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Fullintel Appoints Angela Dwyer as Head of Insights

Fullintel, LLC

Fullintel, a leading media monitoring and media intelligence service, is proud to announce it has appointed Angela Dwyer, a leader in the global PR measurement industry, as its new Head of Insights. A former senior vice-president at NYC-based PR agency Lippe Taylor and senior project manager at PRIME Research (now Cision), Angela has spent years developing and implementing advanced media metrics – such as the Hypatia Gravity Score – to help improve the effectiveness of PR campaigns and media outreach. She’s also actively involved in the Institute for Public Relations (IPR) and International Public Relations Research Conference (IPRRC). Building on Fullintel’s Award-Winning Media Measurement Foundation “Fullintel has mastered a cost-effective, human-curated media monitoring approach,” explains Dwyer, “along with a great analysis foundation in terms of Fullintel’s Media Impact Score and PredictiveAI™ crisis module. I want to continue adding to that by customizing the approach for each client based on a range of factors, such as drivers of recall, predictors of how someone might think about your brand, or even different audience drivers depending on the client’s goal.” Angela’s addition builds on Fullintel’s growing momentum in the PR measurement industry, culminating in the company winning Gold, Silver, and Bronze awards at the 2021 AMEC Awards for media measurement. “Angela is one of the most talented senior members of the global measurement community, period. We’re extremely proud to have her join our team,” said Fullintel President Andrew Koeck. “We look forward to providing our clients across healthcare, tourism, retail, aviation, and other industries with even more impactful and actionable insights, based on our ever-evolving measurement program and new products such as PredictiveAI.” Improving Measurement Standards For Communicators Angela is a regular on several industry committees and boards, including the International Public Relations Measurement Commission. She’s also set to join other media measurement experts in hosting the Institute of Public Relations (IPR) Master Class, a strategic playbook for communicators featuring eight live and interactive sessions from Sept. 19, 2022 to April 18, 2023. About Fullintel: Fullintel combines best-in-class technology with expert content curation to deliver the most relevant, cost optimized media monitoring, daily news briefs, and media analysis possible. Our analysts curate print, online, social media, broadcast, and influencer opinions in real time compiled by technology, supplemented and verified by humans. Where technology alone fails, your dedicated analyst has you covered. Fullintel has offices in Cambridge, Mass., Ottawa, Ont. and Nagercoil, India. Contact Details Fullintel Samuel Chen +1 339-970-8005 schen@fullintel.com Company Website https://fullintel.com/

August 17, 2022 10:20 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Family Pleads for ASIRT to Actively Investigate Death of Alberta Man Who Died in RCMP Custody

