Foreign Secretary Marcelo Edrard Addresses the Mexican Senate

Mexico City centre during the day
  • “The level of respect and attention that Mexico has abroad today is the highest we have had in our history.”-Marcelo Ebrard
  • “Mexico’s voice is heard because we have political and moral authority. If we didn’t, it would not be.”-Marcelo Ebrard 

Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard recently appeared before the Mexican Senate to discuss the foreign policy aspect of the third annual report of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s administration. In the Senate, the Foreign Secretary said to the various political parties that Mexico’s political and moral authority has given it the highest level of respect and attention it has had in its history. 

Secretary Ebrard began by thanking the Senate for its State vision and readiness to support Mexico’s main initiatives and foreign policy positions. Later, the Foreign Secretary gave a comprehensive overview of the progress made by the Foreign Ministry in the tasks entrusted to it. He also highlighted the work done to obtain vaccines and supplies to combat the pandemic. 

The Foreign Secretary then spoke about:

  • the relationship with the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, China,
  • strengthening ties with Africa, the Middle East and Asia
  • the various international agreements and Mexico’s active participation in multilateral organizations

Secretary Ebrard said that the most important task entrusted to the Ministry was to ensure Mexico’s timely access to vaccines, treatments and medical supplies during these difficult global circumstances. 

Regarding the relationship with the United States, Secretary Ebrard confirmed that, despite the negative pronouncements and predictions about the arrival of the new United States government, “we have a very good relationship with President Biden’s administration”. He recounted the high-level visits to both countries to discuss various topics, including migration, security, trade, and health. 

Secretary Ebrard said, with the United States, “we have been able to make progress with shared views on shared issues and on the future that must be addressed in the coming years.” The Foreign Secretary said that, regarding cooperation with the U.S., Mexico has laid out its priorities:

  • to reduce violence
  • reducing the consumption of narcotics
  • tackling the lack of opportunities that leads to violence in southern Mexico
  • reducing arms trafficking

Regarding migration, he said that Mexico has proposed transforming the model for handling the increase and the reasons for migration from the south to the north. The United States was invited to support development in Central America with an immediate-action package to attack the root causes of migration. Mexico, with its own resources, along with El Salvador and Honduras, has made great progress. He said that there are already more than 20,000 participants in the Sowing Life and Youths Building the Future programs. 

The Foreign Secretary said that Mexico is part of Latin America and must ensure that the regional organizations function. It was for this reason that the Celac Summit was organized, because “Mexico is part of Latin America and the Caribbean and we have been part of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States since it was founded. Mexico has never missed that summit”.

The Foreign Secretary reported on the lawsuit Mexico has filed against the main U.S. gunmakers. “This is the first lawsuit filed by a government against the industry that I know of that the Court has admitted. This is not a suit against the U.S. government; it’s against the gun industry.” The lawsuit seeks to end the negligent sales practices engaged in by the gun companies in the U.S. 

Lastly, the Foreign Secretary announced that Mexico will preside over the UN Security Council in November. It will propose three main topics:

  • poverty and inequality as promoting conflict
  • the issue of arms trafficking
  • the coordination of UN agencies and institutions

Secretary Ebrard concluded by saying, “this is a good moment for Mexico’s foreign policy and for the recognition given to the Mexican government headed by President López Obrador. A moment in which Mexico’s voice counts and is respected”. 

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reaffirmed its commitment to work together and coordinate with the legislative branch, to strengthen its foreign policy to benefit the country.

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The Key to Lifetime Financial Security = Having a Holistic Plan

Lifetime Financial Plan

Life is full of important moments – following your passions, buying your first home, growing your family, giving back, reaching retirement. Then there are the events no one wishes for – fixing a leaking roof, being let go from a job or a critical illness that prevents you from earning an income. One of the key differentiators between those who achieve lifetime financial security and those that don’t? A financial plan. Yet, most Canadians are not making a plan their priority. A recent survey conducted by Sun Life found that over half of all Canadians (52%) do not have a financial plan in place. 

