Dirty Money: Will Singapore Clean Up Its Act? Singapore has become an increasingly popular haven for money laundering and tax evasion. Can it be both a home for fortune hunters and a bastion of integrity?

11/01/2013 06:59 PM

Dirty Money: Will Singapore Clean Up Its Act?

By Martin Hesse

Singapore has become an increasingly popular haven for money laundering and tax evasion. But now it faces calls for reform and a difficult dilemma: Can it be both a home for fortune hunters and a bastion of integrity?

A yellowish-brown fog has settled in the urban canyons of Singapore’s financial district. From a skyscraper high above the harbor, you can hardly make out the endless rows of containers in the port terminals. A cloud of smog locally referred to as the “haze” — caused by the slash-and-burn farming methods of the palm oil barons in neighboring Indonesia — regularly darkens the skies of the wealthy city-state of Singapore, at the southern tip of the Malaysian Peninsula. But the air has never been as bad as it is now. Read more of this post

Welcome To The Unicorn Club: Learning From Billion-Dollar Startups

Welcome To The Unicorn Club: Learning From Billion-Dollar Startups

Posted 13 hours ago by Aileen Lee (@aileenlee)

Editor’s note: Aileen Lee is founder of Cowboy Ventures, a seed-stage fund that backs entrepreneurs reinventing work and personal life through software. Previously, she joined Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in 1999 and was also founding CEO of digital media company RMG Networks, backed by KPCB. Follow her on Twitter @aileenlee
Many entrepreneurs, and the venture investors who back them, seek to build billion-dollar companies.

Why do investors seem to care about “billion dollar exits”? Historically, top venture funds have driven returns from their ownership in just a few companies in a given fund of many companies. Plus, traditional venture funds have grown in size, requiring larger “exits” to deliver acceptable returns. For example – to return just the initial capital of a $400 million venture fund, that might mean needing to own 20 percent of two different $1 billion companies, or 20 percent of a $2 billion company when the company is acquired or goes public. So, we wondered, as we’re a year into our new fund (which doesn’t need to back billion-dollar companies to succeed, but hey, we like to learn): how likely is it for a startup to achieve a billion-dollar valuation? Is there anything we can learn from the mega hits of the past decade, likeFacebookLinkedIn and Workday? To answer these questions, the Cowboy Ventures team built a dataset of U.S.-based tech companies started since January 2003 and most recently valued at $1 billion by private or public markets. We call it our “Learning Project,” and it’s ongoing.

unicorn-graph1c unicorn-graph2c unicorn-graph3c Read more of this post

Reduce the noise levels in your investment process

Reduce the noise levels in your investment process

By Barry Ritholtz, Published: November 1

“Signal-to-noise ratio” is an engineering concept that focuses on the amount of useful information being received compared with false or useless data. This is an especially important concept to investors. Over the past few years, I have been reducing the meaningless distractions in my investing process. You should, too. You want less of the annoying nonsense that interferes with your portfolios and more of the significant data that allow you to become a less distracted, more purposeful investor. Read more of this post

Sears’ CEO and billionaire hedge fund manager Eddie Lampert: “I’d like to go faster. I’d like to go bigger. We’re just not making money, which makes it much, much harder to fund the transformation.”

November 2, 2013

At Sears, Those Big Losses Get in the Way

By GRETCHEN MORGENSON

“I’d like to go faster. I’d like to go bigger. We’re just not making money, which makes it much, much harder to fund the transformation.” That’s Edward S. Lampert, the chairman and chief executive of Sears Holdings, speaking last Friday about what lies ahead for this embattled retailing giant, which he put together in 2005 and now oversees. Earlier in the week, the company had announced a possible spin-off of a prized asset — the trusted online retailer Lands’ End. Together with another spin-off, of Sears Auto Centers, the company could “accelerate our transformation into a leading integrated retailer,” it said. Read more of this post

Oarfish Offer Chance to Study an Elusive Animal Long Thought a Monster

November 2, 2013

Oarfish Offer Chance to Study an Elusive Animal Long Thought a Monster

By DOUGLAS QUENQUA

OARFISH-1-articleLarge

The body of an 18-foot male oarfish was found in the waters off Santa Catalina Island in California last month. Five days later, a 14-foot female washed up 50 miles away. It was a big day for marine biologists: On Oct. 13, the body of an 18-foot oarfish was dragged from the water onto Santa Catalina Island off the California coast, presenting a rare opportunity for local scientists to study one of the world’s most elusive and awe-inspiring big fish. Five days later, it was a big day again: Another oarfish washed up 50 miles away, this one 14 feet with six-foot-long ovaries full of eggs.

Read more of this post

Want to be a chief executive of a FTSE 350 company? Here’s the route to follow

Want to be a chief executive? Here’s the route to follow

Hit the sweetspot to becoming a company boss by being male, 46 years old, with a university – ideally Oxbridge – education.

By Rebecca Burn-Callander

6:01AM GMT 31 Oct 2013

The average chief executive of a FTSE 350 company is a 46-year-old male, who attended Oxford or Cambridge University, according to research by business intelligence company QlikTech. The company crunched background data on all of the current FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 CEOs, as of August 2013, to find out where they were born, where they went to university, and details around the subjects they studied and key points from their later career.

THUMB (1) Read more of this post

A joint Chinese and Singaporean research team have developed an “invisibility cloak” using polygonal devices with glass

Chinese, Singaporean team develop invisibility cloak

Staff Reporter

2013-11-03

20131102invisiblehexagon-151925_copy1

The glass device makes part of a pencil disappear. (Internet photo)

A joint Chinese and Singaporean research team have developed an “invisibility cloak” using polygonal devices with glass, reports China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency. Professor Chen Hongsheng of the Electromagnetics Academy of Zhejiang University and a research team from Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University successfully made a goldfish and a cat disappear with the new light-bending technology. Read more of this post

%d bloggers like this: