‘Falcon’s Beyond Global’ Launches as Fully Integrated Development Enterprise for IP-Driven Parks, Resorts, Media, & Merchandise

Falcon’s Beyond Global

Scott Demerau, Executive Chairman of the Board, Falcon’s Beyond and Cecil Magpuri, Chief Executive Officer, Falcon’s Beyond.

New enterprise brings proprietary ‘Katmandu’ and partner IPs to global markets through theme parks, resorts, feature films, episodic series, consumer products, and beyond.

Joint venture with Meliá Hotels International brings access to prime real estate and a global operating presence in major tourist destinations in 40 countries.

ORLANDO Fla., July 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — With proven theme park success in Europe, an award-winning creative team, patented technologies, and access to global real estate in prime tourist destinations, Falcon’s Beyond Global, LLC has launched as a fully integrated enterprise to propel story-driven, experiential entertainment around the world.

Until now, it has proven almost impossible for most IP franchises to rapidly deploy across media content, consumer products, and hardest of all, themed location-based entertainment, all at once.

The new enterprise, supercharged by a joint venture with Meliá Hotels International, will be the only vertically-integrated entertainment powerhouse able to simultaneously activate an intellectual property across the full transmedia spectrum — with the potential to transform the $440 billion hospitality and entertainment category.

Meliá, the world’s #1 leisure hotel group with 390+ properties in 40 countries, many in prime beach destinations, is jointly developing theme park + resort combos with Falcon’s Beyond at flagship properties on multiple continents.

Falcon’s Beyond was formalized this May when leading attraction design & master-planning firm Falcon’s Creative Group united with themed-entertainment company Katmandu Group.

This powerful combination has instantly created the only fully integrated source for simultaneous entertainment IP activations—from streaming media development to theme park site acquisition; master planning to brick-and-mortar projects; immersive ride & attraction design to merchandise creation; right through world-class park & resort operation.

Expanding and Evolving the Katmandu IP

A first major focus of Falcon’s Beyond will be to apply its IP Expandermodel to the rapid evolution of its original and wholly-owned “Katmandu” IP—already popular with the millions of Europeans who have visited Sol Katmandu Park & Resort in Mallorca, Spain, and a growing list of Katmandu-branded kids camps in Meliá’s Sol Hotels.

Audiences resonate with the Katmandu universe’s timeless, intertwined tales—where mythical characters come to life in wild adventures, inspiring wonder with imaginative, immersive realms, elusive yetis, and a multicultural cast of adventurers.

Along with new characters, a streaming video series, and merchandise, the proven Katmandu IP will undergo a brick-and-mortar expansion. Through unique technological capabilities, Falcon’s Beyond will establish Katmandu as the first world-class theme park to have every ride and attraction customized to a centralized story “like chapters in the same legend,” and digitally tied to individual guest experiences.

Development is moving forward on additional Katmandu parks on the grounds of Meliá resorts in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, Tenerife, Spain and other key tourist destinations.

Enabling the Impossible

“Falcon’s Beyond Global represents the ultimate combination of unlimited storytelling potential, agile and flexible real estate scalability, and imaginative expansion into a multitude of categories,” said Cecil D. Magpuri, CEO of Falcon’s Beyond Global and founder of the original Falcon’s Creative Group. “We develop inclusive, story-driven experiences that we can bring to market with unprecedented speed, removing all the massive challenges IP franchises and developers face when attempting this feat on their own.”

“We are truly enabling the impossible,” said Scott Demerau, Executive Chairman of Falcon’s Beyond Global and co-founder of Katmandu Group. “Through our partnership with Meliá, we have created a new playbook for building cost-effective, ‘Big-Experience, Small-Footprint’ theme parks, from beach resort communities to mixed-use entertainment spaces. Falcon’s Beyond Global brings a full complement of technology, design, and media expertise to the equation. Together, we are offering something that’s simply never been accessible to companies before. This is a huge benefit to developers, emerging IPs, and even entertainment giants.”

