Risk-free holidays


It’s a busy time of year and many of us are heading off on holiday somewhere. Before you pack your bags, there are certain matters that need to be attended to at this potentially high-risk time of year. As this article recommends, we need to ensure that we are adequately insured over the Christmas period, especially if there are high-value items such as TVs and iPads on Santa’s list.




Invest in workers




A book by Ron Friedman reveals that investing in personnel happiness can turn a company from mediocre to great. He says that contented employees are more productive, more creative, provide better client service, and are less likely to phone in sick. They also act as brand ambassadors outside the office. Plus, focusing on workplace happiness doesn’t cost the company money in the long run, and ensures revenues will grow.




Fighting fraud


UK banks are considering introducing a revolutionary new digitised card to counter fraud. The new card features a constantly changing digital read-out on the back instead of the permanent three-digit code. The new card is operated by a battery and a microchip, which renews the three-digit code every 20 minutes. Digital security firm Gemalto claims the technology will make it almost impossible for fraudsters to steal a customer's bank card details.


Smartphone tracker




A California-based startup company has developed a device the size of a coin that works with your smartphone to keep track of the things you hold dear (even if they aren’t valuable). Called TrackR, the tracking device can be attached to your vehicle or your keys, wallet, laptop – even your pet’s collar. Users install the free app on their smartphone and connect the app to the device, which costs just $29.


Lightning rod campaign


The KZN government has launched its latest lightning rod campaign, aimed at disaster-stricken rural communities, which have been battered by extreme weather. The roll-out includes a massive awareness campaign that encourages communities to buy lightning rods at local hardware stores for their homes.


Safire Clanfin Nite Race


Thursday 8 December saw a festive-themed Safire Clanfin Nite Race take place at the Natal Canoe Club in Pietermaritzburg. There was a great turn-out of both spectators and competitors, many of whom decorated their canoes and themselves in a bid to win prizes.


Online news


According to AMPS data, in 2007 just over 470,000 South African adults (or 2% of adults in the country) read current news online. In 2015, just eight years later, this figure had increased to a little less than 5 million adults (or 13% of adults).




Safire holiday times


This festive season, Safire will be open during the usual working hours, apart from on Friday 23 December and Friday 30 December, when we will be closing early at 11am, so that our hard-working staff can head home for the holidays.




Plastic overload


According to the World Economic Forum, about 8 million tonnes of plastic leaks into the ocean annually, equal to dumping a garbage truck’s load into the sea each minute. At this rate, by 2050 there will be more plastic in the oceans, by weight, than fish.


The duck squad



Symbiotic relationships are the core of our marketing message, so we find it very relevant when two different species work together to produce positive results for both. Have a look at how a Cape wine estate is using over 1000 ducks to keep its vineyards pest-free.






£1.14 million – value of the gold Christmas tree that a jewellery store in Tokyo has displayed to spread some festive cheer.




$3.45 billion – sales on Cyber Monday 2016, shattering previous records and making it the biggest online shopping day ever.




 6 – number of firefighters who died last year in the US. Using firefighting drones will take humans out of high risk situations.


 50% - percentage of South Africans questioned who predicted before Christmas 2015 that they’d receive chocolates as a gift.




R1 070.0 billion (R1.07 trillion) – amount of tax revenue collection for 2015/16, an increase of R83.7 billion (8.5%) relative to 2014/15.




$520 billion – cost of natural disasters in losses every year, according to the New World Bank Analysis.



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