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COLDSTREAM-BASED TEMPUR SEALY TO ACQUIRE UNITED KINGDOM'S LEADING SPECIALTY BED RETAILER, DREAMS


COLDSTREAM-BASED TEMPUR SEALY TO ACQUIRE UNITED KINGDOM'S LEADING SPECIALTY BED RETAILER, DREAMS
 
 
LEXINGTON, Ky., May 27, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Tempur Sealy International, Inc., the world’s largest bedding provider based on the Coldstream Research Campus at the University of Kentucky, announced it has executed an agreement to acquire Dreams, the leading specialty bed retailer in the United Kingdom, primarily from an affiliate of Sun Capital Partners, Inc. The transaction will accelerate Tempur Sealy's growth in the largest European bedding market and sixth largest economy in the world.

The transaction price is approximately $475 million, less net debt and any working capital deficit, and the transaction is expected to be accretive to Tempur Sealy's earnings per share by approximately $0.20 before synergies in the first year post-acquisition.
After the transaction closes, Tempur Sealy's annualized worldwide direct-to-consumer business is expected to reach $1 billion in sales and its international segment will represent over 20% of consolidated sales. The transaction will be financed through a combination of cash on hand and bank borrowings. The Company's pro forma leverage is expected to be slightly less than 2 times adjusted EBITDA as defined in the Company's credit agreement. Finally, the Company today entered into an amendment of its Senior Credit Facility which increases its liquidity by $300 million.

The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021, subject to receipt of regulatory approval from the United Kindom’s Financial Conduct Authority.
Tempur Sealy International, Inc. Chairman and CEO Scott Thompson commented, "Dreams has created a strong retailer brand and business model, known for its outstanding products and customer service. We have worked with Dreams for many years and they are one of the most talented retailers we service.  They have consistently demonstrated best-in-class web marketing, customer service and sales capabilities. This acquisition better positions both organizations to service customers and bring innovative products to market. We look forward to welcoming the entire Dreams organization to the Tempur Sealy family."
Thompson continued, "This transaction is consistent with our stated strategy of acquiring companies when we see their addition as mutually beneficial and accretive to long-term shareholder value. We expect, over time, to leverage Tempur Sealy's global scale to realize synergy opportunities and long-term sales growth."
Dreams has developed a successful multi-channel sales strategy, with over 200 brick and mortar retail locations, an industry-leading online channel, as well as manufacturing and delivery assets. Dreams generated sales of approximately $400 million and EBITDA of approximately $75 million for the year ending December 31, 2020. Dreams is expected to generate annual sales of approximately $450 million in the first year post-acquisition.

Dreams CEO Mike Logue commented, "We are delighted to be joining the Tempur Sealy family. Today marks a milestone for Dreams. It is recognition of the transformation we have delivered and an endorsement of our customer-focused strategy, our culture and our values.  With Tempur Sealy, we expect to drive our growth strategy and build on our position as the most recommended specialist bed retailer in the UK. I would like to take this opportunity to thank our 2,000 colleagues for their hard work, dedication and commitment. Together we will continue to optimize what we make, sell and deliver to provide better sleep for all of our customers."

About Tempur Sealy
Tempur Sealy is committed to improving the sleep of more people, every night, all around the world. As a global leader in the design, manufacture and distribution of bedding products, we know how crucial a good night of sleep is to overall health and wellness. Utilizing over a century of knowledge and industry-leading innovation, we deliver award-winning products that provide breakthrough sleep solutions to consumers in over 100 countries.
Our highly recognized brands include Tempur-Pedic®, TEMPUR®, Sealy® and Stearns & Foster® and our non-branded offerings include value-focused private label and OEM products. Our distinct brands allow for complementary merchandising strategies and are sold through third-party retailers, our Company-owned stores and e-commerce channels. This omni-channel strategy ensures our products are offered wherever and however customers want to shop.
Lastly, we accept our global responsibility to serve all stakeholders, our community and environment.  We have and are implementing programs consistent with our responsibilities.

