Archive for September, 2017

Pair of Upcoming Webinars Can Help Your Business with Financing, Budgeting

Saturday, September 30th, 2017


Small businesses looking for financing have way more options today than they would have in the past. But all those extra choices can lead to confusion for small business owners.

If you’re trying to sort through the range of financing options available to small businesses, an upcoming webinar might be able to help. The webinar, Understanding Alternative Financing Options for Business Owners, is scheduled for October 5 and registration is currently open.

And that’s not all! Another webinar aimed at helping small businesses with budgeting is scheduled for the same day.

You can learn about both upcoming webinars and more by checking out the Featured Events section and list below.

To see a full list or to submit your own event, contest or award listing, visit the Small Business Events Calendar.



Featured Events, Contests and Awards

Webinar: Understanding Alternative Financing Options for Business OwnersWebinar: Understanding Alternative Financing Options for Business Owners
October 05, 2017, Online

Take the confusion out of choosing the best financing for your business. Join us for this webinar to gain a better understanding of the alternative lending landscape. Register today!


WEBINAR: Dimes to Dollars: Use Apps, Conserve Energy and Recycle to Control Your BudgetWEBINAR: Dimes to Dollars: Use Apps, Conserve Energy and Recycle to Control Your Budget
October 05, 2017, Online

Learn the techniques small businesses are using to gain control of their budgets. Hear from experts, including small business experts Anita Campbell, Ivana Taylor and Michael Cammon, Director, Digital Marketing & Development at Constellation, an energy supplier, for practical ideas to implement in minutes, including how to save money through light bulbs, how to win the thermostat wars in your office, how to switch energy providers to lower energy rates, recycling to save money (as well as helping the environment), how to get an energy audit done – and how it can help, smart building” apps for you and your team to manage costs, how landscaping, caulk and window coverings can save big and energy tax breaks available. REGISTER TODAY!


ONTRApaloozaONTRApalooza
October 04, 2017, Santa Barbara, Calif.

ONTRApalooza is a three-day conference for entrepreneurs, marketers and business leaders packed to the brim with hands-on workshops, in-depth software sessions, and inspiring keynotes from leading experts. Join in on Oct. 4 – 6, 2017 to learn the strategies that are getting results now. Leave prepared to make a bigger impact.


Rule Breaker Awards Ceremony Rule Breaker Awards Ceremony
October 24, 2017, Scottsdale, Ariz.

On October 24, 2017 at the Talking Stick Resort in Scottsdale, Arizona, the Rule Breaker Awards will honor and celebrate those entrepreneurs who have succeeded by doing it their way in a ceremony featuring the Rule Breaker of the Year and Rule Breaker Award winners.


NextConNextCon
October 23, 2017, Scottsdale, Ariz.

At NextCon, you’ll gain:

– Proven techniques to garner higher customer satisfaction.
– Insider strategies from leading experts to help you provide amazing customer service.
– Methods of engaging your employees to better deliver on your customer experience.
– Hands-on training with Nextiva’s technology and products so you can take advantage of tools you already have, or learn about new ones.


Sales World 2017Sales World 2017
November 08, 2017, Online

Sales World 2017 takes place November 8th to 9th, 2017, Online; Live and On Demand. It is the largest Sales Industry Event in the World and will be attended by over 10,000 Sales Professionals. It’s the one sales event you can’t afford to miss!


DIGIMARCON WORLD 2017 - Digital Marketing ConferenceDIGIMARCON WORLD 2017 – Digital Marketing Conference
November 14, 2017, Online

DIGIMARCON WORLD 2017 Digital Marketing Conference takes place November 14th to 16th, 2017. Whether your goal is to reinforce customer loyalty, improve lead generation, increase sales, or drive stronger consumer engagement, DIGIMARCON WORLD 2017’s agenda will help attendees enhance their marketing efforts. Sessions will focus on building traffic, expanding brand awareness, improving customer service and gaining insight into today’s latest digital tools.


More Events

More Contests

This weekly listing of small business events, contests and awards is provided as a community service by Small Business Trends and SmallBizTechnology.

Business Budgeting and Financing via Shutterstock

This article, “Pair of Upcoming Webinars Can Help Your Business with Financing, Budgeting” was first published on Small Business Trends

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Update Your Online Marketing Strategy with These 10 Tips

Saturday, September 30th, 2017


You know all of the basic ways to market a business online: create content, use social media, buy online ads. But your competitors know all of those methods too. So you need to step up your efforts if you want to stand out. Here are some new ways to update your online marketing from members of the online small business community.

