In a conversation with Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, GM CEO Mary Barra explains how she got interested in the automobile industry.
In a conversation with Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, GM CEO Mary Barra explains how she got interested in the automobile industry.
The Tokyo Olympics are set to start in July, yet much of the country is still in a state of emergency as COVID-19 cases continue to rise.
VICTORIA — British Columbia recorded 515 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday, continuing a downward trend of infections as the vaccination rate accelerates. Health officials say in a news release that 6,020 people have active infections, 426 of whom are hospitalized, including 141 in intensive care. Two more people have died, bringing the death toll to 1,624. More than 2.2 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered, 110,516 of which are second doses. The government is also extending the provincial state of emergency through May 25, saying it would allow health and emergency management officials to keep using extraordinary powers to support the pandemic response. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix urged every adult to register amid "ample" vaccine supply. “The number of people protected with a COVID-19 vaccine is going up every day, and the number of people requiring care in hospital is trending down," the joint statement says. "This is what we want to see and what we want to keep going." Most British Columbians are doing their part, but officials continue issuing tickets to owners, operators and event organizers who don't, Mike Farnworth, minister of public safety and solicitor general, says in a statement. "By following orders for the next while and avoiding non-essential travel, you'll be doing your part to get us all through this sooner,' Farnworth says. Non-essential travel outside of a person's health authority is currently prohibited. This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 11, 2021. The Canadian Press
Revenues rose to $86.6 million, up 27.3% y-o-yComparable store sales up 24.5% y-o-yAdjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders up 50.2% and on a per diluted share basis up by 48.0% y-o-y MONTRÉAL, May 11, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- New Look Vision Group Inc. ("New Look Vision" or the "Company") (TSX: BCI), a leader in the Canadian retail optical industry with stores across Canada and in Florida, reported financial results today for the 13 week periods ended March 27, 2021 (“Q1 2021”), and provided updates on actions in response to COVID-19, store re-openings, on omnichannel and facility consolidation. This press release should be read in conjunction with the Company’s management discussion and analysis and consolidated financial statements for fiscal 2020, which are available on the Company’s website at www.newlookvision.ca/investors and under the Company's profile on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Q1 2021 highlights, excluding the impact of IFRS 16, where applicable are: Revenues increased by 27.3% compared to the first quarter of last year to reach $86.6 million as a result of comparable store sales, revenues from newly acquired stores and COVID-19 temporary store closures in March 2020 as opposed to essential services exempted lockdown in 2021.Comparable store sales were up 24.5% as a result of enhanced store operating procedures and a shift in customer behavior.Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders reached $17.1 million, a 72.2% increase over the first quarter of last year.Net earnings attributed to shareholders reached $4.2 million, a 2,195.7% increase compared to the first quarter of last year or 2,600.0% on a per diluted share basis.Adjusted net earnings attributed to shareholders increased by 352.1% compared to the first quarter of last year (358.3% on a per diluted share basis) to $8.7 million.Compared to the first quarter of last year, cash flows related to operating activities reached $9.2 million, an increase of 14.6% or 13.7% on a per diluted share basis.Strong cash position at quarter end of $57.2 million coupled with available credit of $49.4 million.Net debt was $169.1 million compared to $175.5 million as of Q1 2020.The Company actively continued to pursue its significant pipeline of acquisition opportunities in Canada and the United States and acquired 6 stores in the quarter. President & CEO's comments Antoine Amiel, the President and CEO of New Look Vision, stated that: “New Look Vision carried forward its momentum from the second half of 2020 into 2021 with comparable sales growth rising to 24.5% despite the extended COVID-19 restrictions during the quarter. We continued consolidating the fragmented Canadian retail optical market, with six stores acquired since the beginning of the year. More importantly, we’d like to take this time to thank the dedication of the team in the face of the ongoing challenging environment." COVID-19 and Store re-opening During Q1 2021, the Company faced renewed COVID-19 regional restrictions in the market in which it operates despite the Company posted another strong quarter in spite of the ongoing impact of COVID-19. In advance of reopening its stores, the Company issued stringent health and safety procedures, undertook extensive training in the form of in-store rehearsals and is providing each location with prescribed personal protection equipment. COVID-19 has significantly altered the way optical retailers operate on both brick and mortar and eCommerce levels. As consumers increasingly move online, New Look Vision’s investments in omnichannel experience and anticipation of the evolving consumer journey complements and enhances its physical retail presence. This approach increases accessibility to differentiated, customized and precise eyecare, while ensuring safety for consumers across Canada. Our central lens processing facility pivoted to begin producing safety eyewear for use in health care facilities. Status of Dividend Effective March 19, 2020, the Company's Board of Directors suspended the regular quarterly dividend and the corresponding dividend reinvestment plan until further notice, due to the pending impact of the pandemic on the Company's business and liquidity. The decision to declare a dividend is made quarterly when the financial statements for a quarter or a financial year are made available to the Board of Directors. Although there is no guarantee that a dividend will be declared in the future, New Look Vision and its predecessor, Benvest New Look Income Fund, have regularly paid a dividend or distribution since 2005 through 2019. As at April 30, 2021, New Look Vision had 15,660,199 Class A common shares issued and outstanding. Arrangement Agreement to be Acquired On March 18, 2021, the Company announced that it had entered into an arrangement agreement to be acquired by NL1 AcquireCo Inc., an entity created by a group composed of funds