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Researchers find second warship from WWII Battle of Midway



A crew of deep-sea explorers and historians looking for lost World War II warships have found a second Japanese aircraft carrier that went down in the historic Battle of Midway.

Vulcan Inc.’s director of undersea operations Rob Kraft and Naval History and Heritage Command historian Frank Thompson reviewed high frequency sonar images of the warship Sunday and say that it’s dimensions and location mean it has to be the carrier Akagi.

The Akagi was found in the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument resting in nearly 18,000 feet (5,490 metres) of water more than 1,300 miles (2,090 kilometres) northwest of Pearl Harbor.

The researchers used an autonomous underwater vehicle, or AUV, equipped with sonar to find the ship. The vehicle had been out overnight collecting data, and the image of a warship appeared in the first set of readings Sunday morning.

The first scan used low-resolution sonar, so the crew sent their AUV back to get higher-quality images.

“I’m sure of what we’re seeing here, the dimensions that we’re able to derive from this image (are) conclusive,” Kraft said. “It can be none other than Akagi.”

The vessel is sitting among a pile of debris and the ground around the warship is clearly disturbed by the impact of it hitting the seafloor.

“She’s sitting upright on her keel, we can see the bow, we can see the stern clearly, you can see some of the gun emplacements on there, you can see that some of the flight deck is also torn up and missing so you can actually look right into where the flight deck would be,” said Kraft.

The find comes on the heels of the discovery of another Japanese carrier, the Kaga, last week.

“We read about the battles, we know what happened. But when you see these wrecks on the bottom of the ocean and everything, you kind of get a feel for what the real price is for war,” said Frank Thompson, a historian with the Naval History and Heritage Command in Washington, D.C., who is onboard the Petrel. “You see the damage these things took, and it’s humbling to watch some of the video of these vessels because they’re war graves.”

Until now, only one of the seven ships that went down in the June 1942 air and sea battle — five Japanese vessels and two American — had been located.

The crew of the research vessel Petrel is hoping to find and survey all lost ships from the 1942 Battle of Midway, which historians consider a pivotal fight for the U.S. in the Pacific during WWII.

The battle was fought between American and Japanese aircraft carriers and warplanes about 200 miles (320 kilometres) off Midway Atoll, a former military installation that the Japanese hoped to capture in a surprise attack.

The U.S., however, intercepted Japanese communications about the strike and were waiting when they arrived. More than 2,000 Japanese and 300 Americans died.

The expedition is an effort started by the late Paul Allen, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft. For years, the crew of the 250-foot (76-meter) Petrel has worked with the U.S. Navy and other officials around the world to locate and document sunken ships. It has found more than 30 vessels so far.

Kraft says the crew’s mission started with Allen’s desire to honour his father’s military service. Allen died last year.

“It really extends beyond that at this time,” Kraft said. “We’re honouring today’s service members, it’s about education and, you know, bringing history back to life for future generations.”


Follow Associated Press Hawaii correspondent Caleb Jones on Instagram and Twitter as he joins the crew of the Petrel on its expedition.

Caleb Jones, The Associated Press

The post Researchers find second warship from WWII Battle of Midway appeared first on Canadian Business – Your Source For Business News.

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How a hair-care company went from salon supplier to sanitizer powerhouse



When AG Hair moved into its new, 70,000-sq.-foot, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Coquitlam, B.C., two years ago, it was part of a plan to supercharge expansion of its hair care product line to salons in international markets. Europe was next on its list. Then COVID-19 hit.

Not only was the European expansion put on hold, but salons in major markets across Canada and the United States were temporarily closed. Very few were purchasing hair products, so manufacturing was halted in mid-March, leaving most of the company’s 82 employees out of work.

AG Hair could have waited out the pandemic but instead decided to lean into its entrepreneurial culture and make a sharp pivot. It began providing hand-sanitizing products for front-line health-care workers, addressing a global shortage.

“We realized there was this massive need for health-care professionals, and we wanted to make a difference and be able to provide them with the products they needed,” says AG Hair CEO Graham Fraser.

AG Hair received Canadian and U.S. approvals a week after applying for the licences needed to make sanitizer, and produced samples to show local authorities within 48 hours.

AG Hair’s Coquitlam facility has pivoted to making hand sanitizer (Photograph by Alana Paterson)

“That rapid response time, and the fact that we had gone through all of the Health Canada regulatory hurdles, showed [the local health authorities] that we were a partner they could trust and someone they could look to, to deliver the products they needed,” Fraser says.

Within a month, the company started pumping out the products, first for the health-care industry, then for consumers on its own website and on Amazon. About 10 per cent of AG Hair’s hand-sanitizer production also went to people in need, as identified by organizations such as United Way.

