LatinVision Media News

Friday, August 29, 2014

MetLife Named Top 50 Company for Hispanic Women

NEW YORK, Aug 27, 2014 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- MetLife has been selected by LATINA Style Magazine as one of the 50 Best Companies for Latinas to Work for and is featured in the magazine’s 2014 LATINA Style 50 Report. Now in its 17th year, this annual report is one of the most respected sources of employment and career information for Hispanic women in the United States.

“At MetLife, we are committed to growing a diverse workforce that reflects our customers, shareholders and communities and to creating a culture of inclusion – both of which are essential to meeting our business goals,” said Elizabeth Nieto, MetLife’s global chief diversity and inclusion officer. “We’re proud that LATINA Style has recognized MetLife’s strong track record of attracting, developing and retaining a diverse workforce.”

The 50 Best Companies are selected based on their efforts to promote diversity and provide career advancement opportunities, with special attention this year to programs that recruit veterans and military personnel. MetLife is focused on gender diversity through efforts to strengthen the representation, talent development and advancement of women in senior leadership roles. In addition, the company has an ongoing campaign to recruit veterans and military personnel.

“This year LATINA Style is celebrating its 20th Anniversary in providing the Latina community with information that makes a difference in their everyday lives, and we are happy to honor MetLife in this year’s Top 50 Best Companies for Latinas,” said Robert E. Bard, president and chief executive officer of LATINA Style, Inc. “MetLife was chosen for its commitment to advancing Latina women in the workforce and sets an example that other companies should follow.”

The LATINA Style 50 Companies will be honored during LATINA Style’s Awards Ceremony & Diversity Leaders Conference in Washington, D.C., on February 5, 2015.

About MetLife
MetLife, Inc. MET, +0.55% through its subsidiaries and affiliates (“MetLife”), is one of the largest life insurance companies in the world. Founded in 1868, MetLife is a global provider of life insurance, annuities, employee benefits and asset management. Serving approximately 100 million customers, MetLife has operations in nearly 50 countries and holds leading market positions in the United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. For more information, visit www.metlife.com

SOURCE: MetLife, Inc.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Jessica Alba's Startup Honest Co. Valued at Nearly $1 Billion

Nearly two years after its launch, Jessica Alba's startup The Honest Co. is now valued at nearly $1 billion.

Co-founded by Christopher Gavigan, Sean Kane and Brian Lee, the company sells natural, non-toxic items, ranging from household cleaning supplies to baby products. The products are available for purchase either online or at select retail stores in the United States and Canada.

The business raised $70 million from Wellington Management Company so far, with the help from existing investors, including ICONIQ Capital, General Catalyst Partners, Institutional Venture Partners and Lightspeed Venture Partners. According to industry experts, it is worth nearly $1 billion as it moves toward an initial public offering.

Read full article

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Latin American countries dominate retail growth

While the U.S. may be seen as the world's hub for all things retail, a recent report suggests that this title may be a better fit for one of several countries in Latin America - if not the region as a whole.

In its latest Global Retail Development Index, strategic and operational services company A.T. Kearney found Chile to be the best country in the world when it comes to the growth and development of retail, supplanting Brazil as the top destination for retail expansion. In addition to Chile and Brazil, six other Latin American nations - namely Uruguay, Peru, Panama, Colombia, Costa Rica and Mexico - were also included in this year's Index.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Bank of America Merrill Lynch Publishes Report on Latin America Market, “Driving Growth in Latin America”

SANTIAGO, Chile--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Global Transaction Services business at Bank of America Merrill Lynch has published its annual report on the Latin America market, entitled “Driving Growth in Latin America.” The report, which appears in Treasury Management International magazine (TMI), includes a series of articles summarizing the challenges and opportunities for companies conducting business in the region.

“Clients around the world increasingly tell us that Latin America is a crucial part of their strategic growth objectives. It’s no wonder. Foreign direct investment (FDI) is booming. Latin America and the Caribbean hit a historic high of $184.92 billion in 2013 – 5 percent more than in 20121,” said Juan Pablo Cuevas, head of Global Transaction Services for Latin American and the Caribbean. “In addition, Mexico – which has just implemented a number of investor friendly reforms – is expected to enjoy a significant boost to FDI, perhaps overtaking Brazil as the largest recipient of FDI in the region. Meanwhile, Chile, Peru and Colombia now have economies that rank as some of the most open among emerging market countries.”

“Driving Growth in Latin America,” which is available to BofA Merrill clients and through TMI, features articles on the following topics:

  • The impact of the expanded remit of the treasury function.
  • The growth of non-bank financial institutions and public sector entities doing business in the region.
  • Best practices of in-house banking.
  • The appeal of Latin America to U.S. middle-market companies looking to expand internationally.
  • The role of escrow in managing risk, including M&A-related risk.
  • What treasury professionals should look for when investing in money market funds.
  • How the integration of trade finance and foreign exchange can lower a company’s costs and risks.
  • A new era for supply chain finance in Latin America.

“Facilitating the Growing Strategic Role of Treasury” examines the parallel evolution of the growing importance of the treasury function with the expansion of companies into international markets, including Latin America. “Corporate treasury has become a linchpin in supporting a company’s growth strategy in an increasingly complex global environment,” states the article, which goes on to offer guidance on managing risk, enhancing visibility and control, and knowing when to centralize treasury operations.

The regional opportunities for non-bank financial institutions and public sector entities are examined in “Latin America’s Growth Drives Search for Global Solutions.” The article notes that one driver of this trend is the increase in consumer spending, particularly on auto, health and other insurance products. This in turn has been fueled by the growth in the region’s middle classes, which it is estimated, will outnumber the region’s poor by 20162.

“In-House Banking: Is the Time Right for You?” looks at how the changing regulatory landscape and the desire to harness internal liquidity is spurring companies to restructure their cash management structures. The article provides an explanation of in-house banking and identifies the characteristics of best-in-class models.

In the article, “Latin America Opens Up to the U.S. Middle Market,” Brazil and Mexico are identified as the primary expansion targets for many U.S. companies given their size. However, as noted in the article, the two countries have different characteristics. Brazil is a complex and challenging country in which to operate while Mexico is generally seen as the easiest. The article further discusses that Chile, Colombia and Peru are often secondary target markets once a company is established in Mexico and Brazil.

“Mitigating Risk in Latin America” examines the crucial role of escrow services as a risk management tool for multinationals as they increase their business in Latin America. Escrow services can be effective tools to manage M&A-related risk, as well as transaction, regulatory and counterparty risk.

Money market funds historically have been among the most liquid and stable investments available. Despite this, treasury professionals need to carefully vet funds’ investment risk to ensure a fund manager’s risk appetite aligns with their risk tolerance. “Dissecting Risk in Money Market Funds” details how to assess and select approach that selection.

