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Article thumbnail News Release completes a $1.25M pre-seed round in stealth mode to accelerate R&D for AI-Infused Customer Intelligence Platform

CIPIO co-founders Growson Edwards (Ex-MicroPact CCO), Manoj Kumar Goyal ( Ex-Marketo CPO and Ex-Oracle GVP), and Dharm esh Trivedi ( Ex-Motionsoft SVP ) announced the completion of their pre-seed round of $1.25M, led by DX.Partners, a pre-seed Venture Studio, with participation from the co-founders and other angel investors. DX.Partners Founder & Managing Partner, Sundeep Sanghavi (ex-CEO & Founder of DataRPM, acquired by Progress Software (NASDAQ: PRGS)) is very bullish on the founders’ vision and focus on the B2C member/subscriber intelligence. “COVID-19 has accelerated the unprecedented changes in consumer behavior, causing massive disruption in the traditional brick & mortar industries like fitness, faith & spirituality, restaurants, live event venues, who now must transform digitally at an exponential pace,” said Sanghavi. Mr. Trivedi has scaled multiple startups from zero to $100M in revenue with two exits, Razorsight acquired by Synchronoss (NASDAQ: SNCR) and MotionSoft acquired by Daxco. “We have been heads down since the pandemic working on a minimum valuable product and have made tremendous progress,” said Trivedi. With our insights and industry expertise, early adopters like Crunch Fitness, World’s Gym, and the Xponential Fitness streaming platform called GO, which operates brands like Pure Barre, Club Pilates, AKT, YogaSix, Cyclebar, Row House, Stretch Lab, and Stride have seen significant ROI.” Mr. Trivedi reached out to Growson Edwards, an advisor at that time, to methodically launch CIPIO out of stealth mode. Mr. Edwards led MicroPact’s growth from $1M to $84M in revenue and has a knack for customer success resulting in a 106% net dollar retention. “I have launched and scaled five SaaS products across multiple markets. As an early advisor, I saw immense value in CIPIO’s IP, inspiring me to join Dharmesh and invest in the pre-seed round,” said Edwards. He quickly sought out San Francisco Bay area veteran MarTech platform executive Manoj Kumar Goyal to lead CIPIO’s R&D team. Mr. Goyal previously led Oracle’s Customer Data Platform (CDP) team and launched the platform in a record time of 12 months. Before Oracle, Mr. Goyal served as Marketo’s Chief Product Officer, meeting the performance and scalability needs of the most demanding CMOs (such as Google, AWS, and Microsoft), and driving annual revenue growth at a 25% pace to $300m+ revenue for 5000+ customers. “Whether you are a massive franchisor or the operator of a neighborhood corner gym, a church, a restaurant, or venue, the pandemic has impacted one and all like never before. All the idling forced by the novel coronavirus has necessitated that brick & mortar businesses go digital at warp speed. What’s lost in this rapid digital transformation is understanding the customer beyond the 360-degree intelligence that traditional CDPs provide. To understand the customer journey in this new hybrid world will require unparalleled intelligence that can only be produced by combining the power of AI & domain expertise,” said Mr. Goyal. “It’s very rare for a startup at a stealth stage to have such a strong customer validation along with a killer team,” said Sanghavi. CIPIO expects to launch commercially in Q1 of 2021 and expects to raise additional capital at that time. Contact Details Jennifer Isaac +1 315-398-9541 Company Website

November 19, 2020 12:30 PM Eastern Standard Time

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Cashmere Eco-Designer Fights Fast Fashion During Pandemic Holiday Season

