Archive for July, 2015

Windows 10, Amazon Aurora Make Small Biz Headlines

Friday, July 31st, 2015

windows10 friday

Customers have been not-so-patiently waiting for the release of Windows 10 for awhile now. The release has been so highly touted in part because of some of the issues with earlier Windows operating system. But this week, customers got their wish as Windows 10 was finally released.

Amazon, Verizon, and plenty of other big names also made news in the business world this week. You can see a full list of headlines below in this week’s Small Business Trends news and information roundup.

Technology Trends

Finally, Microsoft Releases Windows 10

Microsoft introduced Windows 10 this week. The day has been long awaited by any Windows 8 users hoping the new operating system will resolve some of the problems of its predecessor. If you’ve been waiting for the latest version of Windows for your small business, here’s an overview of the new system and what it offers.

Amazon Web Services Announces Availability of Amazon Aurora to All Customers

Amazon, best known for online sales of thousands of items, is making Amazon Aurora, its MySQL-compatible database engine, available to customers in three regions. These are the U.S. West, U.S. East and the European Union. Formerly, the engine had only been available to a thousand companies participating in a review of the technology.

Verizon and Vice Media Inc. Announce a New Content Partnership

A recently announced partnership between a telecom giant and an independent mobile video content creator is drawing attention. It points to the opportunities available to even startups in the growing mobile video market. Verizon, headquartered in New York City, New York, is joining forces with Vice Media, Inc.

Employment

Upwork Winding Down Elance Activities, New Registrations Ending This Month

It’s the beginning of the end of Elance. The Upwork platform has announced it would be shutting down Elance beginning next month, and migrating its community over to its home site.

Finance

Biz2Credit Report Shows How Small Biz Lending has Rebounded

In 2011, small business lending was at an all time low, with banks approving less than nine percent of loans for small businesses. What a difference four years makes. Lending from large banks to small businesses more than doubled between June 2011 and June 2015 to reach an all-time high, according to the latest figures from the Biz2Credit Lending Index June 2015.

Non-Accredited Equity Crowdfunding Investors Need a Path to Liquidity

PeerRealty, a real estate crowdfunding platform, recently introduced CFX, the U.S.’s first secondary market for equity crowdfunding shares. For accredited investors, this exchange will improve the liquidity of equity crowdfunding investments. Unfortunately, only accredited investors can use the platform.

Management

Drama at HubSpot as CMO Fired After Book Investigation

HubSpot has fired Mike Volpe, its long-time Chief Marketing Officer, for “ethical violations” involving a book about the company. One other executive, Joe Chernov, Vice President of Content, resigned.

Improve Your Office Productivity with Twitter Chat Tips

There are lots of ways to improve productivity in the office. That’s whether you work as a solopreneur from home or with employees from a traditional office. Last week in a Twitter chat, “Enabling Small Business Efficiencies: How to Improve Your Office Productivity,” members of the small business community had much to say on the subject.

Small Biz Spotlight

Spotlight: Heeluxe Steps Up in Footwear Licensing

When business owners get a great idea, they can easily jump into too many tasks at once. Geoffrey Gray is one of those business owners. His great idea was for a footwear testing service, which he named Heeluxe. And although he fell into that common trap of trying to do too much, he was able to overcome it and build a successful business.

SEO

Google Warns Site Owners of CSS Error Hurting Their Ranking

If you are a site owner and have recently received this warning from Google, you are not alone. Here it is: The company has been sending out these Google CSS error warnings to a lot of site owners. The problem is caused by sites blocking Googlebot’s access to CSS and Javascript.

Mobile Technology

Do You Have an Android Phone? If so, You May be at Risk

Do you own an Android device? If so, your phone may be vulnerable to hacking. It appears that Android phones can be hacked due to a flaw in the operating system’s Stagefright media pack, leading to a vulnerability in any phone running versions of the Android operating system between 2.2 and 4.

OnePlus 2 Smartphone, Like Predecessor, is Available by Invite Only

OnePlus, the obscure smartphone company, is trying to trump the industry leaders once again with the sequel to its popular and exclusive debut device. The company has finally unveiled the OnePlus 2, which offers close to top-of-the-line specs at a mid-range smartphone price. Like its predecessor, the OnePlus 2 will be available for purchase only with an invite.

Startup

You Can Now Invest in Art for a Fraction of the Cost

Purchasing and collecting fine art isn’t something that’s exactly accessible for many people. But Madelaine D’Angelo wants to change that. The 28-year-old was unhappy with the current model of fine art collecting. It’s something that basically requires people to purchase artwork outright in order to enjoy those pieces.

Local Business

Millennial Opens a Local Shop for Old Fashioned Paper Goods

Technology has provided so many advances in recent years to make life easier for just about everyone. But sometimes there’s just no substitute for good, old fashioned pen and paper. It’s that sentiment that led 25-year-old Kaci Singer to open her business, Paperwerk.

