Amazon buys Whole Foods(!) for $13.7 billion

Amazon has acquired Whole Foods, a move that marks the ecommerce giant’s official entry into the world of brick-and-mortar stores as well as groceries.

It’s Amazon’s biggest acquisition ever—and it’s not even close. The company is paying $13.7 billion in cash for the grocery chain, which now operates some 465 stores across the U.S.

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Private equity, capital flows bolster local 2017 M&A prospects

Local bankers and lawyers expect a strong final half for mergers and acquisitions, after a jump in activity and resurgence in private equity-led deals so far this year.

Those canvassed by The Australian Financial Review said the pipeline of M&A deals was healthy, and buoyed by large pools of global capital that had to be deployed and favourable funding markets. They expect a strong rather than stellar finish to 2017.

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The week in medical cannabis: ethics approval granted, new JV formed

It’s been a big week for Australia’s growing medical cannabis industry, with ethics approval granted for two human trials as well as the formation of a new joint venture.

Life science company Medlab Clinical Limited has received Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) approvals to begin human trials of two different cannabis-based medicines. Developed at Medlab’s Sydney laboratory, the patent-pending medicines have two different applications and will be clinically tested at different locations.

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Two medicinal cannabis trials to start

Medlab Clinical Limited has received Human Research Ethics Committee approvals to begin human trials of two different cannabis-based medicines.

Developed at the medical life science company’s Sydney laboratory facility, the medicines have two different applications and will be clinically tested at different locations.

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Cancer start-up receives US$16m funding

QUE Oncology, a clinical-stage biotechnology company established by The University of Queensland and Emory University (Atlanta, USA), has received US$16 (AU$20.99) million in series A investment.

The investment from the Brandon Capital-managed Medical Research Commercialisation Fund (MRCF) and Uniseed will enable the company to further develop novel cancer supportive care and anticancer therapies.

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Innovative local projects receive boost in latest funding round

FOUR innovative local science and innovation projects in the Gisborne-East Coast district are sharing grants totalling $340,000 in the 2017 Te Panaha Hihiko – Vision Matauranga Capability Fund investment round.

This is the fifth round for the fund, managed by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, which was established to grow skills and capacity for Maori participation in science and innovation, and support outcomes that benefit New Zealand.

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Victoria set for new fintech hub that will “send a strong signal” to the rest of the world

Victoria will seek to position itself as a major international player in the fintech sector, with the state government last week unveiling plans for a new hub in Melbourne’s Docklands precinct to boost jobs and encourage startups in this fast growing industry.

The hub will be housed in the Goods Shed North in Docklands and will bring together startups, corporates and researchers under one roof.

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Brexit a huge opportunity for New Zealand companies

New Zealand agri-businesses are in a position to step up trade and investment in the United Kingdom after its decision to exit the European Union.

The Brexit vote had made it clear how important free trade was going to be for the UK over the next 10-20 years and was why the UK Department of International Trade was back at Fieldays for the first time in 17 years, British High Commissioner Jonathan Sinclair said.

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Canada Is Using Genetics to Make Cows Less Gassy

Number 1995 is a very special cow. Every day, this Holstein, mostly black with a white cat-face-shaped spot on her forehead, sticks her head into a trough that measures the exact amount of feed she eats. She’s had her genome partially sequenced, and will soon get her breath checked for methane several times a day.

Number 1995 also happens to be J. P. Brouwer’s favorite. “I just like her character,” the Canadian farmer says. “It has nothing to do with how she looks. She’s a nice cow.”

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Urine to power Glastonbury festival displays

The lavatory facilities at festivals can often be feared as pits of despair, but a team of scientists are set to turn Glastonbury goers’ wee into energy.

Display boards at this year’s Glastonbury festival are going to be powered by urine, provided via a 40-person urinal which will be situated near to the headline Pyramid stage.

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