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Business & Entrepreneurship / Marketing mix
« on: April 20, 2017, 06:15:10 PM »
The marketing mix

The marketing mix is one of the most famous marketing terms. The marketing mix is the tactical or operational part of a marketing plan. The marketing mix is also called the 4Ps and the 7Ps. The 4Ps are price, place, product and promotion. The services marketing mix is also called the 7Ps and includes the addition of process, people and physical evidence.

The marketing mix is . . . The set of controllable tactical marketing tools – product, price, place, and promotion – that the firm blends to produce the response it wants in the target market.

Kotler and Armstrong (2010).
The concept is simple. Think about another common mix – a cake mix. All cakes contain eggs, milk, flour, and sugar. However, you can alter the final cake by altering the amounts of mix elements contained in it. So for a sweet cake add more sugar!

It is the same with the marketing mix. The offer you make to your customer can be altered by varying the mix elements. So for a high profile brand, increase the focus on promotion and desensitize the weight given to price.

Another way to think about the marketing mix is to use the image of an artist’s palette. The marketer mixes the prime colours (mix elements) in different quantities to deliver a particular final colour. Every hand painted picture is original in some way, as is every marketing mix. Let’s look at the elements of the marketing mix in more detail. Click on the links to go to the lesson on each element.

Price

Price is the amount the consumer must exchange to receive the offering .

Solomon et al (2009).
The company’s goal in terms of price is really to reduce costs through improving manufacturing and efficiency, and most importantly the marketer needs to increase the perceived value of the benefits of its products and services to the buyer or consumer.
There are many ways to price a product. Let’s have a look at some of them and try to understand the best policy/strategy in various
situations.

Place

Place includes company activities that make the product available to target consumers.

Kotler and Armstrong (2010).
Place is also known as channel, distribution, or intermediary. It is the mechanism through which goods and/or services are moved from the manufacturer/ service provider to the user or consumer.

 

Marketing Mix
The Marketing Mix
 

Product

Product means the goods-and-services combination the company offers to the target market.

Kotler and Armstrong (2010).
For many a product is simply the tangible, physical item that we buy or sell. You can also think of the product as intangible i.e. a service.

In order to actively explore the nature of a product further, let’s consider it as three different products – the CORE product, the ACTUAL product, and finally the AUGMENTED product.

The Product Life Cycle (PLC) is based upon the biological life cycle. For example, a seed is planted (introduction); it begins to sprout (growth); it shoots out leaves and puts down roots as it becomes an adult (maturity); after a long period as an adult the plant begins to shrink and die out (decline).

The Customer Life Cycle (CLC) has obvious similarities with the Product Life Cycle (PLC). However, CLC focuses upon the creation and delivery of lifetime value to the customer i.e. looks at the products or services that customers NEED throughout their lives.

Promotion

Promotion includes all of the activities marketers undertake to inform consumers about their products and to encourage potential customers to buy these products.

Solomon et al (2009).
Promotion includes all of the tools available to the marketer for marketing communication. As with Neil H. Borden’s marketing mix, marketing communications has its own promotions mix. Whilst there is no absolute agreement on the specific content of a marketing communications mix, there are many promotions elements that are often included such as sales, advertising, sales promotion, public relations, direct marketing, online communications and personal selling.

Physical Evidence

(Physical evidence is) . . . The environment in which the service is delivered, and where the firm and customer interact, and any tangible components that facilitate performance or communication of the service.

Zeithaml et al (2008)
Physical Evidence is the material part of a service. Strictly speaking there are no physical attributes to a service, so a consumer tends to rely on material cues. There are many examples of physical evidence, including some of the following buildings, equipment, signs and logos, annual accounts and business reports, brochures, your website, and even your business cards.

People

(People are) . . . All human actors who play a part in service delivery and thus influence the buyers’ perceptions; namely, the firm’s personnel, the customer, and other customers in the service environment.

Zeithaml et al (2008).
People are the most important element of any service or experience. Services tend to be produced and consumed at the same moment, and aspects of the customer experience are altered to meet the individual needs of the person consuming it.

Process

Process is) . . . The actual procedures, mechanisms, and flow of activities by which the service is delivered – this service delivery and operating systems.

Zeithaml et al (2008).
There are a number of perceptions of the concept of process within the business and marketing literature. Some see processes as a means to achieve an outcome, for example – to achieve a 30% market share a company implements a marketing planning process. However in reality it is more about the customer interface between the business and consumer and how they deal with each other in a series of steps in stages, i.e. throughout the process.

77
What is marketing? The definition that many marketers learn as they start out in the industry is: Putting the right product in the right place, at the right price, at the right time.

