FCC blocks U.S. companies from using federal funds for deals with Huawei, ZTE

The Federal Communications Commission | November 24, 2019

The Federal Communications Commission on Friday banned U.S. companies from using federal funds to purchase equipment from two leading Chinese telecommunications firms and is prepared to spend $2 billion to replace existing unsecure gear. The measure targets China’s Huawei Technologies and ZTE, companies that have sold state-subsidized equipment to rural wireless carriers, including one service provider near a U.S. nuclear missile base in Montana. The commission adopted a new rule prohibiting American telecommunications companies from buying equipment from foreign companies that pose a threat to U.S. security with FCC money in the Universal Service Fund, an $8 billion pot of funds used to subsidize rural telecommunications networks.

Spotlight

The City of Menlo Park is home to 32,000 residents and considered one of the most culturally and economically diverse populations in Silicon Valley. The police department is a full service law enforcement agency staffed with 70 employees (48 sworn police officers and 22 professional staff members). The nation recognizes Menlo Park as the epicenter of venture capitalism and home to Facebook; yet one area within our city, the Belle Haven neighborhood, has not shared the typical successes of a prospering economy, and has been the focus of revitalization and redevelopment efforts since 1981. For many years, Belle Haven was plagued with gang violence and associated crime. The City hired Robert Jonsen as Police Chief in February 2013. With the new chief in place, the department immediately established two primary goals, 1) reduce gang violence within the Belle Haven neighborhood and 2) strengthen the public’s trust in the department’s ability to keep them safe. Even though the mission was very straightforward, accomplishing it was not so simple.

Spotlight

The City of Menlo Park is home to 32,000 residents and considered one of the most culturally and economically diverse populations in Silicon Valley. The police department is a full service law enforcement agency staffed with 70 employees (48 sworn police officers and 22 professional staff members). The nation recognizes Menlo Park as the epicenter of venture capitalism and home to Facebook; yet one area within our city, the Belle Haven neighborhood, has not shared the typical successes of a prospering economy, and has been the focus of revitalization and redevelopment efforts since 1981. For many years, Belle Haven was plagued with gang violence and associated crime. The City hired Robert Jonsen as Police Chief in February 2013. With the new chief in place, the department immediately established two primary goals, 1) reduce gang violence within the Belle Haven neighborhood and 2) strengthen the public’s trust in the department’s ability to keep them safe. Even though the mission was very straightforward, accomplishing it was not so simple.

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GOVERNMENT FINANCE

Canvass AI Accelerates Expansion with Completion of US $14.23 Million Series A Funding

