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Han Hae-kyung takes an electrotherapy on her shoulder and back at Gang-won Rehabilitation Hospital, South Korea image www.acbocallcentre.com

SEOUL — When Han Hye-kyung finished high school and got a job at Samsung, her family celebrated with a barbecue. But within two years, she stopped menstruating. And then she couldn’t walk straight. And then doctors found a brain tumour, something she and her family claim came from toxins at a factory run by the South Korean tech giant.

Han and her mother are among a small group of Koreans who say there’s a dark side to this country’s most iconic conglomerate. They say conditions at a Samsung Electronics production plant caused hundreds of rare diseases over the past two decades, some fatal, with most victims in their 20s or 30s.

The fight between Samsung and dozens of former workers persisted for years on the fringes. But the plight of those ex-employees has suddenly forced its way into the mainstream, reflecting South Korea’s growing concern about safety and corporate accountability.

Samsung and other chaebol, as the conglomerates are known, have long stood as the unassailable patriarchs of South Korea’s Third-World-to-riches rise. But in the past few months, lawmakers have demanded that Samsung provide an explanation for the spate of rare diseases. A crowd-sourced movie inspired by the issue hit theatres. And recently, Samsung apologised in a nationally televised news conference for its “lack of attention” to the pain and distress of former employees with the unusual illnesses.

There’s no clear proof linking the diseases with factory conditions. Samsung said in a statement to The Washington Post that it is “meeting or exceeding” industry health and safety standards and emphasised a series of safety innovations that it called “best-in-class.” But some politicians and activists here say the employees’ health problems highlight the faults of a company that emphasised productivity over safety and prevented the formation of workers’ unions.

For those who have pushed Samsung to acknowledge the diseases, the recent apology was a partial vindication, coming after years in which Samsung questioned their credibility. Samsung promised compensation for victims but pointedly did not claim responsibility. Han and her mother, Kim Shi-nyeo, watched the announcement on an off-brand flat-screen at their rented apartment; Kim had sold nearly every Samsung product she owned because just looking at the logo made her angry.

Han, severely disabled by the surgery to remove her brain tumour, beat her chest as she heard Samsung Electronics chief executive Kwon Oh-hyun say he was “heartbroken” by what had happened.

Kim teared up.

“I felt, to an extent, like all those years we’ve had to go through were recognised,” Kim said. “At the same time, the fact still remains that my daughter has to live the rest of her life this way.”

Complicated claims

Samsung is known globally for its televisions and smartphones, but within Korea, its influence is broader — that of a do-everything titan that sells life insurance, builds apartments and accounts for one-fifth of the nation’s gross domestic product.

Those who study Samsung say the company is increasingly sensitive to blemishes on its image as its ailing chairman, Lee Kun-hee, prepares to pass the reins to his only son.

“The social mood is changing in Korea, and I think Samsung sensed that,” said Kim Sang-jo, an economist at Hansung University who specialises in the conglomerate. “The [rare diseases] had become a symbolic problem for Samsung. It was starting to be seen as a very arrogant and stubborn company.”

Concern about Samsung’s factory conditions first surfaced seven years ago, when two former employees who had worked side by side, Hwang Yu-mi and Lee Suk-yeong, died of leukemia within months of one another. Hwang was 23, and her father, a taxi driver, felt the deaths couldn’t be a coincidence.

In the years since, about 200 other people have claimed sicknesses from Samsung production lines, mostly from the Giheung plant 20 miles south of Seoul, which manufactures semiconductors and liquid crystal displays.

But the claims are complicated. Most mainstream medical experts say that the causes of brain tumours and leukemia are essentially unknown. Still, there are some factors that can increase the risk, including exposure to radiation and benzene. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says “long-term exposure” to high levels of benzene can cause leukemia and some cancers.

Like other high-tech manufacturers, Samsung uses potentially harmful chemicals on its production lines — including benzene — but not at levels exceeding safety standards, according to studies that Samsung has permitted of its workplaces.

In part because of that ambiguity, South Korea’s government-run workplace compensation agency has sent conflicting signals about whether it thinks the claims are legitimate. In four cases, the agency has determined that the diseases were workplace accidents, the result of chemical exposure, according to Lee Jong-ran, a lawyer who represents many of those who have fallen ill.

But in 23 other cases, including Han’s, the agency said there was no clear correlation. Those workers have appealed to the courts, where they’ve squared off against the compensation agency and faced yet another challenge — Samsung has lent its high-profile lawyers to the government to help with its defence. (Samsung said in May that it would withdraw its lawyers from the cases.)

