Sneaker Culture Merges into the Fast Lane

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PLANO, Texas, Feb. 26, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — What happens when sneakerheads get ahold of a luxury sport sedan? RTFKT creative collective and Lexus teamed up to find out.

To celebrate the launch of the 2021 Lexus IS, RTFKT reveals its one-of-one shoe featuring design elements inspired by the IS 350 F Sport Dynamic Handling Package. From its athletic stance and slimmer headlights to its carbon fiber spoiler and bold color schemes, the IS drove the creative team to design RTFKT’s first pair of footwear inspired by and partly constructed from vehicle materials.

“We wanted to make sure when the audience looks at the sneaker they instantly know it is the IS,” said Chris Le, creative director and co-founder of RTFKT. “All the intricate design elements come together, and at a first glance it’s a neckbreaker,” added Steven Zaptio, CEO and co-founder of RTFKT.

The RTFKT team first selected a base with a sole closely resembling a tire for their custom silhouette. Features on the front are shaped like the vehicle’s signature spindle grille, with 3D printed material imitating the carbon fiber spoiler of the car. The sides of the sneaker showcase Black NuLuxe with light gray stitching from the seats, with a middle silver stripe inspired by the details of the headlights. The team added an F SPORT branded tag on the side and a Lexus badge covering the top Velcro strap. Lastly, they selected a vibrant blue hue for the sneaker that most closely resembles Grecian Water, a new color for Lexus in 2021.

RTFKT and entertainment media company Complex documented the sneaker creation process in a three-part video series, “Rubber & Sole,” now live on Complex.com. In first episode the team is challenged to create a bespoke shoe inspired by the 2021 Lexus IS. Zaptio and Le take notes, from its newly designed spindle grill down to its NuLuxe interior, using the vehicle as their muse. The second video shows the ideation of the sneaker, from sketching designs to prototyping and materials sourcing. The third and final episode – debuting today – showcases the final details of the sneaker and explains how it is derived from the IS.

This partnership is part of the  “All In” campaign for the new 2021 Lexus IS, where the automaker celebrates those who fully embrace their passions, while showcasing its own obsession: an unapologetically pure sport sedan.

“RTFKT put the same passion into developing this one-of-a-kind shoe that we did in developing the new 2021 Lexus IS,” said Vinay Shahani, vice president of Lexus marketing. “Steven and Chris delivered a head-turning sneaker that unmistakably mirrors the bold design and impressive performance of the IS.”

Founded by Zaptio and Le, RTFKT is a global collective of designers merging next-gen gaming and sneaker culture and works with more than 150 3D artists to create its designs. The studio focuses on one-of-a-kind creations, from color-changing sneakers made from futuristic materials to digital-only virtual collectibles. Their special edition sneaker inspired by the 2021 Lexus IS sport sedan will not be available for sale.

For more information on the new IS, visit https://www.lexus.com/models/IS.

About Lexus
Lexus’ passion for brave design, imaginative technology, and exhilarating performance enables the luxury lifestyle brand to create amazing experiences for its guests. Lexus began its journey in 1989 with two luxury sedans and a commitment to pursue perfection. Since then, Lexus has developed its lineup to meet the needs of global luxury customers in more than 90 countries. In the United States, Lexus vehicles are sold through 243 dealers offering a full lineup of luxury vehicles. With six models incorporating Lexus Hybrid Drive, Lexus is the luxury hybrid leader. Lexus also offers eight F SPORT models and two F performance models. Lexus is committed to being a visionary brand that anticipates the future for luxury customers.

www.facebook.com/lexus 
www.twitter.com/lexus 
www.youtube.com/lexusvehicles 
www.instagram.com/lexususa 
https://www.pinterest.com/lexususa 

Note to Editors: Lexus product information and images are available online via our news media website http://LexusNewsroom.com.

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Erin Portman 
512-736-1640
erin.portman@teamone-usa.com

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SOURCE Lexus

Colgate-Palmolive Launches New Colgate Renewal Focused on Improving Overall Gum Health

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NEW YORK, Feb. 26, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Today, Colgate-Palmolive announced an exciting new product innovation – New Colgate Renewal toothpaste, designed by gum care experts to reverse early gum damage for a beautiful, revitalized smile. With technology backed by clinical research, Colgate Renewal targets and repairs early gum issues to help keep smiles healthy into the future. 

Experience the interactive Multichannel News Release here: https://www.multivu.com/players/English/8856451-new-colgate-renewal-toothpaste-launches-with-brooke-shields-ana-de-la-reguera/  

Every day, people take steps to help reduce and prevent the signs of aging – but many forget that gums also age. Gum care is often perceived as a specialized need, when in fact the gums are the foundation to a healthy, beautiful smile. Adding Colgate Renewal to your daily routine is a simple step to help prevent gum issues that arise over time and keep smiles healthy into the future. 

To celebrate this new launch, Colgate is partnering with longtime actress and model, Brooke Shields and actress, producer, and activist Ana de la Reguera to spread awareness on the importance of proactive gum care. Both celebrities know how important a healthy, beautiful smile is to feeling confident in front of the camera and in their everyday lives – and gums are the foundation to that.

“This is my third partnership with Colgate, and I couldn’t be more excited to be back representing a brand I have used my entire life,” said Colgate Ambassador, Brooke Shield. “Their products have helped me to feel confident in front of the camera with a healthy, revitalized smile, and I’m thrilled to continue that story with their latest innovation, Colgate Renewal toothpaste.”

With a new premium look and feel, Colgate is bringing attention to gum health with wow-worthy packaging and beautiful translucent gel aesthetics that are reflective of a brilliant and healthy smile. 

“In this profession, and really in life, it’s just as important to proactively take care of my smile the same way I take care of my skin…  And taking care of my smile includes taking care of my gums … they’re half of my smile!” said Colgate Ambassador, Ana de la Reguera. “By adding Colgate Renewal toothpaste to my daily routine, I am able to help keep my smile healthy today and into the future.”

Colgate Renewal comes in three variants — Whitening Restoration, Enamel Fortifying and Sensitivity Repair to address your unique smile needs while protecting the health of your gums. Available starting now, Colgate Renewal toothpaste ($6.99$9.99 per 3 oz. tube) can be found at most major retailers. Ready to revitalize your smile? Visit www.colgate.com for more information.

About Colgate-Palmolive

Colgate-Palmolive Company is a caring, innovative growth company reimagining a healthier future for all people, their pets and our planet. Focused on Oral Care, Personal Care, Home Care and Pet Nutrition, the Company sells its products in more than 200 countries and territories under brands such as Colgate, Palmolive, elmex, hello, meridol, Sorriso, Tom’s of Maine, eltaMD, Filorga, Irish Spring, PCA Skin, Protex, Sanex, Softsoap, Speed Stick, Ajax, Axion, Fabuloso, Soupline and Suavitel, as well as Hill’s Science Diet and Hill’s Prescription Diet. The Company is recognized for its leadership and innovation in promoting environmental sustainability and community wellbeing, including its achievements in saving water, reducing waste, promoting recyclability and improving children’s oral health through its Bright Smiles, Bright Futures program, which has reached more than one billion children since 1991. For more information about Colgate’s global business and how the Company is building a future to smile about, visit www.colgatepalmolive.com. CL-C

Media Contact:
Claudia Garcia
bcw | burson cohn & wolfe
Claudia.Garcia@bcw-global.com

SOURCE Colgate-Palmolive

If you were exposed to water from the Flint Water Treatment Plant between April 25, 2014 and November 16, 2020, your rights may be affected by a $641 million settlement

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FLINT, Mich., Feb. 26, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ —

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN

The deadline to register for the Settlement is March 29, 2021.
To learn more, visit www.OfficialFlintWaterSettlement.com

This notice explains a class action settlement in the Flint Water Cases.  The notice applies to you if at any time during the period April 25, 2014 to November 16, 2020 (“Exposure Period”):

(1)   you were exposed to water from the Flint Water Treatment Plant (“FWTP”) and you were 18 years or older at any time when you were exposed; or
(2)   you were 18 years or older at any time when you owned, rented, or lived in residential property served by the FWTP, or were legally liable for the payment for such water, during that time; or
(3)   you owned or operated a business served by the FWTP, or were legally liable for the payment for such water, during that time.

What is the lawsuit about?  The lawsuits assert that residents of Flint and others who used or were exposed to water from the FWTP between April 25, 2014 and November 16, 2020, suffered personal injury, property damage, economic loss, or any other type of damage or injury as a result of exposure to, use of, or being obligated to pay for, the contaminated water.  The lawsuits claim that when the City of Flint switched to the Flint River as the source of water in 2014, the water was not treated correctly and that it caused pipes to corrode and release lead and other contaminants into the water.  Plaintiffs allege that exposure to contaminated water received from the Flint Water Treatment Plant (located at 4500 Dort Highway, Flint, Michigan 48506), during the period April 25, 2014 to November 16, 2020, has caused a public health crisis.

Settling Defendants deny any and all alleged liability, wrongdoing, violations, and/or damages.  The Court has not decided who is right.

Who is included?  The Settlement Class includes all persons or entities who are or could be claiming personal injury, property damage, business economic loss, unjust enrichment, breach of contract, or seeking any other type of damage or relief.  Specific details on the Settlement Class and Subclasses are available at www.OfficialFlintWaterSettlement.com.

What does the Settlement provide?  The value of the entire Settlement Program is approximately $641.25 million. The Settlement Fund is allocated among different categories.  Please visit www.OfficialFlintWaterSettlement.com to see how the Settlement Fund is allocated by category.  If the settlement becomes final, Settlement Class Members who participate in the settlement or do nothing at all will release all their claims against the Settling Defendants.  They will not be allowed to bring any lawsuit against the Settling Defendants related to Flint water or the Flint Water Cases. 

What are your options?  To make a claim for money from the class action Settlement Fund, you must first submit a valid Registration Form.  You may file your Registration Form online or my mail.  The deadline to file a Registration Form online is 11:59 pm PST on March 29, 2021. The postmark deadline to file a Registration Form by mail is March 29, 2021.  Visit www.OfficialFlintWaterSettlement.com now to file your online Registration Form or print one out to file by mail.  Those that validly file a Registration Form will later be sent a Claim Form along with instructions about how to complete the Claim Form.

If you do not want to participate in this proposed class settlement and you want to keep the right to sue the Settling Defendants about the legal issues in this case, then you must take steps to get out of the settlement.  This is called “opting out” of the Settlement Class.  To opt out of the Settlement Class and not participate in the settlement, you must send a written request using the Opt Out Form provided at www.OfficialFlintWaterSettlement.com.  You must mail your completed Opt Out Form, postmarked by March 29, 2021. If you are a member of the Settlement Class and do not opt out, you give up the right to sue the Settling Defendants for any of the claims released by the settlement.  If you are a Settlement Class Member (and do not exclude yourself from the Settlement Class), you can object to any part of the Settlement.  The deadline to file an objection is March 29, 2021.  For more information on how to Opt Out or Object, please visit www.OfficialFlintWaterSettlement.com.

The Court will hold a Fairness Hearing, currently scheduled for July 12, 2021, to determine whether the Settlement Class can be certified and whether the settlement is fair, adequate, and reasonable and should be finally approved, with judgment entered accordingly. The Court will also consider the application for an award of attorneys’ fees and expense reimbursement.  You are welcome to attend the hearing at your own expense, but you are not required to attend. You may also hire your own attorney, at your own expense, to appear or speak for you at the hearing.  For more information, call 1-800-493-1754 or visit www.OfficialFlintWaterSettlement.com.

SOURCE United States District Court Eastern District of Michigan

The Home Depot Foundation Commits up to $500,000 in Response to Recent Winter Storms

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The Home Depot Foundation

ATLANTA, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — In response to the recent winter storms devastating the nation, The Home Depot Foundation announced today that it is committing up to $500,000 to aid with immediate relief efforts and short- and long-term recovery for communities impacted by historic winter storms, Uri and Viola. This incremental commitment is in addition to the Foundation’s annual grants of $3.6 million to disaster relief national nonprofit partners, bringing the current total commitment for 2021 to $4.1 million.

The Home Depot Foundation

Although the extent of the recovery need is still being determined, this commitment will bolster immediate efforts, including distribution of water and kits containing additional critical supplies. Short-term recovery, including mold remediation and emergency home repairs, will take place as damage is assessed and conditions become secure.

In partnership with experienced national nonprofit organizations, including Convoy of Hope, Operation Blessing, American Red Cross and Semper Fi & America’s Fund, the Foundation has been safely deploying essential supplies to the areas stricken with power outages, water shortages, freezing temperatures and plumbing damage. The Home Depot Foundation works with these and other national and local nonprofit partners on an ongoing basis to proactively position emergency supplies and promote timely distribution to communities in need.

The Foundation has long-established connections with local nonprofits in Texas, and its associate volunteer force, Team Depot, has been partnering with Meals on Wheels Central Texas, Rebuilding Together Houston and the City of Dallas to assess damage and need. For example, last week, the Foundation partnered with the City of Dallas to provide seniors and families with much-needed generators, products, and cleaning supplies.

“The Home Depot supplies generously donated to the City of Dallas will support our most vulnerable populations, including seniors and families, during the 2021 winter weather conditions,” said Carrie Rogers, director, Dallas Mayor and City Council Office.

“Our hearts and prayers go out to our associates and the communities suffering from the effects of these catastrophic winter storms,” expresses Shannon Gerber, executive director of The Home Depot Foundation. “We’re working with heightened intentionality to mobilize critical supplies and provide emergency repairs, once safe to proceed.”

The company engaged its Emergency Response Team to respond to the immediate needs of its stores, associates and communities, flowing supplies into the impacted areas throughout the crisis. The Home Depot’s merchandising and supply chain teams are working around the clock to replenish in-demand items like plumbing materials, wet/dry vacuums, generators, and cleaning supplies. 

In addition to numerous stores in the impacted areas, The Home Depot operates several technology centers in Texas, including one in Dallas and two in Austin, where cross-functional teams of engineers worked throughout the storms to maintain networks, platforms and applications supporting stores and other business operations.

The Home Depot’s employee assistance program, The Homer Fund, processed more than 1,300 grants for associates affected by the storms and has already provided more than $500,000 in emergency support.

In 2020, The Home Depot Foundation committed more than $4 million to natural disaster relief efforts. 

About The Home Depot Foundation
The Home Depot Foundation works to improve the homes and lives of U.S. veterans, train skilled tradespeople to fill the labor gap and support communities impacted by natural disasters. To date, the Foundation has invested more than $350 million in support of veterans in need and improved more than 48,000 veteran homes and facilities in more than 4,500 cities. The Foundation has pledged to invest half of a billion dollars in veteran causes by 2025. 

To learn more about The Home Depot Foundation, visit HomeDepotFoundation.org and follow us on Twitter @HomeDepotFound and on Facebook + Instagram @HomeDepotFoundation.

About The Home Depot 
The Home Depot is the world’s largest home improvement specialty retailer. At the end of fiscal 2020, the Company operated a total of 2,296 retail stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, 10 Canadian provinces and Mexico. In fiscal 2020, The Home Depot had sales of $132.1 billion and earnings of $12.9 billion. The company employs approximately 500,000 associates. The Home Depot’s stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: HD) and is included in the Dow Jones industrial average and Standard & Poor’s 500 index.

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SOURCE The Home Depot Foundation

CitizensNYC Honors Five Remarkable Women: Launches “The New Yorkers for New York” Campaign

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NEW YORK, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Citizens Committee for New York City (CitizensNYC) announced today the launch of its 2021 virtual fundraising campaign The New Yorkers for New York. The organization kicks off Women’s History Month by honoring five extraordinary women who are working to rethink, rebuild, and reimagine  New York City.

The five-month-long fundraising campaign will lift up the contributions women have made throughout New York’s history as well as their commitment to the city’s future. Each gift will be matched one-to-one, up to $150,000. CitizensNYC aims to raise $1.5 million dollars this year. This year’s honorees represent the breadth of culture, neighborhoods, and industries that New York City has to offer. Each month the campaign will highlight one of the five honorees who have committed to rolling up their sleeves to help the city recover from the pandemic. The showcase event is set to take place on Tuesday, June 22, 2021.

One of the nation’s oldest micro-funding organizations, CitizensNYC has a longstanding history of celebrating and supporting civic leaders. They have provided residents in the city’s most underserved neighborhoods with community, education, and small business improvement grants for the past 45 years. In 2020, CitizensNYC provided 402 projects with nearly $1.2M in direct cash grants, impacting more than 87,685 residents in 122 neighborhoods across all five boroughs.

