Welcome to the BeeBusinessBee Business Blog.

Here I will include some of my thoughts, comments and option on some of the matters that are taking place in the world of Business and Business Education. I guess I realised that it is about time I start recording my thoughts online rather than just via my twitter account @beebusinessbee

Please feel free to share and comment on any of the content shared in this section of the site. Also bear in mind that updating this section could be a little sporadic and done when and where I get the time.

The latest edition of the BeeBusinessBee podcast has now been published. Catch up with some of the largest news stories from the business world, as well as check out this week’s BeeBusinessBee Word of the Week. 

Click on the Image below to listen to the Podcast.

Bee Business Bee Podcast

In this podcast I cover topics related to;

·         Marketing

·         Profitability

·         Cash Flow

·         Liquidity

·         Business Ownership

·         Legislation

·         Branding

You can also find information about how you can take part in future BeeBusinessBee Podcasts. If you would like to take part in the BeeBusinessBee Big Quiz and be within a chance of winning an exclusive BeeBusinessBee Mug, please contact me via email.

empty shops on the High StreetIt may seem strange that I am writing a piece about the actions of local councils, however it is something that for many years I have felt really strongly about when it comes to how they support businesses located in the High Street.

 

There are currently plans to allow councils to keep 100% of all the business rates that they collect in the future. As a result many are setting up Town Centre Partnerships or Business District initiatives, all with the objective of promoting the local business area, however is this all too little, too late? I personally suspect so and I would like to explain in this blog post the reasons for this thinking.

 

There appears to have been for many years now an objective from many councils to drive out cars from town centres. This has led to some nice shopping areas being created, however they are now actually less and less populated with shoppers. It sort of makes the whole expenditure on these schemes a little bit pointless, as why spend on something that looks nice, when you have no one to admire it? According to research on average over 10% of shops lie empty in the UK at the current time.

Read more: Are local councils helping to increase the decline of the High Street?

The latest edition of the BeeBusinessBee Business podcast has now been launched. This podcast will hopefully become a regular feature if there remains the demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show;

  • Takeovers and Mergers
    Synergies
    Diversification
    GDP 
    EU Membership
    Business Finance

Click Here to listen to the BeeBusinessBee Business Podcast. (Opens in new window)

bee business enterprise day 12017Make sure that your educational institution is celebrating BEE Day 2017. The Business Enterprise Education (BEE) Day was first established in 2015 to mark all things enterprise and education. Each year resources and a suggested lesson activity are published online for teachers all around the world to use and share with their classes.

Over the past 2 years BEE Day has continued to grow, which should ensure that BEE Day 2017 will be the largest one to date!

You are invited to take part in celebrating BEE Day on Friday 3rd March 2017!

This year the theme will be Personal Finance. This has been chosen due to the increased requests from teachers and education providers for resources that can help teach students these all important life skills. As a result it is anticipated that this lesson could be delivered as part of a Business, Enterprise or PSHE session.

Below you can find a series of resources which can be used to deliver this activity. It would be great if you could deliver these on Friday 3rd March, sharing your day with @beebusinessbee on Twitter.

Resource Download Link
Lesson Plan [Download Here] 
Bell Activity [Download Here] 
Starter [Download Here]
Main [Download Here]
Personal Finance Video [Download Here]
Plenary [Download Here] 
BEE Day Classroom Poster [Download Here]
Contact Details [Click Here]

The latest edition of the BeeBusinessBee Business podcast has now been launched. This podcast will hopefully become a regular feature if there remains the demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show'

  • Tesco Supplier Payments
  • Lloyds Bank Share Sale Delayed
  • UK Export Statistics (as part of the EU membership debate)
  • Gross Profit (Business word of the week)

Click Here to listen to the BeeBusinessBee Business Podcast. (Opens in new window)

fruit vegYou may have noticed that a "price war" is taking place at the moment between the larger supermarkets in the UK. This "price war" is actually based around the price of selected vegetables and seemingly which supermarket can sell them at the lowest possible price?

The term "price war" is very much a tabloid newspaper term for what we typically call in business; a loss leader. The term loss leader means exactly that, the idem is being sold at a loss! Stupid you may be thinking as why would anyone want to sell a product at a loss? Well the world of marketing will tell you that such pricing strategies are really effective. In this blog post I will explain how this strategy works.