managed by FFL Partners, LLC, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, and the Dr. H. Doug Barnes Family. The Shareholders meeting is scheduled to be held as a virtual-only meeting conducted by live audio webcast at https://web.lumiagm.com/238565705 on May 14, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. Attachments Table A - HighlightsTable B - Impact of IFRS 16Table C - Consolidated Statement of EarningsTable D - Reconciliation of Net Earnings to Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA Attributed to ShareholdersTable E - Reconciliation of Net Earnings Attributed to Shareholders to Adjusted Net Earnings Attributed to ShareholdersTable F - Reconciliation of Free Cash Flow and Adjusted Cash Flows Related to Operating Activities a) EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders, adjusted net earnings, adjusted net earnings attributed to shareholders, free cash flow and adjusted cash flows related to operating activities are not recognized measures under IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures used by other entities.About New Look Vision Group Inc. New Look Vision is a leader in the eye care industry in Canada with a network of 408 stores, as at May 11, 2021, operating mainly under the New Look Eyewear, Vogue Optical, Greiche & Scaff, Iris, Edward Beiner banners (in the US) and The Vision Clinic in addition to, laboratory facility using state-of-the-art technologies. Tax information regarding payments to shareholders is available at www.newlookvision.ca in the Investors section. All statements other than statements of historical fact contained in this press release are forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, statements regarding the future financial position, business strategy, projected costs and plans and objectives of, or involving New Look Vision. Readers can identify many of these statements by looking for words such as “believe”, “expects”, “will”, “intends”, “projects”, “anticipates”, “estimates”, “plans”, “may”, “would” or similar words or the negative thereof. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions. Although management of New Look Vision believes that the plans, intentions or expectations represented in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, there can be no assurance that they will prove to be correct. Some of the factors which could affect future results and could cause results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements contained herein include: pending and proposed legislative or regulatory developments, competition from established competitors and new market entrants, technological change, interest rate fluctuations, general economic conditions, acceptance and demand for new products and services, and fluctuations in operating results, as well as other risks included in New Look Vision’s current Annual Information Form (AIF) which can be found at www.sedar.com. The forward-looking statements included in this press release are made as of the date hereof, and New Look Vision undertakes no obligation to publicly update such forward-looking statements to reflect new information, subsequent events or otherwise, except as provided by law. For additional information please see our website at www.newlookvision.ca. For enquiries, please contact Lise Melanson (514) 877-4119. TABLE A NEW LOOK VISION GROUP INC.HighlightsFor the years ended March 27, 2021 and March 28, 2020 In thousands of Canadian dollars, except per share amounts Mar. 27, 2021 Mar. 28, 2020 Mar. 27, 2021 (excl. IFRS 16) Mar. 28, 2020 (excl. IFRS 16) Revenues$86,583 $68,034 $86,583 $68,034 Variance %27.3 % 27.3 % Variance in comparable store sales orders(a)24.5 % 2.1 % 24.5 % 2.1 % Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders(b)$23,134 $15,403 $17,130 $9,950 Variance %50.2 % 72.2 % % of revenues26.7 % 22.6 % 19.8 % 14.6 % Per share (diluted)$1.45 $0.98 $1.08 $0.64 Variance %48.0 % 68.8 % Net earnings (loss) attributed to shareholders$3,674 ($317)$4,224 $184 Variance %1,259.0 % 2,195.7 % % of revenues4.2 % (0.5 %) 4.9 % 0.3 % Net earnings (loss) per share Per share (diluted)$0.23 ($0.02)$0.27 $0.01 Variance %1,250.0 % 2,600.0 % Adjusted net earnings attributed to shareholders(b)$8,194 $1,433 $8,744 $1,934 Variance %471.8 % 352.1 % % of revenues9.5 % 2.1 % 10.1 % 2.8 % Per share (diluted)$0.51 $0.09 $0.55 $0.12 Variance %466.7 % 358.3 % Cash flows related to operating activities$14,190 $13,477 $9,196 $8,024 Variance %5.3 % 14.6 % Per share (diluted)$0.89 $0.86 $0.58 $0.51 Variance %3.5 % 13.7 % Free cash flow(b)(c)$12,002 $9,922 $7,008 $4,469 Variance %21.0 % 56.8 % Per share (diluted)$0.75 $0.63 $0.44 $0.29 Variance %19.0 % 51.7 % Total debt(c)$226,239 $186,401 $226,239 $186,401 Net debt / Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders(b)(e)1.93 2.96 2.64 3.25 Number of stores(d)406 393 406 393 a)Comparable stores are stores which have been operating for at least 12 months. Revenues are recognized at time of delivery of goods to customers, however management measures the comparable store performance on the basis of sales orders, whether delivered or not.b)Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders, adjusted net earnings attributed to shareholders, free cash flow and comparable store sales orders are not recognized measures under IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures used by other entities. Refer to Table D and Table E for the reconciliations of these measures to net earnings, and to Table F for the reconciliation of cash flows.c)Free cash flow is defined as operating cash flows less acquisitions of property, plant and equipment.d)Total debt is defined as long-term debt excluding IFRS 16 lease liabilities.e)Net debt is defined as total debt less cash. Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders represents the amount over the last four rolling quarters.f)The increase in the number of stores in the last twelve months reflects the acquisition of 25 stores net of 1 planned merger, 9 planned closures and the sale of one clinic. TABLE B NEW LOOK VISION GROUP INC.Impact of IFRS 16For the years ended March 27, 2021 and March 28, 2020 In thousands of Canadian dollars, except per share amounts The Company has adopted IFRS 16 Leases effective Q1 2020. This standard replaces IAS 17 Leases. The Company has applied a modified retrospective approach; the operating results of previous fiscal periods have not been restated. The adoption of this standard has impacted the Company’s financial results since 2020. Certain occupancy-related expenses previously recorded under the caption other operating expenses are now recorded as depreciation and interest expense. This change has resulted in a reduction to Other operating expenses with a corresponding increase in EBITDA when compared to the same metrics under IAS 17. Depreciation and financial expenses have increased as a result of the application of the standard. The impact of IFRS 16 on the key metrics in the