No. 25 Texas women create early separation over La. Tech

AUSTIN, Texas — Charli Collier scored 22 points, Audrey Warren added 19 and No. 25 Texas beat Louisiana Tech 84-57 on Wednesday night.

Collier entered the game with a nation-leading 34.5 points per game — which now stands at 30.3. The Longhorns have won their first three games by an average of 34.3 points.

Celeste Taylor scored 14 points, and Joanne Allen-Taylor and DeYona Gaston each had 10 for Texas.

Despite missing 12 of 17 from the 3-point line, Texas shot 33 of 66 overall and were largely never challenged. Allen-Taylor’s layup with 3:26 to go in the first quarter gave Texas an 18-5 lead.

Brianna Harris lead Louisiana Tech with 25 points on 9-for-11 shooting.

The game featured two of the more storied programs in NCAA Division I history. The Lady Techsters have 1,141 wins, which is fourth highest, and Texas has 1,110 for sixth.

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Women Housekeepers And Domestic Workers Earn More Thanks To This Tech Duo’s Company

The cleaning industry—an industry largely composed of historically disenfranchised groups such as women and people of color—is desperate for change.

With over 2 million housekeepers across the U.S., an overwhelming number of domestic workers live in poverty. Many of these workers barely earn enough to make ends meet. Unfortunately, this circumstance has been exasperated by COVID-19, where a significant number of domestic workers are either unemployed or experiencing a rapid decline in service requests.

Learn more about the current reality domestic workers face and the tech company, Neu, that is building equity by empowering domestic working women.

The Stark Reality for Domestic Workers Amid COVID

A recent study by the Economic Policy Institute illustrated how the coronavirus has revealed the ways in which domestic work has been undervalued and it’s workforce under-protected. While employers are taking steps to practice social distancing, a large number of domestic workers have been left without work and the looming prospect they may lose their jobs.

In addition, with a disproportionate number of domestic workers being women, many have struggled with balancing their careers alongside the needs of their households. This has particularly applied to working mothers who, in addition to supporting their families financially, have opted to stay at home to support their children as caregivers facilitating e-learning initiatives while a majority of schools nationally remain closed. However, while some housekeepers have this option many do not and and have had the looming need to find work safely, forcing them to work in unsafe conditions to survive and feed their families—typically without adequate protection.

Opportunity for Change In An Industry Ripe for Disruption

Given the stark reality faced by domestic workers, the tech start up Neu is rising to the occasion to increase opportunities for domestic workers.

Neu—a tech platform that provides quality cleans, on-demand—primarily supports two customer segments: vacation rental hosts (Airbnb, VRBO, and more) and cleaners (domestic workers, housekeepers, or others). As a socially-conscious company, Neu has committed to building equity and creating economic opportunity for historically disenfranchised groups with their mission to make cleaning seamless, safer, and stress-free.

The 9-person company, headquartered in Seattle, WA, recently secured seed funding bringing the organization to date to having raised $800,000. In addition, the company’s founders are recent graduates of the 2020 Techstars Seattle cohort. And while ripe for growth, Neu recently expanded to Phoenix, AZ and has plans to enter a third market in early 2021.

Why Now And Why Neu?

“As a computer engineer who moonlighted as a professional Airbnb Superhost, I co-managed a profitable business that couldn’t scale as we lacked a reliable cleaning solution… we would take turns rushing to clean our Airbnbs during our lunch breaks… failing to do so had steep consequences, ranging from losing thousands in revenue from a canceled stay or future bookings from bad reviews,” says Kwame

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Tech companies are moving to hybrid work model: Nasscom’s Debjani Ghosh

NEW DELHI: Talent development has to become a national priority for India as the demand for new age digital skills is growing rapidly. It is eight times higher than supply today and by 2024, it is expected to be 20 times higher than supply, said Debjani Ghosh, president, The National Association of Software and Service Companies (Nasscom).

In an interview, Ghosh spoke on new technologies, work-from-home for IT companies and digital talent. Edited excerpts:

Also read: India can’t make up its mind on PSUs, 30 years after liberalisation

How can enterprises and businesses unlock the potential of new technologies like AI?

We did a research with McKinsey and found that in the next few years, if India can use artificial intelligence (AI) right, then it has the potential to add an incremental of around $500 billion to our GDP. There are several gaps today, which have to be taken into account but, the secret sauce is execution. So, identifying what problems, for example, of increasing supply chain effectiveness or water conservation is a huge one where AI can play a big role. It’s important for us to identify the priorities and the problems you want to solve, then build out the national data sets for these particular verticals, make sure that the protocols are in place for the utilization of data, build out the talent, and build out the regulatory framework. So that’s the approach that has to be taken.

