Предприниматель | Информационно-аналитический журнал - Part 30

Letter of Credit? Why is he an entrepreneur?

Banker about the pros and cons of this tool of international payments.

Author – chairman and co-owner of the Bank “Investtorgbank».

Letter of Credit is a tool in the commission calculation of import and export transactions. Thus it allows us to solve several problems at once – to minimize legal risks associated with lack of knowledge of international law, insures you against unscrupulous partners, and may also serve as a tool lending. How it works and what credit is useful?

Letter of Credit guarantees the legal security of the transaction

Suppose Russian businessman wants to buy the Italian company wallpaper (plumbing, appliances, etc.). After agreeing on the price and conditions, the parties entered into a contract under the laws of the country of one of the parties. In this case, the other party may not be aware of this legislation. Accordingly, in the presence of competent lawyers and attorneys in the absence of such counterparty can be abused.

Risks arise in the second stage – the delivery of products. Here, too, there are two possibilities: either the Italian company sends the wallpaper at your own risk that they will not be paid, or the Russian counterpart to pay for goods in advance, with no guarantees of product delivery in the proper form and on time. Most companies that are already operating successfully in foreign markets may agree with their partners on the calculations on the delivery of the goods. But foreign suppliers are unlikely to agree to such terms with the companies-novices. And to pay up front is not safe and profitable by Russian companies, making the first steps on the international markets.

In this situation, someone has to make a step forward, otherwise the transaction will not take place. The solution may be to use a letter of credit as an international means of payment.

A significant plus letters of credit lies in the legislative aspect: although this form of payment may be differentially regulated in the legislation of any country, there are international Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits (Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits – UCP 600) which are developed by the International Chamber of Commerce . And the hand of foreign trade transactions, subordinated credit to these Uniform Rules, has successfully allowed the potential for conflict with domestic law. This submission must be provided in the foreign trade contract, and the contract with the issuing bank. And these same rules say that if something is in the documentary of the transaction were not so, then find out all the relations between the banks themselves, not their customers.
How

Pay letter of credit

Letters of credit are classified as a reason Documentary Operations – transaction documents play a major role, and banks work just with them, not with the goods. Availability of skilled bankers makes the performance of the contract considerably more secure, orderly and predictable.

The algorithm works with letters of credit is simple. In domestic bank Russian businessman asks a letter of credit in favor of, for example, the Italian distributor for a foreign trade contract. This requires a complete application for a letter of credit, which provides the name of the beneficiary (the seller’s products), the type of credit (usually confirmed), opening date and the expiration of the letter of credit, date and place of shipment and delivery of goods and other settings.
The statement also referred to a list of documents that the supplier must provide the bank to receive payment under the Credit. Typically, this invoice (invoice) and the bill of lading. The less trust between the buyer and the seller, the more documents they can include in the list: quality certificate, certificate of origin, insurance, etc., etc.

In addition to the Russian bank (bank letter of credit issuer) for the implementation of the letter of credit transactions involving foreign banks: Bank of the seller (can function as confirming and fulfilling the advising bank), and if the seller’s bank has no relations with the issuing bank, he will speak only advising bank. In the latter case, the role of confirming and executing bank will execute a foreign bank with a correspondent relationship not only with the issuing bank, but it has set a limit on the credit risk of documentary operations. Typically, this is a very large and well-known overseas bank.

If the supplier has no idea of ??the Russian credit of the issuing bank, it has the right to require the importer to the Russian bank letter of credit has been confirmed he knew the bank. In this case, the confirming bank undertakes for payment under the letter of credit in addition to the obligations of the Russian bank.

Thus, the exporter, having received notice of an incoming letter of credit in favor of it and agreeing to accept it, and ships the wallpaper is confirming bank (through its servicing bank or directly) provided a letter of credit documents, and if the documents meet the requirements of the letter of credit within five business days receive their payment. In other words, the confirming bank, the payment documents made by the executing bank. By the way, at this stage of the interest the seller to deal runs out – he sent the goods in Russia and received the money.

In turn, the Officer (confirmation), the bank receives money from the Russian issuing bank, which pays the buyer, or upon payment to the exporter (letters of credit on demand), or after a certain time (usually no more than one year, including the term of the credit) in the presence of the treaty between the banks. In the latter case we are talking about the so-called post-financing. The advantage of post-financing obvious nominated bank extends credit to a Russian bank, and the last – Russian importer for payment received from the supplier of the goods.

But if the documents do not meet the requirements of the letter of credit, or submitted after the expiry of its term, the nominated bank will make their payment only upon receipt of the consent of the issuing bank of the importer.

Letter of Credit and financing imports

Credit should not only protect the interests of the parties of the foreign trade contract. As a rule, letters of credit are important instruments of international trade finance. This occurs as follows. Importer refers to the issuing bank for the suspension of the execution of its obligations under the letter of credit. The issuing bank can meet the request of his client’s own resources for lending rates of the Russian market (for such transactions is expensive, unattractive and almost never used), or by the resources of a foreign bank that finances the transaction at more attractive rates of the international market. In this case, it also acts as a confirming bank.

If the importer has not provided the issuing bank cash collateral for letters of credit, letter of credit is a loan is a product of nature. The banks make on company applying for a letter of credit, the same requirements as when applying for a loan (financial status and security). Letter of Credit can be used for one-time foreign trade transactions and to fund regular supplies under the credit facility.

How much is it?

Of course, all of these banks have customer service is not free. The cost and the individual terms of service credit institutions may vary, so do not claim to ultimate truth, try to illuminate the whole pricing algorithm in letters of credit.

The importer pays the issuing bank and confirm the value of the cost of funding provided. There may be additional charges according to the rates of the issuing bank, but they will not exceed 1% per annum.

The cost is estimated to confirm the annual percentage rate and the sum of the confirming bank and the issuing bank’s margin. For the average Russian issuing banks confirming bank rate ranged from 1.5% to 4.25% per annum for the term of the letter of credit (although in different countries and in different banks can be for a shorter period) – it depends on the economic situation in the country confirming bank its credit policy and risk assessment confirmation received by the issuing bank and the country of the issuing bank.

The cost of financing is calculated as a percentage per annum, and the sum of rates LIBOR / EURIBOR, rates of foreign financing bank and the issuing bank’s margin. The cost of the financing provided by the bank an average Russian foreign issuing banks, will be LIBOR / EURIBOR plus 3-4.5% per annum for funding.

The margin of the Russian bank-issuer depends on many economic factors, such as the financial situation of the importer, its balances and turnovers in a Russian bank, the quality of collateral.

In any case, the total cost of validation and funding (rates are not cumulative, as each is taken on their terms) should not exceed the threshold at which the validation and international funding ceases to be economically feasible in comparison with the cost of direct Russian loans.

But even if we assume that the interest on the letter of credit and conventional loans are the same, use the letter of credit will be more profitable because of the guaranteed safety calculations.

