RBS Facing Overhaul At Hands Of CEO

Category:General

On Thursday 12th January Stephen Hester, CEO of RBS, will make an announcement to the 18,900 employees in the company’s investment banking division, revealing potential cuts of up to 5,000 jobs. This comes after almost a decade of growth overseen by former CEO Fred Goodwin, which included $140billion of acquisitions.

RBS, currently Britain’s largest government owned-lender, may end up closing its global equities and corporate finance units, as well as its cash equities, equity research, corporate broking and mergers and acquisitions divisions, according to one senior executive who was not at liberty to speak publicly.

Raul Sinha, analyst at JPmorgan Cazenove in London, thinks that shutting down the equities division may not be a strong enough measure. “Addressing only the equities business profitability is insufficient to change the global banking and markets unit’s return on equity prospects, given that the issues are capital consumption as well as costs,” he stated in a note to investors.

According to Liam Vaughn and Howard Mustoe at businessweek.com, current cuts can be seen as an extension of the cuts Hester made when he first took over from CEO Fred Goodwin in 2009: “Since that time he has cut the bank’s assets by about 1 trillion pounds ($1.54 trillion). He retreated from some markets in Asia, running off loans and selling units including the European division of commodities-trading business RBS Sempra, which JPMorgan Chase & Co. bought for $1.7 billion. At the same time he expanded the bank’s equities and advisory business on the continent.”(Mustoe & Vaughn, 2012)

RBS is by no means the only securities firm to face downsizing since the European debt crisis began. Nomura Holdings Inc. and UniCredit SpA are both companies that have eliminated jobs in Europe.

The management consulting firm McKinsey & Co. reviewed RBS in 2009. A former RBS executive who worked alongside them has said that their worst case scenario for the future was entitled “Nuclear Winter” and took into account deterioration of the economy and a drop in market share for RBS. Since then, the executive (who wished to remain anonymous) has stated that the reality may in fact be even worse, due to more recent developments such as the sovereign debt crisis and new regulations on the planned insulation of consumer banking.

Plans for the overhaul are to be outlined this week, including “the transformation of RBS into a U.K. and U.S.- focused consumer bank and lender to companies. The firm will retain its payment-processing arm under the plan along with a smaller investment bank focused on underwriting and trading debt… “(Mustoe & Vaughn, 2012). Fuller details will be given on 23rd February, when the bank reports its year-end earnings. Bruce Packard, an analyst at Seymour Piece Ltd., has remarked that the transition will bring the bank back in line with how it looked in 2004, “before the GBM runaway growth phase”. He then added: “I don’t think they’re being radical enough… The revenue is not worth anything if you can’t control the staff costs.”

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) : Computer Programs Tested By CPAs

Category:Financials | General

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is a commonly used computer program for business management. Since businesses use various applications to keep its ventures running smoothly, ERP software is used to integrate all these applications as one unified operational software. ERPs can handle product planning, inventory control, purchasing, quality assurance, accounting, financing, and a whole lot more in a single package.

With the complexity of contemporary businesses, it is only reasonable to have ERPs that cater to ever-changing business needs and demands. According to Carlton Collins, a Certified Public Accountant, ERPs and accounting software solutions must be evaluated based on their edge over competitors.

One can be easily disheartened to see the complex features of various accounting software. However, Carlton points out that all accounting software have a general ledger and accounting and financial features like any other software available. Hence, the edge that each computer program must have is its ability to accommodate and serve their target market and number of users.

Good accounting software are also backed by the Certified Public Accountant community. CPAs can confirm the software’s features when they are allowed to use and examine it. The success of MAS90 in the early 90’s was evident in the fact that the software was permitted for reselling by CPAs for a reasonable price.

MAS 90 Software Features

Some resellers for MAS90 software attest that the product is widely used, based on its 86,000 users. Such huge number tells you that many individuals and businesses have benefited from the software for years now. Not only that, the number also indicates that the product is proven to deliver efficiency and quality assurance.

The features of MAS 90 and MAS 200 can be maximized by stock or assemble-to-order companies, as well as mid-size and small distributors. MAS90 software gives data integrity and reliability a new meaning. It can be used by a single user or a 100-user client server and it can be implemented in various platforms without converting data regularly. With its flexible features, it also paves the way for easier data migration.

Untapped Silver Resources in Turkey

Category:Business | General

Latin American countries like Mexico and Peru are an obvious choice when it comes to the largest silver mines, with both countries producing the majority amount of silver in the world. However, untapped silver resources in booming economies like Turkey are adding a new perspective to the silver market.

In 2010, the third largest Gumuskoy silver mine in the world was located in Turkey, which is also ranked as the 13th largest silver producing nation in the world. Turkey lures investors with an attractive location, thriving economy, a burning desire to utilize its resources and a positive approach towards mining companies wanting to gain permits.

The 17th largest economy in the world, Turkey is the second most promising economy after China. Even during the economic collapse, well-synchronized financial markets and banking systems kept its head above the water. In fact, the economy showed a steady growth of 7.3% in 2010. Turkey brags of modern infrastructure even in remote areas and has some of the best roads in the world. It ranks high on electrical consumption and production, factors that will diminish the cost of production in comparison to economically less developed countries.

