Tag Archives: profit

Jesus saves, Moses lends, Muhammad invests – Islamic finance accounts for 1 trillion in banking

“The interesting thing about Islam,” says Professor Constant Mews, “is that it was a much more commercial culture from the outset than Christianity.”

And from around the middle of the eighth century to the middle of the 13th, while European Christians were struggling through the Dark Ages, the Islamic world enjoyed a golden age.

Arab merchants had a lot to do with it.

“They developed alternative ways of regulating funds,” says Mews.

“In particular the core Islamic principle is simply one of sharing profit and loss. The desire is to promote investment by taking commercial risk.

“Risk, incidentally, is an Arabic word, referring to where you lend money to others without requiring a return unless there is profitable growth.”

And for some 500 years, this financial model underpinned advances in science, the arts, architecture, and innovation generally. Then came the Crusades and the Mongol hordes, and the Islamic model of finance declined, the space becoming filled by that other model.

Islamic finance, however, is undergoing something of a renaissance.

It is now a USD1 trillion industry…Mohamed Ariff continues the litany of statistical growth: there are 57 majority-Muslim nations, 76 countries which already practice Islamic banking, 350 banks, 15 insurance companies and about 1,200 mutual funds.

Keep readingJesus saves, Moses lends, Muhammad invests

 

 

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How Linkedin gets 20x more money per user than Facebook

Forbes has LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner on the cover—but the professional social network’s business model is the real hero of the story.

Here are some of the amazing statistics Forbes’ George Anders reports:

  • LinkedIn users spend an average of 18 minutes a month on the site. Facebook users spend 6.4 hours a month.
  • But LinkedIn gets $1.30 in revenue for every hour those users spend on site. Facebook: 6.2 cents.
  • Anders describes LinkedIn’s most expensive product offering, LinkedIn Recruiter, as a “Bloomberg terminal” for talent scouts. It costs up to $8,200 a year per “seat,” or user license.
  • Adobe, a big LinkedIn customer, has 70 seats. At list prices, that’s about half a million in revenue a year from a single client.
  • LinkedIn’s top salespeople make as much as $400,000 a year selling Recruiter.
  • LinkedIn spends 33 percent of revenue on sales and marketing.
  • LinkedIn’s profits are expected to double this year to $70 million.

 

Via - How LinkedIn Gets TWENTY Times More Money Per User Than Facebook

 

**Note: Facebook’s profit in the last quarter was $205 million on revenue of $1.1 billion.

 

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Microsoft invests half billion in the Nook, making it more valuable than Barnes and Noble

Microsoft and Barnes & Noble have teamed up to compete against Apple and Amazon in the eBooks business. The new partnership sees Microsoft investing $300 million in a new Barnes & Noble subsidiary.

The $300 million investment in the Nook subsidiary of Barnes & Noble gives Microsoft about 17.6 percent ownership of this business unit. That values this part of the business at about $1.7 billion. Before the markets opened this morning, the Nook business was valued about $900 million more than Barnes & Noble itself.

via GigaOm

 

In addition, Microsoft is paying another $305 million to get Nook on Windows 8 with some content:

Microsoft will be paying the Barnes & Noble subsidiary $180 million for revenue sharing on the Nook app that B&N will make for the Windows 8 platform. This is nonrefundable, the filing notes. Microsoft is also paying $125 million (equal to $25 million over five years) “for purposes of assisting NewCo in acquiring local digital reading content and technology development.” This, too, looks to be nonrefundable.

via Techcrunch

To put that in perspective, in the last quarter Barnes and Noble made $52 million in profit (on $2.4 billion in sales), and Amazon pulled in $130 million in profit (on $13 billion in sales). Clearly, Amazon has a big edge over B&N.

But, when you look at Microsoft’s earnings for the last quarter, $5.1 billion in profit (on $17 billion in sales), it looks like the big dog just entered the game. But, don’t forget that Apple is on the scene as well.

Clearly, the e-reader battle is just heating up and everyone wants a piece.

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On a side note, Target just announced they are pulling all Kindle’s from their stores due to ‘showrooming.’ The practice of visiting Target to physically touch a product, so you can then buy it on Amazon.

Talk is cheap…so make a Long Bet (for charity) to prove your prediction

Pronouncements about the future come easy. Even when made with an air of authority, they’re usually just cheap talk, rarely revisited. Only the tiny fraction that have proven correct tend to be remembered, when their authors want to take credit.

But what if there were some cash at stake?

