Mark Newton-Jones Joins Gordon Brothers as Senior Managing Director, Head of the U.K. & EMEA

London, Feb. 22, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Mark Newton-Jones has joined Gordon Brothers, the global advisory and investment firm, as Senior Managing Director, Head of the U.K. and Europe, the Middle East & Africa (EMEA), serving as the chief executive for the region.

Based in London, Newton-Jones will lead the continued expansion of the firm’s valuation, disposition and capital services working in partnership with a seasoned team of professionals to provide comprehensive solutions, including lending to, investing in and providing advice, for retail, consumer, commercial, and industrial clients and partners.

Newton-Jones has over 35 years of experience leading, operating and restructuring physical and digital retail brands to transform their approach toward strategy, marketing, design and buying, warehousing and distribution, and property and investment. He also has extensive financial services’ experience having managed the consumer debtor book of retailers and as a member of the board of directors at a neobank.

Prior to joining Gordon Brothers, Newton-Jones was the group chief executive officer of Mothercare plc where he led the retailer’s turnaround into a profitable global business. He was previously CEO of Shop Direct Group and transformed the company from a large-scale, loss-making, brick-and-mortar and catalogue operation to one of the U.K.’s leading digital retail businesses, known today as The Very Group. Newton-Jones spent the earlier part of his career at Next plc where he held various roles in retail operations before becoming the director responsible for its catalogue, taking it online in the late 90s.

“We are delighted to welcome Mark to the Gordon Brothers’ team. His experience in leading companies through transition exemplifies the core of our history and is part of our DNA,” said Frank Morton, Chief Investment Officer of Gordon Brothers. “Under Mark’s leadership, we look forward to expanding our global footprint to deliver comprehensive, bespoke solutions for our clients and partners throughout our established U.K. and European markets and into new markets in the Middle East and Africa.”

“I’m thrilled to be joining Gordon Brothers to lead the continued growth and expansion of the business across multiple territories and partnering with retail, commercial and industrial companies that are looking to grow, consolidate or exit their sectors,” said Newton-Jones. “There is a significant opportunity to build off the solid foundations already in place and partner with organisations through strategic change.”

About Gordon Brothers

Since 1903, Gordon Brothers ( has helped lenders, management teams, advisors and investors move forward through change. The firm brings a powerful combination of expertise and capital to clients, developing customized solutions on an integrated or standalone basis across four services areas: valuations, dispositions, financing and investment. Whether to fuel growth or facilitate strategic consolidation, Gordon Brothers partners with companies in the retail, commercial and industrial sectors to provide maximum liquidity, put assets to their highest and best use and mitigate liabilities. The firm conducts more than $100 billion worth of dispositions and appraisals annually and provides both short- and long-term capital to clients undergoing transformation. Gordon Brothers lends against and invests in brands, real estate, inventory, receivables, machinery, equipment and other assets, both together and individually, to provide clients liquidity solutions beyond its market-leading disposition and appraisal services. The firm is headquartered in Boston, with over 30 offices across five continents.

Lauren Nadeau
Gordon Brothers

Mark Newton-Jones
Gordon Brothers

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8754096

Synchronoss to Showcase AI-Powered Personal Cloud Platform at Mobile World Congress

Purpose-Built and Widely Deployed by Leading Telecom Operators, the New Synchronoss Personal Cloud Includes Genius, BackTrack and Other Features to Ensure Data Security and Privacy

BRIDGEWATER, N.J., Feb. 22, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Synchronoss Technologies, Inc. (“Synchronoss” or the “Company”) (NASDAQ: SNCR), a global leader and innovator in cloud, messaging and digital products and platforms, today announced it will showcase the latest version of Synchronoss Personal Cloud at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

The new Synchronoss Personal Cloud platform enables telecom operators to offer premium and value-added services to backup and manage files, photos, videos, and digital content stored on mobile phones and other devices.

Leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) the new Genius feature provides tools to optimize photos. Users can colorize black and white photos, enhance photos, and touch up faces, among other effects. The addition of BackTrack provides the capability to revert back and restore files if they are deleted, corrupted, or lost. Additionally, by integrating machine learning, the platform’s Advanced Highlights feature makes it easy to categorize and tag photos, videos, and other digital content so they can be easily highlighted, managed, and shared.

