Allens advises on Ravenhall Prison Project refinancing

Allens has advised The GEO Consortium on their successful refinancing of the Ravenhall Prison Public-Private Partnership (PPP), by way of a long-term US Private Placement.

The Ravenhall Prison Project was designed and built and is being maintained and operated by the GEO Consortium under a public private partnership arrangement involving The GEO Group Australia, Capella Capital, GEO Care, Honeywell, John Holland and Forensicare, among others.

Allens has advised the GEO Consortium throughout the lifecycle of the Project, since the original bid for the development of the asset in 2013.

Work on the original transaction saw Allens recognised at the 2014 and 2018 Infrastructure Partnerships Australia Awards, winning the ‘Advisory Excellence’ and ‘Project of the Year’ categories, respectively.

‘While the transaction continues a trend for operating PPP projects accessing the US private placement market for longer term debt funding, it’s the first custodial prison in Australia to access that market,’ said Partner and Head of Project Finance, Michael Ryan.

‘The Ravenhall Prison Project is a great example of our team’s ability to service our clients as their needs evolve over the entire life of a project,’ added Partner and Head of Infrastructure, David Donnelly.

‘We’ve been there from Day 1 – through the bid, construction and commissioning phases and now as the project transitions to steady a state of operation with an accompanying long-term debt solution,’ David concluded.

Audax Private Equity announces recapitalisation of the Chartis Group

Audax Private Equity (“Audax”) today announced that it has recapitalised, in partnership with management, The Chartis Group, LLC (“Chartis” or the “Company”). Headquartered in Chicago, IL, and previously a portfolio company of RLH Equity Partners, Chartis is a leading provider of advisory consulting and software analytics to hospitals, health systems, and other healthcare organisations around the world. Founded in 2001, Chartis’ mission is to materially improve the delivery of healthcare by providing thought leadership, advisory, innovation, and analytics services to healthcare organisations. The Chartis management team will continue to lead the Company and, together with the Chartis consultants and employees, maintain a significant ownership position.

Ken Graboys, Chief Executive Officer of Chartis, said, “We are excited to partner with Audax and for the opportunity it provides us to continue to achieve meaningful growth and expand our impact on global healthcare. Audax brings the resources and capital to support the growth of our next generation of practice offerings, and to make strategic acquisitions.”

Young Lee, Managing Director at Audax, said, “Chartis has earned an outstanding reputation in the healthcare consulting industry demonstrated by the transformational results delivered to clients, extraordinarily talented people, and strong firm culture. We are excited to join the team as they continue to build on this success.”

Tim Mack, Managing Director at Audax, said, “We look forward to partnering with the Chartis team as they continue to provide innovation and improvements for healthcare systems, and pursue strategic add-on acquisitions and partnerships.”

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Lincoln International LLC acted as exclusive financial advisor and Winston & Strawn LLP served as legal counsel to Chartis. Ropes & Gray LLP served as counsel to Audax.

About the Chartis Group

The Chartis Group (“Chartis”) provides comprehensive advisory services and analytics to the healthcare industry. With expertise in strategic planning, performance excellence, informatics and technology, and health analytics, Chartis helps leading academic medical centers, integrated delivery networks, children’s hospitals and healthcare service organisations achieve transformative results. Chartis has offices in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, New York, Minneapolis, Portland and San Francisco. For more information, visit https://www.chartis.com/

About Audax Private Equity

Audax Group is a leading alternative investment manager with offices in Boston, New York, and San Francisco. Since its founding in 1999, the firm has raised over $24 billion in capital across its Private Equity and Private Debt businesses. Audax Private Equity has invested over $5 billion in more than 125 platforms and 770 add-on companies. Through its disciplined Buy & Build approach, Audax seeks to help platform companies execute add-on acquisitions that fuel revenue growth, optimise operations, and significantly increase equity value. With more than 240 employees and over 100 investment professionals, the firm is a leading capital partner for North American middle market companies. For more information, visit the Audax Group website https://www.audaxgroup.com/

CBRE - Advisory Excellence

CBRE to establish national agribusiness practice

Clay Dodd has been named director of valuation and advisory services at CBRE Group, Inc. in Minneapolis. CBRE is a commercial real estate services and investment firm offering a broad range of integrated services, including facilities, transportation and project management.

