Coronavirus Gives Workers Wake-up Call, Leads to Surge in Open Enrollment Research

Employees still overwhelmed when making health care decisions but willing to devote more time to the open enrollment process.

PR Newswire

COLUMBUS, Ga., Sept. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The annual open enrollment season is nearly underway, and U.S. employees will be making benefits decisions during an unprecedented and challenging time. To understand employees’ and employers’ feelings about this critical event, Aflac, a leading provider of supplemental insurance and products in the U.S., conducted a national online survey of 1,200 benefits decision-makers and 2,000 employees across the U.S. during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The 2020 Aflac WorkForces Report provides insights into how the pandemic is influencing benefits research and selection in addition to consumer opinions on health insurance and financial security.  

Pandemic Underscores Open Enrollment Decisions
According to the survey, nearly half (49%) of employees said the pandemic has been a wake-up call to invest more time researching and selecting the best coverage options for their situation. This represents a significant shift in employee behavior considering a vast majority of employees (92%) choose the same benefits year after year and on average spend 33 minutes on the task – statistics that haven’t changed meaningfully over the years of the survey. However, in light of current events related to COVID-19, about half of employees said the pandemic was a wake-up call to invest more time researching and selecting the best coverage options for them and their families.

“Choosing benefits is one of the most important actions people take each year. And for the past 10 years, our survey found that employees are on autopilot when it comes to the choices they make,” said Matthew Owenby, chief human resources officer at Aflac. “However, COVID-19 has inspired important conversations taking place about the current health care crisis and growing concerns about financial security.”

In fact, one-third (33%) of employees either do not feel confident or are unsure if their health benefits will protect them or their family in the event they are affected by COVID-19. In addition, most employees’ wallets have already been hit by COVID-19: Many (67%) agree they experienced at least a minor financial impact due to the pandemic, and a full third of workers say they experienced moderate to major impacts on their finances.

The most common of these financial impacts include:

  • Loss of funds due to canceled trips or events (42%).
  • Loss of a job or income (36%).
  • Unexpected costs related to caring for a family member (21%), deductibles (18%) and out-of-pocket health care costs (18%).

Challenges continue with health care costs and decisions
COVID-19 aside, employees continue to worry about their financial vulnerability to unexpected out-of-pocket medical costs. Six out of 10 employees believe their share of medical costs will increase next year, and 54% of employees say they experience anxiety about health care costs that are not covered by health insurance. That sentiment rang true for many: Among the roughly 1 in 5 employees (22%) who reported they or an immediate family member suffered a major health event or accident in the past year, 92% experienced at least one surprise cost.

Unexpected medical costs could weigh heavily on American employees who are not in a financial position to go beyond their current budget. Specifically, 48% of respondents admitted they couldn’t pay $1,000 or more for out-of-pocket expenses without relying on debt or credit if a serious illness or accident occurred today. And those concerns go beyond finances: 46% of workers said they have delayed medical care because of cost concerns.

Expectations of Businesses High
For employers, these pandemic-related challenges will come to the forefront during open enrollment, as employees expect more from their benefits packages. A full 63% expect at least one expanded benefit, such as supplemental insurance or telemedicine, and 45% expressed great interest in insurance that helps offset financial costs related to COVID-19 or other pandemics.

“It’s certainly an encouraging sign to see more than half of workers are expecting more from their benefits package than just health insurance, and employers would do well to listen to their concerns,” said Owenby. “Our survey found that more than one-third (35%) of workers say improving their benefits package is the one thing their employer could do to keep them in their jobs – second only to increasing their pay. The one thing that human resources professionals should take from this information is that satisfying employees of the future will require sustained effort by employers to offer a variety of options that meet employee demand.”

Visit to learn more about the 2020 Aflac WorkForces Report. 

About the 2020 Aflac WorkForces Report
The 2020-2021 Aflac WorkForces Report is the 10th annual Aflac employee study examining benefits trends and attitudes. The employer survey, conducted by Kantar on behalf of Aflac, took place online between June 12 and June 30, 2020. The survey captured responses from 1,200 employers across the United States in various industries. The employee survey, conducted by Kantar on behalf of Aflac, captured responses from 2,000 employees across various industries and business sizes between July 7 and July 21.

About Kantar
Kantar is the world’s leading evidence-based insights and consulting company. We have a complete, unique and rounded understanding of how people think, feel and act; globally and locally in over 90 markets. By combining the deep expertise of our people, our data resources and benchmarks, our innovative analytics and technology, we help our clients understand people and inspire growth. 

Aflac Incorporated (NYSE: AFL) is a Fortune 500 company, helping provide protection to more than 50 million people through its subsidiaries in Japan and the U.S., where it is a leading supplemental insurer by paying cash fast when policyholders get sick or injured. For more than six decades, insurance policies of Aflac Incorporated’s subsidiaries have given policyholders the opportunity to focus on recovery, not financial stress. Aflac Life Insurance Japan is the leading provider of medical and cancer insurance in Japan, where it insures 1 in 4 households. Fortune magazine recognized Aflac as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work for in America for 20 consecutive years. For 14 consecutive years, Aflac has been recognized by Ethisphere as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies. In 2020, Fortune included Aflac Incorporated on its list of World’s Most Admired Companies for the 19th time, and Bloomberg added Aflac Incorporated to its Gender-Equality Index, which tracks the financial performance of public companies committed to supporting gender equality through policy development, representation and transparency. To learn how to get help with expenses health insurance doesn’t cover, get to know us at

Media contact – Darcy Brito, 706.505.9762 or

Analyst and investor contact – David A. Young, 706.596.3264 or

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TRACON Pharmaceuticals Highlights Updated Envafolimab Clinical Results in MSI-H/dMMR Colorectal Cancer

TRACON’s Pivotal ENVASARC Trial of envafolimab in the Sarcoma Subtypes of UPS and MFS Expected to Initiate Dosing in 4Q 2020

SAN DIEGO, Sept. 21, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — TRACON Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:TCON), a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of novel targeted cancer therapeutics and utilizing a cost efficient, CRO-independent product development platform to partner with ex-U.S. companies to develop and commercialize innovative products in the U.S., today highlighted updated clinical data from the pivotal trial of envafolimab in MSI-H/dMMR cancer patients that were recently presented by the Company’s corporate partners, 3D Medicines and Alphamab Oncology.

