Ladbrokes slapped with Belgian licence suspension

first_img Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter One-day sanction imposed after bookie is found to have broken rules on virtual betting Topics: Legal & compliance The Belgian Gaming Commission will suspend Ladbrokes’ licence in the country for 24 hours next month after the bookmaker was reportedly found to have offered unauthorised virtual betting.The violations occurred in 2017 and earlier this year, according to the Brussels Times, which cited multiple newspapers, including La Dernière Heure, Het Laatste Nieuws and De Morgen. No mention of the sanction was published on the commission’s website.The suspension will take effect on September 3, with Ladbrokes blocked from accepting retail or online bets from customers in Belgium.The punishment will be imposed on the Tiercé Ladbroke brand and Derby SA, the Belgian subsidiary of the bookmaker, the report said.Until the end of June 2017, Ladbrokes had an effective monopoly on land-based virtual betting in the country, with no other operator having received the same authorisation, despite challenges from the likes of Rocoluc.According to the report, Ladbrokes continued to offer virtual betting up to March 14 this year.The commission noted that the company had “not contested the materiality of the facts”.Ladbrokes had not responded to a request for clarifications from at the time of publication.PICTURE: Garry Cornes Regions: Europe Western Europe Belgium Tags: Online Gambling OTB and Betting Shops Ladbrokes slapped with Belgian licence suspension 9th August 2018 | By contenteditor AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Legal & compliance Email Addresslast_img read more

Think like a scientist

first_img Applying the first principles concept to your marketing strategy, challenging all underlying assumptions and conventions before rebuilding, can help you make better decisions. Nick Garner runs through the basics. Topics: Marketing & affiliates Strategy Applying the first principles concept to your marketing strategy, challenging all underlying assumptions and conventions before rebuilding, can help you make better decisions. Nick Garner runs through the basics.Reasoning from first principles is a process where you break down complex problems into the most basic elements and rebuild. As a scientist might say: “What are we absolutely sure is true? What has been proven?”Reasoning by analogy ‘This’ is like ‘that’, therefore ‘that’ is like ‘this’. A good example of reasoning by analogy can be seen in the phrase “in my experience”. This new executive says confidently: “You should run your campaign with this partner, because in my experience this will work.” We all value experience, but does it necessarily represent good judgment?Going back to what a scientist might ask: “What are we absolutely sure is true? What has been proven?”The new executive wants to sign off a large budget against ‘experience’.“What are we absolutely sure is true? Well, that an executive ran a campaign with a media partner that was successful for a different brand than ours.”What has been proven? Nothing. What about the creative? Was it different? And in what way? How is that other brand different to yours?The point about experience: it’s the accumulation of years of knowledge that gives somebody a holistic overview of what is ‘best’. It’s a refined version of reasoning by analogy.How to reason by first principles Have you ever asked yourself, “Why do I think this?”
‘This’ could be a strategic view on a market place. It could be an opinion of somebody. It could even be a deeply held long-term belief you treasure.I repeat: have you ever asked yourself why you think ‘this’?Challenging assumptions How do you know this is true? What if you thought the opposite?Let’s say you assume Google AdWords does not convert well. Why do you assume that? Was the creative good enough? What about the landing pages, what about the competitiveness of the offer?Now let’s imagine the opposite: “AdWords works very well for me”. What works well? Maybe you have organised your keyword selection more efficiently, modified your offer or tried a different landing page.By asking yourself, “What if I thought the opposite?” you are looking at an old problem in a new way.Looking for evidence How can you back this up? What are the sources?You’ve got a marketing campaign that’s been very successful. The next question should be “what went right?”Let’s say you assume what went right. How did you validate this assumption? What sources did you use for the validation? Were the analytics correct? Are you sure?If you have important decisions to make, it’s important to never assume anything until you can back up assumptions with valid information.Considering alternative perspectives What might others think? How do you know you are correct?A way of thinking in opposites is to consider alternative perspectives. That marketing campaign was a success… for you. It generated a high conversion rate, but right now we don’t know the long-term revenue per customer.What would the data analyst think about the campaign? The analyst has more information on the long-term revenues from certain customer groups. Would the analyst be happy with this group of converting customers?If the analyst went through the demographics/interest groupings on this batch of conversions, how would that match up with previous players from similar player segments?Did those previous segments go on to produce on or above target revenues?
If so, great. If not, time to change that marketing campaign.Examining consequences What if I am wrong? What are the consequences if I am wrong?What if the conversions were excellent, but the expected return on investment was poor based on player segment analysis?You’ve been telling everyone how the campaign conversion rate was way above average. You did the segment analysis and found out these players are likely to be bonus hunters.You have a choice. You can either admit you are wrong or be defiant and hope people don’t know the truth. If you are wrong, what are the consequences?You’re expected to run the same campaign again since the numbers were above average and everyone believes you’ve got a magic ‘touch’.The consequences: you have short-term gain with above-average conversions, but long-term loss once player revenues start to come through.Questioning the original questions Why did you think that? Were you correct? What conclusions can you draw from the reasoning process?You believed the marketing campaign was a success because conversion rates were high.Subsequently you talked to the data analyst and realised the customer segment you attracted were bonus hunters. And it’s likely they will produce poor long-term revenue.High conversion rate is a good thing. It’s just you have to have the revenue to support the cost of the marketing campaign.You might lower the cost per acquisition in the marketing campaign. You reduce conversion rates but you increase potential return on investment…You might find your business is being driven by fundamentally weak assumptions.Finally “What are we absolutely sure is true? What has been proven?”Nick Garner is a marketing strategist and founder of RIZE digital, the igaming marketing consultancy and web development agency. Nick uses his knowledge to help clients deliver successful web development and earned media marketing projects. Think like a scientist Tags: Mobile Online Gambling AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwittercenter_img Marketing & affiliates 17th September 2019 | By contenteditor Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Email Addresslast_img read more