In his new role, Dodd will help CBRE establish a national agribusiness practice.

Throughout his 25 years as a fee appraiser, Dodd has appraised many grain elevators, including country, shuttle train, river and port elevators. He also has appraised many flour mills, including hard, soft and durum mills. Other assignments include ethanol plants, soybean crushing plants, bio diesel plants, corn mills (wet), oat mills, malt plants, feed mills (dedicated and commercial), seed plants, specialty mills, dairy processing plants, fruit and vegetable processing plants, meat processing plants, pasta plants, canneries, dry mix plants and general food processing plants.

He received a bachelor’s of science degree from Saint Cloud State University in Saint Cloud, Minnesota, US.

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Tilray® Announces International Advisory Board

Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY), a global pioneer in cannabis production and distribution, today announced the formation of its International Advisory Board, an esteemed group of business and government leaders who will provide guidance to Tilrays executive team and Board of Directors as the company pursues its aggressive global growth strategy.

We are honored to welcome this impressive group of distinguished leaders to the Tilray team, says Brendan Kennedy, Tilray CEO. As we pioneer the future of our industry around the world, the experts on our International Advisory Board will advise us on our rapidly expanding global business.

Inaugural members of Tilrays International Advisory Board include:

  • Governor Howard Dean is a former Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairman, presidential candidate, six-term Governor of Vermont, and physician. Gov. Dean is also the founder of Democracy for America, a lecturer at Yale University and a strategic consultant for the global law firm Dentons.
  • Michael Steele made history when he was elected Lieutenant Governor of Maryland in 2003, as the first African American elected to statewide office; and again, with his subsequent chairmanship of the Republican National Committee (RNC). Under Mr. Steeles leadership the RNC broke fundraising records and led Republicans to win 63 House seats in 2010, the biggest pick-up since 1938. Mr. Steele is an accomplished author and media commentator.
  • The Honourable Lloyd Axworthy P.C., C.C., O.M., is the chair of the World Refugee Council and one of Canadas leading voices on global migration and refugee protection. Throughout his 27-year political career, he served as Canadas Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Employment and Immigration, among other postings.
  • Joschka Fischer served as Foreign Minister and Vice Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the International Crisis Group and a member of the Executive Board of the European Council on Foreign Relations. Mr. Fischer also currently serves as Managing Partner of Joschka Fischer & Company, a global strategy firm, where he advises clients on issues relating to Germany and the European Union.
  • Jaime Gama is the longest-serving Portuguese Minister of Foreign Affairs. Over a distinguished career in public policy, Mr. Gama served as Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Home Affairs, Minister of Defense, and Minister of State. He was a member of the Government in 2001 when Portugal approved its decriminalization and harm reduction drug policy. He was elected Member of Parliament and served as the Speaker of the Parliament. Mr. Gama serves as the chairman of a bank and of a private foundation.
  • The Honourable Alexander John Gosse Downer, AC, was the longest-serving Minister for Foreign Affairs in Australia in history, holding his position for ten years. He also served has High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. Mr. Downer was a diplomat in the Department of Foreign Affairs, serving in the Australian Mission to the European Union, the Australian Representation to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and at Australian embassies in Belgium and Luxembourg.
  • Rt Hon Sir Donald McKinnon, ONZ, GCVO, was New Zealands longest serving Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade and held the portfolios of Disarmament and Arms Control, Veterans Affairs, War Pensions, and Pacific Island Affairs. Mr. McKinnon served as Deputy Prime Minister, Leader of the House and was appointed a member of Her Majestys Privy Council. He was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for his work in initiating and overseeing the ceasefire between Bougainvilleans and the Papua New Guinea Government in 1997.
  • Mar­a Lorena Gutirrez Botero served as Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, as well as Ambassador of Colombia to Germany, as a member of President Juan Manuel Santos government. Ms. Gutirrez has served as a member of numerous boards of directors of international organizations and universities, such as the European Foundation for Management Development, the Sumaq Alliance, the Latin American Council of Administration Schools, the Business Association for Latin American Studies and the Quality Corporation of Colombia.
  • James OBrien served two U.S. administrations as Special Presidential Envoy. Mr. OBrien has been Senior Advisor to the U.S. Secretary of State and served as the Principal Deputy Director of Policy Planning at the State Department. Mr. OBrien currently serves as Vice Chair of Albright Stonebridge Group (ASG) and heads up the firms practice in Europe.
  • Dr. Lorna Marsden is a former Canadian Senator from Ontario who was appointed to the position by former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. She served in the Senate for eight and a half years, where she was a member of the Standing Committee on National Finance and chairwoman of the Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology. Dr. Marsden also served as President and Vice-Chancellor of York University and President and Vice-Chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario.

