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ROOM WITH A VIEW

Umm Al Quwain Free Trade Zone (UAQ FTZ)

It was not so long ago that the Big American Dream became an alluring symbol of freedom, opportunity, and success for all those who dreamt of making it big in a large, fast-growing economy where entrepreneurship and professional skills got amply rewarded. Large, sprawling offices with plush revolving armchairs, glass doors opening onto busy streets, and big bay windows opening to metropolis views became the telltale symbol of business and professional success as portrayed by the blockbuster Hollywood movies of the 70s and 80s. But those halcyon days are long gone, and the dreams have sobered since. In the cataclysmic upheaval of economies that the world witnessed over the last many decades, the luster and sheen went off the traditional potpourri markets, with migration trends getting reversed, dreams taking on different hues, and paths leading to newer landscapes. With America becoming unachievable for many, and with success and prosperity not a given even for the luckiest, the middle eastern countries were in for their reap. AT A VANTAGE POINT If the gold rush was the tipping point for immigration for America, petroleum turned the tables for the Arab world. The rest, as they say, is history. The strategic location of the Arab world, perched right in the middle of the world’s movement of trade and commerce wasn’t the only reason why it went the aerial route in becoming one of the most sought-after regions in the world to live, work and do business. It was because they wanted people to come. They wanted to attract talent. They wanted industries and cities to be built, assimilate the best of comforts and luxury the world can offer, and businesses to flourish. And indeed, that was what they achieved too, by relentlessly and meticulously chasing their dream of becoming the cultural and commercial capital of the world. THE ROOM WITH A VIEW Today, the old analogy of the room with a view has changed. The view that entrepreneurs and businesses seek today is not of the metropolis through the bay windows, but the immersive experience right from the center of the action, a vantage point from where the whole world can be seen and felt. That is what the United Arab Emirates offers, perched right at the center of the east, west, north, and south. The UAE is the destination of choice for global corporations, entrepreneurs, and startups alike because of favorable tax laws, clean, peaceful, and secure living environments, access to affluent consumers, top-notch infrastructure, speedy development, a tech-savvy workforce, and access to global markets. Welcome to Umm Al Quwain Free Zone, the perfect ecosystem for businesses for whom the room with a global view is integral to success and non-negotiable for those dreaming to make it big. SPRINGBOARD TO SUCCESS For those thinking of expanding their business footprint to other regions of the world, and those thinking of shifting office to a more strategic, favorable, and future-savvy location, there cannot be a better choice than UAQ Free Trade Zone. As an organization directly under the Government of Umm Al Quwain, the UAQ Free Trade Zone combines the UAE advantage with additional benefits of its own for the investors. These include efficient due-diligence processes to help ensure investors set up their businesses fast, where even a physical presence at the Free Zone office is not required, thus helping save on time, cost, and other resources; relentless pursuit of innovation which ensures that the UAQ FTZ infrastructure is constantly upgraded to suit evolving needs of the clients and the market; strategic locational advantages with excellent connectivity to various leading sea and airports of the UAE; suitability to businesses-at-scale as well as emerging ones or startups; adherence to processes and underpinned by transparency as a guiding principle; a holistic approach that caters to all establishment and scale-up requirements of businesses, availability to quality manpower and access to key residential hubs of the country; and the cosmopolitan culture which forms the bedrock of its philosophy as a Free Zone Authority which caters to global citizens. Johnson M George, General Manager of UAQ Free Trade Zone beams as he proudly asserts the distinct advantages that make them different. “We have built our Free Trade Zone from the center outwards, meticulously planning and providing all the things you need to establish, consolidate, scale and succeed for your company. And right at the center of it are our clients. We have the perfect ecosystem to suit all types of entrepreneurs, from those who own global corporates wanting to extend their footprint into one of the most promotive business environments, to those who are shifting from a salaried job or a fresher taking a maiden step into the entrepreneurial world. We are turning into the choicest address for startups of various hues, and our doors are always open and inviting.” LET YOUR DREAMS GROW WINGS WITH UAQ FREE TRADE ZONE The prospect of owning your own company gives a feeling of sheer exhilaration. And why should it not? You invest your time, money, and business skills acquired over life into your own business, and it often becomes a make-or-break moment. What people often overlook is the fact that working for a company and owning one are different ballgames altogether. More often than not, you get rude surprises in terms of cost overshoots, laborious paperwork, regulatory diligence delays, availability of skills and resources, etc. This is where a single-window approach, transparency, dual-licensing framework, etc. become the determinants of success for a startup. UAQ FTZ understands business at various stages of their life and has frameworks suiting each one of them so that success is by design and not by luck. Thus, for businesses who want to make it big with speed, scale, and sustainability in their favor, no other ecosystem provides a room with a better view than UAQ FTZ. Contact Details Umm Al Quwain Free Trade Zone Authority PR & Communications +971 6 764 7272 media@uaqftz.com Company Website https://uaqftz.com/

October 27, 2022 03:31 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Ready for Ron Sues Federal Election Commission

Ready for Ron

Ready for Ron (RFR), the only credible organization working to draft Governor Ron DeSantis to run for President, filed a lawsuit against the Federal Election Commission (FEC). The action, brought in the U.S. District Court for D.C., follows the FEC issuing an Advisory Opinion to prevent Ready for Ron from sharing with Governor DeSantis the names of those who signed a petition encouraging him to challenge Joe Biden. The lawsuit states in part, “…RFR wishes to provide its signed petition, including names and contact information provided by its signatories, to Governor DeSantis—a traditional form of political expression and association. The Commission has issued an advisory opinion concluding the Federal Election Campaign Act (“FECA”) prohibits RFR from doing so…” Prominent Republican campaign finance attorney Dan Backer recently argued before the FEC and submitted three detailed Public Comments to the FEC supporting Ready for Ron’s request, to share the list of supporters with DeSantis both before and during a potential candidacy – as an act of Constitutionally protected political speech. The arguments cited binding D.C. Circuit Court precedent, legislative history, and the FEC’s own administrative precedents. “The FEC would stop Ready For Ron from sharing a petition – the quintessential form of free speech – unless we also charged for it,” argued Backer. “Act Blue does the same thing we propose – sharing support names and contact information on a vastly larger scale – tens of millions of individuals – while funneling a billion and a half dollars a cycle”. “The FEC is fine with Act Blue doing this to support Biden, as long as money is involved, but when the speech is free or bad for Biden, suddenly it must be suppressed,” Backer continued. The lawsuit further states, “…RFR’s fundamental First Amendment rights to engage in political speech and expressive political association have been violated by the FEC’s response to RFR’s advisory opinion request and the reasonable prospect of prosecution if RFR provides its signed petition to Governor DeSantis…” “We are disappointed some on the FEC are again standing in the way of political speech and freedom of association. Millions of Americans want Ron DeSantis to run. Signing their names to Ready for Ron’s draft petition is the ultimate act of political free speech and association, and there is simply no basis for saying they cannot give those names to the Governor if – and when – he heeds their call and runs. It is disappointing that this litigation is necessary, but we are eager to protect our Free Speech and encourage DeSantis to seek the Presidency. We are confident we will prevail,” Backer continued. “We have before in taking on the FEC, and surely will again.” Since its launch in late May, Ready for Ron has garnered nearly 100,000 petition signers, generated significant media attention, and run hundreds of ads to help convince Ron DeSantis to run for President. Ready for Ron has emerged as the only credible independent organization in support of Ron DeSantis. Americans are encouraged to sign the petition at http://www.ReadyForRon.com to draft Ron DeSantis to run in 2024. ### The lawsuit and exhibits may be found at https://www.readyforron.com/lawsuit/ For more information or to schedule an interview with ‘Ready for Ron’ legal counsel Dan Backer or Lilian Rodríguez-Baz, contact Dan Rene at 202-329-8357 or dan@readyforron.com. Contact Details Ready for Ron Dan Rene +1 202-329-8357 dan@readyforron.com Company Website https://www.readyforron.com/

October 27, 2022 12:21 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Remotebase raises $2.1M at a $65M valuation as it launches developer hiring platform Talently