Hartzler Family

For the second time in less than a year and a half, an Alberta man has died while in custody of the Grande Prairie RCMP. Despite evidence to suggest the matter should be under ASIRT’s purview, a decision has been made to allow a specialty unit within the Grande Prairie RCMP to investigate and control the case. On June 3, 2022, Addison Hartzler called 911 requesting help for what he believed to be a break and enter at his residence. The family was told that RCMP officers arrived at the scene and failed to find evidence that a break and enter had occurred; the RCMP then made the decision to take Addison into custody for public mischief – within nine minutes of arrival at his residence. The family believes Addison was taken into custody unlawfully since the Criminal Code of Canada requires officers to have reasonable grounds, to prove that a false report was made intentionally and that there was an “intent to mislead.” According to information provided by the RCMP, Addison’s behaviour indicated that EMS or a doctor should have assessed him prior to being detained. The officers who arrested Addison said he "was either unwilling to provide his name, or was unable to provide his name, and therefore, they were holding him in order to identify him when he was willing to provide his name to the charge." In a phone conversation with Addison’s family after the incident, the RCMP indicated Addison was acting in a psychotic and delusional manner. “It is our view that, given his alleged state of health, Addison was unlawfully detained and that the RCMP failed to provide the necessaries of life,” says Addison’s father, Gregory Hartzler. “We believe these system failures resulted in Addison’s untimely death.” According to the RCMP, at no point was Addison assessed by EMS or a doctor. Additionally, Information received from a request to Alberta Health Services under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy (FOIP) Act indicates that Addison was last seen alive at 9 a.m. – more than two hours before RCMP placed the request for EMS. The EMS report indicated that Addison was “obviously dead” and had been for some time. The family has serious concerns regarding the two-hour gap between when Addison was last seen alive and when EMS was called. “Due to the circumstances surrounding his death, we believe there was gross negligence in respect to the care provided to Addison while in custody of the Grande Prairie RCMP and their staff, and that an internal investigation by the RCMP is neither appropriate nor adequate,” continues Hartzler. “As a result, we implore the Government of Alberta to direct ASIRT to handle the investigation.” ASIRT is an arm’s length, independent team created under Alberta’s Police Act toinvestigate situations where Alberta police may have caused serious injury or death or when significant allegations of police misconduct have been made. According to an email exchange between the Hartzler family lawyer and Mr. Marlin Degrand, an assistant deputy minister for Alberta Justice and Solicitor General who was the executive director of the Government of Alberta’s Law Enforcement Oversight Branch at the time, it appears the decision to have the RCMP investigate instead of ASIRT was in part due to capacity issues at ASIRT. In his email Mr. Degrand stated he directed the RCMP to oversee the investigation, “…taking into consideration the tasking events recently given to ASIRT.” In further communications between Mr. Degrand and the family, Mr. Degrand indicated that, “Because there was no report of confrontation with police, and no indication of negligence on behalf of the police, I directed that the RCMP should retain carriage of the investigation”. “It is unfathomable that the Government of Alberta does not believe there to be negligence when evidence from EMS states that my son was ‘obviously dead’ and had been for a substantial period of time,” says Hartzler. According to RCMP policy, members must “check prisoner[s] frequently and at irregular intervals to ensure their security and well-being. The intervals are to be no more than 15 minutes apart. These checks must be physical checks, not a check of the CCVE.” “It’s disappointing to see an agency set up by the Alberta Government as a police agency ‘watch dog’ is simply too over tasked and underfunded to actively investigate the death of an individual in police custody. It is suspicious this case is being treated differently than a recent case with seemingly similar circumstances,” adds Hartzler. The RCMP are under investigation for a similar death in custody that occurred on February 8, 2021, at the same detachment. ASIRT is actively investigating that incident. “Albertans should be aware of the RCMP and Government of Alberta’s gross negligence and ASIRT’s apparent capacity issues to investigate the death of an individual while in police custody,” continues Hartzler. “By bringing attention to this issue, we hope to prevent a similar situation from happening to another Albertan family. No one should die alone, in fear – especially while police custody.” Contact Details CIPR Communications Peter Pilarski, President +1 403-462-1160 peter@ciprcommunications.com

August 17, 2022 09:07 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Blockchain Solutions Provider ChainUp Expands Global Presence with a New Office in South Korea

ChainUp

ChainUp, a global blockchain technology solutions provider, announced its expansion with a new office opening in Seoul, South Korea. While they are headquartered in Singapore, ChainUp currently has offices in Hong Kong, Japan, Canada, and the United States. With its office in South Korea, the company plans to strengthen its presence in the region and harness the market’s potential. ChainUp provides businesses with a complete suite of blockchain solutions all within one platform. Its comprehensive solutions include digital asset exchange systems, NFT trading systems, wallet solutions, liquidity solutions, and digital assets custody and management. Since its founding in 2017, ChainUp has served more than 1,000 clients in 30 countries and regions, reaching over 60 billion end-users. Mr. Lee Sangwook, Head of Korea Office of ChainUp said, “The Web3.0 and blockchain industry in Korea is fast-growing and backed by strong government support. With our new office in South Korea, we aim to bring our comprehensive solutions to businesses in the region while fostering close partnerships with relevant stakeholders in the ecosystem to promote technological advancements and industry developments.” Mr. Sailor Zhong, Founder & CEO of ChainUp said, “To fulfil our vision of making blockchain technology more accessible for businesses around the world, we aspire to consistently grow our footprint to facilitate blockchain adoption and support businesses across different industries in their blockchain journeys to stay ahead of the technological curve.” --- End --- About ChainUp Group Founded in 2017, ChainUp is a leading end-to-end blockchain technology solutions provider covering infrastructure development and ecosystem support. Built on the mission to empower businesses through blockchain technology, ChainUp’s innovative and all-around compliant solutions include digital asset exchange systems, NFT trading systems, wallet solutions, liquidity solutions, and digital assets custody and management. Headquartered in Singapore and with offices around the world, the company has served more than 1,000 clients in 30 countries, reaching over 60 million end-users. For more information, please visit: www.chainup.com. Contact Details ChainUp Group Xue Zhen Yeo xuezhen.yeo@chainup.com

