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Kfir Gavrieli: A True Example of Corporate Leadership During a Global Pandemic

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corporate leadership

The Coronavirus Pandemic has undoubtedly uncovered many of the ills faced by our less-than-perfect society, but it has also uncovered the greatness and generosity of the human spirit. While our front-line health workers continue to battle this treacherous disease that has taken the world by storm, there are also heroes working behind the scenes, doing whatever they can to support these front-line workers.

Servant leadership example are Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., and Mother Theresa

Even in the business-as-usual corporate world, unlikely heroes have emerged. One such hero is Kfir Gavrieli, CEO of the fashion shoewear brand Tieks, who recently devised an initiative to step up and support front-line workers by engaging not only his company’s staff and manufacturing facility, but also Tieks’ fans and supporters, in a highly successful campaign to provide much-needed PPE to essential health-care workers.

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Gavrieli has always been a community-minded business leader, long known for his philanthropic work to empower women as the largest donor to date on the Kiva micro-lending platform, which provides micro-loans to women entrepreneurs around the world.  Most recently, after hearing from a friend in Los Angeles about the critical shortages of PPE local county hospitals faced, he set his sights on innovative ways to contribute to mitigating the crisis.

“As soon as I learned of this coming shortage, I knew we had a responsibility to reorient our business to get masks into the hands of those who need them most,” stated the passionate Israeli native. “Our nurses, doctors, EMTs and other medical professionals are on the front lines of this pandemic. We must do everything we can to protect them: for their own health and for everyone’s health, so that we have adequate healthcare staff as this crisis grows.”

Gavrieli immediately sprang into action, quickly purchasing a fleet of sewing machines and training his staff to make masks for health workers. Tieks, a popular footwear brand known for its innovative ballet flats that fold up neatly enough to fit inside a purse or handbag, suddenly found itself producing thousands of cloth masks that include pockets for filters. 

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These masks provide essential backup for hospitals and health workers, as they may be used to prolong the life of the critical N95 masks that have been in short supply in health centers.  When worn together with the N95 masks, the cloth masks extend the life of the N95’s, providing increased protection for essential workers who depend on them.  The cloth masks also provide protection for general hospital and health workers less likely to be exposed to the virus directly, which means that those critical and scarce N95 masks may be reserved to protect those who are directly on the front lines.

The beauty of Gavrieli’s leadership lies not only in his ability to mobilize his own workers, but also in his brilliant and innovative idea to mobilize the company’s vast fan and consumer base, thereby increasing the people-power behind the incentive by the thousands, and multiplying the production of masks by hundreds of thousands.

“We tried sewing masks,” he explained in a recent interview on The Briefing. “We were making a few hundred a day. And then it hit us that if we could somehow engage our community, our fans and our customers, to sew masks with us, we could really scale up the impact we were having.”

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The company, whose fan base and supporters are largely professional women who enjoy the comfort and style of the Tieks flats, launched a social media initiative called Operation #SewTogether. This ingenious campaign motivated thousands of supporters to come together and produce hundreds of thousands of masks, providing easy instructions, and motivation in the form of gift cards for the popular Tieks ballet flats.  For every with 25 masks donated, fans would receive $50 gift cards, and $100 gift cards for every 50 masks donated. This proved to be a win-win situation that allowed thousands of women to purchase the coveted flats at a discount, while building a powerful community to support essential health workers.

“We launched Operation #SewTogether and the response has just been phenomenal,” Gavrieli noted.  “We managed to overnight erect a factory with thousands of workers, something we couldn’t have done at our own headquarters.” 

The initiative has now produced over a million masks masks that have been sewn and distributed among hospitals in the Los Angeles County area, as well as other hard-hit areas in the country, such as Louisiana, New York, Washington, and other cities facing dangerously high infection rates. 

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“People wanted to help. We, as a brand, wanted to help. This was the best idea for how we could really do something together.”

