INVESTMENTS

ZettaScale Technologies spins out from ADLINK and raises strategic investment from TTTech Auto

ADLINK | June 01, 2022

Zetta_Scale_Technologies
ZettaScale Technologies today announced that it has raised a strategic investment from TTTech Auto. The investment marks the start of a strategic partnership between the two companies that will result in the creation of the first European implementation of Data Distribution Service (OMG DDS) that is certified for use in series cars, and enables ZettaScale to expand its market coverage from robotics and mission critical middleware to the automotive market.

We have been seeing convergence across industries including the internet of things, robotics, AI and autonomous vehicles for some time, but developers need new tools to be able to integrate these technological advances into real world systems, TTTech Auto brings an intense focus on safety and security and is the ideal partner to bring ZettaScale's middleware products to the automotive market."

Angelo Corsaro, CEO of ZettaScale.

The partnership will result in the creation of Motionwise Cyclone DDS, combining TTTech Auto's Motionwise software and Time Sensitive Networking (TSN) technologies with ZettaScale's open-source Cyclone DDS. The product will be safety-certified under ISO 26262, and be made available for automotive and non-automotive applications, including those that are a part of ZettaScale's existing robotics and mission critical markets.

System-wide safety is one of the biggest challenges for highly automated driving, MotionWise Cyclone DDS will help car manufacturers to reduce time-to-value while guaranteeing the overall system safety and providing excellent UX, flexibility, security and E2E vehicle properties. Together with ZettaScale, we will develop the next industry standard for safety and reliability in the rapidly evolving field of autonomous driving. Standards and open-source technology are the cornerstones of safety and performance."

Friedhelm Pickhard, Chief Growth Officer of TTTech Auto.

The story of ZettaScale's origins in the ADLINK Advanced Technology Office embodies the spirit of innovation inside ADLINK, We are excited to see Dr. Angelo Corsaro lead ZettaScale over this next phase of growth and look forward to technologies originally developed within ADLINK becoming foundational in multiple domains as edge computing proliferates."

Jim Liu, CEO of ADLINK.

About TTTech Auto
TTTech Auto provides solutions for the challenges of future vehicle generations. The company specializes in safe software and hardware platforms for automated driving and beyond, applicable in series production programs. With its leading technology solutions, TTTech Auto ensures safety and electronic robustness for a more automated world.

TTTech Auto was founded in 2018 by TTTech Group and technology leaders Audi, Infineon and Samsung to build a global, safe vehicle software platform for automated and autonomous driving. In 2022, the company raised USD 285 million (EUR 250 million) from Aptiv and Audi in its latest funding round. At TTTech Auto's headquarters in Vienna, Austria, and in more than 10 locations across Europe, the U.S.A. and Asia, 1,200 employees work with leading car manufacturers on their software-defined vehicle, ADAS and autonomous driving programs.

About ADLINK
ADLINK Technology Inc. (TAIEX:6166) leads edge computing, the catalyst for a world powered by artificial intelligence. ADLINK manufactures edge hardware and develops edge software for embedded, distributed and intelligent computing – from powering medical PCs in the intensive care unit to building the world's first high-speed autonomous race car – more than 1600 customers around the world trust ADLINK for mission-critical success. ADLINK holds top-tier edge partnerships with Intel, NVIDIA, AWS and SAS, and also participates on the Intel Board of Advisors, ROS 2 Technical Steering Committee and Autoware Foundation Board. ADLINK contributes to open source, robotics, autonomous, IoT and 5G standards initiatives across 24+ consortiums, driving innovation in manufacturing, telecommunications, healthcare, energy, defense, transportation and infotainment.