August 17, 2022 09:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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LawPay Launches New Integration With End-to-End Legal Operating Platform Litify

LawPay

LawPay, the leading online payment solution for legal professionals, announced the new integration with cloud-based legal technology platform, Litify. This new integration will provide Litify customers with access to a fully integrated payment solution. This will allow these firms to improve team productivity, increase collections, and have better visibility into the full client cycle. LawPay was developed specifically for attorneys and can get professionals paid up to 39% faster. Litify is an end-to-end legal operating platform for law firms and legal departments. Litify connects all legal professionals across firms and corporate legal departments so that each party can work together in a centralized platform to achieve better business and legal outcomes. With LawPay plus Litify, users can send and receive payments from a single operating system. “We are excited to launch this new integration with Litify, and to bring automated payments onto the Litify platform for law firms of all sizes,” said Dru Armstrong, Chief Executive Officer of LawPay. “Integrating with Litify will make the payments aspect of their day even easier. Adding LawPay to an already robust platform such as Litify is sure to make law firms' day-to-day easier, all while getting paid faster.” According to market research via Cision, 70% of companies using cloud-based technology plan to increase their budgets in the near future, making cloud software solutions the new normal. Litify is ranked the #1 cloud software solution amongst enterprise firms. With this new integration, LawPay and Litify customers can expect: All-in-one management: This new integration adds payments onto the most flexible and integrated platform for lawyers, allowing users to manage every aspect in one central place Highest level of PCI compliance: LawPay exceeds the highest industry standards for Internet security and PCI Level 1 compliance Payment Transparency: Litify’s robust automation tools and dashboards will allow firms to automate payments and have transparency in real time to all collection related needs. “The opportunity to integrate LawPay with Litify is going to help our customers manage all operations on a single platform while also getting paid faster,” said Ari Treuhaft, Litify’s Chief Operating Officer. “This integration continues to build on our core vision to add transparency and automation to the legal industry and allow legal professionals to operate more efficiently and provide a better client experience.” For more information about LawPay and Litify, head here. About LawPay LawPay was developed specifically to help law firms streamline billings and collections, providing a simple, secure solution for legal clients to pay their bills. LawPay is the industry leader in legal payments, providing a cost-effective solution for more than 50,000 law firms around the country. It's available through all 50 state bars, 60+ local and specialty bars and the ABA as a vetted and approved payment solution for the legal industry. LawPay is also the ALA’s Exclusive VIP Partner for Payment Processing. Learn more at lawpay.com. About Litify Litify is the end-to-end legal operating platform that breaks down business silos to power better process, collaboration, insight, and performance. Litify is the only platform that offers tailored solutions for law firms, in-house legal teams, government agencies, and nonprofits, connecting the entire legal ecosystem to provide better business outcomes for legal teams and better legal outcomes for their clients. Built on Salesforce, Litify streamlines and automates matter and task management, document generation, timekeeping, billing, and client communications, while providing data-driven insights that allow law firms and legal teams to scale and improve their financial performance. As a proud member of Pledge 1%, Litify donates 1% of their time, money, and resources to charitable causes every year through a charitable arm Litify.org. This year, Litify was named a "soonicorn" by Tracxn Emerging Startups. To learn more about Litify, or request a personalized demo, visit www.litify.com. LawPay was developed specifically to help law firms streamline billings and collections, providing a simple, secure solution for legal clients to pay their bills. Contact Details AffiniPay Keely Leonard +1 512-368-8988 kleonard@affinipay.com Company Website https://www.lawpay.com/

