How Teddy Sagi is taking on the UK

Teddy Sagi is on a bit of a spending spree. Earlier this year, the Playtech billionaire paid a massive £400 million for Camden Stables Market. Just a few weeks back, he poured another £90 million into the iconic Camden Lock Market.
Camden Lock

London Calling

He is only just getting started though. An Israeli national, Sagi is based in Tel Aviv but leads the sort of jet-setting life that you would expect of a billionaire bachelor. However, his acquisition of prime land in North London, coupled with a number of recent listings on the London Stock Exchange, have led many to wonder whether the British capital may play a larger role in Sagi’s future business plans.


It certainly seems that way. Playtech itself has been listed on the London Stock Exchange since 2006, and is now listed as a FTSE 250 company. Over the past few years, Sagi himself has spearheaded two high profile IPOs on the London Stock Exchange: SafeCharge International Group plc and Crossrider Ltd.

Regulation watch

Sagi’s financial ties to the UK are obvious, but his long-term connections to London are perhaps more apparent in his commitment to following the UK’s increasingly strict gaming legislation and regulations. Recent laws, such as the US’ Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006, have forced companies as Playtech to launch new brands or make adjustments to their business plans in order to obtain their operating licences. Sagi has made every effort to be at the forefront of the UK’s gambling regulation.

As a result, Playtech is now ready to launch a slew of new products on the regulated UK market, which are set to raise Sagi’s profile in the UK even further.

One upcoming venture is Titanbet Casino, a new Playtech-developed brand which has been specifically created for the regulated market in UK. Although the site does not yet have its licence in the UK, it is expected to happen in the very near future.

Global Domination

After this, who knows? The latest rumours suggest that Sagi is harbouring an interest in the UK football scene – football in particular. According to multiple sources, he is said to be considering a takeover bid on the English Championship football team Reading FC.

Meanwhile, market watchers are watching Sagi for hints as to his next move. In September, Playtech announced the £8 million acquisition of Aristocrat Lotteries, suggesting an expansion into the video lottery terminal (VLT) marketplace.

And then of course, there is the small matter of those 12.5 acres of prime real estate in Camden. While it is likely that Sagi will continue to maintain the existing market set-up, the possibilities are endless. City centre mansion, or gaming headquarters? Sagi is nothing if not innovative, and the world will be watching as his domination of the UK continues.

US Federal Reserve bank and tapering: what does it mean?

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Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke, introduced ‘tapering’ during the conclusion of the two-day meeting when each arm of the Federal Reserve bank met this week. However, not many people understand the meaning or usage of the word in this instance, so here is a brief description.

During the financial crisis in mid-2008, the Federal Reserve, or the Fed, cut interest rates to nearly zero percent in an attempt to stimulate the economy; however, unemployment continued to remain high. So the question was: How does the Federal Reserve continue to stimulate the economy without cutting interest rates?

The answer was to pump money into the economy directly by using quantitative easing.

The Fed launched its third round of quantitative easing in late 2012, when it began purchasing long-term US Treasuries and Mortgage backed securities (government debt and mortgage bonds) in order to cut borrowing costs and force cash back into the system. Tapering is the process of slowing or lowering these purchases.

According to BBC Business news, this Wednesday the Fed announced that it was tapering, or scaling back, those purchases from $85 billion dollars a month down to $75 billion dollars a month.

Managing partner at Landcolt Capital, Todd Schoenberger, noted, ‘A ten Billion dollar change won’t be missed. It won’t impact the economy. A change this small is almost like it had done nothing at all.’

Further tapering is dependent upon how the economy responds. But why Now?

The decision to taper is an indicator that the Fed believes the United States economy is gaining strength. Recent data shows that economic growth increased its pace 3.6% in the third quarter, and unemployment fell to 7% percent, which is a five-year low.

The S&P 500 closed at a record-high this past Wednesday, largely due to the Federal Reserve’s decision.

Meanwhile, the Dow Jones rose 1.8 percent. Europe followed the United States’ lead and the CAC-40 in France closed 1.6 percent higher, and the FTSE 100 closed up a full 1.4%.