Of the 43% of Canadians who do have a plan, over one-third (33%) do not have life or critical illness insurance. Insurance protection is even lower among those aged 55 and up with 44% stating they do not have insurance. This is followed by those aged 35-54 (27%) and those 18-34 years of age (21%). When asked why they do not have insurance in their financial plan, nearly one-third (29%) said, ‘I don’t need insurance’. Men were significantly more likely to say they do not need insurance coverage than women at 41% versus 19%.

“Insurance is an important part of a financial plan that will support you and your loved ones for years to come,” said Vineet Kochhar, Senior-Vice President, Insurance Solutions, Sun Life Canada. “Life can be unpredictable – many of us may face challenges that leave us unprepared. Whether you’re married with kids or have a partner or relatives that depend on you financially, life insurance ensures they are supported,” Mr. Kochhar added. “Insurance can seem daunting to navigate on your own – advisors are here to help you understand the insurance solutions available to you and which products suit your needs and complement the rest of your financial plan.”

While many Canadians delay in creating a plan and purchasing life insurance, financial concerns remain top of mind. Sun Life asked Canadians their greatest financial concern – cost of living was ranked the top concern at 36%. This was followed by having enough money saved for the future and/or retirement (23%), paying off debt (17%) and affording a house (13%).

Canadians aged 55 and up rated ‘having enough money for the future and/or retirement’ their second highest concern after cost of living. Yet, that same age group has not created a financial plan. Of those aged 55 and older, the group that is closest to retirement, nearly half (47%) have not created a plan.

“At Sun Life, our goal is to equip every Client with a personalized financial plan and help them live their best life,” said Rowena Chan, President, Sun Life Financial Distributors (Canada) Inc. and SVP, Distribution. “A financial plan, combined with advisors’ unique ability to provide Clients with holistic advice, opens endless opportunities for Canadians. When an advisor helps Clients set up a holistic financial plan, they approach the conversation with three themes in mind – wealth, health and insurance needs – all equally important to reaching your goals,” Ms. Chan added.

Financial security is a key pillar of Sun Life’s sustainability strategy. By providing Clients with innovative products and services, we’re helping secure their—and their family’s—financial future. Sun Life recently announced a collaboration with Conquest Planning Inc. to provide its best-in-class, digital financial planning tool to empower Canadians to reach their life goals. Sun Life is the first Canadian organization to introduce the digital tool across all its wealth and insurance service platforms.

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DHL Express Invests $430K CDN to Launch Four Mobile Retail Stores Across Canada

DHL
  • The DHL mobile pop-ups offer customers a safe, convenient, and practical shipping experience
  • Winnipeg, MB location is the latest pop-up location to open, providing an added point of accessibility for residents

DHL, the world’s leading global express and logistics company, is expanding its vast network of Canadian retail locations by opening first-of-its-kind mobile retail stores in Canada. The company has invested more than $430,000 CDN to create four, electric-powered mobile pop-up locations, called DHL pop-up stores, to provide a safe and easy-to-use shipping option for customers and an added point of accessibility. The DHL mobile pop-up store location at the Grant Park Shopping Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba opened this week and is the latest location available for customers.

“We’ve seen tremendous growth in the industry over the past few years, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, with customers shipping internationally more than ever before,” said Andrew Williams, CEO for DHL Express Canada. “This increased demand is the reason we’re expanding our footprint in Canada with new, strategically placed, safe and easy-to-use pop-up locations to better service our customers here.”

Within the last six months, DHL Express has experienced a 41 per cent growth rate in Winnipeg. The company selects the locations for its new mobile pop-up stores throughout the country based on areas where DHL doesn’t currently have an owned or partner location, but where there is an increased demand for international shipping. DHL Express expects this new Winnipeg location will generate additional volume for its United States, China and Philippines trade lanes, and will be open for customers seven days a week at varied hours.

The first-ever, 2,200 cubic feet Canadian mobile pop-up store opened in Toronto, Ontario at the Cadillac Fairview Mall earlier this month. It was the first unit permitted in Canada, and was a critical first step in the launch of the retail pop-up concept in one of the largest target markets for DHL. This location allows the company to serve three large markets, as it experienced a retail volume growth of 35 per cent in 2020 vs 2019, and expect those numbers to continue rising ahead of the holiday season.

