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These are the best cities in Asia for millennials to live and work

Asia is the world’s millennial hub, home to a staggering 58 percent of the world’s 20- to 38-year-old population.

best set up for millennial living. Using data from The Economist, the World Economic Forum and the World Health Organization and others, the study measured each of the cities according to three key metrics: Employment prospects; cost of living; and quality of life. It then averaged out each of the city’s overall scores to establish its final ranking.

Here are the cities ranked best for millennials:

With a longstanding reputation as one of the world’s most livable cities, it’s perhaps unsurprising that Melbourne emerged as one of ValueChampion’s top five cities for millennials.

Australia’s second largest city benefits from a vibrant arts scene, iconic sports stadiums and good proximity to the coast, granting it second place overall for for quality of life. Meanwhile, its relative affordability — residents spend an estimated 20 percent of their income on rent — gave it a strong third place for cost of living.

Work prospects pulled the city down, however. With an above average unemployment rate of 5 percent, Melbourne fell into the lowest quartile for employment prospects, scoring a joint 18th place with Sydney and coming in just ahead of Jakarta, Indonesia.

One of China’s most populous cities, Guangzhou, secured a spot in the top five cities for millennials largely thanks to its low cost of living.

The mega-city scored top marks for affordability and ranked in joint first position alongside South Korea’s Seoul. By the estimates of ValueChampion, the average resident spends a moderate 22 percent of their income on rent.

Guangzhou lagged behind on employment prospects and quality of life, however, coming in seventh and 11th place respectively, largely due to China’s average unemployment rate and high pollution levels.

Despite its notoriously high cost of living, Hong Kong ranked third in this year’s list, helped by strong work prospects and a thriving lifestyle scene there.

Noted as one of Asia’s foremost economic hubs, the Chinese administrative district secured third place for employment prospects. Meanwhile, high life expectancy and plenty of entertainment options saw Hong Kong score a respectable sixth place for quality of life.

With residents spending an average of 31 percent of their income on rent, however, the city scored a mediocre ninth place for cost of living, putting it in line with the likes of Auckland, New Zealand.

Striking a good balance on all three measures, Japan’s capital, Tokyo, emerged as the second best city in Asia for millennials.

A bustling business district and a modest 2.5 percent unemployment rate saw the city score a respectable fifth place in terms of employment prospects. Elsewhere, low pollution and crime levels caused the city to score equally well for quality of life.

High living costs meant Tokyo to fell behind other cities, however. Though residents spend an estimated 27 percent of their income on rent — lower than the average, according to ValueChampion — those savings are typically quashed by high transport, grocery and entertainment costs.

Topping the ranks in ValueChampion’s study was the Southeast Asian nation of Singapore.

Despite its small size, the city-state punches above its weight economically, recording the highest GDP per capita ($58,000) of all cities studied. That, added to its low unemployment rate of just 2.2 percent and an accommodative business environment, pushed Singapore to first place for employment prospects.

Meanwhile, Singapore’s low levels of pollution, high safety levels, lively entertainment scene and local travel options meant it stole the top spot for quality of life too.

Those perks come at a cost, though. The city at the center of 2018’s Hollywood blockbuster “Crazy Rich Asians” scored relatively poorly in terms of cost of living, emerging in seventh place, far behind the likes of Taipei, Taiwan.

Don’t miss:

This site is helping millennials quit their jobs to work abroad

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UAE announces new international weapons deals as Middle East military spending soars

The United Arab Emirates announced about $1.35 billion in defense deals with local and international companies on the opening day of IDEX 2019, the International Defence Exhibition and Conference, in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

Raytheon, Lockheed Martin and Hesco, the deals will provide missiles, new radar systems capabilities and defensive shelters for the UAE military, respectively. Others notching sales to the country included France’s Thales, Australian firm EOS Defense and Germany’s Rheinmetall Electronics.

The deals with 18 domestic firms highlight the small Gulf country’s investment in developing its own defense manufacturing industry as part of a drive to diversify its economy away from oil.

The purchases come at a time when defense spending is soaring in the Middle East. A report from IHS Jane’s published Friday revealed an increase in arms expenditures in the Gulf from $82.3 billion in 2013 to $103 billion in 2019. And it’s showing no signs of stopping — IHS forecast spending will hit $110.8 billion in 2023.