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The 4 Surprises About Mortgage Applications That Most People Don’t Know About

If you haven’t applied for a mortgage before, you probably don’t realise that the application packet can be more than 100 pages. With this many pages, it can often be hard to skim through every little word to understand what everything means. Since you’re dealing with a lot of money, it’s important that you know about any surprise that may come out to bite you and potentially kill the deal.

A Valuation Kills the Deal

When you apply for a mortgage, the lender will want to know what the home is worth. In order to get this number, they will have to order a valuation to get a fair market value. If the value comes back lower than your offer, the buyer will either have to cough up the difference or scrap the deal.

You Get to Choose the Loan

Many future applicants often think that they have to sign up for a mortgage the bank throws their way. Thankfully, this isn’t the case. When you apply for a loan, you’re going to want to choose the mortgage that fits your budget and lifestyle. Almost all lenders now have a repayment mortgage calculator which you can use to work out your repayments. Some of the most common types of mortgage include: fixed rate, tracker, discount and offset. Make sure that you explore every option to know their advantages and disadvantages.

Tougher Financial Standards

In the past, when the economy was booming, applying for a mortgage couldn’t have been easier. As the economy started to tank, many banks started applying stricter guidelines.

Today, banks are looking for a higher credit score, a larger deposit and a credible work history that can be verified. One of the biggest reasons mortgages get declined is because the buyer either has a poor credit score or can’t come up with a large enough deposit.

Generally, as long as you have a high credit score, a 20 percent deposit and you’ve been working with a job for more than two years, you should have a great chance at getting an approval letter from the bank.

Rates Can Rise

The loan rate you see on your application today doesn’t mean you’re going to be paying that for life. Some interest rates, such as a tracker mortgage, can increase with the current market conditions. While it may be tempting to be lured to the lower interest rates in the beginning, keep in mind that this rate can raise in the future, potentially costing you thousands in interest.

When you apply for a mortgage, don’t sign any paperwork until you understand what you’re getting yourself into. It’s also important that you know the important questions to ask lenders, so that you can make the right decision. If you don’t feel comfortable with the process, consider hiring a professional to help guide you along with the process.

Printing solutions for every department

The way that people work has changed immeasurably over the past decade, thanks in large part to the emergence of technology such as cloud computing.

It means that employees are increasingly able to work remotely and are no longer limited to the office. Even though they may be miles away, they’re always connected.

Staying in touch on the move

Employees no longer expect to have to come into the office to send emails, print documents and write proposals. The advent of mobile hardware, whether that is a laptop, phone or tablet device, means staff can work no matter where they are.

Problems arise when businesses don’t keep pace with the latest technology. A solid IT infrastructure should make people’s jobs both quicker and easier, and ultimately put a company ahead of the competition.

Companies need to decide what technology their employees need

Businesses need to consider how their employees work and what kind of technology will fit their needs. Sales people, for instance, are likely to need mobile devices to access emails while they’re on the move. They may be doing sales pitches, attending meetings and going to trade fairs, and in any one of these scenarios they need to be remotely connected to the office.

Clients will often want print-outs of presentations and this is where cloud printing comes into its own.

A file is sent securely over the web and as long as the printer the document is being sent to is connected to the cloud, it’s as easy as selecting file/print. It really is simple; as long as you have an internet connection, you can print.

In another scenario, there may be employees who will need to take hard-copy documents to a meeting. Rather than waiting to get into the office, they can be printed on the commute into work from a mobile device to the office printer, ready to pick up on arrival.

Printing from phones

There are plenty of scenarios where employees will want to print from their phone. If a member of staff is in the car and remembers that they need some documents printed out for a meeting, for example. As long as the device they’re printing to is e-print enabled, it’s simply a case of downloading an app to allow printing from their mobile.

Digital printing

Marketing departments can make use of digital printers which will allow them to produce high-quality artwork for flyers, posters, direct-mail pieces, case studies and brochures.

It makes sense to bring digital printing capabilities in-house as in the long-run it is much cheaper to produce artwork from the office, rather than relying on a third-party company. It also means there’s no waiting around and if it doesn’t look right first time, it can be amended and re-printed immediately.

