Liverpool Front 3 Worth $590 Million After Champions League Win | Anthony S Casey Singapore

Mohamed Salah

Mohamed Salah Photographer: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Luring the attacking trio of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino away from Champions League soccer winner Liverpool FC could set a potential suitor back a combined 521.6 million euros ($589 million), according to the CIES Football Observatory.

CIES calculates transfer values using an algorithm taking into account factors such as a player’s age, contract, position, minutes played, goals scored and international status. Salah scored 27 times in Liverpool’s 2018-19 season, followed by 26 goals by Mane and 16 for Firmino. None of the team’s front three were even in a top 10 list the CIES published last August.

The Champions League victory has already boosted the fortunes of Liverpool’s principal owner John Henry, as it will become the first global soccer team to bring in more than 250 million pounds ($317 million) in a season from broadcast income, according to analyst Swiss Ramble.

CIES transfer value estimates for highest-rated players as of June 12:

Mohamed Salah Liverpool FC EU219.6m
Raheem Sterling Manchester City EU207.8m
Lionel Messi FC Barcelona EU167.4m
Jadon Sancho Borussia Dortmund EU159.4m
Sadio Mane Liverpool FC EU157.8m
Harry Kane Tottenham EU155.2m
Roberto Firmino Liverpool FC EU144.2m

Radio’s most-played songs revealed | Anthony S Casey Singapore

Ed Sheeran, Rita Ora and Calvin Harris among radio’s most-played songs of 2018

Music royalty body PPL unveil the most-played artists and songs of the past year.

Ed Sheeran and Rita Ora were among the Top 10 most-played artists on radio in the UK last year, while Feel It Still by Portugal The Man was 2018’s most-played song.

Ed topped the most played artists chart despite not releasing any new music in 2018. None of his songs feature in the Top 10 most-played of 2018, suggesting several songs across his catalogue are still in heavy rotation on radio. It’s the third time in four years he’s been the UK’s most-played artist.

The Official Top 40 biggest songs of 2019 so far

The chart was compiled by PPL, the music royalty body which monitors music played on the radio, TV and across the UK’s clubs and pubs.

Calvin Harris finished second place on the most-played artists chart, boosted by huge hits One Kiss and Promises, and Little Mix were third. Rita Ora came in fourth, fuelled by two entries on the most-played of 2018: For You (with Liam Payne) in third and Anywhere in seventh.

Pink’s What About Us made the Top 10 (at Number 10) for a second consecutive year, a feat that has only been achieved once before, by Maroon 5 and Christina Aguilera’s Moves Like Jagger in 2011 and 2012.

Nine of the ten most-played artists last year were British (Pink was the exception), while 2018 marked the first time the majority of the acts were, or featured, women.

Ben Cook, President of Atlantic Records, part of Warner Music UK whose roster of artists includes Ed Sheeran and Portugal The Man, said: “It was an amazing achievement when Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit claimed one, two and three in PPL’s ‘Most Played Tracks’ last year, and that Ed was PPL’s Most Played Artist. For the label to pull off both number one positions again – Ed in the Artist chart for a second year running, and Portugal. The Man’s ‘Feel It Still’ in the Track chart – is incredible.

“I want to acknowledge everyone at the label, especially Damian Christian and our fantastic promotions team, plus our US partners who brought us such a game changing song from Portugal. The Man.

“Thank you to PPL for all the work you do and for recognising this achievement – I know this is a very proud moment for everyone at Atlantic.”