Both locations will be open and available to customers over the next six months, at which point the company will evaluate based on customer demand whether to extend. 

“We’re excited to bring the innovative pop-up store experience to customers in Canada, after seeing tremendous success from testing and launching in several U.S. cities,” added Williams. “Customers prefer the speed and convenience of pop-up stores to quickly create and send shipments – all without having to enter a physical store or office.”

DHL will continue expanding in the Canadian market with an additional two pop-up locations between October 2021 and March 2022. All mobile, 2,200 cubic-feet pop-up stores will be electric-powered.

In response to social-distancing concerns, the mobile pop-up store locations allow customers to easily access DHL’s shipping services, without having to enter a store. The pop-up locations offer customers a safe and practical way to utilize these DHL services and products, featuring everything a traditional DHL storefront would have, including the ability to process shipments, account holder drop offs and the option of accepting smaller Hold for Pickup shipments. An efficient point-of-sale system is capable of processing shipments to U.S. destinations as well as any of the 220 countries and territories DHL serves. Supplies such as bubble wrap, packing tape, and DHL-branded boxes are available at the mobile unit. Additionally, the DHL pop-up stores mitigate congestion and potential security risks at retail locations.

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DoorDash Expands Marketplace Offering with Alcohol On-Demand

Doordash

Customers across 20 states and the District of Columbia can now order wine, beer, or spirits for on-demand delivery or pickup from thousands of restaurants, grocery stores, and retailers

DoorDash announced today it is facilitating the delivery of beer, wine, and spirits via the DoorDash Marketplace, across 20 states and the District of Columbia, as well as in Canada and Australia, reaching over 100 million customers worldwide. Customers in select markets, where legally permissible, can toggle to the Alcohol tab of the DoorDash app to browse and safely order from a wide selection of drinks from restaurants, grocery stores, local retailers, and convenience stores. This news follows a multi-year journey of fulfilling alcohol on-demand delivery for many national and local merchants via their own channels with DoorDash Drive, DoorDash’s white-label fulfillment service. 

“Over the past year, many cities where we operate evolved their legislation in order to permit the delivery of alcohol to residents’ homes. Over that time, we worked tirelessly to build a trusted alcohol ordering and delivery experience for merchants, customers and Dashers,” said Caitlin Macnamara, Director, Alcohol Strategy & Operations at DoorDash. “We’re committed to providing new earning opportunities for merchants and Dashers, a safe, high quality experience for customers, and being a responsible leader in compliant alcohol delivery.”  

DoorDash is proud to offer a wide selection of beverages for all special occasions. In an effort to create a seamless alcohol ordering experience for customers, DoorDash has built an alcohol catalogue including 30,000 SKUs available for purchase across thousands of retailers and restaurants nationally, whether it’s to-go drinks from a favorite local restaurant or a celebratory champagne from a nearby local store. Additionally, with the recent roll out of DoubleDash, customers in select markets can now bundle alcohol with their restaurant meal on certain orders.

 

Creating Opportunities for Restaurants and Retailers to Grow Online

According to a recent Nielsen report, alcohol is the fastest growing e-commerce vertical across all consumer packaged goods, and many retailers and restaurants on DoorDash see increased sales due to the reach and visibility of the DoorDash Marketplace. Today, according to the National Restaurant Association, 56 percent of customers over the age of 21 say they would be likely to order alcoholic beverages if they were offered them as part of a food delivery order from a restaurant. 

On DoorDash, adding alcohol may increase restaurants’ and grocers’ average order values by up to 30% and convenience stores by over 50%. This is why DoorDash stands with restaurants in actively supporting legislation that enables restaurants to offer alcoholic beverages and thus expand their sales through delivery. DoorDash has worked closely with local governments to ensure that restaurant partners can add alcohol to their delivery menus and benefit from increased sales that it brings. 

“We’re excited to expand our online business to reach guests in new ways and create special moments at home,” said Laura LaVigne, Director of Marketing at Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar. “It’s great to have the option to add handcrafted cocktails, a four-pack of our craft house beer, or wine to any celebration or casual meal as part of our partnership with DoorDash.”

