Disney*Pixar’s “Cars 3” Fuels Up For Nationwide Tour

Road to the Races Takes Off March 23, 2017Title Sponsors Include Alamo Rent A Car (SM), Coppertone®, Crest®/Oral-B®, DOLE® and Mattel

BURBANK, Calif., March 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Disney•Pixar's "Cars 3" is hitting the road this month with Road to the Races, a nationwide tour inviting fans of #95 to gear up for the upcoming big-screen release. Life-size, character look-alikes of five-time Piston-Cup champion Lightning McQueen, tech-savvy trainer Cruz Ramirez and the sleek next-gen racer Jackson Storm will be rolling into 27 cities coast to coast to celebrate the new movie, which opens June 16, 2017.

"We are going to kick off the tour at Disney Springs in Walt Disney World on Thursday, March 23," said Lylle Breier, senior vice president, worldwide marketing partnerships and special events for the Walt Disney Studios. "There will be fun activities for the whole family—plus a sneak peek of the movie."

The roster of cities includes Miami, Dallas, Chicago, Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Denver and Los Angeles, among others—the full list is available at CARS3tour.com. The "Road to the Races" nationwide tour wraps up in California with a visit to NASCAR at Sonoma at the Sonoma Raceway June 24-25, 2017, and the life-size character cars will also roll onto the red carpet for the "Cars 3" world premiere on Saturday, June 10, 2017.

A host of sponsors have signed on to support the tour, which includes a variety of activities.

  • Alamo Rent A CarSM is hosting a street art booth and will bring "Cars 3" to life with a giant coloring mural featuring Lightning McQueen and friends, along with a color pencil pack souvenir.  Owned and operated by Enterprise Holdings, Alamo Rent A Car offers low rental rates and a hassle-free customer experience at the most popular travel destinations around the world. 
  • Coppertone® is creating a racer pit crew that encourages visitors to take part in a tire-changing activity and photo-sharing opportunity. A leader in the sun care industry, Coppertone is made by Bayer HealthCare, LLC.
  • Crest® and Oral-B® celebrate the Road to the Races tour, providing fans with an opportunity to create a digital postcard with Lightning McQueen and win "Cars"-themed oral care prizes from the Piston Cup prize wheel. Crest and Oral-B are the first step to enjoying a lifetime of healthy smiles.
  • Dole®, the leader in fresh, quality produce, invites visitors to fuel up and recharge their batteries, sample high-octane fruit and vegetable smoothies, collect "Cars 3"-inspired recipes and discover how Dole and Disney are working together to make healthy living fun and easy for families. For a chance to win "Cars 3" prizes this summer, check out www.dole.com/Cars3.
  • Mattel presents an interactive play area, which sends Lightning McQueen and other racers down the gravity drop and launches them into action in new play sets that feature locations from the movie. Also on display will be a collection of die cast racers from past and present. Mattel is the leading global childhood development and play company.

Fans will be able to catch a sneak peek of the movie in the Cinetransformer Mobile Movie Theater. Visitors will also be able to take photos with the life-size character cars.

In addition, the sports national youth program NASCAR Acceleration Nation will display the science behind NASCAR racing, and elements from the NASCAR Hall of Fame will allow attendees to get up close and personal with the history of NASCAR.  

Mack Trucks, Inc. will transport the life-size character cars on the coast-to-coast tour.  

Schedules are subject to change without notice, and attractions may be unavailable for unscheduled reasons.

ABOUT THE MOVIE
Blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers, the legendary Lightning McQueen (voice of Owen Wilson) is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician, Cruz Ramirez (voice of Cristela Alonzo), with her own plan to win, plus inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn't through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing's biggest stage! Directed by Brian Fee (storyboard artist "Cars," "Cars 2"), produced by Kevin Reher ("A Bug's Life," "La Luna" short) and co-produced by Andrea Warren ("LAVA" short), "Cars 3" cruises into theaters on June 16, 2017.

SOURCE Disney*Pixar

Gatorade® National Boys Basketball Player of the Year: Michael Porter Jr.

SEATTLE, March 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- In its 32nd year of honoring the nation's best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company today announced Michael Porter Jr. of Nathan Hale High School (Seattle, Wash.) as its 2016-17 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year during a surprise at his home.

Check out the surprise video here.

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the court, distinguishes Porter Jr. as the nation's best high school boys basketball player. A national advisory panel comprised of sport-specific experts and sports journalists helped select Michael from nearly 540,000 high school boys basketball players nationwide. Michael is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade Male High School Athlete of the Year award, to be presented at a special ceremony prior to The ESPY Awards in July.

