BUSINESS STRATEGY

getLouie.ai Rolls Out Small Business Partnership--"Paying It Forward" in a Post-COVID Landscape

getLouie | December 01, 2021

getLouie.ai, the recently launched business texting platform, has announced a partnership program for Massachusetts businesses. Known as The Original Partner Program (TOPP), the initiative offers small businesses the opportunity to subscribe to the company's A.I.-driven marketing and scheduling SMS platform.

The program offers as much as 75% off the standard subscription price. The company launched TOPP in response to the economic hardships that many small business owners have recently experienced.

"The entire team at getLouie, along with our parent company TME Group, has been searching for ways to pay forward to fellow small business owners. Our getLouie texting system is hopefully one solution."

Chief Operating Officer Michael Eldridge, getLouie

A study on the impact of COVID-19 on small businesses concluded that the pandemic "represents a shock to America's small firms that has little parallel since the Great Depression of the 1930s," with over 40% of small businesses at least temporarily closed. 

Under the TOPP program, getLouie subscribers will also receive in-person setup, training, and support. Eldridge says that he hopes that the program will help qualified businesses recover from turbulent economic times.

"Almost every small company has taken a hit when it comes to customer connection. Consumers have spent a lot of time 'online only,' and it will take a while for small businesses to reconnect and recover. We hope TOPP will speed the process in my home state of Massachusetts."

In return, the company seeks to expand and hone getLouie's features while working with partners "in the real world."

"The TOPP program gives our company a chance to reconnect, in-person, with our user base," the Worcester native states. "Small business owners can leverage affordable text marketing for their success, and we'll improve our product and standing in the marketplace."

About getLouie
getLouie is a division of TME Group, Inc., a SaaS and creative firm geared toward helping small business owners achieve their goals. Headquartered in Hawaii with mainland offices in Boston and New York City.

Spotlight

Mark Alt, Small Business Center Director at Roanoke Chowan Community College talks about the value the Small Business Center brings. Learn more about his Small Business Center at


Other News
MANAGEMENT

Insurtech Pendella Adds PEO AdvanStaff HR As Partner

Pendella Technologies | May 27, 2022

Pendella Technologies, a fast-growing technology company on a mission to take the bias out of life insurance, announced a partnership with AdvanStaff HR, a professional employer organization (PEO) currently serving 400 small and medium-sized businesses. Through Pendella's AI-powered, white-labeled technology, AdvanStaff HR clients will be able to expand their employee offerings to include individual life insurance. Employees of AdvanStaff HR clients can now choose from a variety of affordable individual life and disability insurance options available from top-rated national insurance providers. Employees can purchase coverage online in minutes, without the need for a medical exam. “AdvanStaff HR has helped companies run their businesses efficiently and successfully for nearly 30 years. We are experts in combining personal service and technology to support our clients, their employees, and the business’ bottom line, By partnering with Pendella, we are furthering our commitment to providing the best products and tools available.” -Matt Richards, President and COO. According to 2021 data from financial research firm LIMRA, more than 8 in 10 workers in the U.S. would like their employer to offer life insurance coverage. “We are excited to partner with AdvanStaff HR and bring the important financial protection that life insurance offers to the thousands of employees they support, Our revolutionary technology not only simplifies the life insurance process, but it creates a huge opportunity for PEO’s to enhance their value to clients.”Pendella is an Associate Member of NAPEO and has partnered with other SMB-focused PEOs over the past 12 months as part of its mission to close the life insurance protection gap. -Bob Gaydos, Pendella CEO and founder The startup recently completed a $5.2 million in Series Seed-2 funding with backing from prominent insurtech venture capital firms American Family Ventures and MassMutual Ventures. The funding round positions to Pendella continue its disruption of the life insurance market and support its planned growth. To learn more about what Pendella's innovative technology can do for your organization, schedule a demo. About Pendella Pendella is a technology company that exists to make the financial protection of individual life and disability insurance available to all people, regardless of age, health status, or income level. Pendella's full-stack, enterprise SaaS solution is powered by artificial intelligence and big data to automate underwriting and deliver a simple and intuitive experience to thousands of people through partnerships with top-rated insurance carriers and distributors. White-label customization enables a seamless end-to-end experience. www.Pendella.com, Linkedin.com/company/Pendella