About Dreams
Established in 1985, Dreams is the United Kingdom’s leading specialist bed retailer. With 2,000 employees across the UK, Dreams sells over ten thousand mattresses, bases and headboards per week to customers nationwide through its network of over 200 stores and online.
Dreams is a proud British business, making products in this country, as it does now at the Dreams Bed Factory in Oldbury. It currently makes hundreds of thousands of mattresses and beds a year before delivering to customers across the UK through its multiple delivery centers and dedicated fleet of vehicles.
As part of its mission to deliver Better Sleep for All, Dreams has rolled out its innovative Sleep Match technology to its stores and is proud to be the official sleep partner for Team Great Britain and Paralympics Great Britain.
 

Altimmune Partners With Coldstream-based Summit Biosciences to Develop Intranasal COVID-19 Vaccine


LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 26, 2021) — Summit Biosciences, a high-tech company based on the University of Kentucky’s Coldstream Research Campus, has been selected by Altimmune Inc. to further develop Altimmune’s intranasal COVID-19 vaccine.

Altimmune is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing intranasal vaccines. As part of the partnership, Summit Biosciences — a worldwide leader in developing nasal spray pharmaceuticals — will manufacture a multidose nasal spray presentation of AdCOVID, Altimmune’s intranasal COVID-19 vaccine candidate.

“I am pleased that Altimmune, a recognized leader in intranasal vaccine development, selected Summit in this exciting endeavor,” said Gregory Plucinski, president and COO of Summit Biosciences. “Summit has a proven track record in bringing nasal spray medicines from concept to market with its state-of-the-art capabilities that are ideal for this program. Together, we will combine our respective expertise and capabilities with the goal of ultimately introducing a potentially novel, needle-free, nasal spray vaccine for the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.”

While traditional vaccines delivered by an intramuscular injection can stimulate systemic immunity as measured in the blood, they have not been shown to induce mucosal immunity in the nasal cavity, which may be critical for blocking transmission of the virus. AdCOVID is designed to deliver vaccine directly to the site of viral entry and replication to stimulate mucosal and cellular immunity in the nasal cavity and respiratory tract, thereby potentially offering an important early defense against the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

AdCOVID is currently being evaluated in a phase 1 clinical trial of healthy adult volunteers between the ages of 18 and 55. Subjects will receive AdCOVID at one of three dose levels administered as a nasal spray. Altimmune anticipates having early data from this trial within the next few months.

“As we continue to build our manufacturing consortium and progress the development of AdCOVID, we are pleased to partner with Summit Biosciences to manufacture AdCOVID in a customized multidose nasal spray delivery device,” said Vipin K. Garg, president and CEO of Altimmune. “We expect this device may be a convenient and efficient option when vaccinating patients in high-demand settings where our vaccine candidate’s anticipated room temperature stability profile will also be important. In addition, Altimmune will continue to produce a single dose presentation of AdCOVID to provide alternative forms of administration. Summit Biosciences has expertise in intranasal product innovation, and we are excited to align with their highly experienced team in our fight against COVID-19.”

“Summit Biosciences is a great model of how to grow a high-tech company in the Lexington area,” said George Ward, executive director of the UK Coldstream Research Campus. “We appreciate the hard work that Greg Plucinski and his team have done to expand their business and the company’s practice of hiring UK graduates and alums.” 

For more information, visit https://ir.altimmune.com/news-releases/news-release-details/altimmune-partners-summit-biosciences-produce-multidose-nasal.

About Summit Biosciences Founded in 2009, Summit Biosciences Inc. of Lexington, Kentucky, is a privately-held, specialized pharmaceutical company focused on developing, manufacturing and commercializing generic and innovative nasal spray medicines. It collaborates on the development of products with its clients and manufactures them at an industrial scale primarily for commercialization in the U.S. and Europe. For more information, visit www.summitbiosciences.com.

About Altimmune

Altimmune is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing intranasal vaccines, immune modulating therapies and treatments for liver disease. These include proprietary intranasal vaccines for COVID-19 (AdCOVID™), anthrax (NasoShield™) and influenza (NasoVAX™); an intranasal immune modulating therapeutic for COVID-19 (T-COVID™); and next generation peptide therapeutics for NASH (ALT-801) and chronic hepatitis B (HepTcell™). For more information on Altimmune, visit www.altimmune.com.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

UK, Partners Break Ground on New Coldstream Research Lab


LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 23, 2021) — Today, representatives from the University of Kentucky, the Woodbury Corporation and state and local officials broke ground on what will soon become a home for early stage, high-tech companies from across Kentucky.