Agility PR Solutions LLC

In a year when most craft fairs and festivals have been cancelled, ekologic cashmere clothing designer Kathleen Tesnakis of Troy, N.Y., is joining other artists in making the shift to online retail while keeping up the meaningful interaction between customer and creator. “This is the first November in eight years that my partner and I haven’t had to wake up at 4 a.m. to pack a rental van with a year’s worth of ekologic inventory, then drive from upstate down to Manhattan to set up an entire shop in Grand Central Terminal for the Holiday Fair,” said Tesnakis, who recycles cashmere to create new sweaters, skirts, hats and gloves. “Normally, we would spend the next month-and-a-half running our shop in Grand Central, overseeing our bustling studio in Troy and traveling between the two locations weekly to replenish inventory. It’s nice to get a little more sleep, but in normal years the Grand Central show accounts for about two-thirds of our annual revenue.” This year, ekologic is a featured artist in the first ever Grand Central Virtual Holiday Fair, a web-based version of what organizers claim to be New York City’s oldest and largest indoor holiday market that beckons customers from across the world to shop in the Terminal’s historic Vanderbilt Hall. Though Grand Central is most lucrative for her, Tesnakis said other art shows that occur across the nation throughout the year are no less important for designers like herself. She typically spends the spring and summer touring the country to sell her clothing line at various curated art shows in places like Dallas, Texas, Jackson Hole, Wy. and Portland, Ore. Those shows, all of which were cancelled this year due to COVID-19, account for the rest of ekologic’s annual revenue. Though the company has maintained an online store for more than two decades, the majority of her customers have preferred to shop in person, sometimes returning year after year to the same festivals and fairs. “I think people really put a value on the experience of purchasing handmade items directly from the artist who made them,” Tesnakis said. “When you shop our online store, you’re still purchasing directly from us. But I recognize that some customers need a bit more help deciding what colors to chose, what size to pick… which is why I’m available for virtual personalized shopping appointments.” Another way she connects with customers is through broadcasting on Facebook Live each Wednesday at 3 p.m. to share her production process and progress in the studio, as well as her philosophy on sustainability that guides her business practices. Climate change and environmental pollution are major crises facing humanity and we have to keep pushing for more sustainable practices,” Tesnakis said. “We have to be more eco-conscious, even during a pandemic, because our planet’s ecosystem is in a health crisis, too. I hope people will keep that in mind as they do more of their shopping online this season. Also, there are so many small artisan businesses that need your support this year and the gifts you find will have an extra special meaning.” FAST FASHION AND WASTE The average American throws away approximately 80 pounds of cheap textiles per year, choking landfills with “fast fashion” garments sold by mass-market retailers. “‘Fast fashion’ is clothing that’s made fast and cheap, with questionable labor practices and ends up in a landfill quickly,” Tesnakis said. “It’s a wasteful, environmentally destructive industry that has to change.” Since 1996, Tesnakis' ekologic company has practiced an alternative to “fast fashion” by recycling cashmere to create high-quality pieces including sweaters, dresses, hats and mittens in women’s and men’s styles that can be worn and cherished for generations. The ekologic mission is to make clothes that inspire a movement of sustainability and environmentally aware customers. “We’ve been on the front lines of the slow fashion revolution for over 20 years,” Tesnakis said. “Our clothing is made to last and to spark conversations about the clothes we wear and the products we purchase.” FASHIONABLE, GREEN, AND ONE-OF-A-KIND Every item made by ekologic is unique because of the way Tesnakis gathers and assembles her materials. After hunting down discarded cashmere treasures, she dismantles each article of clothing while taking the time to recognize its individual character and beauty. Finally, she transforms the material by joining it with other pieces to give an old garment new life and purpose. The random nature of recycling means Tesnakis must work with the materials she finds. While ekologic’s product lines are consistent, each ekologic item is uniquely individual. “Recycling informs my design and production,” Tesnakis said. “I don’t get to order trendy materials. It’s my job to make trends happen.” ekologic clothing is sought after by the environmentally conscious and fashion conscious alike. Celebrities, like Lee Ranaldo, of the iconic rock band Sonic Youth, and celebrated actress Halle Berry have been spotted wearing ekologic apparel. “In recent years, ‘green’ has become a powerful marketing tool that is sometimes used in cynical and disingenuous schemes,” Tesnakis said. “ekologic has been making genuinely ‘green’ fashion long before ‘green’ was fashionable.“ LOCALLY HARVESTED, ZERO WASTE, NO HARSH CHEMICALS In 2003, the eco-clothing company moved from Portland, Ore. to Troy, N.Y. to be closer to the fashion epicenter of New York City and family. All of the cashmere that ekologic recycles into new garments comes from within a 150-mile radius in the “Tri-State” area, qualifying it as “locally harvested.” Since moving to New York state, ekologic has repurposed more than16 tons of post-consumer clothing that would otherwise have ended up sold to international barges or landfilled. The ekologic process of washing and deconstructing post-consumer clothing uses only environmentally-friendly soap–no harsh chemicals or dyes—while striving to use a minimal amount of water. In 2014, ekologic adopted a “zero waste” production facility goal, meaning that even the smallest scraps of material are put to some re-use. ekologic has inspired other artists and manufacturers to use only post-consumer products and has forged new partnerships in order to achieve the “zero waste” goal. "We know that being green isn't easy. It's a lifelong process. Don't be intimidated and feel like you have to change your life overnight," says Tesnakis. "What we're asking you to do is take the steps that are closest to you to change. If each one of us did this, we would have an incredible impact on the world." WHY RECYCLE CASHMERE? Clothing was far more expensive in the early 20th century than it is today, and therefore there was a greater incentive to transform and re-purpose old clothing items into quilts or toys, or even a smaller version of the same garment—a damaged or worn dress for an adult would often be repurposed as a dress for a child. As clothing became cheaper, through outsourcing labor to developing nations, Westerners increasingly began to discard clothing items after one lifecycle or sometimes after a single use as in the case of seasonal fast fashion. By the early 1990s, nearly all new clothing was destined to be landfilled within a matter of a few years. But Tesnakis says she recognized that there are a few materials, such as wools, that have characteristics that made them prime for recycling. “Cashmere and wool are strong, antimicrobial natural fibers which helps them stay in good condition for generations,” Tesnakis said. “It's not uncommon for a beautiful cashmere jacket or a cashmere sweater to be still viable 20 to 30 years later.” REMADE BY HAND IN AMERICA: CONTINUING A HISTORY OF WOMEN & TEXTILES IN TROY, NY “Most people don’t know where their clothing was manufactured. Buying directly from the designer is a rewarding way to shop,” said Tesnakis. “When you shop ekologic, you know who made your clothes. You know how your clothes were made and what materials your clothes were made of. Those are the tenets of the slow fashion movement that will lead us to a fashion revolution.” Tesnakis noted that Troy is nicknamed the "Collar City" because a woman, Hannah Montague, invented the detachable collar here in 1827. Later, in 1864, Kate Mullany started the all-women Collar Laundry Union in Troy, one of the first women's labor unions in history. Tesnakis’ first studio in Troy was in a building that housed the Troy Waste Manufacturing Company which produced garments created from textile waste from the shirt collar industry 100 years before she got there. This year she opened a new studio at 184 4th Street in Troy’s “Pottery District” neighborhood. NEW DESIGNS FOR 2020 This year, ekologic debuted the newly-designed “Jackson” sweater, a modern mosaic piece that achieves zero waste, and a French-inspired beret. Accessories by ekologic cost between $72 to $88, while clothing prices range from $235 to $480. HIGH RESOLUTION PHOTOS & VIDEOS For high resolution fashion photos of ekologic products and models, and broadcast quality video of ekologic Designer & Founder Kathleen Tesnakis in her Troy studio, visit the following Dropbox link: CONNECT WITH EKOLOGIC For information, call (518) 274-0813 email or visit:,, @ekologic_ny YouTube Channel: ART PARTY CENTRAL To help other artisans pivot to the virtual world, Tesnakis and four other women-owned businesses founded to connect independent designers, artists and lifestyle brands with discerning, fun-loving shoppers online. Art Parties are festive, engaging and intimate hour-long virtual events presented by six makers showcasing their newest pieces, current inspirations, a peek at their techniques, and sharing the love of their work in their own environments. Contact Details Kathleen Tesnakis +1 518-867-1864 Company Website