With most companies working from home, what is the model moving forward?

We’re going to move towards a hybrid model for sure. None of the large companies are going to go back 100% on campus, nor are we going to see 100% remote working. But the pandemic has taught us that there are tremendous benefits to remote working. One of them is the ability for people to work from their hometowns, which allows them more time to do things. This will also support the gig economy and spur higher involvement of communities in smaller towns. There’s also a benefit of enabling people whether it is your gender or any other special needs, disabilities, where you could not go to work but have the ability to do so. Companies should have the right to decide what works for them, whether it’s 60-40, 70-30, 30-70 ratio.

How will the new regime in the US impact the H1 B visa issue?

I don’t do much crystal ball game gazing. We’ll wait and see how it plays out but if US has to continue to lead in innovation, they need talent more than ever. Indian IT companies take less than 10% of the H1B visas. More than 90% are taken by the MNCs and the companies that are the biggest takers of H1B are also the biggest investors in innovation and R&D, which means there’s a strong correlation between our talent and the innovation that’s happening in US. Given that there is a need to fuel and accelerate the pace of innovation, there’s going

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China’s online lender Lufax recalibrates business model as regulators clamp down on Big Tech lending



a person holding a sign: Lufax ADRs have had a bumpy ride since the fintech giant listed in October as investors digest fast-evolving fintech regulation in China. Photo: Reuters


Lufax ADRs have had a bumpy ride since the fintech giant listed in October as investors digest fast-evolving fintech regulation in China. Photo: Reuters

Lufax Holding is overhauling the way it digitally matches borrowers and lenders as China clamps down on Big Tech companies extending credit in the world’s second-largest economy amid fears the platforms could be a source of financial instability.

The Shanghai-based firm is lowering interest rates on loans; raising the capital contribution that it makes to loans; and has checked it does not bundle services for customers. Lufax is also widening the array of banks that it works with on lending and is verifying that its disclosure to borrowers is fully compliant with fast-evolving rules.

Lufax, backed by China’s biggest insurer Ping An Insurance (Group), is one of the first major financial-technology companies to lay out how it will adjust in the light of tighter and more complex regulation governing the provision of credit to individuals and small businesses. It is the largest publicly traded online lender in China, following a US$2.4 billion stock sale in October in New York.

Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.

“As planned, we also continued to make progress in establishing a more sustainable risk-sharing business model with our funding partners,” said Lufax CEO Gregory Gibb during the company’s third-quarter earnings call on Wednesday.



a man wearing a suit and tie: Lufax CEO Greg Gibb sees more fintech guidance as soon as in the coming weeks. Photo: Handout


© Provided by South China Morning Post
Lufax CEO Greg Gibb sees more fintech guidance as soon as in the coming weeks. Photo: Handout

Alarmed by spiralling online consumer debt this year, China is clamping down on the fast-growing microlending industry, calling it a threat to social harmony and financial stability.

Beijing-based regulators published a set of draft rules on November 2 capping loans by the country’s 7,227 microlenders to individuals and small businesses. In a one-two punch, regulators followed up with anti-monopoly laws on November 10, targeting bundled sales by Big Tech platforms and excessive price discrimination.

“The real purpose here is for platforms that are cooperating with banks to have more skin in the game, bear more risk and have sufficient capital to back up that risk,” said Gibb. He added what the exact bearing the microfinance rules would have on Lufax’s business model remains unclear.

Gibb said he expects more guidance from regulators as soon as the next couple of weeks. He said there is likely to be more clarity on what prices banks can offer borrowers over digital platforms as well as what types of banks can continue to increase their deposits with online platforms with which they co-lend.

Should more regulatory changes be introduced, Lufax executives said they were ready to make sure the firm remained compliant.

“The market probably won’t grow as fast as it has in the past given these changes,” said Gibb, so Lufax is looking to widen its cooperation with more bank and asset management companies.

Lufax American depositary receipts (ADRs) have risen to US$16.80 on December

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CISB a model for education tech and Sino-Canadian cooperation

The Canadian International School of Beijing provides eduction for students from 55 countries each year. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Founded in 2005, the Canadian International School of Beijing provides high-quality Canadian and World International Baccalaureate education for students from 55 countries each year, with its staff coming from approximately 20 countries.

The school’s chairman Francis Pang said education through artificial intelligence is the future. And CISB has already taken a step forward in that regard.

