Kraft Cuts Jobs

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Kraft Foods Inc. will cut 1,600 positions in North America as it prepares to split its business in two. The company announced in August that it would split into two independent companies: a global snacks business and North American grocery business. Kraft said the moves are needed to help the businesses run more effectively. Questions:… Read more »

Watch that Password!

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Zappos began emailing its 24 million customers Sunday, advising them that its site had been hacked, and some customers’ personal details and account information likely stolen. Despite Zappos’ data breach notification to consumers, the company hasn’t yet answered several key questions, such as detailing when the data breach occurred, the length of time for which… Read more »

We Did Everything Right and Still Lost Our Business: Five Failing Businesses in 2011

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It has been another tough year for small businesses. According to the National Federation of Independent Businessesm one in four believes the biggest problem is weak sales. Issues of timing, cash, and a lack of realistic estimates also add to the challenges they face. Questions: 1. After reading the article, what advice would you offer… Read more »

Amy’s Kitchen in the Small Business Spotlight

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Amy’s Kitchen started in 1987 as one of the first frozen food companies for vegetarians. Naming the company after their daughter, Amy, Rachel and Andy Berliner worked as a team and started the company on a shoestring budget. Their first product, vegetable pot pie, has now led to over 88 frozen meals and in 1999,… Read more »

Ever Thought About Operating A Franchise?

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Tired of not getting paid what you’re worth (or not paid at all) and want to start your own, already-proven business? That’s what is intriguing about franchising. Pick a brand, pay your money, take your chances, and then you’re an entrepreneur. Running day-to-day operations and turning a profit is another matter, of course. However, success… Read more »

The Cost of Sweet Music

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Manuel Rodriguez III owns the century-old family business of the same name, heir to a tradition of guitar manufacturers which dates back to 1905 when his grandfather gave up fishing in Cadiz to dedicate his life to his musical passion. Now the Spanish guitar factory is looking beyond Europe to keep the company competitive. Questions:… Read more »

More Job Cuts

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Citigroup Inc is cutting 4,500 jobs worldwide, Chief Executive Vikram Pandit said on Tuesday, becoming the latest large bank to trim staff. Pandit said the cuts would be completed over “the next few quarters” and would come from a range of businesses. Questions: 1. What is the $400 million charge for? 2. How will this… Read more »

Kenya Life Companies

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Many countries are making a mint from commodities such as oil, copper and gold thanks to sky-high prices. But is that enough to give Africa a permanent boost? Probably not, because commodity markets are notoriously fickle and revenues can quickly be squandered. According to a report by the African Development Bank, a third of Africans… Read more »

PPM: What does it stand for when funding is involved?

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The abbreviation PPM stands for many things, including parts per million. But what does PPM stand for if you are an entrepeneur that is interested gaining funding for your business? When a company is looking to raise funds without an initial public offering, a private placement memorandum (PPM) is one of the best ways to… Read more »

Accounting Error or Change in Estimate?

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On November 21, 2011, independent research firm, Gradient Analytics issued a report that questioned whether j2 Global appropriately treated the measurement of annual contacts with eFax customers as a change in estimate. Based on its examination of the j2 Global’s financial disclosures, applicable accounting rules, and limited feedback from the company, Gradient reported that “…the… Read more »