This year’s honorees include:

Susan R. Cullman, The Activist, became the volunteer director of the Republican Coalition for Choice in 1991 and spent her days on the Hill and across the country, working with lawyers and consultants, raising money and supporting pro-choice Republican candidates. Susan, whose family established roots in NYC centuries ago, serves as a board member with several NYC nonprofits including Citizens Committee for New York City, The New York Women’s Foundation, The Avon and Mount Sinai Health System.

Nicole Lee, The Future, is a community advocate, entrepreneur, and candidate for The New York City Council, representing the 31st district. She is a CitizensNYC grantee partner with more than a decade of experience managing small businesses, serving as the founder of MotherGoose Daycare, Wink Beauty Parlour, and Journey Through Seth’s Eyes, which provides a safe environment and resources for children with special needs, all in her neighborhood of Jamaica Beach, Queens. 

Frida Polli PhD, The Entrepreneur, is an award-winning Harvard and MIT neuroscientist turned CEO. She was named one of Inc.’s Top 100 Female Founders in 2019, one of Entrepreneur’s Top 100 Powerful Women in 2020 and has received the MIT 100K, and HBS Life Science Award, a NARSAD Young Investigator Award. Frida is the CEO and co-founder of Pymetrics, a company leveraging soft skill science and AI to make workforce decisions more accurate and fair. Frida, along with her husband Conor Bastable, Partner at Davidson Kempner Capital Management, further demonstrate their love for NYC as active supporters of Robin Hood, The Urban League, Prep for Prep, and The Bowery Mission.

Sue Suh, The Optimist, is the Chief People Officer at TIME. She has spent most of the past decade at one of the world’s largest private philanthropies, the Rockefeller Foundation. Prior to Rockefeller, Sue spent five years in a variety of roles at the U.S. Departments of State and Defense in Washington, New York, and Tripoli, Libya, including a two-year stint at the U.S. Mission to the UN. A native New Yorker, Sue serves on the board of the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation, the Classical Theatre of Harlem and Special Olympics Asia-Pacific. She was a Fulbright Scholar in South Korea and a Presidential Management Fellow.

Rhina Valentin, The Creative, is a leading figure in New York City’s entertainment industry as the founder of La Reina del Barrio, Inc., a media and television production company. Born and bred in New York City,  Rhina is the talk show host of Colors of Rhina and has been the host of BronxNet’s OPEN Friday since 2006, and is a recipient of the 25 Bronx Influential Women of 2015 Award. She’s also a practitioner of Transcendental Meditation, is an advocate for domestic violence awareness and is currently Raising Money for S.T.E.A.M. programs in support of Puerto Rico, Colombia, and West Africa.

“We felt it was important this year to not only launch this campaign alongside Women’s History Month, and to ensure that our New Yorkers for New York honorees were reflective of the vast diversity of New York City — in a way that is reminiscent of the culture that we all know, love, and hold dear. Our distinguished honorees will play a key role in helping to shine a light on the New Yorkers that are most in need at this time,” said Dr. Rahsaan Harris, CEO of Citizens Committee for New York City.

CitizensNYC is seeking donations throughout The New Yorkers for New York campaign. To support the work of the organization and its grantee partners as they work to rebuild New York City, donate HERE.

About Citizen Committee for New York City:
Citizens Committee for New York City’s mission is to help New Yorkers – especially those in low-income areas – come together and improve the quality of life in their neighborhoods. Residents are uniquely situated to define and act on the issues affecting their communities. When provided with modest support, neighborhood and school groups can effectively mobilize with the assistance of grants, skills-building workshops, project planning assistance and an equipment share library. In 2020, CitizensNYC provided 402 projects with nearly $1.2M in direct cash grants, impacting more than 87,685 residents in 122 neighborhoods across all five boroughs. Since 1975, we have promoted the spirit of volunteerism, local engagement, and social justice that drives our work. Go to citizensnyc.org to learn more.

Additional Information:
Webpage: https://www.citizensnyc.org
Social Media: Twitter @citizensnyc | Instagram @citizenscommittee | Facebook.com/citizensnyc

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SOURCE Citizens Committee For New York City

MoneyGram Digital Business Continues Rapid Ascent with 30% of Company Transactions Now Digital

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MoneyGram_Phone_App

MoneyGram Online (MGO), the Company’s direct-to-consumer digital business, delivered 137% year-over-year cross-border transaction growth in January, its 13th consecutive month of triple-digit growth

Growth has also been led by the Company’s leading app as app transactions increased 161% year-over-year

DALLAS, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — MoneyGram International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MGI), a global leader in cross-border P2P payments and money transfers, today announced the Company delivered 137% year-over-year cross-border transaction growth for January in its direct-to-consumer digital business, MoneyGram Online (MGO), marking the thirteenth consecutive month of triple-digit year-over-year cross-border transaction growth in the channel. The Company’s consumer-centric app helped drive MGO growth as app transactions increased 161% year-over-year in January. Additionally, the Company announced another important milestone on its digital transformation journey as digital transactions accounted for a record 30% of all money transfer transactions in January.

“We’re pleased to report a strong start to the year, which demonstrates sustained momentum in consumer demand for our leading app and continued market share gains,” said Alex Holmes, MoneyGram Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “This has also brought our digital business to 30% of all money transfer transactions, resulting in a size and scale that has redefined MoneyGram’s business.”

The Company’s strong January results come on the heels of strong fourth quarter and full-year 2020 financial results. Earlier this week, MoneyGram reported a record number of digital customers in the fourth quarter of last year and 152% year-over-year cross-border transaction growth in MGO for the full-year. These results continue to be led by record digital growth and successful expense control measures.

“As MoneyGram leads the evolution of digital cross-border P2P payments and money transfers, we continue to execute our strategy to deliver the industry’s best customer experience,” said Kamila Chytil, MoneyGram Chief Operating Officer. “Our January results are yet another example of how our customer-centric app is delivering industry leading returns on investment and driving strong customer lifetime value.”

About MoneyGram International, Inc.
MoneyGram is a global leader in cross-border P2P payments and money transfers. Its consumer-centric capabilities enable family and friends to quickly and affordably send money in more than 200 countries and territories, with 90 now digitally enabled.

MoneyGram leverages its modern, mobile, and API-driven platform and collaborates with the world’s leading brands to serve millions of people each year through both its walk-in business and its direct-to-consumer digital business.

With a strong culture of innovation and a relentless focus on utilizing technology to deliver the world’s best customer experience, MoneyGram is leading the evolution of digital P2P payments.

For more information, please visit MoneyGram.com and follow @MoneyGram.

Media Contact
Stephen Reiff
Media@MoneyGram.com

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SOURCE MoneyGram

The United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Condemns Congresswoman Lesko’s Racist Remarks Restricting COVID-19 Vaccine Access

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WASHINGTON, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC), America’s largest Hispanic business organization, condemns the racist remarks by U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Lesko (R-AZ) about Hispanic Americans at the recent Energy & Commerce hearing on Thursday February 11, 2021. Hispanic Americans contribute $2.6 trillion to the U.S. economy each year and collectively are the world’s seventh largest economy.

“We condemn all racism, including remarks that cast negative stereotypes on the Hispanic community and imply Hispanic Americans do not belong in our country. To date, Hispanic Americans have been disproportionately impacted by this pandemic, with higher infection and mortality rates. This is due to the number of essential Hispanic workers providing healthcare, food service, and logistics in every American community. It is important that everyone has access to COVID-19 vaccines and we encourage Congress to promote equitable distribution of vaccines for all,” said Ramiro A. Cavazos, USHCC President & CEO. “We hope for a sincere apology from Congresswoman Lesko for her remarks so that we can get back to the important work of ending this pandemic and economic recovery.”

“We denounce Representative Lesko’s statement and any language that negatively portrays our Latino community and belies our substantial contributions to this country,” said Alice Rodriguez, Chair of the USHCC Board of Directors. “The data trends show that Latinos are the most represented among our frontline essential workers as well as our national economic growth and recovery process. These statements are unacceptable.”

Lesko made this statement on a proposed amendment to prioritize citizens for vaccines: 

Arizona is a border state. We are compassionate people too. We have a lot of different varieties of people that live here. It’s very diverse. I worked with people that are Hispanic. I mean they’re very good workers. We’re compassionate people, but for goodness sakes, we have to take care of American citizens, or people that are here legally, first. I’m just not going to be able to explain to my senior citizens that we’re giving away the vaccines to people that [are] here illegally. I just think that’s totally wrong.”

The abhorrent comments came days before the United States reached the sad milestone of 500,000 deaths from the COVID-19 virus, affecting so many families from all walks of life.

“We agree with the Department of Homeland Security that ‘equal access to the COVID-19 vaccines… for undocumented immigrants… is a moral and public health imperative.’ Further, we invite Congresswoman Lesko to engage in a discussion about how to best protect all lives in Arizona, regardless of age or status,” said Monica Villalobos, President & CEO, Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.  

Arizona and our entire country have experienced great loss due to the pandemic.  The statements made by Congresswoman Lesko regarding Hispanic Arizonans with the second highest impacted community at 30% infection rate and 29% in deaths, is both inhumane and ill-informed.  These types of comments by a leader of our state only serve to disenfranchise and create distrust at a time when we must work together.  This is not the language of someone who is working for all their constituents during a time of true life and death circumstances,” added Isabel Georgelos, President & CEO, Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

About the USHCC The United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) actively promotes the economic growth, development, and interests of more than 4.7 million Hispanic-owned businesses, that combined, contribute over $800 billion to the American economy every year. It advocates on behalf of its network of more than 250 local chambers and business associations nationwide. For more information, please visit ushcc.com. Follow us on Twitter @USHCC.

SOURCE United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC)

Ardent Mills Announces Intent To Acquire Hinrichs Trading Company Operations

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DENVER, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Ardent Mills, the premier flour-milling and ingredient company, today announced its intention to purchase substantially all of the business operations of Hinrichs Trading Company, the North American leader in chickpea sourcing, cleaning, and packing. The move comes as part of Ardent Mills’ strategic growth plan to further invest in specialty ingredient capabilities and diversify its portfolio of solutions, building upon its existing wheat flour business. The parties are continuing with due diligence and expect the deal to close in April 2021.   

Headquartered in Pullman, Washington, Hinrichs Trading Company currently operates across five locations in Washington and Montana. Family-owned, Hinrichs Trading Company has over 30 years of chickpea experience, having been involved in the production of the ingredient since it was first introduced into the U.S.

“Ardent Mills and Hinrichs Trading Company share a strong commitment to our growers, customers, team members, communities, and to growth and innovation,” said Dan Dye, CEO of Ardent Mills. “There is a strong cultural alignment and shared values across both organizations. We look forward to welcoming the talented Hinrichs Trading Company team to the Ardent Mills family.”

The parties expect the deal will help customers bring innovative products to market to meet growing consumer demand for plant-based and specialty ingredients.

“We were looking for a partner that had the expertise to take the chickpea market to the next level and provide new opportunities for our team members and our growers,” said Phil Hinrichs, CEO of Hinrichs Trading Company. “Ardent Mills is that partner. They bring operational and technical expertise, access to new markets, and the ability to scale quickly and sustainably. Hinrichs Trading Company complements that with our extensive chickpea sourcing knowledge and extremely close grower connections. We’re excited about the opportunity to partner with Ardent Mills as we share a similar values-based culture and a solid vision for growth.”

Upon closing, this will be another step in Ardent Mills’ commitment to the future of specialty ingredients and plant genetics, which supports growth for its customers through The Annex by Ardent Mills. Highlights include:

  • Acquisition of Andean Naturals’ quinoa operations in February 2020.
  • Acquisition of an organic grain elevator in Klamath Falls, Oregon.
  • Added capabilities in its Denver RiNo community mill to clean and pack specialty grains.

“The plant-based food and beverage market shows no sign of slowing down. In fact, we continue to see significant growth as consumers look to foods that align with their individual values – both personal and planetary,” said Shrene White, general manager of The Annex by Ardent Mills. “Ardent Mills has made proactive investments to meet this demand. This potential venture will enable us to offer diverse chickpea solutions to our customers from day one.”

To learn more about how Ardent Mills is nourishing what’s next, please visit www.ardentmills.com.

About Ardent Mills 
Ardent Mills is the premier flour-milling and ingredient company whose vision is to be the trusted partner in nurturing its customers, consumers, and communities through innovative and nutritious grain-based solutions. Ardent Mills’ operations and services are supported by more than 35 flour mills, a specialty bakery, two mix facilities, a gluten-free facility, and The Annex by Ardent Mills (The Annex), a dedicated team committed to cultivating the future of specialty grains and plant-based ingredients. The Annex has a broad portfolio that includes quinoa, ancient and heirloom grains, gluten-free, organic grains and flours, chickpeas, as well as innovations such as Sustagrain® High-Fiber Barley, White Sonora, and heirloom wheat. Deeply rooted in communities throughout North America, Ardent Mills’ operations are located in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico and the company is headquartered in Denver, Colorado. Ardent Mills employs more than 100 certified millers, supporting thousands of local jobs and contributing billions of dollars to local economies. To learn more about Ardent Mills, visit ardentmills.com.

About Hinrichs Trading Company
Hinrichs Trading Company (HTC) is a full-service pulse origination and processing company specializing in the production and processing of high-quality garbanzo bean (chickpea) products. HTC contracts production of garbanzo beans with trusted, long-term growers, across the US production areas. Learn more about Hinrichs Trading Company, visit https://hinrichstrading.com/.

Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1444469/Ardent_Mills_Logo.jpg   

SOURCE Ardent Mills

Public Health Focuses on Dangers of Menthol Cigarettes Reaching Those Most Impacted by Menthol Use – Black Communities, LGBTQ and Young Adults

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LOS ANGELES, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) launches its first quit menthol cigarette campaign to address the risks and harms of menthol tobacco use within communities most exposed to menthol – Black communities, LGBTQ, and young adults. Menthol and other flavors in tobacco hides the harsh taste of tobacco with a cool or minty flavor which can result in smokers inhaling deeper into the lungs resulting in greater exposure to the harmful and addictive chemicals. Black communities are among the highest groups of menthol smokers in LA County. Also, according to the 2018 California Youth Tobacco Survey, all high school students in LA County who reported smoking cigarettes only smoked menthol/mint cigarettes.

“The tobacco industry has disproportionately marketed menthol cigarettes in Black communities as well as towards LGBTQ and youth. Over 12 percent of African American smokers in LA County reported smoking menthol cigarettes compared to just over 3% of white smokers,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director of Public Health. “Public Health continues the efforts towards reversing the harmful effects tobacco has done in these communities.”

The Black community uses menthol tobacco products at a higher rate than other smokers. For decades, the tobacco industry has used aggressive advertising tactics to attract Black, LGBTQ, and young people to use and become addicted to menthol cigarettes. The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids has just released a new report titled, Stopping Menthol, Saving Lives, documenting the tobacco industry’s heavy and deliberate marketing in Black communities, especially towards Black youth, for more than 60 years and as a result the impact the Black community has unfairly suffered from tobacco use.

This media and public education campaign satirizes cigarette ads, acknowledging the impact of glamour and style, using these attributes to help inform about the health risks of smoking menthol cigarettes. The campaign will work with Los Angeles based Black-owned media and Spanish media networks for in-language messaging and to reach the audiences most impacted by the tobacco industry’s marketing tactics. The campaign efforts will include radio, online and social media advertisements, as well as place-based and outdoor advertisements such as posters at convenience store locations.

The campaign encourages people to call 1-800-NO-BUTTS (1-800-45-NO-FUME in Spanish) for free counseling and help to start a quit plan. People can also visit LAQuits.com/menthol for resources to help quit.

The Department of Public Health is committed to protecting and improving the health of over 10 million residents of Los Angeles County. Through a variety of programs, community partnerships and services, Public Health oversees environmental health, disease control, and community and family health. Nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health comprises nearly 4,100 employees and has an annual budget of $1 billion. To learn more about Los Angeles County Public Health, visit PublicHealth.LACounty.gov, and follow LA County Public Health on social media at twitter.com/LAPublicHealth, facebook.com/LAPublicHealth, instagram.com/LApublichealth and youtube.com/LAPublicHealth.

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health works to protect health, prevent disease, and promote health and well-being.

For more information contact:
Sibongile West
o: 310—487-8289
swest@youngcomms.com

 

SOURCE The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health

Toyota Mobility Foundation Designates First Mobility Pilot Technologies and Collaborators for Indiana Future Mobility District Initiative

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IndySkyline

INDIANAPOLIS, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Today, the Toyota Mobility Foundation (TMF) and Energy Systems Network (ESN) designates May Mobility and Udelv as the first two deployments of the Future Mobility District initiative. The Future Mobility District initiative, established in collaboration with the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC), aims to foster innovation through industry partnerships and propel research and development in advanced mobility technologies in Indiana. TMF has established the Future Mobility District initiative in support of Toyota’s mission of Mobility for All and commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, in this case to the Goal # 11 of Sustainable Cities and Communities.

