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Arria and Boost Sport AI Showcase the Benefits of Instant Generation of AI-Data-driven Content with Limitless Scale for Sports Betting, Gaming and Media in the Upcoming Webinar

Arria NLG

Arria NLG and partner, Boost Sport AI (BOOST), will co-host host a webinar on June 24, 2021, at 2:00 PM ET, showcasing the recently announced Arria x Boost platform’s breadth of functionality. REGISTER HERE Arria EVP, Lyndsee Manna, and Mustafa Abdul-Hamid, BOOST CEO, former UCLA standout and professional basketball player, will lead an interactive session addressing the platform’s many use cases as well as the ease with which media, corporate content creators, fantasy sports, gambling sites, and professional franchises can craft personalized, AI-generated narratives. WHAT: ESTABLISH A CONSISTENT, PERSONALIZED, 1:1 DIALOGUE WITH YOUR SPORT CONSUMERS WHO: Mustafa Abdul-Hamid, CEO, Boost Sport AI Lyndsee Manna, EVP, Arria NLG WHEN: Thursday, June 24, 2021 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM EDT REGISTER HERE Noteworthy: With Maryland, Louisiana and South Dakota having joined the more than two dozen states in which sports betting is legal, analysts expect the sports analytics market to reach $ 5.2 billion by 2024 (Markets & Markets). Arria x Boost enables sportsbooks, online and mobile gambling services to deliver customizable, data-driven insights to users via any channel. Timely intelligence for handicapping, team and player pre-game analysis empowers sports betting enthusiasts to place more informed wagers. Arria X Boost humanizes the digital sport experience for Sports Books, Media and E-Commerce. Don’t miss this unique opportunity for an exclusive viewing of how AI, Data Analytics and Natural Language Generation combine for an enhanced, immersive and engaged human sport experience. Attendees will learn about: Sports Betting (Sports Books, Fantasy Sports, Online Gaming) Media Creation (Advertising, Publishing) E-Commerce, Product Descriptions, Retail Sports E-Commerce Content Generation Team Performance for Leagues, Teams, Coaches, and Athletes REGISTER HERE About Arria NLG Arria NLG ( www.arria.com ) is the global leader in the field of Natural Language Generation (NLG), a form of artificial intelligence, specializing in extracting insights from complex data sources and communicating that information in natural language (i.e. as if written or spoken by a human). The Arria NLG Platform is used across multiple industries and use cases. About Boost Sport AI Boost Sport AI ( https://boostsport.ai/ ) is a proprietary technology platform for sport that powers insights and data storytelling. Boost uses computer vision, data analytics, and natural language generation to build personalized, scalable sports applications. The platform is used by coaches and scouts as well as media and sportsbooks. ### Contact Details Mostafa Razzak JMRConnect +1 202-904-2048 m.razzak@jmrconnect.net

June 17, 2021 10:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Cyvatar Raises an Additional $9 Million in Series A Round

