Nine things PR pros need to know on Thursday morning, 2.26.2015

Identity of "Jihadi John" revealed; FCC to vote on Net Neutrality; Publicis buys South Africa's Epic Communications.

1. The identity of "Jihadi John," the face of ISIS’ gruesome propaganda videos, has been unveiled by The Washington Post and the BBC. Mohammed Emwazi is a well-educated West Londoner born in Kuwait who traveled to Syria three years ago to join the terrorist group.

2. The Federal Communications Commission is expected to vote Thursday on Net Neutrality, most likely to regulate the Internet like a public utility. Debate on the topic and court challenges are sure to continue. Here’s what the decision will mean for wireless providers and the entertainment business.

3. Publicis Groupe has bought South African firm Epic Communications with plans to merge it into MSLGroup. Epic has 50 consultants in offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town. Its clients include Samsung.

4. AirPR has sold its PR marketplace, a platform unveiled in 2013 to connect startups with communications representation, to the CHR Group. AirPR is holding on to its analytics service.

5. Walmart gave raises to a half-million employees last week, in a move that gained widespread praise. But that matters little for many part-time workers unless they can get more hours, according to one employee profiled by The New York Times.

6. Lenovo said its website was hacked on Wednesday. The incident followed outrage that the company bundled the Superfish adware program on computes.

7. Sears, the owner of its namesake retail chain and KMart, reported a quarterly loss on Thursday morning for the 11th straight three-month period. The company said last month that it will lay off more than 100 corporate staffers.

8. The pressure will be on Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) on Friday when he addresses the Conservative Political Action Committee’s annual gathering, with former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Wisconsin’s Scott Walker off to strong starts.  

9. Standard Chartered has shaken up its leadership team, appointing Bill Winters to the CEO role. He is replacing Peter Sands, who failed to quiet investors despite major cost cuts. 

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