Impact Hub Asia Pacific and Bank of America work together to address the pressing plastics issue.

Amidst all the chaos happening in the world as we fight against climate change, organizations around the globe continuously find ways to create and find solutions that can help address environmental issues that are plaguing the world day by day. Impact Hub is one of the communities who’s focused on achieving UNDP’s Sustainable Development Goals activated its Asia Pacific ChangeMakers as they launched “Hack The Challenge” last 2019. The program is sponsored by Bank of America and ran by four (4) participating Impact Hubs: Manila, Jakarta, Taipei, and Shanghai. It aims to support innovative ventures committed to addressing the various environmental issues plaguing the world.

Impact Hub Asia Pacific Focuses on Disrupting the Plastics Ecosystem

Swooping in on different cities across the Asia Pacific, applicants were screened and nitpicked as some of them moved forward and hailed as finalists of each city as part of the initial round. They were given mentorship, community visit experiences, and blended learning programs spearheaded by Impact Hubs as they prepared for the final pitch where there will be only one national winner per city.,

It is with clear intention that this program was created to support and look for startups who have impact models that best fit the goal of this program. It became a challenge for both Impact Hubs and Bank of America when they deliberated for the final round but close to the core and vision of this immersive program, national winners were chosen per city and were granted incubation and $7,100.

Winners in each city:

Manila – Fortuna Cools

Fortuna’s Coconut Cooler is the first insulated container that competes with Styrofoam on performance and price–and it’s made of natural, sustainable material. Our secret ingredient is the fiber extracted from coconut husks, a waste product of the coconut meat industry. With minimal processing, we can unlock coconut fiber’s amazing insulating capacity.

Jakarta – SainBags

SainBags under the company Pt Saesha Bunga Indo is a growing Indonesia company, whose mission is to provide an eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags. They have established a green niche in an otherwise uncaring market, supported by a close-knit team of like-minded passionate people. They are proud to deliver the 100% biodegradable and compostable bags.

Taipei –

CircuPlus

(1% reduce plastic bottled water per year) Circuplus is an app that lets people drink water where they can easily find the public drinking point to fill their bottled water.

Azure Alliance

Plastic pollution in the world’s oceans is one of the biggest environmental issues of our time, impacting more than 600 marine species. We have created an automated marina rubbish trap, It will help create cleaner oceans with healthier marine life.

Shanghai – PlasElement

PlasElement empowers plastics recycling by providing data-driven matchmaking between recycled plastics and formulation needs. We are a pair of AI-for-chemistry expert and chemist-entrepreneur, with an existing network of plastics manufacturers and recyclers. We aim to make sure the valuable recycled plastics go to the right stream, enabling more value-driven recycling and eventually established cross-industry standards to empower the circular economy.

Another Round: New Program to be launched in more locations

Given the success of the program, Impact Hub Asia Pacific and Bank of America is set to come back for another round this 2020 with a bigger program including nine (9) cities in the cluster: Manila, Jakarta, Kyoto, Waikato, Taipei, Shanghai, Yangon, Phnom Penh, and Kuala Lumpur. It is set to be launched by February 2020.

This serves as a callout for budding entrepreneurs in the community to prepare their ideas because this upcoming program covers a bigger scope of issues that need to be addressed. It is the best time to break all the barriers of distance and time as we come up with solutions for the world together. Take action and make an impact happen as early as today.

The financial risks that a business needs to manage

Another guest post from CloudCfo, the accounting and finance experts for companies in the Philippines. CloudCfo has partnered with Impact Hub over the last number of months and Mickael Cardoso, CEO of CloudCfo, has also been involved in mentoring startups through the Impact Hub Elevate Training Program.

“What gets measured, gets managed.”

A quote often attributed to Peter Drucker – a well known guru of modern business management.

Nowhere is this quote more relevant than in business. While risk is an unavoidable consequence of doing business, it can be measured…and it can definitely be managed! A business faces many different risks on a daily basis. In this article, we focus on one category of risk – financial risk.

What is financial risk?

Financial risk for a business covers anything that might negatively affect the financial viability of a company. A few examples below:

  • The risk that a business will lose financial value in a public market;
  • Loss of sales or potential sales
  • Decrease of market share
  • Employee absences leading to operations stoppages
  • Theft of stock
  • Wastage due to inefficiencies
  • Financial risks relating to corporate transactions

We have outlined below 5 specific types of financial risk – Market Risk, Credit Risk, Liquidity Risk, Operational Risk and Compliance Risk.
We also provide some expert tips on how best to measure and manage these risks!

Risk No. 1 – Market Risk

Market risk arises from the uncertainty of the marketplace in which a business competes. The risk here usually relates to competitors securing a larger market share and your business revenues decreasing as a result.

Falling behind the market trend can often realise a market risk. This might happen due to a lack of resources, lack of operations or lack of technology. One obvious example is the emergence of e-commerce. Consumers are doing more and more shopping online instead of visiting the traditional physical store. Depending on the industry, if a bricks and mortar store cannot transition in some way to an online model, they may be at risk of losing a significant share of the market.

If you are interested, check out our recent article on doing business as an e-commerce retailer in the Philippines. We discuss tax compliance for online transactions!

Risk No. 2 – Credit Risk

Credit risk relates to the potential for business clients to delay or default on their debts or financial obligations to your company. Cash is undoubtedly a crucial element of ensuring a business can continue to operate. Delayed or defaults on payments can have a serious impact on a company’s cashflow.

