Ten Fun Facts about Battle Of the Sounds 2020 Lockdown Edition

Here are 10 quick fun facts about Battle of the Sounds – Season 2

  1. The theme Lockdown Edition came about as a result of the ongoing restriction on social activities and travels due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  2. Battle of the Sounds is a Penta-genre music competition i.e. hosts 5 music genre tournaments. Fuji/Juju/Apala, Reggae/Dancehall, Rap/Trap, Afropop/Afrobeat, and Acapella.
  3. The biennial music competition is held in November, with actual battle days falling on the weekends of the month i.e. Saturdays and Sundays. This year’s edition will begin on November 7 and end on November 29, 2020.
  4. Registration of participants is free, however entries submitted by applicants are screened for selection of actual contestants
  5. Judges at the competition are usually celebrities or music stars. The 2020 edition will have the likes of Faze, GT da Guitarman, Indomix as judges
  6. Fan voting is one of the criteria for ranking in the competition. See the competition’s official website; battleofthesounds.com for details of the Judging Criteria
  7. Contestants are grouped into 8 teams and the ranking is group-based. Final rewards will be presented to the top 3 groups and individual champions in each genre tournament.
  8. The sum prize for this year’s edition is 1 million naira. With N400,000, N200,000, and N100,000 going to the first, second, and third final groups on the ranking table at the end of the competition. Also, each of the individual champions of the 5 genre tournaments will be given N50,000. While consolation prizes will be given to the tune of N50,000 to selected participants.
  9. Battle of the Sounds was created by Bizzybody NG. However, it has partnered with outfits including Den Visuals, Festac Online, FestacMag,  Mile2Myhood, and other community groups in the last edition.
  10. This edition will be streamed live on social media platforms, including Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube accounts of the competition. Recorded clips will then be broadcasted on TV by broadcast partners like NigezieTVCArea Ten TV, etc.

So there you go. Those are 10 fun facts about the upcoming Battle of the Sounds Season 2 – Lockdown Edition.

Get ready for some clean and good fun on your screens this November, and don’t forget to gist a friend about it.

World Food Day: Emirates SkyCargo maintains supply chains for food and other perishables during COVID-19

LAGOS, NIGERIA;  15 October 2020 – As the world marks this year’s World 
Food Day today October 16th 2020, themed, “Grow, Nourish, Sustain. Together. Our actions are our future”, Emirates SkyCargo is proud to have maintained a supply chain for food and other perishables in this period of COVID-19 pandemic.

With COVID-19 and the disruption to international passenger aviation, the supply chain for food products was put into risk of disruption. 
However, Emirates SkyCargo worked very quickly to restore its international cargo connectivity, growing its network from just around 35 destinations on its freighter aircraft at the end of March to more than 130 destinations by early October on its freighter as well as passenger aircraft. Currently around 500 tonnes of food items are transported every day in the cargo hold of Emirates aircraft across the world.

As a socially responsible carrier, Emirates SkyCargo has ensured that adequate cargo capacity remains available on its widebody aircraft during the COVID-19 pandemic for the transport of urgent medical supplies as well as food items. By doing this, the air cargo carrier is able to help countries and supermarkets maintain their food supplies and at the same time help farmers reliant on food exports continue to make their livelihoods in these challenging times.

Consumers across the world have integrated international ingredients and produce into their daily diets for taste and nutritional reasons. 
Members of international diaspora also look for comfort food offerings from their home countries in supermarket shelves. With Emirates SkyCargo’s global network and flight 

schedule, food items from diverse 
origins retain their freshness as they are rapidly transported to their 
final destinations and the dining tables of consumers.

Emirates SkyCargo’s first freighter flight took off from Guadalajara, Mexico, on the 2nd of October, and the growth of export markets over the last decade has also provided a boost to farming communities and agriculture in the various production markets. Emirates SkyCargo’s flights provide a quick and direct connection for farmers and exporters of food items to their international end customers, thereby supporting their livelihoods and the local economy.