Artwork often has to be produced to tight timescales and missing a mail-out deadline because the company used for printing didn’t deliver can be immensely frustrating, not to mention costly. If a company has all the technology in-house, the only stress is getting the finished product to the post office on time.

So, there really are print solutions for all scenarios and to match every department’s needs. Getting this part of the business right can make a really big difference to the big picture.

Companies such as Kyocera that produce document solutions are worth taking a look at as they may be able to provide a complete printing solution.

Coastal Communities Fund extended

The UK government has announced that its Coastal Communities Fund is increasing. The five per cent rise in capital will extend the pot to £29 million and it will now continue until 2016.

Launched in 2012, the fund is designed to improve the economic viability of the country’s seaside towns and villages, especially those that are much in need of regeneration.

The Centre for Social Justice think tank has conducted research that backs this up, revealing recently that seaside towns are not making any progress and therefore are suffering from “severe social breakdown”.

By boosting the economic potential of these important regions, there is real scope for big-time investors to use services like PropertySales and pump cash into commercial properties, which will ensure that any developments that take place do so with a lasting legacy in mind.

“The fund will support around 5,000 jobs and has created hundreds of opportunities for local apprentices in new charitable, entrepreneurial or social enterprise schemes,” commented Danny Alexander, chief secretary to the Treasury.

“Growing marine revenues from the Crown Estate have allowed us to increase the fund by five per cent and I urge projects to get their bids ready for round three when it opens next year.”

Recent figures from the office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed that there is a lot of work to be done and therefore a considerable amount of potential for commercial investment, be it hotels for sale or retail outlets.

For example, the ONS stated that 25 of the 31 “large” English seaside towns have above average levels of deprivation. This includes places like Clacton, Skegness, Hastings and Blackpool.

In restoring seaside towns and villages to their former glorious selves and bringing them fully into the 21st century, the government expects to see more business opportunities emerge, for local employment to see significant growth and for local people to benefit professionally and personally.

The Coastal Communities Fund requires tenders to outline a detailed regeneration plan, and projects have to show how they will meet a commons set of goals. One of the key criteria that has to be met is showing how “coastal communities are better able to use their assets (physical, natural, social, economic and cultural) to promote sustainable economic growth and jobs”.

Some of the activities supported involve maintaining and developing tourist infrastructure; creating new workplaces that help to support and grow local economies; improving small-scale and sustainable transport initiatives; and investing in social enterprises that make better use of local assets.

“Many seaside towns have particular challenges and the Coastal Communities Fund is another way we’re helping them tap into new business opportunities, creating jobs and new skills that will benefit the whole community,” explained Greg Clark, financial secretary to the Treasury.

“Through measures like the Coastal Communities Fund, City Deals and work with Local Enterprise Partnerships we’re putting civic leaders, residents, local businesses and civil society organisations in the driving seat; helping seaside towns around the country strengthen their local economy.”


How businesses can learn promotional strategies from tourist boards

Companies are constantly looking for new ways to improve image and will often employ a wide range of different marketing strategies at any one time to keep things fresh. Email marketing and direct mail are two of the most common methods that can be used to entice new and keep current customers. However, there is no hard and fast way to go about painting your brand in a positive light and firms can often learn as much from other companies and rivals as they can glean from their own marketing efforts.

Tourist boards are brilliant at depicting the location they are promoting as a perfect holiday destination, and some of their tactics can be mirrored in any form of business. They can paint a picture of the area’s best features, which in turn brings in revenue, so why not try to use some of the same approaches?

Don’t be afraid to experiment

Tourist boards have never been afraid to experiment in other countries in order to gain as much exposure as possible. For instance, last November, the agency Curb Media worked on behalf of the Swiss tourist board to install large blocks of ice around London to promote winter tourism in the Central European country.

Ice blocks were put in busy places such as Canary Wharf, Broadgate’s Fulcrum sculpture, Westfield Shopping Centre and St Pancras Station. Each one depicted Swiss glaciers and represented one of the five ski regions of the country. In addition, there were 75 Swiss flag cards surrounding each block and anyone that freed a card from the melting ice had an opportunity to win a winter holiday to Switzerland.

