E-House Launches Home Price Ratings Website

SHANGHAI, July 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — E-House (China) Holdings Limited (“E-House” or the “Company”) (NYSE: EJ), a leading real estate services company in China, today announced the launch of its home price ratings website www.fangjiadp.com and related mobile app (“Fangjiadp“), both of which operate under the Company’s real estate information and consulting business unit, CRIC. The website and app currently cover more than 4,000 new residential developments in 21 cities, as well as more than 30,000 existing residential compounds in 5 cities in China.

Fangjiadp provides independent home price estimates, qualitative reviews, and ratings for primary and secondary market residential compounds. By entering an address (down to each individual apartment unit level) or compound name, consumers can instantly obtain the estimated market value of both new and previously-owned properties, as well as CRIC’s expert opinions on other aspects of the properties. Properties are rated as “strongly recommended buy,” “recommended buy,” “buy with caution” or “recommend waiting.” Once a consumer locates a property of interest, Fangjiadp will also list four similar properties in the area that are in the same price range so that consumers can compare estimated values and other aspects of the properties.

Xin Zhou, E-House’s co-chairman and CEO, said, “Fangjiadp is developed by highly experienced analysts with many years of industry knowledge and is backed by CRIC’s comprehensive and powerful real estate database. In addition to its wide and comprehensive coverage, Fangjiadp’s unique user interface allows consumers to conduct one-on-one conversations with CRIC’s home price analysts. We believe Fangjiadp brings a new experience and unique value to home buyers and sellers that has never before existed.  As part of our planned upgrade for Fangjiadp, consumers will be able to not only communicate with our home price analysts, but also write their own listing reviews while interacting with other consumers and industry experts to obtain relevant information and recommendations. For our CRIC unit, the launch of Fangjiadp represents the expansion of its customer base from what had historically been businesses and government entities to consumers, and illustrates its position as an independent and unbiased real estate information source.”

About E-House

E-House (China) Holdings Limited (“E-House”) (NYSE: EJ) is China’s leading real estate services company with a nationwide network covering more than 250 cities. E-House offers a wide range of services to the real estate industry, including online advertising, primary sales agency, secondary brokerage, information and consulting, offline advertising and promotion and real estate investment management services. E-House has received numerous awards for its innovative and high-quality services, including “China’s Best Company” from the National Association of Real Estate Brokerage and Appraisal Companies and “China Enterprises with the Best Potential” from Forbes. For more information about E-House, please visit http://www.ehousechina.com.

Safe Harbor: Forward-Looking Statements

This announcement contains forward-looking statements. These statements are made under the “safe harbor” provisions of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as “will,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “future,” “intends,” “plans,” “believes,” “estimates,” “may,” “intend,” “confident,” “is currently reviewing,” “it is possible,” “subject to” and similar statements. Among other things, the quotations from management in this press release, as well as E-House’s strategic and operational plans, contain forward-looking statements. E-House may also make written or oral forward-looking statements in its reports filed or furnished with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including Forms 20-F and 6-K, in its annual report to shareholders, in press releases and other written materials and in oral statements made by its officers, directors or employees to third parties. Statements that are not historical facts, including statements about E-House’s beliefs and expectations, are forward-looking statements and are subject to change. Forward-looking statements involve inherent risks and uncertainties. A number of important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained, either expressly or impliedly, in any of the forward-looking statements in this press release. Potential risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, a severe or prolonged downturn in the global economy, E-House’s susceptibility to fluctuations in the real estate market of China, government measures aimed at China’s real estate industry, failure of the real estate services industry in China to develop or mature as quickly as expected, diminution of the value of E-House’s brand or image, E-House’s inability to successfully execute its strategy of expanding into new geographical markets in China, E-House’s failure to manage its growth effectively and efficiently, E-House’s failure to successfully execute the business plans for its strategic alliances and other new business initiatives, E-House’s loss of its competitive advantage if it fails to maintain and improve its proprietary CRIC system or to prevent disruptions or failure in the system’s performance, E-House’s failure to compete successfully, fluctuations in E-House’s results of operations and cash flows, E-House’s reliance on a concentrated number of real estate developers, natural disasters or outbreaks of health epidemics and other risks outlined in E-House’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. All information provided in this press release is current as of the date of this press release, and E-House does not undertake any obligation to update any such information, except as required under applicable law.

