Monthly Archives: October 2013

Young Entrepreneur Changes the U.S. Cell Phone Market

For Ahmed Khattak, it was personal: He couldn’t buy a phone. An international student from Peshawar, Pakistan, Khattak arrived at Yale in 2004 at the age of 18 with no social security number and no credit history. That meant no one would sell him a cell phone.

In 2007, he went to London for an internship and discovered how to change the game–at the airport, no less, only moments after he got off the plane. “I realized that it was as easy as going to a vending machine, buying a SIM card and [thereafter] paying $22 a month for your phone bill,” he says.

A Business is Born

New Haven CT based GSM Nation’s model is simple: Consumers buy manufacturer-unlocked phones that can be used with any network, then they sign up for significantly cheaper voice, text and data plans through third-party carriers such as H2O Wireless or Simple Mobile–with no multiyear contracts.

These carriers resell blocks of minutes they’ve purchased from T-Mobile and AT&T.

Seed capital for the company first came in the form of a $30,000 loan pooled from friends and family; later it would come from Junaid Shams, who co-founded GSM Nation with Khattak. At the time Shams was in medical school at George Washington University (he graduated in May). “In early 2010, Ahmed came to me with this raw business idea,” Shams says. “We spent the entire night developing it, talking about infrastructure, financing and concept, basically trying to figure out if it was feasible or not.”

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Posted by on October 27, 2013 in money, technology


Kitimat, Canada

Few investors have heard of Kitimat, Canada. But this town of just over 8,000 people looks to be at the epicentre of a multi-billion dollar boom.

The reason is LNG. A topic that’s becoming big news in western Canada.

Especially after last week. When the government of Malaysia announced it plans to spend $35 billion constructing a gas liquefaction terminal and associated infrastructure on the Canadian coast near Kitimat.

Malaysian state firm Petronas will almost certainly feed the LNG development with gas from the British Columbia properties it acquired by buying Progress Energy Resources last year. A theme now becoming common–shale gas in BC looks to be for real. And a number of companies are eying this high-potential area as feedstock for Pacific LNG shipments.

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Posted by on October 16, 2013 in economy, investing, money


Trust Act Signed In California To Limit Deportation Program

Maria del Carmen Sánchez, 45, knows the fear of getting slapped with an ICE hold.

Police arrested her last year after a minor traffic accident. Sánchez, who speaks limited English, says she was driving her neighbor to jury duty. But based on statements from English-speaking witnesses, police suspected that a man had been driving the car instead. When her son tried to bail her out of jail, he found that ICE had requested local authorities to keep her detained because she is undocumented.

“It was a really bad experience,” Sánchez told HuffPost in Spanish. “My kids suffered. I suffered. That was my fear, that they would separate me from my children. I kept thinking, ‘What’s going to happen?’ They need me. I need them.”

The City of Torrance, in California, dropped the criminal charges against Sánchez in September. But she remains in deportation proceedings.

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Posted by on October 6, 2013 in humanity, immigration


Dr. Narendra Dabholkar, A genuine human being battling superstition, paid with his life.

If a holy man had electrified the public with his miracles, Dr. Dabholkar, a former physician, would duplicate the miracles and explain, step by step, how they were performed.

Dr. Dabholkar’s killing is the latest episode in a millenniums-old wrestling match between traditionalists and reformers in India. When detectives began putting together a list of Dr. Dabholkar’s enemies, they found that it was long. He had received threats from Hindu far-right groups, been beaten by followers of angry gurus and challenged by councils upholding archaic caste laws. His home state, Maharashtra, was considering legislation he had promoted for 14 years, banning a list of practices like animal sacrifice, the magical treatment of snake bites and the sale of magic stones.


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Posted by on October 2, 2013 in think

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