The new $15 million development on UK’s Coldstream Research Campus will offer these early stage companies office and laboratory space in an environment where they can further develop and commercialize their products and services.

“When we think about strengthening our economy — particularly following the challenges we’ve faced over the past year — we believe that partnership with the city and the business community is the best way to move forward,” said UK President Eli Capilouto. “This space will create new opportunities for businesses to establish themselves here in Kentucky, create jobs and contribute to economic growth. We look forward to continuing in our role as the University of, for and with Kentucky.”

The new facility will be named “The Core — Collaboration. Research. Entrepreneurship,” and is designed to be the first stop for companies looking to locate on the research campus. The project will add much needed wet lab space in Central Kentucky, as well as working space near the interstates for companies and individuals that need to travel quickly to regional facilities.
 

Kentucky Technology Inc. (KTI), a subsidiary of the UK Research Foundation, will master lease 20,000 square feet of the building’s estimated 40,000 square feet. KTI plans to sublease its space to appropriate high-tech companies. The facility will bring in not only startup companies being incubated at UK, but other companies moving into the Commonwealth.

“KTI’s experience as a master lessor and support from our board provided a strong anchor tenant which enabled this project to move forward,” said George Ward, president of KTI. “The Core will provide an opportunity for more early stage high-tech companies to flourish in Lexington as they grow well-paying jobs and create new products that improve people’s lives.” 

The Core was made possible through a public-private partnership with the Woodbury Corporation, the company developing the facility.

“Woodbury Corporation is honored to bring its 100-year history in commercial real estate to work with the University of Kentucky on the Coldstream Research Campus, and provide a home for Kentucky Technology Inc.,” said Rick Woodbury, chairman of Woodbury Corporation. “Like other research parks that we partner with, we foresee continued growth and success at this campus that will surely establish it as the premier location for technological innovation in the region.” 

The UK Board of Trustees approved construction of the facility and the partnership just one year ago — a timeline that officials agree is a testament to prioritizing innovation and economic development in Lexington and the Commonwealth. The project was also supported and expedited through partnerships with state, city and local officials. A product development initiative (PDI) grant created by the state and the Kentucky Association for Economic Development and supported by Commerce Lexington will enable the Coldstream Research Campus to receive a $500,000 matching grant to develop lab space in the new building.

“An important part of securing a brighter future for Kentuckians is our ability to establish Kentucky as a premier destination for high-tech businesses,” said Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear. “The addition of The Core at UK’s Coldstream Research Campus is evidence that PDI is one of a number of tools that can help us do just that. This new research lab will be a gateway for innovative startups looking to take that next step in their development. I want to congratulate everyone at UK, as well as their partners, on this significant step forward to ensure the sustained success of businesses in Kentucky.”

“This is exciting news for Lexington and Central Kentucky,” said Ray Daniels, Commerce Lexington Inc. board chair. “Having new lab space is critical not only to further generate ideas and innovation, but also to use as a tool in recruiting new business to Lexington. This will be a tremendous asset to grow our technology and life sciences sectors, as it will create more opportunities for expansion. The Commerce Lexington Inc. economic development team was proud to work with University of Kentucky officials to help secure the grant for this project. It was a true team effort.”

Through a change in Coldstream’s zoning definition and providing tax incentives, the city of Lexington has been an instrumental partner in the progress of the facility as well.

“Coldstream Research Campus is an important key to economic development and growth in Lexington,” said Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton. “The partnership we’ve built with the University of Kentucky to develop this area creates a live, work, play and innovative environment. Lexington will continue its growth as a hub for high-tech development, and The Core is going to be a critical part of our move forward.”