Remotebase

Hiring developers has always been a point of contention for businesses and technical recruiters. There’s no definitive verdict on what is the smarter way of hiring the right developer talent while expending a smart budget on it. In addressing this challenge, recruitment marketplace Remotebase is announcing a $2.1Million funding round as it launches the developer hiring tool Talently. The pre-series A was co-led by Indus Valley Capital and Hustlefund Ventures with participation from Soma Capital, Angel Squad, Draper Associates, and Angel investors from Redis and Careem. With this round, Remotebase has raised $2.1Million at a $65 million from investors. Remotebase offers pre-vetted top developer teams of Silicon Valley calibre and ready to operate for any client within 24 hours. To do this, Remotebase onboards the best developers and engineers as part of its focused hiring processes. The new recruitment app from Remotebase, Talently, is its latest proposition to anyone seeking to onboard the best-in-class developer talent. Talently helps developers find top job opportunities while inviting tech recruiters and hiring managers to seek dedicated remote developer teams by exploring more than 60,000+ pre-vetted developer profiles on the go. The app presents the closest match to customer requirements and immediately locks interviews with those developers so that companies can save 100s of hours of their time finding, vetting and hiring the candidates. Qasim Salam, the CEO of Remotebase, said: “Building and scaling our platform from just 11 engineers to now over 60,000+ within 2.5 years has truly been rewarding. With Talently we want to democratize work and enable millions of individuals from emerging countries to have access to the best opportunities in the world.” Hiring developers is challenging for several reasons. According to IDC, a leading market intelligence firm, there is an extremely high global shortage of skilled engineers that will reach up to 4 million developers by 2025. Another issue that intensifies the difficulty of hiring tech talent is the extensive length of the hiring process and its costly budget. According to Workable, hiring a developer usually takes 42 days, which can increase more depending on the candidate's notice period. The worst thing is that if you fail to find the right person, you need to go through the daunting hiring process again. It is where Talently completely changes the game by vetting and onboarding extremely talented developers by industry experts beforehand to eliminate the exhaustive tech hiring culture. Talently has quickly created an extensive talent network of global developers with extraordinary coding skills in 100+ programming languages, including Python, React, JavaScript, Java, Node.js, Android, Swift, PHP, Angular, C#, Ruby, and many more. It is an agile app for hiring exceptional remote developers or finding fully remote developer jobs that fit your talent. Talently will work on a subscription model. Business recruiters can get full access to hundreds of premium developer profiles for a small monthly fee starting at $499. Remotebase was founded by Qasim Asad Salam and Talha Masood, who identified an opportunity to revolutionize the tech hiring process by offering a unique competitive service. Initially, they launched two startups together, a software house and an engineers’ performance tracking system. After Covid changed how people work massively, the founders took it upon themselves to ensure the placement of their engineering teams and started to look for business within their network with an offering of pre-vetted engineers ready to be placed in 24 hours. They started getting positive responses and identified a huge demand for tech talent with minimal hiring time. Fortunately, their previous startup experience had made them experts in finding, hiring, and training software engineers and keeping track of their performance. That’s when things changed for the better, as they decided to scale this up, and the idea of Remotebase was born. The demand for remote tech talent increased tremendously during the pandemic. Soon, Remotebase skyrocketed from having one client to working with several unicorn companies and billion-dollar clients, including Northwestern Mutual, Fireflies.ai, and Fabric. Inc, etc. Since then, Remotebase has grown and now ventured into a diverse portfolio of remote working tools, developer tools, and a tech talent app. Talha Masood, the CTO of Remotebase, said: “We have always believed that talent has no borders, and if opportunities were to be equally shared with everyone across the globe, creating a fast track channel to match opportunities with the best resources, the fusion of skills and ideas will result in a tremendous tech revolution that would elevate the tech industry standards beyond our expectations. Talently is good news for tech recruiters, hiring managers, and CTOs who are constantly on the lookout for hiring the most reliable tech talent and want to avoid the costly hassle of technical assessments.” Based on initial reviews, the app has been received well by the B2B segments, and it looks like it will be a matter of time before Talently becomes the go-to app for tech recruitment across various regions and markets. Tim Draper, an investor in Remotebase, said: "Talently has the potential to become a game-changer in the way tech talent is hired all over the world. It can help both companies and developers surpass geographical constraints and make hiring processes much more efficient. About Remotebase Remotebase is a recruitment marketplace that matches tech companies with the world’s top 1% developer teams, pre-vetted and ready to hire within 24 hours. Their Silicon Valley standardized vetting process provides the finest tech experts with 100+ skills that best fit your timezone and work model, eliminating the highly exhaustive and costly hiring process. By introducing innovative tools like the Talently app, Remotebase is taking the lead in making tech hiring more efficient, economical, and hassle-free. For more information please visit Remotebase or follow via LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter. Contact Details Remotebase Bilal Mahmood +44 7714 007257 b.mahmood@stockwoodstrategy.com Company Website https://www.remotebase.com/

October 27, 2022 07:00 AM Pacific Daylight Time

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Comcast Business Enhances Fiction Tribe’s Cybersecurity with SecurityEdge™ Solution

