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Global investors back fintech KTrade - the ‘Robinhood’ of Pakistan

Stockwood Strategy

Leading Pakistani fintech stock trading app KTrade today announced it has raised $4.5m in a funding round from a range of global investors and institutions led by Hong Kong-based TTB Partners, and HOF Capital from New York. German fintech investor Christian Angermayer, the Managing Partner of German bank Berenberg David Mortlock, and leading Pakistani business families also participated in the round. KTrade is the fintech retail trading app created by KASB Securities, the leading stock brokerage in Pakistan. KTrade provides easy access to financial markets for retail investors much like its global peers such as XP in Brazil, Zerodha and Groww in India, Tiger in China, Flatex in Germany and Robinhood in the US. Since launching in 2019, KTrade has over 200,000 users and aims to reach 10 million Pakistani’s at home and abroad by 2023 to invest in stocks, bonds, commodities and mutual funds through its mobile platform. The Karachi Stock Exchange Index (KSE100) has rallied by 19% per annum over the past 20 years despite regular market cycles. The volumes have increased by 7x over the last 18 months driven by regulatory reforms and increase in retail investor participation. Retail investors now account for over 65% of overall trading volume compared to around 45% 24 months ago. KTrade aims to provide users quick and easy accessibility to this investment opportunity. Ali Farid led the creation of KTrade. He was previously the CFO of UK listed fintech company SafeCharge (acquired by Nuvei) and a Partner at Autonomous Research (acquired by Alliance Bernstein) in London. Ali is a Rhodes Scholar and has been a top ranked Technology Analyst in Europe since 2013. Ali Farid, Co-founder of KTrade commented: “People in Pakistan have traditionally turned to gold or real estate when they consider investment options. However, as the regulatory approach, authority and credibility of the Karachi Stock Exchange has grown, more people are getting comfortable with stock market investing. This is an exciting trend but accessibility to these markets remains a hurdle for millions. KTrade will enable this mobile-first population to participate in the investment opportunity. By connecting these people to companies we can drive capital trapped in unproductive assets into the formal economy which would eventually drive a virtuous cycle of economic growth and higher investments”. Pakistan is emerging on the radar of global investors as the next Indonesia. A large, young and growing middle class and high smartphone penetration have created ideal conditions for technology led disruption. KASB’s aim is to provide retail savers access to financial education, information and financial products and to help them make better financial decisions. “Most people in Pakistan lack access to formal financial products and their savings in real estate or gold offer inferior returns, are inefficient and have high transactional costs. We aim to democratise access to the capital markets and enable them to make stock market investments. The strong demand for KTrade shows that the market is ready for this transformation. Other regional and emerging markets have seen similar evolution led by successful fintech companies” added Ali Farid. “Pakistan and South Asia have some of the most exciting market dynamics and demographics globally, and KTrade is well positioned to take advantage of the democratisation of finance in the region” said Jonathan Bond, Managing Partner TTB Partners who were lead investors in the funding round. “We are delighted to be investing in the latest round of funding for KASB, and to support Ali and his first-class team on their continued journey. We have been extremely impressed by what KASB has built over the past few years, both from a tech perspective and from the educational overlay to investing, which the company has embraced. In particular, we believe that in KTrade, the company has a stellar solution to expanding stock market participation across Pakistan” added Jonathan Bond. About KASB Securities KASB is the leading stock brokerage in Pakistan. It is a member of the Pakistan Stock Exchange and Pakistan Mercantile Exchange and regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan. KASB’s mission is to democratise investments by giving people in Pakistan easy access to financial information, education and products. It operates KASB Varsity, an online MOOC, and KTrade, the leading stock trading application in Pakistan. KASB’s goal is to channel capital to financial markets by broadening the breadth of the capital markets. Further information visit: https://kasb.com or follow the company on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and through YouTube. Contact Details Stockwood Strategy Bilal Mahmood +44 7714 007257 b.mahmood@stockwoodstrategy.com Company Website https://kasb.com/ktrade/

June 07, 2021 07:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Prepare to entertain in style with exclusive Provenance Signature Collection

