The CEO of a New York-based tech company has offered a hefty sum to draw likely GOP Presidential candidate Donald Trump into a debate with potential Democratic nominee Bernie Sanders.
Richie Hecker, chairman and CEO of Traction and Scale, responded to a proposition from Trump that he would agree to a debate with Sanders if a $ 10 million donation to charity was made. Hecker told BuzzFeed:
“Yesterday, Mr. Trump asked for a $ 10 [million] donation to charity in order to accept Mr. Sanders’s challenge to debate him. We are willing to offer that $ 10 [million] donation in return for the opportunity to host the debate.
“We believe that Mr. Sanders and Mr. Trump collectively represent the voice of the American people. We are confident that convening the voice of the people in a nonpartisan forum will spark the revolution and make America great again.”
Hecker said his company would find “the largest venue” possible in California if both candidates agree to a June 6 debate. So far, Sanders seems open to the idea.
According to their website, Traction and Scale invests in “transformative businesses that makes peoples’ lives easier.”
On Friday, Trump responded to the proposition by backing out, saying:
“Based on the fact that the Democratic nominating process is totally rigged and Crooked Hillary Clinton and Deborah Wasserman Schultz will not allow Bernie Sanders to win, and now that I am the presumptive Republican nominee, it seems inappropriate that I would debate the second place finisher.
“Therefore, as much as I want to debate Bernie Sanders – and it would be an easy payday – I will wait to debate the first place finisher in the Democratic Party, probably Crooked Hillary Clinton, or whoever it may be.”
He probably jut doesn’t want to ruin his tan by getting Berned.
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A fast-food chain founded by two former Costco executives just raised $ 7 million in a round of funding that was led by Costco’s founder. The organic chain currently has two restaurants in San Francisco and Pleasanton, California, and is preparing to expand to at least 24 new locations with its new investment.
The Organic Coup, a USDA-certified organic fast-food chain, is the first of its kind in the United States. It specializes in fried-chicken sandwiches prepared in coconut oil and offers sides such as chocolate-drizzled popcorn. Coconut oil is perhaps the most expensive oil on the market, but was chosen for its obvious health benefits.
One of the company’s cofounders is Erica Welton, a former food buyer for Costco for 14 years. Cofounder Dennis Hoover has been with Costco for 33 years and responsible for overseeing 53 of the wholesale giant’s warehouses in Northern California.
In fact, Hoover had a direct hand in transforming Costco into one of the largest providers of organic goods in the world. It’s not surprising that The Organic Coup has noteworthy backers that include Costco’s founder and former CEO Jim Sinegal as well as Costco’s chief financial officer, Richard Galanti. Galanti told Business Insider:
“I have complete confidence in him [Hoover] — he’s a great operator. I also like the fact that my boss [Senegal] for many years is a major investor.”
Welton and Hoover may not have any previous restaurant experience, but they’re borrowing a thing or two from Costco to ensure their success. Hoover said:
“Our model is based on that Costco model of efficiency and paying employees a great wage.”
The starting wages for The Organic Coup is $ 16 an hour in San Francisco and $ 14 an hour in Pleasanton. That’s nearly double the $ 7.98 hourly wage fast-food workers in the US reportedly make.
President Vicky Bevilacqua True (left) and Co-founder Erica Welton (right)
Organic Coup’s menu is also unfortunately, a little bit pricier than your typical fast-food restaurant. Their fried-chicken sandwich costs $ 9.99 compared to $ 4 for one at Chick-fil-A. So far, it seems to be well-received with four stars for its Pleasanton location on Yelp.
Images via Instagram
The post The Organic Coup: First All-Organic Fast Food Chain Founded by Costco Execs Raises $ 7 Million in Funding appeared first on NextShark.
I have been involved in franchising dozens of businesses, at last count over 60. Some from concept and some where we converted an existing business to the franchised model and I am really happy to deal with either pathway with one really important proviso.
The business owner must have a reasonable understanding on what it takes to run a business successfully – franchised or not.
And unfortunately I have concluded this is easier said than done.
