Category Archive : Technology

Before you go to Barbados, here are some useful facts and things to know so that when you arrive on the island you will know what to expect.

Barbados has one airport: Grantley Adams International Airport (BGI). The airport is in the south of the island and is 16 km from Bridgetown, the capital. There is only one terminal at the airport. The airport does not have airbridges, so passengers must exit the plane by a staircase and walk to the arrivals hall.

Barbados has a strict rule that prohibits any form of army camouflage clothing, including hats, scarves, shorts, T-shirts, backpacks, etc. The Authorities will ask anyone who brings these items into the country (including children) to take them away.

LANDING CARD

On board the flight, you will be given an immigration / customs form to complete. Forms must be completed prior to entering the Arrivals Hall. Visitors must indicate the address where they will be staying while in Barbados. On the back of the landing card there is a blue customs form that you must complete and give to the customs officer once you have collected your luggage.

AIRPORT MEET & GREET

Take the hassle out of your arrival experience by organizing a personal Meet and Greet service. This service includes being personally escorted through Immigration, immediate assistance with baggage retrieval, and continuing through Customs to an air-conditioned taxi waiting for you.

RED CAPS

After you have passed Immigration, you will see numerous “Red Caps”. These men and women are available to help you with your bags and will accompany you through Customs abroad. It is customary to tip Red Caps Bds $ 2 (US $ 1) per bag, however, for additional luggage or exceptional service, an additional tip will not be declined.

FREE ARRIVAL PURCHASES

There is a duty-free wine and spirits shop next to the baggage claim area, where prices can be up to 70% lower than retail purchases on the island. Especially good bargains are found on vodka, gin, and whiskeys. There are no savings on our local rum. Each person is allowed 1 liter, but connoisseurs know that they can buy more than the 1 liter limit.

TRANSPORT

Unless you have made prior arrangements for a private taxi, upon exiting the Arrivals Hall there is a counter immediately to the left where a taxi dispatcher will direct you to the next available taxi. There are signs with posted rates for all the major destinations on the island, but keep in mind that most, if not all, drivers will charge an additional fee based on the number of passengers and the amount of luggage. We suggest that you agree on a price before you leave the airport.

CAR RENTAL

There are numerous car rental companies on the island, but only a few meet international standards. Courtesy Rent-a-Car, one of Barbados’ oldest and best-known car rental companies, and Drive-a-Matic have kiosks on the left immediately after exiting the Arrivals Hall. With prior reservation, other companies will generally greet you with a sign in hand outside the Arrivals Hall.

DRINKING WATER

Barbados water is naturally filtered through limestone and coral and is therefore safe to drink. Some say that the water of Barbados is fit for a queen, as Queen Elizabeth herself declared that the water of Barbados was delicious.

FREE SHOPPING

If you are shopping at any of the many stores on the island, be sure to bring your passport and immigration card as you will be required to present these documents to purchase certain items duty free. Alcohol and tobacco purchases cannot be taken with you, but will be waiting for you at the counter of the Chamber of Commerce after you pass the security check in the Departures Hall.

MOVE

We drive on the left side of the road, which means that the steering wheel is located on the right side of the vehicle. For those of you who drive on the “other side of the road,” be careful, be careful, and look both ways before crossing the street. Simple tip: the steering wheel should always be in the middle of the road, never to the side!

Baja Californians like their car horns. Horns of anger are rarely heard in Barbados, but rather as a friendly greeting, as a “please go ahead” and as a thank you. A flash of the lights is an indication “please proceed before me”.

Our extensive road system can be challenging to navigate. You can download a free SatNav map to your Garmin and some car rental companies offer a SatNav with your car rental. The signs at the bus stop are helpful in knowing which direction you are going. They are marked as “To Town” or “Out of Town”. This is useful if you want to go in either direction, but crossing the country can be a bit more difficult.

PUBLIC TRANSPORT

Our public transport system is quite good, however there is no particular schedule. Blue buses are owned by the government; the yellow minibuses and the small white ZR vans are privately owned. Unfortunately, there is sporadic law enforcement of the sometimes unsafe driving practices exhibited by public transportation vehicles. Use these vehicles at your own risk. Bus fares are Bds $ 2 / US $ 1 to anywhere on the island. Just raise your hand to stop a bus.

