Monthly Archives: October 2015

Real Estate Shifts as the Technology Industry Blossoms in NYC

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Technology is blossoming, and with it comes a shift in the real estate landscape in advanced cities like New York. Huffington Post recently reported on the four ways things are moving.

First, there has been a boom in investments in tech companies. This increase in money leads to a bigger impact on the real estate scene for these companies, including a substantial increase in leasing activity in the last year. The increased demand has led to an increase in rent, as much as 80 percent in some neighborhoods over the last decade.

These companies want more than just an office space. They want a rich environment, made to order, that focuses on company culture and engagement. Landlords are literally knocking down walls to cater to the tech startup clientele.

These startups are finding neighborhoods like the Garment District and the Flatiron district very attractive for their new offices. As they move in, so do new restaurants, bars, and retail stores to provide for the new neighbors.

The employees of these companies are also changing the demographics of their residential areas. They often move to surrounding, less developed areas, infusing them with younger, more educated residents. This infusion creates “hot spots” that, again, bring in new restaurants, bars, and stores.

All these changes require real estate companies that can keep up with the shifting landscape. Leading the luxury real estate services in finding NYC apartments for rent is TOWN Residential. The firm has nine offices in prominent New York neighborhoods, making them highly accessible. At TOWN’s heart is a team of expertly qualified professionals, led by co-chairmen Andrew Heiberger and Joseph Sitt.

The firm’s representatives specialize in residential sales; leasing; and the marketing, sales, and leasing of property developments. TOWN also provides extensive services in New Developments, including market research, planning, and advertising. The Commercial department can also help businesses find investors, tenants find space, and landlord find tenants. TOWN Residential is well equipped for the technology industry’s boom in New York City.

The unconventional face in the world of makeup, Doe Deere

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The founder and a CEO of the makeup line called Lime Crime, Doe Deere has a goal to prove that makeup does a lot more than just covering imperfections, that it is a form of self- expression and freedom. To her, being beautiful is not about what looks best or what is natural, but what feels right. Having this in mind, she launched her own makeup line of magical, cruelty- free, colorful, vibrant, bold, intensely pigmented products.
Doe claims that she patiently waits for inspiration, and sometimes it even takes weeks or months, but when she gets inspired, she acts decisively and swiftly. When she creates a new product, she insists on trying it on herself first as that is the only way for her to be sure that it is authentic – she must live and feel the product before it goes into production.
She sees numerous advantages to shopping makeup online, as there you have access to unlimited amount of innovative ways to get products. Lime Crime was among the first makeup companies to strongly focus on e-commerce. In 2008, when it all started, she remembers that the experts told her that selling lipsticks online is impossible as women want to try them on first, but she disagreed. She felt that if the presentation is correct and high quality, then she would succeed in selling online. Lime Crime, a part of that undertaking, was first to introduce on the on-lip swatch of lipsticks – you are shown the color on the actual lips and just a swiped or crushed color. This idea started to appear in the campaigns of numerous makeup brands, and now, it has become the standard in the industry. They continue to bring innovations in the area of e-commerce so as to create the best possible interactive experience of shopping for makeup lovers all over the world.
From her career and experience, she gives the advice to all young women to always follow their dreams and heart because she firmly believes that everyone has in them something special, some unique quality or skill that no one in the world but them has, and once when you realize that, you start to reach towards your truest potential. She always advises and tells everyone to go for what they love, whatever that may be and explore that completely. She knows that it is really important to truly get to know yourself in order to reach your best potential because, while growing up and all her life, she felt alone and different in the way she thinks. She realized later that that was not true and that there were many people out there who were just like her and felt strongly about the same things as her, so she embraced her difference and turned it into the unique makeup line of her own.

With Cleaning Services through an App, Handy Fills a Niche

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A simple solution to a common problem has blossomed into a multimillion dollar operation for two young businessmen. Handy services puts cleaning and handyman services at immediate access to those who need them with the simple touch of a smart phone app.
Called the Uber of home cleaning services, after the sucessful ride sharing service, Handy’s business has mushroomed in a matter of three years.

In 2011, founder Oisin Hanrahan was in the business of renovating old apartments in Europe. He found it difficult to find reliable help for small jobs such as cleaning, repairing fixtures and painting.

After moving to the US to attend the Harvard Business School, he found the same problem existed. With the help of college pal Umang Dua, Handybook (now simply Handy) was founded. The returns were beyond their expectations.

In a few short years, Handy on apple app now operates in 25 cities in the US, and is opening a branch in London. Handy now manages 5000 independent contractors and $1 million in jobs per week. Though the majority of services contracted for are cleaning services, Handy is now branching out into plumbing and handyman services.