Letter of credit with post-financing – the most common form of letters of credit for today, because it provides important benefits to the buyer in the financing of international trade activities.

It’s worth noting that the buyer can get a reprieve from the payment and the supplier – the so-called trade credit, which is becoming increasingly popular, especially in the highly competitive European markets, such as wine products on the market that does not exclude the possibility of obtaining post-financing along with deferred payment.

David Yakobashvili — hostage fate

By building his empire, David Yakobashvili successfully coped with the bandits. Overcome market competition was not so easy.

Chairman of the Board of Directors of “Wimm-Bill-Dann” David Yakobashvili first encountered serious difficulties in its core business. Key indicators of the largest Russian food industry deteriorated, its brands in the market feel much less confident than before. Business out of old partners. Is 46-year-old Iakobachvili – one of the most successful businessmen of Russia – lost the talent to turn everything he touches into gold?

Iakobachvili unique track record. In the restructuring, he led one of the first cooperatives in 1992 – almost the first modern motor show in 1993 – the largest casino in Russia. In the mid-1990s, “Wimm-Bill-Dann” launched in the dairy and juice market first brands on a national scale – «J-7,” “House in the Country” and “Sweet Mila”, and February 8, 2002 has successfully placed its shares on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). And it became clear that Russian capitalism entered the new stage of development: consumer company has managed to become as attractive as the raw material.

And suddenly something broke in runs like clockwork mechanism. Over the past two years, the main barometer of economic activity Russia – RTS stock index rose by 140%, while shares of WBD and have remained at the level of the prices at which they were placed, and even cheaper by 5%. The company earned $ 21 million in net profit last year on revenue of $ 939 million – is 41% lower than in 2002. Debt increased by as much as $ 201 million agency Standard & Poor’s changed the outlook of the company’s investment rating to negative from stable.

In November last year, after two years of negotiations, the French food giant Groupe Danone has abandoned its intention to buy a controlling stake WBD. Yakobashvili said that negotiations have been terminated by the decision of both parties. But if the deal for Danone is one of the many co-owners for WBD she could become the crown of their multi-year effort.

Family

The backbone of the group, who later created the “Wimm-Bill-Dann”, was formed in the hotel “Union” on the northern outskirts of Moscow, where Paul worked Dudnikov and Evgeny Yaroslavsky – a restaurant manager, the other bartender. Sometimes friends were traveling on business in Tbilisi, where in 1984, made friends with a student dropouts Polytechnic Institute David Yakobashvili, who was then serving in the security services. He himself was a frequent visitor to Moscow: his mother was born there. “Moscow – the city is small – Yakobashvili said in an interview with Forbes.

– I still keep dating, which started in the 70s. ”
Some of his old friends were at the origins of the cooperative movement. In early 1987, Dudnikov and Yaroslavsky and his partner Michael Vishnyakov founded on Pokrovka beauty “Ginseng”, one of the first cooperatives in Russia. In 1988, the Muscovites remembered Tbilisi friend, Iakobachvili moved to the capital and was connected to the case.

While doing business could only truly brave people: for the newly appeared entrepreneurs hunted racketeers. “The kids had to go to the” arrow “- says Iakobachvili. – Frequently visited us. Some people liked the room “Ginseng” pitching came and said, “Here we train. It’s ours. ” How could fight back? Iakobachvili continues: “Many people respect only brute force. Thank God it did not go over certain limits. But people felt they could get a rebuff. ”

In 1989, a team led Iakobachvili new companion – just released from prison Gabriel (“Garik”) Yushvaev. In 1980 Yushvaev upekli for 9 years, because he was beating out of the debtor’s money. It is hardly necessary to explain, what connections he could return to the area. Yushvaev himself refused to give an interview to Forbes. Iakobachvili common past of the man was not embarrassed, he says that a “thief in law” Yushvaev not.

Garik not just accepted in general business, Iakobachvili affinity with him by marrying his niece. Partnership between the two businessmen and to this day – the basis of “family.” One businessman, who works with the group, but is not part of it, in an interview with Forbes named Yushvaev “kulaks team”, “man-bear”. Iakobachvili same, he says, “the brain of all this business.”

Easy Money

The team of the future founders of the “Wimm-Bill-Dann” readily took on any profitable business. Partners rented a boat on the Moscow River into a hotel for foreign workers, tourists were transported to the hotels of the “Sheremetyevo”, furnished the furniture “Metropol”.

Furnished helped a friend from Sweden. He, by the way, and threw up the idea of ​​the brand name. Once Iakobachvili and his two partners discussed with the Swedish another matter. Drinking. Foreigner so impressed cohesion partners, he said: “You are right Holy Trinity. The Holy Trinity. ”

The first really big business “Trinity” was the trade of second-hand American cars. Iakobachvili with partners themselves first traveled to the U.S. for the “Cadillac” and “Chevrolet” and even by sitting at the wheel of the road carrier of Finland.

Meanwhile infancy even more profitable business – gaming. “Trinity” was to deliver in St. Petersburg and Moscow the first “one-armed bandits.” And when they began to appear a casino, “Trinity” in cooperation with the Swedish company engaged in the gaming business, and concern “Albee”, owned by businessman Oleg Boiko, have built up the largest complex in the capital of gambling – casino “Cherry” and a nightclub “Snowstorm” on Novy Arbat . Which opened in the summer of 1993 a grim casino “Cherry” hit the brilliance of multi-colored lights. Money flowed. English manager “Snowstorm” then told Forbes: «If this goes on, we will refund the money invested ($ 5,000,000) in four months.”

Bandit War

The more money appeared in Moscow, the hectic getting on the streets. Auto business has turned into an arena of fierce struggle for survival, “Chechen” and “Baumanskoye” exchanged gunfire, violence is often passed by the door of the same casinos and night clubs. Prosperous “Trinity”, of course, could not attract envious glances. “We had a good security organization – says Iakobachvili. – Everything is the same as the others did. The authorities did not specifically protected, had to defend themselves – where cunning, where strength, where the mind, where something else. ”

One of those who survived those troubled times, was Vladislav Wanner, which the newspaper attributed to the role of head Bauman gang – he was shot in January 1994. According to investigators, the killer was the famous Alexander Solonik (nicknamed Alexander the Great). Wanner near death touched Iakobachvili.

“We were friends – said a businessman. – I was helping him, and he told me. He drove us to the car when it was necessary. ” But what about the Bauman group? “You can glue the labels in every one … Can all to label anything you want. If he grew up in the Bauman district, it does not mean that he was the leader of group – said Yakobashvili. – And in general, what Bauman criminal gang? The press does not understand many things. They have seen enough movies about the mafia. ”

Against the backdrop of conflict and the “showdown” “Trinity” flourished. And over time, the partners first task was to invest the money earned.
In

Juice

For six months before the launch of “Cherry” to Iakobachvili asked two young men – Sergey PLastinin and Mikhail Dubinin. They rented a bottling line juices Lianozovo Dairy and needed help. “They had to be on the market – explains Iakobachvili – and we already had some kind of connection.” Such ties are not only allowed to lease new bottling line, but also to buy a combine – Ramenskii.

