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The latest news from Business Insider

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    WOW Air Airbus A320

    • The Icelandic, ultra-low-cost airline Wow Air laid off 111 employees on Thursday, the airline said in a press release.
    • The airline added that contractors and short-term employees will not have their contracts renewed.
    • Wow Air described 2018 as a "challenging" year and said it was in the process of "restructuring and simplifying its operations."
    • The airline now has around 1,000 employees.


    The Icelandic, ultra-low-cost airline Wow Air laid off 111 employees on Thursday, the airline said in a press release. The airline added that contractors and short-term employees will not have their contracts renewed.

    "WOW air hopes to be able to offer affected employees a future employment opportunity when WOW air starts growing again," the airline said.

    The airline now has around 1,000 employees.

    Read more: Boeing just launched a new $400 million 777X private airliner, and it's a flying mansion that can go halfway around the world

    Wow Air described 2018 as a "challenging" year and said it was in the process of "restructuring and simplifying its operations." The airline said it would trim its fleet from twenty to eleven aircraft by selling Four Airbus A321 aircraft and potentially returning some aircraft, including all of its Airbus A321s, to lessors. The airline's fleet will consist of single-aisle Airbus aircraft.

    "This is the most difficult day in the history of WOW air. We have dedicated people who have worked hard to make WOW air a reality and it breaks my heart to downsize the company," Wow Air CEO Skuli Mogensen said in the press release. "However, in order to ensure our future and preserve WOW air in the long run, we unfortunately must take these drastic measures."

    Wow Air will introduce a new flight schedule in January, the airline said, though its December and early-January schedules will not change.

    Icelandair, Iceland's flagship carrier, said in November that it would not follow through on its deal to purchase Wow Air because of unspecified conditions Icelandair said were not likely to be met.

    You can read Wow Air's full press release below:

    After a challenging year, WOW air is now restructuring and simplifying its operations to return to its roots as a profitable ultra-low cost airline while discussions with Indigo Partners progress.

    WOW air's fleet will be reduced from twenty to eleven aircraft, all single-aisle Airbus. WOW air is in negotiations with its lessors to return some of its aircraft including all Airbus A330s. Four Airbus A321s are being sold in a transaction that will improve WOW air's liquidity by more than 10 million USD.

    There will no changes in the schedule in December and early January. In January 2019, WOW air will implement a new flight schedule. WOW air will contact passengers affected by these changes.

    Considering this smaller operation, a reduction in WOW air’s workforce is unfortunately inevitable. Today, 111 permanent employees were laid off across the airline. Contractors and short term staff will not be renewed for the time being. WOW air hopes to be able to offer affected employees a future employment opportunity when WOW air starts growing again.

    “This is the most difficult day in the history of WOW air. We have dedicated people who have worked hard to make WOW air a reality and it breaks my heart to downsize the company. However, in order to ensure our future and preserve WOW air in the long run, we unfortunately must take these drastic measures“ says Skuli Mogensen CEO and founder of WOW air.

    After this restructuring, about one thousand employees will remain with WOW air.

    This information is information that WOW air hf. is obliged to make public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation. The information was submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact person set out above, at 11:00 GMT on December 13, 2018.

    SEE ALSO: I tried economy class on Etihad, the airline famous for its $23,000 apartment-in-the-sky ticket, and I was surprised to find it wasn't anything special

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This Rolls-Royce feature might be the world's fanciest way to tailgate

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    This is a preview of the Influencer Marketing (2018) research report from Business Insider Intelligence. To learn more about the top platforms, as well as strategies for social media influencer marketing, click here. Current subscribers can read the report here.

    Social Media Influencer Marketing Success Metrics

    The concept of a brand hiring a popular personality to promote a product or service isn't new, and brands know that celebrity endorsements can sell products. In the age of social media, however, brands are finding new ways to leverage popular figures as brand ambassadors, and these people aren't necessarily famous actors, singers, or athletes.

    How brands are leveraging social media influencer marketing

    While brands certainly continue to tap celebrities for endorsement deals, they’re also starting to enlist social media personalities, broadly known as “influencers,” for advertising campaigns. Social influencers generally focus on specific content areas — like fashion, beauty, parenting, or gaming — and cater their content to a specific vertical.

    A new report from BI Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, identifies the ways brands can find and manage relationships with social media influencers. It notes the most engaging industry verticals, the pitfalls to avoid, and the opportunities to cash-in on. Finally, it explores how major social platforms are increasingly building out tools that enable their most popular users to build their personal brands.

    Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:

    • Influencer marketing ad spend is poised to reach between $5 billion and $10 billion in 2022. Taking the midpoint of $7.5 billion as a base case, this represents a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 38%.
    • Brands need to fine-balance providing influencers with enough creative freedom, while also ensuring the messaging positively reflects the brand. Nearly 40% of influencers believe that overly restrictive content guidelines are one of the biggest mistakes brands and agencies make when working with them. 
    • Influencers tend to have higher user engagement than content generated by brands. The average influencer engagement rate across industry verticals is 5.7%. As a comparison, the average engagement rate for brands on Instagram has fluctuated between 2-3% in the past year. 
    • Authenticity is key for influencer marketing messaging. Brands should give influencers sufficient creative freedom to keep posts authentic, as it makes posts less likely to be dismissed by users. Other best practices include repurposing influencer content for multiple platforms, evaluating the audience and following of an influencer, and leveraging data to optimize future campaigns. 

     In full, the report:

    • Outlines recent steps the top social platforms are taking for influencer posts.
    • Details the best practices brands should adopt when starting out with influencer marketing. 
    • Discusses the top verticals that are poised to benefit the most from influencer marketing, and which ones are growing. 
    • Highlights the factors that will be critical for compliance with social platforms and the FTC.

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    • Apple said it would build a new campus in Texas for 15,000 employees on Thursday.
    • But that's not the only place the iPhone giant is expanding.
    • Here's an incomplete list of Apple's expanding footprint in the United States, and what it's likely to do at all of these new facilities. 

    Apple's building a new campus in Austin, Texas, the iPhone giant announced on Thursday.

    This new office complex could support up to 15,000 employees in departments like customer service, research and development, and operations, Apple said.