first quarters ended March 27, 2021 and March 28, 2020 are summarized in the table below: 2021 Impact of IFRS 16 2021 (excl. IFRS 16)2020 Impact of IFRS 162020(excl. IFRS 16)Change (excl. IFRS 16) $ $ $ $ $ $ $ Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders(a)$23,134 ($6,004)$17,130 $15,403 ($5,453)$9,950 $7,180 % of revenues26.7 % (6.9 %)19.8 % 22.6 % (8.0 %)14.6 % 5.2 % Per share (diluted)$1.45 $(0.37)$1.08 $0.98 $(0.35)$0.63 $0.45 Net earnings (loss) attributed to shareholders$3,674 $550 $4,224 ($317)$501 $184 $4,040 % of revenues4.2 % 0.6 % 4.9 % (0.5 %)0.7 % 0.2 % 4.7 % Per share (diluted)$0.23 $0.04 $0.27 $(0.02)$0.03 $0.01 $0.26 Adjusted net earnings attributed to shareholders(a)$8,194 $550 $8,744 $1,433 $501 $1,934 $6,810 % of revenues9.5 % 0.6 % 10.1 % 2.1 % 0.7 % 2.8 % 7.3 % Per share (diluted)$0.51 $0.03 $0.55 $0.09 $0.03 $0.12 $0.43 Cash flows related to operating activities$14,190 ($4,994)$9,196 $13,477 ($5,453)$8,024 $1,172 Per share (diluted)$0.89 $(0.31)$0.58 $0.86 $(0.35)$0.51 $0.07 Free cash flow(a)$12,002 ($4,994)$7,008 $9,922 ($5,453)$4,469 $2,539 Per share (diluted)$0.75 ($0.31)$0.44 $0.63 ($0.35)$0.28 $0.16 a) Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders, adjusted net earnings attributed to shareholders and free cash flow are not recognized measures under IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures used by other entities. Refer to Table D and Table E for the reconciliations of these measures to net earnings, and to Table F for the reconciliation of cash flows. TABLE C NEW LOOK VISION GROUP INC.Consolidated Statement of EarningsFor the years ended March 27, 2021 and March 28, 2020 In thousands of Canadian dollars, except per share amounts 2021 2020 $ $ Revenues86,583 68,034 Materials consumed19,747 15,638 Employee remuneration expenses29,317 23,617 Other operating expenses18,402 14,300 Earnings before depreciation, amortization, loss on disposal, financial expenses, and income from investments in joint ventures and associates19,117 14,479 Depreciation, amortization and loss on disposal10,683 9,313 Financial expenses, net of interest revenue3,892 5,629 Earnings (loss) before income from investments in joint ventures and associates and income taxes4,542 (463)Income from investments in joint ventures and associates898 185 Earnings (loss) before income taxes5,440 (278)Income taxes Current1,063 972 Deferred415 (978)Total income taxes1,478 (6)Net earnings (loss)3,962 (272)Net earnings (loss) attributed to: Non-controlling interest288 45 Shareholders of New Look Vision3,674 (317) 3,962 (272)Net earnings (loss) per share Basic0.23 (0.02)Diluted0.23 (0.02) TABLE D NEW LOOK VISION GROUP INC.Reconciliation of Net Earnings to Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA Attributed to ShareholdersFor the years ended March 27, 2021 and March 28, 2020 In thousands of Canadian dollars, except per share amounts 202120202021 (excl. IFRS 16)2020 (excl. IFRS 16) $ $ $ $ Net earnings (loss)3,962 (272)4,532 229 Depreciation, amortization and loss on disposal10,683 9,313 5,570 4,603 Financial expenses, net of interest revenue3,892 5,629 2,322 4,195 Income taxes1,478 (6)1,681 184 EBITDA(a)20,015 14,664 14,105 9,211 Equity-based compensation(b)414 168 414 168 Acquisition-related costs(c)701 432 701 432 Other non-comparable items(d)2,362 170 2,362 170 Adjusted EBITDA(a)23,492 15,434 17,582 9,981 Variance in $8,058 7,601 Variance in %52.2 % 76.2 % % of revenues27.1 % 22.7 % 20.3 % 14.7 % Per share (basic)1.50 0.99 1.12 0.64 Per share (diluted)1.48 0.99 1.10 0.64 The following table represents the adjusted EBITDA available to New Look Vision shareholders, which takes into consideration the investments in joint ventures and associates. 202120202021 (excl. IFRS 16)2020 (excl. IFRS 16) $ $ $ $ Adjusted EBITDA(a)23,492 15,434 17,582 9,981 Income from investments in joint ventures and associates(898)(185)(921)(185)EBITDA from investments in joint ventures and associates1,313 397 1,104 397 EBITDA attributed to non-controlling interest(773)(243)(635)(243)Adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders(a)23,134 15,403 17,130 9,950 EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders are not recognized measures under IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures used by other entities. New Look Vision believes that EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders are useful financial metrics as they assist in determining the ability to generate cash from operations. Investors should be cautioned that EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA attributed to shareholders should not be considered as an alternative to net earnings or cash flows as determined under IFRS.Equity-based compensation represents the fair value of New Look Vision stock options vested in the period.Acquisition-related costs are composed of wages and professional fees specifically incurred in the business acquisition process, whether an acquisition is completed or not.Other non-comparable items include one-time expenses (income) connected with restructuring and transition related matters. TABLE E NEW LOOK VISION GROUP INC.Reconciliation of Net Earnings Attributed to Shareholders to Adjusted Net Earnings Attributed to ShareholdersFor the years ended March 27, 2021 and March 28, 2020 In thousands of Canadian dollars, except per share amounts 2021 20202021 (excl. IFRS 16)2020 (excl. IFRS 16) $ $ $ $ Net earnings (loss) attributed to shareholders3,674 (317)4,224 184 Amortization of acquired intangibles2,257 1,648 2,257 1,648 Acquisition-related costs701 432 701 432 Equity-based compensation414 168 414 168 Other non-comparable items2,362 170 2,362 170 Related income taxes(1,214)(668)(1,214)(668)Adjusted net earnings attributed to shareholders(a)8,194 1,433 8,744 1,934 Variance in $6,761 6,810 Variance in %471.8 % 352.1 % % of revenues9.5 % 2.1 % 10.1 % 2.8 % Per share amount Basic0.52 0.09 0.56 0.12 Diluted0.51 0.09 0.55 0.12 a) Adjusted net earnings attributed to shareholders are not a recognized measure under IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures used by other entities. New Look Vision believes that this disclosure provides useful information as it allows the comparison of net results excluding amortization of acquired intangibles, acquisition-related costs, equity-based compensation, other non-comparable items and related income taxes, which may vary significantly from quarter to quarter. Investors should be cautioned that adjusted net earnings should not be considered as an alternative to net earnings as determined under IFRS. TABLE F NEW LOOK VISION GROUP INC.Reconciliation of Free Cash Flow and Adjusted Cash Flows Related to Operating ActivitiesFor the years ended March 27, 2021 and March 28, 2020 In thousands of Canadian dollars, except per share amounts 202120202021 (excl. IFRS 16)2020 (excl. IFRS 16) $ $ $ $ Earnings (loss) before income taxes5,440 (278)6,213 413 Adjustments: Depreciation, amortization and loss on disposal10,683 