LOCAL DRIVING LICENSE

If you rent a vehicle, the car rental company will issue you a driving license valid for 3 months. The cost is Bds $ 10 / US $ 5. Alternatively, if you want to borrow a vehicle from a family member or friend, you can get your local driving license at any police station. They accept only Barbadian dollars. Remember to bring your own driving license.

BABY MATERIAL RENTAL

Car seats, strollers, cots, cribs, and even toys can be easily rented if you want to leave those bulky items at home to facilitate a hassle-free trip to Barbados.

SPENDING MONEY

US dollars are easily accepted throughout the island at a conversion rate of $ 2.00 Bds equal to $ 1.00 US. Any other currency can be converted to Barbadian dollars at any of the island’s banks or at the bank using the airport baggage claim service. Upon departure, the National Bank of Barbados kiosk located in the Departures Hall can exchange the remaining Barbadian dollars into your local currency. All major credit cards are accepted in Barbados, although American Express is not widely accepted.

Tips

It is not customary to tip taxi drivers, although a tip will not be refused. The average tip for a restaurant is 10%, but make sure a service charge or tip has not been included in the restaurant bill. In the supermarket, it is customary to give packers their shopping bags and then take them to their car a couple of dollars. In private villas, the staff welcomes a tip at the end of your vacation and this amount is at your discretion, depending on the level of service you have received. Check with your villa manager or reservation agent for guidelines. Hotels typically automatically add a 10% service charge to your room and food and beverage bill.

Bitcoin is in! It recently went up to $ 5480.68 per coin! People are fighting to get hold of it. But can you pay for things with this digital money? Yes! This is by no means all companies that accept Bitcoin, but it is an interesting list of big names to show you that it is now a serious currency to consider owning …

  • Dell now accepts Bitcoin. They have a partnership with Coinbase, one of the most trusted exchanges.

  • DISH Network: Internet Service Provider

  • Newegg – Large Computer Hardware and Electronics Retailer

  • Microsoft – Add money to your account with Bitcoin to buy apps, games, and videos.

  • TigerDirect – California-based retailer that provides electronic products, computers, and computer components for business and corporate customers.

  • Virgin Galactic – The aviation company run by Richard Branson started accepting Bitcoin for customers who are interested in flying into space and paying with Bitcoin.

  • WordPress – The popular blogging platform used by some of the world’s largest media companies has accepted Bitcoin since 2012.

  • The Pirate Bay – A great BitTorrent director with a huge library of movies, TV shows, software, and music started accepting Bitcoins in April 2013.

  • Reddit: Reddit allows users to buy Reddit Gold using Bitcoins.

  • Zynga – A popular mobile game company loves Bitcoin.

  • OkCupid – The online dating site started accepting Bitcoin for premium services in April 2013.

  • Memory Distributors: Carries a wide range of computer memory and network hardware equipment.

  • CheapAir – This California-based online travel booking website began accepting bitcoins in November 2013.

  • The NBA Sacramento Kings franchise takes Bitcoin for food, clothing, and beer.

  • Namecheap – This service offers inexpensive domain registration. It started allowing customers to pay with Bitcoin in 2013.

  • Intuit – An American software company that develops financial and tax preparation software and related services for small businesses, accountants, and individuals.

  • Bloomberg.com – Online Newspaper

  • PizzaForCoins.com – Domino’s Pizza signed up

  • Steam: desktop gaming platform

  • Subway – Eat fresh

  • A class limousine – a luxury service will pick you up.

  • Suntimes.com – Chicago-based online newspaper

  • Rakutan: a Japanese e-commerce giant

  • MovieTickets.com – Online Movie Ticket Exchange / Retailer

  • Yacht-base.com – Croatian yacht charter company

  • Expedia.com – Online Travel Booking Agency

  • Save the Children: global charity

There are thousands more and hundreds of thousands to come. Bitcoin is just a baby. More and more companies will realize the value of this magic coin soon. Many wealthy investors are buying it like crazy. Maybe they know something that the general public needs to know!

Last week I turned 60 years old.