Creating “Big-Experience, Small-Footprint” Parks

Meliá Hotels and Katmandu Group originally came together in a 2012 joint venture to launch the themed Sol Katmandu Park & Resort in Mallorca and complement the beach holiday experience by providing “entertainment with rooms.” Their proof-of-concept rocketed to the top of the Meliá Sol portfolio and was named in the European Hospitality Awards as the #1 hotel in Europe for innovation in service, out of more than 100,000 hotels. Trivago Global named the park + resort as the #1 Hotel in Spain for Traveling with Kids. TripAdvisor named Katmandu Park in the top 3 parks in Spain three years in a row, and as a Travelers’ Choice Best of the Best 2020.

Falcon’s Beyond will elevate this unique, proven model of “Big-Experience, Small-Footprint” theme parks for Katmandu and other IPs around the world, leveraging the joint venture with Meliá, whose global operating presence enables growth in any tourism destination across the Americas, Europe, Asia, and beyond. The rights to additional important IPs have already been secured, and Falcon’s Beyond is in discussions with others to deploy complete transmedia expressions at unheard-of speeds. The company has worked on master planning and design projects totaling over $100 billion and won numerous design awards for its world-class attractions and experiences.

Revolutionary Alternative to Mega Parks

Traditional “mega theme parks” require at least 6-8 years of planning, billions in investment, difficult real estate acquisition, new transportation infrastructures, urban planning, and 5-7 years of construction.

Falcon’s Beyond delivers a revolutionary alternative.

Falcon’s proprietary rides and attractions are world-class, cutting-edge, story-driven, and the first of their kind. Its patented technologies are uniquely able to create mega-park experiences in “Big-Experience, Small-Footprint” parks — which leverage underused land on existing resorts in dense tourist hotspots. Falcon’s Beyond parks can be deployed in as little as a 24-36 month window at a tiny fraction of the cost of a mega park, with Falcon’s providing expert, ongoing operations.

A True Disruptor

“Meliá is committed to bringing extraordinary experiences to our guests around the world,” said André Gerondeau, Chief Operating Officer of Meliá Hotels International. “Katmandu-themed parks and resorts will be a vital part of our story moving forward, and we feel this initiative puts us five years ahead of the rest of the hospitality industry in delivering ‘entertainment with rooms.’ Everyone at Meliá is thrilled to be working with the creative minds and experienced development experts at Falcon’s Beyond.”

“Falcon’s Beyond and its unprecedented, imaginative, and already-deployed IP activation model completely shifts the established entertainment industry paradigm,”  said industry leader Ken Faier, founder of Epic Story Media, a full-service, creator-driven kids entertainment company.  “We have seen first-hand what Falcon’s is creating and we are really excited to explore an epic collaboration. There is a big demand for families looking for exciting experiences around great IP.”

With its expertise in intellectual property expansion, licensing, and immersive experiences, Falcon’s Beyond Global has unprecedented power to turn imagined worlds into reality — inspiring wonder in audiences and guests, with memories to last a lifetime.

About Falcon’s Beyond Global LLC
Headquartered in Orlando, Florida, Falcon’s Beyond Global, LLC is a fully integrated, top-tier experiential entertainment development enterprise specializing in intellectual property expansion. The company brings its own proprietary and partner IPs to global markets through owned and operated theme parks, resorts, attractions, patented technologies, feature films, episodic series, consumer products, licensing, and beyond. The company has won numerous design awards and provided design services in 39 countries around the world. It is composed of four core divisions: Falcon’s Treehouse (master planning & design), Falcon’s Digital Media, Falcon’s Licensing, and Falcon’s Parks & Resorts. Storytelling is the guiding force behind all Falcon’s Beyond projects—which turn imagined worlds into reality. For more information, visit www.falconsbeyondglobal.com