Make Your Content More Relevant in Search

In order for your content marketing to be effective, people need to easily be able to find it. And search engines are a big part of that. To learn how to make your content more relevant in search, check out this Content Marketing Institute post by Marcia Riefer Johnston.

Avoid These Common AdWords Mistakes

AdWords has been a major tool for online marketers for years. But in that time, many have made costly mistakes that have lessened the effectiveness of their ads. See some of those common mistakes so you can avoid them in your own efforts in this Search Engine Journal post by Susan Wenograd.

Create Processes for Regular Web Maintenance

Once you’ve created a great website for your business, the work isn’t over. You have to perform regular web maintenance. And creating processes can help with that. Benjamin Brandall provides a helpful checklist for doing so in this Process Street post.

Make Your Business Happy with These Landing Page Benefits

Think you don’t need to use landing pages as part of your online marketing strategy? Think again! In this post, Mike Allton of the Social Media Hat shares why you’re wrong to believe landing pages are unimportant. BizSugar members also shared thoughts on the post here.

Learn the Art and Science of Retargeting

Retargeting gives businesses a unique opportunity to procure more repeat shoppers online. But there’s a lot that goes into this process. Learn the art and science of retargeting in this Target Marketing post by Patrick Kuehn and Daniel Ripes.

Implement These Marketing Automation Workflows

Online marketing can be a time consuming undertaking. But you can save time and increase effectiveness by automating certain processes. In this SUCCESS Agency post, Mary Blackiston suggests seven marketing automation workflows that you should implement in order to save time.

Use These Affiliate Marketing Strategies for Success During the Holidays

The holidays are quickly approaching, providing opportunities to boost sales with unique holiday promotions. And affiliate marketing can be a huge part of your strategy. In this Marketing Land post, Adam Weiss offers some affiliate marketing strategies you can use for success during the holidays.

Boost Retention Rates with These Customer Support Hacks

Online marketing isn’t just about gaining new customers. You also need strategies for retaining current ones. The customer support hacks listed in this Post Funnel article by Sam Hurley can help in that area. And you can also see commentary on the post over on BizSugar.

Avoid These Common Blogging Mistakes

Blogging has been a popular way for businesses to promote their offerings and earn extra income for years now. But some are still just getting started with blogging, meaning they could be more prone to mistakes. To learn more about some of the common mistakes to avoid, read this Basic Blog Tips post by Erik Emanuelli.

Maximize Your Email Marketing Strategy with These Platforms

Through all of the changes to online marketing tools and platforms, email remains a powerful way to communicate with customers and potential customers. If you’re looking to maximize your email marketing strategy, this SMB CEO post by Megan Totka may be able to provide some useful insights.

If you’d like to suggest your favorite small business content to be considered for an upcoming community roundup, please send your news tips to: sbtips@gmail.com.

Online Marketing Strategy via Shutterstock

This article, “Update Your Online Marketing Strategy with These 10 Tips” was first published on Small Business Trends

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25 Examples of Halloween Displays to Inspire Your Retail Store

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

Americans are expected to spend more than $9 billion on Halloween purchases this year. So if you don’t have some kind of Halloween display ideas, you might want to put your thinking cap on. Here’s some inspiration to help you come up with a Halloween retail display to boost sales for your small business this fall.

Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You

Graveyard Candy Display

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Candy is a product you’d naturally want to showcase for Halloween. Dylan’s Candy Bar in New York took a unique and colorful approach by arranging candy to look like tombstones.

Halloween Display Ideas for the Classic Cake Shop

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This cake shop in Cyprus took a pretty classic approach, simply arranging some festive treats along a table and a simple message stated with window decals.

Cute Sweet Shop Display

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This window display at Waseda Doori in Japan features a lot of the shop’s normal products and then simply integrates some little pumpkins and other cute decorations.

Orange Decor Display

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For a stylish look, decor boutique Willow and Stone in England created a display that includes products and decorative elements that fit into just one color category — orange for the Halloween season.

White Pumpkin Home Decor Vignette

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Orange and black don’t necessarily go with the style of every business. For FOUND by domestic bliss, a vintage and decor shop in Arizona, the off white palette of this display is more consistent. But the store still integrated pumpkins and fall elements into the design.

Apothecary Decor Window Display

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Scout in Michigan also created a subtle Halloween display showing off some home decor items that look like they might belong in an apothecary or be used for casting spells or making spooky potions.

Skeleton Kitchen Antiques Setup

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Country Meadows, an antique shop in Illinois, took a quirky approach to showing off some of its items by creating a classic kitchen display and then adding some skeletons and halloween decor.