In the article, “FX and Trade Finance Convergence Delivers Benefits,” the author explains how integrating trade finance and foreign exchange can lead to lower costs and reduced risks. For example, purchasing goods in local currency can allow companies to negotiate more competitive local pricing and avoid overpaying for their imports.

“Supply Chain Finance in Latin America: A New Era” discusses the current environment for supply chain finance in the region, where banks have successfully adapted their products and support to reflect the specific needs of buyers and suppliers in Latin America.

1 Foreign Direct Investment in Latin America and the Caribbean 2013, Economic Commission for Latin America (United Nations), May 2014

2 Social Gains in the Balance, World Bank, February 2014

Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the world's leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small businesses, middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 49 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 5,000 retail banking offices and approximately 16,000 ATMs and award-winning online banking with 30 million active users and more than 15 million mobile users. Bank of America is among the world's leading wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in more than 40 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch is the marketing name for the global banking and global markets businesses of Bank of America Corporation. Lending, derivatives, and other commercial banking activities are performed globally by banking affiliates of Bank of America Corporation, including Bank of America, N.A., member FDIC. Securities, strategic advisory, and other investment banking activities are performed globally by investment banking affiliates of Bank of America Corporation (“Investment Banking Affiliates”), including, in the United States, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated, which is a registered broker-dealer and member of SIPC, and, in other jurisdictions, a locally registered entity. Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated and Merrill Lynch Professional Clearing Corp. are registered as futures commission merchants with the CFTC and are members of the NFA. Investment products offered by Investment Banking Affiliates: Are Not FDIC Insured * May Lose Value * Are Not Bank Guaranteed.

Bank of America N.A., Oficina de Representacion (Chile), is a representative office in Chile of Bank of America N.A., supervised by the Superintendencia de Bancos e Instituciones Financieras and authorized to promote in Chile select products and services that Bank of America N.A. provides outside of Chile. Neither Bank of America, N.A., nor its Representative Office in Chile, is authorized to carry out in Chile any activities that are reserved by Chilean law to locally licensed banks.

Copyright 2014 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved. Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, Broadcort and their logos are trademarks of Bank of America Corporation and/or its affiliates.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Hispanics Seek More Financial Knowledge

Growing up with little to no financial education, Hispanic investors today say they are hungry for more investment knowledge, according to a new Wells Fargo survey.

A large majority of Hispanic investors wish they knew more about investing in mutual funds, stocks and bonds (72% of surveyed Hispanic investors versus 64% of U.S. investors overall), according to the survey.

Read more

Thursday, August 21, 2014

El Pollo Loco: PE 'Bust-Out', 20+ Years Of Failed Domestic Expansion, Pre-IPO Window Dressing Make An Ideal Short

Summary

More like a ‘Pollos Hermanos’ than the Chipotle media comparison it is currently getting.
20+ years of failed domestic expansion track record.
Two-year comp momentum is largely average check growth driven, and thus should be heavily discounted.
Existing equity holders will be very motivated sellers at lockup expiry.
There should be ZERO bid for this stock anywhere north of $20.

Read full article

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Economy survey: Most Hispanic business owners plan to save more, spend less

Sept 11, 2012 | by Becky Yerak

Chicago's Hispanic business owners say they're conserving cash and cutting spending amid worries about taxes, the federal deficit and health care changes, according to a PNC Bank survey released Monday.

In its first survey of Hispanic entrepreneurs, the Pittsburgh-based bank conducted 402 interviews nationally from May 18 to June 12, including 101 in the Chicago area.

Read full article

Monday, August 13, 2012

Hispanic Communities Are Largely an Untapped Market

August 12, 2012 | By Natasha Chilingerian

Credit unions might believe they’re doing all they can to target valuable demographic groups, but there’s one market that many are neglecting, said one consulting firm and its credit union clients. Hispanics are a rapidly growing market, according to Des Moines, Iowa-based firm Coopera Consulting. And they are hungry for financial services and carry an abundance of new business opportunities for credit unions.

Mexico-born Miriam De Dios, CEO of Coopera, said that while many credit unions naturally serve Hispanics as a result of their member service area locations, not enough of them implement comprehensive plans to win over the ethnic group. Coopera opened five years ago and has helped approximately 70 credit unions court their Hispanic communities to date.

Read full article

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Frontera Investment Raises $10 Million of New Capital

SAN DIEGO, Calif., Jun 21, 2012 (GlobeNewswire via COMTEX) -- via PRWeb - Frontera is an alternative financial services company that serves the large and fast-growing low-cost consumer finance market. The company uses advanced technology and business processes to offer competitive prices on a wide range of financial products and services, including check cashing, loans (payday and gold jewelry loans) and money transfers. 

The first transaction is a new $5 million senior credit facility from Salus Capital Partners ( http://www.saluscapital.com ). The proceeds of this credit facility will be used to repay existing, higher interest rate indebtedness and to provide the company with additional lending capacity to grow the gold buying and gold pawn business lines.

The second transaction is a $5.0 million preferred stock investment from MRC Capital Group ( http://www.mrccapital.com ), an existing investor in Frontera. The proceeds of this equity investment will be used to repay existing indebtedness and to finance growth in Frontera's core business through a series of new store acquisitions.

"We are very pleased to announce these two transactions," said Gilbert Partida, Frontera's president and CEO. "They mark an important step in our business as we look to leverage the systems we have built over the past nine years to accomplish our mission of providing our customers with products that reduce the cost of basic financial transactions for the un-banked market in the United States."

As contemplated in the preferred stock purchase agreement, representatives of MRC Capital Group will occupy three of Frontera's five Board of Director seats with Benjamin Yogel, MRC Capital Group's Managing Partner, becoming the Co-Chairman of the Board along with Gilbert Partida.

"We are thrilled to expand our existing investment in Frontera," said Benjamin Yogel. "Two years ago we made an initial investment in the company and have been impressed with the company and its management team during the tenure of our investment. We see a clear market opportunity for Frontera to leverage its existing systems by adding new stores through acquisition onto the company's technology platform. Our new equity investment, coupled with Salus' new credit facility, will provide the company with the liquidity to accomplish this growth strategy."

"We are excited to partner with Frontera and its sponsor, MRC Capital Group," said Marc S. Price, Senior Vice President, Loan Originations and Corporate Strategy of Salus Capital. "As a subsidiary of Harbinger Group, Inc., we seek to align ourselves with companies and sponsors that have a unique business model that differentiates them from the competition. Frontera's advanced technology and commitment in providing financial services to the un-banked consumer is consistent with our approach."