About Meliá Hotels International
Founded in 1956 in Palma de Mallorca, Spain, Meliá Hotels International (MHI) has more than 390 hotels open, or in the process of opening, in more than 40 countries. They operate under the brands Gran Meliá Hotels & Resorts, Paradisus by Meliá, ME by Meliá, Meliá Hotels & Resorts, INNSiDE by Meliá, Sol by Meliá, and TRYP by Wyndham. The company is a global leader in resort hotels, and its resort experience has allowed it to become a leader in the growing market of urban hotels inspired by leisure. The Sustainability Yearbook 2020, published by S&P Global, named Meliá among the Most Sustainable Hotel Companies in the World (Silver Medal), and it has been included among Europe’s Climate Leaders 2021 by the Financial Times & Statista. Meliá Hotels International is also a member of the IBEX 35 and is the Spanish hotel company with the best corporate reputation, per Merco Ranking. For more information, visit www.meliahotelsinternational.com


Joel Moore
Praytell Strategy

María Umbert
Meliá Hotels International

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/77a4b0cf-859f-4c92-b5c4-8e95f66ea4f6

ISW Holdings Closes on Its 1st phase of over 100MW Georgia Crypto Mining Farm Capable of Driving Over $100M in Annual Gross Revs

LAS VEGAS, July 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — via InvestorWire — ISW Holdings, Inc. (OTC: ISWH) (“ISW Holdings” or the “Company”), a global brand management holdings company, is excited to announce that it has finalized its land lease development agreement, which grants the Company full use of a 1st phase 7-acre parcel of property in Georgia tailored for cryptocurrency mining operations, complete with access to energy resources capable of powering over 100 MW of cryptocurrency mining capacity.

“This agreement puts us in position to scale up into a top-five global cryptocurrency mining position by volume,” remarked ISW Holdings President and Chairman, Alonzo Pierce. “We control an ideal plot of land, to initiate the 1st phase with additional access to over 100 megawatts of power for use in crypto mining. We also have our close partner Bit5ive, LLC – North America’s largest provider of collective management of renewable, clean energy services and mining equipment – right on premises to manage and develop the mining operations at the site. China is cracking down hard and shutting down its domestic crypto mining industry. This has enormous consequences because more than half of the world’s cryptocurrency mining has been taking place in China. As a result, we are already fielding calls from mining firms seeking a new home. We are now equipped to handle this at scale. We have the power!”

For more details and forward-looking statements, view the entire announcement: https://ibn.fm/ISW100MWAnnouncement

Pierce added, “Our plan is to execute an additional agreement with some of the world’s largest and best-known mining companies seeking additional accommodation for expanded mining operations. We are already beginning to design and plan for this added scalability. Once we deploy the full 100 MW, we see total gross revenue run rate exceeding $100 million on an annualized basis.”

About ISW Holdings
ISW Holdings, Inc. (ISWH), based in Nevada, is a diversified portfolio company comprised of essential business lines that serve consumer product demands. Our expertise lies in strategic brand development, early growth facilitation, as well as brand identity through our proprietary procurement process. Together, with our partners, we seek to provide a structure that meets large scalability demands, as well as anticipated marketplace needs. We are able to meet these needs through a variety of strategic innovative processes. ISWH is creating and managing brands across a spectrum of disruptive industries. It maneuvers its proprietary companies through critical stages of market development, which includes conceptualization, go-to-market strategies, engineering, product integration, and distribution efficiency. The company has also partnered with a well-known software development and consulting company, Bengala Technologies LLC, which is developing significant enhancements in the supply chain management space; and the partnership has a vitally needed patent now pending.

The Company’s cryptocurrency mining segment, established in partnership with industry leader, Bit5ive LLC, is driven by a mission to mine cryptocurrency with a zero carbon footprint. Learn more at www.iswholdings.com.

About Bit5ive

Bit5ive is a leader in crypto currency mining data centers with several projects currently in development in the United States. Bit5ive’s success lies in its commitment to its clients, hailing from a variety of industries and professions. Bit5ive’s corporate headquarters is based in Miami, Florida, from which it operates as a management hub for its data centers, sales and customer service. Learn more at www.Bit5ive.com.

Company Contact:

Public Relations
EDM Media, LLC

Corporate Communications:
InvestorBrandNetwork (IBN)
Los Angeles, California
310.299.1717 Office

Falana & Falana Issues the Following Statement: Alex Saab Challenges Indictment in U.S. Court

WASHINGTON, July 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Today, the legal team of Baker Hostetler, representing Mr. Alex Saab, filed their Opening Brief in the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, challenging a decision by U.S. District Judge in Miami refusing to consider Mr. Saab’s status as a diplomat immune from U.S. proceedings unless and until he personally appears in the United States.