Spotlight

Powerful forces are reshaping the banking industry. Customer expectations, technological
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imperative to change. Banks need to get ahead of these challenges and retool to win in the next era.
Banks must not only execute on today’s imperatives, but also radically innovate and transform
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Other News
FUNDING

USQ Expands Investment Platform with PREDEX Acquisition

USQ, Chatham Financial | August 02, 2022

Union Square Capital Partners, LLC, announced today it acquired the management of PREDEX, a real estate-focused interval fund. PREDEX (Ticker: PRDEX) has $163 million in AUM as of July 27, 2022, bringing total assets of USQ interval funds to approximately $400 million. “True diversification matters, and most investors have been reminded of that over the first half of this year,” said Thomas Miller, Chief Executive Officer of Union Square Capital Partners. Since both funds were launched, they have consistently demonstrated that non-correlation to the broader markets while still delivering strong risk-adjusted returns is possible, both having a three-year correlation of just -0.02 to the S&P 500 Index as of June 30, 2022. During the same period, the USQ Core Real Estate Fund (Ticker: USQIX) delivered an annualized return of 10.46%, while PRDEX delivered an annualized return of 12.09%. USQ’s first fund, USQIX, has a primary investment objective to generate a return comprised of both current income and long-term capital appreciation with moderate volatility and low correlation to the broader markets. USQ implements this strategy by investing in the core private equity real estate funds that comprise the NCREIF Fund Index — Open-end Diversified Core Equity (“NFI-ODCE”). PREDEX likewise serves as a gateway to private core real estate but implements a slightly different approach that allows for a portion of assets to be held in funds outside of the NFI-ODCE Index. “We are excited to join the USQ team and feel they are a perfect partner to support growing the PREDEX fund,” said J. Grayson Sanders, founder of PREDEX. “We are excited to join the USQ team and feel they are a perfect partner to support growing the PREDEX fund,” said J. Grayson Sanders, founder of PREDEX. The expansion of the USQ strategies is aligned with long-term plans for the firm. “This acquisition highlights our commitment to growing our asset management business through both organic growth and strategic acquisitions,” said Matt Henry, Managing Partner and Founder of USQ and Chief Executive Officer of Chatham Financial. The performance quoted represents past performance. Past performance does not guarantee future results. The current performance may be lower or higher than the performance data quoted. The investment return and principal value of the Fund will fluctuate; an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Performance data current to the most recent month end may be obtained by calling 1-833-877-3863 for USQIX or 1-877-940-7202 for PRDEX. Fund returns reflect actual fee waivers and reimbursement of expenses for the time periods represented. Had fees and expenses not been waived and reimbursed, returns would have been lower. See each fund’s prospectus for more information on current fees and expenses. About USQ USQ, a wholly owned subsidiary of Chatham Financial Corp., is an investment management firm providing access to inventive strategies for real asset investing. The USQ platform leverages in-depth knowledge of real estate financing complexities to offer modern investing approaches spanning the needs from registered investment advisors to institutional investors. Union Square Capital Partners, LLC brings low-cost, institutional private real estate to wealth managers. About Chatham Financial Chatham Financial is the largest independent financial risk management advisory and technology firm. A leader in debt and derivative solutions, Chatham provides clients with access to in-depth knowledge, innovative tools, and an incomparable team of over 600 employees to help mitigate risks associated with interest rate, foreign currency, and commodity exposures. Founded in 1991, Chatham serves more than 3,000 companies across a wide range of industries — handling over $750 billion in transaction volume annually and helping businesses maximize their value in the capital markets, every day. To learn more, visit chathamfinancial.com.