The Future Mobility District will support deployments focused on improving overall movement of people and goods to validate their role in the changing mobility ecosystem. Designed with local community input, this human-centered framework will facilitate implementation activities and commercialization of an array of cooperative options.

May Mobility, a leader in autonomous vehicle (AV) technology and shuttle operations, will begin operating two 6-month non-concurrent AV shuttle services for passengers in the cities of Indianapolis and Fishers. The Indianapolis deployment is designed to increase mobility options by providing a connection from the nearby Vermont Station – along IndyGO’s Red Line – to areas west of downtown. The fixed-route service will be open to the general public when operations begin in May 2021 and will include five Lexus RX450h vehicles equipped with May Mobility’s autonomous technology alongside one wheelchair-accessible Polaris GEM shuttle.

“The May Mobility team is thrilled to be partnering with the Toyota Mobility Foundation and Energy Systems Network to bring this new AV shuttle service to Indianapolis and Fishers,” said Edwin Olson, co-founder and CEO of May Mobility. “Our mission is to offer safe, reliable and accessible transportation options that can seamlessly integrate with the available public and private services. And with every new deployment, we are able to expand our capabilities to better serve the riders and communities.”

Prior to launching its operations, May Mobility will establish its regional headquarters at the Indiana Internet of Things (IoT) Lab in Fishers. Founded in 2017, the Indiana IoT Lab is one of the nation’s first to bring together various players in the growing IoT sector and contributes to making central Indiana a thriving hub of innovation, education, and networking opportunities. May Mobility will subsequently commence autonomous vehicle operations in Fishers in November 2021.

We’ve built our community to be smart and entrepreneurial in both business and lifestyle to make way for opportunities such as this,” said Fishers Mayor Scott Fadness. “The partnership with ESN, Toyota Mobility Foundation, and May Mobility allows Fishers to be at the forefront of personal mobility in Indiana.”

Udelv, the world’s leading autonomous delivery platform for last and middle mile delivery, improves living quality in cities by reducing overall traffic and carbon footprint through their highly effective and innovative Delivery Management System (DMS), comprised of an automated cargo pod (the uPod®) and a cloud-based operating system, the UdelvOS. Udelv’s DMS is the only true contactless delivery system in the world. Through Udelv’s uPod, goods are retrieved from an individual compartment by consumers without direct contact with the vehicle’s driver. Udelv will begin operations of their program in 2021 in Indianapolis with one Toyota Sienna equipped with their innovative DMS technology.

“We are excited to now also deploy our platform on a Toyota Sienna in Indianapolis and allow for true contactless delivery and improved customer service levels while lowering cost and pollution in the process”, says Daniel Laury, CEO of Udelv.

“As we actively pursue Mobility for All through our Future Mobility District initiative, we want to continue to partner with like-minded organizations like Udelv and May Mobility who understand the importance of advancing innovation in mobility through community engagement,” shared Ryan Klem, Director of Programs for the Toyota Mobility Foundation. “We are confident they are key players in helping to build the future of sustainable cities and communities.

“The introduction of the Indiana Future Mobility District’s first two mobility services are major steps forward for defining the initiative and validating its model for cost-effective and cooperative mobility technologies,” said Matt Peak, managing director, ESN. “The integration of additive technologies into the region’s existing transportation resources will continue to push central Indiana to the cutting edge of innovation and help inform deployment strategies in other regions.”

Additional details about the Future Mobility District initiative deployments and how to get involved will be made available in the coming months leading up to the launch of these pilots.

About Toyota Mobility Foundation
The Toyota Mobility Foundation was established in August 2014 to support the development of a more mobile society. The Foundation aims to support strong and equitable mobility systems. It utilizes Toyota’s expertise in technology, safety, and the environment, working in collaboration with universities, government, non-profit organizations, research institutions and other organizations to address mobility issues around the world. Solutions till date have aimed at resolving urban transportation problems, expanding the utilization of multi-modal mobility and developing solutions for future generations.

About Energy Systems Network
ESN is an Indianapolis-based nonprofit initiative focused on the development of the advanced energy technology and transportation sectors. Over the last decade, ESN has collaborated with a range of industry, academia, and government partners to deliver sustainable energy and mobility solutions, including electric car sharing, vehicle-to-smart grid communications, mobility-as-a-service, and others. ESN’s mission is to leverage its network of global thought leaders to develop integrated energy solutions to increase quality of life for today and tomorrow. The company’s focus is to: reduce costs, emissions and waste; influence policy; and advance technological innovation. For more information, and to download Emerging Mobility Technologies and Trends, visit www.energysystemsnetwork.com.

About IEDC
The Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) leads the state of Indiana’s economic development efforts, helping businesses launch, grow and locate in the state. Governed by a 15-member board chaired by Governor Eric J. Holcomb, the IEDC manages many initiatives, including performance-based tax credits, workforce training grants, innovation and entrepreneurship resources, public infrastructure assistance, and talent attraction and retention efforts. For more information about the IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov. 

About May Mobility
May Mobility is a leader in autonomous vehicle technology development and deployment. With more than 270,000 autonomous rides to date, May Mobility is committed to delivering safe, efficient and sustainable shuttle solutions designed to complement today’s public transportation options. The company’s ultimate goal is to realize a world where self-driving systems make transportation more accessible and reliable, the roads safer, and encourage better land use in order to foster more green, vibrant, and livable spaces. For more information, visit maymobility.com. 

About Udelv
On a mission to improve people’s lives, road safety and deliver a sustainable industry, Udelv is revolutionizing the logistics space with its Autonomous Delivery Vans (ADV), built specifically for last and middle mile delivery on public roads. Founded in California in late 2017 by Daniel Laury and Akshat Patel, Udelv’s mission is to revolutionize delivery and shape the future of autonomous deliveries. In January 2018, Udelv successfully accomplished the first ever autonomous delivery on public roads. Udelv has since completed nearly 30,000 deliveries for multiple merchants in CA, AZ and TX and is preparing for expansion in many other states. Udelv is the leader in the last and middle mile logistics space through its proprietary delivery & access platform. Udelv’s focus on autonomous vehicles paired with its uPod delivery technology enable long-range and high-capacity deliveries that are eco, business and customer friendly. For more information, visit www.udelv.com.

About City of Fishers
The City of Fishers is a suburb of Indianapolis, Indiana, located in Hamilton County and was named #1 Place to Live in the US by Money Magazine in 2017. Under the leadership of Mayor Scott Fadness, Fishers is known as a smart, vibrant, and entrepreneurial city through its neighborhood development, dedication to supporting high-growth companies, and innovative city processes. With a population of 91,832 (2017), Fishers is one of the fastest growing communities in Indiana and has received national accolades for entrepreneurship, livability, and safety. City branding guidelines and logos can be downloaded here.

Media Contacts: 
Julie Ann Burandt (TMF) – info@toyota-mf.org
Drew Tharp (ESN) – drew@energysystemsnetwork.com
Erin Sweitzer (IEDC) – 317-296-2556 or esweitzer@iedc.in.gov
Afaf Farah (May Mobility) – 248-346-0407 or afaf@telemetryagency.com
Tobias Wessels (Udelv) – press@udelv.com 
Ashley Elrod (City of Fishers, IN) – 317-903-9825 or elroda@fishers.in.us 

Photo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1444877/IndySkyline.jpg 
Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/439685/Toyota_Corp_Red_Logo.jpg

 

SOURCE Toyota Mobility Foundation

Texas home sales, median price break records while housing inventory hits all-time low

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Texas Association of Realtors logo.

AUSTIN, Texas, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/– For the sixth consecutive year, the Texas housing market broke records in terms of the number of homes sold and median price, while inventory levels hit a critical all-time low, according to the 2020 Texas Real Estate Year in Review report released today by Texas Realtors.

Texas Association of Realtors logo.

Texas real estate sales broke records despite being in the middle of a pandemic,” said Marvin Jolly, 2021 chairman of Texas Realtors. “Housing inventory dropped to historically low levels in many areas of the state, and that shortage of homes for sale made many markets extremely favorable to sellers and challenging for buyers.”

Home sales across the state increased 9.5% in 2020, with 393,615 homes sold. This is a larger increase than the 3.8% increase in 2019.

Housing inventory dropped to 1.7 months of inventory, a decrease of 1.3 months from 2019. According to the Texas Real Estate Research Center, a market balanced between supply and demand has between 6.0 and 6.5 months of inventory.

Median home price increased 8% from the prior year to $259,230. Price class distribution showed that the largest percentage of homes sold across the state (34.5%) fell in the $200,000$299,000 price range.

“The 2021 housing market will be characterized by strong demand with low inventories accompanied by strong price growth,” explained Luis Torres, Ph.D., research economist with the Texas Real Estate Research Center at Texas A&M University. “Inventories of homes priced under $300,000 will be especially low, affecting sales in that price range. The economic recovery helped by the additional federal fiscal stimulus and vaccination rates will contribute to Texas housing demand in 2021.”

Active listings statewide declined 22.1% from 2019 to 2020. Homes spent an average of 55 days on the market, four days less than 2019.

Chairman Jolly concluded, “Rising home prices coupled with the housing shortage has made affordability a challenge across our state. These issues remain top of mind for Texas Realtors as we continue through the 87th legislative session. We will continue to champion legislation that will ensure homeownership remains attainable and a sound investment for years to come.”

About the Texas Real Estate Year in Review Report
Data for the Texas Real Estate Year in Review Report is provided by the Data Relevance Project, a partnership among local REALTOR® associations, their MLSs, and Texas REALTORS®, with analysis by the Texas Real Estate Research Center at Texas A&M University. The report provides annual real estate sales data from a statewide perspective and for 25 metropolitan statistical areas in Texas. To view the report in its entirety, visit TexasRealEstate.com.

About Texas REALTORS®
With more than 140,000 members, Texas REALTORS® is a professional membership organization that represents all aspects of real estate in Texas. We are the advocates for REALTORS® and private property rights in Texas. Visit texasrealestate.com to learn more.

Contact:

Morgan Moritz
mmoritz@piercom.com

Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1317682/Texas_Realtors_Logo.jpg

 

SOURCE Texas Realtors

JINS Eyewear Will Open its 3rd Bay Area Store at Hillsdale Shopping Center in San Mateo on March 1st

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Grand Opening Special: For every customer in the first 2 weeks, with any purchase of glasses or sunglasses, get 1 free JINS SCREEN Boxed blue light glasses (ready-made as non-prescription). Available in Adult and Kids sizes (regular retail $50 for Adults and $30 for Kids). Limited time offer until March 14th, 2021.

SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — JINS Eyewear, Japan’s largest eyewear brand by volume, officially announces its 6th store in the United States will open on March 1st, 2021, located at Hillsdale Shopping Center. JINS, a 5-star rated eyewear brand in Silicon Valley, will open its 3rd location in the Bay Area at 60 31st Avenue, San Mateo, CA 94403 on the upper level close to Pandora. Despite these tough times during the pandemic, JINS wants to expand their services to more communities in the Bay Area and are happy to be a part of the San Mateo community. Visit JINS Hillsdale by booking an appointment to secure your spot, or walk-ins welcome if available. Open daily 11:00am to 7:00pm.

Grand Opening Special: For every customer in the first 2 weeks, with any purchase of glasses or sunglasses, get 1 free JINS SCREEN Boxed blue light glasses (ready-made as non-prescription). Available in Adult and Kids sizes (regular retail $50 for Adults and $30 for Kids). Limited time offer until March 14th, 2021.

Over 430 Eyewear Styles and All-In-One Pricing
The brand new store houses over 430 styles of eyeglasses, ranging from Airframe lightweight glasses, to Alternative Fit frames, suited for low nose bridges, and more. Adult and Kids sizes are available. The store will continue to feature signature 30-minute prescription glasses (depending on lens availability). Glasses start at $60, with premium quality lenses included: high index up to 1.74, aspheric, UV cut, anti-glare, and hard coatings — all at no extra charge. Customers can continue to use their out-of-network vision insurance benefits for reimbursement. JINS has two other stores in the Bay Area: San Francisco’s Union Square (flagship) and Santa Clara’s Westfield Valley Fair.

Customers’ health and safety is JINS’ number one priority, they have COVID-19 safety measures in place, and details can be found here. Eye exams for now will not be available at opening.

Grand Opening Special: Free Blue Light Glasses until 3/14
JINS at Hillsdale Shopping Center kicks off their grand opening with a special promotion to welcome the surrounding community. For every customer in the first 2 weeks: With any purchase of glasses or sunglasses, get 1 free JINS SCREEN Boxed blue light glasses (ready-made as non-prescription). Available in Adult and Kids sizes (regular retail $50 for Adults and $30 for Kids). Limited time offer until March 14th, 2021.

Limited Time Offer: $60 $0 Blue Light Lenses
With more working from home or distance learning, many are spending alarming longer hours looking at digital devices each day. JINS wants to help in these times. They have a limited time offer for free blue light lens upgrades ($60 regular retail). Available online and in stores. Their blue light lenses called JINS SCREEN block blue light and reduce digital eye strain, as proven in the clinical study conducted by Keio University. JINS has already sold over 12 million pairs of blue light glasses in the US and Japan.

About JINS
JINS believes in Eyewear Fit for All. With stylish, innovative eyewear and thoughtful design, they encourage customers to explore their personal style, without having to worry about budget. Not only are they here to help you see the world better, but they also want our world to be a better place to see. Their Cases for Causes program collaborates with local nonprofits, with beautifully designed cases to support their missions. 100% of case sales goes back to the nonprofits. The brand has 640 retail stores globally in Japan, China, Taiwan, Philippines, and Hong Kong, including 6 U.S. stores, in the San Francisco Bay Area: Union Square, San Jose, San Mateo, and in Los Angeles: Sherman Oaks, Arcadia, and Torrance.

Find JINS on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
For additional information, visit: https://www.jins.com/us

JINS Press Contact
JINS US Marketing
Marketing@us.jins.com

JINS Logo

Photo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1444569/JINS_SCREEN.jpg
Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1444568/JINS_Logo.jpg

SOURCE JINS Eyewear

Ismael Cala has opened the “Cala Center” in Miami, a unique comprehensive training space for leaders

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MIAMI, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The author, communicator and strategist Ismael Cala has opened the CALA CENTER in Miami, a multipurpose space to host his main events as well as to welcome other happenings to the region.

“The Cala Center is a comprehensive training space for activating the five senses, but also that sixth sense that connects us with nature, with what we are beyond our bodies and with that high-consciousness vibration, of the leaders we want to train,” Cala explained.

Located in the southern part of downtown Miami, the Cala Center will be the setting for courses, seminars, and workshops on positive psychology, exponential mindful leadership, epigenetics, neurosciences, emotional intelligence, assertive communication and other activities requested by both the corporate sector and the people.

“After the pandemic, now more than ever, the world needs places where they can disconnect and create peace in the midst of so much uncertainty,” Cala added.

The center’s opening coincides with some events postponed by the Covid-19 pandemic being resumed, all with increased health safety precautions.

The first in-person workshop given was “Reprogram your Brain: Build Your New Version,” which will be followed by “The Science of Forgiving: the Antidote to Anxiety and Depression” (Saturday, February 27) and “Five Pillars for Creating Personal Strength” (with Jacques Giraud, Saturday, March 13).

“Safety is our top priority. Health and safety norms and protocols established by Miami-Dade County will be respected on the date of each activity,” the company Cala Enterprises clarified.

The Cala Center will also be open to community, social, cultural and family events.

The Cala Center:

19091 SW 160th St. Miami, FL 33187
www.ismaelcala.com/calacenter/
WhatsApp: +1 305 360 9940

SOURCE Cala Enterprises

Toyota Pledges $1 Million To Support Texans Impacted By Historic Winter Storm

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TOYOTA PLEDGES $1 MILLION TO SUPPORT TEXANS IMPACTED BY HISTORIC WINTER STORM

PLANO, Texas, Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — With Winter Storm Uri leaving millions of Texans without power or water last week, North Texas-based Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) has pledged $1 million in relief for storm victims.  The aid will serve both customers and a variety of Texas-based non-profit organizations.

TOYOTA PLEDGES $1 MILLION TO SUPPORT TEXANS IMPACTED BY HISTORIC WINTER STORM

“We take our role as community leaders seriously, so when winter storms affected millions right in our backyard, our top priority became helping Texas get back on its feet after this ordeal,” said Sean Suggs, group vice president of Social Innovation, TMNA. “Texans have supported our company in myriad ways, and we want to help our neighbors emerge from this storm stronger than ever.”