Mr. Saab was unlawfully detained, at the request of U.S. law enforcement authorities, in Cabo Verde, where his aircraft had stopped to refuel. He was, in fact, traveling from Venezuela to Iran on a diplomatic mission, seeking humanitarian assistance in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a well established rule of international law that diplomats, traveling from their country of origin to an overseas post, whether as a special envoy like Mr. Saab or as part of a permanent mission, are entitled to diplomatic immunity from arrest or detention. Accordingly, at the instruction of his own government, he has vigorously opposed his extradition to the United States.

Mr. Saab, the subject of a U.S. indictment for alleged wrongdoing in Venezuela and neighboring countries, sought to raise this point with the Miami district judge, who refused to consider his immunity until he agreed to personally appear before the judge in the United States. The judge grounded his decision in the “fugitive disentitlement” doctrine, which is a judge-made rule stating that individuals who have fled the court’s authority cannot raise legal arguments until they have been physically brought before the court.

However, this doctrine does not apply in Mr. Saab’s case because he has never fled the United States or U.S. law enforcement authorities, and has opposed his extradition to the United States because he is a diplomat on mission entitled to immunity. Accordingly, Mr. Saab has appealed the District Judge’s ruling to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. In his Opening Brief, Mr. Saab has made plain that he is not a fugitive from the United States and that, as Venezuela’s Special Envoy to Iran, he is a diplomatic Head of Mission under the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and the United States Diplomatic Relations Act, which implements U.S. treaty obligations under that Convention. In fact, the Eleventh Circuit concluded that Special Envoy’s like Mr. Saab are entitled to immunity in a case decided in 1984, Abdulaziz v. Meto. Dade County, 741 F.2d 1328 (11th Cir. 1984). This case constitutes binding precedent on both the District Judge and the Court of Appeals.

Accordingly, Mr. Saab has asked the Court of Appeals to reject the District Court’s application of the Fugitive Disentitlement Doctrine and to rule that he is entitled to immunity from arrest, detention, and extradition to the United States, dismissing the case against him.


José Manuel Pinto Monteiro
+234 803 300 4903
Falana & Falana Chambers

Hatch raises C$1 million for COVAX and UNICEF

Mississauga, Canada, July 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Mississauga, Canada— Hatch employees came together in an eight-week-long campaign to raise funds in support of COVAX, helping them progress towards their goal of procuring and delivering 2 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines globally. Through the employees’ generous donations and a corporate match, $C1 million was raised!

COVAX is co-led by Gavi, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the World Health Organization, alongside key delivery partner, UNICEF. Its aim is to accelerate the development and manufacture of COVID-19 vaccines, and to guarantee fair and equitable access for every country in the world.

Unfortunately, many countries do not have the ability to maintain progress or even start. It is clear the pandemic will not truly end until all countries have equitable access to vaccines. UNICEF is working with manufacturers and partners on the procurement and delivery of vaccine doses, as well as freight, logistics, and storage for countries around the world. With Hatch’s donation, UNICEF will be able to fully vaccinate (two doses) more than 187,000 people worldwide.

“To end this pandemic, we need to think globally and act locally to make a difference beyond our families and our company—this is the basis of real positive change around the world. As a global company, we are engaging great people who make a difference every day in their communities, with our clients, and with each other. Together, we saw the imperative to support the world’s largest mass health campaign to stop the COVID-19 virus and move forward into a better future,” shared John Bianchini, Hatch’s Chairman and CEO.

“On behalf of UNICEF, I would like to thank Hatch for its support in ensuring widespread and equitable delivery of COVID-19 vaccines. They stepped up to help UNICEF in its efforts to deliver the largest fastest immunization campaign in history. We are grateful to Hatch employees for their contributions and to Hatch for increasing the impact by matching every dollar raised,” shared David Morley, UNICEF Canada’s President and CEO.