“Unlike OTT apps, our cloud platform provides a carrier-grade solution for service providers to deliver value-added services that also focus heavily on data security and privacy,” said Jeff Miller, President and CEO of Synchronoss. “The capabilities of generative AI and machine learning allow us to deliver innovative functionality such as Genius, BackTrack, and Advanced Highlights, giving users new ways to engage and share their digital content.”

The new features of Synchronoss Personal Cloud are being rolled out to millions of subscribers, including cloud users at AT&T, Verizon, and one of the largest global operators that recently signed a multi-year cloud agreement launching later this year.

Entering Mobile World Congress, Synchronoss will also showcase its carrier-grade email platform, Synchronoss Email Suite. The company recently announced a new contract expansion with a prominent service provider that is delivering email services to over 50 million users, powered by Synchronoss Email Suite and the Mx9 core messaging platform.

“Representing the future of connectivity and drawing the biggest names in the industry, Mobile World Congress is a tremendous venue to build on the momentum of the new Synchronoss Personal Cloud and Synchronoss Email Suite platforms. We look forward to working with our global customers, partners, and new prospects to deliver innovative cloud, messaging, and digital solutions that drive new revenue opportunities for their business,” added Miller.

Meet Us in Barcelona

To schedule a meeting at Mobile World Congress, visit:

About Synchronoss

Synchronoss Technologies (NASDAQ: SNCR) builds software that empowers companies around the world to connect with their subscribers in trusted and meaningful ways. The company’s collection of products helps streamline networks, simplify onboarding, and engage subscribers to unleash new revenue streams, reduce costs and increase speed to market. Hundreds of millions of subscribers trust Synchronoss products to stay in sync with the people, services, and content they love. Learn more at

Media Relations Contact:
Domenick Cilea

Investor Relations Contact:
Matt Glover / Tom Colton
Gateway Group, Inc.

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8754201

Call for Entries Issued for The 20th Annual International Business Awards®

New Awards Categories for Achievements in Sustainability

FAIRFAX, Va., Feb. 22, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Stevie Awards are now accepting nominations for The 20th Annual International Business Awards®, the world’s premier business awards competition, which attracts nominations from organizations in more than 60 nations and territories each year.

All individuals and organizations worldwide – public and private, for-profit and non-profit, large and small – may submit nominations to The International Business Awards. The early-bird entry deadline, with reduced entry fees, is 12 April. The final entry deadline is 10 May, but late entries will be accepted through 14 June with payment of a late fee. Entry details are available at

Juries featuring more than 150 executives around the world will determine the Gold, Silver, and Bronze Stevie Award winners. Winners will be announced on 11 August and celebrated at a gala banquet in Rome, Italy this October.

The International Business Awards recognize achievement in every facet of the workplace. Categories include:

There are many new and revised features of The International Business Awards for 2023:

Stevie Award winners in the 2022 IBAs included Anexa BPO (Mexico), Abu Dhabi Ports Group (UAE), DHL Express (worldwide), Filinvest Alabang Inc. (Philippines), Halkbank (Turkey), IBM (USA), LLYC (Spain), Lotte Duty Free (South Korea), MDI Ventures (Indonesia), Megaphone (Australia), MetLife China, Octopus Energy (UK), Ooredoo (Singapore), Sleepm Global Inc. (Canada), Unicef Cambodia, Viettel Group (Vietnam), Wolters Kluwer Legal & Regulatory U.S., and many more.

About the Stevie Awards
Stevie Awards are conferred in eight programs: the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards, the German Stevie Awards, the Middle East & North Africa Stevie Awards, The American Business Awards®, The International Business Awards®, the Stevie Awards for Great Employers, the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, and the Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service. Stevie Awards competitions receive more than 12,000 entries each year from organizations in more than 70 nations. Honoring organizations of all types and sizes and the people behind them, the Stevies recognize outstanding performances in the workplace worldwide. Learn more about the Stevie Awards at

Nina Moore
+1 (703) 547-8389

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8752852

Inscrições abertas para o 20th Annual International Business Awards®

Novas Categorias de Prêmios para Conquistas em Sustentabilidade

FAIRFAX, Va., Feb. 22, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Os Stevie Awards abriram as inscrições para o 20th Annual International Business Awards, a principal competição Stevie® para premiação de empresas que atrai indicações de organizações em mais de 60 países e territórios todos os anos.