    But that's not the only place where Apple is widening its footprint. Apple is starting to expand far beyond its headquarters in Cupertino, California, with offices, retail stores, and employees in all 50 states.

    Part of this is in response to the Trump administration's pressure for Apple to do more manufacturing in the United States. Apple's responses over the past year have focused on how much business it already does in the U.S., even if the iPhone is largely assembled in China. 

    On Thursday, Apple said its expansion wasn't only limited to Austin — it's going to three more states as well, and that's not even counting the data centers it had previously announced.

    Here's where Apple may be expanding near you: 

    SEE ALSO: Apple threw shade at Amazon 'HQ2' calling it a 'beauty contest,' but then it did the exact same thing

    Apple is building a new 133-acre campus in Austin, Texas, only a mile away from its existing offices in the city.

    According to Apple, this new campus may one day support as many as 15,000 employees.

    But Apple also said it planned to expand to 1,000 employees in other areas, including Seattle, where it has people working on artificial intelligence and Apple Maps.

    Apple has been assembling a team of robotics and data collection experts to fly drones to improve Apple Maps, Bloomberg reported in 2016

    Apple is also expanding in Culver City, Los Angeles, where it will take over a property previously earmarked for HBO. Apple is likely to base its original content operations here.

    Source: Variety

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Vlad Tenev Robinhood founder CEO

    • Robinhood faced significant outages with its options trading services Wednesday.
    • Some Robinhood customers attempting to access options trading Wednesday morning received a message stating "Account Deactivated" and were directed to the company's support email address without given further explanation of the issue. 
    • Users turned to social media to voice their anger.
    • "The majority of affected accounts have had their trading ability restored, and we’re working to restore access for the other subset," a spokesperson said.  

    Robinhood, the trading app that has risen in popularity due to its no-fee brokerage business, faced significant outages with its options trading services Wednesday, keeping customers out of their accounts and preventing them from closing out open positions.

    Some Robinhood customers attempting to access options trading Wednesday morning received a message stating "Account Deactivated" and were directed to the company's support email address without given further explanation of the issue. 

    A Robinhood spokesperson told Business Insider the outage impacted "a smaller percentage of customers" and trading was limited, "as a precautionary measure."

    "We experienced an outage with options trading, affecting a smaller percentage of customers, and we limited trading for some as a precautionary measure. The majority of affected accounts have had their trading ability restored, and we’re working to restore access for the other subset," the spokesperson said.  

    Users turned to social media to voice their anger. On Robinhood's Reddit page, the first mention of trouble came from a thread posted at 9:04 AM EST in which the user saidits option order was reject.  

    Robinhood first directly acknowledged the issue when responding to a tweet at 10:36 AM EST.

    Less than 20 minutes later, Robinhood issued a tweet stating it had "temporarily shut down options trading" and was "working to restore service ASAP".

    Users impacted by the outage also received an email from the company.


    Robinhood sent a follow-up email when accounts had been re-activated, offering three months of Robinhood Gold, the app's premium service, for free. 


    That didn't stop customers from pointing out the losses they faced in the market from not being able to access their accounts. 

    This morning, Robinhood tweeted again, stating it had been working on the issue overnight.

    However, users continued to tweet at the company, describing losses they felt they faced due to the outage.

    As of 1:00 PM EST, Robinhood was still working to restore access to accounts and options trading,according to its status page, stating "nearly all accounts have been resorted."

    The outage comes at an inopportune for the app, which announced Thursday it would begin offering checking and savings accounts to customers as part of its overall goal to "democratize America's financial system."

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: The legendary economist who predicted the housing crisis says the US will win the trade war

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    chris watts extra wide

    • A video released by the Weld County District Attorney's Office shows the moment Chris Watts realized he had been caught in a lie.
    • Last month, Watts was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences after admitting he killed his pregnant wife and two young daughters.
    • The recently released video shows Watts watching a neighbor's surveillance footage that proved his wife never left the home with their daughters the day they disappeared, as he had claimed to police.
    • Instead, it shows Watts suspiciously loading up his vehicle and driving off in the pre-dawn hours, shortly after his wife was seen returning home from a business trip.

    Newly released video shows the moment Chris Watts, 33, realized his alibi didn't hold up after his pregnant wife and two young daughters went missing.

    The video, released in a records request by the Longmont Times-Call and confirmed by INSIDER, was taken on a Frederick Police Department officer's body camera, and shows Watts at his neighbor's house, watching surveillance video that captured his activities the morning that his wife Shanann, 34, and daughters Bella, 4, and Celeste, 3, disappeared.

    Watts told police that his wife ran off with their daughters while he was at work that day, but the footage only shows Watts leaving the house during that period.

    The footage also captured Shanann returning to the home in the early hours of August 13, after flying back from a business trip in Arizona.

    Just a few hours later, Watts is seen backing his vehicle into the driveway in the pre-dawn hours, loading it up and driving off.

    Read more:'I put my hands around my wife's neck': Video shows the chilling moment Chris Watts confessed to strangling his pregnant wife

    Autopsy reports show that Shanann was strangled while the two girls were smothered. Later, after failing a polygraph test, Watts confessed to killing his wife but said that she killed their daughters when he told her he wanted a divorce.

    He later confessed to killing all three and was sentenced last month to three consecutive life in prison sentences. He led investigators to the location where he disposed of their bodies, at an oil site where he worked.

    shanann watts bella celeste

    In the video, Watts looks nervous as he watches the surveillance footage, captured by his neighbor Nathaniel Trinastich.

    About a minute into the video, Watts puts his hands on his head and looks away from the screen.

    Near the end of the video, Watts goes outside to speak to a detective, while Officer Scott Coonrod stays and talks to Trinastich.

    Once Watts is out of the room, Trinastich turns to the officer and says, "He's not acting right."

    Trinastich goes on to say that he and his wife often hear the couple arguing and that they were concerned something happened to Shanann when she left to spend most of the summer with her daughters in North Carolina.

    "To be completely honest with you, my wife and I were wondering when she was on vacation if something happened, because I've heard them flat-out screaming at each other at the top of their lungs, and he gets crazy," he said.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: 7 things you shouldn't buy on Black Friday

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    The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you'll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.

    best products 2018 6

    Thousands of product tests and reviews later, here we stand at the end of the year, excited to present to you our 2018 Insider Picks Hall of Fame.

