Monthly Archives: March 2016

Visual Search By the Slyce Pays Off

Fourth Quarter 2015 financial results and activities for Slyce Inc. have been published by Yahoo Finance. Slyce is the lead company in alternative online Search methods that has put effective Visual Search technologies on e-commerce retailers “Must Have” list. Along with the profits earned, the report gives many interesting highlights of the fast-paced action happening at Slyce.

During the last fiscal quarter last year, Slyce announced a major partnership with SHOES.COM, the e-commerce shoe merchant. SHOES.COM owns and When people are out and about with Slyce’s app running on their smartphones they can snap a picture of any shoes they see as interesting and use that picture as input to Slyce’s intelligent Visual Search. The result is a list of exact or at least quite similar shoes offered by SHOES.COM, and get this: the ability to immediately buy the selected shoes with a few taps on the screen. The picture can be of real shoes, pictures printed in a random catalog or sales flyer, magazine pictures, or from an online web page.

Slyce had already done the same major technology upgrade for Neiman Marcus for a few items. The high-end retailer was so enthusiastic about the increased revenues Slyce brought them that they add most of their other product lines to their NM mobile app, called ‘Snap. Find. Shop.’ Another refinement of the NM app is the addition of using 3D images as input. Customers can buy home furnishings, apparel for the whole family, jewellery, shoes, handbags, and pet accessories; finding these things simply by supplying some type of image.

Of course, all this wizard of Ozzery has required great effort by Slyce’s research division and the purchase of innovative technology companies that also supplied key pieces. Several million dollars have been put into the company by savvy investors. This money is slated to build up Slyce’s repertoire to include every possible type of alternative Search methods. All of them veer into the future, not longer tethered solely on difficult to describe textual inputs. Slyce introduced a new third-party Software Development Kit, a 2D Content Management System (CMS), 3D model recognition, and a new digital mobile coupon system called Coupon Author.

Helane Morrison and the Importance of Compliance Officers

A compliance officer’s job is not the most popular type of position that a person can have but it is extremely important. Compliance officers are needed within the business and financial industries to ensure that organizations and independent workers are using legal and ethical practices in their dealings. A top level compliance officer named Helane Morrison knows the kind of corruption that takes place within the world of business and finance. She has spent a great deal of her career fighting against this type of corruption. 

Financial institutions and individuals are given a certain level of trust by default. Many people honestly believe that if a person works within this type of field that simply means that they are naturally going to do the right thing. Unfortunately, this is not always true. 

One of the biggest reasons as to why the Great Recession of 2008 happened was due to the greed of business and financial workers. Many organizations and individuals who worked in these field used unethical practices to issue bad loans and to carry out bad business. 

Even before the 2008 recession had taken place, some CEO’s, investors and financial officers were not doing the right thing. Investors were allowing people to put their money into faulty ventures that they knew were going to fail, bankers were securitizing loans that were flat out bad and fraud was being committed by many companies because there were no laws in place to keep it from happening. 

Sometimes, a business will do things that are not ethical. They are not necessarily trying to be deceptive or get over by breaking the law; their actions could result out of frustration, bureaucratic restrictions or they see loopholes that will allow them to get ahead in an impractical manner. While all of these factors come into play that does not mean that an organization can do whatever they desire to make a profit. 

Compliance officers enforce government, state and local laws pertaining business practices or operations. They ensure that financial records are well kept and maintained. They also make it a point to ensure that clients are not being cheated against by the companies that they do business with. 

Helane learned a lot about ethical integrity during her time with the SEC. She was the first woman to be appointed to the head of the organization and was lauded for her time there in this WSJ article.

Helane Morrison was a rare compliance officer that was able to motivate her fellow workers to do good while they carried out their duties every day. This woman worked hard to ensure that everyone underneath her command performed with excellence. Helane Morrison’s work ethic and compliance management style is outlined in the article How Helane Morrison is Shattering the Glass Ceiling in the Corporate World.

Learn more about Helane by visiting her Crunchbase or connecting with her on LinkedIn here >>


Dick DeVos and the DeVos Family in support of the Republican Candidate, Marco Rubio

The DeVos family are originally from Michigan and are known as some of the wealthiest families in America to date. Dick who is the son of the co-founder of Amway, Richard DeVos has made a name for himself by being involved in the family business for many years (learn more from this mLive feature article). Acting as the vice president and several other positions within the company. Dick and his wife Betsy have used their wealth for the good of the people and founded several charities in the past. The Dick and Betsy DeVos Foundation is a very large foundation that was founded back in 1990. This foundation supports various causes including civic, religious, artistic, educational as well as community and free market organizations. 

Betsy shares her approach for creating more quality educational opportunities for children in Detroit.

Posted by Dick DeVos on Tuesday, February 23, 2016

With an estimated net worth of $5.1 billion according to Forbes Magazine in 2012 he is the 67th wealthiest man in the United States. His formal education background has seen him graduate from the Northwood University where he received a bachelors degree in business administration. He also attended Wharton’s School’s Executive Study Programs as well as Harvard Business School. However he did not graduate from either of these schools. He has however received several honorary doctorate degrees from a number of well known colleges around the country. These include Central Michigan University, Grove City College and Northwood University.

Dick DeVos has also been politically active since 1990 where he was elected as a representative on the Michigan State Board of Education. However he stepped back from this position 2 years later to begin a business of his own as he said it was due to his return as Amway CEO that he had to make this decision. Dick DeVos has been apart of many boards in the past including the Education Freedom Fund or the Grand Valley State University Board of Control. Find Dick’s resume on Netherland Institute’s site. 

In a recent article Dick and the DeVos family endorsed Marco Rubio in the Republican Presidential Primaries. This endorsement also came along with some financial help which has been much needed for Marco Rubio’s campaign. The DeVos family has shifted their support from Jeb Bush to Marco Rubio as Jeb had opted out earlier due to his fourth place finish in the South Carolina primary. The DeVos family has been known to support Republican party politics in the past. They have personally known Marco Rubio from previous speaking engagements in Florida.

Visit Dick’s LinkedIn to learn more about his life and career.


FreedomPop Launches In European Markets

By the end of the month, FreedomPop, a mobile phone service provider that offers basic services free, will have launched its free MVNO service in Europe. On the heels of picking up 50 million dollars in funding, which lifted their total to 190 million dollars, the launch will be the beginning of expanding their international market penetration.

FreedomPop’s model for making money is to get customers signed up for free and then offer them extras like a second phone for a small monthly fee. For international customers the company offers 200 MB of free data per month. Users can earn an extra 500 MB of data for a 10 dollar fee. A global hotspot can be had for 50 dollars. SIM cards can be purchased for 10 dollars.

At the present time FreedomPop has more than a million customers. In the United States 48 percent of free customers pay for an extra service. In Europe the rate is 40 percent. The company has had success in maintaining paid customers. The retention rate is 90 percent.

In further news, the company has partnered with Axiata, an Asian telecom giant that is based in Malaysia. They plan on delivering products and services for markets in Asia, Europe, and South America.