Firstly lets look at what is happening at the moment with the price of vegetables. Tesco, Asda, Lidl and Aldi have seemingly set about a battle to sell selected items at 20p (at the time of writing this is correct, however this could now be even lower). At this price it is estimated that smaller greengrocer can not even achieve this price from their wholesalers. The typical wholesale price for 1Kg of carrots at wholesale is 40p, yet here supermarkets are selling them to the customer at 20p. This makes it near impossible for a small greengrocer to complete on price against the supermarkets.

Of course the actual wholesale price that the supermarkets pay could be much lower than the 40p used above. This will be down to Economies of Scale and the purchasing economies that come with volume the supermarkets are acquiring. However most experts agree that even with any discount on the wholesale prices, these vegetables are being sold as a loss leader.

A possible example of loss leader in action for 1Kg of carrots could look like:

Read more: Loss Leader - Good or Bad for the Economy and Consumer?

You have probably seen it on the news and read about it in the newspapers, how the price of oil has been falling. There are many different stories that are being used to explain such a fall, however simply put this is the best modern day example of supply and demand in action.

Firstly, we need to remember that oil is sold in barrels. The price of oil is always based on US $, so this means that in the UK the strength of our currency against the Dollar does have some impact on price paid.

So what has been happening to the price of a barrel of oil?

oilpricegraph

As you can see the trend has been downwards for quite some time now. Just looking at the last quarter shows how the price of oil has dramatically fallen. As I write this you can buy a barrel of oil for $29 per barrel. If we go back to before the global recession that same barrel was costing around $120 per barrel!

So what has changed to cause such a dramatic decline in price?

Read more: Supply and Demand

uk budgetIt may seem like a long time ago that the then Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne produced his budget for the UK for the coming financial year. It was actually only March 16th when this event was taking place, however 2016 has been a year of massive change both politically and economically. This week the now Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond will announce what is known as the Autumn Statement. This is basically the Government carrying out a form of Budgetary Control.

Now is a good time to pause and re-cap on key knowledge. You should be aware that a budget is a plan of inflows and outflows of money, in this case we are talking about the inflows and outflows from the UK economy. Once the budget has been set, then it is important that performance is reviewed against the actual. This process is known as Budgetary Control. In this case we get to learn how well the UK Government is performing against its plan (budget) and what actions it is putting in place to make any changes given the actual figures we now know.

What is it all about? Well the Government will set out its fiscal policy from this point forward. Fiscal policy is when the Government adjusts taxation levels and Government spending levels, with the aim of having a positive impact on the economy. This is different to the Monetary policy which is adopted by the Bank of England to help try and control the economy. The Government needs to make sure that it has more inflows than outflows, otherwise it will be facing a liquidity problem.

Read more: UK Autumn Statement - What's it All About?

There is one notion of the education system that really frustrates me at moment, the focus on exam targets as a key success indicator.

We appear to have created factories, focused on meeting the latest targets that have been set by the grand paymaster generals in Government at the time. The obsession of those seeking political gain making media seeking soundbites does not help the profession, just adding to the long term confusion about where education is heading.

I am not for one minute saying that education should not change and everything is perfect. Quite simply, it's not! However despite all the curriculum changes there appears to be this constant agenda that an education establishment and ultimately teacher will be judged on the results that are achieved.

The critics of the profession will no doubt argue that such targets are needed to “drive up standards”. I personally wonder what they think would happen without such targets? Do they seriously think classrooms would be full of teachers just baby sitting children playing about? If so, then they are seriously naive as teachers tend to go into the profession to teach and and enhance the lives of the students they teach.

Read more: Educated Failure?

hs2 logoIt has been hard not to notice that in the UK there has been a lot of talk from the Government recently regarding the railways. Put simply the Government is looking to purchase a new train set, using a credit card.

HS2 and the other permutations from this are all focused on delivering High Speed trains from the major cities in the UK. High Speed apparently is defined as any train that can travel at over 125mph, which actually does mean that our current railways actually do deliver "High Speed" based on the technical definition. The Government believes that by building a new railway infrastructure it will improve the economic benefits for areas outside of London, treble the capacity of the current trains on the network and also speed up the travel times between the major cities.

It all sounds very promising when you think of it like that. If getting from Manchester to London will now go from 127mins to 67mins then that has to be a positive. There is the claim that these trains will travel at up to 250mph and the fares will be "online" with those that are currently paid on the railways. However critics are starting to question this already based on the basic business principles of finance.

Building a new railway isn't cheap. In fact HS2 is estimated to cost in total somewhere near the £65bn mark. This is a budget that has already been revised upwards. Also remember that the Government is dependent on borrowing to finance its projects, so basically the Government is talking out a loan to pay for this investment which will mean that interest charges should be factored into the overall cost of the project.

