CONVERSABLE ECONOMIST: Macaulay on Economic Progress, 100 Years Before Keynes

He wrote: “We are suffering, not from the rheumatics of old age, but from the growing-pains of over-rapid changes, from the painfulness of readjustment between one economic period and another.” He added: “I would predict that the standard of life in progressive countries one hundred years hence will be between four and eight times as high as it is to-day. There would be nothing surprising in this even in the light of our present knowledge. It would not be foolish to contemplate the possibility of afar greater progress still.”

via CONVERSABLE ECONOMIST: Macaulay on Economic Progress, 100 Years Before Keynes

News: Sued over non-payment, Wipro seeks jury trial — People Matters

“Advantage failed to pay wages and salaries due to employees that were retained by Advantage as required by the agreement between Wipro and Advantage causing Wipro to have to pay wages and salaries that were the obligation of Advantage,” is Wipro’s stance in their filing.

via News: Sued over non-payment, Wipro seeks jury trial — People Matters


Give up all forms of parrotry. Start practicing whatever you truly feel to be true and justly to be just.

Do not make a show of your faith and beliefs. You have not to give up your religion, but to give up clinging to the husk of mere ritual and ceremony.

To get to the fundamental core of Truth underlying all religions, reach beyond religion.


Check this out from The Times of India

We’re changing lives: India rebuts Donald Trump’s jibe on Afghanistan

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Toastmasters is a matter of speaking – Greene Publishing, Inc.

Mickey Starling: Greene Publishing, Inc.

If you’ve ever wanted to improve your public speaking skills or improve general communication with others, Toastmasters may be what you’re looking for. Toastmasters is an international organization devoted to improving communication skills, grammar and vocabulary, time management and listening skills. Members give speeches which are timed and then evaluated in a positive and constructive manner by fellow Toastmasters.

Though this may sound stressful to some, the atmosphere is actually relaxed, encouraging and often lively. To make things more interesting, impromptu speeches are given from random topics at a moments notice, requiring speakers to generate a meaningful speech with no preparation. Anyone from this group who is ever required to give a toast to someone will be well prepared.

There have been plenty of famous politicians and television personalities who have gained experience and leadership skills as members of Toastmasters, including Tim Allen, from “Last Man Standing.” The local Toastmasters meet every second and fourth Friday, at Cucinella’s Brick Oven Pizzeria, located at 202 SW Rutledge St., in Madison, at 12 p.m. At the Friday, Dec. 14 meeting, three members gave excellent speeches. Julius Hackett gave an informative speech about the wasting of food in America. Kaitlyn Culpepper gave a humorous account of the many rewards of managing a parade. During her speech, Culpepper gave her description of the perfect career. “I wanted a job requiring a briefcase and that avoided math,” said Culpepper. Jeff Brewer was awarded the best speech of the day for his offering on how to turn failure into success.

Anyone interested in joining the Toastmasters is encouraged to attend their next meeting, on Friday, Jan. 11.

via Toastmasters is a matter of speaking – Greene Publishing, Inc.

Plasso Founder On Scaling And Selling A Startup – AngelList

via Plasso Founder On Scaling And Selling A Startup – AngelList


Plasso Founder On Scaling And Selling A Startup

Drew Wilson shares the lessons he’s learned from scaling, raising capital, and going through an acquisition.

In 2016, Drew Wilson had just raised money to grow Plasso, a payment subscription business that he founded. By September 2018, Plasso was acquired by GoDaddy.

In this episode of AngelList Radio, host Tyler Willis speaks with Drew to hear, frankly, about what he’s learned from starting Plasso, scaling the company, and going through its acquision.

An Accidental Entrepreneur: Plasso’s Humble Origins

Even though Drew is now a prolific software creator, he practiced, initially, as a designer. As he mentions in the episode, he “didn’t want to code, didn’t want to touch it.” He learned how to, though, and got to work on a number of projects. Reminiscing on his lack of business chops in the early days, he says, “I had nobody in my inner circle that was wealthy or knew how to build businesses. I advertised in the Yellow Pages. This is the kind of person we’re talking about here.”

He later spent two years building a front-end CMS that he expected to be a hit, but it wasn’t:

I was under the impression that, hey, if I just build the best version of X, all the best money will come to me. It’s completely false, however — it took me years to learn that lesson.

After the failure of the CMS, he had to sell all the furniture in his house and short-sell the house to make ends meet.

In 2010, Drew created an icon set called Pictos, “just for fun.” He remembers his brothers weren’t familiar with the concept of icons at the time and dubbed him “the king of clip art.” He created a digital goods delivery service to sell the icon set online, which is the project that turned into Plasso.

Raising Money And Scaling Plasso

After working on the digital payments project for a couple of years, Drew decided to raise money for Plasso. This was his first time fundraising for any project, and he made some early mistakes along the way, but he believed he could raise money for Plasso.

There’s no good reason I should have thought I was capable of going for it. I had no skillsets around raising money or pitch decks. I had to research what an angel investor really did and the difference between an angel investor and a VC. I was coming at this brand new, but I absolutely love trial by fire—that gut feeling where you’re just super-nervous and you know you’re way outside your comfort zone. I love learning that way.

Drew reflected on the advantages and drawbacks of raising from angels vs. VCs. If he were to do it again, he says he would only raise from angels, particularly those who have been entrepreneurs themselves. Those are the people who were most helpful to him.

Raising money wasn’t the only challenge Drew faced while building Plasso to a success. He’d worked completely alone before raising money, and the transition to building a team—especially learning to let go of some control—was a difficult one:

If you want to have 100% control of everything, there is no way that you can ever scale beyond a one-woman or one-man show. Before you raise money, I hope you take a moment to reflect on what that means…Plasso, at that time, when I first raised a team was me. It was an extension of me. That’s what it feels like. It doesn’t feel like a team effort. It feels like this is what I built, and now I’m bringing a team to it. After about a year, it started to feel like a team effort.

