Saturday, July 30, 2016

The Ever Dynamic and Talented Coldplay in Chicago 2016

I had the great opportunity to see Coldplay in Chicago on Sunday, July 24th at Soldier Field and what a night it was.  Thunderstorms came down like it was the end of the world and then the sun slowly broke through to allow Coldplay to perform around 9:15 p.m. with no backup band.

Play they did -- for two solid hours.  A concert of a lifetime.  Oh, and did anyone tell you about the plastic throwaway watches each of us received upon entering?  You pulled a tab to activate it and later, there was a light show like I've never seen.  The photos capture some of the amazing moments.

Photos courtesy:  ©2016 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.  

Friday, July 29, 2016

Let's Have Confidence In Our Future

Many of us feel that world trade is tricky this year, especially for Canada’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) seeking to expand their markets.  Agree?

According to Bank of Canada Business Outlook Survey, the imperative for Canadian firms to go global has never been more important today.
“Confidence in the future is a primary factor influencing the decision to invest,” the BDC [Business Development Bank of Canada; the bank of entrepreneurs] says.
Read more:  Small businesses:  Be prepared for future trade deals

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Hey Delaware Business Owners: Claim Your Money for Exports!

©iStock/&#169 Andy Dean
Global Delaware – the Delaware Department of State’s international economic development office – is requesting applications from small- and mid-sized companies interested in using the funds before the September 30th deadline.

Money is specifically set aside to help local businesses increase their export sales.  Ever heard of the expression, "Use it or lose it?"  Well that is what is going to happen if Delaware business owners don't claim this money for export activity.
The funds are part of a $277,000 grant Global Delaware received last year through the U.S. Small Business Administration’s State Trade and Export Promotion (STEP) Program – the largest single award the state has ever received from the program.
A good portion is still left.  If you are located in Delaware and export, contact Global Delaware.

Read more:  Time running out on grants to help Delaware companies go global

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Set Your Sights on Global Market

As a Melbourne, Australia mother, Julie Bray was juggling running a small business with being a school mom, and the request to "bring a plate" caught her out more than once.  Hence, it triggered her to start a business that sends out notifications through a smartphone app called Konnective.  What distinguishes Konnective from existing social media platforms?
Ms Bray answered that Konnective's annual subscription model for companies is cost effective compared with messaging via SMS, that it does not have limitations on group size, and it avoids the "noise" of social media networks or email lists where "everybody hits reply all."
She has set her sights on the global marketplace. Learn more:  Julie Bray is turning a parental fail into a global business with smartphone app

Monday, July 25, 2016

Today In Global Small Business: Any Small Business Can Be Global

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, July 23, 2016

The Pokémon Go Craze

When I go for quick walks in my neighborhood -- whether it's 6:30 a.m. in the morning or 7:30 p.m. -- (Rogers Park, Illinois), I typically see one or two guys hanging out.  Not after the Pokémon Go launch.  Guys are everywhere outside, as you can see.  For single women, this could be good?

Photos courtesy:  ©2016 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Politically, Is Anyone Against U.S. Small Businesses?

As a small business owner, it's hard to figure out which candidate running for president of the United States would serve small business owners best.  I'm nonpartisan yet always look for a candidate who is pro-trade (tricky, very tricky).

But there are other issues to be worried about like taxes, health care and regulations.

David Primo, a professor of political science and business administration at the University of Rochester, says:
"No one's against small business."
Here's a look at what the candidates and some delegates are saying:  Expect focus on small business to grow in presidential race.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

What Does Brexit Mean for Small Businesses?

What does Brexit mean for small businesses?  What's the impact of Brexit on GBP?  What happens to SME's appetite for credit during times of political and economic uncertainty?  What are the challenges and opportunities of Brexit?

Learn more:  Small businesses live with Brexit uncertainty

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Are Global Small Business Owners Exposed to Market Fluctuations?

Global small business owners must deal with the threats that larger businesses face following Brexit — having to relocate employees or even entire headquarters, a more complex regulatory environment and FX volatility and exposure mitigation — but they are also tasked with handling these challenges with limited resources, all with the threat that banks may be forced to pull back small business financing.

That readers, is according to

Read more:  For SMEs, It's a Small World After All

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Works on CETA

©iStock/Evgeny Gromov
Here’s what you need to know to fully understand the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), a EU-Canada treaty, and its benefits.

Read more:  The EU-Canada Trade Deal:  CETA

Monday, July 18, 2016

Today in Global Small Business: Foreign Correspondents Explain the U.S. Election

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Edgewater Greek July Festival in Chicago

Good fun, great eats (the Greek honey puffs are amazing), and intriguing drinks (e.g., Fix equals the Greek word for beer) to say the least.  All in all, a delightful time at the Edgewater Greek July Fest, St. Andrew's 55th Annual Greek Festival (July 9-10, 2016).  Don't miss next year's!

Photos courtesy:  ©2016 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.

Friday, July 15, 2016

How to Grow Rural Small Business Exports

©iStock/Maciej Maksymowicz
Today (7/14/16), the White House Rural Council (WHRC) announced a workshop series to provide specific assistance for rural small businesses working to grow their international sales. The announcement was made by WHRC Chair Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker and Deputy Postmaster General Ronald A. Stroman.
"Strong rural communities are key to a stronger America," said Vilsack. "USDA continuously seeks opportunities for U.S. agricultural producers to expand overseas markets that contribute to a positive U.S. trade balance, create jobs, and boost economic growth."
Read more:  White House Rural Council Announces Assistance to Grow Small Business Exports

To find a Made in Rural American workshop, visit and click on your state.