Maybe at different times, I would be bothered by the fact that most of my life is over. Yet amid the pandemic and civil unrest, this historic birthday seems somewhat minor.

Instead, this turning point in my life seems like the perfect time to reflect and count my blessings. As they say, not everyone reaches 60 and for that I am grateful. As I am older, I know there are simple reasons to cherish each day of life, even during this COVID outbreak.

Like what, you ask?

After a record hot summer with 146 days of temperatures over 100 years this year, fall has finally arrived in the California desert where I live. Last week my husband and I sat outside on our patio. Mars shone brightly over us. We enjoyed a dinner of grilled steak and listened to romantic music.

These are the things that make me happy.

Due to the pandemic, I almost missed my youngest grandson, Paige’s second year of life. She thinks I live on a phone. Last week, we called my youngest son, Christopher, and his wife, Johnni, and he sounded annoyed. Paige picked up the phone and looked at me with her big blue eyes and asked, “What happened, Grandma?” She looked at me seriously, like she was eager to listen and really cared. And she has two. My heart swelled.

These are the things that make me happy.

Throughout this pandemic, my friends left small homemade gifts, sent flowers and cards, and provided much-needed love and support. My family lives across the street and always has a listening ear, ready to help me in any way. My other grandchildren live with me along with my oldest son, Jonathan, so thankfully I will not be deprived of their company during this pandemic. My 9-year-old granddaughter River proudly showed me how she is learning to skate with her new teal skates and matching helmet. She described how she can only wear matching clothes. Rowan, my 11-year-old grandson, was eager to show me his tomato plants and a playground he built for his two parakeets made from sticks and other household supplies.

These are the things that make me happy.

So this is the question. Once you stop focusing on the fact that life goes by faster than you ever imagined and regretting those extra wrinkles, you can find plenty of reasons to be happy about being 60 years old. Although this has been a difficult year in many ways, I look for ways to stay calm, trust God, and focus on the positive.

After all, at 60, I know what matters. I fully realize the importance of my spiritual needs, my relationships, my health, and my compassion. I have weathered storms and I know I will survive. I appreciate a good laugh. I understand my priorities. I am more confident and comfortable in my own skin. In fact, I was not born yesterday and have gained invaluable wisdom along the way.

Plus, turning 60 is liberating.

Last week, I was sitting on my patio with 60s classical music blasting through my headphones. Let’s face it, I was rocking, I mean squarely with my arms hanging over my head, eyes closed. Okay, maybe I had a glass of wine and, by the way, I really like to dance. Suddenly, I heard a noise at the door and opened my eyes. It was the UPS man delivering a package with a big smile on his face.

In my youth, I would have died of shame. But you know what? I didn’t even care. He put the package down, closed my eyes and kept rocking.

That is the beauty of being 60 years old.

Mobile apps aren’t just for large organizations; Today, many small or medium-sized businesses own their individual mobile applications. The emerging trend in mobile technology involves more than just having a mobile-friendly website. The combination of mobile applications and business will be the best marketing tool. These days, you can interact with many small or medium businesses that own their dedicated mobile app. From the coffee shop to travel agencies, companies are gaining business through a mobile app and taking their marketing to the next level.

Still, you are not sure why your business needs a mobile app; These are some of the top benefits that will guide you down the road.

Always be visible

According to statistics, an average person spends approximately two hours on a mobile device. As its use involves a handful of applications, it will affect the way they move or scan the mobile in search of the applications they are looking for. In this way, the company can benefit as the human brain unconsciously registers all the icons (with an excellent design) that it finds, even if it goes unnoticed.

Direct marketing

The mobile application provides common information about the business, prices, reservation forms, functions, user accounts, company news feeds and much more. Information that companies like to provide to customers, including sales promotions and the latest announcements, can be instantly added to the mobile app. You can easily reach out to customers through push notifications and remind them of products, discounts, offers, and services.

Offer value to customers

The business can provide direct rewards to customers through the mobile app and it can result in more app downloads and more returning customers.