It's simple! You just need to create a product that a particular group of people want, put it on sale some place that those same people visit regularly, and price it at a level which matches the value they feel they get out of it; and do all that at a time they want to buy. Then you've got it made!

There's a lot of truth in this idea. However, a lot of hard work needs to go into finding out what customers want, and identifying where they do their shopping. Then you need to figure out how to produce the item at a price that represents value to them, and get it all to come together at the critical time.

But if you get just one element wrong, it can spell disaster. You could be left promoting a car with amazing fuel economy in a country where fuel is very cheap, or publishing a textbook after the start of the new school year, or selling an item at a price that's too high – or too low – to attract the people you're targeting.

The marketing mix is a good place to start when you are thinking through your plans for a product or service, and it helps you to avoid these kinds of mistakes.

Understanding the Tool

The marketing mix and the 4Ps of marketing are often used as synonyms for one another. In fact, they are not necessarily the same thing.

"Marketing mix" is a general phrase used to describe the different kinds of choices organizations have to make in the whole process of bringing a product or service to market. The 4Ps is one way – probably the best-known way – of defining the marketing mix, and was first expressed in 1960 by E. J. McCarthy.

The 4Ps are:
Product (or Service).
Place.
Price.
Promotion.
A good way to understand the 4Ps is by the questions that you need to ask to define your marketing mix. Here are some questions that will help you understand and define each of the four elements:

Product/Service

What does the customer want from the product Add to My Personal Learning Plan/service? What needs does it satisfy?
What features does it have to meet these needs?
Are there any features you've missed out?
Are you including costly features that the customer won't actually use?
How and where will the customer use it?
What does it look like? How will customers experience it?
What size(s), color(s), and so on, should it be?
What is it to be called?
How is it branded?
How is it differentiated versus your competitors?
What is the most it can cost to provide and still be sold sufficiently profitably? (See also Price, below.)
Place

Where do buyers look for your product or service?
If they look in a store, what kind? A specialist boutique or in a supermarket, or both? Or online? Or direct, via a catalogue?
How can you access the right distribution channels?
Do you need to use a sales force? Or attend trade fairs? Or make online submissions? Or send samples to catalogue companies?
What do your competitors Add to My Personal Learning Plan do, and how can you learn from that and/or differentiate?
Price

What is the value of the product or service to the buyer?
Are there established price points Add to My Personal Learning Plan for products or services in this area?
Is the customer price sensitive? Will a small decrease in price gain you extra market share? Or will a small increase be indiscernible, and so gain you extra profit margin?
What discounts should be offered to trade customers, or to other specific segments Add to My Personal Learning Plan of your market?
How will your price compare with your competitors?
Promotion

Where and when can you get your marketing messages across to your target market?
Will you reach your audience by advertising online, in the press, on TV, on radio, or on billboards? By using direct marketing mailshots? Through PR? On the Internet?
When is the best time to promote? Is there seasonality in the market? Are there any wider environmental issues that suggest or dictate the timing of your market launch or subsequent promotions?
How do your competitors do their promotions? And how does that influence your choice of promotional activity?

78
Leadership strategies are those actions that promote the creation of a unique and valuable market position through a system of activities that complement one another towards achieving the end goal. Often seen as a collection of informed choices, trade-offs and deliberate deviations from the norm, leadership strategies help determine where the opportunities lie and what you can do to best exploit them.
In many cases, leadership strategies are the groundwork for a company's strategic plan and must therefore remain at the forefront when setting organizational goals. But as addressed in Strategic Leadership for Executives, there are two primary branches of leadership - analytical and human - that serve as a framework for operational approach. And the choice of analytical over human is often the result of an individual's personal strengths and weaknesses in the multi-layered aspects of business.
Matching strategy with personality

Strategic leadership is often practiced by those who run large companies, managing thousands or hundreds of thousands of people throughout an extensive organization. To accomplish this task effectively, the leader must possess a refined set of skills geared toward achieving the end goal. And while it's not necessary that he or she possess all traits, most will find a high degree of competence and comfort in the areas in which they naturally excel.

Consider the following traits and their respective leadership strategies.
Visioning and the autocrat

The term visioning refers to the initial spark of an idea, the moment that represents the start of any strategic plan. Once the leader has outlined strategic goals, all members of the organization must work toward those goals, using all possible influence and resources to accomplish the changes necessary to support the larger plan. And though a leader's strategic plan is often unique, it must also be relatable enough and have enough internal and external support to enable those who follow to think along the same lines. Without commitment, success is unlikely.