Comcast Oregon / SW Washington

Comcast Business today announced that it is supplying Portland-based creative agency, Fiction Tribe, with Comcast Business SecurityEdge ™, Business Internet and 4G LTE Connection Pro Services, enabling the business to better safeguard its data and keep its employees connected while using a hybrid work model. Fiction Tribe is an independent digital creative agency with 25 employees and 10 contractors. Unlike typical creative agencies, Fiction Tribe uses machine intelligence technology to analyze seemingly disconnected data points and identify real-time insights and recommendations to its clients. This technology, combined with Fiction Tribe’s digital and creative acumen, offers its clients unmatched deployment times, targeted messaging and actionable analytics. Because of this operational reliance on technology and data, Fiction Tribe counts on its internet and cybersecurity solutions from Comcast Business to help protect client data whenever needed, no matter where employees are working from. “With employees across the globe from Portland to Portugal, which is now standard, we need to spend time growing the business instead of worrying about online threats,” said James Rice, CEO of Fiction Tribe. “As a small business without an IT department, we rely on Comcast Business. With SecurityEdge, we can help protect employee, guests’ and contractors’ devices on the network.” A few years ago, cybersecurity solutions were less attainable for small businesses due to high costs and fixed solution designs. With SecurityEdge™, businesses have access to an advanced network solution. It works to help block threats like malware, ransomware, phishing and botnet attacks across all connected devices on a business’ network while simultaneously preventing guests and employees from accessing suspicious websites. Fiction Tribe’s finds this feature an especially important cybersecurity measure to have when working with contractors and remote workers. “I look forward to viewing the SecurityEdge Activity Summary Report. It tells me all about our network threats, including phishing, malware, and botnets,” Rice explained. “We are comforted that it helps protect our employees’ and customers’ devices.” Paired with Comcast Business’ Internet, SecurityEdge™ seamlessly runs in the background, helping to protect the network’s data, and will do so even if a small business does not have a dedicated IT department. "We want businesses to be empowered to grow. We know there is risk in that, and we want to help businesses have peace of mind," said Alan Goldsmith, vice president of Comcast Business’ Oregon/SW Washington. "As the distributed workforce continues to expand and push the boundaries of digital collaboration, network support solutions will increasingly help define a business' success. That's why Comcast Business is proud to play a role in supporting Fiction Tribe's security solutions and connectivity operations." About Comcast Business: Comcast Business offers a suite of Connectivity, Communications, Networking, Cybersecurity, Wireless, and Managed Solutions to help organizations of different sizes prepare for what’s next. Powered by the nation’s largest Gig-speed broadband network, and backed by 24/7 customer support, Comcast Business is the nation’s largest cable provider to small and mid-size businesses and one of the leading service providers to the Enterprise market. Comcast Business has been consistently recognized by industry analysts and associations as a leader and innovator, and one of the fastest growing providers of Ethernet services. For more information, call 866-429-3085. Follow on Twitter @ComcastBusiness and on other social media networks at http://business.comcast.com/social. Contact Details Comcast Business Amy Keiter +1 503-407-9109 amy_keiter@comcast.com Company Website https://business.comcast.com/

October 26, 2022 07:01 AM Pacific Daylight Time

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NMTC Coalition Urges White House and Congressional Leadership to Make the NMTC Permanent