Call for Entries: APO Group African Women in Media Award to Recognise Support of Female Journalists for Women’s Entrepreneurship in Africa

The winner will be bestowed with USD 2,500 cash prize, and online courses from one of the most respected international universities

APO Group (APO-opa.com), the leading pan-African communications and business consultancy, presents the second annual APO Group African Women in Media Award set to recognise, celebrate and empower African women journalists who support female entrepreneurship in Africa.

The Award will be bestowed to the winner at the 6th Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum’s (AWIEF) (AWIEForum.org) Virtual Conference and Awards hosted on 2-3 December 2020, with the theme ‘Reimagining Business & Rebuilding Better.’

AWIEF’s prestigious annual event is a platform that sees global thought leaders, industry experts, policymakers, academics, development organisations and investors gather to dialogue, connect, network, share, collaborate and transact in a combined effort to boost Africa’s entrepreneurship ecosystem for women.

Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard, Chairman and Founder of APO Group said, “The launch of our inaugural award in 2019 was successful in putting a spotlight on the work of female journalists sharing the stories of women entrepreneurs in Africa. We are proud to continue The APO Group African Women in Media Award as part of our commitment to supporting the development of journalism on the continent. We look forward to presenting this award with AWIEF in Johannesburg as we celebrate women in journalism and entrepreneurship.”

Entries for APO Group African Women in Media Award must offer valuable insights into African female entrepreneurs while appealing to a global audience.

The award is open to African woman journalists and bloggers, whether directly employed or freelancers, working in the continent of Africa who have produced a story that has been broadcast or published in English, French, Portuguese or Arabic in the form of a printed publication, a television feature, a radio story, a website or a blog whose primary audience is based in Africa.

Stories must have been broadcast or published between 1st January and 31st October 2020.

We look forward to presenting this award with AWIEF in Johannesburg as we celebrate women in journalism and entrepreneurship

Stories are judged on content, writing, analysis, creativity, human interest and community impact.

All stories must be submitted in electronic format:

– Print: upload the scan(s) of the published article;

– Radio: upload the SoundCloud link;

– Website: upload the URL or

– TV: upload the YouTube link.

TV material must first be uploaded to YouTube (YouTube.com) and radio material to SoundCloud (SoundCloud.com). If one is not a member of these sites, one will need to sign up in order to upload the video or radio material. Once one has obtained the link, one must enter it in this online entry form when inputting one’s story details.

The online entry form is available here: http://bit.ly/APOaward

The deadline for entries is 31st October 2020. The finalists will be announced on 20th November 2020 while the winner will be announced on Thursday, 3 December 2020.1.  

About APO Group:
Founded in 2007, APO Group (APO-opa.com) is the leading pan-African communications and business consultancy. We assist private and public organisations in sharpening their reputation and increasing their brand equity in target countries across Africa. Our role as a trusted partner is to leverage the power of media and build bespoke strategies that enable organisations to produce a real, measurable impact in Africa and beyond. The trust and recognition granted to APO Group by global and multinational companies, governments, and NGOs inspires us to continuously enhance our value proposition within Africa to better cater to our clients’ needs. Among our prestigious clients: Facebook, Dangote Group, Nestlé, GE, Uber, Microsoft, Nokia, NBA, Canon, PwC, DHL, Marriott Group, Ecobank, Philips, Siemens, Standard Chartered, HP, Hilton, Ernst & Young, Orange.

Headquarters: Lausanne, Switzerland | Offices in Senegal, Dubai and Hong Kong.

For further information, please visit our website: APO-opa.com.

About AWIEF:
AWIEF (www.AWIEForum.org) is a pan-African women’s economic empowerment organisation that promotes and supports female innovation, technology and entrepreneurship across Africa through a portfolio of high impact programmes. AWIEF’s mission is to foster the economic inclusion, advancement and empowerment of women in Africa through entrepreneurship support and development. AWIEF’s programmes and activities include accelerators, capacity-building and training, networking and mentorship, AWIEF Awards, AWIEF Digital Hub, and building the AWIEF community of African women entrepreneurs. The year-round activities culminate in convening and hosting the popular and widely attended annual international and multi-stakeholder AWIEF conference, exhibition and awards event, currently in its fifth edition. Website: www.AWIEForum.org.