Read More

BUSINESS STRATEGY

Constant Contact Closes Acquisition of Vision6

Constant Contact | April 08, 2022

Constant Contact, a digital marketing platform used by millions of small businesses, backed by Clearlake Capital Group, L.P. (together with its affiliates, "Clearlake") and Siris Capital Group, LLC (together with its affiliates, "Siris"), announced today that it has completed its acquisition of Vision6. "We are pleased to welcome Vision6 to the Constant Contact team, and I look forward to working together to deliver for small businesses, government agencies and nonprofits in Australia. Vision6's products, people and culture are closely aligned with our own. We are eager to partner with them as colleagues, and I am certain their market knowledge, passion and energy will be instrumental to our global growth and investment plans." Frank Vella, CEO, Constant Contact "This deal enhances Vision6's ability to support the evolving needs of our customers as a trusted Australian SMS and email marketing software," said Mathew Myers, co-founder and CEO, Vision6. "We are excited to join the Constant Contact team - they clearly share our passion for innovation and, together, we see an opportunity to accelerate our growth." Constant Contact is committed to preserving the data sovereignty Vision6 upholds in Australia. This acquisition will provide Constant Contact the opportunity to expose its portfolio of email marketing, small business CRM, analytics and ecommerce integrations to the Australian marketplace through Vision6. About Constant Contact Constant Contact delivers for small businesses and nonprofits with powerful tools that simplify and amplify digital marketing. Whether it's driving sales, growing a customer base or engaging an audience, we deliver the performance and guidance to build strong connections and generate powerful results. About Vision6 As Australia's most reliable email and SMS marketing software, Vision6 is passionate about helping marketers and agency professionals to get more customers and grow their business. Since 2001, Vision6 is relied upon by thousands of businesses for its industry-leading marketing solution, real person local support, data sovereignty and security. About Clearlake Clearlake Capital Group, L.P. is an investment firm founded in 2006 operating integrated businesses across private equity, credit and other related strategies. With a sector-focused approach, the firm seeks to partner with management teams by providing patient, long-term capital to businesses that can benefit from Clearlake's operational improvement approach, O.P.S.® The firm's core target sectors are industrials, technology, and consumer. Clearlake currently has over $72 billion of assets under management, and its senior investment principals have led or co-led over 300 investments. The firm is headquartered in Santa Monica, CA with affiliates in Dallas, TX, London, UK and Dublin, Ireland. About Siris Siris is a leading private equity firm that invests primarily in mature technology and telecommunications companies with mission-critical products and services, facing industry changes or other significant transitions. Siris' development of proprietary research to identify opportunities and its extensive collaboration with its Executive Partners and Advisors are integral to its approach. Siris' Executive Partners and Advisors are experienced senior operating executives that actively participate in key aspects of the transaction lifecycle to help identify opportunities and drive strategic and operational value. Siris is based in New York, Silicon Valley and West Palm Beach, and has raised nearly $6 billion in cumulative capital commitments.

Read More

TECHNOLOGY

Aryaka Launches Accelerate Global Partner Program

Aryaka | January 28, 2022

Aryaka®, the leader in fully managed SD-WAN and SASE, announced today the launch of its Accelerate Global Partner Program, which unifies the company’s partner-led go-to-market strategy under a single comprehensive program for channel partners of all types worldwide. The new program empowers them to tap into an expanded revenue opportunity made possible by Aryaka’s new all-in-one SD-WAN and secure access service edge (SASE) solutions packaged and priced for businesses of all sizes. “Strong channel partnerships have been part of Aryaka’s success from day one. With the launch of the Aryaka Accelerate Global Partner Program, we’re putting a stake in the ground as a partner-led organization with the breakthrough solutions, simplified packaging and go-to-market alignment they need to seize the rising revenue opportunity in secure cloud-first networks and fast-track their business growth.” Ian McEwan, chief revenue officer at Aryaka The global launch builds on the November 1, 2021, introduction of the Aryaka Accelerate Agent Partner Program for commission-based sales agents and technology services brokerages (TSBs) by extending benefits tailored to match partner business strategies across North America; Europe, Africa and the Middle East (EMEA); and Asia-Pacific (APAC). These include margin-based value-added resellers (VARs), managed services providers (MSPs) and IT distributors; white-label service providers and systems integrators (SIs); and IT marketplaces and strategic alliances. The Aryaka Accelerate Global Partner Program begins with a top-down commitment to the channel that has enabled innovations and resources with partners in mind, including: Expanded Channel Team – Aryaka has added highly experienced channel specialists to its team, including new leaders Craig Patterson, channel chief and vice president of sales – Americas, and Ed Pearce, national channel director – North America. They join Rich Farbman, regional vice president – Americas, and Lisette Sens, vice president of channel sales – International. Increased Total Addressable Market (TAM) – Aryaka’s new all-in-one SD-WAN and SASE services are based on the company’s new, industry-leading FlexCore™ technology that combines Layer 2 and 3 networking, enabling partners to deliver services optimized for performance or cost. This flexibility also expands the total addressable market for Aryaka’s services to include businesses of all sizes – from global enterprises to regional small and medium businesses (SMBs). Simplified Packaging and Pricing – Aryaka’s new SmartConnect EZ + SmartConnect Pro and Prime EZ solutions are easy to quote, sell and consume with “T-shirt” sized pricing and standard service tiers, speeding time to revenue for partners. New Co-managed Network Option – Aryaka’s new AppAssure™ application enables VAR, MSP and white-label partners with the network visibility required to co-manage their clients’ networks, increasing their value and wallet share. Last-Mile Services Revenue – Uniquely, Aryaka can offer its network-as-a-service solution with the last-mile connections included, offering partners an additional revenue opportunity. Training and Certification – Aryaka has a self-paced, online training program for sales and technical competencies. An updated certification program for the new solutions will be rolled out in 2022. Sales and Marketing Alignment – As a channel-led company, Aryaka works in lockstep with partners to align and enable sales and marketing activities, such as strategic account mapping, marketing resources, co-investment in co-marketing and co-selling, and all-new account-based sales and marketing programs to generate leads for qualified partners. Lucrative Incentives – Aryaka offers a range of sales incentives tailored to partner types, such as commission multipliers and increased margin opportunities. Customer Success – In addition to two levels of expert support, Aryaka provides customer success managers (CSMs) devoted to retaining and growing partners’ accounts. “Aryaka has made good on its promises to invest in a partner-led strategy by introducing SD-WAN and SASE solutions that are easy for partners to sell,” said Craig Patterson, channel chief and vice president of sales – Americas. “With the launch of the Aryaka Accelerate Global Partner Program, we’re now wrapping that with alignment, enablement, incentives and support resources to drive success for agents, VARs and MSPs worldwide.” "Aryaka's success in EMEA and APAC has always been driven by a mutually beneficial, partner-led approach,” Lisette Sens, vice president of channel sales – International. “We're delighted to continue the great work we've done in EMEA and APAC by extending the Aryaka Accelerate Global Partner Program to supplement our all-in-one SD-WAN and SASE offerings with additional investment into training, alignment and incentives."