While the drop in oil prices from 2014 to 2016 delayed many procurement projects, “defense was generally protected from the worst of the spending cuts due to regional security concerns and budgets are now growing again,” Charles Forrester, senior defense industry analyst IHS Jane’s, wrote in the report.

The heavy spending is no surprise given the ramp-up in political tensions over the last few years between regional rivals Saudi Arabia — along with its Gulf allies the UAE and Bahrain, among others — and Iran. The Saudi-led blockade against Qatar has also spiked arms procurement, as the latter’s resulting re-armament made it the world’s eighth-largest weapons importer in 2018, IHS said.

The Middle East is the world’s top arms-importing region, according to the analytics firm, accounting for nearly 20 percent of the global defense market. American companies make up 50 percent of the exports that go there.

Ian Bremmer, founder of political risk consultancy Eurasia Group, says it’s nothing short of a regional arms race.

“I think there is an arms race happening in the Middle East,” Bremmer told CNBC at the Munich Security Conference on Sunday. “The Saudis of course are spending the most on their defense, but the UAE is ramping up as well, the Iranians are ramping up.”

With a slowdown in growth forecast for the entire Middle East and North Africa region, thanks in part to lower oil prices, that spending will come under pressure.

“But still, the defense contractors should be happy in this environment, that’s true all over the world,” Bremmer said. “And, in an environment where there are so many big challenges, it’s a little sad to see just how many countries are working to ramp up their defense spend.”

The UAE is a top regional ally to the U.S. in the fight against terrorist organizations, and has been credited by Pentagon officials for its role in combating Al Qaeda in Yemen. More recently, however, it has come under increased criticism for its role in Yemen’s civil war, where a Saudi and UAE-led offensive coalition has been described by the UN as being responsible for most of the at least 10,000 civilian deaths in the country since 2015.


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Japan’s Abe nominated Trump for the Nobel Peace Prize — reportedly after the US asked him to

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe nominated U.S. President Donald Trump for the Nobel Peace Prize last autumn after receiving a request from the U.S. government to do so, the Asahi newspaper reported on Sunday.

The report follows Trump’s claim on Friday that Abe had nominated him for the Nobel Peace Prize for opening talks and easing tensions with North Korea.

The Japanese leader had given him “the most beautiful copy” of a five-page nomination letter, Trump said at a White House news conference.

The U.S. government had sounded Abe out over the Nobel Peace Prize nomination after Trump’s summit in June last year with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the first meeting between a North Korean leader and a sitting U.S. president, the Asahi said, citing an unnamed Japanese government source.

A spokesman for Japan’s Foreign Ministry in Tokyo said the ministry was aware of Trump’s remarks, but “would refrain from commenting on the interaction between the two leaders.”

The White House had no immediate comment when contacted by Reuters.

The Nobel Foundation’s website says a nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize may be submitted by any person who meets the nomination criteria, which includes current heads of states. Under the foundation’s rules, names and other information about unsuccessful nominations cannot be disclosed for 50 years.


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Oil is doing something it’s never done before, and at least one expert considers it bullish

It’s already a year for the record books.

Futures Now.”

However, Kloza, who’s known for predicting the 2015 crude collapse, said his forecast comes with a caveat: It’ll be a more temperate and gentle year despite the robust start.

Overall, he predicted 2019 to be cheaper than last year. In 2018, the U.S. Energy Information Administration finds the average price for WTI crude was $65.06 a barrel.

“The upside is limited to about five dollars a barrel or so – which is probably not a statement you would make in February and many of the last ten years,” he added.

Crude typically sees between $15 to $20 a barrel of upside, according to Kloza. It’s different this year, he said, because oil was oversold in December. Right now, he believes it’s a balanced market for oil.

“You have a lot of refineries that are down for maintenance — and yet gasoline prices are not moving higher, demand is not moving higher, and that means lower demand for crude,” said Kloza.

On Friday, WTI crude rose 2.2 percent to close at $55.59 a barrel, a three month high. Brent, the international oil benchmark, also set a three month high.

“We’re in a Goldilocks sort of situation where the cost of finding the crude in the Permian Basin is coming down,” Kloza said, speaking of the large oil field covering parts of Texas and New Mexico.

“And, the prices, right now, for crude oil blends beyond the benchmarks, beyond and WTI, are actually off to probably their best start for a new year in 30 years,” he added.