The 6-foot-9, 225-pound senior forward and guard led the Nathan Hale Raiders to a 29-0 record, a No. 1 ranking in USA TODAY's Super 25 and the Class 3A state championship this past season. Porter Jr. averaged 36.2 points, 13.6 rebounds, 5.0 assists, 3.2 steals and 2.7 blocks per game. A member of the USA Basketball Men's U18 National Team, he has been chosen to play in the McDonald's All-American Game, the Jordan Brand Classic and the Nike Hoop Summit. Porter Jr. is also ranked as the nation's No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2017 by ESPN. He has volunteered locally on behalf of his church's youth ministry and youth basketball programs and has maintained an A average in the classroom.

"Michael Porter Jr.'s extreme versatility – including his length, skill and athletic ability as a perimeter player – make him standout," says Paul Biancardi of ESPN Basketball. "His jump shot is his calling card, and he already has NBA range and accuracy. He displays the uncanny ability to make tough shots look easy. Equally impressive is his dribble-drive or post-up game as well as his consistency on the glass. What made him truly special this year was the ability to deliver high-level performances against the nation's best."

Porter Jr. remains undecided upon a collegiate destination.

"Without question, Michael is deserving of recognition as the nation's best high school boys basketball player based on his statistics on the court and the impact his accomplishments have had on Nathan Hale's success," said Gatorade Senior Vice President and General Manager Brett O'Brien. "He is also a shining example to peers and aspiring young athletes of what a leader and a student-athlete should be. He represents everything we hope for in a Gatorade Player of the Year recipient."

As a part of Gatorade's cause marketing platform "Play it Forward," Porter Jr. also has the opportunity to award a $1,000 grant to a local or national youth sports organization of his choosing. He is also eligible to win one of twelve $10,000 spotlight grants for his organization of choice, which will be announced throughout the year. 

The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade high school sports leadership team in partnership with the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.

Former notable Gatorade National Players of the Year include:

  • Super Bowl Most Valuable Player Peyton Manning
  • 2015 NBA first overall pick Karl-Anthony Towns
  • Three-time WNBA champion Maya Moore
  • Four-time track & field gold medalist Allyson Felix
  • Three-time beach volleyball gold medalist Kerri Walsh
  • Three-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw

For more information on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination information, a complete list of former winners, and future announcement dates, visit the Gatorade Player of the Year Web site at http://www.gatorade.com/poy, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GatoradePOY or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Gatorade.

ALL-TIME GATORADE NATIONAL BOYS BASKETBALL PLAYERS OF THE YEAR


YEAR

NAME

HIGH SCHOOL

STATUS

2016-17

Michael Porter Jr.

Nathan Hale, Seattle, WA

High School Senior

2015-16

Jayson Tatum

Chaminade College Prep, St. Louis, MO                

Duke University

2014-15

Ben Simmons

Montverde Academy, FL

Philadelphia 76ers

2013-14

Karl-Anthony Towns

St. Joseph, Metuchen, NJ

Minnesota Timberwolves

2012-13

Andrew Wiggins

St. Joseph's Central Catholic, Huntington, WV

Minnesota Timberwolves

2011-12

Jabari Parker

Simeon Career Academy, Chicago, IL

Milwaukee Bucks

2010-11          

Bradley Beal      

Chaminade College Prep, St. Louis, MO 

Washington Wizards

2009-10

Brandon Knight

Pine Crest School, Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Phoenix Suns

2008-09

Brandon Knight

Pine Crest School, Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Phoenix Suns