Todas as pessoas e empresas de todo o mundo – públicas e privadas, com fins lucrativos e sem fins lucrativos, grandes e pequenas – podem enviar indicações ao The International Business Awards. O prazo para a inscrição antecipada, com taxas reduzidas, é 12 de abril. O prazo final para inscrições é 10 de maio, mas aceitaremos inscrições até 14 de junho mediante o pagamento de uma taxa de atraso. Os detalhes da inscrição podem ser encontrados em

Corpos de jurados com mais de 150 executivos de todo o mundo escolherão os vencedores do Stevie Award Ouro, Prata e Bronze. Os nomes dos vencedores serão anunciados em 11 de agosto e homenageados em um banquete de gala em Roma, Itália, em outubro.

Os International Business Awards homenageiam as conquistas em todas as facetas do local de trabalho. As categorias incluem:

Existem muitos recursos novos e revisados do The International Business Awards para 2023:

Os vencedores do Stevie Award nos IBAs de 2022 incluíram Anexa BPO (México), Abu Dhabi Ports Group (Emirados Árabes Unidos), DHL Express (em todo o mundo), Filinvest Alabang Inc. (Filipinas), Halkbank (Turquia), IBM (EUA), LLYC (Espanha), Lotte Duty Free (Coréia do Sul), MDI Ventures (Indonésia), Megaphone (Austrália), MetLife China, Octopus Energy (Reino Unido), Ooredoo (Cingapura), Sleepm Global Inc. (Canadá), Unicef Cambodia, Viettel Group (Vietnã), Wolters Kluwer Legal & Regulatory U.S., e muitos mais.

Sobre os Stevie Awards
Stevie Awards são concedidos em oito programas: Stevie Awards Ásia-Pacífico, Stevie Awards Alemão, Stevie Awards Oriente Médio e África do Norte, The American Business Awards®, The International Business Awards®, Stevie Awards para Grandes Empregadoras, Stevie Awards para Mulheres Empresariais e Stevie Awards para Vendas e Serviço ao Cliente. Os concursos Stevie Awards recebem mais de 12.000 nomeações todos os anos de empresas de mais de 70 países. Honrando empresas de todos os tipos e tamanhos, e as pessoas por trás delas, os Stevies reconhecem excelente desempenho no local de trabalho em todo o mundo. Saiba mais sobre os Stevie Awards em

Nina Moore
+1 (703) 547-8389

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8753770

Appel à candidatures émis pour la 20e édition annuelle des International Business Awards®

Nouvelles catégories de prix pour les accomplissements en matière de durabilité

FAIRFAX, Virginie, 22 févr. 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Les Stevie Awards acceptent désormais les candidatures pour la 20e édition annuelle des International Business Awards®, le programme international de récompenses pour les entreprises le plus prestigieux au monde, qui attire chaque année des candidatures d’organisations provenant de plus de 60 pays et territoires.

Toutes les personnes et organisations du monde (publiques et privées, à but lucratif et à but non lucratif, grandes et petites) peuvent soumettre leurs candidatures aux International Business Awards. La date limite des premières candidatures, qui bénéficieront de frais d’entrée réduits, est fixée au 12 avril. La date limite des candidatures finales est fixée au 10 mai, mais les candidatures tardives seront acceptées jusqu’au 14 juin, moyennant le paiement de frais de retard. Les détails des candidatures sont disponibles à l’adresse

Les jurys composés de plus de 150 cadres à travers le monde détermineront les lauréats des Prix Stevie d’or, d’argent et de bronze. Les lauréats seront annoncés le 11 août et célébrés lors d’un banquet de gala qui se tiendra à Rome, en Italie, en octobre.

