Connect with us

Investment

Urbana Corporation announces investment in Blue Ocean Technologies, LLC – Financial Post

Published

 on


/NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION TO U.S. WIRE SERVICES OR FOR DISSEMINATION IN THE U.S./

TORONTO, June 29, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Urbana Corporation (TSX & CSE: URB & URB.A)

Urbana Corporation (“Urbana”) is pleased to announce it has closed on a $10.5 million investment in Blue Ocean Technologies, LLC (“BOT”) www.blueoceantechnologiesllc.com, a private company, for approximately 37% of that organization. This investment is held through Urbana International Inc., a Delaware incorporated wholly owned subsidiary of Urbana.

BOT has recently established an Alternative Trading System which allows the trading of U.S. listed equities from 8pm ET to 4am ET, for investors, including those based in the Asia-Pacific region, who will now be able to trade U.S. equities during their daytime hours.

We see this venture as holding great potential in terms of trading volumes, data sourcing and revenues.

The team at BOT is made up of highly experienced security trading platform and Wall Street professionals.

On behalf of Urbana’s Board of Directors
Thomas S. Caldwell, C.M.

ABOUT URBANA CORPORATION

Urbana Corporation is a diversified investment corporation with a current focus across the financial services sector from exchanges to banks to broker dealers, investment managers and information services.

The long-term goal of Urbana is to seek and acquire investments for income and capital appreciation through a combination of public and private investments. The mix of an actively managed portfolio of publicly traded securities with private equity investments ensures non-committed assets are productively employed as we seek out, evaluate and participate in opportunities within the non-public sphere.

Visit www.urbanacorp.com

For further information, please contact:
Elizabeth Naumovski, Investor Relations
enaumovski@urbanacorp.com or 416-595-9106

Certain statements in this news release constitute “forward-looking” statements that involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Urbana to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Unless required by applicable securities law, Urbana does not assume any obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

Primary Logo

Adblock test (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Investment

Church’s Chicken Acquired By Investment Firm High Bluff Capital Partners – Forbes

Published

 on


High Bluff Capital Partners is adding Church’s Chicken to its growing roster of restaurant brands under its REGO Restaurant Group platform, established in 2018.

The company has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Church’s from FFL partners for an undisclosed amount.  FS Investments led a structured capital investment in support of the acquisition out of its FS Tactical Opportunities Fund along with other affiliated investment funds. The transaction is expected to be completed in Q3.

Atlanta-based Church’s Chicken has more than 1,500 locations in 25 countries and territories. The nearly 70-year-old brand generated systemwide sales of about $1.2 billion in 2020, including its most profitable performance in “many years,” by leveraging a strong demand for chicken and bundled meals, as well as drive-thru and off-premise channels.

This momentum is what attracted High Bluff founder Anand Gowda to the brand.

“At a time when the entire restaurant industry has faced unprecedented challenges, Church’s has stood out as a notable bright spot, having emerged from the pandemic with considerable tailwinds that strongly position the brand for tremendous growth geographically as well as in the overall chicken category,” he said.

Despite those tailwinds, however, Gowda acknowledges that Church’s needs a bit more agility to better compete in an intensifying space.

“My perspective is that situations that appear to be challenged on the outside–like having a dated brand–have tremendous loyalty from the customer base and if you can invest some capital in the physical assets and technology, that’s interesting,” he said. “Church’s has performed very well through Covid, but there is still so much untapped value here. It’ll take some simple blocking and tackling to energize the customer base and that’s what we intend to do.”

Those blocking and tackling efforts include bringing innovative menu offerings to market more quickly, elevating the tech platform, improving the point-of-sale system and getting a loyalty program in place as soon as possible.

Essentially, Gowda wants to bring a faster mindset to the system, which has been under the same ownership since 2009.

“They took a long time to make decisions like implementing price changes. They were late to the chicken sandwich wars. It shouldn’t take two years to develop a loyalty program,” he said. “You have to be quick in this industry–especially now. We have a small group of owners and that gives us the ability to make decisions quickly. Our ownership is narrow and I think that will be a strategic advantage with the brand.”

Taking over a legacy brand at a sprint’s pace has its risks, however. Namely, it could turn off loyal franchisees who have been with the system for a long time. Gowda isn’t worried about this so much, however.

“We all have the same goals. If we’re not working to increase their margin, we shouldn’t be in the market. Our objective is to bring more sales to franchisees in a more agile way and give them more opportunities at growth and more flexibility with technology. They’re in acute alignment with that objective,” he said.

If that alignment is sustained, Gowda expects big things for the Church’s brand. He wants to grow its footprint, including in nontraditional ways such as ghost kitchens–a plan he’s deploying with REGO’s other brands.

Further, consumers have proven their appetite for chicken is boundless and he believes there is plenty of room for Church’s Texas-style chicken alongside the Kentucky-style chicken of KFC and the Louisiana-style chicken of Popeyes (both of which are on a significant upswing, by the way). He also likes the momentum Church’s has with its international business, its strongest driver of growth throughout the past two years.