The $1 million relief effort includes:

North Texas/DFW Metroplex

  • United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, in support of North Texas Cares and West Dallas nonprofits to quickly distribute funds to grassroots organizations: $450,000
  • North Texas Food Bank: $100,000
  • The Family Place and Genesis Women’s Shelter to fund hotel rooms, food, and transportation for their clients: $30,000
  • Toyota employees will be able to support the needs of four North Texas community partners significantly impacted by the storms by purchasing items from their Amazon Wish Lists.

San Antonio

  • SAWS Community Pipe Repair Fund, through the San Antonio Area Foundation to assist individuals and families stay in their homes safely with funds for plumbing repairs: $100,000
  • Let’s Help SA Fund to provide food, water and shelter: $200,000

Houston

  • United Way of Greater Houston to support the Greater Houston 2021 Winter Storm Relief Fund that supports local home repairs: $50,000
  • Houston Food Bank: $50,000
  • CrowdSource Rescue to provide food, water and fuel: $20,000

Toyota offers support to all U.S.-based employees with their personal recovery efforts from unexpected catastrophic events.  Additionally, Toyota will match up to $10,000 in individual employee contributions to nonprofit organizations recovering from the storm.

Toyota Financial Services (TFS) announced it is offering payment relief options to customers affected by the storms. This broad outreach includes any TFS or Lexus Financial Services customer in the designated disaster areas.  Impacted lease and finance customers residing in affected areas may be eligible to take advantage of several payment relief options, some of which include:

  • extensions and lease deferred payments
  • redirecting billing statements
  • arranging phone or online payments

About Toyota

Toyota (NYSE:TM) has been a part of the cultural fabric in the U.S. for more than 60 years, and is committed to advancing sustainable, next-generation mobility through our Toyota and Lexus brands, plus our nearly 1,500 dealerships. 

Toyota has created a tremendous value chain and directly employs more than 36,000 in the U.S. The company has contributed world-class design, engineering, and assembly of more than 30 million cars and trucks at our 9 manufacturing plants, 10 including our joint venture in Alabama that begins production in 2021.

To help inspire the next generation for a career in STEM-based fields, including mobility, Toyota launched its virtual education hub at www.TourToyota.com with an immersive experience and chance to visit many of our U.S. manufacturing facilities. The hub also includes a series of free STEM-based lessons and curriculum through Toyota USA Foundation partners, virtual field trips and more. For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyotanewsroom.com.

Contact:  
Victor Vanov
Victor.vanov@toyota.com; 469.292.1318

 

SOURCE Toyota Motor North America

Keurig Dr Pepper Reports Strong Finish to 2020

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Keurig_Dr_Pepper_logo

BURLINGTON, Mass and PLANO, Texas, Feb. 25, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Keurig Dr Pepper Inc. (NASDAQ: KDP) today reported financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2020 and provided guidance for 2021.   

Reported GAAP Basis

Adjusted Basis1

Q4

FY 2020

Q4

FY 2020

Net Sales

   % vs Prior Year

  % vs Prior Year – Constant Currency

$3.12 bn

6.4%

6.6%

$11.62 bn

4.5%

5.0%

$3.12 bn

6.4%

6.6%

$11.62 bn

4.5%

5.0%

Diluted EPS

   % vs Prior Year

$0.30

3.4%

$0.93

5.7%

$0.39

11.4%

$1.40

14.8%

Earlier today the Company announced a 25% increase in its annualized dividend rate to $0.75 per share, from the current $0.60 per share, effective with the Company’s regular quarterly dividend to be announced in the second quarter of 2021, subject to official declaration by the Board of Directors.  This 25% increase will result in growth of 12.5% in dividends paid in 2021 and another 11.1% increase in 2022, given the calendar timing of both the increase and dividend payments.

Commenting on the announcements, Chairman and CEO Bob Gamgort stated, “KDP again delivered on its annual financial commitments in 2020, capped by a strong fourth quarter with exceptional growth in net sales that was driven by market share gains across our portfolio and accelerated household adoption of the Keurig system. During the year, we implemented robust protocols to keep our employees safe, enhanced our portfolio with innovative new products and strategic partnerships, invested in our supply chain for growth, delivered our corporate responsibility goals and supported our communities. While we expect 2021 to be another challenging and unpredictable year, we’re confident in our ability to deliver the final year of the merger commitments communicated in 2018.  We are also confident in our ongoing strong free cash flow generation, which will enable us to return incremental value to our shareholders, while continuing to delever to our targeted level by year-end.”

Full-year 2020 highlights:

  • Successfully responded to the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping employees safe, delivering for customers and providing for the communities that KDP serves.
  • Delivered strong net sales growth and double-digit Adjusted diluted EPS growth.
  • Grew market share2 in more than 90% of the Company’s cold beverage retail base.
  • Added approximately three million new U.S. households using the Keurig coffee system.
  • Strengthened and expanded KDP’s direct-store-delivery network through multiple transactions, including a long-term agreement with Polar Beverages.
  • Reduced financial obligations by more than $1.1 billion, with $240 million of unrestricted cash on hand, and improved KDP’s management leverage ratio by 0.9x to 3.6x at year-end 2020.
  • Meaningfully advanced KDP’s sustainability agenda, achieving key 2020 goals.
  • Transferred KDP’s stock exchange listing to Nasdaq and entered the Nasdaq-100 Index, supporting KDP’s evolution into a Modern Beverage Company.

2020 Full Year Consolidated Results
Net sales for the full year of 2020 increased 4.5% to $11.62 billion, compared to $11.12 billion in the year-ago period.  On a constant currency basis, net sales increased 5.0%, driven by higher volume/mix of 5.6%, partially offset by lower net price realization of 0.6%. 

KDP in-market performance remained strong for the year, with dollar market share advancing in more than 90% of KDP’s cold beverage retail base, including CSDs3, premium unflavored still water, teas and fruit drinks, vegetable juice, apple juice and apple sauce. This performance reflected the strength of Dr Pepper, Canada Dry and A&W CSDs, CORE hydration and evian premium water, Snapple tea and juice drinks, Clamato vegetable juice and Motts apple juice and apple sauce.  In coffee, retail consumption of single-serve pods manufactured by KDP grew nearly 10% in IRi tracked channels, with accelerated growth in e-commerce, partially offset by significant declines in away from home office and hospitality businesses.  In U.S. tracked channels, dollar market share of KDP manufactured pods remained strong at 83%.

GAAP operating income increased 4.3% to $2.48 billion, compared to $2.38 billion in the year-ago period, driven by the strong net sales growth, continued productivity and merger synergies and lower discretionary expenses, primarily marketing.  Partially offsetting these factors were the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, which included $128 million of COVID-19 related costs and a $67 million non-cash impairment charge on the Bai brand.  Also unfavorably impacting the comparison were increased operating expenses associated with higher consumer demand, inflation in logistics and certain other COVID-19 related costs. Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income increased 10.4% to $3.19 billion, compared to $2.89 billion in the year-ago period, and Adjusted operating margin increased 150 basis points to 27.5%.  On a constant currency basis, Adjusted operating income grew 10.8%.

Total COVID-19 related operating costs were $150 million in 2020, including the aforementioned $128 million in costs recognized as items affecting comparability.  These costs primarily reflected temporary compensation increases and incentives for front-line employees, as well as incremental health and safety measures across our employee base and enhanced sanitation expenses for our facilities. The remainder of the costs, totaling $22 million, were included in Adjusted results and represented inventory write-downs and bad debt expense in the first half of the year.

GAAP net income for the full year advanced 5.7% to $1.33 billion, or $0.93 per diluted share, compared to $1.25 billion, or $0.88 per diluted share in the year-ago period. This performance was driven by the growth in operating income, lower interest expense, reflecting continued deleveraging that was partially offset by comparison to prior year gains on interest rate swap contracts, and a lower effective tax rate, stemming from favorable valuation adjustments and discrete tax items. These drivers were partially offset by the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, including the COVID-19 related costs, the non-cash impairment charge on the Bai brand and other non-cash impairment charges on equity investments incurred in 2020. Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted net income for the year increased 15% to $1.99 billion, compared to $1.73 billion in the year-ago period, and Adjusted diluted EPS for 2020 increased 15% to $1.40, compared to $1.22 in the year-ago period.

KDP generated exceptionally strong free cash flow of $2.20 billion in 2020, reflecting growth in operating income and ongoing effective working capital management. The free cash flow performance enabled KDP to reduce total financial obligations by $1.12 billion and the Company ended the year with $240 million of unrestricted cash on hand.  The Company’s management leverage ratio declined to 3.6x at the end of 2020, compared to 4.5x at the end of 2019, primarily reflecting the reduction in bank debt and strong earnings growth.  Since the close of the merger in July 2018, KDP’s management leverage ratio has declined by 2.4x.

________________________________________

1 Adjusted financial metrics used in this release are non-GAAP. See reconciliations of GAAP results to Adjusted results in the accompanying tables.   

2 Market share and retail consumption data based on Keurig Dr Pepper’s custom IRi category definitions for the 13- and 52-week periods ending 12/27/2020.

3 CSDs refer to “Carbonated Soft Drinks”.

2020 Full Year Segment Results

Coffee Systems
Net sales in 2020 increased 4.7% to $4.43 billion, compared to $4.23 billion in the year-ago period, reflecting higher volume/mix of 7.2%, partially offset by lower net price realization of 2.4%.  Also impacting the net sales performance was unfavorable foreign currency translation of 0.1%.  On a constant currency basis, net sales advanced 4.8%.

The volume/mix growth of 7.2% reflected strong pod volume growth of 6.3% and exceptionally strong brewer volume growth of 21%. Pod growth was driven by double-digit at-home consumption, partially offset by a significant decline in the away-from-home business, as work-from-home trends were elevated for most of the year.  The strong brewer growth was driven by continued innovation, marketing investments to grow household penetration and a very successful holiday season.  For the full year, U.S. households regularly using a Keurig brewer increased approximately 10% to 33 million households.

Operating income increased 4.0% to $1.27 billion in 2020, compared to $1.22 billion in the year-ago period.  This performance reflected the growth in net sales, continued productivity and merger synergies and lower discretionary spending, partially offset by unfavorable margin mix related to the exceptionally strong brewer growth and the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, including $25 million in costs related to COVID-19.  Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income increased 7.9% to $1.51 billion, compared to $1.40 billion in the year-ago period, and Adjusted operating margin increased 110 basis points to 34.2%. On a constant currency basis, Adjusted operating income grew 8.0%.

Packaged Beverages
Net sales in 2020 increased 8.5% to $5.36 billion, compared to $4.95 billion in the year-ago period, reflecting favorable volume/mix of 8.2% and higher net price realization of 0.3%. This strong performance reflected market share growth across the portfolio, with particular strength in CSDs, premium unflavored water, juice, apple sauce and mixers, partially offset by softness in enhanced flavored water due to a slowdown in the convenience and gas channels for most of the year.

Brands driving the strong net sales performance were Dr Pepper, A&W, Canada Dry, 7UP, Squirt and Sunkist CSDs, Core Hydration and evian premium water, Motts juices, Snapple teas and juice drinks, A Shoc energy, Clamato, Real Lemon and mixers, partially offset by a decline in Bai.

Operating income increased 8.6% to $0.82 billion in 2020, compared to $0.76 billion in the year-ago period, reflecting the strong growth in net sales, lower discretionary expenses, and continued productivity and merger synergies.  These growth drivers were partially offset by higher operating costs to meet strong consumer demand, inflation in logistics and the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, including $101 million in costs related to COVID-19 and a $67 million non-cash impairment charge on the Bai brand.  Excluding these and other items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income increased 30% to $1.02 billion, compared to $0.78 billion in the prior year, and Adjusted operating margin increased 320 basis points to 19.0%. On a constant currency basis, Adjusted operating income grew 31%.

Beverage Concentrates
Net sales in 2020 decreased 6.3% to $1.33 billion, compared to $1.41 billion in the year-ago period, reflecting unfavorable volume/mix of 5.8%, lower net price realization of 0.4% and unfavorable foreign currency translation of 0.1%. This performance primarily reflected the negative impact of COVID-19 on the fountain foodservice business, which primarily serves the restaurant and hospitality channels, due to significantly reduced consumer mobility.  On a constant currency basis, net sales decreased 6.2%.

Total shipment volume declined 5.1% versus year-ago due to the aforementioned COVID-19 impact on the fountain foodservice business.  Declines in Dr Pepper and Crush were partially offset by increased shipment volume in Squirt.  Bottler cases sales volume in 2020 decreased 2.4% versus the prior year.

Operating income in 2020 decreased 2.4% to $932 million, compared to $955 million in the year-ago period, reflecting the lower net sales and the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, partially offset by lower discretionary expenses.  Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income decreased 2.0% to $938 million, compared to $957 million in the year-ago period and Adjusted operating margin increased 310 basis points to 70.8%. 

Latin America Beverages
Net sales in 2020 decreased 5.9% to $497 million, compared to $528 million in the year-ago period, primarily reflecting the impact of unfavorable foreign currency translation.  On a constant currency basis, net sales increased 3.8%, reflecting higher net price realization of 5.8%, partially offset by lower volume/mix of 2.0% due primarily to the impact of COVID-19 in Mexico.

Operating income in 2020 increased 24% to $105 million, compared to $85 million in the year-ago period, reflecting the growth in constant currency net sales, continued productivity and lower discretionary spending, partially offset by the unfavorable impacts of foreign currency transaction expense, inflation in logistics and the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability.  Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income increased 32% to $108 million, compared to $82 million in the prior year, and Adjusted operating margin increased 620 basis points to 21.7%. On a constant currency basis, Adjusted operating income grew 42.7% versus 2019.

Fourth Quarter Consolidated Results
Net sales in the fourth quarter of 2020 grew at an accelerated rate of 6.4% to $3.12 billion, compared to $2.93 billion in the year-ago period.  On a constant currency basis, net sales advanced 6.6%, reflecting higher volume/mix of 6.3% and favorable net price realization of 0.3%.

KDP in-market performance remained strong in the quarter, with dollar market share continuing to advance in more than 90% of KDP’s cold beverage retail base.  This performance reflected particular strength in CSDs, premium unflavored water, teas and fruit drinks, vegetable juice, apple juice and apple sauce.  In coffee, retail consumption of single-serve pods manufactured by KDP grew more than 7% in IRi tracked channels, with accelerated growth in e-commerce, partially offset by significant declines in away from home office and hospitality businesses. In the U.S. tracked channels, dollar market share of KDP manufactured pods remained strong at 83%.

GAAP operating income decreased 1.8% to $700 million in the fourth quarter of 2020, compared to $713 million in the year-ago period, reflecting the benefits of the strong growth in net sales, lower discretionary expenses, primarily marketing, continued productivity and merger synergies.  More than offsetting these factors were the unfavorable comparison to a $30 million gain in the prior year on the sale-leaseback of three manufacturing facilities, higher operating expenses associated with increased consumer demand, inflation in logistics and the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, including COVID-19 related costs and a $67 million non-cash impairment charge on the Bai brand.  Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income in the quarter increased 5.5% to $858 million, compared to Adjusted operating income of $813 million in the year-ago period, and Adjusted operating margin declined 20 basis points to 27.5%.  On a constant currency basis, Adjusted operating income grew 5.7%.

The COVID-19 related operating costs incurred in the fourth quarter totaled $11 million, all of which were recognized as items affecting comparability, and consisted of temporary compensation increases and incentives for frontline employees, as well as incremental safety and sanitation expenses.

GAAP net income in the fourth quarter of 2020 increased 5.4% to $428 million, or $0.30 per diluted share, compared to GAAP net income of $406 million, or $0.29 per diluted share in the year-ago period.  This performance reflected the strong growth in net sales, higher operating income driven by lower discretionary expenses, productivity and merger synergies, as well as lower interest expense and a lower effective tax rate resulting from favorable valuation adjustments and discrete tax items. These drivers were partially offset by the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, including the aforementioned $67 million non-cash impairment charge on the Bai brand and $11 million of COVID-19 related operating costs.  Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted net income advanced nearly 13% to $554 million in the fourth quarter of 2020, compared to $491 million in the year-ago period. Adjusted diluted EPS increased 11.4% to $0.39, compared to $0.35 in the year-ago period.

Free cash flow generation remained strong at $685 million in the fourth quarter of 2020, enabling the Company to reduce bank debt by $410 million.