Les International Business Awards récompensent les réalisations dans tous les aspects du lieu de travail. Les catégories comprennent :

L’édition 2023 des International Business Awards propose de nombreuses fonctionnalités nouvelles et révisées :

Les lauréats de Stevie Award lors des IBA 2022 comprenaient Anexa BPO (Mexique), Abu Dhabi Ports Group (EAU), DHL Express (mondial), Filinvest Alabang Inc. (Philippines), Halkbank (Turquie), IBM (États-Unis), LLYC (Espagne), Lotte Duty Free (Corée du Sud), MDI Ventures (Indonésie), Megaphone (Australie), MetLife Chine, Octopus Energy (Royaume-Uni), Ooredoo (Singapour), Sleepm Global Inc. (Canada), Unicef Cambodia, Viettel Group (Vietnam), Wolters Kluwer Legal & Regulatory U.S., et bien d’autres encore.

À propos des Stevie Awards
Les Stevie Awards sont décernés dans huit programmes : les Stevie Awards en Asie-Pacifique, les Stevie Awards en Allemagne, les Stevie Awards au Moyen-Orient et en Afrique du Nord, les American Business Awards®, les International Business Awards®, les Stevie Awards pour les grands employeurs, les Stevie Awards pour les femmes entrepreneurs et les Stevie Awards pour les ventes et le service à la clientèle. Les concours des Stevie Awards reçoivent chaque année plus de 12 000 candidatures émanant d’entreprises de plus de 70 pays. En récompensant les entreprises de tous types et de toutes tailles, ainsi que leurs collaborateurs, les Stevie Awards reconnaissent les performances exceptionnelles sur le lieu de travail dans le monde entier. Pour en savoir plus sur les Stevie Awards, rendez-vous sur le site

Contact :
Nina Moore
+1 (703) 547-8389

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8753770

Farmers to purchase their own agro-inputs using PDM cash

Farmers have been asked to make use of funds disbursed through Parish Development Model (PDM) savings and credit cooperative organisations to purchase agro-inputs as they prepare for the next planting season.

The call was made by the commissioner in charge of agriculture extension and skills management in the agriculture ministry, Dr Henry Nakelet Opolot.

He is also the coordinator of the Agriculture Cluster Development Project that has been giving farmers subsidised inputs.

Opolot’s advice follows calls from farmers that have been receiving subsided inputs through the project but to date, they haven’t been contacted by the agriculture ministry for the same.

Under the project, farmers have been receiving a subsidised package of agro-inputs including fertilisers, seed, pesticides, herbicides, tarpaulins and special airtight storage bags.

He however cautioned that before farmers can access the funds, they should be re-trained and well prepared so as to make efficient use of the funds.

The Parish Development Model was launched by President Yoweri Museveni in 2022 in a bid to improve household incomes, enable inclusive, sustainable and balanced socio-economic transformation among others.

To kickstart the project, the finance ministry set aside some funds where each parish is expected to receive sh100m to be disbursed through. And the target is to uplift the 3.5million households that are still in subsistence farming to commercial agriculture.

Although some legislators argue that the funds are still not accessible to farmers, PDM technical advisor Edward Katende said in an interview with New Vision that the funds will be released once they are sure that beneficiaries are ready.

“We want to prevent past incidences where farmers would access funds for agriculture and then divert them. We shall first consider farmer groups or farmers who have already prepared their gardens and are only waiting for the money to purchase inputs and related expenses,” said Katende.

Source: New Vision

NEMA to impound, auction trucks dumping murram in wetlands

KAMPALA - The National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) on Wednesday said it would impound and auction any truck found dumping murram in wetland.

In a statement, NEMA said they had noted the increasing number of cases in which lorry or truck drivers are contracted to aid in backfilling of wetlands, which is a criminal offence under the National Environment Act, No.5 of 2019 and attendant regulations.

“The general public, particularly truck drivers, owners and contractors are hereby informed that once we have ascertained that a truck has been used to dump murram or debris in a wetland, the truck will be auctioned and the driver, owner & contractor charged for the crime,” said NEMA.

The statement warned truck drivers, owners and contractors and advised them to verify whether the areas where they deliver debris or murram to are approved by NEMA or a delegated authority.

Some of the areas that have been worst hit by dumping include the Kinawataka wetland that is almost entirely degraded and sections of Lubigi wetland.

