Fisher-Price Introduces New “Mini-Me” Work-From-Home and Role-Play Toys

BDPA2020 | bdpa2020.com

EAST AURORA, NY — Fisher-Price unveils a new lineup of “mini-me” and role-play items that turn every day grown-up activities into, well, toys. This collection features a number of actions that kids are seeing the adults in their lives do now more than ever. Highlights include:

  • My Home Office Set – As many parents and caregivers across the country are continuing to work from home (WFH), this preschool role-play set enables kids to do the same. The new toy features a laptop with four fabric “apps,” a smartphone, a headset for calls and, of course, a coffee cup.
  • Baby Biceps™ Gift Set – Parents and caregivers aren’t just working from home these days; they are working out from home as well. Now, babies can take part in the fitness fun with a gym-themed set that pumps up playtime.
  • Cutest Chef™ Gift Set – And, as parents and caregivers are perfecting their home chef skills, babies can also get involved in the “cooking.” The Cutest Chef Gift Set includes a crinkle recipe card, play tongs with a meatball spinner, a chewy oven mitt teether and a wearable chef’s apron bib.

Our designers created these toys based on some of the most popular themes in social media, including #food and #fitness. And, speaking of popular hashtags, we also recently introduced a Tiny Tourist™ Gift Set perfect for family #staycations.

fish-price-wfh-officeThese new releases also build on previously introduced “mini-me” and role-play items including a pizza teether, a coffee cup teether, a Taco Tuesday™ set, a Rice ‘n Roll Sushi set, a charcuterie set and a home garden set, to name a few.

Our new “mini-me” and role-play toys are the latest example of how we are delivering on our promise to create playful connections between children and the grown-ups in their lives. And, there is so much more to come.

At Fisher-Price®, we’ve always been focused on making playtime more fun by infusing surprising and playful elements into our toys. In the infant and preschool categories especially, we have deliberately focused on introducing toys that get parents and caregivers laughing, too.

— By Chuck Scothon, Senior Vice President of Fisher-Price and Global Head of Infant and Preschool, Mattel

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CTA, HRS Unveil Recommendations for Managing Personal Health With Wearables at CES 2020

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LAS VEGAS, NV — This week, the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)® and Heart Rhythm Society (HRS) released a unique digital health paper recommending best practices for using wearable technology to manage personal health, including detecting and monitoring cardiovascular biometrics. Presented for the first time during a panel at CES® 2020 – the world’s largest, most influential tech event – this paper provides consumer guidance on understanding devices and managing their personal health data.

“The collaboration between HRS and CTA is timely and important for both consumers and clinicians,” said Dr. Andrea Russo, president, HRS. “Chronic diseases are increasing in prevalence and wearables help people monitor their health to aid in earlier diagnosis and better management of their conditions; furthermore, they provide information to the user that fosters a healthier lifestyle.”

“Digital health is changing lives for the better – providing more personalized care, delivering better outcomes and lowering costs,” said Rene Quashie, VP of digital health, CTA. “Wearable solutions are one of the fastest growing sectors in technology. And as more consumers capture personal health information, a cross industry-created guidance document has never been more important to provide clarity on the potential health and wellness benefits of wearables.”

The CTA/HRS Guidance for Wearable Health Solutions paper includes an overview of the wearables landscape and offers advice for consumers on using wearables. A FAQ section tackles topics including data management, when to call a doctor, sharing data with a health provider, data privacy and security policies.

Developed and reviewed by physicians, patient advocates, technology companies and health care organizations, CTA and HRS created these guidelines to answer common questions for consumers that currently own – or want to own – wearables that capture personal health information. The best practices were presented at the Disruptive Innovations in Health Care conference track at CES.

Dr. Nassir Marrouche, lead author of the paper, added, “in this document we aimed to highlight this new intersection between consumer tech and health. We want people to be aware of what these wearables have to offer, how they can increase knowledge about one’s health, and how clinicians are optimistic about the data wearables can deliver.”

According to recent data, CTA projects total sales of digital health devices in the U.S. – such as smartwatches, fitness trackers and blood pressure monitors – will reach $10 billion in revenue in 2020 (up by 16% over last year).

The Health & Wellness category at CES 2020 will have over 20% more exhibitors and 15% more exhibitor space than CES 2019, with notable exhibitors such as Abbott, Cigna, Humana, Omron Healthcare, Myant, Philips and Procter & Gamble.

To download the CTA/HRS Guidance for Wearable Health Solutions document, visit CTA.tech.

by Danielle Cassagnol, CTA

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Norton’s New Bill Encourages U.S. Government to Increase Minority and Women-Owned Media participation in Advertising Contracts

WASHINGTON — On May 8, 2019, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) formally introduced a bill that she and others hope will help to stop federal agencies from overlooking Black-, other minority-, and women-owned businesses when establishing advertising contracts.