Visioning is a common trait to most high-level executives, but some are not able to achieve as much success with it in comparison to others - in particular, the autocrat.
The autocrat manages by telling people what to do and when to do it. Often referred to as a "micro-manager," the autocrat possesses little confidence in subordinates and may even distrust them. In select instances, such as military or law enforcement applications, this approach may actually save lives and therefore serves as the best leadership strategy. However, in the corporate world, this managerial style is often viewed as stifling and almost always fails to entice the commitment required to achieve the optimal levels of creativity and innovation. Within this system, employees are unable to make decisions on their own, preventing not only their personal growth but also the sharing of valuable insight and creative ideas. As a result, an autocrat's visioning typically produces little more than a high rate of employee turnover.
The benevolent autocrat who employs 'command and control'

Command and control sounds like a tactic the autocrat would employ... and even enjoy. But it actually has little to do with micro-management and more to do with fostering an environment that provides the necessities that allow the organization to achieve its goals. Focused heavily on creativity and innovation, command and control establishes a framework for achieving goals and then creates organizational networks that elicit the best from its people.

Within this framework, the benevolent autocrat succeeds, primarily because they're the driving force behind this particular employee-driven brand of corporate culture. The benevolent autocrat is typically someone who prefers to function as a coach or mentor to subordinates and frequently disseminates tasks to a wide range of people to maximize the organization's talent. This individual makes important decisions then works toward convincing subordinates to go along, a process that has been shown to build an organic level of commitment at all levels of a company. Though the benevolent autocrat will often use rewards to motivate personnel, he or she may also use punishment, a practice that is viewed as counterintuitive to modern strategic leadership.

79
Business & Entrepreneurship / Strategic Leadership for Executives
« on: April 20, 2017, 06:11:38 PM »
How effective are you at managing change? In the modern business landscape, the process of successfully navigating change - whether it's organizational or related to products and services - is one of the most highly-valued skills for the entrepreneur.
And to manage change successfully, an executive must possess the skills and tools for strategy formulation as well as implementation. The combination of these two elements has come to be known as strategic leadership, providing the vision and direction for the growth and success of an organization.
A Snapshot of the Strategic Leader

In general, strategic leaders can be found at the head of large organizations, influencing thousands to hundreds of thousands of employees and external support personnel. Within this role, they are tasked with establishing organizational structure, allocating funding and other resources and effectively defining and communicating the strategic vision for the company as a whole to employees and investors alike.

Common traits often include:
Ability to operate in an uncertain environment where complex problems and external events may impact the success of the venture
Make decisions by processing information quickly and assessing alternatives (often based on incomplete data), the consequences of which impact a wider range of people and resources than a standard organizational leader
Often will not see the fruit of their labor come to light during their tenure, planning instead for initiatives that will take place years later and possibly even after the leader has left the job
Two Different Approaches

As with just about anything in a large organization, the process of strategic leadership begins with people. Managing change through uncertainty requires strategic leaders who possess and communicate a clear path of direction, fostering ownership and alignment within their workgroups to achieve the desired outcomes.

In addition, these leaders are keenly aware of the delicate balance between the analytical and human components present within their organization, which is why many who've successfully employed this system have been shown to rely on strong second-tier leaders, enabling them to exert their influence primarily through subordinates while focusing on the larger issues that impact the organization as a whole.
However, depending on the strengths and individual personality of each executive, many corporate leaders opt to focus on the human component more than the analytical, as seen in the modern employee-centered organization, or vice versa on analytical, as seen in organizations based on a more traditional model that center primarily on a bottom line.
How to Select the Style That's Right for You

Strategic leadership is an ongoing process. And when trying to decide how to conceptualize your role as a strategic leader, you must first decide how you see yourself participating as the process moves forward. Is it your goal to provide bold, analytical leadership and establish yourself as "hero" among employees and stockholders? Or do you envision yourself serving as a benevolent and humane coach, enabling those under you to realize their own full potential and stand in the limelight?

An analytical leader desires to personally come up with the right answer. Leading from the front, these individuals tackle strategic issues by drawing primarily upon their own experience and insight, attempting to single-handedly outsmart the competition and establish dominance within the marketplace.

In contrast, the leader focused on the human branch of strategic leadership believes their organization's strategy is only as strong as the breadth and depth of the understanding and commitment it attracts. As such, the development of strategy is carefully coordinated but widely disseminated throughout the organization. In doing so, this type of leader is able to guide and respond to directional elements while fostering commitment and encouraging empowerment among employees at all levels.