The dumping of murram on the Kinawataka wetland has heavily affected the flow of water on Jinja Road and caused severe flooding.

Source: New Vision

GREEN UGANDA: Firewood, charcoal burning up planet

It is estimated that 90% of households in Uganda derive their energy from firewood and charcoal. Much of this energy is used for cooking, with most rural households relying on firewood, while urban households depend on charcoal.

According to the World Bank Uganda Wood Overview Report 2019, domestic cooking consumes the largest share of wood (about 27 metric tonnes) annually, followed by industrial use estimated at 2.7 tonnes, while commercial consumption is estimated at 2.36 tonnes.

Ugandan institutions such as schools, prisons, the army, hospitals and small to medium enterprises like confectioneries and brick-making are also some of the ever-growing users of fuelwood.

Most of these institutions buy their wood from markets or traders with no regard to the source of the wood.

It is a common sight to see trucks entering urban centres carrying firewood, most of which has probably been harvested illegally from public forests, woodlands, riverine forests and farmers’ gardens.

Over the last two to three decades, the demand for fuelwood has been increasing due to growth in population, industrialisation and urbanisation.

How do we address deforestation?

According to the World Bank, the total demand for wood fuel is estimated to have increased by 9.1% between 2015-2019.

This has translated into massive acres of forests and woodlands being cleared for firewood and charcoal, especially in the cattle corridor districts of Nakasongola, Mubende, Luwero, Kyankwazi and Kiboga. Other areas include districts in West Nile, northern Uganda and Karamoja.

The situation has not been helped by the increasing demand in the region from countries such as Kenya, Rwanda and South Sudan, as well as the influx of refugees in the country.

In areas prone to disasters such as Karamoja, charcoal burning has become one of the major backups during such periods of stress.

It is also important to note that fuelwood and charcoal have increasingly become profitable economic activities, sometimes involving cartels and supply centres in urban areas.


A number of factors are responsible for increased fuelwood-related deforestation:

• Poor methods of cooking, especially using three cooking stones: Most of the heat from the burnt firewood is lost through radiation, meaning more fuelwood is required to prepare a meal.

• Rudimentary methods of converting wood to charcoal: The traditional methods commonly used to produce charcoal have limited control on combustion and use wet instead of dried wood, resulting in only about 10-20% charcoal being recovered from the wood. This, coupled with the use of inefficient cooking stoves, means more wood is lost, resulting in massive clearing of forests and woodlands, more greenhouse emissions and climate change.

• Limited implementation of laws and policies that control the production, conversion and transportation of firewood and charcoal: Overlapping institutional mandates between the water and environment, energy as well as the local government ministries have not made licensing, sustainable production and utilisation any easy. For example, there is missing information on the source of the most charcoal or firewood transported to Kampala. Chances are that most of it is from massive clearing from the source, with limited capacities of the resource to regenerate.

• Limited awareness, access, adaptability, and attitude change on the use of alternative sources of cooking fuel such as biogas systems, use of briquettes and liquified petroleum gas.

• Clearing of land for crop-growing and opening grazing areas has been a big factor in the cattle corridor, with landowners interested in removing unpalatable species such as the thorny Acacia species to open up grass for grazing.

What we can do

To address the challenges of fuel-related deforestation, several interventions are possible

1. Raise the issue of cooking with untraceable wood (wood whose source is not known) so that consumers can demand that wood is supplied from sustainably managed sources

2. Develop mechanisms to encourage users of wood fuel such as schools to develop dedicated woodlots/ energy plantations, for their own supply of fuelwood. A number of tree species such as gmelina aborea, eucalyptus, neem and terminalia have been tested for site suitability in the different parts of Uganda and hold great promise.

3. Ensure improved technologies in charcoal production such as the use of modern kilns that increase the amount of charcoal produced from wood. Ensure use of improved technologies such as institutional cooking stoves that increase energy efficiency, cleanliness and health

4. Plant more trees than what is consumed and avoid harvesting natural forests for fuelwood

5. Switch to other alternative sources of cooking energy such as biogas systems, use of briquettes and liquified petroleum gas.

