China says it has agreed with the US to cancel existing trade tariffs in phases

CNBC | November 07, 2019

China’s Commerce Ministry said Thursday that Beijing had agreed with Washington to lift existing trade tariffs between the two nations in phases. Gao Feng, a ministry spokesperson for China’s Commerce Ministry, said that both sides had agreed to simultaneously cancel some existing tariffs on one another’s goods, according to the country’s state broadcaster. The ministry spokesperson said that both sides were closer to a so-called “phase one” trade agreement following constructive negotiations over the past two weeks. One important condition for a limited trade agreement, Feng insisted, was that the U.S. and China must remove the same amount of charges at the same time.

Spotlight

Did you know there are nearly 500 miles of public sewer mains underneath the City of Lee’s Summit? In addition to inspecting and cleaning these lines every day, Lee’s Summit Water Utilities is currently rehabilitating several miles of sewer lines in most need of repair through a process which essentially installs a pipe within a pipe and is specifically designed for minimal impact and disruption to neighborhoods and customers.

Spotlight

Did you know there are nearly 500 miles of public sewer mains underneath the City of Lee’s Summit? In addition to inspecting and cleaning these lines every day, Lee’s Summit Water Utilities is currently rehabilitating several miles of sewer lines in most need of repair through a process which essentially installs a pipe within a pipe and is specifically designed for minimal impact and disruption to neighborhoods and customers.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

Symplicity joins the UK Government's G-Cloud framework for its 13th iteration

Symplicity | November 21, 2022

Symplicity® Corporation the global leader of student employability, wellbeing and success, is proud to announce it has joined the UK Crown Commercial Services as a certified supplier on the Government's G-Cloud 13 procurement framework. This acceptance brings a powerful, and affordable, student support services platform to higher education institutions across the United Kingdom. The approval means that any higher education institution can now engage with Symplicity without the need for prolonged and extended procurement, bringing a wide range of functionality and services within easy reach. This includes support for employability, skills and graduate outcomes, wellbeing and disability support, a unified student experience and employer engagement, to name a few. Part of the Government's Digital Marketplace, the G-Cloud framework is designed to ensure the public sector has access to proven and cost-effective cloud software and services via an online platform. "Achieving G-Cloud 13 certification enables Symplicity to continue offering higher education institutions the tools to improve student engagement and outcomes, With this sought-after certification, Symplicity can support more institutions, staff and students with a holistic and whole university support structure." -Thomas Jepsen, President of International at Symplicity. About Crown Commercial Service (CCS): Crown Commercial Service (CCS) is an Executive Agency of the Cabinet Office, supporting the public sector to achieve maximum commercial value when procuring common goods and services. CCS supports the public sector to achieve maximum commercial value when procuring common goods and services. In 2021/22, CCS helped the public sector to achieve commercial benefits equal to £2.8 billion - supporting world-class public services that offer best value for taxpayers. About Symplicity: Symplicity® Corporation is a global leader in student employability and engagement software solutions to more than 2,500 colleges and universities across 37 countries. Symplicity's SaaS platform supports the full student Iife, including early talent recruiting, accessibility, wellbeing and behavioural intervention. These solutions empower higher education clients to enhance a student's ability to stay in school, graduate and secure a first job.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

AE Industrial Partners Completes Investment in York Space Systems

York Space Systems | November 15, 2022

AE Industrial Partners, LP ("AEI"), a leader in space investing and a private equity firm specializing in aerospace, defense & government services, space, power & utility services, and specialty industrial markets, announced today that it has completed its majority stake investment in York Space Systems ("York" or "the Company"), an independent provider of small satellites, satellite components and turnkey mission operations. Dirk Wallinger, who founded York in 2012, will remain in his current role as CEO & Board Director, and Charles "Chuck" Beames will continue to serve on the Board of Directors. They will also maintain significant ownership positions in York. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Headquartered in Denver, CO, York manufactures and architects low Earth orbit ("LEO"), geosynchronous equatorial orbit ("GEO"), and cislunar spacecraft solutions for the proliferated satellite market. Its products are purposefully designed to balance scalability, manufacturability, and efficiency to meet the schedule-driven, high-volume demand for customers' small satellite constellations. York's spacecraft solutions are designed for all mission types, including communications, EO/IR, radiofrequency, hyperspectral, weather, remote proximity ops, and more. "York has transformed the small satellite market with its complete mission solutions and mass manufacturing capabilities. The Company has become a critical partner to the Space Development Agency ("SDA"), Space Force, and other national security customers given its ability to deliver new satellite technology solutions faster and more cost efficiently than any other player in the market, With significant momentum from multiple marquee national security LEO constellation wins, York now has the ability to manufacture satellites at mass production level scale, which is transformative to the commercial space industry. We are excited to collaborate with Dirk, Chuck and the entire York team as the Company enters into this next stage of growth and development." -Kirk Konert, Partner at AEI. York currently serves a variety of leading government and commercial customers. The SDA recently awarded York an additional contract with a total potential value of approximately $200 million. Known as the T1DES program, York will build and operate 12 prototype satellites that will test satellite communications from LEO to augment the Tranche 1 Transport Layer constellation. As previously announced, York is also providing spacecraft solutions as part of both Tranche 0 and Tranche 1 of the SDA's Transport Layer and has a contract with the U.S. Department of Defense's new proliferated LEO constellation. AEI's experience building other space companies in their portfolio coupled with their strategic investment in York empowers us to continue to compete with the world's biggest aerospace companies while still maintaining the highest level of efficiency and affordability for our government and commercial customers, said Mr. Wallinger. With rote production now well underway at both our Denver Tech Center and downtown facilities, York is well-positioned to meet today's surging commercial and DoD market demand. We are optimistic about the opportunities ahead. About York Space Systems: Headquartered in Denver, CO, York Space Systems was founded in 2012 to radically improve spacecraft affordability and reliability, transforming and enabling next generation space mission operations worldwide. An independent provider of small satellites, satellite components and turnkey mission operations, York's products and solutions are used by both government and commercial customers. About AE Industrial Partners: AE Industrial Partners is a private equity firm specializing in aerospace, defense & government services, space, power & utility services, and specialty industrial markets. AE Industrial Partners invests in market-leading companies that can benefit from our deep industry knowledge, operating experience, and relationships throughout our target markets. AE Industrial Partners is a signatory to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment and the ILPA Diversity in Action initiative.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

