Ira Smolens                  

President at Pound Ridge Products                

About Ira Smolens                    

Ira Smolens, a seasoned and innovative direct marketer, today focuses his attention on a Florida- headquartered business. Smolens is a co-founder of CarTHINK, LLC, an Internet-based direct marketing company with a suite of software products developed for automobile dealerships. Established in 2004, Ira Smolens joined his experience and talents with those of co-founder Kevin Rose to offer the industry result-based web sales.

Smolens's initial experience with nationally available direct marketing for auto dealerships began in 1972, when he signed on as Senior Vice President at Automated Marketing Systems, Inc. (AMS). During his time there, the company helped lead more than 7,000 clients in a new and effective direction, using qualified mail campaigns to attract customer returns for a variety of events and specials.

A graduate of City College of New York, Ira Smolens began his business career working for IBM, where he made use of a newly acquired degree in mechanical engineering. From there, he joined the groundbreaking computer software company Informatics as Vice President of Commercial Applications before making the move to AMS.

In 1974, Smolens took a new direction and struck out as an entrepreneur. He began a national marketing company for print ads, primarily focused on cosmetics and housewares. When the FCC deregulated commercial air time in 1984, Smolens acted quickly to establish a media company that specialized in infomercials, taking direct marketing to an even more effective level with greater tracking ability.

Ira Smolens is now invested in a number of businesses that he maintains from his home in Boca Raton, Florida. In addition to CarTHINK, he is involved in enterprises that are headquartered and marketed around the world.                            

The Odyssey House Theatre Project

As the majority owner of CarThink, LLC, Ira Smolens brings decades of marketing and media experience to his web-based car business. Ira Smolens includes charity in his list of interests and is involved with Odyssey House, a nonprofit organization that aims to provide holistic care and comprehensive services for those in the New York City area who have addiction and mental health issues.

The Odyssey House Theatre Project represents one innovative program offered by Odyssey House, as their staff recognizes that recreation and the arts are integral parts of the wellness of their residents. The program offers teenage residents in the various Odyssey House locations the opportunity to create, rehearse, and perform original plays under the tutelage of New York City theater professionals.

A grant-funded endeavor, the Odyssey House Theatre Projects begin with intensive three-month workshops taught by experts, who coach the residents through the multiple elements of playwriting, from concept development to stage production. Projects culminate with a live stage performance.

Modern Shapewear

As one of the earliest entrepreneurs involved in infomercials, Ira Smolens brings a variety of professional marketing and sales experiences to his position as owner of CarTHINK, LLC. Ira Smolens had success with infomercials and subsequently became involved with HSN (Home Shopping Network) during the 1990s selling slimming garments or shapewear.

Shapewear is worn underneath clothing to hide flaws and shape the figure. It is made of specific fabrics with a unique combination of elasticity and rigidity to make clothing more flattering on a variety of shapes.

The technology of shapewear involves cutting and sewing fabric and using seam definition in order to create attractive lines. Fabrics used for shapewear must be comfortable but also provide support and lift in order to reshape the body underneath, eliminating lumps and bumps. Additionally, the material must have the ability to return to its original shape after extended wear. Fabrics most commonly used for slimming garments include spandex, various micro-fibers, polyamide, and elastane.

International Vasa Previa Foundation Funds AMOSS Study

Ira Smolens, cofounder of CarThink LLC, supports many local and international charities. One charity that Ira Smolens regularly supports is the International Vasa Previa Foundation.

The International Vasa Previa Foundation, established in January 2001, is a nonprofit organization that provides information about vasa previa to the public as well as to health care professionals.

Vasa previa is a prenatal condition involving exposed fetal vessels traversing the amniotic membranes between the baby’s presenting part and the internal cervical os. Vasa previa has been estimated to occur in 1 in 2,500 births, and it is rarely reported. Vasa previa has a 50-95% fetal mortality rate if undiagnosed prenatally. It is much more frequent in in-vitro fertilization-assisted pregnancies and multiple pregnancies.

From 2013 to 2014, the Australasian Maternity Outcomes Surveillance System, or AMOSS, carried out a national study called the Vasa Praevia Project, funded by the International Vasa Previa Foundation. The study was conducted to address the lack of information concerning the management and maternity care of women in Australia who experience vasa previa. AMOSS hopes to use the information collected in the study to create guides for the best possible management of pregnancies involving vasa previa. Analysis of the data collected is currently in progress.

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