There are also concerns over the amount how smoothly will the plans run? If the project was to hit delays from external factors and influences then costs could quickly increase. There are also question marks over the operating costs of the project and the real Return on Investment that the project will yield. The critics point to the fact that all the calculations have been performed based on the assumption that energy prices will only inflate until 2035 an then after this will remain constant. This does appear to be a strange logic that is being adopted here.

Read more: Does HS2 Really Provide Economic Benefits for All?

BuzzGo! Business GameIt is with great excitement that I can share with you a brand new teaching resource that I have created and successfully used with Business students at a range of different age groups. BuzzGo! is a new Business game that can be easily adapted and used in the classroom with any topic on the Business specification. The game is easily adaptable to most classroom environments and topics, however I will be sharing the BuzzGo! cards that I have created and used in the classroom.

Students really enjoy the game, with the feedback being exceptionally positive. The game has been developed taking into account their feedback and has been designed that it can be the perfect starter, development or plenary activity. If this is something that you would like to introduce in the classroom to your students, then watch this space to download the resources to play BuzzGo! in your classroom.

 

Mobile Phone Brand PersonalityIt is one of those devices that many of us have and use daily, however how much do we consider the power of branding when it comes to choosing our mobile phone network provider?

The market is saturated now in the UK with EE, O2, Vodafone and Three all the main networks in the market and alongside these are MVNO's such as Tesco, Virgin, Asda, Giff Gaff and soon to be Plusnet Mobile to name just a few. Firstly what is the difference between a main network and an MVNO? Simply the later actually don't own any physical infrastructure and just rent capacity from the main networks. For example, Tesco Mobile actually uses the O2 network. So if you are a Tesco Mobile customer even though your phone says Tesco and you pay your monthly bill to Tesco, your phone is actually connecting to your nearest O2 mast. If O2 does not have coverage, then neither will Tesco Mobile.

This is a market where brand personality is clearly evident in some of the providers. You only have to look at EE to establish that this is a premium and quality brand that is positioned to appeal to the more affluent user or the typical customer who values a quality service. You could suggest that the brand is aimed at exactly the same sort of customer who Apple or Samsung are chasing with their higher end products.

With this being the case the owners of EE, BT have kept a secondary MVNO called Life Mobile operating. Life Mobile was very much pitched at a different target market and had a totally different brand personality. For example just looking at the Life Mobile website you would quickly identify that it was a brand with a personality which is associated with value and budget. This is the total opposite end of the market to what the brand of EE is targeting and something that was evidence of this was how Life Mobile only offered 2g/3g access, where as EE customers get the premium service of the availability of super fast 4g access and other additional perks such as Wi-Fi calling and access to music and sport.

Read more: Brand Personality in the Mobile Market

buzzopoly board gameIt is with great excitement that I can share with you a brand new teaching resource that I have created and successfully used with Business students at a range of different age groups. Buzzopoly is a new Business board game that can be easily adapted and used in the classroom with any topic on the Business specification.

Students really enjoy the game, with the feedback being exceptionally positive. The game has been developed taking into account their feedback and has been designed that it can be the perfect starter, development or plenary activity. If this is something that you would like to introduce in the classroom to your students, then watch this space to download the resources to play Buzzopoly in your classroom.

Don't just take my word for it. Here are some of the comments from my students;

  • "Very enjoyable. We like that game."
  • "It's good fun, can't we play it for the whole hour?"
  • "A good fun way to practise what we have learnt"

 

Well it may appear to be a silly title, however is failure really the key to success?

I ask this question after seeing first hand how some people can really fear failing at a task. It does appear that we now live in a world where the word "fail" has become a feared word. Quite why it is so feared is such an unknown? Maybe it does highlight the lack of resilience and independence within our education system. After having conversations with a number of academics it has become clear that some learners just love seeing "ticks", even if those ticks are meaningless or the work is many levels below what would challenge the learner.

The obsession with some teachers is to try and chase targets and micro manage every stage of the learning process. This is most probably having an adverse impact on the natural ability of learners. How do you create independent learners when a teacher "spoon feeds" the content, organises a revision program, ticks and flicks though effectively work that has been copied from a board? Quite simply, we don't! What we actually are creating is more needy and less independent learners, however then as teachers we will complain when they can't synthesise information or evaluate critically.