PPL’s Annual Most Played Artist Charts 2018

1. Ed Sheeran
2. Calvin Harris
3. Little Mix
4. Rita Ora
5. Coldplay
6. P!nk
7. Clean Bandit
8. Dua Lipa
9. George Ezra
10. Jess Glynne

PPL’s Annual Most Played Track Chart 2018

1. ‘Feel It Still’ – Portugal. The Man (Atlantic – Warner Music)
2. ‘These Days (feat. Jess Glynne, Macklemore & Dan Caplen)’ – Rudimental (Asylum – Warner Music)
3. ‘For You (Fifty Shades Freed)’ – Liam Payne & Rita Ora (Capitol – Universal Music)
4. ‘One Kiss’ – Calvin Harris & Dua Lipa (Columbia – Sony Music Entertainment)
5. ‘Shotgun’ – George Ezra (Columbia – Sony Music Entertainment)
6. ‘Lullaby’ – Sigala & Paloma Faith (Ministry of Sound – Sony Music Entertainment)
7. ‘Anywhere’ – Rita Ora (Atlantic – Warner Music)
8. ‘Flames’ – David Guetta & Sia (Parlophone – Warner Music)
9. ‘Paradise’ – George Ezra (Columbia – Sony Music Entertainment)
10. ‘What About Us’ – P!nk (RCA – Sony Music Entertainment)

Swansong for iTunes as Apple picks a new playlist | Anthony S Casey Singapore

Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of software engineering, speaks during Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in San Jose where the company announced changes to iTunes
Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, speaks during Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in San Jose where the company announced changes to iTunesBRITTANY HOSEA-SMALL/AFP

In the world of dodgy music sharing sites and viruses, iTunes seemed like a breath of fresh air. Now, however, after nearly two decades, Apple is changing one of its most famous creations.

The tech giant announced yesterday at a developers’ conference in San Jose, California that iTunes would be broken up into three new apps, Apple Music, Apple Podcasts and Apple TV. The apps will work on desktop computers as well as iPhones and iPads.

Apple said that the changes will simplify the experience of listening and watching content as more people stream music, TV and podcasts.

Steve Jobs, the former chief executive of Apple, introduced iTunes 18 years ago after he convinced leading record labels to offer their music on the platform. It was one of the most important steps in the music industry’s move into digital and helped to combat the piracy that was rife on applications such as Napster and LimeWire at the time.

iTunes became unwieldy and complicated as Apple added features such as movies, TV shows, books, podcasts and audiobooks. The company also introduced its own streaming service, Apple Music in 2015, which now has 50 million subscribers.

Apple has begun to invest heavily in its streaming service for TV shows and movies, creating original content to compete with Netflix and Amazon.

Santander Scores Marketing Success From Champions League Final | Anthony S Casey Singapore


In a low growth world for banks, Banco Santander SA can still count on a payoff from its sponsorship of European soccer’s top club competition.

Liverpool, which has won the Champions League five times, takes the field Saturday against London’s Tottenham Hotspur at Atletico de Madrid’s stadium. While the Spanish capital braces for an invasion of English fans — 4,700 police will be on duty to keep order — Santander sees the final as a business opportunity.

Every euro invested in its sponsorship of the Champions League yields three to five euros in terms of the value of marketing exposure, said a person familiar with the bank’s sponsorship activities, who asked not to be named because the information is private. Santander’s gamble is that paying fees to sponsor top sporting events such as the Champions League will draw in customers in and raise its profile.

“There’s very good research that shows sponsoring prestige events leads to your brand getting associated with that prestige, so it’s easy to see why this is attractive for Santander,” said Antony Poole, associate professor of marketing at EADA business school in Barcelona. “It’s not just the sponsorship, it’s everything else you can do around it.”

Santander’s top three markets — Brazil, Spain and the U.K. — are crazy about soccer. The final will be shown in 200 countries worldwide, generating about 1 billion social media and UEFA web and app activations, according to UEFA. That multiplies the scope for Santander to get its name in front of consumers.

Global Reach

Santander’s underlying profit share by geography

Source: Banco Santander SA

Two of the countries — Spain and the U.K. — have proved problematic for Santander’s banking business as an ultra-low interest rate environment makes it hard for the bank to build revenue in its home market and Brexit clouds the outlook for the British economy. Shares in Santander are little changed this year and about in line with the Euro STOXX Banks Price Index.

Even so, sports sponsorship is one way to improve cost efficiency and bolster the bank’s brand, said Juan Manuel Cendoya, the bank’s senior executive vice president of communications, corporate marketing and research, in a phone interview. The lender was able to cut marketing expenses by 15% last year, in part because of the effectiveness of its sport sponsorship investments, he said.