Construction is expected to be completed in early 2022. For leasing information, contact the Coldstream/KTI office at 859-231-8324 or the Woodbury Corporation at 402-405-1823.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

UK HDI Provides Leadership Around New State Employment First Executive Order


University of Kentucky Stone Wall

 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 7, 2020) — On June 29, 2020, Gov. Andy Beshear signed the Employment First Executive Order, stating that “It is the policy of the Commonwealth of Kentucky that competitive integrated employment in the community shall be considered the first and primary option for persons with disabilities of working age who desire to become employed.”
The executive order authorizes the Employment First Council and charges it to “increase meaningful opportunities for competitive integrated employment for citizens with a disability seeking employment, regardless of the level of disability.” The 28-member council is administered by the University of Kentucky Human Development Institute(HDI) and serves as an advisory body to state government in furtherance of this policy, including the identification of state policies that create disincentives to employment of people with disabilities.
Kentucky’s employment first policy will create opportunities that have been previously unavailable to many persons with disabilities and will contribute to changing the trajectory of their lives and the next generation of their family. Kathy Sheppard-Jones, executive director of HDI, said, “The governor’s action in issuing this executive order is a significant step forward toward realizing the promise of a truly inclusive workforce in Kentucky, to strengthening our economy and to improving the quality of life for citizens with disabilities across the Commonwealth.”
The governor’s action is particularly significant, given that, in 2020, the employment rate of Kentuckians with disabilities stands at 29.4% compared to 75.7% for Kentuckians without disabilities. In a news release, Beshear said, ““We are committed to righting inequities and breaking down barriers for our citizens with disabilities who desire to have a meaningful career. Too often people with disabilities are relegated to the sidelines in our communities, when they have significant contributions to make to our workforce and society.”
Agencies and organizations across Kentucky are committed to working together to advance employment first and have memorialized their commitment by signing the Proclamation of Collaboration. Anyone can join this collective effort to address barriers and identify solutions to improve the quality of life and increase economic self-sufficiency for Kentuckians with disabilities.
For more information, visit the Employment First Kentucky website.

 

Summit Biosciences Retained to Develop and Supply AT-301 Nasal Spray for Clinical Study


 
On May 28th, 2020, Atossa Therapeutics, Inc. announced their second COVID-19 therapeutic development program, AT-301 Nasal Spray. Summit Biosciences, located on the University of Kentucky's Coldstream Research Campus was retained to develop and produce a clinical supply of pre-filled nasal spray products in multi-dose devices containing AT-301.
 
Summit Biosciences LogoAT-301 is Atossa’s proprietary formula intended for nasal administration in patients immediately following a diagnosis of COVID-19 but who have not yet exhibited symptoms severe enough to require hospitalization. 
The next steps with the program include the designing and manufacturing of the clinical trial materials and the active pharmaceutical ingredients in AT-301 followed by adequate and well-controlled studies to demonstrate safety and efficacy. These studies must be successfully completed, and regulatory approvals must be obtained before AT-301 may be commercialized. Atossa has filed provisional patent applications on AT-301 to treat patients diagnosed with, or to prevent, COVID-19 via nasal spray and intends to apply to the FDA as soon as possible so that human clinical trials may be commenced in the third quarter of 2020.
 
Founded in 2009, Summit Biosciences (www.summitbiosciences.com) is a specialized pharmaceutical company focused on developing, manufacturing, and commercializing generic and innovative nasal spray medicines. Summit Biosciences collaborates on the development of products with their clients and manufacturers at commercial scale for the US and European markets.
 
Atossa Therapeutics, Inc (www.atossatherapeutics.com) is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company seeking to discover and develop innovative medicines in areas of significant unmet medical need with a current focus on breast cancer and COVID-19.
 

Contact: 
Summit Biosciences, Inc. 
UK Coldstream Research Campus
1513 Bull Lea Rd
Lexington, KY 40511  
Tel: 859-254-0180
 

Contact:
Atossa Therapeutics, Inc.
Kyle Guse, CFO and General Counsel
Office: (866) 893-4927

kyle.guse@atossainc.com

UK Board Approves Lease Between Coldstream, Cityscape to Develop Residential Village


On May 5, 2020 the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees authorized the UK Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration to negotiate and execute a ground lease with Cityscape Residential, LCC, a real estate development and construction firm.

Cityscape will lease land from the university for a residential village development project on UK’s Coldstream Research Campus. The 13-acre development will include approximately 250 multi-family residential units. Cityscape will construct and operate the residential village, complying with Coldstream’s design guidelines within its land lease contract.

