Thursday, February 29, 2024

NIQ Empowers Clients and Partners with the Launch of Global Media Division

 CHICAGO - Thursday, 29. February 2024

(BUSINESS WIRE) -- NIQ, the world’s leading consumer intelligence company, is pleased to announce the launch of its new Media Division, a strategic initiative designed to enhance the value advertisers derive from their marketing efforts and enable partners in support of our advertiser clients. This move underscores NIQ’s continued commitment to providing clients with the Full View™ and strengthening their marketing capabilities.


Heading the Global Media Division is Lana Busignani, a seasoned professional with an impressive track record in driving strategy across various media products. Formerly with Quotient Technology Inc., Lana brings her extensive experience to lead this strategic initiative, drawing from seven years at Nielsen Media, initially leading global Marketing Effectiveness and then serving as general manager of international media services. With a wealth of market research experience, including 15 years at IPSOS leading global advertising intelligence, Lana is well-positioned to drive the success of NIQ's Media Division.


“We're excited to unveil our Media Division, a testament to our commitment to providing clients with the Full View™. This strategic initiative, uniting the capabilities of NIQ, GfK, and MRI-Simmons, enhances client value and marks a pivotal step toward an exciting and dynamic industry,” said Lana Busignani General Manager, Global Media with NIQ. “By leveraging our collective strengths, we're shaping a future where businesses can make informed decisions in their marketing investments and execution, strengthening our position as industry leaders.”


The Media Division will address three core industry issues: defining the right audience for brands, delivering that audience and ensuring that it performs, by integrating the power of NIQ, GfK, and MRI-Simmons.


“With the launch of the Media Division under the leadership of Lana, we are thrilled to round out NIQ's suite of services,” said Susan Dunn, Chief Revenue Officer with NIQ. “This strategic initiative harmonizes our capabilities, offering clients a comprehensive solution to make informed and unified decisions in their marketing endeavors. Lana's wealth of experience and strategic vision align seamlessly with our commitment to providing clients with the Full View, reinforcing NIQ's position as a trusted partner in driving business success.”


About NIQ 

NIQ is the world’s leading consumer intelligence company, delivering the most complete understanding of consumer buying behavior and revealing new pathways to growth. In 2023, NIQ combined with GfK, bringing together the two industry leaders with unparalleled global reach. With a holistic retail read and the most comprehensive consumer insights—delivered with advanced analytics through state-of-the-art platforms—NIQ delivers the Full ViewTM.


NIQ is an Advent International portfolio company with operations in 100+ markets, covering more than 90% of the world’s population. For more information, visit NIQ.com.


 


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Contacts

Media

Gillian Mosher (Gillian.Mosher@NIQ.com)

VeriSilicon NPU IP is Shipped in Over 100 Million AI-Enabled Chips Worldwide

 


SHANGHAI, China -

Enabling efficient execution of applications ranging from AI voice, AI vision, AI pixel to AIGC on embedded devices


(BUSINESS WIRE)--VeriSilicon (688521.SH) today announced that it has reached a milestone achievement with its Neural Network Processor (NPU) IP integrated into over 100 million AI-enabled chips across 10 major application sectors worldwide, including Internet of Things (IoT), wearables, smart TVs, smart home, security monitoring, servers, automotive electronics, smartphones, tablets, and smart healthcare. As a global leader in embedded AI/NPU over the past seven years, VeriSilicon’s NPU IP has been successfully integrated into 128 AI SoCs supplied by 72 licensees in these varied market segments.


VeriSilicon’s NPU IP is a high-performance AI processor IP designed with a low-power, programmable, and scalable architecture. It can be easily configured to meet licensees’ requirements for chip sizes and power budgets, making it a cost-effective neural network acceleration engine. This IP also ships with extensive and mature Software Development Kit (SDK) supporting all major deep learning frameworks, ensuring fast product deployment in the market.


VeriSilicon’s latest VIP9000 series NPU IP offers scalable and high-performance processing capabilities for both Transformer and Convolutional Neural Network (CNN). Coupled with Acuity toolkits, this powerful IP supports all major frameworks including PyTorch, ONNX, and TensorFlow. Additionally, it features 4-bit quantization and compression technologies to address bandwidth constraints, facilitating the deployment of AI Generated Content (AIGC) and Large Language Model (LLM) algorithms such as Stable Diffusion and Llama 2 on embedded devices.