In a presentation highlighting updated clinical results at the Chinese Society of Clinical Oncology (CSCO) 2020 Virtual Scientific Program entitled, “Subcutaneous Injection of PD-L1 Antibody Envafolimab (KN035) in Advanced Tumors with Mismatch-Repair Deficiency,” single agent envafolimab was shown to have a 32% confirmed objective response rate (ORR) by central radiographic review of 41 patients with MSI-H/dMMR colorectal cancer (CRC) who failed a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin and irinotecan, and had at least two on-study tumor assessments. Duration of response (DOR) was greater than or equal to 12 months in 75% of patients and overall survival (OS) was greater than or equal to 12 months in 65% of patients. The ORR in the overall population (N=103) was 43%, DOR was greater than or equal to 12 months in 92% of patients and OS was greater than or equal to 12 months in 75% of patients. Envafolimab demonstrated good tolerability and safety and there continued to be no infusion-related reactions.

Earlier data from this trial were presented by 3D Medicines and Alphamab Oncology at ASCO 2020, in a presentation entitled, “Envafolimab (KN035) in Advanced Tumors with Mismatch-Repair Deficiency,” at which time single agent envafolimab was shown to have a 28% confirmed ORR by central radiographic review in 39 patients with MSI-H/dMMR CRC who failed a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin and irinotecan, and had at least two on-study tumor assessments. The trial enrolled 103 patients with MSI-H CRC, GC or with dMMR in other advanced solid tumors at clinical sites in China, in an open label format with efficacy endpoints, including the primary endpoint of confirmed ORR determined by independent central review. MSI-H/dMMR status was assessed centrally for CRC and GC and locally for other tumors.

The confirmed ORR in MSI-H/dMMR colorectal cancer patients treated with envafolimab who failed a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin and irinotecan reported at CSCO 2020 of 32% is similar to the 28% confirmed ORR reported in the Opdivo package insert in MSI-H/dMMR colorectal cancer patients who failed a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin, and irinotecan, and the 27.9% confirmed ORR reported for Keytruda in MSI-H/dMMR CRC patients who failed a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin and irinotecan seen in cohort A of the pivotal KEYNOTE-164 trial.

“The CSCO 2020 data provide further clinical evidence that envafolimab’s activity is similar to that of Opdivo and Keytruda in MSI-H/dMMR cancer. Also impressive is the durability of response at 12 months,” said James Freddo, M.D., TRACON Chief Medical Officer. “Given the 4% ORR reported in the pivotal study of Votrient, the only approved therapy for refractory UPS and MFS, and the demonstrated efficacy of immune checkpoint inhibitors in these populations, we believe the clinical results of our ENVASARC pivotal trial, if positive, could position envafolimab as a transformative new standard of care for sarcoma patients. Moreover, the elimination of PD-L1 associated infusion-related reactions observed to date and the convenience provided by envafolimab as the only subcutaneously administered PD-L1 inhibitor currently being studied in registrational trials, could provide significant benefits for clinicians and their patients.”


Key elements for the planned ENVASARC pivotal trial include:

  • Multi-center, open-label, randomized, non-comparative, parallel cohort study at approximately 25 top cancer centers in the United States.
  • Eligible patients will have undifferentiated pleomorphic sarcoma (UPS) or myxofibrosarcoma (MFS) and received one or two prior cancer therapies, but no prior immune checkpoint inhibitor therapy.
  • Planned total enrollment of 160 patients, with 80 patients enrolled into cohort A of treatment with single agent envafolimab and 80 patients enrolled in cohort B of treatment with envafolimab and Yervoy.
  • Primary endpoint of confirmed ORR with duration of response a key secondary endpoint.
  • Open-label format with blinded independent central review of efficacy endpoint data.


Envafolimab (KN035), a novel, single-domain antibody against PD-L1, is the first subcutaneously administered PD-(L)1 inhibitor to be studied in registrational trials. Envafolimab is currently dosing in a Phase 2 registration trial as a single agent in MSI-H/dMMR advanced solid tumor patients and a Phase 3 registration trial in combination with gemcitabine and oxaliplatin in advanced biliary tract cancer patients in China. 3D Medicines and Alphamab Oncology, TRACON’s corporate partners for this program, plan to submit a BLA to the NMPA in China for envafolimab in 2020 based on the ORR in MSI-H/dMMR advanced solid tumor patients. The confirmed ORR in MSI-H/dMMR colorectal cancer patients treated with envafolimab who failed a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin and irinotecan reported at CSCO 2020 was 32%, which was similar to the 28% confirmed ORR reported in the Opdivo package insert in MSI-H/dMMR colorectal cancer patients who failed a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin, and irinotecan and the 27.9% confirmed ORR reported for Keytruda in MSI-H/dMMR CRC patients who failed a fluoropyrimidine, oxaliplatin and irinotecan in cohort A of KEYNOTE-164.