 

Committing to the Responsible, Compliant and Safe Delivery of Alcohol

DoorDash is committed to building a product that can support the complexities and responsibilities that come with the delivery of alcohol. DoorDash has enhanced the industry standard in implementing several safeguards within its product, including:

  • Rigorous ID verification prior to checkout and multiple ID check points along the delivery to ensure customers are of legal age;
  • More on the company’s ID verification processes and other restrictions on alcohol delivery can be found here;
  • A compliance course available to Dashers 21 years or older to ensure Dashers are aware of the laws around the delivery of alcohol, and regular communication with Dashers across the timespan of a delivery to remind them of the proper protocols for lawful delivery;
  • Enabling customers to voluntarily exclude themselves from receiving alcohol orders from DoorDash. An exclusion from alcohol delivery will also exclude persons from direct marketing communication surrounding alcohol-related promos. Click here to submit an exclusion request;
  • Additional support and resources related to alcohol consumption can be accessed anytime, here.

To reinforce these commitments, DoorDash is proud to announce partnerships with two organizations – Responsibility.org and Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) – aimed at promoting alcohol responsibility and preventing under age drinking. The company has partnered with Responsibility.org, a national not-for-profit that aims to eliminate drunk driving and underage drinking and empower adults to make a lifetime of responsible alcohol choices as part of a balanced lifestyle. Responsibility.org will help DoorDash continue to advance its corporate responsibility initiatives surrounding alcohol delivery, provide guidance for future product builds based on their industry-leading research and provide shared resources surrounding responsible decision making with DoorDash customers. Additionally, DoorDash has teamed up with Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) in order to open the dialogue around preventing under age drinking through marketplace purchases. DoorDash has also partnered with Retail Drinks Australia and Drinkwise in Australia to further expand our commitment to responsible service of alcohol in other countries.

“We are proud to work alongside DoorDash to strengthen responsibility efforts in our communities and on our roadways by providing guidance and proven resources to help prevent impaired driving and underage drinking,” said Chris Swonger, President & CEO, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States and Responsibility.org. “Whether you’re a Dasher, a restaurant employee, or a customer – we are all stronger when we’re united by a commitment to a culture of alcohol responsibility.”

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The World’s #1 Anti-Food Waste App, Too Good To Go, Launches in Vancouver

Food Waste

Too Good To Go provides a simple solution that empowers businesses and consumers to reduce the 13,000 tonnes of food that goes to waste each year in Metro Vancouver

After successfully entering the Canadian market with a launch in Toronto in July, Too Good To Go is proud to bring its global movement to the west coast. Launching today in Vancouver, Too Good To Go is calling on all Vancouverites to start saving meals and help Canada become a nation of #WasteWarriors.

Too Good To Go is the world’s largest B2C marketplace for surplus food. The company and its app empower the public and local businesses to fight food waste by offering Surprise Bags of food that would otherwise go to waste at the end of the day.

The fight against food waste needs to be tackled at every level and in every country. Globally, 40 percent of all food goes to waste, which accounts for 10 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions yearly; for comparison, flight travel contributes 1 per cent, globally.

Nationally, Canadians throw out 35.5 million tonnes of food, equivalent to the weight of nearly 1.2 million humpback whales. Food waste has a significant economic impact as well, in British Columbia an estimated $1.3 billion worth of food is wasted per year in food store and food service businesses, which is 57 per cent more than the estimated profit in those sectors.

“Reducing food waste is the most immediate and effective way to fight climate change”, said Sam Kashani, Too Good To Go, Country Manager for Canada. “Imagine a world where all food that gets produced is consumed. We are very inspired by that. The Too Good To Go app is a tangible solution that brings everyone into the fight against food waste.” 

In Vancouver, Too Good To Go has partnered with over 90 businesses across the city with notable sustainability leaders such as Nada, Terra Breads, Flourist and Be Fresh – with more added every day.