Generate brand awareness among customers

The mobile application is like a billboard with which you can do whatever you want. Businesses can make the mobile app functional and informative for customers. By adding attractive designs, features, and options that customers love, businesses can create a beautifully designed branding app. The more you involve customers in your application, the sooner they will buy your product or service and therefore your brand will become popular with customers.

Improve customer engagement

Having a messaging or chat feature will change the way customers interact with the app. The chat feature will get the job done in minutes without wasting the customer’s time and improves business too.

Stay away from the competition

Having a unified layout with interactive graphics and options will make an application stand out from its competitors. Be the first to provide a mobile app for your customers.

Build customer loyalty

As companies reach out to consumers through various forms of advertising, we may lose customer impact due to the immense advertising. To grow the business, the customer must build trust among the audience for your product or service. The mobile application will bring your company closer to your customers and make all your company’s products at hand with a simple mobile application.

Think about where you want to do business

Two of the major mobile operating systems, Android and Apple, continue to gain popularity with customers. Anyone watching the current marketing trend in the industry will obviously know that Apple leads the growth rate from 43.1% to 44.2% between August 2016 and February 2017, but Android is still the popular mobile operating system. between customers. When many Apple users switched to Android, Apple launched the website in 2016 to switch users to iPhone. Recently, he announced the mobile application to move contacts and files from other devices to the iPhone. During 2016, Android had a market share of 82.8% compared to Apple’s market share of 11.6%. So think wisely and choose the right operating system to launch your new business application.

In the United States, more than 190 million people own smartphones. According to the recent survey, Google’s operating system is losing its customers than its profits. Between April and May, Android has lost between 52.2% and 54.1% of customers. China is one of the countries with the highest sales of smartphones and has registered sales of 30% in the second quarter of 2016. Samsung continues to challenge Apple’s big screen phones. Samsung has lost 4.3 percent market share and 5.1 percent in unit sales during the second quarter of 2016. Despite the price or features of Android or iPhone, both mobile phone brands are gaining popularity. in the global market.

Learn to play the guitar through Skype

With the growth of social media through sites like Facebook, Google+, Instagram, and Snapchat, the entire world is now linked to the internet in one way or another. People find it easier to communicate online than to talk over a normal phone line. It’s even easier for us to shop online rather than having to drive into town, struggle to find a place to park, and queue at the store.

Businesses are finding new and exciting ways to reach people through the Internet, so it was not difficult to see that eventually education and learning will be available through the Internet.

Skype is not a new program; It has been around for several years, but it wasn’t until high-speed broadband became available that it became a medium for the reliable transmission of video and audio.

Now we can replace the classroom with a monitor and the catchment area for the students has become the whole world.

However, we must remember that the same rules apply when selecting a teacher if you want to learn to play the guitar.

Education

Opinions differ as to whether a guitarist should have formally studied his instrument. Your teacher may have gone to school, but he may also have studied individually with dozens of professional players.

If you are considering a teacher with no college background, look up a list of references and review what they teach.

In addition to showing you the technique, you will want a teacher to explain music theory to you to give you a deeper understanding of what you are playing.

Teaching experience

Many great guitarists can teach, but they may not be experienced teachers. Conveying information is its own art form and everyone learns differently. A good education alone will not work: choose a guitarist who has at least a few years of teaching behind him. If they are new to teaching and you agree with that, make sure they give you a competitive rate with other teachers.

Teaching style

Casual or rigorous? Loaded with theory or focused on a single technique or song? There are as many different ways to take a guitar lesson as there are teachers and students. Ask yourself what you want to gain from your experience. If you’re just doing this for fun, you might want a more laid-back teacher. If you want to learn as much as possible, find someone to keep you on your toes.

Of course, there are pros and cons to selecting to learn online, here are some of them in greater detail.

Pro’s

Because you are no longer confined to regional locations, you can select a teacher from anywhere in the world.

No more missed trips to your lesson

Students can practice to the point of the lesson to make sure they are warm and ready for the lesson.

Students feel more comfortable being in their home environment and feel more relaxed and find it easier to act and play more than they would in a classroom situation.

Due to the nature of Skype lessons, students spend more time playing games than they normally would in a face-to-face lesson.

If you are a busy parent and you are trying to find time to attend classes and also take care of another sibling, then the problem disappears, the student can learn the lesson of why you have time to do other things.