The first name of juices gave the name of the company itself: the word “Wimm-Bill-Dann” was coined in consonance with voiced English “Wimbledon.” Developing inviting former Soviet buyer western theme, the founders of the company in 1994, came up with a brand «J-7» (Seven Juices, «Seven juice”), and a year later bought a controlling stake in Wimm-Bill-Lianozovsky plant.

“Wimm-Bill-Dann” grew rapidly. Partners of the “Trinity” at first it seemed that it was just another “perk”, the dimensions of which do not go to any comparison of the cash flow from gambling. But first casino profits have steadily dropped, and the consumer market, on the contrary, the money flowed. “Wimm-Bill-Dann” opened the manufacture of dairy products (currently 70% of the total turnover of the company), millions of dollars have been invested in advertising, so that the market appeared to all known brands. For 10 years, “Wimm-Bill-Dann” united 24 companies across the country.

Of course, not everything went as smoothly as it looks today. In 1997, for example, a dispute broke out with Vladimir Tambov, director Lianozovsky plant and a major shareholder of the group. “He was our partner, but, unfortunately, got in touch with a group, with the bandits, and wanted us to expel from the plant,” – says Iakobachvili. As a result, Tambov lost the conflict and was forced to give up their shares.

In the “family”, led by Iakobachvili and Yushvaev, there were clear rule: who does not work – do not eat. The rule applies even to the founding fathers. Paul angelica, for example, was a key member of the team from the very beginning, it belonged to him a brilliant idea to bring “Wimm-Bill-Dann” on the New York Stock Exchange. But in 2000, due to a severe eye disease Dudnikov was forced to resign as chairman of the board of directors of the company and sell its share to other partners, without waiting for the exit on the NYSE. “He knew – said Yakobashvili. – Said I can not work, I want to sell. And sold. ” After that, he took the chair Iakobachvili.

Rules of the “family” strict. The only exception is obviously done for Yushvaev. According Iakobachvili, he “never takes decisions on the IAP.” However, it Yushvaev is the largest shareholder of the company: it has 19% of the shares. We Iakobachvili only 9%.

New competitors

It is still unclear why the deal fell through with Danone: the parties have agreed to keep confidential details of the negotiations. Different versions are being built: Danone wanted to buy just the dairy assets, and shareholders sold to “milk” with “juice”, the current partners in the WBD intended to stay in control of the company, and Danone objected, and finally, just do not agree on the price.

One thing is clear: as long as there were negotiations, WBD began to take positions. Last year, for the first time in the history of “Wimm-Bill-Dann” decreased volumes of sales of juices. This reduction is doubly alarming when you consider that the very juice market grew by 13% due to VBD young competitors such as JSC “Lebedyanskiy” (brands such as “I”, “Tone” and “Orchard”) and “Multon» (Rich “Good”). In the dairy business WBD while holding position, although rapidly gaining momentum such dangerous competitors, as is still the same and the German company Danone Ehrmann.

Over the past year, the administrative costs have increased IAP, with the launch of new packaging company was late, import and distribution system began to falter. As recognized Yakobashvili, during talks with Danone Company “relaxed.” WBD now hastily trying to fix things: change of directors juice business has finally launched new types of packaging, launched an extensive advertising campaign.

But if WBD, despite all the turmoil, continues to be the largest producer of dairy products in Russia, then in the beer market Iakobachvili have not managed to take the lead. Over the past few years, partners at “Wimm-Bill-Dann” have invested about $ 50 million in the purchase of four breweries in Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Vladivostok and in Bashkortostan, as well as to the development of national brands. However, both by brands – “Legion” and “The Messenger” – fell flat. Central European Brewing Company (cleavers) was not able to compete with “Baltika” and Sun Interbrew, owned by powerful western holdings.

Incubator Project

Iakobachvili partners continue to act in the same way as in the early 1990s, spraying efforts on various types of businesses. In the month of Iakobachvili considering almost fifty different projects. Each of the partners in Wimm-Bill-Dann and “Trinity Group” has the right to bring up for discussion the idea of ​​their colleagues and bring to realization the other.

Projects, as in the early years, is surprisingly different. There are 800 elite breeds of cows on a farm in the Moscow Gorki-2. There are commercial properties in prime locations in Moscow. There are 200,000 hectares of land in the long-term lease in the Volgograd region. Most business projects are selected without a thorough study. “Starting a business, we would certainly attract professionals who analyze the market. But the project is interesting or not, I decide myself – says Iakobachvili. – I can not say that I read the technical description, but the idea of ​​catch. ”

In this approach, a high probability of errors. In the mid-1990s Iakobachvili partners have invested $ 1 million in the development of Russian scientists – antenna system that enables to track the movement of objects in the city. But scientists have not managed to make the system work with the required accuracy. In addition, if Iakobachvili more carefully consulted with experts, they surely would have warned him of the impending arrival of the satellite navigation system GPS, which has almost completely replaced all of the local system like the one that was created for his money.

Yakobashvili said steadily and monotonously and lights up only when it comes to new projects. Then his voice heard again colossal ambition and desire to make a breakthrough.

That is how he treats his investment – $ 6,000,000 – in the construction of a gypsum plant in Kabardino-Balkaria. It is a joint business with the president of the Russian Jewish Congress Yevgeny Satanovsky. Iakobachvili ready to win a part of the wound in the German company Knauf, which dominates the market for gypsum building materials in Russia.

With even more enthusiasm Iakobachvili speaks about the open a few years ago the production of respiratory protection. Together with other partners and Yushvaev he invests $ 30 million in the production of the unique technology of compact gas masks, hoods. By next year it is going to produce a million units per month. It remains to understand who buys so many wonderful respirators. “Our safety equipment should be in every man – says entrepreneur. – Especially given the current threat of terrorist attacks. ”

For sale

Meanwhile, members of the old team that founded the “Wimm-Bill-Dann” and “Trinity Group”, continue to diverge.

“Some of the major shareholders of” Wimm-Bill-Dann “carried away by his business and sells shares – says CEO Sergei PLastinin WBD. – Someone thinks at all quit the business. ” But not all shares are leaving the “family.” “There is a contract that binds the major shareholders of certain rules – explains Iakobachvili. – We can not sell shares to the side with no common agreement. If they decide to sell something in the market, first, we agree that it is not struck by the company and not to collapse prices. ”

In February and March of this year, in the face of falling stock prices WBD, five long-standing partners Iakobachvili sold a total of 8% “Wimm-Bill-Dann”. Some shares Iakobachvili had to buy himself – probably at a lower price. “The fact that the main partners of the shares take off – a bad sign for the foreign market” – he explains.