80
Leadership strategies are those actions that promote the creation of a unique and valuable market position through a system of activities that complement one another towards achieving the end goal. Often seen as a collection of informed choices, trade-offs and deliberate deviations from the norm, leadership strategies help determine where the opportunities lie and what you can do to best exploit them.
In many cases, leadership strategies are the groundwork for a company's strategic plan and must therefore remain at the forefront when setting organizational goals. But as addressed in Strategic Leadership for Executives, there are two primary branches of leadership - analytical and human - that serve as a framework for operational approach. And the choice of analytical over human is often the result of an individual's personal strengths and weaknesses in the multi-layered aspects of business.
Matching strategy with personality

Strategic leadership is often practiced by those who run large companies, managing thousands or hundreds of thousands of people throughout an extensive organization. To accomplish this task effectively, the leader must possess a refined set of skills geared toward achieving the end goal. And while it's not necessary that he or she possess all traits, most will find a high degree of competence and comfort in the areas in which they naturally excel.

Consider the following traits and their respective leadership strategies.
Visioning and the autocrat

The term visioning refers to the initial spark of an idea, the moment that represents the start of any strategic plan. Once the leader has outlined strategic goals, all members of the organization must work toward those goals, using all possible influence and resources to accomplish the changes necessary to support the larger plan. And though a leader's strategic plan is often unique, it must also be relatable enough and have enough internal and external support to enable those who follow to think along the same lines. Without commitment, success is unlikely.

Visioning is a common trait to most high-level executives, but some are not able to achieve as much success with it in comparison to others - in particular, the autocrat.
The autocrat manages by telling people what to do and when to do it. Often referred to as a "micro-manager," the autocrat possesses little confidence in subordinates and may even distrust them. In select instances, such as military or law enforcement applications, this approach may actually save lives and therefore serves as the best leadership strategy. However, in the corporate world, this managerial style is often viewed as stifling and almost always fails to entice the commitment required to achieve the optimal levels of creativity and innovation. Within this system, employees are unable to make decisions on their own, preventing not only their personal growth but also the sharing of valuable insight and creative ideas. As a result, an autocrat's visioning typically produces little more than a high rate of employee turnover.
The benevolent autocrat who employs 'command and control'

Command and control sounds like a tactic the autocrat would employ... and even enjoy. But it actually has little to do with micro-management and more to do with fostering an environment that provides the necessities that allow the organization to achieve its goals. Focused heavily on creativity and innovation, command and control establishes a framework for achieving goals and then creates organizational networks that elicit the best from its people.

Within this framework, the benevolent autocrat succeeds, primarily because they're the driving force behind this particular employee-driven brand of corporate culture. The benevolent autocrat is typically someone who prefers to function as a coach or mentor to subordinates and frequently disseminates tasks to a wide range of people to maximize the organization's talent. This individual makes important decisions then works toward convincing subordinates to go along, a process that has been shown to build an organic level of commitment at all levels of a company. Though the benevolent autocrat will often use rewards to motivate personnel, he or she may also use punishment, a practice that is viewed as counterintuitive to modern strategic leadership.

81
Business & Entrepreneurship / Strategic Leadership for Executives
« on: April 20, 2017, 06:10:49 PM »
How effective are you at managing change? In the modern business landscape, the process of successfully navigating change - whether it's organizational or related to products and services - is one of the most highly-valued skills for the entrepreneur.
And to manage change successfully, an executive must possess the skills and tools for strategy formulation as well as implementation. The combination of these two elements has come to be known as strategic leadership, providing the vision and direction for the growth and success of an organization.
A Snapshot of the Strategic Leader

In general, strategic leaders can be found at the head of large organizations, influencing thousands to hundreds of thousands of employees and external support personnel. Within this role, they are tasked with establishing organizational structure, allocating funding and other resources and effectively defining and communicating the strategic vision for the company as a whole to employees and investors alike.

Common traits often include:
Ability to operate in an uncertain environment where complex problems and external events may impact the success of the venture
Make decisions by processing information quickly and assessing alternatives (often based on incomplete data), the consequences of which impact a wider range of people and resources than a standard organizational leader
Often will not see the fruit of their labor come to light during their tenure, planning instead for initiatives that will take place years later and possibly even after the leader has left the job
Two Different Approaches

As with just about anything in a large organization, the process of strategic leadership begins with people. Managing change through uncertainty requires strategic leaders who possess and communicate a clear path of direction, fostering ownership and alignment within their workgroups to achieve the desired outcomes.

In addition, these leaders are keenly aware of the delicate balance between the analytical and human components present within their organization, which is why many who've successfully employed this system have been shown to rely on strong second-tier leaders, enabling them to exert their influence primarily through subordinates while focusing on the larger issues that impact the organization as a whole.
However, depending on the strengths and individual personality of each executive, many corporate leaders opt to focus on the human component more than the analytical, as seen in the modern employee-centered organization, or vice versa on analytical, as seen in organizations based on a more traditional model that center primarily on a bottom line.
How to Select the Style That's Right for You

Strategic leadership is an ongoing process. And when trying to decide how to conceptualize your role as a strategic leader, you must first decide how you see yourself participating as the process moves forward. Is it your goal to provide bold, analytical leadership and establish yourself as "hero" among employees and stockholders? Or do you envision yourself serving as a benevolent and humane coach, enabling those under you to realize their own full potential and stand in the limelight?