Cyvatar

Cyvatar today announced that it has raised $9 million as part of its Series A financing to help scale and serve its rapidly growing customer base and continue to drive the adoption of its innovative cybersecurity-as-a-service (CSaaS) model. Escalating cybersecurity breaches and the need to address vulnerabilities across systems, networks, and apps fuel the security services market, expected to reach $193 billion by 2028. Additionally, the growth in hybrid and remote workers coupled with unsecured and unpatched BYOD devices further underscores the need for on-demand cybersecurity resources that include human talent, proven processes, and best-of-breed technology delivered from a single intuitive platform. Cyvatar has grown more than 200% since its debut in October. ATX Venture Partners led the round with additional participation from existing customer CORTEC and longtime Cyvatar investor Bill Wood Ventures. Cyvatar closed a $3 million seed round late last year, bringing the total amount raised over the last eight months to $12 million. “We’ve seen fundraising explode in the security space, in part as a result of the raft of ransomware, email compromise, and phishing attacks that have made people more aware of the problem and increased the need to fix it quickly and effectively,” said Chris Shonk, partner at ATX Venture Partners. “Cyvatar is an exciting addition to our dynamic portfolio and a natural fit alongside our other rapidly growing organizations. No other company we evaluated solves the problems of cybersecurity like Cyvatar. With Cyvatar CSaaS, security becomes as effortless as turning on the lights. There’s no better value for customers.” Cyvatar CSaaS offers security in a box for organizations of any size and any level of cybersecurity expertise--already more than 150 platform members have started the security journey with Cyvatar. Its mature sales and marketing engine makes it easy for new members to join and offers ongoing education and support for existing customers to continuously remediate evolving threats, safeguard critical systems, and boost compliance scores. "I can tell you that after implementing just three Cyvatar solutions, our security confidence is a lot stronger than it was before and our company as a whole is far more secure,” said Brent Fanguy, vice president of technology at CORTEC. “We applaud Cyvatar for pricing by employee count because it’s so easy to calculate and fit into our budget -- no counting servers or workstations, which is a nightmare. Cyvatar has delivered consistent value from our security spend, and we look forward to continuing to grow our partnership with them.” Whether customers need to speed their sales cycles, remediate after a breach, prevent future incursions, or respond to a third-party risk assessment, Cyvatar helps them achieve superior business outcomes every day. Click HERE to get started free and learn more about how Cyvatar is making cybersecurity effortless for every business. About Cyvatar Cyvatar is committed to effortless cybersecurity for everyone. As the industry’s first subscription-based, cybersecurity-as-a-service (CSaaS) company, it’s our mission to transform the way the security industry builds, sells, and supports cyber solutions. We empower our members to achieve successful outcomes by providing expert advisors, proven technologies, and a strategic process roadmap to guarantee results that map to their business drivers. Our approach is rooted in proprietary ICARM (installation, configuration, assessment, remediation, maintenance) methodology that delivers smarter, measurable security solutions for superior compliance and cyber-attack protection faster and more efficiently, all at a fixed monthly price. And because we’re a subscription, members can cancel anytime. Cyvatar is a global organization with operations around the world. Begin your journey to security confidence at cyvatar.ai and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube. About ATX Venture Partners ATX Venture Partners is an early-stage venture capital firm specializing in the South-Central US. The firm’s seed and Series A investments focus on software-as-a-service, IoT, e-commerce, AI, frontier commercial technologies and mobile applications. ATX Venture Partners brings institutional-grade funding, process and rigor to early-stage venture capital investments, and is the partner to propel portfolio companies forward to larger growth capital. The firm was founded in 2014 and is based in Austin, Texas. Visit www.atxventurepartners.com, and follow them on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Contact Details Cyvatar KC Higgins +1 303-434-8163 kc@cyvatar.ai ATX Ventures Meg Brigman +15127666462 meg@atxventurepartners.com Company Website https://cyvatar.ai/

June 17, 2021 07:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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NHS Test and Trace strengthen their cyber defences with Risk Ledger