9,313 5,570 4,603 Equity-based compensation414 168 414 168 Financial expenses4,070 5,772 2,500 4,338 Interest revenue(178)(143)(178)(143)Other528 (712)528 (712)Income from investments in joint ventures and associates(898)(185)(921)(185)Income taxes paid(1,575)(1,173)(1,575)(1,173)Cash flows related to operating activities, before changes in working capital items18,484 12,762 12,551 7,309 Changes in working capital items(4,294)715 (3,355)715 Cash flows related to operating activities14,190 13,477 9,196 8,024 Free cash flow 202120202021 (excl. IFRS 16)2020 (excl. IFRS 16) $ $ $ $ Cash flows related to operating activities14,190 13,477 9,196 8,024 Acquisitions of property, plant and equipment(2,188)(3,555)(2,188)(3,555)Free cash flow(a)12,002 9,922 7,008 4,469 a)Free cash flow is not a recognized measure under IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures used by other entities. New Look Vision believes that this disclosure provides useful information as it provides insight on operating cash flows available after considering necessary capital investments. Investors should be cautioned that free cash flow should not be considered as an alternative to cash flows related to operating activities as determined under IFRS. Adjusted cash flows related to operating activities 202120202021 (excl. IFRS 16)2020 (excl. IFRS 16) $ $ $ $ Cash flows related to operating activities14,190 13,477 9,196 8,024 Income taxes paid1,575 (1,173)1,575 (1,173)Changes in working capital items4,294 (715)3,355 (715)Acquisition-related costs701 432 701 432 Other non-comparable items2,362 170 2,362 170 Adjusted cash flows related to operating activities(a)23,122 12,191 17,189 6,738 a)Adjusted cash flows related to operating activities are not a recognized measure under IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures used by other entities. New Look Vision believes that this disclosure provides useful information as it allows the comparison of net operating cash flows excluding income taxes paid, changes in working capital items, acquisition-related costs and other non-comparable items, which may vary significantly from quarter to quarter. Certain occupancy-related expenses previously recorded in the cash flows related to operating activities are now presented in the cash flows related to financing activities. Investors should be cautioned that adjusted cash flows related to operating activities should not be considered as an alternative to cash flows related to operating activities as determined under IFRS.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Norman Lloyd, whose role as kindly Dr. Daniel Auschlander on TV’s “St. Elsewhere” was a single chapter in a distinguished stage and screen career that put him in the company of Orson Welles, Alfred Hitchcock, Charlie Chaplin and other greats, has died. He was 106. Lloyd's son, Michael Lloyd, said his father died Tuesday at his home in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles. His credits stretch from the earliest known U.S. TV drama, 1939′s “On the Streets of New York” on the nascent NBC network, to 21st-century projects including “Modern Family” and “The Practice.” “If modern film history has a voice, it is Norman Lloyd’s,” reviewer Kenneth Turan wrote in the Los Angeles Times in 2012 after Lloyd regaled a Cannes Film Festival crowd with anecdotes about rarified friends and colleagues including Charlie Chaplin and Jean Renoir. The wiry, 5-foot-5 Lloyd, whose energy was boundless off-screen as well, continued to play tennis into his 90s. In 2015, he appeared in the Amy Schumer comedy “Trainwreck.” His most notable film part was as the villain who plummets off the Statue of Liberty in 1942′s “Saboteur,” directed by Hitchcock, who also cast Lloyd in the classic thriller 1945’s “Spellbound.” His other movie credits include Jean Renoir’s “The Southerner,” Charlie Chaplin’s “Limelight,” “Dead Poets Society” with Robin Williams, “In Her Shoes” with Cameron Diaz and “Gangs of New York” with Daniel Day-Lewis. On Broadway, Lloyd played the Fool opposite Louis Calhern’s King Lear in 1950, co-starred with Jessica Tandy in the comedy “Madam, Will You Walk” and directed Jerry Stiller in “The Taming of the Shrew” in 1957. He was also part of Welles’ 1937 modern-dress fascist-era production of “Julius Caesar” that has gone down in history as one of the landmark stage pieces in the American theater. Norman played the small but key role of Cinna the Poet, opposite Welles’ Brutus. Stage magazine put Welles on its June cover and proclaimed the production “one of the most exciting dramatic events of our time.” Born Nov. 8, 1914, in Jersey City, New Jersey, Lloyd jumped into acting as a youngster in the 1920s. On stage, he was a regular with Welles’ Mercury Theater, the groundbreaking 1930s troupe that also featured Joseph Cotton and Agnes Moorehead and formed the basis of Welles’ classic film debut, “Citizen Kane.” His other plays included “Crime,” directed by Elia Kazan and featuring his future wife, Peggy Craven. The couple were married for 75 years, until Peggy Lloyd’s death in 2011 at age 98. TV viewers knew him best as the memorable calm center of St. Eligius hospital on the 1982-99 NBC drama series “St. Elsewhere.” His Dr. Daniel Auschlander was originally only supposed to appear in a few episodes, but Lloyd became a series regular and stayed with the show for the entire run. The series would inspire such shows as “E.R.” and “Grey’s Anatomy.” Lloyd worked steadily as a TV actor and director in the early 1950s, but the political liberal found his career in jeopardy during the Hollywood blacklist period aimed at communists or their sympathizers. In 1957, Hitchcock came to his rescue, Lloyd told the Los Angeles Times in 2014. When the famed director sought to hire Lloyd as associate producer on his series “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” but was told “There is a problem with Norman Lloyd,” Hitchcock didn’t back down, Lloyd recalled. “He said three words: ‘I want him,’” Lloyd said. He was immediately hired and eventually worked as executive producer on another series, “The Alfred Hitchcock Hour.” His other TV credits include roles in “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” “Murder, She Wrote,” “The Paper Chase,” “Quincy M.E.,” “Kojak” and “The Practice.” In 2014, in recognition of his 82 years in show business, and reaching the age of 100, the Los Angeles City Council proclaimed that his birthday of Nov. 8, would be honored as “Norman Lloyd Day.” ____ Kennedy reported from New York. AP Entertainment Writer Jonathan Landrum Jr. contributed to this report. Lynn Elber And Mark Kennedy, The Associated Press
Glancy Prongay & Murray LLP ("GPM"), a leading national shareholder rights law firm, today announced that it has commenced an investigation on behalf of Skillz Inc. f/k/a Flying Eagle Acquisition Corp. ("Skillz" or the "Company") (NYSE: SKLZ) investors concerning the Company’s possible violations of the federal securities laws.