Get your brand message right

Whatever types of marketing method you use, it is the message that you must get absolutely spot on if you are to get people onside. This means that companies – just as tourist boards do – need to promote the most important details of the services the company provides and what they can expect from you. Tourist boards aim to show off the different activities that visitors can take part in while on holiday in that country, and so firms should show the services that they would provide to any potential customer. You should be attempting to provide an image of the products and services that help to make you an industry leader in your sector.

Companies should brainstorm the different things that help to make their services stand out against their rivals and show these off in marketing communications.

Highlight your best features

Some tourist boards will have millions to spend every year on marketing methods to paint their area in a positive light. Think about how much money it would cost Visit California for their recurring TV adverts that feature scores of big-name celebrities telling viewers about the joys of a holiday in the US state. Indeed, people such as Rob Lowe and former governor Arnold Schwarzenegger have appeared in the adverts.

While your company may not have the budget that Visit California does, it is vitally important that you highlight the features that make your brand great. In marketing communications, paint a portrait of your firm in the best possible light. Companies can also paint their products in a positive light by offering out promotional items such as polo shirts. 4imprint has a wide range such items to choose from.

Good Energy forms partnership with BMW

UK licensed electricity supplier Good Energy announced on Tuesday that it has entered into a partnership agreement with automobile manufacturer BMW to provide  100% green electricity to the households of BMW customers throughout mainland Britain UK. This will enable the owners of BMW i3 and BMW i8 urban electric car models to charge their vehicles at home using renewably sourced electricity.

Good Energy stated that it sources all its electricity from certified renewables across Britain. It operates with strict purchasing policies and its main electricity tariff is certified by the independent Green Energy Supply Scheme. The partnership between the two companies will reportedly help BMW to fulfil its objective of providing truly low carbon driving, in line with its strategy for sustainable electric mobility and responsible charging to help to displace CO2 emissions from ‘power plants to tailpipe’.

According to Good energy, BMW will be the first electric vehicle manufacturer in the UK to offer a complete product portfolio that includes a specially developed and purpose-designed home charging unit with complementary green electricity products and services. Good Energy added that it will work closely with BMW to further develop custom-made green electricity tariffs for Electric Vehicles, while taking into account the UK’s supply and demand, as well as typical charging behaviours, .

The all-electric BMW i range of locally emission-free vehicles designed for city driving are sustainably designed throughout and are powered by BMW’s fully emission-free electric motors. The vehicles run on lithium-ion high-voltage batteries that have a range of up to 100 miles. Prices range from £30,680.00.

With more than 35,000 renewable electricity customers, Good Energy ensures that all the electricity it supplies is 100% matched with electricity sourced from renewable energy. The company added a gas product to its range in 2008 and now has over 12,000 gas customers.  In addition, Good Energy owns the UK’s first commercial wind farm, Delabole Wind Farm and aims to develop 110MW of capacity of new renewable electricity generation assets by 2016.

Why retirement living is replacing care homes

When people think of retirement, the old approach of care homes is not often met positively. Retirement living, on the other hand, has a much more positive image attached to it – and it’s easy to see why.

Retirement living offers many benefits and advantages that simply outmatch care homes – the key reason why they are overtaking the older method and becoming more and more popular across the country. If you haven’t already considered either your own or your parents retirement, these benefits should help show you why this new approach is the much better way to go.

Independent space

Living this way gives you your own home, not just a room. There is something to be said for being able to get up and walk around freely in the private comfort of your own sanctuary. With houses for sale at McCarthy and Stone specialising in these types of property for prospective pensioners, this is a very easy reality to get hold of.

The difference between this and your own home is practicality. These apartments and buildings are found in suitable areas with additional services and everything else you may need. A typical home could be anywhere and, more often than not, simply unsuited for the role. The few tweaks that retirement living homes provide makes all the difference.

Everything you need

Even if you can’t immediately see it, retired living has all the services offered by care homes – only without sacrificing space or freedom. Assisted living doesn’t need to restrict you to one room in a complex, as you can easily have your own home with as much or as little care as you need.

In other words, this lets you retain freedom and independence as much as possible, only being assisted when you need it, rather than being constantly restricted. Likewise, going to places that specialise in retirement homes means security and safety are also taken care of, as these are natural concerns that anyone looks for in a new home at any age.