Depending on the size of the company, non-payment by one or two key customers might either obstruct or halt business operations. This is particularly the case where a company does not have access to a cash or credit lines to fall back on during such periods!

Credit risk is the reason why businesses tend not to offer extensive credit terms to new customers. However, after a client has sufficiently proven its ability to pay, a business can be more open to providing a credit line.

Risk No. 3 – Liquidity Risk

Liquidity is the ability of a business to quickly turn its assets into cash. The more liquid a company, the better its ability to pay off its short-term liabilities as they arise.
Short-term liabilities are debts that have to be paid within one year. One of our recent articles explained the key concepts of liabilities, assets and equity for a commercial business.
The liquidity risk arises where a business cannot easily convert its assets to cash. As a result, the business cannot pay its short term liabilities. Examples of assets that can be turned into cash quickly include inventories, short-term investments and collectibles.

If a company is having liquidity issues, this is a serious situation for a business – the company could be declared bankrupt if not resolved!

So make sure that the management or company accountant reviews and monitors business liquidity on an ongoing basis!

Risk No. 4 – Operational Risk

Operational risks relate to issues facing the daily operations of a business.
The operational risk arises from internal factors such as employees, systems or processes. Some sources of operational risks include:

  1. Defective inventories
  2. Possible lawsuits with suppliers or clients
  3. Employee theft
  4. Incompetent personnel
  5. Equipment failures

If the above issues arise, they can have negative implications for the finances of a business. If the business is not operating or is not operating at the forecasted levels, the business will not be able to generate as much revenue as anticipated. Again, this will have a knock-on effect for cashflow.

Risk No. 5 – Compliance Risk

The risks arising from non-compliance with statutory or legal requirements. Non-compliance with rules and regulations issued by the SEC, the BIR, DOLE and other regulatory offices can often result in financial penalties for a company.

Tax filings, corporate filings, employee-related payments and contributions – these are all compliance requirements to which a business must adhere. There are many more too!
Remember – as a business grows, the compliance requirements will usually become more onerous. More employees, larger premises, new locations, additional shareholders and new markets!

The financial penalties can also increase as a business scales!
A company that is seeking to scale should always consider building a risk and compliance team to ensure that every “t” is crossed and every “i” is dotted when it comes to compliance.

For ease of reference, here are some of our recent articles that might provide some helpful tips on ensuring compliance in the Philippines:

Expert tips on managing and minimizing financial risks

  1. In order to identify and protect against financial risks, a company should regularly perform financial risk assessments. This requires identification of all risks that may affect the business in the short, medium and long terms.
  2. A company should make it a habit to analyze financial statements on an ongoing basis. Here are a few things that management should assess periodically:
  3. Evaluate trends in each of the income statement or balance sheet items
  4. Identify variances between actual results with budget and forecasts
  5. Compare results between two different years
    Robust internal controls are key. Having identified the relevant financial risks, it is then necessary to examine if your existing internal processes and controls are sufficient to protect against these risks.
  6. Budgeting. This will enable management to plan ahead and provide protection against potential financial risks and shortfalls in cash. Budgeting will not only help minimize financial risks but will also play a key role in helping the business grow. Check out our previous article on why budgets and forecasts are essential for business growth.

Protect against financial risks

CloudCfo can be your partner for protecting your company against the various forms of financial risk. Visit them at cloudcfo.ph or contact us directly at enquire@cloudcfo.ph.

The financial risks that a business needs to manage

Another guest post from CloudCfo, the accounting and finance experts for companies in the Philippines. CloudCfo has partnered with Impact Hub over the last number of months and Mickael Cardoso, CEO of CloudCfo, has also been involved in mentoring startups through the Impact Hub Elevate Training Program.

“What gets measured, gets managed.”

A quote often attributed to Peter Drucker – a well known guru of modern business management.

Nowhere is this quote more relevant than in business. While risk is an unavoidable consequence of doing business, it can be measured…and it can definitely be managed! A business faces many different risks on a daily basis. In this article, we focus on one category of risk – financial risk.

What is financial risk?

Financial risk for a business covers anything that might negatively affect the financial viability of a company. A few examples below:

  • The risk that a business will lose financial value in a public market;
  • Loss of sales or potential sales
  • Decrease of market share
  • Employee absences leading to operations stoppages
  • Theft of stock
  • Wastage due to inefficiencies
  • Financial risks relating to corporate transactions

We have outlined below 5 specific types of financial risk – Market Risk, Credit Risk, Liquidity Risk, Operational Risk and Compliance Risk.
We also provide some expert tips on how best to measure and manage these risks!

Risk No. 1 – Market Risk

Market risk arises from the uncertainty of the marketplace in which a business competes. The risk here usually relates to competitors securing a larger market share and your business revenues decreasing as a result.

Falling behind the market trend can often realise a market risk. This might happen due to a lack of resources, lack of operations or lack of technology. One obvious example is the emergence of e-commerce. Consumers are doing more and more shopping online instead of visiting the traditional physical store. Depending on the industry, if a bricks and mortar store cannot transition in some way to an online model, they may be at risk of losing a significant share of the market.

If you are interested, check out our recent article on doing business as an e-commerce retailer in the Philippines. We discuss tax compliance for online transactions!