August 16, 2022 09:28 AM Central Daylight Time

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DonorsTrust Givers Recommended $126 Million in First Seven Months of 2022

Donors Trust

The DonorsTrust community of givers during the first seven months of 2022 recommended more than $126 million to nearly 2,000 unique nationwide charities, defying historical rates of inflation and ongoing market volatility. While this 11% increase in YTD charitable dollars is significant, the total number of grant requests is up a whopping 49% compared to the same time period last year, suggesting the DonorsTrust client community is spreading more dollars among more institutions. As DonorsTrust President and CEO Lawson Bader says, “The sheer volume of grant requests so far from our community of givers is a reflection of the historic number of new accounts opened with DonorsTrust during 2021 and 2022. “What’s more, the pace at which our donors are meeting charitable needs is evidence of an engaged, serious community of givers that understands nonprofits need more financial assistance to make ends meet during these turbulent economic times.” Grant-making accelerates year-over-year despite market pressures In 2021, DonorsTrust paid out nearly $190 million to charities nationwide and—if giving continues to keep pace with the first half of 2022—it will end the year easily exceeding last year’s record-breaking total. DonorsTrust givers are stepping up to meet needs even though the S&P 500 has declined 20% YTD, the index’s worst six months in more than 50 years, according to CNBC. Other major stock indexes like the Dow and the Nasdaq were down 15% and 30%, respectively, in the first half of 2022. Donor-advised funds, also known as charitable-giving accounts, offer some shelter from the turbulent markets, however, as the charitable tool enables givers to claim an immediate tax deduction for each irrevocable donation made to their donor-advised fund, also known as a charitable-giving account. Donors respond to war in Ukraine, policy challenges at home During the first half of 2022—in partnership with the Atlas Network, a global network of think tanks that work to secure economic and personal freedom for all individuals—DonorsTrust’s donors responded to the Ukrainian crisis by raising more than $2.5 million and counting for life-saving supplies. DonorsTrust Vice President Peter Lipsett earlier this year interviewed Dr. Tom Palmer, executive vice president for international programs at Atlas Network, about the relief missions Palmer personally conducted, delivering supplies from a Polish base and coordinating travel for those fleeing Ukraine. “[Ukrainians] are committed, not merely to repelling [Russian] aggression, but to doing it because they want a free society. They want to live with freedom of speech and free markets and the ability to live your own life as you want and not as someone commands you to live,” says Palmer. In addition to funding relief efforts in Ukraine, clients’ giving in the first seven months of the year focused heavily on grant-making to policy organizations that preserve and protect civil liberties. More than $85 million in the first seven months of 2022 went to policy-focused charities, including State Policy Network, the Foundation for Government Accountability and the Constitutional Defense Fund. ### About DonorsTrust DonorsTrust is a mission-focused donor-advised-fund provider that primarily serves conservative and libertarian givers. Established in 1999 as a 501(c)(3) public charity, DonorsTrust is a community of donors devoted to creating a better future for all. DonorsTrust supports charities it believes protect constitutional liberties and strengthens civil society through private institutions and initiatives. Since its inception, DonorsTrust has granted nearly $2 billion to more than 4,000 charities in the arts and sciences, education, public policy, religion, and social services. Contact Details Dan Rene +1 202-329-8357 daniel.rene@kglobal.com Company Website https://www.donorstrust.org/

August 15, 2022 02:30 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Have We Seen The Beginning Of The End Of Data Privacy In The European Union?