Madison Financial Services PLC 2011 Annual Report

first_imgMadison Financial Services PLC ( listed on the Lusaka Securities Exchange under the Financial sector has released it’s 2011 annual report.For more information about Madison Financial Services PLC ( reports, abridged reports, interim earnings results and earnings presentations, visit the Madison Financial Services PLC ( company page on AfricanFinancials.Document: Madison Financial Services PLC (  2011 annual report.Company ProfileMadison Financial Services Plc is a financial services group in Zambia offering solutions for general insurance and life assurance products for personal and corporate clients in Zambia and Tanzania. The company operates in four segments: life assurance, non-life assurance, asset management and microfinance. Madison Financial Services offers a range of products; from life and term assurance to pension funds which include unitised, guaranteed, endowment and mortgage endowment options. Company subsidiaries offer a range of health insurance products, and personal, motor, household, commercial and business interruption insurance. Madison Financial Services also provides investment management services, as well as investment funds, unit trusts and brokering service. The microfinance division offers solutions for loans to small- and medium-sized companies and employees of public and private institutions. Madison Financial Services Plc was established in 1992 and is a subsidiary of Lawrence Sikutwa and Associates Limited. Madison Financial Services Plc is listed on the Lusaka Stock Exchangelast_img read more

Law Union And Rock Insurance Plc ( HY2014 Interim Report

first_imgLaw Union And Rock Insurance Plc ( listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange under the Insurance sector has released it’s 2014 interim results for the half year.For more information about Law Union And Rock Insurance Plc ( reports, abridged reports, interim earnings results and earnings presentations, visit the Law Union And Rock Insurance Plc ( company page on AfricanFinancials.Document: Law Union And Rock Insurance Plc (  2014 interim results for the half year.Company ProfileLaw Union & Rock Insurance Plc is an insurance company in Nigeria licensed to underwrite all classes of insurance business. The company provides non-life insurance policies which includes cover for motor, fire, burglary, general household and home owners comprehensive, group personal accident, all risks, workmen’s compensation, general third party liability, marine, professional indemnity, goods-in-transit, money, fidelity guarantee, engineering, oil and gas, cargo, onshore property, legal liability, construction erection, business interruption, and bonds insurance policies. The company was founded in 1951. Its head office is in Lagos, Nigeria. Law Union & Rock Insurance Plc is listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchangelast_img read more