Fourth Quarter Segment Results

Coffee Systems
Net sales for the fourth quarter of 2020 increased 9.1% to $1.32 billion, compared to $1.21 billion in the year-ago period, reflecting higher volume/mix of 10.2%, partially offset by lower net price realization of 1.3%.  Also impacting the net sales performance was favorable foreign currency translation of 0.2%.  On a constant currency basis, net sales increased 8.9%.

The volume/mix increase of 10.2% in the quarter reflected strong pod volume growth of 7.4% and exceptionally strong brewer growth of nearly 28%. Pod growth was driven by strong at-home consumption, partially offset by continued softness in the away-from-home business, as return to offices and hospitality remain depressed although improved since the second quarter. The strong brewer volume was driven by innovation and increased shipments to retailers during a very successful holiday season.   

Operating income increased 17% to $386 million in the fourth quarter of 2020, compared to $329 million in the year-ago period, reflecting the strong growth in net sales, continued productivity and merger synergies and lower discretionary expenses. Partially offsetting these positive drivers were unfavorable margin mix related to the exceptionally strong brewer growth, inflation in logistics and the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, including $4 million in costs related to COVID-19.  Excluding these and other items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income increased 17% to $431 million, compared to $370 million in the year-ago period, and Adjusted operating margin increased 210 basis points to 32.7%.

Packaged Beverages
Net sales for the fourth quarter of 2020 increased 7.9% to $1.31 billion, compared to $1.21 billion in the year-ago period, reflecting favorable volume/mix of 6.1% due to continued, strong market share expansion across the portfolio and higher net price realization of 1.8%. 

Leading the net sales performance were Dr Pepper, A&W, Canada Dry, 7UP, Sunkist and Squirt CSDs, Snapple and Motts juices, CORE hydration and evian premium water and Clamato, partially offset by a decline in Bai.

Operating income in the fourth quarter of 2020 decreased 27% to $165 million, compared to $226 million in the year-ago period, reflecting the unfavorable comparison to a $30 million year-ago gain on the sale-leaseback of three manufacturing facilities, higher operating costs to meet the continued strong consumer demand, inflation in logistics costs, and the unfavorable year-over-year impact of items affecting comparability, which included the $67 million non-cash impairment charge on the Bai brand and $6 million in costs related to COVID-19. Partially offsetting these drivers were the strong growth in net sales, continued productivity and merger synergies and lower discretionary expenses.  Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income increased 5.6% to $245 million, compared to $232 million in the year-ago period, and Adjusted operating margin declined 50 basis points to 18.7%.

Beverage Concentrates
Net sales for the fourth quarter of 2020 decreased 5.8% to $358 million, compared to $380 million in the year-ago period, reflecting unfavorable volume/mix of 4.5% and lower net price realization of 1.3%.  This performance continued to be pressured by COVID-19 as consumer mobility in the restaurant and hospitality channels remained depressed. 

Total shipment volume versus year-ago declined 3.4% in the quarter, due to the aforementioned COVID-19 impact on the fountain foodservice business.  Declines in Dr Pepper and Crush were partially offset by increased shipment volume in Squirt.  Bottler case sales volume decreased 2.1% in the quarter compared to the year-ago period.

Operating income in the fourth quarter of 2020 decreased 4.5% to $253 million, compared to $265 million in the year-ago period, reflecting the impact of the lower net sales, partially offset by lower discretionary expenses and a slight year-over-year benefit from items affecting comparability.  Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income decreased 4.5% to $254 million, compared to $266 million in the year-ago period, and Adjusted operating margin increased 90 basis points to 70.9%. 

Latin America Beverages
Net sales for the fourth quarter of 2020 increased 2.3% to $136 million, compared to net sales of $133 million in the year-ago period, driven by volume/mix growth of 2.3% and higher net price realization of 6.0%, significantly offset by unfavorable foreign currency translation of 6.0%. On a constant currency basis, net sales increased a strong 8.3%.

Operating income in the fourth quarter of 2020 increased 39% to $32 million, compared to $23 million in the year-ago period, reflecting the strong growth in constant currency net sales, continued productivity and lower discretionary expenses, partially offset by the unfavorable impact of foreign currency transaction expense and inflation in logistics.  Excluding items affecting comparability, Adjusted operating income increased 32% to $33 million, compared to $25 million in the year-ago period, and Adjusted operating margin increased 550 basis points to 24.3%.  On a constant currency basis, Adjusted operating income grew 36% versus the prior year.

KDP Adjusted Guidance for 2021
KDP expects to deliver another year of strong net sales growth in 2021, positioning the Company to exceed its three-year merger target of 2-3% average annual growth.  Adjusted diluted EPS is again expected to grow by double-digits, enabling KDP to meet its three-year merger target of 15-17% average annual growth.

Specifically, constant currency net sales growth is expected in the range of 3-4% in 2021, driven by investments in innovation and marketing, the benefits of recent partnerships and ongoing strong in-market execution.  Adjusted diluted EPS growth is expected in the range of 13% to 15%, reflecting the benefits of the strong top-line performance and continued merger synergies and productivity, as well as reduced interest expense and improvement in the Company’s effective tax rate. 

Supporting this guidance are the following detailed expectations:

  • Merger synergies of approximately $200 million, for a three-year total of approximately $600 million, in line with the Company’s merger target.
  • Adjusted interest expense in the range of $505 million to $515 million.
  • Adjusted effective tax rate in the range of 23.5% to 24.0%.
  • Diluted weighted average shares outstanding of approximately 1,430 million.
  • Management leverage ratio at or below 3.0x at year end 2021.

Investor Contacts:
Tyson Seely
Keurig Dr Pepper
T: 781-418-3352 / tyson.seely@kdrp.com

Steve Alexander
Keurig Dr Pepper
T: 972-673-6769 / steve.alexander@kdrp.com

Media Contact:
Katie Gilroy
Keurig Dr Pepper
T: 781-418-3345 / katie.gilroy@kdrp.com

About Keurig Dr Pepper
Keurig Dr Pepper (KDP) is a leading beverage company in North America, with annual revenue in excess of $11 billion and nearly 27,000 employees. KDP holds leadership positions in soft drinks, specialty coffee and tea, water, juice and juice drinks and mixers, and markets the #1 single serve coffee brewing system in the U.S. and Canada. The Company’s portfolio of more than 125 owned, licensed and partner brands is designed to satisfy virtually any consumer need, any time, and includes Keurig®, Dr Pepper®, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters®, Canada Dry®, Snapple®, Bai®, Mott’s®, CORE® and The Original Donut Shop®. Through its powerful sales and distribution network, KDP can deliver its portfolio of hot and cold beverages to nearly every point of purchase for consumers.  The Company is committed to sourcing, producing and distributing its beverages responsibly through its Drink Well. Do Good. corporate responsibility platform, including efforts around circular packaging, efficient natural resource use and supply chain sustainability.  For more information, visit, www.keurigdrpepper.com.

FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
Certain statements contained herein are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of applicable securities laws and regulations. These forward-looking statements can generally be identified by the use of words such as “outlook,” “guidance,” “anticipate,” “expect,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “feel,” “forecast,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “potential,” “project,” “should,” “target,” “will,” “would,” and similar words, phrases or expressions and variations or negatives of these words, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. Forward-looking statements by their nature address matters that are, to different degrees, uncertain, such as statements regarding the estimated or anticipated future results of the combined company following the combination of Keurig Green Mountain, Inc. (“KGM”) and Dr Pepper Snapple Group, Inc. (“DPS” and such combination, the “transaction”), the anticipated benefits of the transaction, including estimated synergies and cost savings, the long-term merger targets, and other statements that are not historical facts. These statements are based on the current expectations of our management and are not predictions of actual performance.

These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties regarding the company’s business and the transaction and actual results may differ materially. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: (i) the impact the significant additional debt incurred in connection with the transaction may have on our ability to operate our business, (ii) risks relating to the integration of the KGM and DPS operations, products and employees into the combined company and assumption of certain potential liabilities of KGM and the possibility that the anticipated synergies and other benefits of the transaction, including cost savings, will not be realized or will not be realized within the expected timeframe, (iii) the impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic, and (iv) risks relating to the businesses and the industries in which our combined company operates. These risks and uncertainties, as well as other risks and uncertainties, are more fully discussed in the Company’s filings with the SEC, including our Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent filings. While the lists of risk factors presented here and in our public filings are considered representative, no such list should be considered to be a complete statement of all potential risks and uncertainties. Any forward-looking statement made herein speaks only as of the date of this document. We are under no obligation to, and expressly disclaim any obligation to, update or alter any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, subsequent events or otherwise, except as required by applicable laws or regulations.

NON-GAAP FINANCIAL MEASURES
This release includes certain non-GAAP financial measures including Adjusted operating income, Adjusted net income, Adjusted diluted EPS and Free Cash Flow, which differ from results using U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). These non-GAAP financial measures should be considered as supplements to the GAAP reported measures, should not be considered replacements for, or superior to, the GAAP measures and may not be comparable to similarly named measures used by other companies. Non-GAAP financial measures typically exclude certain charges, including one-time costs related to the transaction and integration activities, which are not expected to occur routinely in future periods. The Company uses non-GAAP financial measures internally to focus management on performance excluding these special charges to gauge our business operating performance. Management believes this information is helpful to investors because it increases transparency and assists investors in understanding the underlying performance of the Company and in the analysis of ongoing operating trends. Additionally, management believes that non-GAAP financial measures are frequently used by analysts and investors in their evaluation of companies, and continued inclusion provides consistency in financial reporting and enables analysts and investors to perform meaningful comparisons of past, present and future operating results. The most directly comparable GAAP financial measures and reconciliations to non-GAAP financial measures are set forth in the appendix to this release and included in the Company’s filings with the SEC.

To the extent that the Company provides guidance, it does so only on a non-GAAP basis and does not provide reconciliations of such forward-looking non-GAAP measures to GAAP due to the inability to predict the amount and timing of impacts outside of the Company’s control on certain items, such as non-cash gains or losses resulting from mark-to-market adjustments of derivative instruments, among others.

 

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME

For the Three Months and Years Ended December 31, 2020 and 2019

(Unaudited, in millions, except per share data)

For the Three Months Ended
December 31,

For the Year Ended
December 31,

(in millions, except per share data)

2020

2019

2020

2019

Net sales

$

3,121

$

2,934

$

11,618

$

11,120

Cost of sales

1,353

1,241

5,132

4,778

Gross profit

1,768

1,693

6,486

6,342

Selling, general and administrative expenses

1,000

1,011

3,978

3,962

Impairment of intangible assets

67

67

Other operating (income) expense, net

1

(31)

(39)

2

Income from operations

700

713

2,480

2,378

Interest expense

146

157

604

654

Loss on early extinguishment of debt

2

4

11

Impairment of investments and note receivable

102

Other expense, net

(4)

4

17

19

Income before provision for income taxes

558

550

1,753

1,694

Provision for income taxes

130

144

428

440

Net income

$

428

$

406

$

1,325

$

1,254

Less: Net income attributable to non-controlling interest

Net income attributable to KDP

$

428

$

406

$

1,325

$

1,254

Earnings per common share:

Basic

$

0.30

$

0.29

$

0.94

$

0.89

Diluted

0.30

0.29

0.93

0.88

Weighted average common shares outstanding:

Basic

1,407.3

1,406.9

1,407.2

1,406.7

Diluted

1,423.8

1,419.9

1,422.1

1,419.1

 

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS

As of December 31, 2020 and 2019

(Unaudited, in millions, except shares and per share data)

December 31,

(in millions, except share and per share data)

2020

2019

Assets

Current assets:

Cash and cash equivalents

$

240

$

75

Restricted cash and restricted cash equivalents

15

26

Trade accounts receivable, net

1,048

1,115

Inventories

762

654

Prepaid expenses and other current assets

323

403

Total current assets

2,388

2,273

Property, plant and equipment, net

2,212

2,028

Investments in unconsolidated affiliates

88

151

Goodwill

20,184

20,172

Other intangible assets, net

23,968

24,117

Other non-current assets

894

748

Deferred tax assets

45

29

Total assets

$

49,779

$

49,518

Liabilities and Stockholders’ Equity

Current liabilities:

Accounts payable

$

3,740

$

3,176

Accrued expenses

1,040

939

Structured payables

153

321

Short-term borrowings and current portion of long-term obligations

2,345

1,593

Other current liabilities

416

445

Total current liabilities

7,694

6,474

Long-term obligations

11,143

12,827

Deferred tax liabilities

5,993

6,030

Other non-current liabilities

1,119

930

Total liabilities

25,949

26,261

Commitments and contingencies

Stockholders’ equity:

Preferred stock, $0.01 par value, 15,000,000 shares authorized, no shares issued

Common stock, $0.01 par value, 2,000,000,000 shares authorized, 1,407,260,676 and
1,406,852,305 shares issued and outstanding as of December 31, 2020 and 2019,
respectively

14

14

Additional paid-in capital

21,677

21,557

Retained earnings

2,061

1,582

Accumulated other comprehensive (income) loss

77

104

 Total stockholders’ equity

23,829

23,257

 Non-controlling interest

1

Total equity

23,830

23,257

Total liabilities and stockholders’ equity

$

49,779

$

49,518

 

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS

For The Years Ended December 31, 2020 and 2019 

(Unaudited, in millions)

For the Year Ended December 31,

(in millions)

2020

2019

Operating activities:

Net income

$

1,325

$

1,254

Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by operating activities:

Depreciation expense

362

358

Amortization of intangibles

133

126

Other amortization expense

158

174

Provision for sales returns

54

43

Deferred income taxes

(51)

(23)

Employee stock-based compensation expense

85

64

Loss on early extinguishment of debt

4

11

(Gain) loss on disposal of property, plant and equipment

(36)

(14)

Unrealized (gain) loss on foreign currency

(1)

(24)

Unrealized loss on derivatives

8

36

Equity in losses of unconsolidated affiliates

20

51

Impairment of intangible assets

67

Impairment on investments and note receivable of unconsolidated affiliates

102

Other, net

60

52

Changes in assets and liabilities:

Trade accounts receivable

(5)

(7)

Inventories

(107)

(24)

Income taxes receivable and payables, net

(91)

36

Other current and non current assets

(435)

(324)

Accounts payable and accrued expenses

624

583

Other current and non current liabilities

180

102

Net change in operating assets and liabilities

166

366

Net cash provided by operating activities

2,456

2,474

Investing activities:

Acquisitions of businesses

(8)

Issuance of related party note receivable

(6)

(32)

Investments in unconsolidated affiliates

(5)

(16)

Purchases of property, plant and equipment

(461)

(330)

Proceeds from sales of property, plant and equipment

203

247

Purchases of intangibles

(56)

(35)

Other, net

9

24

Net cash used in investing activities

(316)

(150)

Financing activities:

Proceeds from controlling shareholder stock transactions

29

Proceeds from unsecured credit facility

1,850

Proceeds from senior unsecured notes

1,500

Proceeds from term loan

2,000

Net (repayment) issuance of commercial paper notes

(1,246)

167

Proceeds from structured payables

171

330

Payments on structured payables

(341)

(531)

Payments on senior unsecured notes

(250)

(250)

Payment on unsecured credit facility

(1,850)

Payments on term loan

(955)

(3,203)

Payments on finance leases

(52)

(38)

Cash dividends paid

(846)

(844)

Other, net

5

Net cash used in financing activities

(1,990)

(2,364)

Cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash and restricted cash equivalents — net change from:

Operating, investing and financing activities

150

(40)

Effect of exchange rate changes on cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash and restricted cash equivalents

(6)

12

Cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash and restricted cash equivalents at beginning of period

111

139

Cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash and restricted cash equivalents at end of period

$

255

$

111

 

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF SEGMENT INFORMATION

(Unaudited)

For the Three Months Ended
December 31,

For the Year Ended
December 31,

(in millions)

2020

2019

2020

2019

Net Sales

Coffee Systems

$

1,320

$

1,210

$

4,433

$

4,233

Packaged Beverages

1,307

1,211

5,363

4,945

Beverage Concentrates

358

380

1,325

1,414

Latin America Beverages

136

133

497

528

Total net sales

$

3,121

$

2,934

$

11,618

$

11,120

Income from Operations

Coffee Systems

$

386

$

329

$

1,268

$

1,219

Packaged Beverages

165

226

822

757

Beverage Concentrates

253

265

932

955

Latin America Beverages

32

23

105

85

Unallocated corporate costs

(136)

(130)

(647)

(638)

Total income from operations

$

700

$

713

$

2,480

$

2,378

 

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.
RECONCILIATION OF CERTAIN NON-GAAP INFORMATION
(Unaudited)

The company reports its financial results in accordance with U.S. GAAP. However, management believes that certain non-GAAP financial measures that reflect the way management evaluates the business may provide investors with additional information regarding the company’s results, trends and ongoing performance on a comparable basis.