New Markets Tax Credit Coalition

Today, the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) Coalition, a national membership organization of Community Development Entities (CDEs) and investors organized to advocate on behalf of the NMTC, released a letter signed by 700 community development stakeholders to President Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy in support of enactment of a permananent extension to NMTC in end of the year tax legislation. Signatories on the letter include 344 community development organizations, including 10 native-affiliated organizations; 74 housing organizations, including 41 Habitat for Humanity affiliates; 109 nonprofits, shelters, schools, healthcare facilities, and community service providers; and 134 businesses and community development-focused investors. The Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation estimates the ten-year cost of a permanent extension of NMTC provisions at only $1.38 billion over ten years, while those funds will leverage an estimated $85 billion investment in economically distressed rural, urban, and tribal communities. These communities will benefit from improved services, increased private sector investment, and 700,000 new jobs at a federal cost of under $4,000 per job. “We strongly support making the NMTC permanent,” said Aisha Benson, President of the NMTC Coalition and President and CEO of Nonprofit Finance Fund. Recently, opinion pieces in support of making the NMTC permanent have appeared in publications in Little Rock and Cleveland. During this Congress, both the Senate and House introduced bills (S. 456 and H.R. 1321) with bipartisan support to make the NMTC extension permanent. Establishing permanence will provide certainty in delivering resources to low-income and marginalized communities, creating jobs, increasing economic opportunity, and improving lives at a time when underserved communities face significant challenges. Throughout its 20-year history, the NMTC has delivered more than $120 billion to rural and urban communities outside the economic mainstream, which has led to financing to more than 6,000 businesses and projects and over one million jobs. Establishing the NMTC as a permanent part of the tax code will provide certainty and further promote the in getting patient, flexible capital to low-income and marginalized communities, creating jobs, increasing economic opportunity, and improving lives at a time when the economic frailty of our underserved communities has never been more apparent. Established in 2000 in the Community Renewal Tax Relief Act (P.L.106-554), the New Markets Tax Credit is a bipartisan effort to stimulate investment and economic growth in low-income urban neighborhoods and rural communities. Since then, the New Markets Tax Credit has financed more than 6,500 projects and created over one million jobs in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. “Following devastating impacts from COVID-19, the New Markets Tax Credit is absolutely vital for many of America’s urban neighborhoods and rural communities and will provide billions of dollars for high-impact, community revitalization projects,” said Bob Rapoza, spokesperson for the NMTC Coalition. “Over the years, the credit has been instrumental in financing plant and equipment for small manufacturing businesses and patient, flexible capital to other small businesses, hospitals, healthcare centers, homeless shelters and other transformative projects that improve communities, create jobs and economic opportunity. A permanent extension of NMTC will provide more certainty to private sector investors, which will result in better pricing and more subsidy to hard-to-finance, essential projects.” For examples of how the NMTC is making an impact in each state, see the NMTC Coalition’s newly released report, NMTC at Work in Communities Across America, featuring updated state statistics sheets on NMTC efficacy and more than 80 Tax Credit success stories. About New Markets Tax Credit Program The New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) was enacted in 2000 in an effort to stimulate private investment and economic growth in low-income urban neighborhoods and rural communities that lack access to the patient capital needed to support and grow businesses, create jobs, and sustain healthy local economies. Since its inception, the NMTC has generated more than one million jobs. Today, due to the NMTC, nearly $120 billion is hard at work in underserved communities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. For more information, visit www.NMTCCoalition.org. Contact Details Bob Rapoza +1 202-498-9921 bob@rapoza.org Company Website https://nmtccoalition.org/

October 24, 2022 11:15 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Skuad secures Series A funding to drive global expansion in helping companies hire, manage and pay talent globally

Skuad

