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ASTRAZENECA – A PRESENT AND LONGTIME WILLWORK CLIENT – HAS JUST FINISHED UP A STANDOUT AND CHAMPIONSHIP YEAR, AND CARRIES STRONG AND POSITIVE MOMENTUM INTO 2020

“Science has the power to change the world for the better.  In our industry, we are lucky that we are sometimes able to that we are sometimes able to translate our sciences into medicines that can transform the lives of millions of patients.”

MENE PANGALOS, AstraZeneca Executive Vice President of BioPharmaceuticals Research and Development, speaking in a video that AstraZeneca created on the occasion of and to tell the news of Mr. Panagalos being knighted by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for his contributions to United Kingdom science.  The honor was bestowed as a component of Her Majesty’s 2020 Honours List

(Header image: AstraZeneca R&D Centre and Global Headquarters in Cambridge, UNITED KINGDOM; image credit: AstraZeneca.)

AstraZeneca, based in England, is one of the leading international pharmaceutical corporations.

The company was formed in 1999 with the merger of Swedish Astra AB and the English Zeneca Group.

For several years it has been the privilege of Willwork Global Event Services to provide tradeshow and event services to AstraZeneca.

Accordingly, and most appropriately, Willwork enthusiastically highlights and spreads the word of the winning performance of AstraZeneca in 2019 – a performance that continues into 2020 with increased strength and growing momentum.

Of course, this success and achievement means, for those afflicted and suffering from serious illness, longer and improved quality of life, and hope.

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On the second-to-last day of 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it approved, to treat pancreatic cancer, a drug co-developed by AstraZeneca and Merck.

The medication – LYNPARZA® – already effective in the treatment of other types of cancer, is in the drug class PARP inhibitors.

Please click here to be taken to a story, “FDA Approves AstraZeneca and Merck’s Lynpraza for pancreatic cancer,” written by Alex Keown, and published in BioSpace, a digital media outlet covering the life sciences industry.

This news came 10 days after the FDA approved ENHERTU® – a medicine AstraZeneca developed in collaboration with Japanese drug maker Daiichi Sankyo – to treat inoperable and metastatic breast cancers.

Clicking here transports you to the FDA announcement of its approval of ENHERTU®.

AstraZeneca has long been involved in the battle to take down breast cancer.

Almost 50 years ago, AstraZeneca produced the first drug to treat the disease. 

Today the company has six breast cancer drugs available, and nine breast cancer drugs in the development pipeline. 

As well, AstraZeneca has played a broader role in the quest to defeat and find a cure for breast cancer. 

AstraZeneca was one of the founders of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, as we detailed in the post, “Willwork Global Event Services Clients are Leading in Breast Cancer Prevention, Diagnosis, Treatment … and the Quest to Find the Cure,”, published on this blog on October 31.

Now, consider that even before the FDA approved LYNPARZA® and ENHERTU®, 2019 had been a championship year for AstraZeneca.

Indeed, three days prior to the FDA releasing its ENHERTU® news, BioPharma Dive – a newsletter and website that covers the biotech and pharma industries, and which has a reader and viewer base of seven million – published a story in which it named AstraZeneca “Pharma of the Year.”  

This recognition continues a run of positive results for AstraZeneca that commenced in 2012 when Pascal Soriot came on board as CEO of the company.    

The following excerpt from the BioPharma Dive story, which is authored by Jonathan Gardner, presents and frames a perspective that takes in Mr. Soriot’s arrival at AstraZeneca and the seven-year stretch that brings us to the fourth quarter of 2019:

“This year, five of AstraZeneca’s blockbusters are growing, while in 2012 five of its seven were in retreat, taking $4.4 billion from its top line.  The company can now confidently point to growing sales, with revenue $2.2 billion greater over the first nine months of the year versus the same period in 2018.”

Please click here to be taken to the complete BioPharma Dive article.

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You know it has been a good year for an organization when the monarch of the United Kingdom, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth IIknights one of its employees.