Forward-Looking Statements

Such forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks, assumptions and uncertainties that could cause the company's actual results to differ materially from those projected in such forward-looking statements. These risks, assumptions and uncertainties include: the ability to complete expansion within currently estimated time frames and budgets; the ability to compete effectively in a rapidly evolving and price competitive marketplace; ability to raise capital to support its growth strategy; changes in business strategy; and the successful integration of newly acquired businesses.

About Frontera, Investment, Inc

Frontera FRNV +153.52% is an alternative services company utilizing advanced technologies and operational systems to provide a growing array of low cost, one-stop-shopping financial services to the "unbanked" and "under-banked" consumer markets. The company offers competitive prices on a wide range of financial products and services, including check cashing, loans (payday and gold jewelry loans) and money transfers.

Frontera's primary target market is the Hispanic sector, which is currently estimated to be more than 40 million customers. Over half of these Hispanic consumers do not use any form of banking service. Frontera's immediate mission is to be the first full-service Hispanic financial services brand.

In addition, approximately 35 percent of all households in the United States across the board are either un-banked, under-banked, or regularly use alternative financial services. Frontera is a prime, low-cost, high customer value option for consumers in these markets.

Frontera currently operates ten stores in California and two stores in Florida.
To learn more visit http://www.fronterainvestment.com  

SOURCE: Frontera Investment, Inc.
                   

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Private equity, venture capital fundraising could hit at least US$10bn in Latin America in 2012

Sept 15, 2011 | by Jorge Porter

Fundraising for Latin American private equity and venture capital (PE/VC) could hit at least a record US$10bn in 2012 given that global investors are more willing to increase their exposure to the region, Cate Ambrose, president and executive director of the Latin American Venture Capital Association (LAVCA), told BNamericas.

Read full article

Monday, August 15, 2011

10 ways to add sizzle to your Online Marketing

These days every new entrepreneur understands that an innovative product or service is necessary, but not sufficient, to start a business. You have to build a web presence with marketing content to get visibility above the 50 million other new websites created every year, and attract the customers you need. But most entrepreneurs don’t know where to start.

Of course, there is a plethora of “experts” emerging out there, who are anxious to lead you down that path, for a large price. So I’m always on the lookout for some real experts, and some pragmatic guidance on how to attack this issue. 

Recently I was reviewing a new book on content marketing, “Accelerate!” by an expert and friend in this space, Arnie Kuenn, which offers guidance and examples on new and modern approaches for the rest of us:

1) Build a blog. According to Hubspot, websites that have blogs get twice as many inbound links, 400 percent more indexed pages, and a more than 50 percent increase in traffic, compared to websites without blogs. Search engines and people love blogs these days.

2) Join the conversation with Community Forums. A forum is a discussion site on a relevant subject, hosted and moderated by you, which adds authority, content, and traffic to your website. The registration process to join can give you a very targeted email list.

3) Curation, the most efficient content. Curation is humanly aggregating, filtering, and re-posting the best-of-the-best content on the web, relative to your product or service area. This shows your knowledge and positions your company as a thought leader.

4) Win with engaging contests. Not a new idea, but when used creatively, can entice new prospect traffic and backlinks to your site. People these days love to submit stories, vote on other entries, and receive the recognition of even small prizes or product rewards.

5) Traditional publishing out, self-publishing in with eBooks. You don’t need a real book as a base for electronic books, as people now prefer something akin to a “white paper” on steroids. It’s just another way to demonstrate credibility and attract traffic.

6) Keep them engaged with eNewsletters. These are regular updates, usually monthly, via website and email that help with customer retention, and again remind your customers that you are the expert in your industry. Supplement text here with video and audio.

7) Widgets and badges. A widget is a mini-app that displays or updates data either locally or on the web – to share something of value and interest. A badge is a simple graphic designed for fun, to show support, or promote certain standards online. All highlight you.

Read full article

Friday, July 15, 2011

Daily Deal Sites Attract 1.6 Billion in Venture Capital Investment in 2011

TROY, Mich.—July 13, 2011—Over the past six months, daily deal sites such as Groupon, Living Social and Gilt Groupe have attracted more than $1.69 billion in venture capital and other investments according to the new 2011 Daily Deal Investment Index released today by Daily Deal Media. Overall, 22 Daily Deal companies have received investments in the past six months.


For more information or to purchase a copy of the 1H 2011 Daily Deal Investment Index, which includes a comprehensive breakdown of the deals and profiles of more than 30 leading Daily Deal companies, visit our Data Reports page.


Results of the report will be discussed at the 2011 Daily Deal Media Conference, the premier industry event for companies and investors in the Daily Deal market. The conference will be held September 8-9 in Chicago, and interested participants can register here.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Orlando-based pawn company lands $5 million venture deal

By Richard Burnett, Orlando Sentinel

The latest multimillion-dollar venture-capital investment in Central Florida did not go to a social-networking firm, theme-park spinoff or high-tech company. It went to a pawn shop chain.

Orlando-based La Familia Pawn & Jewelry has landed $5 million in venture funding from a private equity firm based in Puerto Rico, the companies said Thursday.

It is one of the largest venture deals in Central Florida so far this year, according to the latest MoneyTree survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers, which tracks activity by professional investment firms.

Read full article

Find Chinese Venture Capital for Your Business

By Karen E. Klein, Bloomberg Business Week.

Start by calling development groups that promote trade between China and the U.S. Then consider partnering with a sophisticated entrepreneur or investor with personal connections in the country
I have a project to develop 12 to 15 small lodges along a jaguar preservation corridor in Latin America. Can you direct me on connecting with Chinese venture capital or private equity firms? —J.H., North Miami, Fla.

After decades of distrust, the past several years have seen efforts to encourage business partnerships across the Pacific. The formal and informal connections being made capitalize on the flourishing Chinese economy, which is rewarding business owners and spurring them to seek investments, says Steven Shen, chairman of the China-U.S.Business Summit, a nonprofit in Long Beach, Calif.

Read full article

Monday, April 25, 2011

Venture capital takes off in Mexico

By Jeff Tyler, Marketplace


Venture capital firms are finding success in Mexico. Some entrepreneurs are using the economic development to combat crime.


Entrepreneurs in Mexico hope new start-ups will help the country's economy.

Steve Chiotakis: We've been hearing a lot lately about drug violence in Mexico. But that's not stopping a lot of wealthy people from investing there.


Marketplace's Jeff Tyler now and why venture capital is taking off south of the border.


Read full article

Friday, April 22, 2011

Businesses and celebrities unite for St. Jude’s Gala por la Vida in New York, April 28th - Few tickets left!