“We have this wonderful international business and we can take all the flavors that we put into those businesses and import them here that are in high demand. International is one of our strongest assets and it will help us bring forward great products that will generate great sales. Our operators are thirsty for this type of innovation,” Gowda said. “We recognize we’ll fail sometimes but we’ll win big sometimes. In two or three years, we’ll be leading this category versus following in this category.”

With the acquisition of the chicken chain, REGO Restaurant Group diversifies its portfolio that already includes sub chain Quiznos and Mexican concept Taco Del Mar. Gowda would like to get to at least 10 brands and double its EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) to north of $100 million in the next few years. REGO plans to continue taking advantage of the mergers & acquisitions market while it remains hot.

“It took us a little while to get the snowball going, but now we have a scalable platform with Church’s. That was our goal–scale to get to scale. Now we focus on buying bigger assets, financing them in a cost efficient way and accelerate opportunities that are either undermanaged, poorly capitalized or growing well but in the mid-to-early stages of growth that we can accelerate,” Gowda said. “We’re just getting started.”

Adblock test (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Investment

Montreal investment fund sued over use of founder's great-great-grandfather's name – Coast Reporter

Published

 on


MONTREAL — Brendan Holt Dunn said he wanted to invoke the legacy of his great-great-grandfather, pioneering Quebec industrialist Sir Herbert Holt, in the name of his Montreal-based venture capital fund.

Now, he may have to go to court to keep the name.

His fund, The Holt Xchange, which invests in early stage financial technology startups, is being sued by international bank Credit Suisse for trademark violation. 

In a statement of claim filed last year with Federal Court in Edmonton, Credit Suisse subsidiary CSFB HOLT said it owns the right to use the brand “HOLT” when offering financial goods and services in Canada and that the branding and offerings of the Montreal venture capital fund — known as the Holt Accelerator when the lawsuit was filed — is too similar.

The bank, which is seeking at least $100,000 in damages, argues that similarity “will cause confusion amongst Canadian consumers” and reduce the value and reputation of its trademark.

Dunn said he doesn’t think there’s a risk of confusion.

“We’re in different areas, the financial sector as a whole is very broad,” he said, adding that he’d never heard of Credit Suisse’s HOLT brand before being sued.

“I think what they’re worried about is that our name, our family’s name is better known than them in Canada,” he said in an interview Wednesday. “There is absolutely no overlap.”

Elisabeth Laett, managing partner at The Holt Xchange, said the decision to use the Holt family name when the fund launched in 2018 was a reference to the history of Montreal’s financial sector and the fund’s ambitions to help make Quebec a hub for a new generation of financial technology companies.

“We were the financial hub of Canada, in Montreal, at one point,” she said. 

When Herbert Holt died in 1941, he was described as the richest man in Canada. A railway engineer who helped build the Canadian Pacific Railway, he was knighted for his work planning railways in France during the First World War. He later consolidated several power companies in the Montreal area — which would eventually be expropriated to create Hydro-Québec — and was president of the Royal Bank of Canada from 1908 to 1934. 

Holt was also a controversial figure in Montreal at a time when many French-speaking Quebecers resented the city’s English-speaking business elite.

In court filings, The Holt Xchange maintains the Holt name has been used by generations of family members when offering financial goods and services in Canada. It has also filed a counter claim seeking to have Credit Suisse’s HOLT trademark struck down.

Credit Suisse’s HOLT brand comes from the name of a United States-based financial consulting firm acquired by the bank in 2002 and is an acronym based on the letters of the last names of consulting company’s founders. The bank, which filed an application to register the “HOLT” trademark in Canada in 2006, sells software used to value companies, as well as offering consulting services and investment products, under the HOLT name.

Whether consumers would interpret “Holt” in the name of the Montreal venture capital fund as a reference to the Holt family is one of the issues being disputed in court filings.

Teresa Scassa, the Canada Research Chair in information law and policy at the University of Ottawa’s law faculty said the courts look at several factors when evaluating the possibility of confusion in trademark cases “including how long each name or mark has been in use, and how similar the goods and services goods or services are, and the way in which they’re marketed or sold.”

While the Trademarks Act allows people to use their own names as trade names, she said that defence has “been interpreted fairly narrowly,” 

“For example, someone named McDonald is not prevented from using their name in business and if they open a burger stand, they’re not prevented from using their name in their family business to sell burgers, but they can’t just call it McDonald’s,” she said. Instead they have to make it clear it’s a different business.

Credit Suisse spokesman Jonathan Schwarzberg declined to comment on the case, saying the bank can’t say anything publicly beyond what’s in court filings. No trial date has been set. 

Dunn said the fund entered into negotiations with Credit Suisse after the lawsuit was filed and changed its name from Holt Fintech Accelerator to The Holt Xchange in the spring, a move he said he thought would satisfy the bank.

He noted there are other companies using the name Holt.