2007-08

Jrue Holiday

Campbell Hall, North Hollywood, CA

New Orleans Pelicans

2006-07 

Kevin Love

Lake Oswego, Lake Oswego, OR

Cleveland Cavaliers

2005-06

Greg Oden

Lawrence North, Indianapolis, IN

Retired Pro

2004-05

Greg Oden

Lawrence North, Indianapolis, IN

Retired Pro

2003-04

Dwight Howard

SW Atlanta Christian Academy, Atlanta, GA

Atlanta Hawks

2002-03

LeBron James

St, Vincent-St. Mary, Akron, OH

Cleveland Cavaliers

2001-02

LeBron James

St. Vincent-St. Mary, Akron, OH

Cleveland Cavaliers

2000-01

Kelvin Torbert

Northwestern Edison, Flint, MI

Retired Pro

1999-00

Jared Jeffries

North, Bloomington, IN

Denver Nuggets Staff

1998-99

LaVell Blanchard

Pioneer, Ann Arbor, MI

Retired Pro

1997-98

Al Harrington

St. Patrick, Elizabeth, NJ

Retired Pro

1996-97

Baron Davis

Crossroads, Santa Monica, CA

NBA Free Agent

1995-96

Kobe Bryant

Lower Merion, Ardmore, PA

Retired Pro

1994-95

Stephon Marbury

Abraham Lincoln, Brooklyn, NY

Beijing Ducks

1993-94

Felipe Lopez

Rice, New York, NY

Retired from NBA

1992-93

Randy Livingston

Isidore Newman School, New Orleans, LA

Retired from NBA 

1991-92

Corliss Williamson

Russellville, Russellville, AR

Orlando Magic Staff 

1990-91

Chris Webber

Detroit Country Day, Birmingham, MI

Retired from NBA

1989-90

Damon Bailey

Bedford North Lawrence, Bedford, IN

Butler Women's Staff

1988-89

Kenny Anderson

Archbishop Molloy, Jamaica, NY

Retired from NBA

1987-88

Alonzo Mourning

Indian River, Chesapeake, VA

Retired from NBA

1986-87

LaBradford Smith

Bay City, Bay City, TX

Retired from NBA

1985-86

J.R. Reid

Kempsville, Virginia Beach, VA

Patrick Henry Staff

 

SOURCE Gatorade

Uberrito Opens at Arcadia Gateway, Continues Phoenix-Area, Southwest Expansion

/EINPresswire.com/ — PHOENIX, AZ–(Marketwired – Mar 22, 2017) – Überrito announced today the opening of its newest restaurant, located at 4325 E Indian School Road, Suite 150 in the Arcadia Gateway shopping center. The newest Arcadia location celebrates its grand opening on Thursday, March 23, 2017. It joins the nearby Scottsdale location as the second Phoenix-area Überrito restaurant.

On Thursday, March 23, Überrito will kick off grand opening day festivities by offering the first 100 customers a free meal, VIP loyalty card loaded with a free burrito every month for a year, and exclusive branded giveaways. In celebration of National Chip and Dip Day that same day, Überrito will celebrate with samples of chips, house made salsa, guacamole and queso.

Additional grand opening day offers for all customers include:

  • Burrito, drink and cookie combo for just $2.99 all day long
  • Buy-one-get-one-free coupon for a future visit
  • Customers registering for the loyalty program during opening week will also receive a free burrito and cookie to redeem at a future visit
  • Chance to win free burritos for a year, gift cards and other prizes by playing Überrito’s spin-to-win game

From March 23-31, all seven Überrito locations in Phoenix and Houston will celebrate opening week with $5 burritos and bowls. Registered loyalty card members earn double points all week as well.

Überrito will cap off Arcadia grand-opening festivities with a friendly school spirit „Überrito Burrito Battle” fundraiser between area schools. From April 1-8, customers are encouraged to visit the Arcadia Überrito and mention the school they would like to support at checkout. Überrito will donate 15 percent of proceeds from every school purchase and match sales up to $2,500 for the school with the most sales. In addition, the winning school, which will be announced in April, receives a catered teacher and staff appreciation party for up to 100 people.

Participating schools currently include:

  • Arcadia High School (4703 E Indian School Rd.)
  • Camelback High School (4612 N 28th St.)
  • Christ Lutheran School (3901 E Indian School Rd.)

„We are thrilled to open our second location in Phoenix, continuing our expansion efforts in the Southwest,” said Marcus Jundt, CEO of Überrito. „Our first Phoenix location has been a big hit with customers, and we know the Arcadia area will enjoy our signature fresh-Mex food, unexpected taste combinations and vibrant atmosphere. We look forward to serving our new customers for many years to come.”

Überrito encourages customers to „try something nü”, offering nearly unlimited combinations with eight different proteins, 28 ingredients, eight house-made salsas and four flavors of fresh tortillas. Customers wishing to go tortilla free may opt for a bowl, salad or nachos layered in queso. The menu also includes „10 Tasty Tacos” and house-made tortilla soup.

About Überrito
The Überrito concept launched December 2014, building on the success of the former Mission Burrito founded in 1996 in Houston. The fast-casual concept goes above and beyond the basic burrito, offering customers flavor, variety and a unique dining experience. Menu items include unlimited combinations with eight different proteins, 28 ingredients, eight house-made salsas, and four flavors of fresh tortillas. Bowls, salads, house-made tortilla soup and „10 Tasty Tacos” are customer favorites. Visit Überrito online at http://uberrito.com and on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

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SERVPRO(R) Expands PGA Sponsorship with PGA Fantasy Golf

Cleanup and restoration specialist says the season’s first major golf tournament is a great time to „master” Fantasy Golf skills

GALLATIN, TN–(Marketwired – March 22, 2017) – There is an old adage: „It never rains on a golf course.” As the official cleanup and restoration company of the PGA TOUR, SERVPRO® knows this isn’t true, but rain or shine, fans follow their favorite players’ performance at PGA golf tournaments throughout the season. Recognizing the ever-growing popularity of the game, SERVPRO has expanded its relationship with the PGA TOUR by becoming the presenting sponsor of the PGA Fantasy Golf games, available at pgatour.com/fantasy.