Online tools designed for rural businesses interested in international exports include and

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Bringing Global Attention to Egypt’s Growing Technology and Entrepreneurship Ecosystem

Egyptian entrepreneur Mai Medhat, founder of the Eventtus online platform, got to sit on stage with US President Obama and Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) held recently in Silicon Valley. Why?

Find out here:  Egyptian Entrepreneur Mai Medhat:  'I Dreamt Big From Day One'

But we cannot contain ourselves by holding back on Mai's comment:
“I did not imagine that one day I would have a discussion with the US president, but from day one I dreamt big and that my company would become global,” she said in an interview with the Egyptian Mail newspaper.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Globalization Has Not Run Its Course

Based on the recent AMC-Odean deal, many of us need to wake up and smell the popcorn because globalization has not run its course.
AMC’s $1.2 billion cash and stock agreement to buy Odeon & UCI Cinemas — which, if approved by European antitrust officials, would make it the world’s largest exhibition chain — illustrates how quickly and easily capital continues to slosh across borders.
Welcome to the world of internationalization of movie theaters.

Learn more:  How Quickly Will Local Movie Theaters Go Global Following AMC-Odean Deal?

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Going Global Adds New Lease on Business Life

A look at a report by NASSCOM indicates India was ranked the third largest tech startup ecosystem with more than 100 accelerators, 200 active angels, 150 VCs and over 4,200 startups operating in the region.

According to Entrepreneur:
The FinTech industry in India is predicted to grow two-fold by 2020, with global brands lending their weight. This drive brings a lease of life and convenience to smaller businesses, which historically have struggled to benefit from national and global growth opportunities due to a traditionally poor technology infrastructure and network.
Read more:  Bizequity Expands Its Global Reach With Its Launch in India

Alert:  There's room for a few more virtual seats at WEGG's upcoming webinar (it's no charge but you must register to attend).

Monday, July 11, 2016

Today In Global Small Business: E-Commerce Platforms Provide Market Access Across Borders

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, July 09, 2016

A Night Out On the Town in Evanston, Illinois at SPACE

What fun to see the Eagle Rock Gospel Singers at the hip SPACE concert venue in Evanston, Illinois.  Adjoined to Space is the Union Pizzeria (bottom photo), which serves up some mighty tasty pizza.  Worth a trip or two, whether it's a chilly or a hot, hot night in Chicago.

Oh, and I did I mention what a delight the Eagle Rock Gospel Singers are?  This is the second time I've caught their performance -- the first time was at the Hideout back in September, 2015.  They never disappoint.

Photos courtesy:  ©2016 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.

Friday, July 08, 2016

TPP Will Help Shape the Rules of Global Trade in Favor of U.S. Companies

Audley Logan Sr. is the founder and President of 3-C Technology LLC in Lancaster, Texas (USA).  He feels very strongly that Congress should support not only Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) but more international trade agreements in the future.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a trade agreement with 11 other countries in the Asia-Pacific region, would help shape the rules of international [global] trade in favor of U.S. companies.

The U.S. International Trade Commission’s recent independent examination (May 2016) found the Trans-Pacific Partnership would boost the U.S. economy and help small businesses.
Logan says, "The Trans-Pacific Partnership would deal America’s small businesses a winning hand, creating more jobs and strengthening the economy.

Read more:  Pass Trans-Pacific Partnership to help small business

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Why Globalization Is the New Buzzword

Globalization is a current buzzword on cable news talk shows. Why?  According to USA Today, "With the U.K.'s vote to leave the European Union and a U.S. presidential candidate vowing to build a wall between the USA and America’s third-largest trading partner," that's why.

You wonder what's in store for American small businesses.

Read more:  Globalization is a small-business necessity

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

How to Thrive in a Foreign Market

©iStock/Olivier Le Moal
This is cool.  Ryerson University and the DMZ, the top-ranked university-based incubator in North America, have signed a MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with ProMexico and LatAm Startups.

“The importance of providing a global network for high-potential startups to scale internationally is immeasurable,” says Francisco N. González Díaz, CEO of ProMexico. “Entrepreneurs from both countries should be given the opportunity to connect with like-minded talent abroad and leverage the wealth of opportunities in a thriving foreign market.”

Learn more:  Joining Forces to Support International Entrepreneurship Programs

Monday, July 04, 2016

Today in Global Small Business: The World's Most Revered Holocaust Survivor Dies

©Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:
Wishing you a fabulous 4th.  As an American, I am proud of our courage, bravery, and independence.

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Get a Lyfe

One of my favorite places to eat:  Lyfe Kitchen (Evanston, Illinois location).  By the way, Lyfe stands for:  "Love Your Food Everyday."

Photos courtesy:  ©2016 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.

Friday, July 01, 2016

Resilience Is Important When Running a Global Small Business

Liz Dickinson, founder and CEO of Mio Global, knows a little something about what it takes to become a success with a startup company.  You need to "sell yourself, your vision, and ultimately your products."

She goes on to say:
Yet, in reflecting back over those early years, being prepared for the challenge ahead was not my key learning. More fundamentally, what I have learned is the importance of being strong; having that character trait of resilience, which luckily turned out to be my greatest asset.
Learn more:  Small Business Startup Tips for Success