Over the past two years Iakobachvili or sold, or was willing to sell most of its assets. After a failed attempt to gain control over the “KNG” he lost his 45 per cent stake in the oil-producing enterprise “Gazprombank”, according to analysts, the final buyer is a “Rosneft”. He recently broke up with a project that has launched nine years ago – the restaurant “White Swan” on Clean Ponds in Moscow. Now he is willing to sell car dealer “Trinity Motors” and is also looking for strategic partners for the brewing company and a major producer of TsEPKO neon sign “Trinity Neon.”

David Yakobashvili denies that “Wimm-Bill-Dann” or his other companies have a serious problem, and says she has always been willing to part with any of their businesses. But one thing is clear: the Russian market has changed, and Iakobachvili with partners new to this market competition. Perseverance and courage that helped earn millions in state in the early 1990s, now giving way to professional management and the ability to gain a foothold in certain market niches. Not only enter the market with a scarce commodity, you need to carefully develop a business plan to invest millions of dollars in marketing, build distribution network, well-control administrative costs and manufacturing processes.

For the soul to such hard work David Yakobashvili and its partners? Chairman of the Board of Directors of “Wimm-Bill-Dann” says that a few years ago was about to leave the company. Then he did not succeed, and even today to decide on this would be easy. “I, unfortunately, can not do that because of commitments to the people with whom I work for a long time – says the businessman. – In a way, I’m just a pawn of the case.”

What loans are worth taking, and which to reject

Tips for the business owner from the banker.

At first, few people are attracted to the idea to take a loan and along with it – debt obligations. It is much more profitable to be independent from banks and invest in a company only their money. So acquired confidence in the future and a peaceful sleep. But really – it’s just an illusion of stability.

If a business has growth potential and does not implement it, competitors will try to push your business to the market. Even if you have enough previously achieved, it will not add them leniency. The society in which we live has an impact on us. For business, it means that you can not ignore the actions of competitors.

Every entrepreneur has their own idea about how to improve the business and make big profits. Someone who has more appetite for risk, take advantage of the credit for the development of business, thereby weakening the position of competitors. After getting investment opportunities and to upgrade equipment (which leads to an improvement in the quality of goods or services), and for the expansion of the market (with a consequent increase in market share).

But the fact that you are using the loan funds, does not guarantee you will get benefits. A credit to the wrong order can lead to a deterioration of the financial situation of the company. These effects are almost impossible to predict in advance. Only after a while it becomes clear who exactly – you or your competitors – was able to make the best business plan, find a proper purpose, who consistently went to the goal and more efficiently invested money.

So whether or not to take the credit, and if so – how much? There can be no general rules. In different industries can be a big difference in the comfort level of debt. Favorable level for example, grocery chains will be the ratio of net debt (net debt here – the amount of short-term and long-term debt on loans and business loans with less available funds in the accounts and in hand), and EBITDA at a ratio of 4:1. This means that net debt can be up to four times the annual profit. For capital-intensive companies will be acceptable level of 3:1 to 2:1. The size of the optimal parameter affects the current situation of the enterprise, business acumen of its leaders, trends in the economy and business strategy.

After the end of the crisis, companies engaged in optimizing the structure of the loan portfolio, reducing this rate, refinancing and extending the debt. During the stability of the economy, large organizations can sell their shares and send the proceeds to pay off debt or to expand the business. Small and medium-sized businesses do not have this capability, so they need to seriously and in detail to think about every decision that is associated with the assistance of outside money. With the help of credit your business can generate more revenue and strengthen its position in the market struggle, but at the same time, there is a risk due to these credit facilities to undermine the position of the company. What could be a mistake if you take the credit?

Unnecessary purchase

Psychologically “wrong” it is easier to spend money than earn their own. This leads to the risk of wasteful spending borrowed money. Often bought necessary at first glance things that really will not affect the increase in profits, and sometimes vice versa. For example, the hiring of a large number of employees, secretaries, purchase expensive furniture and office equipment and other non-priority expenditures in the early stages can lead to a significant deterioration in the financial condition of the company. Usually later becomes apparent that it was not necessarily do it all.

Sales and marketing is not the first place

It is risky to invest in the expansion of capital assets – for example, to purchase equipment to increase production – not entering into preliminary agreements with customers or even with no idea of ?? How to increase the number of clients. Even for “Gazprom” fundamentally signing contracts with buyers before production and construction of gas pipelines. You can easily buy the equipment and later, and find markets – a much more difficult task. If the loan funds will not help you attract new customers, you can purchase the equipment only if it would reduce your expenses.

Loan term production cycle

To get the long-term success, the timing of the loan must be weighed at a rate of turnover. For example, if you take out a loan for a period of 3-4 months (as is customary for commercial operations), the borrower, wanting to ensure that the next production cycle, can bring a default. This is due to the fact that the actual credit period of many trades much longer period of one revolution. Repayment of the loan is possible only if the accumulated net income, equal in principal amount. Therefore, the feasibility studies of the projects should be much further ahead.

Loan in excess of the

If the enterprise already has a debt load of 2-4 times the annual income or exceeding annual revenue, a more cautious approach to lending further business, and start looking for other sources of funding. There are situations where you need to stop in time, despite the possible attractive prospects in the development of the case, which can be realized with the help of new money. It seems that the market is growing, and things should go well. But in this situation it is better to concentrate and do the reduction of costs. In a short period of time, you can dial a surprising amount of loans, they are not very difficult to obtain. But even easier to spend these loans. It is much more difficult – to get them to make a profit and pay off the banks.

Miser pays twice

For business is equally harmful, whether you spend a lot or skimp. This case concerns only the most useful, the most necessary for the enterprise. If what you are considering to purchase, will help several times to reduce your costs – do not be greedy. If you need valuable advice, through which you can avoid many of the mistakes and put the case out of the impasse, do not hesitate to seek such advice from qualified consultants.

Funding only via Credit

It should be understood that the loans – no more than an auxiliary method of financing. The company must initially have a substantial part of its own funds. A further activity of the enterprise should be financed mainly by its profits. Of course, what you earn, you should be enough “to life”, but buying expensive cars and other “toys” out of profits – a likely path to closing a business. Most large company business financing comes mostly from profits, dividends spent 10-20% of net income, or do not pay them at all. In some of these companies except for those who work in the international market on the basis of the western practice, pay big dividends – 40-50% of net profit. This MTS “CTC Media, TNK-BP and others.

Lack of free money

Proceeds from loans may be too risky if the company has no balances, or if you will spend the entire loan immediately, going for broke. There is a saying: “The bank will give you an umbrella when the sun is shining, and take it when it starts to rain.” Here, of course, exaggeration, but to some extent this is still true, because the complete lack of liquidity indicates a problem in the business of the client, not the bank’s excessive caution.