Seasonal Living

Backyard living is taking a trendy turn as more homeowners extend their living space with luxury furniture, and Signature Trends will be launching a unique collection at spring High Point Market this June. The Provenance Signature Collection has been exclusively designed for Seasonal Living by the creative director of Four Point Design Build, Laura Muller. Muller is an internationally recognized, award-winning designer, builder, author, and advocate for the interior design profession. Her knowledge and experience in promoting wellness coupled with nature-inspired designs are intended to promote positive feelings and experiences that happen with and or around this collection. “Seasonal Living is beyond thrilled to be working with Laura Muller of Four Point Design & Build,” Seasonal Living CEO Gary Pettitt said. “Laura has created such a beautiful (and timely) collection that personifies not only her exceptional talent as a designer but a collection that seamlessly moves between indoor or outdoor living specification.” A recent report uncovered that 78% of people are looking to upgrade their outdoor space right now. As homeowners prepare to start entertaining again, post-pandemic, the trend has been towards creating a paradise in the backyard. Luxurious furniture, elegant fixtures, and deluxe appliances are the new status symbols. Designing a stylish and relaxing outdoor space brings together the natural desire to get outside with the comfort of the indoors. “When designing the new exclusive Signature Collection for Seasonal Living, I wanted to create an Indoor/Outdoor Collection that was truly seamless and flexible in both spaces (not only in product design but in the material and color palette selections), said Laura Muller, Owner, CEO and Creative Director, Four Point Design Build Inc. “Given what the world has experienced over the last year, I was very mindful in my design intentions towards easy product care and product longevity, as well as creating flexible timeless pieces that would endure the test of time.” Invoking restful tranquility, the Provenance Signature Collection is intended to augment a wellness experience in any environment. The designs reflect the intimate and abstract intersection of land and coast, and architecture and nature. Few furniture collections provide a truly seamless indoor and outdoor experience, but Provenance Signature pieces enable designers to easily create highly personalized, relaxing environments with fluid transitions between inside and outside spaces. “This Collection is intended to celebrate my deep connection to nature and the timeless California architecture of my youth, and for the many beautiful memories spent with family on the coast of California,” explains Muller. “My hope is that buyers will sense (in the designs) all the wonderful and familiar natural elements that speak to me from a lifetime in Southern California,” adds Muller. In this collection, the designer and Seasonal Living have worked closely together over a 15-month period to embrace not only the values of responsible environmental stewardship but also in selecting materials that provide our customers with years of easy product care, which highlights our emphasis on physical and mental wellness in creating products that require minimal care. The collection will be available for preview at the Hight Point Spring Market from June 5-9 in the Seasonal Living Showroom ( InterHall # IH-506 ). Orders will start shipping in late September. Comprised of three main materials; Fiber-reinforced polymer, ceramic, and Outdoor Wicker, (High density polypropylene) the collection features neutral pieces that reflect elements in nature that provide a sensuous and healing experience, such as stone, sand, earth, fire, and water. “The Provenance Collection personifies Laura’s commitment to blending highly-refined design style with Wellness intentions to create an initial core collection that exemplifies the casually sophisticated essence of southern California living,” explains Pettitt. “Laura’s experience, professionalism, and enthusiasm working on this project have been a hurricane of fresh air.” To learn more about the collection, visit: http://bit.ly/Provenance-Collection or scan the QR Code below. ABOUT SEASONAL LIVING Seasonal Living is a 5x Arts Award winning manufacturer and importer of modern indoor/outdoor furniture, lighting and decorative accessories. Seasonal Living has been in business for 17 years and is well established in both the international residential and hospitality markets. Seasonal Living shown in Interhall at High Point Market for the past 10 years. Seasonal Living is known for its innovative use of sustainable materials in the production of their furniture as well as for supporting factories around the world that have been involved in small batch artisanal production for generations. In 2020, Seasonal Living Magazine launched the world's first virtual Designer Showhouse (a 20,000 SF residence is built entirely in the virtual world, set on 20 acres in Malibu, California overlooking the Pacific Ocean) in collaboration with 11 internationally known interior designers and 15 leading KBIS manufacturers. The floor plan reflects a forward-looking perspective on how homes will need to function in an uncertain future, based on the pandemic and changing priorities of luxury homeowners. For more information, click here to tour the Showhouse: https://www.seasonalliving.com/seasonal-living-magazine/. Follow Seasonal Living on Instagram at: @seasonal_living_trd ABOUT SEASONAL LIVING MAGAZINE Seasonal Living Magazine is a separately owned media asset of Gary Pettitt. It is a consumer facing luxury lifestyle shoppable digital magazine published 4 times a year. Its mission is to encourage people around the globe to live more in harmony with the 4 seasons of Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer, through inspiring images, articles and videos about all things seasonal with respect to Food + Recipes, Design, Wellness, Entertaining and Travel. The Summer issue, out now, is the 13 th edition of the Magazine this link: http://seasonalliving.com/seasonal-living-magazine. A printed copy of the Magazine is available in the Seasonal Living Showroom (InterHall # IH-506) at the June 2021 High Point Market. For more information and to view all 13 issues, visit: http://issuu.com/seasonallivingmagazine. Contact Details ShaunThompsonPR Shaun Marie Thompson +1 310-739-7489 Shaun@shaunthompsonpr.com Company Website https://www.seasonalliving.com/