November 19, 2020 10:33 AM Eastern Standard Time

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Quidel Corporation Hosts Upcoming Webinar to Help Health Professionals Distinguish Lyme Disease, Flu and COVID-19 During Frightening Respiratory Season

Quidel Corporation

With the common symptoms of flu, COVID-19 and Lyme disease all converging to form a frightening respiratory season, health care professionals nationwide will converge themselves to join an important webinar on Dec. 3 focused on how to correctly diagnose and treat these look-alike conditions. The webinar is being sponsored by Quidel, the California-based diagnostic health care manufacturer known for successfully developing rapid diagnostic health solutions. As reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the trio of Lyme disease, flu and COVID-19 share the common symptoms of fever/chills, fatigue, muscle aches and headaches. That makes it both challenging and critical for health care professionals to properly distinguish one from the other so that they can correctly treat their patients for the corresponding ailment. “In particular, physicians need to have their radar up for Lyme disease, which is known as ‘The Great Imitator’ because its symptoms often mimic those of flu and, most recently, COVID-19 infections,” said Roxanne Carfora, D.O., who will be conducting the webinar. “Early diagnosis of Lyme disease is critical because if not caught early or if misdiagnosed, Lyme disease can have long-term debilitating consequences. With Lyme disease afflicting as many as 400,000 Americans each year, we view this as an epidemic within the pandemic.” A recovering Lyme disease patient herself, Dr. Carfora is board certified in anti-aging and functional medicine and has been practicing family medicine on Long Island for more than 25 years. She is the founder of New York-based Ageless MD, which combines family medicine, anti-aging medicine and aesthetics in one patient-friendly environment. Dr. Carfora is a graduate of New York College of Osteopathic Medicine, host of the radio program “Getting You Healthy, Naturally” and co-author of “Ageless Adventures,” which provides tips on how to live a more active, healthy lifestyle. Lyme disease is a bacterial infection that is spread when people are bitten by an infected deer tick. It can strike anyone at any age and can lead to a number of serious, life-threatening problems if not caught early. Leading the way in Lyme disease testing is Quidel’s innovative Sofia® 2 Lyme FIA test. This test provides a patient as well as his or her physician with indicative results within minutes as opposed to days, which has historically been the norm. Performed in the privacy of a doctor’s office or local clinic, it is also the only test that can get results from a simple finger prick of blood. With appropriate antibiotic treatment, most people with Lyme disease recover completely; but the key is catching it early, and that means not hesitating to get tested. Among those expected to attend the free Dec. 3 webinar are physicians; allied health professionals; health researchers; and representatives of physician offices, laboratories, urgent care centers and others interested in the subject. The webinar, titled, “Doctor, I’m exhausted and have a fever. Do I have COVID? Could it be the flu or even Lyme disease?” will take place from noon-1 p.m. (EDT). To register, visit About Quidel Corporation Quidel Corporation (Nasdaq: QDEL) is a leading manufacturer of diagnostic solutions at the point of care, delivering a continuum of rapid testing technologies that further improve the quality of health care throughout the globe. An innovator for over 40 years in the medical device industry, Quidel pioneered the first FDA-cleared point-of-care test for influenza in 1999 and was the first to market a rapid SARS-CoV-2 antigen test in the U.S. Under trusted brand names, Sofia®, Solana®, Lyra®, Triage® and QuickVue®, Quidel’s comprehensive product portfolio includes tests for a wide range of infectious diseases, cardiac and autoimmune biomarkers, as well as a host of products to detect COVID-19. With products made in America, Quidel’s mission is to provide patients with immediate and frequent access to highly accurate, affordable testing for the good of our families, our communities and the world. For more information about Quidel, visit Contact Details Jim Yeager +1 424-644-0225 Company Website