Numerous large companies around the world have started to adopt globally distributed and hybrid team structures as part of business growth and expansion plans. However, they are struggling to remain compliant with local employment regulations, process cross-border payroll and find high-quality talent as they hire beyond borders. Skuad, a Singapore-based company that enables global hiring and payroll, announced today that it has raised US$ 15 Mn in Series A funding to help companies like these overcome challenges around building global teams. The funding round was led by a Southeast Asian venture capital fund alongside a U.S. strategic investor specializing in staffing and two leading global payments platforms. This round also saw participation from existing investors BEENEXT, Anthemis as well other prominent angel investors. This funding follows on from the US$4 Mn seed round in December 2020, taking the total capital raised to US$19 Mn. The brainchild of Sundeep Sahi, Skuad was founded in 2020 with the singular aim of simplifying the process of finding and managing the right talent while removing the limitations of boundaries. While the pandemic-induced lockdowns and the “work from home” situation enabled the rise of distributed working models and global teams, they also created a unique set of challenges for organizations that were used to a traditional “office” set-up. Skuad enables companies to build global, distributed teams by hiring the best talent beyond borders (without setting up a legal entity). Its array of services include onboarding, payroll, benefits, taxes and local compliance (at a fraction of the usual cost and time). “The way people work and companies hire has changed,” said Sundeep Sahi, Founder and CEO of Skuad. “ Our mission is to elevate lives by democratizing opportunities and talent globally. We started Skuad because we realized that talent was everywhere but opportunities were not. With the complexities of hiring in foreign markets and cross-border payments, companies were finding it hard to discover and hire the right talent and build global teams. On the other hand, talent did not have the right discovery platform for finding remote employment that invests and helps them grow in their career rather than working for transactional short term gigs. We want to change this status quo and actively work towards enabling 1 Mn workers to discover the best opportunities globally, work anywhere in the world & get paid anytime in their currency of choice”. To further its mission, Skuad is also finalizing its acquisition of Codejudge, a data-driven talent assessment platform that automates the tech interview process. On the Codejudge acquisition, Sundeep Sahi added: “Finding the right talent is only half the battle — being able to qualitatively assess, interview and hire this talent is fundamental to the success of talent acquisition and retention strategies. The acquisition of Codejudge will strengthen Skuad’s existing hiring and onboarding capabilities with an added layer of data-driven talent assessment functionalities. Skuad will leverage Codejudge’s robust code-simulation platform and code sandboxes to further enhance its product offerings and scale its acquisition capabilities.” Commenting on the funding, Dirk Van Quaquebeke, Managing Partner, Beenext, said, “Businesses are beginning to see the advantages of having teams not constrained by borders. This not only enables them to scale teams and enter new markets quickly, but also helps them find and hire the best talent without the need to relocate. As early investors in Skuad, we’ve seen the team bridge the gap between talent shortage and surplus markets. We are excited for this next phase of growth of the business — building global, distributed teams for thousands of customers.” In the last two years, Skuad has witnessed exceptional growth — with customers across 34 countries (>50% from North America and Europe), talent in 94 countries (>80% from emerging economies) and 3X growth in ARR since January 2022. Further, given Skuad’s affordable pricing plans — starting at US$199 per employee per month for payroll and US$499 per employee per month for talent discovered through the integrated platform — their clients range from emerging and early-stage startups to larger businesses. These companies have built their global teams on Skuad’s platform and are processing over US$120 Mn in payroll and payments worldwide in over 50 currencies. Skuad has also expanded its leadership team with experienced senior hires across all verticals (Product, Sales and Operations), resulting in brand visibility and big client wins in the US and EU in a short period of time. Remote and hybrid work trends have continued in the post-COVID world leading to a greater demand for digital knowledge workers, especially from the Asia-Pacific region. Evolving digital advancements across industries and sectors has led to the need for diverse and upgraded tech skills. This has resulted in the creation of new technology hubs in the Philippines, Malaysia, India and Indonesia. According to a McKinsey Global Institute article, Asia is expected to account for almost 40% of global consumption and generate more than 50% of world GDP by 2040. Skuad is built for this new world of work. Together with the funding capital and the Codejudge acquisition, the company plans to strengthen its tech features to scale across global hiring, payments and payroll. It will also continue to build growth functions to further penetrate prime markets and expand beyond current geographies. About Skuad Skuad is a fast-growing global employment and payroll platform, which enables large enterprises and emerging start-ups to employ and pay exceptional talent anywhere in the world, compliantly. Skuad is valued and trusted by leading global companies worldwide. Skuad’s digital employment infrastructure ensures companies can hire, onboard, and pay employees and contractors in 160+ countries, without setting up local entities, on a single unified dashboard. Our legal infrastructure manages all local compliances and provides a range of amazing country-specific benefits and insurance packages. Contact Details Skuad Bilal Mahmood +44 7714 007257 b.mahmood@stockwoodstrategy.com Company Website https://www.skuad.io/