TRACON develops targeted therapies for cancer utilizing a capital efficient, CRO independent, product development platform. The Company’s clinical-stage pipeline includes: Envafolimab, a subcutaneous PD-L1 single-domain antibody being developed for the treatment of sarcoma with the goal of initiating a registrational trial in the U.S. in the fourth quarter of 2020; TRC253, a Phase 3 ready small molecule drug candidate for the treatment of prostate cancer; TRC102, a Phase 2 small molecule drug candidate in development for the treatment of lung cancer; and TJ004309, a Phase 1 CD73 antibody in development for the treatment of advanced solid tumors. TRACON is actively seeking additional corporate partnerships whereby it leads U.S. regulatory and clinical development and shares in the cost and risk of clinical development and leads U.S. commercialization.  In these partnerships TRACON believes it can serve as a solution for companies without clinical and commercial capabilities in the U.S.  To learn more about TRACON and its product pipeline, visit TRACON’s website at

Forward-Looking Statements

Statements made in this press release regarding matters that are not historical facts are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Because such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward‐looking statements. Such statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding TRACON’s and its partners’ plans to further develop product candidates, expectations regarding the timing and scope of clinical trials and availability of clinical data, expected development and regulatory milestones and timing thereof, and TRACON’s business development strategy and goals to enter into additional collaborations. Risks that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in these forward‐looking statements include: risks associated with clinical development; whether TRACON or others will be able to complete or initiate clinical trials on TRACON’s expected timelines, if at all, including due to risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic or other pandemics; the fact that future preclinical studies and clinical trials may not be successful or otherwise consistent with results from prior studies; the fact that interim data from clinical trials may not be consistent with future or final data from the same trials; the fact that TRACON has limited control over whether or when third party collaborators complete on-going trials, initiate additional trials or seek regulatory approval of TRACON’s product candidates; the fact that TRACON’s collaboration agreements are subject to early termination; whether TRACON will be able to enter into additional collaboration agreements on favorable terms or at all; potential changes in regulatory requirements in the United States and foreign countries; TRACON’s reliance on third parties for the development of its product candidates, including the conduct of its clinical trials and manufacture of its product candidates; whether TRACON will be able to obtain additional financing; and other risks described in TRACON’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission under the heading “Risk Factors”. All forward‐looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date on which they were made and are based on management’s assumptions and estimates as of such date. TRACON undertakes no obligation to update such statements to reflect events that occur or circumstances that exist after the date on which they were made.

Company Contact: Investor Contact:
Mark Wiggins Brian Ritchie
Chief Business Officer LifeSci Advisors LLC
(858) 251-3492 212-915-2578



Specialized Estate Planning Law Firm Sub Rosa Chooses iManage Cloud

Newly established practice increases value to clients by employing modern software on par with larger firms to power document management, advanced search and to support remote access

CHICAGO, Sept. 21, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — iManage, the company dedicated to transforming how professionals work, today announced that Sub Rosa Law – a boutique law firm based in Miami, Florida that provides an international client base with specialized estate planning services – has selected iManage Cloud and iManage Work 10 as the ideal choice for its work product management needs. The combination of powerful functionality and affordability was a draw for the smaller, recently founded firm.

Sub Rosa Law’s founding partners envisioned a new kind of boutique law firm that would leverage best-in-class technology to:

  • Support a team of lawyers working anywhere on any device
  • Include robust search and versioning features to help manage complex document lifecycles
  • Be simple to use and deploy in the cloud, delivering high performance while eliminating the need for specialized IT staff
  • Serve as a true differentiator enabling a practice of their size to compete against larger firms and attract associates eager to leverage technology to provide agile, client-focused service

always intent on running a lean and mean operation with low overhead
,” said Mich
l Rosenblum, Founding Partner and Principal, Sub Rosa Law
. “iManage Cloud fits into that strategy perfectly. We want to be smart with how we
spend our money and
deploy our resources,
get technology that will deliver the most value for us and our clients
I would give up my office space before I gave up using iManage.

Easily Handling Complicated Matters for Clients

Given the complicated nature of the estate planning documents that Sub Rosa Law creates for its clients, strong versioning capabilities are essential. iManage Work’s smart timelines make it easy to access prior versions and understand how a document has evolved and who has changed or viewed it.

Search capability was also critical in the firm’s choice.

“Search is an area where iManage really excels,” said Rosenblum. “
Work makes it extremely easy to save emails to client matters right alongside
the relevant documents
, and the
is very powerful, allowing me to easily search for and
pull up
what I need. That’s important, because no client is going to pay me
to dig around
documents or emails.
That speed
of search
lets me
provide greater responsiveness to the client.”

Anytime, Anywhere Access
with No IT Department Needed

iManage partner RBRO Solutions, assisted Sub Rosa Law in identifying the ideal solution for their needs and was selected to set up the firm on iManage Cloud.

“RBRO did a great job of helping us define our requirements,” said Rosenblum. “We’re lawyers, not technical experts, so we relied on their recommendations. They gave us a solution that we’re extremely happy with.”

With iManage Cloud in place, Sub Rosa Law has been well positioned to continue its work uninterrupted during the COVID-19 pandemic, as all members of the firm can easily and securely access their critical files – anywhere, anytime, on any device – and readily collaborate with one another and their clients.