June 03, 2021 06:03 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Charles Monat Associates Announces New Global Leadership Structure to Accelerate International Growth

Charles Monat Associates

Berry Wong appointed to newly created role of CEO, APAC Nikki Koh appointed as CEO, Singapore Elevated appointments for Klaus Kiessling to Group CFO and Li San Tan to Group COO Global Advisory Council created to build greater synergies across regions HONG KONG SAR - Media OutReach - 2 June 2021 - Charles Monat Associates (CMA), a pioneer in wealth planning and life insurance solutions, today announced major global leadership changes to advance the company’s business growth strategy and build greater synergies across regions, asset classes and liquidity solutions. To capitalize on the extraordinary growth opportunities across Asia Pacific (APAC), driven by rapidly increasing wealth across the region, CMA has appointed Berry Wong to the new position of CEO of APAC. Wong, who previously served as CEO of Hong Kong where he drove revenue growth by 300% in the last four years, will be responsible for overseeing operations in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Singapore. In this newly created position, Wong will continue to be an enabler of evolving client wealth planning objectives, while charting an ambitious expansion strategy across APAC. Nikki Koh will succeed Martin Wong as CEO of Singapore, where he will be responsible for building on the firm’s success in this strategically important market. Koh, who has over 25 years of insurance and banking experience, will also drive the development of an emerging-market roadmap across South-East Asia. In addition to his new leadership responsibilities, he will continue to serve as Group Chief Commercial Officer. Martin Wong has been appointed to the new position of Group Chief Business Development Officer, where he will utilize his experience in expanding across Asia to focus on developing onshore opportunities across different regions and markets. To support the firm’s aggressive global expansion plans, CMA has established a new Global Advisory Council to build greater synergies across APAC, Europe, the Middle East and Americas. The Council will report to CMA’s Group Executive Committee and will be charged with developing a blueprint to navigate the opportunities and challenges posed by the rapidly shifting landscape of global wealth. The establishment of the Global Advisory Council comes ahead of a major expansion across Europe, and follows the exceptional growth of CMA’s Middle East operations over the last two years, managed under Rahul Chopra, Senior Executive Officer & Managing Director, Dubai, who has been appointed to the Council. As part of CMA’s strategic growth plans to increase its geographical footprint across Europe and bring more comprehensive services and solutions to clients, CMA is making further investments into its growing Swiss-based operations, and has appointed Marco Liardo as Head of Switzerland and Managing Director. Liardo reports into Simon Lo, Chief Executive Officer, International Business. Yves Guélat, Group CEO of CMA, said: “The changes we have announced today signify a new and exciting chapter for Charles Monat Associates. We are proud to be the uncontested market leader and premier broker of choice, having had the privilege of serving over 8,000 high-net-worth individuals and families for 50 years. These moves are testament to the strength and vision of our team, and position us to capitalize on the significant global opportunities ahead of us. “Over the last few years, a new, highly-competitive wealth planning ecosystem has been emerging. Covid-19 has accelerated the pace of this change as the entire world was brought to a standstill, with borders closing and travel restricted. The uncertainty has highlighted the importance of succession planning, while reaffirming the need for wealth consultants to be nimble and agile to adapt to the fast-moving environment and bridge their capabilities globally. Today’s announcement puts us in a unique position to do this, as we aim to get closer to our clients and partners, become the world’s most ‘global broker’ and continue to build our legacy and the legacies of our clients.” Berry Wong, CEO, APAC, said: “I am humbled, yet excited to take on this role. CMA was born in Hong Kong and the business has been shaped by the APAC region over the course of its 50-year history. As we embark on this new chapter, I am energized by the opportunity to sharpen our organization’s focus and lay the foundation for another 50 years of growth and expansion throughout the continent. Asia’s rise has been nothing short of remarkable, with the number of ultra-high-net-worth individuals growing faster than anywhere else in the world. I am extremely proud of our team’s contributions to making a difference to our partners and clients, always putting their needs first. With this team of extraordinary professionals, together we will continue to play a significant role in helping individuals, families, and businesses plan ahead with peace of mind that guarantees the continuity of their life’s work.” Nikki Koh, CEO, Singapore, said: “The opportunity ahead of us cannot be overstated. Singapore is already home to one of the highest concentrations of high-net-worth individuals in the world and the emerging markets of South East Asia represent a new and exciting frontier. As a people-centric organization with a culture built on trust, passion and family-values, we always take the time to understand what’s important to our clients to cater to their unique needs. As CMA begins this new chapter, we do so with the industry’s best talents and a clear sense of organizational purpose.” Aligned with the company’s strategic move to accelerate its international growth plan, Klaus Kiessling has been elevated from Group Chief Operations Officer (COO) and will now take charge of CMA’s global financial strategy as Group Chief Financial Officer. Li San Tan has been appointed as the new Group COO, and will be responsible for optimizing operational processes globally, and overseeing the company’s digital transformation across markets, including the enhancement of IT infrastructure, security, and cybersecurity. Tan will also take the lead in automation integration to streamline business processes, and ensure a seamless experience for CMA’s clients and partners on user-facing tools and platforms. Established in 1971, CMA has become an industry leader preserving the wealth of more than 8,000 clients from 50 countries, and placed more than US$40 billion worth of solutions during this 50-year tenure. CMA operates across Asia with a strong presence in Mainland China and operations in the Middle East, Europe and North America. CMA has an agile team of on-the-ground experts who understand the nuances of each market. About Charles Monat Associates Charles Monat Associates (CMA) is a leading global insurance broker with more than 200 professionals operating in Hong Kong, Singapore, Dubai, Switzerland, Miami, Kuala Lumpur, and Liechtenstein. Founded in 1971 by Charles S. Monat, the company has established a reputation as Asia’s most trusted premier consultancy. With 50 years of experience, CMA delivers world class expertise in liquidity planning and wealth transfer for Ultra-High-Net-Worth and High-Net-Worth individuals, families and businesses. For more information, visit www.monat.com. Contact Details Charles Monat Associates Sabrina Lau sabrina.lau@monat.com Charles Monat Associates Jeraldine Leong jeraldine.leong@monat.com Company Website http://www.monat.com/