For the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019, we define our Adjusted non-GAAP financial measures as certain financial statement captions and metrics adjusted for certain items affecting comparability. The items affecting comparability are defined below.

Specifically, investors should consider the following with respect to our financial results:

Adjusted: Defined as certain financial statement captions and metrics adjusted for certain items affecting comparability.

Items affecting comparability: Defined as certain items that are excluded for comparison to prior year periods, adjusted for the tax impact as applicable. Tax impact is determined based upon an approximate rate for each item. For each period, management adjusts for (i) the unrealized mark-to-market impact of derivative instruments not designated as hedges in accordance with U.S. GAAP and do not have an offsetting risk reflected within the financial results; (ii) the amortization associated with definite-lived intangible assets; (iii) the amortization of the deferred financing costs associated with the DPS Merger and Keurig Acquisition; (iv) the amortization of the fair value adjustment of the senior unsecured notes obtained as a result of the DPS Merger; (v) stock compensation expense attributable to the matching awards made to employees who made an initial investment in the Keurig Green Mountain, Inc. Executive Ownership Plan, the Keurig Dr Pepper Omnibus Incentive Plan of 2009 or the Keurig Dr Pepper Inc. Omnibus Incentive Plan of 2019; and (vi) other certain items that are excluded for comparison purposes to prior year periods.

For year ended December 31, 2020, the other certain items excluded for comparison purposes include (i) restructuring and integration expenses related to significant business combinations; (ii) productivity expenses; (iii) costs related to significant nonroutine legal matters; (iv) the loss on early extinguishment of debt related to the redemption of debt; (v) incremental temporary costs to our operations related to risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic; (vi) impairment recognized on equity method investments with Bedford Systems, LLC and LifeFuels Inc; and (vii) impairment recognized on the Bai brand.

Incremental costs to our operations related to risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic include incremental expenses incurred to either maintain the health and safety of our front-line employees or temporarily increase compensation to such employees to ensure essential operations continue during the pandemic. We believe removing these costs reflects how management views our business results on a consistent basis.

For year ended December 31, 2019, the other certain items excluded for comparison purposes include (i) restructuring and integration expenses related to significant business combinations; (ii) productivity expenses; (iii) transaction costs for significant business combinations (completed or abandoned) excluding the DPS Merger; (iv) costs related to significant nonroutine legal matters; (v) the impact of the step-up of acquired inventory not associated with the DPS Merger (vi) the loss on early extinguishment of debt related to the redemption of debt and (vii) the loss related to the February 2019 organized malware attack on our business operation networks in the Coffee Systems segment.

For the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019, the supplemental financial data set forth below includes reconciliations of Adjusted income from operations, Adjusted net income and Adjusted diluted EPS to the applicable financial measure presented in the unaudited condensed consolidated financial statement for the same period.

Reconciliations for these items are provided in the tables below.

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF CERTAIN REPORTED ITEMS TO CERTAIN NON-GAAP ADJUSTED ITEMS

For the Three Months Ended December 31, 2020 

(Unaudited, in millions, except per share data)

Cost of sales

Gross profit

Gross margin

Selling, general and administrative expenses

Impairment of intangible assets

Income from operations

Operating margin

Reported

$

1,353

$

1,768

56.6

%

$

1,000

$

67

$

700

22.4

%

Items Affecting Comparability:

Mark to market

31

(31)

23

(54)

Amortization of intangibles

(33)

33

Stock compensation

(6)

6

Restructuring and integration costs

(56)

56

Productivity

(1)

1

(24)

25

Impairment of intangible assets

(67)

67

Nonroutine legal matters

(14)

14

COVID-19

(6)

6

(5)

11

Adjusted GAAP

$

1,377

$

1,744

55.9

%

$

885

$

$

858

27.5

%

 

Interest expense

Income before provision for income taxes

Provision for income taxes

Effective tax rate

Net income attributable to KDP

Weighted Average Diluted shares

Diluted earnings per share

Reported

$

146

$

558

$

130

23.3

%

$

428

1,423.8

$

0.30

Items Affecting Comparability:

Mark to market

1

(55)

(14)

(41)

(0.03)

Amortization of intangibles

33

8

25

0.02

Amortization of deferred financing costs

(3)

3

1

2

Amortization of fair value debt adjustment

(6)

6

2

4

Stock compensation

6

1

5

Restructuring and integration costs

56

15

41

0.03

Productivity

25

6

19

0.01

Impairment of intangible assets

67

15

52

0.04

Nonroutine legal matters

14

4

10

0.01

COVID-19

11

2

9

0.01

Adjusted GAAP

$

138

$

724

$

170

23.5

%

$

554

1,423.8

$

0.39

Diluted earnings per common share may not foot due to rounding.

 

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF CERTAIN REPORTED ITEMS TO CERTAIN NON-GAAP ADJUSTED ITEMS

For the Three Months Ended December 31, 2019 

(Unaudited, in millions, except per share data)

Cost of sales

Gross profit

Gross margin

Selling, general and administrative expenses

Other operating expense (income), net

Income from operations

Operating margin

Reported

$

1,241

$

1,693

57.7

%

$

1,011

$

(31)

$

713

24.3

%

Items Affecting Comparability:

Mark to market

41

(41)

5

(46)

Amortization of intangibles

(32)

32

Stock compensation

(6)

6

Restructuring and integration costs

(65)

(1)

66

Productivity

(1)

1

(19)

20

Transaction costs

(1)

1

Nonroutine legal matters

(21)

21

Adjusted GAAP

$

1,281

$

1,653

56.3

%

$

872

$

(32)

$

813

27.7

%

 

Interest expense

Income before provision for income taxes

Provision for income taxes

Effective tax rate

Net income attributable to KDP

Weighted Average Diluted shares

Diluted earnings per share

Reported

$

157

$

550

$

144

26.2

%

$

406

1,419.9

$

0.29

Items Affecting Comparability:

Mark to market

(3)

(43)

(12)

(31)

(0.02)

Amortization of intangibles

32

8

24

0.02

Amortization of deferred financing costs

(3)

3

1

2

Amortization of fair value debt adjustment

(6)

6

1

5

Stock compensation

6

2

4

Restructuring and integration costs

1

65

16

49

0.04

Productivity

20

7

13

0.01

Transaction costs

1

1

Loss on early extinguishment of debt

2

2

Nonroutine legal matters

21

4

17

Adjusted GAAP

$

146

$

663

$

172

25.9

%

$

491

1,419.9

$

0.35

Numbers may not foot due to rounding.

 


KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF CERTAIN REPORTED ITEMS TO CERTAIN NON-GAAP ADJUSTED ITEMS

For the Year Ended December 31, 2020 

(Unaudited, in millions, except per share data)

Cost of sales

Gross profit

Gross margin

Selling, general and administrative expenses

Impairment of intangible assets

Income from operations

Operating margin

Reported

$

5,132

$

6,486

55.8

%

$

3,978

$

67

$

2,480

21.3

%

Items Affecting Comparability:

Mark to market

33

(33)

(5)

(28)

Amortization of intangibles

(133)

133

Stock compensation

(27)

27

Restructuring and integration costs

(199)

199

Productivity

(29)

29

(99)

128

Impairment of intangibles assets

(67)

67

Nonroutine legal matters

(57)

57

COVID-19

(44)

44

(84)

128

Adjusted GAAP

$

5,092

$

6,526

56.2

%

$

3,374

$

$

3,191

27.5

%

 

Interest expense

Loss on early extinguishment of debt

Impairment on investments and note receivable

Income before provision for income taxes

Provision for income taxes

Effective tax rate

Net income attributable to KDP

Weighted Average Diluted shares

Diluted earnings per share

Reported

$

604

$

4

$

102

$

1,753

$

428

24.4

%

$

1,325

1,422.1

$

0.93

Items Affecting Comparability:

Mark to market

(27)

(1)

(1)

Amortization of intangibles

133

35

98

0.07

Amortization of deferred financing costs

(11)

11

3

8

0.01

Amortization of fair value debt adjustment

(24)

24

6

18

0.01

Stock compensation

27

5

22

0.02

Restructuring and integration costs

199

49

150

0.11

Productivity

128

33

95

0.07

Impairment of intangibles assets

67

15

52

0.04

Loss on early extinguishment of debt

(4)

4

1

3

Impairment on investment

(102)

102

25

77

0.05

Nonroutine legal matters

57

14

43

0.03

COVID-19

128

31

97

0.07

Adjusted GAAP

$

542

$

$

$

2,632

$

644

24.5

%

$

1,988

1,422.1

$

1.40

Diluted earnings per common share may not foot due to rounding.

 

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF CERTAIN REPORTED ITEMS TO CERTAIN NON-GAAP ADJUSTED ITEMS

For the Year Ended December 31, 2019 

(Unaudited, in millions, except per share data)

Cost of sales

Gross profit

Gross margin

Selling, general and administrative expenses

Other operating expense (income), net

Income from operations

Operating margin

Reported

$

4,778

$

6,342

57.0

%

$

3,962

$

2

$

2,378

21.4

%

Items Affecting Comparability:

Mark to market

35

(35)

10

(45)

Amortization of intangibles

(126)

126

Stock compensation

(24)

24

Restructuring and integration costs

(1)

1

(216)

(25)

242

Productivity

(15)

15

(60)

(22)

97

Transaction costs

(9)

9

Nonroutine legal matters

(48)

48

Inventory step-up

(3)

3

3

Malware incident

(2)

2

(6)

8

Adjusted GAAP

$

4,792

$

6,328

56.9

%

$

3,483

$

(45)

$

2,890

26.0

%

 

Interest expense

Loss on early extinguishment of debt

Income before provision for income taxes

Provision for income taxes

Effective tax rate

Net income attributable to KDP

Weighted Average Diluted shares

Diluted earnings per share

Reported

$

654

$

11

$

1,694

$

440

26.0

%

$

1,254

1,419.1

$

0.88

Items Affecting Comparability:

Mark to market

(47)

2

(1)

3

Amortization of intangibles

126

34

92

0.06

Amortization of deferred financing costs

(13)

13

4

9

0.01

Amortization of fair value debt adjustment

(26)

26

6

20

0.01

Stock compensation

24

6

18

0.01

Restructuring and integration costs

1

241

55

186

0.13

Productivity

97

24

73

0.05

Transaction costs

(16)

25

7

18

0.01

Loss on early extinguishment of debt

(11)

11

2

9

0.01

Nonroutine legal matters

48

11

37

0.02

Inventory step-up

3

1

2

Malware incident

8

2

6

Adjusted GAAP

$

553

$

$

2,318

$

591

25.5

%

$

1,727

1,419.1

$

1.22

Diluted earnings per common share may not foot due to rounding.

 


KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF SEGMENT ITEMS TO CERTAIN NON-GAAP ADJUSTED SEGMENT ITEMS

(Unaudited)

(in millions)

Reported

Items Affecting
Comparability

Adjusted
GAAP

For the Three Months Ended December 31, 2020

Income from Operations

Coffee Systems

$

386

$

45

$

431

Packaged Beverages

165

80

245

Beverage Concentrates

253

1

254

Latin America Beverages

32

1

33

Unallocated corporate costs

(136)

31

(105)

Total income from operations

$

700

$

158

$

858

For the Three Months Ended December 31, 2019

Income from Operations

Coffee Systems

$

329

$

41

$

370

Packaged Beverages

226

6

232

Beverage Concentrates

265

1

266

Latin America Beverages

23

2

25

Unallocated corporate costs

(130)

50

(80)

Total income from operations

$

713

$

100

$

813

Numbers may not foot due to rounding.

 


KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF SEGMENT ITEMS TO CERTAIN NON-GAAP ADJUSTED SEGMENT ITEMS

(Unaudited)

(in millions)

Reported

Items Affecting
Comparability

Adjusted
GAAP

For the year ended December 31, 2020

Income from Operations

Coffee Systems

$

1,268

$

246

$

1,514

Packaged Beverages

822

199

1,021

Beverage Concentrates

932

6

938

Latin America Beverages

105

3

108

Unallocated corporate costs

(647)

257

(390)

Total income from operations

$

2,480

$

711

$

3,191

For the year ended December 31, 2019

Income from Operations

Coffee Systems

$

1,219

$

184

$

1,403

Packaged Beverages

757

26

783

Beverage Concentrates

955

2

957

Latin America Beverages

85

(3)

82

Unallocated corporate costs

(638)

303

(335)

Total income from operations

$

2,378

$

512

$

2,890

 


KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF ADJUSTED EBITDA AND MANAGEMENT LEVERAGE RATIO

(Unaudited)

(in millions, except for ratio)

ADJUSTED EBITDA RECONCILIATION – LAST TWELVE MONTHS

Net income

$

1,325

Interest expense

604

Provision for income taxes

428

Loss on early extinguishment of debt

4

Impairment of investments and note receivable

102

Impairment of intangible assets

67

Other (income) expense, net

17

Depreciation expense

362

Other amortization

158

Amortization of intangibles

133

EBITDA

$

3,200

Items affecting comparability:

Restructuring and integration expenses

$

199

Productivity

108

Nonroutine legal matters

57

Stock compensation

27

Mark to market

(28)

COVID-19

128

Adjusted EBITDA

$

3,691

December 31,

2020

Principal amounts of:

Commercial paper notes

$

Term loan

425

KDP Revolver

Senior unsecured notes

13,225

Total principal amounts

13,650

Less: Cash and cash equivalents

240

Total principal amounts less cash and cash equivalents

$

13,410

December 31, 2020 Management Leverage Ratio

3.6

 

KEURIG DR PEPPER INC.

RECONCILIATION OF NET CASH PROVIDED BY OPERATING ACTIVITIES TO FREE CASH FLOW

(Unaudited)

Free cash flow is defined as net cash provided by operating activities adjusted for purchases of property, plant and equipment, proceeds from sales of property, plant and equipment, and certain items excluded for comparison to prior year periods. For the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019, there were no certain items excluded for comparison to prior year periods.

For the Year Ended December 31,

(in millions)

2020

2019

Net cash provided by operating activities

$

2,456

$

2,474

Purchases of property, plant and equipment

(461)

(330)

Proceeds from sales of property, plant and equipment

203

247

Free Cash Flow

$

2,198

$

2,391

 

RECONCILIATION OF CERTAIN CURRENCY NEUTRAL ADJUSTED FINANCIAL RESULTS

(Unaudited)

Net sales, adjusted income from operations and adjusted earnings per share, as adjusted to currency neutral: These adjusted financial results are calculated on a currency neutral basis by converting our current-period local currency financial results using the prior-period foreign currency exchange rates.

For the Three Months Ended December 31, 2020

Coffee

Packaged

Beverage

Latin
America

Percent change

Systems

Beverages

Concentrates

Beverages

Total

Net sales

9.1

%

7.9

%

(5.8)

%

2.3

%

6.4

%

Impact of foreign currency

(0.2)

%

%

%

6.0

%

0.2

%

Net sales, as adjusted to currency neutral

8.9

%

7.9

%

(5.8)

%

8.3

%

6.6

%

For the Three Months Ended December 31, 2020

Coffee

Packaged

Beverage

Latin
America

Percent change

Systems

Beverages

Concentrates

Beverages

Total

Adjusted income from operations

16.5

%

5.6

%

(4.5)

%

32.0

%

5.5

%

Impact of foreign currency

%

%

%

4.0

%

0.2

%

Adjusted income from operations, as adjusted to
currency neutral

16.5

%

5.6

%

(4.5)

%

36.0

%

5.7

%

For the Year Ended December 31, 2020

Coffee

Packaged

Beverage

Latin
America

Percent change

Systems

Beverages

Concentrates

Beverages

Total

Net sales

4.7

%

8.5

%

(6.3)

%

(5.9)

%

4.5

%

Impact of foreign currency

0.1

%

%

0.1

%

9.7

%

0.5

%

Net sales, as adjusted to currency neutral

4.8

%

8.5

%

(6.2)

%

3.8

%

5.0

%

For the Year Ended December 31, 2020

Coffee

Packaged

Beverage

Latin
America

Percent change

Systems

Beverages

Concentrates

Beverages

Total

Adjusted income from operations

7.9

%

30.4

%

(2.0)

%

31.7

%

10.4

%

Impact of foreign currency

0.1

%

0.1

%

%

11.0

%

0.4

%

Adjusted income from operations, as adjusted to
currency neutral

8.0

%

30.5

%

(2.0)

%

42.7

%

10.8

%

For the Three Months
Ended December 31, 2020

For the Year Ended
December 31, 2020

Adjusted diluted earnings per share

$

0.39

$

1.40

Impact of foreign currency

Adjusted diluted earnings per share, as adjusted to currency neutral

$

0.39

$

1.40

 

The following table sets forth our reconciliation of significant COVID-19-related expenses. However, employee compensation expense and employee protection costs, which impact our SG&A expenses and cost of sales, are included as the COVID-19 item affecting comparability and is excluded in our Adjusted financial measures. In addition, reported amounts under U.S. GAAP also include additional costs, not included as the COVID-19 item affecting comparability, as presented in tables below.