Stockwood Strategy

NHS Test and Trace has selected British cyber security company Risk Ledger to manage cyber security risks in their supply chain as a proactive measure to mitigate the increasing risks the NHS and other critical national infrastructure organisations face from supply chain cyber-attacks. The Risk Ledger platform will give the UK government funded service all the tools they need to manage cyber security risks in their supply chain at speed for a low per-supplier cost - at least 60% cheaper than traditional solutions. Cyber security risks in the supply chain can include third parties failing to encrypt sensitive data when it is being transferred. NHS Test and Trace, established to track and help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus in England, will take advantage of Risk Ledger's key innovation which is its secure 'social network' allowing organisations to connect and share risk data securely, quickly, and easily. This gives organisations like NHS Test and Trace unparalleled visibility of their supply chain and a comprehensive set of data to identify, measure and mitigate supply chain security risks at scale. Major supply chain cyber security breaches at Solarwinds and Microsoft in recent months have put the challenge of securing supply chains at the top of the agenda for organisations around the world. Minister for Digital Infrastructure, Matt Warman MP said: “The government is working tirelessly to secure the nation online and grow the UK's £8.9 billion cyber security industry as we build back better from the pandemic. We're helping SMEs develop innovative products and services and it's great to see Risk Ledger, one of the firms we've supported, win this contract to protect the Test and Trace system and support the national effort against coronavirus.” Risk Ledger's client base includes organisations like BAE AI, City of London Police, Telenor, Schroder's Personal Wealth and ASOS. Risk Ledger CEO and Co-Founder Haydn Brooks said: "NHS Test and Trace is essentially the biggest new start-up in the UK healthcare market so we are delighted they have chosen to take advantage of our ability to provide enhanced visibility of their supply chain risks. I am proud we will be part of the effort to secure this incredibly important supply chain. "Healthcare organisations and their supply chains handle lots of highly sensitive data and have a high rate of data breaches. We have already seen during the COVID-19 pandemic that bad actors are actively targeting supply chains to access data and cause disruption” added Haydn Brooks. Risk Ledger is a rising star of the UK's growing cyber security scene having won competitions run by the UK Government's National Cyber Security Centre, the tech industry body TechUK and most recently a winner in the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport’s ‘Most Innovative UK Cyber SME of the Year’ competition in May. The company is also a member of the UK Government backed LORCA programme (London Office of Rapid Cybersecurity Advancement). About Risk Ledger Risk Ledger is a British company that manages cyber security risks in supply chains. Th process of supply chain security risk management ensures third parties who deliver critical services, have access to data, corporate networks, or any other status of business trust, maintain a good base level of cyber security controls to prevent bad actors using the third party as an attack vector. In 2019, Risk Ledger won the ‘Cyber Den’ competition at the 2019 CyberUK event run by the UK Government’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). At the time, Ian Levy, Technical Director at the NCSC said: ‘Our mission is to make the UK the safest place to do business online. We run the Cyber Den competition with DCMS to identify and provide a springboard for the most promising cyber security start-ups in the UK. Risk Ledger beat some excellent competition at this year’s Cyber Den event because their platform approaches supply chain security in a novel way that could revolutionise the way organisations understand the cybersecurity of their supply chains which is at the root of so many security incidents.’ Notable achievements - Risk Ledger was a finalist in the 'Most Innovative New Technology Award' category at the 2021 Water Industry Awards. - In March 2021, Risk Ledger won the South Summit Industry 4.0 innovation competition. - In May 2021, Risk Ledger was announced as a runner up in the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport’s ‘Most Innovative UK Cyber SME of the Year’ competition. Contact Details Risk Ledger Bilal Mahmood +44 7714 007257 b.mahmood@stockwoodstrategy.com Company Website https://riskledger.com/

June 16, 2021 05:15 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Accelerated Wealth Advisors welcomes Mackenzie Bekeza, CFP®

Accelerated Wealth

Accelerated Wealth Advisors, LLC (AWA) announced today that Wealth Advisor Mackenzie “Mack” Bekeza has joined AWA to help clients achieve their retirement goals. “We believe Mack is a great addition to our team and more importantly will bring significant value to our clients,” said Accelerated Wealth’s Financial Advisor Dustin West with whom Mack will partner to serve clients. “AWA has taken great care to create an outstanding team to assist our clients over multiple business cycles. As a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, Mack will make sure our clients are informed, empowered and have plans to ensure they don’t have to worry during their golden years. We extend a warm welcome to Mack and know he will help clients plan for their financial future.” Mack has been serving in the Financial Planning industry since he graduated from Western Kentucky University in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in Financial Planning (CFP® Board Registered Program). Bekeza added, “I believe active investment management is needed to achieve consistent returns from inconsistent markets. As an independent firm with time tested strategies and access to a variety of investment solutions, Accelerated Wealth provides objective advice and crucial wealth management services for our clients.” About Accelerated Wealth Advisors (AWA) Accelerated Wealth Advisors, LLC is a Colorado Springs based wealth strategy firm dedicated to providing effective strategies to help its clients make wise financial decisions. AWA’s business practices and culture are driven by its core values of faith, integrity, relationships, vision, excellence and being coachable. AWA is headquartered in Colorado Springs with four offices located in three states including additional Colorado offices in Lone Tree and Englewood. For more information please visit www.acceleratedwealth.com or Facebook. All Rights Reserved. Advisory services are offered through Accelerated Wealth Advisors, LLC, a SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Accelerated Wealth Advisors, LLC and Accelerated Wealth, LLC are affiliated entities and do not provide legal or tax advice. The information contained herein is obtained from sources deemed to be reliable. Accelerated Wealth Advisors, LLC and Accelerated Wealth, LLC cannot be responsible for the accuracy of the information being presented. Not an offer to buy or a solicitation to sell securities. See your accountant or legal counsel for tax or legal advice. Not affiliated with or approved, endorsed, or authorized by the Social Security Administration or any other government agency. All investing involves risk. Contact Details Accelerated Wealth Advisors, LLC Sloane Herman +1 719-466-5639 sloaneh@acceleratedwealth.com Company Website https://www.acceleratedwealth.com