An analytical leader desires to personally come up with the right answer. Leading from the front, these individuals tackle strategic issues by drawing primarily upon their own experience and insight, attempting to single-handedly outsmart the competition and establish dominance within the marketplace.

In contrast, the leader focused on the human branch of strategic leadership believes their organization's strategy is only as strong as the breadth and depth of the understanding and commitment it attracts. As such, the development of strategy is carefully coordinated but widely disseminated throughout the organization. In doing so, this type of leader is able to guide and respond to directional elements while fostering commitment and encouraging empowerment among employees at all levels.

82
What makes a good leader? The answer varies widely depending on who you ask, with researchers disagreeing on the critical components that go into the most effective corporate chief. But there are traits they do agree on, including personality components and acquired skills. Some believe even the situation for leadership itself has a bearing on the effectiveness of the leader.
Important Leadership Skills

Commitment, resolve and perseverance - driving every aspect of the organization toward a singular unified purpose.
Risk-taking - breaking conventions and developing new products and services to establish marketplace dominance (and possibly even create a unique market).
Planning - though a leader typically doesn't get too involved in the details, he or she must orchestrate a high-level plan that drives everyone toward the unified goal.
Motivating - an effective leader must be able to encourage contributions from the entire organization, navigating the specific motivators of each individual or group to push the right buttons and inspire employees at every level to achieve not only their personal best but the best for the organization as a whole.
Communication skills that rely on active listening - far more than just being able to speak and write persuasively, leadership communication skills incite others to work toward the stated goal in line with the path the leader has chosen.
Possessing or obtaining the skills required to successfully achieve business goals - bringing a unique knowledge set to the table or acquiring it personally or through employees and other subordinates.
What Makes These Individual Skills So Important?

First, a distinction needs to be made: the difference between a leader and a manager. A leader is someone who does the right thing, whereas a manager does things right. Or to put it another way, management is an occupation, leadership is a calling.

As addressed in the list above, this calling demands a unique vision for success and the tools necessary to communicate and implement that vision. The leader must possess a set of clearly-defined convictions and the daring and skill to translate their vision into a reality. This is why many people believe, as seen in What Motivates True Leaders, that the most successful development of leadership skills takes place when the leader is geared toward the development of individuals or social constructs. This foundation creates a drive and a passion that many believe cannot be replicated or faked in situations where the leader is concerned solely with financial returns.
With effective leadership, all participants within the organization are confident someone they know is working towards the greater good, both on their behalf personally and that of the company, as well as the larger impact created by the specific product or service. And within this system, one of the most critical elements to success is a leader in whom they can place their trust. That's because true leadership is about taking people to places they would not or could not go on their own. And achieving that level of loyalty and dedication is next to impossible without the genuine allegiance inspired by true leadership skills.

83
Business & Entrepreneurship / Leadership vs. Management
« on: April 20, 2017, 06:09:40 PM »
Many people quickly assume that being a good leader means you're a good manager and vice versa. The two concepts are actually quite distinct and understanding that distinction can help you understand what it means to be good at either or good at both.
What are the Key Characteristics of Management?

From a broad perspective, management is smaller scale and more focused on details than leadership. The leader sets the vision and the broad plan, the manager executes it and does what is needed to achieve that plan. Key characteristics of management are:
A tactical focus on aspects of the organization's strategy
Executing on specific areas within their responsibilities
Formulating and enforcing the policies of a business to achieve its goals
Directing and monitoring their team to achieve their specific goals
Management and containment of risks in an organization
Short term focus with attention to the details
What are the Key Characteristics of Leadership?

Leadership is setting the tone of an organization, the broad objectives and long term goals will come from the leader, and then managers need to execute on a plan to attain them. Leadership is not necessarily getting caught up in all the details but rather setting the plan and inspiring people to follow them. Key characteristics of leadership are:
Strategic focus on the organization's needs
Establishing goals and the strategic direction
Establishing principles
Empowering and mentoring the team to lead them to their goals
Risk engagement and overall identification
Long term, high level focus
Which is more important?

Any organization or business needs people who are good at both leadership and management if they are going to succeed. With good management and poor leadership they will be able to execute everything very well, but will be doing so without a consistent direction and overall strategy. With good leadership and poor management a company will have the goals and inspiration to succeed, but no one to execute the plan on how to get there.