The diseases were reported by people employed by Samsung in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and the company has since revamped its Giheung plant. Still, several employees who worked there say Samsung for too long paid insufficient attention to worker safety. During occasional power outages, air filtration systems would shut down. Work would stop temporarily, but resume before the gases were entirely cleared, they said.

“It’s very expensive to stop a [production] line for a long time,” said Ryu Ui-seok, a former Samsung engineer who worked at Giheung from 2004 until 2006 and is in good health. “After even a brief power outage, you’d smell the chemicals very strongly” as people got back to work.

Most of the workers at Giheung were women, recent high school graduates. During the one-month orientations held for newcomers, they were told about the history of the company and the apartments they’d one day be able to afford, according to several former employees. They were given detailed instructions on how to keep the production line clean, an essential for semiconductor manufacturing. But they were told almost nothing about safety or the chemicals they’d be dealing with, they said.

“All we learned was how to be an efficient worker,” said Hong Sae-mi, who joined Samsung at 19 and has multiple sclerosis, a disease she says is workplace-related. “The emphasis was on the product, not the people.”

In a statement, Samsung said that even dating back to the 1990s, 10 of 200 mandatory education hours for employees were devoted to safety. Employees were instructed on how to handle chemicals and deal with accidents. Samsung also said that in 2007, it implemented a round-the-clock chemical monitoring system, and that out of an “abundance of caution,” chemical levels were kept to one-tenth of legal limits.

Samsung declined to discuss Han’s case. A company spokeswoman said that in the West, apologising could be seen as an admission of responsibility.

“But the employees are like our family, and the company would like to offer help when the family is in trouble,” said the spokeswoman, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue. “Instead of looking into whose fault it is, we try to give help first.”

Fighting a lost cause

Han, who left Samsung in 2001, developed the menstruation problems while still at the company. But her more serious health issues emerged later; her brain tumour was diagnosed in 2005. In a 2012 blog post, Samsung noted that some ex-employees’ illnesses surfaced well after they left the company, making it difficult to draw a link.

Han can’t tell her own story. She has full comprehension, but she can barely speak — only a few words now and then. After years of physiotherapy, she can dress herself, but she cannot button her shirts. She cannot write. She can talk on the phone, but only if her mother holds it to her ear.

For all the attention that the claims against Samsung have received in recent months, those dealing with diseases have suffered in private for years. In Han’s case, the best-case scenario is that she’ll “one day be able to walk to the dinner table,” Kim said.

After doctors discovered Han’s tumour, she underwent high-risk surgery. She emerged from the 12-hour operation alive, but much different. Her arms flailed uncontrollably and she couldn’t lift her head. She had quadruple vision.

It was only in 2008 that Kim heard about the other, comparable cases. Friends told her that fighting Samsung was a lost cause, given its political power and clout with the news media. But Kim joined a growing group of victims and their relatives who held memorial services and brandished banners in front of Samsung’s headquarters. Kim sold a restaurant she owned and became a full-time caretaker for her daughter. A group representing the families has paid Han’s medical bills over the past two years.

Both the government agency and a Seoul administrative court have ruled there’s no confirmed link between Han’s condition and her time at Samsung. But Kim says she’s “100 percent sure” there is. There is no family history of brain tumours or other rare diseases, and Han never showed health problems before taking her job at Samsung, her mother said.

Kim is now hoping to receive compensation from Samsung in a negotiation process. Her goals are simple. She wants to outfit her apartment with grasp bars and other devices that can help her daughter more easily live at home.

“I want Samsung to think about all the years my daughter cannot work,” Kim said. “She will need help for the rest of her life.”

Henry Sapiecha

ON A LIGHTER NOTE-GOLD COIN BULLION LEFT TO LAST HEIR

A substitute teacher in California is the likely heir to a trove of gold coins worth over USD$7 million uncovered by a cleaning crew in the home of a recently deceased relative.

Gold Company


The National Post reports that Arlene Magdon is believed to be the sole remaining heir to the treasure amassed over many years by Walter Samaszko Jr., Magdon’s first cousin and a quiet recluse who passed away earlier this year at the age of 69.

Samaszko had resided in the Nevada capital of Carson City since the late 1960’s and led a quiet and frugal life. Records indicate he would withdraw only $500 a month from his stock accounts for the payment of modest costs.