“This has a very powerful influence in terms of image, awareness and commercial and business efffects,” Cendoya said.

Santander’s recent focus on soccer comes as it wound down its eight-year sponsorship of the Ferrari racing team and corporate agreements with Formula 1.

The bank has sponsored football competitions in Latin America and this year extended its accord for La Liga, the Spanish league that’s home to Real Madrid and Barcelona, to include the 2020-2021 season. They are the biggest clubs in the sport in terms of the amount of revenue they earn, according to Deloitte.

Sometimes relationships built through sport can help win banking business. Santander’s sponsorship of Ferrari put the lenders’s name on the chassis of the Italian automaker’s Formula 1 supercar. It also helped the bank land a top role in Ferrari’s initial public offering in 2015.

Moises Lopez@chapoisat

Ronaldo, nuevo embajador Banco Santander, destaca patrocinio “Champions”

Ronaldo Nazário, exjugador brasileño y del Real Madrid, fue presentado este jueves en Mónaco como, embajador global del Banco Santander para el fútbol, un acuerdo de patrocinio.

See Moises Lopez’s other Tweets

The bank is getting into the spirit of the final, hiring sightseeing buses for fans and an arena in Madrid’s Central square to showcase famous moments from the competition’s history. Overseeing the festivities will be Ronaldo Nazario, the Brazilian star who is Santander’s sponsorship ambassador.

Other corporate sponsors UEFA’s Champion’s League include NissanMastercard and Heineken. Madrid is preparing for an overflow of Liverpool and Spurs supporters far in excess of the 16,613 tickets allocated to each finalist.

Football: Aston Villa return to Premier League with win over Derby County | Anthony S Casey Singapore

LONDON: Aston Villa returned to the Premier League, after a three year absence, beating Derby County 2-1 in the Championship playoff final at Wembley on Monday (May 27).

Goals from Anwar El Ghazi and John McGinn put Villa 2-0 up before Martyn Waghorn pulled a goal back for Derby in the 81st minute but Dean Smith’s side held on for the victory against intense pressure.

The playoff final is considered the most lucrative single game of football in the world, earning Villa an estimated £170 million (US$215.51 million) in revenue.

Norwich City and Sheffield United had already secured promotion to the top flight for next season after finishing in the top two positions in the second tier Championship.

El Ghazi opened the scoring just before the break with a diving header from cross from right by Ahmed Elmohamady.

McGinn doubled the advantage in the 59th minute when a deflected shot from El Ghazi looped into the area and Derby keeper Kelle Roos came out but was unable to capture the ball under challenge from McGinn who bundled the ball home.

Derby, managed by former Chelsea and England midfielder Frank Lampard, got back in the game when substitute Jack Marriott’s low shot was turned in by Waghorn and then piled on the pressure in the final minutes but were unable to break through.

Rugby tournament in Australia May 2019 | Anthony S Casey Singapore

Mike Ashley to sell Newcastle to Arab billionaire for $445 million | Anthony S Casey Singapore

(Reuters) – Mike Ashley has agreed to sell Newcastle United to Abu Dhabi’s billionaire Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al Nehayan for 350 million pounds ($445.24 million), the Sun reported late on Sunday.

The contracts between Ashley and Sheikh Khaled have been signed and submitted to the Premier League, according to the report.

Ashley, who bought a controlling stake in the Premier League club in 2007, has in the past tried to sell the club.


FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football – Premier League – Newcastle United v Leicester City – St James’ Park, Newcastle, Britain – September 29, 2018 Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley


Ashley, who owns British sportswear retailer Sports Direct International Plc said last October that he had not received any acceptable offers for Newcastle, a year after he officially put the club up for sale, but told Sky News in December that talks on a deal had made promising progress.

Any potential buyer of the club must be able to provide transfer funds, he had said at the time.