By leveraging VeriSilicon’s FLEXA® technology, VIP9000 can be seamlessly integrated with VeriSilicon’s Image Signal Processor (ISP) and video encoders to form low-latency AI-ISP and AI-Video subsystems without requiring DDR memory. It can be further customized to balance cost and flexibility for power- and space-constrained environments in deeply embedded applications.


“AI capability is now an essential part of every smart device across different applications, ranging from MCUs to high-performance application processors. Leveraging our expertise in Graphics Processor Unit (GPU), we have architected low-power, programmable, and scalable NPU processor IPs capable of handling various types of neural networks and computational tasks within the NPU itself. Such efficiency, combined with minimized data traffic, serves as key enablers for embedded smart devices,” said Wei-Jin Dai, Executive VP and GM of IP Division at VeriSilicon. “With the rapid advancement of AI, we have achieved a level of human-like reasoning that paves the way for intelligent human assistants. VeriSilicon is leveraging our highly efficient AI computing capabilities and vast experience in deploying over 100 million AI-enabled chips to bring server-level AIGC capabilities to embedded devices.”


About VeriSilicon


VeriSilicon is committed to providing customers with platform-based, all-around, one-stop custom silicon services and semiconductor IP licensing services leveraging its in-house semiconductor IP. For more information, please visit: www.verisilicon.com


 


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Contacts

 

Media Contact: press@verisilicon.com

AB InBev Reports Full Year and Fourth Quarter 2023 Results

 Continued global momentum, partially offset by US performance, delivered all-time high revenue in FY23


 


(BUSINESS WIRE)--AB InBev (Brussel:ABI) (BMV:ANB) (JSE:ANH) (NYSE:BUD):


Regulated and inside information1


“Our business delivered another year of consistent profitable growth with a revenue increase of 7.8% and EBITDA growth of 7.0%. Strong free cash flow generation enabled us to progress on our deleveraging, propose an increased dividend to our shareholders and execute on a 1 billion USD share buyback. Our results are a testament to the strength of the beer category, resilience of our business and people, consistent execution of our replicable growth drivers and our unwavering commitment to invest for long-term growth and value creation.” – Michel Doukeris, CEO, AB InBev


Management comments


Creating a future with more cheers


Our business delivered another year of consistent profitable growth, with an EBITDA increase of 7.0%, in-line with our medium-term growth ambition and outlook for the year. While our full growth potential was constrained by the performance of our US business, we remained true to our purpose and laser focused on the execution of our strategy.


We made disciplined revenue management and resource allocation choices, delivering broad-based growth with top- and bottom-line increases in four of our five operating regions. Our results are a testament to the strength of the beer category, resilience of our business and people, consistent execution of our replicable growth drivers and our unwavering commitment to invest for long-term growth and value creation.


As with any year, there was success to celebrate and challenges from which to learn. We are taking the learnings and moving forward in a stronger position to realize our full growth potential.


Delivering consistent profitable growth


Our top-line increased by 7.8% in FY23, with revenue growth in more than 85% of our markets, driven by a revenue per hl increase of 9.9% as a result of pricing actions, ongoing premiumization and other revenue management initiatives. Volumes declined by 1.7% as growth in many of our emerging and developing markets was primarily offset by performance in the US and a soft industry in Europe.


EBITDA increased by 7.0%, with our top-line growth partially offset by anticipated transactional FX and commodity cost headwinds and increased sales and marketing investments. Underlying EPS was 3.05 USD, an increase of 0.02 USD per share versus FY22.


Progressing our strategic priorities


Lead and grow the category


We remain focused on the consistent execution of our five proven and replicable category expansion levers. In FY23, the beer and beyond beer category continued to gain share of alcohol by volume globally, led by gains in South America and China, according to Euromonitor.


We focused our investments behind the megabrands in our portfolio that are driving the majority of our growth and the global mega platforms that consumers love and that bring people together. Our portfolio of brands is unparalleled, with 7 out of the top 10 most valuable beer brands in the world, according to Kantar BrandZ, and 20 iconic billion-dollar revenue beer brands. The combination of our iconic brands with mega platforms such as the Olympics, FIFA World CupTM, Copa America, NFL, UFC, NBA, Lollapalooza and Tomorrowland has us uniquely positioned to lead and grow the category.


The relevance, authenticity and effective creativity of our marketing work continues to be recognized. At the 2023 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, campaigns and brands from all 5 of our operating regions were awarded and we were honored to be named as the Creative Marketer of the Year for the second year in a row.