“AI with augmented and virtual reality lesson planning enhances teaching,” Pang added, who holds honorary doctoral degrees in business and law.

To expedite its use of technology, the school put together a team of technical experts and teachers four years ago to develop a system that combined AI and teaching.

The AI teaching software is called CanGlory and helps improve students’ learning ability and enhances teachers’ understanding of their students, Pang said.

CISB also features many innovative technological tools that lets students learn in more interesting and relevant ways.

A new VR lab allows some students in higher grades to use software called Mindshow to pick environments, characters and tools and create their own animated scenes. Students can use the software to create work or choose different systems to explore environments, such as the human body or an underwater world.

Students can learn the fundamentals of game design and summarize the rapid innovation process for capturing film, editing video game art and designing software.

The school also has indoor virtual ski-training areas where students can learn the sport from the comfort of a classroom.

Pang said: “AI with AR and VR lessons in many subjects helps students get higher scores that exceed previous expectations.”

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Women’s Wellness Tech Company, Bellabeat, Adds New Star Hire

Wellness has grown to be a top priority in people’s life encompassing wellbeing, beauty and lifestyle. The industry has seen massive growth in the past few years worth over $4.2 trillion with wellness tourism predicting to be a $919 billion industry by 2022, which would represent about 18 percent of all global tourism. 

The rise of the industry has also sparked wellness tech into a  steep upward trajectory in the past few years. While tech giants like Apple and Samsung have played a major role in this development, there are also numerous other players in the wellness and beauty sector that shaped this market with the help of new, innovative products and technologies such as San Francisco startup Bellabeat.

Bellabeat is a data-oriented wellness tech company that was founded by Sandro Mur, Urška Sršen, and Lovepreet Singh in 2013. Headquartered in San Francisco with offices in London, Hong Kong, and Zagreb. The business focuses on women’s health and wellness but its main product is the Bellabeat Leaf. The Leaf is a water-resistant device that tracks your activity, stress, sleep, meditation, and reproductive health. The data is then shared with the consumer to help her adjust diet, exercise and wellness based on her hormones and menstrual cycle. It is made of hypoallergenic, vegan-friendly materials and can be worn as a necklace, bracelet, or clip, depending on which accessories you combine with it. Within four years after its inception, Bellabeat has already sold over 700,000 pieces of jewelry.

 Although the wellness tech sector is being flooded with wearables, like smartwatches or smart rings, there is still a distinct lack of products specifically aimed at women. Bellabeat’s smart jewelry, on the other hand, is designed with women’s health in mind. The Leaf was also named the best overall smart jewelry by Business Insider.

The menstrual cycle is a big part of just about any woman’s life. It affects the hormonal balance of the body, and, thus, it has a big impact on women’s wellbeing. With the Bellabeat Leaf and its accompanying app, women can track just about everything that might have an impact on their health or performance. This knowledge can then help them optimize their lives. While Bellabeat has seen success since 2017, the company has now added the economist Jeppe Christiansen to its board in an effort to advance the wellness tech industry even further. Christiansen, who is a distinguished economist with an MSc in Economics from the University of Copenhagen and has decades of professional experience in the financial sector, joined Bellabeat as a board member to further improve the business and its products to help it reach even more women.

At the moment, Christiansen is CEO of Maj Invest, which is an asset management business based in Copenhagen, as well as vice-chair of Novo Nordisk,

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Group Seeking Equality for Women in Tech Raises $11 Million

SAN FRANCISCO — Two years ago, fed up with stories of harassment and discrimination in Silicon Valley, a group of female venture capitalists formed a nonprofit called All Raise to focus on women’s equality.

This week, the group raised $11 million toward a target of $15 million from backers including Pivotal Ventures, the investment firm of Melinda Gates; the Reid Hoffman Foundation; and GGV Capital. The money will fund expansion plans for the next three years, said Pam Kostka, All Raise’s chief executive. It previously raised $4 million in 2018.

“We’re moving as aggressively as we can to change the ecosystem,” Ms. Kostka said.

In two years, All Raise built a network of 20,000 people across four U.S. tech hubs. The industry began adding more female investors, who now make up 13 percent of the venture industry, compared with 9 percent before. All Raise said it aimed to help push that number to 18 percent by 2028.

Yet many challenges remain. Roughly two-thirds of venture capital firms still have no female partners. Venture capital funding going to women entrepreneurs stagnated over the last year at around 12 percent. Women own just 11 percent of founder and employee equity in start-ups, according to a study conducted by Carta, a financial technology start-up.