Below we share the first paragraph of an article, “AstraZeneca scientist knighted,” published in The Pharma Letter on the final day of 2019:

“Mene Pangalos … one of the leaders behind AstraZeneca’s (LSE: AZN) remarkable recent record of successful drug development, has been awarded a knighthood.”

Mene Pangalos is the Executive Vice President of BioPharmaceuticals Research and Development at AstraZeneca.

Sir Mene Pangalos, Executive Vice President of Research and Development at AstraZeneca (image credit: The Pharma Letter)

Mr. Pangalos – who is now, by virtue of being knighted, Sir Pangalos – received from Queen Elizabeth II the award and distinction as a component of the 2020 edition of New Year Honours, a UK institution which goes back to 1890, and by which or in the name of the monarch of England, or the vice-regal representative of the monarch, honors are bestowed for contributions and service to the UK.

Willwork Global Event Services recommends an AstraZenca video – which can be accessed by clicking here – in which Sir Pangalos expresses his gratitude and appreciation for the honor of knighthood.

In the video, Sir Pangalos also gives thanks for having a job and a career that he loves and which fulfills him, with these benefits – as he explains – provided through the work goals he pursues, the extraordinary people with whom he collaborates, and the teams and team environment of which he is a member.

Sir Pangalos knows he is part of a great group doing among the most important work on earth. 

Willwork Global Event Services looks forward to continuing to support and provide services for this great group – the great group AstraZeneca.

A Christmas Tradition Born in Germany in the Middle Ages Continues

Now Celebrated Internationally, the Christkindlmarkt Has a Vibrant Presence in America

In Milwaukee – the Most German of U.S. Cities – a Willwork Global Event Services Client Plays a Central Role in the Holding of the Christkindlmarkt

(Header image: Christkindlmarket Chicago in 2014; image credit: True Shot Studios.)

On October 17, Willwork Global Event Services published in this space a post about the history of harvest and agricultural fairs and festivals. 

Please click here to be taken to the post.  

Included in the post was a discussion of Oktoberfest, an annual autumn event celebrated around the world that has its origins in Munich, Germany in the early 1800s.

In that we are in the holiday season, we felt it appropriate to feature here another annual event that started in Germany and which grew to take place internationally.

We are talking about the Christkindlmarkt– a Christmas market that is a type of street festival held during the season of Advent, the approximately four-week period in the Christian calendar that leads up to Christmas. 

Christkindlmarkt is German for “Christ child market” – yet the term Christkindlmarkt, as it relates to the event, has become more widely accepted as referring to and meaning the Christmas spirit. 

Christkindlmarkts are also known as German Christmas markets, German holiday markets, and Christmas markets. 

Christmas markets have open-air stalls where vendors sell food, drink, arts, and crafts. There is music and plays and other theater.  Large displays and exhibits adorn the landscape of the markets.

A genuine Chriskindlmarkt will retain and celebrate German heritage.

There will be a nativity scene, zwetschgenmännle (decorative figures made out of dried plums, and nussknackers (ornate carved nutcrackers).   

Available will be German foods like bratwurst, goulash, and the hot mulled wine glühwein; beer; gebrannte mandolin (roasted candied almonds); the gingerbreads lebkuchen and magenbrot, and stollen, a soft bread into which fruit is woven; potato pancakes; and lentil soup.

German music will be heard throughout the market.

A true German Christmas market will feature the arrival of the Christkind, the golden-haired spritely child angel that is the traditional Christmas giver in Germany and other countries in Europe, and also in parts of Brazil, in Hispanic America, and the Acadiana section of Louisiana.

Benigna Munsi, dressed as the Christkind,, standing on the balcony of of the Church of Our Lady in Nuremberg, opens the Nuremberg Christkindlmarkt (image credit: Matthias Schrader / AP)

The Striezelmarkt, in Dresden, is the oldest Christmas market, having first opened in 1434, and has been held for 585 consecutive years. 