Category Participation: In FY23, the percentage of consumers purchasing our portfolio of brands increased or remained stable in the majority of our markets, according to our estimates. Our brand, pack and liquid innovations drove increased participation with female consumers across key markets in Africa, Latin America and Europe, and new legal drinking age consumers in the US and Canada.

Core Superiority: Our mainstream portfolio delivered high-single digit revenue growth in FY23 with double-digit growth in markets such as South Africa, Colombia and Dominican Republic. Our mainstream brands gained or maintained share of segment in the majority of our key markets, according to our estimates.

Occasions Development: Our global no-alcohol beer portfolio continued to outperform, delivering high-teens revenue growth in FY23, with our performance driven by Budweiser Zero and Corona Cero. Our digital direct-to-consumer products enabled us to develop deep consumer insights and new consumption occasions, such as Corona Sunset Hours, Brahma Soccer Wednesdays and increased in-home consumption of returnable glass bottle packs.

Premiumization: Our above core beer portfolio grew revenue by low-teens in FY23, with our premium and super premium brands gaining share of segment in a number of key markets, including South Africa, Mexico and Brazil, according to our estimates. Our global megabrands grew revenue by 18.2% outside of their home markets led by Corona which grew by 22.1%. Budweiser delivered a revenue increase of 17.1%, with broad-based growth in more than 25 markets, Stella Artois grew by 18.8% and Michelob Ultra by 7.5%.

Beyond Beer: In FY23, our Beyond Beer business contributed approximately 1.5 billion USD of revenue and grew by mid-single digits, as growth globally was partially offset by the performance of malt-based seltzer in the US. Growth was primarily driven by Brutal Fruit and Flying Fish in Africa, our spirits based ready-to-drink portfolio in the US and Beats in Brazil, all of which grew revenue by double-digits.

Digitize and monetize our ecosystem


The digital transformation of our route to consumer is a fundamental evolution in how we do business and serve our customers. Our digital platforms are enabling us to increase the distribution of our brands, reduce our cost to serve and improve our relationship with customers and consumers. It is a key competitive advantage, and we continue to explore new ways to monetize our digital and physical assets to create additional profitable revenue streams.

Digitizing our relationships with our more than six million customers globally: As of 31 December 2023, BEES was live in 26 markets, with approximately 70% of our 4Q23 revenues captured through B2B digital platforms. In FY23, BEES reached 3.7 million monthly active users and captured 39.8 billion USD in gross merchandise value (GMV), growth of 27% versus FY22.


BEES Marketplace was live in 15 markets with 67% of BEES customers also Marketplace buyers. Marketplace captured approximately 1.5 billion USD in GMV from sales of third-party products this year, growth of 52% versus FY22.

Leading the way in DTC solutions: Our omnichannel direct-to-consumer (DTC) ecosystem of digital and physical products generated revenue of approximately 1.5 billion USD this year. Our DTC megabrands, Zé Delivery, TaDa and PerfectDraft are available in 21 markets, fulfilled over 69 million e-commerce orders and generated revenue of more than 550 million USD in FY23, growth of 15% versus FY22.

Unlocking value from our ecosystem: We continue to explore opportunities to generate scalable incremental revenue streams for our business through EverGrain, our upcycled barley ingredients company, and Biobrew, our precision fermentation venture.

Optimize our business

Maximizing value creation: Our objective to maximize long-term value creation is driven by our focus on three areas: optimized resource allocation, robust risk management and an efficient capital structure. Our culture of everyday financial discipline enables us to optimize resource allocation and invest for growth. In FY23, we invested 11.6 billion USD in capex and sales and marketing while delivering free cash flow of approximately 8.8 billion USD, a 0.3 billion USD increase versus FY22.


We continued to deleverage, reducing gross debt by 1.8 billion USD to reach 78.1 billion USD, resulting in a net debt to EBITDA ratio of 3.38x as of 31 December 2023. Our robust risk management was recognized earlier this year with a credit rating upgrade from Baa1 to A3 by Moody’s and from BBB+ to A- by S&P.


As a result, we have additional flexibility in our capital allocation choices. The AB InBev Board of Directors has proposed a full year dividend of 0.82 EUR per share, a 9% increase versus FY22. In addition, as of 23rd February 2024 we have completed nearly 90% of our 1 billion USD share buyback program announced on 31 October 2023.