Fear of attracting investors

Do not immediately reject the possibility of selling the company shares to an outside investor. You can sell a third or a quarter of the investment fund or a wealthy man who is willing to invest in your business, and such opportunities are now enough. Such a contract can be concluded is not forever, but only for a certain period – three years, for example – when the investor invested in your company will earn money and significantly increase its value. Investors need to look very carefully and only work with the funds and the people who have repeatedly confirmed the good business reputation.
Improper ratio

Time is money

You can lose benefits if too hurry to close the loan ahead of schedule. Conversely, if you try to stretch the repayment of the debt for the entire term of the originally installed, it will distract you extra money to pay the interest and thus harm its business.

Case Studies

The company “Rusal” tried to develop rapidly in several directions, and in a crisis of its position strongly shaken due to the decrease in aluminum prices. By the end of 2009, their debt exceeded earnings of 22.9 times and this was the worst position of the company for the entire period of its activity. At the end of 2010 were able to normalize this figure up to 4.4:1.

For several years, pharmacy network “36.6” has a high debt load, though not permit delays for its obligations. The company has the means to conduct large-scale expansion. By the end of 2010 its rate was 4.8:1, and interest payments were only one and a half times lower EBITDA. In the stock market, bonds of the network is defined as a high-risk speculative instrument.

Restaurant chain “Rosinter” a lot invested in the development, and balancing on the verge of profitability, net profit margin, has successfully reduced its ratio of net debt to EBITDA ratio to 1.1:1 in 2010. In the last period he was 2,97:1.

In 2010, the non disk “Magnet” opened a lot of stores novih, but still maintained a low level of debt 1,39:1, and in 2009 was recorded minimum value of 0,09:1. His main challenger, X5 Retail Group (owner of the store, “Crossroads”, “Carousel”, “Roundabout”), is a more aggressive debt policy, and their ratio – 3.7:1 by the end of 2010. The comparable figure for the year 2009 amounted 2,08:1.

The fatal strategy — how to understand and react in time?

Mistakes companies studied by experts.

Companies like to speak out about their new strategies. Often these strategies look like this: “We will be presenting a unique service for our customers,” “We will increase its profit by so much percent a year,” “our company’s market share will increase annually at such a pace, and income – to grow by this much then “,” Soon we will grow to a global company, and reduce the cost of so much “… According to Richard Rumelta, author of the bestseller« Good Strategy, Bad Strategy »(« A good strategy, bad strategy “), all of these statements are not strategies . Moreover, to make such statements – in itself a bad strategy.

Main differences between a good and bad strategies

Rumelt has studied a large number of companies and highlighted the key points that should be feared. Such moments are strong statements that are not based on anything, without significant goals determine how to achieve them, a lot of goals, uncoordinated, without clear prioritization. All of this can be covered with different beautiful words and figures. For example, the infamous Enron company has always been persuasive reports, full of facts and figures, which confirmed their plans and “strategy.” In this case, the fact that the market for their products is significantly different from the markets for electricity and gas, was released from sight – or deliberately concealed.

Few understand what strategy is not successful, you also need to be able to consider a good strategy. Any real strategy, Rumelt argues, must contain three components: an indication of the challenge for the company, how it solutions and specific actions to be taken. The first component involves narrowing of the range of challenges that will or may occur in the enterprise, in order to understand what may be critical for the company. But understanding the winning strategy is difficult not only to outside observers, but also the top managers of the company. MBA courses there on a special assignment for this situation: the students will be all the possible information about the company – the financial situation and the description of the individual leader to the current market situation – and they have to find their own and determine the probable factors of success and failure. It is often neither strategy nor the company’s mission does not show what is really important for the company.

As an example, consider a company slogan Wal-Mart: «Save money, live better.” They are opening stores in places where previously there was no discount stores, as well as outside the cities. But the real strategy of the company – not in the way are shops. Even the man. Far removed from retail, it’s easy to understand that in a small village and can sell some. True strategy – in the way of the network. Due to the large number of stores they are able to efficiently allocate goods on them and overtake competitors. Of considerable importance is the fact that this strategy is not easy to copy: it is much more difficult to create a network of stores than to open one.

Risk, without which you can not do

Jim Collins (created bestseller “Good to Great”) and Morten Hansen wrote the book «Great by Choice» («be a great choice”), which allows you to track successful and failing strategy. In this paper, called the ten companies that in the past 15 years have increased their business tenfold. The authors have considered only those companies that knowingly walked to success, to plan and clear strategy.

In the book, the growth of these enterprises compared with the overcoming of the marathon 20 miles. In order to get to the finish line, you need to calculate the forces. This means that a company it is important to rely mostly on themselves, not on external circumstances. At what the circumstances may be both beneficial and not so. Collins and Hansen describe the great care with which the company Southwest Airlines manage the growth of their business. They added only four of their new routes, despite the abundance of interest in this city, which later emerged. With this strategy, Southwest Airlines during the crisis rose to the occasion.

Consequently, successful companies differ from conventional so that they can better anticipate tough. A sure way to quickly disappear is just the motto “for success need to act quickly and with the risk.” Council Collins and Hansen is that you have to be “constructive paranoid”: think about every step with the greatest possible care to remain vigilant, do not wait for the moment to connect all possible potential, but instead constantly thinking about what could go wrong . Keep only those experiments that do not fall apart from all the business in the event of failure. And most importantly – do not rush to give up the time-tested ideas in favor of new, even very promising. Bill Gates continued to work on Windows, even after the market launch of its OS2. And Steve Jobs is very carefully worked on the development of chain stores Apple. Remember one thing: the desire to act quickly or caused by herd instinct, or overweening confidence in the fact that you have a “completely unique case.” Try to stop yourself and turn into a cold and calculating strategist.

About the nuances of the business

Details that can not be underestimated – plastic lighters, gum-clasp and a broken cistern.

One day my friend the photographer took pictures in the recently opened an expensive restaurant, Moscow. The host institution asked him about his impressions, which produces a restaurant, asking honest criticism. Friend said: “Everything is fine, only one thing: when I asked for a light, I brought the 40-cent Cricket. This causes some dissonance. If the lighter has been solid, even Colibri for $ 50-70, everything would look different. ” A week later, the photographer called back and thanked him for advice – clients like it.

Another story. I had the opportunity in 2007 to criticize the “Book of the real profits and real growth,” authored by reputable consultant Fred Rayheld. In Russia it has issued a young publishing house “Generation”. In short – the book explaining why you can not save on buyers, and offered to evaluate the success of the enterprise by asking the question “Would you recommend this company to a friend or colleague?”. So, the “Generation” I would not recommend to anyone – the book was published on the cheap loose paper, and on the cover was a photo explicitly download online.