Done well, franchising does help to structure a business so that it has the best chance of success because franchising helps to put some great business practices in place. Systems and money management being at the top of the list. But overall, I have found that in most businesses, there are some aspects about business success which need to be reviewed and without sound business experience, creating a franchise is not likely to succeed.
Understanding how business works is especially important, because you, as franchisor, will often be training less business savvy-franchisees on successful business practice.
The most useful way I have found to think about business success is to look at the stages of business growth because it is through this journey that many learn the value of different business skills needed as they grow.
The 5 Stages of Business Growth
Way back in the early 1980’s, the concept that businesses grow through defined stages was first discussed in an article published in Forbes by Neil C. Churchill and Virginia L. Lewis. This work is still cited to explain the importance of basic business elements to success.
Before I go into the 5 stages, there is one important point to make.
Businesses do not necessarily need to go through each stage. It is possible to speed through stages into whichever is your goal. The way to do this is to understand what is required. This is how the likes of Richard Branson create new businesses everyday – Richard will have all his business ducks in a row before he starts. But even his businesses will need to go through some of these stages on the way to creating an empire.
In a nutshell these are the stages
Stage 1 – Existence
This is generally the start-up stage for any business. With no revenue, the focus of the business owner is obtaining customers and delivering the product or service. Inevitably, the owner is definitely working in the business, often alone filling every role. A major concern is having enough money to cover this start-up phase. The strategy here is simply to stay alive.
Stage 2 – Survival
By now, the business has proven it is workable and can be profitable but it is still simple in structure. There may be a limited number of employees supervised by a sales manager or a general foreman but neither will make any major decisions independently. They carry out the rather well-defined orders of the owner.
Systems development is still minimal. Formal planning is, at best, cash forecasting. The major goal is still survival, and the owner is still the business and working in the business. The main aim is to get a return on investment and making the business profitable.
However if the business is to grow, it is important to begin to understand the need to systemise and understand how business operates.
Some small businesses choose to stay here, hardly making a profit, others choose to move into the Success Stage.
Stage 3 – Success
At this point, the company is stable and profitable and cash is not a problem. Most telling, basic financial, marketing, and production systems are in place to power effective delegation.
Organizationally, the company has grown large enough, in many cases, to have functional managers to take over some duties previously performed by the owner and some planning through operational budgets support this delegation.
There should also be some strategic planning in place and the owner and, to a lesser extent, the company’s managers, should be monitoring this in accordance with goals.
While cash is plentiful, the main concern is to avoid a cash drain in prosperous periods to the detriment of the company’s ability to withstand the inevitable rough times.
Some choose to stay in this phase while others choose to move into a phase of growth.
Stage 4 – Rapid Growth
If the decision is made to grow beyond the Success Stage, then key problems will be how to achieve growth and how to finance it. Growth will return to a phase where cash management becomes critical.
Churchill and Lewis report they found the keys to success here are having a sound understanding of delegation and how to manage risk in cash flow.
As staff numbers grow, systems need to become more refined to ensure delegation is efficient and both operational and strategic planning are crucial to make sure everyone is on the same page.
At this stage, the owner no longer works in the business but does have a strong presence over the way it is run and over things such as stock control.
Churchill and Lewis state:
‘This is a pivotal period in a company’s life. If the owner rises to the challenges of a growing company, both financially and managerially, it can become a big business. If not, it can usually be sold-at a profit-provided the owner recognizes his or her limitations soon enough’
Stage 5 – Maturity
The company has now arrived. It has the advantages of size, financial resources, and managerial talent. If it can preserve its entrepreneurial spirit, it will be a formidable force in the market.
If not, it may enter a sixth stage of sorts: ossification and death.
Franchises often do it better
Yes, even in the 1980’s when the Churchill and Lewis first published their article, it was acknowledged that franchised businesses moved through the stages to Success and Rapid Growth better than those not franchised.
Because franchises often have the following advantages:
First of all, they have, in most cases, a franchisor who really understands, through experience, the essentials of business, making sure clear structures are in place from the beginning to move through Existence and Survival fast.