Advancing our sustainability priorities: In FY23, we continued to make progress towards our ambitious 2025 Sustainability Goals. We contracted the equivalent of 100% of our global purchased electricity volume from renewable sources with 73.6% operational. Since 2017, we reduced our absolute GHG emissions across Scopes 1 and 2 by 44% and GHG emissions intensity across Scopes 1, 2 and 3 by 24.2%. In Sustainable Agriculture, 95% of our direct farmers met our criteria for skilled, 92% for connected and 86% for financially empowered. In Water Stewardship, we are investing in restoration and conservation efforts across 100% of our sites in high stress areas, with 56% of sites in scope for our 2025 goal already seeing measurable improvement in watershed health. For Circular Packaging, 77.5% of our products were in packaging that was returnable or made from majority recycled content. We are also progressing on our ambition to achieve net zero by 2040, with 36 lighthouse projects implemented worldwide in 2023.


In recognition of our leadership in corporate transparency and performance on climate change and water security, we were awarded a double A score by CDP.


We are committed to Smart Drinking and improving moderation habits all over the world. Since 2016, we have invested 900 million USD in social norms marketing and are on track to deliver our 1 billion USD goal by 2025. We have also undertaken the largest voluntary guidance labeling initiative, with 100% of our labels now featuring Smart Drinking icons and moderation actionable messages in 26 markets.


Please refer to our Sustainability Statements in our 2023 annual report here for further details.

Looking forward


As we reflect on 2023, while our full potential was constrained, the fundamental strengths of our business drove another year of consistent profitable growth. Beer is a large, profitable and growing category, gaining share of alcohol globally and with significant headroom for premiumization. Our diversified footprint, global scale and unparalleled ecosystem uniquely position us to lead and grow the category. We have replicable growth drivers such as our portfolio of megabrands that consumers love, digital products that unlock value and a category expansion model that drives organic growth. Our business generates superior profitability and cash generation, and our dynamic capital allocation framework provides us flexibility to maximize value creation. The resilience, relentless commitment and deep ownership culture of our people is truly unwavering, and we thank all our colleagues globally for their hard work and dedication.


Looking ahead to 2024, our purpose as a company remains as relevant as ever. Guided by our strategy and our focus on customer and consumer centricity, we are energized about the opportunities ahead to activate the category through our megabrands and platforms. We believe in the potential of the beer category, the fundamentals of our company and our people, and our ability to generate superior long-term value and create a future with more cheers.


2024 Outlook


(i) Overall Performance: We expect our EBITDA to grow in line with our medium-term outlook of between 4-8%1. The outlook for FY24 reflects our current assessment of inflation and other macroeconomic conditions.


(ii) Net Finance Costs: Net pension interest expenses and accretion expenses are expected to be in the range of 220 to 250 million USD per quarter, depending on currency and interest rate fluctuations. We expect the average gross debt coupon in FY24 to be approximately 4%.


(iii) Effective Tax Rates (ETR): We expect the normalized ETR in FY24 to be in the range of 27% to 29%. The ETR outlook does not consider the impact of potential future changes in legislation.


(iv) Net Capital Expenditure: We expect net capital expenditure of between 4.0 and 4.5 billion USD in FY24.


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Contacts

Investors

Shaun Fullalove

Tel: +1 212 573 9287

E-mail: shaun.fullalove@ab-inbev.com


Ekaterina Baillie

Tel: +32 16 276 888

E-mail: ekaterina.baillie@ab-inbev.com


Cyrus Nentin

Tel: +1 646 746 9673

E-mail: cyrus.nentin@ab-inbev.com


Media

Media Relations

E-mail: media.relations@ab-inbev.com


Kenai Therapeutics Announces $82 Million Series A Financing to Advance Next Generation Allogeneic Cell Therapies for Neurological Diseases

 SAN DIEGO - Thursday, 29. February 2024 AETOSWire 


– Proceeds to be used to complete clinical proof-of-concept trial for lead candidate, RNDP-001, for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease –


– Financing co-led by Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation, Cure Ventures and The Column Group, with participation from Euclidean Capital and Saisei Ventures –


 


(BUSINESS WIRE)--Kenai Therapeutics, a biotechnology company leveraging induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology to discover and develop a platform of allogeneic neuron replacement cell therapies for neurological disorders, today announced an $82 million Series A financing co-led by Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation, Cure Ventures and The Column Group, with participation from Euclidean Capital and Saisei Ventures. Kenai Therapeutics previously raised seed funding under the name Ryne Bio.