“We’re not a large law firm with a dedicated IT team,” said Rosenblum. “iManage Cloud has been perfect
, because it
has seamlessly enabled us
to work remotely,
any extra administration on our side. That’s more time that we can spend serving our clients.”

With its selection of iManage Cloud, Sub Rosa Law has taken a shrewd approach to
bringing the technological capabilities of a large institutional practice to a small, boutique firm
,” said
Dan Dosen, General Manager
, iManage
. “
Cloud is ideal for firms of any size who want to access the industry’s leading Work Product Management capabilities with scalable, reliable performance and features specifically designed for professionals.

As a trusted iManage partner adept at moving law firms and corporations to iManage Cloud, RBRO Solutions has completed a significant number of iManage Cloud migrations in the last year. “Sub Rosa Law is proof that a small law firm can affordably integrate modern cloud architecture. Our experience and unique process make it possible for small firms to gain the benefits of enterprise solutions like iManage,” said RBRO CEO, Howard Russell.

Read more about Sub Rosa Law’s iManage Cloud deployment, in this case study.

About iManage

iManage transforms how professionals in legal, accounting and financial services get work done by combining artificial intelligence, security and risk mitigation with market-leading document and email management. iManage automates routine cognitive tasks, provides powerful insights and streamlines how professionals work, while maintaining the highest level of security and governance over critical client and corporate data. Over one million professionals at over 3,500 organizations in over 65 countries – including more than 2,500 law firms and 1,200 corporate legal departments and other enterprise customers – rely on iManage to deliver great client and corporate work – securely.     

About RBRO Solutions

Trusted globally by over 400,000 business users, RBRO offers visionary leadership to its clients with respect to changing landscapes that impact their business. Over 30 RBRO propriety solutions seamlessly support mission-critical business systems for top legal and corporate brands worldwide. The company was established in 2003 at the forefront of the enterprise content management, big data and document management era and continues to be a leader in its approach.


Anastasia Bullinger
Phone: +1-312-868-8411

Henry Schein Named to Fortune® Magazine’s ‘Change the World’ List

Henry Schein Named to Fortune® Magazine’s ‘Change the World’ List

Company Recognized for Its Role as Co-Founder and Private Sector Lead of the Pandemic Supply Chain Network

Henry Schein, Inc. (Nasdaq: HSIC) announced today that it has been named to FORTUNE® magazine’s “Change the World” list, an annual ranking of companies that have had a positive social impact through activities that are part of their core business strategy. Henry Schein was recognized for its role in helping to create the Pandemic Supply Chain Network (PSCN), a public-private partnership aimed at saving lives by strengthening the resilience of the global health supply chain in response to pandemics. Henry Schein serves as the PSCN’s private sector lead.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: (Graphic: Business Wire) (Graphic: Business Wire)

The PSCN, co-founded by Henry Schein, is a public-private initiative that brings together the private sector and global organizations – including the World Health Organization, World Economic Forum, the United Nations World Food Programme, the World Bank, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, UNICEF, and approximately 60 health care manufacturers and suppliers – to embrace a common commitment to a cause. Since the PSCN’s inception, Henry Schein, as private sector lead, has worked intensively to develop a platform for data sharing, market visibility, and operational coordination for health care products to more effectively match global demand with global supply. The trust-based relationships built between sectors through the PSCN has been crucial in enabling the sharing of information and facilitating the ability of key stakeholders to navigate together the supply chain challenges caused by global pandemics.

“Henry Schein is driven by a sense of purpose and mission, and we are honored to be named to FORTUNE® magazine’s ‘Change the World’ list for our enduring commitment to these values,” said Stanley M. Bergman, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Henry Schein. “Since our founding in 1932, Henry Schein has been guided by the belief that we can align our strengths as a business with the needs of society to make a positive difference. Through the Pandemic Supply Chain Network, we have had the opportunity to work with leaders from all sectors of society to help create a safer world through more effective pandemic preparedness and response.”

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in late 2019, the PSCN has taken an active role in developing critical tools to strengthen the supply chain, including advocacy, procurement, and product recommendations. Henry Schein’s long-term leadership in the PSCN enabled the Company to deploy insights in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, specifically advocating for and disseminating guidelines for proper usage of personal protective equipment (PPE) to promoting the judicious use of PPE. The Company’s collaboration with its PSCN partners reinforces Henry Schein’s commitment to public-private partnerships as a means of addressing complex societal issues.

FORTUNE® magazine’s “Change the World” list celebrates companies and leaders that embrace corporate purpose and recognize how it can add value to business and society. FORTUNE® evaluates the companies by measurable social impact, business results, degree of innovation, and corporate integration. To view the entire list, please visit:

About Henry Schein, Inc.

Henry Schein, Inc. (Nasdaq: HSIC) is a solutions company for health care professionals powered by a network of people and technology. With approximately 19,000 Team Schein Members worldwide, the Company’s network of trusted advisors provides more than 1 million customers globally with more than 300 valued solutions that improve operational success and clinical outcomes. Our Business, Clinical, Technology, and Supply Chain solutions help office-based dental and medical practitioners work more efficiently so they can provide quality care more effectively. These solutions also support dental laboratories, government and institutional health care clinics, as well as other alternate care sites.

Henry Schein operates through a centralized and automated distribution network, with a selection of more than 120,000 branded products and Henry Schein private-brand products in stock, as well as more than 180,000 additional products available as special-order items.

A FORTUNE 500 Company and a member of the S&P 500® index, Henry Schein is headquartered in Melville, N.Y., and has operations or affiliates in 31 countries. The Company’s sales from continuing operations reached $10.0 billion in 2019, and have grown at a compound annual rate of approximately 13 percent since Henry Schein became a public company in 1995.