Cons

The teacher is not in the same room as the student, so he cannot manipulate his wrists, fingers, elbows, etc.

Teacher and student are unable to play together due to a delayed webcam (and all webcam sessions experience lag).

You need an internet connection.

Students can be distracted by outside sources, siblings, animals, neighbors, etc. however, keep in mind that this can also occur in a lesson if it is taught to a student at home.

Required equipment

Here is the minimum configuration you will need:

High speed internet connection

Computer, with enough processing power to send and receive streaming video and audio (anything on the market today can handle it)

Webcam, either built into a laptop or purchased separately

Microphone, either built-in or separate, over time you may want to upgrade to a higher quality microphone.

Having a good pair of headphones is also recommended in case you feel distracted or the internet quality begins to weaken during a lesson.

This is the minimum you will need to participate in an online lesson. You will need to install the Skype software on that computer. Go to Skype.com and they will guide you. Choose an appropriate username, usually your own name, if available.

Payments

Payment for online lessons is normally done through PayPal, talk to your teacher and they will usually let you know how they want to be paid. Some teachers offer lesson packages that can save you money over a period of time.

Everyone has a birthday and it can be guaranteed that every day someone may be celebrating a birthday. Some people may not like celebrating birthdays, because it means that they are older than they were before, while others may hug and look forward to birthdays, believing that getting older can also mean getting wiser.

Birthday wishes can be more meaningful when the recipient is feeling happier and more expectant about getting old. Younger children may be happier with birthday celebrations, because it means that they are getting older, while the older generation will prefer to delay the aging process. Regardless of how it is perceived, birthdays are inevitable as long as you remain alive, and you can choose what can or should be done with them.

Birthdays are nothing without a happy birthday wish, and there are a number of ways to deliver a happy birthday wish. Birthday wishes can be in the form of a single line, a set quote, or a fully developed poem or essay. How the birthday wish is delivered will depend on the relationship with the recipient.

A personal touch or physical contact may be preferable in some circumstances, while in others, a greeting referred to by a third party or some type of intermediary may be more appropriate. It is also possible that some people are not comfortable delivering birthday wishes personally. Birthday celebration should be a happy occasion, and while wishing someone a happy birthday may be superficial, genuine happiness can be hard to fake and recipients will be more receptive when your wishes are genuine.

One of the popular ways to send birthday greetings is with birthday cards. There is an entire industry developed around the function of writing birthday wishes. Wishes can be written in a fun or witty style, or they can be warm and romantic. Cards can also be relationship specific. There are cards for close family members, co-workers, fiancees, and supervisors or bosses. There are even cards to deliver belated birthday wishes.

In the age of electronic communications, birthday wishes can easily be sent electronically. Cards can be sent electronically or greetings can be sent via email, text message, or social media updates. One of the perceived benefits of the social network profile is that greetings can be scheduled to be sent automatically on birthday. Some recipients may be very grateful to receive a happy birthday greeting, especially on a day when they may feel forgotten or neglected.

It was Nintendo’s entry into the gaming device market with its Wii model that opened up the wide world of gaming consoles. This gaming device, in a short period, took a large part of the market emerging as a successful brand. Thanks to the really throbbing features that make it look different from the rest. The Wii video game console was released by Nintendo as the successor to the Nintendo Game Cube, which had previously had a strong impact on the market. This seventh-generation console competes directly with Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Sony’s PlayStation 3, and targets a large demographic market for gaming devices around the world.

To start the list of truly impressive gaming controller features, let’s first take a look at the wireless controller and Wii Remote feature that makes the model too comfortable to hold the pointing device that is capable of detecting acceleration and orientation in. three different dimensions. The Wii Connect 24 function is capable of receiving messages and updates via the Internet in standby mode. Nintendo first presented the idea for a Wii game console at the E3 2004 press conference and later unveiled it at E3 2005.