June 15, 2021 01:05 PM Mountain Daylight Time

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NO DOGS LEFT BEHIND RESPONDS TO THE CDC’S TEMPORARY SUSPENSION OF THE IMPORTATION OF DOGS FROM OVER 100 COUNTRIES

No Dogs Left Behind

No Dogs Left Behind (NDLB), a global animal rescue organization, is addressing the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) proclamation on Monday that it will issue a temporary ban on the importation of dogs from over 100 designated high risk countries, including (but not limited to) China, Russia, Vietnam, Columbia, and the Dominican Republic. The ban is set to go into effect on July 14, 2021. The CDC has stated in internal emails and communications that it is banning the importation of dogs from designated high risk rabies countries for at least a year because of a sharp increase in the number of puppies imported into the country with fraudulent rabies vaccination certificates. This issue, according to the CDC, is one of public safety for both the dogs and the public’s health. But this declaration of a total ban on importing dogs from 113 countries to achieve this goal is overly broad and fails to meet the narrowly tailored requirement for administrative agency determinations. While well intended, this ban is overreaching and will cause more harm than good for millions of domesticated dogs all over the world. To be clear, NDLB agrees with the CDC that implementation of any and all safeguards necessary to protect humans and dogs from rabies is paramount. NDLB and all reputable rescue organizations take the issue of rabies and all infectious diseases very seriously. NDLB is on the front lines in East Asia every day fighting to save dogs from extreme torture and reckless slaughter. All of the dogs rescued by NDLB are treated according to strict protocols. “The very first protocol for emergency response of NDLB’s 5 Pillar Approach to Rescue is to fully vaccinate and microchip every dog saved” states Jeffrey Beri, Founder and President of NDL̆B. “We vaccinate for rabies and DHPPI-L, conduct tests for brucellosis and canine distemper and canine parvovirus, and perform complete blood counts and biochemical profiles on all dogs that we rescue, provide sanctuary for, and ultimate adopt into the United States and other countries.” This is all done immediately before moving the dogs to NDLB sanctuaries. “All vaccines are kept up to date, and the paperwork documenting all of this accompanies the dogs to the countries where their adopters are located” notes Beri. “We work cooperatively with the USDA to ensure our paperwork is correct and the import permit is issued prior to importing dogs into the United States. These safeguards are in place for the benefit of our survivors, our adopters, and all of the humans and dogs in the countries where our dogs go” says Jacqueline Finnegan, Vice President for NDLB. “There are no shortcuts when it comes to public safety.” With respect to the proposed ban, NDLB notes that there is a way to achieve the goal of protecting people and dogs in the United States from rabies without a wholesale ban on the importation of dogs from 113 countries. For example, like many other countries around the world, the United States could require a valid rabies titer showing adequate immunization of the dog or dog(s) prior to allowing dogs entry. This paperwork can even be pre-screened prior to issuing a dog importation permit so as to avoid the issue of dogs being denied entry and having to be returned back to the countries from which they came. But to ban all dogs -- regardless of age, breed, documentation, or who the importer is -- based solely on the country of export is an overly broad application of a rule that can be narrowly tailored to achieve the same goal. The CDC has stated that the ban will be reevaluated in a year, and that in the meantime, exceptions can be made on a case-by-case basis. Such exceptions, however, are extremely limited and expressly prohibit the ability of any rescue group – even legitimate and recognized 501(c)(3) organizations, to apply for an exception to this ban. The few available exemptions are detailed in instructions by the CDC, and expressly include dogs being imported for science, education and exhibition. Expressly prohibited in these instructions are dogs being imported for other any other purposes, such as adoption, resale, or transfer of ownership. It remains unclear how the articulated goal of public safety can be met by permitting dogs to enter the country for science, education, and exhibition yet not for adoptions. NDLB will be addressing this question with the CDC directly. Those who applaud the ban, noting that there is no reason for Americans to look overseas for dogs, mistake the fundamental reason why Americans adopt dogs from other countries. “The point of looking oversees for dogs is not to cast our eyes away from domestic dogs here in the US, but instead to rescue dogs from horrific circumstances such as dog meat festivals and slaughterhouses that we are fortunate enough not to have here in the United States” explains Finnegan. Rescuing dogs from overseas is about saving a dog’s life. It is about taking a stand that the inhuman treatment, torture and reckless slaughtering of man’s best friend is unacceptable and must be addressed in order for change to happen. NDLB fights on the front lines every day, documenting the atrocities, and working tirelessly to treat, rehabilitate and find loving homes for the dogs of the dog meat trade in Asia. A blanket ban on importing dogs of this magnitude will be a catastrophic blow to reputable rescues who have made it their mission to help animals globally. “We will not sit by silently. We will fight for these dogs here in the United States like we fight for them on the front lines in Asia. We are their voice. There is a way to accomplish the goal of the CDC to protect the public without hampering the efforts of hundreds of rescues worldwide. We will fight to make that happen” says Beri. About No Dogs Left Behind: No Dogs Left Behind operates boots on the ground in China, fighting on the frontlines to rescue dogs from the illegal dogmeat trade. We work hands-on with local activists through emergency response, pulling dogs directly from slaughterhouses, dogmeat trucks, wet markets and traffickers. Our mission extends beyond borders, advocating for the creation and enforcement of animal welfare laws, and raising awareness for a cruelty-free, sustainable world in which no animal is violated, exploited, tortured or slaughtered for commercial goods or profit. With nearly 500 survivors in our care, No Dogs Left Behind operates sanctuaries in Dayi and Gongyi, China. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, TikTok and Pinterest. Contact Details No Dogs Left Behind Sherry Chen +1 855-665-0888 sherry@nodogsleftbehind.com Company Website http://www.nodogsleftbehind.com