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PAYMENTS

Affirm Partners with Agoda to Bring Travelers More Flexible Payment Options

Affirm | June 14, 2022

Affirm, the payment network that empowers consumers and helps merchants drive growth, today announced a partnership with global travel platform Agoda, part of Booking Holdings, the world’s leading provider of online travel and related services. Now, eligible travelers can book their hotel accommodations for upcoming trips across the Agoda platform both on web and via the app and pay over time for bookings over $50. By selecting Affirm as a checkout option on the platform, eligible travelers can split the total cost of purchases into either biweekly or monthly payments for as low as 0% APR. They are shown the total cost of their purchase and will never pay more than the agreed amount upfront. With Affirm, customers will know exactly what they owe with no additional late charges or hidden fees. Agoda integrates Affirm’s Adaptive Checkout to offer customers dynamic payment options to suit a variety of budgets and preferences, including four interest-free biweekly payments as well as monthly payment options. We are always looking for innovative ways to help more people access travel, using tech to simplify the search, booking and payment processes, The launch of pay-over-time options with Affirm will enable travelers in North America who might have previously found it inconvenient to pay for their booking in one lump sum to spread the costs over multiple payments without incurring any compound interest or additional costs. We’re helping consumers get back out into the world of travel – on their own terms.” Agoda’s Chief Financial Officer Thi-Mai-Linh Bui. According to a recent Affirm Consumer Spend Report, 80% of consumers agree that 2022 will be the year they splurge on a bucket-list trip and nearly 30% plan to pay for travel expenses over time instead of all at once, Our partnership with Agoda gives more travelers a budget-friendly way to pay for their next milestone vacation so they can travel without concern for late or hidden fees.” Affirm’s Chief Revenue Officer Geoff Kott. Agoda joins over 200,000 Affirm retail partners, including American Airlines, Vrbo, Priceline, Vacasa, and more. Offering Affirm at checkout can reach new customers, drive overall sales, increase average order value and customer repurchase rates. About Affirm Affirm’s mission is to deliver honest financial products that improve lives. By building a new kind of payment network — one based on trust, transparency and putting people first — we empower millions of consumers to spend and save responsibly, and give thousands of businesses the tools to fuel growth. Unlike most credit cards and other pay-over-time options, we show consumers exactly what they will pay up front, never increase that amount, and never charge any late or hidden fees. About Agoda From its beginnings as an e-commerce start-up based in Singapore in 2005, digital travel platform Agoda has grown to offer a global network of over 2.5 million properties in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide, offering travelers easy access to a wide choice of luxury and budget hotels, apartments, homes and villas, to suit all budgets and travel occasions. In 2019, Agoda added a flight product and packages to help make travel even easier.

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FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT

KKR Completes Acquisition of Barracuda from Thoma Bravo

Barracuda Networks, KKR and Thoma Bravo | August 18, 2022

KKR, a leading global investment firm, and Barracuda Networks, Inc. (“Barracuda” or the “Company”) a leading provider of cloud-first security solutions, today announced that KKR’s investment funds have completed an acquisition of Barracuda from Thoma Bravo, a leading software investment firm. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Barracuda is a cloud-first provider of cybersecurity solutions for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). More than 200,000 customers worldwide count on Barracuda to protect their email, networks, applications, and data. “We’re ready to deliver on our next phase of growth with KKR and remain dedicated to investing in our team and product portfolio to provide innovative cybersecurity solutions for our customers and partners, We‘re grateful to Thoma Bravo for their valuable strategic and operational support over the last four years.” -Hatem Naguib, CEO of Barracuda We are excited to complete this transaction and begin working with the Barracuda team to support their continued growth and delivery of next generation cloud-first cybersecurity solutions that protect SMEs from an evolving landscape of threats, said John Park, a Partner at KKR. Barracuda has been a tremendous partner over the last four years and has experienced strong product, customer and revenue growth, We have enjoyed working closely with Hatem and his team through multiple acquisitions and operational improvements, and we are confident that the company is well-positioned for continued success,said Chip Virnig, a Partner at Thoma Bravo. J.P. Morgan served as exclusive financial advisor to Thoma Bravo and Barracuda. Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal counsel to Thoma Bravo and Barracuda. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP served as legal counsel to KKR. Guggenheim Securities, DBO Partners and Barclays served as financial advisors to KKR. About Barracuda Networks At Barracuda we strive to make the world a safer place. We believe every business deserves access to cloud-first, enterprise-grade security solutions that are easy to buy, deploy, and use. We protect email, networks, data, and applications with innovative solutions that grow and adapt with our customers' journey. More than 200,000 organizations worldwide trust Barracuda to protect them – in ways they may not even know they are at risk — so they can focus on taking their business to the next level. About KKR KKR is a leading global investment firm that offers alternative asset management as well as capital markets and insurance solutions. KKR aims to generate attractive investment returns by following a patient and disciplined investment approach, employing world-class people, and supporting growth in its portfolio companies and communities. KKR sponsors investment funds that invest in private equity, credit and real assets and has strategic partners that manage hedge funds. KKR’s insurance subsidiaries offer retirement, life and reinsurance products under the management of Global Atlantic Financial Group. References to KKR’s investments may include the activities of its sponsored funds and insurance subsidiaries. About Thoma Bravo Thoma Bravo is one of the largest private equity firms in the world, with more than $114 billion in assets under management as of March 31, 2022. The firm invests in growth-oriented, innovative companies operating in the software and technology sectors. Leveraging the firm’s deep sector expertise and proven strategic and operational capabilities, Thoma Bravo collaborates with its portfolio companies to implement operating best practices, drive growth initiatives and make accretive acquisitions intended to accelerate revenue and earnings. Over the past 20 years, the firm has acquired or invested in more than 380 companies representing over $190 billion in enterprise value. The firm has offices in Chicago, Miami and San Francisco.