Nuances, details, particularly – it’s rate of serious intentions of the company and the entrepreneur – it’s like the consumer or, at least, leaves no room for doubt. Timur grief, is the founder and CEO of “Kalina” in 1999, told me how to explain to their workers about the importance of a smooth and tight screw the cap (it would seem, what a trifle) on toothpaste tubes and tubes of cream: “Suppose that of thousands of shoppers every tenth does not want to take the bad with the toothpaste cap twisted. Then he tells the others that “Kalina” is doing everything anyhow. And yet few people notice that they face someone bought a paste from another manufacturer, and do the same. So we gradually left without orders, and you – without a salary. ” Working Gorjaev definitely understood his message. Now “Kalina” is a manufacturer of state level, and it all started with the provincial factory, formerly bore the name of “Ural gems.” Unilever Corporation in October last year entered into an agreement to purchase 82% of shares of “Kalina” for 17.6 billion rubles, which is 13 EBITDA enterprise. It is clear that not only caps brought such success. But all these details and especially strengthen the basis of the business and determine its survival.

Increased attention to detail was the cause of the phenomenal success of Moleskine. Once called moleskin handmade notebooks, the cover is a pasted over with a thick cloth of cotton, which bore the name of the mole skine – «skin mole.” These notebooks have used famous artists, poets and writers – Van Gogh, Picasso, Apollinaire, Sartre, Hemingway. By the 1980s, moleskin ceased to be popular. But in 1997, Francesco and Mario Francesi Barutstsi, owners of a small Milanese publisher Modo & Modo registered trademark Moleskine, deciding that the retro idea could be profitable. They are, in fact, re-invented moleskin. The owners have decided that to promote the brand not only legends of former popularity. Ahead of the competition can only use the parts that create comfort in general. For their notebooks they made flexible but sturdy cover, added gum-fastener tape-tab, internal pockets – the number of nuances eventually grew. The first batch of Moleskine has 5,000 pieces, and in 2005 they sold 4.5 million investment fund SG Capital Europe in August 2006 bought 75 percent stake Modo & Modo for € 62 million, when the annual revenue publishing – € 12,7 млн and profits – more than € 2 million

Important for consumers to feel the thoroughness and thoughtfulness of production and service, and they are willing to pay for it. For serious partners and contractors details are essential, too. Just have in mind not the outward signs of success and stability, you can easily buy (cars, watches, furniture in the office), and such particular that can show the relationship to management and business processes. I was told a story about how the Russian company has lost production project with the Japanese company. The talks were held in the office of the enterprise, and one Japanese at some point went into another country. Upon his return, he spoke to colleagues. The Japanese are consulted and ultimately postponed the signing of the contract. Then it turned out that their decision influenced by the fact that the toilet cistern was broken. It is absurd? The Japanese decided that a partner who can provide small, fail and more.

Top of makeovers for entrepreneurs – especially when spent time, money and effort, but it does not promise a mandatory return. When the understanding of the importance of details does not come from a marketing calculation, and from professional ambitions. As an example, I usually think of meticulous approach Andrew Dellosa, Moscow restaurateur. When you open a network of “Mu-Mu” he was looking for glassware manufacturer, which would make it exactly as in the book “On the tasty and healthy food.” When Dellos conceived “Turandot”, he studied vignettes and a half years of the late Baroque, that his institution they were really authentic. One antique dealer said that he once asked: “Andrew, why is that? Maximum, one tenth of the visitors will pay attention and appreciate. ” Restaurateur said: “For me it is important to view this part of the tenth.”

By the way, the young publisher “Generation”, which I mentioned above, is no longer engaged in the business literature …

(Русский) Тротуарная плитка: как выбрать тротуарную плитку в Днепропетровске?

Sorry, this entry is only available in Russian.

9 tips on how to build a dream team for a startup

Why talented skateboarder with no work experience will be useful for a startup than a mid-level professionals.

Creating efficient business is the main goal of any entrepreneur. You can not do it alone. You will need to recruit allies, and it is from them will depend on the success of your business. And the companions, not workers. For a start the professionalism and quality execution of work is needed, but that’s not all requirements. Need to stress mental and physical strength, increased commitment, and even a change of priorities in life. Money ceases to be the primary motivator and fade into the background. For a complete surrender to the person needs to grieve for the cause. Task manager – to find and retain such personnel is to build a dream team. Here are some basic rules to help you achieve this.

Hire the best

First and foremost – you can not save on a pro. Of course, expensive, difficult to interest them, and to keep, but their effectiveness will cover and exceed all costs. You do not need to monitor the whole process of work to spend time explaining and correcting the mistakes of others, to do the work for them, and then change the team, re-education spending. One “superspetsialist” better of two mid-level. In the allocation of your existing budget, divide it into two parts. One part – only for the team, and the other – we are all the other costs.

Look heroes

You need not only those who are good, or even a very good job with their work, looking for those who have achieved great success – at least in anything. This may be skateboarding or crochet. It might not be a self-sufficient criterion, but one who has shown outstanding results in any case, are more likely to be devoting all their time to your project and is unlikely to leave you halfway. After all, he was able to prove that his chosen path laid out by 100% and reaches the goal. Then it all depends on you – if you can capture it for new heroics.

Become a while HR-director

From your involvement in the process of recruiting staff directly dependent chances of finding exactly the right people to you. No, even the best HR will do it for you. It can adequately assess professional experience, but can not “feel” the energy potential of human ability and willingness to work at high speeds and with strict deadlines. It is you, as a leader, be able to understand how the applicant will fit you not only as a professional and as a person, if you can work together, and how strong his “fighting spirit.” During the formation of the key commands the future of the company you will need to do to become HR-director.

Play the ambitions

The right staff to get complicated, but even harder to keep them. Most often it is easy to find work, and wages – not always their top priority when choosing a new location. What is their motivation? Of course, the challenge non-standard tasks, the possibility of self-realization. These people are moving in start-ups because of his own ambition and ambition. – Your task is to use them for the benefit of the quality of the case. Make the tough deadlines, high speeds and high loads challenge professional qualities, the incentive to search for unconventional solutions and creativity. No matter what you need to do – change the design or improve KPI sales. Add the excitement, fuel a fighting spirit, and teach people to enjoy and to make matters forward. After all of this, and they came in a startup.

not insulate the department from each other

Next you need to organize the effective work. The optimal structure for a startup suggests solutions to common business problems through the involvement of specialists in different fields. From the beginning, do not need to turn the department into isolated from each other “islands” that focus only on solving their own problems. For example, when developing an IT platform we engage in the process of marketing. They describe the needs of consumers and the market that you want to lay in it. To join the process of product managers, “transform” the market terminology into plain language of IT professionals. This relationship is sure to give a synergistic effect. In turn, IT professionals, understanding the needs of the business may propose improvements to enhance the effectiveness of marketing professionals.