Following Samaszko’s death genealogical researchers were unable to find any living family members in Carson City and were compelled to search further afield. Arlene Magdon is believed by them to be Samaszko’s last living heir.

A clean-up crew enlisted by Alan Glover, the Carson City Clerk-Recorder, following Samaszko’s death discovered a staggering trove of gold bullion in his garage. According to Glover the gold coins, many wrapped in foil and plastic cases, are numerous enough to fill two wheelbarrows.

A report filed by appraiser Howard Herz several weeks ago lists a total of 2,695 coins estimated to be worth over $7.4 million in total.

According to Herz Samaszko, far from being a reclusive crank, was in fact a canny bullion investor.

“What some individuals have called a hoard of gold is, in fact, a quite well-thought-out investment in gold,” wrote Herz in his report.

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha

NEWS ACCESS DIGITAL BY AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER TO COST

News Ltd will soon charge readers of The Australian $2.95 a week to view all content on its website and mobile phone and tablet applications, as the country’s largest newspaper publisher experiments with alternative sources of revenue in the face of falling advertising receipts.

It will be the first paywall for a general newspaper in Australia, an experiment that has achieved mixed success overseas by newspapers and magazines including The New York Times, the Financial Times and The Economist.

It will follow the approach of News Corp stablemate The Wall Street Journal. Some stories will be able to be read for free while others will need a subscription to be read, most likely to be its analysis and specialised sections.

That approach is aimed at retaining enough readers to keep its digital advertising revenue, while establishing a separate source of funding less buffeted by variations in the advertising market.

It has rejected the strict paywall of The Times in London and The Australian Financial Review, published by Fairfax Media, in Australia.

The Australian Financial Review had the first paywall for a major newspaper here, an expensive one, the future of which is now under review, given poor subscription growth.

News Ltd has planned the move for some time, and will formally announce the details this week.

The move is expected to happen this month, probably to be accompanied by an initial free period.

Most of the other changes were discussed at a briefing for bloggers last night with company executives, including the editor of The Australian, Clive Mathieson, and chief executive of both The Australian and News Digital Media, Richard Freudenstein.

One blogger there, Gavin Heaton, wrote that the editoral team would “tweak content between pay and free spaces according to time of day, popularity, etc”.

Another attendee, Karalee Evans, wrote that the editor-in-chief, Chris Mitchell, would have the final say of what would be “paywalled” or not, but that columnists would be.

Its general news site, news.com.au, would “never” be a paid model, Evans reported.

News Ltd confirmed today that a digital pass for the website, apps and a mobile site would be $2.95 a week, $4.50 for digital plus a Saturday paper subscription and $7.95 for a weekly print and digital subscription.

Existing print subscribers would get free digital access.

The 5 cheekiest Con Artists

of All Time

By: Kristi Harrison

February 13, 2008 567,830 views

Let’s give the devils their due. Yeah, they’ve screwed over thousands of innocent people. But some of them had balls the size of hot air balloons and for that, we must salute them.

#5.
Charles Ponzi

Charles ‘The Ponz’ Ponzi is, quite simply, one of the greatest swindlers in American history. The originator and copyright holder of the piece de resistance of his career, the “Ponzi Scheme,” Ponzi also boasted old-timey movie star looks and a smirk that could charm the pants off of the Pope.

Much like Vito Corleone, Ponzi came to America as an impoverished Italian immigrant. Also like Vito Corleone, Ponzi decided early in the game that his many talents should not be squandered working in a opium pipe-making factory, or wherever they sent the Italians to work back then. Keep in mind that the man had already served time in Canada, hiding it from his family by telling them he had gotten a job there. Once he was out and in the states, he created his own little plan for living the good life.

The deal was, back then you could get these coupons that could be redeemed for stamps in other countries. Ponzi noticed that back in Italy these coupons cost way less than the stamps in America. So, he figured it was still 1918 and there were a lot of retarded people around, and that he could buy like a billion of those coupons in Italy and then redeem them for the stamps here. He made 400 percent profit on each transaction, and didn’t produce a damned thing.

Ponzi thought, well, shit, why isn’t everybody doing this? So this smooth operator convinced thousands of people to invest in his totally legit business, the Securities Exchange Company, and by 1920 was making $250,000 a day.

Audacity Factor:
Remember those coupons Ponzi was supposed to be buying with all this investor money? Yeah, he wasn’t. There wasn’t even a thousandth as many of the coupons in existence as the investors had given him the money to buy. He was basically just taking the investor’s money, piling it up and swimming around in it like Scrooge McDuck. It was estimated that millions of dollars had passed through his hands and he had nothing to show for them but his awesome mustache.