For more information, visit Henry Schein at,, and @HenrySchein on Twitter.

Ann Marie Gothard, Vice President, Corporate Media Relations,, (631) 390-8169

KEYWORDS: New York United States North America

INDUSTRY KEYWORDS: Medical Supplies Health Infectious Diseases Logistics/Supply Chain Management Transport Dental General Health


Photo (Graphic: Business Wire)

(NKLA) ALERT: Nikola Corporation Investors Reminded of Class Action Deadline; Investors with Losses Over $200,000 Encouraged to Contact Firm – Johnson Fistel, LLP

PR Newswire

SAN DIEGO, Sept. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Shareholder rights law firm Johnson Fistel, LLP reminds investors that a class action lawsuit has been filed against Nikola Corporation (“Nikola or the “Company”) (NASDAQ: NKLA) on behalf of all purchasers of common stock during the period between March 3, 2020 and September 15, 2020, inclusive (the “Class Period”). 

If you wish to serve as a lead plaintiff, you must move the Court no later than November 16, 2020. If you want to discuss this action or have any questions concerning this notice, please contact lead analyst Jim Baker ( at 619-814-4471.
 If you email, please include your phone number.


click here to join this action]

The complaint alleges that during the Class Period, defendants throughout the Class Period made false and misleading statements and failed to disclose that: (1) VectoIQ did not engage in proper due diligence regarding its merger with Nikola; (2) Nikola overstated its “in-house” design, manufacturing, and testing capabilities; (3) Nikola overstated its hydrogen production capabilities; (4) as a result, Nikola overstated its ability to lower the cost of hydrogen fuel; (5) Nikola founder and Executive Chairman, Trevor Milton, tweeted a misleading “test” video of the Company’s Nikola Two truck; (6) the work experience and background of key Nikola employees, including Mr. Milton, had been overstated and obfuscated; (7) Nikola did not have five Tre trucks completed; and (8) as a result, defendants’ public statements were materially false and misleading at all relevant times. According to the suit, these true details were disclosed by a market research firm.

On September 14, 2020, media outlets reported Nikola is facing a probe by the SEC and the DOJ. Then on September 20, 2020, Nikola announced that Trevor Milton, its founder stepped down as executive chairman.


Johnson Fistel, LLP:

Johnson Fistel, LLP is a nationally recognized shareholder rights law firm with offices in California, New York and Georgia. The firm represents individual and institutional investors in shareholder derivative and securities class action lawsuits. For more information about the firm and its attorneys, please visit Attorney advertising. Past results do not guarantee future outcomes.


Johnson Fistel, LLP
Jim Baker, 619-814-4471


click here to join this action]

Cision View original content:—johnson-fistel-llp-301134605.html

SOURCE Johnson Fistel, LLP

Equinix Expands Collaboration with VMware to Help Enterprises Accelerate Digital Transformation

VMware to Offer SD-WAN Edge on Equinix’s Network Edge & Expand Global Footprint on Platform Equinix

PR Newswire

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Sept. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Equinix, Inc. (Nasdaq: EQIX), the global interconnection and data center company, today announced an expanded collaboration with VMware to help enterprises accelerate digital transformation. As part of this expansion, VMware will offer its SD-WAN Edge as a virtual network function (VNF) on Equinix’s Network Edge. VMware is also extending its presence in Equinix International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers across the Americas, Europe, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East to enable greater connectivity for customers on a global scale.

As enterprises worldwide pursue digital transformation initiatives, they increasingly embrace cloud-style models and services to meet their objectives. With employees and customers dispersed across geographic locations and different cloud providers, there is unrelenting pressure on enterprise networks to become more agile, flexible and easier to deploy and manage. To meet these evolving demands, Equinix is collaborating with VMware to offer an easy-to-consume solution to enterprises, service providers and partners that empowers remote workforces, reduces disruption, and increases business continuity efforts for companies at the digital edge.

The VMware SD-WAN™ by VeloCloud® solution now available on Equinix’s Network Edge is an enterprise-grade virtual SD-WAN edge service that helps enterprises manage their own direct peering relationships with the cloud service providers of their choice via Equinix Cloud Exchange Fabric® (ECX Fabric®) or Equinix Marketplace. It allows enterprises to enhance application performance for remote users within minutes, and without any upfront capital expenses. By delivering fast, optimized and secure site-to-applications at the edge via private interconnection, enterprises can deploy the solution to gain the consistent and predictable network performance required to meet their digital business needs.

Highlights/Key Facts:

  • Designed to accelerate digital transformation for global businesses, Network Edge by Equinix offers enterprises a new way to deploy virtual network services, within minutes, at the digital edge without a physical data center deployment or hardware requirements.
  • Network Edge enables companies to reduce capital expenses and scale IT and network services globally by virtually deploying a digital-ready infrastructure. By utilizing network functions virtualization (NFV), Network Edge offers customers the choice of virtual network services from multiple vendors.
  • The VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud solution delivers high-performance, reliable branch access to cloud services, private data centers, and SaaS-based enterprise applications. Offered on Network Edge, global companies can bring their own VMware SD-WAN license and deploy the solution in minutes, optimizing network connectivity between site and applications while eliminating the complexities of managing hardware and connecting to multicloud environments. 
  • Expanding on VMware’s secure-access service edge (SASE) vision, Equinix and VMware will also enable provisioning and accessibility of SASE components via Network Edge, ECX Fabric and other connectivity options available through a single pane of glass on the VMware Orchestrator portal.
  • Equinix has been collaborating with VMware since 2013 to enable hybrid cloud infrastructures, helping Global 2000 enterprises and partners address the increasing volume and complexity of application workloads and data. 
  • Equinix is a Gold-level sponsor at VMworld 2020, taking place September 29October 1, 2020. During the virtual event, Equinix will showcase its digital transformation solutions in the Equinix Booth, located in the VMworld 2020 Virtual Hub. Additionally, Equinix speakers will be participating in session #VCNE3168S during the event titled, “Accelerate Your Journey to the Hybrid Multicloud: VMware and Equinix Achieve Scale at the Edge.”