Do not be afraid to change people

People can work well, but not laying out at 100%, as would be desirable for you. But you reconciled with it, considering that any way better than nothing at all. Relying on the average level of work you and your startup does not raise above the average. Set yourself a question: I would choose the same people re-assembling the team? If so, then it could be in the other – in the wrong setting priorities or workflow. If not, it is better to act right away, it is too late. Anyone can make a mistake, but if he can not analyze shortcomings and continues to make the same mistakes, it is better to fire him. This also applies to you. Only your “dismissal” of the business will follow directly from your inability to make tough decisions and your own indecision.

Take the fire itself

Only when a new project is being developed, the team is small, and work, on the contrary, very much. And even when optimally competent tasking and prioritizing correctly you will need to take part in all business processes, to control every step and ultimately be responsible for any outcome, successfully achieved or unachieved. Somewhere flawed functional apparent technical flaws, not as fast sales are in the end, it stalled. Who is to blame? No technical director or sales manager – only the leader. Even if you have multiple partners, in making difficult decisions all the team should know who will have the final word. You are carrying a huge burden of responsibility – in front of your team to investors, customers, in front of your family and yourself. The only thing you can do – be patient and philosophical approach to all challenges. In the end, you choose.

Delegate authority

To be responsible for the business does not mean you have to do everything myself. Do not forget that the passing of the work of another person, you need to give him and the right decisions. No need to endlessly interfere in the work of every employee and do it yourself regardless of the urgency and complexity of the problem. On the basis of experience, it can be argued that with the development of the enterprise, team cohesion and increase mutual trust constant monitoring leader becomes weaker, and the knowledge of the workers tends to rise. No need to slow down this natural course of events.

Do not change your principles

Each of us has their own ideas about what is good and what is bad. Discuss ethics and morality in business – a thankless job. Just everyone has a line that he was in any case not cross. And everyone is their own. To whom it may be easy to dismiss the father of five children, and someone torment the conscience, if he raise his voice to a subordinate. General recommendations here. It happens that the hard times are coming, and then you have to make difficult decisions. There is a good way to understand Step back to you through their own moral boundaries: Imagine that the choice you need to justify to the audience full of people. If you falter, it will show that, in its decision you are sure that it comes from within, and therefore it is correct. Not at all correct, but specifically for you and your business. Always follow your beliefs, be confident.

And the last – like people who work in your business, try to make their life better in every way possible. And you are sure to get out!

How to organize the effective work of the IT project

Tips company CEO CUSTIS (developing IT systems) .

The optimal situation – when the customer seek to control 100% operation, 80% support and 20% of IT systems.

“Custom” and “ready” enterprise systems is not so obvious differ from each other, as is commonly believed. To begin, we’ll try to find out who buys them and why.

For companies of any size and scope of the two groups of business processes. The most numerous group includes providing processes. This is all the procedures that help us to function normally: bookkeeping, purchasing office, the work underlying IT infrastructure. Without them it is impossible to do, but you can minimize the cost of their organization, for example, buying at the market “best practices.”

The second group of business processes are those that relate to the know-how of the company and give it a competitive advantage in the marketplace. In this case, all you need to do only their own, such as a company’s processes are unique and have no analogues.

Any IT solution that is already on the market, you need to be seriously modified, or, as they say, to customize, to automate the processes that constitute the know-how of the enterprise, as well as to ensure the processes are changed for various reasons, can not be acceptable. And the companies agree to take such a step, since it is well understood that in their situation benefits from the creation of IT systems with a high level of customization will be much higher than the costs. Of such IT solutions and we’ll talk.

A bargain is a bargain

The implementation of a large project with a high degree of customization – a very specific and accompanied by risks process. Risk is that the customer and the contractor may not be able to agree on what exactly needs to be done in the framework of the project. Most entrepreneurs describe the problem generally, without fine details. And for IT engineering requires a description of all the necessary details and the absence of uncertainties.

Based on experience, we can say that the basis for the successful implementation of the project is an agreement on the top level of IT planning – system architecture. Require the combined preparation of the conceptual design of the system – the document of 20-30 pages, which is enough even for a large system – which the customer (and from the business and from IT) and singer understand the same. This is the system architecture of the project – Framework agreement on the basic powers of his freedom. Such a coherent neoclassical architecture becomes a contract, that is a long-term contract in the face of uncertainty, when the full impact of the transaction can not be foreseen.

After designation of the critical importance of the system architecture will talk about the organization of effective work on projects with a high level of customization.

Greece has everything?

The existence of a coherent system architecture means that the prototype is already selected (product or platform), based on which the project will be executed ordered. Otherwise, IT can not give a guarantee for the completion of the work. The time to make the required changes to the prototype depends on its size and complexity. For example, it is easier to build a plant from scratch than to build it, and at the same time breaking old. Follows, the second significant risk – the right choice of the prototype project.

Two things you need to consider when assessing the volume and, consequently, the cost of future improvements, it is the size of the prototype and the new functionality required by the customer. Often turns out to be cheaper to order more changes at a smaller initial functionality. In all circumstances, effectively modifying the very large or very small prototype.

It is worth noting that so far we have described the situation in statics. In practice, changes over time and the system architecture itself, and the amount of the required improvements. We recommend that when choosing a prototype guided by the motto “Nothing more?” Rather than the traditional “Greece has everything!” As an overabundance of features of the project will need to “push” through all made improvements.

No people have no idea

The human factor – the third significant risk of the introduction of IT systems with a high level of customization. Knowledge of experts who will do engineering work, tools and ability to use it seriously affects the success of the project. The greater the number of hands through which the project will take place from authors to those who will implement it in the company, the more knowledge will be lost to the completion of the work.

In addition, people should focus on the project – they will be able to create an architecture that optimally “lies” on the tool, and it will ensure the future development of the system at the same time to the business. Employees should be interesting non-trivial tasks and innovative ideas.

Life is just beginning

By implementing the system runs the risk of the customer to buy the dependence of the performer in the operational matters, matters of maintenance and development of the project. Then the most important is the reliability of the contractor, which is characterized by loyalty and project charisma.

Loyalty is to be understood in two different ways. The first – whether the contractor is ready for rapid implementation of the specific requirements of the client. This commitment is strongly dependent on whether the artist is going to replicate the system. If he has a strong interest in replicating, you will not be willing to perform the unique options that will not be replicated.

Second – it’s keeping the confidentiality of know-how client. Customer must ensure that the information about the specifics of his company, its organizational structure, corporate standards, business processes becomes available to competitors – those who later acquire or services of the same contractor.

The most loyal is the internal IT department of the company. Slightly lower level of loyalty – by subsidiaries that are controlled by the customer. The third level of loyalty – from small companies that specialize in developing custom. They take the explicit warranty work on behalf of the customer.

The second criterion for determining the reliability of the customer – this project charisma, which suggests a desire to work for results and creative approach to execution. There is an inverse relationship between the level of loyalty and project charisma. The level of cooperation with the lowest loyalty (custom development from an external contractor) actually provides quality work on the project in the long term, making it the most sought-after. Affect this specialization, continuous efforts to improve the design of technology, development of design culture, improvement of industrial quality tools, and the lack of involvement in routine processes. Designing in large organizations is fraught with tightening in operating activities of project personnel, and they are likely to go away, losing perspective.