Edgar Allen Poe Book Display

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Edgar Allen Poe Book Display - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

This photo is from a library display at a school in Kansas. But something similar that features Poe or other authors that specialize in spooky fiction could work at a bookstore or similar business.

Makeshift Costume Display

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Makeshift Costume Display - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

An American Apparel store in California created this display showing how some of its items could be used for various superhero costumes.

Witch Outfit Fashion Showcase

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Witch Outfit Fashion Showcase - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

At Whimsy, a retail fashion boutique in Illinois, the Halloween display ideas featured a mannequin with a gray and black outfit, A broom and witch’s hat are other clever Halloween retail ideas.

Bridal Pumpkin Head Display

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Bridal Pumpkin Head Display - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

At Alexandra’s Bridal Boutique in Massachusetts, the store created window displays featuring its dresses on mannequins with pumpkin heads, along with some spooky lighting.

Kids’ Clothing Pumpkin Display

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To show off its line of fall kids’ clothes, Ralph Lauren in New York created a window display featuring a large jack-o-lantern and some smaller fall elements alongside mannequins featuring fall outfits.

Skeleton Mannequin Window

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Another way of displaying clothing in a spooky way, this retail boutique in New York used skeletons instead of mannequins.

Eyewear Mummy Mannequin

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Eyewear Mummy Mannequin - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

You can also use spooky mannequins like mummies to show off smaller accessories like eyewear, as Luxury Eyesight in Illinois did with this display.

Skull Window Display

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Skull Window Display - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

Or if you’re more interested in getting attention than showing off your products, you could do something like this Marc Jacobs window in New York that just features stacks of fake skulls and bones.

Jack-o-lantern Retail Window

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Jack-o-lantern Retail Window - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

Halloween retail ideas can be found all over the world At Mono, a retail shop in Japan, the window features a cutout of a jack-o-lantern so you can see pumpkins and mannequins decked out with the store’s accessories through the cutouts.

Broom Hardware Store Display

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Broom Hardware Store Display - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

You might think that there’s not a lot of opportunity to create fun halloween displays featuring hardware store products. But Cole Hardware in California proves that sentiment wrong with this spooky broom window display.

Stylish Bat Window Display

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This window at Grasse, a retail shop in Norway, features a white and gold color palette with a set of paper bats in the background to add a festive touch.

Classic Character Gift Shop Display

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This window at a gift shop in Walt Disney World features some simple Halloween decor and then some festive products displayed around classic characters Mickey and Minnie.

Eclectic and Magical Gift Shop

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Roger’s Gardens in California hosts a series of pop-up boutiques each fall. This year, its focus is on shops with a magical feel, including this eclectic “Owl Post” shop that mixes Halloween items with references to popular magical tales.

Giant Witch Feet Outdoor Display

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Harrods in London created a large outdoor display a few years ago featuring the witch’s feet from the Wizard of Oz. It might not be a Halloween movie exactly. But it was certainly an attention grabbing display.

Colorful Halloween Display Ideas for Your Sporting Goods Store

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Chums, a sporting goods store in Japan, kept its window display fun and colorful, but added a spooky element with a masked mannequin and some pumpkins for Halloween.

Plush Animal Hospital Window

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Plush Animal Hospital Window - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

This animal hospital also got into the Halloween spirit with a window display featuring plush dogs with costumes and pumpkins.

Giant Scream Soda Display

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Grocery or convenience stores, there are plenty of Halloween images you can conjure up by arranging boxes of soda or other beverages, like this one showing ghostface from Scream.

Carved Pumpkin Display

25 Examples of Halloween Retail Displays to Inspire You - Carved Pumpkin Display - Halloween Retail Displays - Halloween Retail Ideas - Halloween Display Ideas

Your Studio is a service based business that provides branding and design services, so it doesn’t really have products to showcase in a window display. To show some Halloween spirit, the business chose a theme for some carved pumpkins and created a window display around those instead.

For more Halloween marketing ideas please read:

Halloween Photo via Shutterstock

This article, “25 Examples of Halloween Displays to Inspire Your Retail Store” was first published on Small Business Trends

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Venture Deals Breaks Down the VC Industry for Entrepreneurs

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

Venture Deals Breaks Down the VC Industry for EntrepreneursSo, you’ve got your business plans, pitch deck, and awesome team ready to launch your startup. Think you’re ready to go? Your journey is just starting out, young grasshopper. Venture Deals: Be Smarter Than Your Lawyer and Venture Capitalist is an in-depth guide through the legal and financial maze that most startup owners aren’t prepared to face. Written by two experts with more than 40 combined years in the venture capital industry, the book points out the key terms and conditions to look for while signing contracts and moving closer to their dream.