Risk No. 2 – Credit Risk

Credit risk relates to the potential for business clients to delay or default on their debts or financial obligations to your company. Cash is undoubtedly a crucial element of ensuring a business can continue to operate. Delayed or defaults on payments can have a serious impact on a company’s cashflow.

Depending on the size of the company, non-payment by one or two key customers might either obstruct or halt business operations. This is particularly the case where a company does not have access to a cash or credit lines to fall back on during such periods!

Credit risk is the reason why businesses tend not to offer extensive credit terms to new customers. However, after a client has sufficiently proven its ability to pay, a business can be more open to providing a credit line.

Risk No. 3 – Liquidity Risk

Liquidity is the ability of a business to quickly turn its assets into cash. The more liquid a company, the better its ability to pay off its short-term liabilities as they arise.
Short-term liabilities are debts that have to be paid within one year. One of our recent articles explained the key concepts of liabilities, assets and equity for a commercial business.
The liquidity risk arises where a business cannot easily convert its assets to cash. As a result, the business cannot pay its short term liabilities. Examples of assets that can be turned into cash quickly include inventories, short-term investments and collectibles.

If a company is having liquidity issues, this is a serious situation for a business – the company could be declared bankrupt if not resolved!

So make sure that the management or company accountant reviews and monitors business liquidity on an ongoing basis!

Risk No. 4 – Operational Risk

Operational risks relate to issues facing the daily operations of a business.
The operational risk arises from internal factors such as employees, systems or processes. Some sources of operational risks include:

  1. Defective inventories
  2. Possible lawsuits with suppliers or clients
  3. Employee theft
  4. Incompetent personnel
  5. Equipment failures

If the above issues arise, they can have negative implications for the finances of a business. If the business is not operating or is not operating at the forecasted levels, the business will not be able to generate as much revenue as anticipated. Again, this will have a knock-on effect for cashflow.

Risk No. 5 – Compliance Risk

The risks arising from non-compliance with statutory or legal requirements. Non-compliance with rules and regulations issued by the SEC, the BIR, DOLE and other regulatory offices can often result in financial penalties for a company.

Tax filings, corporate filings, employee-related payments and contributions – these are all compliance requirements to which a business must adhere. There are many more too!
Remember – as a business grows, the compliance requirements will usually become more onerous. More employees, larger premises, new locations, additional shareholders and new markets!

The financial penalties can also increase as a business scales!
A company that is seeking to scale should always consider building a risk and compliance team to ensure that every “t” is crossed and every “i” is dotted when it comes to compliance.

For ease of reference, here are some of our recent articles that might provide some helpful tips on ensuring compliance in the Philippines:

Expert tips on managing and minimizing financial risks

  1. In order to identify and protect against financial risks, a company should regularly perform financial risk assessments. This requires identification of all risks that may affect the business in the short, medium and long terms.
  2. A company should make it a habit to analyze financial statements on an ongoing basis. Here are a few things that management should assess periodically:
  3. Evaluate trends in each of the income statement or balance sheet items
  4. Identify variances between actual results with budget and forecasts
  5. Compare results between two different years
    Robust internal controls are key. Having identified the relevant financial risks, it is then necessary to examine if your existing internal processes and controls are sufficient to protect against these risks.
  6. Budgeting. This will enable management to plan ahead and provide protection against potential financial risks and shortfalls in cash. Budgeting will not only help minimize financial risks but will also play a key role in helping the business grow. Check out our previous article on why budgets and forecasts are essential for business growth.

Protect against financial risks

CloudCfo can be your partner for protecting your company against the various forms of financial risk. Visit them at cloudcfo.ph or contact us directly at enquire@cloudcfo.ph.

Impact Hub Manila and Forest Foundation Philippines Strengthen Community-Building through the SEED Program

 Community members and members of the Sékéd Weavers Association in Malawig, Coron.
Community members and members of the Sékéd Weavers Association in Malawig, Coron.

2019 was yet another year of great impact through Impact Hub Manila’s many initiatives. Tagged as one of the front runners in startup incubation, Impact Hub Manila has embarked on a number of projects that focuses on empowering communities of all kinds, through impactful innovative business practices.

Aligned with that mission, Impact Hub Manila collaborated with the Forest Foundation Philippines and launched the Social Entrepreneurship Engagement Development (SEED) Program. The SEED Program is a year-long development program geared towards community-based enterprise assistance. The SEED Program was bent on supporting some barangays and indigenous communities in Aurora, Quirino and Palawan. The communities gained exposure to sought after mentors and startup founders who served as mentors and community enablers for the program. Core to the vision of the program is linking community-based micro entrepreneurs to established innovators to foster knowledge transfer and upskilling to grow their community-based ideas.

Impact Hub Manila and Forest Foundation Philippines swoop in on grassroot communities

From mentorship to incubation, the team in charge of the SEED Program had gone to different provinces of the Philippines (Aurora, Quirino and Palawan) to roundup, assess, mentor, and connect the stakeholders through the curated framework of the Impact Hub Manila and funding support of Forest Foundation Philippines which aims to integrate business innovation in Forest Foundation Philippines’ adopted communities.

This immersive approach aimed to aid the lack of access to capacity building opportunities, financial resources, and business networks that prevents the majority of small-scale entrepreneurs in remote areas from reaching operations and scale with the SEED Program.

As early as January 2020, Impact Hub Manila and Forest Foundation Philippines is already touting a pragmatic year of more community-building and startup support in remote enterprises. This year-long effort, enveloped in the SEED Program, is already offering proof that community-based projects can and will collect enough feasibility, with the right support.