Benzinga

With the goal of protecting the European Union (EU) from child pornographers and other unsavory and illegal activity, the Digital Services Act, a regulatory act aimed at making the internet a safer place, is on its way to cracking down on Big Tech. Big Tech Could Be Facing Big Fines If Companies Don’t Comply Beginning in 2024, the new EU law will fine companies like Alphabet Inc. ’s (NASDAQ: GOOGL) Google, Meta Platform Inc. ’s (NASDAQ: META), Facebook and WhatsApp, Twitter Inc. (NYSE: TWTR) and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) up to 6% of their global revenue if they are caught violating the strict new rules. Companies like Meta could be looking at fines as high as $7 billion if it decides to ignore the new rules. Companies with repeat violations could eventually be banned from doing business in the EU. The law is a means of cracking down on advertising aimed at children as well as ads that target private information such as religion, gender and political opinions. The rules also give EU governmental entities the right to take down what they deem as illegal content, including any viewed as promoting terrorism, child sex abuse, hate speech or commercial scams. Additionally, online retailers such as Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) must adhere to the law by implementing similar protections for what governments view as suspect products, such as counterfeit items or unsafe children’s toys. The EU laws follow the U.S. Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission's move to file antitrust actions against Google and Facebook. In a statement released by Google, the company says, “As the (EU) law is finalized and implemented, the details will matter. We look forward to working with policymakers to get the remaining technical details right to ensure the law works for everyone.” Swiss - Hosted Privacy Company Rolls Out EU Regulation-Immune Chat Tool Alain Ghiai, CEO at Swiss-hosted privacy and cybersecurity company Sekur Private Data Ltd. (OTCQX: SWISF), is among those skeptical of the new laws on Big Tech's effect and intent. He sees the law as a government data grab. “This is not unlike China, where everything you do and post online is public property of the EU government, which will be scanning everything. When people use free (chat) applications like WhatsApp, Gmail and Signal and others, they basically force those providers to give them that information,” he said. “The question is whether what they’re doing is pure intent, or is there something else behind it? A lot of people think the new EU regulations are a new way to exercise full control over people’s privacy, and they’re very angry about it.” Taking advantage of the concern with EU government entities snooping on chat and email, Ghiai has been making the media rounds discussing his company’s newest encrypted feature on SekurMessenger, "Chat-by-Invite". The chat tool is Sekur ’s latest instant-messaging tool, letting Sekur users invite non-Sekur users by sending a SMS notification invite, and is now available in 25 countries, covering a population of 1.18 billion people, including SMS invite notifications coverage in the U.S., Canada, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and most of Latin America and Europe. It says it gives subscribers complete privacy to chat with non-Sekur users, without the non-Sekur users having to register to, or download, Sekur. Chat-by-Invite reports that it protects Sekur subscribers’ instant messages which, when sent to a recipient, open into a private, secure platform hosted in Switzerland, through its proprietary HeliX connection. The chat is essentially occurring on Swiss servers owned and controlled by Sekur. Sekur says that once the instant messaging is completed, the messages disappear and hackers will be unaware of the conversation because of Sekur’s highly private and secure encrypted military technology, which is operating behind it. Though the country pays annual fees to do business with the EU, Switzerland is still independent of the union and is believed to have some of the best and strictest data privacy laws in the world. “Thank God, we’re in Switzerland, and we don’t have such a law (like the EU),” Ghiai said. “It’s not just that the government can go in and read your stuff. The danger is what happens when they get hacked?” With Sekur, there is no direct messaging on open-source platforms, making them invulnerable to cybersecurity breaches. The company reports it has developed or is rolling out products including SekurMail, SekurMessenger, SekurVPN, SekurVoice and SekurPro video conferencing, among others. The SekurMessenger with Chat-by-Invite app is now available on any web browsers, on iOS and Android. For more information on Sekur Private Data, go to https://sekurprivatedata.com. For more information on Sekur solutions, go to https://www.sekur.com. This post contains sponsored advertising content. This content is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be investing advice. This post contains sponsored advertising content. This content is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be investing advice. Contact Details Benzinga +1 877-440-9464 info@benzinga.com Company Website http://www.benzinga.com

August 11, 2022 09:55 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Volatus Aerospace Obtains Industry First Special Flight Operations Certificate for Beyond Visual Line of Sight Operations without a Visual Observer

Volatus Aerospace Corp.