NEW YORK, NY (April 22nd, 2011) – The leadership and influence of recognized Latino business professionals, celebrities and executives in New York has set the tone for the launch of the second annual “Gala por la Vida” (Gala for Life) event, a night of hope for children who are suffering from cancer and other catastrophic diseases at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®, the nation’s top children’s cancer hospital. The gala will take place on April 28, 2011 at 6:30 p.m. at the exclusive Angel Orensanz Foundation Center for the Arts in New York. This year, the gala will honor prominent minority-owned business and non-profit leader George A. Zeppenfeldt-Cestero, President and CEO of the National Hispanic Chamber of Commerce on Health, for his commitment and dedication to improving the lives of minority groups in the healthcare community. Well-known local news personality, Sandra O’Neill, from Univision 41 will host the evening’s event.


“The members of the committee are putting forth their best resources and contacts to provide hope to the thousands of children who need treatment at St. Jude,” said Liliana Gil, chair of the Gala por la Vida committee and XL Alliance Managing Partner. The committee counts on the generous support of dedicated volunteers such as Chris Valletta, ex NFL player and former cast member of the NBC’s “The Apprentice”; Cesar Camacho, the event's creative director and producer; fashion consultant Valentina Henao, Karen Hoyos, Mark Antonacci, Carlos Vasallo, David A. Chitel, Karla Micalizzi, Diane Rankin, Gabriela Nevez, Michael A. Fernandez, Kelly Ramirez, Martha Llamoza, Mary C. Miqueli, Monica Dias, Warren Peña, Gabriela Poler, Jesús Maldonado and Windy Lopez.


The gala will include an exclusive fashion show by renowned Colombo-Venezuelan designer Raul Peñaranda. Peñaranda, who has worked with world-renowned fashion houses, including Oscar de la Renta, Kellwood and Tommy Hilfiger, will be showing his Fall 2011 collection at the Gala por la Vida. The exclusive fashion show will be sponsored by Vanidades magazine and styled by Camilo Vergara.


“We want to help St. Jude in their continuous quest in helping children fight cancer and our participation in this year’s Gala allows us to be a part of their worthy cause especially as it relates to the Hispanic community,” said Madelin Bosakewich, US and International Sales Director of Televisa Publishing + Digital.


The gala’s 300 guests will enjoy an unforgettable evening accompanied by top Latin music and television stars, and New York’s philanthropic community as they walk the red carpet. The evening’s events will include silent and live auctions featuring items like a personal donation from Gala por la Vida’s supporter, John Leguizamo, who has donated a personal backstage experience to his new Broadway show, Ghetto Klown.


Live performances will feature recording artist Fragancia, former member of the group DLG, new bachata sensation Yunel Cruz and as well as entertainment by DJ Kazzanova, from Univision Radio’s x96.3. Guests will also taste a menu exclusively designed for the gala by Salvadorian celebrity chef and Food Network star Ricardo Cardona. Some of the participating sponsors include Shoprite, Vanidades, Univision, Johnnie Walker, Wines of Argentina, MISSION Athlete Care, Starlite Media, The Kimball Family Foundation, Toma Vodka, Hispanolia Rum, d’expósito & Partners, XL Alliance, among others.


Thanks to events like Gala por la Vida, St. Jude is able to continue providing lifesaving medical treatments to children fighting cancers like leukemia, regardless of a family’s inability to pay. For more information on purchasing tickets to the gala, sponsorships or donating silent auction items, please contact (212) 239-3239 or visit www.stjude.org/galaporlavida. This year, we also ask the community to take part in a text messaging campaign benefiting St. Jude by texting the word “VIDA” to 90999 to donate $10 for the children of St. Jude.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

10 Best Study Abroad Destinations for Business Majors

By Bschool.com

Any student, no matter her or his major, should snap up any affordable opportunities to study abroad that present themselves. Such experiences infuse lessons with far more diverse perspectives than the ones touched upon in the classroom. Business classes especially benefit from a generous shot of multiculturalism — and one need not focus on international trade to get something out of it! When the urge to hop a plane and head overseas for some valuable lessons hits, look into programs at some of the following locations first.


1.Hong Kong, China: This Special Administrative Region is touted as one of the top financial centers in the world, and business students harboring a love of economics come here to see laissez-faire capitalism in action. It's ranked 2nd on the Ease of Doing Business Index as well. Combined with its status as one of the world's foremost centers for banking, finance and international commerce and trade, Hong Kong should be one of the top destinations for business students hoping to study abroad.


2.Singapore: Considered one of the four economic juggernauts of Asia, Singapore ranks first on the Ease of Doing Business Index. A largely trade-based economy, the city-state thrives mainly on exporting goods and retooling imports. Suffice to say, it boasts one of the world's most active ports on top of being considered the fourth most prosperous financial centers anywhere. Business students hoping to enter into the chemical, petroleum, electronics, biomedical or mechanical engineering industries have plenty to explore here as well.


3.Taipei, Taiwan: Taiwan is considered another one of the "Asian Tigers" of business and commerce, with capital Taipei as its flourishing center. Even though the global economy is experiencing a downturn, the city boasts the 2nd -highest per-capita GDP in all of Asia and still expands at a rate of roughly 5% per year. Inflation and unemployment are both kept to a staggering minimum, too. Despite the popularity of textiles and electronics, business students with different goals can still easily walk away from a stint in Taipei with some great experiences and lessons under their belts.


Read full article

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Mayor Bloomberg Launches Innovation Index to Measure New York City’s Economic Transformation

Innovation Activity in New York City Increased 12 Percent Between 2003 and 2009 and Continues to Grow


Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today launched New York City’s Innovation Index, the first composite indicator that tracks overall innovation activity in New York City over time. The Index, developed and administered by the New York City Economic Development Corporation, provides a detailed analysis of the drivers of innovation in the City and how they are faring. The data will be updated every year and will be used to measure the scale and pace of the City’s economic transformation, as well as inform policies and shape a regulatory environment that promotes innovation in New York City. Overall, innovation-related activity increased by 12 percent between 2003 and 2009, a trend that preliminary data suggest reached 14 percent by the end of 2010


“One of our Administration’s most important economic development goals is to promote entrepreneurship and innovation and grow New York City’s high-tech sector, and we want to track its drivers,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Innovation is a tough thing to measure, but when taken together through the Innovation Index, factors like job growth, research and development funding, and venture capital, provide a gauge of the City’s success in generating new ideas, new companies and new jobs. Accelerating the trend of innovation in New York is critical to the City’s economic growth and diversification, particularly given the challenges of competing in the global economy.”