For investor and media inquiries please contact:

In China:

Investor Relations
E-House (China) Holdings Limited
Phone: +86 (21) 6133-3937
E-mail: ir@ehousechina.com

Mr. Derek Mitchell
Ogilvy Financial, Beijing
Phone: +86 (10) 8520-3073
E-mail: ej@ogilvy.com

In the United States:

Mr. Justin Knapp
Ogilvy Financial, U.S.
Phone: +1 (616) 551-9714
E-mail: ej@ogilvy.com

Laffer’s International Tobacco Taxation Handbook Gives Governments Roadmap to Optimize Tax Revenues

LONDON, July 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — As excise taxes become increasingly important throughout the world, Dr. Arthur Laffer today released his international tobacco tax handbook, cautioning that “one size does not fit all” in tobacco tax policy and offering governments practical examples and case studies to consider in order to optimize tobacco excise tax revenues. 

“Tobacco taxes represent an essential source of tax revenue for most countries across the globe,” Laffer said during today’s release of his Handbook of Tobacco Taxation – Theory and Practice. “Governments levy excise taxes on tobacco to achieve fiscal and public health objectives. Because the goal of reducing smoking incidence cannot be understated, this handbook is for everyone interested in setting tobacco tax policy as it focuses on using tax as the solution to the tobacco consumption problem.” 

Laffer found that the unique aspects of tax structure and economic environments make taking a blanket approach to tax levels or tax systems unadvisable. Instead, governments should tailor their approach to tobacco taxation, taking into consideration a range of factors.

“It’s important to think twice about the mounting pressure on the international level to create an overarching tobacco tax structure and level for every country across the globe,” Laffer also said.  “One size does not fit all.  Tobacco regulation and taxation are complex matters that require consideration of a number of political, economic, and demographic factors prior to deciding on tax structures and levels.”

The Laffer Curve illustrates the relationship between tax rates and tax revenue. In most instances when tobacco rates are increased, government revenue increases. However, there are increasingly examples of countries, including the UK and Ireland, whose rates have entered the so-called “prohibitive range” of the Curve. 

“When setting tax levels, dramatic increases can be counterproductive,” Laffer said. “Once tax levels are in the prohibitive range of the Laffer Curve, tax revenues will fall.  If consumers shift to lower taxed or black market products, the tax increase may not even lead to less smoking.”

Laffer’s handbook advises governments to construct their tax systems based on four principles.  These include:

  1. CLEAR PRODUCT CATEGORIES – So that revenue is not lost in “loophole products,” setting precise tobacco product category definitions while amending and updating these categories.
  2. SOLID TAX STRUCTURES – The excise tax structure should support stable and predictable collections and ensure, as much as possible, that excise tax increases translate into government tax revenue increases.
  3. CORRECT TAX LEVELS – To prevent consumers from turning to lower priced products on the black market following tax increases, ensure the correct tax level is applied to each category.
  4. EFFICIENT COLLECTION SYSTEM – To minimize administrative burdens on tax payers and tax collectors, and ensure efficient payment of tobacco taxes by all manufactures and importers.

Two Teachers from Indonesia Joined the 10th Anniversary of Honeywell Educators @ Space Academy

JAKARTA, July 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Binar Sejati and Melva Manalu, two science teachers from West Java, were among more than 200 teachers from around the world to receive a scholarship  for Honeywell (NYSE: HON) program called Honeywell Educators @ Space Academy (HESA) — the “game-changing” experience celebrating its 10th anniversary of inspiring teachers who, in turn, inspire students to pursue science and math education and careers.

Created in partnership with the U.S. Space & Rocket Center (USSRC), Honeywell (NYSE: HON) developed the award-winning scholarship program to help middle school math and science teachers become more effective educators in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). During the past ten years, Honeywell has awarded scholarships to 2,176 teachers from 56 countries.