Volatus Aerospace Corp. (TSXV: VOL) (OTCQB: VLTTF) ("Volatus" or "the Company") is pleased to announce that it is the first company in Canada to receive a Beyond Visual Line Of Sight ("BVLOS") Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) from Transport Canada to operate a remotely piloted aircraft (RPAS, drone) without a visual observer, using a ground-based optical detect and avoid system. This is a key milestone in the commercialization of the AERIEPORT nesting station and a necessary and important step toward commercializing drone technologies at scale in Canada. Volatus is experienced in BVLOS operations and currently holds authorization to conduct BVLOS training at several locations across Canada. This new SFOC will enable Volatus Aerospace to remotely pilot a Volatus M300 drone integrated with FlightOps’ remote operations software and a CASIA G Optical Detect and Avoid system from IRIS Automation at the Lake Simcoe Regional Airport. “An SFOC is an authorization, usually on a one-time, single location, or risk level basis given by Transport Canada to operate above and beyond current regulations,” explained Richard Podolski, VP of Flight Operations for Volatus Aerospace. “It’s a very well regulated and safety-oriented method for developing new functionality in an industry or accomplishing what nobody thought to write rules for.” “For drone technology to be successful long-term, it needs to improve upon current methods and applications, be affordable, and scalable,” stated Glen Lynch, CEO of Volatus Aerospace. “Today’s achievement has broken through a major barrier and opened the door to commercial opportunities that have only been dreamed about but until today have been just out of reach. Remote operations beyond visual line of sight are now a reality for Volatus. Commercialization begins now.” About Volatus Aerospace: Volatus Aerospace Corp. is a leading provider of integrated drone solutions throughout Canada, the United States, Latin America and most recently in Europe. Operating a vast pilot network, Volatus serves commercial and defense markets with imaging and inspection, security and surveillance, equipment sales and support, training, and design, manufacturing, and R&D. Through its subsidiary Volatus Aviation, Volatus carries on the business of aircraft management, charter sales, and cargo services using piloted, remotely piloted, and autonomous aircraft. Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. Forward-Looking Statement This news release contains statements that constitute “forward-looking information” within the meaning of applicable securities laws, including statements regarding the plans, intentions, beliefs and current expectations of the Corporation with respect to future business activities and operating performance. Often, but not always, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of words such as “plans”, “expects”, “is expected”, “budget”, “scheduled”, “estimates”, “forecasts”, “intends”, “anticipates”, or “believes” or variations (including negative variations) of such words and phrases, or statements formed in the future tense or indicating that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would”, “might” or “will” (or other variations of the foregoing) be taken, occur, be achieved, or come to pass. Forward-looking information includes information regarding (i) the business plans and expectations of the Corporation; and (ii) expectations for other economic, business, and/or competitive factors. Forward-looking information is based on currently available competitive, financial and economic data and operating plans, strategies or beliefs as of the date of this news release, but involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, assumptions and other factors that may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Corporation to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking information. Such factors may be based on information currently available to the Corporation, including information obtained from third-party industry analysts and other third-party sources, and are based on management’s current expectations or beliefs. Any and all forward-looking information contained in this news release is expressly qualified by this cautionary statement. Investors are cautioned that forward-looking information is not based on historical facts but instead reflects expectations, estimates or projections concerning future results or events based on the opinions, assumptions and estimates of management considered reasonable at the date the statements are made. Forward-looking information reflects the Corporation’s current beliefs and is based on information currently available to it and on assumptions it believes to be not unreasonable in light of all of the circumstances. In some instances, material factors or assumptions are discussed in this news release in connection with statements containing forward-looking information. Such material factors and assumptions include, but are not limited to: the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Corporation; meeting the continued listing requirements of the TSXV; and anticipated and unanticipated costs and other factors referenced in this news release and the Circular, including, but not limited to, those set forth in the Circular under the caption “Risk Factors”. Although the Corporation has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking information, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results to differ from those anticipated, estimated or intended. The forward-looking information contained herein is made as of the date of this news release and, other than as required by law, the Corporation disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise. There can be no assurance that forward-looking information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. Source: Volatus Aerospace Corp. TSXV: VOL Contact Details Rob Walker +1 514-447-7986 rob.walker@volatusaerospace.com Company Website https://volatusaerospace.com

