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Business Formation and Planning Archives

SEC recognizes new way to communicate with investors

Residents of Virginia may have heard that the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, has established new guidelines for disclosure of business information via social media. The SEC now recognizes social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter as legitimate channels of communication. The SEC views social media sites the same way as it does corporate websites or the SEC's own Edgar site. The new rules state that corporations must make clear which social media sites will serve as official channels of disclosure. This will impact not only large corporations such as Netflix but also those involved in corporate formation, limited liability companies and business start-ups.The new disclosure rules follow a notable incident in December of 2012. Reed Hastings, the chief executive of Netflix, used his personal Facebook account to congratulate Netflix employees for more than 1 billion hours of video viewing by customers in a single month. The SEC considered this information material to investors who would not have access to the news unless they had Facebook accounts and subscribed to Mr. Hastings' posts.

Virginia greenhouse venture will add 205 jobs

A new $30-million greenhouse operation is expected to create 205 jobs in Virginia over the next five years. Red Sun Farms plans to construct multiple climate-controlled greenhouses to grow organic, hydroponic vegetables by using state-of-the-art technology. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell lauded the new business formation as a "game-changing project" that has been a long time coming. The project will be constructed on 45 acres in a new business park located in Dublin, Virginia. Red Sun Farms will be the first tenant of the New River Valley Commerce Park. The company has operated in Mexico under the name Agricola El Rosal since 2001.

Small business start-ups still possible

New research shows that it is the baby boomers, not the Generation Y entrepreneurs, who are the real risk takers when it comes to business formation. Boomers and Generation X'ers are far more likely to take on the challenges of starting a small business than their younger counterparts. The study found that 41 percent of Generation X employees, those between 30 and 49, and 45 percent of baby boomers, aged 50 to 69, consider themselves "entrepreneurial" as compared to only 32 percent of Generation Y investors aged 18 to 29. While younger workers do tend to be drawn to smaller companies where they can exercise their creative spirit, all generations evidence an entrepreneurial spirit within their companies.Older workers have many advantages when it comes to starting a business, including experience, connections and accumulated wealth. At least 40 percent of Generation Y business owners and 43 percent of baby boomers identified themselves as "high risk" in terms of business ventures while only 28 percent of Generation Y responders answered this way.

Business errors entrepreneurs should avoid

Mistakes are inevitable in any business and industry, but some are more common and damaging than others. For people who are looking into a business formation, it is important that they avoid frequent and, sometimes, business-killing missteps. The most common include lack of planning, failure to listen to customers and financial mismanagement.For businesses both new and old, planning is essential. If there is not a series of steps in place for everything from product development to sales, companies are likely to experience chaos and problems managing the business. When businesses implement proper planning, the company works efficiently, and it makes it easier to discover problems within an organization. It is also essential that businesses listen to their customers. Even if a company has an outstanding product, their competitors are attempting to develop one that is even better. Companies that listen and respond to their customers are in a far better position to improve their products and services.

Senator presents bill to streamline small business regulation

A bill recently introduced in the Virginia Senate would implement a commission with the power to block enforcement of regulations for some small businesses. The commission would also evaluate any new mandates the state government places on businesses. Senator Richard Stuart's bill made it out of the Rules Committee nearly two weeks ago. The full Senate will hear the bill next.Stuart, R-Stafford, elaborated on the role of the commission, saying that it would review how any future mandates would impact small business formation. The commission would consist of both private citizens and legislators. It would also be able to suspend mandates for up to a year for further review. Stuart introduced the bill after speaking with business professionals about impediments to creating jobs, with government mandates being the main concern state business people had.

Crowdfunding holds risks, rewards

Crowdfunding is such a new concept that spell check refuses to acknowledge it's status as a properly spelled word. Crowdfunding is not just a real word, but it is also a real idea that has turned into a reality for many small business owners that has transformed the possibilities for entrepreneurs who need seed money to grow.

What happens when a business partner leaves the partnership?

When you work closely with another person on the time-consuming and often frustrating process of building and maintaining a profitable business venture, your partner's sudden announcement that he or she has decided to leave the partnership can feel like a divorce, or worse, a death. While you previously had your partner to rely on for both the daily tasks and long-term goals and obligations of your Virginia small business, you have now found yourself alone. That can be unsettling, daunting and, in many cases, frightening.

Popular franchise expands by 3,000 locations

A few weeks ago we posted about how Starbucks acquired specialty tea brand Teavana. Now, they are changing their business model even further by adding 3,000 new locations across the globe in the next five years. The coffee magnate is also planning to renovate numerous existing stores.

Advice for growing a small business

The recent economic woes impacting people across the country and in states like Virginia have left many business owners scrambling to make ends meet. A weak economy often impacts small business owners and entrepreneurs much more than larger corporations. In response, to ensure economic success entrepreneurs must be prepared and savvy.

Should you open a franchise?

Many Virginia entrepreneurs know that opening a franchise can be an incredibly successful endeavor. In order to make it successful, it's important to plan for the expected and unexpected, and to be willing to put the time and effort into getting it off the ground. It's not as easy as just writing a check and getting some branded decals in the mail, but some franchises make it easier than others to succeed and run a profitable business. One of the elements that experts say can help define a successful franchise is the training provided by the parent company.

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