  • Sanjay Uppal,

    Senior Vice President
     & General Manager, VeloCloud Business Unit, VMware

    “We are thrilled to work with Equinix to help enterprises accelerate their digital transformation initiatives and offer new world-class capabilities within the Equinix IBX facilities. With VMware SD-WAN Edge now available as a virtual network service on Equinix’s Network Edge, enterprises, partners and service providers alike will be able to have unique, globally available network solutions optimized for intrinsically secure access to any public, private or SaaS cloud for remote and branch users.”

  • Bill Long, Senior Vice President, Product Management, Equinix

    “An entire architectural shift driven by data transformation is happening across the IT landscape today. By expanding our collaboration with VMware to deliver an innovative new solution that empowers remote workforces, reduces disruption and enables business continuity, we can help companies deploy a digital ready infrastructure at the edge within minutes in order to accelerate their digital transformation efforts anywhere in the world.”

  • Brad Casemore, Research Vice President, Datacenter Networks, IDC

    “Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the long-term growth prospects for the SD-WAN market remain exceptionally robust. Driven by the ubiquitous imperative of digital transformation, a growing number of organizations worldwide are looking to scale initial deployments, which often begin with a limited number of sites, to encompass all branch offices supported by their WAN. As they do so, they prize agility, resilience and operational simplicity. VMware’s SD-WAN by VeloCloud solution, now available on Equinix’s Network Edge, is designed to address those needs and help organizations dynamically scale their IT infrastructure in lockstep with the demands of digital business.”

Additional Resources

About Equinix
Equinix, Inc. (Nasdaq: EQIX) connects the world’s leading businesses to their customers, employees and partners inside the most-interconnected data centers. On this global platform for digital business, companies come together across more than 55 markets on five continents to reach everywhere, interconnect everyone and integrate everything they need to create their digital futures.

VMware, VMware SD-WAN, VeloCloud, VMware Orchestrator and VMworld are registered trademarks or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and other jurisdictions. All other marks and names mentioned herein may be trademarks of their respective companies.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from expectations discussed in such forward-looking statements. Factors that might cause such differences include, but are not limited to, the challenges of acquiring, operating and constructing IBX data centers and developing, deploying and delivering Equinix products and solutions; unanticipated costs or difficulties relating to the integration of companies we have acquired or will acquire into Equinix; a failure to receive significant revenues from customers in recently built out or acquired data centers; a failure to complete any financing arrangements contemplated from time to time; competition from existing and new competitors; the ability to generate sufficient cash flow or otherwise obtain funds to repay new or outstanding indebtedness; the loss or decline in business from our key customers; risks related to our taxation as a REIT; and other risks described from time to time in Equinix filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In particular, see recent Equinix quarterly and annual reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, copies of which are available upon request from Equinix. Equinix does not assume any obligation to update the forward-looking information contained in this press release.


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Mountain Province Diamonds Announces the Results of its Latest Diamond Sale

PR Newswire


TORONTO and NEW YORK, Sept. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ – Mountain Province Diamonds Inc. (“Mountain Province” or the “Company”) (TSX: MPVD) (OTCQX: MPVD) today announces the preliminary results of its latest diamond sale in Antwerp, Belgium, which closed on September 19th, 2020.  The latest sale represents the Company’s first traditional commercial sale since February and the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic. It is important to note that these results do not include the sale of any high value fancy and special stones.

Total proceeds from the sale were US$8.9 million (CAD$11.7 million) from 210,661 carats at an average realized value of US$42 per carat, indicating a 1% discount to values achieved for similar diamonds at the February sale.

Despite COVID-19 restricting travel into Belgium, bidding was strong and consistent with those seen earlier in the year. The Company’s next sale event is scheduled to close on October 31st, 2020. 

Stuart Brown, the Company’s President and CEO, commented:

“We are pleased to have finally resumed our traditional sales channels as the markets around the globe continue to gradually open for business. The results of the first small sale, post the COVID-19 Pandemic are an encouraging start considering that the market has been at a standstill for nearly 6 months. The results of the sale were a positive sign as the markets for rough and polished diamonds start to return.”

About Mountain Province Diamonds Inc.

Mountain Province Diamonds is a 49% participant with De Beers Group in the Gahcho Kué diamond mine located in Canada’sNorthwest Territories. The Gahcho Kué Joint Venture property consists of several kimberlites that are actively being mined, developed, and explored for future development. The Company also controls 106,202 hectares of highly prospective mineral claims and leases that surround the Gahcho Kué Joint Venture property that include an indicated mineral resource for the Kelvin kimberlite and inferred mineral resources for the Faraday kimberlites.