So what can we do differently? Firstly we need to instil some independence within our learners. This needs to be a whole school approach to be successful. It means we have to move away from this robotic target driven approach, to a realistic approach that not everyone will be successful at their first attempt. We also need to refocus the idea that "intervention" is the solution to bringing about achievement for those who are under achieving. What needs to be in place is an increase in expectations of independent learning, along with an increase in testing. This will enable learners to firstly realise that to learn takes time and effort, however failure to work on this independently will result in failure! This failure of course should then be a tool to drive and push students to want to improve and increase their levels of independence.

Read more: Is Failure the Key to Success?

stick pick appI have for the past year or so been using the Stick Pick App that is available for teachers to download via your local App store. I have been using the Stick Pick App on my iPad which after spending a short amount of time learning how it works and setting it up, has been a really useful educational resource. It adds a new electronic dimension to questioning in the classroom and gives you a way of involving the learner in a different style.

What I liked about the Stick Pick App was the ability to import class lists from DropBox which meant that it wasn't too taxing entering my students into class lists. Using the App was easy and simple, recording the questions that they got correct and giving a nice simple point system. Another useful feature is the inclusion of build in question starters, which are levelled. There is use of Bloom's which is a real useful tool to have at your finger tips as it really enables you to ask those targeted differentiated questions to your students.

Overall I feel this is a worthwhile app for teachers to have and use in the classroom. If you want to learn more then please visit the Stick Pick App website.

If your a developer of an educational resource and would like me to review your resource and give some honest feedback, please get in touch with me.

One of the most common questions that I tend to get asked by my students is about the skill of evaluation, when it comes to exam questions. The most important point that I explain to them that it is the same skill in Business as it is in History, Geography, English or Science. It doesn't matter which subject you are studying the skill of evaluation is exactly the same. It is why I believe that you have to teach this as a skill and then make use of this skill in all the subjects that you study.

The other key point to note is how evaluation is pointless if you don't understand the basic knowledge that is required to make your evaluative answer. This is because you need to use the knowledge and apply the knowledge to perform a decent evaluation. This is why practicing evaluative questions is totally pointless until you understand the knowledge required.

Below you can find links for two videos that I have produced. Each gives you a question and then takes you through the skills required to produce a good answer.

Tackling the Evaluative Question 1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EXQwXJ5pu_Y

Tackling the Evaluative Question 2

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WsYmyY4jDBg

The latest edition of the beebusinessbee podcast is now out. This is show is fast becoming a regular feature and their appears a growing demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business studies and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show;

  • Banking Dividends
  • Airline Profits
  • Eurozone Problems
  • University Fears

vodafone customer ofcomThere has for years been the old saying in marketing "There is no such thing as bad publicity" which is believed to be a quote made by the American showman Phineas Barnum. He was a man who never missed the chance to present himself to the public, which could be why there is a belief that this quote has some truth in business. This quote was further endorsed by the late Oscar Wilde who went on to say "The only thing worse than being talked about, is not being talked about". So how much truth does that have in a world where "being talked about" is easier than ever in a world than has become ever Dependant on the world of social media?

To test out this logical lets take a look at the mobile phone company Vodafone. Here in the UK they have been hitting the headlines for all of the wrong reasons. Only last week they were fined £4.6m by the regulator Ofcom for "serious" breaches of consumer protection rules. This is the largest ever fine that Ofcom has ever issued to a mobile phone operator. Ofcom ranks the mobile phone provider the worse for customer complaints, with the mobile operator recording 32 complaints per 10,000 customers compared to Tesco Mobile who had the best rates in the industry of just 1 complaint per 10,000 customers. Needless to say this story of bad customer service and care by Vodafone has been hitting the headlines for months and giving Vodafone plenty of media attention and coverage.

Read more: There is no such thing as bad publicity?

The latest edition of the beebusinessbee podcast is now out. This is show is fast becoming a regular feature and their appears a growing demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business studies and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show'

  • Sky pay a high price
  • Virgin media invest in growth
  • Germany economy bounces back
  • Holiday makers packing up and heading off overseas

You may have noticed in the news that the Government has recently sold off more of the shares that it owned in Lloyds Bank. This now means that the UK Government owns just 8.9% of the bank. This is a massive decrease in the percentage of Government ownership of the bank which stood at 43% just six years ago.

This now means that the UK Government has been able to recoup £17bn of the £20.5bn that was given to the bank as a bailout between 2007 and 2009. If the share price continues to improve with the general trend of the stock market, then it is reasonably possible that the Government could get close to, if not slightly more on the £20.5bn original bailout cost.