November 19, 2020 07:00 AM Pacific Standard Time

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Cyvatar Adds Starter Subscription to CSaaS Offering


Cyvatar today announced the availability of its starter subscription, a fast and cost-effective introduction to the company’s revolutionary all-in-one cybersecurity-as-a-service (CSaaS) offering. Cyvatar delivers outcomes-based solutions to organizations that cannot hire in-house security teams, do not have the runway to experiment with multiple security tools as they scale, or cannot compete against larger firms for the scarce number of skilled resources available. Its starter subscription offers businesses the quickest route to remediation--the process of identifying and closing gaps or vulnerabilities in a security environment--by bundling expert practitioners, proven technologies, and a strategic long-term roadmap into a fixed monthly price. The starter subscription also enables companies trying to maintain standards including SOC 2, CMMC, NIST, ISO, HIPAA, and PCI to achieve complete and continuous compliance even as regulations change. “Companies often don’t realize the hidden costs of maintaining compliance,” said Cyvatar Founder and Chief Experience Officer Corey White. “They think if they purchase a compliance tool or managed service, they’ll be covered--but that’s rarely the case. Too often, such solutions uncover more problems that require remediation without providing the capabilities to patch vulnerabilities and keep an organization’s data both safe and compliant. Our experts provide solutions across the entire security lifecycle as part of an inclusive all-in-one subscription model.” Cyvatar’s starter subscription covers incident response services, IT asset inventory, continuous vulnerability scanning security gap analysis, and a strategic roadmap to ensure that once an organization achieves remediation it preserves that solved state over time while maintaining all applicable compliance requirements. Rather than simply sending alerts, Cyvatar’s seasoned cyber veterans manage the entire security process, from assessment to continuous remediation and maintenance. “You can spend a small fortune investing in a series of pen tests, assessments, or other costly activities that don’t bring you any closer to remediation,” said Craig Goodwin, founder and chief product and strategy officer at Cyvatar. “Historically, companies had good security or full compliance, but not both. We’re revolutionizing the industry by ensuring both goals are met simultaneously so customers no longer have to sacrifice one to achieve the other.” The Cyvatar starter subscription delivers guaranteed cybersecurity and compliance outcomes at a fraction of the cost of legacy approaches: What security challenges are you trying to solve? What barriers do you face? Click HERE to get started with Cyvatar’s cybersecurity-as-a-service (CSaaS) subscription and register for the Subscription Launch Party on December 8th. About Cyvatar is a transformative cybersecurity company that operates at the intersection of our customers and technology to define what a cybersecurity solution should be: guaranteed business outcomes that are measurable. We break down barriers to create positive experiences for passionate companies globally. Cyvatar is headquartered in Irvine, California. Learn more at and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter. Contact Details KC Higgins +1 303-434-8163 Company Website

November 19, 2020 08:22 AM Eastern Standard Time

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Convey Services Launches Cloud Exhibit

