Oct 21, 2021
Avalara, a provider of tax compliance automation software for businesses of all sizes, acquired CrowdReason, a developer of SaaS-based property tax compliance applications. CrowdReason's expertise will extend Avalara's capabilities in several key areas, including document management, tax content and property tax returns. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Avalara also acquired the assets of a valuation advisory services business from CorrelationAdvisors as part of the deal. Earlier this month, Avalara acquired Track1099, which automates the managing, filing and delivery of IRS forms. Headquartered in Seattle, Avalara has offices across the U.S. and around the world in Brazil, Europe and India.
Alaska Communications agreed to supply low Earth orbit (LEO) satellite service through OneWeb to Bristol Bay Telephone Cooperative. LEO satellites deliver fiber-like connectivity performance to areas that are difficult and expensive to reach via terrestrial options. The cooperative will initially use this service to connect its offices and facilities. In the future, it plans to extend it to residents in the region and augment its voice and mobile data network. Announced in June, OneWeb and Alaska Communications are collaborating to deliver a fiber-like connectivity experience everywhere in Alaska. Through the agreement, Alaska Communications will sell OneWeb's LEO satellite service to its customers and use it for critical middle mile connections. LEO service for Bristol Bay Telephone will begin in November. Alaska Communications, an affiliate of ATN International, provides advanced broadband and managed IT services for businesses and consumers in Alaska.
Bellevue-based Smartsheet, an enterprise platform for dynamic work, unveiled new steps it is taking to strengthen its presence in the European Union and Germany to better serve its growing list of global customers. Smartsheet launched Smartsheet Regions, which gives global organizations more control over where they host their Smartsheet content, making it easier for customers to address regional compliance, privacy and governance requirements. Smartsheet Regions is now available in the EU and will support new accounts and work assets created there. Smartsheet Regions EU hosts customers' content in Frankfurt, Germany. More international regions will be added next year. Smartsheet also announced a new partnership with Bechtle, one of Europe's leading IT providers. Bechtle joins Smartsheet's growing partner community in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Other regional partners include AMX, Nanga Systems, ON-MC and Star Cooperation. To further support its growing customer and partner base in the region, Smartsheet is expanding its local team in Germany to bolster its existing international presence in London, Edinburgh and Sydney.
Oct 20, 2021
Seattle-based Fashwire, the parent company of web-based platforms FashWire and GlossWire, won first place in the category of Women in Business at the International Trade Council's Annual Go Global Awards ceremony. Founded in 2018 by Kimberly Carney, FashWire's global platform, a two-sided marketplace, provides over 400 fashion designers from more than 35 countries insight into consumer shopping patterns through trending data and real-time actionable insights in the ready-to-wear, shoes and accessories space. Fashwire expanded into the beauty industry with the launch of GlossWire in February, which connects brands and consumers through the same data-driven platform. The International Trade Council's Go Global Awards celebrate organizations that drive the global economy through their innovations, technologies and strategies.
CaliBurger, a Cali Group portfolio company, announced that it will open its first restaurant since the onset of the pandemic in early 2020 in the greater Seattle area, the third in the Seattle market. The restaurant will be at 18336 Aurora Ave. N. in Shoreline and will feature Flippy, an autonomous robot system taking over the work of an entire fry station. While the Shoreline store will use Flippy to initially cook french fries, Flippy can also cook chicken breasts and tenders, onion rings and sweet potato waffle fries. The system's image recognition technology allows for real-time quality control to prevent any food quality errors during the cooking process. Developed by Miso Robotics, the technology that brings Flippy to life has been in development for almost five years and represents over a quarter million labor hours of engineering time devoted to building the base software, intelligence and platforms. The new CaliBurger restaurant will also have PopID's latest face-based ordering and payment system.
Ohio-based Hexion recently expanded its Portland manufacturing site to support its ArmorBuilt Wildfire Shield product. The addition recently came online after an earlier expansion in the first quarter of the year. ArmorBuilt Wildfire Shield offers a durable, fire mitigation safeguard for securing critical infrastructure. ArmorBuilt has also passed an industry approved wildfire simulation burn test for fire resistance. With its insulating and self-healing properties, ArmorBuilt provides a burn-prevention material for a variety of industries that are potentially affected by fires, including wildfires.
Oct 19, 2021
The Low Income Investment Fund (LIIF) named Emma Chavez as its new market director of the western region. Based in the Los Angeles office, Chavez is responsible for lending activities in California, Oregon, Washington and Colorado. Her work includes developing, managing and supporting local funder relationships. Chavez has 20 years of experience in affordable housing finance and development. Prior to this new role, she was vice president of community development lending at Boston Private Bank. Early in her career, she was a loan officer for LIIF and has also served as a lender at the California Community Reinvestment Corporation and the Chicago Community Loan Fund. LIIF invests in projects that have high social value but lack access to traditional financial institutions. Since 1984, LIIF has deployed more than $2.9 billion to serve more than 2 million people in communities across the country from its five offices.
Amazon announced that 150,000 seasonal jobs are now available across the United States. Amazon jobs in the U.S., including seasonal roles, have an average starting pay of $18 per hour. Jobs in Amazon's operations network include stowing, picking, packing, shipping and more. New hires will be trained and all facilities follow strict COVID-19 health and safety protocols. Jobs are available in hundreds of cities and towns across America. Washington and Oregon are among the states with the greatest number of seasonal roles available. Interested candidates can get more details at http://www.amazon.com/apply.
Spice AI, a startup enabling developers to integrate AI into their applications, announced funding of $1 million from leading AI-focused venture and angel investors. Founded by Luke Kim and Phillip LeBlanc, Spice AI takes a developer-first approach to building intelligent apps. Spice AI's first release and namesake, Spice.ai, is an open-source project that enables developers to access machine learning tools in minutes instead of months. Spice AI is backed and advised by a number of tech leaders, including Nat Friedman (CEO of GitHub) and Mark Russinovich (CTO of Microsoft Azure), together with institutional investors Madrona Venture Group, Picus Capital, TA Ventures, Elysium Venture Capital, Cardinia Ventures and Founder's Co-op. Spice AI will use the funding to build its core team in the Pacific Northwest and is currently hiring full-time software and machine-learning engineers.