If he were to start over again, Drew says he would have two pieces of advice for himself:

  1. Hire slow
  2. Start with sales

One thing I learned (working with sales) is you get a lot of candid feedback. If you’re calling the right people, you’ll find out how your product is not easy for them to use or is not tailored for them to use. The truth is not that many people cold call.

Getting Acquired By GoDaddy

Of course, as a first-time money-raiser and team-builder, this was also Drew’s first time dealing with an acquisition offer. He shared a blow-by-blow account, from GoDaddy’s business development team reaching out about a potential acquisition to the deal closing. During this time, Drew was spending 80% of his time managing the acquisition process.

He also provided a checklist for any founder considering an acquisition offer:

  • Figure out if the person or team reaching out has decision-making power
  • Look into the terms and people involved with past acquisitions that the company has done
  • Map out the competitive landscape to get a sense of how valuable your company would be for the acquirer

The job of the CorpDev is to get the acquired company at the lowest price. That’s the entire reason for their industry and so you have to not take anything personally and you have to understand that that’s their job.

He suggested talking to more than one prospective acquirer to discover what opportunities exist and to gain negotiating leverage. Drew reached out to his network and investors to get introductions to corporate development teams at similar companies but ultimately chose GoDaddy.

Listen to Drew’s full story here.

If you like what you hear, subscribe here for more AngelList Radio and don’t forget to leave a review on your favorite podcast platform.

Ethical Alliance Daily News 

Ethical Alliance Daily News 

Brazil: Brazil’s Odebrecht to pay 161.9 million reais to Eletrobras in new leniency deal
Jan 03, 2019 08:00 pm

Brazilian construction conglomerate Odebrecht SA has agreed to pay 161.9 million reais (£32.8 million) to Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras SA in a deal with authorities to help settle corruption allegations against it, according to a securities filing on Wednesday. Eletrobras, as…

United States: Former De Blasio Fundraiser Found Guilty in Police Corruption Trial
Jan 03, 2019 07:30 pm

A Brooklyn businessman and former fundraiser for Mayor Bill de Blasio was convicted Wednesday of conspiring to bribe New York Police Department officials for favors. A federal jury in Manhattan found the businessman, Jeremy Reichberg, guilty on four of five…

United States: Former USC assistant coach pleads guilty in corruption case
Jan 03, 2019 07:00 pm

A former assistant basketball coach for the University of Southern California pleaded guilty Wednesday to conspiracy to commit bribery, admitting he accepted $4,100 in cash to steer players at the school to certain financial advisers and business managers. Tony Bland’s…

Peru: Peru attorney general reverses decision on graft probe
Jan 03, 2019 06:30 pm

Peru Attorney General Pedro Chavarry on Wednesday reappointed two lead prosecutors he had dismissed from a high-profile graft probe after the decision sparked widespread opposition and a threat by President Martin Vizcarra to suspend him. The prosecutors, Rafael Vela and…

United States: US Gives Ex-Colombian Corruption Official 4 Years for Bribes
Jan 03, 2019 06:00 pm

A former top official with Colombia’s anti-corruption agency has received a four-year sentence from a U.S. judge for seeking bribes. U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro in Miami sentenced Luis Gustavo Moreno Rivera on Wednesday on a money-laundering charge he pleaded…

Taiwan: Anti-money laundering guidance to be revealed next month
Jan 03, 2019 05:30 pm

Guidelines on anti-money laundering for financial institutions dealing with low-risk clients are to be announced after the Lunar New Year, Financial Supervisory Commission Chairman Wellington Koo (顧立雄) said on Monday. The guidelines, which are to include a reduction in examination…
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Is Apple going the ‘Nokia’ Way.. In China?

The world’s first trillion-dollar company suddenly seems a bit vulnerable.

On Wednesday, Apple lowered its sales estimates for the first time in over a decade. While Apple had once predicted $93 billion for first-quarter revenue, the company is lowering that projection to $84 billion—and Apple’s shares fell over 8% as a result. Thursday morning, the Dow dropped over 650 points.

Apple is dealing with two distinct problems simultaneously:

  • The Chinese market isn’t generating the revenue Apple expected.
  • U.S. iPhone users aren’t upgrading their iPhones like they used to.
As recently as 2016, Apple was the market leader in Chinese smartphones. In Q4 of 2017, the Chinese market accounted for nearly 20% of Apple’s revenue. In 2019, however, things seem to be changing. The slowdown of the Chinese economy, rising tensions from the U.S.-China trade war, and increased competition from smartphone providers like Huawei have all contributed to Apple’s poorer-than-expectedperformance in China.

But while the Chinese economy and U.S.-China relations aren’t quite in Tim Cook’s control, Apple’s problems in the U.S. market certainly are.

Four years ago, iPhone users would upgrade their phones about every two years. As a result, Apple enjoyed a fairly consistent demand for new iPhones within its existing customer base. In 2018, however, studies found the average iPhone user was waiting almost three years before upgrading. The majority of people who haven’t upgraded, according to Barron’s, held off either because they found their current phone to be “just fine” or because the price of a new phone was too high. Simply put, new iPhone models no longer have that “must have” appeal to make customers shell out more money to upgrade as quickly as they used to.

This slowdown in upgrades in the U.S. market, as well as uncertainty in the Chinese market, has hit Apple hard, contributing to the tech giant’s 28% slide since November 2018. It remains to be seen if Apple will be able to course-correct quickly and—perhaps most importantly—course-correct with Tim Cook’s credibility intact.