There were certain controversies and issues related to the name of the Nintendo game console. Called Revolution at first, the console launched. But it was later renamed the Nintendo Wii and became the first Nintendo game console to be released outside of Japan without its name branded. Nintendo has brought us many reasons for the name change, but the important one is the tip of the word Wii, which may sound like us, which emphasizes that the console is for everyone. It also gives the impression that two people are together. Thanks to the two lowercase “i’s”. But nothing could appease a group of video game developers who felt that Revolution was more suitable than Wii. They also had strong arguments for that. But reasons and arguments aside, if left out, one thing is for sure. The Nintendo Wii video game console is one of the leading brands of gaming devices that really took the contemporaries of the gaming world by storm.

When most of us think of social media online, we most likely think of Facebook. Facebook is by far the most popular social networking site we have today with 500 million Facebook users.

However, Mark Zuckerberg was definitely not the first person to have built a social network, he was just the first to be successful the way he did.

In fact, one of the first social networks to really take off was called Sixdegrees.com.

It was founded by Andrew Weinreich, a well-known Internet entrepreneur and executive. Weinreich began his career working as a financial analyst and soon returned to school to study law. He worked as a legal professional for 2 years. It was during this time that he came up with the concept of an online social network that made the process of “meeting people you don’t know through the people you know” more efficient.

It was in 1997 that he launched Sixdegrees. At its peak, the site had 3,500,000 users and 100 employees. Subsequently, Weinreich sold the site to Youthstream Media Networks in December 2000 for $ 125 million. Weinreich is currently the CEO of meetMoi, a location-based mobile dating service, as well as the president of Xtify, a platform for geo-targeted mobile messaging.

Sixdegrees relied on web-based social media contacts. Weinreich was inspired by the theory that all people in the world are connected to each other by no more than six steps, also known as the concept of “six degrees of separation.” It was also the first social networking site to combine features found on other dating sites and community sites into one. Users can create personal profiles, configure friend lists, and browse friend lists belonging to other users within their network. They could message each other, join networks and send invitations to family and friends to become Sixdegrees members.

Writing this now in 2010, none of this seems all that impressive. However, in 1997, no other site offered a combination of these features.

Unfortunately, Sixdegrees didn’t last long and certainly didn’t capitalize on the popularity or support that a site like Facebook has today. There were a number of reasons that contributed to the failure of this social network:

1) At that time, web technology had not yet developed to the point where it was capable of supporting the functions that were needed for this type of application to be successful;

2) Despite its 3,500,000 registered users, Sixdegrees was unable to accumulate the required number of users before its money ran out;

3) The features available to Sixdegrees users weren’t as attractive as they could have been and didn’t keep their users coming back;

4) Factors that were outside of the company’s control had a detrimental effect on its ability to profit from online advertising. These events included a recession after April 2000, as well as September 11 and;

5) The online advertising industry was not mature enough to provide enough online advertisers to support its business model.

Factors 4 and 5 probably contributed the most to its downfall, yet Sixdegrees ushered in a new era in online communication and networking. Despite its short-lived success, it paved the way for companies like Facebook, LinkedIn, and many more.

Venture capital is a specific term that refers to financing obtained from a venture capitalist. These are professional serial investors and can be individuals or part of a company. Venture capitalists often have a niche based on the type of business or size or stage of growth. They are likely to see many proposals in front of them (sometimes hundreds a month), become interested in some, and invest in even less. Around 1 to 3% of all transactions made to a venture capitalist are financed. So with the numbers so low, you must be clearly impressive.

Growth is often associated with accessing and conserving cash, while maximizing profitable business. People often see venture capital as the magic bullet to fix everything, but it is not. Homeowners must have a strong desire to grow and a willingness to relinquish ownership or control. For many, not wanting to lose control will make them a poor choice for venture capital. (If you figure this out early on, you could save yourself a lot of headaches.)

Remember, it is not just about money. From a business owner’s perspective, there is money and smart money. Smart money means it comes with experience, advice, and often contacts and new sales opportunities. This helps the owner and investors to grow the business.

Venture capital is just one way to finance a business, and in fact it is one of the least common, but most frequently discussed. It may or may not be the right option for you (a conversation with a corporate advisor could help you decide which path is right for you).

Here are some other options to consider.

Your Own Money – Many businesses are financed from the owner’s own savings or money taken from the equity in the property. It is usually the easiest money to access. Often times, an investor would like to see some of the owner’s fund in the business (“skin in the game”) before considering investing.

