Global Entrepreneurship Week


It’s Global Entrepreneurship Week from Nov 17 to Nov 23rd. All over the world, people are moving their minds, hearts, and pockets to find a common goal: create wealth. I learned about entrepreneurship and creating wealth at Babson College. Its founder, Roger Babson, wanted to create a distinctive way of thinking and acting that would lead to what Jeffry Timmons later called “the Silent Revolution.” I had the privilege of graduating from Babson’s MBA class and meeting and discussing many ideas with Jeff, whose legacy expands beyond his life. I would like to dedicate this wealth drop to Roger and Jeff.

The concept of creating wealth is fantastic because there is no way to create prosperity without sharing it. Thus, governments are quite keen on exploring this topic, and along with them investors, yes, even in today’s financial situation!. The Global Entrepreneurship Week represents an amazing international effort, led by large corporations who see a bright future ahead, and supported with enthusiasm around the globe. What a refreshing thought, so different from the distressing news about the financial markets and the crisis!

I’ve always seen my future bright and interesting, although sometimes I have seen it through a dark tunnel that I know I have to walk. Ouch!

It has always paid off. I just realized that I don’t deal with depressed people because entrepreneurs and inventors create. They are too busy discovering ways of doing things to worry about dramas or to feel victims of other’s actions. In most cases, it turns out in a different way than we plan or expected, but the use of our energy to create positive worries is much healthier than to share misery and to feel that we are like seaweed in the ocean, at the mercy of the tide. No way!

As most of my work involves Global Entrepreneurship, I want to share with you the four critical success factors of Born Global Firms:

1. Global Vision: It’s all about the people who create the vision. People involved in the Strategic Intent of the Firm have a pre-conceived notion of globalization. They know it is possible because they’ve done it. Experience, Knowledge, Connections are firmly rooted in the managers or founder’s previous global experiences. As simple as: I’ve seen that before or I’ve done that before!

2. Global appeal: Offerings cross over cultural barriers.   Global  Firms make no adaptation to their offerings: Products, services,  marketing , etc They have a USP (Unique Selling Proposition) that appeals to consumers regardless of culture and location. BONUS! Having the same offering provides a systematic approach that minimizes mistakes, improves efficiencies, and provides clear message.

3. Global Reach: Reach customers rapidly, effectively and at low cost. They collaborate in local markets. They compete in  global   markets . Change of mindset from smaller economies: more is less (100% of 10 is 10), less is more (10% of 1000 is 100). Everybody wins.

4. Global Implementation: Find ideal partners. It requires a mindset to collaborate and think about your best fit. – What do you need – What do you require – What is your negotiating range and what are the deal breakers? – What is the (aligned) reward system – How to take the dip and cut loses – How to establish elegant ways out Don’t depend on legal frameworks, the best contract is never reinforced. What ifs…

I could not think of better times to go global. With suppliers and part time employees and clients in almost all continents, we have system that works smoothly around the globe. There are very few barriers to global entrepreneurship, if you are reading this, you have none.

We all need more entrepreneurial thinking, specially in times of crisis.

Practice to explore the world, because the world needs what you can offer.

Alicia Castillo Holley.


5 Schools That Offer an Online MBA Degree


The job market for entry and middle level managers has become exceedingly competitive in the last few years. An MBA is fast becoming a prerequisite for executive positions in most sought-after corporations. Thus, pursuing an online MBA makes sense for anyone who wants to further his or her career.

One may have a general idea of what coursework to undertake when obtaining an MBA. The courses on various MBA programs available differ depending on the institution but many courses offer similar subject matter.

Below are five schools that offer an online MBA Degree.

1. American InterContinental University

American InterContinental University offers industry-current degree programs in many of today’s most competitive fields. It also provides student support to help the student get the most out of his or her online education. AIU offers up to date online MBA programs that reflect and integrate emerging theories and practical applications in their respective areas of focus.

AIU offers MBA in Accounting,   Finance , HealthCare Management, Human Resource Management, International Business, Management,  Marketing , Operations Management, and Project Management.

2. California State University

The California State University provide online delivery of accredited MBA degree and programs that are specifically designed for busy working professionals whose work and location prevents them from attending an on-campus program.