And by some measures, harassment has worsened, according to a recent survey from Women Who Tech, a nonprofit. Forty-four percent of female founders said they had been harassed. Two-thirds said they had been propositioned for sex, up 9 percent from 2017, and one-third said they had been groped, up 7 percent from 2017.

More broadly, bigger tech companies, which began publishing diversity statistics on their work forces six years ago and have poured millions of dollars into diversity efforts, are nowhere close to gender parity and have shown even less progress on hiring more Black and Latino workers. This year, the World Economic Forum concluded that it would take women 257 years to close the employment gender gap across all industries, compared with its previous estimate of 202 years.

“We are not going to take hundreds of years of stereotyping and systemic oppression and turn that around overnight,” Ms. Kostka said. “But are we making more tangible progress? Yes.”

All Raise helps peer groups, boot camps, and mentorship programs for female and nonbinary investors and founders. It also produces data reports on the start-up industry, publishes a directory of vetted speakers and runs a program for Black female founders, When Founder Met Funder. With the new money, it plans to establish chapters in more cities and offer more programs, which it said were “oversubscribed.”

Ms. Kostka said the demand for All Raise’s programs showed that the tech industry’s lack of diversity was not caused by a lack of talent or interest from women and minorities. “We don’t have a pipeline problem,” she said. “We have a talent network problem.”

At a summit in October, 700 of its members gathered online for a virtual networking event. The mood was celebratory

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Cyber Monday sales: Save big on tech, beauty, home and more

Big savings are coming your way today (and in some cases, all week long) as Cyber Monday deals start today. We’ve rounded up some of the best in tech, beauty, home and clothing.

Philo is having a Cyber Monday sale on their streaming service, which offers an amazing range of 60+ top-rated television channels including AMC, A&E, MTV, BET, Discovery, VH1, Food Network, History, Nickelodeon, OWN, TLC, Lifetime, Hallmark, Paramount, TV One, and more for just $20/month. Use code “Cyber Monday 2020” to get 25 percent off your subscription.

PlayStation Plus 12 month Premium Membership

Price: $44.96 (reg. $59.99)

Roku Streaming Stick

Price: $29 (reg. $49)

Samsung Galaxy Watch in Rose Gold

Price: $169 (reg. $259)

SAMSUNG 65″ Class 4K Crystal UHD (2160P) LED Smart TV with HDR

Price: $478 (reg. $528)

Nixplay Smart Digital Picture Frame 10.1 Inch

Price: $114.19 (reg. $179.99)

Ulta is offering sales up to 50 percent off. Save 30 percent on Tarte, 50 percent off Morphe pan palettes and more from other top brands today.

Sephora is giving away trial size lipsticks, mascaras and more with a $25 purchase. You can also save up to 50 percent across the site with items like PMD Clean Pro, Fenty Beauty Lipsticks for just $9 and plenty more.

NYX Cosmetics has 40 percent off storewide, no code needed, and a free gift with every purchase.

Save at least 25 percent on Glossier skincare and beauty products including The Makeup Set staples for brows, cheeks and eyes for just $30.

Roborock S6 Pure Robot Vacuum and Mop

Price: $359.99 (reg. $599.99)

Instant Pot Max Pressure Cooker 9 in 1

Price: $79.99 (reg. $199.95)

Ayesha Curry Home Collection Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Set, 9 Piece

Price: $64.98 (reg. $99.99)

Ninja Blender 1200

Price: $69 (reg. $119)

Mainstays Basic Bath Collection, 18-Piece Towel Set

Price: $24.98 (reg. $57.60)

Sister stores Old Navy and The Gap are both offering 50 percent off everything. Banana Republic is offering up to 75 percent off everything with $30 sweaters.

At Nordstrom you can get up to 50 percent off thousands of styles, plus an additional 25 percent off clearance.

Adidas has 30 percent off sitewide with code BRINGJOY.

Athletic apparel is up to 70 percent off at Outdoor Voices in both women’s and men’s styles.

Lululemon also has Cyber Monday specials on their athleisure collection as well.

Today only, take 30 percent off everything at Anthropologie.

Under Armour is offering up to 50 percent off, no code needed.

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Group Seeking Equality for Women in Tech Raises $15 Million

SAN FRANCISCO — Two years ago, fed up with stories of harassment and discrimination in Silicon Valley, a group of female venture capitalists formed a nonprofit called All Raise to focus on women’s equality.

This week, the group raised $15 million from backers including Pivotal Ventures, the investment firm of Melinda Gates; the Reid Hoffman Foundation; and GGV Capital. The money will fund expansion plans for the next three years, said Pam Kostka, All Raise’s chief executive. It previously raised $4 million in 2018.