On May 11, Biolyse, a St. Catharines-based manufacturer of injectable medicines, announced an agreement with the Bolivian government to produce and export COVID-19 vaccines, if permitted by the Government of Canada. Currently, there are over 317,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Bolivia, a country that has a total population of 11 million people. John R. Fulton, spokesperson for Biolyse, said that the St. Catharines facility has been trying for over a two months to get the government to start the process of achieving compulsory or voluntary licensing status, and to obtain the intellectual property waiver to produce the COVID-19 vaccine. Per Fulton, this collaboration with the government of Bolivia should satisfy the requirements for licensing and acquiring of the property waiver as laid out by the Canadian Access to Medicines Regime (CAMR). CAMR is the framework which allows Canadian companies to facilitate patent waivers for vaccines. It does so by enacting the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement, which allows companies to bypass or use patents of other companies, in special circumstances, such as a pandemic. “This is a path that we are taking with commitment to the right to life,” said Bolivia’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Rogelio Mayta, through an interpreter. “We need to unite to find ways to overcome the pandemic.” “If we have to do compulsory licences, let’s do it. If we have to change the rules of the (World Trade Organization) WTO, let’s do it. If we have to free the patents and transfer technology, then let’s do it,” added Mayta. “This is one small step in the process of granting a compulsory licence for a COVID-19 vaccine, and one giant step toward international co-operation to vaccinate the global south,” said Fulton. The facility, which normally produces injectable cancer drugs, already has all the required equipment and Fulton said can be fully operational for COVID-19 vaccine production in four to six months. Alone, Biolyse would produce 20 million doses yearly, but when partnered with Pnuvax and other medicine production companies in Canada, the companies could produce well over 50 million in a year. Gloria Ghéquière, an adviser of international trade, from the office of European Union member Kathleen Van Brempt, provided insight the announcement. “It shows how much we need these types of solutions,” she said, when speaking on the collaboration between Biolyse and the Bolivian government. “From a policy point of view, I'm just puzzled at how slow the bureaucratic process goes of allowing generic manufacturing.” “It also shows that the rules are not fit for purpose when it comes to access to vaccines during a pandemic,” Ghéquière said. She said that she believes that there should be free trade on vaccines, and that it is “unethical” for governments to prevent smaller companies from aiding in production. She said that collaborations of these sorts should be more commonplace, as the vaccine production supply chain is already an international process, and not sharing vaccines with countries who supply vials, for example, could remove incentive for production and international collaboration in general. Earlier this year, Fulton said Biolyse contacted Johnson & Johnson for a licence transfer request to produce the vaccine, but the company refused. Now that the company has a importer partnering country, he said the next step would be to contact Johnson & Johnson again, and the Government of Canada, and await patent and licensing approval, respectively. Moosa Imran, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Grimsby Lincoln News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans in the U.S. Senate mounted an aggressive case Tuesday against Democrats' sweeping election and voter-access legislation, pushing to roll back proposals for automatic registration, 24-hour ballot drop boxes and other changes in an increasingly charged national debate. The legislation, a top priority of Democrats in the aftermath of the divisive 2020 election, would bring about the largest overhaul of U.S. voting in a generation, touching nearly every aspect of the electoral process. It would remove hurdles to voting erected in the name of election security and curtail the influence of big money in politics. At the end of a long, contentious day, the Rules Committee deadlocked 9-9 over advancing the bill to the full Senate in its current form. That leaves it to Democratic leader Chuck Schumer to try to invoke a special process to force the legislation ahead. Though it is federal legislation, Republicans are fighting a national campaign against it rooted in state battles to restrict new ways of voting that have unfolded during the pandemic. Just Tuesday, the Arizona Legislature sent the governor a bill that would make it easier to purge infrequent voters from a list of those who automatically get mail-in ballots, the latest battleground state to push through changes likely to take months or years to finally settle in court. GOP Senate leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is so determined to stop the legislation that he made a rare appearance at Tuesday's Rules Committee session in Washington. McConnell and other Republicans on the panel argued for a wave of amendments against key sections of the bill, which Democrats turned aside in an hours-long voting session. McConnell declared, “Our democracy is not in crisis" and said he wasn’t about to cede control of elections to new laws “under the false pretense of saving it.” With Democrats holding the White House and narrow control of Congress, they see the legislation as crucial — perhaps their best chance to counter efforts by state-level Republicans who have seized on former President Donald Trump’s false claims about the 2020 election to push ballot restrictions. Yet even as they tout the measure, Democrats find themselves playing defense, unable to push their legislative response to President Joe Biden’s desk. While the elections overhaul has passed the House, there’s no clear path forward in the Senate, which is split 50-50. Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona have both said they oppose making changes to the Senate’s filibuster rules, which would be needed to maneuver the bill past unified Republican opposition. Trump’s election claims, which have only increased in the six months since his defeat, were rejected by Republican as well as Democratic election officials in state after state, by U.S. cybersecurity officials and by courts up to the U.S. Supreme Court. And his attorney general said there was no evidence of fraud that could change the election outcome. “President Trump told a big lie, one of the biggest ever told. We all know that. Every single person in this room knows that,” Sen. Schumer, the Democratic majority leader, said at the hearing. "And it’s taking root, this big lie is taking root in our country, not just in the minds of his voters but in the laws of the land.” The laws emerging around the country “are about one thing and one thing alone: making it harder for Americans to vote," he said. The Democrats' measure would not stop every bill being passed in Republican states across the country. But it would make it difficult, if not impossible, for states to press ahead with many of the new rules. That's because the legislation would create nationwide rules for early voting and no-excuse absentee voting, standardizing the process. Currently, six states don’t offer early, in-person voting and a third of states still require an excuse — such as illness or planning to be away from home on Election Day — to vote by mail, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Republicans walked a narrow line during much of the discussion on Tuesday, criticizing congressional Democrats for seeking to change voting rules while at the same time offering robust support for GOP state lawmakers who are doing the same. The GOP senators cited high voter turnout in last year’s presidential election during the pandemic as proof that the system worked without the Democrats' changes and voters were not disenfranchised. But they offered little justification for GOP efforts at the state level to impose new limits on voting, particularly mail voting. Republicans also attacked provisions that would create a new public financing system for political campaigns and strengthen the enforcement capabilities of the federal agency tasked with policing elections, as well as dozens of other proposals that would dictate how states conduct their elections. “This bill doesn’t protect voting rights, it steals voting rights from the American people,” said Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. While Republicans argue the new state rules are needed to secure the vote, critics warn the states are seeking to reduce voter access, particularly for Black voters, who are a crucial part of the Democratic Party base. That could usher in a new Jim Crow era for the 21st century, they warn. “These bills moving in state capitals across America are not empty threats, they are real efforts to stop people from voting,” said Sen. Amy Klobuchar, a Minnesota Democrat and chairwoman of the Senate Rules Committee. Yet moderate members of the Democratic caucus — not just Republicans — pose a sizable obstacle to the bill becoming law. Manchin has called for any elections overhaul to be done on a bipartisan basis, despite Republican insistence that no changes are necessary. Other Democrats want to pare back the bill to core voting protections to try to put Republicans on the spot. Democrats have been making their own changes to draw more support. In the latest version of the legislation, states would have more time and flexibility to put new federal rules in place. Some election officials had complained of unrealistic timelines, increased costs and onerous requirements. States would have more time to launch same-day voter registration at polling places and to comply with new voting system requirements. They would also be able to apply for an extension if they were unable to meet the deadline for automatic voter registration. Officials have said these are complex processes that require equipment changes or upgrades that will take time. Democrats are also dropping a requirement that local election offices provide self-sealing envelopes with mail ballots and cover the costs of return postage. They plan to require the U.S. Postal Service to carry mail ballots and ballot request forms free of charge, with the federal government picking up the tab. But Republicans argue the changes would do little to limit what they view as unwarranted federal intrusions into local elections. “Giving states more time to implement bad policy doesn’t make the policy less bad,” said Sen Roy Blunt of Missouri, the ranking minority member on the committee. “I think the federal government taking over elections is the wrong thing to do." ___ Cassidy reported from Atlanta. Brian Slodysko And Christina A. Cassidy, The Associated Press
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — New York Yankees third base coach Phil Nevin is away from the team after a positive COVID-19 test. New York announced the positive test for Nevin, who is fully vaccinated, about two hours before the scheduled first pitch Tuesday night at Tampa Bay. Nevin is under quarantine protocol in nearby Tampa. Under Major League Baseball’s guidance and advice, and with its assistance, additional testing and contact tracing are ongoing. “He's doing OK,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. Several other coaches were expected to miss the game due to contact tracing, but Boone said the contact tracing did not include any players. "We have a few other staff, coaches that are still pending and we don’t have confirmation on," Boone said before the game. “There's a few people that we sent home just as a precaution to make sure. We're doing all we can to stay healthy. A little bit of a skeleton staff but nothing we can't handle.” Bench coach Carlos Mendoza replaced Nevin as third base coach, and minor league coordinator Mario Garza filled in as first base coach for Reggie Willits. Pitching coach Matt Blake was not visible in the bullpen area when starting pitcher Jordan Montgomery warmed up before the game. The Yankees on April 30 were able to relax MLB protocols after reaching an 85% vaccination rate among players and staff such as managers, coaches and athletic trainers. The team spoke with MLB officials about the situation. “We'll have to definitely evaluate and make sure we're doing everything we possibly can to prevent things from happening,” Boone said. Yankees ace Gerrit Cole, who resumed wearing a mask during a pregame zoom session Tuesday, said the players were comfortable in playing the game. “As a whole, we're going to press on,” Cole said. “I don't think this is going to be over for a few years. I think we've going to have to be dealing with this kind of thing for a while. And every time these things come up, we're going to have to adapt and learn, just as a species.” Cole planned to wear a mask in the dugout during Tuesday night’s game. “We've all learned that playing through a pandemic last year, nothing surprises you, but it catches you off guard a little bit,” Boone said. “Playing the 2020 season, going through spring training, playing this year and not having an issue, it still hits you, it still stops you in your tracks. Without question we're certainly more equipped to deal with it." Notes: CF Aaron Hicks was a late scratch with a bruised right shin. He fouled a ball off it in the eighth inning of Sunday's game against Washington. ... Aaron Judge started in right field after being rested Sunday and hit a first-pitch homer in the first inning. He has been dealing with Boone is calling “lower leg stuff.” ... 3B Gio Urshela (sore left knee) was back in the lineup for the first time since leaving Thursday's game against Houston. More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports The Associated Press