Sheikh Khaled, the cousin of Manchester City owner and Arab billionaire Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, previously failed in his bid to buy Liverpool Football Club for 2 billion pounds last year, the Daily Mail has previously reported.

Sheikh Khaled is also the founder of Bin Zayed Group, a leading conglomerate with diverse business interests in the local and international markets.

Newcastle United, the Premier League and the Bin Zayed Group did not immediately respond to Reuters’ requests for comments.

Soccer’s $215 Million Playoff Is Biggest Prize in Team Sports | Anthony S Casey Singapore

Aston Villa plays Derby County at Villa Park on March 2.
Aston Villa plays Derby County at Villa Park on March 2. Photographer: Neville Williams/Aston Villa FC via Getty Images

The biggest financial prize in sports gets awarded next week, and it won’t be going to the NBA champs. Two English soccer teams are battling for at least $215 million.

Derby County Football Club and Aston Villa Football Club meet Monday in London for the highly coveted final spot in the Premier League next season. Getting promoted to the world’s most-popular soccer league lets the winner share in the riches of its billion-dollar media deals. The loser returns to England’s second division for another season.

The winner will take in at least 170 million pounds in added revenue over the next three years, according to the financial consulting firm Deloitte LLP. And that’s the worst-case scenario — if the team is immediately relegated again to the sport’s back bench. A longer run in the big league means even more riches.

It’s a “financial cliff,” according to Aston Villa co-owner Wes Edens, who also owns basketball’s Milwaukee Bucks. Speaking last month on the Bloomberg Business of Sports podcast, the co-founder of Fortress Investment Group said the difference in broadcast money alone for a team in the Premier League versus the second tier is at least $100 million a year.

Here’s how it works: Every year the three worst performers are demoted from the Premier League, and three teams are promoted to take their place. The top two teams in England’s second tier are guaranteed a spot in the higher league, and the next four finishers enter a playoff for that third and final spot — which Derby County and Aston Villa are now vying for.

Monday’s match is “definitely the most valuable single-game prize in any team sport,” said Stefan Szymanski, a University of Michigan economist whose books include Soccernomics. While similar games in Germany and Spain also have big financial implications, nothing comes close to England’s because of the Premier League’s TV deals, he said.

The Formula

The Premier League divvies up its media millions based on a complex formula that varies depending on how well a team performs and how often it is on TV. The payouts form the bulk of most teams’ annual revenue, vastly outpacing ticket sales or sponsorships.

According to Deloitte, the revenue difference between a middling Premier League season and a year in England’s second division is about $120 million. If Monday’s winner is demoted after just one season, it will also receive a parachute payment of about $95 million over two years.

Previous playoff winners have had varied levels of success. Fulham, which won promotion last year over Aston Villa, was relegated after its first season. Huddersfield Town, which won the 2017 playoff, stayed up for two seasons before being sent down alongside Fulham. Then there’s Crystal Palace, which won the playoff in 2013 and is still in the Premier League.

Up and Down

Aston Villa is no stranger to England’s top tier. The club was a founding member of the Premier League in 1992, when it finished second, and stayed there until 2016.

Derby County, on the other hand, has spent most of the Premier League era in the lower tier. The club had just two short Premiership stints, never finishing above eighth.

In addition to the clubs, a number of sponsors will win or lose on Monday. Aston Villa’s official jersey provider is local menswear brand Luke 1977. Derby County’s official partners include Marston’s Plc, a pub and hotel operator based in nearby Wolverhampton.

One company that might not be sweating the outcome — online gambling operator 32Red. The Gibraltar-based casino and sports betting company, owned by Kindred Group Plc, is the main jersey sponsor for both teams.

China Trade War Is Music to a French Billionaire’s Ears | Anthony S Casey Singapore

Ariana Grande (Photographer: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

The U.S.-China trade war may give Vivendi SA some handy cover if the sale of its stake in Universal Music Group fails to generate its target price.