FedDev Ontario | August 10, 2022

Canvass Analytics Inc. ("Canvass AI"), a leader in industrial AI software, today announced the completion of its previously reported Series A financing with an extension of US $7.73 million, led by Yamaha Motors Ventures and a CDN $5.7 million (US $4.43 million) repayable loan from the Government of Canada, through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario). The Series A extension will fuel the company's mission to empower industrial workforces to drive impact across their operations with the power of Industrial AI. "The completion of our Series A endorses our go-to-market strategy and the acceptance of our solution in market. Today, leading industrials and manufacturers are using our patented Canvass AI platform to solve challenges that have plagued their operations for decades. This, in turn, is providing a positive impact to their productivity, profitability, and sustainability goals, This additional financing places us in a solid position to achieve our growth plans and accelerate AI adoption in large and mid-cap industrial companies." -Humera Malik, CEO of Canvass AI. As previously announced, the FedDev loan will enable the company to expand its diverse and inclusive workforce in Ontario as the company accelerates its growth with industrial companies who are rapidly adopting and scaling AI across their operations. "Our government believes that protecting our environment and fighting climate change is not only the right thing to do for the planet but also for our economy. The Government of Canada is proud to support tech companies like Canvass AI in the important work they are doing to reduce the environmental impact of major industries as we move toward net-zero emissions." -Honourable Helena Jaczek, Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario. Canvass AI's laser focus on enabling industrial companies to achieve their performance goals faster with the power of AI is filling a gap in the market that industrial companies have been searching for. We are excited by Canvass AI's strategy to empower industrial engineers as the change makers of Industry 4.0 so that the industrials can extend their competitive advantage, reduce costs, and advance their sustainability initiatives, commented Anish Patel, COO and Managing Director of Yamaha Motor Ventures. Canvass AI's customers span the oil and gas, chemical and petrochemical, metals and mining, and energy sectors, all of which contribute significantly to the global economy and will play key roles in combating climate change. The Canvass AI platform provides industrial engineers with easy-to-use AI solutions to apply and scale across their operations that address their operational challenges, without requiring coding or data science expertise. Today, leading companies use Canvass AI to reduce carbon emissions and waste, improve yields, optimize facility operations, improve asset reliability and integrity, and optimize energy consumption. About Canvass AI: Canvass AI is a leading industrial AI software provider that puts the power of AI in the hands of industrial workforces to solve day-to-day operational problems. Some of the world's largest companies use Canvass AI's patented Industrial AI Platform to reduce carbon emissions and waste, improve yields, and optimize facility operations. Backed by Alphabet and Yamaha Motor Ventures, the Company is recognized by CB Insights as one of the world's top 50 technology companies that is advancing manufacturing. About FedDev Ontario: For 13 years, the Government of Canada, through FedDev Ontario, has worked to advance and diversify the southern Ontario economy through funding opportunities and business services that support innovation, growth and job creation in Canada's most populous region. The Agency has delivered impressive results, which can be seen in southern Ontario businesses that are creating innovative technologies, improving productivity, growing revenues, creating jobs, and in the economic advancement of communities across the region.

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GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

Align Capital Partners Makes Growth Investment in GovTech Platform Schneider Geospatial

Align Capital Partners | June 24, 2022

Align Capital Partners announced the recapitalization of Schneider Geospatial, LLC, a SaaS provider of public access land management software and recurring support services to state and local governments. As one of the largest providers of GovTech geospatial solutions in the U.S. with a presence in over 25 states, the Company’s software allows citizens to access disparate government information sources in a more efficient and cost-effective manner. Schneider Engineering Corporation was founded in 1962 and began offering geographic information system (GIS) services in 1989. After the GIS business grew well organically and through several acquisitions, the Schneider family decided to spin out Schneider Geospatial into a separate, independent business in 2018 while maintaining 100% ownership of the Company. Through this transaction, ACP is providing significant growth capital to Schneider Geospatial, while preserving the Schneider family legacy through their continued ownership interest in the Company. “Our grandfather, Vincent Schneider, had a love for technology that was ahead of his time. Our father, John Schneider, embraced this passion and began our GIS business with a keen insight that understood the importance of geographic data. We are very proud of Schneider Geospatial, its award-winning innovations and the amazing group of employees who have made this all happen. We are excited to be associated with Align Capital Partners and we look forward to the future as we continue to grow and expand,” said J. Barry Schneider and Victoria Schneider Temple. Headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, the Company’s 50+ person team helps power Schneider Geospatial’s cloud-based software platform that enables clients to manage over 500 million information requests from over 23 million users, including citizens, commercial real estate developers, appraisers, law firms, contractors and inspectors. The Company’s core solution combines web-based GIS data reporting tools including CAMA and tax, ownership history, liens, boundaries, environmental issues and topography, into a single, user-friendly web application. We are excited to continue our partnership with our amazing clients. ACP’s investment allows us to accelerate several of our growth initiatives which will result in even better solutions and services to our clients. Our talented team is excited to continue this next phase of the Company’s growth.” Jeff Corns, CEO of Schneider Geospatial Schneider Geospatial is ACP’s second GovTech platform investment to date, following its 2020 investment in Electronic Transaction Consultants Corporation. “The Company has a very strong value-proposition of helping clients provide public access to digitized records as a replacement to a historically inefficient and labor-intensive experience,” said ACP Managing Partner Chris Jones. “Our enthusiasm for Schneider Geospatial plays on the attractive tailwinds of our firm’s GovTech thesis. The Company is well positioned to help governments replace antiquated technology, increase access to important digitized information and enhance information sharing capabilities to improve citizen engagement.” This represents ACP’s 72nd closed investment since the firm was founded in 2016 and is ACP’s 11th new investment year-to-date, including two platforms and nine add-on investments. Principal Matt Iodice and Associate Aaron Lewis worked alongside Mr. Jones on the transaction. Schneider Geospatial was advised on the transaction by Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP, while ACP was supported by Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP. About Schneider Geospatial Schneider Geospatial is a provider of State & Local Government SaaS public access solutions and support services. The Company’s products include award-winning SaaS solutions such as Beacon™ and qPublic.net™ focused on local government information for the web; GeoPermits™ which is a SaaS permitting and workflow management platform; and Agland™ used to automate the calculating process for agricultural assessments. In addition to a diverse product portfolio, the Company offers a full range of GIS, technology and GovTech services. About Align Capital Partners Align Capital Partners is a growth-oriented private equity firm that partners with business owners and management teams to create shared success. ACP manages $775 million in committed capital with investment teams in Cleveland and Dallas. ACP brings experience and resources to help lower-middle market companies accelerate their growth, to the benefit of management, employees and the firm’s investors. ACP makes control investments in differentiated companies within the business services, technology, specialty manufacturing and distribution sectors.