At the very least they will have:
A marketing plan developed from extensive research
Promotion and other start-up support such as brand identification
Sophisticated information and control systems so the whole franchise can be monitored
Operating procedures that are standardized and very well developed so delegation is consistent and efficient
I would add that, if the franchisor has really done the homework, there will also be:
Strong leadership for the group and an understanding of managing teams of equal partners
Good strategic and operational planning which has input from all franchise partners
And a very clear understanding of money management in the franchise group, making sure that all levels of the franchise can be profitable
I have to say, not many business I see have all these business aspects in place when they start to think about franchising. And the franchise process will help to put some in place. Things such as systems will be built and it will be essential to have a sound understanding of money management as the franchise structure is developed. If you are still working in the business though, putting in 60 or 80 hours a week, I think you will find the extra work and emotional energy to do the conversion can be more than a little overwhelming.
The Pillars for Successful Business Growth
So what’s the answer?
It’s really quite simple…
In discussing the five stages of business growth, Lewis and Churchill identified some skills needed and show that these skills are what are built up through the business growth process.
Delegation, leadership and people management which results in leveraging you out of the day to day of the business
Strategic and operational planning
In my mind, today, there is at least one other skill to be added.
Marketing and your brand
The thing is, I know very few of us, if any, have the individual skill to deal with every business ability to a satisfactory level, so creating a team is an essential component as soon as it is possible. The key is to understand each area and to know who to put into your team to move you and your business forward.
So here is some detail.
Marketing and Your Brand
Having a good understanding of your target market, what is wanted of you and what your brand should look and feel like is essential from the earliest days of business.
If you do not understand how important this is, you need to think about getting help from the beginning.
Fundamental today is knowing that people respond to the power of Why. If you do not know of Simon Sinek’s amazing Ted Talk on this then visit Start With Why and listen to what he has to say.
Once your brand is sorted, you need to think about how to get your message out into the very different market place of today. Central to this is your internet presence. Businesses without will generally not have the ability to grow beyond their local area if they even manage to reach that level.
The foundation of marketing today is the ability to communicate to your people in today’s vernacular and the bitter truth is that’s the killer for 80% of businesses.
Money Availability and Its Management
Managing business through the various growth stages from inception to maturity needs a good understanding of money. How to manage cash flow, what level
An independent app aimed at those want to participate in group sex called 3nder is being sued by Tinder for trademark infringement in the high court
The popular dating app owned by Match Group has claimed that 3nder’s name poses an “unfair advantage” due to its similarity to Tinder’s, according to The Guardian. It reportedly wants to shut down the smaller competitor to avoid “confusion.”
Claiming that “3nder” (“Thrinder”) is pronounced differently in other countries, 3nder founder Dimo Trifonov questioned whether a company can claim copyright of an existing word or combination of letters. He also noted that gay networking app Grindr, whose name is similar, was launched well ahead of Tinder.
“The whole thing is unfair … can I trademark the word coffee and then sue every coffee shop in the world?” he said. “Who does that? Evil corporations do that.”
While the two apps are both matchmaking tools used to find connections online, 3nder offers hookups for those looking for threesomes while Tinder focuses on the more traditional approach of singular partners.
Trifonov ensured that his company will stand its ground, saying that while Tinder is “loading a nuclear weapon” against his small company of eight employees, 3nder will fight back.
In an attempt to rally support from its users, 3nder called on members to post Tinder pictures of their socks via Twitter using the hashtag #TinderSuckMySocks.
“When a multi-billion corporation is after you, you don’t have many options but to fight back hard or just let them destroy you,” 3nder said of its anti-Tinder campaign.
“On the outside Tinder is cute and friendly but if you look below the surface you will see it is one piece of a gigantic corporation hungry for more.”
Some users heeded the call and flooded the social media site with tweets that expressed support for 3nder.
Aware of his firm’s chances against a relatively big company, Trifonov knows hashtag campaigns can only go so far.
“If I’m realistic, they can bankrupt us,” he told the Guardian. “It’s not about that though, it’s about right or wrong.”
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Is it a smart phone or is it a smart watch? Maybe, it’s both.
A small Chinese startup called Moxi Group is introducing a device that doubles as a smartphone and a watch. The product has a bendable touchscreen that can wrap around a user’s wrist to be worn as either a watch or bracelet. When unraveled, it works like any regular non-bendable smartphone.