Convey Services

Convey Services, a SaaS technology company, today expanded its Cloud Conventions platform by launching Cloud Exhibit ™, a universal, portable, virtual exhibit environment that improves branding, and enhances attendee experience, when exhibiting or sponsoring any virtual event, regardless of the platform used by the tradeshow or conference. Cloud Exhibit is the digital version of a custom trade show booth that companies can use to showcase their products and services at dozens of different events and conferences, selectively displaying from a collection of formats and assets to match every audience. With Cloud Exhibit you can own a branded, content-rich exhibit environment connecting attendees to a custom experience. “Today, companies must adapt to virtual booth environments on event platforms that have the philosophy of one size fits all,” said Carolyn Bradfield, CEO of Convey. “As the virtual event trend expands into 2021 and beyond, companies large and small will exhibit at an increasing number of virtual events delivered over a variety of technology platforms. Exhibitors don’t have a say in the platform a trade show chooses, but they can control everything an attendee sees and can engage with. Cloud Exhibit provides a customizable, flexible, virtual booth environment that comes online in days without the time, risk, or expense of development. It maintains a strong corporate identity, provides better control of branding, and has an expanded set of sales tools.” How Cloud Exhibit Works Cloud Exhibit is built on Cloud Conventions’ technology platform providing exhibitors with a framework to create a custom branded display that can be linked to any virtual tradeshow. Attendees logged into a virtual event are connected to the Cloud Exhibit platform through hyperlinks or by single sign-on technology transferring the attendee into the Cloud Exhibit platform, creating a data record at the same time. Cloud Exhibit has many of the capabilities of a Cloud Conventions event portal including customization of the home page with graphics and embedded videos or 3D virtual technology. The platform is segmented into catalogs to organize and visually display content, showcase products, or segment individual brands and hold live or on-demand sessions. Every Cloud Exhibit comes with an attendee CRM, built-in email marketing and analytical reports to track engagement. “Customized, connected, focused and branded, a Cloud Exhibit showcases you in the way you want it to be seen and tracks engagement,” added Bradfield. “We created Cloud Exhibit in response to demand from exhibitors participating in Cloud Conventions-hosted events who are exhibiting at other events in 2021 on platforms that are less robust. Most event platforms do not provide companies with enough messaging control, branding, and a flexible experience to encourage attendee interaction, so having a permanent online environment that is portable only makes sense.” Cloud Exhibit comes with the technology framework to customize the homepage, organize content, create attendee dashboards, manage data records and relationships in the CRM, deliver virtual sessions and track activity. Cloud Exhibit portals include online training and an administrator help database to answer frequently asked questions. For more information on Cloud Exhibit visit: About Cloud Conventions Cloud Conventions is a Virtual Trade Show and Conference Platform from Convey Services that brings new capabilities to a marketplace looking for solutions to replace the thousands of live trade shows, annual conferences and association meetings cancelled in the wake of COVID-19. Originally launched as ConveyLive, Cloud Conventions automates exhibitors and virtual booths, attendee registration, speaker sessions and reminders, invitations and email communication, while at the same time producing detailed analytics on attendee, session and exhibitor activity. Trade Associations and event managers can explore all of the Cloud Conventions solutions by visiting or contacting or call 888-975-1382. Cloud Conventions™, Cloud Exhibit™, Cloud Kickoffs™, Conduct™, One-Touch Email Share™, Hub & Spoke™, 360° Virtual Exhibit Hall & Lobby Experience™ and ListLock™ are trademarks of Convey Services LLC Contact Details Bruce Ahern +1 770-580-0810 Company Website

November 17, 2020 01:45 PM Eastern Standard Time

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Discovering the Joys of Tulsa… Safely