„We know people don’t associate SERVPRO with the wide-open spaces and fair weather feeling of a golf course. After all, SERVPRO is the company you turn to when the unexpected, even the unthinkable, happens to your home or business,” says Sue Steen, Servpro Industries, Inc., chief executive officer. „But each SERVPRO business is also a local business, there to support their communities in good times and bad. Teaming up with the PGA TOUR as the sponsor of their Fantasy Golf Suite helps SERVPRO franchisees build connections within their local communities. We want local home and business owners to know that we are there for them ready to respond at a moment’s notice if things go wrong.”

The new „One & Done” games were launched on January 3, 2017, but the game structure allows players to join in on the fun at any point during the current season. Each week, game players select one player to earn points for them in that week’s tournament. The PGA Tour Fantasy game is based on accumulated FedEx Cup points and the PGA Tour Champions game is based on accumulated Charles Schwab Cup points. A player may select a given golfer for a tournament in each of the One & Done games only once in each season. Since some tournaments earn a pro golfer more points than others, game strategy is based on selecting the right golfers for the right tournaments.

„With the first major tournament of the season — The Masters — just around the corner, now is a great time to start your One & Done game for this year’s tour,” says Steen. „If you ‚master’ the trick of choosing the right golfers in the right tournaments, you could jump to the top of your Fantasy league.” The top finisher in the PGA TOUR game will win a new set of golf clubs, while the top prize for the PGA TOUR Champions game is a trip for two to the Charles Schwab Cup Championship at Phoenix Country Club in Phoenix, Arizona, November 6-12.

SERVPRO specializes in disaster restoration, cleanup and repair services, helping to remediate damage, making it „Like it never even happened,” for both commercial and residential customers. For more information on SERVPRO, please visit www.servpro.com.

About SERVPRO®
Founded in 1967, the SERVPRO® Franchise System is a leader and provider of fire and water cleanup and restoration services and mold mitigation and remediation. SERVPRO’s professional services network of more than 1,700 individually owned and operated Franchises responds to property damage emergencies ranging from small individual disasters to multi-million dollar large-loss events. Providing coverage in the United States and Canada, the SERVPRO® System has established relationships with major insurance companies and commercial clients, as well as individual homeowners.

Credit-Scoring Model Developers Can Retain Accuracy In Absence of Negative Consumer Credit-File Data

/EINPresswire.com/ — STAMFORD, CT–(Marketwired – March 22, 2017) – VantageScore Solutions, LLC, developer of the VantageScore® credit scoring model, today released a white paper which found that credit score models can maintain accuracy and predictive power even if certain negative data — such as tax liens, civil judgments, medical and non-medical collections — are removed from consumer credit files.

The paper, „Negative Data Suppression and the Impacts on Credit Score Models,” anticipates potential model-development questions raised under the National Consumer Assistance Plan (NCAP). Spearheaded by the three national credit reporting companies (CRCs) — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — the NCAP is focusing on a variety of measures aimed at making credit-data reporting more accurate and understandable for consumers.

The CRCs are still making a final determination about the measures to be included in the NCAP, which is scheduled for full implementation by March 2018, but so far the recommendations are expected to include removal from consumer credit files of all civil-judgment records, a substantial number of tax liens, and medical-related agency collections less than 180 days old. When included in credit files, these data are predictive of default risk, so most modern credit-scoring models take them into consideration. Such changes could impact a lender’s customer acquisition and/or portfolio management processes.

Recognizing this, VantageScore embarked on research to discover how the removal of this credit-file data could impact scoring-model accuracy and the ability to develop high-performing models in the future.

Using two million anonymized consumer credit files and a methodology detailed in the white paper, VantageScore developed two scoring models for comparison — one based on credit files containing all the negative data NCAP may exclude, and the other based on credit files with all NCAP-related data removed. A comparison of scores obtained by scoring the same population with both models revealed the following findings:

  • Despite the predictive value of negative data that would be omitted under NCAP, credit score models can certainly recover predictive performance in their absence.
  • In fact, by adopting new variables more closely aligned to current credit-usage behavior — as opposed to the „backward-looking” historical events that NCAP would exclude — models developed in the absence of NCAP data may prove more stable than older models.
  • Consumers who scored above 660 using model designs that accommodate NCAP data suppression exhibited better credit-management habits and more stable loan portfolios than their counterparts scored using models built using the negative file data.
  • Regulatory focus on eliminating negative data under NCAP, along with the findings outlined above, suggests lenders should evaluate incumbent scoring models to ensure they will perform well in the absence of NCAP-related data.