Even during World War II, a year did not go by without a Striezelmarkt, as Dresden would not sustain any major Allied attack until the aerial bombings of February 13-15, 1945.

Today, the Striezelmarkt draws 2 million visitors.

Prior to Christmas markets, there were December markets held across the Holy Roman Empire, the earliest record of which is in Vienna in 1298.

For sure, the locus of Christmas market culture and activity remains in Germany.  

Consider that in Berlin alone there are 70 Christmas markets.  

Probably the most visited Christmas market on earth is the Cologne Cathedral Christmas Market, which every year draws about 4 million attendees.  In second place for annual attendees, with 3.5 million, is the Dortmund Christmas Market

Christmas markets in Stuttgart and Frankfurt have annual attendances in the neighborhood of 3 million.  Two million visit the Nuremberg Christkindlmarkt.

Please click here to be transported to a story “Germany’s Best Christmas Markets in 2019,” written by Meeroona, and published at Travel Away, the digital travel publication she co-founded, managed, and to which she regularly contributes.

Christkindlmarkts in the United States

Yes, the Christkindlmarkt – the German Christmas market, German holiday market, the Christmas market – is an international phenomenon.

Some of the best Christkindlmarkts anywhere on the planet are in the U.S. of A.  

One of these Christkindlmarkts that Willwork just has to point to is the Christkindlmarket Milwaukee, an authentic German Christmas market held in the most German of American cities.

We are compelled to highlight this market because it takes place along the plaza of Fiserv Forum, the sports, entertainment, and conventions venue to which Willwork client Fiserv – a worldwide leader in financial services technology – holds naming rights. 

Christkindlmarket (the spelling is Anglicized) Milwaukee launched last year, and last year also took place on the Fiserv Forum plaza.   

Christkindlmarkt Milwaukee – which runs this year from November 15 through December 25 – is one of three Christkindlmarkts organized and run annually by German American Events, LLC, a subsidiary of the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest, Inc. (GACC Midwest).

Extending beyond the U.S. Midwest, the United States is an area strong and well populated with German lineage. 

Christkindlmarket Chicago – held every year since 1996 – is the first German holiday market that GACC Midwest established.  It is also the largest and best attended in the U.S.  

Located at Daley Plaza – the dates of the event this year November 15 through December 24 – Christkindlmarket Chicago brings in more than 1 million visitors, and hosts a vast and varied roster of vendors and events.

In 2017, GACC started its second Christkindlmarkt, also in Chicago, in the neighborhood of Wrigleyville, along Gallagher Way.

Christkindlmarket Wrigleyville has been a major success.  Dates for its 2019 run are November 22 through December 31.

America is a home to many wonderful and well-planned, well-orchestrated, inspiring, and fun Christkindlmarkts.

To learn about some of these Christkindlmarkts, we recommend clicking here to be taken to a story, “23 Best German Markets Across the U.S.,” written by Courtney Campbell, and published in October in the online entertainment and news outlet Wide Open Country.

You still have time to take in a Christkindlmarkt.

Willwork Global Event Services wishes all Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!

It’s International Ninja Day. Consider the Business Operational and Marketing Value of the Ninja

Willwork Global Event Services is a leading corporate production and private event, general contracting, labor management, and event services company. 

Founded in 1987, we are now in our fourth decade in business.

Willwork is headquartered 25 miles south of Boston, and operates offices in major metropolitan areas across the United States.

We work in cities, towns, villages, and hamlets throughout America, and also have a growing international presence, particularly in Brazil and the Pacific Rim.

All the services Willwork provides its clients support and advance the efforts of companies, and other organizations, to strengthen their brand, more effectively market and sell, and to tell a story that is more engaging.

It makes sense then that we pay attention to and are intrigued with the emergence and spread … and adaptation and enlistment – of words, messages, images, taglines, narratives, emotions, and tempers that take hold in society,

And this brings us to the “ninja.”

Yes, the historic and vibrant cultural phenomenon that describes and presents as nimble, cunning, fast, courageous, strong, brilliant … and wholly effective.