By analyzing the City’s innovation inputs – research and development (R&D) spending, finance, and human capital – and innovation outputs, or the growth of intellectual property, production in high-tech sectors, and entrepreneurship, the Innovation Index uncovered key trends in the City’s innovation economy:


· The high-tech sectors’ share of the Gross City Product (GCP) increased by almost 25% between 2003 and 2009. In 2009, GCP per worker in the City’s high-tech sectors was more than $200,000, among the highest level of any sector.
· Venture capital funding in the New York metro area totaled $1.9 billion in 2010, with firms in the City accounting for 64 percent of this activity. Both the number and value of VC deals increased at a significantly higher rate than in the rest of the nation between 2003 and 2010.
· New York City’s small businesses received a total of $30 million in federal grant dollars for innovation and research in 2009. The value of grants to the City’s firms more than doubled between 2003 and 2009.
· The City’s universities invested $1.8 billion in R&D in 2009. R&D spending at these institutions increased 13 percent since 2003 and accounted for approximately 3.5 percent of all academic R&D spending nationally.
· In 2009, the City’s universities were home to nearly 27,000 graduate and post-doctorate students in the science and engineering disciplines. This represented a 3.9 percent share of all such students in the U.S. and is up from 3.5 percent in 2003, demonstrating the City’s learning and research institutions’ growing influence in these fields.
· With nearly 179,000 people employed in science and engineering occupations in 2009, the City’s workforce is becoming more concentrated in these jobs. The number of workers increased by 9 percent between 2003 and 2009, while their share of total private employment grew by 4 percent.
· There were approximately 1,100 patents awarded to New York City inventors in 2009, an increase of 23 percent from 2003.


“The Bloomberg Administration is taking concrete steps to further New York City’s position as the 21st Century City of innovation,’ and the Innovation Index will be a useful tool as we move forward,” said Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert K. Steel.


“Because we believe that innovation is the key to future economic growth, measuring the level of innovation occurring in New York City serves as a critical barometer of economic opportunity,” said New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth W. Pinsky. “Understanding this data will help us develop more effective policies that will accelerate the trends and strengthen our position in an increasingly competitive world.”


Overall, the Index documents that barriers to business creation for high-tech and innovative firms are lower today than they were a few years ago, and they continue to decrease as more entrepreneurs are attracted to the City. The results of the Index show that, within the broader City economy, entrepreneurs are establishing new businesses, and more startups are securing venture capital and federal funding. This development is facilitated by the concentration of highly skilled talent across numerous industries, providing an ideal environment to exchange ideas. The City’s universities continue to be the engine driving research and knowledge creation, helping to develop a highly-skilled workforce. Meanwhile, more patents are awarded to the City’s inventors each year.


While inputs like R&D and venture capital funding have increased sharply since 2003, these investments in innovation have uncertain returns that do not necessarily or immediately translate into innovation outputs. Several years may be needed for ideas to be patented or commercialized. But with inputs continuing to rise, there is reason to be optimistic about the City’s future performance.


To access the full report and its findings, visit www.nycedc.com/innovation.  


The Innovation Index is part of the Bloomberg Administration’s efforts to encourage entrepreneurship within a variety of economic sectors. With a network of eight incubators around the City, the Administration is providing low-cost office space, as well as training and networking opportunities, to hundreds of start-ups and small businesses. In addition, in 2010, the City launched the New York City Entrepreneurial Fund, the first City-sponsored seed and early-stage investment fund located outside of Silicon Valley. In partnership with FirstMark Capital, the fund will make up to $22 million available to New York City-based technology startups. This month, the Mayor announced the winners of the second annual NYC BigApps competition and a strategic partnership with BMW, which is launching a $100 million venture capital fund in New York City as well as a small business incubator. And as part of larger efforts to grow the technology sector in the City, the Administration recently received 18 responses to a Request for Expressions of Interest that it issued to institutions seeking to build or expand an applied sciences research facility within the five boroughs.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Liliana Gil, one of two Colombians selected by the World Economic Forum as 2011 Young Global Leader

April 11th, 2011
The World Economic Forum, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland and its exclusive community of Young Global Leaders have announced the class of 2011 Young Global Leaders.


Each year, the World Economic Forum identifies 200-300 extraordinary individuals worldwide. Together, they form a powerful international community that can dramatically impact the global future. Nominated under 40, these young leaders are proposed through a qualified nomination process and assessed according to rigorous selection criteria that creates a diverse and truly representative body, while accepting only the very best leaders who have already demonstrated their commitment to serving society at large.


After tracking and monitoring over 5,000 candidates worldwide, Liliana Gil was selected by a committee chaired by Queen Rania of Jordan and prominent business leaders, politicians and media leaders who appointed a select group of 190 Young Global Leaders.


Liliana is one of two Colombians, next to Juan Carlos Pinzón Bueno, chief of staff to the President of Colombia, and one of 17 from Latin-American, who was hand selected to join this elite group of business and community leaders. She joins a select group of honorees that represent the future of leadership, coming from all regions of the world and representing business, government, civil society, arts & culture, academia and media, as well as social entrepreneurs.


Watch David Aikman, head of the Forum of Young Global Leaders, talk about this year's selection.


The YGL class of 2011 is composed of 190 Young Global Leaders from 65 countries and all stakeholders of society (business, civil society, social entrepreneurs, politics and government, arts and culture, and opinion and media). The new class represents all regions: East Asia (50), South Asia (18), Europe (42), Middle East and North Africa (13), sub-Saharan Africa (14), North America (36) and Latin America (17). This year's selection has more gender parity than ever, with 44% women.


"I am honored and humbled to be part of this select group of young leaders. More than ever, I now feel responsible, yet empowered, to amplify both social and business priorities that impact my home country Colombia and the Latino community in the U.S." says Gil. "To this day I am not sure how the nomination process came about.but, it is great to see that all the hard-work and passion I've been sharing all these years, has caught the attention of global leaders at the World Economic Forum."


After a prominent career that made her one of the youngest executives at Johnson & Johnson, Liliana is now an entrepreneur, media contributor and co-founder of XL Alliance, a unique Cultural Marketing & Consulting firm that focuses on advising corporate leaders and businesses to better reach the fast growing multicultural market, particularly Latinos, in America.


About the World Economic Forum
The World Economic Forum is an independent international organization committed to improving the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.


Incorporated as a not-for-profit foundation in 1971, and headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, the Forum is tied to no political, partisan or national interests. http://www.weforum.org/  

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Bloomberg Sports, ESPN Deportes, Soccer United Marketing, NFL, and NBA executives to be among speakers at LatinVision’s “Marketing to Latinos Sports” conference, April 7 in New York

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)—LatinVision Media Inc., a New York based organizer of conferences and networking events focused on marketing to U.S. Hispanics and Latin American executives, today announced its second annual “Sports” conference.


The event will be held at The Harvard Club in New York City on April 7, 2011. The speakers will address sports marketing issues relevant to the Hispanic community and will discuss best practices to reach Hispanic consumers using sports multimedia platforms.


"Sports is one of the most attractive and effective industries to reach Latinos consumers. No marketer can ignore the fact, the U.S. Hispanic consumer is one of the fastest growing markets in the nation with more than $1 trillion in purchasing power,“ said Carlos Vassallo, CEO of Latin Media Inc.