Still, when an angry crowd of investors gathered outside his office, he walked right out there, smiled, gave them some money and offered coffee. That’s the kind of guy he was.

He was eventually sentenced to prison, at which point he jumped bail, moved to Florida and went right back to scamming. When the cops came for him, he changed his appearance, stowed away on a boat and tried to leave the country. Finally, he got caught and went to jail.

The thing is, before that whole mess, Ponzi had come up with another idea. Back in 1918 he had tried to publish this book of business listings, where the businesses would pay to get listed and then people would use the listing to decide where to shop. Everyone told him the idea was retarded and he dropped it, plunging into a life of fraud instead. Later, somebody else would get rich on a thing called “The Yellow Pages.”

#4.
Benny Hinn

For you poor unfortunates uneducated in the ways of evangelical fundamentalism, Benny Hinn may be off your radar. Which is too bad. Because Benny Hinn is king of the Muppet-Showesque monstrosities known as faith healers. He’s so good, that he makes you forget about their supposed real king, What’s His Name of Nazareth. “So what?,” you may ask. “So he’s a faith-healing evangelical–I’ve got dozens of those under my bed. What’s the big deal?”

Mr. Hinn has built his ministry on a few tenets. One is his gift of prophecy. Here are just a few of his better known predictions:

God will kill all the homosexuals by fire;
Castro will die in the 1990s;
An earthquake would destroy the American east coast, also in the 1990s;
JESUS CHRIST HIMSELF was going to make a personal appearance at Hinn’s African crusade.

Needless to say, Jesus had a great deal going on that day and couldn’t make it. Followers have still donated millions to Hinn, who lives in a $10 million house and drives a Mercedes SUV. Apparently there’s, like, some kind of law against asking people to donate money to God and then buying bling with it instead, because the Senate Committee on Finance launched an investigation late last year. If they have hearings it’ll be interesting to see if Jesus makes an appearance.

It takes a special kind of guy to make this list. False prophesies and wicked combovers just aren’t going to cut it. But Hinn is no ordinary minion of Satan. Observe:

As you can see, Hinn performs his miracles by slapping old people to the ground, and then apparently doing a Jedi force-push against those who come to their aid. Fat people, tiny deaf orphan children, epileptic mulleted types, anyone is fair game for the wrath of Hinn, who then swaggers around those passed out fools like Ali demanding a rematch.

Audacity Factor:
In 2006 this pimp sent out this letter to his followers:

… we have recently taken delivery on our Gulfstream G4SP plane, which we call Dove One. I have enclosed a beautiful photo-filled brochure to explain more about this incredible ministry tool that will increase the scope of our abilities to preach the Gospel around the globe. Now we must pay the remainder of the down payment, and I am asking the Lord Jesus to speak to 6,000 of my precious partners to sow a seed of $1,000 in the next ninety days. And I am praying, even as I write this letter, that you will be one of them!

Walking may have been good enough for Jesus Christ, but it’s not good enough for Benny Hinn. Somebody, please, buy this man a Dove One. Better yet, go ahead and purchase him a yacht, a subway line, the Orient Express, some rickshaws and a few of those elephants domesticated for human transportation. ANYTHING to get his egregious face-slapping ministry to the people.

Hell, maybe he’s not a con man after all. Watch that video, the man’s worth every penny.

#3.
The Fox Sisters

Don’t let the sexy name fool you. Kate, Margaret and Leah Fox were leading proponents of the Spiritualist Movement of the 19th Century, their primary qualification for that job being that they were completely full of shit.

The younger two, Kate and Margaret, were only 10 and 12 when they convinced their idiot parents they could talk with a household ghost through a system of knocks and raps. The girls would snap their fingers and the ghosts would respond, much to the amazement of all the dumbasses who populated the world in the 19th century.

By the time big sister Leah got in the act, the three tricky Foxs had earned an international reputation as ghost-talkers and were making epic amounts of bucks with their other-worldly seances. Unfortunately, the sisters also gained a thirst for the hooch in their old age and were eventually exposed as fraudulent drunks who were using their toes to simulate the sounds from the great beyond, a trick that, in retrospect, doesn’t seem it should have fooled the family dog.