The SEED is growing

The SEED Program wasn’t solely a platform for community research and data-gathering. 2019 was also marked by the continued mentorship and rollout of training programs to its community. As Impact Hub Manila starts the new year, scheduled community visits and sponsored business trainings are already ongoing hoping to give birth to more entrepreneurs who can help develop a sustainable startup ecosystem focusing on rural area development in the future.

Life-Changing New Year of Building and Learning

There is no doubt that the collaboration between Forest Foundation Philippines and Impact Hub Manila forged a lasting connection amongst themselves and the communities. The SEED program will continue to provide an avenue for learning and market discovery, allowing communities the chance to leverage their skills and implement their ideas in such a way that will bring value to the world.

It’s time to welcome the year with ‘real change’ by disrupting the norms of supporting a community and give them a holistic program where they can execute their ideas as they create lasting solutions to the issues that the world is facing. This is the perfect time to start a change and Impact Hub Manila has its doors wide open for collaboration!

Millennial Friendly Offices: Workplaces that Work for You

When it comes to life and the living, nature works. It is all about having an adaptive environment. For your work to come alive, you need an environment that helps you grow. While traditional workplaces see this growth in terms of their profession, Millenials have a holistic view about growth and see the workplace as an enabler of efficiency, productivity and a good mix of professional and personal development. After all, every single experience enhances awareness and the ability to function better as a professional and a human being.

WHAT ABOUT MAKING THE BEST OF WHAT YOU GOT? WHY STRESS UPON A FRIENDLY WORKPLACE?

Well, before making the best of anything else, you have to make the best out of yourself. This is why millennials persist with the idea of “loving their workplace, as much as loving their work”. Most millennials entered adulthood and self-reliance in the post-2000 recession-era when burdened by debts; their dreams were quashed for tight budgets and low-risk mindset. The pressures caused a lot of stress and anxiety. Mental health became an essential criterion of finding the right work, employer and workplace.

Startups need “empowerment”, entrepreneurs need “excitement”, Gen Z wants the “enriching experiences” and Millenials want to “evolve”. Bearing this in mind, a millennial-friendly office has to be “a workplace that empowers, excites, enriches and evolves along with the work and the people”. 

Agreed, the blog seems a little dull, but the message is not. Perhaps, if you get to know such offices, things will get really exciting.

WHAT MAKES AN OFFICE MILLENIAL FRIENDLY

  • Technology-enabled offices that foster the “human connection”

Millennials want to connect with people, their cultures, their values, and their motivations. Be a part of a team, a tribe, or even believe that co-workers are making up one huge family. After all, it is about mutual trust and co-dependence that helps manage everything that can possibly hinder productivity and personal growth. Millennials want to help each other in every possible way, even in times of emotional turmoil and mental stress. Introduce the joy of cooperation instead of the cut-throat competition within the workplace. AI may be here and it may replace tasks, but millennials comprise of the generation that is at the helm of human advancement and their innovative minds need a healthy and active lifestyle that transcends work and home environments.

  • Financial planning that rids worries

Millennials witnessed many of their elders, including parents and family members, get fired without having a financial safety net. I hope you can see the wisdom in providing a well-planned and secure financial strategy to a millennial right away, especially if you are a millennial. Stock options are a good choice, as they link individual and organizational performance with financial reward and a Small Business 401k is an amazing choice, as it shows your intent to invest in their future, including retirement.

  • Engage, communicate and create an idea pipeline from the bottom up

Today, organizations are migrating towards a flat structure and the hierarchy only represents the size and scope of one’s job description and not the superior status of an individual. The best way to achieve this or sustain a flat structure is to ensure that good ideas from absolutely anyone in the organization are heard by everyone. No presumptions and no quashing of ideas. After all, there are no bad ideas, only half-baked or ill-timed ideas, which can be revisited and fostered for growth, just like millennials.

Attention Founders! This is what investors and shareholders want to know about your accounts and finances

Another guest post from CloudCfo, the accounting and finance experts for companies in the Philippines. CloudCfo has partnered with Impact Hub over the last number of months and Mickael Cardoso, CEO of CloudCfo, has also been involved in mentoring startups through the Impact Hub Elevate Training Program.

Founders will always be considering what their business might be worth – and for good reason!

They may want to:
(1) evaluate their own personal progress or (2) success ensure shareholders are satisfied or (3) pitch to new investors.

In this article, we focus on No.2 and No.3.
We examine the most important finance and accounting related items that an investor or shareholder will want to understand when evaluating a business.

So let’s start with financial performance!

1. Financial Performance

First and foremost, investors and shareholders will want to see a positive return on their investment. They will want to know that the business is performing well from a financial perspective.
So how do you measure financial performance? From both a historical and a forward-looking point of view.
Historical
Investors can evaluate financial performance by looking at historical financial data. There are a number of ways in which financial statements can be considered:

  • Horizontal Analysis – Analyzing growth or decline of accounts across different time periods or accounting periods. Increasing gross profit margins are positive signs for investors and shareholders.
  • Vertical Analysis – Analyzing financial statements where each account is evaluated from the perspective of margins. Taking revenue as an example, measuring profit margins will show what proportion or percentage of the value of sales remains after all applicable expenses have been paid off. Shareholders and investors like this ratio as it identifies how efficiently a business can transform their sales into net income.