About Tilray, Inc.

Tilray is a global pioneer in the research, cultivation, production and distribution of cannabis and cannabinoids is currently serving tens of thousands of patients in twelve countries spanning five continents.

Cautionary Note regarding Forward-looking Statements:

This press release contains forward-looking statements, which may be identified by the use of words such as, may, would, could, will, likely, expect, anticipate, believe, intend, plan, forecast, project, estimate, outlook and other similar expressions, including statements related to Tilrays global strategy and the International Advisory Board. Forward-looking statements are not a guarantee of future performance and are based upon a number of estimates and assumptions of management in light of managements experience and perception of trends, current conditions and expected developments, as well as other factors that management believes to be relevant and reasonable in the circumstances, including assumptions in respect of current and future market conditions. Actual results, performance or achievement could differ materially from that expressed in, or implied by, any forward-looking statements in this press release, and, accordingly, you should not place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements and they are not guarantees of future results. Forward-looking statements involve significant risks, assumptions, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual future results or anticipated events to differ materially from those expressed or implied in any forward-looking statements. Please see the heading Risk Factors in Tilrays Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended June 30, 2018 and the risks discussed in Tilrays other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a discussion of the material risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking information. Tilray does not undertake to update any forward-looking statements that are included herein, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.

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4 Effective Ways to Win and Retain Clients

Are you walking the walk or just talking the talk? A flashy marketing campaign is doomed to fail if your transparency and genuineness don’t come through to your clients in their interactions with you. Make no mistake: Customers have well-honed radar and will disconnect if they sense even a whiff of disingenuousness.

So, how can you continue to gain new clients and create long-term relationships with them?

James Atkins and Jason Langford-Brown, both longstanding Mindshop members and successful business advisors, delivered four key insights on this topic during the global Mindshop Advisor Workshop this November.

1. Market for Engagement

“Experience is the new product, and time is the new price” was an idea that resonated throughout the workshops.

For professional service firms, providing a fantastic experience for customers across all touch points, from the sales process, onboarding and delivery through to billing, is essential to generating referrals, which remains still the strongest way to generate leads. This is based on the key idea that marketing is no longer the sole responsibility of a few people and clients’ willingness to pay for ease of engagement.

This whole-of-business approach to marketing requires thinking, acting and communicating from the inside out, starting with the organisation’s “why.” Ask yourself some fundamental questions about your purpose, motivation and beliefs. This will frame how you go about engaging with clients: your process, specific actions and your firm’s “what.”

2. Be More Authentic

Balancing what you say versus what others say about you is the key to authentic engagement. An advisory brand is an articulation of who the organisation is, what they believe and what they do. So, if it does not reflect the expectations and experience of your customers, you’re at risk of lacking authenticity. Do you know what clients are saying about you and what your reputation is? If not, you need to find out. Start by asking both customers you have won recently and those you lost.

The sweet spot of authenticity is the intersection of your brand, reputation and fit with customer needs.

To be authentic you need to be trusted, and to be trusted you need to be transparent.

Think of your marketing as a pyramid: The base is your website, holding up campaigns and sales engagement techniques. All these building blocks need to be authentic, aligning with your “why” at each stage of the sales cycle and beyond. Here’s a practical tip: Why not try harnessing the power of video (the shorter the better) and using unscripted language to tell stories of how your customers have experienced success using your services?

3. Engage Through Influence

B2B selling is complex, and the likelihood of a purchase drops sharply when the number of decision makers involved increases. Today’s empowered customers are often well into making their purchase decision by the time they engage a supplier. Therefore, engaging through influencing decision makers can be a powerful tool.