June 15, 2021 03:02 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Increase In Early Retirement Forcing Americans to Collect Permanently Reduced Social Security.

Jennifer Lang Financial Services, LLC

Contact Details Jennifer Lang Financial Services, LLC. Jennifer Lang +1 870-413-6993 mail@jenniferlangfinancialservices.com Company Website https://www.jenniferlangfinancialservices.com

June 15, 2021 10:05 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Minuteman Press Printing Franchise in Bethesda, MD Celebrates Grand Reopening

Minuteman Press International Inc

Located at 8210 Wisconsin Avenue, Minuteman Press in Bethesda held its grand reopening event on May 15 th in conjunction with the Rockville Chamber of Commerce. Owner Leslie Klein was excited to celebrate the renovations of her center as well as the return of local community events to Bethesda. She says, “We redid our lobby, added a new envelope printer, and rearranged our layout to optimize our production and best serve our clients. It feels fantastic to celebrate our grand reopening!” As she reflects on her grand reopening as well as the past year, Leslie says, “The pandemic took its toll on everyone and we are just thrilled to be able to move forward. Last year, we remained open as an essential business and continued to support and serve our community in any way we could. For example, I reached out to all of the local school districts and we ended up printing and distributing 3,000 graduation yard signs, which was really gratifying.” Today, Leslie is happy to get back to business. “As soon as networking events opened back up, I jumped on board and attended all sorts of networking and speed networking sessions. This past week alone, I received two jobs for orders from people who referred me from those events. It feels great to get back out there and let people know what Minuteman Press in Bethesda is all about.” Some of the popular high-demand items that Leslie’s team provides to clients right now include bulk mailings, banners and signs (large format printing), promotional products, and custom printing for events and trade shows. Leslie says, “Community events are coming back and this summer is already heating up for us. We have already been selected to be the print supplier for two golf tournaments. For one of the upcoming golf outings, we are producing 60 double-sided yard signs, retractable banners, table tents, and promotional magnets.” Leslie adds, “As for bulk mailings, I’ve done my research on direct mail and I’ve really made it a point of focus at networking events. I talk about direct mail in Chamber groups, my BNI group, and to my customers. We are able to help them market themselves and our ability to design, print, and do the mailings for them makes it easy for our clients.” “Our clients will give us an idea of what they want and as marketing and printing professionals we’re able to help them figure out what they really need. We are a small business with a team that works really well together. What I’ve learned is that print is here to stay and we can assist our clients with customized products and services that make sense for their needs and their bottom lines.” -Leslie Klein, owner, Minuteman Press franchise, Bethesda, Maryland From Nursing to Printing Prior to buying Minuteman Press in Bethesda in November 2019, Leslie Klein worked 25 years as a nurse and also spent time raising her three children. She says, “I loved being a nurse but I always wanted to do something entrepreneurial for myself. My husband and I decided to go to the local franchise show in April 2019 because it was fun to see what opportunities were out there. I always thought I might end up with a business related to gardening since it’s a hobby of mine, and I also looked at other options such as an eyelash/cosmetics franchise. I met Minuteman Press Regional Vice President Bob Heimbuch at the show and learned about printing. We did our research, the price was right, and by the middle of May we put down a deposit for Minuteman Press in Bethesda.” “Minuteman Press provided me with a turnkey business where I didn’t have to reinvent the wheel. I love everything about the ongoing local support Minuteman Press provides as well as the business model where I have nights, weekends, and holidays off. I enjoyed being a nurse but the hours were hard and I left the field to raise my kids. I love what I am doing now and I feel my quality of life and work-life balance are far superior than when I was working in hospitals.” -Leslie Klein When asked about the rewards of owning her own business, Leslie answers, “My staff is absolutely amazing and we work well together to best serve our customers.” She concludes, “Being able to fulfill custom orders and keeping my clients happy is such a great feeling. Being able to learn and grow with them is my ultimate reward.” Minuteman Press in Bethesda has been awarded the 2021 Best of Bethesda Award in the Commercial Printers, Designers & Marketers category. The award from the Bethesda Award Program recognizes Leslie and her team for working to “enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community.” For more information on Minuteman Press in Bethesda, call (301) 656-1188 or visit https://www.mmpbethesda.com. Learn more about #1 rated Minuteman Press franchise opportunities at https://minutemanpressfranchise.com. Contact Details Minuteman Press International Chris Biscuiti +1 631-249-1370 cbiscuiti@mpihq.com Company Website https://minutemanpressfranchise.com

June 15, 2021 10:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Velocity Global commits $1M to First Descents to expand adventure programs for young adults coping with multiple sclerosis