Coldstream Campus Sign “Multi-family housing will allow for the creation of a dynamic live-work-play-learn environment by providing the social infrastructure necessary to drive the development of office and research and development facilities,” said George Ward, executive director of Coldstream Research Campus. “We are excited to be working with Cityscape and look forward to the development of this project.”

The university first issued a request for proposals (RFP) in March 2018, and selected Indianapolis-based Cityscape based on their award-winning luxury multi-family rental communities.

“Cityscape was honored to be selected during the RFP process and looks forward to the potential of breaking ground later this year,”  said Brian Evans, vice president of Cityscape Residential. “With a 30-year track record developing several billion dollars of luxury rental apartment communities throughout the middle U.S., we hope to soon become a landmark community within the Lexington area.” 

Cityscape Residential is a full-service real estate development and construction firm based in Indianapolis, Indiana.  The principals of Cityscape have been responsible for the successful development and/or financing of over $2 billion of real estate throughout the eastern two-thirds of the United States during their careers and have been responsible for the development and construction of several thousand for-sale and rental residential units across multiple market areas. 

The firm brings an especially strong background to the innovative design and construction of high-density multifamily communities, leveraging a deep base of in-house construction experience among its partners and associates.  Principals in Cityscape are trained and have practiced in the fields of architecture, urban planning, accounting and construction management and have served as senior executives at firms ranging from small entrepreneurial partnerships to large, public, NYSE-listed companies.   

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" two years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

UK Board Approves Construction of $15 Million Coldstream Research Lab to Support Early Stage, High-Tech Companies


Coldstream Brick Sign
February 21, 2020 
The Board of Trustees approved construction of the facility at its meeting today, along with the authorization for the university to create a public-private partnership with a developer to construct and own the building. Kentucky Technology, Inc. (KTI), a subsidiary of the UK Research Foundation, will master lease 20,000 square feet of the new building’s estimated 40,000 square feet. KTI plans to sublease its space to appropriate high-tech companies.

George Ward, executive director of the Coldstream Research Campus, says the building will fill a facilities gap between small labs leased to companies in UK's Advanced Science and Technology Commercialization Center (ASTeCC) building, and larger facilities used by established companies at Coldstream and other locations in the state.

"The new research building at Coldstream will enable growing high-tech companies, many housed in UK's ASTeCC building, to continue their research and business expansion," Ward said. "There is a very small inventory of available laboratory space for these growing companies currently, and by providing this facility at Coldstream, Lexington will benefit from the well-paying jobs these companies are creating."

The new facility will be constructed to meet Coldstream's design guidelines, and will house wet labs, offices and flex space for the early stage companies. In alignment with UK's new Economic Development Collaborative, the project supports companies growing at ASTeCC and other places as a landing spot for continued growth, providing an environment where they can commercialize their products and services.

The project was authorized by the 2018 Kentucky General Assembly and will be funded by the developer. Construction is expected to be completed in early 2022.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" two years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

 

University of Kentucky MBA student Elizabeth "Liz" Bazner promoted to Director of Digital at A&W Restaurants


A&W Restaurants headquarters, located on the Coldstream Research Campus has a Wildcat in their office…
University of Kentucky MBA student at the Gatton College of Business and Economics, Elizabeth "Liz" Bazner, has recently been promoted to the Director of Digital at A&W Restaurants, Inc. with headquarters in Lexington, KY. A&W is one of the best-known restaurants and was America’s first franchised restaurant chain. In 2018, A&W was named #4 on Time magazine’s list of America’s best fast-food chains. In this role, Liz will oversee A&W's national digital media buys and digital strategy while strengthening their email marketing program, local digital strategy and engagement with consumers online.
 
