SMALL BUSINESS ADVICE

Hawaiian Upcycling Company Receives a $10,000 Small Business Grant from Nav

Nav | May 03, 2021

Nav, the basic and smart financing stage for small businesses, today reported Upcycle Hawaii LLC as the most recent $10,000 thousand prize victor of its Small Business Grant. Upcycle Hawaii is a brand and maker zeroed in on making quality items with recovered and repurposed materials on the Big Island in Hilo, Hawaii. Proprietor and "Lead Trashionista" of Upcycle Hawaii, Mattie Mae Larson, plans to utilize the assets to develop her inside the group and put resources into new apparatuses.

"This previous year introduced a limit challenge for most small businesses the nation over and throughout the planet. Nav's Small Business Grant was made in 2018, however somewhat recently, the grant has become a help and additional opportunity for some business proprietors," said Greg Ott, Nav CEO. "Upcycle Hawaii's work upcycling refuse to transform it into treasure isn't just decidedly affecting the climate, yet in addition their nearby Hawaiian economy. The vision and love Mattie Mae has placed into her business are moving, and we were unable to be more excited to grant her and her group with this grant."

In 2016, Larson established Upcycle Hawaii to bring issues to light for maintainability in Hawaii. Experiencing childhood with the Big Island, Larson saw the serious decay of nearby coral reefs, seashores, and stops because of marine trash and plastic contamination firsthand. She realized she needed to join her fantasy to be a business proprietor with her energy for manageability to help address the issues of waste administration in her old neighborhood. Presently in her fifth year of business, the Upcycle Hawaii group is rapidly moving toward the achievement of 30,000 square feet and 500 lbs of sheet plastics redirected from neighborhood landfills.

"As the 'Lead Trashionista', I love that I will have a beneficial outcome on my local area through my small business. Through my work at Upcycle Hawaii LLC, I've added occupations to my local area, redirected landfills from nearby landfills, and instructed understudies and clubs on the significance of a reasonable business," said Larson, organizer, and proprietor at Upcycle Hawaii LLC. "This grant cash will be basic to the Upcycle group's turn of events and development throughout the several months. It will permit us to zero in additional time on intensive preparing, put resources into new apparatuses and gear, and decrease our pressure encompassing our developing costs this next quarter."

Nav additionally granted a $ 5,000-second place prize to Chow Corp., a nonprofit giving culinary expressions preparing to military veterans and mates in Maryland. Established in January 2020, the nonprofit run by Jordan Foley and Charlie McGovern was begun to change how nonprofits consider professional preparing for veterans and military life partners. Until now, Chow has helped many military veterans and life partners become culinary business proprietors.

"We chose to make a nonprofit that overcame any barrier from when a veteran left the help to beginning a business in the culinary business. We tracked down the ideal method to do that was through food truck preparing, which offers the ideal microcosm of culinary administration abilities, from showcasing to engine generator startup to mincing onions," said Chow Corp. proprietors McGovern and Foley.

Nav made the Nav Small Business Grant in 2018 to bring issues to light about the hindrances small business proprietors and business visionaries experience when constructing and keeping up their businesses. As of April 2021, Nav has granted $139,500 to small businesses the nation over. In the last round of grant champs, Nav gave a $10,000 thousand prize to Prince Abou's Butchery, a supplier of privately sourced, natural halal meats.

About Nav

Nav uses real business data to quickly match small businesses with the best loans and credit cards. The leading Business Financial Management app, Nav's intelligent business financing solution powers insights and opportunities for daily financial decisions that fuel their success. Nav's solution is also leveraged by other business service providers to enhance their customer experience.

Spotlight

According to the International Finance Corporation, small and medium-sized enterprises SMEs make up 99% of the 125 million companies in the world, and these SMEs contribute a staggering 49% of global GDP. Despite the market size, banks are in danger of missing this opportunity by not properly addressing this highly lucrative and accessible market.


Other News
TECHNOLOGY

Vodafone Business and RingCentral Bring Flexible Cloud Communications Solutions to Organisations