D S Simon Media

A trip to Tulsa may be a little different than it was before, but the heart of the city, it’s people, and it’s attractions haven’t skipped a beat. Recently, Tony Moore, Executive Director of The Gathering Place and Mary Beth Babcock, owner of Buck Atom’s Cosmic Curios on Route 66, teamed with Visit Tulsa and YourUpdateTV on a satellite media tour to discuss the new Tulsa Safely initiative. A video accompanying this announcement is available at: The Tulsa Safely initiative is uniting local partners and businesses who are adhering to all recommended CDC health regulations, like wearing masks. Places like Mother Road Market are doing outdoor patio dining and take-out only and ensuring that they are respecting social distancing guidelines. Route 66, with its quirky shops and stops, including Buck Atom’s, is a great family attraction that is also outside for easy social distancing. The route is iconic and has many exciting discoveries for a family to enjoy. The Route 66 Passport is an interactive way to enjoy the fabled roadway, allowing families to collect stamps from establishments along the route. The ever-inclusive and engaging Gathering Place, Tulsa’s 66-acre, $465 million public park that takes days to fully experience, is the top choice for family activities. The seasonal events are changing to address pandemic protocols and masks are required. The Tulsa Zoo, who just welcomed three new animals, also attracts families to explore the many enclosures that bring them face to face with all sorts of creatures. Masks are required and visitors must purchase tickets in advance to prevent crowding. The Oklahoma Aquarium boasts an impressive world-class collection of bull sharks and offers unique animal encounters for guests. The attraction requires masks, urges visitors to come outside of peak hours and mandates social distancing. Cultural institutions like Philbrook & Gilcrease Museums have outdoor events for families while The Botanic Garden and Tulsa’s River Trails & Parks offer family fun in any season. Tulsa is also known as a battleground for Civil Rights, and the Greenwood Cultural Center is a step towards exploring this history. Next year, Tulsa will be home to an even larger museum, Greenwood Rising, showcasing Black history in Tulsa. As a community, Tulsa is taking momentous steps toward healing.. Check out for more information when you’re ready to travel again and come back early in 2021 for a full new website experience. About Tony Moore, Executive Director, Gathering Place As a hospitality park executive with more than 30 years of experience in the entertainment industry, Tony has served in a leadership capacity for some of the most respected entertainment brands including Universal Studios, SeaWorld Parks and Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo. Tony owned and operated a hospitality consulting firm, Attractions Management Group Inc. and is now serving as the Executive Director for a one of a kind, world-class, urban park, Gathering Place. About Mary Beth Babcock, Owner of Buck Atom’s Cosmic Curios on Route 66: A native of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, Mary Beth Babcock has become known as one of her state’s most talented and enthusiastic goodwill ambassadors. As the founder of such Tulsa mainstays as Dwelling Spaces and the famous Route 66 landmark Buck Atom’s Cosmic Curios on 66, Babcock’s boundless energy has helped put Tulsa on the map in all new ways. About YourUpdateTV: YourUpdateTV is a social media video portal for organizations to share their content. It includes separate channels for Health and Wellness, Lifestyle, Media and Entertainment, Money and Finance, Social Responsibility, Sports and Technology. Contact Details YourUpdateTV +1 212-736-2727

November 17, 2020 08:00 AM Eastern Standard Time

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CMMC Center of Excellence Announces Memorandum of Understanding with Maryland Innovation & Security Institute

Interoperability Clearinghouse

The Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification Center of Excellence ( CMMC COE ), hosted by the Information Technology Acquisition Advisory Council (IT-AAC), a public-private partnership serving the public and private sectors for more than 15 years, is proud to announce a Memorandum of Understanding with the Maryland Innovation & Security Institute ( MISI ) and Dreamport Mission Accelerator. This unique partnership will extend efforts to advance the goals and objectives for improving the cyber and supply chain security and resilience of the US Department of Defense (DoD) global Defense Industrial Base (DIB) network of contractors, suppliers, and vendors. The executed MOU establishes a cooperative agreement between the Maryland Innovation & Security Institute and CMMC COE to partner in the furthering of their respective and complementary missions and objectives regarding the adoption, use, and expansion of CMMC based cybersecurity practices for the DIB contractor community and the information and communication technology community creating a broader CMMC ecosystem to improve security and resilience. Specific actions will include: The co-development of CMMC advisory services, cyber training and education programs to accelerate CMMC certification, increase cyber adoption and improve cyber protection & resilience. Collaboration on cyber technology knowledge sharing Co-sponsor symposiums, training programs and podcasts leveraging their combined cyber and IT expertise. Host regular working groups, with other partners, to enable collaboration and communications. Establish an independent Industry Cyber Security Advisory Council with peer organizations to advise and educate leaders across government and industry on the continued evolution and effectiveness of CMMC Through this exciting partnership, the CMMC-COE ( ) will also focus on bringing together the many disparate cyber and national security communities of interest to reduce complexity, improve awareness, and accelerate industry effort to become more cyber resilient against the growing threats from nation states and criminal enterprises. The CMMC-COE partner network will be sharing a wide range of capabilities from member organizations, including; cyber standards frameworks, education, solution architectures, cyber mentoring, workforce, and other elements needed to scale to the demands of the entire DIB market place in the US and abroad (400,000+ contractors). The CMMC-COE establishes both a Market Place and Knowledge Clearinghouse that will include resources that support the overall effort, including white papers; tutorials; recorded webcasts; presentations; and more that will help reduce the cost and burden on small/medium size contractors already struggling from the impact of COVID. MISI is recognized as a leading provider of cybersecurity expertise and test and evaluation resource for cybersecurity technologies. MISI helps organizations by disrupting traditional innovation and accelerating the discovery of viable cybersecurity and related technologies that when combined with more mature technology, results in powerful new capabilities tackling new vulnerabilities and attack vectors launched at the US and the world. Acceleration is accomplished through maximum collaboration between our global cybersecurity and technology network of resources, academia, federal laboratories, and technology incubators and accelerators in our cyber mission accelerator facilities and labs, thereby, speeding up solution discovery through continuous probing of the marketplace and disruptive thought leadership. The team at MISI is deeply engaged with DoD suppliers across the nation and around the world as part of the organization’s efforts to find, test, evaluate, and develop as necessary, cost-effective cyber solutions in support of the nation and its supply chain. MISI’s work includes an almost two year deep dive into studying the challenges and state of the Defense Industrial Base ( DIB ) as it pertains to DFARS-7012 and readiness for the new CMMC requirements. For more information on the CMMC COE, please visit email or call 703-863-3766 For more information on the Maryland Innovation & Security Institute, please visit About Us ---------- CMMC-COE.ORG is a unique non-profit public-private partnership, with a vision to accelerate Cybersecurity Maturity Model (CMM) adoption, and reduce time & cost for security compliance for our partners by leveraging commercial best practices, CMMC standards, and innovative solutions for a measurable success. Our mission, focused on DOD mission objectives, cost containment and expeditious CMMC compliance, is to help the DIB improve cyber posture and resilience, and simplify its acquisition. The CMMC-COE is hosted by the Information Technology Acquisition Advisory Council (IT-AAC), a public/private partnership (P3) chartered in 2007 as an honest broker to reach outside the confines of the Federal IT advisories that lack dynamic reach into the Global IT Market, and dedicated to the adoption of commercial IT management standards of practice and innovations emanating from the Global IT market. Team IT-AAC has already demonstrated the value of its decade long investment, and provides a unique value to agencies seeking to achieve accelerate the transformation of legacy processes and systems. Our Just-in-Time SMEs apply an innovative suite of Technology Business Management and Agile Acquisition Processes needed to assure the business value of commercial IT. The Interoperability Clearinghouse (ICH), is the managing partner that make up the 24 NGO/SDO organizations that make up the IT-AAC. ICH provides the contract vehicles, clearances, and critical resources proven to guide sustainable, measurable and repeatable processes needed to drive better investment decisions as the speed of mission need, while aligning existing processes, methods and workforce with IT reform mandates contained in Clinger Cohen Act, FITARA, IT MGT Act, EO13838. Contact Details Bob Dix +1 703-975-6633 Company Website