October 20, 2022 07:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Press Release: CLASP & Nithio, with support from the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet, Launch Financing Facility for Productive Use Appliances

CLASP

Today at the Global Off-Grid Solar Forum and Expo, CLASP and Nithio launched a USD $6.5 million financing facility to catalyze uptake of productive use appliances across Africa. The facility will improve appliance affordability for consumers and companies and is supported in part by the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP). Access to productive use appliances can deliver significant economic, health, education, and quality of life benefits for an estimated 60 million households worldwide and put under-electrified parts of the world on a low carbon pathway to electrification. Yet, affordability remains a major barrier to access and scale. Speaking during the facility’s launch in Kigali, Rwanda, Jeff Stottlemyer, Director at CLASP said, “This facility is designed to catalyze private investment in productive use appliance markets at scale, making those appliances more affordable and accessible.” CLASP and Nithio identified six appliance technologies based on their relative maturity and potential to drive development impact – walk-in cold rooms, refrigerators, electric cookers, fans, mills, and solar water pumps. Chianda Njogu, Senior Associate at the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP) said, “By making productive use appliances affordable and accessible, the facility can transform lives by enhancing income generated by smallholder farmers and micro-enterprises, creating new green energy enabled jobs, and improving the sustainability of renewable energy infrastructure projects through increased demand for electricity.” The facility will initially operate in Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and Uganda based on growth potential and market maturity. Kate Steel, Chief Executive Officer at Nithio said, “Consumer financing is crucial to long-term, sustainable growth in the productive use market. GEAPP’s support will enable Nithio to leverage our unique, data-drive approach to make consumer financing accessible for more companies and, ultimately, make it easier for their customers to afford these life-changing technologies.” How it Works The facility will offer procurement subsidies, capacity building grants, consumer financing, and advisory support focused on credit systems development for productive use appliance distributors. It will lower appliance costs for end-users by discounting the price of bulk solar appliance procurements and providing financing for distributors to enable them to sell their products on credit. For more information, please visit our website. Grant requests and general enquiries should be sent to Financing@clasp.ngo. About CLASP CLASP focuses on appliance & equipment energy performance and quality, to mitigate and adapt to climate change and expand access to clean energy. Super-efficient and high quality appliances accelerate access to and use of renewable energy for the world’s poorest people. CLASP supports progress on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 7, affordable and sustainable energy for all. Renewable energy services like cooling, communications, and mechanization empower low-income communities and improve lives in a climate friendly way. CLASP works globally and has teams in Washington, DC; Nairobi, Kenya; New Delhi, India; Brussels, Belgium; and Jakarta, Indonesia. About NITHIO Nithio is an energy financing platform powered by its innovative credit risk analytics engine. Nithio leverages its deep sector expertise, geospatial data, and artificial intelligence (AI) to forecast repayment patterns by consumer segment, provide detailed insight on projected cash flows, and finance energy access technologies. About the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP) The Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP) is an alliance of local entrepreneurs, governments in emerging and developed economies, and technology, policy, and financing partners. Our common mission is to support developing countries’ shift to a clean energy, pro-growth model that ensures universal energy access and unlocks a new era of inclusive economic growth, while enabling the global community to meet critical climate goals during the next decade. In doing so, as an Alliance we aim to enable 150 million new jobs, reduce 4 gigatons of future carbon emissions, and expand clean energy access to one billion people. With philanthropic partners, Bezos Earth Fund, IKEA Foundation, and The Rockefeller Foundation, GEAPP works to build the enabling environment, capacity, and market conditions for private sector solutions, catalyze new business models through innovation and entrepreneurship, and deploy high-risk capital to encourage private sector solutions, and assist just transition solutions. For more information, please visit www.energyalliance.org and follow us on Twitter at @EnergyAlliance. CLASP focuses on appliance & equipment energy performance and quality, to mitigate and adapt to climate change and expand access to clean energy. Super-efficient and high quality appliances accelerate access to and use of renewable energy for the world’s poorest people. CLASP supports progress on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 7, affordable and sustainable energy for all. Renewable energy services like cooling, communications, and mechanization empower low-income communities and improve lives in a climate friendly way. CLASP works globally and has teams in Washington, DC; Nairobi, Kenya; New Delhi, India; Brussels, Belgium; and Jakarta, Indonesia. Contact Details CLASP Dennis Migono +254 707 204548 dmigono@clasp.ngo Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet Eric Gay +1 917-912-6190 eric.gay@energyalliance.org Company Website http://www.clasp.ngo/

October 19, 2022 11:45 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Travel Technology Association Selects Laura Chadwick as New Leader

Travel Tech

The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech), the voice of the travel technology industry, announced today that following a comprehensive executive search, it has appointed Laura Chadwick as its new President and Chief Executive Officer. Chadwick’s record of association leadership and public policy advocacy make her an ideal choice for the association to advance its mission of promoting marketplace competition, transparency, and advocacy for policies that deliver consumer value. Chadwick previously served as a Vice President, Industry Relations at the XRAssociation (XRA), where she launched the new organization’s membership, marketing, and development efforts. Under her leadership, XRA grew from five members to more than 40 in the span of two and a half years. Previously Chadwick led corporate member engagement and technology policy lobbying at the National Restaurant Association. She is also a veteran of the Consumer Technology Association and the Capitol Hill offices of U.S. Representatives Adam Schiff (CA-28) and Mike Thompson (CA-05). “We are delighted Laura is leading Travel Tech. Her leadership skills, combined with her technology and policy background, make her the perfect choice,” stated Emmett O’Keefe, Chairman of the Travel Tech Board of Directors. “She will be a great advocate for the industry as we continue to provide value to the travel consumer.” Chadwick will focus on solidifying the Travel Technology Association’s value to the industry, highlighting its advocacy work, and expanding its membership. “I am honored to join the Travel Technology Association as its new leader and work with some of the most innovative companies in the travel industry,” Chadwick said. “Throughout my career, I have led efforts to highlight the power of technology to benefit consumers and transform businesses. As more and more Americans make plans to travel, we have a great opportunity to highlight Travel Tech’s core principles of consumer choice, competition, and transparency and its value as an organization supporting the industry.” “Laura’s leadership is a welcome addition to the team,” stated Kelly Kolb, Travel Tech’s Board Vice Chair. “Her plans to expand the reach of the association, enhance our advocacy efforts, and showcase the benefits technology brings to travelers and the economy, will be noticed quickly throughout the industry and especially in Washington, DC.” Chadwick takes on the role of President and CEO following the transition of Interim President Stewart Alvarez. Alvarez will continue to support Travel Tech in an advisory role. “I look forward to working with Laura as she leads Travel Tech in these important times,” stated Alvarez. “Proposals from the Department of Transportation regarding ticket refunds and ancillary services, ongoing discussions in state capitals and city halls, along with the continued advocacy of a transparent marketplace, make her leadership in this space essential.” ### About Travel Tech The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) is the voice of the travel technology industry, advocating for public policy that promotes transparency and competition in the marketplace to encourage innovation and preserve consumer choice. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including global distribution systems, online travel agencies and metasearch companies, travel management companies, and short-term rental platforms. To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Dan Rene of kglobal at 202-329-8357 or daniel.rene@kglobal.com. Contact Details Dan Rene +1 202-329-8357 daniel.rene@kglobal.com Company Website https://www.traveltech.org.