The MBA Online Program currently offers seven concentrations for General Business, International Business, Management,  Finance ,  Marketing  Management, Information Technology Management and Human Resource Management.

3. Hawaii Pacific University

The online degrees offered by Hawai’i Pacific University (HPU) train students with a world-class education to prepare them for their professional careers. The student-centered approach of their online MBA degree programs creates a unique and intimate learning experience that provides students with relevant instruction and individual attention essential for success.

HPU’s online MBA degree program includes MBA in Human Resource Management, Information Systems, International Business, Management, and Organizational Change and Development.

The online MBA programs at Hawai’i Pacific University usually require 42 credit hours of graduate work and prerequisite courses up to 9 credits in business subjects may be required.

4. Kelly School of Business

Kelley Direct provides working professionals the opportunity to earn an MBA from the Kelley School of Business while continuing their career no matter where they work or live. The focus of the program is General Administration and covers topics such as business law and ethics, economics,  marketing ,  finance , operations, information technology, and project management.

Students can also take 9 hours of electives to tailor the program toward their career goals. Online MBA programs can be done in as little as two years or as many as five to provide students with utmost flexibility.

5. Capella University

Capella’s online MBA degree is versatile, business-focused, and a rigorous curriculum that integrates the study of core business disciplines with the advanced leadership and professional skills needed to excel in high-performing, global organizations. Capella University provides a wide range of resources including the MBA Central portal and mobile applications to help students achieve their academic goals and to translate the knowledge they acquired into on-the-job success.

Capella University offers online MBA degrees on Accounting, Business Intelligence, Entrepreneurship,  Finance , General Business Administration,  Global  Operations and Supply Chain Management, Health Care Management, Human Resource Management, Information Technology Management,  Marketing , and Project Management.

Whatever institution you decide to enroll at, you can earn your degree online while maintaining your career and personal life. You can complete all of your classes online while staying on your professional career track. You have full interaction with classmates and faculty online, no matter where you are.


Currency Investment


For over a generation the US dollar has been deemed the most valuable currency in the world and has therefore been the measure of the worth of all other currencies. This is so much the case that oil and gold are denominated in US dollars.

Recently, with the turmoil in world financial markets, great volatility has been observed in currency markets across the world, predominantly due to the impact of the United States economy, and the credit crisis that has been experienced by financial institutions on a global scale.

Many competing variables influence any one economy and the exchange rate of a particular currency is but the product of the numerous other factors that influence the foreign exchange market. From the UK perspective, a budget deficit means that the British government is spending more than it is receiving and necessarily indicates that the government is in debt. To finance this debt the government naturally has to borrow funds, and apart from the basic principles of demand and supply affecting price, the British pound is also susceptible to the impact of the budget deficit as the market reacts negatively to a wider deficit.

The deficit in the balance of trade is also a negative influence on the currency. This means that the money leaving the UK when imported goods and services are purchased by Brits outweighs the money coming into Britain by UK citizens and corporations selling their goods and services overseas. Generally a trade deficit is viewed as a negative attribute of a nation’s economy and is reflective of its competitiveness with other economies.

In addition inflation reduces the purchasing power of a currency and in the UK the purchasing power is currently reduced by approximately 4.5% per annum. This purchasing power reduces the demand for the currency and therefore has a negative effect on the British pound. Inflation however is directly linked to the robust nature of the economy and if inflation is high, then that means demand is high and will be closely monitored by the Bank of England. The chief means the Bank of England uses to control inflation is by the raising of interest rates, and in this event the demand for the British pound will increase as investors seek to purchase pounds in order to invest them at the higher rate of return.

Clearly, the science of foreign exchange trading is a vastly complex one, and not for the fainthearted manager of assets, however, it may be useful to note that if your fund manager is investing funds in foreign markets (as is often the case due to the diversification of financial markets around the world), then whatever return is achieved by that particular strategy is further subject to a foreign exchange risk, which as the above variables imply can easily erode the gains made in another market.

Such is the lot of a fund manager whether self appointed or professionally employed, and any judicious decision making in regard to foreign investments, while potentially promising, are at the mercy of a far more sophisticated global currency market, and therefore need to be display the exceptional features of quality, security and high return in order to justify the matrix of risk that is adopted with such an investment.