The point here is that you get the help you need without being undermined or patronised. An estimated 1.3 million elderly people are cognitively impaired or disabled in England and Wales and for them this support is vital.


Finally, all of these points add up to the one simple fact – choice. With such a home, you can go out or stay in when you want, do what pleases you and generally look after yourself. When you live near others, you also have the option to socialise as much or as little as you desire. In other words, it’s your life and retirement living ensures that is how it stays.

New sponsorship deals help drive record first quarter revenues for Manchester United football club

UK Premier League football club Manchester United has declared a 63% rise in sponsorship revenue, which has helped the club to achieve record revenues of £98.5m for the first quarter of its fiscal year, a rise of 29%.

The BBC reported on Thursday that Manchester United’s rise in revenue follows a leap in sponsorship income, as well as a 41% increase in earnings from broadcasting revenues of £19.3m. Revenues for the whole year are expected to be between £420 and £430m

Manchester United, which is controlled by the American Glazer family, has reportedly signed 12 new global and regional sponsorship deals with companies such as Russian airline Aeroflot and soft drinks company PepsiCo. Its latest broadcast rights deal is with BT, which has agreed to pay £900m to broadcast European club football for three years.

Ed Woodward, Manchester United executive vice-chairman, was quoted as saying: “This deal represents a meaningful increase over the current arrangement, which should translate into higher broadcasting revenue for the participating clubs.”

In addition, licensing of clothing and other products brought in £10.7m, an increase of 13.8% compared to the same period in 2012. The club also received a one-off receipt of £1.3m in respect of its players who were on international duty at the Euro 2012 tournament.

During the quarter, staff costs increased by 31% to £52.9m. This rise was said to be partly because some players’ wages were paid only for part of last year, but now have been fully included in the three-month period. It also reflects wage rises and bonuses paid as a result of growth in the club’s commercial business.

According to Woodward, the club’s unique approach to its commercial business will continue to ensure future growth.

How to Improve Success Rates in ForexTrading

Whether they’re experienced traders or can be classed as novices, one of the many questions which Forex traders have is how they can go about improving their trading and in turn how they can increase their chance of success. Of course, there is no such thing as a “sure thing”, however there are a number of steps which may be taken to maximise the chances of success.

Step 1: Analyse

One of the major elements which separate the professional trader from the hobbyist is the planning and the homework which the professional puts into their trading. In addition to having and perfecting their strategies, it is necessary to examine those strategies on a regular basis, analyse their success and above all, not be afraid of removing or modifying a strategy which is not working out or having the desired effect.

Step 2: Diarise

Unlike the stock markets, the Forex market can be traded on at any time: the timing of this is up to the individual trader and it may be that they prefer a certain time to trade or have a strategy which depends upon a certain country’s market. Therefore, being organised with trading times, diarising and being willing to trade at “out of hours” times is essential for success. Even traders who are happy to trade as and when they feel like it can benefit from a diary system.

Step 3: Use the Data

Forex charts, which are often available as part of a professional platform (such as the ones provided by can be an invaluable tool in strategizing as they enable the trader to use all of the relevant data, including historical performance, when planning their next trade.

Step 4: Manage the Risk

When a trader is using their own finances, it can be all too easy for them to become emotional about their trades. However, the best traders are those who can separate their personal finances and emotions and their trading experience. Learning to manage the risk and be stoical about the wins and the losses can help the trader to lose the inhibitions which may be preventing them from making the right and necessary choices.

Step 5: Knowledge is Power

Those who are more likely to enjoy success in the short and long term are ultimately likely to be those who have taken the time to study and learn their craft. An education in any area is always useful but in Forex where a variety of technical terms and knowledge could be the key to success can never be underestimated.

Step 6: Beware of Overthinking

As important as education and analysis are in Forex, there is a danger of overthinking strategies to the point of destroying confidence and taking any sense of enjoyment out of the process. In addition, the traders who overthink their own way of trading are likely to be the ones who talk themselves out of making key plays which could lead to success, and find themselves too afraid or nervous to show the courage they need to when trading.