Red Light Camera vote highlights a busy City Council agenda

first_img Apopka residents who want the predatory for-profit red light camera racket gone from the city need to attend the meeting to speak and say NO MORE cameras.James C. Walker, National Motorists Association James C Walker Steve Smith Reply June 22, 2017 at 12:54 pm Gov. DeSantis says new moment-of-silence law in public schools protects religious freedom June 21, 2017 at 5:18 pm Reply LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply Two weeks ago, it sat harmlessly in the fourth position of a modest City Council Consent Agenda. But at tonight’s City Council meeting, it has moved up in pole position and onto a more prominent list. The Authorization to renew the agreement with American Traffic Solutions for the Intersection Safety Program is the lead item on the Business Agenda.In other words, the red light camera program will be discussed, debated, and ultimately voted on at tonight’s Apopka City Council meeting.According to the Agenda Packet provided for the June 21st meeting, the current agreement is set to expire this year unless renewed by Council. The staff of the Apopka Police Department has been in negotiations with ATS and has modified the language in the agreement to enhance the terms and conditions of the services in the best interest of Apopka. ATS, the largest provider of such intersection safety programs in the state, has agreed to the new terms and has provided services adequately and responsively to Apopka’s needs over the last ten years of the agreement. Additionally, the infrastructure for the enforcement services and programmatic business rules between Apopka and ATS are in place. The system is managed in accordance with State Statute and court rules. Highlights of the renewal are:Intersection approach costs are reduced from $4,750 to $4,250 per approach.The contract may be terminated by either party for convenience after December 1st, 2018.The contract may also be terminated without penalty if the program is prohibited by state law.ATS will upgrade each existing approach with new technology.According to the packet, APD Chief Michael McKinley recommends the City Council vote to renew the agreement between the City and ATS. However, Commissioner Kyle Becker expressed reservations at the previous meeting about the program and continues to have questions leading up to tonight’s agenda item.“For me to make a fact-based decision on this topic, I need to see the data, the trends, and the financial impact of this program,” he said in a statement after the June 7th meeting. “If a benefit of the program is a decrease in violations, but crashes are increasing, is there truly a benefit? If violations decrease to the point the program then takes a loss financially, does the safety impact and the potential to reduce crashes then make it worth the investment from a public safety standpoint? These are all questions and conversations that need to take place, not anecdotally, but rather data-driven.”Also on the agenda is the second reading for a temporary moratorium on medical cannabis dispensing in Apopka, six annexations, and three items related to the Apopka Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA). There is also a 6 PM meeting of the CRA before the 7 PM City Council meeting. I’d like to see the Mayor and the Councilmen that promised to get rid of them during their campaigns honor their promises. James C Walker Reply Florida gas prices jump 12 cents; most expensive since 2014 Please enter your name here This is my take on the Apopka red light cameras: ATS executives have been indicted for in federal court in other states,Illionis one of them. If Apopka does business with crooks, I no longer wish to do business with Apopka. Your scam got me for $300 plus a day wasted in court,4 years ago,since them I have initiated my personal boycott to the city going on 6 year now. This is just an economic estimate of the lost business from me of this year alone: I have spoken to Apopka Home Depot to purchase a Window AC unit around $600, They had it in stock,so I grabbed my keys and then I remember, Apopka ripped me off with a red light ticket… Turned around drove away and bought it somewhere else . Today I have spoken to one the best Optometrists in the area, I was ready to schedule a $100 eye exam,until I saw the location,..No go, I will have to drive and find another one,perhaps Altamonte,it’s a longer drive but I do not have to deal with revenue collecting scams. Needed new brakes two weeks ago, I did not even looked at Apopka stores, got them somewhere else. The most expensive purchase they’ve lost from me few months ago was a new Transmission, yes I looked at the Apopka stores,same price shorter distance to drive,but I am no longer interested in doing business with Apopka merchants until they make the city understand that red light tickets, are a dishonest scheme,keep the cameras for accident recording if you wish,but as long as the city continue to issue red light tickets,you the merchants will be the ones affected.Reply Go to the city website, record the emails of the elected officials, and send them a personal copy of this email – including your full contract information. Also include the emails of the community development department.James C. Walker, National Motorists Association Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Share on Facebook Tweet on Twitter Reply Felix Guerra Please enter your comment! Apopka City Hall TAGSApopka City CouncilRed Light Camera Program Previous articleApopka Burglary ReportNext articleEverything you want to know about red light cameras… Denise Connell RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR June 21, 2017 at 6:52 pm 4 COMMENTS UF/IFAS in Apopka will temporarily house District staff; saves almost $400,000 You have entered an incorrect email address! Please enter your email address here June 21, 2017 at 9:51 amlast_img read more

School donates winning business plan to Demelza House Hospice

first_img Tagged with: Community fundraising corporate Howard Lake | 27 June 2008 | News School donates winning business plan to Demelza House Hospice About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of Researching massive growth in giving. Kidbrooke School in Greenwhich, London, is the winner of a competition to produce a fundraising business plan for Demelza Hospice Care for Children. Six Greenwich schools presented their business plans for the charity in a competition sponsored by ANZ (Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited) and run in co-ordination with Greenwich Council. Channel 4 presenter Dave Berry presented the award to the winners.Each of the six schools had worked for five months with a team of mentors from ANZ to devise a business idea and plan for Demelza. The prize was £10,000 worth of equipment for Demelza.The culmination of the challenge was the six teams making their presentation today to the judges.Ted Gladdish, Chief Executive of Demelza, said: “Kidbrooke School’s winning plan showed great imagination: an annual 5-a-side football competition based on the Spanish Liga de Futbol, with the prize being a training session with Didier Drogba of Chelsea. We definitely will think about this and all the ideas put forward by the teams and are grateful to them as well as ANZ.”Councillor Denise Hyland, Greenwich Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy and Skills, said, “The Business Enterprise Challenge has been a great learning experience for Greenwich schools. Our pupils have got to work in a totally new field, taking their studies beyond the classroom into real business environments, where they’ve learnt a great deal and also helped to raise money for Demelza Hospice Care for Children.” AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis  32 total views,  1 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more

Patterson glad to ‘get over with’ spring game

first_imgReddIt Men’s basketball scores season-low in NIT semifinals loss to Texas Previous articleTCU reaches 10-game winning streak with 9-2 win over Murray StateNext articleNo. 30 TCU cap strong weekend with 4-0 sweep over Iowa State Garrett Podell RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR ReddIt Garrett Podell Boschini talks: construction, parking, tuition, enrollment, DEI, a student trustee Facebook Garrett Podell TCU head coach Gary Patterson signs a fan’s poster after the annual spring game on Saturday. Garrett Podell Linkedin Linkedin Facebook + posts center_img Garrett Podell TCU rowing program strengthens after facing COVID-19 setbacks Garrett is a Journalism and Sports Broadcasting double major. He is the Managing Editor for TCU360, and his passions are God, family, friends, sports, and great food. Boschini: ‘None of the talk matters because Jamie Dixon is staying’ Twitter TAGSgary pattersonsport analysis Garrett Podell Another series win lands TCU Baseball in the top 5, earns Sikes conference award Twitter Listen: The Podell and Pickell Show with L.J. Collier printTCU football concluded its spring practices Saturday with the annual scrimmage of its offense against its defense in front of fans at Amon G. Carter StadiumTCU football fans take in the annual spring game at Amon G. Carter Stadium. (Photo By Brandon Kitchin/TCU 360 Photographer)TCU head coach Gary Patterson was pleased to wrap up the spring and look forward to summer.“I just wanted to get it over with,” Patterson said. “We didn’t score, that spring we didn’t score, we had a field goal that’s it, but all I care about is that everyone got a chance to play and enjoy the fans because we had already done a lot of work in the first 14 spring practices.”Passing game still a work in progress“It’s kind of like 2014 where we missed some plays on the deep routes, we have to be able to hit that,” Patterson said.Although some of the issues that plagued the Horned Frog aerial attack stemmed from not functioning with all hands on deck.“We had five wide receivers out, getting to the end of the spring, we’ve been a little bit beat up,” Patterson said.TCU senior wide receivers John Diarse (9) and Ty Slanina (13) did not suit up for the spring game on Saturday. (Photo By Brandon Kitchin/TCU 360 Photographer)The spring game was the world’s first look at highly-touted freshman quarterback Shawn Robinson.“I thought he was a little nervous, overthrowing a couple, so he has to get better at that,” Patterson said. “That’s what I like about the spring games because you get to see how they act with people in the stands.”Shawn Robinson throws a pass in warmups for the spring game on Saturday. (Photo By Brandon Kitchin/TCU 360 Photographer)As for Kenny Hill, the Horned Frogs returning starting quarterback, Patterson saw a mixed bag.“He [Hill] didn’t start very good, and you can’t wish touchdowns, you have to throw where they’re open,” Patterson said. “The one big throw was a good play, the other one he threw it right to the defense, so we have to be better at that, but the defense did a good job too,”Once again, Patterson noted that the offense doesn’t just ride on the play of its quarterbacks.“We have to catch the ball a lot better if we’re going to win ball games, and you can’t blame it all on the quarterbacks.”Patterson said the defense has the advantage in preseason matchups like the spring game Saturday.“Both the offense and the defense ran their base sets without gimmicks, so the defense kind of knows what you’re doing every snap,” Patterson said.However, Patterson has seen improvement throughout his offense.“We have to keep getting better at the offensive line, we’ve progressed at quarterback, so we’ll see how it goes,” Patterson said.Defense looks sharp heading into summer“We think we’re better in the secondary compared to where we were this time last year,” Patterson said.”We have to get more depth, and our backups have to grow up more to have an opportunity to be better.”As for his linebackers, Patterson was encouraged by what he saw top to bottom, especially from senior linebacker Sammy Douglas, who was coming off an injury-riddled campaign last season.“He [Douglas] didn’t really play until after spring break, but other than that he progressed,” Patterson said. “I like the way the linebackers played, it’ll give us some flexibility on moving guys to safety or defensive end or playing some other defenses we didn’t see today.”Special Teams spots still unresolved“There was only one PAT, and we kicked off and punted,” Patterson said. “I was hoping we would score more so we could do more of that stuff.”TCU kickers last season connected on 18 of their 25 field goals attempts.Kyle Hicks takes a day off“We’re not thumping or tacking him, and we’ll wait until the fall to do that,” Patterson said. “We did the same thing with Aaron Green a year ago in spring.”TCU running back Kyle Hicks chats with co-offensive coordinator and running backs coach Curtis Luper.(Photo By Brandon Kitchin/TCU 360 Photographer)Patterson made sure to make one point clear: it’s only spring.“It’s our first 14 days of practices, and our starters are our starters right now,” Patterson said.”It’s the spring game, that’s it.” TCU baseball finds their biggest fan just by saying hellolast_img read more