June 02, 2021 09:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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FREELANCER.COM'S 20 MILLION JOBS BY THE NUMBERS

Freelancer.com

Because of the pandemic, more and more people are turning to freelancing to offer their skills, or search for other skilled workers to help them set up their own business. Freelancer.com as a two-sided marketplace is in a unique position because the 52 million registered users means a job poster is almost certain to find a freelancer with the requisite skills. It is the demand side, the job posters with work which needs completing, which indicates where the best job opportunities lie. With that in mind the accompanying graphs paint an interesting picture about the most in-demand jobs and skills where freelancers can be assured there are opportunities. 20 Million Projects By Skill: The proportion of jobs in IT and software development and website building has fallen over time, reflecting the growth in WYSIWYG templated website build platforms. The demand for content to populate those websites has grown over time, as has the demand for design, media (Photoshop skills and the like) and architecture. The freelance economy is characterised by a transfer between developed and emerging economies. Developed countries post jobs which are overwhelmingly done in emerging countries. This provides efficiency and cost-saving to businesses in the developed world while providing income that changes lives in emerging economies. The exchange, when 10% of the world lives on less than US$1.90 a day, is a significant factor in the fight against poverty. The freelance economy is characterised by a transfer between developed and emerging economies. Developed countries post jobs which are overwhelmingly done in emerging countries. This provides efficiency and cost-saving to businesses in the developed world while providing income that changes lives in emerging economies. The exchange, when 10% of the world lives on less than US$1.90 a day, is a significant factor in the fight against poverty. About Freelancer ® Twelve-time Webby award-winning Freelancer.com is the world’s largest freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace by total number of users and jobs posted. More than 52 million registered users have posted over 19 million jobs and contests to date in over 1,800 areas as diverse as website development, logo design, marketing, copywriting, astrophysics, aerospace engineering and manufacturing. Freelancer owns StartCon, Australia's largest startup conference, expo and entrepreneur community established in 2009, WarriorForum.com, the world’s largest Internet marketing community & marketplace, Escrow.com, the world’s largest provider of secure online escrow and online transaction management for consumers and businesses on the Internet, and Freightlancer, a global marketplace for freight, shipping and transportation. Freelancer Limited is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange under the ticker ASX:FLN and on the OTCQX under ticker OTCQX:FLNCF Contact Details Sebastian Siseles +1 415-801-2271 sebastian@freelancer.com Phil Sylvester +16503342706 psylvester@freelancer.com Helma Kusuma +628121049853 helma@freelancer.com Company Website https://www.freelancer.com