Said Brianne Miller, Co-Founder and CEO of zero waste grocery store, Nada, “our team is thrilled to partner with fellow B-Corporation Too Good to Go to tackle one of the world’s most pressing climate issues: surplus food. Nada is on a mission to connect people to a more just and equitable food system. By participating in this program we’re excited to continue our food recovery initiatives by linking customers to surplus food, and making sure that the valuable resources used to grow, transport, and distribute food do not go to waste.”

“We have always considered ourselves responsible for the improvement of the communities we serve,” said Michael Lansky, President and Founder of Terra Breads.”It’s this purpose that drives Terra Breads to contribute to communities through partnerships with organizations such as Too Good To Go. We’re proud to demonstrate our commitment to improving our communities with this perfect partnership! To feed more people with the food we’re already making is good for everyone. Too Good To Go fits with our purpose perfectly”.

During the pandemic production has been upended and purchase habits have been unpredictable, often leading to increased food waste. Said Janna Bishop, Co-Founder and CEO of Vancouver-based, Flourist, “our goal is to have as little waste as possible. We’ve learned to creatively adapt during the past year by having new distribution streams for our products. Too Good To Go provides the perfect solution to connect us with customers to help ensure that surplus food is not wasted.”

“We are so excited to partner with Too Good to Go on this phenomenal food waste tool. Fighting food waste not only helps our planet in combating climate change, but also aids in supporting food security, one of our pillars of sustainability that we are extremely passionate about. It is an awesome way of helping customers become part of the solution,” Ashley Sugar, Manager of Organic Acres and Be Fresh stores in Vancouver.

Vancouverites will now join the more than 44 million people, globally, who have saved more than 91 million meals at more than 110,000 restaurants, cafes, grocery stores and food sellers on the Too Good to Go app. Since launching in Toronto, Too Good To Go has saved 20,000+ meals from 350+ partner restaurants and stores. The company anticipates an equally vibrant response from customers and business owners in Vancouver and is excited to continue to expand throughout Canada in the coming months.

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Cadillac Fairview Launches TikTok Campaign to ‘Rediscover’ Canadian Retail

Cadillac Fairview Tower

CF and TikTok creators Basement Gang, Shina Nova, James Jones and Mykenna Dorn invite
Canadians to “rediscover that feeling” of community and human connection

Cadillac Fairview (CF) is inspiring Canadians to rediscover that meet-you-at-the-mall feeling with a new TikTok campaign launched today. In a first for a Canadian retail shopping centre brand, CF has partnered with the popular video-sharing app for a joy-filled movement called “Rediscover” to dance away the blues of social isolation and ignite much needed social connection across communities nationwide. CF is welcoming all Canadians to its retail locations to engage in moments of cheer and rediscover that feeling of positivity and togetherness.

Directed by award-winning director-editor Sean Cartwright, the CF TikTok campaign features four popular creators serving “main character energy” and meme-worthy dance moves set to an original song. The lyrics “Rediscover that feeling” aim to inspire excitement for the return to CF destinations of retail, entertainment, cuisine and human connection. Canadians across the country are encouraged to participate in the movement by sharing their own “happy dance” on TikTok using the hashtag #MeetYouThere and tagging @cadillacfairview.

“Over the last year and a half, Canadians have craved a sense of community that has long been associated with CF shopping centres as vibrant spaces that foster connection and a sense of belonging. This campaign is all about how good it feels to reunite with the people we love, together in the communities we love. What better way to celebrate that than with a TikTok dance?” said Jason Anderson, Senior Vice President Brand, Marketing, Communications at Cadillac Fairview. “This year at CF, we redefined our position in the communities we serve as one that combats detachment and social isolation.”

 

THE GANG’S ALL HERE: Meet the CF-TikTok Creators

From their parents’ basements to the elevators and escalators of the iconic CF Toronto Eaton Centre, Canadian TikTok dance trio “Basement Gang” leads the national campaign with their signature “drip” and comedic style that have attracted nearly four million followers to the @basementgang TikTok page. The Toronto friends, whose videos have garnered more than 80 million likes on TikTok, are seen two-stepping in the Urban Eatery and dancing throughout landmark spots, including the bridge across Queen Street, in the campaign video.