Private capital – Private Equity and Venture Capital are almost the same, but with a slightly different flavor. Venture Capital tends to be the term used for an early stage company and Private Equity for a later stage financing for further growth. There are specialists in each area and you will find different companies with their own criteria.

FF and F – Family, friends and fools. Those closest to the business and often unsophisticated investors. This type of money may come with more emotional charge and interference (as opposed to help) from your providers, but it may be the fastest way to access smaller amounts of capital. Often several investors will make up the full amount needed.

Angelic Investors – Top business angels differ from venture capitalists in their motives and level of involvement. Angels are often more involved in the business, providing ongoing mentoring and advice based on experience in a particular industry. For that reason, matching angels and owners is critical. There are important networks of angels easily located. Introducing them to them is no less demanding than a venture capitalist, as they still go through hundreds of proposals and accept only a handful. Often times, the demands around exit strategies are different for an angel and are satisfied with a slightly longer term investment (say 5-7 years compared to 3-4 for a venture capitalist).

Bootstrapping – grow organically by reinvesting profits. No external capital is injected.

Banks – banks lend money, but they are more concerned with their assets than with their business. Expect to personally guarantee everything.

Leases – This can be a way of financing private purchases that allow expansion. They will normally be leases on assets and will be guaranteed by those assets. Often times, it is possible to lease specialized equipment that a bank would not loan.

Merger / acquisition strategy – may seek to acquire or be acquired. Generally, even a merger has a stronger and a weaker partner. Combining the resources of two or more companies can be a path to growth, and when done with a company from the same business, it can make a lot of sense, at least on paper. Many mergers suffer cultural differences and unforeseen hard feelings that can wipe out profits.

Inventory financing – Specialty lenders will loan money against your inventory. This can be more expensive than a bank, but it could allow you to access funds that you might not otherwise have.

Accounts receivable financing / factoring – again, a specialized lending area that can allow you to access a source of funds that you didn’t know you had.

IPO – This is normally a strategy after an initial capital raise and after having proven that a business is viable through the development of a track record. In Australia there are several ways to “list”. They are useful for raising large amounts of money ($ 50 million and more) as the costs can be quite high ($ 1 million more).

MBO (Purchase by Management) – This tends to be a later stage strategy, rather than a seed funding strategy. In essence, debt is generated to buy from owners and investors. It is often a strategy to regain control from outside investors or when investors seek to divest from the business.

One of the most important things to remember in all of these strategies is that they all require a significant amount of work to work – from the way the business is structured to relationships with staff, vendors, and customers – must be examined and conditioned to make the company attractive as an investment proposal. This process of preparing and eliminating risks can take anywhere from three months to a year. It is often costly both in actual expenses (consultants, legal advice, accounting advice) and in shifting the focus of owners from “sticking to the fabric” and making money within the business to a focus on how the business is presented.

Having gained considerable experience developing five of my own accounting practices and spending the next two decades individually helping more than 2,000 accountants develop their own practices, there are some basic principles that accountants can observe to give themselves the greatest chance of success.

The best way for accountants to be successful in starting their own CPA Accounting and Tax practice is by providing themselves the greatest opportunity for that success. This can be done by remembering that the basic principles for a successful practice are good clients along with the basic tools to serve them. Many accountants looking to develop their own practice are positioned with large amounts of unnecessary overhead that undermine their chance of success. Unnecessary costs can be deferred until they are needed. Get only the items you need to serve initial customers. It is important to keep upfront overhead as low as possible to quickly create positive cash flow to fund practice development.

When starting a CPA accounting and tax firm, it is recommended that accountants start from home. In today’s tech world, accountants who work from home are very accepting of clients. In a sense, it provides customers with the perception that they are receiving greater value. They feel that if the accountant is incurring less overhead, perhaps some of the savings will be passed on to clients. By saving on the cost of rent and other office expenses, accountants will accelerate their positive cash flow, which can be used to finance the expansion of the practice without going into debt. Once the cash flow is sufficient to maintain an office, the accountant can decide whether expansion to an office is warranted. Accountants who work from home may also find they enjoy it so much that they may choose to forego moving to an outside office.