Moxi, pronounced as “mou-she,” is shorthand for “graphene” in Chinese. It is the name of the material that gives the display its bendy characteristic.
According to CNN Money, graphene is the thinnest material in the world. It also has desirable qualities that make it an ideal material. Graphene, which is made from a layer of carbon atoms arranged in a highly conductive way, is strong, light, flexible and transparent.
The company, based in the city of Chongquing, claims to have already produced a prototype of the phone. By the end of this year, Moxi plans on putting 100,000 of its devices on China’s market.
However, one drawback of the product is that it will be initially available with only black-and-white displays. Moxi Group Executive Vice President Congsheng Yu, told Digital Trends:
“Black-and-white phones are much easier to make. The color model power usage is also much higher than that of the black-and-white unit.”
The company is working towards providing full-color screens, a much more difficult feat, by 2018. The phones released by the end of 2016 will be priced at around $ 760 each while the most affordable version of an Apple 6S iPhone costs $ 806 in China.
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Many first-time business owners are completely overwhelmed or unprepared by the amount of small business costs associated with operating a business. Small business costs often lead to the failure of many businesses, especially during the first year, or they even prevent them from getting started in the first place. Through a wide array of government and private programs, however, many small business owners have helpful options to help them finance their mounting small business costs.
A business plan is a necessity for obtaining business startup loans and funding for your business. Without one, most banks and investors will not even consider providing you with business startup loans or other funding for your new business. But a business plan provides more than just the opportunity to receive funding. Properly done it is also a blueprint for you to map out your future success in a written plan that you can stick to.
A business plan for the sole purpose of receiving a small business startup loan must contain several components. The first few pages include the Executive Summary and the Table of Contents. After this is the company description. This is one of the most important sections of a business plan. Your company description will give potential investors a short history of your small business along with the future you are planning for it. It describes plans you might have to expand your business. For purposes of getting small business startup loans, this is one of the sections that loan providers and investors are most interested in.
In the company description, you will want to avoid mentioning that your business is a startup business. Startup businesses are considered very risky investments by most investors. As an alternative, outline details of what you have contributed to the industry that you are currently in or plan on entering. Without sounding arrogant, mention some details or things that you have changed or something you have done differently than others in your market that has proved to be successful. Also, discuss how your business has grown in recent months or years and don’t be shy about your predicted growth. Your excitement and passion regarding your new business needs to be seen in the writing of your business plan to help increase your chances of getting a business startup loan.
One of the last parts of a well-written business plan, but certainly not the least important, is your marketing plan analysis. This is an explanation of your demographics using facts and figures and a study done about your new, potential customers and clients. This section also explains your advertising plans, especially your target market and how you intend to reach them. This section must show that you have done extensive research, appropriate with your market to ensure that your product or service has a large demand. In order to obtain small business startup loans, you will also need to include a sound financial plan, including pro-forma financial statements for your new business.
Small business costs can be a large concern for entrepreneurs and first-time business owners. Fortunately, small business owners have access to business startup loans as well as other forms of business startup funding to help them overcome their financial stress. A business plan is an ideal way to show investors that you are serious about your new venture and that you know how to make it a success. With a some extra financial help, most small businesses can pull through the tough times and remain a viable business.
Editor’s Note: The opinions and viewpoints expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or viewpoints of The Rice Daily.
My name is David Bond, and I make a living approaching Asian women on youtube and selling travel guides online. In the past two years I’ve successfully tricked, trolled and pranked the media in Asia into giving me millions and millions of free traffic.
I’ve been on televised Eastern news over 35 times and have been the subject of controversy in many parts of Asia for the past two years over my YouTube channel and my travel guides.
How It All Began
In 2014 I had a video that took place in Hong Kong go viral. It was a video where a friend of mine appeared to steal a Chinese guy’s girlfriend from him. The video topped out at 3.5 million views and made the news in Hong Kong for about two months. The truth was the guy wasn’t not only her boyfriend but was a random guy who just started talking to her.