“As a group that reps the Greater Toronto Area, CF Toronto Eaton Centre holds a special place in our hearts, so it has been awesome to represent the ‘six’ and bring our moves to a bigger dance floor,” said Kadeem Hemmings, a member of Basement Gang. “Our vibe is all about joy and positivity, and we can’t wait for our Canadian community to rediscover that same feeling at CF malls!”

The creative partnerships for the campaign also include Shina Nova (@shinanova on TikTok), an Inuk throat singer in Montreal; James Jones (@notoriouscree on TikTok), a traditional Indigenous hoop dance artist in Alberta; and Mykenna Dorn (@mykenna on TikTok), a lifestyle influencer based in Vancouver.

“Cadillac Fairview has committed to ‘Transforming Communities for a Vibrant Tomorrow,’ a purpose that puts positivity and human connection at the core of everything we do,” added Anderson. “In the age of TikTok, and everything we’ve gone through, dance has never felt more like a powerful medium of celebration and connection, and we’re proud to work with these emerging artists to reconnect our shoppers and communities.”

 

MEET YOU THERE: Welcoming Back Canadians

The TikTok campaign builds on a larger Rediscover advertising campaign currently in-market. Launched in early September, the campaign spans digital (in-mall signage, digital directories, newsletters) digital out of home, radio, video (YouTube, online news outlets and DirectTV), Google ads, as well as social media with paid support on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and TikTok.

CF’s Rediscover campaign is one among a suite of initiatives launched by CF throughout the summer to support retail recovery efforts in Canada. CF has already introduced new retail experiences and helped Canadians rediscover all the things they have been missing, from retailer spotlights, spend and save perks, and special CF SHOP! card promotions to memorable community events, as well as surprise and delight moments for shoppers. Across Canada, CF has facilitated patio extensions, including the 30,000-square-foot highlight called The Lot at CF Sherway Gardens. CF also plans to host “VIP Shopping Nights” at select shopping centres for frontline workers, and has further major incentives planned to drive retail recovery in Canada in the fall and into 2022.

Throughout the pandemic, safety has been a top priority for CF and the company continues to follow local public health guidelines. Additional measures, including physical distancing, use of PPE and increased cleaning of high touch point surfaces have been implemented at CF properties, all in an effort to help fight the spread of COVID-19. 

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Jetty Introduces New Flexible Rent Payment Product and Raises $23M

Rent Payment

Jetty, the financial services company on a mission to make renting a home more affordable and flexible, today announced the launch of Jetty Rent, a new product that removes the cost burden of expensive late fees by giving renters the flexibility to choose when they pay their rent. This latest offering on the Jetty platform was developed and brought to market with the backing of a new, $23M equity financing round from investors that include Citi and Flourish Ventures.

According to data from the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC), in the first six months of 2021 an average of 21% of renters failed to pay their rent by the 6th of the month*, a cutoff date that would typically trigger late fees from property owners. The federal eviction moratorium restricted the charging of late fees, but with the moratorium now partially lifted, many renters will once again be facing this financial challenge.

“It’s a tricky situation—property managers need predictable cash flow to meet their financial obligations, yet forcing renters to meet rigid, first-of- the-month payment dates doesn’t reflect the financial realities of today’s renter population,” said Mike Rudoy, Co-Founder and CEO of Jetty. “We solved this monthly headache with Jetty Rent, which gives renters more flexibility with payment while at the same time offering property managers the reliable cash flow they need.”

With Jetty Rent, Jetty will pay rent on behalf of renters on the first of the month and renters will then have until the 24th of each month to repay Jetty, which they can do in one lump sum or through installments..

To launch Jetty Rent, the company partnered with Cortland, a top 20** real estate investment, development and management company, who rolled out the offering to residents across a portfolio of properties.

“At Cortland, we’re focused on improving the resident experience, and the process of paying rent is a massive part of that,” said Jonathan Kirn,  Director of Ancillary Services at Cortland. “Jetty Rent makes life easier on our residents and takes the burden of rent collection off our shoulders—it’s a true win-win.”