Emphasis needs to be placed equally on both areas if an organization wants to thrive.
Can someone do both?

Good leaders and good managers are not often the same person, the few people that excel at both tend to be overwhelmingly successful in achieving their goals. Management and leadership skills are in some ways very opposite from one another, short vs. long term, big picture vs. detail oriented, etc. It can be very difficult for one to split their time between the two and excel at both. Often organizations that succeed have a mix of individuals, some who excel at leadership and some who excel at management.

While it's good for anyone to clearly understand which they excel at more, being aware of the other characteristics is important. Just knowing what it takes to be a good leader can make you more aware of yourself even if you know you tend to be an excellent manager. Understanding the differences between leadership and. management can ensure you see where you can improve and what else you should be thinking about, and not assume you are simply excellent at both. Ultimately this can make you both a better leader and a better manager.

84
Business & Entrepreneurship / Venture Capital vs Crowdfunding
« on: April 20, 2017, 06:08:46 PM »
The primary difference between venture capital and crowdfunding is simply equity. Venture capitalists acquire equity in the startup. Crowdfunders do not. Instead, crowdfunding is much more like a high-risk pre-order platform, where there's a reasonable probability that the startup may fail to deliver the pre-order.

Read more: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/venture-capital.html

85
The primary differences between VC vs seed & angel investing are timing in the company's lifecycle, monetary size, and deal structure.

Timing. Venture capital is typically not used for extremely early funding. Instead, these rounds are often called "Series AA," or "Pre-A" rounds, and include funding from friends & family, angel investors, and seed stage financing syndicates and firms. Venture capital firms usually get involved at the Series A round and after (all happening after the AA or Pre-A rounds). Although both VC and seed/angel investing are high risk investments, seed & angel investing usually happen in the earliest stages of a startup when the risk is ultra-high.

Funding Amounts. Venture capital also usually starts with companies that are slightly more mature (although not necessarily profitable), with higher valuations, and higher funding amounts. Funding amounts in angel & seed investing typically range from a couple thousand USD through to one million USD, while venture capital is usually millions, tens of millions, or even hundreds of millions of dollars.

Deal Structure. Angel investing also frequently uses different deal structures than VC, although this is primarily to reduce legal costs, cut transaction overhead, and rapidly accelerate the rate at which the startup and angel investor can agree on terms. Some of these alternative structures include convertible notes and SAFEs ("simple agreement for future equity"). Unlike venture capital, convertible notes and SAFEs don't actually transfer equity in the company to the investor until a later date, and in the case of failed startups, sometimes not even at all.

Read more: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/venture-capital.html

86
Business & Entrepreneurship / venture capital
« on: April 20, 2017, 06:07:45 PM »
Venture Capital vs Loans

Although loans and venture capital are both common methods for funding businesses, venture capital is very different from a loan.

With a loan, a lender gives a company money, and the company has a contractual obligation to pay back that amount plus interest over some period of time. Sometimes the loan is backed by assets (like equipment or inventory) or receivables. In the case of many small businesses, the loan is backed by a personal guarantee from the business owner. This backing allows the lender to recoup some of its investment in case the lendee defaults (fails to make payments)

With venture capital, the startup company issues private shares in exchange for money.

The venture capitalist's partnership fund actually becomes a partial owner of the startup. Additionally, venture capital is usually only used with high growth industries, where risk is much higher. In these cases, there are little or no assets to back the loan in the event of default so the likelihood of obtaining a loan is much lower, and the potential payouts must be drastically higher to result in a successful investment.

Read more: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/venture-capital.html