Preparation and Personal Finance


With the global economy still facing a long road to recovery, maintaining an accurate picture of personal finances is more important than ever. Keeping meticulous and accurate records as well as a personal budget aid in the ups and downs of the economic climate despite setbacks or profits, and saving for the future is imperative to personal financial responsibility in this market, as well as preparing for the unexpected.

A budget is an integral part of personal finances. By knowing accurately and quickly the amount required for monthly expenses, as well as income, it is possible for individuals to prepare for whatever happens in the market here or abroad. Many budget options are available. By planning accordingly in unstable economic times, and maintaining a healthy watch over personal finances, individuals can maintain financial stability regardless of the current or future markets. By recording monthly expenses diligently and planning for potential outcomes, it is likely that people can be more prepared should they face unemployment or pay cuts or unforeseen expenses in the future. Budgeting should not only encompass monthly recurring expenses like rent or mortgage payments, but also utilities, telephone, credit card bills and other costs associated with managing a household. Certain amounts can be set aside for dining out or food expenses, as well as a weekly cash amount to have on hand for other expenditures. The more carefully a budget is thought out and planned for, the more successful it can be in maintaining financial responsibility and adequately paying necessary expenditures.

Having a savings account is also imperative in having a sound financial future. It may not be possible to save large sums of money at a time, but every little bit helps. By putting money into savings, even in small increments, it is possible to build up a cushion for unforeseen events or expenses that may come up. While it is impossible to know what the future holds, planning for the unexpected or sudden can greatly reduce the stress and financial impact it may have. By setting aside a certain amount every month, people can be more prepared for unanticipated costs associated with car repair, the loss of a job, etc. A savings account can really play a vital role in how a person or family is able to react to a financial crisis and the burden that it places on them. Many financial institutions offer automatic savings plans which transfer a certain amount from an active current account to a savings account at a certain time each month. An automatic savings plan can be extremely beneficial to those who find savings difficult.

Staying abreast of personal finances is crucial in the current financial climate. With the recession recovery process taking longer than expected, and quick turnarounds not appearing to be forthcoming, financial responsibility at a personal and family level becomes vital to establishing monetary freedom from excessive debt. By establishing a working, feasible budget combined with a savings plan, consumers can prepare for the unexpected as much as possible, and take their own personal finances into their own hands, regardless of the market swings.


Forex Online Trading – An Overview


In this age of rapid communication, the world has been transformed into a global village in the true sense of the term. Today it does not matter where you stay-in Trinidad or in Timbuktu — to carry on your business in the other part of the world. And it is this highly efficient communication network that led to create the world’s largest financial market; the Foreign Exchange Market or the Forex.

For a long time trading in foreign currencies used to be an area monopolized by the giant multinational banks, other financial institutions and top brokers. But the internet has made it possible for the small scale investors to take part in this highly lucrative market. There are a number of websites which have thrown open this world’s largest 24-hour currency markets to all ambitious investors.

The foreign currency exchange is the market where trading in the foreign currency takes place. But Forex is not a market in the traditional sense of the term. There is no designated place where the buying or selling of the foreign currency takes place. Trading is carried on 24X 7 worldwide over internet, although telephonic trading is also not uncommon. There are five major cities that play the decisive roles in the forex online trading. They are: Sydney, Tokyo, London, Frankfurt and New York. Everyday, Forex triggers off in Sydney, and moves on to the other centers of the globe as a new day begins in each financial center.

There is no other business or industry in the entire world that can respond to the world financial trends so quickly. Any social, financial or political developments in the one corner of the world, is immediately followed by some kind of financial repercussions and that get reflected in the fluctuation of the value of the currencies. And the investors can direct their trading accordingly at any time of the day they occur- day or night.

When you are trading in the Forex market online, you can make any transaction directly with the other party. There is no centralized exchange controlling the trading or asking commission for each purchase and sell. Thus, the Forex trading takes the shape of Over the Counter or ‘interbank’ market.

