How to Sell Your Business in 2014

Now that the economy is recovering many businesses may look into selling up as more people will be looking to buy. There are many reasons people consider selling a business: it may be due to reaching the age of retirement, financial issues or even boredom. If you are thinking of selling because you are facing issues outside of work, such as divorce or bereavement, consider if now is the best time to sell, when you are possibly not in the right frame of mind to think clearly. Is there anyone who can take over some of the responsibility of handling your business in the meantime? Continue reading “How to Sell Your Business in 2014”

Car Title Loans for Beginners

Once upon a time there was just a bank loan – and this made everyone’s life simple. We all knew to turn up in our suit, mind our P’s and Q’s with the bank manager, and we’d get a black and white loan. Unfortunately, life’s not that simple anymore. It’s not just the high-street banks which provide such lending power, there are now countless other firms which are able to provide quick bouts of finance. While some of these loans have come in for criticism over the years, the beauty about them is that they quash any red tape that the banks once provided. In short, they’re much more accessible. Continue reading “Car Title Loans for Beginners”

Corporate Investments in Emerging Markets

Some of America’s largest corporations are seeking great opportunities in opening up new locations in other new emerging markets. Additionally, some companies want to invest heavily in the marketplaces that have recently become available due to a change in political situations. Corporate executives travel the world extensively with the hope of making business and political connections in specific regions such as Asia. John Ferraro E&Y is an example of an American executive that builds relationships with Asian countries. Continue reading “Corporate Investments in Emerging Markets”

5 Simple Steps: How to Conserve Your Firm’s Cash

The global economic crisis of the last few years has done enough to encourage small firms to tighten their belts and prepare for the inevitable financial peaks and troughs that business brings. Whether you’re just starting out or you’re a seasoned business veteran, entrepreneurs with success on their mind should be prepared to stop dreaming and start acting. Continue reading “5 Simple Steps: How to Conserve Your Firm’s Cash”

How To Avoid Business Insolvency

 The world of business is tough and competitive, and the sad reality is that up to 80 per cent of all new businesses will fail within the first five years. So how to avoid this eventuality? Fortunately, there are ways, and the most effective ones are listed here. Continue reading “How To Avoid Business Insolvency”

Pros and cons of structured settlements – a refreshing overview

Structured Settlements have been a part of our lives since the 1970s. There are some known advantages and the unfortunate disadvantages attached with them that are difficult to ignore. Over so many years of its inception and usage, one thing is clear that it is one of those funds that do benefit the claimant and help secure his family for a long time through periodic settlements or by making provisions for a lump sum amount should he choose to sell a part of it. The Government has made honest efforts all the way to help people gain from the scheme by making it tax free and by applying judicial watch over the sale of the same. However, there can be some definite cons of the Structured Settlements too that can be classified. Continue reading “Pros and cons of structured settlements – a refreshing overview”

How to Become a Commodity Broker

Commodities Futures Broker (CFB) and Stock Brokers, both reside in the financial industry, but when you think of the quantity and possibly quality, Commodities Futures Broker are unique. CFB’s are – in a very specific niche of the futures, commodities and options world. There are close to a million stock brokers, and less than a one-hundred thousand CFB’s. Online trading, truly turned everyone into a “stock-broker”, in that, anyone can buy stock, and operate mutual funds. On the converse, when it comes to the actual trading of commodities, there is no general set rule, or a model with commodity trading. However, if you are looking to become a CFB, there are two key avenues to consider, before stepping into this arena of the financial market. Continue reading “How to Become a Commodity Broker”

Diffusion of Electronic Banking Solutions for Financial Inclusion

A major pain point of the banking industry is the challenge of how to penetrate the Bottom of the Pyramid (BoP), a concept which was popularized by Prahlad [3]. This indeed is a sizeable market, consisting of 2.5 billion people who live on less than US$2.50 per day. Technology is being heralded as a major enabler for the diffusion of banking solutions in this segment, and the same is being brought about by different types of electronic payment systems.

It is interesting to note how in emerging economies, diffusion of these technologies are creating benefits for this segment [4]. No wonder technology vendors and service providers are rallying to get a big pie of this cake and research in this topic has increased significantly [1,2]. However, the risks of fraud and perceived usefulness of these technology are slowing down the diffusion of the same in these economies. Another major barrier is internet penetration, which is significantly low, in developing economies, especially in the rural segments.