June 02, 2021 07:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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LambdaTest rallies global investors raising US$16m Series B funding as it rapidly scales

Stockwood Strategy

Cloud-based browser testing platform LambdaTest today announced it has secured US$16 million in Series B funding led by Sequoia Capital India. Telstra Ventures, MENA region investor Wamda Capital and a leading sovereign wealth fund also joined the series B round. Founded in 2017 by Asad Khan and Jay Singh, San Francisco-based LambdaTest is a cloud-based testing infrastructure company that allows users to seamlessly test their websites’ and apps’ look, feel and performance on over 2,000 different browsers and by operating systems and device combinations. The proliferation of devices and browsers has made it increasingly complex for developers to test their websites and apps. LambdaTest solves this problem by enabling developers to run a variety of tests through their cloud-based platform, spotlight concerns, share immediately with teams and remedy issues quickly. LambdaTest exists to support the developer community to identify defects in code much earlier in the release cycle. These defects present one of the biggest challenges and costs facing businesses. Indeed, the cost of fixing these defects once in production and release is 30x higher than addressing earlier in the development cycle. Since its launch, LambdaTest has attracted over 500,000 developers in 132 countries who have performed more than 20 million tests. Customers include SMEs and Fortune 500 companies such as Xerox, Cisco, Microsoft, Deloitte, Media.net, Coca Cola, Trepp, SurveyMonkey, Capgemini, HBR, 23andme and Dashlane. Asad Khan, CEO of LambdaTest commented: “Companies are increasingly competing on customer experience 1 and as such are releasing software updates faster, more frequently to remain relevant. In doing so, there is a greater demand for continuous testing to ensure quality releases in the production environment. In just six short months since the series A round in 2020, LambdaTest has doubled revenues and increased customer numbers by 20%. In that time headcount has doubled in size from 70 people pre-Series A to 150 today across the engineering, sales, and customer success teams. Harshjit Sethi, Principal at Sequoia India commented: “As every company is becoming a software company and deployment cycles are shrinking, testing is becoming an increasingly important part of the software development cycle. Additionally testing is now happening earlier and earlier in the development cycle as part of the ‘Shift Left’ movement that companies like LambdaTest are enabling. Operating in a USD 35 billion market for testing software and services, LambdaTest has emerged as the go-to platform for its users in browser testing, evident from its best-in-class ratings across review sites. Sequoia Capital India is excited to continue partnering with the LambdaTest team as they execute on their vision of building an end-to-end testing system for developers to enable companies to release more reliable software faster.” The number of software tests run by developers has almost doubled from 12m to over 20m in six months at LambdaTest. As developers shift to cloud-based testing, this number will grow exponentially. This trend has been accelerated by the adoption of the Shift Left approach, as more developers are testing code early before they ship to the testing cycles. “LambdaTest’s vision is to empower 23 million developers and testers worldwide with a powerful, comprehensive and secure continuous quality test platform. Our upcoming product lines will enable tech teams to ship high quality code seamlessly boosting their release velocity” added Asad Khan. Steve Schmidt, General Partner at Telstra Ventures commented: “We have an opportunity to build a very large scale and independent testing company with a modern approach to software development and that’s very exciting. Lambdatest has already signed several customers in Australia without having any local presence and we look forward to helping them build out a local APAC team to meet this demand”. The funding advances LambdaTest’s commitment to scaling the testing ecosystem and building next-generation cloud infrastructure for users. To this end, LambdaTest is broadening its reach with the tester community by engaging with developers as it launches a suite of products in 2021 designed for them to perform tests on scale. “We’ve had an exciting period of growth and there is more to come as we expand our platform capabilities and go deeper in global markets. This funding round validates our efforts in building a robust cloud testing platform that is truly resonating with the testing and developer community globally. We pride ourselves in delivering a highly reliable, stable and secure infrastructure for them to achieve success. This success is born out in the numbers as our customers have been able to increase release velocity by over 60% and half the time to market” concluded Asad Khan. About LambdaTest LambdaTest is a cloud testing infrastructure company that allows users to run both manual and automated tests on their websites and webapps across 2000+ different browsers, browser versions and operating system environments. The platform has been used to perform over 20 million tests in just three years, and is now being used by over 500,000 users across 132 different countries. Contact Details LambdaTest Bilal Mahmood +44 7714 007257 b.mahmood@stockwoodstrategy.com Company Website https://www.theeditldn.com/