“In an ever-changing Latin market place marketers must stay on top of current topics and trends as well as success stories and best practices of current players who successfully are leveraging and taking advantage of this Latino passion.”


The one-day conference will feature a morning-evening format, with the morning session bearing the panels and presentations from 8:00 AM until 12.45PM, an afternoon session, and after work from 6PM to 8:30PM, designated for networking and one-on-one exchanges.


The panel presentations will be streamed live to Latin America, Spain and Portugal by LatinVision’s partner NetStairs and promoted in English, Spanish and Portuguese by partners Business Wire and Business Wire’s LatinoWire.


The panelist Lineup includes:


Chris Russo, CEO, Big Lead Sports
Bill Squadron, Sports Chief, Bloomberg Sports
Anthony Eros, Founder, Eros Company
Michelle Bella, VP Marketing, ESPN Deportes
Marcus Jimenez, Partner / Principal, Huemanitas
Hugo Hernandez, Director Sports Initiatives, Impremedia
Seneca Mudd, Director, Interactive Advertising Bureau
Carlos Vassallo, CEO, LatinVision Media
Jean Jimenez, Business Development & Sales, Mobile Messaging Solutions
Saskia Sorrosa, Senior Director of US Hispanic Marketing, NBA
Manuel Garcia, Director Latino Affairs, New York Yankees
Alvaro Saralegui, SVP, NFL
Oscar Allain, Account Director, Multicultural Marketing, Octagon
Javier Farfan, Director of Cultural Branding at PepsiCo, Pepsico
Juan Delgado, Managing Director North America, Perform Group
Chris Lencheski, Founder & CEO, Phoenicia Sport & Entertainment
Joseph Schramm, Managing Partner, Schramm Marketing Group
Russell Findlay, Chief Marketing Officer, Soccer United Marketing
Vicente Navarro, Director of Hispanic Marketing, Sports Endeavors, Inc.
Liz Sarachek Blacker, Chief Revenue Officer, Terra Networks
Daniel Traver, Director of Business Development, Traver Hispanic Marketing Group


For more information about the conference, to register and sponsor: www.latinvision.com/conference/sports and http://www.latinvision.com/conference/sports/sponsors.pdf


To learn more about LatinVision Media 2011 Conferences Series: www.latinvision.com/marketing


About LatinVision Media
LatinVision Media, Inc. is a New York-based company that operates business portals targeting U.S. Hispanic and Latin American entrepreneurs, business owners, executives and professionals in small and medium-sized companies. LatinVision portals include: http://www.latinvision.com/; www.latinvision.com/finance; www.latinvision.com/jobs; www.latinvision.com/digital among others. For more information: http://tinyurl.com/LatinVision  


About Business Wire
Business Wire, a Berkshire Hathaway company, celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2011 as the global leader in press release distribution and regulatory disclosure. Public relations and investor relations professionals rely on Business Wire for both broad-based and targeted market reach. A recognized disclosure service in the United States, Canada and a dozen European countries, Business Wire handles XBRL tagging, document formatting and regulatory filing into EDGAR, SEDAR and other systems. Business Wire provides online newsroom hosting and integration services as well as search engine optimization, mobile distribution and detailed measurement on every press release. Its patented NX delivery platform provides simultaneous full-text posting of Business Wire content to news systems and websites in virtually any country or language. With 32 bureaus worldwide, Business Wire offers local service and global reach.


Learn more at BusinessWire.com and the BusinessWired blog; follow updates on Twitter: @businesswire or on Facebook.


About NetStairs.com
NetStairs® celebrates its 10th anniversary. Since 2000, the company has pioneered and built open standard media infrastructures and platforms for ad agencies, global brands, publishers, TV stations, broadcasters, event promoters, content aggregators, and enterprises with CMS Web 2.0 / Web 3.0 sought solutions. As an intelligent media delivery enabler, NetStairs platforms are founded on industry standards with focus on interactive, live, on demand, and streaming protocols. For more information, visit: http://www.netstairs.com/.

Monday, March 21, 2011

4th Cards & Payment Latin America – July 12-14, Miami

The main event for this sector organized by IQPC, global leader in business information.


This year the event will take place on days 12, 13 and July 14 at the JW Marriott Hotel Miami, Florida and is a unique opportunity to interact with the biggest names in the banking sector, payment methods, flags retailers. This year we have an exclusive programming, in addition to the best case studies throughout Latin America, we will present new workshops and panels about main themes of the segment. This is the right time to exploit new markets and develop creative strategies for growth. Join the Congress of Cards & Payment Latin America 2011 and explore new business opportunities, new partnerships and new technologies!

Further Information: http://www.tarjetaslatam.com/ or (55 11) 3164-5600 informaciones@iqpc.com

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

SuccessFactors Gets a Boost in Latin America With Avanxo Partnership

Strategic partnership adds fuel to SuccessFactors' worldwide growth strategy

SAN MATEO, Calif., March 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Avanxo announced that it has joined SuccessFactors' (Nasdaq: SFSF) Partner Program as a Strategic SuccessSales partner. Avanxo is headquartered in Bogota, Colombia. Under the terms of the agreement, Avanxo will resell, implement and provide customer support for the SuccessFactors Business Execution suite in Latin America, marking SuccessFactors' continued commitment to growth worldwide.


Avanxo is a professional services and technology firm that specializes in the sales, implementation and support of cloud-based technologies in Latin America. Now, Avanxo clients have access to the SuccessFactors Business Execution (BizX) Suite, which helps to align strategies, promote employee collaboration, manage performance and increase workforce productivity.


"We are committed to providing our customers the best that cloud computing has to offer: quick, easy implementations and support - all at a lower cost than legacy software. We chose to partner with SuccessFactors for its vision and clear leadership position in Business Execution," said Diego Maldonado, CEO of Avanxo. "The demand for business software in Latin America is growing every day, and this partnership provides the right combination of software and local expertise to help organizations improve their ability to execute."


"Avanxo is an important partner to help accelerate our continued growth in Latin America," said Catherine Cherubino, vice president of alliances, SuccessFactors. "Its HCM experience, deep knowledge of cloud computing, extensive sales and professional services teams, combined with a local presence in Spanish-speaking countries, make them an ideal partner to provide our Business Execution solutions to the Latin American market."


SuccessSales partners invest in building proficiencies around selling and supporting SuccessFactors products to be able to effectively offer their customers and prospects the industry-leading Business Execution (BizX) Suite. SuccessFactors selects its sales partners based on numerous factors, including the ability to help accelerate and enable SuccessFactors' global reach. The Strategic partnership level is the highest tier in the SuccessFactors Partner Program.