Vodafone Business | February 04, 2022

Vodafone Business and RingCentral Inc., a leading provider of global enterprise cloud communications, video meetings, collaboration, and contact centre solutions, today unveiled ‘Vodafone Business UC with RingCentral,’ a powerful new communications platform that brings together RingCentral’s flagship offering RingCentral Message Video Phone™ (MVP™) with Vodafone’s mobility and 5G capabilities to give customers more choice, flexibility, and simplicity when it comes to workforce collaboration and remote working. Vodafone Business UC with RingCentral will be rolled out in the UK, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, and Sweden. The way people work and collaborate has changed. There is an increased focus on enabling people to work from anywhere. To support hybrid work, companies need a secure, reliable, and flexible cloud communications platform. Bringing together Vodafone Business’ mobile first approach, global brand, reach, and scale with RingCentral’s deep Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) and Contact Centre as a Service (CCaaS) expertise, Vodafone Business UC with RingCentral combines all preferred modes of communication including team messaging, video meetings, and cloud phone into a single intuitive app that is accessible on any device, anywhere. “As businesses adapt to a disruptive and changing environment, they need to become more automated and agile in their way of working. Bringing technologies together that work in sync, connecting people, processes and information for faster decision making, will be critical. Vodafone is committed to supporting the digital journeys of companies big and small, so we’re pleased to be working with RingCentral to support this move and help organisations become fit for the future.” Giorgio Migliarina, products and services director at Vodafone Business Providing businesses with an effective way to move their existing legacy infrastructure to the cloud, the platform is highly secure and robust and offers an expanded portfolio of next generation unified communication and collaboration capabilities including team messaging, HD video meetings, and calling. Homayoun Razavi, Chief Business Development Officer at RingCentral said: “Enterprises today have growing global communications needs to meet the ever-evolving demands of their mobile and distributed workforce—from servicing global customers to expanding their global talent pool. Combining RingCentral’s industry-leading cloud communications with Vodafone’s leadership in mobility, 5G, and international connectivity unlocks new ways for companies to grow and run their businesses. Our open platforms and joint innovation are paving new paths to productivity and engagement around the world.” All features can be run standalone or integrated with various business applications, including Microsoft 365, leading Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and Helpdesk services – ensuring everything works in sync. In addition, Vodafone Business UC with RingCentral includes real-time and historic analytics, extensive call management, and team collaboration and task management capabilities, which will be available to larger businesses. Vodafone Business plans to expand the platform to smaller businesses in the UK and Germany soon. About Vodafone Unique in its scale as the largest pan-European and African technology communications company, Vodafone transforms the way we live and work through its innovation, technology, connectivity, platforms, products, and services. Vodafone operates mobile and fixed networks in 21 countries, and partners with mobile networks in 52 more. As of 31 December 2021, we had over 300m mobile customers, more than 28m fixed broadband customers and over 22m TV customers. Vodafone is a world leader in the Internet of Things (IoT), connecting more than 142m devices and platforms through innovation that aligns with the aspirations of society for cleaner and safer cities, better transport, and improved agriculture. Vodafone’s digital leadership is also changing how governments deliver healthcare and education, and how businesses, particularly Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), serve customers. We have revolutionised fintech in Africa through M-Pesa, which celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2022. It is the region’s largest fintech platform, providing access to financial services for more than 51m people in a secure, affordable, and convenient way. Our purpose is to connect for a better future, enabling an inclusive and sustainable digital society. We are taking significant steps to reduce our impact on our planet by becoming net zero by 2040, purchasing 100% of our electricity from renewable sources in Europe and across our entire operations by 2025, and reusing, reselling or recycling 100% of our redundant network equipment. Vodafone proactively works to expand access to connectivity for rural communities, students, and jobseekers. For more than 30 years, Vodafone’s Foundation has supported communities in Europe and Africa in the areas of health, education, and equality. We support diversity and inclusion through our maternity and parental leave policies, empowering women through connectivity and improving access to education and digital skills for women, girls, and society at large. We are respectful of all individuals, irrespective of race, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, belief, culture, or religion. About RingCentral RingCentral, Inc. is a leading provider of cloud Message Video Phone™ (MVP™), customer engagement and contact centre solutions for businesses worldwide. More flexible and cost-effective than legacy on-premise PBX and video conferencing systems that it replaces, RingCentral empowers modern mobile and distributed workforces to communicate, collaborate, and connect via any mode, any device, and any location. RingCentral’s open platform integrates with leading third-party business applications and enables customers to easily customise business workflows. RingCentral is headquartered in Belmont, California, and has offices around the world.