Delta Air Lines Announces September Quarter Financial Results

September quarter 2020 GAAP pre-tax loss of $6.9 billion and loss per share of $8.47 on total revenue of $3.1 billion

September quarter 2020 adjusted pre-tax loss of $2.6 billion and adjusted loss per share of $3.30 on adjusted revenue of $2.6 billion

Delta ended the September quarter 2020 with $21.6 billion in liquidity

ATLANTA, Oct. 13, 2020 – Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) today reported financial results for the September quarter 2020. 

“While our September quarter results demonstrate the magnitude of the pandemic on our business, we have been  encouraged as more customers travel and we 

are seeing a path of progressive improvement in our revenues, financial results and daily cash burn,” said Ed Bastian, Delta’s chief executive officer.  “The actions we are taking now to take care of our people, simplify our fleet, improve the customer experience, and strengthen our brand will allow Delta to accelerate into a post-COVID recovery.”

September Quarter Financial Results  

Revenue Environment

Delta’s adjusted operating revenue of $2.6 billion for the September quarter was down 79 percent versus the September 2019 quarter as demand for air travel remains under significant pressure.  Passenger revenues declined 83 percent on 63 percent lower capacity.  Non-ticket revenue streams have performed relatively better than passenger revenues, with total loyalty revenues declining 60 percent and cargo declining 25 percent.

“With a slow and steady build in demand, we are restoring flying to meet our customers’ needs, while staying nimble with our capacity in light of COVID-19,” said Glen Hauenstein, Delta’s president.  “While it may be two years or more until we see a normalized revenue environment, by restoring customer confidence in travel and building customer loyalty now, we are creating the foundation for sustainable future revenue growth.”

Setting the Foundation for Recovery

Delta has taken a number of actions to position the company to accelerate into a post-COVID recovery:

Taking great care of Delta people

  • Through the voluntary separation and early 
  • retirement programs, voluntary unpaid leaves, job sharing and other initiatives, the company has been able to avoid involuntary furloughs for ground and flight attendant employees
  • Launching a “Stop the Spread.  Save Lives.” campaign to emphasize the six core health actions that protect Delta employees against COVID-19, including wearing masks, social distancing, testing and getting a flu shot.  Delta is providing no-cost COVID-19 testing and flu shots for its U.S. employees  

Improving the customer experience

  • Emphasizing health and safety with the Delta CareStandard, a multi-layered approach that includes intense cleaning protocols, blocking middle seats and requiring masks onboard all aircraft
  • Reducing complexity for customers by eliminating change fees for nearly all domestic fares and redeposit/reissuance fees on domestic reward tickets for SkyMiles Members
  • Taking a customer-centric approach to refunds, with approximately $2.8 billion returned to customers year-to-date.

Simplifying the fleet

  • Restructuring its Airbus and CRJ aircraft order books to better match the timing of aircraft deliveries with network and financial needs over the next several years.  The restructuring reduces aircraft purchase commitments by more than $2 billion in 2020 and by more than $5 billion through 2022
  • Accelerating its fleet simplification strategy, which is intended to modernize and streamline the company’s fleet, enhance the customer experience and generate cost savings.  The company has announced plans to accelerate retirements of nearly 400 aircraft by 2025, including more than 200 in 2020.

I

Cost Performance

Total adjusted operating expense for the September quarter decreased $5.5 billion or 52 percent versus the prior year quarter excluding $3.1 billion in charges related to the voluntary separation and early retirement programs for employees, $2.2 billion in restructuring charges from fleet-related decisions, and a $1.3 billion CARES Act benefit.  This performance was driven by a $1.8 billion or 78 percent reduction in fuel expense, a 75 percent reduction in maintenance expense from parking or retiring nearly 40 percent of mainline aircraft and lower volume- and revenue-related expenses.  Salaries and benefits expense was down 32 percent as a result of approximately 18,000 employees electing to depart the company in addition to benefits from voluntary unpaid leaves, work hour reductions and other initiatives.