What is Venture Deals About?

Venture Deals is the third edition of a book that started out as a blog intended to bring more transparency to the venture capital (VC) industry. The VC industry has its own terminology, best practices, and strategies that many people, including promising startups who are approached by venture capitalists, do not realize. The book starts with the basics, explaining how a VC firm is structured and how it invests.

Venture Deals then delves into the core topic of the book, the term sheet. For those not familiar with the word, a “term sheet” is like a golden ticket to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory — from a startup’s point of view. It lays out the initial conditions for a venture capitalist or VC firm to invest in your startup dream. Getting this term sheet is a hard-fought battle, but it is the start of a longer war. That is the purpose of the latter part of the book, which focuses on the funding and negotiation concerns you may have down the road.

Beyond term sheets, Venture Deals exposes readers to the mind of a venture capitalist — or VC. The authors show what a venture capitalist looks for in a promising startup at each stage of funding. (Hint: it’s more than an awesome-looking pitch deck or Prezi presentation). Unlike the perception, startup financing is not like a fairytale where a “venture capitalist” waltzes in to save a promising startup. The promise is more nuanced, startup owners have more options, and conditions have more leeway than you might imagine. Venture Deals is a guide to understanding these nuances and options so you can achieve the most favorable arrangement to launch the start-up of your dreams.

Author Brad Feld is an experienced early-stage investor and entrepreneur with 25 years of experience in the industry. He co-founded Foundry Group with Jason Mendelson. Feld has also founded (or co-founded) several other businesses including Intensity Ventures, Feld Technologies and Mobius Venture Capital. Besides running businesses, he is also an avid marathon runner.

Co-author Jason Mendelson is a former startup lawyer, an adjunct law professor, and a co-founder of the Foundry Group. Mendelson previously served as managing director and Chief Administrator Office for Mobius Venture Capital. In addition, he is a hiker, musician and home remodeler.

What Was Best About Venture Deals?

Venture Deals deserves a lot of credit for attempting to break down the venture capital industry for the wide-eyed startup owner who still believes his or her startup is a billion-dollar unicorn in the making. While authors Feld and Mendelson don’t dash anyone’s dreams, they bring a much-needed practicality to the world of startups entrepreneurs will need to understand. The authors pull out key terms and concepts from the confusing legal and financial startup funding maze and take readers on a tour to show how the industry really works. In some cases, Venture Deals walks readers through every important paragraph of a document (like the term sheet).

What Could Have Been Done Differently?

Venture Deals, while extremely helpful and organized when focusing on the fundamentals, is not a book for everyone. Despite the authors’ attempts, it can be an intellectually daunting book if you don’t have some exposure to corporate finance. This isn’t a bad thing, but it is something readers may want to consider. If you know what terms like “convertible debt” and “vesting” mean, you should be fine.

Another issue is the balance of legal and financial information. The book is skewed more toward the financial side of things. More information on the legal issues in startup financing might be helpful.

Why Read Venture Deals?

As mentioned above, the venture capital industry is something most people know little about. Because of that lack of knowledge, people to believe in the hype. The authors take the time to gently bring entrepreneurs back to earth by explaining key issues a prospective startup company needs to understand. There aren’t too many books that do this kind of thing. Most startup books focus on the business strategy or marketing aspects of getting a new business off the ground. Venture Deals focuses on the less shiny, but all-important, legal and financing issues of building a startup.

This article, “Venture Deals Breaks Down the VC Industry for Entrepreneurs” was first published on Small Business Trends

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Raise in the Wages of the Military from January Next Year

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

“From 1 January 2018, the military will receive higher salaries.” This is what Defense Minister Krasimir Karakachanov said in Varna.

He added that he could not tell the exact percentage because the raises would be different, depending on the rank and the service, but certainly the biggest ones will be in the battle divisions.

“I also want to congratulate the 800,000 Bulgarians who will receive higher pensions tomorrow.” The Minister of Defense was among the official guests in the oversight of the military flags of the Naval School “Nikola Yonkov Vaptsarov” in Varna.

“This oath is not just a beautiful ritual, it is a promise and a responsibility to serve Bulgaria to the end,” Karakachanov told the young men. He congratulated their teachers and parents and wished them to be faithful to their homeland.

