Business Acquisition Opportunities in 2014

The M&A market has now had a few years of stability. Companies continue to make money and the underlying macroeconomic trends support higher levels of business confidence. Despite new healthcare regulations and calls for higher taxation in Washington, most business owners are heading into 2014 with a few good years under their belts and increasing optimism. Many companies are ramping up business acquisition opportunities in 2014 as a way to increase their growth. There are a number of reasons why companies are doing this. Firstly, interest rates continue to be at historically low levels and loans are widely available. Strategic business acquisition can be easily financed at low rates. Acquisitions continue to represent the best way to jump start organic growth at most middle market companies. They provide valuable assets such as customer portfolios and new product sets they can take years to accumulate on their own. They also bring teams of quality employees that have special skills not easily sourced in the labor markets.The best business acquisition opportunities in 2014 can be found in old line businesses, such as distribution and service companies who are not fully monetizing the value of their customer accounts or product portfolios. For example, many companies have strong customer relationships selling a single service or product but are unable to expand their offerings to provide a fuller spectrum of product offerings. These companies lack innovation capability and more than likely lack visionary product design leadership in their organization. Some companies have hard to assemble product lines and offerings but lack the ability to bring these products into new channels such as federal government channels, new territories and online marketplaces. These companies often are steeped in product knowledge and customer service but lack the channel development vision. When a company’s revenue levels off and an owner reaches a certain age, the probability of future growth diminishes.

The best sectors for business acquisition opportunity today are in the IT Consulting, Direct sales distribution and Healthcare service sectors. All of these sectors have experienced significant change over the past several years due. IT has gone from a localized consulting model to a cloud based offshore model. With the cloud becoming omnipresent, IT delivery channels have been structurally upended. Distribution companies that have historically used direct sales to drive growth are now dealing with adoption of new technologically based sales and marketing tools. Customer’s today want to deal with fewer suppliers and are organizing managed purchasing platforms that may cut out certain suppliers. Most direct sales based distributors need to adopt new technologies such as skype, video conferencing and hand held tablets into their sales process to keep their sales force on the cutting edge. Health care companies particularly in the service side are under attack from technology and regulatory changes. Most health care service companies such as home care or outpatient practices have been run as lifestyle businesses. They are not equipped to deal with changes in reimbursement let alone large scale industry reorganization into accountable care organizations. While these sectors are all different, they all are wrestling with the same issue – how to become more efficient in a technology dominated world where the old fashioned way of doing things is no longer good enough. These sectors present the best business acquisition opportunities in 2014.

Consider Four Factors When Creating An International Small Business Expansion Plan

Many multinational companies begun as small privately owned businesses. Today they are international organizations with multiple branches and employees. Do you know that you can build a global business empire as well? Perhaps you think this is impossible but it is not. First you should create a business expansion plan that will help you grow your small company beyond your national border. There are many factors you should consider when drafting your international expansion plan. Four of these factors are described as shown below.Foreign market research – There are over one hundred and ninety countries in the world. Even so your business idea cannot flourish in every country. A thorough market research will reveal suitable foreign markets. If you live in USA, you can make use of the U.S commercial Service Market Research Library. It contains market research about different countries and industries. Their website gives access to the Market Research Library. MRL possesses over one hundred thousand market research findings, trade directory lists, Country Commercial Guides and so on. In the CCGs you will locate country-specific commercial data. This includes government contacts, import and export sectors, future trade events, travel guides, trade laws, political situations and economic conditions among others. The internet is also a great resource for every small-scale entrepreneur who wants to transact business abroad.

Cultural and language barriers – If you speak fluent and flawless English, do not expect the same from people of other countries. They speak and write English only as a second language. When you open a branch in their country, you must adapt to their manner of talking to do well. There are cultures that speak French, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Arabic or Germany as their national language. If you want to make them your customers, you must learn their language or employ local people. Besides the manner of speaking, global countries have unique cultural behaviors and activities. It will take you time to learn their cultures and so you should be patient.

Currency – Each nation has its currency. So if you are used to a US dollar you will have to be flexible when you finally set up a branch abroad. Fortunately there are online currency calculators you can use when setting your product prices. Besides understanding how currencies of other nations work you should decide whether getting paid or paying for something in your currency is more advantageous. Competitors’ currency choice can guide you. Consider that your international customers have a right to pay for goods in their currency or yours. It will be a negotiation between you and them. Foreign currency exchange rates can fluctuate any time. This should be considered before accepting to use overseas currencies. One way you can avoid losing money due to these fluctuations is to speedup your payables cycle. The hedging technique can work as well.

Recruitment – When drafting your international growth and expansion strategy you must reflect on recruitment. Will you send some of your current employees abroad or will you hire new workers from there? The best way to appreciate and embrace new cultures is to hire local workers. They already understand local business laws, people, markets and currency among other things.

The Invisible Entry Alert Beam – Helping Small Businesses Grow

The owners of small stores need to work harder in a smarter way for being successful in the present day retail market. Simply put, it means they should get paid for all their efforts, and they need to provide their clients with a first class experience. Often, it is not very easy to achieve all that, yet certain ways can help small businesses to meet their goals.A major problem with small businesses is ensuring doing all the necessary things. A number of stores would simply love having a worker that could sort out the goods at the rear of the store, and also undertake some clerical duties, with another worker occupying the front of their store for offering the much-needed services to customers. However, there are many small businesses that can ill afford to hire two workers, and there is always the need to have someone at the front of the store.

This means that the secretarial tasks can’t be completed unless the owner is willing to pay extra to the lone worker. This is usually done through overtime wages for working beyond office hours and completing all the tasks. Some workers may be pleased at the idea of making some extra money by working overtime, but others may not find it worthwhile to put in the extra hours of work. That is when the installation of an invisible entry alert beam can help the business by informing the worker whenever a customer walks in the store.

What is an invisible entry alert beam?

An invisible entry alert beam system, also known as a motion focused system, is usually located at the entrance of the store. Its main function is to send a signal to the employee whenever anybody enters the store. The signal can be in the form of a chime or any audio signal through the intercom installed at the rear of the office. The main benefit to the business is the fact that the employee can continue working in the rear of the office and also greet the customers visiting the store.

Imagine the kind of customer service a storeowner can provide when installing this system. The customer gets highly impressed and feels honored that their presence at the store prompted a worker to stop doing the job at hand and come to the front of the store to greet them personally. It surely goes a long way in developing a long-lasting relationship with the customers.

Another very helpful feature of the invisible entry alert beam is the fact that these products are available in many models, for different budgets. You can get a simple and effective system that can easily be installed at the entrance to your store. When the budget allows it, you may install a technically advanced system that offers additional advantages, like not using any electrical wires, or connecting the system to the intercom. Any small business owner will be glad of having invested in one such system.