August 10, 2022 12:29 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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The Association of Professional Builders Identifies Key Warning Signs for Residential Home Builders

Association of Professional Builders

The Association of Professional Builders (APB), a leading business coaching service for custom home builders, with members in the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, today identified five key warning signs that indicate a residential building company may be headed for trouble. In light of the issues being faced by Australian home builders – and a possible recession that US economists are warning – now is the optimal time for residential home builders to take stock of their businesses and cash flow to avoid facing a risky financial future. “The last 12 months have been tough on builders,” said Russ Stephens, co-founder of APB. “Around 80% of them are using their own funds in order to complete a client's home. Some of the building companies we’re seeing in the US are struggling to implement cost escalation clauses which is causing a myriad of issues. If their losses continue unchecked, they will eventually be unable to pay their bills and will be forced to call the liquidators in.” This trend may be migrating to the US market soon, if builders miss these key warning signs. Consumers are already being hit hard by inflation and interest rate rises and are not in the position to cover the increase in the cost of construction materials. APB has identified five stages of decline that residential home builders need to be aware as they are managing their day-to-day operations: Potential loss on a contract: APB warns that this is stage 0, the first sign of trouble. This happens when a building company has an unprofitable contract that has not yet started. An unprofitable contract is one where the gross profit on the contract does not cover the proportional company overheads. If a building company, for example, completes 12 projects a year and has annual overheads of $1 million, they will need to generate $83,333 in gross profit from each job to break even. If the company does not reach that gross profit target, which can be seriously eroded by the rising construction costs, then they lose money. APB is encouraging builders to reprice their projects before construction commences to make sure they are still profitable; if not, it’s important to renegotiate with the client. If the client won’t renegotiate, then APB encourages the home builder professional to seek expert legal advice from a construction lawyer that will act in their best interests. Actual loss on a contract: This stage is one where the building company for whatever reason has lost money on a project once their proportional fixed expenses were factored in. APB notes that this is possible even when the price of construction materials are not increasing. Often, it can be a result of estimating errors or prolonged delays which increase the proportional fixed expenses or errors and omissions in the plans and specifications. Also as a result of the rise in the cost of construction during 2021, many building companies ended up losing money on a project even before their proportional fixed expenses were factored in. Company lost money: If proportional fixed expenses were not factored in, the next stage of decline for a building company is an overall loss from all of their activity during a financial or calendar year. When a business loses money, they begin eroding their reserves which also reduces their working capital, thus making the business even more vulnerable to future black swan events. This is where additional funding in the form of a loan or an injection of shareholder capital in order for it to continue trading. Speed is the most important tool here. How badly affected the company is by a trading loss depends on the size of its loss versus the size of the reserves. APB warns that this stage can be deceiving for builders as the company may still be cash-flow positive. Most building companies can absorb a trading loss while still paying their suppliers and subcontractors, however, they are dipping into their reserves at this point. If a company loses enough money to wipe out its entire reserves in a single year, or it accumulates losses over multiple years that exceed its reserves, then it will begin the journey into negative equity. Negative equity: At this stage, building companies are extremely high risk and vulnerable because their liabilities exceed their assets. They are able to still trade legally as they have a positive cash flow which allows them to pay their suppliers and subcontractors on time classifying them as trading solvent. In reality, they are operating as Ponzi schemes, using cash inflows from project A to pay creditors on project B. When a building company reaches this stage, all too often the company executives bury their heads in the sand and work flat out in the hope they can turn things around. Lacking the financial knowledge that is needed here to understand the gravity of the situation they find themselves in is a fast deteriorating situation which can quickly spiral out of control. Insolvency: Once a company reaches this stage and is no longer able to pay their invoices on time, they are classified as insolvent. Often, companies will enter into payment plans with the tax office deferring their due dates while pouring in every cent available to them in a desperate attempt to keep their company open. Unfortunately, this is the most dire stage of decline for a building company, which could have also been avoided had they sought help and changed direction earlier. Some of the best run businesses can be caught in this as a result of fast changing market conditions and environments - ultimately resulting in a financial situation where they did not have the tools to see what’s coming. APB offers a range of builder resources to help guide companies in growing and building their companies safely and securely. Currently the company offers a range of free training including “Pricing for Profit” which includes a three-step process to help residential home builders price new home construction projects and renovations. Other free trainings include, “Systemizing A Residential Building Company,” “Growing Margins,” “Crisis Management For Custom Home Builders,” “Cash Flow Management For Custom Home Builders,” and “90 Day Planning for Builders,” among other key topics. APB encourages residential home builders to check out the free resources, and contact the company should they be in need of additional custom support and coaching. For more information and to access APB’s resources, visit: https://associationofprofessionalbuilders.com/resources. # # # ABOUT THE ASSOCIATION OF PROFESSIONAL BUILDERS The Association of Professional Builders is a leading business coaching service for custom home builders in the United States of America, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. It provides tested and proven systems for builders to scale and succeed, based on data, experience, and results. For more information, visit: https://associationofprofessionalbuilders.com. Contact Details The Hoyt Organization Alyson Campbell +1 310-373-0103 acampbell@hoytorg.com The Hoyt Organization Cinnamon Thompson +1 310-373-0103 cthompson@hoytorg.com Company Website https://associationofprofessionalbuilders.com/