Velocity Global

First Descents (FD) has announced a transformative $1 million contribution from Velocity Global to support the expansion of adventure programs for young adults living with multiple sclerosis (MS). Funds will support program development and help reach more than 1,000 MS participants over the next 5 years. “First Descents serves people first to fill a gap in psychosocial supportive care for young adults living with MS. Velocity Global is honored to support the expansion of these programs through this donation and volunteer efforts from our global team,” said Ben Wright, founder and CEO of Velocity Global. “I have witnessed the healing impact of First Descents programs firsthand, and am proud our company is in a position to advance this important work.” Velocity Global and First Descents share a special partnership that transcends financial support. The two Colorado-based companies began as office neighbors at INDUSTRY Denver in 2014. Over the years, Velocity Global employees have volunteered on First Descents programs and fundraised while competing in the Ragnar Snowmass Relay and the TransRockies Run. In 2018, Velocity Global contributed $150,000 to pilot MS programming which began with a whitewater kayaking experience in Tarkio, Montana. “Velocity Global’s support will help us to serve more than 1,000 young adults living with MS in the coming years while investing in vital partnerships with patient advocacy groups and neurology clinics nationwide,” observes Ryan O’Donoghue, CEO, First Descents. “We want MS patients to learn about First Descents closer to the time of diagnosis and know that we are here for them. Velocity Global’s leadership support will make this vision a reality.” The National MS Society indicates there are approximately 1 million people living with multiple sclerosis in the United States with approximately 10,000 new cases diagnosed each year. Typically, MS is diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with a median age of diagnosis at 34. Young adults living with MS can experience significant physical, neurological and psychosocial changes that often disrupt important developmental milestones. In addition to the complexities of clinical treatments and lifestyle implications, the relapsing and progressive nature of MS can be daunting, and can result in significant psychosocial distress. According to the National MS Society, clinical depression ranks among the most common comorbidities associated with MS. These realities have been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic where prolonged social isolation and apprehension for the future have taken a significant toll. First Descents is working with several renowned patient advocacy groups, including the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America (MSAA) to reach more people coping with MS. “There is an important need to support young adult MS patients with age appropriate programming that can improve their outlook and quality of life,” observes Gina Ross Murdoch, CEO, Multiple Sclerosis Association of America. “Staying fit and active - especially with peers living with MS - can greatly benefit patients’ mental and physical health. We are excited to work with First Descents and Velocity Global on the launch of these programs.” First Descents’ all-inclusive programs are free of charge to participants. All programs ensure ADA lodging compliance, a tailored Wahls protocol nutrition program, and fully-accessible outdoor activities. Further, programs are designed with careful consideration to mitigate heat sensitivity, balance issues, and fatigue. Ultimately, First Descents creates an environment where young adults with MS can reclaim their physical agency, explore new activities, and nurture lifelong supportive peer relationships. ### ABOUT VELOCITY GLOBAL Velocity Global accelerates the future of work beyond borders. Its platform enables businesses to employ remote teams and expand internationally through global expertise, best-in-breed technology, and scale. More than 700 brands rely on its Employer of Record model and infrastructure, also called an International PEO (Professional Employer Organization), in 185 countries and all 50 United States to compliantly employ thousands of supported employees, access global talent, and grow revenue. Named a “Leader” in Global Employer of Record services by prominent analyst firm NelsonHall, Velocity Global is a strategic partner to its clients through additional comprehensive services including Immigration, Independent Contractor Compliance to assess a workforce, and Agent of Record (AoR) to streamline payments to contractors globally. Founded in 2014, the company is headquartered in Denver, Colorado, with regional headquarters in Amsterdam, Bogotá, and Singapore, with local employees in 16 countries. ABOUT FIRST DESCENTS First Descents (FD) is a leader in adventure-based healing. Through outdoor adventure, community building, and lifestyle development, FD improves long-term survivorship and quality of life for young adults impacted by cancer, multiple sclerosis, and other serious health conditions. Headquartered in Denver, First Descents has served more than 10,000 participants over the last 20 years. Beginning in 2020, First Descents launched programs for healthcare workers on the frontlines of COVID-19. All services are fully-adaptive and free of charge. A Guidestar Platinum-ranked nonprofit, First Descents has been recognized on CNN Heroes and Outside Magazine's Best Places to Work. RESOURCES: First Descents MS Program Page Contact Details Velocity Global John Hall +1 720-650-4348 johnhall@velocityglobal.com First Descents Ray Shedd +12034999633 ray.shedd@firstdescents.org Company Website https://velocityglobal.com/

June 15, 2021 07:02 AM Mountain Daylight Time

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Secta Finance innovates the £10b private school fees model, making affordable finance options for parents