Read More

INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

Citi to Exit Consumer, Small Business and Middle Market Banking Operations in Mexico

Citi | January 12, 2022

Citi today announced that it intends to exit the consumer, small business and middle market banking operations of Citibanamex as part of its strategic refresh. Citi will continue to operate a locally-licensed banking business in Mexico through its global Institutional Clients Group. Citi has operated in Mexico for more than a century and the country will remain among Citi’s top institutional markets outside of the U.S. Citi will continue to invest in and grow those institutional banking operations, along with its Private Banking franchise. “The decision to exit the consumer, small business and middle market banking businesses in Mexico is fully aligned with the principles of our strategy refresh – we’ll be able to direct our resources to opportunities aligned with our core strengths and competitive advantages, focus on businesses that benefit from connectivity to our global network, and we will further simplify our bank.” Citi CEO Jane Fraser Fraser continued, “Mexico is a priority market for Citi – that will not change. We expect Mexico to be a major recipient of global investment and trade flows in the years ahead, and we are confident about the country’s trajectory. Citi is uniquely positioned to support cross-border capital markets activity and trade flows in and out of Mexico for our institutional clients and we will continue to make material investments in our institutional operations and market-leading hub there.” Citi’s planned divestitures of its consumer businesses across Mexico, Asia and Europe are aligned with the repositioning of its consumer operations to focus on wealth centers globally as well as payments and lending and a targeted retail presence in the U.S. Banco Nacional de México is a leading bank in Mexico with an iconic brand and rich history. Citi has made meaningful investments in this business over the course of the last two decades, greatly enhancing its digital and mobile banking capabilities, strengthening its technology infrastructure, modernizing its branch and ATM network, deepening relationships with key customer segments and advancing its financial inclusion efforts. “The strategy refresh Citi has undertaken will result in a stronger, more focused bank,” said Mark Mason, Citi’s Chief Financial Officer. “We will execute a targeted consumer strategy, double down in wealth, and focus on our higher-returning institutional businesses where we have competitive advantages. Our emphasis is on opportunities where our global network uniquely positions us to support clients who are growing and facing an ever-changing set of complex dynamics around the world.” The businesses in the intended exit include the Mexico consumer and small business banking operations, reported as part of Citi’s Global Consumer Banking segment, as well as the Mexico middle market banking business, reported in Citi’s Institutional Clients Group segment. The Mexico consumer and small business banking operations included in the intended exit represent the entirety of the Latin America Global Consumer Banking unit. In the first three quarters of 2021, the businesses Citi intends to exit together accounted for approximately $3.5 billion in revenue, $1.2 billion in earnings before tax, $44 billion in assets, and $4 billion in average allocated TCE. Additional information about the operations Citi intends to exit in Mexico will be included in the 2021 fourth quarter earnings report on January 14, 2022. A link to Citi’s Current Report on Form 8-K filed today regarding the exit can be found here. The method and timing of Citi’s exit from its consumer, small business and middle market banking operations in Mexico, which could include a sale or a public market alternative, will be determined by Citi and will be aligned with its objectives of maximizing shareholder value and strengthening both the businesses that Citi will exit and those it will retain. The exit process is subject to various conditions and approvals, including applicable regulatory approvals in both the U.S. and Mexico. About Citi Citi, the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.

Read More

Spotlight

Mark Alt, Small Business Center Director at Roanoke Chowan Community College talks about the value the Small Business Center brings. Learn more about his Small Business Center at

Resources