Esker and Quadient to Develop Electronic Invoicing Platform, to Partner with French Government

Esker | November 22, 2022

Esker, a global cloud platform and leader in AI-driven process automation solutions for finance and customer service functions, and Quadient, a leader in helping businesses create meaningful customer connections through digital and physical channels, today announced that their years-long collaboration will take on a new dimension by partnering with the French government’s upcoming Partner Dematerialization Platform (PDP). Quadient and Esker have been working together for more than seven years through their joint subsidiary NCS, a strategic partnership that allows Quadient to leverage Esker's technology expertise for automating and digitizing customer and supplier invoices. The new direction NCS is taking strengthens this collaboration and ensures that businesses of all sizes experience a smooth and secure transition to compliance with upcoming French tax regulations according to the defined timetable, whether invoices are received or transmitted by mail, email in PDF format, portal, EDI or another channel. The finance law requires that invoices exchanged between VAT taxpayers must be transmitted in a structured data format (UBL, UNCEFACT CII) or hybrid format (Factur-X): As of July 1, 2024 for all VAT taxable entities receiving invoices As of July 1, 2024 for large companies issuing invoices As of January 1, 2025 this applies to medium-sized businesses issuing invoices As of January 1, 2026 this applies to all micro and small businesses issuing invoices The PDP, which will be approved by the government, will send and receive electronic invoices between entities while simultaneously transmitting the required invoicing data to the Public Portal (PPF), and electronically reports all necessary transaction data. “The widespread implementation of electronic invoicing over the next three years is a major challenge for the four million companies in France. As a major player in the electronic document management market for small and medium-sized businesses, we look forward to our continued partnership with Esker, in which we join forces and expertise to offer businesses straightforward and efficient invoicing process automation, The government’s timetable calls for a long and gradual transition, and we know that for many companies, compliance can be a source of anxiety because it brings about profound changes. By offering flexible and adapted solutions, we want to help them anticipate the implementation of new management methods that are connected and automated, so that they are able to meet regulatory deadlines with confidence.” -Nicolas de Beco, Chief Strategy and Product Officer for Intelligent Document Automation at Quadient. As members of the National e-Invoice Forum and active participants in workshops organized by the General Administration of Public Finances (DGFiP) and the Agency for Financial Information Technology of the State (AIFE), Esker and Quadient are currently in the process of preparing for the registration process beginning in September 2023, with governmental accreditation expected in accordance to the officially defined timeframes. In addition to being in compliance with regulatory guidelines, businesses will also be able to take advantage of complementary services, such as centralized management of all workflows, business process automation, complete visibility over and tracking of communications, invoice archiving, processing of associated documents, payment reconciliation and reporting capabilities. These services are facilitated by easy interconnectability with other business solutions and interoperability with other platforms, which enables them to simplify and optimize management processes, accelerate their digital transformation and improve their cash management. “Esker is proud to support Quadient in this project. As long-standing partners, our two companies have demonstrated their ability to work together to deliver innovative solutions that benefit thousands of businesses in France today, We are committed to helping our customers today and in the future in turning these regulatory developments into opportunity for growth and acceleration of the digital transformation.” -Emmanuel Olivier, COO at Esker. About Esker: Esker is a global cloud platform built to unlock strategic value for finance and customer service professionals, and strengthen collaboration between companies by automating the cash conversion cycle. Esker’s solutions incorporate technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) to drive increased productivity, enhanced visibility, reduced fraud risk, and improved collaboration with customers, suppliers and internally. Esker operates in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia Pacific with global headquarters in Lyon, France, and U.S. headquarters in Madison, Wisconsin. About Quadient: Quadient is the driving force behind the world’s most meaningful customer experiences. By focusing on three key solution areas, Intelligent Communication Automation, Parcel Locker Solutions and Mail-Related Solutions, Quadient helps simplify the connection between people and what matters. Quadient supports hundreds of thousands of customers worldwide in their quest to create relevant, personalized connections and achieve customer experience excellence. Quadient is listed in compartment B of Euronext Paris (QDT) and is part of the SBF 120®, CAC® Mid 60 and EnterNext® Tech 40 indices.

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