“We are grateful for the support of a syndicate of leading life science investors and a team of industry veterans, including scientific co-founders Dr. Howard Federoff and Dr. Jeffrey Kordower, who see the promise in Kenai’s approach to treating central nervous system disorders,” said Nick Manusos, chief executive officer of Kenai Therapeutics. “Their guidance will be invaluable as we soon advance our lead candidate, RNDP-001, into the clinic for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.”


RNDP-001 is an iPSC-derived, allogeneic dopamine progenitor cell therapy for the treatment of both idiopathic and inherited forms of Parkinson’s disease, and has displayed robust survival, innervation, and behavioral rescue in preclinical models of Parkinson’s disease. Proceeds from the financing will enable the Company to submit an IND for RNDP-001 and complete Phase 1 clinical trials, which will initiate within the year.


“Kenai’s proprietary platform leverages an emerging approach to treating central nervous system disorders by replacing neurons lost due to neurodegeneration,” said Jeff Jonas, M.D., chair and board member of Kenai Therapeutics and partner at Cure Ventures. “The potentially curative nature of RNDP-001 for Parkinson’s disease could dramatically alter outcomes for patients with very few treatment options.”


Beyond RNDP-001, Kenai is developing a robust pipeline of advanced off-the-shelf dopamine neuron replacement cell therapeutics for neurological disorders. The Company will continue to work with its contract manufacturing partner, FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics, a leading expert in iPSC technology and research, for manufacturing and development services.


“As a global leader in the field of iPSCs, we are thrilled to support the Kenai Therapeutics team to achieve progress in this promising area of science for patients with neurodegenerative diseases,” said Tomoyuki Hasegawa, president and chief executive officer at FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics, Inc.


“Kenai’s approach to treating Parkinson’s disease is meaningfully differentiated from competing cell therapy approaches and has disease-modifying potential for patients with limited, primarily symptomatic, treatment options,” said Jeff Goater, partner at The Column Group. “We are proud to be able to support Kenai in its mission to advance RNDP-001 to help families and patients suffering with this devastating disease.”


About Kenai Therapeutics


Kenai Therapeutics (Kenai) is a biotechnology company pioneering next generation approaches to cure neurological disorders. The Company utilizes allogeneic induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology, a Nobel Prize-winning breakthrough that enables scientists to manufacture many human cell types, in order to advance Kenai’s off-the-shelf neuron replacement therapeutics. By focusing on an iPSC technology platform, and forging partnerships with global leaders in surgical delivery and clinical development, Kenai is dedicated to advancing a best-in-class pipeline targeting neurological diseases. For additional information, please visit: www.kenaitx.com.


About Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation


The Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation (APFC) was created by the Alaska Legislature in 1980 as a quasi-independent state entity tasked with the important mission of prudently investing and managing the assets of the Alaska Permanent Fund. The Fund’s total assets are approximately $80 billion and are invested across a broad range of assets including equities, fixed income, alternatives and real estate. The Fund has been an active investor in biotechnology and life sciences dating back to 2013 and these assets now represent approximately 8% of APFC’s $15 billion private equity portfolio. For more information, please visit: www.apfc.org.


About Cure Ventures


Founded in 2021, Cure Ventures is a life sciences venture capital firm focusing on de novo company formation around groundbreaking curative technologies. Above all else, the Cure team leads with respect for people and for science. Led by highly accomplished industry veterans, Cure’s investment thesis is founded on three tenets: A seed funding model that allows Cure to de-risk the science and set companies up for success; genetic validation that increases the probability of success; and embedded Cure operators to drive the best day-to-day decision making in collaboration with founders. For more information, please visit: www.curevc.com.


About The Column Group


The Column Group (TCG) is a leading venture capital firm based in San Francisco that seeks to partner with exceptional scientific founders, entrepreneurs, executives, and investment organizations with a shared vision for building the next generation of drug discovery and development companies. TCG invests in disease-focused drug discovery companies with the potential to become leaders in their respective fields. These companies are strongly supported by the unique and complimentary skill sets of TCG’s team, which includes prominent authorities in the scientific, operational, and financial arenas. For more information, please visit: www.thecolumngroup.com.


About FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics, Inc.


FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics, Inc. is a leading developer and manufacturer of human iPSCs and iPSC-derived cells utilized in drug discovery, contract development and manufacturing services for cell therapies. For its partners, FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics utilizes its iPSC platform to advance the progress of therapeutic candidates in the clinic and provides contract development and manufacturing (CDMO) services. In addition to cell therapy, FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics also offers life science research tools including the company’s inventoried iCell® products, which are available in almost any cell type and are sourced from multiple cell lines which can be applied for target identification as well as toxicity testing. The company also offers custom cell services and cell banking. FUJIFILM Cellular Dynamics’ goal is to leverage the vast utility of iPSCs to advance human health and improve the quality of life for patients around the world. For more information, please visit: www.fujifilmcdi.com.