The future of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has been in question for months, ever since the Los Angeles Times exposed its loose financial practices and lack of diversity. But with NBC’s announcement on Monday that it would not broadcast the Golden Globes in 2022, it began to seem that the HFPA might not survive […]
FBI agents were at a large Hindu temple in New Jersey on Tuesday as a new lawsuit claimed it was built by workers from marginalized communities in India who were lured to the U.S. and forced to work long hours for just a few dollars per day. The lawsuit accuses the leaders of the Hindu organization known as Bochasanwasi Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha, or BAPS, of human trafficking and wage law violations. An FBI spokesperson confirmed that agents were at the temple on “court-authorized law enforcement activity,” but wouldn't elaborate. One of the attorneys who filed the suit said some workers had been removed from the site Tuesday. The lawsuit says more than 200 workers — many or all of whom don't speak English — were coerced into signing employment agreements in India. They traveled to New Jersey under R-1 visas, which are meant for “those who minister, or work in religious vocations or occupations,” according to the lawsuit. When they arrived, the lawsuit says, their passports were taken away and they were forced to work at the temple from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. with few days off, for about $450 per month a rate that the suit said came out to around $1.20 per hour. Of that, the workers allegedly only received $50 in cash per month, with the rest deposited into their accounts in India. According to the lawsuit, the exploited workers were Dalits — members of the lowest step of South Asia's caste hierarchy. An attorney representing several of the workers, Daniel Werner, called it “shocking that this happens in our backyard.” “It is even more disturbing that it has gone on for years in New Jersey behind the temple’s walls,” Werner, of Decatur, Georgia, said Tuesday outside the gates of the complex. He said some workers were on the site for a year, two years or even longer, and were not allowed to leave unless accompanied by somebody from BAPS.” BAPS CEO Kanu Patel, who is named as a defendant in the lawsuit, told The New York Times, “I respectfully disagree with the wage claim.” A spokesperson for the organization, Matthew Frankel, told The Associated Press that BAPS was first made aware of the accusations early Tuesday morning. “We are taking them very seriously and thoroughly reviewing the issues raised,” he said. The ornate temple, known as a mandir, is made of Italian and Indian marble, and sits on 162 acres (65 hectares) in Robbinsville, outside Trenton. The lawsuit said workers lived in a fenced-in compound where their movements were monitored by cameras and guards. They were told that if they left, police would arrest them because they didn't have their passports, the suit said. The lawsuit names Patel and several individuals described as having supervised the workers. It seeks unpaid wages and unspecified compensatory and punitive damages. D.B. Sagar, president of the Washington-based International Commission for Dalit Rights, told The Associated Press that Dalits are an easy target for exploitation because they’re the poorest people in India. “They need something to survive, to protect their family,” he said, adding that if the allegations in the lawsuit are true, they amount to “modern-day slavery.” BAPS is a global sect of Hinduism founded in the early 20th century and aims to “preserve Indian culture and the Hindu ideals of faith, unity, and selfless service,” according to its website. The organization says it has built more than 1,100 mandirs — often large complexes that essentially function as community centers. BAPS is known for community service and philanthropy, taking an active role in the diaspora’s initiative to help India amid the current COVID-19 surge. But it also is linked to contentious issues in India, publicly supporting and funding the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, built on the site of a mosque demolished by Hindu nationalists. India’s right-wing prime minister, Narendra Modi, has close ties to the organization and one of its transformative leaders, Pramukh Swami Maharaj, who died in 2016. The ongoing construction on the mandir in Robbinsville began in 2010, and the site has caught the attention of state and federal authorities in recent years. Last month, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development issued a stop-work order against a Newark-based construction company whose projects included the BAPS temple in Robbinsville. An investigation found the company, Cunha Construction, was paying workers in cash off the books and didn’t have workers’ compensation insurance, according to a release. A phone listed for the company rang unanswered Tuesday. It’s not named in the lawsuit. In 2017, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration investigated after a Pennsylvania teenager was killed in a fall while volunteering at the site. According to the website for the Robbinsville mandir, its construction “is the epitome of volunteerism.” “Volunteers of all ages have devoted their time and resources from the beginning: assisting in the construction work, cleaning up around the site, preparing food for all the artisans on a daily basis and helping with other tasks,” the website says. “A total of 4.7 million man hours were required by craftsman and volunteers to complete the Mandir.” ___ Associated Press writer Mike Catalini contributed to this report. David Porter And Mallika Sen, The Associated Press
Shares of Palantir Technologies (NYSE: PLTR) jumped 9.4% Tuesday after the data analytics specialist delivered solid first-quarter results. The software company enjoyed strong gains across both its U.S. government and commercial businesses, which saw revenue rise 83% and 72%, respectively. Investors bid up Palantir Technologies' stock price Tuesday.