June 02, 2021 05:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Jennifer Lang Financial Services Launches Nationwide Retirement Planning Campaign.

Jennifer Lang Financial Services, LLC

Contact Details Jennifer Lang Financial Services, LLC. Jennifer Lang +1 877-487-8926 mail@jenniferlangfinancialservices.com Company Website https://www.jenniferlangfinancialservices.com

June 01, 2021 10:05 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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NASA JET PROPULSION LABORATORY’S MATT WALLACE AND STEVE ALFERY ANNOUNCED AS WORLD CONGRESS KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

National Contract Management Association

NCMA announced that Matt Wallace, Mars 2020 Project Manager, and Steve Alfery, Section Manager, Project Acquisition and Critical Product Management with NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (NASA JPL), open World Congress as keynote speakers. For their keynote, Wallace and Alfery will share stories of NASA JPL missions, including the most complex and capable rover ever bound for Mars, the Perseverance, and the decades of contracting creativity it took to lift the rover out of an Earthly crisis to triumph on Mars. “We are thrilled to share powerful stories of creativity and resilience through these keynote speakers! The public doesn’t realize that procurements like Perseverance and Ingenuityare products of intense, ongoing collaboration between industry and government. Space exploration would be impossible without the work of innovators like Mike and Steve,” said Kraig Conrad, NCMA Chief Executive Officer. Wallace graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy with a B.S. in systems engineering and received an M.S. in electrical engineering from Caltech. After graduation, he served in the US Navy’s fast-attack submarine fleet. Perseverance is the fifth Mars rover on which Wallace has worked. He began as a power systems engineer on the Mars Pathfinder Sojourner vehicle, led the assembly and test team for the twin Spirit and Opportunity missions, which landed in 2004, and held the Flight System Manager position on the 2012 Curiosity mission. He has worked on other planetary missions at JPL, and as a program manager for Earth-observing satellites in the aerospace industry. Alfery graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a B.A. in Business Economics. Steve’s career spans almost 36 years at JPL. Beginning as an entry-level buyer, his procurement experience covers a wide variety of products and services including IT, labor support services, facility construction, and flight hardware up to and including complete spacecraft systems. Alfery was the Mars 2020 Project Acquisition Manager and led all project acquisition activities on Mars 2020 since 2013. He also served as Project Acquisition Manager on all JPL Mars rover missions since Spirit and Opportunity (Mars Exploration Rovers) and is now leading acquisition management for the Mars Sample Return Program and Sample Retrieval Lander Project. World Congress will be held at the Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center, July 25-28, 2021. Visit ncmaworldcongress.org for more details to learn more about the conference. The National Contract Management Association (NCMA), which was founded in 1959 and is the world’s leading association in the field of contract management. The organization, which has over 18,000 members, is dedicated to the professional growth and educational advancement of procurement and acquisition personnel worldwide. NCMA strives to serve and inform the profession and industry it represents and to offer opportunities for the open exchange of ideas in neutral forums. To find out more, please visit www.ncmahq.org. Contact Details Jennifer Knowlton +1 571-382-1127 jennifer.knowlton@ncmahq.org Company Website https://www.ncmahq.org/