Audacity Factor:
Knuckle cracking? Really? Anyone who makes their living by popping appendages and is not a prostitute, side-show freak or chiropractor, deserves some mad props. And they didn’t just say, “Hey y’all? You hear that? I bet the house is settling or something.” No. These girls went through the trouble of creating a systematic knuckle cracking language to communicate with their pretend spirits … and kept it up for almost 40 freaking years. A scientist (William Crookes) studied the sisters and declared them to be the real deal.

Well, we at Cracked have studied the people in the 19th century and declared them all to be mildly retarded.

One of the sisters eventually came clean when a reporter offered them $1,500 in beer money to spill the secret. The money was quickly pissed away and all three of the sisters died in poverty and were buried in pauper’s graves. Even Charles Dickens couldn’t have imagined a better ending for the Fox Sisters.

#2.
Gregor MacGregor

Gregor MacGregor made his fortune and reputation in the early 1800s when he convinced hundreds of investors that he was the prince of the fictional country of Poyois. Not only did Gregor MacGregor gain the trust and hard-earned pounds of his eager would-be colonists, he also created a guidebook detailing the geography and abundant natural resources of his island off the coast of Honduras.

By the time his 250 investors had sailed to the vacant patch of water where their island should have been, MacGregor was already rounding up his next group of colonists, this time from France. Undeterred by the eventual deaths of 200 of his first settlers, MacGregor went through the trouble of drafting a Poyois constitution naming himself as head of the republic. Even after his trial and conviction for fraud, this magnificent man continued selling non-existent land and stock to European nobility.

Audacity Factor:
The real downfall of Jim Jones and Koresh and those Heaven’s Gate fools was that they believed what they were peddling. Not Prince Gregor MacRadical. After the few survivors made it back from their boat trip to nowhere, most still couldn’t believe MacGregor had lied to them, standing up for him in the papers and basically blaming the island for not being there. They simply could not comprehend that any one man could have balls that huge. They were wrong.

#1.
Frank Abagnale

By the age today’s emo kids are tripping over their first curbs on account of the hair in their eyes and the loss of circulation from their too-tight pants, Mr. Abagnale had collected over $40,000 from various banks across New York City. By the time some of you were hoping to unlatch your first bra, and for most of you, much much sooner, the man had faked his way as a university professor, lawyer, pilot and doctor. Pretty much all the occupations Cracked writers and readers are barred from entering.

By the time you and I were sleeping through our summers at home from college, whining about how boring our hometowns were and “Why can’t you stay off my case, I’M ON VACATION,” Frank Abagnale had already been caught by French police, served jail time in France and Sweden, was extradited to the United States, escaped from a moving damned airplane and nearly orchestrated a perfect getaway.

That’s the sort of thing that inspires Hollywood to make movies about you, starring Leo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks.

Audacity Factor:
Once Abagnale was imprisoned, he convinced his guards that he was actually an undercover prison inspector and that he needed the privilege of having an unsupervised meeting with his FBI agent contact. Yeah, they bought it.

After finally serving five years in prison, Abagnale was released if he cooperated with the government in detecting fraud. Not one to miss a golden opportunity, he turned his specialized knowledge into a legitimate money-making machine, opening a wildly successful fraud consultation business.

This one has a happy ending, as once his businesses took off, he used his honestly-earned millions to repay those he defrauded over the years. Of course, there’s always the chance that this whole phase of his life is also a scam somehow, one so convoluted that the world won’t figure it out until Abagnale is leaving orbit in a spaceship full of all of the world’s gold.

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha

Dear Henry Sapiecha,

We are pleased to announce the next National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) workshop in Perth.  Interested in learning about NRAS and how it can boost your personal wealth through property investing?  GPS is hosting NRAS seminars to explain the financial benefits to investors, how it works and what properties are available Australia wide.

NRAS Property Workshop


The National Rental Affordability Scheme explained

GPS is proud to provide Australian investors with the opportunity to take part in the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) with properties all over Australia.  This workshop will teach you about NRAS and the excellent tax free rebates/incentives for the next 10 years.

By supplying you access to a website especially designed to provide detailed analysis you will be able to assess the benefits of NRAS on a range of effective investment properties nationally

Some of the topics to be covered in depth are:

What is a NRAS?

Why NRAS was introduced.

Government Tax Free Incentives.

What are the financial benefits to the Investors?

What properties are available in Perth under NRAS and how do they compare?

How does GPS assist in choosing the best NRAS product Australia Wide?

A case Study and a lot more.