Limerick Institute of Technology president takes up office as Chair of…

first_img TAGSeducationLimerick City and CountyLimerick Institute of TechnologyNews NewsEducationLimerick Institute of Technology president takes up office as Chair of THEA board for 2020By Staff Reporter – January 2, 2020 485 Housing 37 Compulsory Purchase Orders issued as council takes action on derelict sites Linkedin Facebook Professor Vincent Cunnane, President of Limerick Institute of Technology.Picture Sean Curtin True Media.President of Limerick Institute of Technology, Professor Vincent Cunnane, assumes the chair of THEA for the 50th anniversary year of Technological Higher Education in Ireland.The Technological Higher Education Association is the representative advocacy body for Ireland’s technological higher education institutions, and professor Cunnane said he was “looking forward to my time in office as Chair of the THEA board for 2020”.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up “2020 marks a significant and challenging milestone in the development of higher education in Ireland,” he said, noting, “It marks fifty years of technological higher education, since the first Regional Technical Colleges came into being in 1970.”The LIT President said the “evolution” of the country’s technological education institutions “reflects the story of Ireland’s development.”“In 1970, there were about 12,000 third-level students in Ireland.  Today, there are some 250,000, with the RTCs and Institutes of Technology being central in a dramatic rise in student numbers since their foundation. In fact, the socio-economic profile of students in institutes of technology reflects that of Irish society as a whole.”Professor Cunnane believes Ireland will see a further evolution of IT’s in 2020 as they “progress towards Technological University designation, bringing with it all the challenges and opportunities that such a major change entail”.“It is our hope that 2020 will see a resolution of the sustainable funding issue for our institutions.  We expect that the report prepared for Government by Peter Cassells will finally be addressed and that a model of sustainable funding for higher education be agreed and put in place during my term of office as Chair of THEA.Commenting on his appointment, Dr Joseph Ryan, CEO of THEA said, “I am delighted to welcome Prof Vincent Cunnane as Chairperson of the Board of THEA and we look forward to an engaging and busy year working with Dr Cunnane. We are very grateful to Dr Annie Doona, President of IADT for her term of office during 2019. We also wish Dr Doona well as she retires from the Institute of Art, Design, & Technology, Dun Laoghaire to embrace other challenges during the year ahead.”Prof Cunnane’s term of office runs from 01 January 2020 to 31 December 2020. Limerick on Covid watch list Email Previous articleLimerick Hurling Team of the Decade: Right Corner ForwardNext articleKevin’s journey from special branch to the political heartland Staff Reporter Printcenter_img WhatsApp RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Limerick’s Student Radio Station Wired FM Celebrates 25 Years on Air Twitter Limerick social entrepreneurs honoured for their work in response to covid-19 TechPost | Episode 9 | Pay with Google, WAZE – the new Google Maps? and Speak don’t Type! Advertisement Shannon Airport braced for a devastating blowlast_img read more