Online foreign exchange trading is at the core, simply the exchanging of one currency for another. It is a kind of ‘spread ‘ trade buying of one currency must be followed by the sale of the other. You have to buy one currency and sell another simultaneously. Thus you always have to choose a currency combination like Euro/US Dollar or Pound/Japanese Yen. This currency combination used in the Forex trade is called a cross. The most commonly traded currencies are called the “majors”.


Online Forex trading system involves an ergonomic process. It also requires some intuitive abilities in the part of the investors. You can perform all the online trading functions from a single screen including placing a trade, leaving an order, position and order management, and margin analysis.


Introduction to Financial Spread Betting


Financial Spread betting is a kind of financial speculation that enables global market traders to make profits regardless of whether the market prices move up or down. Those who trade in individual shares, bonds, stocks, crude oil, currencies as well as precious commodities like gold can use spread betting to increase their chances of getting profits.

There are many benefits associated with financial spread betting. One, the profits you get through this type of trading is completely tax free. Secondly, you do not have to pay any unnecessary commissions. However, you will be required to pay some money to the betting company based on the spread, that is, the difference between buying and selling price.

Another benefit is having access to most of the global markets 24 hours, 7 days a week. You can do your stock trading in multiple markets through only one account. You also get to choose the currency you think is most appropriate for you, thus you will be saved the trouble of having to pay for currency exchange. Financial betting allows you to bet on movement of the market prices. You can go long or short, but either way, you can make a lot of profit if the market prices move on the direction of your bet.

All investments that deal with shares, currency or stock trading have to have an element of risk, and financial betting is of course no exception. Loses in this type of investment occur when the market shifts in the direction opposite what you placed you placed your bet on. You can monitor your funds, and maybe control your loses through some of the stop loss mechanisms available to you.

One of the forms of betting that is similar to spread betting and equally popular among many people involved in stock trading is contacts for difference, or CFDs trading. However there are a number of differences between the two. There are no commissions, but in CFD trading you have to pay some commission. CFD trading is subjected to Capital Gains Tax while financial betting is not. There are no dividends in spread betting, but CFD traders do get dividends when possible.

Binary bet is yet another betting option that has more or less the same properties as financial betting. However, unlike spread betting where prices are based on the underlying instrument price, the price of a binary bet is based on the odds of the occurrence of an event. Binary betting is popular among stock traders since it offers a lot of flexibility.

Opening a spread betting account does not involve much. You can open one online or through the telephone. Spread betting offers a very simple way to gain when the stock trading market seems to be falling. Financial spread betting is not the best option for making a long term investment plan. However, this type of trading is appropriate for those who would like to make short term profits from stock trading.


How to Invest Now


In my “Springtime Thoughts”, I explain why 2013 will also be a year in which not to sell in May, not to go away and instead to stay selectively invested. And why, more than ever today’s high-flying markets are ideally suited to the disciplined, diversified and dividend-backed approach exemplified in my Canadian Equity and Dividend 6-Paks.

Why are my 6-Paks secure against these on-again, off-again markets? The three reasons are; diversification and balance, world-class Canadian industry-leading corporations and protective and rising dividend underpinnings.

6-Pak Advantage

Set up in 2004-05 as proxies for superior longer-term investing, these distinctive packages encompass a full range of Canadian investment potential, the Equity 6-Pak focused more on growth, the Dividend 6-Pak on dividends and the ability to keep them growing. Key in both is to keep holdings meaningfully and evenly weighted and to periodically adjust and, as needs be, change holdings as circumstances and stock market prices dictate.

They’ve had their ups and down and contain inevitable problem children, but both 6-Pak approaches are nonetheless delivering the superior longer-term returns expected of them. There’s also the underpinning and comparative yield advantage of their mandatory dividend requirement, especially the Dividend 6-Pak which withstood the financial crises of 2007-09 impressively well.

World-Class Canadian Substance and More

According to Canadian International Trade Minister Ed Fast “The Canadian mining sector and its related industries contributed more than $35 billion to Canada’s gross domestic product in 20110.” Resources, energy and banking are among Canada’s world-class industries and they are proving to be a good investment and as such prime candidates for the MGIS 6-Paks.

Though their number of individual holdings may be intentionally small, a key to successful investing is meaningful portfolio representation, but both 6-Paks nevertheless provide the world-class cross-section offered by modern-day Canadian equity markets.