Advisors can implement the seven principles of persuasion to assist in the B2B sales process:

  • Reciprocation: Prospects will have a feeling of obligation if you provide something of value first
  • Social Proof: We tend to be more trusting of things that are popular and have been endorsed as quality by others we trust
  • Commitment and Consistency: Asking your prospect to start with small agreements makes it harder for them to say no in the long run
  • Liking: We’re more likely to submit to requests made by people we like and who like us in return
  • Authority: We’re more likely to agree with those who have perceived authority
  • Scarcity: We’re drawn to things that are hard to get and in short supply
  • Unity: People need to feel they belong to something greater than themselves

These principles are not about “trickery” and need to be applied in an authentic way. How can you weave them into your advisory offering, marketing and sales?​

4. Meet the Marketing Fundamentals

The quality of your service model and ability to deliver a high-value outcome for clients are obviously keys in client retention of clients. If you’re not offering services that provide ongoing benefits, rather than one-off, project-based activities, you will constantly be searching for new clients.

Your offering must meet the following three marketing fundamentals:

  • Be digestible
  • Solve a problem
  • Link to a clear competitive advantage

Your advisory model needs to tell a great story about how you will work with clients to achieve their goals.

Here are three advisory services that will resonate with clients in 2019 and improve your likelihood of retention:

  • a. Online Coaching and Training: Deliver the triple play of benefits: leverage (more clients, more often), improved customer experience (just-in-time support) and cost reduction (less reliance on heavy travel schedules to maintain face-to-face contact).
  • b. Initial Business Reviews: Help clients focus attention on where they are now and where they want to be in the future. Use tools such as a Growth and Profit Diagnostic, Now Where How and financial dashboards.
  • c. Half-Day Strategic Plan Resets: Time-poor clients want a simple, strategic plan review to get them back on track. Use tools like One Page Plan, Now Where How, Sustainable Competitive Advantage, Mindmap and Pareto to achieve a clear plan in a short period of time.

Good luck with implementing some of these ideas! The achievement of authenticity through your marketing, sales and advisory offering will set you apart from those who are just “talking the talk” and help you win new clients and keep them.

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Qatar Stock Exchange launches IR Excellence Program

Qatar Stock Exchange (QSE), in collaboration with Iridium Investor Relations, has informed that it has launched the fourth annual Investor Relations (IR) Excellence Program, which aims to help listed companies in Qatar further improve investor relations best practices. Since its inception in 2015 as the first recognition program of its kind in the GCC, the IR Excellence Program rewards companies and their leaders for their investor relations achievements. Mr. Rashid Bin Ali Al-Mansoori, Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Stock Exchange said:

“It has never been more important for listed companies to engage in a meaningful dialogue with existing and prospective shareowners that fosters truth and trust. During a time when risks can arise from all angles, it is critical to keep the investment community informed through professional investor relations activities – both locally and internationally. The QSE IR Excellence Program has been created to recognise the best organisations and leaders in Qatar who excel at creating a clear picture about their listed company’s strategic, financial and operational developments, and adhere to the highest standards of transparency and disclosure.”

A public voting system and a thorough IR website ranking of all listed companies will be conducted from mid-November to end-December 2018. Both retail and professional members of the investment community will be eligible to vote for the best investor relations efforts by the companies. Iridium Investor Relations, an independent IR advisory specialist, will manage the distribution of emails and questionnaires to a database of over 2,000 regional and international investor on behalf of QSE. The firm will also be responsible for ranking the company’s websites.

Since the program launch in 2015, the IR Excellence Program methodology has been made publicly available to the market every year in advance of the review process. To ensure the credibility of the award, the IR Excellence Program cannot be sponsored.

Qatar National Bank received recognition as the best Qatari firm for IR Excellence in February 2018. The best small (Al Meera), mid (Vodafone) and large cap (Qatar National Bank) companies, as well as the best Chief Financial Officer (Mr. Ramzi Marri of QNB), the best Investor Relations Officer (Mr. Andreas Goldau of Ooredoo) and the best corporate IR website (Ooredoo) in the country, were also recognised.

Mr. Abdul Aziz Al Emadi, Director of Listing Department at QSE, added:

“During the first three years of the IR Excellence Program, the QSE focused on creating awareness for the importance of the investor relations function. As a result, a growing number of companies has made improvements to their investor relations efforts. We are now committed to helping more companies adopt international best practice investor relations standards. Building on the momentum that we have created to date, our goal is to take investor relations in Qatar to the next level.”

For more information about the annual Investor Relations (IR) Excellence Progam, please visit: https://www.qe.com.qa/