Friday, November 27, 2015

United Online, Inc.: Provider of Consumer Services and Products Over the Internet

The internet remains to be the expertise of United Online, Inc. The company continues to offer a wide range of products and services that allow its customers to gain access online and at the same time promote loyalty marketing.  It is in Woodland Hills, California that the business holds its corporate office.

United Online, Inc. is a publicly traded company that operates in two reporting segments: Communications and Content & Media. The common shares of the business are marketed on the NASDAQ, using the ticker symbol UNTD. The Communications segment offers internet access and various devices. Their portfolio includes mobile broadband, dial-up, digital subscriber line (DSL), voice services, web hosting and email, among others. The Content & Media division offers various products and services for social networking and loyalty marketing services.

The products of the business are marketed under the brand names Juno, Classmates, NetZero, MyPOints and Trombi. It competes against giant companies like AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint and several other communications companies.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical, Inc.: Advancing the Development of Novelty Therapeutics

There remains to be a huge area of unmet needs in the arena of medicine. This is especially true when it comes to rare diseases and ultra-rare illnesses. Because there are not that many patients who are suffering from these diseases, not that many pharmaceutical companies invest in the development of novelty therapeutics.

Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical, Inc. is one of the few companies in the United States that have taken on the challenge of pushing boundaries and providing hope to patients with orphan diseases. The company is registered as a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical venture that is headquartered in Novato, California. Incorporated in June 2011, the business engages in the identification, acquisition, development and commercialization of novelty therapeutics intended for rare and ultra-rare diseases. It has put emphasis on debilitating genetic diseases. The pipeline products of the company are categorized under two treatments: biologics and small molecule.

Their product portfolio includes KRN23 (UX023), rhGUS (UX003), rhPPCA (UX004), Triheptanoin (UX007) and SA-ER (UX001). KRN23 is a fully human monoclonal antibody that is intended as treatment or patients with X-linked hypophosphatemia (XLH). This therapeutic is administrated via subcutaneous injection. rhGUS is an intravenous medication that is intended as a treatment for mucopolysaccharidosis 7 (MPS 7). rhPPCA is a therapeutic that is being developed for galactosialidosis. Trihepatnoin is a replacement therapy for patients who are suffering from long-chain fatty acid oxidation disorders (LC-FAOD). SA-ER is an orally administered medication for hereditary inclusion body myopathy (HIBM). The majority of these novelty therapeutics is intended to address the needs of patients, who are left with no therapeutic options.

With the advancement of the medications being developed by Ultragenyx Pharmaceuticals, patients with debilitating rare diseases are given hope of a better tomorrow. The business is traded publicly on the NASDAQ using the ticker symbol RARE. It is listed as one of the components of the Wilshire 5000 Index.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Williamson-Dickie Manufacturing Company: A Brand for the Working Man

The Williamson-Dickie Manufacturing Company has its roots in the U.S. Overall Company, which was founded by C.N. Williamson and E.E. Dickie in 1918; the duo had previous business experience in the vehicle and harness business in Texas. In 1922, the company became the Williamson-Dickie Manufacturing Company when C. Don Williamson as well as his cousin and father bought its 100% stake.

Today, the company is more well-known as the Dickies brand that makes and sells work-related clothes, shoes and personal accessories including belts and backpacks. While its major competitors, such as Carhartt and Ben Davis, are giving the Williamson-Dickie Manufacturing Company stiff competition, it has been holding well on its own especially in overseas markets.

From its early years, Dickies has enjoyed consistent growth except for a few episodes including the Great Depression. Today, the brand is marketed and sold in all 50 states in the United States as well as in countries including South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Chile, Russia, South Korea, Japan, Chile, Canada, France, Germany, Mexico, Italy, Croatia, Poland, and the Philippines.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Whole Foods Market Sells Only the Best in Natural and Organic Products

Say “Whole Foods” among American consumers and the first images that come to mind are natural, organic and healthy food products that have been carefully chosen for their positive impact on both the producers and the consumers. The Austin, Texas-based American supermarket chain, after all, specializes in organic food that health-conscious consumers want in their pantries, refrigerators and tables.

As of September 2015, Whole Foods employs over 91,000 people in its 431 supermarkets across the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. While its headquarters are in Austin, Texas, its main produce procurement and purchasing facilities are in Watsonville, California.

Whole Foods has also built up a reputation as one of the best companies to work for. Under the leadership of its various CEOs and Chairmen of the Board, it is also one of the largest publicly-traded companies and the largest retailers (30th in 2014 based on revenues) in the United States as well as being a Fortune 500 company. As of 2015, its current crop of leaders includes co-CEOs John Mackey (founder) and Water Robb as well as John Elstrott as chairman.

Like all start-ups during its early years, founders John Mackey and Renee Lawson had their fair shares of troubles since they first founded SaferWay, the precursor to While Foods, in 1978. In 1980, Whole Foods was created with the merging of SaferWay with Clarksville Natural Grocery; the first store with a total area of 12,500 square feet and a staff of 19 employees was considered quite large in the health food store industry then.

While its inventory and equipment were destroyed in 1981 due to widespread flooding, Whole Foods recovered and expanded its operations outside of Austin by 1984; the expansions were made by opening new stores and acquiring existing health food stores. The success of its operations lies partly in its strict adherence to only selling products that meet its self-created, self-imposed quality standards for natural and organic products.