Hatch is committed to doing its part to support efforts to end the COVID-19 pandemic. Hatch also recently sponsored the “This is our Shot” movement, a consortium of grassroots organizations, Canadian businesses, associations, healthcare professionals, community leaders, and influencers focused on educating and inspiring Canadians so that vaccine hesitancy is replaced with confidence.

To learn more about how Hatch continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, visit our COVID-19 Information Center.

To learn more about the UNICEF COVAX campaign, click here.

About Hatch

Whatever our clients envision, our professional teams can design and build. With over six decades of business and technical experience in the mining, energy, and infrastructure sectors, we know your business and understand that your challenges are changing rapidly. We respond quickly with solutions that are smarter, more efficient, and innovative. We draw upon our 9,500 staff with experience in over 150 countries to challenge the status quo and create positive change for our clients, our employees, and the communities we serve.

Find out more on www.hatch.com.

Lindsay Janca

40 Million People Relied on GFN Food Banks for Meals amid COVID-19 Crisis in 2020

Food banks increased their reach by 132 percent over the previous year due to increased demand for food caused by pandemic and faltering economic conditions

Chicago, IL, July 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Today, The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN) announced that food banks in 44 countries served 40 million people in 2020, a 132 percent increase over service in 2019. The data is part of GFN’s annual Network survey, which this year includes information about how GFN-supported food banks around the world responded to COVID-19.

The significant increase in people accessing food banks reflects the toll of the pandemic. As food requests rose from cut-off or quarantined communities, food banks rapidly deployed their transport, inventory, and logistics infrastructures to assist people who were isolated due to closed schools and public support agencies or overwhelmed health systems.

“Food banks have served as a lifeline for millions of people during the health crisis,” said Lisa Moon, president and CEO of The Global FoodBanking Network. “When the pandemic rattled economies and prevented access to food, food banks responded where existing infrastructure failed. They proved agile and resourceful, providing emergency relief and hope to their communities.”

African food banks, which served 169 percent more people than the year before, reported the highest increase in people served globally, followed by food banks in Latin America, which served 157 percent more people than in 2019.

Many food banks embraced mass distribution through congregate feeding sites and meal kit deliveries as they sought to reach the most people possible. More than half of the people served by GFN partner food banks in 2020 were women and girls.

Children were especially vulnerable during lockdowns and movement restrictions. In response to widespread school closures, the majority of GFN partner food banks that operated or supported feeding programs for school-age children (including school lunches, after-school snacks, and backpack programs) quickly pivoted to alternative models, such as providing food directly to families or organizing distribution events at schools and daycare centers.

As COVID-19 disrupted the global food supply chain, food banks saw a shift in the sources of donated products. According to the survey, food banks experienced a tremendous drop in donations from food services, restaurants, hotels, grocers, and markets. At the same time, food donations from the agricultural sector nearly doubled in 2020, partly because farms did not have the informal labor force needed for harvest.

This year promises to be another challenging year for food banks. In the GFN survey, food banks in many countries reported deep concern over slow vaccine rollouts, additional waves of infections, economic recovery and recession, and staff and volunteer burnout.

“COVID-19 has made the hunger crisis even more urgent,” said Moon. “Now more than ever, it is important that governments, businesses, and other community leaders partner with food banks, which are community assets that work to ensure all people have access to food.”

About The Global FoodBanking Network:

The Global FoodBanking Network supports community-driven solutions to alleviate hunger in more than 40 countries. While millions struggle to access enough safe and nutritious food, nearly a third of all food produced is lost or wasted. We’re changing that. We believe food banks directed by local leaders are key to achieving Zero Hunger and building resilient food systems. For more information, visit foodbanking.org.

Nina Rabinovitch Blecker
The Global FoodBanking Network

SECP to Introduce a Regime to Register Microinsurance and Digital Insurance Companies

The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has decided to introduce a regime for the registration of entities desirous to transact insurance on a digital-only basis and small ticket size insurance, i.e., microinsurance.

According to a paper of the SECP issued on Tuesday, the objective is to promote financial technology and innovation, to leverage cost-effectiveness and accessibility, increasing competition, widening product range, improve customer experience, and enhancing financial inclusion.