Perth Workshop Details:

NRAS workshop:

When: Wednesday 8th September 2010

Location: GPS Perth Office – Suite 1, 251 Hay Street, East Perth WA

Arrive: 5:45pm for Registration, Networking & Refreshments
6:00pm Start – 7.30pm

We extend the invitation to you and your associates who you believe would also benefit from this education. You may register your interest for this workshop in your State.

Please RSVP at your earliest to confirm your attendance to the workshop by simply completing the online form: www.gpsnetwork.com.au/NRAS-Property.asp

Best Regards,

The GPS Team

Property Investment Information – www.gpsnetwork.com.au

Search Investment Properties – www.guardianproperty.com.au

Published by Henry Sapiecha

Entrepreneurs

Meet The Fastest Growing Company

Ever

Andrew Mason figured out how to inject hysteria into the process of bargain hunting on the Web.

The result is an overnight success story called Groupon.

image
At least Mark Zuckerberg wrote a few lines of computer code at Harvard before he left to launch Facebook. Now Andrew Mason, a relaxed and lanky 29-year-old music major from Northwestern, has managed to build the fastest-growing company in Web history. Groupon represents what the dot-com boom was supposed to be all about: huge sales, easy profits and solid connection between bricks-and-mortar retailers and online consumers.

Groupon, a name that blends “group” and “coupon,” presents an online audience with deep discounts on a product or service. Act now, says the pitch: You have only so many hours before this offer expires. That’s a familiar come-on, but it’s coupled with a novel element: You get the deal only if a certain number of fellow citizens buy the same thing on the same day. It’s a cents-off coupon married to a Friday-after-Thanksgiving shopping frenzy.

What’s in it for the vendor–which might be a museum, a yoga studio or an ice cream shop? Exposure. Since the resulting revenue is not only discounted but shared (typically, 50/50) with Groupon, the vendor may scarcely break even on the incremental sales. But it now has customers who might never have thought of patronizing the business. Groupon gets its offers in front of eyeballs by buying ad space through Google ( GOOG news people ) and Facebook and via the word of mouth of its 13 million subscribers.

Video: Growing Groupon

Unlike so many dot-com rockets, Groupon is a real business. Occupying 85,000 square feet inside a rehabbed eight-story former Montgomery Ward warehouse in Chicago’s River North neighborhood, the company is on track to pass $500 million in revenue this year, according to a report Morgan Stanley ( MS news people ) put together to win some underwriting business. No technology stalwart–including Ebay, Amazon.com ( AMZN news people ), Yahoo ( YHOO news people ), AOL and Google–grew that big that fast. At just 17 months old this April Groupon boasted a $1.35 billion valuation when it raised $135 million, the biggest chunk of it from Digital Sky Technologies, the curious Moscow investment fund behind Facebook and Zynga. (Mason will not disclose his stake, which he says is less than 50%.) The only company to reach a $1 billion valuation faster was YouTube (now part of Google), founded in 2005 and still waiting to turn its first profit. Groupon broke into the black just seven months after inception.

// < ![CDATA[//

Mason’s model is transforming the way companies–especially smaller ones with limited marketing budgets–snag sales. In May Groupon sold 6,561 tickets to a King Tut exhibit in New York’s Times Square for $18 apiece, little more than half the list price. The campaign brought in $120,000 at virtually no marginal cost to the exhibit; Groupon pocketed about 50% for a day’s effort. The most popular item so far: a $25 ticket for a Chicago architectural boat tour sold for $12. In May Groupon moved 19,822 tickets in eight hours and split the $238,000 with the tour operator.

Groupon has charged into 88 U.S. cities and 22 countries, including Turkey and Chile. Hundreds of rivals, some with deep pockets, are springing up. With turf wars brewing from New York to Brazil, Mason has armed himself with 250 salespeople and 70 writers, many plucked from the Chicago improv scene, to concoct witty pitches for deals. “We want to do for local e-commerce what Amazon did for normal consumer goods,” he boasts.

Sourced & published  by Henry Sapiecha

Everyone Works on Commission

sales tips, sales techniques, sales assistance, sales questions,  sales strategies, selling tips, sel

Most sales people receive some portion of their remuneration based on the success of their sales effort. For some, they operate on 100% commission. And of course this is a powerful incentive to improve. Their connection to sales is obvious.

What about other people in your organisation? The receptionist. The delivery driver. The accounts clerk. In a small business, pretty much everyone will talk to your customers. But they probably don’t consider themselves in sales.

Whether they like it or not, they are in sales. And they are on commission too. After all, if sales go down dramatically, or they cause you to lose an important customer, their whole pay packet (and job) is at risk.