Stockwood Strategy

Fintech business Secta Finance has launched today to transform how private school fees are paid. Families are spending circa £10b every year to pay school fees for over 620,000 children and over the years there has been no innovation on the termly bill payments. Secta Finance has set out to change this and become an enabler for many more families considering private schooling but feel it is currently unaffordable. In collaboration with a number of financial institutions, Secta Finance has created a range of flexible and highly competitive finance plans that enable parents (and would-be parents) to spread the cost of private school fees over many years in a simple affordable way. The Secta Flexiplan enables parents to use the equity in their home to secure a facility that allows parents to draw funds flexibly within the first 5 years. Parents only pay interest on the amount they actually drawdown. If they don’t need to draw funds there is no cost. Parents can decide how much they draw; their monthly repayment amounts (subject to a minimum) and the term they repay over (up to 30 years). Also, there are no early repayment fees if they choose to repay in full. Below is an example* of how a Secta Flexiplan could be used to finance 5 years of private education. This example is based on one child, annual school fees of £15,000 per year and with the Secta Flexiplan being repaid over a period of 10 or 20 years. However, the amount borrowed, the term over which it is repaid and the monthly repayments can be adjusted to suit individual circumstances and preferences. Secta Finance has made it quick and simple for parents to get indicative quotes from their online platform. Thereafter they can engage with a qualified advisor to discuss their options and tailor a plan to suit their needs. Joe Hill, founder and CEO of Secta Finance commented: “How parents pay for private school fees is no longer fit for purpose. They are still paying large lump sums, sometimes, with expensive and inflexible means using credit cards or unsecured loans, that simply is not sustainable. Secta has set out to challenge this approach with a fresh lens and a clear pathway for parents to handle this significant expense. We want to create manageable and affordable finance solutions for school fees, much like the financial products people consider when buying a house or a car.” Contrary to popular belief, private education is not confined to the wealthy, but many middle class parents place a very high value on it and want to provide the benefits of a private education for their children. However, the costs can be prohibitive, especially for families with more than one child. Annual average school fees are in excess of £15,000 for day schools and in excess of £30,000 for boarding schools. Factoring in additional costs, a private education can cost an average of £325,600 per child for day school and £469,700 for boarders starting their schooling in 2019. Unsurprisingly, many parents find this a struggle. Research completed by Killik and Co suggests that private day school fees have increased by 403% since 1990. “Many parents make significant sacrifices to give their children a private school education. But it doesn’t have to be that way. It makes sense to have a solution whereby parents can spread the cost over a longer period of time if they wish (up to 30 years), to reduce the strain on their finances, but still be able to give their children a private education,” added Joe Hill. There are more than 2,500 independent schools in the UK catering for approximately 620,000 pupils. This represents about 7% of all UK school children and 18% of pupils over aged 16 years and older. The estimated school fee market value is approximately £11 billion. Secta Finance is working closely with schools who are keen to offer meaningful finance options for their parents. The company is also collaborating with independent financial advisors who are seeking flexible, efficient options for their clients. Parents are also directly engaging with the online platform to find out more about the options available to them. Looking ahead Joe Hill added: “We are creating opportunities for parents, for schools and for children. By offering finance solutions which are affordable, simple to understand, we will create a sustainable path for better outcomes. Our strategic aim is to expand the opportunity of private education to many more families and enable a sustainable relationship for parents and schools through the products that we offer”. ENDS *This is an indicative quote and does not constitute an offer or advice. Interest rate and solution terms will depend on your circumstances and the amount of the loan. Before you make a loan application, we will carry out a full review to establish your needs and preferences and if you meet the criteria, we will give advice and make a recommendation to you. All loans are subject to status. Please note that our product calculators show an indicative rate only and may not be suitable for you. Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up with your repayments. About Secta Finance Our mission is to relieve the pressure of private school fees by providing innovative, affordable finance solutions to parents. In doing so, we bring the outstanding benefits of private education within the reach of many more families, everywhere. Secta Finance Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Contact Details Secta Finance Bilal Mahmood +44 7714 007257 b.mahmood@stockwoodstrategy.com Company Website https://www.sectafinance.co.uk/

June 15, 2021 04:30 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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