Non-operating expense for the quarter was $349 million higher versus the prior year quarter, driven primarily by $221 million in higher interest expense from increased debt levels the company has incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our results this quarter were underpinned by a strong focus on costs, as we reduced adjusted operating expenses by more than 50 percent, similar to the June quarter, despite flying 23 points more capacity,” said Paul Jacobson, Delta’s chief financial officer.  “That cost focus allowed the increase we’ve seen in net sales to flow directly into an improvement in our daily cash burn, which improved from $27 million per day in June to $18 million per day in September.”

Balance Sheet, Cash and Liquidity

Delta ended the September quarter with $21.6 billion in liquidity.  Cash used in operations during the quarter was $2.6 billion.  Daily cash burn averaged $24 million for the quarter, with an average of $18 million for the month of September. 

At the end of the September quarter, the company had total debt and finance lease obligations of $34.9 billion with adjusted net debt of $17.0 billion, $6.5 billion higher than December 31, 2019.  In September, Delta completed the largest debt offering in aviation history, raising $9.0 billion at a blended average rate of 4.75 percent secured by its SkyMiles loyalty program.  In addition, the company borrowed $1.5 billion at a blended yield of 4.4 percent in connection with the issuance of tax-exempt bonds, that will be used to finance the LaGuardia airport project.  Thecompany’s total debt had a weighted average interest rate of 4.3 percent at September 30, 2020.

Subsequent to the end of the quarter, the company repaid the $3 billion, 364-day term loan that it entered into in March, increasing its unencumbered asset base to $9 to $10 billion of aircraft, engines and spare parts and reducing remaining debt amortization and maturities to $2.3 billion through the end of 2021.  The company also repaid $2.6 billion under its revolving credit facilities drawn down in March 2020.

At the end of the September quarter, the company’s Air Traffic Liability stood at $4.6 billion, including a current liability of $4.4 billion and a non-current liability of $0.2 billion.  The non-current liability represents the current estimate of tickets to be flown, as well as credits to be used, beyond one year.  Travel credits represent approximately 60 percent of the Air Traffic Liability at the end of the September quarter.

CARES Act Accounting, Fleet Restructuring and Voluntary Separation and Early Retirement Program Charges

In the September quarter, the company received $701 million under the payroll support program (PSP) of the CARES Act, consisting of $491 million in additional grant funds and a $210 million increase in the low-interest, unsecured 10-year loan.  The September quarter amount includes an incremental $157 million beyond the initial $5.4 billion Delta was allocated in April 2020.  In the September quarter, approximately $1.3 billion of the grant was recognized as a contra-expense, which is reflected as “CARES Act grant recognition” on the Consolidated Statements of Operations.  The company expects to use the remaining proceeds from the PSP by the end of 2020. 

During the September quarter, the company made the decision to retire its 717-200 fleet and the remainder of its 767-300ER fleet by 2025 and its CRJ-200 fleet by 2023.  As a result of these decisions, the company recorded $2.2 billion in fleet-related charges, which are reflected in “Restructuring charges” on the Consolidated Statement of Operations. 

The company offered voluntary separation and early retirement programs to employees during the September quarter.  Approximately 18,000 employees participated in the programs, with most leaving the company August 1, resulting in a $3.1 billion restructuring charge in the September quarter, which 

is reflected in “Restructuring charges” on the Consolidated Statement of Operations.  Cash payments in connection with these programs totaled $813 million in the September quarter, and these payments are excluded from daily cash burn figures.  The company anticipates an additional $150 to $250 million in cash payments in the December quarter, $600 million in 2021 and the remaining payments in 2022 and beyond.

September Quarter Results

September quarter results have been adjusted primarily for the CARES Act grant recognition and restructuring charges described above.