However, the development of banking solutions which can be used through Mobile based technologies, can significantly eradicate these problems. The adoption and penetration of mobile phones is significantly larger than internet based technologies. Hence technology giants like IBM and Microsoft are investigating significantly on research, so that mobile payment solutions can be made available to this segment. Some of the major technological advancements which are attempting to address this gap are speech technologies like the spoken web. It would indeed be interesting to see how such technologies can bring about inclusive development in the banking and financial services industry. Indeed the adoption of these technologies can bring about financial inclusion for the general masses by enabling banking solutions for this segment.

References

  1. Kar, A. (2009). eBusiness Enablement: Implications for Business Strategy. Available at SSRN 1432433.
  2. Kar, A. (2009). The Past, Present and Future of Information Systems Research. Available at SSRN 1366962
  3. Prahalad, C. K., & Hart, S. L. (2002). The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid. Strategy and Business, 54-54.
  4. Simpson, J. (2002). The impact of the Internet in banking: observations and evidence from developed and emerging markets. Telematics and Informatics, 19(4), 315-330.

Why should you use a Business Credit Card?

Starting a business is a dream for which an owner plans and prepares. Market research is done to ensure there is a market for the product or service and that it is an area of need for potential customers. You check out a location for a storefront or office and plan all the different ways you’ll be able to promote your business.

What is a Business Credit Card?
A business credit card is much like a personal credit card. A business credit card extends the credit available to the business. When financing is tight, the business credit card can be used to pay bills and buy supplies to keep the business afloat.

Costs
Everything seems to be coming together until you start adding up the costs for starting the business and for keeping it going for a year until there is a regular income stream coming in. There may be costs for licenses or other government requirements, costs for space, internet access, equipment, supplies and employees.

Business Planning
A business plan is a must for making sure an owner covers all the bases and doesn’t lose the dream due to poor planning. A business plan includes listing all sources of potential financing. These may include personal savings, taking out a mortgage on a home or other property and loans from the banks, friends or family. These are all fairly fixed amounts, but business expenses ebb and flow.

Not a Personal Credit Card
Business credit cards often offer different terms than a personal credit card. They also have the larger credit limits required to efficiently run a business. Of course, like a personal credit card, anything spent has to be paid back.

Use Judiciously
Credit cards are loans and owners need to take care to use a business credit card account wisely. Paying back any funds spent needs to be part of the overall business plan. Like personal credit cards, there is the temptation to consider the credit free money and overuse the card. This can undermine the solid financial basis of the company. However, there are good reasons to use a business credit card.

Accounting
Accounting can become a nightmare for the small business owner, especially when supplies and products are purchased with different accounts. Keeping receipts together can get frustrating and putting everything together difficult for an owner who already has way too much to do just keeping the business running.

If, however, everything is purchased on a business credit card account, the business will have all expenses listed in one place. The owner can quickly check when something was purchased, where it was purchased and for how much. This proof is invaluable should the government call into question, at tax time, whether something was purchased and whether one or more purchases qualifies as a deductible expense. A business credit card also keeps tabs on the purchases of employees.

Perks
Business credit cards, depending upon the card, offer a variety of perks that assist the business owner from discounts on supplies to free flying miles.

Author’s Bio: The articles of Ethan Grunt have been proving very useful for the customers who look forward to get information on business credit cards. He suggests them to visit Businesscreditcards.com for further information.

Avoid Investing in Facebook – Investment strategies

Avoid falling flat on your Facebook. The fall and fall of Facebook’s stock has been the stuff of investors’ nightmares. Starting with a stock price of $38, by 31st August the stock had lost approximately 52% value with no sign of a bounce. The real issue isn’t just Facebook’s shares so much as a lack of probity in investments these days and many businesses who choose to ‘float’ may find there’s a leak in their boat.

The average duration for a shareholding in the USA currently stands at an almost instantaneous 22 seconds!

Compared with an average holding of 8 years in the 1940’s, the stock market has become the ‘get rich quick’ scheme (substitute ‘dream’ for a more apt description) of the 00’s. Shareholders just aren’t in it for the long game any more and this creates a multitude of problems for businesses great and small.

The demand to create shareholder value overnight keeps many an Executive Suite buzzing into the ridiculous hours of the night; sees downsizing and corporate initiatives bluntly delivered across departments to deliver savings and greater profit margins and dissatisfaction in the stock market quickly translates into a knee jerk reaction kicking the HR department into action, moving from co-production to consultation as the company’s most “valuable assets” become “deadweight” creating drag merely as a result of bottom line cost.

Shareholder value, as a concept, is fine but it’s become very one directional in recent years and creates little benefit for the business, less a short term cash injection and longer term drain on your profits and profitability.