87
Business & Entrepreneurship / Information Risk Management Policy
« on: April 20, 2017, 06:00:31 PM »
1/4
Information Risk Management Policy
1. Purpose
This policy and its sub policies and associated procedures define how the British Library will
manage information risk. It is intended to ensure that all security, compliance and other risks to
the British Library’s corporate information are identified, analysed and managed so that they are
maintained at acceptable levels. This includes risks to the confidentiality, integrity and availability
of Library information.
This policy lays the framework for a formal information governance programme (focusing
primarily on risks to information assets) by establishing responsibility for risk mitigation,
programme management and oversight of the information policy framework.
The policy fits within the Library’s overall business risk framework, and will need to be read in
conjunction with the corporate Risk Management policy and processes.
2. Scope
This policy applies to all British Library Divisions, their staff (employed, contract or volunteer), and
third parties that collect, transmit, retain or use for any purpose information on behalf of the
Library in any form.
3. Statement of intent
The Library will identify and manage information risks that endanger the achievement of the
strategic aims defined in its Business Plan or the operational aims defined in Divisions’ plans.
The Library will embed information management into business processes and functions by means
of approved procedures, processes, and controls. Action taken to manage information risk will
address issues relating to information compliance, information management, and information
security.
The Library will make all reasonable efforts to discharge any information risk, management or
security related obligations arising from legislation, regulation or voluntary agreement, drawing on
best practice and recognised standards where appropriate. The Library will manage information
in ways that support the efficient and effective achievement of the Library’s strategic and
operational aims, drawing on best practice and recognised standards where appropriate. The
Library will publish sub-polices, mandatory procedures and optional guidelines in support of this
policy.
2/4
4. Policy ownership
The Senior Information Risk Owner (SIRO) owns this policy on behalf of the Library’s Executive
Leadership Team (ELT). The SIRO, leading the Corporate Information Governance Group
(CIGG), will be responsible for developing and implementing this policy and its associated subpolicies, and for reviewing them regularly to ensure that they remain appropriate to the Library’s
objectives and risk environment.
Changes, amendments or accepted deviations from this policy can be authorised only by the
SIRO.
5. Responsibilities
Everyone in the Library has a role in the effective management of information. All staff should
actively participate in identifying potential risks to the Library’s information in their area and
contribute to the implementation of appropriate solutions.
The SIRO and CIGG, in conjunction with the Integrated Risk Management Team (IRM), will be
responsible for maintaining the currency of all aspects of this policy and its related sub policies,
procedures and guidance, taking into account legal compliance, government directives and
corporate strategies and resources.
The SIRO will act as an advocate for information security and risk to ELT and in internal
discussions, and provide written advice to the Chief Executive for the annual Statement of
Internal Control relating to information risk for reporting to the DCMS.
6. Assessment of information risks
Information risk management is the process of identifying vulnerabilities and threats to the
information resources used by an organization in achieving business objectives, and deciding
what countermeasures, if any, to take based on the value of the information resource to the
organization.
Identification and a threat assessment of risks related to the Library’s information assets will be
carried out in line with the corporate Risk Management policy and the Corporate Risk Register
maintained by IRM, including an assessment of risk appetite and risk tolerance.
The SIRO will own the high level strategic information risk that is held on the Corporate Risk
Register. This strategic risk recognises that an information related incident may cause serious
harm to the Library, and that the risk of such an incident may arise from weaknesses in
information governance structures, inadequate control of information content, inability to access
information in a timely fashion, and/or inappropriate disclosure of information.
In turn CIMU will manage CIGG’s Risk Register of more detailed risks related to each area of
potential failure.
7. Sub policies, procedures and guidelines
Sub-policies, mandatory procedures and optional guidelines will detail the Library’s approach to
managing various aspects of information risk relating to information compliance, information
management and/or information security.
3/4
8. Incident management
Security breaches, information loss or unauthorised disclosure, and other risks associated with
information management will be managed as ‘incidents’ with appropriate actions undertaken in
terms of escalation, reporting, recovery and subsequent review of existing controls, policy and
procedures.
9. Cultural change
ELT and the Board recognise that in order for information risks to be effectively managed there
will, in some cases, be a requirement for cultural change and changes to current working practice
within the Library. The SIRO and CIGG have been empowered by ELT to develop and implement
necessary changes to working practice to ensure that this policy (and its associated sub-policies)
can be fully implemented.
The SIRO and CIGG will work closely with Strategic HR and Internal Communications to ensure
that appropriate actions are taken to provide staff with adequate training and education in order
that they can fulfil their requirements to implement, maintain and develop effective information
management controls.
Failure to observe this policy (and its associated sub policies and related mandatory procedures)
may be regarded by the Library as gross misconduct. Disciplinary procedures may be instigated
as a consequence of damage caused to an individual, the Library or its partner organisations by
non-compliance with this policy.
10. Monitoring and review
The SIRO and CIGG will be responsible for monitoring the implementation of actions taken to
implement the requirements of this policy. These actions will each be led by a sub-group or
designated individual of CIGG. These specific actions will be monitored by CIGG on a regular
basis.
The policy itself will be subject to annual review, or earlier if warranted by regulatory, statutory or
policy change. The SIRO and CIGG will carry out the review.
4/4
Annex A: Theoretical Policy Framework
The policy is conceptualised as an ‘umbrella’ policy that sits over the more detailed sub-policies
that set out how the Library will manage various aspects of Information Compliance, Information
Management and Information Security. Below these lower level policies will sit levels of
mandatory procedures and optional guidance that cover the operational management of specific
areas of risk such as PCI compliance, password management or data sharing, for example.
Information Risk
Management Policy
Data Protection
FOI Policy Policy Manag Re em co ern dtsPolicy InformaP tio oln icS y ecurity
Use of Fair
Processing Notices
FOI Request
Management
Procedures
IT Backup Policy &
Procedures
FOI Guidance
Notes
DP Induction
training
Records Centre
processes
RM guidelines on
where to store
records
Etc. Etc. Etc.
Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc.
Strategic
Policy
Sub
Policies
Mandatory
Processes
Optional
Guidance
& Advice
As such the IRM policy defines the role of the SIRO and CIGG, sets out the Library’s high level
intent to manage information risk and the framework for doing so, and points to the lower level
policies for specific implementation of the policy.
It is our intent that the policy be as short as possible whilst still containing enough detail to comply
with the Cabinet Office Guidance on the Department Information Risk Policy.