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Aging Americans are a big market for tech investors, who also want to track their parents

Greg Yap is a venture capitalist looking for the next big thing in digital health. At age 45, he’s also the father of young kids and the son of an aging mother, who lives nearby in an independent living facility.

Amazon’s Echo, which can set medication reminders, Apple’s smartwatch with fall detection and the Nest thermostat’s motion sensors, Yap has been trying new products specifically designed to monitor aging parents. One example is Silver Mother, which incorporates sensors on pill boxes, front doors and mattresses for remote monitoring of health, safety and sleep.

“I’ve been trying a few sensors out to approximate this monitoring function,” Yap said. “The technology is not yet idiot-proof though.”

There’s a demographic reason why Yap sees as a big opportunity. More Americans in their 60s and 70s are opting to live independently rather than in assisted living as part of the “aging in place” trend. Still, they’re more likely to have chronic illnesses to manage and are at higher risk of a serious medical event, like a fall, heart attack or stroke.

Yap, who lives in Silicon Valley and works at Menlo Ventures, is piecing things together.

“I really do think the core technologies are there,” he said. “But someone just has to weave them together and make it easier to install them.”

From a product perspective, one of the big challenges is to make the gadgets useful, intuitive and affordable without the sensors being overly invasive and burdensome.

“The industry is still a bunch of hobbyists trying to hack together the pieces of a solution to monitor their parents,” said Michael Skaff, a tech industry veteran who’s now the chief operating officer at the Jewish Senior Living Group in San Francisco.

Skaff said there are a number of types of sensors that could prove to be useful, especially when all the data is aggregated. There are sensors for refrigerators that can track if they’ve been opened recently, moisture sensors for monitoring water spillage and smart locks and connected lights that can turn on at night. There’s also sensors that can be placed on doors and windows, that provide an update when someone has come or gone from the home.

Traditional medical devices are also increasingly linked to smartphone apps, and data can be shared with caregivers and children, as long as users consent.

“It’s still a bit hodgepodge, but we’re getting there,” said Scaff.

Technology companies are starting to take the market more seriously.

Alphabet’s Nest has been pitching its technology to senior living facilities, Amazon employees went on a nationwide bus tour to learn about how to make its devices helpful to the elderly and Apple has rolled out a number of features like fall detection on the Apple Watch and Siri Shortcuts, which help people access their apps more quickly using voice technology.

Mark Prince of start-up Quardio, which develops devices for monitoring heart health, said Siri Shortcuts are great for caregivers, who no longer have to worry about emails and notifications.

“I can just say, ‘Hey Siri, what was mom’s last blood pressure reading?’ and get the data,” said Prince, the company’s head of consumer sales and channel marketing.

Older generations are surprisingly adept with new technologies, said Kyle Armbrester, CEO of a Signify Health, which deploys care teams for elderly people who prefer to live at home.

“This whole Luddite argument is a farce,” he said. “Most older Americans have smartphones.”

As a result, home devices and sensors are poised to take off, Armbrester predicts.

“Kids and caregivers are helping to push these new technologies into the home,” he said. “And now you can do so much more remote monitoring than ever before.”


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Funko CEO says company not hindered by Toys R Us bankruptcy, promises ‘insane year’ for the brand

If you love something, odds are Funko has turned it to a collectible — or has plans to.

Mattel and Hasbro did after the fall of Toys R Us.

Or, it could be the fact that Funko says it doesn’t allow any one retailer to make up more than 10 percent of its business.

The bankruptcy and subsequent closure of Toys R Us took a big toll on the toy industry. Sales slumped 2 percent last year, as toy makers found themselves with fewer shelves on which to place their inventory than in years prior. Toys R Us was estimated to account for 10 to 15 percent of all toy sales prior to its closure in June.

Yet Funko didn’t escape Toys R Us’ closure completely unscathed.

“We expected 6.5 to 7 percent growth in our total business in 2018 with Toys R Us, [then] we lost it,” Mariotti told CNBC at New York’s annual Toy Fair on Saturday. However, he reiterated the guidance of 25 to 26 percent net sales growth for full year 2018, set during Funko’s third quarter conference call in November.

“We are never going to be reliant on one retail partner,” Mariotti said.

While Mattel and Hasbro have warned investors that the lack of Toys R Us and other industry factors could result in a flat performance in 2019, Mariotti is confident about the coming year.

“I think 2019 is at an A+ level on content,” he said. “I think we are going to have an insane year. I wouldn’t be surprised if, when we give our guidance, it is not extremely optimistic.”

