What a Business Model!

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In 2008, a thriving company named Science Care Inc developed a 55-page national expansion plan. Read what happened! Questions: 1. What was the company’s goal? 2. What company did Science Care Inc. model? 3. How much did the company earn From 2012 through 2014? 4. If a person donates a whole body when they die,… Read more »

Xiaomi – Cheap phones online may not be the key to success.

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Xiaomi, once hailed as an Apple iPhone slayer in China, now admits that they moved too fast to outpace their competitor. The company’s founder, Lei Jun, wrote his employees this week, indicating that the company needs to focus on the future and long-term sustainability. Questions: 1. Who are the domestic rivals to Xiaomi in the… Read more »

Is this Fair?

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Since 2014, a Michigan law has limited Tesla Motors’ capacity to sell in the state, after the Republican-led legislature implemented a statute that banned the company’s only method of selling its cars to consumers. Questions: 1. What are the four states that Tesla has been shut out of? 2. Where did Tesla win its most… Read more »

Another Bubble?

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Airbnb’s latest financing round is being led by private equity firm General Atlantic, and includes Hillhouse Capital Group, a Chinese fund manager, and Tiger Global Management, which just led a big $80 million financing for Postmates. The deal is expected to be officially announced today, Monday, June 29. Questions: 1. What is a “private IPO”?… Read more »

Uber: Employees or Contractors?

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The California Labor Commission has found that a driver for Uber in San Francisco is an employee of the company. Questions: 1. Why is this such a nightmare for Uber? 2. Discuss how this will change the company’s accounting system and business model if this ruling is upheld and the costs involved. 3. The article… Read more »

No More SkyMall?

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The parent company for SkyMall filed for bankruptcy protection on January 23, 2015. SkyMall was the entertaining catalogue of everything you never thought about buying, but was in the seat pockets of every plane. As Farhi said, “the value added to this grotesque shlock was SkyMall’s enthusiastic descriptive copy. SkyMall’s writers never let on that… Read more »

Living without Water

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Thousands of people in bankrupt Detroit haven’t paid their water bills. Even some businesses have skipped payment. How is the bankrupt city dealing with the most basic of problems — getting people to pay their bills? Questions: 1. Detroit is the poster child for shutting off water to customers delinquent on their bills. Even though… Read more »

The Business Model of Overstating Benefits: How Harmful or Ethical?

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It is estimated that between 50,000 to 100,000 patients died or had a heart attack as a result of taking the drug Advandia. For seven years, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) failed to report data that indicated Advandia increases the risk of heart attack by 40%. As we reported back in July, in the biggest health care fraud… Read more »

Angie’s list

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By now you have probably heard of Angie’s List. Angie Hicks started the company in 1995 after a friend moved and had trouble finding reliable contractors. Originally started in Columbus, Ohio, the company has expanded to other national markets. There is a subscription fee to belong to this list that includes personal recommendations. Questions: 1…. Read more »

HAPPY HALLOWEEN: 1-800-Autopsy

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As hospitals and municipalities around the country cut back on the costly service of providing autopsies, family members of the deceased who feel there are unanswered questions that could be resolved by a post-mortem investigation are not without recourse. Today, only about 5 percent of all hospital deaths are autopsied, which is down 42 percent… Read more »