October 19, 2022 09:45 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Study: Is Digital Nomadism the New Work Non-Negotiable?

MBO Partners

A new study from ​ MBO Partners® shows that digital nomadism is the number one work trend that employers can no longer ignore. Digital nomadism, a term referencing workers who embrace a location-independent, technology-enabled lifestyle that allows them to travel and work remotely, has grown by 131% from the pre-pandemic year 2019. Today, 16.9 million American workers describe themselves as digital nomads. Traditional workers are the fastest-growing segment embracing this style of work. The number of digital nomads with traditional corporate jobs increased by 9% in 2022, growing from 10.2 million in 2021 to 11.1 million this year. "The massive rise in digital nomads is just one more sign that the workforce of yesterday is gone for good,"said Miles Everson, CEO, MBO Partners. "The 'work from anywhere' trend is here to stay, and employers must take note that the power is in the hands of the worker, not the employer or client. To embrace this strong and growing population of nearly 17 million workers, look beyond the if and into the how – create and enforce a documented nomad policy, and consider how to engage flexible, blended talent teams that engage for purpose and outcomes." The report revealed several key insights about this fast-growing segment of the American workforce, including: Out of the office, into the world. The number of digital nomads with traditional jobs increased by 9% in 2022, growing from 10.2 million in 2021 to 11.1 million in 2022. In fact, since the start of the pandemic, the number of digital nomads with traditional jobs has more than tripled. Taking a page from the retiree's handbook, digital nomads seek out locations with lower costs of living and favorable amenities. No plans to quiet quit. Eighty-one percent of digital nomads report being highly satisfied, and 11% are satisfied with their work and lifestyle. Only 3% were dissatisfied. This compares to 68% of non-digital nomads reporting being highly satisfied and 14% satisfied with their work and lifestyle. Interestingly, in terms of politics, digital nomads skew heavily Democratic (51%) vs. Republicans (23%) and Independents (23%). VanLife is not out of gas. VanLifers, digital nomads who travel, live and work in RVs, vans, or other vehicles converted into roaming residences, were the fastest-growing digital nomad segment, increasing 19% in 2022 and reaching 3.1 million. Digital nomad villages offer support. A growing support industry is making it easier to be a successful digital nomad, whether it be providing products like cross-border health insurance to assist digital nomads or digital nomad villages like Nomad Village Brazil and Digital Nomad Valley Zadar, Croatia that provide a community and infrastructure to be productive. The top challenges reported by digital nomads are personal safety (34%), being away from family and friends (32%), and managing work and travel (25%). The new Dreamers: Armchair Nomads. Despite aspirations, only 8-11% of those who express interest in the nomadic lifestyle will actually make the leap in the next 2-3 years. A growing group of "armchair digital nomads" will live the life through the experiences of others vs. becoming nomads themselves. The convergence of remote work and technological improvements have been key drivers in accelerating the digital nomad trend. While the pandemic forced a change in physical work locations, it ignited an industry to support this holistic change of remote work. It was not a giant leap for workers to go from working from home to working from anywhere that technology allowed. As evidenced by summer air travel, our appetite for travel has not diminished. Even as work requirements shift from fully remote to hybrid or in-office, digital nomadism will not be grounded. Many factors will continue to drive the growth of this trend, such as cities and countries competing to attract digital nomads, improvement in remote work technology, and companies creating digital nomad policies. MBO Partners will release the full 2022 State of Independence study in November 2022. To obtain a copy of the brief, please visit www.mbopartners.com/state-of-independence/digital-nomads. About MBO Partners®​ MBO Partners is a deep job platform that connects and enables independent professionals and microbusiness owners to do business safely and effectively with enterprise organizations. Its unmatched experience and industry leadership enable it to operate on the forefront of the independent economy and consistently advance the next way of working. For more information, visit​ ​mbopartners.com​ Contact Details Words For Hire Karen Swim +1 586-461-2103 mbopr@wordsforhirellc.com Company Website https://mbopartners.com

October 19, 2022 09:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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