Forward-Looking

Shareholders and investors are also interested in the future potential of a business. There are two main ways to measure future performance:

  • Forecasts – a measure of future financial performance based on a company’s historical financial information. Forecasts are used to generate a forward-looking analysis of what the future financial position of a business is likely to be based on recently available information.
  • Budgets – shorter term objectives that the company is seeking to achieve. It is a representation of how management is directing the business in the very near future. Budgets are more concerned with operational and day to day activities.

Both forecasts and budgets are important if you want to illustrate to investors and shareholders that the business can generate real growth. For an in-depth analysis, check out why budgets and forecasts are necessary for growth.

2. Strong Cash Flow

If a business does not have sufficient cash reserves to sustain operations, it will encounter serious financial problems.
For this reason, investors and shareholders seek to invest (or continue to invest) in businesses that are consistently able to generate enough cash to cover daily operations. There are many ways investors measure cash flow. A common measurement method is the “Cash Conversion Cycle” or CCC.

The Cash Conversion Cycle is a metric that estimates how a company collects and uses cash, beginning from the initial cost of inventory to receivables collections to the payment of liabilities. The formula for calculating CCC is:
CCC = Days of inventory outstanding (DIO) + Days of sales outstanding (DSO) – Days payables outstanding (DPO)
As a general rule, the shorter the CCC, the stronger the cash flow of the business.

For reference:
Days of inventory outstanding (DIO) = an estimate of how long inventories remain in stock before they are sold. The shorter the DIO, the faster the business sells its inventories. Check out our recent article on inventory bookkeeping for retail businesses in the Philippines.

Days sales outstanding (DSO) = the time it takes for customers to pay. The faster a customer pays, the shorter the DSO and the better it is for cash flow.

Days Payable Outstanding (DPO) – how long it takes for a business to settle its payables. Where payment terms are longer, businesses will be able to use the cash for something else (e.g. the purchase of additional inventories). Investors may look for longer DPOs.

3. Healthy Financial Position

Investors and shareholders are particularly interested in two current business metrics: liquidity and solvency.

1. Liquidity

This measures the ability of a business to pay off its short-term liabilities using assets that can be converted to cash with ease. A common measure of liquidity is the Current Ratio.

The Current Ratio is computed by dividing Total Current Assets by Total Current Liabilities. The higher the ratio, the better the ability of the business to pay off its current liabilities.

A current ratio higher than 1 means that there are sufficient current assets to cover current liabilities. Investors and shareholders will want to see current ratios that are higher than 1.
For a detailed explanation on the terms “assets” and “liabilities”, check out our recent article on the 7 key accounting and bookkeeping concepts that businesses must know.

2. Solvency

This measures the ability of a business to pay off all of its liabilities using all of its existing assets. Common ratios used by investors and shareholders to measure solvency are the “debt-to-assets ratio” and the “equity-to-assets ratio”.
Let’s say for example that a business has P1M in total assets, P400,000 liabilities and P600,000 equity.

With this information, we can conclude that the debt ratio is 40% (P400,000/P1M) and the equity ratio is 60% (P600,000/P1M).
Investors will also want a higher share of the assets or a higher equity ratio. This is true unless they are investing in an industry where debts are integral to a business model. For example, in the banking industry, where banks may not own much of the cash making up their loans.

4. Full Compliance

One of the most important things for investors and shareholders is that the business in which they are (or will be) investing is fully compliant with relevant laws and regulations. Issues can often arise during a due diligence process in investment transactions.
Compliance issues, particularly at the corporate governance level, can also be a trigger for shareholders to pull out.

There are a number of important bodies in the Philippines to consider when thinking about compliance. Three important government agencies that deal with compliance and regulation are the Bureau of Internal Revenue, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Labor and Employment.

The BIR is the tax collection government branch in the Philippines. The BIR has the mandate to collect taxes and investigate companies for tax compliance through the conducting of audits. Tax audits are examinations to check the accuracy of data a company has reported in their tax submissions. An audit or investigation may also arise where no data has been reported!
The SEC is the regulatory body mandated to supervise corporations and capital market participants, monitor securities and corporate investments and protect individual/private investors.
DOLE supervises and regulates all labor and employment related matters in the Philippines. Its aim is to protect workers and their welfare, promote gainful employment opportunities and to maintain industrial peace.

Again, compliance is a key element of what an investor will look for when performing a due diligence on a company. Shareholders will also want to ensure the company is in good standing from a compliance and regulatory perspective.

5. A Robust Business Plan

An investor or shareholder will need to know the direction, plans and strategy of the business in which they have invested or are considering investing. This information will generally be contained within a business plan prepared by management.

A business plan contains a comprehensive and detailed outline of how a business intends to make a profit. Here are some of the key components of a business plan:

  • Target market
  • Financial budgets and forecasts
  • Marketing goals and plans
  • Competitor analysis
  • Risk analysis
  • Investment requirements, potential return on investment and timeline of when returns will be achieved
  • Investment structure – the mix of liabilities and equities that will be used by the business

Preparing a business plan can be tricky. It requires an understanding of the entire business as well as the finances and accounts. A finance expert with commercial expertise, such as a Chief Financial Officer, can help significantly with the preparation of a business plan.