How it works

Those in need of services download the iphone app or android app through Google Play, or through their website at For cleaning services, the user simply taps the number of rooms to be cleaned and the date and time for work to begin.

A price quote is returned immediately. Payment for services is done electronically via the phone app or website. The work can begin as soon as the next day. Screening contractors and chasing down estimates is previously done by Handy.

The Contractors

To date, more than 200,000 independent contractors have applied to Handy offering their services. But Handy has proven to be picky about those it allows to operate with them. All contractors must submit to background checks, go through a personal interview and provide references. Out of those who apply, only roughly three percent are accepted.
Most are the heads of single families seeking to earn a little extra money, and the pay is reasonable. Average pay is $18 per hour. To date, more than 5000 service providers finish at least one job per month. Contractors themselves are permitted flexible hours, notifying the company when they can work before their service offers are posted.

Things One Might not Expect in a Booking Service

Independent contractors for Handy prefer to be paid on the books, rather than under the table or off the books. Those wanting to finance a car or buy a home want and need to show reported income.

Handy offers a 100 percent money back guarantee and pays replacement cost in the event something is damaged.

Learning From Business Leaders In Chicago

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Business Leaders in Chicago

In that regard, there are a number of entrepreneurs and business savvy professionals you can look up to in your city. If you live in the city of Chicago, you also have a number of business leaders in Chicago that you can look to in order to learn the ropes and get an idea of how they made their wealth. Majeed Ekbal’s Vimeo page explores the fact that he is a strong example of business in action.

When it comes to business in the Chicago area, Majeed Ekbal has set a strong precedent and standard for strong entrepreneurship. He has been in business for decades running companies such as Expresso, a catering company that was wildly successful due to its attention to detail and customer service. He attended the District of Columbia’s American University and has been putting his business skills to use ever since.

He has also been active in numerous real estate deals throughout the Chicago area and beyond. He has set a strong standard and precedent in this regard and is looked upon as one of the highly credible business leaders in Chicago.

By researching his business practices, you can replicate some of his steps and philosophies in order to make sure that you are on the right track when it comes to carving out your own success in the industry. Everybody has to start somewhere, so the best thing you can do is to learn from such an entrepreneur and make sure that you are diligently taking notes and putting your best foot forward in order to understand exactly how they conduct themselves.

When researching Chicago business leaders, it pays to read their blogs and become active on social media to engage them in conversation. Many of these Chicago entrepreneurs make themselves available to the public in these sort of formats, giving you an unprecedented opportunity that you otherwise would not have had. You can also read interviews that they have done with publications in the Chicago area and beyond to get a glimpse into the way that their mind operates, so that you can borrow some ideas and refine them to fit your own business ventures.

Beneful Is One Of The Healthiest Dog Foods

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Most people tend to think that dog food is simply dog food, nothing more. All dogs should like all kinds of dog food. After all, dogs have been domesticated to live with humans, free of harm, shouldn’t they be happy with any food in their bowl?

The ingredients in dog food do not really mean a lot to dogs, but it should to owners. Keep in mind what ingredients one’s dog might not favor, or not eat altogether. Some dogs actually refuse to eat certain types of food, or just barely eat enough of it to survive until the owner buys the next bag of dog food.

So, in general, there are two major types of dog food: wet and dry. Dry dog foods last much longer, and can be stored virtually wherever an owner decides to place them, while wet foods need to be either kept in a fridge or indoors stashed away in a cabinet or pantry. Dry dog foods are much easier to keep up with, since they are able to be left outside and are sold in such large amounts. Wet dog foods on usually only come in small cans, which means you have to buy lots of cans if you want to have enough to feed your dog for a while.

A dog might be allergic to some types of ingredients, so make sure to thoroughly comb through the list of ingredients before one makes a purchase. Once one is sure that a dog will not be allergic to any ingredient on the list, start keeping an eye out for ingredients that lead to healthy dog growth.

Fish is one of the best sources of energy for dogs, especially salmon and haddock. Some brands do not specify the species of fish that are used in the dog food, but any type of fish is a great place to start.

Stay away from any types of “meals” that are in the ingredient list, as these are made mostly from various powders and mixes. If a human wouldn’t eat a type of food, why should it be fed to a dog?

Beneful is not only one of the most popular types of dog food, it is one of the healthiest for dogs. Beneful is produced in both wet and dry types of dog food, and is available in all sorts of containers. Beneful comes in small cans for single meals, or comes in resealable tubs. Purina also produces Beneful treats for dogs who can’t get enough of the taste of their dog food.