Before you launch your business into the choppy stock market seas, consider a few alternatives:

  • Raise additional funds through other means:

Investment pots and pensions aren’t delivering growth in low interest economies just now.

Money in the bank is more of a tax liability than a cushion.  Get family; friends and acquaintances to consider becoming a minority investor in your venture with the prospect (but no guarantee) of long-term returns;

Ask – “Do I really need to grow?” Many businesses chase growth like a dog chases it’s own tail.  It’s the perpetual motion that creates the illusion of progress when, in reality, you’re just expending energy chasing an elusive, moving and often undesirable target. Growth’s not a bad thing; it’s just not the be all and end all of business.  Sustainability and longevity are much more important.

Grow from within:  Re-invest your profits.  It’s the simplest and most economical way of growing any business; it doesn’t sell off any part of your holding and doesn’t expose it to the jitter of shareholders demanding short-term results.

Or consider selling shares to the employees and give them a stake in their own sweat and toil.

Consider the 3 C’s:

  1. Co-operation
  2. Co-production
  3. Collaboration

You don’t need to do it all on your own.  Find other businesses or individuals that are either doing something similar and work together to increase market share or find complimentary products and services and share the costs of increasing your joint offer to the market.  Cross selling could help you both.

All these options allow you to retain control of your business and keep your long-term goals in focus.

If you decide that you do want shareholders, make sure major shareholders you bring in possess more than just the financial wherewithal to invest.

Get investors that are passionate about what you’re trying to achieve; who have experience and expertise in an area that’s relevant for your business and that can actually add something to the business and the Boardroom (other than banging fists; a scary glare and the demand you make them rich instantly or they’ll withdraw their investment).

That way, when the storm hits the good ship (insert your company’s name) you can call all hands to deck rather than your shareholders racing to the lifeboats as the rest are left to bail out.

Bio:  Colin Millar is an entrepreneur and Founding Director of Cloud Management Systems [Link: CloudManagementSystems (.) co( .)uk ], a consultancy with a difference.  Colin is also the Chairman of a Scottish based charity. Colin blogs on leadership, management; business and enterprise.  In 2011, he won the Chartered Management Institute’s ‘Top Blog” award.

The Economics of Olympic games

A comprehensive research conducted by Goldman Sachs titled “The Olympics and Economics 2012” precisely attempts to answer this question. The researchers analyzed the Olympic Games which were conducted in Beijing and Sydney, few years ago, and thus made a few projections for London 2012. What is of significant interest is that a lot of these projections are destined to come true and revitalize the economies, which are somewhat in a sombre mood in early 2012. Even the Prime Minister of United Kingdom, David Cameron, thinks that the Olympics will roll in 13 Billion pounds for the nation (even though that may help little to douse the fire burning within the economy).

The British economy really needs a boost, thanks to a protracted double-dip recession that has pushed down GDP for three quarters without even an inkling of a  break. The Olympic Games hosted in London 2012 (underway currently) have been projected to be extremely profitable for the “British Empire”,  and the revenues have been forecasted to exceed the operating cost of hosting the major event. Tickets sales are expected to generate over 500 million pounds or 785 million dollars and generate direct revenue for the management. This itself is a huge amount for a nation trapped in a continent facing rampant economic slowdown at large.In addition, a short-term financial boost in the third quarter of 1.2–1.6 percent of GDP at an annualized rate has been forecasted. This will also generate a lot of employment to a nation strapped with excess workable hands with very little to do. In addition, the tourism industry will get a healthy dosage of fuel to the slumbering embers, and this may just be sufficient to the industry slowly lumbering to a dormant stage.

With such a concern over economic health revision, a public-private partnership to ensure the success of such grand fiestas could be a shot for success. While such boost is sure to affect many sections of the society both directly and indirectly, the long term boon of employing workers for digging a trench and employing another set of workers to fill it up, are also evident in this case, though the analogy may be less fitting. Considering Ireland, which is in dire straits, will the benefits of the Olympic games overflow to Britain’s closest neighbor?

What is more important at this stage that will Brazil also benefit in the same big way, in 2016? With so much focus on her economy, will the benefits boost Brazil’s stake in the cake as an economic superpower? Only time can tell more how this story unfolds itself.

How to Use Free Finance Calculators to Save Money

Free financial calculators are one of the best tools for managing personal finances and saving money. These calculators enable you to stay on the right track with your finances. All you have to do is enter the details of your financial position in the free financial calculator. It will provide you an output consisting useful information on how to use your money in the most appropriate manner. Continue reading “How to Use Free Finance Calculators to Save Money”