“It was a stupid thing that governments and ordinary people thought that by entering NATO, they would keep us safe and going into the European Union, they would provide for us, first of all we should rely on our own powers. There is an idea NATO base on our territory, but it’s just an idea, nothing concrete has been put forward for discussion, “said Minister Karakachanov. He promised that funds would be allocated for the purchase of the necessary equipment for the army, not just for airplanes.

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236 Illegal Migrants were Detained Near Edirne

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

A total of 236 illegal migrants planning to enter  European countries illegally, as well as a traffickers, were arrested on Friday near the Turkish town of Edirne, Daily Sabah writes, quoted by FOCUS.

The Turkish gendarmerie has detained migrants during roadside checks carried out near the villages of Bosna, Yekanidrin, located along the Greek border. Migrants are identified as citizens of Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Morocco and Vietnam.
The suspect, charged with organizing illegal traffic of people, was detained in the Edrine Gendarmerie building while the captured migrants were sent to the provincial migration control office.

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Assange: We are Witnessing the World’s First Internet War in Catalonia

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange believes the situation surrounding the referendum on the independence of Catalonia can be described as the first case in the world of internet war.

“The world’s first internet war began in Catalonia, where the people and the government use it (the Internet) to organize Sunday’s independence referendum, while Spanish intelligence services are attacking and freezing telecommunication links, censoring hundreds of sites , protocols and so on, “Assange wrote in Twitter.

Earlier, he expressed the view that what is happening in the Spanish Autonomous Region is “the most significant Western conflict between the nation and the state since the fall of the Berlin Wall,” but happening in the style of the new century. Namely, through proxy servers, VPNs, mirrors, encrypted chats, internet surveillance, censorship, and bot propaganda (agitation performed by robotized software.

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The Russian Authorities Released the Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

Opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who was detained yesterday in Moscow, announced himself last night that the police had let him out of the police station, reported Btv.

Yesterday morning the Moscow police detained him “for repeated appeals for participation in an unauthorized public event”.

He was arrested before going to Nizhny Novgorod for unauthorized action. The police have compiled an administrative protocol.
The Simonean court in Moscow will consider the administrative case against him on 2 October.

This is the third detention for Navalni for the past six months, the previous two before his rallies in Moscow on 26 March and 12 June this year.

The 41-year-old opposition eader is considered to be Vladimir Putin’s main rival in the presidential election next year if they allow him to run, added Btv.

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The US Health Minister Resigned

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

US Secretary of Health and Public Services Thomas Price quit today the US administration after a scandal in connection with his private-plane travel that he paid for with state funds.

“The Minister of Health and Public Services, Thomas Price, resigned and it was accepted by the president,” said White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders, who also said that Price’s position would be temporarily taken over by his deputy, Don Wright.
 

Last week the Health Inspector General, Daniel Levinsson, launched an investigation into a charge for appropriating state funds after Politiko revealed that from May until now, the Minister had flown 26 times with private or military aircraft.

According to the magazine, just in June, Price has made a charter flight from Washington to Nashville, Tennessee for USD 17,760. He spent six hours there, where he had made two official events and had lunch with his son by paying the bill again with state money. A few months later, in September, the orthopedic surgeon spent a total of USD 60,000 in state money for four days for private flights, even though he had the opportunity to take public air transport.

In addition to private planes, Price has used USD 500,000 for his overseas trips with US Air Force airplanes. So, in less than a year, the minister’s pleasure cost more than a million dollars to US taxpayers, including benefits for Price’s family, friends and ex-colleagues.

On Thursday, Price promised to re-allocate the state budget and not use more charter flights even for official purposes.

Source

German Police have Arrested the Suspect for the Baby Food Poisoning

Saturday, September 30th, 2017

German police have detained the suspect for poisoning baby food. His name is not mentioned. According to a spokesman for the police, the man is from the Tubingen region and looks very much like the man from the photo of the alleged blackmailer, the BNR said, citing the local media.

The services have come to the suspect after multiple alerts of citizens. More than 650 alerts have been filed by German citizens in the police. According to the investigators, the man probably does not act alone. It is still unclear whether the man detained by the police in Constance is the wanted blackmailer. He has demanded a 10 million euro ransom from several retail chains. Otherwise, he threatened to leave 20 poisoned foods in various supermarkets. Today, the payout period expires.

He sent his threat in a letter to the police and several chains of German supermarkets as early as mid-September. In Friedrichshafen, southern Germany, baby food jars containing ethylene glycol, the main ingredient of the antifreeze, were found. Poisoning with this substance leads to an urgent condition that requires rapid medical intervention.

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