Who wouldn’t want to be a ninja?

Who wouldn’t want to have ninja abilities?

Today, December 5, is International Ninja Day.

Following is a definition of the ninja published at Ancient History Encyclopedia, a United Kingdom-based non-profit:

Ninja (aka Shinobi) were the specialised assassins, saboteurs, and secret agents of medieval Japanese warfare who were highly-trained proponents of the martial arts, especially what later became known as ninjutsu or ‘the art of the ninja’. These special forces were adept at disguise, deception, and assaulting enemy positions and strongholds, usually at night when they moved like shadows in their traditional dark clothing. Employed from the 15th century CE onwards, ninjas, because of their lengthy secret training in specialised schools and mysterious anonymity, have acquired a perhaps exaggerated reputation for fantastic feats and weapons play, which makes them perfect characters for many modern comic books and computer games.”

Please click here to be taken to the full Ancient History Encyclopedia definition of ninja, written by Mark Cartwright, and published on June 3, 2019.The concept of the ninja, which originated 700 years ago, is prominent and easily found in many sectors of modern life. 

Ninjas and ninja-like are expressed in many forms.

It was back in 1984 when, in Dover, NH, two comic book graphic artists and writers – Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird – created the characters of four crime-fighting anthropomorphic turtles named for artists/inventors of the Italian Renaissance: Donatello, Leonardo, Michelangelo, and Raphael.

The turtles, who live in the sewers of New York City, are trained in the art of ninja by a rat sensei, also anthropomorphic. 

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Image credit: Nickelodeon)

Messrs. Eastman and Laird called the quartet Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and made the turtles the subject of a comic book they self-published.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has grown into a hugely popular worldwide media franchise that includes more comic books, major motion pictures, TV series, action figures, clothing … and more.

To be a ninja – to “be ninja” – promises all sorts of qualities that help people win, no matter the endeavor.

It isn’t an accident that maybe the most successful and popular – and money wealthy – online gamer, e-sport competitor, and streaming personality has taken on the name of Ninja.

That would be Richard Tyler Blevins, universally known as Ninja.

Ninja, 28, makes about $500,000 a month through his livelihood.

Ninja’s YouTube channel has 22.3 million subscribers.  And with two million followers, he is the most followed on the live-streaming video game site Mixer.

Richard Tyler Blevins “Ninja” (Image credit: TechSpot)

In that Willwork is involved … and this involvement is growing … in setting up and installing e-sports arenas and facilities, we watch with keen interest the career of Ninja.

It surely helps to be a ninja in business.

Smart and successful companies know full well the value of the “ninja” brand and name.

To wit and for example –

There is Internet Marketing Ninjas, Ninja Business Media, Ninja Journalist, Invoice Ninja, and Business Ninja.

Clicking here takes you the website of Nina Kitchen, seller of kitchen appliances.

Now, of course, there is the fitness and obstacle-course sport and television phenomenon Ninja Warrior.

Gary Shapiro a technology and innovation thought leader, knows the value of performing like a ninja.

Mr. Shapiro is the CEO and president of the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), a trade and standards organization that represents more than 2,200 consumer technology companies, and which also sponsors major tech industry events, the largest and most prominent of which is the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), held annually in January at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

(CES is a busy event for Willwork Global Event Services, with several of our clients participating in the show.)

Mr. Shapiro is an in-demand speaker and prolific writer about business, innovation, and technology.

He has penned bestselling books, among them Ninja Future: Secrets to Success in the New World of Innovation (William Morrow, 2019) and Ninja Innovation: The Ten Killer Strategies of the World’s Most Successful Businesses (William Morrow, 2013).

Willwork Global Event Services recognizes what the businesses cited above, and what Gary Shapiro knows and understands – that being able to think and act like a ninja confers a trove of competitive advantage and value. 

The fact is, Willwork has the ninja gene and mindset, and ninja qualities enable us to accomplish and get done what other companies can’t.