Parallel 49 Brewing Company is also using AG Hair’s Coquitlam manufacturing facility to produce its own blend of liquid hand sanitizer for front-line health and emergency workers, in partnership with the B.C. government.

Fraser credits his team for its energy and creativity in making the hand-sanitizer production happen, and helping put AG Hair staff back to work.

“We realized we had an opportunity . . . and then it became this incredible, almost war-room mentality and collaboration with our owners, our executive team and our people to say, ‘How are we going to get through this?’ ” Fraser recalls. “I think our success speaks to the type of people we have and the entrepreneurial spirit of pursuing every avenue we have, understanding how we can produce the products and making it happen.”

AG Hair’s commitment to investing in future growth is a big part of what makes it a Best Managed company, says Nicole Coleman, a partner at Deloitte and co-lead of its Best Managed Program in B.C.

“Capability and innovation come through quite strongly with this company,” says Coleman, who is also AG Hair’s coach at Deloitte. “I don’t think they would be able to pivot as quickly if they weren’t so strategic and had the internal capabilities to do it.”

The manufacturing facility was a big investment, but one Coleman says has already paid dividends.

“They were looking forward with a strategic plan in mind about future growth and how they could expand, rather than just focusing on the day to day,” she says. “Best Managed companies are always pushing the envelope and are conscious about planning for the future.”

AG Hair was founded in Vancouver in 1989 by hairstylist John Davis and graphic artist Lotte Davis. The husband-and-wife team began bottling hair products in their basement and selling them direct to salons from the back of a station wagon.

The company eventually moved its manufacturing off-site, to a third party. One day, John went to watch the operations and was surprised to see salt being poured into the mixture. Although he was told salt is commonly used as a thickener, he didn’t like the potential side effects of dry hair and skin.

It was at that moment John decided the company would oversee its own manufacturing. “Through that experience, John also became an expert in product development,” says Fraser, who came to the company in 2000 as director of sales.

After having worked for more than two decades at PepsiCo and Kraft Foods, Fraser was eager to work at a smaller, more agile company where he felt he could help make a difference.

“It was perfect because I got to bring a lot of structure and process that I learned in those organizations, but I also learned an awful lot about being an entrepreneur from John and Lotte: that sense of urgency, the decision-making process, the need to get things done and drive things forward and pursue opportunities,” he says.

Fraser has helped drive AG Hair’s expansion into the U.S. and internationally, including Australia, Taiwan, and Central and South America. A portion of its sales go to One Girl Can, a charity founded by Lotte that provides schooling, education and mentoring for girls in sub-Saharan Africa.

Fraser also oversees the development of new, trending products, including a new deep-conditioning hair mask made with 98 per cent plant-based and natural ingredients. Hand-sanitizing spray and gel will be the latest addition to the company’s product lineup.

“We don’t see the demand [for hand-sanitizing products] going away,” he says. “As the isolation policies start to get lifted, people are going to need forms of security and protocols as they get back into regular life and work. We see there’s going to be a need for these types of products long-term.”

This article appears in print in the June 2020 issue of Maclean’s magazine with the headline, “Working out the kinks.” Subscribe to the monthly print magazine here.

The post How a hair-care company went from salon supplier to sanitizer powerhouse appeared first on Canadian Business – Your Source For Business News.

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Buy Into the Shopify Story for the Long-Term, Says 5-Star Analyst



E-commerce platform Shopify (SHOP) joined the $1,000 per share club last week, symbolically reaching the landmark on Canada Day. The Ottawa-based company has delivered a strong performance in 2020, with shares up by a remarkable 159% year-to-date. Given this impressive rally, should investors reduce exposure to the e-commerce highflyer?No, is the succinct answer from Baird analyst Colin Sebastian.While the lofty valuation is “still the biggest investor pushback,” the 5-star analyst believes there still remains a large untapped TAM (total addressable market) that Shopify has yet to penetrate.Sebastian said, “Shopify has made our list of favorite stocks each year since initiating coverage in early 2016. In our view, there are scarce few (if any) public software companies as closely tied to the enormous e-commerce share shift, with an established leadership position, and world-class product and engineering. Moreover, we see multiple incremental revenue drivers ahead from new paid services, new partnerships (e.g., WMT) and consumer facing technology (Shop app).”It’s no secret that as the coronavirus raged across the globe, the e-commerce sector benefitted.COVID-19 has sped up what was already an underlying shopping trend – the move to online. Sebastian estimates this will result in an “incremental shift of roughly $200 billion in annual retail spend in the U.S. from offline to online channels.”Shopify, PayPal and Amazon make up roughly 80% of e-commerce volume in the U.S. This means that Shopify stands to “capture a significant amount of that incremental spend.”Despite the massive gains in 2020, Shopify is still valued lower than both, implying it has more room to grow.And it is growing, still. Recent checks made by the investment firm indicate that merchant growth on Shopify is increasing. Shopify now has 1.3 million merchants and brands using its service, which is 200,000 more than when last surveyed in late January.Additionally, the company's “variable revenue base” should further expand due to the rising adoption of Shopify Payments.Accordingly, Sebastian keeps an Outperform rating on SHOP shares, while bumping up the price target from $820 to $1,100. Should the figure be met over the next 12 months, there’s upside of 7% in store. (To watch Sebastian’s track record, click here)Looking at the consensus breakdown, 8 Buys, 12 Holds and 1 Sell were assigned in the last three months. As a result, SHOP has a Moderate Buy consensus rating. However, the $824.94 average price target implies shares could drop by nearly 16% in the year ahead. (See Shopify stock-price forecast on TipRanks)To find good ideas for stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights. More recent articles from Smarter Analyst: * Ad Spend Ban Could Damage Facebook’s Brand, Says 5-Star Analyst * MEI Pharma (MEIP) Stock Takes a Hit but This Analyst Keeps the Faith * 3 Coronavirus Penny Stocks With Triple-Digit Upside Potential * The Rise of E-Commerce and Cloud Services Positions Amazon (AMZN) for the Win

