Just about all poor vassal taxpayers in the State of Connecticut are aware of the saga of Sema4, a flagship equity investment promoted by Oak HC/FT, Oak HC/FT being the hedge-fund partnership partially owned by Annie Lamont, spouse of the stalwart Connecticut Governor His Royal Con-Man, King Ned Lamont The Unaccountable. We followed Sema4 through its journey from "no-bid" Covid testing and documented its personal data theft of children to the “pump” of its IPO in 2021, down through the aftermath of its subsequent “dump” leading to the withdrawal of its in-state presence in 2022. During this time, the Lamont-related ownership interests greatly benefited by leveraging millions of incredibly cheap “economic assistance” dollars to a backdrop of almost total political silence and a concerted corporate media effort to look the other way.
If we lived in any sort of a rational world instead of Connecticut, the picture we would be seeing today would be far different than the one now existing. That said, my review of a “responsive information” disclosure this past week concerning the same players but a different equity made it quite clear that other shifty “Ned Deals” were occurring during the identical time frame of Sema4, and unfortunately, no one was the wiser.
To this end, Infosys Limited (aka "Infosys”) is a worldwide company that over the past five years has been able to and will acquire, a mere $38 million dollars of Connecticut Taxpayers monies. How, you ask? From the generosity of the (should-be abolished) Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (“DECD”) via an $18 million dollar contract to bring 1,200 jobs to Connecticut over an either six- or eight-year period (depending on clarifications to this secret agreement). Two million dollars of this grant was purportedly used for "job training", however that is defined, and what actual job training was provided is a also mystery according to the disclosure. These 1,200 jobs cost Connecticut Taxpayers $15,000 for each job.
Whom Infosys can hire to meet this nebulous quota is also confusing to many. Apparently "green card" permanent residents can be hired and will qualify for meeting this jobs quota. Jobs can be done remotely from home and apparently from out-of-state employees so long as they in theory somehow pay a Connecticut State Income Tax on their wages. Salaries that need to be paid qualifying to meet this quota are equally hazy. Further, there is no study in the disclosure to exactly ascertain how much tax revenue Connecticut will get back from this $18 million investment. Regrettably, a review of these documents tells us it will take many years for the state to get back this massive amount of money given freely to this out of-state worldwide company, if anything ever gets returned at all.
That said, if we feel the above is bad, things become much worse: In 2022, Infosys also received a "sweetheart" $20 million dollar Connecticut Taxpayer- funded contract for maintenance and support services to the Office of Early Childhood and Connecticut’s Health Insurance Exchange known as “Access Health CT”. This ostensibly undeserved gift, along with the proviso of additional services for the Department of Social Services were a part of this contract. It seems like this was a pre-planned contract even though it went through a state bidding process and amazingly enough was awarded to this foreign company that uses "green card" permanent residents and out-of-state employees in what has been publicly represented to corporate media as a “local” economic development program.
Trying to understand the complexities of this worldwide company is made to be intentionally difficult. And why this company was given this money is questionable. For example, the global revenue of Infosys amounted to about $18.2 billion U.S. dollars for Fiscal Year 2023. It looks on paper as a highly profitable company worldwide. The operative question then becomes as to why a company that has this type of revenue need this $18 million dollar pittance of Connecticut taxpayers' monies? We still do not see nor understand how this grant benefits the state at large. But regrettably, (or thankfully) those of us that have dutifully followed the saga of The Unaccountable and his spouse in this state discovered the inevitable tie-in food chain between Oak HC/FT and Infosys.
As just several examples:
• In 2019 Rapyd, a global Fintech-as-a-service provider, received $100 million dollars in financing that was led by Oak HC/FT. Rapyd and Infosys partnered together to create and enable a functioning local payment system and methods for their global clients.
• In 2020 Infosys partnered with a company called Unqork. Unqork creates "Codeless Architecture". Unqork received funding from Oak HC/FT.
These are just a several examples of the Lamont-Oak HC/FT modus operandi of using Connecticut taxpayer monies to prop up questionable investments made by Oak HC/FT thus facilitated via the uncontrolled and secretive DECD cash spigot leading to either taxpayer-supported profit or risk-free loss. Followers of my blog and of Tony De Angelo on 94.9's "Lee Elci Show" are well-familiar with this Lamont shell game. However, while the above is both shocking and disgusting (if not, larcenous) no one seems to care about these new founded investments nor do we still have any answers to Ned Lamont's family hedge fund (Oak HC/FT Partners) investments to associated companies relating to the Covid-19 crisis that include "Thermo Fisher Scientific", "Sema 4", " Core Infomatics", "Ocrulus", "Urjanet", "1life Healthcare", "Galileo Health", "Castlight Health", "Paladina Health", and "VillageMD" to name a few. It is yet more of the same with Infosys and the Lamonts, as he continues to be the darling poster boy of the state to the point where more than one state politician (including some Republicans) cannot wait to grab a “selfie” with him.
Complex larceny is one thing, but lousy employee management is another. Infosys has a checked history when it comes to employee retention especially for United States workers. Looking at reviews that employees have entered at the website glassdoor.com one can see major issues. You can review some of this data brought to us by the diligent efforts of “CT Techworkers” This group has compiled a pdf of some of these reviews that are horrific. I suggest you read this document. An example from this pdf on page 4; "I left the company back in August 2020 and to this day (2/1/2021), I am still dealing with HR issues and HR no longer responds to my emails. The company had me listed as a resident of two different states, therefore I was paying income tax for both states—it was never corrected despite many different tickets submitted." My thoughts regarding this would Infosys Limited being counting this employee with two different state grants it received, being Connecticut and another state? Regardless, this would be a bookkeeping system in which millions of state tax dollars are channeled through.
What's another $38 million dollars of Connecticut Taxpayers monies? A “mere bag of shells” according to bus driver Ralph Kramden of “Honeymooners” fame, especially if the “key people” of the state are being buoyed by the funding. Again, this past budget featured over $823 million dollars spent for "economic development" in the 49th worst economic state in the union, and it looks that Connecticut has nothing to show for almost $1 billion dollars being spent by the DECD. However, this example presented with Infosys in conjunction with profits being made by Ned Lamont's family hedge fund Oak HC/FT represents again, a complete and total disregard for both Connecticut Taxpayers and for legal Connecticut citizens who work in the IT field and pay taxes to the state.
My second part to this issue will be forthcoming next week. Suffice it to say these situations are a farce and a rip-off against state taxpayers while an entire political and media system remains silent. But as you struggle to piece together a holiday meal for your family do keep in mind that others closer to the inner-machinery of the farce that is called Connecticut government, do not struggle nearly as much as we may.