OTTAWA — Advocates are calling on the federal government and the City of Vancouver to halt the march toward possible drug decriminalization in the city, saying the process excludes users and demands a do-over. In a letter to federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu and the Vancouver and British Columbia working groups on decriminalization, a coalition of 15 organizations said the current proposal must be scrapped immediately or risks reproducing the harms of prohibition. "We cannot abide by the phony 'Vancouver Model' of decriminalization and refuse to be tokenized in petty political bids," reads the letter from groups representing users. "We want decriminalization — but on our terms, not the terms of the police and politicians." The group says police have an oversized role in developing the so-called Vancouver model and that the thresholds that define simple possession are too low in the latest submission to Ottawa. The letter comes after the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users' (VANDU) board of directors resigned from the city's decriminalization working group Monday. A morning meeting between the working group and Health Canada officials confirmed that the board's input "is not being taken seriously," VANDU said in a statement. The open letter also comes ahead of a planned submission on decriminalization to the federal Health Department this Friday. Health Canada is currently working with Vancouver on the city's request for exemption from criminal provisions on simple possession of small amounts of drugs. Vancouver has been the epicentre of an opioid crisis that saw B.C. record 1,176 illicit drug overdose deaths in 2020 — the highest ever in a single year — and more than 7,000 deaths since a public health emergency was declared in April 2016. In an emailed statement, Hajdu stressed that "substance use is a health issue, not a moral one." Police are among the "relevant stakeholders," along with Vancouver Coastal Health, the city and the province, she said. The Vancouver Police Department noted it is part of the working group "that has provided input throughout this process," but directed further questions to city hall. The city did not respond Tuesday to requests for comment on the coalition's letter. The group is demanding the Vancouver Police Department take a backseat in discussions and asking the city to raise the proposed drug thresholds from a supposed three-day supply. "The police and city officials and health officials go off into a room and prepare something and then they show it to us as they’re about to send it to Health Canada," said VANDU representative Garth Mullins in a news conference Tuesday. "That is a focus group ... That is not co-design," he said. "That is a decriminalization regime designed by and for police, and it is a Trojan horse to recriminalize us on the other side of its implementation." Caitlin Shane, a lawyer at the Vancouver-based Pivot Legal Society, worries that a defective decriminalization model could set a harmful precedent for jurisdictions across the country. Lower thresholds on what constitutes simple possession — rather than possession for the purpose of trafficking — mean users cannot buy multiple days’ supply in one purchase without violating the Criminal Code. It could also necessitate more frequent interaction with dealers, along with the attendant danger, Shane said. "These thresholds mean that we are actually incentivizing people to engage with that criminal system more frequently because they are unable to purchase in larger amounts." Drug users also face greater dangers as the third wave of COVID-19 forces harm reduction sites and outreach programs to curtail their services, leaving at-risk communities out in the cold. In B.C., deaths linked to the synthetic opioid fentanyl had been on the decline for more than a year until April 2020, when monthly numbers routinely began to double those of 2019. Opioid-related deaths countrywide could climb as high as 2,000 per quarter in the first half of 2021, far surpassing the peak of nearly 1,200 in the last three months of 2018, according to modelling from the Public Health Agency of Canada. Canada's ongoing border restrictions have disrupted the flow of illicit drugs, and dealers looking to stretch their limited supplies are more apt to add potentially toxic adulterants. Benzodiazepines have been detected in drugs circulating in parts of several provinces. Users can be difficult to rouse and slow to respond to naloxone — the drug that reverses opioid overdoses — and more likely to overdose when fentanyl or other opioids are also in the mix. Richard Elliott, executive director of the HIV Legal Network, said decriminalization helps to remove stigma and barriers to services. But safe supply and treatment programs also make up a key part of the equation, "especially if people's use patterns are being affected by restrictions and by changes in the drug market," he said in an interview. The B.C. government has made several commitments to helping drug users, with some supervised consumption sites in the province, as well as overdose prevention sites in many cities. Hajdu said the federal government's focus on harm reduction includes its support for the 2017 Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act, which exempts people from charges after they call 911 during an overdose. The Liberal government has also funded programs that seek to divert users from the criminal justice system and enhance access to safe consumption sites and treatment options, she noted. Ottawa's work on the decriminalization file is "guided by the health needs of people who use substances" as well as recommendations from the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police and federal prosecutors, she added. B.C. is preparing its own provincewide application for exclusion from the rules around simple possession — illegal under the Criminal Code, but open to exemption along with other provisions of the Controlled Drugs and Substances "if, in the opinion of the minister, the exemption is ... in the public interest," the legislation reads. "Our approach will seek input from many different groups including people with lived/living experience, frontline service workers and health care professionals, and chiefs of police," the B.C. Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions said in an email. This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 11, 2021. Christopher Reynolds, The Canadian Press
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Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez were one of the most talked about couples in Hollywood during the early 2000s.
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Taylor Swift told up-and-coming musicians there is “no career path that comes free of negativity” in a Brit Awards acceptance speech. The US singer was presented with the global icon award during Tuesday’s ceremony.
SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazil's government is about to start delivering COVID-19 vaccines to athletes, coaches, referees and accredited media headed for the Olympics and Paralympic Games in Tokyo. Health Minister Marcelo Queiroga told a news conference Tuesday that Brazil will use 4,050 doses of the Pfizer shot and another 8,000 from Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac. “We will vaccinate our Olympic athletes and coaches to ensure they can perform very well in their capacities and bring many medals,” Queiroga said. He estimates 1,814 people will be vaccinated to go to Japan, with any remaining doses to be given to the public health care system. The athlete vaccination program will begin Wednesday and will be conducted in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Fortaleza. It follows similar measures being undertaken by countries including the United States, Britain and Australia. The Olympic Games, which have already been delayed 12 months because of the coronavirus pandemic, are scheduled to open July 23. Brazil has attributed more than 420,000 deaths to COVID-19, a toll second only to the United States. A more contagious variant of the disease caused the country's health care system to near collapse in March and April, but the number of hospitalizations and deaths have decreased in May. Brazil's vaccination rollout has been slow, and has been targeted at people aged 60 and over. President Jair Bolsonaro has refused to take any vaccines and is under investigation in a Senate inquiry for his administration's handling of the pandemic. ___ More AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/olympic-games and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports Mauricio Savarese, The Associated Press
Logan Webb leads Giants to a 4-2 win over the Rangers
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Turns out milkshakes do bring all the boys to the yard — or at least an IHOP parking lot.