November 16, 2020 10:00 AM Eastern Standard Time

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Holiday Shopping Tips from a Personal Finance Expert

D S Simon Media

After a difficult 2020, it’s no surprise that this holiday season will look and feel a little different. With consumers potentially navigating difficult financial times, it’s more important than ever to be prepared for what lies ahead. Recently, Personal Finance Expert, Farnoosh Torabi, teamed with YourUpdateTV on a national satellite media tour to discuss. A video accompanying this announcement is available at: Get a Head Start There’s no need to wait until Black Friday or December to begin holiday shopping. Sales are abundant and round-the-clock this year, as retailers work hard to attract shoppers in a slow economy. When you see a sale for an item that’s on your list, take advantage of it. Waiting until the last minute only ensures you’ll be left with few options, in which case you might overspend on items that weren’t originally on your list. Make Budgeting a Family Affair You’re likely not the only member of the family concerned with blowing your budget over the holidays. To that end, be sure to openly discuss your savings goals with your family and suggest alternatives that could help bring down everyone’s expenses. For example, you might want to throw out the idea of an anonymous gift exchange, ‘Secret Santa,’ or ‘Pollyanna’ so that each family member only needs to shop for one person instead of multiple. Make it extra budget-friendly by capping gifts to no more than $25 or $30. Use Credit Wisely Avoid the traditional New Year debt hangover and be conscientious when using your credit card this holiday season. Try to streamline your spending onto one card for easier tracking. While you’re at it, use the card that best rewards you for all of your holiday purchases. For example, the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card helps will save you time and money this holiday season with unlimited 5% cash back on purchases. And if you’re planning to get out of your home for the holidays, the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card also earns you 2% back on restaurants and travel, so you’re saving everywhere you shop. That savings will allow you to spend more time on what matters during the holidays and less time shopping around. Bulk Buy Common Gifts For gifts you anticipate giving to many people this year, for example, bottles of wine, chocolates or stocking stuffers for your kids, buy the items in bulk. Often retailers will provide a 10% or 15% discount if you buy several of one item, whether it’s six pairs of the same socks or several pounds of sweets. It may not be advertised, but always worth asking a store manager. Never Checkout without a Promo Code Before you click “check out” online, be sure you’re not leaving any discounts on the table. A quick internet search for the name of the retailer and the term “discount code” might lead you to some handy codes to save a fast 20% or free shipping. For more information about the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card, visit or visit for more holiday shopping tips. About Farnoosh Torabi Farnoosh Torabi is one of America’s leading personal finance authorities — hooked on helping you live your richest, happiest life. As a Contributing Editor to Oprah Magazine and NextAdvisor, host of primetime series for CNBC and creator of the Webby-nominated podcast So Money, Farnoosh has become our favorite go-to money expert and financial friend. The New York Times calls her advice, “perfectly practical.” About YourUpdateTV: YourUpdateTV is a social media video portal for organizations to share their content. It includes separate channels for Health and Wellness, Lifestyle, Media and Entertainment, Money and Finance, Social Responsibility, Sports and Technology. Contact Details YourUpdateTV +1 212-736-2727