    The point of Insider Picks has always been to discover and share with you the best of the best. Still, we have some personal favorites that are truly the cream of the crop and we want to make sure you don't miss them.  

    These are all the tech gadgets, kitchen appliances, clothes, shoes, home products, and personal care products that impressed us and rose above everything else we reviewed in 2018. Some are new product launches, while others are just new to us.

    You'll find an explanation for why we loved it, plus a link to the original review or related guide so you'll have all the information needed to decide whether you want to join each product's fan club.

    See the 36 best products we reviewed in 2018 below.

    Crane & Canopy sheets

    Sheets and Sheet Sets, $35 to $249, available at Crane & Canopy

    Read more about the best sheets you can buy for your bed here

    Crane & Canopy is a startup that began selling easy-to-use duvet covers in 2012. Since then, the company has branched out into sheets, comforters, pillows, blankets, towels, washcloths, and more.

    I tried a set of striped sheets from Crane & Canopy and I loved them. Not only are the sheets silky smooth and soft straight out of the package, they also come in several fun prints and colors. I chose the gray and white striped sheets, because they make for a nice, neutral base layer for my bedding. Malarie Gokey, Insider Picks guides editor

    The Sonos soundbar

    Sonos Beam, $399, available at Amazon

    Read our review of the Sonos Beam here

    Once a year I make a significant "treat yourself"-style tech purchase, and in 2018 that was the Sonos Beam. Sonos’ compact soundbar carries over the best features from the company’s Sonos One speaker: built-in Alexa, support for Apple’s AirPlay 2 software, and excellent, well-balanced sound.

    The Beam gets louder than its small size would suggest, and it never sounds distorted. I’ve used it while watching movies, playing video games, and listening to music, and it’s sounded universally excellent. The Beam can’t quite compete with the immersion from a 5.1 surround sound setup, but it doesn’t have to. I live in a small, New York City apartment, and the Beam has given me a home theater system that was easy to set up and enjoy. Brandt Ranj, Insider Picks associate editor

    A Peak Design backpack

    Peak Design Everyday Backpack 20L, $259.95, available at Amazon

    Peak originally began as a camera accessory company, but its Everyday backpack and travel bags are great for, well, everyday use — not just for carrying cameras. The reconfigurable internal shelves can be adjusted quickly for any needs. I use this bag for my daily commute to work, and even as my daypack when I travel. I'm also a fan of Peak’s travel backpack and packing tools. David Slotnick, Insider Picks senior reporter

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    facebook executives in crypto 2x1

    • Facebook is working on a secretive blockchain project, but many Facebook employees are jumping ship to work on their own blockchain and crypto projects.
    • The Facebook veterans are bringing high-level tech experience and discipline to a crypto sector famous for chaos and turmoil.
    • Business Insider spoke to industry insiders to track down 15 alumni from the social network now working in the space, and interviewed many of them.

    Facebook turned heads earlier this year when it announced that it was diving into blockchain

    The social media giant has yet to specify what its blockchain plans entail, but it is currently trying to hire crypto experts and build a team — a recruiting effort that news site Cheddar recently reported has proven more challenging than expected. 

    The irony is that many of the big players in the crypto world once worked at Facebook. Dozens of Facebook alumni have left the company in recent years to join the blockchain boom. 

    The engineering and management experience earned while working on a major tech product like Facebook's 2-billion member social network — along with the financial windfall many employees received in the 2012 IPO — have left the Facebook veterans well-positioned to build a new crop of crypto and blockchain startups. 

    The former Facebook employees — and other tech workers from established companies — will have to apply their skills not only to professionalize the sector but to convince naysayers that the volatile market, currently suffering from a sharp drop in cryptocurrency prices, is not just a flash in the pan.

    Business Insider spoke to people throughout blockchain ecosystem to track down some of the key Facebook alumni who made the jump to work in crypto, and asked what this shift could mean for the industry.

    So, in no particular order, here are fifteen former Facebook employees now trying their luck in the wild world of crypto and blockchain:

    SEE ALSO: Months after killing its drone project, Facebook is testing experimental hardware at a new facility in the New Mexico desert

    1. David Park, a Facebook product guru brought in to manage Refereum's operations.

    Until January 2018, David Park led the product team for Facebook's Mobile App Install Ads business.

    He had been dabbling in the blockchain space and making investments since the end of 2013, but it was only then that he decided to jump into it full time — joining Refereum as its COO later that year. (By the end of his time at Facebook he was "thinking about crypto 24/7," he admitted.) 

    Refereum is a startup that uses cryptocurrency to provide reward tokens to users of other apps and services to encourage growth; it has worked with triple-A game Battlefield, as well as a variety of blockchain projects.

    "It was super exciting to think about jumping into this industry early on and being a player early on," he said, citing the example of how Facebook accelerated the "career trajectories" of early employees — saying he viewed similar potential for people working in blockchain.

    He's also a founder of Orca, a syndicate of current or former Facebook employees who invest in crypto projects.

    2. Veteran finance exec and initial blockchain skeptic Kahina Van Dyke.

    Unlike many of the Facebook employees who transitioned into crypto, Kahina Van Dyke's background isn't in tech but in finance.

    She's a veteran of Citibank and MasterCard, and joined Facebook at the start of 2016 to serve as global director of financial service and payments.

    She held that role for more than two years — until June 2018 — when she moved to Ripple, one of the biggest companies in the blockchain ecosystem, focused on enterprise payments. She now works as the firm's SVP of business and corporate development.

    Van Dyke was, she admits, initially "vocally resistant" to the concept of bitcoin, but started getting more interested in 2016, when the hype around blockchain (as distinct from bitcoin) first started taking off.

    3. Cryptocurrency index fund pioneer Hunter Horsley.

    Bitwise Asset Management launched the first cryptocurrency index fund back in 2017 — and at its helm is Hunter Horsley.

    Horsley, the chief exec, cofounder the firm in November 2016 after leaving Facebook, where he was a product manager focusing on video monetization, and a product manager at Instagram before that.