Rooty the bear "I'm very excited for this opportunity which will increase both my responsibilities and the size of my team," says Liz. "We've spent the last few years putting a really solid foundation together and now we're ready to expand to maintain a really strong brand presence online, as well as offering best in class marketing support to our franchisees." 
Liz has held several leadership roles since joining A&W in 2012 including Senior Digital Manager, Digital Manager, Associate Manager of Digital Communications, Social & Digital Communications Strategist and now the Director of Digital. Over the past 8 years, Liz and her team have enjoyed some great successes at A&W. 
"A&W Restaurants turned 100 in 2019, making it the first restaurant chain to reach a centennial, so it was a big year all around," says Liz. "We were named both a top Food Franchise and a top Franchise overall by Franchise Business Review, which is based on feedback from our actual franchisees, so we were all really proud to be a part of that success. A&W was also rated highest in consumer sentiment for QSR brands on social media platforms, winning over brands with much bigger teams and exponentially larger budgets, which was really gratifying."
 
While working full-time at A&W, Liz decided to enroll in Gatton's part-time Professional MBA program designed for the full-time working professional. The Professional MBA brings together a diverse network of working professionals and executives from various industries such as engineering, law, healthcare, agriculture, transportation, manufacturing, technology, banking/finance, government and more. 
 
"After working in the brand marketing field for a number of years, I wanted to be able to increase my value to the company by increasing my strategic thinking capabilities and filling in my knowledge gaps." says Liz. "UK's Professional MBA was a great choice for me because it allowed me to stay local, provided a schedule that was flexible enough to allow me to keep working full time and is also affordable. It's been great to work in groups with professionals outside of my industry, which is not something that I do on a regular basis. Learning how to apply an iterative process to my projects at A&W has helped my productivity, but also my ability to articulate ideas and the reason behind them more concisely."
 
In 2019, Gatton launched the new Real-Time, Online MBA option which allows candidates enrolled in the Professional MBA to access the program 100% online, in the classroom or a combination of both. 
"UK has a ton of resources available for their graduate students, including professional certifications, lunch and learns and networking events," says Liz. "I think the students who excel in the program are the ones who have dedicated themselves fully to taking advantage of every opportunity available, both in and out of the classroom. Getting your MBA is challenging but well worth the time and investment."
 
Liz graduated from Vanderbilt University with her degree Political Science and Public Policy in 2006. She joined the Professional MBA program at the Gatton College of Business and Economics in 2018 and will be graduating in 2020. 
 
A&W Restaurants, Inc., America’s first restaurant chain to turn 100, is one of the country’s best-known and most beloved restaurants. Its original craft Root Beer, still handmade fresh in-house with real cane sugar, water and a proprietary blend of herbs, bark, spices and berries and served in a frosty mug, made its debut on June 20, 1919. A&W All American Food® is served quickly at affordable prices.

University Launches Economic Development Collaborative


LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 27, 2019) — Today, the University of Kentucky has officially launched the UK Economic Development Collaborative (EDC) to set the strategy moving forward on how UK will address economic development in the areas of talent, innovation, place and partnership. The EDC will also play an advisory role for the economic development engagement areas charged with executing on UK’s strategies.

Picture of two researchersMembers of the EDC include UK leadership from academia and administration across the campus including a vice provost, four college deans, Student and Academic Life, Philanthropy, Purchasing, HealthCare, Athletics, Human Resources, Research, Information Technology Services and six economic engagement areas listed below.

"UK serves as a powerful economic engine for Kentucky — not only by educating the next generation of citizens, but through partnerships with businesses and industries that strengthen Kentucky’s economy and improve the lives of its residents," said UK President Eli Capilouto. "The Economic Development Collaborative brings all of our leadership across campus together to optimize the economic impact of UK and its many missions. We are committed to further connecting the creative research, development and entrepreneurial spirit on our campus into tangible solutions in our communities."

“Dr. Capilouto has challenged the EDC to think boldly and to assemble the resources necessary to execute UK’s economic development strategies,” said George Ward, executive director of the Coldstream Research Campus. “The diverse brain power we have assembled is committed to meet this challenge and help the university achieve its strategic goals long into the future.”

The new EDC website is the access point for both internal and external stakeholders and offers comprehensive solutions for UK’s students, innovators, entrepreneurs and industry partners. It will serve as the university's primary source of information on programs, projects, initiatives and resources related to economic development at UK.

The six economic development engagement areas of the university highlighted on the new website include the following:

For more information on the UK Economic Development Collaborative, visit www.uky.edu/edc or contact George Ward at george.ward@uky.edu.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" two years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

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