is increasingly being adopted by the food and beverage industry, health care and personal care industries.

Share Button