    Horsley was also named to Forbes’ 30 under 30 finance list in 2018.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    colin o'brady south pole trek.JPG

    • 33-year-old American explorer Colin O'Brady is attempting to become the first person to cross Antarctica alone and unaided.
    • He just reached the South Pole, 40 days into his trek.
    • A British man, Louis Rudd, is also trekking alone across the southern continent and nearing the South Pole.
    • If either man finishes the journey, it would be a world first. 

    It's literally all downhill from here for American explorer Colin O'Brady.

    The 33-year-old is trying to become the first person to cross Antarctica on skis, alone and unaided. He just hit the South Pole — the route's halfway mark and point of highest elevation. O'Brady expects he'll pick up speed now as he heads down-slope and away from the pole. His final destination is the Ross Ice Shelf.

    O'Brady posted an Instagram photo of himself at the bottom tip of the world on Wednesday, 40 days into his trek. "Today has quite honestly been one of the best days of my entire life," he wrote in the post. "It was whiteout conditions approaching the pole as it’s been for days.

    Day 40: SOUTH POLE!!! I made it!!! What a day. I expected to be happy reaching the South Pole, but today has quite honestly been one of the best days of my entire life. It was whiteout conditions approaching the pole as it’s been for days. I spent about an hour there - taking photos and soaking in the moment before continuing onward. I am deeply honored to be adding to the 100 year lineage of the @explorersclub flag. Just having that fabric in my hand at the pole, knowing all of the other hands it’s touched over the generations, gives me chills. Shortly after leaving the pole the sun came out and I was overcome with one of the deepest feelings of happiness and calm that I have ever experienced. I truly felt I was tapping into all of the love that was being sent my way from all over the world. Deep, deep, deep gratitude - I’m shining my love right back at you. Some perspective on today’s accomplishment (which for me feels completely humbling, putting me in rare company.) Only 28 people before me have completed coast to pole crossing; skied from the coast of Antarctica to the South Pole, solo, unsupported (no resupplies), and unaided (no kites). Only 2 people before me have done so on this route. For all of these people the South Pole was a very worthy finish line, but I still have unfinished business as I try to be the very first to complete a full traverse and reach the opposite coast. Onward!! #TheImpossibleFirst #BePossible

    A post shared by Colin O'Brady (@colinobrady) on Dec 12, 2018 at 6:20pm PST on


    The whiteout was so bad the night before O'Brady reached South Pole that he stopped and camped in his tent, just three miles shy of his goal. Once he reached the pole, though, conditions were clear enough for him to snap the selfie.

    Just before O'Brady started his journey, he told Business Insider that the first half of the trek would be harder than the second. He took off hauling a 400-pound load, which included just one pair of underwear in order to save weight.

    Read More: At the bottom of the world, a 33-year-old is about to trek across Antarctica alone — a journey no one has survived. He's bringing just one pair of underwear.

    "All the way to the South Pole, not only do I have a heavy sled, but I'm going uphill the entire time," he said. "It's imperceptibly up and downhill to the naked eye, but you can really feel it when you're dragging that much weight." 


    Now, O'Brady has eaten 40 days' worth of food rations — he's subsisting on a 8,000-calorie-per-day diet of protein bars and freeze-dried meals — and burned through a good chunk of his cooking fuel.

    So he's hoping to pick up the pace. 

    But O'Brady isn't the only man trying to set a record as the first person to cross the white continent without the help of a re-supply or a kite. Around the same time he started his trek, another explorer, 49-year-old Louis Rudd also set out from the Ronne Ice Shelf. Rudd is now 12 miles away from the South Pole checkpoint, which means the world first is still in reach for either skier.

    The solo, unaided crossing both men are attempting has never been completed before because everyone who's tried has either given up or died.

    "People have crossed oceans in sailboats by themselves, people have even rowed boats across the oceans, but this is just one of those things that hasn't quite been accomplished," O'Brady said.

    That's part of the reason why O'Brady bulked up before the trip. He spent months strength training, packing about 20 extra pounds of muscle mass onto his normally 165-pound frame.

    O'Brady said he hopes his journey inspires others to do things they never thought were possible, too.

    Colin at North Pole (1).JPG"I don't think everyone wants to go walk across Antarctica, but I know that people certainly have challenges in their life," O'Brady said. "Everyone has reservoirs of untapped potential inside of themselves and can achieve really incredible things." 

    SEE ALSO: At the bottom of the world, a 33-year-old is about to trek across Antarctica alone — a journey no one has survived. He's bringing just one pair of underwear.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Scientists just released this rare footage of a colorful underwater habitat in Antarctica

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    Climate change is already affecting ecosystems and environments around the world, putting vulnerable animals in danger of extinction. With research and activism underway, there is hope in saving animals from being wiped out completely.

    From giant pandas to chimpanzees, here are 10 rainforest animals that may go extinct because of climate change.

    SEE ALSO: The 45 Most Endangered Species In America

    FOLLOW US: INSIDER is on Facebook

    Climate change is wiping out bamboo, which puts giant pandas in danger.

    Giant pandas reside in the bamboo rainforests of China, and they rely solely on bamboo for food. Only 1,500 giant pandas exist in the wild today, according to National Geographic.

    The creatures spend half of their day eating and consume up to 15% of their body weight in bamboo. But the tree-like plant is particularly vulnerable to effects from climate change, especially increasing temperatures, because of its unique reproductive cycle — bamboo only flowers every three decades, as reported by the Guardian

    A 2012 study published in the journal Nature Climate Change illustrated the importance of bamboo to the survival of giant pandas and other animals that rely on the plant for food and shelter. The scientists studied the bamboo in the Qinling Mountains of China and concluded that most species of bamboo will likely die off completely by the end of this century.

    Asian elephants are losing access to fresh water.

    According to the World Wildlife Fund, Asian elephants are under direct threat from climate change because they are sensitive to high temperatures and do not adapt easily to changing climates. It's projected that temperatures will rise across South and Southeast Asia, and the region is also projected to see increases in heavy rain events during the wet seasons and a higher frequency of drought. This directly impacts Asian elephants as their daily activities, reproduction, and migration are all tied to having an available water source.

    Fewer than 50,000 Asian elephants are alive today, and their numbers decline every year.