Do your non-sales staff see the connection between what they do and sales? Every customer contact in your business with anyone in it is a moment of truth for your business. Does everyone in your business know that they are in sales, and that everyone in your business Works on Commission?

So why not make even some small portion of their package visibly dependent on sales so that every time they answer the phone, they KNOW they are Working on Commission.

May Your Business Be – As You Plan It.

About the author:

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and The Australian Business Coaching Club and is the internationally recognized author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success.

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 22nd March 2010


Hi again

DEVELOPING A POSITIVE MINDSET

The following is a statement from a serious money making person - Jon
It says it all. Take note and learn.
My footnote at the end

QUOTE

I've been ranting and raving lately about the
importance of your wealth DNA.

Why is it such a big deal?

I bump into so many individuals, especially at
seminars and when I get to talk to them, it's
obvious to me that no matter how specific you
layout a strategy, you just know they're never
going to be successful.


How do I know?

It's in the way they speak and the language they
use.

They generally fall into 3 categories. You might
think that this bit doesn't relate to you, but
let's see.

The first question that I ask them is, what is
that has stopped you in creating more success in
your life so far?

The overwhelming answer is that they start
talking about events or other individuals who
have somehow controlled their destiny.

They're playing what I call the "blame-game".

They'll blame the economy, the government, the
stock market, their broker, a real estate agent,
a former business partner, their ex-wife, you
get the drift...


You'll never become wealthy if you fall into
this category.

You have to take 100% responsibility of where
you are at right now. You'll never be able to
move forward if you don't accept this.

Here's an interesting story. I once told this to
someone, (I wont mention who) and they
aggressively came back at me with...

"So if I'm walking down the street and a brick
falls on my head, it's my fault?"

No, it's not your fault... But how you respond
to the event is your choice.

Let me ask you this, do you have any friends or
family that have been on workcover for 5 years,
waiting for payout?

Now don't get me wrong, of course injuries
happen, but your attitude to how you respond to
events that seem challenging at the time is so
important when you're building a foundation for
wealth.

The next attitude of mediocrity is
"justification".

If you're not blaming, you are usually
justifying your situation in some shape or form.

I've had people say to me, "Money is not really
important to me."

Guess what... These guys are usually broke.
Guaranteed.

Another way of justifying their lack of money
position, they generally use dumb comparisons
like, "Money is not as important as love" or
"Money is not as important as your health."

Isn't that dumb? It's like you can only have one
or the other. I know you can have both or all
three.

The next dumb attitude is complaining.

In fact, this is the worst thing you can do,
guaranteed to keep you broke, and it gets even
worse... Your health will suffer as well.

I'm a big believer in what you focus on expands.
Read that again... It's THAT powerful.

When you're whining, moaning and complaining,
the only likely outcome is that you're going to
get more of the same crap that you're
complaining about.

When you're complaining, you become a living,
breathing crap-magnet.

Have you ever met a rich person who bitches and
moans all day long.

THINK POSITIVE ALL THE WAY TO THE BANK

Here's some homework for you that could
potentially give you some instant results in
your life.

Are you suffering from a little bit or a lot of
the above "wealth-stealing" principles?

You might say to me that, nup, you don't do any
of the above.

Here's a challenge for you...

For the next 7 days, try this. Don't blame,
justify or complain... No matter what.

Look at every experience and say to yourself,

"Mmmm.... What have I done to create this?"
(Responsibility)

"What's my positive response? If at all..."

"What can I learn from this situation that will
be useful to me?"

See how you go... I bet you it's not going to be
easy. But if you take up the challenge, you're
going to be amazed at the insights and
transformations that will start to appear.

...And remember, it's nothing more than taking
100% responsibility of your own life.

Regards - Jon


Some people have not got a life.
They are so busy complaining that life passes them by
Scared to take risks and explore opportunities
or better still create opportunities.
They are always victims..HA-HA-HA
Get a grip and crush that mentality or
forever walk in someone elses shadow
YOU CAN GET JUST ABOUT ANYTHING YOU WANTY IN LIFE -
ENGAGE A POSITIVE MINDSET

Sourced and Published by Henry Sapiecha 17th March 2010
REAL ESTATE MARKET IN AUSTRALIA
www.realestate-au.info
50-notes-house-top
I've got some shocking news for you if you're a property
investor, and hopefully this will put the confusion to rest
as to whether the market will go up or down in the next 12
months.

Many of the negative views that relate to real estate are
coming off the back-end of what is happening in the U.S.
market. 