All of this attention at first was very scary. Thousands of people were accusing me of being this bad guy, and my reaction was to try and set the story straight. There was so much racial debate swirling around the video, which was based on lies about me and what happened.
After many inquiries, I finally agreed to short interviews with Hong Kong media outlets. I remember answering their questions, trying to give long and detailed answers about the truth and why the controversy was completely based on false assumptions made by the viewers.
Many of these media outlets seemed annoyed over the real story and so resorted to asking me personal questions about my sex life. Eventually I did answer some of them honestly. I later looked over the coverage of my interview and noticed none of the honest answers I spent so much time giving them were featured, but instead they highlighted the very brief answers of mine which were sexual in nature.
Essentially the media outlets had no interest in what really happened because the truth did not fit the national narrative — which is that foreigners are sexual deviants, or that foreign influence is not good for the country.
I noticed that while all of my efforts to explain the real story and to justify myself were completely ignored, anything I’d say or show that fit the narrative would instantly blow up.
Drunk and bored one night, I messaged one of the media outlets on Facebook to tell them I had another video from Hong Kong that involved different girls.
One hour later my “lie” was put into a front-page article.
During this time I’d pay virtual assistants to translate articles about me. I noticed similar words in the headlines and eventually figured out what words in Chinese were being used to describe me. I’d Google those words and found other articles about foreigners being “bad boys” that were written long before me.
Some of these stories were so innocent it was almost confusing why they were newsworthy.
I realized I made a discovery, and I had an idea on how to trigger this attention on demand.
I tested my theory, and it worked.
I launched my first website, which was a website where people would have to pay $ 17 to get access to videos I uploaded of me traveling, on dates, or exploring different countries. All of the videos were innocent: for example, a 45-minute video of me riding a motorbike in Vietnam or a video of me and my girlfriend in Japan looking at temples.
I then told the media outlets that covered me that I launched a website with videos from Hong Kong.
I then paid dozens of virtual assistants to lie and message the media outlets in Chinese that my website contained sexual videos.
It worked, and within days thousands of dollars were being dumped into my bank account by Chinese men who believed the Hong Kong media — who by the way did absolutely zero fact-checking.
I was literally turning lies into profit.
Keep in mind, the website did not mention sexuality or claim to host anything sexual at all. I directly was not lying to anyone or scamming anyone. It’s not like the website said, “Pay for sexual videos” or anything. It simply said, “Check out more of my travel videos.”
In addition to that I had no guilt over this because technically my reputation was being completely destroyed online by Asian media outlets. For example, if CNN did a story about me being a rapist with absolutely no evidence, I could sue for defamation — but these scumbag Asian outlets had no problem completely lying about who I am, what I do, or what I think. The opportunity to have another flashy “foreigners are bad” story was too good to let facts or truth get in the way of the attention.
To this day my jaw still drops over the factual claims made about me with zero evidence. One Korean news channel even said I teach men to scream “Pikachu” at women and that I sell porn.
How to Score Asian Media Coverage
In the past two years, after dozens of translations and study of Asian-based media outlets, I’ve developed an attention trigger system that allows me to essentially troll the Eastern media for traffic.
So essentially i’ve identified which Asian countries have a cultural narrative that involves foreigner fear and found a way to exploit it on demand for profit.
In many parts of Asia there’s a cultural narrative that states foreigners and foreign influence is bad, and so anything that seems to reinforce that idea is an easy story for Eastern-based news outlets. To make an analogy that people might understand, in liberal parts of the United States there’s a cultural narrative that gun laws should be more strict, so any story of gun violence is instantly put all over the news — whereas a story of guns being used to stop crime never make the news. The principle is that news runs on people’s attention, and anything that re-enforces the existing beliefs of the people is a quick and easy way to get attention.
In a way, i’ve come up with a way to convert racism, lies, and hate into cash.
Here’s an example me trolling my way into a magazine.
I paid two virtual assistants to message Face magazine that they had a “David Bond Sighting” in Hong Kong, and shortly after they asked me if I was. I then pretended to be shocked that they knew I was in Hong Kong (I was really at my mom’s house in Fresno, California.)