The graph below shows the general trend of the Lloyds Bank share price over the last 5 years.

Read more: Government Lloyds Bank Staggered Share Sale

The latest edition of the beebusinessbee podcast is now out. This is show is fast becoming a regular feature and their appears a growing demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business studies and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show'

  • Poundland Takeover of 99p Stores
  • BT and EE Confirm Deal
  • UK Economy shows signs of Growth
  • Fox reports improved profits

national min wageThis is a blog post that has been inspired by my friend Sam. He was talking to me a while back about the increase in the National Minimum Wage to £7.20 for people over the age of 25 in the UK, asking the question if we really are better off when the National Minimum Wage increases?

This is a very good question and one that it depends how you want to view the notion of a National Minimum Wage. If you purely look at from a political perspective and a number perspective, being paid £7.20 per hour sounds much better than being paid £6.70 per hour. If you apply the argument that how we feel has a massive impact on our spending power, then you could logically argue that an increase in the National Minimum Wage will actually be good for the overall economy and output of the nation.

I wanted to investigate this further. Below you can see a comparison of the average growth / decline in the UK economy following an increase in the UK National Minimum Wage.

Read more: Does a National Minimum Wage Increase Population Wealth?

The latest edition of the new and improved podcast has now been launched. This podcast will hopefully become a regular feature if there remains the demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business studies and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show'

  • Eurozone Panic
  • Changes in the Mobile Phone Market
  • Diversification in the Retail Markets

Listen to the first show via the links below;

You will have heard all about it in the news. Does the EU need the UK more than we need the EU? Well this is a real topic of debate and there are arguments on both sides of this debate, however in this short blob I am going to look at UK imports and exports, considering what the general trend tells us about the answer to this question.

First off, let me explain that the gap between your imports and your exports is known as your balance of payments. An economy would ideally want a positive balance of payments as this means that you are exporting more than your importing. Why is this important? Well because if you are exporting then this means that you are selling your products / services to another country and in return they are giving you money for these items. Of course if that money is going into your economy, then it has to be going out of someone else's economy. Put simply in an economics sense an economy that is a net exporter is a strong one.

According to the latest published data this is what the UK economy looks like at the current time;

Read more: Brexit; The Great Import v Export Debate

The 2nd new and improved podcast has now been launched. This is show one of which will hopefully become a regular feature if there remains the demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business studies and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show'

  • Changes in the Mobile Phone Market
  • Inflation and Bank of England Base Rates
  • Unenployment and Economic Impact

Listen to the first show via the links below;

rajar radioYou may have noticed that you local commercial station is probably talking about listing figures this morning, or maybe not if they are not as good as expected. However why are listening figures and commercial radio so important? It all comes down to business!

The radio stations in the UK all use something called RAJAR which is a measure of radio listening. I won't go into the details of how they set about this process, however it is these results that come out each quarter that can have a massive impact on a commercial radio station. This is because unlike the BBC the commercial stations are funded by the advertisers and the adverts that they carry on their stations. The amount that the advertisers pay for each slot depends on the number of listeners that each station claims to be able to reach.

If a radio station is successful and has more listeners, then it can charge more. This is known as a rate card and typically will be based on a set number of adverts of a set period of time. Of course if it is not as successful then a station may find that it can no longer charge such rates and will have to cut the cost of advertising. This of course will see the revenue decrease for the commercial stations and as such could reduce profits or mean that they need to look to reduce costs.

The best way to highlight this is with an example;

Read more: Business world of Commercial Radio

When talking about sources of finance for a business you will typically hear the terms; bank loan and overdraft. However, what is the actual difference and how does a business decide when to choose a bank loan and when to choose an overdraft?

It all comes down to the time frame that the business requires the money for. For example, if the business requires the money for what we deem in business as the "long term", then a bank loan would be the chosen source of finance. Whereas, if it requires the money for the "short term" then then it would be looking at using an overdraft as the chosen source of finance.

In business we define;

  • Long term finance - money that will be paid back over a period of longer than one year.
  • Short term finance - money that will be paid back over a period of less than one year.

 

19.86%

Natwest Overdraft APR 

An overdraft is a short term source of finance that effectively allows a business to borrow money once their bank account goes beyond the £0 figure. You can have arranged overdrafts where you can agree a limit with the bank for how far past £0 you can go; eg; £1000. You can have un-arranged borrowing where the business just goes past £0, however rather than the bank refusing to make payments and forcing the business to shut down, it will just allow the bank account go into a negative figures (overdrawn).