Reduce dependence on the designer will help correct distribution of powers. Customer need to control the architecture, operations and the bulk of support. A contractor will develop better, not a chore.

The bottom line

Based on our experience with the IT systems, which need a high level of customization, we have formulated the main points:

  • main risk of such a project that can be done is not what was needed. This risk can be removed with the right attitude of all parties to the system architecture of the project. System architecture – it’s responsible arrangements agreed between the company, its IT structure and the contractor that are clear and allow the enterprise IT side to guarantee the feasibility, timing and budget.
  • In specified projects need to closely monitor the minimization of the system volume. Every unnecessary functionality will be severely inhibit changes to the system: the greater the system, the more will have to pay for the revision.
  • Another critical factor – the remoteness of the implementation team from the authors of the prototype. The greater the distance between them, the worse the quality of the final result and the greater the amount of engineering work required, and this has a negative impact on the timing and costs of the project.
  • client should try to gain control over the operation of 100%, 80% support and 20% of the system’s development. Practice shows that this is the best option for reducing the risks and to reduce IT costs.

How to divide a business? Instructions for Divorce with business partners

Negotiations always effective legal process.

Many analysts are convinced that this year or at least in its first half, the world will once severe economic and financial crisis. A typical feature of the economic downturn is the increased number of broken business contracts and decaying joint ventures. When parting business partners the main question – how to distribute the losses and share losses suffered by the company due to poor choices of partners to deal with the debts that were shareholders.

It is unlikely that someone will object that the negotiations on the division of loss is always difficult negotiations on the division of revenue. The person can have extremely negative attitude to losses. Various studies show that, to avoid the loss, people are willing to pay much more for insurance than profit. Separation loss is usually accompanied by a tense atmosphere, aggression, eventually leads to lawsuits, insults and even threats. According to some lawyers, is that the customer is willing to pay a million dollars to win the process by which it is possible to obtain half a million. There is no rational kernel – it’s only human emotions.

When you are going to divide the business, you need to decide what is more important to you: leave a partner on the rocks, at the risk of losing everything, or to minimize casualties. If you choose the second option – use the tips below, they can help you.

First of all, go to court and file a lawsuit. And at the same time, contact your attorney or counselor and begin to think about negotiating. The rules are simple.

  1. Set “rules of the game.” Since you do not trust the other party, you should start with a discussion of procedural issues. Thus, you have to decide how many meetings will be held and where the information that you are ready to voice at these meetings. If the opponent to accept your terms, it means that he is willing to talk, and you can deduct these organizational issues first in a series of agreements, which you then have to conclude.
  2. Try to postpone the final decision. Those losses may change over time – either increase or decrease. So it is imperative to make a list of what is possible will lead to further losses, and then separate the list into two parts – what needs to be done urgently, and what can be postponed. In practice, some Held in 2008, the loss in 2011 turned a small profit.
  3. not pay attention to the numbers. When that figures for the loss, they can cause a surge of negative emotions. Start with what proportions you will share losses. Will it be 50/50, or ownership interests were unequal? Who invest more initially, and what has changed in the structure of deposits over time? Such conversations are useful because they help to move to the bare mathematics without dwelling on the emotions.
  4. not traded. Do not try to bargain when the relationship is almost broken. Would be preferable if you only marked flexible negotiation framework and assign the rest of the proxies. With this you will be able to control the process, and at the same time avoid emotional decisions.
  5. not put the final point. Any agreement must be time limits: you can, for example, make an appointment in a year. Maybe for a year the situation will undergo changes, and lowered the amount of loss. A new meeting can also help to restore, if desired, the relationship with the former business partner.

Most importantly, remember that negotiations are always efficient judicial process or any alternative. With this you will be able to control the process more, which, in any case, good.

How to retain talented employees?

For a start, which is designed to help employers address this issue, and Adobe developers Zynga stopped working.

Last October, Zao Yang resigned from the company Zynga, which publishes games for social networks, despite the fact that I could get there the option. He preferred to do a difficult task – to help small businesses retain talented employees. “I wanted to get to the point and eager to fight,” – says the 28-year-old Yang. Once it is already possible – before Ian was developing computer games, including FarmVille, acquired by Zynga in 2009. Then he brought the game Zynga founder Mark Pincus billions.

How can you “get to the point”, working with small businesses? On the decision to part with Ian employer influenced Paige Craig, a defense contractor, with whom he met over a glass of tequila at the event VC firm Redpoint Ventures. I had the idea of combining technology and social media to manage motivational programs. Within two weeks, Jan versed in the details of the idea, and eventually moved from San Francisco to Los Angeles, to Craig. At the same time, to join a startup and guest Craig, George Ishii, a former programmer Abobe, one of the first employees of PayPal and founder of Geni (service to create a family tree) and Yammer (social network for office workers).

They drafted BetterWorks, company that creates incentive programs for employees. These programs combine the benefit Groupon, gear recommendations, and a simple interface Amazon.com and socialization of Facebook. The company has already found investors who are confident in the success of not less developer-startaparov. Redpoint has invested in a young company $ 8 million

What is the business idea? Small firms that do not have a large staff of cadres and big budgets do not have a program of employee motivation. These programs are difficult to implement, and there is nobody to do it. “They have a health insurance program for payroll, but no single motivational system – said Ishii. – This brings us to our idea. ”

With BetterWorks employers can in a few clicks transfer to the employee’s money that he can spend on various services. There are hundreds of them – from dry land to the delivery, and they are available at a discount of 10% to 70%. The program gives a reminder, if the company is ordered pizza for the entire office or scheduled bowling (with the obligatory discount) for the management team. Software analyzes the behavior of the staff, to offer the most suitable recommendations, using the settings manager may adjust bonuses under the real situation – for example, to throw $ 25 at lunch delayed on employee performance.

BetterWorks Company enters into contracts with suppliers, develops interface, invoice and makes deliveries. They already have more than 130 clients, small businesses in Los Angeles and San Francisco, that covers the company’s subscription-based monthly service cost ranges from $ 30 to $ 500. One employee is on average $ 66 per month, but there are exceptions: in one of the firms established at the cost of $ 900 per employee. According to John Foster, senior vice president of talent and the first video portal Hulu client BetterWorks, money – not the only way to motivate. “Regular motivational encouragement great help to create a system of corporate values,” – he said.

Revenue BetterWorks are modest percentage of each transaction. Participation of suppliers in the project – and there were already 2200 – free of charge. The plans of the founders – the expansion of business in the 20 cities that will almost certainly require a significant effort in sales and advertising. “We are ready to work a couple of months without profit, in order to prove that our platform – a really great thing,” – says Craig.