6. Increase utilisation and efficiency of agricultural and forest waste in fuel energy.

7. Ensure appropriate policy implementation, regulation and control of the fuelwood industry

8. Engaging cattle farmers to encourage minimum stock removals through optimal tree stocking and assisted regeneration

9. Increase tree growing on farmlands to address multiple needs on nutrition, soil improvement, shade and animal fodder.

Source: New Vision

Kenya Tourism Officials Say Earnings Jumped 83% Last Year

Kenya's tourism ministry says earnings jumped 83% last year as the sector recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic. Tourism revenue is expected to more than double over the next four years.

A new report from Kenya’s Ministry of Tourism says earnings from the tourism sector increased to more than $2.1 billion last year.

That’s a gigantic leap from the $1.16 billion earned in 2021, when the pandemic was holding down international travel.

The number of international tourists also grew to over 1.4 million, compared to 870,000 in 2021.

Sixteen percent of the visitors last year arrived from America, according to the ministry. About 12% came from Uganda, and 10% came from the United Kingdom.

''Because of the nature of the relationship we have with the U.S. of course, and of course the nature of the numbers, says Peninah Malonza, Kenya's minister of tourism, wildlife and heritage. "If you do proper marketing in any country and if that country has good numbers, looking at the population of the U.S. is quite a large population and this is our traditional market,'' he said.

The impact of COVID-19 in 2020 brought Kenya’s tourism industry to a screeching halt, with more than 2 million people losing their jobs at the time. Most have since returned to work.

The tourism sector accounts for 10.4% of Kenya's economy and 5.5% of formal employment.

Source: Voice of America

Killer of US Rapper Nipsey Hussle Jailed for at Least 60 Years

The man who shot dead Grammy-winning rapper Nipsey Hussle on a Los Angeles street in 2019 was jailed for at least 60 years Wednesday.

Eric Holder had not denied killing Hussle -- a fast-rising star whose death sent shockwaves through the music world -- but his lawyers argued it was an impulsive crime that took place in the "heat of passion."

But a jury last year found Holder had acted with premeditation as he fired at Hussle at least 10 times following a dispute between the two men over claims the assailant was "snitching" to the police.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge H. Clay Jacke sentenced Holder to a minimum of 25 years for the killing, with an additional 25 years because a gun was used in the crime.

Holder was given another 10 years for shooting and wounding two other men who were nearby.

The violent killing of Hussle, a former gang member, in front of a clothing store he owned triggered widespread grief in his native Los Angeles and among his superstar peers, who hailed his musical talents and community activism.

Raised in the city's Crenshaw district, Hussle, who was 33 when he died, had transformed the block he used to hustle on into a retail, job-creating hub for his Marathon Clothing company.

But he remained linked to the gang-ridden world he grew up in.

Holder, a 32-year-old gang member, and Hussle were both members of the same "Rollin 60s" Crips faction.

During the trial, prosecutor John McKinney said Hussle had told Holder there were rumors Holder had been "snitching," before Holder left the parking lot where the two were talking.

When he returned a short time later, Holder "pulls out not one but two guns and starts shooting" in an "explosion of violence."

The killing was captured on video.

In his closing argument, McKinney called the killing "cold-blooded" and "calculated," saying Holder had "quite a bit of time for premeditation and deliberation."

But Holder's attorney told jurors the killing was "an act of impulse and rashness" which should have been charged as manslaughter.

Aaron Jansen said his client, who he said suffered from mental illness, had already received death threats and that "his life in prison is going to be hell for as long as it lasts."

The judge said he would recommend Holder be housed in a facility that can address his mental health needs.

'He saw hope'

The month after his 2019 killing, thousands of people gathered for a service in Hussle's honor, with Stevie Wonder and Snoop Dogg among those paying tribute, and former President Barack Obama penning a letter that was read during the service.

"While most folks look at the Crenshaw neighborhood where he grew up and see only gangs, bullets and despair, Nipsey saw potential," wrote Obama.

"He saw hope. He saw a community that, even through its flaws, taught him to always keep going."

Hussle -- real name Ermias Asghedom -- was posthumously honored with two Grammy Awards in 2020 for best rap performance for Racks in the Middle and best rap/sung performance for Higher.

In August, on what would have been his 37th birthday, he was granted a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.

Source: Voice of America