And remember, if you don’t want to hire directly, a CFO can be outsourced! Here are some of the benefits of outsourcing a CFO in the Philippines instead of hiring an in-house CFO.
Outsourced accounting and bookkeeping services in the Philippines
Investors and shareholders will invest or remain invested in a business that performs well in the market, can show that it has a clear direction and strategy, implements robust internal policies, processes and controls and generates solid financials.
CloudCfo, the outsourced tax, bookkeeping and accounting service provider for companies in the Philippines, is a growth partner for clients.

This means that CloudCfo integrates itself into clients’ businesses and implements value-added processes and controls that give companies a platform to scale. CloudCfo works its clients to help them achieve their growth objectives.

Visit cloudcfo.ph for more information about their services or contact CloudCfo directly at enquire@cloudcfo.ph !

Buckle Up for the Most Productive New Year with these 4 Tips To Kickstart Your Business in 2020!

 

It is the time of the year again, where creative resolutions, fresh beginnings, and new starts are common. It can be easily said that there can be no other ideal time to kick-start your creativity and plan for a new year that will be the most exciting with inspiration and productivity. Nevertheless, if this is what you are craving for, it should be said that the standard resolutions are not just going to cut it.

So, the question here is how you set resolutions that you will actually stick to. Most importantly, it should not be like the resolutions you make every year. Examples include hitting the gym daily, eating less and you know, hitting the gym daily. But hey! All of us make resolutions every year. But, how many of us really stick to it? 

The answer to this question is the set of resolutions that will make the upcoming 2020, the most fruitful for you! Remember that these tips will help you keep your professional ambitions at the forefront of your commitments for the upcoming year. So, buckle up! This is the right time to plan and prevent your New Year’s resolutions from falling flat.

Set realistic goals that will take you to success

Will you agree when it is said that the New Year will bring in a lot of expectations and energy for the future? Yes, the reason is that many of us feel it to be the natural time for new beginnings. Obviously, you will be interested in doing whatever you feel could not be done last year, right? Of course, you will set some new goals as well that will help you keep the needle moving. As against setting up regular ambitious goals like losing 20 pounds of weight, you should use both lag and lead measures. What are they? Let us find out here:

  • Do you know that lag measures can actually measure the success of your most important objectives for the upcoming year? For instance, for a business, these measures can be like improving customer base, increasing sales and revenue. When it comes to individuals, these measures can be anything like losing some pounds of weight, learning a new language, etc. When you set up your lag measures, you will have to ensure that they are not just specific, but also quantifiable. So, it will be easier for you to judge how well you did.

  • On the other hand, lead measures help track the crucial activities that take you to the lag measure. When it comes to businesses, these measures can denote the time spent with customers. This is something that can drive a business to achieve better customer satisfaction and the resulting profit. When it comes to personal life, these measures denote the exercises and diet that you carry out to lose weight.

Define your purpose 

Only when you have a definitive purpose, you will stay in tune with your resolution. When you have a single goal of achieving specific revenue in your business in the upcoming year, you will be focused on that goal alone. But, what if you have multiple goals. For instance, you wish to achieve specific revenue and secondly, you have the goal of achieving the specific revenue by working only for fewer hours in a day. So, these are two different things you will have to focus on. Rather than focusing on both simultaneously, it would be fruitful to focus on one initially. Once you achieve it, you can move on with the other 

Identify your focus area

You might think that you are good at multi-tasking. But, remember that it can have a great impact on your marching towards your goals. The reason is that when you multi-task, your concentration switches from one job to another. In turn, you cannot complete both efficiently. So, follow a minimalist approach. For instance, when you are into achieving your business goal, stay focused. Do not allow any distractions when you are marching towards your goal. One thing you can do is keeping away your phone—which is the biggest enemy these days for many people. Particularly, if you have web access on your phone, just switch it off. You might think that you can just visit and come out of a website. But, it will drag you in. So, identify your focus area and avoid all sorts of distractions. 

Develop a morning routine

Do you know that successful people have a morning routine in their life? When you have such a routine, you can start your day fresh and focused with lots of energy. Also, when you do this, you will have more time to do the most crucial tasks first thing at the beginning of the day. The routine can be anything like exercise, journaling, writing, reading or meditation.

Now, are you ready? Let your resolutions bring success to your business in the upcoming year! 

Working Out the Co-Working Concept: A Paradigm Shift for Startups

While the world is in the crossroads between the 2nd and 3rd decade of the 21st century, a dogmatic change in the functioning of the industrial sector is guaranteed to meet the demands of the current time. It is very crucial to have a strong strategy under your sleeve such that your startup doesn’t end up in the ‘valley of death’ of the startup pathway but reaches the ‘break-even’ mark.

Well, don’t get worried at all if you are thinking of venturing the startup game or already plunged into it! There will be tricks under your sleeve as well to win your startup game. One of the most critical issues that haunt the modern-day startups and budding entrepreneurs is to find a proper workplace under a limited budget without compromising the state of the art facilities for your startup.

Co-working, popularly known as ‘hot-desking’ is becoming a new star in the startup domain as it can function as an initial boast that can help your company to thrive in this crucial stage in many ways. To put it into a definition, co-working may be described as a business model, where the workers can work either with collaboration or even independently in a common shared place.

As an example, several biotech startups require similar laboratory set-ups, different management groups require similar board room ambiance. Co-working spaces provide such common requirements to the stakeholders but not costing too much to the individuals. The current boom of incubation centers worldwide bears the testimony to the fact.