To the end of April the year-to-date returns were 10.5% on the Equity 6-Pak and 8.4% on the Dividend 6-Pak, the latter also yielding an average 5.5%.

For their individual holdings and more about the 6-Pak approach, also about world-class Canadian equity the MGIS website listed below.

Three reasons why my 6-Paks remain secure against on-again, off-again, continuously volatile markets.

Reason 1: Diversified and balanced

Reason 2: World-class, Canadian industry leaders

Reason 3: Protective and also rising dividend underpinnings

While stock markets seem to be on a daily roller coaster ride, investors should rise to the challenge and with careful planning and sage advice prepare for the McLuhan-like global village whose future is now.


Online Dating and the Global Financial Crisis


Not surprisingly, the current global financial crisis has had a great impact on peoples’ personal lives. Relationships have been heavily affected. And there have been surprising changes in sexual behavior and dating habits. While many of these consequences are negative, they’re not all bad.

The worst effect has been the immediate impact on married couples. Money being so central to marriage, the sudden financial strain has been devastating to many unions. Numerous counseling services in the UK are reporting a big rise in calls for assistance, sometimes up by a factor of close to sixty percent over last year.

But there have been other, more indirect effects – for instance the influence on the sex industry. Brothels in Australia are generally not nearly as profitable as they used to be, with many struggling to stay in business. The main reason is that men now have less disposable income (or are concerned that it may drop heavily in the near future) and are therefore less likely to spend their hard earned money on sex.

Then there’s the online matchmaking industry. More and more men and women are using these sites for casual encounters, so the number of sexually frustrated males is lower than in the recent past. While those profiting from prostitution may not be happy about these developments, there must be many who see them as a good thing!

And as the brothels go bust, some big matchmaking sites are actually reporting a substantial rise in subscriptions. While the two trends may have nothing to do with each other, it does seem plausible that they are related.

There are different theories about the nature of the link. For instance, it could just be that people who have lost their jobs or are getting less hours at work are now using their extra free time to meet people.

But I think the major causative factor is not more hours, but less money! Online dating is simply a cheaper way to meet members of the opposite sex.

When you think about it, going out to socialize can be very expensive. If you have a car there’s the cost of petrol and parking. If you don’t you still have to pay for public transport or taxis.

Once at the venue, you have to pay the cost of admission. Sometimes this can be quite hefty, particularly for singles events. And you always get hungry, so you have to fork out for a meal as well! Then there are all those highly priced drinks you pay for during the night …

But if you’re sitting at home in front of your PC, you don’t incur any of those costs. Sure, you might not meet as many people as you would at a party in the “real world”. But some of these big sites have hundreds, if not thousands of members online at any one time. What with Skype and similar video chat programs you can see and hear them, too.

Also, unlike in a smoky pub or nightclub, the interaction is a bit more meaningful. You can make more sensible, selective decisions about who you want to get to know, and who you don’t.

Which all goes to make online a dating a very smart choice for singles in these cash-strapped times. And regardless of the cost, it’s still an effective antidote to all the gloom and doom about the world economy. Nothing can lift your mood more than meeting someone new, after all.


eFoods Global Review


eFoods Global is a company built around the idea that food is the most valuable commodity on the planet. It is that basic understanding that fuels every aspect of the company’s business.

eFoods Global has made it their mission to provide high quality meals that can be utilized in both good times and bad times. The company has been providing solutions to help others “serve, save and plant” food products for nearly 30 years. The company has focused heavily on food provisions for difficult times such as economic downturns, famine and drought. With this in mind, they have developed their pre-packaged meals with a storage life of 25 years. Meal selections include breakfast offerings, breads, soups and entrees. The Essentials Food Back offers 388 complete servings of food at less than $.91 per serving.

The concept of teaching people to feed themselves has led the eFoods Global to not only develop food solutions, but also to create a business opportunity that can be replicated. The company operates under an IBO (Independent Business Owner) structure. Each IBO pays a yearly fee of $29.97 that gives them access to a marketing website, the back office systems and secures their place in the Team Commission Structure.

