For Brazil, World Cup success fuels hope for more tourists at Rio Olympics

August 22, 2014

Mimi Whitefield – Miami Herald, 8/21/2014

During the World Cup, more than 1 million international visitors flocked to Brazil — far exceeding pre-tournament expectations.

That wasn’t the only thing topsy-turvy about the world’s biggest sporting event. The Brazilian soccer team was a pre-Cup favorite and many expected Brazil would flub at organizing the June 15-July 15 event. Instead, Brazil was routed in the semifinals and got high marks for its hosting efforts.

Now it hopes to take some of the lessons it learned from organizing a successful World Cup as it barrels full-speed ahead in preparing for its next mega sporting event: the 2016 Rio Olympics.

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New species of non-venomous snake discovered in Brazil

August 20, 2014

Odisha Sun Times, 8/20/2014

Scientists from four Brazilian institutions have announced the discovery of a new species of non-venomous snake that inhabits the savannas in the central part of the country.

The new serpent has been dubbed Atractus Spinalis and belongs to the Dipsadidae family, found in several countries of the Americas and some Caribbean islands.

The snake was found and identified by scientists of the federal universities of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, who carried out their studies in collaboration with researchers from the Brazilian National Centre for Research and Conservation of Reptiles and Amphibians, and with the support of the Boticario Group Foundation for Nature Protection.

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Rio’s Slums to Jacob’s Pillow

August 11, 2014

Marina Harss – The New York Times, 8/9/2014

As the protests surrounding the World Cup this summer underscored, Brazil is a complex country, blessed with gorgeous beaches and breathtaking landscapes, bursting with music, but also plagued by poverty and violence. Extremes of beauty and ugliness rub shoulders; they are intertwined in the national character. This tension is precisely what the choreographer Sonia Destri Lie, founder of the contemporary hip-hop troupe Companhia Urbana de Dança, strives to capture in her work. The company will appear at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Becket, Mass., from Wednesday to Saturday.

Back in the 1970s, when Ms. Destri was growing up in the comfortable Rio suburb of Bangu, she did not yet know this would be her life’s work. She studied ballet and contemporary dance and went on to perform with the Brazilian dance-theater choreographer Suzana Braga and to choreograph for television, movies and fashion. In the ’90s, when the jobs in Rio dried up, she decamped to Düsseldorf to teach.

Just as she found herself in a creative slump, she was introduced to hip-hop by the American b-boy Marvin A. Smith, also based in Germany. In hip-hop, she recognized a language that offered the freedom she had been seeking. After a fire gutted her apartment, she returned to Rio in 1997 and began producing hip-hop events. She was invited to choreograph Rio’s fashion week and the film “Maré, Nossa História de Amor,” a love story set in Rio’s streets.

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Brazilian Airline Azul Avoids Brazil’s Busiest Route

August 11, 2014

Christiana Sciaudone and Jessica Brice – Bloomberg Businessweek, 8/7/2014

Ask David Neeleman, majority owner of Brazilian airline Azul and founder of JetBlue Airways (JBLU), and he’ll say Brazil’s busiest route is just that: too busy. With more than 280 daily flights, the 45-minute trip between São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro is already the world’s most-served route. But while aviation disrupters such as Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic Airways grew by going wing-to-wing against incumbents between major cities, Neeleman says his Azul Linhas Aéreas Brasileiras will likely use slots it wins at São Paulo’s domestic airport to strengthen its hold on small cities other airlines don’t fly to.

The popular São Paulo-to-Rio de Janeiro run is dominated by rivals Gol Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes and Tam, which is controlled by Santiago-based Latam Airlines Group (LAN:CI). Azul has been locked out of offering weekday flights to and from São Paulo’s Congonhas airport until now. The government will soon award new takeoff and landing times, and Neeleman estimates Azul will get 14 to 16 slots a day, making it the biggest winner. Still, he says that’s too few to make a big difference flying to Rio. “Do you want to go into a gunfight with a peashooter?” he asks. “If you only have 12 or 14 departures, 16 departures, whatever, it just doesn’t give you enough.”

Currently, Azul has only one slot per week at Congonhas, on Saturday afternoon, which it uses to fly to Rio. It would need many more on the route to threaten Tam’s and Gol’s dominance, says Raymond James Financial analyst Savanthi Syth. “There’s going to be a little more overlap here in the domestic market,” she says. The two leading carriers now have more than 200 Congonhas slots a day each. Avianca Brazil has 12 on weekdays.

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Asset Freeze Means Top Brazilian Soccer Team Unable to Pay Wages

August 7, 2014

Tariz Panja – Bloomberg, 8/6/2014

Botafogo, one of Brazilian soccer’s most storied clubs, is in crisis, unable to pay its players after debts totaling more than 700 million reais ($307 million) led authorities to freeze its accounts.

The Rio de Janeiro-based team, whose black and white shirts were made famous by the likes of World Cup winner Garrincha and most recently Dutch midfielder Clarence Seedorf, hasn’t paid some players in more than three months. The team had tax debt of 127 million reais last season, according to its accounts, and former players are owed millions in pension contributions, a club official said.

“We have 100 percent of our resources blocked,” team spokesman Bernardo Peirao said yesterday in a telephone interview. “We don’t have money to pay the players and the employees.”

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China sells trains to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

August 6, 2014

Macau Hub, 8/6/2014

The third shipment of trains acquired in China by the government of Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro state arrived in the city’s port on Sunday and after testing should begin operating next week, Agência Brasil reports.

The trains were obtained from the state-owned China CNR Corporation Limited and comprise four trains with four carriages each. Each train can carry 1,200 passengers.

The new trains are equipped with air conditioning, an automatic derail detection system and LCD screens in carriages, as well as internal and external TV cameras enabling the driver to see platforms and carriage interiors.

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DS Healthcare Expands Distribution Channels in Brazil Through Leading Rio de Janeiro Pharmacy Chain

August 6, 2014

Market Watch, 8/6/2014

DS Healthcare Group, Inc. DSKX -3.91% , a leading developer of personal care products and specialty pharmaceuticals, announced today it has signed a distribution agreement with Drogaria Venancio , a leading Rio de Janerio-based pharmacy chain. Drogaria Venancio will sell DS Healthcare’s clinically proven personal care products including its Revita and Spectral hair re-growth and hair care products. DS Laboratories, its flagship line can already be found on retail shelves throughout Rio de Janeiro. Drogaria Venancio operates wholesale distribution centers and premium retail pharmacy locations. Founded in 1979, the pharmacy chain employs 1600 people.

This marks DS Healthcare’s third distribution agreement in Brazil and it’s second in Rio de Janeiro. DS Healthcare’s have already been selling through CSB Drogaria which has two retail pharmacy chains with 85 stores in Rio de Janeiro, as well as in Sao Paulo through the Drogaria Iguatemi pharmacy chain. Retail sales are also growing through DS Healthcare’ Brazilian ecommerce site . According to market research firm Euromonitor, the Brazilian beauty industry generated $42 billion in sales in 2012.

“We are experiencing extremely robust sales growth in Brazil while building strong brand recognition and loyalty for our products. While we are successfully achieving market penetration into two of Brazil’s largest cities, we also intend to expand distribution beyond these metropolitan areas into other regions of the country. In addition, we’ve seen our e-commerce platform that services customers in regions where we have yet to be present, do extremely well, further endorsing our belief that Brazil will be one of our key markets worldwide” stated DS Healthcare President and CEO Daniel Khesin.”

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