Another way that accountants can keep overhead low is by avoiding unnecessary expensive software. Many accountants purchase expensive unnecessary software to help clients they have not yet developed. There are extremely good software companies that offer a great product at a low or medium price. Drake Tax Software is a very profitable software program that has an excellent reputation. In the September 2011 issue of The Journal of Accountancy, the results of a software survey were published and Drake Tax Software received an excellent score. Accountants who are starting their own CPA accounting and tax firm are encouraged to look for good software at affordable prices that provides them with the basic tools to serve clients.

There are many other simple ways that accountants starting their own tax and accounting firm can cut start-up costs. Simply the name that the accountants decide on for their companies will lower their startup costs. If accountants use their first name, middle initial, and last name followed by CPA and / or Certified Public Accountant, they can avoid DBA registration costs, bank charges, and filing fees. Additionally, actively licensed Certified Public Accountants have legal rights to practice public accounting under their own names, saving them costs associated with fictitious names. Many times, Certified Public Accountants may choose fictitious names, which would lower potential clients’ perception of them, which in turn would prevent starting a business. For example, a licensed CPA who operates as a “Bay City Tax Service” or “Accounting and Tax Service” loses credibility. Potential customers may perceive that this company is not certified and unlicensed.

Accountants who are considering developing a Certified Public Accountant / Accounting practice and are currently employed are encouraged not to terminate their employment in order to start their own Chartered Accountant and Chartered Accountant firm. Instead, they must develop their practice at the same time while still employed. This may be a time consuming decision compared to terminating your employment and dedicating full time to your practice; however, the sacrifice is well worth the reward. As the practice grows, accountants can grow with it and transition themselves full-time to their own practice without putting unnecessary financial pressure on themselves or their families.

With the financial pressure relieved while operating the new practice at the same time as employment, there will be a substantial increase in income without incurring large expenses. Cash reserves will increase substantially as earned income is maintained, and new income will also begin to flow from the new practice. This increase in cash reserves will go a long way in financing a full-time transition, and this will make the move more seamless when the time comes.

By making that change to a full-time practice, accountants will find it easier to transition from full-time to their own practice in January. January is the beginning of tax season and, along with it, the beginning of income from income tax preparation. The increased revenue will come just when accountants need it most. It is important for accountants to position themselves to start marketing early in the tax season to aggressively develop individual tax clients who make the most of their first tax season. Also, January covers year-end work for many companies, such as payroll and financial reporting. This will also add additional income to the accountants’ practices in the month of your transition.

January is also the best month of the year to transition from full time to internship because it can be the best month of the year to develop new business as clients. Most business owners are reluctant to change accountants. It takes a very strong reason for a client to leave a predecessor accountant. Once a customer makes the decision to change, they generally won’t invoke the change until the end of the business year if they don’t want two accountants to split a fiscal year. Consequently, the end of the year is the most opportune time to reach out to business owners and will ease the transition to full-time practice.

Lastly, when starting a public accountancy and tax business, it is important to avoid marketing services as a commodity or a product. This often leads to a very low response and low quality clientele. It can also be extremely expensive. There are a large number of accountants who are pursuing very expensive marketing programs offered by various companies and who are lured by hard-to-enforce warranties. Many of these programs are commodity-based. The accounting industry is not based on commodities; it is driven by trust and loyalty. An accountant’s marketing campaign should be driven by truth, honesty, and professionalism, allowing the client to feel more comfortable knowing that they are hiring an accountant they can trust.

Currently employed accountants or CPAs looking to start their own accounting and tax CPA firms will find it beneficial to follow the practice by following a few very simple steps:

1) Avoid unnecessary costs and expenses.

2) Consider starting your CPA accounting practice from home.

3) Develop the practice alongside current employment.

4) Avoid marketing the business as a commodity or a product.

Remember, opportunity begins with action. No action, no opportunity. Accountants who take action give themselves a chance to succeed. They should start their own bookkeeping and accounting businesses from home while employed. Their successful experience without jeopardizing their future will give them the confidence and cash flow they need to enjoy the freedoms of owning a CPA accounting and tax firm.