Beneful is not only one of the healthiest dog foods on the market, as it is one of the best tasting, according to dogs. Beneful has ranked in the best dog foods for not only taste, but nutrition. Beneful is sold in most major supermarkets and pet stores, so check Beneful out today.

FreedomPop – Free Mobile Service For The First 10,000 UK Customers

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FreedomPop has a new offer to its existing and prospective customers. The Los Angeles based firm is now offering 200 minutes or talk, text and data plan free for UK customers. Customers will also have an opportunity to earn more data through surveys, coupons and sharing it with others. With almost one million customers in the US and quarter of a million in the UK, it’s urging everyone to sign up for the free deals. Note that this free service is available on FreedomPop SIM card or app only. What the 200 MBs of data can cover is enough for 1000 text emails, 500 web views and about 5 videos. 2.5GB of data on the other hand will let you send more than 50,000 text emails, watch video worth 17 hours or use Skype for 127 hours.

For completing just 1 10-minute survey, customers can also avail features such as free offer ranging from 2.5GB and 10GB of data. Best part on is, unused data or talk time gets rolled over every month. Notifications can also be received free of charge. Every user is entitled for one virtual international number for free calls from people living outside of UK. According to FreedomPop chief executive officer Stephen Stokols, this is one company that offers a completely new business modeled free service for life. He also notes that FreedomPop provides reliable and high quality service in the area it serves. FreedomPop understands that not having high quality broadband down the hall is a problem for many remote workers in the country. Stephen wants everyone in the UK to have access to mobile service and FreedomPop is the way to achieve that dream.

The UK in fact is the first market outside of the US to use this service which will be followed by 12 other countries embracing it by the end of this year. What’s more, the company also plans to set up service in 20 other countries by 2017, cut price for handsets before Christmas and giveaway 1000 minutes of text, talk-time and 1 GB of data to the first 10,000 new customers.

Yeon-mi Park Speaks Out Against North Korean Oppression

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In the early months of 2014, the UN released a long-anticipated 400 page report detailing a ghastly number of governmental abuses committed by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, also known as North Korea, under the leadership of Kim Jong-Il. The report was compiled from extensive interviews conducted with more than 300 escapees from the state, most of whom had experienced firsthand many of the torturous methods used by various government officials and described in the report. Charges ranged from mass starvation to rape, torture and infanticide from within the many state run hard labor camps. In total, hundreds of thousands of North Koreans are estimated to have died in the camps in the past 5 decades, and hundreds of thousands more have been tortured, beaten and starved nearly to death. One witness testified to being starved so severely that his weight dropped an alarming 86 pounds in a brief 10 month period.

One young person who has witnessed firsthand many of the atrocities detailed in the report is young Yeonmi Park. Park is a North Korean defector who made her way out with her mother in 2007, when her father was arrested and sentenced to 27 years in the forced labor camps. In an article in Independent, following his arrest and sentencing, they watched his health deteriorate rapidly before their very eyes as he experienced the same beatings and abominable conditions detailed in the UN report.

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea was not the only government chastised in the UN report. The Chinese government was also singled out for their participation in sending escaped North Koreans back to North Korea to face harsh and severe punishments once they returned.

While Yeon-mi and her mother managed to elude Chinese authorities during their time in China, they did not escape being raped and sold into sex trafficking. They were eventually able to half walk and crawl their way across a stretch of the Gobi desert into Mongolia where they were given shelter at the South Korean embassy. Now living in Seoul, South Korea, Yeon-mi is determined to not allow the world – or the South Korean government – to turn a blind eye to the plight of North Korea.

As a regular guest on South Korean radio and television shows, she keeps the North Korea in the forefront of the public eye. In 2014, she was invited to speak at the One Young World Summit in Dublin, Ireland, where she delivered an impassioned address that left few dry eyes in the building. That speech went viral and gained her a new following of sympathizers to her cause. The North Korean government reacted swiftly by releasing an 18 minute video of her aunt and uncle attempting to denounce her claims, but too many of them have been too well documented by others making the same claims to simply dismiss the validity of her story.

Matt Landis and the Notre Dame Men’s Lacrosse Team Give Back to the Community

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matt landis kost
The Fourth Annual Playing for Peace Clinic

matt landis peace
The men’s lacrosse team at the University of Notre Dame certainly portrayed character, culture, and community, the three pillars which the program was built upon, during the Fourth Annual Playing for Peace Clinic on September 24, 2015. The team traveled to Chicago to meet young athletes participating in O.W.L.S. Lacrosse, the organization co-hosting the free instructional clinic. The fall event, Playing for Peace, brings together college players, coaches, and community members for a positive impact in inner-city schools and athletes living in low-income communities.