 


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 IR@kenaitx.com

Mastercard and MTN Group Fintech partner to drive acceleration of mobile money ecosystem in Africa across 13 markets

 


 

  • The partnership is set to launch a prepaid virtual card tailored for MTN's MoMo customers, granting them access to over 100 million acceptance points worldwide
  • Additionally, it will empower MoMo merchants to seamlessly accept card payments, enhancing the platform's instant cross-border money remittance services and capabilities

 

Mastercard and MTN Group Fintech have signed a multi-market agreement that will set in motion a new era of collaboration to connect millions of people and small businesses across Africa with digital tools to transact through secure mobile payments, expanding access to the benefits of the cashless digital economy.

 

The partnership will use Mastercard’s cutting edge technology and capabilities to support MTN’s ambition to become Africa’s largest fintech platform for both merchants and consumers. This follows Mastercard and MTN’s recent agreement for a minority investment into MTN Group Fintech - the digital financial services arm of Africa’s largest mobile network operator – that concluded this month.

 

With MTN's overall subscriber base at 290 million and 60 million active monthly MoMo (Mobile Money) wallets, the agreement will impact 13 markets in Africa including Benin, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Eswatini, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria, Republic of Congo, Republic of Guinea, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda, and Zambia.

 

“Our innovation strategy is based on collaboration. We are very proud of our partnership with MTN that will enable digital commerce for millions of people in Africa. In addition, mobile money solutions can be greatly beneficial for SMEs, enabling growth through seamless commercial operations, wider payments acceptance, access to affordable credit, and secure digital tools,” said Amnah Ajmal, Executive Vice President, Market Development EEMEA, Mastercard.

 

Africa is home to over 1.3 billion people and only about 43% are banked with over 90% of all payments and transactions made via cash. And of the total population, 45% have mobile money accounts. Over the past five years, Mastercard and MTN have joined together to support several mobile money programs across Africa, helping people to make payments through global platforms, thus bringing more people into the financial mainstream.

 

“When there is a mutual vision – in this case to bring access, progress, financial inclusion, and prosperity to people – the road to partnership is a simple one. We look forward to working with Mastercard as a partner that is also committed to the enablement of more people and businesses through the collaboration into best-in-class apps, superior user experiences, safe transactions, secure remittances, new use cases, and expanded acceptance,” said Serigne Dioum, Group CEO, MTN Fintech.

 

The collaboration will help strengthen local infrastructure for digital payments, support potential expansion of transactions in the future and drive financial inclusion through access to assets.

 

Enabling global access for MoMo wallet users

A virtual and physical Mastercard companion card will be added to every MoMo wallet allowing users access to over 100 million acceptance locations globally enabling MTN to scale up internationally.

 

With this access, Mastercard will also be able to provide its cybersecurity solutions to MTN’s operations with the aim to increase customer loyalty and trust.

 

Empowering SMEs with payment acceptance solutions

The agreement will enable SMEs with payments acceptance solutions such as Mastercard’s SME-in-a-Box, a low-cost payments solution that enables small business owners to move their businesses online and accept a range of digital payments from their customers.

 

SME owners will now be able to access solutions with the opportunity to set up an e-commerce shopfront, including QR enablement, Tap on Phone solutions and digital card acceptance. This aims to further elevate customer experience, reduce business costs, and open new avenues for growth and innovation.

 

Expanding reach for remittance solutions

Through the partnership, consumers will now have expanded reach for mobile money remittance services – both inward and cross-border remittances in Africa. The demand for international remittance services is growing with more than US$2 billion in daily processed transactions, equivalent to more than 40% of the GDP of Sub-Saharan Africa. International remittances via mobile-money wallets grew by 65% year over year in 2020 to around US$1 billion, with no signs of slowing.

 

Mastercard is committed to its work with multiple telecommunications network companies across the continent and around the world, to make financial inclusion a reality. The company has pledged to bring 1 billion people and 50 million SMEs into the global digital economy by 2025. The work to provide MTN’s consumers and SME customers with easy and secure solutions, platforms and tools is just one example of work to deliver on this goal.