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PAYMENTS

Payveris Introduces Loan Payments® for Financial Institutions to Offer Customers Integrated Real-Time Payment Methods & Channels

Payveris | June 18, 2022

Modern money movement leader Payveris, a division of Paymentus, today launched Loan Payments®, a cutting-edge loan and debt repayment service with the widest array of real-time payment methods and channels available on the market. Loan Payments® is designed to help financial institutions meet rising consumer demand for payment methods and channels that are speedy, convenient and secure — all while reducing operational overhead, fostering better customer engagement and loyalty. An Aite-Novarica Group survey from 2021 found that 89% of consumers want more real-time payment options from their digital banking experience. As consumers enjoy more payment choices, speed and convenience in just about every other aspect of their financial lives, they expect the same from their loan payment servicers — and aren't satisfied by the status quo from financial institutions. In fact, a recent J.D Power study found that non-bank loan servicers saw a 17% increase in customer satisfaction, while banks only saw a 4% increase. When financial institutions make it complicated to accept and receive payments through coupon books or legacy loan payment systems, borrowers are less likely to consider them for their next loan, Providing choice, speed and autonomy is no longer a bonus, but a baseline expectation for consumers. Financial institutions must seriously rethink their loan payment experience and meet customers where they are, and Loan Payments® can help them get there. Whether that's an auto loan, a personal loan, or a mortgage, the days of consumers using a coupon book have passed." Payveris Chief Innovation Officer Marcell King. With Loan Payments®, financial institutions can deliver a true omni-channel experience that matches what consumers have come to expect from shopping or paying bills. Payment methods supported by Loan Payments® include cash, debit card and e-check/ACH. Loan Payments® also empowers consumers to choose their preferred payment channel, whether it's online, mobile, text, PayPal app, Amazon Alexa, Walmart, or directly at their bank or credit union. In addition to more convenience and flexibility, Loan Payments® gives financial institutions' customers more control over how they automate and schedule payments, and the ability to spread their payments across multiple methods at once. WSECU, a Payveris customer since 2020, is one of the first financial institutions with plans to roll out Loan Payments®. "Our first priority is to improve the loan payment experience for members, making it easier and providing them more options, Payveris is helping us do that, and that alone is a big win. But there is also more we gain, including the operational efficiencies that come from no longer managing disparate processes. Now, everything is centralized into one payment processing system, regardless of which option best meets the needs of an individual member." Melissa Wolff, Vice President, Operations Support and Payment Services at WSECU. Financial institutions also stand to gain another avenue in which they can drive customer engagement and loyalty. Loan Payments® was first developed by Payveris' parent company Paymentus, recognized by Aite-Novarica as the "Best in Class" industry leader for Biller Direct EPPP solutions. The solution is powered by the Instant Payment Network®, the only integrated ecosystem of real-time digital bill presentment, payment, and money movement capabilities in the market. The Instant Payment Network® is currently trusted by numerous Fortune 500 companies, with more than 10 million consumers relying on it to make payments. About Payveris Payveris, a division of Paymentus, is the creator of the MoveMoney℠ Platform, an Open API, cloud-based platform that enables more than 265+ financial institutions to control, simplify, and extend more engaging intelligent digital payment and money movement capabilities to their users through any application or device while significantly reducing operating costs and future-proofing their IT investment.

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Spotlight

Powerful forces are reshaping the banking industry. Customer expectations, technological
capabilities, regulatory requirements, demographics and economics are together creating an
imperative to change. Banks need to get ahead of these challenges and retool to win in the next era.
Banks must not only execute on today’s imperatives, but also radically innovate and transform
themselves for the future.

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