About Avanxo
Avanxo is a professional services firm specialized in the marketing and implementation of technology solutions under the SaaS model in Latin America, focused on Success Factors, Salesforce.com and Google Apps. Avanxo has developed a methodology to implement SaaS solutions, aiming at optimizing Human Capital Management, CRM, collaboration and communication business processes. Our methodology includes the redesign of processes, change management, system configuration, integration, data migration and custom development, based on the expert knowledge of our team of certified consultants and backed by over 250 successful implementations. To learn more, visit http://www.avanxo.com/


About the SuccessFactors Partner Program
SuccessFactors has established significant relationships with industry leaders in sales, consulting, complementary business solutions and technology through the SuccessFactors Partner Program. Together, SuccessFactors and its partners develop, market, sell and deliver the most comprehensive, extensible suite of Business Execution Software solutions available.


SuccessFactors Partners benefit from the breadth of services, promotion and support available through the SuccessFactors Partner Program, and customers benefit from joint solutions between SuccessFactors and its partners. For more information, visit: http://www.successfactors.com/partners/


About SuccessFactors, Inc.
SuccessFactors is the leading provider of cloud-based Business Execution (BizX) software solutions to organizations of all sizes, with more than 8 million users across multiple industries and geographies. We strive to delight our customers by delivering innovative solutions, a broad range of content, process expertise and best practices knowledge gained from serving our large and varied customer base. Today, we have more than 3,200 customers in more than 168 countries using our application suite in 34 languages.


Execution Is The Difference(TM)


Follow us: http://twitter.com/SuccessFactors


Like us: http://facebook.com/SuccessFactors


"Safe harbor" statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995:


This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. These forward-looking statements are SuccessFactors' current expectations and beliefs. These forward-looking statements include statements about product strategy and performance, partnerships, customer usage, expected benefits and implementation. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated by these forward-looking statements include: unexpected delays in implementation; unexpected bugs or defects; outages or security breaches; user acceptance levels of the application; or our ability to manage our growth. If any such risks or uncertainties materialize or if any of the assumptions proves incorrect, our results could differ materially from the results expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements we make.


Further information on these and other factors that could affect these forward-looking statements is included in the section entitled "Risk Factors" in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and in our most recent report on Form 10-Q and in other filings we make with the Securities and Exchange Commission from time to time.


These documents are or will be available in the SEC Filings section of the Investor Relations section of our website at www.successfactors.com/investor.  Information on our website is not part of this release.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

INVISION, Inc. Secures $6 Million in Venture Debt Financing from Wellington Financial

Company Also Arranges $2.5 Million Line of Credit from Silicon Valley Bank
NEW YORK, March 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- INVISION, Inc., the leading provider of advertising planning and sales solutions to the media industry, today announced a US$6 million venture debt financing from Wellington Financial LP, a privately held specialty finance firm. Silicon Valley Bank also provided INVISION with a $2.5 million line of credit as part of the transaction. INVISION's principal venture capital investors include ABS Capital Partners and Garvin Hill Capital Partners.


"Bringing Wellington Financial and Silicon Valley Bank aboard as our newest partners allows us to capitalize on the strategic growth initiatives we have underway across our business," said Lynda Clarizio, CEO of INVISION. "We're happy to have a premier North American debt firm and leading technology-focused banking institution on board as we bring new solutions to the marketplace."


INVISION's flagship DealMaker sales planning and management system is used by cable networks, broadcast networks, television syndicators and other media businesses to manage over $13 billion in television advertising revenue each year. It eases work flow, provides fast and robust plan generation, deal stewardship, inventory management, and robust revenue reporting. INVISION also recently announced an agreement with Turner Broadcasting for exclusive worldwide distribution rights to the Crossroad commercial operations system that will enable INVISION to bring to market a fully integrated sales and commercial operations system with DealMaker.


The funding from Wellington Financial and Silicon Valley Bank will support INVISION's development and launch this year of the DealMaker Crossroad (DMC) integrated sales and commercial operations platform as well as DealMaker Digital, a comprehensive digital ad sales planning and management system.


"With its extensive and growing list of high-profile media customers, INVISION has demonstrated an exceptional understanding of its customers' business objectives and continues to take a leadership role in the industry's evolution and growth," said Mark Usher, Partner at Wellington Financial. "This transaction is another excellent example of how our True Growth Capital can benefit an already successful company. We are confident about the strong growth prospects that lie ahead for INVISION."


Since 2004, Wellington Financial LP has led or participated in more than $350 million in transactions, making it one of the most active funds of its kind in North America. Silicon Valley Bank is a leading financial institution focused on emerging growth technology companies.


About INVISION, Inc.
Founded in 1993, INVISION, Inc. (http://www.invisioninc.com/) develops software to support the ad sales and traffic processes for cable networks, broadcast networks, television syndicators and Hispanic-focused media. With offices in New York and Atlanta and northern Virginia, INVISION's clients include Azteca America, BET, Bloomberg, Bravo, CNBC, E! Entertainment Television, Galavision, Game Show Network, G4/Tech TV, TV Guide Network, Hallmark Channel, NBC Universal, ION, Sony Pictures Television, Telemundo, Telefutura, WGN America, Univision, Warner Bros. and The Weather Channel.


About Wellington Financial LP
Wellington Financial LP is a privately held specialty finance firm providing revolving lines of credit, term, venture and amortizing loans up to $30 million. Wellington Financial LP is currently managing a $450 million investment program via Wellington Financial Fund III, with offices in Toronto, Canada and Santa Monica, California. Wellington Financial LP is managed by a partnership controlled by fund management and Clairvest Group Inc., who jointly have contributed a large financial stake to Fund III. LPs include several of Canada's largest institutional investors, crown corporations, financial institutions and pension fund. Please visit the fund website at http://www.wellingtonfund.com, or the Wellington Financial team blog at http://www.wellingtonfund.com/blog.  


About Silicon Valley Bank
Silicon Valley Bank provides commercial banking services to emerging growth and mature companies in the technology, life science, private equity and premium wine industries. Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., the company serves clients around the world through 27 U.S. offices and five international operations. Silicon Valley Bank is a member of global financial services firm SVB Financial Group, along with SVB Analytics, SVB Capital, SVB Global and SVB Private Client Services. More information on the company can be found at http://www.svb.com/.  

Friday, February 18, 2011

LatinVision Media Announces “Marketing to Latinos” Conference Series

Marketing to Latinos Travel, Tourism and Hospitality Conference

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--LatinVision Media, an operator of business portals serving the U.S. Hispanic and Latin American entrepreneurs, business owners and executives in small to medium-sized companies, today announced its 2011 Marketing to Latinos Conference Series aimed at helping marketers reach and engage US Hispanic consumers and businesses.