Public appeal after elderly woman is seriously assaulted

first_img PSNI and Gardai urged to investigate Adams’ claims he sheltered on-the-run suspect in Donegal Google+ RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Google+ Man arrested in Derry on suspicion of drugs and criminal property offences released By News Highland – March 22, 2012 Man arrested on suspicion of drugs and criminal property offences in Derry Newsx Adverts Public appeal after elderly woman is seriously assaulted Facebook Twitter HSE warns of ‘widespread cancellations’ of appointments next week center_img Previous articleMartin McDermott sentenced to 4 months in prison by Derry courtNext articleDonegal rape trial: Alleged victim was threatened with being called a liar News Highland Dail hears questions over design, funding and operation of Mica redress scheme Facebook WhatsApp Twitter Pinterest Pinterest Dail to vote later on extending emergency Covid powers WhatsApp Police in Foyle are appealing for witnesses following an assault on a pensioner and her son in the Greenwalk area of Creggan last Saturday night, March 17th.Shortly before 9pm, the woman and her son were both hit with a glass bottle as they walked along the street. The mother and son were both treated in hospital for injuries.It is understood a large group of youths were standing nearby and police are keen to speak to these youths.Police believe people in the area know who was responsible for the attack and are appealing to local people to help identify the culprit.Anyone who witnessed the attack or has any information is asked to contact local policelast_img read more

COVID-19 A Force Majeure Event; But Not An Excuse For Breach Of Deadlines Before Pandemic Outbreak : Delhi HC [Read Order]