Friday, November 13, 2015

World Airways: What Could Have Been

Many airlines had the potential to go global but were unable to take off to such great heights of success. One such airline is World Airways, Inc., an American airline formerly headquartered in Peachtree City in the Greater Atlanta area of the State of Georgia. During its operations, it mostly focused on non-scheduled services.

Founded in 1948 by Benjamin Pepper, the company was first based on the ex-Pan American World Airways Boeing 314 flying boats. In 1950, Edward Daly bought the airline for $50,000 and then purchased DC-4s that were used upon the company’s 1951 acquisition of its first government contract. Most of its businesses were with the military including being one of the US military’s key contractors during the Vietnam War as well as during the Persian Gulf War and the military passenger trunk route between military bases in Asia and Los Angeles, California.

Corporate troubles including financial management led to its immediate cessation of all operations on 27 March 2014.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

XIM, Inc.: Integration Is the Key To Its Success

Founded in 1994, Xtra Information Management Incorporated (XIM, Inc.) has established a reputation for being a leading provider of information technology consultation as well as application development, software and system integration, and testing services. As a medium-sized Silicon Valley-based company, its main focus is on mobile and wireless development, smart home automation and quality assurance services.

While its headquarters are in San Francisco, California, it also maintains 7 offshore development centers in Moscow, Kaluga, Minsk, Obninsk, Kazan, Ulyanovsk, and Gomel, all in Eastern Europe. The XIM Offshore Software Development and Testing Services is the company’s overseas extension of its longstanding services rendered in the United States.

Since its founding, XIM has changed in terms of its organizational structure and services menu. During its first 10 years, XIM was involved in projects involving end users in verticals, such as wireless and mobile field, and in the support if OEMs and ISVs. By the 2000s, XIM has created its offshore centers with the first one being in Moscow (2003) followed by the Obninsk-based Research and Development Center.

Moscow, the most prominent of its offshore development centers, has two departments, namely, Software Development and Quality Assurance. These included several sections involved in various project subjects including Java Technology Section for implementation of J2EE, J2SE, J2ME, and XSLT projects; Mobile Phone Technology Section for C/C++ applications in smartphones and pocket computers with iOS, Android and Windows Mobile; and Mobile Communication Technology Section for the manufacture of the Openwave product.

In February 2004, XIM opened its Moscow-based American Software Quality Assurance School. In 2005, the company launched its bundled service, the Remote Testing Lab, which was focused on mobile/wireless and EAI solutions. Other expansions include its own product development for mobile platforms (e.g., XiMAD for entertainment and mobile games development), which has resulted in the popular Pandas vs. Ninjas, Bubble Birds, and Brain Cubes.

XIM Inc. is also active in charity causes particularly with the Jewish Board of Family and Children's Services.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Cellectis: Fighting Cancer With Engineered T Cells

Cancer affects millions of people worldwide but with the pioneering work of the likes of Cellectis, hope for effective anti-cancer therapies is on the horizon. Cellectis, founded in 1999, is at the forefront of gene-editing as used in the development of a new generation of anti-cancer treatments. Basically, the immunotherapies are based on gene edited engineered CAR-T cells, or UCART, which Cellectis has developed in the past 15 years as part of its genome engineering expertise.

Cellectis takes pride in its range of TALEN products and meganucleases, its flagship technology, as well as its electroporation PulseAgile technology, both of which are used in the creation of its pioneering immunotherapies. With its CAR technologies, the NYSE-listed (ALCLS) and Nasdaq Global Market-listed (CCLS) company works toward creating innovative products in multiple fields and target markets.

Calyxt, Inc. is one of the subsidiaries of Cellectis. Founded in 2010, Calyxt, Inc. has created a platform designed for the food and agriculture industries; the platform improves the quality and quantity of crops.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

ThyssenKrupp: Supplying the World With Steel

In 1999, Thyssen AG and Krupp merged into ThyssenKrupp AG with the largest shareholder being Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation, a German philanthropic organization founded by Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach. ThyssenKrupp AG is now considered one of the largest German multinational conglomerate corporations with 670 companies around the world.

Such is its wide sphere of influence that aside from being among the world’s largest producers of steel, it is also a major manufacturer of systems, solutions and components for several industries including automotive, elevators and escalators, industrial services, and material trading, among others.

Due to the 2009 reorganization, ThyssenKrupp AG has eight business areas within two major divisions. First, the Materials division focuses on the manufacture of carbon steel, stainless steel, and materials services. Second, the Technology division focuses on plants and components technology, elevators and escalators, and marine systems.

The business areas include components technology (i.e., components for the construction, automotive and engineering sectors); elevator technology (i.e., construction, modernization, and maintenance of escalators, elevators, and passenger boarding bridges); materials services (i.e., global distribution of materials and technical services for manufacturing sectors); industrial solutions (i.e., supplies plant construction and naval shipbuilding sectors); steel Europe; and steel Americas.

With over 5,500 employees, ThyssenKrupp AG is one of Europe’s largest employers. It has consistently been voted as one of Germany’s best places to work in. The conglomerate also honors notable achievements in technology via its annual Innovation Prize.

Among its subsidiaries are Acciai Speciali Terni SpA, Outokumpu VDM GmbH, and ThyssenKrupp Elevator AG. Its main factories for elevators are in Spain while its stainless steel manufacturing facilities are in Italy; sales generated in both countries account for 9% of total sales for the conglomerate. In Germany, sales amount to 33% of consolidated sales worldwide with the European Union sales accounting for 28% and NAFTA sales for 21%.