In July, the French media conglomerate announced plans to sell as much as 50 percent of the world’s biggest record label. Yet banks still hadn’t been appointed to run the sale in March, according a Bloomberg News report on Thursday. Private equity investors, tired of the glacial pace and the vendor’s punchy 25 billion-euro ($28 billion) valuation, have backed out of the process, leaving Vivendi to target strategic buyers.

Tencent Holdings Ltd. is a name that repeatedly surfaces as a prospective partner. It’s hard to determine the extent of the Chinese technology giant’s interest. There have been talks between the two firms, according to Thursday’s story.

But would a deal make any more sense for Tencent than it would for, say, Apple Inc.? Or Google parent Alphabet Inc.? It’s tough to see how. All those companies already have licensing agreements in place with UMG, as does Tencent, so the need to own its music content seems slight. Besides, buying a stake in UMG might make it more complicated for them to do business with the other major record labels: Sony Music and Warner Music. The list of strategic buyers is shortening.

Tencent, the owner of WeChat, could easily afford a deal – its annual free cash flow is more than $13 billion and its net debt is less than a tenth of annual Ebitda. But the idea it would be willing to pay generously for a partnership looks to be an exercise in wishful thinking by Vincent Bollore, the billionaire who controls Vivendi.

The Chinese behemoth is unlikely to write its largest check yet for an acquisition without gaining control in return. It’s possible the company could team up with private equity, as it did when it acquired control of online gamemaker Supercell Oy for $8.6 billion in 2016 – but it appears loath to overpay.

It’s important to stress that for Tencent, music is a side business, and Western music a side business within that. The Shenzhen-based company makes its money from games and advertising. In March it spun off and listed Tencent Music Entertainment Group, a business which generates 70% of its revenue from live streaming and online karaoke. And while Chinese consumers aren’t averse to a bit of Selena Gomez or Elton John, Western pop songs aren’t the go-to favorites for karaoke or streaming.

So while the purchase of Supercell, the author of Clash of Clans, fitted easily into Tencent’s games catalog, there’s little benefit to owning the rights to artists like Carrie Underwood or Herbert Groenemeyer.

Which is why the trade tensions might provide just the excuse that Vivendi needs. Some involved in the deal are concerned that a sale to the Chinese could anger U.S. officials, according to Bloomberg News. That seems a stretch – music is hardly a matter of national security. But if Tencent fails to make an offer to Vivendi’s liking, then pointing toward the conflict gives the French firm a get-out.

The Happy Faces of Baan Nokkamin

Anthony S Casey recently traveled from Singapore to Bangkok for a visit. If you’ve never been, you’ll see a lot of things when you visit the city. You will see the Wat Phra Kaeo glistening in the Grand Palace, you’ll see luxurious goods in department stores in Siam, or maybe you’ll see world-renowned art museums. What you won’t see are the faces of those that have been left behind by the city’s success; underprivileged children; many who are without a home.

One foundation, Baan Nokkamin, developed with the goal to make home a reality for the orphans, homeless children, and children of drug addicts that live in Bangkok.

These children are a consequence of collapse in the family structure and home disputes which parents are incapable of solving. The effects of this collapse trickle down to cause rise to the unfortunate problem of orphans, drug addicts, and subsequent sexual abuse and child labor and criminal activity and social decay. So, Baan Nokkamin is there to relieve these children from this lifestyle and benefit them with positive values? Baan Nokkamin is there to educate children about how to help children achieve a wholesome vision and thus benefit others around them.

How did the orphanage get its start? A Swiss missionary, Mr. Erwin Groebli, met a group of street children in Ramkhamhaeng, Bangkok Metropolis in the late 1980’s. They had nowhere to sleep, no nourishment, and no one offer health support.

Mr.Erwin gave to these kids love and attention and the support they needed to survive. The beginning of the foundation started when a functional building was acquired to accommodate the group. By 1989, Baan Nokkamin Foundation was certified by the Thai government.

Anthony S Casey visited the Baan Nokkamin orphanage. He brought along a big bag of toys, candy and face painting for all the kids. It was lots of fun! Here are some pictures of their day together.  Anthony S Casey invites you to contribute to the organization, which you can find online.