 

About Mastercard (NYSE: MA)  www.mastercard.com 

Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry. Our mission is to connect and power an inclusive, digital economy that benefits everyone, everywhere by making transactions safe, simple, smart and accessible. Using secure data and networks, partnerships and passion, our innovations and solutions help individuals, financial institutions, governments and businesses realize their greatest potential. With connections across more than 210 countries and territories, we are building a sustainable world that unlocks priceless possibilities for all.

 

Mastercard communications contact: Amelia.Naidoo@mastercard.com

 

About the MTN Group

Launched in 1994, the MTN Group is a leading emerging market operator with a clear vision to lead the delivery of a bold new digital world to our customers. We are inspired by our belief that everyone deserves the benefits of a modern connected life. The MTN Group is listed on the JSE Securities Exchange in South Africa under the share code ‘MTN’. Our strategy is Ambition 2025: Leading digital solutions for Africa’s progress.

 

About MTN Group Fintech

MTN Fintech, the platform business of MTN Group, is dedicated to revolutionizing global financial services through innovative digital technology solutions. Leveraging MTN's extensive reach and expertise in telecommunications, MTN Fintech is committed to advancing financial inclusion for all and empowering communities in Africa. With a primary focus on pioneering mobile financial services, digital payments, e-commerce, short-term insurance, and remittance capabilities, MTN Fintech strives to establish seamless, accessible, and secure financial ecosystems that shape the future of digital finance.

 

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Contacts

MTN Group Press Office

Nikiwe Gwatyu

MTNGroup.PressOffice@mtn.com

LiveRamp Launches Unified Data Collaboration Platform Featuring Composable Technology

 SAN FRANCISCO - Thursday, 29. February 2024 AETOSWire Print 


New enhancements enable customers to collaborate with any partner, activate data to any destination, and access more solutions—all from one place


With a future-ready platform optimized for speed and ease-of-use, customers can deliver better business outcomes and more personalized customer experiences


 


(BUSINESS WIRE)--LiveRamp (NYSE: RAMP) today unveiled the next generation of the /LiveRamp Data Collaboration Platform, which brings together solutions for the end-to-end marketing lifecycle onto a single platform. The unified offering introduces new capabilities such as a simplified user interface, composable technology for cross-cloud interoperability, and a partner marketplace where innovative third-party developers can build applications showcasing their trusted expertise. Built on a foundation of durable, authenticated technology designed to withstand signal loss, the /LiveRamp Data Collaboration Platform offers functionality to proactively address evolving privacy considerations while accelerating forward-looking data collaboration use cases.


Gartner® findings show “Marketing has an outsized role in data and analytic activities across the enterprise, with 71% of marketing data and analytics teams responsible for owning at least one element of data strategy for their organization.” By bringing all of its capabilities into a single user interface with simplified orchestration, LiveRamp enables customers to more easily connect audiences across partners. Supporting modern data architectures with a focus on decentralized data reduces cloud complexity, improving cloud usability for all business users while resolving IT infrastructure constraints. Customer advantages include greater ease-of-use and streamlined functionality that unlock greater value across all of their data collaboration needs.


Increase simplicity using a single user interface built on a foundation of best-in-class identity, global authenticated connectivity, and proprietary privacy-enhancing technologies

Enhance the user experience and accelerate speed-to-value with new ingestion pipelines that reduce turnaround time from days to hours. Self-service tools allow the permissioning of datasets and segments, and a new notification system—capable of integrating with workplace tools including Slack—enables users to control how they receive information

Reach audiences ecosystem-wide using an enhanced activation and segmentation experience centered on users, campaigns and cross-audience segmentation. Further improve marketing performance by integrating with technologies such as Google PAIR designed to combat the loss of third-party cookies and other deprecating signals.

Unlock new partnerships across second and third-party data with the flexibility to collaborate wherever your first-party data lives, across the widest range of use cases, from one location

Leverage a new, partner application marketplace starting with integrated discovery, access, and deployment of measurement solutions from LiveRamp’s global network of partners

“A core tenet of the Albertsons Media Collective is to foster a more interconnected, collaborative ecosystem that increases access to data while minimizing data movement,” said Evan Hovorka, VP of Product and Innovation, Albertsons Media Collective. “LiveRamp has helped us advance this pledge with future-ready solutions that grow signal fidelity, enhance privacy, and scale data collaboration across the channels that matter most to our network. LiveRamp bringing these capabilities together more seamlessly will not only accelerate our own partnership, but the downstream value we deliver to our customers, advertisers, and ecosystem at large.”