Items Affecting Comparability(1)

(in millions)

Employee
Compensation
Expense(2)

Employee
Protection
Costs(3)

Allowances for
Expected Credit
Losses(4)

Inventory Write-
Downs(5)

Total

For the Three Months Ended
December 31, 2020

Coffee Systems

$

1

$

3

$

$

$

4

Packaged Beverages

3

3

6

Beverage Concentrates

Latin America Beverages

1

1

Unallocated corporate costs

Total

$

4

$

7

$

$

$

11

For the year ended December 31,
2020

Coffee Systems

$

15

$

10

$

2

$

8

$

35

Packaged Beverages

76

25

8

109

Beverage Concentrates

4

4

Latin America Beverages

2

2

Unallocated corporate costs

Total

$

91

$

37

$

14

$

8

$

150

(1)

Employee compensation expense and employee protection costs are both included as the COVID-19 items affecting comparability in the reconciliation of our Adjusted Non-GAAP financial measures.

(2)

Primarily reflects temporary incremental frontline incentive pay and the associated taxes in order to maintain essential operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. Impacts both cost of sales and SG&A expenses. In mid-September 2020, we discontinued the incremental frontline incentive pay program.

(3)

Includes costs associated with personal protective equipment, temperature scans, cleaning and other sanitization services. Impacts both cost of sales and SG&A expenses.

(4)

Allowances reflect the expected impact of the economic uncertainty caused by COVID-19, leveraging estimates of credit worthiness, default and recovery rates for certain of our customers. Impacts SG&A expenses.

(5)

Inventory write-downs represent obsolescence charges, which impact cost of sales.

 

Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/724482/Keurig_Dr_Pepper_logo.jpg  

SOURCE Keurig Dr Pepper

March Of Dimes Announces 2021 March For Babies: A Mother Of A Movement™

0
MoD_MarchforBabies_Logo

ARLINGTON, Virginia, Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — March of Dimes, the leading nonprofit organization fighting for the health of all moms and babies, is pleased to announce March for Babies: A Mother of a Movement, a virtual awareness and fundraising campaign kicking off now to address the ongoing maternal and health crisis by engaging the public to raise critical funds in support of life-saving research, programs and educational initiatives.  As the country enters the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic, March for Babies is now much more than a walk to primarily end preventable preterm birth, but a rally cry to inspire and unite communities everywhere to achieve health equity for moms and babies alike.

“We’ve long said that in order to provide the best possible start for babies, we must take care of moms, too.  A woman dies every 12 hours from pregnancy-related causes, and 1 in 10 babies is born too soon, which is why we’re also fighting to end preventable maternal health risks and deaths which are particularly devastating to underserved families of color,” said Stacey D. Stewart, President and CEO of March of Dimes.  “The health of moms and babies are intertwined and we welcome everyone to join this movement for change that will help us achieve real, measurable improvements. We embrace anyone who wants to do more for moms and babies—and not just today, but every day.”

The March of Dimes 2020 Report Card found that for the fifth year in a row, the U.S. preterm birth rate increased to 10.2 percent of births, earning the nation a “C-” grade. The statistics are worse for moms and babies of color—with the Report Card showing significant racial disparities that cut across maternal and infant health. Women of color are up to 50 percent more likely to give birth preterm and their children face up to a 130 percent higher infant death rate. Additionally, Black and American Indian/Alaskan Native women are up to three times more likely to die from pregnancy related complications compared to White women.

March for Babies will bring communities together virtually for a variety of team building activities and fundraising challenges. Together, participants will unite to honor motherhood, babies and families in addition to supporting the March of Dimes mission. Throughout the country, participants can donate individually or work as a team with their colleagues, family or friends to raise much-needed funds to make America a more equitable place and ensure that every mom and baby is healthy for generations to come.

“After more than 50 years as the largest fundraiser for March of Dimes and the nation’s oldest charitable walk, we’re excited to see March for Babies elevate mothers – who are at the center of our mission – and grow into an even bigger movement that unites and connects us to fight for families who need us the most,” added Stewart.

Take the following steps today to support all moms and babies though March for Babies:

  1. Sign up to be part of the movement
    Sign up as a team captain, team member or individual.
  2. Take action to connect, fundraise and spread the word
    Rally with millions of Americans in the collective effort to transform the health of all moms and babies.
  3. Continue to check back for updates at marchforbabies.org

Check out our latest PSA, “Seen”, which shares moments of the collective experience of motherhood and urges viewers to take action on behalf of moms and babies. Our social media press kit  also provides information on March for Babies to help rally public support. For more information on March for Babies, including how to sign up and start a team, download the March for Babies app or visit marchforbabies.org.

ABOUT MARCH OF DIMES
March of Dimes leads the fight for the health of all moms and babies. We support research, lead programs and provide education and advocacy so that every mom and baby can have the best possible start. Building on a successful 80-year legacy of impact and innovation, we’re there for every family—those who had first-hand hardships, those celebrating their health and those just trying to start their families. For more information go to marchofdimes.org or nacersano.org, and visit shareyourstory.org for comfort and support. Find us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1444049/MoD_MarchforBabies_Logo.jpg

SOURCE March of Dimes Inc.

Al Aire Con El Terrible Syndicated Morning Show With Alberto “El Terri” Cortez Expands To New Key Hispanic Markets

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MIAMI, Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — AIRE Radio Networks, the largest minority certified Spanish Language radio network in the country and the official radio network of Spanish Broadcasting System, announced today that its highly rated syndicated morning show, Al Aire Con El Terrible, expands its coverage and can now be heard across 15 top Hispanic markets.

Al Aire con El Terrible was launched through AIRE Radio Networks/Spanish Broadcasting System back in August 2018 and is hosted by one of the most influential Latin radio personalities, Alberto “El Terri” Cortez. A listener favorite, Al Aire Con El Terrible, is becoming widely recognized for uplifting and empowering the Hispanic community through music and laughter.

The program includes a variety of engaging segments that connect with Hispanic consumers such as community highlights, stories and words of empowerment, interviews with Latin artists and celebrities, international news, celebrity gossip, jokes, as well as tentpole segments like Mini Terry, El Pesado de Sinaloa, Citripio Perez, Segmento Deportivo, El Anónimo, El Detective, El Doctor J, Sexologa Eugenia Flores.  Each break of the show includes a mix of the biggest Regional Mexican music hits.

“El Terri is a unique influencer who has consistently driven ratings on our owned-and-operated audio stations in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago. His success comes through his hard work in developing engaging, cultural and empowering content that speaks to the Hispanic community,” said Elisa Torres, EVP, AIRE Radio Networks and Spanish Broadcasting System National Sales. “The response to his show since we launched has been exceptional and the demand to carry and advertise within the program continues to surge. We’re very excited to witness the growth of Al Aire con El Terrible.”

“The partnership with AIRE Radio Networks and Spanish Broadcasting System has been remarkable. I’m so grateful to have a robust platform where I can empower Hispanic listeners across the nation every day,” said Alberto Cortez, the host of Al Aire con El Terrible. “We’re living through challenging times and the biggest reward is knowing that I have played a role helping our people start their day with laughter and positivity.”

Al AIRE con El Terrible also has a variety of digital and social extensions such as his self-titled podcast on the LaMusica App, the #1 Hispanic Streaming App and El Terrible’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.  

For all syndication inquiries and details, contact Blanca Navas, Vice President, Affiliate Sales at bnavas@aireradionetworks.com.

About Spanish Broadcasting System and AIRE Radio Networks
Spanish Broadcasting System, Inc. is a leading Hispanic media company that owns and operates 17 radio stations located in the top U.S. Hispanic markets of New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, San Francisco and Puerto Rico, airing the Spanish Tropical, Regional Mexican, Spanish Adult Contemporary, Top 40 and Latin Rhythmic format genres. SBS also operates AIRE Radio Networks, a national radio platform which creates, distributes and markets leading Spanish-language radio programming to over 300+ affiliated stations reaching 95% of the U.S. Hispanic audience. SBS also owns MegaTV, a television operation with over-the-air, cable and satellite distribution and affiliates throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico. SBS also produces live concerts and events and owns multiple bilingual websites, including www.LaMusica.com, an online destination and mobile app providing content related to Latin music, entertainment, news and culture. For more information, visit us online at www.spanishbroadcasting.com.

About Terry “El Terrible” Cortez
Alberto “El Terrible” Cortez has been in the entertainment business for years inspiring the U.S. Hispanic community to grow personally and professionally. Well known for speaking about topics that matter the most, even when nobody wants to talk about them, El Terrible thrives on bringing out the best of in his listeners. Cortez is innovating, funny and is also known for his originality. When El Terrible is not busy being hosting Al Aire con El Terrible, he enjoys spending time with his family, soccer and local wrestling.

Contact: Vladimir Gomez, 786-805-2545, vgomez@spanishbroadcasting.com

 

SOURCE Spanish Broadcasting System, Inc.

Florida Housing Coalition Announces Major New Initiative: Center for Racial Equity

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The Florida Housing Coalition, the state’s leading nonprofit provider of training and technical assistance dedicated to affordable housing from ending homelessness to first-time homeownership, today announced the creation of new Center for Racial Equity: www.centerforracialequity.org

The Florida Housing Coalition Center for Racial Equity will serve as a composite platform for the Coalition’s efforts focused on race and equity in public and private investments, regulations, and legal and policy frameworks that shape Florida’s neighborhoods, cities, and regions.

“We know two things: Florida—like every other state in the nation—has a housing problem intricately linked with race; and Florida’s cities often look to the Coalition to help them solve housing problems,” Coalition’s President and CEO Jaimie Ross said. “What is the right approach for local communities to take? There are no obvious benchmarks and little to no statewide policy guidance to indicate a single working approach. This is how the Coalition can help,” she added.

The idea for the Center came from discussions among Coalition staff in response to the protests for Black Lives Matter that occurred nationally throughout 2020. “Each of us felt a need to respond to the urgency of the moment in a way that was thoughtful and deliberate and that would move the dial long term,” Coalition Chief Programs Officer Ashon Nesbitt said.

Closing the Racial Disparity Gap in Homeownership
Central to its early efforts is the seminal program Closing the Gap – a matching grant program for municipalities. With funding in place from major underwriters Bank of America and Wells Fargo, the program provides a 3:1 match in technical assistance and resources to close the gap in the homeownership rate between Black and white households.

“Bank of America is helping advance racial equality and economic opportunity, with a particular focus on helping create opportunity for people and communities of color,” said Gene Schaefer, Miami market president for Bank of America. “We are committed to helping multicultural families and communities begin to build personal wealth and family legacy through the power of homeownership.”

The Florida Housing Coalition Center for Racial Equity is being launched with funding by the Wells Fargo Foundation, which is focused on advancing racial equity and creating pathways to safe, affordable homes.

“Having a safe and affordable place to call home is essential to help lay the foundation for wellness, dignity, and economic opportunity,” said Eileen Fitzgerald, head of housing affordability philanthropy with Wells Fargo. “With our support for the Coalition’s Center for Racial Equity, we hope to inspire meaningful change to a long history of systemic inequality, injustice, loss of wealth, and housing instability experienced by people of color, particularly during times of economic distress.  We aim to build a more inclusive, sustainable future where everyone can have a quality and affordable place to call home.”

Other Programs the Center is launching with include:

Leading with Equity Online Course
Funders Collaborative & Allies
Glossary of Shared Language
HBCU Internship Program

SOURCE Florida Housing Coalition

Saavedra Law Firm, PLC Attorney Named To Super Lawyers For 3rd Consecutive Year

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Civil Litigation and Personal Injury Attorney Freddy Saavedra founder of Saavedra Law Firm, PLC. Legal.Better.

PHOENIX, Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Freddy Saavedra, founding attorney at Saavedra Law Firm, PLC, a personal injury and civil litigation law firm based in Phoenix, Arizona, was selected as a 2021 Super Lawyers Rising Star in the area of Personal Injury by Thomson Reuters. This is his third consecutive recognition.

Civil Litigation and Personal Injury Attorney Freddy Saavedra founder of Saavedra Law Firm, PLC. Legal.Better.

Though Super Lawyer recognition in each state is limited to only five percent of lawyers, no more than 2.5 percent may be named to the Rising Star list. The selection for both, Rising Star and Super Lawyers is the same with one exception: the lawyers eligible for inclusion in Rising Stars must be either 40 years old or younger or in practice for 10 years or less.

Saavedra Law Firm, PLC is a civil litigation law firm representing businesses and consumers in business disputes, breach of contract claims, and personal injury claims. While their office is located in Phoenix, Arizona, Saavedra Law Firm provides services to clients throughout Arizona. The firm provides legal representation to clients in both English and Spanish.

Freddy Saavedra practices in the areas of civil litigation, personal injury, and social security disability. He is a graduate of the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University. Mr. Saavedra is also a U.S. Army Veteran, having served 11 years in the Army with deployments to Bosnia-Herzegovina and Iraq. Mr. Saavedra is a Martindale-Hubbell AV rated attorney as well as a fellow of the American Bar Foundation. He is a lifetime member of Disabled American Veterans.

Super Lawyers, a Thomson Reuters business, is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a patented multiphase process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. The result is a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys.

Saavedra Law Firm, PLC. Legal.Better.®

Photo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1443441/Freddy_Saavedra.jpg
Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1443442/Saavedra_Law_Firm_Logo.jpg

 

SOURCE Saavedra Law Firm, PLC

Every 2021MY Mazda Vehicle Tested Earns 2021 IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK+ Award

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Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States and Mexico through nearly 700 dealers. Operations in Mexico are managed by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City. For more information on Mazda vehicles, including photography and B-roll, please visit the online Mazda media center at www.mazdausamedia.com. (PRNewsFoto/Mazda North American Operations)

WASHINGTON, Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) today announced the winners of its highest award in safety, the 2021 TOP SAFETY PICK+. All tested Mazda vehicles made the list for the second year in a row. These vehicles include the Mazda3 Sedan and Mazda3 Hatchback, Mazda6, CX-3, CX-30 (built after September 2020), CX-5 and CX-9.

Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States and Mexico through nearly 700 dealers. Operations in Mexico are managed by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City. For more information on Mazda vehicles, including photography and B-roll, please visit the online Mazda media center at www.mazdausamedia.com. (PRNewsFoto/Mazda North American Operations)

To qualify for the 2021 TOP SAFETY PICK+ award, Mazda vehicles earned good ratings in each of the Institute’s six crashworthiness evaluations: moderate overlap front, driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraint tests. Mazda vehicles also earned advanced or superior ratings for front crash prevention in both vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-pedestrian evaluations and good or acceptable headlight ratings. 

“With safety a top priority for Mazda, we are proud to have every Mazda vehicle tested earn the coveted 2021 IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK+ award. This accomplishment stems from our committment to our owners,” said Mazda North American Operations President Jeff Guyton. “Our customers have come to expect Mazda’s dedication to providing advanced safety technologies paired with dynamic styling, which give them a confident and more enjoyable driving experience.”

Mazda’s i-Activsense is an umbrella term covering a series of advanced safety technologies which make use of detection devices such as milliwave radars and cameras. They include active safety technologies that support safer driving by helping the driver to recognize potential hazards, and pre-crash safety technologies which help to avert collisions or reduce their severity in situations where they cannot be avoided. Mazda’s i-Activsense advanced safety technologies include Advanced Smart City Brake Support with Pedestrian Detection, Smart Brake Support with Collision Warning, Smart Brake Support, Mazda Radar Cruise Control with Stop & Go Function, Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning System with Lane-Keep Assist, Driver Attention Alert, High Beam Control, Adaptive Front-Lighting System, and Traffic Sign Recognition.

To learn more about Mazda’s i-Activsense advanced safety technology, please visit the MazdaUSA.com website – https://www.mazdausa.com/why-mazda/safety.

The IIHS is an independent, non-governmental safety-testing organization, funded by the insurance industry. For more information, visit https://www.iihs.org/ratings/top-safety-picks.

Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, California, and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States and Mexico through approximately 620 dealers. Operations in Mexico are managed by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City. For more information on Mazda vehicles, including photography and B-roll, please visit the online Mazda media center at InsideMazda.MazdaUSA.com/Newsroom.