Should a Business Owner Yell at a Screaming Child?

Last Saturday, Darla Neugebauer, owner of Marcy’s Diner, in Portland, Maine, earned herself the media spotlight when she snapped at a rowdy customer and slammed her hands on the counter. “This needs to stop!” Neugebauer shouted.

Image: Microsoft/YouTube

This article, “Windows 10, Amazon Aurora Make Small Biz Headlines” was first published on Small Business Trends

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Long positions in Treasuries look good

Friday, July 31st, 2015

It is time to sell your least-favourite dollar risk assets, says John Dizard

Sage and Deloitte Partner to Provide Cloud Products for Small Business

Friday, July 31st, 2015

sage x3

A new strategic partnership between Sage and Deloitte looks to use the cloud as a delivery platform to deliver affordable insight and agility to small businesses.

Kevin Walsh, head of technology consulting for Deloitte, says in a press release:

“Cloud is an important tool to help companies to grow and scale their businesses faster. This is particularly true in the finance function, where cloud technologies save time and effort and allow data to be accessed 24/7. Our partnership with Sage, as a leading provider of business management software and services to small and medium businesses, will help these ambitious businesses flourish in a competitive marketplace.”

We now live in a data driven society, and if businesses can’t effectively use information to gain actionable insights, their ability to compete will be greatly diminished.

This partnership is going to give small businesses the tools they need to achieve the agility that comes with efficient use of data and, in this case, it’s financial data.

As a global firm delivering services in audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk management, tax, and related services, Deloitte brings the financial expertise needed to make this partnership work.

For its part, Sage brings insight and tools businesses need by combining social, mobile and real-time technology to put live information in the hands of decision makers.

Santiago Solanas, Global CMO of Sage, says:

“Together, Deloitte and Sage will give Small and Medium Businesses an affordable way to harness enterprise-class resources to help them compete and grow rapidly.”

The collaboration has resulted in the rapid deployment of Sage X3, a next generation business management solution designed to take the complexity out of running your business.

The Sage 3 platform simplifies the entire operations portion of your business with one cohesive system for accelerating the core business processes of your company. Everything from purchasing to manufacturing, inventory, sales, customer service, and finances can be managed on a Web browser or mobile device.

Expensive enterprise grade IT solutions were a pipe dream for small businesses, but cloud technology has made it a reality. And companies that catered to enterprises are going after the SMB market because cloud is making it much easier to deliver the products and services they offer.

The partnership between Sage and Deloitte is the latest example.

Image: Sage

This article, “Sage and Deloitte Partner to Provide Cloud Products for Small Business” was first published on Small Business Trends

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PKK Bombs Railway in Turkey’s Kars, Police Kills Three Kurdish Rebels in Agri

Friday, July 31st, 2015

Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) rebels have bombed a railway line in Turkey’s eastern province of Kars and then fired at repair workers, killing one, the BBC reported.

The attack, which took place on Thursday, is the latest in the surge in violence after a fragile two-year ceasefire between PKK and the Turkish government broke last week.

Turkey started airstrikes against PKK targets in northern Iraq last week, after a Turkish policeman and a civilian were killed in an attack in the city of Diyarbakir. The PKK claimed responsibility for the attack.

Meanwhile, three Kurdish militants were killed in clashes with police in Turkey’s eastern Agri province on Friday, Anadolu Agency reported.

Security sources have told the Turkish news agency that the militants were members of outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and affiliated Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK).

There has been a surge in violence in Turkey after the suicide attack in the southeastern town of Suruc on July 20, which claimed the lives of 32 people and left hundreds injured. In response, Turkey has launched a series of airstrikes against suspected Islamic State (IS) and PKK targets across the border in Syria and northern Iraq. 

An armed attack on a police station in the southern Turkish province of Adana left two police officers and two Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants dead.

 

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Bulgaria Turns to Budget Surplus of 1.1% of GDP at End-June

Friday, July 31st, 2015

Bulgaria’s central government budget showed a surplus of BGN 890M equivalent to 1.1% of the projected 2015 GDP, the Finance Ministry announced on Friday.

This compared with a budget deficit of BGN 996.4M, or 1.2% of GDP at the end of June 2014.

The turnaround to surplus was due to a 15-percent year-on-year increase in budget revenue and grants, which totalled BGN 16.3B, or 53.7% of the 2015 plan at the end of June, the Finance Ministry said in a statement.

Tax revenue increased by 9.9%, reaching BGN 12.3B or 51.2% of the 2015 plan.

Non-tax revenue was 10.7% higher, while grants, which comprised mostly EU funds, rose by 71.2%.

Budget spending, including Bulgaria’s contribution to the EU budget, totalled BGN 15.4B or 46,9% of the annual plan. This was 1.6% higher compared with the end of June 2014.

