It’s all flowers and going-out tops from here 🌷

Just let it be true.

Please respect our grief at this time: Outcome Health is officially no more, merging with Cincinnati's PatientPoint Technologies. It’s a last-ditch effort to salvage some value from a company that once had breathless media coverage and a more-than-billion-dollar valuation, despite literally just being TVs with pharma ads in doctors’ offices. A pretty dumb conspiracy to inflate the number of people seeing those ads brought it all tumbling down like a petty Icarus, and now one of Chicago’s Great Tech Unicorns is officially no more.

If only Tovala would go next, instead of raising $30 million for its microwave. 

We don’t expect the loss of Outcome Health to result in a dramatic loss of jobs, on account of it’s not a real company and a lot of people were already shed immediately post-scandal. Still, there are plenty of new ones on their way in. Hyzon, a New York-based hydrogen-powered truck maker, is hiring 50 people by the end of the year to staff a fuel-cell factory in Bolingbrook.

Hyzon is looking mostly for engineers to advance research and development, but Discover is just looking for the people skills necessary to survive a call center. It’s opening a new facility on the South Side by 2024, with plans to hire nearly 1,000 people and pay them more than $17 an hour. 

Amazon has no such plans to exceed the Chicago minimum wage. It’s continuing to add distribution centers on the South and West sides, and continuing to break up any attempts at unionizing

Speaking of the minimum wage, some fighting words
By now you’ve heard about Biden’s COVID-19 relief plan, for which we have some excite. Stimulus checks on the way for those who reported up to $75,000 AGI, partial checks for up to $80,000 (down from first round, meh). Good news in there for parents and child care providers, people on unemployment, the Affordable Care Act, Amtrak, and, dare we say, more? Hopefully something for everyone. 

One provision that was knocked out earlier was increasing the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025. For those of you still fighting the good fight, wanted to point out some “talking” points about what’s already happening closer to home. 

For one, the minimum wage in Illinois is $11 an hour, vs $7.25 at the federal level, and already set to increase to $15 by 2025. In Cook County, it’s currently $13. (What’s your point, again, conservative parents in the suburbs?) In Chicago proper, the minimum wage is $14, or $13.50 for employers with 20 or fewer workers. It will increase to $15 for large employers this summer. Tipped workers (ILY) will be at $9.

None of this is that great, we are not celebrating. But if you like to fight, and we know you do, spit those facts all over the Land of Lincoln when someone tells you $15 is too much. 

PS: Indiana’s still at $7.25.

Jobs, Glorious Jobs
Head of Operations and Program Management at Tech for Campaigns
Sent to us by a hustler so dedicated to Democrats that she’s planning a move to Pennsylvania before the next election, this job would give you a chance to use digital marketing knowledge for good by improving campaign technology. Please. Make them better.

Retail Store Manager at Rebuilding Exchange
We are biased, because one of us is on the auxiliary board, but Rebuilding Exchange is maybe the most fun place to spend a day in Chicago? And can be confirmed as an excellent date spot. You could be responsible for it, and by extension for keeping building materials out of landfills and training quality people for quality jobs. Hit us up directly if you’re interested!

Program Manager, Baumhart Center for Social Enterprise and Responsibility at Loyola University
Develop and launch the Baumhart Review, a media platform for the center whose mission is to leverage business ideas to build a more just, humane and sustainable world. (Go on ... ) Create an audience, a content strategy and an advisory board, among other powers (within reason — it's still a university, y'all). But a rare opportunity to start from scratch at a job that is literally asking for journalists. Also looking for a Program Coordinator.

Tool of the week
Background-noise muffler Krisp, which successfully removed both screaming children and barking dogs from our conference calls, making us feel like actual professionals again for the first time in a long time.

Inspiration of the week

Yes, sure, some of it is just the spring thaw (crocuses!), and some of it is just the thought of once again donning a going-out top, and a lot of it is Dolly’s mountain accent, but we are starting to experience the sensation of hope again. At this time it is mostly manifesting as unprompted tears, but you know, it’s a feeling. 

On this one-year quaranniversary, just know that wherever you are on the spectrum of not-great-bob.gif to you-go-glen-coco.gif, we’ve felt it too — and probably in the last hour. There isn’t a right way to feel. But knowing that Dolly is now statistically unlikely to die from COVID-19 gives us just enough optimism to maybe make it to the other side of all this.

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