The company’s pay plan utilizes a binary compensation structure. This means that each IBO has 2 teams or “legs”, a right and left. Once the IBO has placed their initial two referrals, all other referrals are then placed under others in their organizational downline. This system allows for rapid growth and is meant to encourage new distributors, as the work of the overall team helps them build their individual business. eFoods Global pays a 10% commission on the sales volume of the “weaker” leg. This means that commissions are based on the leg with the lowest sales volume. In addition to the standard commission structure there are coded bonuses that allow for greater earnings from IBOs who achieve Essential IBO. In addition to financial compensation eFoods Global also offers weekly food credits as an incentive to their IBOs.

eFoods Global offers a unique product and aggressive business opportunity for the right individual. This business seems ideally suited in places where having a readily accessible food supply available is critical. This could include coastal areas affected by tropical storms, high snowfall areas and areas prone to excessive drought. This business would also make sense for those who anticipate a rapid deterioration in the economy and societal structure within the United States. This is alluded to in many of the marketing materials provided by the company.


The Relationship Between Insurance and Finance


Insurance and finance are closely interwoven fields of business, not least because they both involve money. They also often both involve speculation and risk, and often where one goes, the other will follow. Take property investment for example, it involves a large amount of capital out lay, swiftly followed by insurance to protect the capital investment. It would be ridiculous to spend such a vast sum of money on a venture and not protect it against possible damage. It therefore makes sense to store information on these two subjects together, as the relationship is so logical.

Insurance is a form of risk management used to protect the insured against the risk of a loss. It is defined as the equitable transfer of the risk of a loss from one entity to another in exchange for a premium. There are different kinds of insurance for just about every conceivable event. The most common insurance is probably life insurance, which provides a monetary benefit to a decedent’s family or other designated beneficiary.

It can cover funeral or burial costs and can be paid out to the beneficiary in either a lump sum or as an annuity. Property insurance is one of the more necessary insurances as property is extremely expensive and if it is lost or damaged for some reason (fire, earthquake, flood) it can be very difficult to replace without adequate reimbursement. Travel insurance used to be seen as an unnecessary expense and is still viewed as such by many. Its importance is, however, being increasingly recognised by the public at large. It is cover taken by those who travel abroad and covers certain unforeseen events such as medical expenses, loss of personal belongings, travel delays etc. There are numerous other types of insurance, too many to mention, all vital if you want to protect something of particular importance to you or another.

In the world of finance there are many sub-categories, also too numerous to mention but a few will be included here. Forex, or the foreign exchange market wherever one currency is traded for another. It includes trading between banks, speculators, institutions, corporations, governments, and other financial markets. The average daily trade in the global forex is over US$ 3 trillion.

Tax consulting usually involves CPAs and tax lawyers in addressing any tax issues that you may have. There may also be Professional Strategic Tax Planners and Enrolled Agents, depending on the company that you hire. They will help you reduce your tax debt, eliminate tax penalties, an innocent spouse claim, tax liens, bank levies, and preparing unfilled tax returns, as well as any other tax resolution problem that you might have.

Property investment is usually when an investor buys property with an eye to generate profit and not to occupy it. It is an asset that has been purchased and held for future appreciation, income or portfolio purposes. In some instances an investment property does not have to be held for profit, as some landlords in New York lease office buildings to non-profit organisations for tax purposes. Homeowners consider their homes to be investments but they aren’t classified as investment properties. Perhaps if you’re buying your second or third home, it can be considered an investment property, especially if you plan to rent it out to help pay off the home loan.

Business networking is a marketing method, which is as old as business itself. It’s been around since ever since people learned to hold a glass of whiskey and schmooze. In fact, its probably been around a lot longer, Cro-Magnon man probably gathered around the newly discovered fire and showed each other their collection of animal teeth and traded them. Creating networks of crocodile teeth owners and sabre toothed tiger owners, who tried a take over bid against the sabre toothed leopard owners. Business networking is designed to create business opportunities through social networks. It helps if the people involved are of the same frame of mind.

These days a very handy way of business networking is via the Internet on the various social media available. But it must be said that very little can beat the intimacy and trust created by face-to-face relationships. Also, where would our businessmen be without their whiskeys and weekly schmooze?