first_imgBusinesses in the North-West have voiced their concerns over the slow pace of progress with significant capital projects and called for accelerated delivery of the National Development Plan.The groups voiced their concerns at a meeting with local public representatives.The meeting was held at the Pramerica Offices in Letterkenny. Businesses say they need to support balanced growth and job creation across the entire country.In particular, they are calling for the recent corporate tax windfall to be directed towards much-needed infrastructure to position the regional economy to grow.Ibec North West Regional President Cormac Kearns said: “Businesses are anxious to see progress in the delivery of Project Ireland 2040 as challenges around peripherality and connectivity intensify. The delivery of strategic road infrastructure will help improve inter-urban and inter-regional connectivity and offer greater accessibility that will drive growth.“Investment in education and skills should also be viewed as a key infrastructure priority that will help support continued business growth in the region. “The country is currently enjoying windfall corporate tax revenue and there is an opportunity to invest in much-needed infrastructure, improve overall quality of life and position the regional economy to grow.  Delays on infrastructure have significant costs and pose a real threat to economic growth and damage competitiveness. Unless we deliver the infrastructure, the region will continue to develop at a slower pace.”Mr Kearns added: “With a disorderly Brexit looking increasingly likely and with regions being most vulnerable in this scenario, fast-tracking infrastructure investment is more vital than ever. We must invest ambitiously and deliver on committed projects as urgently as possible.”Donegal businesses voice concerns over Capital Plan for 2040 was last modified: October 2nd, 2019 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

first_img30 October 2014The University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg will most probably channel part of the R100-million donation towards the Wits Arts museum, with the rest going to advance research at the institution.The donation is from a long-time supporter of Wits University who has asked to remain anonymous. Chances are that R10-million of the donation will go towards the Wits Arts Museum and the rest will go towards research and/or teaching, the university said in a statement.Wits Vice-Chancellor and Principal Professor Adam Habib said the money will go a long way towards advancing higher education in general.“It is a great honour for Wits to receive funding of this magnitude from a South African who has seen it fit to invest in Wits, and in higher education, a sector that develops the future leaders of our country,’ said Habib.However, Habib said the university is still working out the “specific details’ of how the funds will be expended, but the institution is “always in need of funds to attract and retain talented academics and students, and to support the research and teaching activities’.Habib said it is rare that universities in South Africa receive funding of this magnitude from sole philanthropists, as the majority of external funding is sourced from corporates and state funding agencies locally, and international trusts and foundations.“A distinguishing feature of this donation is also that it is unrestricted. The university leadership has been granted the autonomy to deploy this donation as it deems best to enhance teaching and research at Wits. Such donations are rare and is to be particularly applauded,’ said Habib, adding that such donations, however, are important for Wits to remain a leader in research and service excellence.The Wits Group has an annual turnover of about R4-billion and to remain globally competitive, the institution is increasingly looking towards third stream income. Most universities in South Africa obtain their funding via three income streams – state subsidy, student fees and third stream income.On its website , Wits claims it is the recipient of the highest levels of external financial support of all universities in South Africa, from donors and partners all over the world.“I believe that Wits is an active social leader that seeks to advance the public good. An investment in Wits and in our universities today is an investment in our youth, and the future of our country,’ said Habib.SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest When a sports fan heads to the stadium to cheer on their favorite team, it is safe to say that one of the last things on their minds is agriculture. But, thanks to some help from an Ohio farm boy turned NFL football player,  the ways those in the stands think about farming and how it correlates with many aspects of the sporting event they are attending are changing.Behind that concept is Ohioan Mark Inkrott, who grew up in Glandorf with a long agricultural family history behind him. His grandfather converted a flour mill to a grain elevator that has been in the family since 1942. In fact, Inkrott’s father still delivers feed to farmers throughout Putnam County.“When I was a kid, whenever I wasn’t in school I was in my dad’s bulk truck,” Inkrott said. “That’s when I got to know all of the farmers and found out what they did and started to understand everything that goes into food production.”Although Inkrott has never forgotten those lessons from his rural neighbors, his life’s journey took him far away from home. He followed a career in football, which began at the college level at the University of Findlay and then professionally with the Carolina Panthers and the New York Giants. He even spent time on the gridiron in Europe.After hanging up the cleats, Inkrott came back to Ohio to attend graduate school and then found himself back in the industry where he started.“When I think back to when I was younger and thinking about what was ahead, I didn’t think agriculture would be where I ended up in my career,” Inkrott said. “It’s funny how you end up where you’re supposed to be and be working with farmers again has been very rewarding in the sense that they are value-based people who know what hard work is.”After working in the dairy industry for a while, Inkrott came up with a concept to fill what he saw as a need for agriculture. So he and a business partner, a fellow Glandorf native, founded UpField Group, a sports marketing and consulting firm specializing in agriculture and farm to stadium programs. The team also consists of a farm policy specialist and a rancher’s daughter. Together they bring a unique skill set to their agricultural endeavor  and have teamed up with associations ranging from the NFL Alumni to Mossy Creek Outfitters and Dairy Management Incorporated.“At one point in my life I just assumed that everyone across the country knew where food comes from but that certainly isn’t the case,” Inkrott said. “After my football career it occurred to me that sports have a powerful platform to be influential and to tell great stories about agriculture and food production.”UpField Group founder Mark Inkrott and professional wide receiver Larry FitzgeraldUpField Group specifically saw the most potential in the stadiums, which already are used to deliver messages from the teams on the field and from the sponsors that are plastered all around the venue.“Sports transcend throughout the community and it brings people together,” Inkrott said. “No matter what your political stance is, or your background or beliefs, when you go to a ballgame we can all agree on the team we are rooting for.”Inkrott said that when he did play football in cities like Charlotte and New York, he noticed things that very few people around him might have picked up on.“The first time I went to an NFL game, I was playing in it and even then I recognized the agriculture component to a ballgame,” Inkrott said. “As fans were enjoying a cold beer I knew that there were hops and barley farmers somewhere that made that possible. The same goes for hot dogs, popcorn and lemonade and the examples go on and on.”The vision of UpField Group is to make those connections to food and sports easier to see for everyone involved, closing the many gaps that are in between farmers and consumers.“Consumers, in general, are confused about their food and more labels and misleading marketing aren’t helping,” Inkrott said. “Transparency about how food is made is trendy and so is buying local, especially in urban markets and that is where UpField Group can come in and share the messages that people need to hear about farming and its misconceptions. Sports is a great platform for that.”And UpField Group believes that message should come from no one else but the farmer, so they have developed a strategic alliance with ag accounting firm K Coe Isom to help give consumers a 360-degree view of the farm through their many farmer clients.“The information we glean through this partnership is allowing us to create fact-based marketing and go find new opportunities in new markets,” Inkrott said. “We can meet with companies like a brewery, for example, and introduce them to a farmer and the corn crop they raise, their sustainability record and value of their message and offer that brewery a great ambassador and face for where their product comes from.“Then, we can do an event at that brewery with the farmer and he can talk about what happens on his farm, giving the consumer confidence and trust and a great image of where the product comes from.”On a bigger scale, UpField Group sees potential in making the farmer-to-consumer connection inside sporting arenas by placing producers on the Jumbotron to share what they farm to make the spectator’s experience that much more enjoyable.“Consumers are smarter than ever and they have access to more information than ever before so there’s no trick marketing and no gimmicks in what we are doing here,” Inkrott said. “Since the core values of a farmer are honesty and hard work, helping them tell their story will be the best way to regain the trust of the American consumer.”last_img read more