Inspired by the success of the Operation #SewTogether campaign, Gavrieli decided to push his company’s philanthropy a step further to provide more direct rewards for essential health-care workers and those working on the front lines to fight the pandemic. In recent weeks, Tieks launched an additional campaign initiative offering direct rewards to health workers. The Tieks For Heroes campaign provides the gift of a $100 gift card toward a pair of the coveted Tieks flats to nurses, doctors, other health workers, and other essential workers who are on the front lines of the fight against Covid-19.

Although Gavrieli has long been recognized for his generous contributions to platforms such as Kiva and other charities, this particular campaign, with its innovative use of social media and wide-scale public engagement, became extra-special, because it unified supporters all over the country and built a beautiful community of donors.

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In his frank and forthright conversation on The Briefing, the emotion and excitement in Gavrieli’s voice was evident as he stated simply, “This really has been for me, as the CEO of the company, perhaps the most rewarding campaign we’ve ever done.” For more on Kfir Gavrieli visit:

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NIFTY scales new heights, expect Sensex to follow this time around

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NIFTY scales new heights, expect Sensex to follow this time around

Last week, the markets remained volatile but continued their upward trend, with NIFTY hitting a new high each trading session. BSESENSEX is close to surpassing its previous high, while NIFTY is expected to set a new high on Monday or Tuesday.

BSESENSEX closed the week gaining 716.16 points, and NIFTY gained 172 points. The broader markets also saw gains across different indices. While markets saw gains on three sessions, they faced losses on two days. The Indian Rupee also saw a slight gain against the US Dollar.

Vibhor Steel Tubes Limited had a remarkable debut on the bourses, listing at a gain of 178.80 percent and closing at a gain of 192.71 percent. Juniper Hotels Limited’s IPO received a lukewarm response despite being subscribed 2.07 times overall. Exicom Tele-Systems Limited is set to launch its IPO, offering power management solutions and EV chargers.

Bharat Highways Invit is set to launch an issue for fixed income investors, with units to be issued in a band of Rs 98-100. The INVIT will have initial assets from G.R. Infraprojects Limited’s HAM model, offering an attractive income yield. February futures are set to expire on February 29 amid a bullish market trend.

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TN CM lays foundation stone for VinFast's Rs 4,000-cr EV factory

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TN CM lays foundation stone for VinFast's Rs 4,000-cr EV factory

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin laid the foundation stone for VinFast group’s EV plant in Tuticorin. VinFast Auto India Ltd will invest Rs 4,000 crore in the first phase out of the planned Rs 16,000 crore investment, making Tamil Nadu the country’s EV Capital.

The plant, spread across 380 acres, will have a capacity to roll out 1,50,000 vehicles per annum. Industries Minister T.R.B. Rajaa mentioned that Tamil Nadu is already a hub for electric vehicle production in India.

Stalin distributed compensation for flood victims and criticized the central government for not providing support. Despite roadblocks, the state government has been successful in achieving its objectives and attracting investments for the state.

Since taking office in 2021, Stalin has prioritized garnering investments for Tamil Nadu. The DMK-led government’s focus on the welfare of the people has been evident in its policies and programs.

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Aadhaar, Jan Dhan giving big push to digital India ecosystem: Instamojo's CEO

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Aadhaar, Jan Dhan giving big push to digital India ecosystem:
Instamojo's CEO

New Delhi, Feb 25 (IANS) As the government accelerates its digital journey, Instamojo’s CEO Sampad Swain highlighted the impact of Aadhaar and Jan Dhan Yojana on India’s digital ecosystem. Swain emphasized on the opportunities created in the last few years, including the JAM Trinity, availability of credit, and the role of social media for small business owners.

Instamojo, a D2C tech company, provides online stores and payment solutions for e-commerce brands and startups. Despite facing a setback last year when RBI returned their license application, Swain remains optimistic and stated that they are preparing to reapply by September, with a focus on data security and compliance with regulations.

In FY2023, Instamojo reported significant profits and steady growth in its customer base, currently serving over 3 million small business owners on its platform. Swain expressed confidence in the company’s continued success, projecting a profitable year in 2024.

The CEO highlighted the importance of adapting to regulatory requirements and maintaining a strong customer base in the competitive digital market. Instamojo’s focus on empowering small businesses with online tools and payment solutions has contributed to its growth and success in the evolving digital landscape.

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