I asked my girlfriend at the time to get in her panties and pretend to pull my pants down. I uploaded the video and told Face magazine that I was with a Hong Kong girl and was too busy to chat. Knowing the formula I knew this would work. It had all the right elements: foreigner seducing local girls, hints at a sexual video, etc. A week later someone sent me a photo of the front page of the magazine and it had a screenshot from the video we recorded.
My girlfriend and I laughed our heads off as the Paypal notifications rolled in from all the traffic my YouTube channel and website had received from my trolling.
During this time to keep my story alive i’d use fake facebook accounts acting as young asian girls who claimed to knew me in real life. Having read so many ‘foreigners are bad’ stories I knew exactly the type of content they we’re excited to blow up. I’d proceed to “leak” photos of myself as well as short stories about myself – anything that would make me appear as some sexual predator with the power to bed local girls would instantly go viral and keep sales going.
I’d ask my girlfriend in the US to wear one of her Japanese school girl outfits, then leak a photo of me with a “Japanese girl” in Japan. I’d pretend to be a girl and “leak” photos of me at clubs with girls. I’d leak photos of me with girls I used to date from years ago, and claim they were in whatever country I was trolling that week.
If you watch the David Bond News Coverage Compilation v 1.0 video you can see the photos they show, almost all of them were leaked by me, but the news reports it as “an anonymous source”
Here’s another example.
I noticed a small bump in Korean traffic from my channel and tracked the source and noticed there was a Korean blog that covered my channel. The article said I had a YouTube channel where I pick up girls in Japan and also sold a video guide on how to get laid in Japan.
A copycat blog then covered the same story, and I knew it was a great time to pour some gasoline on the small fire.
I quickly edited a fake trailer announcing “Korea: By David Bond,” the “guide” on getting Korean girls. I made a quick landing page that said “Stay Tuned” with a fake Photoshopped plane ticket showing that I was going to Korea.
I uploaded the video and even bragged to my friends in my private Facebook group that it would make news in a week.
The video got 30,000 views in 24 hours, and within two days I was all over the Korean news.
In the next seven days I had over 2 million hits in traffic.
The Korean media made a story about an “American playboy” coming to Korea and how local women should watch out. They also claimed I sell porn and scream “Pikachu” at girls. I don’t know where the Pikachu thing or the pornstar thing came from, but whatever.
Knowing that internet porn in Korea is illegal, I hiked my prices for all my digital products. One video site went from $ 17 to $ 197. I then hiked my Japan guide and hiked the upsells by 40 percent.
My trolling worked as planned — another gullible Eastern media outlet vomiting regurgitated rumors with no fact-checking.
The good thing about my latest traffic trigger troll was the whole thing paid my rent for the next two years. Thanks, Korea.
There’s No Such Thing as Bad Publicity
As tempting as it is to try and clear my name or correct the lies about me, it’s in my best interest for the hate, the rumors, and the lies to spread — hate, lies, and rumors all drive traffic and sales.
The good thing is many of my fans only knew about me from the bad press I helped to create, and many of my haters slowly turn into fans.
The truth is despite being American, my content really resonates with a predominantly Eastern male demographic. In fact, over 95 percent of my sales are from the East. Based on the non-stop interaction I have with my audience, many men in the East feel more cultural pressure to behave in a polite way, and this can make meeting girls more difficult, especially if they’re strangers. So watching a person who is behaving free of the pressure can evoke extreme hate or extreme inspiration.
In fact I get many private messages secretly thanking me for content.
One of my favorite moments happened recently in Bangkok, where I’m currently living. I was approached by a Japanese guy who asked if I was David Bond. He said, “Wow! I love your videos!” and we talked for a bit. We later went to a strip club together and had a few laughs.
I’m going to take a small break from the Eastern media button pushing. I launched “Thailand — A Single Man’s Guide” and am currently living in Thailand. Two years of media manipulation and trolling is still driving traffic and sales. For now I just want to enjoy life in Thailand where all I do is sleep in late, swim in my rooftop pool with my girlfriends, and go out to do street photography. Besides, if things ever get slow I have an atomic media troll in my back pocket for emergencies.
The post was originally published on The Rice Daily.
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