That is the reason why more than 70% of co-working spaces have become profitable within two years of operation. There are multiple positive impacts while working in a co-working space; the primary ones can be described as C3—that can be elaborated as:

  • Cost-cutting

  • Collaboration

  • Cultural exchange

While the advantage of cost-cutting is straightforward, the other two advantages have a very large impact.

Collaborative interaction within a co-working space can benefit multiple stakeholders when there is a mutually beneficial goal and no conflict of interest. Even if there is limited scope for collaboration, the cultural and informal interactions between co-working partners may lead to a large networking hub.

Overall, a co-working space provides a comfortable yet competitive breathing space for startups. Now, if we organize the co-working scheme, the order will be as below:

A. Finding a suitable co-working space

B. Organizing it properly

C. Management of the space

D. Improvement of its functioning

The very presence of strong networking websites like LinkedIn, it becomes much easier to get honest opinions from your peers regarding the choice of co-working space based on one’s requirement and budget. As you might expect, the cost varies based on location and facilities provided. Now, when you have chosen your dream co-working space and booked it, one must make a to-do list before starting the shopping for your space. The basic things one should keep in mind while organizing the space are as follows:

Choice of manpower.

It’s the people and their attitude towards co-working what matters to you. So, it’s important to choose a set of good team players with a positive vibe around. In addition, there should be diversity among them based on an academic and professional level to facilitate the mixing of various outlooks on a given matter. 

Space organization.

The workspace should be interaction friendly. Employees are encouraged to interact positively with each other both within the company and also from other companies. To make that collaborative interaction organic, specific space can be devoted to this purpose. A proper monitoring is a must to check whether the interactions are in place. Well, how about a weekly brainstorming over a cup of coffee?

Digital management.

Firstly, a high-speed Wi-Fi connection needs to be installed with appropriate personnel, before one can develop a high-quality website and design a clear cut social media strategy for an aggressive start in the domain. The manner in which you show the interiors of your workplace and the product output on popular social media like Facebook and Instagram, goes a long way to carve a niche for your startup. An up to date monitoring of the website and other social media will help you to note any feedback, positive or negative, coming from your customers or potential customers.

Employee benefit.

Offering perks like health insurance and daycare facilities go a long way to keep your best employees on-board for a longer period. On top of that, if your employees get highlighted periodically on your website, that will be another motivating factor for them. Having a partnership with some decent enough nearby hotel or cafeteria will also be beneficial to attract a lot of interests.

Outreach activity.

Organizing events like summer school, open day, short internship is very helpful in creating a brand name for your co-working space.

Overall, the concept of co-working provides an opportunity to significantly improve the productivity of business startups of any stratum by reducing individual space costs, creating a mutually beneficial environment for an individual as well as collaborative work and enhancing the work-life balance of the employee with a big smile.

The Branding Must-Haves for Startups: Essential For the Brand’s Survival in the Cutthroat World

Instead of herds of sheep that live for the moment, our economy needs entrepreneurs that work for the future. Although overused, this comparison is reality. Have you noticed the competition out there? 

Thousands of startups are coming out of the woodwork, trying to establish a brand. Each one of them trying to survive. To persevere in the cutthroat world, as an entrepreneur, you have to be innovative. You need to have the ambition to create a global impact.

As skilled tacticians, you should promote and build a timeless brand. Your efforts should include marketing. Without proper marketing, your product could remain undiscovered. Always underappreciated. You need to understand that branding is the key. It is so much more than a logo.

Perfect the Brand’s Voice and Tone

For whom have you created the business products and services? Do they solve the issues of elderly ladies or tackle the problems teenagers face? Identifying your customer base is high on the priority list. Without understanding the customers, you can’t establish either a voice or tone for your business. 

You have to perfect the voice and tone of your business for flawless branding. The voice encompasses the essential qualities of your business. The tone is adapted depending on the target.

  • Suppose your target happens to be, little wide-eyed school girls, the tone has to be adapted to entice them. You have to make them pine for the baubles you sell. Little girls are attracted to shiny new things. It’s universal. That’s our takeaway. Use it when you create the campaign.

  • Now, if your products are for elderly ladies, the company’s voice needs to be modified into an understanding explanatory tone. Think about how you would explain it to your grandmother, that’s the solution. 

Sharpen the Brand’s Purpose to Influence People

As an entrepreneur, you are smart enough to grasp the need for a purpose. So, what’s holding you back? What’s stopping you? It is the make-it-or-break-it element of your branding? Once you find the purpose, you’ll realize how effective it is to influence people with good marketing. How many of you use one or more Apple Inc. products? For every Apple product, there are thousands of competitors, and yet it remains the number one in the niche. Despite all the competition. 

What’s your purpose? Does your company deliver on those promises? To grow, you need to sharpen that purpose, build on it, and become the best at it. Even if it’s customer service, no other company should surpass you in that regard. 

Deliver Fresh Consistent Content 

Let’s get down to the basics. Let’s compare the theme and tone of your website design. Now think about the pictures you have shared on Instagram. Does the quality differ? Has it deviated from the business theme? Is there consistency in the content?

When you present content on two different platforms, it should match on a level. When you view your website and compare it to social media content, you should be confident that both remain true to the brand’s tone. When you achieve the seamless quality that transfers from one platform to another, you have made it!

Most startups forget to live by these branding rules. Remember that we are shooting for the stars. Entrepreneurship doesn’t stop at hoping for profits. It focuses on the development of a smart brand, a brand that dares to grow beyond its potential. A branding environment can help you gain more perspective on how to provide fresh and consistent content. 