Jetty Rent is the latest product to be offered by Jetty. The company also offers low-cost renters insurance as well as its industry-leading security deposit replacement, Jetty Deposit.

“We’re seeing overwhelming demand from renters and property managers alike for new financial services across the entire renter lifecycle,” said Rudoy. “Our team is working toward building the most all-encompassing financial services platforms for the rental market. From Jetty Deposit to Jetty Protect to now Jetty Rent, our platform is unrivaled in the industry.”

Emmalyn Shaw, Managing Partner at Flourish Ventures, added:

“Embedded finance platforms like Jetty are quickly becoming one of the most influential technology trends taking place around the world—one where the customer’s experience with such things as online payments and loans comes first. We’re thrilled to back the Jetty team as they continue to develop their fintech platform and product offerings to help reach those who need relief and flexibility with meeting housing costs.”

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Canada’s Leading Organic and Natural Food Distributor Horizon Grocery + Wellness Starts Distributing Modern Plant Based Foods’ Products

Plant-based Food

Modern Plant-Based Foods Inc., an award-winning plant-based food company, is pleased to announce that Modern Meat, its meat alternative brand, has entered into a partnership agreement Horizon Grocery + Wellness to increase service to consumers throughout Canada. With a deep list of retail partnerships including Whole Foods, Save on Foods, Nesters and Choices, Modern Meat will have the opportunity to significantly expand its retail distribution in Canada.

Horizon Grocery + Wellness operates out of a combined 186,000 sq ft of facility space in south Burnaby, BC and is Western Canada’s leading distributor of organic and natural products in the dry, chill, and frozen grocery categories, in addition to natural personal care and nutritional health supplement categories. The company services a diverse customer base including major natural, grocery and independent grocery chains, independent natural health stores, buying clubs, restaurants, cafes and specialty retailers, and ships orders daily to large metropolitan areas and small towns across British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Yukon. 

“We are excited to announce the addition of Horizon to our growing list of channel partners. Horizon has been instrumental to many Plant Based companies getting on large retailers shelves and mainstream distribution. Part of our strategic growth is to align ourselves with reputable and far-reaching distribution partners,” said Tara Haddad, Founder of Modern Plant Based Foods.  “Horizon has over 750 suppliers with many going back decades, yet they also support up and coming small, local and independent brands.  They pride themselves on building and maintaining relationships with brands they believe in, and we look forward to working and growing with them.”

Through the distribution partnership, Horizon will carry Modern Meat’s complete portfolio of meat alternative products including Modern Burger, Crumble, Crab Cakes, Meatballs, Breakfast Sausage and Gyozas.  Plans to sign on with large retail outlets will begin immediately.

“Horizon has a strong presence in the retail grocery channel, and we expect the addition of Modern Meat to Horizon will accelerate the interest in our plant-based meat alternatives nationwide,” explained Chris Parkinson, National Brand Manager for Modern Plant-Based Foods.  “With this partnership, our products will now be more accessible across the country expanding our reach to the health-conscious and environmentally conscious consumer.  We remain committed to executing on our strategy and firmly believe we are well on our journey to becoming a trusted household brand.”

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Venzee Automates Hardline Retail Product Data Flow for New Brand Client

AI

Venzee Technologies Inc., the artificial intelligence (AI) platform for product data, announced today additional Mesh Connector™ activations for a client home improvement brand.

“Activation of the two largest North American home improvement retailers for this new client reflects Venzee’s ability to convert its growing pipeline into tangible, SaaS-model revenue,” said John Sexton Abrams, CEO of Venzee. “Our proprietary and intelligent  platform enables brands to communicate product information to their retailers at the speed consumers demand of commerce today. The level of efficiency provided by our Mesh Connectors™ is revolutionary and our clients recognize the market advantage Venzee provides.”

Venzee dramatically reduced the time it takes this client to move product data to these key hardlines retailers by providing a centralized platform they can use to transform data according to the retailers’ specific requirements. Venzee’s AI platform quickly identifies and alerts the client to any errors in their product data — errors that could have been missed had the client continued to rely on legacy manual syndication methods.