“I don’t understand it,” he said. “It’s insulting and we’re obviously feeling like we’re being bullied. We’re a very successful family, but no family in the world can go up against a financial institution.”

Laett said the Montreal fund has built an international brand around its name, attracting interest from startups from around the world. “We’ve received roughly 3,000 applications to be part of Holt,” she said. “There is a tremendous momentum.”

Dunn said he’s not open to dropping “Holt” from the company’s name. 

“It is my personal name and my family’s name and our family’s history and reputation in Canada,” he said. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 2, 2021.

———

This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

Jacob Serebrin, The Canadian Press

Adblock test (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Investment

Montreal investment fund sued over use of founder's great-great-grandfather's name – Pique Newsmagazine

Published

 on


MONTREAL — Brendan Holt Dunn said he wanted to invoke the legacy of his great-great-grandfather, pioneering Quebec industrialist Sir Herbert Holt, in the name of his Montreal-based venture capital fund.

Now, he may have to go to court to keep the name.

His fund, The Holt Xchange, which invests in early stage financial technology startups, is being sued by international bank Credit Suisse for trademark violation. 

In a statement of claim filed last year with Federal Court in Edmonton, Credit Suisse subsidiary CSFB HOLT said it owns the right to use the brand “HOLT” when offering financial goods and services in Canada and that the branding and offerings of the Montreal venture capital fund — known as the Holt Accelerator when the lawsuit was filed — is too similar.

The bank, which is seeking at least $100,000 in damages, argues that similarity “will cause confusion amongst Canadian consumers” and reduce the value and reputation of its trademark.

Dunn said he doesn’t think there’s a risk of confusion.

“We’re in different areas, the financial sector as a whole is very broad,” he said, adding that he’d never heard of Credit Suisse’s HOLT brand before being sued.

“I think what they’re worried about is that our name, our family’s name is better known than them in Canada,” he said in an interview Wednesday. “There is absolutely no overlap.”

Elisabeth Laett, managing partner at The Holt Xchange, said the decision to use the Holt family name when the fund launched in 2018 was a reference to the history of Montreal’s financial sector and the fund’s ambitions to help make Quebec a hub for a new generation of financial technology companies.

“We were the financial hub of Canada, in Montreal, at one point,” she said. 

When Herbert Holt died in 1941, he was described as the richest man in Canada. A railway engineer who helped build the Canadian Pacific Railway, he was knighted for his work planning railways in France during the First World War. He later consolidated several power companies in the Montreal area — which would eventually be expropriated to create Hydro-Québec — and was president of the Royal Bank of Canada from 1908 to 1934. 

Holt was also a controversial figure in Montreal at a time when many French-speaking Quebecers resented the city’s English-speaking business elite.

In court filings, The Holt Xchange maintains the Holt name has been used by generations of family members when offering financial goods and services in Canada. It has also filed a counter claim seeking to have Credit Suisse’s HOLT trademark struck down.

Credit Suisse’s HOLT brand comes from the name of a United States-based financial consulting firm acquired by the bank in 2002 and is an acronym based on the letters of the last names of consulting company’s founders. The bank, which filed an application to register the “HOLT” trademark in Canada in 2006, sells software used to value companies, as well as offering consulting services and investment products, under the HOLT name.

Whether consumers would interpret “Holt” in the name of the Montreal venture capital fund as a reference to the Holt family is one of the issues being disputed in court filings.

Teresa Scassa, the Canada Research Chair in information law and policy at the University of Ottawa’s law faculty said the courts look at several factors when evaluating the possibility of confusion in trademark cases “including how long each name or mark has been in use, and how similar the goods and services goods or services are, and the way in which they’re marketed or sold.”

While the Trademarks Act allows people to use their own names as trade names, she said that defence has “been interpreted fairly narrowly,” 

“For example, someone named McDonald is not prevented from using their name in business and if they open a burger stand, they’re not prevented from using their name in their family business to sell burgers, but they can’t just call it McDonald’s,” she said. Instead they have to make it clear it’s a different business.

Credit Suisse spokesman Jonathan Schwarzberg declined to comment on the case, saying the bank can’t say anything publicly beyond what’s in court filings. No trial date has been set. 

Dunn said the fund entered into negotiations with Credit Suisse after the lawsuit was filed and changed its name from Holt Fintech Accelerator to The Holt Xchange in the spring, a move he said he thought would satisfy the bank.

He noted there are other companies using the name Holt.

“I don’t understand it,” he said. “It’s insulting and we’re obviously feeling like we’re being bullied. We’re a very successful family, but no family in the world can go up against a financial institution.”

Laett said the Montreal fund has built an international brand around its name, attracting interest from startups from around the world. “We’ve received roughly 3,000 applications to be part of Holt,” she said. “There is a tremendous momentum.”

Dunn said he’s not open to dropping “Holt” from the company’s name. 

“It is my personal name and my family’s name and our family’s history and reputation in Canada,” he said. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 2, 2021.

———

This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

Jacob Serebrin, The Canadian Press

Adblock test (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Trending