In partnership with Business Wire, Business Wire LatinoWire and NetStairs, LatinVision Media will host four industry-specific sessions, beginning with “Marketing to Latinos Travel, Tourism and Hospitality Conference” on February 24, 2011 in New York City. Other sessions include Sports, Latinas, and Banking/Finance.


“The Census of 2010 results will confirm the U.S. Hispanic Market is the most attractive one for advertisers and marketers with a purchasing power above one trillion dollars,“ said Carlos Vassallo, CEO of LatinVision Media. “The exponential growth of the Hispanic Market as a segment is changing the rules forcing marketers to change their approach, strategy and tactics if they want to maintain their share in the business. The approach used 10 years ago is no longer relevant neither effective. This is our second series edition, this year the main focus will be on these changes and how companies and individuals can use these changes to engage this audience in a proactive, interactive and unique way.’’


The conference series will feature panels and presentations in the morning and after work sessions in the evening for networking and one-on-one exchanges. As with all LatinVision events, there is a dedicated website for each event where attendees can find detailed information, including conference schedule, registration, program and other details. Each conference will be will be live streamed and profiled in social networks and a Business networking event will follow after in the afternoon.


To learn more about the conference, to register and sponsor: www.latinvision.com/conference/travel  and www.latinvision.com/conference/travel/mediakit.pdf  


To learn more about 2011 Conferences Series: www.latinvision.com/marketing  


About LatinVision Media
LatinVision Media, Inc., a New York based company, is a premier organizer of conferences and business networking events, gathering U.S. Hispanic and Latin American executives, professionals, entrepreneurs and business owners.


About Business Wire
Business Wire, a Berkshire Hathaway company, celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2011 as the global leader in press release distribution and regulatory disclosure. Public relations and investor relations professionals rely on Business Wire for both broad-based and targeted market reach. A recognized disclosure service in the United States, Canada and a dozen European countries, Business Wire handles XBRL tagging, document formatting and regulatory filing into EDGAR, SEDAR and other systems. Business Wire provides online newsroom hosting and integration services as well as search engine optimization, mobile distribution and detailed measurement on every press release. Its patented NX delivery platform provides simultaneous full-text posting of Business Wire content to news systems and websites in virtually any country or language.


With 32 bureaus worldwide, Business Wire’s service hallmark is defined by local service coupled with global reach, a combination unique in its industry. Learn more at BusinessWire.com and the BusinessWired blog; follow updates on Twitter: @businesswire or on Facebook. Photos/Multimedia Gallery available here


About NetStairs.com
NetStairs® celebrates its 10th anniversary. Since 2000, the company has pioneered and built open standard media infrastructures and platforms for ad agencies, global brands, publishers, TV stations, broadcasters, event promoters, content aggregators, and enterprises with CMS Web 2.0 / Web 3.0 sought solutions. As an intelligent media delivery enabler, NetStairs platforms are founded on industry standards with focus on interactive, live, on demand, and streaming protocols. For more information, visit: http://www.netstairs.com/.  

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Central Valley Fund Invests $3.5M in Modesto-based Paleteria La Michoacana

DAVIS, Calif. and MODESTO, Calif., Feb. 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Central Valley Fund, a private investment fund focused on middle market Central Valley companies, today announced a preferred stock investment of $3.5 million in Paleteria La Michoacana, LLC ("PLM" or the "Company"). The capital will be used to support management as it continues to capitalize on growing demand across a wide variety of food and grocery retailers for its uniquely flavored Mexican-style frozen novelties and related ice cream products.


Founded in 1991, the Company's roots trace back to a modest manufacturing facility in Turlock, CA. The central product then and now in the Company's growth is its paleta, an all-natural ice cream bar with higher butterfat content than many other well-known novelty offerings. These bars come in traditional, Hispanic-oriented flavors, as well as those designed to appeal to a broader consumer set, including Coconut, Arroz con Leche (Rice Pudding), Guava, Walnut, and Cookies n' Cream.


Ignacio Gutierrez and his wife, Patricia, have successfully built the Company over its twenty-year history into a premier ice cream manufacturer and marketer by focusing on producing high-quality paletas and complementary products such as containers of ice cream. Beginning with Hispanic-oriented grocery stores in the Central Valley, PLM's direct-to-store and third-party distribution network now covers both local and mainstream grocers and warehouse club stores in California, the InterMountain West region and Texas.


According to the International Ice Cream Association, sales of ice cream and related frozen desserts were over $21 billion in the U.S. in 2008. Segmenting the market further, supermarket sales (excluding convenience stores, big-box retailers, etc.) of frozen novelty products accounted for approximately $2.4 billion of the "at home" total, up approximately 1.6% versus the prior year, providing the Company with a positive tailwind to continue to increase year over year sales.


Jose Blanco, a partner with CVF, emphasized, "We are impressed by management's ability to cater to its primary customer base, the Hispanic consumer, while capturing other markets due to the strong crossover appeal of the Company's products. We will support management at all levels as they continue to expand and refine their marketing and distribution infrastructure in order to execute on existing and new market opportunities."


Ignacio Gutierrez, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "As a husband and wife team that lives and breathes our business, we believe CVF to be an important resource as we guide the Company through its growth plans. We are looking forward to having CVF as both a financial and strategic partner."


About Paleteria La Michoacana
Paleteria La Michoacana is a leading producer, marketer and distributor of premium ice cream and other fine desserts. The Company is known for its fine quality and methods used to produce its paletas, using natural fruits and ingredients of the highest quality. For more information, please visit http://www.ytupaleta.com/.


About The Central Valley Fund
The Central Valley Fund was established by the principals of Gael Partners, LLC to finance later stage growth through mezzanine and preferred equity investments. The fund has offices in Davis, CA and Fresno, CA. It is focused on making investments in California's Central Valley and throughout the state. For more information, please visit http://www.centralvalleyfund.com/.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tax Expert Carlos Marquez Encourages Small Business Owners to Avoid Problems with the IRS

During the Su Socio de Negocios breakfast seminar, the entrepreneur and owner of Tri Tax gives a lecture to 150 small business owners on vital tax season information


Los Angeles, CA (Vocus/PRWEB) February 15, 2011


Every year tax season wakens interest amongst the growing Hispanic community, as was proven in the record number of attendance to the first SuSociodeNegocios.com breakfast seminar of 2011.


Carlos Marquez, president and founder of Tri Tax and a respected figure within Latinos for his lectures and segments on W690 radio, served as guest speaker to the El Clasificado presented event which took place on February 9th, 2011.


According to the 33 year-old entrepreneur, paying high taxes is a good sign because it proves a business is fruitful. Marquez candidly assured the 150 Hispanic small business owners in attendance that it is best to pay what is due and not try to cheat the government because “at the end problems will arise”.


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