„In light of the potential for significant changes to these data as a result of the NCAP, lenders must evaluate their scoring models to understand expected outcomes as the CRCs move ahead with their plans,” said Sarah Davies, senior vice president, research, analytics and product development, VantageScore Solutions. „This paper demonstrates that there is an opportunity to provide some relief for consumers whose scores are affected by these data while also preserving model performance.”

For more details on the study, visit VantageScore.com/NegativeData to download the white paper.

About VantageScore Solutions

Credit scores can impact many aspects of your life, everything from whether you are able to get a loan and how much interest you will have to pay to whether you are able to rent an apartment.

VantageScore Solutions, LLC (www.VantageScore.com) is the independently managed company that owns the intellectual property rights to the VantageScore credit scoring models, including the VantageScore 3.0 model, which without relaxing standards, scores 30-35 million consumers typically not scored by conventional models. VantageScore credit scores are used by lenders, landlords, utility companies, telecom companies and many others to determine your creditworthiness. By using the VantageScore model, these enterprises have access to many more consumers, and in turn, consumers have greater access to mainstream credit.

Although there are many credit scoring models in the industry, the „win-win” for VantageScore is its innovative, highly predictive, patent-protected, tri-bureau scoring methodology that provides lenders and consumers with more consistent credit scores across all three national credit reporting companies. VantageScore is also the model tens of millions of consumers use to monitor their credit behaviors through dozens of websites and lenders who provide their users and customers with their VantageScore credit scores for free. More than eight billion VantageScore credit scores were used in the 12-month period from July 2015-June 2016 by over 2,400 lenders and other industry participants, including 20 of the top 25 financial institutions — an increase of nearly 40% over the previous 12-month period.

The company is celebrating its 11th anniversary in 2017.

Traditional Retailers Must Adopt Pizza Delivery Sales Model, Says New Research From Catalyst

ROCHESTER, N.Y., March 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Convenience, better deals, crowds, and the desire for instant gratification have driven more customers online, but savvy traditional retailers can still win the retail game by creating more personal, efficient and unified customer experiences, according to a new research study by Catalyst, a marketing agency specializing in the retail sector.

The Pizza Delivery Model: How Brick-and-Mortar Stores Can Win the Retail Game explores consumer shopping behaviors across multiple channels to better understand the value of the brick-and-mortar store experience, with the goal of helping retailers compete more effectively. The study comprised one-hour online focus groups of 55 geographically diverse, multi-channel retail shoppers who had made at least one large purchase in the last year.

„We found several overarching motivators that drove customers to brick-and-mortar stores,” said Tara Litchfield, director of experience design, who authored the study. „First and foremost, convenience, not surprisingly. But what was surprising was the extent to which efficiency motivated shoppers. And by that, I don’t mean efficiency for the store. I mean efficiency for the customer,” she said.

For example, Litchfield said, most customers hated to wait. They would happily use self-checkout when they didn’t have questions, when the technology was easy to use, and most important, when there wasn’t a line.

„What’s efficient for the store is not always efficient for the customer,” Litchfield said. „Stores would be wise to look at their POS practices from the customer’s vantage point rather than their own,” she said.

Convenience is paramount, she said, and Amazon wins.

„Today’s busy customers want to make as little effort and commitment as possible, and they want free shipping and free returns for an extended period,” Litchfield said.  „They also want an experience with the product, not the salesperson –  pushy salespeople were a real turn-off,” she said.

But customers were not always looking for the lowest price. It was more important to buy a quality product from a reputable company than to get the lowest price.

In order, Litchfield said, the top five motivators were convenience, efficiency, good customer service, and product quality, with value for the money pervasive to all.

In addition to an exploration of the top retail shopping motivators, the study outlines the typical customer shopping journey and identified specific opportunities for retailers to insert themselves into each stage more effectively. Throughout the report, quotes from actual shoppers reinforce the study’s findings.

„Brick-and-mortar retailers are still relevant, and in some cases are the preferred option,” Litchfield was quick to point out. „A quality product at the best price is the goal, and efficiency, convenience and customer service are the key differentiators.

„To prevail, retailers need to focus on making their omnichannel experience efficient and convenient from the customer’s perspective, and provide the best customer service possible,” she said. „In other words – make shopping as convenient as possible and delivery as fast as delivering a pizza.”