Matt Landis
matt landis suit
Matt Landis grew up in Pelham, NY and began his career as an athlete at Pelham Memorial High School, participating in football, hockey, and lacrosse while excelling in academics and participating in the community as a volunteer. named Pelham Memorial football team’s defensive MVP during his junior and sophomore years. He has taken his athletic skill with him to his college years after earning a scholarship to Notre Dame. While interested in various other schools, Landis has stated that he chose Notre Dame due to its Division I programs for sports and excellent academic programs.

matt landis yellow
Landis is currently a starting player for Notre Dame lacrosse. A finance major and full-time student, Landis works part-time and volunteers as well. He pursues his interests in hiking, skiing, skeet shooting, golf, and reading in his spare time.

Highland Capital Management and James Dondero

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Highland Capital Management is an alternative investment management firm based in Dallas with a reported $18.7 billion in managed assets. The firm was founded in 1993 and currently has offices in New York City, Singapore and London.

The company has evolved quite a bit over the past twenty years. Highland’s storied history begins in January of 1990 when co-founders Mark Okada and James Dondero began a joint venture with Protective Life Insurance Corporation, with 60% ownership belonging to Protective Life and the remainder belonging to Okada and Dondero. The venture specialized mainly in fixed income markets with the inclusion of the management of senior secured bank loans. 1993 saw the venture evolve into an investment adviser, registered with the SEC and known as Protective Asset Management Company. In May of 1997, the co-founders bought out Protective Life Insurance Corporation’s share to become the sole owners of the company and changed the name to Ranger Asset Management L.P. The company’s name was changed to Highland Capital Management in the following year. Okada and Dondero began the industry’s first commingled bank loan fund and founded an alternate investment 40 Act platform in the year 2000. Expansion continued when the company entered the mutual fund market in 2004 and further diversified it’s product offerings when the company acquired two floating rate funds from Columbia Asset Management. Further expansion was celebrated when the firm opened the Singapore office in 2008 and the office in Seoul in 2011.

Highland Capital Management continues it’s rapid growth today as an investment firm which is independently owned and has over 180 employees engaged in managing a wide range of products for both institutional and retail clients. In addition to offices in Seoul, Singapore and New York, the firm has a physical presence in São Paulo. Clients include high-net worth individuals, corporations, financial institutions, foundations and endowments, pension plans and government entities.

Highland’s co-founder and president, James Dondero, has been a Chartered Financial Analyst since 1987 and is a Certified Management Accountant.  His management experience includes preferred and common stocks, emerging markets, leveraged bank loans, derivatives, investment grade corporates and mortgage-backed securities. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of MGM Studios and American Banknote Corporation. He also serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of NexBank, Cornerstone Healthcare and CCS Medical.

Slyce a Toronto Startup

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Slyce is a new Toronto startup. According to the chief digital officer, Mark Elfenbein, the idea of the company is to give customers the ability to take a picture of any product in the world, using product recognition, and all users to purchase the product. However, unlike the popular app Shazaam that helps users find music and send it to their iTunes store, the Slyce app will not be seen my users. Instead, the new technology will be offered in conjunction with bigger brands’ websites.

The way the technology works is by determining what the item is at first by looking at it. Then it will determine what the properties of the item are. For example, it will first make a determination of whether the product is a towel, plate, or shirt. After that has been narrowed down, the technology will analyze the image according to Slyce’s schema that was programmed for each item.

When it comes to a shirt, the technology might analyze the pattern, color, location of pockets, and more. By breaking each product down like this, Slyce is able to provide users exact matches and other objects that are similar. However, the technology must first know what it is supposed to be looking for.

Mr. Elfenbein recognizes that every they venture into a new market there will always be a certain amount of work that needs to be done to build a technology before it is released. Therefore, the company must build models for each item. After it has been built, it can be reused over and over again.

When it is all said and done, the new technology is being built into retailers’ apps and online stores. Slyce is not stopping with helping users match pictures with the actual product.

The data for the retailer is almost as equally important as whether the user buys the item or not. The technology can be used to create lists for wedding registries and other special events.

While Slyce is a Toronto based company, it is starting to spread throughout North America as well. Mr. Elfenbein also recognizes that the company is growing very quickly. He believes that the new technology has the ability to revolutionize how users interact with the brands they are interested in.