first_imgTop StoriesCOVID-19 A Force Majeure Event; But Not An Excuse For Breach Of Deadlines Before Pandemic Outbreak : Delhi HC [Read Order] Karan Tripathi29 May 2020 9:32 AMShare This – x’Every breach or non-performance cannot be justified or excused merely on the invocation of COVID-19 as a Force Majeure condition’, the Court said.The Delhi High Court on Friday rejected Halliburton’s plea to restrain Vedanta Limited from invoking the bank guarantees on the ground of Force Majeure clause invoked due to the COVID19 pandemic.TThe single bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh was considering an application filed by Halliburton under Section 9 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, seeking to restrain the invocation of…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginThe Delhi High Court on Friday rejected Halliburton’s plea to restrain Vedanta Limited from invoking the bank guarantees on the ground of Force Majeure clause invoked due to the COVID19 pandemic.TThe single bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh was considering an application filed by Halliburton under Section 9 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, seeking to restrain the invocation of bank guarantees.On prima facie examination of facts, the Court noted that the alleged non-performance of the contract cannot be excused on the ground of force majuere due to COVID-19HC observations on Force MajeureThe Court observed that COVID-19 is a Force Majeure event, but its application will depend on the facts and circumstances of each case.”There is no doubt that COVID-19 is a Force Majeure event. But was this event the cause of the non-performance?”, the Court asked.On the issue of application of doctrine of Force Majeure in this matter, the court observed that the question as to whether COVID-19 would justify non-performance or breach of a contract has to be examined on the facts and circumstances of each case.Every breach or non-performance cannot be justified or excused merely on the invocation of COVID-19 as a Force Majeure condition.The court further noted that it would have to assess :the conduct of the parties prior to the outbreak,the deadlines that were imposed in the contract,the steps that were to be taken,the various compliances that were required to be madeOnly then it can assess whether, genuinely, a party was prevented or is able to justify its non- performance due to the epidemic/pandemic.The Court observed : “The question as to whether COVID-19 would justify non-performance or breach of a contract has to be examined on the facts and circumstances of each case. Every breach or non-performance cannot be justified or excused merely on the invocation of COVID-19 as a Force Majeure condition. The Court would have to assess the conduct of the parties prior to the outbreak, the deadlines that were imposed in the contract, the steps that were to be taken, the various compliances that were required to be made and only then assess as to whether, genuinely, a party was prevented or is able to justify its nonperformance due to the epidemic/pandemic”. The court said: ‘It is the settled position in law that a Force Majeure clause is to be interpreted narrowly and not broadly. Parties ought to be compelled to adhere to contractual terms and conditions and excusing non-performance would be only in exceptional situations.’ On prima facie examination of facts, the Court said that force majeure cannot be an excuse for the petitioner. The Court observed : “The past non-performance of the Contractor cannot be condoned due to the COVID-19 lockdown in March 2020 in India. The Contractor was in breach since September 2019. Opportunities were given to the Contractor to cure the same repeatedly. Despite the same, the Contractor could not complete the Project. The outbreak of a pandemic cannot be used as an excuse for nonperformance of a contract for which the deadlines were much before the outbreak itself”. The Court also added that the question as to whether the Force Majeure clause itself would apply or justify non-performance in these facts would have to be finally determined finally in the arbitral proceedings. “Needless to add that the opinion rendered herein is prima facie in nature and shall not bind the arbitral proceedings in any manner whatsoever. The respective claims and counterclaims would be liable to be adjudicated by the duly constituted Arbitral Tribunal, on their own merits, in accordance with law”, the bench clarified. The bench made extensive reference to the SC precedent Energy Watchdog v. Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (2017) 14 SCC 80 and discussed in detail the principles of force majeure. Background In 2018, the Petitioner was granted a contract by Vedanta for the integrated development of Mangala, Bhagyam and Aiswarya oil and gas fields in Rajasthan for which the Petitioner had furnished various bank guarantees. The Petitioner was supposed to complete the contracted project by January 31 2020. However, on Petitioner’s own request, the Respondent had extended the deadlines to 29 February 2020 and finally to 31 March 2020. Amidst the ongoing disagreement between both the parties regarding extension of the deadlines, on 18/03/20, the Petitioner sent a communication to the Respondent, stating that it is invoking the Force Majeure clause due to the ongoing COVID19 pandemic. In response to that communication, the Respondent, on 31/03/20, informed the Petitioner that it will not be accommodating the request of relief under Force Majeure and reserved its right to take appropriate recourse under the contract. In response to that communication, the Petitioner moved the Delhi High Court in order to restrain the Defendant from invoking bank guarantees extended by the Petitioner during the signing of the contract. Subsequently, the Respondent terminated the contract and moved ahead to invoke the concerned bank guarantees. Preempting that, Halliburton moved the HC under Section 9 of the Arbitration Act. Further Observations The court noted: ‘The Contractor (Halliburton) has clearly defaulted in performance despite repeated opportunities by the Company. The Bank Guarantees are unconditional and irrevocable. All the Bank Guarantees are valid. The language of the financial and performance Bank Guarantees makes it clear that simply on demand, the bank would have to make payment.’ Earlier, the court had passed an ad-interim order in favour of Halliburton, asking both the parties to maintain the status quo. Observing that the lockdown was prima facie in the nature of a force majeure, Justice C Hari Shankar had passed an ad-interim order on April 20 restraining the invocation of bank guarantees. But now (on May 29), the bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh vacated the ad-interim order, observing that the same was passed when the complete pleadings of the parties were not on record. On the issue of invocation of Advanced Bank Guarantees, the court laid down the following process to be followed: ‘Accordingly, insofar as the Advance Bank Guarantees are concerned, this Court is of the opinion that the amount recoverable by the Company ought to be ascertained. Accordingly, it is directed that the amount of only the Advance Bank Guarantees which have been invoked, upon being encashed, shall be placed in a separate `Joint Account’ which shall be jointly held by the Contractor and the Company. The parties are directed to reconcile the accounts, including payment of any invoices already raised and upon reconciliation as to the unrecovered portion of the advance amount which the Company is entitled to retain, in terms of the clauses in the contract, they may instruct the bank to release the said amounts in favour of the Company.’ The court added: ‘The remaining amounts be released to the Contractor. If the parties are unable to reconcile the same, they are free to approach the Arbitral Tribunal under Section 17 of the Act. The `Joint Account’ as directed, shall be opened within three days and the amounts of the Advance Bank Guarantees shall be directly deposited in the said account. The reconciliation process shall be completed in two weeks.’ Senior Advocate Gopal Subramanium appeared for Halliburton and Senior Advocate Harish Salve appeared for Vedanta. Click here to download OrderRead Order Next Storylast_img