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GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

Sage Communications Partners with Deep Water Point to Provide Holistic Marketing and Professional Services Solution for Reaching Federal Government

Sage Communications | June 22, 2022

Sage Communications, a leading technology and public sector marketing and public relations agency in the Washington, D.C.-metro region, announced today that the company has formed a strategic alliance with federal management consultancy Deep Water Point to provide top-level marketing and professional services to businesses supporting the federal government. The new alliance provides an unmatched solution for companies that seek to increase their business and growth in the federal government. Through a combination of both companies’ extensive understanding of the federal government, its critical programs, and industry, Sage and Deep Water Point will offer broad strategic and tactical capabilities to their many clients working with the federal government. Our new alliance with Deep Water Point brings together our team’s ability to foster a more welcoming and informed federal market with Deep Water Point’s knowledge and experience from the perspective of federal agencies and government contractors. Whether targeting an entire agency mission or just one program, Sage Communications and Deep Water Point together will help companies map an efficient, practical, and doable path to success.” David Gorodetski, co-founder and CEO of Sage Communications Deep Water Point’s unparalleled understanding of government agencies and programs stems from its longstanding relationships and direct experience across every federal mission. Its team of more than 300 former senior-level agency and industry leaders guide clients to the right opportunities for their capabilities, increasing win probability and leading to success. The new partnership with Sage will not only further that path to success but also bolster current capabilities by adding more professional communication experts within marketing and public relations while developing integrated offerings. “Moving our business forward with one of the top marketing and PR agencies in the D.C. metro area provides both companies the opportunity to offer a more comprehensive suite of services to our mutual clients. Most importantly, companies doing business with us will benefit and that’s the basis for our relationship,” said Howard Seeger, Deep Water Point’s President and CEO. About Sage Communications Located in the Greater Washington, D.C. area, Sage Communications is a full-service marketing communications and public relations agency providing strategic marketing services to technology, government, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, non-profits and consumer-oriented organizations. The company provides a unique fusion of traditional and digital services that include public relations, advertising, marketing, branding, social media, interactive services, and event management to Fortune 500 companies, start-ups, non-profits, government agencies, associations and coalitions to deliver custom, high-impact communications programs. Sage supports several organizations and activities including the Leadership of Greater Washington, DC Jazz Festival, Access Youth, and The Children’s Inn at NIH. About Deep Water Point Deep Water Point’s unique combination of government and industry expertise helps businesses accelerate their growth in the complex federal market. With 300+ former senior government and industry executives who have operational experience and a proven track record of success, our expertise covers the federal civilian, DOD, intelligence community, and health and life sciences markets. Our complete array of services, from opportunity identification through capture, implementation, and operations, is unmatched by any other federal government consultancy. With a presence throughout the National Capital Region, Central Florida, the United Kingdom and the European Union, Deep Water Point has become one of the fastest growing and respected consultancies in the federal market.

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