The government’s fiscal reserve totalled BGN 11B on 30 June 2015, including BGN 10.8B deposited with the Bulgarian National Bank and other banks.

Citing preliminary data and estimates, the Finance Ministry said it expects to report next month a central government budget surplus of BGN 801M for end-July equivalent to 1% of the projected 2015 GDP. The preliminary figure is an improvement on end-July 2014 when the central government budget was BGN 1.15B in the red, equivalent to 1.4% of GDP.

Bulgaria’s minority coalition government has projected 3% deficit in the 2015 budget bill adopted by Parliament in December. Budget revenue is forecast at 36.8% of GDP and expenditure is set at 39.8% of GDP.

 

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Falling oil price hits big energy groups

Friday, July 31st, 2015

ExxonMobil and Chevron results blow follow huge job cut announcements in Europe

Week in Review, August 1

Friday, July 31st, 2015

Deutsche Bank, Microsoft, oil majors and Microsoft featured

Englishwoman Reportedly Found Dead in Bulgarian Village, Murder Suspected

Friday, July 31st, 2015

The dead body of a Englishwoman has been found near her house in the village of Malomir, in Yambol Region in southeastern Bulgaria, 24 Chasa news daily reported on Friday.

A murder is suspected as the body is rumoured to have been partially burnt, according to the newspaper.

The body has not been officially identified yet. 

Citing unofficial information, 24 Chasa said the body belonged to a woman aged about 60, who had settled in Malomir in spring 2015 together with her physically disabled husband. Prior to that the family had lived in Turkey.

The body was found by a local man on Thursday night some 200 metres away from the home where the woman lived. She was suspectedly murdered shortly after going out to walk her dogs at around 10 p.m. (0700 GMT)

Police has declined to disclose any official information, 24 Chasa said. 

The regional prosecuting authority in Yambol said an investigation is underway and the reason for the woman’s death will be announced only after the autopsy of the body is completed.

Source

Englishwoman Reportedly Found Dead in Village in Bulgaria’s Yambol Region, Murder Suspected

Friday, July 31st, 2015

The dead body of a Englishwoman has been found near her house in the village of Malomir, in Yambol Region in southeastern Bulgaria, 24 Chasa news daily reported on Friday.

A murder is suspected as the body is rumoured to have been partially burnt, according to the newspaper.

The body has not been officially identified yet. 

Citing unofficial information, 24 Chasa said the body belonged to a woman aged about 60, who had settled in Malomir in spring 2015 together with her physically disabled husband. Prior to that the family had lived in Turkey.

The body was found by a local man on Thursday night some 200 metres away from the home where the woman lived. She was suspectedly murdered shortly after going out to walk her dogs at around 10 p.m. (0700 GMT)

Police has declined to disclose any official information, 24 Chasa said. 

The regional prosecuting authority in Yambol said an investigation is underway and the reason for the woman’s death will be announced only after the autopsy of the body is completed.

Source

Remote Workers Build Tools to Make Remote Work Even Easier

Friday, July 31st, 2015

doist

Doist, the company behind to-do list manager Todoist has grown from a one-man operation to a 40-person team in the last eight years.

But instead of hiring employees in one location and having them work out of a single office, founder Amir Salihefendic has hired people from more than 20 different countries.

This tactic has not only allowed the company to save on the expenses that would normally go along with operating a physical office, but it has also provided a sort of freedom when it comes to hiring the right people.

Instead of being bound by location, Salihefendic can reach out to pretty much anyone to find the people who are actually the best fit for each job.

He told Fast Company:

“It’s not only about expenses, it’s also about talent. If you go to San Francisco, you’re competing against companies that have a lot of millions in investment.”

And Salihefendic thinks that his company’s remote worker strategy can be employed by a lot of different companies.

The remote workforce has certainly grown in recent years, as technology has started offering more and more tools to make remote work a more realistic possibility for different businesses.

Doist, in addition to being a company that utilizes remote workers, is also one of the companies that is creating tools to try and make that remote work even easier. Salihefendic originally created Todoist for his own use.

And the company continues to make communication apps and tools to better facilitate its own team communication and collaboration. It just so happens that a lot of those tools can also be useful for other companies who hire remote workers.

Salihefendic said to Fast Company:

“I can’t really see why you should not be able to scale to thousands of people. One of the things we want to do as a company is create tools that enable remote work. You will see a lot of innovation in the tools that we have access to that enable us to communicate, share thoughts, and organize thoughts inside huge remote organizations.”

While tools and technology like Todoist continue to grow and evolve, the remote workforce is likely to do so as well. While it’s not a strategy that will necessarily apply to every small business, it’s certainly one that has benefits, as evidenced by Doist’s continually growing user base.

Image: Doist

This article, “Remote Workers Build Tools to Make Remote Work Even Easier” was first published on Small Business Trends

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