The “Federal Government Advertising Equity Accountability Act”, formerly H.R. 7215, was reintroduced in the 116th Congress as H.R. 2576. The new bill requests and requires all federal agencies to include in their annual budget justifications the amount spent on advertising contracts with Small Disadvantaged Businesses (SDBs) and businesses owned by Blacks, women and other minorities in the previous fiscal year.

Bill Co-Sponsors
The legislation, which is co-sponsored by California Democratic Congresswoman Barbara Lee and Wisconsin Democratic Congresswoman Gwen Moore, also requires that each agency provide projections of their spending for the upcoming fiscal year.

“The National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) applauds and salutes the outstanding leadership of Congresswoman Norton for introducing one of the most important Congressional bills to potentially benefit the Black Press of America,” said NNPA President and CEO Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr.

NNPA - Founded in 1940“For too long, millions of annual federal advertising dollars have not been spent with Black-, other minority- and women-owned newspapers and media businesses,” Chavis said.

Chavis also thanked Representatives Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Gwen Moore (D-WI) for co-sponsoring “this game-changing legislation.”

“We further thank Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) Chair, Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-CA), and all the members of the CBC for their resolute support of the Black Press of America,” he said.

Appropriations Bills
Norton and Lee also sent letters to all 12 House appropriations subcommittees requesting that they direct each agency under their jurisdiction to include the pertinent information in their fiscal year 2021 budget justifications.

An accompanying House fiscal year 2020 Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations bill – the first fiscal year 2020 report released thus far and the second largest appropriations bill – further directs the agencies to include data in their fiscal year 2021 budget justifications.

“As the largest advertiser in the United States, the federal government has an obligation to ensure fair access for minority and women-owned media companies,” said Norton, who earlier this month was ranked as the most effective House Democrat by the Center for Effective Lawmaking.

Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton

Led by professors at the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University, the Center for Effective Lawmaking defines legislative effectiveness as the “proven ability to advance a member’s agenda items through the legislative process and into law.”

It’s that reason that Norton and the nation’s Black-, other minority- and women-owned media companies are optimistic that her proposed legislation will aid their businesses, which have long played a vital role in local communities.

“My bill would ensure that federal agencies are striving to reach minorities and women, who often get their news from outlets that serve more specific communities,” Norton said.

Lee added that it’s important that federal agencies comply.

She said that African American-, women-, and other minority-owned businesses should always have a seat at the table when it comes to government advertising and contracts.

Government Accounting Office (GAO) Findings
In 2016, Norton led members of Congress in requesting a GAO report on their advertising contracts.

Released in July 2018, the GAO report showed that, in fiscal year 2017, only 16 percent of the federal government’s advertising contract obligations went to businesses owned by minorities and women.

“In 2017, the GAO examined spending on advertising contracts with minority-owned businesses by five agencies – the Department of Defense, the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of the Interior, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration – and found that only five percent of the $4.3 billion available for advertising contracts went to minority businesses,” Norton said.

“In light of these concerning figures, we, and several Members, sent a letter to the GAO in April 2016 requesting updated information on the amount of federal advertising dollars spent with SDBs and businesses owned by minorities and women,” she said.

“The GAO’s findings make it clear that there is still much progress to be made,” Norton said.

“BigTech”, “FinTech”, Prime/Sub Contractor, and Advertising Agency trends
Further, she said the regular collection of information on federal advertising contracts with SDBs and businesses owned by women and minorities is essential to bridging the divide between current statistics and a more inclusive advertising landscape.

“Collection would also promote transparency and encourage federal agencies to strive to reach minorities, who often receive their daily news from smaller media outlets that serve communities of color,” Norton said.

“Collection of this information would also demonstrate that the promotion of equity in advertising, and in all areas of government, should be a continuous effort that is central to the mission of every agency,” she said.

By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Correspondent
Photo credits NNPA and Black Press USA

bdpatoday | Paths Forward and Next Steps?

For Advertising and Public Relations Agencies

This bill primarily supports growth and sustainability for small community and county newspapers which include small, minority, women, and veteran-owned businesses in rural America and America’s largest urban metropolitan areas.  New federal advertising reporting requirements help federal prime contractors and their subcontractors meet and exceed public sector supplier diversity and small business goals for corporations who wish to continue to trade (win contracts) with the federal government.

  • Review and follow the new bill, H.R. 2576
  • Increase paid advertising with, small, minority, women, veteran-owned, and HBCU/MSI publications to meet or exceed diversity and inclusion goals
  • Include NNPA, NAHP, and HBCU/MSI publications in marketing and new advertising campaigns


For Publishers

This bill primarily supports growth and sustainability for small, minority, and women owned businesses, National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) newspapers, National Association of Hispanic Publications (NAHP) newspapers, and HBCU/MSI publications:

  • Review and follow the new bill, H.R. 2576
  • Download Congresswoman Norton’s “Dear Colleague Letter” to voice additional support and share with peers to directly send to Senators and Congressional Representatives
  • Increase readership and advertising revenues — pivot to TECH
  • Hire STEM interns; train more tech journalists
  • Regularly publish digital transformational trends with related career and government contracting opportunities
  • Publish articles for new readers by covering all vertical industry segments (i.e. health, transportation, manufacturing, banking, defense, etc.)
  • Modeled after “PARADE Magazine” featured every Sunday, NNPA and NAHP newspapers may consider supplementing weekly or monthly newspaper editions with “STEM” tabloids. For example, NNPA/NAHP “STEM Value Packs” may include:
  • Capturing new or more federal contracts for printing, publishing, and advertising?
    • Complete or update corporate profiles on the federal government’s System for Award Management  (SAM.gov) portal. A DUNS number, a CAGE Code, and appropriate NAICS code(s) are required for federal prime and subcontracts— new publishers, businesses, and start-ups should visit SBA.gov first
    • Research the market to sell products or services to the federal government. The Government Services Agency’s (GSA) acquisition solutions for small businesses and publishers offer private sector professional services, equipment, supplies, and IT to government organizations and the military. GSA is Uncle Sam’s “Amazon.”  Start here. → https://www.gsa.gov/small-business/get-started
    • Continuity of Operations and Disaster Recovery (CoOP/DR) contracts or BCDR Preparedness grants.  Secure publishing/printing opportunities with federal/state/local agencies in advance of natural disasters to publish updated instructions, emergency planning, maps, and shelter locations. Power, Internet access, and WiFi services may not be available during or after major disruptive events → https://www.fema.gov/grants
    • Review special requirements and contracting opportunities for HUB Zones or Opportunity Zones.   Several Historically Black College or University/Minority Serving Institution (HBCU/MSI) campuses are in rural areas, HUB Zones, and in some cases may be the largest employer in town
    • HBCU/MSI, NNPA, and NAHP publications also may expand community outreach, training, and career development opportunities into regional “news deserts” or distressed communities
    • Digital transformation, preservation, and archiving contracts or STEM grants.  Publishers and printers may secure new opportunities to help agencies and organizations transition their  documents and legacy data onto new multimedia platforms.
— bdpatoday

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Exclusive: National Basketball Players Association Announces First-Ever Tech Summit

NBA players’ union plays matchmaker with its athletes and Silicon Valley for more than beefing up portfolios

by KC Ifeanyi

NEW YORK, NY – The National Basketball Players Association announced today it will hold the inaugural NBPA Technology Summit from July 19-21 in San Francisco.

The NBPA Technology Summit will provide current and former NBA players with the following:

  • Educational content and presentations from executives of major media and technology companies;
  • Site visits to several media and technology companies in Silicon Valley;
  • Networking opportunities with senior executives and influencers;
  • Workshops designed to identify opportunities for players to pursue both during and after their NBA careers.

Among the participating companies are Andreessen Horowitz, Jawbone and SV Angel.

This three-day event in San Francisco that aims to integrate NBA players with tech and media companies for post-career opportunities beyond just backing them—a shift in thinking that’s found Golden State Warriors forward Andre Iguodala (top photo) as a model student.

Code Once. Sell Many.

The NBPA Technology Summit will incorporate site visits to media and tech companies, as well as lectures, presentations, and workshops from executives and influencers. Jawbone, Pinterest, Andreessen Horowitz, and SV Angel are just a few companies on deck to help NBA players find their place in Silicon Valley—and one place the NBPA feels is particularly apt for athletes is wearable technology.  Read more

Sources:  NBPA and  FastCompany.com

ces15-sands14

Under Armour launched UA Record during CES 2015, a health and fitness network for new wearable apps dedicated to helping users lead healthier lives.  Photo courtesy, Under Armour.

SWORKIT receives $1.5M from the ‘Sharks’

D.C. firm captures largest tech startup funding in the history of  Shark Tank

WASHINGTON—Two 40-something entrepreneurs recently received the largest tech startup funding in the history of the ABC television show Shark Tank. They received $1.5 million in funding for their product, an interactive fitness app called Sworkit (which stands for “simply work it”), which provides customizable and personalized video workouts.

Not the techie types

Sworkit co-founders are CEO Ben Young and COO Gregory Coleman. They readily admit they don’t fit the pattern of the typical Silicon Valley techies, but what they do have is a unique product that received the Washington D.C. TechDay Techie Award for Best in Health Tech in 2014. A recent fitness research study by the University of Florida also gave Sworkit the highest ranking when compared to other fitness apps on the market.

A $1.5 million deal

The two owners received a deal from shark Mark Cuban of $1.5 million for 10 percent stake in their company. Both are big fans of the show and were thrilled to be invited to appear to pitch their business. Coleman stated, “We are looking forward to working with [Cuban] and learning from him while together helping Sworkit become the leading platform people turn to fitness.”

Their business goal is to be “the leading global standard for all instructional exercise.” Their Washington D.C.-based company was well on their way prior to the Shark Tank appearance. Their product earned over 10 million downloads. But they are hoping their exposure on Shark Tank will take them to greater levels.

Discover more about the Sworkit app at www.sworkit.com

— Source: Photos and article courtesy Shark Tank and blackbusiness.org
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