Follow MNAO’s social media channels through Twitter and Instagram at @MazdaUSA and Facebook at Facebook.com/MazdaUSA.

Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/53154/mazda_north_american_operations_logo.jpg

 

SOURCE Mazda North American Operations

Texas Realtors announces 2020 Texas real estate award winners

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Texas Association of Realtors logo.

AUSTIN, Texas, Feb. 23, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Texas Realtors recognized outstanding members and local Realtor associations during its annual Texas Realtors Winter Meeting, which took place virtually Feb. 16-18.

Texas Association of Realtors logo.

“Last year was an unprecedented year in Texas real estate,” said Marvin Jolly, chairman of Texas Realtors. “This past year, Realtors in the Lone Star State went above and beyond to support their communities, elevate our industry and impact the lives of their clients. These awards are a testament to the resiliency of Realtors, particularly during these challenging times.”

The 2020 Texas Realtor of the Year, the most prestigious honor awarded annually to a member who has made outstanding contributions to the industry throughout their career, was presented to Shad Bogany of Houston. Bogany has volunteered for decades and served in many leadership roles to benefit Realtors, the real estate industry, and Texas real estate consumers. He previously served as chairman of Texas Realtors in 2013 and chairman of the Houston Association of Realtors in 2002.

The Tom D. Morton Association Executive of the Year award—given to Realtor association executives with a long track record of service to their local association—was presented to Connie Coots, CEO of the Odessa Board of Realtors. Coots worked with local leaders during the pandemic to ensure that real estate transactions could still proceed safely and led an initiative to make over 200 masks for the city’s fire and rescue workers. Coots was also honored with the Tom D. Morton Association Executive of the Year award in 2005.

Sydney Ealy of Houston received the Texas Realtor Good Neighbor Award, which honors a Realtor who has demonstrated outstanding community involvement and volunteerism. Ealy was specifically recognized for her charity, Twist for Girls, a nonprofit established for youths age 11 to 17, to discover and achieve their goals through one-to-one mentorship, life skills development, career exposure and cultural experiences at no cost to the children who participate.

Candace (Candy) Cooke of Round Rock was named the 2020 Educator of the Year. Cooke is a senior instructor for Real Property Counselors and teaches Texas Realtors and National Association of Realtors certification and designation courses. She has paved the way for how education now operates in Texas in the COVID-19 pandemic, having taught over 300 classes virtually with more than 6,800 students in 2020.

Alison Blalock of WestMark Commercial/TNC Worldwide received the 2020 William C. Jennings Award for the outstanding commercial real estate transaction of the year. The award is based on the transaction’s contribution to the community, merit and creativity, and application of commercial principles. The winning transaction transformed unusable office space into 89 affordable housing units in one of Lubbock’s most historic buildings, Metro Tower. The tower had been mostly uninhabited since a devasting tornado damaged the building in 1970.

The Austin Board of Realtors received the 2020 Mark Lehman Governmental Affairs Achievement Award. The honor recognizes a local Realtor association that has demonstrated excellence in fundraising, grassroots involvement and other local initiatives for the year.

The Texas Realtors Grassroots Advocate of the Year award was presented to Lee Overstreet of the Granbury Association of Realtors for his support on two successful campaigns for Realtor-supported candidates including state Rep. Glenn Rogers in Texas House District 60 and U.S. Rep. August Pfluger. The Texas Realtors Grassroots Advocate of the Year award honors one individual from the year’s full list of Texas Realtors Strike Force Award winners. 

Finally, Texas Realtors honored two local associations that launched innovative programs and educational courses that kept Realtors up to date with legal, marketing and industry trends. The Education Program of the Year awards were given to:

  • MetroTex Association of Realtors in the legal category
  • MetroTex Association of Realtors in the series or short program category
  • Houston Association of Realtors in the marketing category
  • Houston Association of Realtors in the innovation category

About Texas REALTORS®
With more than 140,000 members, Texas REALTORS® is a professional membership organization that represents all aspects of real estate in Texas. We are the advocates for REALTORS® and private property rights in Texas. Visit texasrealestate.com to learn more.

CONTACT: Morgan Moritz, mmoritz@piercom.com

Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1317682/Texas_Realtors_Logo.jpg

SOURCE Texas Realtors

2021 Acura RDX and TLX Earn Highest Possible Safety Award from IIHS

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2021 Acura RDX and TLX Earn Highest Possible Safety Award from IIHS

TORRANCE, Calif., Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The 2021 Acura RDX and TLX have earned the highest possible safety rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Both Acura models qualified for TOP SAFETY PICK+ (TSP+) by earning a top rating of “GOOD” in all crashworthiness tests, a “SUPERIOR” rating for the Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™), part of the standard AcuraWatch™ safety and driver-assistive technology and standard “GOOD” rated headlights. Not yet tested by the Institute, the all-new 2022 Acura MDX, the brand’s flagship model, is similarly expected to achieve a 2021 TSP+ rating when it is evaluated later this year.

2021 Acura RDX and TLX Earn Highest Possible Safety Award from IIHS

All Acura sedans and SUVs feature the AcuraWatch™ suite of safety and driver-assistive technologies as standard equipment, including Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™), Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow and Road Departure Mitigation. The 2021 Acura RDX and TLX feature Acura’s Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure, designed to enhance occupant protection and crash compatibility in frontal collisions with a network of connected structural elements to distribute crash energy more evenly throughout the front of the vehicle and reducing the forces transferred to the passenger compartment. Acura JewelEye™ LED headlights help both models achieve its best-in-class ratings.

To earn the 2021 TOP SAFETY PICK+ award, a vehicle must earn good crashworthiness ratings in all test modes, including the challenging passenger-side small overlap test. It also needs available front crash prevention (standard on RDX and TLX) that earns an advanced or superior rating in both vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-pedestrian testing and standard good- or acceptable- rated headlights.

About Acura

Acura is a leading automotive nameplate that delivers Precision Crafted Performance – a commitment to expressive styling, high performance and innovative engineering, all built on a foundation of quality and reliability. The Acura lineup features five distinctive models – the ILX and TLX sport sedans, the RDX and MDX sport-utility vehicles and the next-generation, electrified NSX supercar. All Acura models sold in North America for 2021 and 2022 model years are made in the U.S., using domestic and globally sourced parts.

Additional media information including pricing, features & specifications and high-resolution photography is available at AcuraNews.com. Consumer information is available at Acura.com. Follow Acura on social media at Acura.us/SocialChannels.

Acura Logo. (PRNewsFoto/American Honda Motor Co., Inc.)

Photo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1443530/2021_TLX_A_Spec_01_source.jpg
Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/458749/acura_logo.jpg

 

SOURCE Acura

DIVERSITY in Ed’s Publisher Vows to Place 5,000 Teachers of Color by 2021 School Year

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Diversity Recruitment Partners - DIVERSITY in Ed Online Teacher Recruitment Services include Print Magazine, Job Board & Virtual Recruitment Fairs

HOUSTON, Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — 2021 has barely begun, and the largest teacher recruitment campaign to date for DIVERSITY in Ed is already underway. On Feb 1st, in honor of Black History month, DIVERSITY in Ed’s publisher, Trina Edwards, launched an ambitious campaign with the goal of connecting 5,000 teachers from diverse backgrounds and cultures in communities of color nationwide. Says Edwards, “this goal is how we achieve the mission we share with our nationwide partners, that all students of color have access to a teacher who looks like them or shares their unique cultural background.”

Diversity Recruitment Partners - DIVERSITY in Ed Online Teacher Recruitment Services include Print Magazine, Job Board & Virtual Recruitment Fairs

To date, 179 school leaders and Human Resources personnel from across the country have joined the campaign to recruit and hire minority teachers. Some of the largest and most diverse districts in the country, which include NYC Department of Education, Duval County Public Schools, Clark County Public Schools, Fairfax County Public Schools, and Gwinnett County Public Schools have committed to recruiting and hiring at this spring’s 7th annual Virtual Recruitment Fair to be held on April 14, 2021.

Representation includes schools and districts from both northern and southern states, and over 20 charter schools are also registered, with Edwards sharing that there is already diversity in the range of recruiters who don’t want to miss out at the opportunity to make their pitch to in-demand teacher talent.  As LaMeika Robinson, Talent Acquisition Manager, Columbus City Schools described her experience at DIVERSITY in Ed’s pop-up fair last fall, “I was blown away! I met teacher candidates locally, nationally, and INTERNATIONALLY. Without a doubt, I would recommend this fair to all school districts globally.”     

While DIVERSITY in Ed’s virtual event is the perfect fit for a pandemic landscape in which both teacher candidates and recruiters are looking to connect safely to fill critical roles in our nation’s schools, the model predates these unprecedented times, and the experts in diversity hiring are hoping their 7th recruitment fair is the biggest and best yet.             

For recruiters ready to get a jump start on vetting candidates, Edwards and her team encourage schools and districts to register now at the DIVERSITY in Ed job board at https://www.diversityined.com. New teachers and teachers preparing for graduation and certification are welcome to browse jobs and sign up to hold their spot to become part of this historic effort to make a major impact in increasing diversity in the education workforce.           

For more information on DIVERSITY in Ed’s next Virtual Teacher Recruitment Fair, or to register your school or district, please visit https://diversityined.careerfairexpo.com/.

CONTACT:
Trina Edwards
281-265-2473
trina@diversityined.com

Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1143119/DIVERSITYinEd_Logo.jpg

SOURCE DIVERSITY in Ed

Doggett Freightliner, One Of The Largest 18-Wheeler Dealership Groups In The U.S., Further Expands To Serve Brownsville Customers

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Doggett_Logo

HOUSTON, Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Doggett Freightliner continues to grow, expanding into the Brownsville area to provide expedited parts and unmatched service support for local customers. With the new Brownsville facility, Doggett Freightliner will have nine locations throughout Texas and Arkansas, including San Antonio, El Paso, Laredo, and Pharr, Texas, along with North Little Rock, Springdale, and Van Buren, Arkansas. The Brownsville facility complements Doggett’s existing Freightliner and Western Star dealerships that now sell and service flatbeds, dry freight, refrigerated vans, and other over-the-road truck offerings. This new location will help local customers maximize uptime with expedited parts and dependable mobile support.

“Doggett has a long and successful history of living up to the rigid demands of our customers. Our success has been built by performing up to our customer’s exceedingly high expectations 24/7, thanks to an excellent team of dedicated support staff and factory-trained technicians that are pros at keeping their promises,” says Paul Burk, Senior VP of the Doggett Truck Group.

Burk concludes, “At Doggett Freightliner, we are proud to be a superior dealership with our Elite Support Certification providing the industry’s best truck maintenance and repairs with an unmatched-level of customer service. Our loyal customers’ trust helped us grow into one of the largest dealership groups in the country. We are excited to continue to deliver unmatched service and support to our customers for years to come in the Brownsville area.” 

About the Doggett Equipment Services Group
Doggett Equipment Services Group (Doggett) is a diversified heavy equipment factory authorized dealer for seven industry-leading manufacturers that are either number one or two in their respective industries. Doggett, founded in 1993 with 17 employees, was ranked by the Houston Chronicle in 2020 as Houston’s 9th largest private company approaching $2 billion in annual sales and also rated by the Houston Business Journal in 2020 as Houston’s largest (#1) family-owned business. Serving Texas, Louisiana, and Arkansas, its team of 1400+ full-time employees, including 500+ factory-trained and certified technicians, are dedicated to providing a world-class customer experience. Doggett is a family-owned business without outside investment headquartered in Houston, Texas.

Doggett is a proud dealer-partner with the following industry-leading manufacturers: John Deere Construction and Forestry equipment (16 dealerships including exclusivity for the state of Louisiana, east and south Texas), Toyota Material Handling – Forklifts (7 dealerships covering the southern half of Texas including El Paso), Freightliner and Western Star (Daimler-Benz Companies) on-highway and vocational trucks (9 dealerships including exclusivity for the state of Arkansas, South and West Texas), Link-Belt Cranes (2 dealerships including exclusivity for the state of Louisiana), Great Dane Trailers (3 dealerships), and a Ford auto and truck dealership. To learn more, visit Doggett.com and DoggettFreightliner.com.

Media Contact
Hue Du
Phone: (281) 249-4638
Email: Hue.Du@Doggett.com 

Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/956669/Doggett_Logo.jpg

SOURCE Doggett Equipment Services Group

Six 2021 Honda Models Earn IIHS Top Safety Ratings

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Six Honda models earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) TOP SAFETY PICK (TSP) rating or better for 2021, with three, Accord, Insight and Odyssey achieving the pinnacle TOP SAFETY PICK+ (TSP+) rating. Contributing to the top ratings, the 2021 Accord, two Civic models (Sedan and Hatchback), CR-V, Insight and Odyssey each achieve the highest possible rating of “GOOD” in all six IIHS crashworthiness tests.

TORRANCE, Calif., Feb. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Six Honda models have earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) TOP SAFETY PICK (TSP) rating or better for 2021, with three, Accord, Insight and Odyssey, achieving the pinnacle TOP SAFETY PICK+ (TSP+) rating. Contributing to the top ratings, the 2021 Accord, two Civic models[1] (Sedan and Hatchback), CR-V, Insight and Odyssey each achieve the highest possible rating of “GOOD” in all six IIHS crashworthiness tests. In addition, all feature Honda Sensing® driver-assistive and safety technology as standard equipment, earning “SUPERIOR” ratings for vehicle-to-vehicle frontal crash prevention.

Six Honda models earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) TOP SAFETY PICK (TSP) rating or better for 2021, with three, Accord, Insight and Odyssey achieving the pinnacle TOP SAFETY PICK+ (TSP+) rating. Contributing to the top ratings, the 2021 Accord, two Civic models (Sedan and Hatchback), CR-V, Insight and Odyssey each achieve the highest possible rating of “GOOD” in all six IIHS crashworthiness tests.

Honda Sensing® is now available or standard on every Honda automobile model, and there are well over four million Honda vehicles on U.S. roads today featuring this comprehensive suite of safety and driver-assistive technologies, which includes Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™) with Pedestrian Detection; Forward Collision Warning; Road Departure Mitigation (RDM) incorporating Lane Departure Warning (LDW); Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS); and Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC).

All Honda vehicles also benefit from Honda’s proprietary Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure, designed to protect occupants in a wide variety of frontal collisions, along with advanced supplemental restraint systems, including pretensioning front seatbelts, and front, side, knee and side-curtain airbags.

To earn the 2021 TSP award, a vehicle must earn “GOOD” crashworthiness ratings in all test modes, including in the challenging passenger-side small overlap test. A top-rated vehicle must also offer front crash prevention that earns an “ADVANCED” or “SUPERIOR” rating in both vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-pedestrian testing, as well as “GOOD” or “ACCEPTABLE” ratings for available headlights; while TSP+ rated vehicles must achieve the same “GOOD” or “ACCEPTABLE” rating for their standard headlights. Separately, every Honda model that has been fully evaluated in the NHTSA’s 2021 model year NCAP testing has received a 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score[2].

For More Information
Consumer information is available at automobiles.honda.com. To join the Honda community on Facebook, visit facebook.com/honda. Additional media information including detailed pricing features and high-resolution photography of all 2021 Honda models is available at hondanews.com.

About Honda
Honda offers a full line of reliable, fuel-efficient and fun-to-drive vehicles with advanced safety technologies sold through over 1,000 independent U.S. Honda dealers. The Honda lineup includes the Fit, Civic, Insight, Accord and Clarity series passenger cars, along with the HR-V, CR-V, Passport and Pilot sport utility vehicles, the Ridgeline pickup and the Odyssey minivan.

Honda has been producing automobiles in America for 38 years and currently operates 19 major manufacturing facilities in North America. In 2020, more than 95 percent of all Honda vehicles sold in the U.S. were made in North America, using domestic and globally-sourced parts.

About Honda Safety Leadership
Honda has a long history of leadership in the development and application of advanced technologies designed to enhance the safety of all road users, including automobile occupants, motorcycle riders and pedestrians. The company operates two of the world’s most sophisticated crash test facilities, in Ohio and Japan, and is responsible for numerous pioneering efforts in the areas of crashworthiness, airbag technology, collision compatibility and pedestrian safety.

[1] Excludes Civic Type R.
[2] Government 5-Star Safety Ratings are part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA’s) New Car Assessment Program (www.SaferCar.gov). Not yet fully evaluated for the 2021 model year are the Clarity series and Civic Type R.

Honda Logo.

Photo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/1443537/2020_Honda_CR_V_Hybrid.jpg
Logo – https://mma.prnewswire.com/media/451598/Honda_Logo.jpg

SOURCE American Honda Motor Co., Inc.