November 13, 2020 12:00 PM Eastern Standard Time

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Unhygienic restaurants are flushing away repeat business – new Fine Dining survey highlights importance of a clean restroom to customers

Fine Hygienic Holding

89% of customers will not return to restaurants with poor washroom hygiene and 79% of customers prefer paper hand towels over hand dryers while 66% opting for sterilized products over regular hand towels A survey commissioned by Fine Solutions, the away-from-home division of Fine Hygienic Holding (FHH), one of the world’s leading wellness groups and manufacturer of hygienic paper products, has highlighted the importance of hygiene in the dining experience post Covid-19 lockdown, with 89% of UAE customers unwilling to revisit a restaurant with poor washroom hygiene. The survey by Kantar Middle East was created to understand the customer perspective and the correlation between loyalty and restroom hygiene. The survey of 500 respondents was conducted online across different nationalities, affluence levels and cities. The main findings show that customers placed more importance on cleanliness in the washroom (50%) than in the kitchen (48%) or interior - the area including tables, chairs, floor and billing counter (47%) - when it comes to hygiene factors that matter most in a restaurant. Elsewhere, cleanliness and operational condition (62%) were found to be the most important hygiene factors in a restaurant restroom. James Michael Lafferty, CEO of Fine Hygienic Holding, said: “This survey comes at an important time for both consumers and brands as we navigate the new normal of everyday life in the time of the Covid pandemic. Operators and brands are still adjusting to life post lockdown, implementing new protocols and adhering to new directives, and tackling the realities of business and life while re-engaging with their core customers. “We understand the importance of hygiene, it drives everything we do as a business. And this study emphasizes how highly customers and consumers place these considerations when it comes to their choices and their behavior.” The survey has uncovered some interesting findings on consumer preference towards hygiene and cleanliness, in an era when businesses can be affected by poor customer reviews and social media coverage. Although customers expect high hygiene standards across any outlet, the cleanliness of the dining area and restroom stand out. Customer perception of washroom hygiene is influenced by several attributes including the cleanliness and overall operational condition of toilets and handwashing area, dryness of floors, and availability of sanitation products. Cleanliness and availability of sanitation products in the restroom were rated highly important. Interestingly, while toilet cleanliness rated higher among female respondents, the availability of sanitation products such as wipes and sanitizers on tables polled higher among males. Taking a deep dive into hand hygiene, 79% of customers preferred paper towels over hand dryers, citing speed, health and texture as the main reason for their preference. Absorption power, biodegradable aspects and texture were the three most important attributes for paper towel users. Sterilized paper hand towels were also preferred to regular paper towels by 66% of those surveyed. The overall preference for paper towels fits in with a number of scientific studies which show that hand dryers spread 1,300 times more germs than paper towels. According to the study, preference for paper towels was found to be the highest among Arabs (87%), with absorption rated most important by Asian Expats, and thickness and brand considered most important in cities. Lafferty added: “The unique Fine Dine Program has been designed to recognize the efforts of F&B establishments in improving hygiene level at their facilities, and also to link consumers to a network of restaurants and dining options in the region with high hygiene levels.” Fine Hygienic Holding provides restaurants and a range of other businesses, from healthcare institutions, corporate offices, and industrial facilities, with carefully tailored solutions to ensure a clean and hygienic environment through its away-from-home division Fine Solutions. The Fine Dine Program network is exclusively available on NB: the percentage figure given corresponds to the number of respondents who gave a rating of 9 or 10 to the survey questions About Fine Hygienic Holding: Fine Hygienic Holding (FHH), MENA’s leading manufacturer of hygienic products, serves consumers in more than 80 countries around the world. With its commitment to becoming “the shining star of the Arab FMCG business world,” FHH focuses on wellness, sustainability, state-of-the-art production processes, pioneering CSR programs, and award-winning products. The company offers a diverse array of products including facial tissues, napkins, kitchen towels, toilet paper, baby diapers, adult briefs, jumbo rolls, as well as away-from-home products to accommodate all types of private and public institutions, in addition to personal protective equipment (PPE). Contact Details Sylvia Sarkies +971 4 367 1084 Company Website

November 11, 2020 07:15 AM Eastern Standard Time

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