The Long Bets Foundation, a new project masterminded by Well founder Stewart Brand and Wired editor-at-large Kevin Kelly, hopes to raise the quality of our collective foresight by incorporating money and accountability into the process of debate.

The idea is simple. If someone makes a grandiose claim, any skeptic can challenge it – “Would you bet on that?” – and the Long Bets Foundation will keep tabs on the wager, whether it takes five years or five decades to come to pass. If proven right, a predictor can relish the victory; if wrong, the challenger gets the glory.

 

 

The Bets:

- Over a ten-year period, the S & P 500 will outperform hedge funds, when performance is measured on a basis net of fees, costs and expenses. – $1,000,000 – (Warren Buffet vs. Protege Partners, LLC)

 

- At least one human alive in the year 2000 will still be alive in 2150. – $2,000 (Peter Schwartz vs. Melody Haller)

 

- Large Hadron Collider will destroy Earth. – $1,000 (Joe Keane vs. Nick Damiano)

 

- By 2020, a professional sports team (NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS) will integrate and have a woman as a team member/player. – $500 (Thomas Leavens vs. Martin Nisenholtz)

 

- By 2025, the states will have voted on at least one constitutional amendment to cede US federal power to a global government. – $800 (Thomas Quigley vs. Steven Midgley)

 

See more on the record bets.

 

By preserving the terms of the wager in public view, Long Bets promises to be more than a service for confident prognosticators. Over time, it hopes to foster better understanding of how predictions in aggregate work out in reality – what kinds of truths are easiest (or hardest) to forecast, and what kinds of people are right (or wrong) most reliably.

According to the Long Bets Foundation, all stakes are treated as charitable donations, tax deductible when the bet is made. Bettors designate nonprofits to receive the proceeds. Meanwhile, the foundation holds the funds in an investment account for the life of the bet, with half of the growth covering administrative costs. A competition designed to thrive in the public eye, Long Bets uses time as a teacher.

via Wired, May 2002

Best Buy to close 50 stores in the U.S. and 11 in the U.K.

Selling consumer electronics isn’t as easy as it used to be for Best Buy. The big-box retailer is closing 50 stores and compensating employees based on customer service after its fiscal fourth-quarter sales fell short of expectations.

The company today reported a fiscal fourth-quarter net loss of $1.7 billion, on revenue of $16.63 billion, up 3 percent from a year ago.

Best Buy’s problem: Amazon. Best Buy has been trying to grow its e-commerce business to compete better, but the big-box approach to selling consumer electronics isn’t what it used to be. That reality has Best Buy thinking small.

The company outlined the following moves:

  • It will cut $800 million in costs by fiscal 2015.
  • Close 50 big-box stores this fiscal year.
  • Open 100 Best Buy Mobile and small stores this year.
  • Boost online revenue by 15 percent.
  • And Best Buy will change its employee compensation model to revolve around customer service and business goals.

“The company is gradually becoming a physical showroom for online retailers,” said Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter.

via c|net – Business Tech

 

The company is also closing 11 stores in the UK, and:

As part of the plan to fix its troubles in Europe, Best Buy says that it will bring its “Wireless World” experience to some of the 2,500 small box mobility stores it currently operates in Europe.

via c|net – The Digital Home

 

// Photos via Kevin Dooley & MJ/TR

The new movie studios – $2.6 billion built from internet ads and online streaming

As 2012 rolls in…it appears the geeks have finally won. Multiple “internet-built studios” have announced they are committing big money to making movies and TV shows:

That’s $2.6 billion from internet based business, built off those digital pennies (instead of analog dollars). Plus, if you project forward growth looks strong for all three companies, while traditional studios are tightening their budgets.

The future is now?

Artificial insemination and too-fat-to-fly – the real Thanksgiving turkey

Something scary is happening in the turkey world. Our scientists and farmers have created a Frankenstein-like beast called the broad breasted white. This creature is created in a lab, through artificial insemination, and then grows fat so fast that it often cannot walk. It usually needs antibiotics to survive to be butchered.

Needless to say, it cannot fly. It can also barely walk, but it does create the biggest turkey breast you could ever imagine.

If that wasn’t enough these creatures are shoved into tight pens with thousands of other birds. All of them too fat to walk around, struggling to survive, and sometimes even injected with butter and salt.

“These birds are grown in large grow-out barns that are fully automated and may house as many as 10,000 birds.” (Wikipedia)

Why is this happening?

Profit, pure and simple. Americans want $5 turkeys and don’t care how they get it. When there is a will there is a way, and this way has been found.

The only thing I can think to say…is it worth it?

Photo credit: INSADCO Photography/Alamy