Funko is set to report its fourth quarter earnings on Feb 28 and will provide full-year guidance at that time. In the previous quarter, the company reported net sales of $176.9 million, a 24 percent increase year-over-year.

Funko sells its products through a number of different retailers, some brick and mortar, some online and some that use both methods. Often, Funko provides these retailers with exclusive collectibles that can only be purchased with that company, which helps to drive up demand and sales.

For example, Barnes & Noble is the only location that customers can purchase a Mr. Rogers Funko Pop that features the character holding a puppet. Similarly, Walmart is the only place fans can get a glittery version of Black Panther. Even drugstore Walgreens carries exclusive collectibles from Funko: It is the only place that consumers can grab a young Obi-Wan Kenobi Pop wearing a hood.

Funko also works with Hot Topic, GameStop, Target, Best Buy and national and local comic book shops.

Mariotti pointed to a number of strong film releases as one reason that Funko is set for a stellar year. This year, the company will have figures tied to “Captain Marvel,” “Avengers: Endgame,” “Spider-Man: Far From Home,” “Frozen 2,” “It 2,” “Star Wars: Episode IX,” “Star Wars: The Mandalorian,” “Aladdin,” “Men in Black International,” and more.

Funko is also releasing characters from beloved series and films like “The Addams Family,” “The Office” “Cheers,” “Caddy Shack,” “Little Shop of Horrors” and “Ghostbusters.”

Not to mention, the company also dabbles in music icons. Popular Korean boy band BTS is being immortalized in Pop form this year, as is Migos, Johnny Cash, NSYNC, The Backstreet Boys, Post Malone and Kiss.

Also, there are the famous athletes from the Major Leagues. Funko has a lineup of baseball, soccer, hockey, basketball, wrestling and football stars as well as a collection of sports mascots.

“We believe if you take video games, sports, music, TV and theatrical, those five categories represent 85 to 90 percent of the population consuming them,” Mariotti said. “We are not niche, we are not boutique, we are mainstream. Pop culture is mainstream.”

Mariotti said that his big push going forward is to better explain Funko’s vision to Wall Street. Shares of the company are up more than 154 percent over the last 12 months, and 38 percent since January.

“We are absolutely, positively convinced that we are going to be a $2 billion a year company sometime in the future and we think we have a path to get there,” Marrioti said — arguing that Funko doesn’t see other major toy brands as rivals.

“We think we are in our own lane, doing our own thing and those guys would kill to have men and women boys and girls buying their products,” he added.


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Democrat, ex-congressman Anthony Weiner released from prison, begins federal reentry program

Anthony Weiner was released from a federal prison in Massachusetts and is now under the watch of a re-entry program in New York, according to Federal Bureau of Prisons records.

The disgraced ex-congressman served 15 months of his 21-month sentence at Federal Medical Center Devens in Ayer, Massachusetts, after pleading guilty to sexting with a 15-year-old girl.

Devens is one of two federal prisons that house sex offenders who volunteer for what the Federal Bureau of Prisons describes as “high-intensity programming” to prevent re-offending.

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Trump’s national emergency unites GOP, Amazon exit divides Dems

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Probe into alleged Smollett attack shifts to whether actor staged incident, source says

Weiner, 54, is now being supervised by the federal Residential Reentry Management in New York, records show. It is unclear if he is in a reentry center or under home confinement before his official release on May 14. A prison official told NBC News on Sunday that it does not disclose when inmates are moved.

Weiner pleaded guilty in May 2017 to one count of transferring obscene material to a minor. As part of his plea agreement, Weiner must register as a sex offender. He must also pay a $10,000 fine and be under three years of supervised release.

At his sentencing, Weiner asked for leniency.

“I was a very sick man for a long time,” he said. “I have a disease but I have no excuse.”

His now ex-wife Huma Abedin, a former aide to Hillary Clinton, filed for divorce the same day he pleaded guilty in 2017. They later withdrew the divorce action and said they would settle the divorce “swiftly and privately” to protect their child.


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Learning From Kevin Hart’s Social Media Mistakes

He lost his gig at the Academy Awards over some old tweets.

5 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

This month, the Academy Awards will take place without a host. Kevin Hart was forced to resign the job after old offensive tweets resurfaced. This is a high-profile example of something that can affect anybody. Online posts often live forever, and there is no telling when a person will be held accountable. As social media becomes ever more integral to our lives, it is important to think carefully about the way we handle ourselves online.