“We’re moving as aggressively as we can to change the ecosystem,” Ms. Kostka said.

In two years, All Raise built a network of 20,000 people across four U.S. tech hubs. The industry began adding more female investors, who now make up 13 percent of the venture industry, compared with 9 percent before. All Raise said it aims to help push that number to 18 percent by 2028.

Yet many challenges remain. Roughly two-thirds of venture capital firms still have no female partners. Venture capital funding going to women entrepreneurs stagnated over the last year at around 12 percent. Women own just 11 percent of founder and employee equity in start-ups, according to a study conducted by Carta, a financial technology start-up.

And by some measures, harassment has worsened, according to a recent survey from Women Who Tech, a nonprofit. Forty-four percent of female founders said they had been harassed. Two-thirds said they had been propositioned for sex, up 9 percent from 2017, and one-third said they had been groped, up 7 percent from 2017.

More broadly, bigger tech companies, which began publishing diversity statistics on their work forces six years ago and have poured millions of dollars into diversity efforts, are nowhere close to gender parity and have shown even less progress on hiring more Black and Latino workers. This year, the World Economic Forum concluded that it would take women 257 years to close the employment gender gap across all industries, compared with its previous estimate of 202 years.

“We are not going to take hundreds of years of stereotyping and systemic oppression and turn that around overnight,” Ms. Kostka said. “But are we making more tangible progress? Yes.”

All Raise helps peer groups, boot camps and mentorship programs for female and nonbinary investors and founders. It also produces data reports on the start-up industry, publishes a directory of vetted speakers and runs a program for Black female founders, When Founder Met Funder. With the new money, it plans to establish chapters in more cities and offer more programs, which it said were “oversubscribed.”

Ms. Kostka said the demand for All Raise’s programs shows the tech industry’s lack of diversity is not caused by a lack of talent or interest from women and minorities. “We don’t have a pipeline problem,” she said. “We have a talent network problem.”

At a summit in October, 700 of its members gathered online for a virtual networking event. The mood was celebratory as Ms. Kostka rattled off success stories

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The Verge home tech holiday gift guide

Sugru Mouldable Glue

Sugru is Play-Doh for grownups. You mold it into whatever you want and then let it harden into things like a headphone holder, a curtain hook, or a cable organizer. I’ve also used it to repair a faucet handle. It’s the fixit solution for those of us who are normally not handy. Price: ~$10

Mueller Austria Ultra-Stick 500 hand blender

Being home more than usual has enabled a lot of people to cook more than they would usually, and having the right tools makes things even easier. This immersion hand blender has multiple uses — use it to whisk some eggs, or puree some veggies to make some salsa for Taco Tuesdays. Price: ~$35

Instant Pot

The Instant Pot could become one of the most-used items in your kitchen. It makes great soups and stews, can serve as a pressure cooker for tasty meats, and yes, can also be a rice cooker. Versatile and handy, it’s a great gadget for someone who’s cooking at home more often. Price: ~$79

Gravity Blanket

Life is stressful, and it seems like every day there is something new to worry about. Thankfully, this weighted blanket can help reduce your anxiety and make you sleep more soundly. It is incredibly soft, will keep you warm during the cold winter months, and it looks very stylish draped across your bed. Price: ~$132

Epson Home Cinema 2150 projector

This is a great projector if you are looking to watch movies and TV shows in 1080p resolution. The Verge video director Alix Diaconis said this is her top pick because of its bright image, good speakers, and easy set-up. Price: ~$850

Base Roots vegan leather plant hangers

This minimalist plant hanger has the look and durability of leather without the, well, leather. It’s a great alternative to cord or macrame hangers. Price: ~$15

Oxford pennant

Sometimes you just need to add a little inspiration to your room, whether it’s living space or an office. Some people prefer posters or inspirational prints, but pennants are not a bad idea, either. Price: ~25

Lapgear lap desk

Working from home does not mean you have to have a crazy desk setup. A lap desk is great for people who prefer to work from the comfort of their bed or on their comfy couch, while still feeling productive. Price: ~$30

Walking Palm cat cave

Cats are fickle creatures, but the one thing you can rely on them doing is sitting in any enclosed space they can fit in. So why not make that enclosed space comfortable and nice to look at? Cat caves look great in your living room, and give your pet a comfortable place to sleep. Win-win. Price: ~$60

Agatha Kaya Face pot

A wonderfully quirky ceramic pot by artist Justina Blakeney that will complement any type of flora. It’s a lovely gift that could be perfect for your plant-loving

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