    Asian elephants, which weight 11,000 pounds on average, also need vast amounts of water to remain healthy and active. But climate change is limiting their access to fresh water because of changing weather.

    Philippine eagles are facing habitat destruction.

    Philippine eagles are often called monkey-eating eagles, since their main food source is small monkeys like macaques. The eagles live in tropical rainforests, nesting among the highest branches and hunting for prey among the trees.

    Philippine eagles are in danger of going extinct, with only an estimated 200 currently alive, according to Smithsonian magazine. The birds have an unusually low reproduction rate, often laying just a single egg in a year.

    Philippine eagles' population is declining due to rising temperatures, and they are also at risk because of the pollution and pesticides that their prey ingests. But their biggest threat is deforestation and logging, which has left the majority of Philippine eagles homeless.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    As consumers increasingly turn to e-commerce for all their shopping needs, speedy fulfillment isn’t just a “nice to have” — it’s the expectation of every online shopping experience. And if logistics companies and their retail partners want a shot at thwarting the ever-looming threat of Amazon Prime, it needs to be a priority.

    last mile share of delivery costs

    As a result, businesses have begun racing to develop new technologies and experimental supply chain models to increase parcel volume, expedite deliveries, and delight customers — all while trying to cut costs. Unfortunately, one of their biggest expenses and challenges is same-day, last mile shipping.

    In a new report from Business Insider Intelligence, we take a look at shipping logistics, the last mile problem, and how companies can adapt to the new challenges of e-commerce shipping. Read on to learn some of the highlights of this increasingly prevalent disruption.

    What is last mile delivery?

    In a product’s journey from warehouse shelf to customer doorstep, the “last mile” of delivery is the final step of the process — the point at which the package finally arrives at the buyer’s door. In addition to being a key to customer satisfaction, last mile delivery is both the most expensive and time-consuming part of the shipping process.

    What is the last mile problem?

    If you’ve ever tracked a package online and saw that it was “out for delivery” for what felt like forever, you already understand that the last mile problem is inefficiency. That’s because the final leg of shipment typically involves multiple stops with low drop sizes.

    In rural areas, delivery points along a particular route could be several miles apart, with only one or two packages getting dropped off at each one. In cities, the outlook isn’t much better; what urban areas make up for in stop proximity is quickly negated by the near constant delays of traffic congestion.

    The costs and inefficiencies of the last mile problem have only been further compounded by the continuous rise of e-commerce in US retail sales, which has dramatically increased the number of parcels delivered each day, as well as raised customer expectations to include not just fast, but also free, delivery.

    What are the costs of last mile delivery?

    As a share of the total cost of shipping, last mile delivery costs are substantial — comprising 53% overall. And with the growing ubiquitousness of “free shipping,” customers are less willing to foot a delivery fee, forcing retailers and logistics partners to shoulder the cost. As such, it’s become the first place they’re looking to implement new technologies and drive process improvements.

    Technology solutions to improve last mile logistics

    With the rise of the gig economy, many consumers are already familiar with the concept of crowdsourcing local services through digital platforms like Uber, Airbnb, and Postmates. Location-based crowdsourcing allows consumers to open a mobile app to hail a ride, book a place to stay, order coffee to the office, hire a handyman to mount a TV, send flowers to that special someone, or even schedule takeout to arrive just as they’re walking through their apartment door.


    The crowdsourcing model has been prevalent in transportation, hospitality, and food delivery for some time now, and retailers are eyeing its low startup costs, asset-light operations, and improved customer experience to ease their last mile delivery woes.

    With crowdsource technology, retailers, logistics partners, and consumers can connect directly with local, non-professional couriers who use their own transportation to make deliveries. Companies can get their online orders to customers faster, and customers can get their items when and where they want them. The freedom to make on-demand and scheduled deliveries also ensures that customers are home at the time of delivery — eliminating the need for a second (or third) attempt.

    And with the ongoing integration and enhancement of automation across industries, it’s likely we’ll start seeing delivery robots, drones, and self-driving vehicles making many of these drop-offs in the not-so-far future.

    Explore last mile logistics challenges, solutions and trends

    Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service,  has written a detailed report on crowdsourced delivery that:

    • Details the factors driving investment and growth in crowdsourced delivery startups.
    • Examines the benefits and drawbacks of using crowdsourcing to deliver online orders.
    • Explains how crowdsourced delivery startups can improve their cost efficiencies to tackle greater delivery volumes
    • Explores the role that crowdsourcing will play in the future of delivery once automated delivery options, like drones and robots, arrive.

    Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:

    • Retailers are looking for ways to deliver goods faster to consumers' doorsteps to stave off Amazon's threat and meet customer expectations.
    • To accomplish that, retailers and delivery providers are zeroing in on the "last mile" of fulfillment, the most expensive and time-consuming part of the delivery process, which is when a package reaches the customer's address.
    • Startups like Postmates, Instacart, and others are looking to disrupt the last mile delivery space by leveraging the "Uber model," and connecting businesses to non-professional couriers who can deliver goods instantly.
    • Crowdsourcing can drastically speed up deliveries in urban areas, where there is a high density of deliveries and potential couriers to be matched.
    • However, as delivery volumes increase, crowdsourced delivery startups will need to further optimize their deliveries to improve cost efficiencies.
    • Many of the deliveries these startups perform today will likely be automated in the future, raising the possibility that these startups may eventually look to incorporate new technologies like delivery drones or self-driving delivery vehicles. 

    Subscribe to an All-Access pass to Business Insider Intelligence and gain immediate access to:

    This report and more than 250 other expertly researched reports
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    Dara Khosrowshahi

    • Uber employees are most likely start the next class of hot, new startups, according to First Round Capital's "2018 State of Startups" report
    • The survey found that 23% of respondents believed Uber employees were the most likely to become the next generation of notable founders within the next five years.
    • Around 16% thought Slack employees had the best shot, and around 15% thought they would come from Stripe.
    • The most infamous group of alumni was the "PayPal Mafia," the group of PayPal founders and early executives that included the likes of Peter Thiel, Reid Hoffman, and Elon Musk. 

    Uber employees are most likely start the next class of hot, new startups.

    That's according to First Round Capital's "2018 State of Startups" report that was released on Thursday. 