Social media can be an invaluable communication tool, but many people use public platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, SnapChat and Twitter as vehicles for expressing anger and vitriol. People hiding behind their computers and phone screens commonly share angry opinions that they would never say in person. Those hateful comments then become a part of the person’s online record and, as Hart’s example proves, that record can be shockingly permanent.

Related: 7 Ways to Recover After a Reputation Crisis

“Your reputation lives online, and how you engage in social media communities can sabotage your career,” says Jessica Nunez, CEO of TruePoint Communications. “If an organization’s leader or employee goes on social media spewing hate, it can negatively impact the company for employing these folks, especially when they are leaders.”

At Acceleration Partners, our team takes social media activity into account when we hire, and more and more businesses are doing the same. It’s an important barometer of a person’s judgment. Here are some ways you can put your own best self forward online.

1. Don’t engage in the argument.

The instantaneousness of social media can work against people in tense situations. It is easy to see how a platform like Facebook can attract angry comments — people who see something they disagree with can fire off a harsh response in just a few keystrokes. It’s so easy that people quickly fall into the trap of engaging in toxic social media arguments that everyone can see.

I am a strong proponent of building emotional capacity, and part of that involves putting aside battles that are not worth fighting. Arguing on social media is often pointless. You are unlikely to change the other person’s mind, and you can put your own future at risk with a thoughtless post or comment.

Charles R. Swindoll said, “Life is 10 percent what happens to you and 90 percent how you react to it.” This is especially true for social media. If you see something that makes you angry, but is not personal to you in any way, try not to engage.

Related: Want to Do a ‘Marie Kondo’ on Your Messy Social Media Accounts? Here’s How.

2. Wait awhile before you hit send.

Whether it’s an email, a text message or a social media post, responding in an emotional state can be risky and counterproductive. When you get an upsetting note, it’s tempting to lash out immediately, but it’s better to take the time to formulate an argument that you will later be able to stand behind.

Unless you are in an urgent situation, a great strategy is to craft a response and then sit on it for 24 hours without sending it. I have a folder of emails that I never sent. I wrote them to blow off steam, and I later revisited the issues when I was calmer and ready to respond appropriately. This approach provides the emotional catharsis of getting everything off your chest, but it gives you the chance to temper your reaction once you are feeling more level-headed. It’s a great strategy for protecting yourself from saying something that you might regret.

3. Use the Sunday paper test.

There is so much content on social media that it’s tempting to think of everything as abstract and temporary. Who could possibly care about a single careless post? Unfortunately, online outputs stick around forever — and you never know what the long-term implications might be. On professional networks like LinkedIn, missteps can even impact your company’s reputation and success.

Related: 3 Ways Companies Are Analyzing Social Media To Make Hiring Decisions

Before you write your next social media entry, use this thought exercise: Imagine your post was on the cover of the Sunday morning newspaper, there in black and white for all your colleagues and neighbors to see. Would you be proud of what you said? Would you stand by it? Or would you be worried about who is seeing those comments? Using that lens to judge posts will hold your online presence to a higher standard.

For all the ways social media makes our lives better, it can also be misused and destructive. It is important to remember that your social media activity will last forever. Since you don’t know who will see your comments, either now or in the future, live online as if anybody could be watching.

Source: Entrepreneur
Author: Robert Glazer

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Review: 2019 Maserati Levante GTS is an SUV with a Ferrari V-8 engine that delivers on speed

The ongoing shift to SUVs from sedans and coupes has presented a problem for storied sports car manufacturers like Maserati. SUVs, while practical, tend to handle and perform worse than their sedans. To survive in today’s finicky market, a crossover is almost a necessary offering.

The main thing that separates the GTS from lesser Levantes is the Ferrari-sourced, 550-horsepower V-8 under the hood. For even more money, you can get the Levante Trofeo, which offers a 590-horsepower tune of the same engine, but the $136,790 tester we had didn’t feel like it needed more power.

Aside from the fire-breathing and sonorous motor, the GTS also packs adaptive suspension that can make the ride softer or more dynamic on a moment’s notice. Couple that with some of the best steering of any SUV on sale today and it’s easy to find yourself taking the long way home.