Despite the information that we have put out recently about
our prediction, some folk are still not convinced.

I suppose the reason why there is a strong focus on the U.S.
real estate market is that it was the catalyst that started
the ball rolling and has led us down this uncertain economic
climate. Confidence is coming back - but not quick enough.

So I want to have a conversation with you as to where the
U.S. is at and how we differ here in Australia.

man-interviews-couple

Many experts in the U.S. still see housing prices as too
high to attract buyers and too low for sellers who have got
negative equity to get out with their dignity intact. 

With such a crazy scenario, there is obviously going to be
more problems in that market. The question is, will it
effect you as a real estate investor?

Let's have a look at it closely...

The first obstacle the U.S. have got is a simple one...
They've got too many houses that no one wants. I read a
report recently that said that nearly 10% of all homes built
this decade are sitting empty.

You're probably wondering how many are actually empty? Over
600,000 homes.
dollar_house_balance-172x115

Who owns them? Well, it's probably a bank or a fancy
financial institution that was silly enough to buy the
mortgages two or three years ago.

So the guys that hold the asset have got a problem, don't
they? If they flood the market the prices of those homes
will come crashing down, which further destroys the value of
the asset on the corporate balance sheet. 

They don't want that - they would rather hold it and call it
an un-performing asset at a reasonable valuation rather than
what it's really worth.

These are the games that big companies play - it makes them
sound smart, but it's a dumb move.

Anyway, so yes, it's bad over there and likely to get worse.

But I know what you're thinking... 

What about us here in Australia?
australia-flag

Well, we have no such problem. In fact, we have the reverse.
In Australia, there is a shortage of housing that is quickly
adding up to 100,000 dwellings.

With no immediate solution...

It's really as simple as that... What forces prices down is
something that most property investors don't think about.
Supply and demand.

We're not going to experience the same fall-out that the
States has suffered - that should be obvious to you by now.
But I keep hearing these stories of how it's going to get
worse in the States and how we're going to be dragged along
and suffer the same circumstances.

It isn't going to happen.

To date, the US market generally speaking has fallen by 34%
based on the Case-Schiller Index. It'll probably fall
further, so if you're thinking about investing in the States
- here's what you should do...

Research the market for the next 3-6 months and then
consider buying some of the bargains of the century. Not
many of you would consider that, however there is a real big
opportunity emerging. (Best leave that for another day).

So what about Australia?

Well, here's what I'm doing. I'm looking for value in the
market and a vendor that's a little bit worried as to what
may happen in the next 12-24 months. 

buy_sellxsmall

I wont be rushing in just yet, I think the free money out
there that the government is throwing around has created a
short-term spike in prices. Once some of the free money is
taken out of the market, which begins in September, I'll be
opening up the check book again. 

For now, I'm doing my home work, researching, planning and
getting ready to strike after September and through the
early part of 2010.

I know some of the more astute property investors look to
two other fundamental indicators that may suggest where the
real estate market is going and they are... Unemployment and
Interest Rates
frugal-touse

Let's deal with them both... 

Naive investors have got really short memories. It's handy
to look back in history and at past recessions to see what
the effect was on real estate.

In the 1982-83 and 1991-92 recessions, falling interest
rates actually boosted Australian house prices as
unemployment rose.

So can you see what happened back then? Cheap money
out-weighed fears of job losses, reinforced by strong banks
and a critical shortage of housing.

The governor of the Reserve Bank (Glen Stevens) said it
himself, most missed it, "If new supply, now at long-term
lows, doesn't improve, fresh demand will further inflate
existing housing prices."

...I know that's grammatically wrong - but he's got 4 MBA's
so he can say anything he likes. The bottom line is, he's
worried about real estate prices going up.

---
SECRET REAL ESTATE RESEARCH REVEALS 
WHERE PRICES WILL GO IN THE NEXT 12 MONTHS

chart
That means profit to you if you know what you're doing...

As a real estate investor that owns a substantial portfolio,
I'm not worried - I'm looking to pick up more deals whilst
the rest of the market is asleep at the wheel. If you've
read this far, don't sit on the fence. Either you're going
to get serious about real estate or you're not.

This article was posted here with input from an astute market
investor here in Australia.If you need further input from us please
email us or comment on this posting where we will make further
comments or make contact with our info source for you.

*If you are in the real estate business, then use this article
to promote sales.
*If you are an investor/buyer, then take this opportunity
to review your property buying options

Published by Henry Sapiecha 5th August 2009
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