May 28, 2021 08:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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2021 SORCI REPORT REVEALS SOLUTIONS FOR U.S. RESIDENTIAL BUILDERS TO AVOID PREDICTED DOWNTURN IN 2022

Association of Professional Builders

While builders in the United States have seen record increases in revenue and net profit with homeowners seeking to improve their living environments because of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2022 predictions for the residential home building industry aren’t quite as positive. These findings were unveiled in the recent 2021 State of Residential Construction Industry (SORCI) report, which is sponsored by the Association of Professional Builders (APB), a leading business coaching service for custom home builders. “There has been a boom in residential home construction and renovation largely due to the effects of the pandemic,” says Erik Cofield, an Executive Business Coach with APB based in Houston. “However, this unprecedented demand isn’t sustainable and savvy builders will need to think more like accountants. Our new research reveals that custom home builders could be heading for challenging times in 2022.” More than 1,000 builders globally participated in the survey to provide deeper insights into the residential construction industry. Data from the report revealed that 2020 was a bumper year with 46.5% of respondents globally signing more contracts than in 2019; and 50% more in the U.S. market report signing more contracts in 2020 than 2019. However, after signing a record number of fixed-price contracts, the report also found that many are not prepared for the ensuing squeeze on margins caused by the rise in material pricing and other factors. “We’re urging professional builders to plan for the long term so they’ll be able to weather the predicted downturn in 2022,” says Russ Stephens, APB co-founder and business strategy specialist. “This report truly highlights the current pain points for U.S. builders, and shows where they need to focus their efforts to at least meet industry benchmarks and compete to be the best in the industry.” This concern stems from the survey, which shows that more than 55% of the builders in the U.S. never calculate their work in progress accounting adjustment, indicating that they are at significant risk of growing too quickly because they don’t understand their true financial position. Thus, they are likely to pay higher taxes and experience severe cash flow challenges, particularly when sales begin to slow down. Nearly two-thirds of respondents had no formal sales process in place, and the vast majority (78.8%) had no succession plan to future-proof their business should the unthinkable happen. With these findings in mind, it’s no surprise builders have identified systemizing their business as one of the top priorities for 2021. Other findings include: 80% of the U.S.-based home builders don’t charge for quotes; vs. 56.4% in Australia, 79.1% in Canada, 57.5% in New Zealand and 90% in the United Kingdom; 80% of the U.S.-based home builders do not have a business plan covering the next three years, vs. 69% in Australia, 75% in Canada and 57% in New Zealand; 37% of the U.S.-based home builders want to systemize their businesses; vs 36.1% in Australia, 41% in Canada, 45% in New Zealand and 60% in the United Kingdom. The comprehensive report also dives into trends in sales, contracts, social media, marketing and advertising within the industry. Data from the report also covered insights from residential builders for lead generation, team building, project management, planning, owner’s remuneration, financials and self-development. To find out more about the state of the residential construction industry, a copy of the report can be purchased at https://info.apbbuilders.com/sorci. APB’S WORK IN THE INDUSTRY APB has worked with thousands of builders, coaching residential building companies to systemize their business, including Jason Burgess of Burgess Homes based in Central Massachusetts. “The biggest reason I was looking for APB is that I was doing a lot of smaller renovation jobs. I wanted to grow the business and focus on new construction homes, which is what I truly enjoy,” Burgess said. “Before I was with APB, my average project size was probably around $40,000 and since implementing the content from APB, I’m seeing jobs averaging around $400,000. So, it’s been a tenfold increase for me.” You can read more about Jason’s business growth success story as well as others here: https://associationofprofessionalbuilders.com/success-stories/. ABOUT 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. Contact Details Anne Shanahan +1 310-933-6834 ashanahan@hoytorg.com Company Website https://associationofprofessionalbuilders.com/

May 27, 2021 08:15 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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British online store The Edit LDN transforms prized sneaker industry as sales soar