Develop a Brand Environment Guide

  • What is brand environment?

An environment that cements the survival of your brand without resorting to in your face marketing. It’s building an environment that helps you generate consistent content through all the resources.

  • How to create a brand environment?

Build a guideline that will help you develop content that sticks. The prospective customers should remember it even out of sight. The exceptional content churned via the Brand Environment will act as a roadmap to your organization. People might not remember the contact details, but they’ll find their way back to your website. Incorporate your brand into every deliverable. Make its presence known. Your marketing goals should be reflected in the delivered content. 

It’s More Than the Logo

As we have seen, it’s not just the logo. It’s so much more. We have picked it up from the freshness of the content to your brand’s voice and tone.

We will not deny the impact a logo can create. It matters a huge deal, but don’t let it limit your brand’s brilliance. Think about the long term impact of your marketing efforts. Are they enough to survive the test of time? When you invest in marketing without a plan, you are hitting the self-destruct button. It is one of the most common mistakes made by startups. 

Start by developing a permanent marketing tool that will help you create marketing campaigns. Build this Brand Identity system. It is an entrepreneur’s guide to produce writing copies, campaigns, and social media content. Build your guidelines.

If you’re interested in finding a coworking space, or want to learn more about the concept, you can reach us by clicking on the button below!

The Branding Must-Haves for Startups: Essential For the Brand’s Survival in the Cutthroat World

Instead of herds of sheep that live for the moment, our economy needs entrepreneurs that work for the future. Although overused, this comparison is reality. Have you noticed the competition out there? 

Thousands of startups are coming out of the woodwork, trying to establish a brand. Each one of them trying to survive. To persevere in the cutthroat world, as an entrepreneur, you have to be innovative. You need to have the ambition to create a global impact.

As skilled tacticians, you should promote and build a timeless brand. Your efforts should include marketing. Without proper marketing, your product could remain undiscovered. Always underappreciated. You need to understand that branding is the key. It is so much more than a logo.

Perfect the Brand’s Voice and Tone

For whom have you created the business products and services? Do they solve the issues of elderly ladies or tackle the problems teenagers face? Identifying your customer base is high on the priority list. Without understanding the customers, you can’t establish either a voice or tone for your business. 

You have to perfect the voice and tone of your business for flawless branding. The voice encompasses the essential qualities of your business. The tone is adapted depending on the target.

  • Suppose your target happens to be, little wide-eyed school girls, the tone has to be adapted to entice them. You have to make them pine for the baubles you sell. Little girls are attracted to shiny new things. It’s universal. That’s our takeaway. Use it when you create the campaign.

  • Now, if your products are for elderly ladies, the company’s voice needs to be modified into an understanding explanatory tone. Think about how you would explain it to your grandmother, that’s the solution. 

Sharpen the Brand’s Purpose to Influence People

As an entrepreneur, you are smart enough to grasp the need for a purpose. So, what’s holding you back? What’s stopping you? It is the make-it-or-break-it element of your branding? Once you find the purpose, you’ll realize how effective it is to influence people with good marketing. How many of you use one or more Apple Inc. products? For every Apple product, there are thousands of competitors, and yet it remains the number one in the niche. Despite all the competition. 

What’s your purpose? Does your company deliver on those promises? To grow, you need to sharpen that purpose, build on it, and become the best at it. Even if it’s customer service, no other company should surpass you in that regard. 

Deliver Fresh Consistent Content 

Let’s get down to the basics. Let’s compare the theme and tone of your website design. Now think about the pictures you have shared on Instagram. Does the quality differ? Has it deviated from the business theme? Is there consistency in the content?

When you present content on two different platforms, it should match on a level. When you view your website and compare it to social media content, you should be confident that both remain true to the brand’s tone. When you achieve the seamless quality that transfers from one platform to another, you have made it!

Most startups forget to live by these branding rules. Remember that we are shooting for the stars. Entrepreneurship doesn’t stop at hoping for profits. It focuses on the development of a smart brand, a brand that dares to grow beyond its potential. A branding environment can help you gain more perspective on how to provide fresh and consistent content. 

Develop a Brand Environment Guide

  • What is brand environment?

An environment that cements the survival of your brand without resorting to in your face marketing. It’s building an environment that helps you generate consistent content through all the resources.

  • How to create a brand environment?

Build a guideline that will help you develop content that sticks. The prospective customers should remember it even out of sight. The exceptional content churned via the Brand Environment will act as a roadmap to your organization. People might not remember the contact details, but they’ll find their way back to your website. Incorporate your brand into every deliverable. Make its presence known. Your marketing goals should be reflected in the delivered content. 

It’s More Than the Logo

As we have seen, it’s not just the logo. It’s so much more. We have picked it up from the freshness of the content to your brand’s voice and tone.

We will not deny the impact a logo can create. It matters a huge deal, but don’t let it limit your brand’s brilliance. Think about the long term impact of your marketing efforts. Are they enough to survive the test of time? When you invest in marketing without a plan, you are hitting the self-destruct button. It is one of the most common mistakes made by startups. 

Start by developing a permanent marketing tool that will help you create marketing campaigns. Build this Brand Identity system. It is an entrepreneur’s guide to produce writing copies, campaigns, and social media content. Build your guidelines.

If you’re interested in finding a coworking space, or want to learn more about the concept, you can reach us by clicking on the button below!