Acting and playing like a ninja is a key component to the success of Willwork Global Event Services.

And Willwork is committed to keeping our ninja abilities in top condition.

On Ninja Burger – and the Origins of International Ninja Day

International Ninja Day is the brainchild of Ninja Burger, a farce and for-giggles website and online fast-food restaurant.

Ninja Burger sells – and the items are also farcical – hamburgers, fries, and soda.

Ninja Burger delivers the food to you – but it does not have a delivery service.  Yeah, the service is fake, as well.

We have selected a couple items from the Ninja Burger menu to share with you:

Ninja Burger ($5) – “A single 4 oz. all-beef patty hand-broiled over the finest free-range artisanal charcoal briquettes. Comes with Secret Sauce, lettuce, cheese, tomatoes, pickles, onions and Kung-Fu Grip. All inside a toasted roll.”

(Image credit: Ninja Burger)

Ninja Cola ($2) – “A 20 oz. beverage of an undisclosed brand of cola. Served in your choice of classic white or stealth black cup, with just the right amount of the finest free-range artisanal ice.”

Those Ninja Burger food prices are reasonable.

Not so the delivery charges, which start at $99.99.

Then, again, let’s put things in perspective.

For if you are going to receive ninja-quality delivery service, it can’t come cheap.

VETERANS DAY 2019 – AND THE 30TH ANNIVERSARY OF EPIC HUMAN LIBERATION THAT THE SERVICE AND SACRIFICE OF THE SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF THE UNITED STATES HELPED ASSURE

“Word to the nation: Guard zealously your right to serve in the Armed Forces, for without them, there will be no other rights to guard.”

PRESIDENT JOHN F. KENNEDY

(Header image: Ninety-nine members of the United States Armed Forces from 33 countries take the oath of U.S. citizenship at Camp Pendleton, September 17, 2009. Photo is courtesy of the United States Marine Corps.)

Willwork Global Event Services is a leading exhibition services and event management company.

Launched in 1987, Willwork is growing rapidly and works in cities, towns, villages, and hamlets across America.  We are also busy with projects in Brazil and the Pacific Rim.

We are based in the Boston suburb of Easton, MA, and operate offices in major U.S. metropolitan areas.

In this space, Willwork frequently gives thanks to and heralds the sacrifice of those who have served and are serving in the U.S. armed forces.  We honor and celebrate in this space those, whether in the military or not, who have sacrificed and willingly put themselves in harm’s way to advance and achieve noble and virtuous causes. 

Among posts of this nature and substance are a Veterans Day 2016 post, which can be accessed by clicking here, and a Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday post that can be accessed by clicking here.

Every day should be a day to show gratitude to all Americans who have worn and who wear the uniform of the United States military. 

Yet, still, we appreciate and embrace Veterans Day as an event that facilitates, nurtures, and assists a broad and far-reaching societal observance and reflection on the martial service and sacrifice necessary to found and maintain our republic.

Veterans Day 2019 coincides with the 30th anniversary of the physical fall of the Berlin Wall.  (Actually, the fall of the wall commenced on November 9, 1989 – but the historic cascade of euphoria, joy, and adrenaline were still very much in the birth phase on November 11, 1989.)  And we emphasize here the “physical” fall of the wall, because, in truth, as soon as the wall went up, in 1961, continuous and inextinguishable thirst for freedom and liberty, and spirited and passionate words and actions … some on the order of heroic … fomented in a way that assured the eventual destruction of the stone and wire structure that deprived liberty.

The Berlin Wall falls, November 1989 (image credit: U.S. Department of Defense)

As the Berlin Wall collapsed, it all initiated and inspired, across a wide swath of Europe, a freedom revolution and the death knell of repressive governments, and the liberation of tens of millions of people.

Now, of course, the repression under which the people were living had been instituted when, in the immediate wake of the end of World War II, the Soviet Union imposed its rule across the eastern section of the continent.