Stockwood Strategy

The UK’s leading online store for limited edition sneakers and high end streetwear The Edit Man London has become The Edit LDN. The name change reflects the rapidly growing female appeal for new and pre-loved sneakers and streetwear as sales grow 60% month-on-month in the last 12 months. The Edit LDN is an online consignment store that sells new and pre-loved goods from a variety of brands including Yeezy, Jordan, Louis Vuitton, Dior, Off-White, Supreme, Fear of God among others to a wide community of fashionistas, collectors and investors. Just as premium sites like Farfetch address the fashion world, The Edit LDN is the leading destination for limited edition sneakers and high end streetwear. They connect premium resellers with a highly engaged, price agnostic and eager audience. Through partnerships with styling services such as Thread.com and various concierge companies, THE EDIT LDN has expanded its community of buyers from TV and film celebrities to professional footballers and royal families around the world. Moses Rashid, founder and CEO of The Edit LDN commented: “As a brand we want to remain current and relevant to our community, our new name now fairly represents and embraces our diverse community but is true to its origins. We dropped the ‘Man’ from the name simply because the number of women buying had been steadily increasing since launch in January 2020 and passed 50% in March this year. It was the right thing to do.” The Edit LDN has established itself as a trusted source of authenticated and high quality new and pre-loved streetwear and sneakers. Their unabating focus on speed (to deliver purchased goods), customer service engagement and ensuring all goods are authenticated has been testament to the growth of the platform and community. “We set out to create a destination that opens up and levels up the opportunity for anyone wishing to own extremely limited edition goods. Essentially we make Inaccessible, accessible. Previous means to buy these goods have been riddled with issues such as sending payments to random resellers found on social media, authenticity issues when buying online and long delivery times on purchases from global marketplaces. The Edit LDN addresses all these concerns and is transforming the customer experience and industry simultaneously, added Moses ”. In 2021 (to April), The Edit LDN attracted more traffic, transactions and revenue than in their first year of trading (2020). With 60% month-on-month growth and mounting interest, the business is set to take-off. “We’re regularly selling sneakers and streetwear worth £1,500 each. Recently, we sold a Gucci TNF jacket for £9,200. It’s not only the variety of goods we offer but the speed at which we send purchases. Just last year we managed to source and sell 44 Playstation 5 games consoles to the England U21 football team within 24 hours, literally dispatching them in Ubers to their homes” said Moses. Looking ahead, Moses added: “This is a marketplace worth $6b a year globally and will grow 5x by 2030. By the end of this year, The Edit LDN will be worth £10m and given the hyper growth rate of our sales and revenues, we will 3x our valuation by the end of 2022 for sure. In meeting the needs of this rapid scaling, we will seek to raise funds this year to propel us as we launch in new markets”. The Edit LDN has its community and social conscious front of mind. They have raised funds and awareness against gun crime, mental health and sustainability issues. In 2020, the company collaborated with the artist McCrow as part of the One Less Gun campaign to create a sneaker with bullet shells from an AK-47 rifle. Working with Gary James McQueen in aid of MIND mental health charity, they raised funds with an exclusive T-shirt drop featuring the famous McQueen Vanitas skull. In owning their sustainability agenda, they turned their focus to the circular economy by selling pre-owned (or pre-loved) goods through the platform. In addition to this, they are a paperless company and only ship products using recycled packaging. “At the heart of The Edit LDN proposition is a focus on social and economic issues. These are matters that are important to us and our community, so we recognise that we’re in a super hot market right now so we want to use our platform to make a long lasting impact where possible” concluded Moses. About The Edit LDN Founded in 2020, The Edit LDN has quickly become the UK’s leading online consignment store for limited edition sneakers and high end streetwear, both new and pre-loved items. Their innovative platform connects premium resellers to a global audience offering a deluxe experience from discovery, packaging and delivery. Brands include Jordan, Yeezy, Louis Vuitton, Dior, Off-White, Supreme, Fear of God among others. The platform is fast becoming synonymous with speed of service, authenticity, diverse selection of secure payment methods, and first class customer service. The Edit LDN is the leading destination for resellers and their premium sneakers and streetwear. Through partnerships with styling services such as Thread.com and various concierge companies, The Edit LDN has a community of buyers celebrities to professional footballers and royal families around the world. Contact Details The Edit LDN Bilal Mahmood +44 7714 007257 b.mahmood@stockwoodstrategy.com Company Website https://www.theeditldn.com/

May 27, 2021 05:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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