    The survey found that 23% of respondents believed Uber employees were the most likely to become the next generation of notable founders within the next five years.

    Around 16% thought Slack employees (last valued at $7.1 billion) had the best shot of creating the "next big thing," and around 15% thought they would come from the online payments company, Stripe. 

    The most infamous group of alumni, of course, came from PayPal. Known as the "PayPal Mafia," this group of overachieving entrepreneurs included Peter Thiel (co-founder of $20 billion Palantir), Reid Hoffman (co-founder of LinkedIn, which Microsoft bought for $26.2 billion), Jeremy Stoppelman (co-founder of Yelp, valued at $3 billion on the public markets), and Elon Musk (co-founder of Tesla and founder of SpaceX). 

    Read more:Meet The PayPal Mafia, The Richest Group Of Men In Silicon Valley

    Only time will tell if Uber employees can become the next "PayPal Mafia." But with the company's S-1 filing last week, which could see it go public at a valuation as high as $120 billion, Uber current employees may be cashing out and starting their new projects quite soon. 

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: How an automatic floodgate is helping communities against natural disasters

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    Nancy Pelosi

    • Nancy Pelosi wore a red Max Mara coat that became an internet sensation this week. 
    • The coat was called "the Glamis," and it was from a 2013 collection, according to the New York Times.
    • The designer announced on Wednesday that the coat would come back, in new colors, in 2019, Glamour reported. 

    Rep. Nancy Pelosi will likely return as speaker of the house, but she's already a style icon.

    She wore a red coat to meet President Donald Trump on Tuesday. The meeting became a televised battle between Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, and Trump.

    But as talked-about as the meeting was, the moments that endured were the photographs of Pelosi coming out of the White House afterwards. The coat was deep red with a standing collar, and many on the internet saw it as battle armor.

    A picture taken after the meeting, of Pelosi walking away from the White House, quickly became a meme, with tweets flying fast and furious. There's now even a parody Twitter account called "Nancy Pelosi's Red Coat."

    Read more:Fashion Nova is becoming the internet's favorite fashion label. Here's how this affordable brand won over Kylie Jenner and Cardi B on its way to 14 million Instagram followers.

    The coat was identified as "the Glamis," and it is from designer Max Mara, according to the New York Times. Those who were looking to purchase the coat were disappointed, however, when they found out that it was actually from a 2013 collection.

    However, on Wednesday, a spokesperson for the brand said that there was good news: the coat would be back in new colors in 2019, Glamour reported

    "You develop an emotional relationship with a coat like nothing else in your wardrobe,"Ian Griffiths, the creative director of Max Mara, told the Times."I can imagine why Ms. Pelosi chose to wear it for this important moment, and I’m honored."

    SEE ALSO: Mitt Romney wore a tux he bought on Amazon to the Met Gala — and it embarrassed his wife

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: I cooked nothing but Blue Apron for a week and it was a roller coaster of emotions — here's why I won't be using the meal kit service anymore

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    • I'm notoriously frugal and I rarely spend more than $100 on anything — no matter how high-quality it is.
    • After months of eyeing Everlane's $155 cashmere waffle knit turtleneck, I finally gave in and paid more than $100 for a sweater — for the first time in my life — and I don't regret it.
    • Everlane's cashmere is super soft, and the waffle knit gives it an amazing texture that you'll want to touch all day. Plus, its subtle, oversized square cut and low turtleneck make it super chic.

    When I first heard about Everlane, I wondered why everyone was so excited about its simple, basic-looking clothing. I didn't get why a $16 T-shirt was worth it, and why everyone was calling it "affordable." 

    Since then, I've tested Everlane jeans, flats, boots, jackets, and sweaters as part of my job, and I've loved every single thing I've tried. 

    The secret, it turns out, is that Everlane's clothing is made from high-quality materials that last. You can feel the quality when you wear the startup's clothing — its leather is like butter, its cotton is supple, its cashmere is heavenly soft — and the clothing's deceptively simple cuts look effortlessly stylish.

    It doesn't hurt that Everlane also assures you that its factories are sustainable, its workers are paid fairly, and its materials are responsibly sourced. Add to that the fact that Everlane's prices are actually cheaper than other pieces of equal quality by other brands, and it should be a no-brainer.

    But even so, I'm notoriously thrifty, so paying more than $100 for literally anything makes me feel guilty and a bit anxious.

    Everlane $155

    So when I fell in love with Everlane's $155 cashmere waffle knit turtleneck sweater, I knew I was in trouble. I told myself, "$155 for a cashmere waffle knit turtleneck sweater is actually a great deal!" 

    But then I thought, "Do I really need it? How can I justify spending that much on something I could find for half the price (albeit minus the cashmere and the quality)?"

    I eyed it for months. The color I wanted sold out, and I asked Everlane to email me if it came back in stock — just in case I got up the nerve to buy it.

    It's hard to shake the feeling that everything is too expensive and you can't afford any of it. Even when you can, you wonder if you should.

    It comes from growing up without money in a household that always hovered around the poverty line. I wore $10 acrylic sweaters from JCPenney and J.Crew thrift shop finds that I bought with money I earned from working during the summer — not $155 cashmere sweaters. Even though I now have an amazing job and I live well above the poverty line, the thought of spending that much money on a sweater still makes me cringe.

    So what pushed me over the edge and made me buy a $155 cashmere sweater?

    First, my colleague wore the exact waffle knit sweater I'd been eyeing and told me how much she loved it. I touched it, and I was almost sold. But still, $155 and the color I wanted was out of stock! 

    But then, I got two emails in my inbox: a $20 off coupon from Everlane and a notification that my rust red color was back in stock. Knowing how quickly Everlane sells out of things, I hastily rechecked my measurements, cringed, and clicked the buy button.

    About a week later, it came. Needless to say, the sweater was perfect. I ordered several sizes smaller than usual since it's an oversized sweater, and I didn't want it to be super oversized on my petite frame. I was glad it fit the way I'd hoped. The simple square cut looks effortlessly chic, and the shorter turtleneck doesn't irritate my skin or choke me.

    Anyone who's worn cheap, scratchy wool or annoying synthetics knows the joy of cashmere and its perfect softness. The cashmere is super soft and lush and the waffle knit gives it a lovely texture that you just want to touch all day.