So far, only 27 online products have been registered with SECP by the life insurance companies under the “file and use” prescribed under Section 13 of the Insurance Ordinance, 2000.

Also, the use of technology in other areas of insurance is the untapped area, such as tech-based innovative products, automated underwriting, policy administration, claims processing, and payments, among others.

To proceed in respect of the introduction of the registration regime for microinsurer and digital-only insurers, the draft amendments to the Insurance Rules, 2017, are made for review and feedback of all relevant stakeholders to be received within thirty days of issue of this paper.

The proposed Registration Regime for Digital-only Insurer and Dedicated Microinsurer is expected to enable the small entities with vision and plan to innovate and serve the insurance market to obtain registration with the SECP while complying with lenient regulatory requirements in terms of minimum paid-up capital and solvency requirement.

In line with the principle of proportionality, lenient capital and solvency requirement have been proposed for registration of dedicated microinsurer and digital-only insurers, SECP stated.

The entities desirous to transact microinsurance business dedicatedly may do as after obtaining registration with the SECP as microinsurer while complying with the (proposed) applicable regulatory requirements stipulated in the draft amendments annexed to this paper.

However, the existing insurance companies may continue to transact the microinsurance business in a current manner. In line with the principle of proportionality, lenient capital and solvency requirement have been proposed for the registration of dedicated microinsurers, as illustrated in the previous section.

The dedicated microinsurer so registered will comply with the requirements for the conduct of microinsurance business set out in the SEC (Microinsurance) Rules, 2014, including but not limited to disclosure, product features, and filing, claim handling and processing, complaint handling, code of conduct, and consumer protection standards.

Registration as Digital-only Insurer

The lenient registration requirements, i.e., relaxed paid-up capital and solvency requirements, have been proposed for the entities desirous to transact insurance through digital mode only to enable the innovative and visionary fintech entities to enter the insurance market.

The digital-only insurer will be required to demonstrate capability for conducting business through digital modes and comply with business conduct requirements proposed in the draft amendments, the key contents of which are stipulated.

After registration, the digital-only insurer and microinsurer may obtain authorization to conduct takaful operations on a dedicated or window basis while complying with the applicable provisions of the Takaful Rules, 2012. All regulatory requirements as applicable to the full-fledged insurers registered under Section 6 of the Insurance Ordinance, 2000, will apply to the dedicated microinsurers and digital-only insurers, including inter alia Insurance Rules, 2017, Code of Corporate Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan Insurance Division Position Paper – Registration Regime for Digital-only Insurer and Dedicated Microinsurer, Page 7 of 7 Governance for Insurance Companies, 2016, Insurance Companies (Sound and Prudent Management) Regulations, 2012, Takaful Rules, 2012, SEC Cybersecurity Guidelines, 2020, SEC (IBNR) Guidelines, 2016, SECP added.

Solvency Requirements:

For Life microinsurer and Life Digital-only Insurer, Rupees seventy-five million is proposed as the required minimum amount to be maintained as a surplus of admissible assets over liabilities in shareholders fund of life microinsurer and life digital-only insurer. For full-fledged insurers registered under Section 6 of the Insurance Ordinance, 2000, this amount is Rupees one hundred and sixty-five million only.

The solvency margin requirement for statutory funds of life insurers is formula-based, as given in Annexure III of Insurance Rules, 2017, and will be automatically rationalized in line with the business volume and operations of the entity.

For Non-life Microinsurer and Non-life Digital-only Insurer Under the insurance regulatory framework, the solvency requirement for a non-life insurer is higher of a fixed amount of fifty million, and formula-based amount, calculated in accordance with Section 36(3) of the Insurance Ordinance, 2000, read with Rule 15 (2) & (3). Rupees fifty million is proposed as a fixed solvency margin requirement for non-life Microinsurer and Non-life Digital-only Insurer.

For fullfledged non-life insurers registered under Section 6 of the Insurance Ordinance, 2000, this amount is Rupees one hundred and fifty million only. The formula-based amount will be automatically rationalized in line with the business volume and operations of the entity.

Source: Pro Pakistani