Google, HTC announce $1.1bn cooperation agreement

Rick Osterloh, senior vice president of hardware at Google, and Cher Wang, chairwoman and CEO of HTC.
Updated 25 September 2017
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Google, HTC announce $1.1bn cooperation agreement

Google and HTC Corporation have announced a definitive agreement under which certain HTC employees — many of whom are already working with Google to develop Pixel smartphones — will join Google. HTC will receive $1.1 billion in cash from Google as part of the transaction. Separately, Google will receive a non-exclusive license for HTC intellectual property (IP).
“The agreement is a testament to the decade-long strategic relationship between HTC and Google around the development of premium smartphones,” a press release said.
“This agreement also supports HTC’s continued branded smartphone strategy, enabling a more streamlined product portfolio, greater operational efficiency and financial flexibility. HTC will continue to have best-in-class engineering talent, which is currently working on the next flagship phone, following the successful launch of the HTC U11 earlier this year. HTC will also continue to build the virtual reality ecosystem to grow its VIVE business, while investing in other next-generation technologies, including the Internet of Things, augmented reality and artificial intelligence,” it added.
Cher Wang, chairwoman and CEO of HTC, said: “As a pioneer of the smartphone market, we are very proud of our history of innovation. Our unmatched smartphone value chain, including our IP portfolio, and world-class talent and system integration capabilities, have supported Google in bolstering the Android market.”
She added: “This agreement is a brilliant next step in our longstanding partnership, enabling Google to supercharge their hardware business while ensuring continued innovation within our HTC smartphone and VIVE virtual reality businesses. We believe HTC is well positioned to maintain our rich legacy of innovation and realize the potential of a new generation of connected products and services.”
The agreement is expected to further reinforce Google’s commitment to smartphones and overall investment in its emerging hardware business.
It represents a significant investment by Google in Taiwan as a key innovation and technology hub, according to the statement.
“HTC has been a longtime partner of Google and has created some of the most beautiful, premium devices on the market,” said Rick Osterloh, senior vice president of hardware at Google. “We’re excited and can’t wait to welcome members of the HTC team who will be joining Google to fuel further innovation and future product development in consumer hardware.”


Emaar reopens historic Al-Alamein Hotel

Updated 17 July 2018
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Emaar reopens historic Al-Alamein Hotel

The historic Al-Alamein Hotel has officially reopened after a major facelift by Emaar Hospitality Group that makes it among the finest resorts along the Mediterranean.

The opening event was attended by Egyptian Minister of Tourism, Dr. Rania Al-Mashat, VIP guests, top media figures, as well as other public figures.

Situated in the picturesque setting of Sidi Abdel Rahman Bay, the hotel’s glamorous design ethos and refurbished retro-modern interiors hark back to the glory days of the 1960s, when the resort first opened.

The remodelled designs blend vintage charm with contemporary style, evoking a sense of nostalgia to the golden age of Egyptian music and cinema. “The refurbishment of Al-Alamein Hotel provides an example of our determination to offer a hotel that is on a par with, or rather superior to, world-class resorts,” said Mohamed Alabbar, chairman of Emaar. 

“We strive for nothing less than the highest global standards for our customers and our developments in Egypt including Al-Alamein Hotel, of which renovation costs totaled EGP 1.5 billion ($84 million),” Alabbar added.

While the building stays true to its rich heritage, visitors can expect modern comfort and style everywhere, from the bar and restaurants to the corridors and rooms.

There is something remarkable around every corner of the resort. An impressive assortment of black and white photographs of Egypt’s most celebrated classical actors and singers festooning columns at the lobby offer visitors much to marvel at once they walk into the building.

The hotel is also home to the renowned Umbrellas sculpture by Greek artist George Zongolopoulos, a poetic structure of steel umbrellas that stretches 13 meters into the sky, offering a dramatic reinterpretation of Abdel Halim Hafez’ classic oldie “Dokko Elshamasy” or “Fix the Umbrellas on the Beach.” One of the most photographed modern sculptures worldwide, the piece was first displayed at the Venice Biennale in 1995, where it drew international attention, and will now delight visitors to this Egyptian vacation spot.

The hotel also boasts a magnificent collection of art works and sculptures by a large number of local and global artists, including an iconic mosaic mural of late legendary Egyptian singer Umm Kulthum and another one featuring colorful ancient boats.

Al-Alamein Hotel is part of a thriving residential and tourist community Emaar is developing in Marassi, the company’s flagship Mediterranean landmark in Egypt. These include several hotels already launched such as Vida Marassi Marina, Address Marassi Beach Resort and Address Marassi Golf Resort + Spa. Marassi will be home to seven luxury hotels with up to 3,000 rooms.