According to Joel Carstedt, Senior Director of Sales at Venzee, “I am excited to see activation of these important Mesh Connectors™ as a first step in converting a massive number of our pipeline sales opportunities in the home improvement and hardlines verticals. Data distribution efficiency is exactly why Venzee is the premier syndication method in the market and our platform will expand retail distribution scale for our pipeline of more than 7,000 Mesh Connector™ sales opportunities.”

Venzee Senior Director of Integrations, Chad Kaczmarek, said, “Before our client began using Venzee’s Mesh Connectors™, they would manually submit product content to these leading home improvement retailers using a 1970s era data pool method. That process could take half a year or more. Venzee’s platform helped the client syndicate their complete product data set in only 30 days,”

Radically simpler than alternatives, Venzee’s Mesh Connectors™ are unique in the market, system agnostic and infinitely scalable. Venzee’s intelligent platform offers partners and brands a reliable, machine-to-machine interface that accelerates the distribution of product information to any retail or e-commerce destination.

With more than 400 retail Mesh Connectors™ instantly available to brands, Venzee has become an important tool in the simplification and automation of syndication processes for consumer brands globally.

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Kocomo Has Raised $56 Million to Allow Co-Ownership of Luxury Vacation Homes

Vacation home in Mexico with palm trees

The sharing economy has upended various industries, including car rides, private jet travel, and home rentals. Kocomo is the long-awaited extension into vacation home ownership.

 

Kocomo, a pre-seed stage proptech startup backed by leading U.S., European, and Latin American investors, has raised US$56M in debt and equity to tackle cross-border, co-ownership of luxury vacation properties. Kocomo’s mission is to make the dream of vacation home ownership an attainable reality for more people around the world.

 

“In the same way that Netjets uses shared ownership to create a more cost-effective solution for people to enjoy the benefits of private air travel, we apply a co-ownership model to create a smarter way for people to own and enjoy luxury vacation homes worldwide,” explained Martin Schrimpff, co-founder and CEO of Kocomo.

 

This funding round was led by AllVP and Vine Ventures — with participation from Picus Capital, Fontes – QED, FJ Labs, Clocktower Technology Ventures, and JAWS (the family office of Starwood Capital Group Chairman Barry Sternlicht), while the debt investment was financed by Architect Capital.

 

Investments from the founders of four of Latin America’s most prominent companies— including Mate and Florian of Loft, Oskar Hjertonsson of Cornershop, Carlos Garcia of Kavak, and Sergio Furio of Creditas — also make up the round.

 

Kocomo seeks to upend conventional vacation home ownership by enabling people to own a luxury vacation property abroad through its best-in-class co-ownership and property management model — starting with Mexico. “With Kocomo, we have created a new unit of real estate ownership that is better suited to actual use patterns for vacation properties — and our end-to-end platform makes co-ownership completely hassle-free,” added co-founder and CFO, Tom Baldwin.

 

Leveraging the power of technology, Kocomo aims to create a transparent marketplace that empowers people to purchase, own, and sell co-ownership interests in luxury homes through its vertically-integrated platform. In addition to benefiting from potential home appreciation and rental income, co-owners also experience stress-free vacations themselves as Kocomo manages both the luxury property and the other vetted co-owners.

 

Kocomo is led by a multinational team of seasoned entrepreneurs who are driven by their shared passion for international travel, technology, business, design, and real estate innovation. “We came together as a team because we believe vacation memories fuel life,” says co-founder and CPO, Graciela Arango. “Often our fondest memories are created during vacation — and we’re passionate about providing more accessible opportunities for people to own a vacation home that’ll serve as the backdrop to unforgettable moments like family game nights, learning how to ride a bike, or holiday celebrations.”

 

About Kocomo:

Kocomo is an early-stage proptech startup, backed by leading U.S., European, and Latin American investors. Leveraging the power of technology, Kocomo aims to create a transparent marketplace that empowers people to purchase, own, and sell co-ownership interests in luxury homes through its vertically-integrated platform, starting in Mexico. Kocomo’s mission is to make the dream of vacation home ownership an attainable reality for more people around the world.

 

For business enquires contact Martin Schrimpff CEO, Kocomo [email protected]

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