“Circana’s Lift solution, a gold standard in retail and CPG measurement, incorporates household level data to unlock critical insights for advertisers, enabling them to measure and optimize media investments to improve sales performance,” said Harvey Goldhersz, EVP of Product at Circana. “Through LiveRamp, advertisers can now pinpoint which creative messages, ad formats, audience segments, and media placements drive retail sales most effectively and efficiently. Advertisers who use Circana’s Lift solution improve return on advertising spend (ROAS) up to 80%. We’re thrilled to switch on this capability for LiveRamp, bringing Circana’s speed, superior coverage, and accuracy to an even wider audience.”


The launch of the unified /LiveRamp Data Collaboration Platform follows the company’s acquisition of Habu to accelerate data collaboration through enhanced clean room technology. Customers using the LiveRamp Clean Room, powered by Habu on its platform can measure campaigns across all walled gardens, media platforms and programmatic channels while connecting data seamlessly across clouds, warehouses and clean rooms.


“LiveRamp’s customers have been asking for solutions with greater simplicity and scale to unlock the value of data and drive a competitive advantage,” added Kimberly Bloomston, Chief Product Officer at LiveRamp. “The launch of our fully unified platform delivers on this need by setting a new standard for powerful data collaboration built on privacy-enhancing technologies that withstand evolving signal loss and privacy requirements. LiveRamp’s recent acquisition of Habu further strengthens our ability to help customers collaborate with anyone, activate data anywhere, and measure everywhere it matters.”


Learn more about the wide range of data collaboration use cases LiveRamp can unlock for your company at liveramp.com/our-platform.


About LiveRamp


LiveRamp is the data collaboration platform of choice for the world’s most innovative companies. A groundbreaking leader in consumer privacy, data ethics, and enterprise identity, LiveRamp is setting the new standard for building a connected customer view with unmatched clarity and context while protecting precious brand and consumer trust. LiveRamp offers complete flexibility to collaborate wherever data lives to support the widest range of data collaboration use cases—within organizations, between brands, and across its premier global network of top-quality partners.


Hundreds of global innovators, from iconic consumer brands and tech giants to banks, retailers, and healthcare leaders turn to LiveRamp to build enduring brand and business value by deepening customer engagement and loyalty, activating new partnerships, and maximizing the value of their first-party data while staying on the forefront of rapidly evolving compliance and privacy requirements. LiveRamp is based in San Francisco, California with offices worldwide. Learn more at www.liveramp.com.


 


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Contacts

Michelle Millsap

PR@liveramp.com

EH Group Joins H2MARINE Project to Develop Next Generation Maritime Fuel Cells

 


(BUSINESS WIRE)--EH Group is a proud member of H2MARINE, a co-funded initiative by the EU’s Clean Hydrogen Partnership and SERI (Switzerland). The project is committed to innovation in hydrogen technologies, focused on the development of next generation PEM fuel cell stacks for marine applications.


It entails the comprehensive process of designing, assembly, and testing of FC stacks, engineered to generate 250-300 kW of electrical power, and addressing the specific challenges of maritime applications. Based on its unique FC technology, EH Group will contribute its high power density stacks, further developed and optimised for marine use.


With an overall budget of over 9Mio EUR, across 42 months, the project represents a significant step forward in the pursuit of sustainable energy solutions for the maritime sector. The project consortium consists of 13 partners across Europe, including key R&D institutes like VTT, EPFL, ZSW, University of Freiburg, and companies such as Beyond Gravity, CluBE, CLEOS, DANA REINZ-DICHTUNGS-GmbH, Greenerity GmbH, PowerCell Sweden AB, and Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems.


“Our high power density fuel cell technology has been recognised in its use for maritime applications, and we are delighted to contribute to its further development in this project. ” says Mardit Matian, Founder of EH Group.


“The marine sector is facing increasing pressure to decarbonise, and EH Group is committed with its H2MARINE collaborators to accelerate FCs role in solving that challenge.” states Christopher Brandon, Co-Founder.


About EH Group


Established in Switzerland since 2017, EH Group is focused on the design and production of its innovative fuel cell technology. It offers unrivalled power density, greater system efficiency and a unique assembly process that radically reduces costs. It is aimed at the decarbonisation of heavy duty mobility such as marine vessels, off-highway vehicles, trucking and aviation as well as large scale stationary power.


 


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Contacts

For more information:

info@ehgroup.ch

www.ehgroup.ch