The Soviet occupation and takeover of this part of the world commenced the Cold War – a stretch of about 20 years of tension during which the democratic U.S. faced off against the communist Soviet Union, with the nations never engaging in one-on-one hot conflict, but coming close.

A major reason that the United States and freedom won the Cold War was the military service, all over the globe, of U.S. men and women, whether or not that service involved hearing a shot fired in anger. 

Those men and women stood on a wall and served … and were willing to give all … to defend liberty.

As do the men and women of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard today.

Of this we, all of us, need to be ever mindful.

Willwork Global Event Services says, “Thank You” to all our veterans!!

A Man, a Giant Pumpkin, a River – and a World Record

(Header image: Todd Sandstrum en route to the world record)

Willwork Global Event Services, founded in 1987, is a leading exhibition services and event project management company.

In our social media posts, we like to talk about and point to events, exhibitions, conventions, parties, soirees, shows, and festivals … of all types.

Indeed, here in this space, among the topics we have featured and discussed are the summer solstice, celebrations held for championship professional sports teams, “Blood Moon,”  World’s Columbian Exposition (more commonly called the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair), Halloween and scary-themed expositions and events, world’s top flower shows, and giant and spectacular Christmas trees.

This being the first week of October and early fall, we thought it particularly appropriate to herald an event which is built around and promotes a fruit – a cultivated and domesticated fruit that is member of the winter squash family.

Yes, we are talking about the pumpkin – a native of North America, originating about 7,000 BC, in an area that encompasses present day northeastern Mexico and southern United States.

Getting back to squashes – the pumpkin is also a gourd, which is an ornamental squash, even if pumpkins are also a favorite food source, whereas most ornamental squashes are edible, but intensely bitter.

Willwork Global Event Services has a direct tie to a big-time event involving a pumpkin. 

Actually, we refer to a world record involving a pumpkin – a really big pumpkin – that was established by a native of Easton, MA, the town where is located the Willwork Global Event Services corporate office.

The Easton native is Todd Sandstrum, a gentleman who was also living in Easton when, on September 3, 2016, he set the global mark.

Mr. Sandstrum – a third-generation farmer, agricultural steward and education advocate, and environmentalist – made it into the Guinness World Records when he skippered and paddled a 1,240-lb. pumpkin, carved and fashioned into a boat, eight miles on the Taunton River, a waterway in southeastern Massachusetts.

The Taunton River is 36 miles long, from its origin in the town of Bridgewater, MA to where it meets the Atlantic Ocean in Mount Hope Bay at the border of Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

Starting in the city of Taunton, the Taunton River is tidal for the final 12 miles of its journey to the ocean.

Success came for Mr. Sandstrum a year after his first pumpkin-paddling world record attempt – also on the Taunton River.  In that effort, he made it about 3.5 miles before shallow water halted his progress.

Yet, that 3.5-mile trek was recognized as a world record by the World Record Academy.  Guinness, though, did not certify the mark because of insufficient documentation.

Todd Sandstrum’s second try for a world best would be thoroughly chronicled, with local media covering the event. 

Mr. Sandstrum set his pumpkin boat in the water in Dighton, MA.

His final destination was Battleship Cove, a maritime museum and war memorial set in Fall River. MA at the intersection of the Taunton River and the Atlantic. 

Approximately four hours and 13 minutes after he set off from Dighton, hundreds were cheering from the shoreline, and news cameras clicked and rolled, as Todd Sandstrum pulled his pumpkin vessel up next to the USS Massachusetts (which is permanently anchored at Battleship Cove) and affixed a kiss to the famed and iconic battleship.

Mission Complete – Todd Sandstrum kisses the USS Massachusetts (image credit: Marc Vasconcellos for the The Enterprise)

One for the record books.

To learn more about Todd Sandstrum’s world record, please click here to be taken to an Enterprise newspaper story, smartly titled, “Good gourd! Easton man paddles pumpkin boat, squashes record,” written by Cody Shepard, with photos by Marc Vasconcellos.