88
The Shadow Brokers – a hackers group that claimed to have stolen a bunch of hacking tools from the NSA – released today more alleged hacking tools and exploits that target earlier versions of Windows operating system, along with evidence that the Intelligence agency also targeted the SWIFT banking system of several banks around the world.

Last week, the hacking group released the password for an encrypted cache of Unix exploits, including a remote root zero-day exploit for Solaris OS, and the TOAST framework the group put on auction last summer.

The hacking tools belonged to "Equation Group" – an elite cyber attack unit linked to the National Security Agency (NSA).

89
Bangladesh advanced three steps, thus, jointly ranking 139th  with Ghana and Zambia out of 188 countries in the Human Development Index (HDI), according to the Human Development Report (HDR) 2016.

Categorised as a “medium human development” country for the 13th consecutive year, Bangladesh’s average annual growth of HDI was 1.64%, between 1990 and 2015, which is higher than that of many other South Asian countries, the report adds.

The annual report was unveiled by the UNDP at a programme which it jointly organised with the Planning Commission in Dhaka on Wednesday, less than two weeks after the report’s global launch in Stockholm, Sweden.

With the HDI value standing at 0.579 in 2015, Bangladesh ranked fifth in South Asia, lagging behind Sri Lanka (73rd), the Maldives (105th), India (131st) and Bhutan (132nd) on the overall list topped by Norway (with 0.949 HDI value).

Addressing as chief guest, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal termed Bangladesh’s progress in human development over the last two decades significant, saying the average annual HDI growth is better than many other South Asian countries.

“Our social indicators depict that we are doing better in health, education and life expectancy at birth with the per capita income spiraling,” he added.

Life expectancy at birth in Bangladesh stood at 72 years, expected years of schooling at 10.2 years, mean years of schooling 5.2 years, adult literacy rate 61.5, gross national income (GNI) per capita $3,341, the  report reads.

State Minister for Foreign Affairs Shahriar Alam said Bangladesh became a role model among developing countries as its progress in recent years has impressed the world.

“We have to continue our development for the sake of the people, especially the marginalised and deprived ones.”

Dr Selim Jahan, lead author of the report, cautioning on paying too much attention to national averages, said: “Though progress in human development has been impressive over the past 25 years, still it [human development] has been uneven and human deprivations persist.”

UNDP Bangladesh Country Director Sudipto Mukharjee questioned about who has been left out in the development process and how and why that happened.

Devised and launched in 1990, HDI is a measure to assess progress in three basic dimensions of human development: a long and healthy life, access to knowledge, and access to decent standard living.
Source: Dhaka Tribune

     
     
     
     
     
   

90
The World Bank has projected a 6.8% GDP growth for Bangladesh in 2017, a slight fall from 7.1% last year.

“The economy of Bangladesh has weathered global uncertainties well aided by strengthening investment and a recovery of exports. Growth will be sustained at 6.8% in 2017, coming down slightly from 7.1% in 2016 and with a decelerating information rate and a budget deficit that has narrowed, said the World Bank in a report published on Sunday.

The report identified infrastructural gaps and inadequate energy supply, combined with the high cost of doing business as the main obstacles to the realisation of Bangladesh’s growth potential.

The report also said regional GDP growth of South Asia is expected to rise from 6.7% in 2016 to 6.8% in 2017, and 7.1% in 2018.

“To make the most of this export opportunity, countries in the region should continue to focus on polices that promote economic growth,” said World Bank South Asia Region chief economist Martin Rama.

He said: “A survey of South Asian experts conducted for this report reveals a strong consensus on the need to promote human capital accumulation, investments in infrastructure, and a more business-friendly environment.”

The bank’s South Asia Region vice president Annette Dixon said: “Simulations on the impact of hypothetical new trade barriers show that South Asia is not only resilient to a potential rise in protectionism but could possibly even gain from it in some circumstances.”

She said: “Advanced economies are recovering and could see faster growth that will likely increase demand for South Asian products. The region should seize this opportunity to diversify its exports and enhance its supply response.”
Source: Dhaka Tribune

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