Although, FDI was not allowed in the country until 1993, the country is now welcoming foreign mining firms with open arms. Since, the entry of foreign investment in Turkey, the prospects of large mineral reserves in the country will be fully explored. Moreover, mining firms are looking forward to invest in Turkey because of the country’s incredible growth rates. Companies trading in traditional markets like construction and textiles are now ready to take the risk of thinking laterally and buy a stake in mining. It also indicates the growing amount of investment money available with medium sized firms.

Turkey is mainly a copper producing country with a prominent belt of the said metal running through the country. Its silver mining operations are mostly polymetallic with heavy deposits of copper, zinc, lead, and gold found in the mines. Companies are hoping to find reserves similar to the Gumuskoy mine, which is the third largest silver mine in the world.

Some of the prominent polymetallic silver mines in Turkey are Yenipazar gold-silver-zinc-lead mine in the centre of Turkey managed by Alridge Minerals, Red Mountain (Kizildag) mine possessed by Mediterranean Resources Ltd., and the Golcuk, Akarca gold-silver mines owned by Eurasian minerals. With time, Turkey is slowly disclosing its hidden wealth of minerals.

As for silver prices around the world, they continue to climb amidst a rebound in the euro against the U.S. dollar. Prices on silver have also risen sharply in trading due the escalating Iran tensions.

Commercial Cleaning As a Business, Is It Right for You?

Category:Business | Financials | General | Health | Technology

Take a look in your newspaper, and you will likely find stories about businesses closing their doors after decades of service to consumers. In this economy, you will likely see more of these stories than in previous years. The businesses that are remaining afloat or are even thriving these days are the strong ones with solid business plans, energetic and bright marketing teams and clean, maintained stores or offices. Nobody wants to shop at or do business with a company that does not maintain an organized, clean and tidy appearance. Recently, a national retailer with over a century of experience announced that it was closing over a hundred stores, citing “economic difficulties.” The sad thing is that this particular retailer was a pioneer in the mail order and discount store arena. For whatever reason, the company has allowed its stores to fall into clutter and disarray. Consumers nowadays demand cleanliness and order to the point that they will not spend their hard-earned dollars in a messy store. In today’s competitive market, three compelling reasons for choosing a commercial cleaning company for your business are: retaining happy clients, improving employee productivity, and maintaining a uniform standard of cleanliness.

Let’s start with retaining happy clients. A satisfied and happy client is the backbone of many a business regardless of size. We also know that satisfied clients will talk about their experiences with friends and colleagues, using the old “word of mouth” advertising that businesses all rely on. If a client has a bad experience, they will be sure to talk about this to anyone who will listen. You only get one chance to make a first impression, right? The first step to making that good first impression is to keep the business environment clean and organized. If you don’t bother keeping the restrooms or parking lot clean, you may look like you won’t be careful with the job they are trusting you to do for them. You want your clients to have complete confidence in your abilities and you want to show that you have your act together. Nobody wants to walk into a dirty store, or nail salon, or dry cleaning studio. Clutter and dirt are major turn offs and consumers are definitely willing to spend their money elsewhere if a cleaner option presents itself, even if they need to spend a little more. Next, think about your employees. Most of them have to spend eight or more hours at their job. Whether they enjoy it or not is really besides the point; they have a job to do and they will do it best in a clean environment. If you hire someone to take out the trash, vacuum the floors and clean the restrooms, your employees will feel like you want them to have a safe and sanitary work environment, and they will appreciate it. Also, eliminating these chores from your employee’s to do lists frees them up to do the work you hired them for.

Finally, look at most successful businesses, from burger chains to high-end fashion department stores. They have a standard of cleanliness that often depends on a schedule with specific tasks that must be completed. For example, certain department stores insist that all carpets be vacuumed each night in each of their stores, regardless of how busy or slow they were that day. Trash is taken to the dumpster every day, regardless of how little trash has accumulated. Other businesses have a cleaning crew clean their restrooms each night or at certain times of the day depending on business and traffic levels. By adopting a regular schedule of professional cleaning, your company will start hold itself to a high standard in that area. You may start to notice that your employees will take ownership of their work environment and alert you if rules are not followed. They will expect this cleaning to occur. For example, let’s say the cleaning crew doesn’t come on a night they are supposed to. Instead of letting this go, you or your employees will notice that they cleaning has not been completed and alert someone who can amend this problem. As you can see, a commercial cleaning company is the most efficient and professional way to go. By understanding that the business world is a highly competitive arena these days, you can adjust your actions and thrive and prosper as a result. Consider hiring a commercial cleaning company and watch as your business takes off.