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SMALL BUSINESS ADVICE

New digital growth partnership to spotlight ecommerce success for UK startups

Outfund, Diginius | June 14, 2021

The UK’s largest ecommerce investor and a leading digital insights specialist have joined forces to help accelerate business transition online. And the news comes at a time when firms across all sectors are seeking to capitalise on the rapid growth of online sales and marketing, with the UK e-commerce market projected to reach over £80.67bn in 2021. Upstart Outfund has partnered with Diginius, a London-based technology company, who specialise in digital marketing and ecommerce solutions, which has already acquired big brand attention with the likes of Dreams, Thomas Lyte and Skinny Dip onboard. And with the latest ONS figures for April indicating a strong continued demand for online sales, the new venture seems well placed to solidify business’ reputation in an increasingly competitive ecommerce sphere: “We’re delighted to be joining forces with Outfund,” said Diginius CEO Nate Burke. “Today’s digital market is booming, but it’s an ever more saturated landscape that needs to deliver a unique differentiator and a genuine chance for skilled startups to succeed. “What this partnership enables is for firms to not only to get the financial support they need, but also the real-time insight and perspective on which marketplaces are performing successfully, and which present the most avenues for growth, all tailored to the individual needs of the client and their sector.” Outfund, which has already helped deliver growth for the likes of Onto and The Vegan Kind, two firms in increasingly popular spheres of electric car and vegan food subscriptions, recently announced an £100m commitment to ecommerce and subscription-based firms over the next 12 months. The business has already raised over £37m, delivering a service that helps online businesses accelerate their online activities without giving away equity. And with Diginius partnership now sealed, Outfund CEO Daniel Lipinski believes more firms can look to make their mark on the ecommerce landscape: “Outfund and Diginius both provide critical services for e-commerce and SaaS companies - funding and PPC/analytics respectively. “Whilst almost all businesses will require these services throughout their existence, in most instances it is done so in isolation. “Through our partnership with Diginius, we are combining our funding with their analytics expertise so that these areas work synonymously, with the ultimate goal of driving our shared client’s growth to new heights.” With data integration and support across all major marketing and advertising platforms, Diginius empowers organisations to achieve maximum impact from their online sales and activities. For more information, visit https://www.diginius.com/. Further details on Outfund can be found at https://www.out.fund/.

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IMPACT

LegalShield’s Enhanced Small Business Service Empowers Aspiring Entrepreneurs at Launch

LegalShield | February 23, 2022

The entrepreneurial spirit is stronger than it has been in decades as more people have decided to create their own business during the pandemic. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 5.4 million new business applications were filed in 2021, surpassing the 2020 record of 4.4 million. At the same time, small business formation requires a significant amount of legal paperwork which can be difficult to navigate alone. Those seeking to start a small business can greatly benefit from a service that’s affordable and provides personal legal support to help to manage every step of the process. To provide a solution, LegalShield, the leading provider of membership-based legal services and identity theft protection plans, has enhanced its Launch by LegalShield service to simplify the business formation process. From launch phase to growth phase and beyond, professional lawyers seamlessly support and assist aspiring entrepreneurs with all their legal needs. “Starting a business can be stressful and complicated, especially if you’re doing it alone or relying on a DIY solution. LegalShield supports founders every step of the way with a dedicated law firm as they form their business. Let us take care of all the legal details in launching your business, and then support you with a personal and business legal plan for 90 days so you can focus on making your dreams become a reality.” Jeff Bell, CEO of PPLSI Launch by LegalShield’s network of provider lawyers and law firms acts as a concierge service and brings value and support to critical business steps including: Entity formation to review and complete the paperwork needed to successfully form an LLC or corporation including protecting personal assets, opening bank accounts, completing contracts, hiring employees, and securing business licenses and permits. Additionally, to understand how the business will be taxed and advise of any legal liabilities that could result in financial ramifications. Business name check to ensure the chosen business name is legally available and doesn’t infringe on other business registrations. Business startup consultation to discuss business goals and form the LLC. Tax ID/Employer Identification Number (EIN) that allows the IRS to recognize the business for tax reporting. An EIN enables access to open bank accounts and apply for credit under the business’ name. Worry-free filing through the designated lawyer who will prepare, review, approve, and submit all necessary paperwork to form the LLC. Registered agent services are available for purchase to those who need to focus on growing the business and need a trusted source to act as the Registered Agent for the business. About LegalShield A trailblazer in the democratization of affordable access to legal advice, counsel, protection, and representation, LegalShield is the world's largest platform for legal, identity, and reputation management services protecting individuals and businesses across North America. Founded in 1972, LegalShield, and its privacy management company, IDShield, has provided individuals, families, businesses, and employers with tools and services needed to affordably live a just and secure life. Through technology and innovation, LegalShield is disrupting the traditional legal system and transforming how and where people receive legal guidance and services, with access to thousands of qualified, trusted attorneys and law firms. About PPLSI A champion of equal access to justice and security, PPLSI has provided individuals, families, businesses, and employers with the tools and services needed to live a just and secure life for 50 years. Under PPLSI, our consumer brand, LegalShield, is disrupting the legal services industry by giving everyone the resources and tools to affordably find their justice. We are transforming the traditional way of receiving legal guidance and services and providing qualified, trusted attorneys and law firms in the palm of your hands. Our security brand, IDShield, specializes in privacy and reputation management and protects your online data and information.

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FINANCE

Mibanco Uses FICO Platform to Expand Microlending and Help Customers

Mibanco | March 21, 2022

Mibanco, the largest microfinance bank in both Peru and Latin America, has used FICO Platform’s Decisions Capability to boost its lending capacity and respond quickly to changing market conditions during the pandemic. The transformational project has reduced the time taken to put policy into production by 90 percent and cut annual IT development expenditure by 20 percent, allowing Mibanco to better serve thousands of its customers. “Mibanco’s goal is to expand access to credit for the unbanked or credit invisible,” said Sebastián Valera, risk transformation manager at Mibanco. “Annually we grant about 1.6 million loans worth about USD$3.7B to hundreds of thousands of people. These loans are often life-changing, allowing individuals to build businesses, access housing and education. We were seeking a tool with predictive analytic qualities that would accelerate and increase approvals, while qualifying consumers better, even the unbanked ones. FICO had the strongest offering that filled the brief.” Prior to the implementation, the entire credit flow, including the policies and various scores, was developed within the bank's core system. This meant when any lending changes were needed, software development within the core was required. “It could take anywhere between 3 to 12 months whenever credit risk wanted to make a change,” said Valera. “Requests went to IT, meetings were held, changes were prioritized by committee, technical documents prepared, development, testing and so on. As a result, we were lacking the agility we wanted and failing to extend microcredit to the largest number of consumers possible.” Mibanco needed to adopt a solution to make more precise, value-based decisions at the origination stage, enabling them to grow more profitable portfolios while managing customer-level risk. Mibanco implemented FICO’s technology in two stages. The first was to enable FICO® Platform - Decision Modeler to be connected directly to the core system, where the flow would be maintained. The second was to replace the core credit flow, used FICO® Originations Solution which is powered by FICO Platform. Over just six months, FICO worked with the Mibanco team to examine, adjust and migrate all the policies programmed into FICO Platform. Group policies were also added that could not be programmed in the past and by January 2020, 28 policies were put into production just as COVID-19 started to spread around the world. When the pandemic arrived, Mibanco was able to react quickly by having a highly flexible originations solution in place. The risk team rescheduled and froze repayments for USD$2.4 billion in loans to 720,000 borrowers and assisted approximately 267,000 customers with USD$785M of credit through government-sponsored programs to the MyPe segment (micros and small companies). Additionally, COVID forced Mibanco to adjust credit policies and the different scores it uses. Thanks to FICO Platform, Mibanco can make quick changes and assist its customers while ensuring that risk keeps within the company’s guidelines. “Lenders want to expand their market to include more new borrowers, but this segment of applicants poses a significant challenge to a lender’s ability to assess character, credit risk and verify the credit destination. Mibanco has modernized its ability to originate loans by harnessing the analytic and predictive power of FICO Platform. Financial inclusion has been a foundational area of focus for FICO and a key part of our ethos. We get great satisfaction out of helping lenders like Mibanco expand their offering to hundreds of thousands and bring them into the financial system.” Nikhil Behl chief marketing officer at FICO “Mibanco did a great job optimizing their decisioning process to drive more automation,” said Armando Junior, general manager, risk and compliance at Dock and one of the FICO Decisions Awards judges. “With an increased adoption of advance technology in microfinancing, lenders can reduce the operational costs and expand lending to thousands more people and at the same time grow their own revenue and opportunities in the market.” About Mibanco Mibanco is the leading microfinance financial institution in Latin America and the second largest player worldwide. In Peru, Mibanco has 23 years of experience working with the purpose of transforming people's lives, committed to their financial inclusion and progress. It has a loan portfolio of more than USD 3 billion, close to 1.6 million customers and more than 300 points of service throughout Peru. About FICO FICO powers decisions that help people and businesses around the world prosper. Founded in 1956, the company is a pioneer in the use of predictive analytics and data science to improve operational decisions. FICO holds more than 200 US and foreign patents on technologies that increase profitability, customer satisfaction and growth for businesses in financial services, manufacturing, telecommunications, health care, retail and many other industries. Using FICO solutions, businesses in more than 120 countries do everything from protecting 2.6 billion payment cards from fraud, to helping people get credit, to ensuring that millions of airplanes and rental cars are in the right place at the right time.

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Spotlight

According to the International Finance Corporation, small and medium-sized enterprises SMEs make up 99% of the 125 million companies in the world, and these SMEs contribute a staggering 49% of global GDP. Despite the market size, banks are in danger of missing this opportunity by not properly addressing this highly lucrative and accessible market.

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