    It is, in short, the perfect sweater, and I wish I had it in every color.

    Even though I still can't believe I paid $155 for a sweater (!), I don't regret it at all. Some things truly are worth it when you have the money and you've considered your purchase carefully. Besides, it'll probably take me another year or two to buy anything else that costs more than $100, so I might as well enjoy this moment. 

    Buy the Waffle Square Cashmere Turtleneck, available at Everlane, $155

    SEE ALSO: All of Insider Picks' holiday gift guides, in one place

    DON'T MISS: 25 cold weather wardrobe staples for women we swear by for our own closets

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    google headquarters

    • Google reorganized to become Alphabet three years ago, but the way the company is structured is still rather confusing.
    • Alphabet is organized in two parts: Google and "Other Bets," which each house the various other parts of the company's business.
    • Here's a breakdown of all the divisions under Alphabet. 

    It's been three years since Google blew up its entire corporate structure to form a new parent company: Alphabet.

    The shake-up was intended to help all of its businesses operate more efficiently, a move CEO Larry Page was working on for years as a secret project he called "Javelin."

    This move also allowed Page to step back from day-to-day operations to "focus on the bigger picture."

    Now, Alphabet is a massive corporation that encompasses everything from internet-beaming hot air balloons to self-driving cars to Google Cloud. 

    Here are all the companies and divisions within Google's parent company, Alphabet: 

    SEE ALSO: From Meghan Markle to the World Cup: Here are the top 10 searches on Google in 2018

    Google officially became Alphabet in October 2015, with the hope of allowing business units to operate independently and move faster. Google cofounder Larry Page is the CEO of the umbrella company, Alphabet.

    Alphabet is divided into two main units: Google and Other Bets. Other Bets is best known for its "moonshot" R&D unit, X, but it also houses several other companies. Let's start with the smaller companies under Other Bets.

    Alphabet's Access division includes Google Fiber, which launched in Kansas City in 2012 and expanded to about 18 cities. Fiber offers extremely fast high-speed internet, TV, and phone service. It's billed as an alternative to traditional cable companies.

    Source: Business Insider

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    elite netflix

    • INSIDER ranked Netflix originals based on critics ratings from Rotten Tomatoes. 
    • The ratings range from 12% to 100%. 
    • INSIDER included both series and season debuts for the list. 
    • "One Day at a Time,""Love," and the YA series, "Elite," ranked high on the list.

    Netflix has been releasing more and more originals each year, and 2018 was no exception.

    From the premiere of shows, including "Elite" and the "Chilling Adventures of Sabrina," to the return of old favorites, like "BoJack Horseman" and "Jessica Jones," the streaming platform offered up shows for everyone.

    Using critics ratings from Rotten Tomatoes, INSIDER ranked all the TV shows that debuted or dropped new seasons in 2018 shows on Netflix. When the critic ratings were the same, INSIDER used audience ratings to break the ties.

    Here are the top Netflix shows of the year. 

    54. "Insatiable" (season one)

    Critics rating: 12%

    Critics consensus: "Broad stereotypes, clumsy social commentary, and a failed attempt at 'wokeness' make 'Insatiable' hard to swallow."

    53. "13 Reasons Why" (season two)

    Critics rating: 27%

    Critics consensus: "By deviating from its source material, '13 Reasons Why' can better explore its tenderly crafted characters; unfortunately, in the process, it loses track of what made the show so gripping in the first place."

    52. "Arrested Development" (season four, remix)

    Critics rating: 27%

    Critics consensus: "They've made a huge mistake."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Growth Regtech Firms

    This is a preview of a research report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service. To learn more about Business Insider Intelligence, click here.

    Regtech solutions seemed to offer the solution to financial institutions' (FIs) compliance woes when they first came to prominence around 24 months ago, gaining support from regulators and investors alike. 

    However, many of the companies offering these solutions haven't scaled as might have been expected from the initial hype, and have failed to follow the trajectory of firms in other segments of fintech.

    This unexpected inertia in the regtech industry is likely to resolve over the next 12-18 months as other factors come into play that shift FIs' approach to regtech solutions, and as the companies offering them evolve. External factors driving this change include regulatory support of regtech solutions, and consultancies offering more help to FIs wanting to sift through solutions. Startups offering regtech solutions will also play a part by partnering with each other, forming industry organizations, and taking advantage of new opportunities.

    This report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, provides a brief overview of the current global financial regulatory compliance landscape, and the regtech industry's position within it. It then details the major drivers that will shift the dial on FIs' adoption of regtech over the next 12-18 months, as well as those that will propel startups offering regtech solutions to new heights. Finally, it outlines what impact these drivers will have, and gives insight into what the global regtech industry will look like by 2020.

    Here are some of the key takeaways:

    • Regulatory compliance is still a significant issue faced by global FIs. In 2018 alone, EU regulations MiFID II and PSD2 have come into effect, bringing with them huge handbooks and gigantic reporting requirements. 
    • Regtech startups boast solutions that can ease FIs' compliance burden — but they are struggling to scale. 
    • Some changes expected to drive greater adoption of these solutions in the next 12 to 18 months are: the ongoing evolution of startups' business models, increasing numbers of partnerships, regulators' promotion of regtech, changing attitudes to the segment among FIs, and consultancies helping to facilitate adoption.
    • FIs will actively be using solutions from regtech startups by 2020, and startups will be collaborating in an organized fashion with each other and with FIs. Global regulators will have adopted regtech themselves, while continuing to act as advocates for the industry.

    In full, the report:

    • Reviews the major changes expected to hit the regtech segment in the next 12 to 18 months.
    • Examines the drivers behind these changes, and how the proliferation of regtech will improve compliance for FIs.
    • Provides our view on what the future of the regtech industry looks like through 2020.


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    Mask Frenzy_MAIN_01

    Skincare, like the convenience of home tech or casual talk about the weather, is an interest that unites a remarkable amount of us. We all want bright, clear complexions — and holiday cocktails, cookies, and late nights out with friends in dry winter air typically work against us.

    Luckily, there's no shortage of products — and excuses to stay in watching the Yule Log in a face mask — to help with that, whether you gift them to yourself or opt to bless friends or family with a present that is simultaneously entirely practical and totally luxurious. 