For further information on Mountain Province Diamonds and to receive news releases by email, visit the Company’s website at

Caution Regarding Forward Looking Information

This news release contains certain “forward-looking statements” and “forward-looking information” under applicable Canadian and United States securities laws concerning the business, operations and financial performance and condition of Mountain Province Diamonds Inc.  Forward-looking statements and forward-looking information include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to estimated production and mine life of the project of Mountain Province; the realization of mineral reserve estimates; the timing and amount of estimated future production; costs of production; the future price of diamonds; the estimation of mineral reserves and resources; the ability to manage debt; capital expenditures; the ability to obtain permits for operations; liquidity; tax rates; and currency exchange rate fluctuations.  Except for statements of historical fact relating to Mountain Province, certain information contained herein constitutes forward-looking statements.  Forward-looking statements are frequently characterized by words such as “anticipates,” “may,” “can,” “plans,” “believes,” “estimates,” “expects,” “projects,” “targets,” “intends,” “likely,” “will,” “should,” “to be”, “potential” and other similar words, or statements that certain events or conditions “may”, “should” or “will” occur.  Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management at the date the statements are made, and are based on a number of assumptions and subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements.  Many of these assumptions are based on factors and events that are not within the control of Mountain Province and there is no assurance they will prove to be correct.

Factors that could cause actual results to vary materially from results anticipated by such forward-looking statements include variations in ore grade or recovery rates, changes in market conditions, changes in project parameters, mine sequencing; production rates; cash flow; risks relating to the availability and timeliness of permitting and governmental approvals; supply of, and demand for, diamonds; fluctuating commodity prices and currency exchange rates, the possibility of project cost overruns or unanticipated costs and expenses, labour disputes and other risks of the mining industry, failure of plant, equipment or processes to operate as anticipated.

These factors are discussed in greater detail in Mountain Province’s most recent Annual Information Form and in the most recent MD&A filed on SEDAR, which also provide additional general assumptions in connection with these statements.  Mountain Province cautions that the foregoing list of important factors is not exhaustive.  Investors and others who base themselves on forward-looking statements should carefully consider the above factors as well as the uncertainties they represent and the risk they entail.  Mountain Province believes that the expectations reflected in those forward-looking statements are reasonable, but no assurance can be given that these expectations will prove to be correct and such forward-looking statements included in this news release should not be unduly relied upon.  These statements speak only as of the date of this news release.

Although Mountain Province has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be anticipated, estimated or intended.  There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.  Mountain Province undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if circumstances or management’s estimates or opinions should change except as required by applicable securities laws.  The reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements.  Statements concerning mineral reserve and resource estimates may also be deemed to constitute forward-looking statements to the extent they involve estimates of the mineralization that will be encountered as the property is developed.

Further, Mountain Province may make changes to its business plans that could affect its results.  The principal assets of Mountain Province are administered pursuant to a joint venture under which Mountain Province is not the operator.  Mountain Province is exposed to actions taken or omissions made by the operator within its prerogative and/or determinations made by the joint venture under its terms.  Such actions or omissions may impact the future performance of Mountain Province.  Under its current note and revolving credit facilities Mountain Province is subject to certain limitations on its ability to pay dividends on common stock.  The declaration of dividends is at the discretion of Mountain Province’s Board of Directors, subject to the limitations under the Company’s debt facilities, and will depend on Mountain Province’s financial results, cash requirements, future prospects, and other factors deemed relevant by the Board.

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Marriott International CFO to Speak at Bernstein European Strategic Decisions Conference September 24; Remarks to be Webcast

PR Newswire

BETHESDA, Md., Sept. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Leeny Oberg, executive vice president and chief financial officer at Marriott International, Inc. (Nasdaq: MAR), will speak at the 2020 Bernstein European Strategic Decisions Conference, to be held on Thursday, September 24.  Ms. Oberg’s remarks will be at approximately 10:30 a.m., Eastern Time, and will be webcast live.

To access the webcast, please go to, and then click on the link to the “Bernstein European Strategic Decisions Conference” under “Events & Presentations.”

The webcast will be available until December 23, 2020 at the same site.

Marriott International, Inc. (Nasdaq: MAR) is based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, and encompasses a portfolio of more than 7,400 properties under 30 leading brands spanning 135 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts all around the world. The company offers Marriott Bonvoy™, its highly-awarded travel program. For more information, please visit our website at, and for the latest company news, visit In addition, connect with us on Facebook and @MarriottIntl on Twitter and Instagram.


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SOURCE Marriott International, Inc.

Avast’s virtualised 5G security solution enables operators to protect subscribers’ connected devices at the network level

Avast Smart Life for 5G allows carriers to offer new in-home and on-the-go security services, protecting IoT devices, handsets and sensitive data

PR Newswire

PRAGUE, Sept. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Avast (LSE:AVST), a global leader in digital security and privacy products, today announces the launch of Avast Smart Life for 5G, its first smart home security solution for 5G, delivered as a virtualised network function (VNF). Avast Smart Life for 5G enables operators to protect their subscribers’ smart home and all connected devices at the virtual router level, based on Avast’s artificial intelligence (AI) driven threat detection technology. The solution scans traffic and immediately blocks security risks on all of a customer’s devices, both inside the home and on-the-go.

Avast Smart Life for 5G builds on the company’s decades of experience in protecting consumers and businesses. Carriers can integrate Avast’s consumer security solution as a VNF, protecting their subscribers’ devices seamlessly at the virtual router level. Avast Smart Life for 5G uses Avast’s AI-based threat intelligence technology to identify connected devices, malicious URLs and unusual network traffic. It can then alert the subscriber to, and block, unusual or unwanted activity at a network level. Parental controls also offer families the ability to filter the content and apps their children can access, including social media and videos.