August 10, 2022 08:30 AM Central Daylight Time

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Assembly Hires Gaby Sethi as Global Head of Impact

Assembly

Global omnichannel agency and Ad Age Purpose-Led Agency of the Year, Assembly, has brought on Gaby Sethi as our new Global Head of Impact. Gaby will strengthen the agency’s social and environmental impact proposition and lead a comprehensive strategy globally to deliver meaningful and measurable impact, with a key initiative being the agency’s achievement of B Corp certification. Gaby joins Assembly with an impressive background in the impact space, having most recently led OVO Foundation, the philanthropic arm of OVO Energy. With Purpose – inclusive of People, Impact, and BI E&D (Belonging, Inclusion, Equity, Diversity) – being a key aspect of Assembly’s global approach, the role is critical to the agency’s ability to drive meaningful change for all stakeholders, all around the world. On joining Assembly, Gaby shared, “I loved that delivering impact and supporting communities was already core to Assembly’s DNA. And at just a few weeks in, I already feel incredibly supported by leadership and the whole agency, as I set out to shape a new vision for Impact.” “It’s proof that Assembly is genuinely committed to being a purposeful business.” Assembly started off 2022 as Ad Age’s first-ever Purpose-Led Agency of the Year, a recognition gained in celebration of the agency’s global 1,200 Moves for Impact completed in 2021, led by former Head of Impact Hanna Kubbutat-Byrne, as well as our dynamic work with clients which placed sustainability at the heart of media strategy and execution. The goal, looking forward, is to build a more connected community globally who are driving toward common sustainability and social impact goals, in addition to investing in strategic partnerships and developing new ways to engage clients in the agency’s impact efforts. Gaby added, “Assembly are total experts in growing the world’s largest brands. We have an important opportunity to work with clients who are, likewise, purpose-led and are helping create solutions to the world’s biggest problems. Together alongside our clients, we can achieve exponential impact.” Global CEO of Assembly, James Townsend, commented, “We have huge strides to make, in an environment where both our talent and clients are asking us to commit to and deliver positive environmental and social impact. Gaby will help us more clearly define and evolve our ways of working to ensure we can meet our goals, while keeping purpose at the core of our progressive company.” ABOUT ASSEMBLY: Assembly is made of the ingredients of the modern agency, bringing together data, talent, and technology to deliver a connected set of solutions for media + more to the best brands on the planet. We’re home to more than 1,600 of the industry’s top talent, who bring unmatched global omnichannel media expertise + data, technology, and business consulting capabilities that find change and fuel growth for brands worldwide. Assembly is a proud member of Stagwell, the challenger network built to transform marketing. Visit www.assemblyglobal.com for more information. Contact Details Assembly Sara Pollack, VP of Marketing +1 917-438-4922 sara.pollack@assemblyglobal.com Company Website https://www.assemblyglobal.com/

August 10, 2022 04:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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