The Process of Polythene Manufacturing in the UK

Category:Business | General

Types of Polythene

• Low Density Polyethylene – LDPE
• High Density Polythene – HDPE
• Linear Low Density – LLDPE
• Metallocene Linear – MLDPE

Properties

LDPE – Natural in colour with good clarity. Flexible and pliable with good tensile strength HDPE – Natural in colour with cloudy appearance. Stiffer more rigid film with high strength properties LLDPE – Is a polymer which when added increases performance particularly in it strength characteristics MLDPE – This is linear polythene, with good strength characteristics, again natural in col-our Film Substrates Virgin Reprocessed Mixed Density Co-extruded

• Virgin: Extruded from its natural Material for more critical and consistent Applications
• Reprocessed: Extruded from recycled polythene for non critical applications such as waste bags
• Mixed Density: Mixing polymers together to form different characteristics.
• Co-extruded: Multi layered polythene containing different polymer grades. Polythene Additives

Masterbatches

Polythene is natural in colour and masterbatches are added to give its colour. Different % of masterbatches is added to give the polythene its opacity of colour. For a hint of colour about 1-2 % is added to give it a tint. For a deep colour where the polythene needs to be opaque between 6 and 12% addition Only certain colours have good opacity properties e.g. White cannot be opaque so co-ex (multi layered) needs to be made with a coloured inner layer.

Bio-Degradable

This is an additive that we add to the film to make it degrade, there are a number of different additives on the market which we use.

The Polythene Manufacturing Process

The Blown Film Process

The blown film process is the method by which the vast majority of all polythene products are manufactured. Polythene granules are fed into an extruder. As the granules are transported down the extruder screw, they are continuously heated and eventually become molten.

The melt passes through a narrow slit forming a tube which is extruded vertically until it can be clamped at the top nip rollers, which continuously pull the tube from the die. Once clamped the tube is inflated to create the desired width, the speed of the nip rolls determines the film thickness. The film is air cooled to set the film dimensions.

The tube is then collapsed prior to the nips to form a lay flat tube to a set width and thickness. The flat film is passed through path rollers to a floor mounted winder. Further processing can take place during this section for example: Slitting, Trimming, Perforation or treatment for print.

The cast film process

In the cast film process the material is forced through a slit die to form a sheet. The sheet is (as with blown film) drawn off via nip rolls again the wall thickness is determined by the speed at which the material is drawn off.

Cast film is cooled as it exits the die via large water cooled chill rolls which also leave a micro embossed pattern on the film. Winding styles and terminology Lay Flat Tube (LFT) – The most basic blown film product – formed by collapsing and flattening the bubble / tube. All other blown film products are derived from the lay flat. Centre Fold Sheet (CFS) – This is a lay flat tube with one edge fold removed by either a trim or an edge slit. Single Wound Sheet (SWS) – Again both edges of the edge fold are removed. In this instance the two sheets of film are separated and are wound up simultaneously. As with double wound sheet (DWS), the roll can now be slit down into multiple rolls by inserting slitting Blades. Because cast film is extruded through a ‘slit die’ the final product is exclusively Single Wound Sheet.

Double Wound Sheet

(DWS) – Both edge folds of the lay flat are removed leaving two single sheets of film wound onto one core. The roll may now be slit down into multiple rolls by the addition of slitting blades. Gusseted Lay Flat (GLFT) – Gusseted film is formed by using a pair of wooden (or metal triangles) to alter the shape of the bubble as it passes through the collapsing frame. J Fold Sheet (JFS) – This is a lay flat tube with one trim removed from a section from the edge fold to a specified width on the upper or lower web.

The Printing Process Flexography is the major process used to print packaging materials. Flexography is used to print corrugated containers, folding cartons, multiwall sacks, paper sacks, plastic bags, milk and beverage cartons, disposable cups and containers, labels, adhesive tapes, envelopes, newspapers, and wrappers. Flexographic presses are capable of producing good quality impressions on many different substrates and are the least expensive and simplest of the printing processes used for decorating and packaging printing. The use of flexographic printing presses is on the rise. There are two primary reasons for this: 1) it is a relatively simple operation; and 2) it is easily adapted to the use of water-based inks. The widespread use of water-based inks in flexographic printing means a large reduction in VOC emission compared to thick headset web or gravure printing processes.

Publication flexography is used mainly in the production of newspaper, comics, directories, newspaper inserts, and catalogues. Packaging flexography is used for the production of folding cartons, labels, and packaging materials. Large quantities of inks are used during normal runs on flexographic presses; however, some printers are able to recycle a majority of their spent inks and wash waters. Major chemicals used in flexography include plate making solution, water and solvent based inks, and blanket/roller cleaning solvents. Flexography is a form of rotary web letterpress, combining features of both letterpress and rotogravure printing, using relief plates comprised of flexible rubber or photopolymer plates and fast drying, low viscosity solvent, water-based or UV curable inks fed from an “anilox” or two roller inking system. The flexible (rubber or photopolymer) plates are mounted onto the printing cylinder with double-faced adhesive. Plates are sometimes backed with thin metal sheets and attached to the cylinder with fastening straps for close register or ink alignment. This adds additional cost to the plate and requires more make-ready time, but when quality printing is critical this type of plate can make the difference.