To receive a copy of the research at no charge, contact Christian Banach at 585.453.8313 or email: cbanach@catalystinc.com.

About Catalyst

Catalyst (www.catalystinc.com) is a marketing agency that combines complex data analysis, experience design and marketing technology to develop more profitable customers. It’s a powerful combination of Science + Soul that yields deeper insights, better solutions and better marketing results.

Headquartered in Rochester, NY, our clients include AAA, ACI Worldwide, American Family Insurance, Embrace Home Loans, Kodak, Kroger, Kulzer, Preferred Mutual, TTI Floor Care North America, University of Rochester, Valvoline Instant Oil Change, and Xeikon, among others.

Press Contact:

Robyn Kahn Federman
Catalyst
585.453.8358
Robyn.Federman@catalystinc.com
www.catalystinc.com

Related Links

Catalyst website

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SOURCE Catalyst

Windstream expands metro fiber network in Little Rock

Expansion is part of Windstream’s multi-city campaign to connect even more data centers & commercial buildings to company’s national backbone

/EIN News/ — LITTLE ROCK, Ark., March 22, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN), a leading provider of advanced network communications, today announced a major expansion of its advanced metro fiber network in Little Rock. Windstream’s expansion will provide the area’s growing business community with world-class fiber and fixed-wireless infrastructure that connects even more local data centers and commercial buildings with Windstream’s high-speed, highly available nationwide fiber network.

“Windstream is headquartered in Little Rock, and our company’s connection to the city goes back nearly 75 years,” said Tony Thomas, chief executive officer for Windstream. “We’re proud to make this investment in our hometown to help create a new level of connectivity and network stability for all the businesses here, especially the Downtown, Midtown, West Little Rock, North Little Rock, Northshore Business Park, Airport/Port Authority and Conway areas. It also will allow us to offer our customers an expanded product suite and higher levels of service.”

Windstream’s expansion of its local metro fiber network and the addition of fixed wireless service will connect the company’s national fiber network to major data center complexes and commercial buildings in the Little Rock area. This expansion will connect companies directly to other major and mid-size markets across the country, and it also will enable business customers to utilize the enterprise-class data, voice, network and cloud services that Windstream customers in other major markets use as the foundation of their technology strategy.

Little Rock’s Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport is among the entities that have benefited directly from Windstream’s expansion. The airport is Arkansas’s largest commercial service airport, and it serves nearly 2 million passengers annually.

“Clinton National Airport is a critical resource to our region. More than 3,000 people work at the airport, which generates $1.2 billion in annual economic benefit,” said Ronald F. Mathieu, executive director, Clinton National Airport. “We are partnering with Windstream, using their reliable, fiber-fed internet service, to offer the best Wi-Fi connection of any airport in the world.”

The Windstream fiber expansion increases both the footprint of the company’s network and the services that are available to local customers – including fixed wireless service, unified communications, managed services, network security, business continuity, network solutions and cloud services, all of which are provided with the support of a truly local team.

Windstream is expanding local metro fiber networks across the country as part of an initiative that will support customers in the banking, financial services, legal services, education, healthcare, government, hospitality and retail industries, among others. In addition to Little Rock, Windstream is expanding its metro fiber networks in a number of cities including Charlotte, Nashville, Richmond, Atlanta, Chicago, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Dallas, Detroit and Cleveland.

Windstream offers a full suite of advanced network communications and technology solutions, including Network & Data, SD-WAN, Voice & Unified Communications, Network Security, Managed Services and Cloud Services. For more information, visit windstreambusiness.com.

About Windstream
Windstream Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:WIN), a FORTUNE 500 company, is a leading provider of advanced network communications and technology solutions for consumers, businesses, enterprise organizations and wholesale customers across the U.S. Windstream offers bundled services, including broadband, security solutions, voice and digital TV to consumers. The company also provides data, cloud solutions, unified communications and managed services to small business and enterprise clients. The company supplies core transport solutions on a local and long-haul fiber network spanning approximately 147,000 miles. Additional information is available at windstream.com. Please visit our newsroom at news.windstream.com or follow us on Twitter at @Windstream.

Media Contact
                    Sarah C. Davis, 720.529.7611
                    sarah.c.davis@windstream.com
                    

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Windstream expands metro fiber network in Little Rock

Expansion is part of Windstream’s multi-city campaign to connect even more data centers & commercial buildings to company’s national backbone

/EIN News/ — LITTLE ROCK, Ark., March 22, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN), a leading provider of advanced network communications, today announced a major expansion of its advanced metro fiber network in Little Rock. Windstream’s expansion will provide the area’s growing business community with world-class fiber and fixed-wireless infrastructure that connects even more local data centers and commercial buildings with Windstream’s high-speed, highly available nationwide fiber network.

“Windstream is headquartered in Little Rock, and our company’s connection to the city goes back nearly 75 years,” said Tony Thomas, chief executive officer for Windstream. “We’re proud to make this investment in our hometown to help create a new level of connectivity and network stability for all the businesses here, especially the Downtown, Midtown, West Little Rock, North Little Rock, Northshore Business Park, Airport/Port Authority and Conway areas. It also will allow us to offer our customers an expanded product suite and higher levels of service.”

Windstream’s expansion of its local metro fiber network and the addition of fixed wireless service will connect the company’s national fiber network to major data center complexes and commercial buildings in the Little Rock area. This expansion will connect companies directly to other major and mid-size markets across the country, and it also will enable business customers to utilize the enterprise-class data, voice, network and cloud services that Windstream customers in other major markets use as the foundation of their technology strategy.

Little Rock’s Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport is among the entities that have benefited directly from Windstream’s expansion. The airport is Arkansas’s largest commercial service airport, and it serves nearly 2 million passengers annually.

“Clinton National Airport is a critical resource to our region. More than 3,000 people work at the airport, which generates $1.2 billion in annual economic benefit,” said Ronald F. Mathieu, executive director, Clinton National Airport. “We are partnering with Windstream, using their reliable, fiber-fed internet service, to offer the best Wi-Fi connection of any airport in the world.”

The Windstream fiber expansion increases both the footprint of the company’s network and the services that are available to local customers – including fixed wireless service, unified communications, managed services, network security, business continuity, network solutions and cloud services, all of which are provided with the support of a truly local team.

Windstream is expanding local metro fiber networks across the country as part of an initiative that will support customers in the banking, financial services, legal services, education, healthcare, government, hospitality and retail industries, among others. In addition to Little Rock, Windstream is expanding its metro fiber networks in a number of cities including Charlotte, Nashville, Richmond, Atlanta, Chicago, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Dallas, Detroit and Cleveland.

Windstream offers a full suite of advanced network communications and technology solutions, including Network & Data, SD-WAN, Voice & Unified Communications, Network Security, Managed Services and Cloud Services. For more information, visit windstreambusiness.com.

About Windstream
Windstream Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:WIN), a FORTUNE 500 company, is a leading provider of advanced network communications and technology solutions for consumers, businesses, enterprise organizations and wholesale customers across the U.S. Windstream offers bundled services, including broadband, security solutions, voice and digital TV to consumers. The company also provides data, cloud solutions, unified communications and managed services to small business and enterprise clients. The company supplies core transport solutions on a local and long-haul fiber network spanning approximately 147,000 miles. Additional information is available at windstream.com. Please visit our newsroom at news.windstream.com or follow us on Twitter at @Windstream.

Media Contact
                    Sarah C. Davis, 720.529.7611
                    sarah.c.davis@windstream.com
                    

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Mattis Urges Congressional Support for Additional $30 Billion for Defense

WASHINGTON, March 22, 2017 — The $30 billion in requested additional defense funding for fiscal year 2017 would be used to strengthen the military and protect the nation against emerging global security challenges, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Capitol Hill today.

At a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, Mattis warned that hesitation in investing in defense would deepen the “strategic mismatch between our future security and the military means to protect our people and freedoms.”

The secretary appeared at the defense budget and readiness hearing with Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

“The security situation facing our country has become more challenging,” Mattis said. “The looming threats have outstripped the level of resources we have been allocating to defense.”

Good Stewards of Taxpayers’ Money

President Donald J. Trump’s request for the additional $30 billion represents the first step in a three-part, multi-year effort to restore readiness, Mattis explained.

This year’s budget appropriation, including the requested additional $30 billion, is needed to “get our aircraft back in the air, our ships back to sea, and our troops back in the field with refurbished or new equipment and proper training,” the defense secretary said.

“We base this request on a realistic appreciation of the capacity we need to fight and win on the battlefield,” he said, noting the next phases of the effort focus on fiscal year 2018 and several years beyond.

The department is aware of the sacrifices of the American taxpayers in making the additional funding for fiscal year 2017 possible, Mattis said. The department takes the responsibility of being wise stewards seriously.”

The $30 billion in additional funds include a base budget request of $24.9 billion and an overseas contingency operations budget request of $5.1 billion.

The additional $30 billion funding request brings to $619.2 billion the amount requested by the Defense Department for fiscal year 2017, according to the DoD comptroller’s office.