Stomp on the gas and the Levante sprints its way to 60 in four seconds, but isn’t nearly out of steam. Given enough space, the GTS can do a staggering 181 mph. It’s effortlessly stable at absurd speeds and feels built for high-speed cruising.

But while other fantastic-driving SUVs like the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio sacrifice road manners for a fun experience, the Levante is perfectly comfortable for city cruising. It handles rough streets well, never harshly, with a surprisingly quiet cabin given the ferocity of the motor.

As for a value proposition, the Levante GTS fares quite well. It — along with its sedan sibling, the Maserati Quattroporte GTS — is the cheapest way to get s Ferrari engine in a new car. You’ll have to spend over $200,000 to get a Ferrari Portofino, a fair bit more than the $119,980 entrance point of the Levante GTS.

It also fares well against its main rival, the Porsche Cayenne Turbo. It offers more power and standard equipment than the Porsche while costing about $5,000 less.

Sitting in a Levante, it isn’t hard to see how they saved that money. The interior is nice enough, but there are cars costing half as much that wow you more.

Part of the problem is the eerie familiarity of some pieces of the cabin, plucked from far cheaper Fiat Chrysler products. The important bits are all bespoke, but I can’t shake the feeling that the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio offered a more special interior. For $136,790, our tester should have felt more premium.

The value argument is also weakened by fuel economy that we could only describe as “brutal.” The Levante is rated for 14 miles per gallon in the city and 18 mpg on the highway, but spirited driving brought our average to about 13 mpg. It’s what you expect from a Ferrari-powered SUV, but we think it’s worth noting.

Finally, we wish it were a bit louder. That may sound antithetical to a luxury SUV, but the Levante GTS doesn’t have the set-your-ears-on-fire exhaust note you might expect from a Ferrari engine. Even the V-6 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio was more rowdy. Trofeo models get a different exhaust setup, but you shouldn’t have to go that far to get a great-sounding SUV.

The $119,980 standard-issue Levante comes reasonably well equipped. We’d suggest the $1,590 driver assistance package to get Maserati’s semi-autonomous driver assistance system, plus the thumping Bowers & Wilkins stereo for $1,990.

As with most high-end brands, Maserati offers a lot of paint, wheel and upholstery options to suit your personal taste. Customization notwithstanding, a Levante GTS with these options will cost $123,560. That’s a hefty pile of cash, but still less than a Cayenne Turbo with no options.

If your main goal is to get the most luxurious SUV around, the Maserati isn’t the SUV for you. Despite their premium roots, Maserati products have never excelled in that category.

Instead, the Levante GTS is fit for the buyer who isn’t willing to sacrifice fun or excitement to get the practicality they need for life. It’s not just one of the best-driving SUVs on the planet, it’s better than a lot of sports sedans.

Exterior: 3

Interior: 2.5

Driving Experience: 5

Value: 5

Price as tested: $136,790


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Tech bankers are making their money in the enterprise while Facebook and Google stay quiet

While big internet companies like Facebook and Google have been fairly quiet of late on the deal-making front, business software vendors have kept bankers quite busy.

Goldman Sachs, at the bank’s Technology and Internet Conference in San Francisco this week.

It’s been five years since Facebook purchased WhatsApp and Oculus, and about the same amount of time since Google bought Nest. To the average consumer, MuleSoft and Red Hat may not be household names, but they’ve been huge deals for Salesforce and IBM, respectively, and have created fat paydays for M&A bankers. Private equity firms, meanwhile, have been actively buying up smaller cloud players.

“I think the real heart of the M&A market is actually much more enterprise-focused,” Ryan said.

Last year was huge in software. IBM spent $34 billion on Red Hat, Broadcom bought CA for $18.9 billion and SAP purchased Qualtrics for $8 billion. Additionally, Microsoft spent $7.5 billion on GitHub and Salesforce shelled out $6.5 billion on MuleSoft.

Newly public companies are also making big purchases. For instance, Twilio recently acquired SendGrid for $2 billion in stock.

Ryan said that with stock prices surging for emerging software companies, their valuations are a “good currency to go and pursue M&A to grow their business.”

And in the future, the biggest cloud providers could get more active in deals.

“I think there’s a real opportunity to capture some of – I’ll call it economic opportunity that exists up the stack beyond the infrastructure layer, whether in applications or somewhere between the two,” Ryan said.

WATCH: M&A activity will continue pace in this market, says Goldman CEO David Solomon


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