“Inspiring students begins with inspiring teachers,” said Alex J. Pollack, president of Honeywell Indonesia. “HESA gives teachers an engaging and unforgettable learning experience that heightens their ability to become even more effective educators. I am glad that more Indonesian teachers are getting the opportunity to join this terrific program.”

This year, 204 teachers from 27 countries attended one of two five-day programs offered over consecutive weeks from June 11-24 at the USSRC in Huntsville, Alabama. Teachers were given rigorous training focused on science and space exploration including astronaut-style exercises like high-performance jet simulation, scenario-based space mission, land and water survival training, and interactive flight dynamics programs.

Both Sejati and Manalu said the program exceeded their expectation and they have learned a lot during the best week of their lives.  

“I was impressed that the entire program relied heavily on interdependence,” said Sejati who is teaching at the Darul Hikam International School. “I realised that the STEM learning is one that will bring students attention, passion, and curiosity. If we combine that with team work, the result will be magnificent. I look forward to integrate my learning in my class.”

Manalu from the SDK Plus BPK Penabur said, “Everything in this program enhanced our understanding not only about space, but also about math, chemistry, technology, and even history. I learned about the authentic integration of science, math and other subjects, the importance of team work, and how to develop enthusiasm among students.”   

Since 2004, educators have shared their experiences and knowledge to more than 2 million students, inspiring many to pursue STEM education and careers. From winning grants from local and federal governments, to entering students in international and NASA educational projects, to creating STEM-focused after school programs, the impact of the program is continuing beyond the classroom. To help mark the program’s decade-long run, 10 HESA alumni were selected, one representing each year, to be the guests-of-honor at the graduation ceremony on June 23.

“This program is all about re-igniting passion in teachers,” said Tom Buckmaster, president of Honeywell Hometown Solutions, the company’s global citizenship initiative responsible for HESA. “STEM subjects are some of the most challenging to teach, but this experience helps teachers discover new ways of delivering lesson plans to the next generation of engineers, programmers, mathematicians and astronauts.”

Brandma.Co Received Strategic Investment from Seinosuke Sato

HONG KONG, July 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Brandma.Co Limited, the leading brand management and protection expert in China, announced on July 16, 2014 that Mr. Seinosuke Sato has made an early-stage strategic investment to the company. The deal was completed last week in Hong Kong with the terms undisclosed.

Mr. Sato is a renowned entrepreneur and investor in Silicon Valley and Tokyo. His most recent venture is BrainPad Inc., an industry pioneer in the Big Data field, which offers cutting-edge analytical services and solutions to large-scale web portals, as well as serving retail, finance, telecom, and e-commerce enterprises in Japan. “I firmly believe Brandma has already seized the window of opportunity in the China market,” said Mr. Sato. “The team has demonstrated terrific power of execution and is fulfilling the demanding needs for brand protection in China. I will assist Brandma by enhancing its data processing and analytics capability, upgrading its online brand monitoring and fraud detection mechanism, as well as accelerating Brandma’s global expansion strategy.”

“It’s our honor to earn distinguished investors like Sato-san’s recognition of Brandma’s value and share our vision,” said Mr. Ching Chiao, Founder and the CEO of Brandma.Co. “With Sato-san’s guidance and experience, Brandma is advancing to become a world-class technology company. Our existing customers and partners can rest assured that Brandma continues to offer a reliable, scalable and secure platform for protecting their domain names, trademarks, as well as other digital brand assets. Most importantly, we will keep acting proactively and aggressively in acquiring customers to sustain our market leader position in this competitive market.”

Mr. Chiao also serves as an ICANN GNSO Councilor who oversees the global top-level domain name policies, and a Board Member of .asia TLD registry. He founded Brandma.Co Limited in early 2013 and the company has operations in Beijing, Chengdu, Hong Kong, and Taipei.

Media contact:

Ms. Cathy Peng
+86-10-650084677 (CN)