    Below are 50 of the best skincare gifts you can buy on Sephora, from masks to serums to body wash. They're cult-favorites, industry gold standards, and notable newcomers. There are single products and sets that save you money. No matter what you get, rest assured they'll be excited to get home and use it. 

    Looking for more gift ideas? Check out all of Insider Picks' holiday gift guides for 2018 here.

    Fresh Rose Face Mask

    Fresh Rose Face Mask, $62

    This beloved face mask from Fresh comes with real rose petals suspended in a silky gel. Once washed off, the skin looks noticeably brighter, plumper, and better hydrated.

    Tatcha Rice Polish Powder

    Tatcha Rice Polish Foaming Enzyme Powder, $65

    The Polished Rice Enzyme Powder is a water-activated Japanese exfoliator that gently removes dead skin to create a smoother canvas for makeup application. You can also opt for versions that address specific skin concerns like dryness or oiliness.

    Dr. Jart+ Dermaclear Trans-Foam Clay Trio

    Dr. Jart+ Dermaclear Trans-Foam Clay Trio, $35

    This trio of innovative, multi-action Trans-Foam Clay cleansers go on like a clay mask but transform into a gentle foaming cleanser.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    A container of Johnson's baby powder made by Johnson & Johnson.

    • Johnson & Johnson sank 8% on Friday after Reuters reported the company knew for decades that its baby powder contained asbestos.
    • Reuters reviewed documents from at least 1971 to the early 2000s that it said showed powders sometimes tested positively for small traces of asbestos.
    • Watch Johnson & Johnson trade live.

    Johnson & Johnson shares sank 8% Friday after Reuters reported that the pharmaceutical giant knew for decades that its baby powder contained asbestos.

    Reuters reviewed documents, deposition, and trial testimony from at least 1971 to the early 2000s that it said showed powders and raw talc sometimes tested positively for small traces of asbestos.

    Furthermore, "company executives, mine managers, scientists, doctors, and lawyers fretted over the problem and how to address it while failing to disclose it to regulators or the public," the Reuters reporter Lisa Girion wrote.

    Johnson & Johnson issued a statement on Friday  in response to the report, calling the article false and saying that its baby powder is "safe and asbestos-free."

    This is not the first time the company, which also manufactures medical devices, has come under fire for issues related to its baby powder.

    In July, a St. Louis jury awarded $4.69 billion to 22 women who said its talcum baby powder gave them ovarian cancer. At the time it was the sixth-largest product-defect award in US history.

    Johnson & Johnson was down a little over 2% this year.

    Johnson & Johnson shares.

    Now read:

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    • People on Instagram have been sharing an ambassador recruitment post from what they believed to be a Lululemon account this week.
    • The page from @lulurecruitment said chosen ambassadors would receive free clothing from the brand. 
    • But Lululemon has said that the page is a scam and the company is not affiliated with it. 

    Lululemon warned its customers this week that an ambassador recruiting post on Instagram was a scam.

    People on social media circulated a story from an Instagram account called @lulurecruitment this week, which said it would choose 150 people to become ambassadors for its brand.

    "We're looking for 150 ambassadors for our upcoming clothing season," the Instagram story said. "You will receive free shipments of Lululemon clothing and accessories monthly."

    The post said to enter for a chance to be an ambassador, people had to have a minimum of 150 followers, follow @lulurecruitment, and repost its instagram story and tag the page before December 31.

    Chosen ambassadors, the post said, would receive free Lululemon clothing and monthly gift cards and discounts.

    Read more:12 of the biggest money scandals and scams of 2018

    When people asked Lululemon about the post on Twitter, however, the company said they were not doing any ambassador recruiting through the Instagram posts.

    "Thanks for double-checking with us about the recruitment accounts and posts you're seeing — these are not legitimate or associated with us, and we currently have our brand team on this," the company said in one Twitter post.

    When responding to another person on Twitter, Lululemon said that any real Lululemon Instagram account has a verified blue check on its page.

    The company also suggested that people check its website to learn how to actually become a brand ambassador.

    The page @lulurecruitment, which posted the fake recruiting story, has been removed from Instagram.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: 6 airline industry secrets that will help you fly like a pro this holiday season

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    John Kelly

    • President Donald Trump's third chief of staff will likely face a strenuous time in the White House amid a key point in the Russia investigations.
    • The highly publicized nature of the job and the potential for a highly publicized fallout adds more pressure to a potential successor.
    • Several candidates have been mentioned as potential successors, some more outside the box than others.

    After news broke that John Kelly, the former US Marine Corps general who became President Donald Trump's second chief of staff, would leave the White House by the end of the year, the focus shifted to who could be next.

    Trump's first pick, Mike Pence's chief of staff Nick Ayers, already turned the job down (and said he'll leave Pence's side next year), leaving Trump in a more challenging hunt than expected for a replacement.

    Here are a few candidates who have been thrown around in the last few days as potential Kelly successors.

    SEE ALSO: Nick Ayers will not replace White House chief of staff John Kelly as suspected

    Jared Kushner

    Trump is reportedly considering Jared Kushner, his son-in-law and adviser, for the job. 

    A top Republican close to the White House told HuffPost that Kushner, Ivanka Trump's husband, has made it to the president's shortlist. The source and two others close to the White House confirmed Kushner's interest for the job to HuffPost. 

    On Thursday, December 13, Trump told reporters he is down to five finalists, saying he was now interviewing candidates for the position. 

    Kushner and his wife have faced opposition from both inside and outside of the White House due to concerns about nepotism.

    Steven Mnuchin

    Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, has also been floated around as a potential chief of staff, according to Reuters.

    Reuters reported that Mnuchin, who has served the administration since February 2017, sees his role as Treasury secretary as best suited to help the president. However, The Washington Post reported that Mnuchin might change his mind and take the chief of staff position if Trump pleads with him.

    Mick Mulvaney

    The Associated Press reported that Mick Mulvaney, current White House budget chief and acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, is back again as a contender for the chief of staff role after Trump briefly considered replacing Kelly with him over the summer.

    Mulvaney, the AP reported, is not interested in the position and would rather serve as Treasury or commerce secretary.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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