“With family security, privacy, and online safety presenting significant concerns for consumers, delivering advanced security in the network is an opportunity for carriers,” said Nick Viney, Senior Vice President and General Manager for Partner, Business Unit at Avast. “The ability to offer a converged protection across all customer devices from malware, network attacks, and fine-grained parental controls over access and content, will be a valuable differentiating service.”

Avast’s team has extensive experience in integrating consumer security solutions with carrier systems; partners such as WINDTRE already offer Avast security solutions to their subscribers.

Smart Life for 5G capabilities:

  • Home network protection: allowing users to discover which devices and people are connected to their home network. Smart Life will provide alerts if unusual behavior is detected on any device, and block attackers trying to access any device.
  • On-the-go security: extending Avast antivirus protection seamlessly to mobile devices, whether PC, Mac, Android, or iOS based, to secure them outside the home.
  • Parental controls: enabling families to filter the content and apps that their children can access, including social media and videos. Offering the ability to pause internet access, or individual services such as online gaming or video streaming at any time. Geo-location services can help keep track of children with the option to set alerts for when they leave or arrive at certain places.

Network operators can request a demo of Avast Smart Life for 5G, via Avast’s Partner team, here: Attendees at the Big 5G virtual event on 22nd-24th September, will also be able to learn more about Avast’s range of carrier offerings at Avast’s virtual booth:

About Avast:
Avast (LSE: AVST) is a global leader in digital security and privacy products. With over 400 million users online, Avast offers products under the Avast and AVG brands that protect people from threats on the internet and the evolving IoT threat landscape. The company’s threat detection network is among the most advanced in the world, using machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies to detect and stop threats in real time. Avast digital security products for Mobile, PC or Mac are top-ranked and certified by VB100, AV-Comparatives, AV-Test, SE Labs and others. Visit:

Media contact:


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Harvest Health & Recreation Inc. Opens 15th Dispensary in Phoenix, Arizona

PR Newswire

PHOENIX, Sept. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Harvest Health & Recreation Inc. (CSE: HARV, OTCQX: HRVSF), a vertically integrated cannabis company and multi-state operator in the U.S., today announced the opening of a new medical dispensary in Phoenix, Arizona.

Harvest of Phoenix is located at 2017 W Peoria Avenue in Phoenix and is open every day from 8:00 am to 10:00 pm.

“We are pleased to open our fifteenth location in our home state of Arizona and one of our core markets,” said Chief Executive Officer Steve White. “We look forward to serving patients and providing quality products at this new location in Phoenix.”

About Harvest Health & Recreation Inc.

Headquartered in Tempe, Arizona, Harvest Health & Recreation Inc. is a vertically integrated cannabis company and multi-state operator. Since 2011, Harvest has been committed to expanding its retail and wholesale presence throughout the U.S., acquiring, manufacturing, and selling cannabis products for patients and consumers in addition to providing services to retail dispensaries. Through organic license wins, service agreements, and targeted acquisitions, Harvest has assembled an operational footprint spanning multiple states in the U.S. Harvest’s mission is to improve lives through the goodness of cannabis. We hope you’ll join us on our journey:


Instagram: @HarvestHOC 
Twitter: @HarvestHOC

Forward-looking Statements

This press release contains statements which constitute “forward-looking information” within the meaning of applicable securities laws, including statements regarding the plans, intentions, beliefs and current expectations of Harvest with respect to future business activities. Forward-looking information is often identified by the words “may,” “would,” “could,” “should,” “will,” “intend,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect” or similar expressions and include information regarding: (i) expectations regarding the size of the U.S. cannabis market, (ii) the ability of the Company to successfully achieve its business objectives, (iii) plans for expansion of Harvest, and (iv) expectations for other economic, business, and/or competitive factors.

Investors are cautioned that forward-looking information is not based on historical facts but instead reflects Harvest management’s expectations, estimates or projections concerning future results or events based on the opinions, assumptions and estimates of management considered reasonable at the date the statements are made. Although Harvest believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking information are reasonable, such information involves risks and uncertainties, and undue reliance should not be placed on such information, as unknown or unpredictable factors could have material adverse effects on future results, performance or achievements of the combined Company. Among the key factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information are the following: the effects of the weather, natural disasters, and health pandemics, including the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), on customer demand, the Company’s supply chain as well as its consolidated results of operation, financial position and cash flows, the ability of Harvest to open additional retail locations and meet its revenue growth and profitability objectives, the ability of Harvest to integrate recent acquisitions, the ability of Harvest to obtain and/or maintain licenses or other contractual rights to operate in the jurisdictions in which it operates or in which it expects or plans to operate; changes in general economic, business and political conditions, including changes in the financial markets; and in particular in the ability of Harvest to raise debt and equity capital in the amounts needed and at the costs that it expects; adverse changes in the public perception of cannabis; decreases in the prevailing prices for cannabis and cannabis products in the markets that Harvest operates in; adverse changes in applicable laws; or adverse changes in the application or enforcement of current laws, including those related to taxation; and increasing costs of compliance with extensive government regulation. This forward-looking information may be affected by risks and uncertainties in the business of Harvest and market conditions.

Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should assumptions underlying the forward-looking information prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described herein as intended, planned, anticipated, believed, estimated or expected. Although Harvest has attempted to identify important risks, uncertainties and factors which could cause actual results to differ materially, there may be others that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. Harvest does not intend, and does not assume any obligation, to update this forward-looking information except as otherwise required by applicable law.

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SOURCE Harvest Health & Recreation Inc.