UK university drops investment in U.S. drone firm after protests
drone firm after protests By The Guardian Tweet Rob Edwards, theguardian.com A leading UK university is ending its 1.2 million investment in a defense company that makes components for lethal US drones because it says the business is not socially responsible. The University of Edinburgh has bowed to pressure from students and campaign groups and is withdrawing funding from Ultra Electronics . The company, headquartered at Greenford in Middlesex, makes navigation controls for the U.S. fleet of Predator and Reaper unmanned aerial vehicles . Armed with Hellfire missiles, they are sent on covert targeted killing missions against suspected terrorist cells in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. But according to the Bureau for Investigative Journalism at City University in London, more than 430 strikes since 2002 have killed at least 428 civilians, of whom 173 were children. Edinburgh University Students Association (Eusa) , the student environmental group People and Planet , and the human rights charity Reprieve launched a campaign for the university to disinvest in June . A response from the university issued under a freedom of information request had revealed an investment of 1,244,672 in Ultra Electronics at the end of 2012. According to the university, the investment has been under active management since then and has reduced to about 400,000. Having taken on board concerns raised by Eusa, we have taken the decision to disinvest in Ultra Electronics, a university spokeswoman told the Guardian. We are committed to socially responsible investment and are the first university in Europe to sign up to the UN principles of responsible investment . Edinburgh University has an investment portfolio of about 230m, the third largest in the UK after Oxford and Cambridge. Its money is invested in more than 100 companies, including Shell, Total, Tesco and Monsanto. The universitys move has been welcomed by campaigners, who are now urging disinvestment in fossil fuel companies. The process of cleaning up the universitys investments can and must be taken further to the issue of environmental responsibility, said Undine Schmidt from People and Planet. Catherine Gilfedder, from Reprieve, urged other institutions to follow Edinburghs lead.
LONDON — Warner Music Group said Sunday that Christian Tattersfield would step down as CEO of Warner Music UK and co-chairman, Warner Bros. Records UK in February. our editor recommends The Oddest Thing About Will.i.am’s Trademark Claim Against Pharrell Williams It named Max Lousada co-CEO of Warner Music UK with immediate effect and said he would assume the position of sole CEO after Tattersfield’s departure. Both report to Warner Music CEO Steve Cooper.Lousada will also continue in his role as chairman, Atlantic Records UK. STORY: Warner Music, Clear Channel Enter Strategic Alliance Miles Leonard, chairman ofParlophoneRecords and co-chairman of Warner Bros. Records UK, will take on full responsibility for Warner Bros. Records UK followingTattersfieldsdeparture, the firm also said. He will report toLousada. “Christian’s tenure as leader of Warner Music UK has been an extremely impressive one,” said Cooper. “As well as guiding the company through on-going commercial success, he has fostered a culture of excellence in artist development that will continue to shape our future.” He added: “Max is a natural successor to Christian and, in Miles and the rest of the senior U.K. team, he will have extremely strong support when he takes the role. His appointment ensures stability and continuity during the handover period and leaves us well positioned for growth in this important and influential market.” Said Tattersfield: “With the company in such great shape and its future in such good hands, the time is right for me to focus on the kind of entrepreneurial projects that I have pursued since I started out in the industry.” He didn’t detail specific future plans. “Im delighted to have the opportunity to lead Warner Music UK and am indebted to Christian for his tremendous encouragement over the last four years, during which time he steadfastly supported our boundless ambition and artistic vision for Atlantic UK,” Lousada said. “I look forward to continuing that spirit of partnership with Miles and our other exceptional leaders here in the U.K. as well as with the extraordinary artists we work with across all our labels.”