Highlighting Military Support of Diplomacy

Mattis highlighted the importance of military support of diplomatic efforts, saying diplomatic solutions are the preferred options.

“Our military must ensure that the president and our diplomats always negotiate from a position of strength,” he said. “Global threats require a global response, applying the full weight of our own and our allies’ power, allies which are also increasing their defense outlays.”

Military deterrence, the defense secretary said, is only credible if military strength is sufficiently formidable that allies can confidently align with the United States in tempering adversaries’ designs.

Global Challenges Threaten National Security Interests

The global security challenges threatening national security interests are numerous, Mattis outlined to the senators.

“We see Russia and China seeking veto power over the economic, diplomatic and security decisions of nations on their periphery,” he said. “Terrorist groups murder the innocent and threaten peace in many regions and target us.”

In addition, the secretary noted North Korea’s “reckless rhetoric and provocative actions” with its nuclear activities.

“This situation calls for our department to maintain a safe and secure nuclear deterrent and a decisive conventional force that can also fight irregular enemies since our military must be able to counter all threats facing us,” Mattis said.

Funding Requires ‘Hard Choices’ with ‘Sustained Commitment’

The defense secretary acknowledged “hard choices” will have to be made in funding the department.

“With the help of the Congress, I believe we can build a force that is more lethal, without placing an undue burden on the American economy,” he said.

But, in order to do so, DoD needs a “sustained commitment from Congress in the form of additional funding and regular on-time budgets,” Mattis said.

(Follow Lisa Ferdinando on Twitter: @FerdinandoDoD)

Mattis Urges Congressional Support for Additional $30 Billion for Defense

WASHINGTON, March 22, 2017 — The $30 billion in requested additional defense funding for fiscal year 2017 would be used to strengthen the military and protect the nation against emerging global security challenges, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Capitol Hill today.

At a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, Mattis warned that hesitation in investing in defense would deepen the “strategic mismatch between our future security and the military means to protect our people and freedoms.”

The secretary appeared at the defense budget and readiness hearing with Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

“The security situation facing our country has become more challenging,” Mattis said. “The looming threats have outstripped the level of resources we have been allocating to defense.”

Good Stewards of Taxpayers’ Money

President Donald J. Trump’s request for the additional $30 billion represents the first step in a three-part, multi-year effort to restore readiness, Mattis explained.

This year’s budget appropriation, including the requested additional $30 billion, is needed to “get our aircraft back in the air, our ships back to sea, and our troops back in the field with refurbished or new equipment and proper training,” the defense secretary said.

“We base this request on a realistic appreciation of the capacity we need to fight and win on the battlefield,” he said, noting the next phases of the effort focus on fiscal year 2018 and several years beyond.

The department is aware of the sacrifices of the American taxpayers in making the additional funding for fiscal year 2017 possible, Mattis said. The department takes the responsibility of being wise stewards seriously.”

The $30 billion in additional funds include a base budget request of $24.9 billion and an overseas contingency operations budget request of $5.1 billion.

The additional $30 billion funding request brings to $619.2 billion the amount requested by the Defense Department for fiscal year 2017, according to the DoD comptroller’s office.

Highlighting Military Support of Diplomacy

Mattis highlighted the importance of military support of diplomatic efforts, saying diplomatic solutions are the preferred options.

“Our military must ensure that the president and our diplomats always negotiate from a position of strength,” he said. “Global threats require a global response, applying the full weight of our own and our allies’ power, allies which are also increasing their defense outlays.”

Military deterrence, the defense secretary said, is only credible if military strength is sufficiently formidable that allies can confidently align with the United States in tempering adversaries’ designs.

Global Challenges Threaten National Security Interests

The global security challenges threatening national security interests are numerous, Mattis outlined to the senators.

“We see Russia and China seeking veto power over the economic, diplomatic and security decisions of nations on their periphery,” he said. “Terrorist groups murder the innocent and threaten peace in many regions and target us.”

In addition, the secretary noted North Korea’s “reckless rhetoric and provocative actions” with its nuclear activities.

“This situation calls for our department to maintain a safe and secure nuclear deterrent and a decisive conventional force that can also fight irregular enemies since our military must be able to counter all threats facing us,” Mattis said.

Funding Requires ‘Hard Choices’ with ‘Sustained Commitment’

The defense secretary acknowledged “hard choices” will have to be made in funding the department.

“With the help of the Congress, I believe we can build a force that is more lethal, without placing an undue burden on the American economy,” he said.

But, in order to do so, DoD needs a “sustained commitment from Congress in the form of additional funding and regular on-time budgets,” Mattis said.

(Follow Lisa Ferdinando on Twitter: @FerdinandoDoD)