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These congressional districts saw the highest number of PPP loans over $150,000



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Where did the money land?

After a long wait and plenty of hounding from Congress, oversight agencies, and outside groups, a deluge of Paycheck Protection Program loan data was released Monday.

Though there are may ways to slice the data, one interesting window is to look at the number of loans by congressional district. As Fortune‘s analysis shows, the districts that saw the most loans tended to be in the wealthiest enclaves in California, New York and Texas. The 10 districts receiving the most PPP loans over $150,000 are represented in the chart below.

The highest number of loans were awarded in Jerry Nadler’s New York 10th congressional district (6,976). The 10th district includes parts of upper and lower Manhattan (including the Financial District) and Brooklyn. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s district, the 14th district of New York, meanwhile, received a much smaller pool of 728 forgivable loans.

Others in the top 10 districts to get the taxpayer loans include Republican Dan Crenshaw, whose district, the 2nd of Texas, came in No. 2 with 5,247 loans over $150,000. Democrat Diana DeGette’s 1st district of Colorado rounded out the top three, with 4,805 loans for her district based in Denver.

Some of the congressional districts, in places like New York City, that took home the most PPP loans were also among the hardest hit by initial shutdowns.

One interesting note: Georgia’s 6th Congressional District is currently represented by Democrat Lucy McBath, which came in at No. 9. That district’s move from a Republican stronghold, which was once represented by Newt Gingrich, to Democratic district is symbolic of the country’s wealthiest enclaves drifting away from the Republican party to the Democratic party. In 2012, Mitt Romney won 54% of the voters with incomes over $200,000 household incomes, that number fell to 48% for Donald Trump, according to New York Times exit poll data.

Meanwhile, chairwoman of the House’s Committee on Small Business Nydia Velázquez’s district secured 4,799 loans for New York’s 7th district—which includes parts of Queens, Brooklyn, and lower Manhattan. Rep. Velázquez has been a key figure in the small business emergency aid program, and has expressed frustration with the administration’s approach to transparency: She wrote in a joint statement with Richard Neal (D-Mass.) and Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) on June 22 that, “only sharing data on disbursements above [$150,000] is utterly inadequate.”

Rep. Carolyn Maloney’s 12th district in New York received 4,441 loans, encompassing areas in Midtown and the Upper East Side, while California’s 33rd district, represented by Ted Lieu, came in at No. 6 with 4,346 forgivable loans.

Among the three California districts to receive the most loans is Katie Porter’s 45th district—securing 4,124 PPP loans for her Orange County, California district. Porter has echoed Velázquez’ concerns about a lack of transparency for the Small Business Administration’s program, and declared on MSNBC on July 1 that, “Even if [Treasury Secretary Steve] Mnuchin gives us some of these data, we need to be acting legislatively to ensure we’re going to have the information throughout the program,” as the program still has over $130 billion of unused funds as of June 30.

Texas representative Kenny Marchant’s 24th district (one of the two Republicans whose districts hit the top 10) secured 3,959 PPP loans.

The 28th district of California, which includes Pasadena and Hollywood, came in at No. 10, with 3,663 PPP loans over $150,000. The district is represented by Democrat Adam Schiff, who also chairs the House Select Committee on Intelligence.

Although the public got its first look at exactly who got loans, the disclosures on Monday only covered about 14% of the total number of PPP borrowers, as the majority of loans fell under the $150,000 threshold. Now, the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis is “working to ensure more oversight and more transparency for this critical program,” Rep. James Clyburn, the subcommittee’s chairman, said in a statement Monday.

More must-read finance coverage from Fortune:

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