The problem with using an overdraft is that the bank charges the business interest on the money that they have borrowed. Because the amount borrowed on an overdraft is meant to be small and this is only meant to be a short term source of finance, the amount of interest charged will be higher than a bank loan. So this can become an expensive form of borrowing if a business is using an overdraft for the wrong purposes. A valid use of an overdraft would be to cover a short term cash flow problem where you know the money will be coming into the business, however you need to make a payment before this will be the case. 

Below is an example of a potential cash flow problem where an overdraft could enable a business to solve its cash flow issue;

   Jan  Feb
Inflows £1000  £5000
Outflows £3000  £2000
Net Monthly  (£2000)  £3000
Opening Balance £100  (£1900)
Closing Balance (£1900)  £1100

The business could use an overdraft in January when it goes overdrawn as by the end of February they have paid back the overdraft and the bank account is back as a positive figure.

A bank loan will typically have a lower rate of finance (APR), however you would be typically borrowing larger sums of money over a longer period of time. This sort of finance would typically be used for purchasing larger items in the business or if the business is needing money to invest in growing the business. A bank loan should not be used to by a building though, as we have a special type of loan for this which is known as a mortgage. At the time of writing a typical bank loan would cost 3.6% APR, which is considerably less than the overdraft APR.

This is why it is vitally important for a business to choose the right source of finance. If a business is using the wrong source of finance then it could be more expensive in the longer term, which ultimately could lead to the failure of the business. Some people think that an overdraft is the best option as it is fairly easy to organise and does not require the same levels of paperwork as a bank loan, however this is not the answer and a business should always consider the APR and the cost of repayments.

beebusinessbee podcastThe latest edition of the BeeBusinessBee Business podcast has now been published. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

In this show I am joined by Christine Hamilton, Acting Regional Director for the UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) in the West Midlands, who tells me about the role of the UKTI and the importance that exports play to the UK economy.

Content that is covered in this lesson;

Takeovers and Mergers
Diversification
Synergies
Exchange Rates
Government Support
Economic Growth
Interest Rates
Business Finance

Click Here to listen to the BeeBusinessBee Business Podcast. (Opens in new window)

The new beebusinessbee pod cast has now been launched. This is show one of which will hopefully become a regular feature if there remains the demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee pod-cast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business studies and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show'

  • Tesco and Morrison's performance
  • Falling price of oil
  • UK inflation
  • Milk prices
  • Sainsburys market share

Listen to the first show via the links below;

 

The latest edition of the BeeBusinessBee Business podcast has now been launched. This podcast will hopefully become a regular feature if there remains the demand for it. The purpose of this beebusinessbee podcast is to quickly round up the weekly business news, looking in more detail at some of the business and economics content that is behind the stories. There will also be a feature looking at some key subject terms, all in short audio format.

Content included in this show;

  • Takeovers and Mergers
    Business Culture
    Diversification
    Exchange Rates 
    EU Membership
    New Product Development & Pricing Strategy

Click Here to listen to the BeeBusinessBee Business Podcast. (Opens in new window)

For numerous years we have always pictured the centre of retail being the local City Centre, where typically you would find an expansive shopping centre and the large national and international multiple chain stores. A visit to a City Centre used to be an experience for the customer and as a result if you choose to drive into your local City Centre then you would have to expect to pay a premium for car parking.

However a combination of social, demographic and technological trends have conspired the bring about massive change in the retail market over the last 10 years. The main change has been the undoubted expansion in usage of the internet, we are now talking about 77% of the UK population having access to broadband in the UK and combine this with the fact that 93% of the UK population now have a mobile phone and the retailers really have a different technology driven customer.

It is interesting that such a change has been able to take place, given that the UK has an ageing population and one that on the face of it you would not be expecting to be the natural adopters of such technology changes. However statistics suggest that the number of "Silver Surfers" (term for the over 65's using the Internet) is one of the fastest growing user groups, yet despite this 5 million of this group still do not have or appear to wish to have access to the internet. It is this social attitude change to completing tasks online that has helped to drive interest in the internet. Only 5 years ago a large proportion of the UK had reservations about competing their shopping or banking online, as there were constant question marks over the security of the internet or that it was simply "just not right" to buy clothes without touching or seeing them in person. These changes though have brought about a real different retail environment that we see today.

Read more: The Changing Face of Retail
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