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  • HFTP Research Report: Pre-opening Expenditures in Hospitality

    A study of the pre-opening budget; the timeline for these expenditures; timeline for onboarding of staff; and the selection, installation and training of the technology component. By Agnes DeFranco, Ed.

  • New Global Directors Join the 2018-2019 HFTP Board

    The HFTP 2018-2019 Global Board of Directors was installed during the association's 2018 Annual Convention and introduces new directors Toni Bau, Carson Booth, CHTP and Mark Fancourt. These extensive director profiles give insight into the distinguished professions and personal goals of HFTP's newest association leaders.

  • Internal Controls and the Important Roles They Play in Eradicating Fraud

    Although I have been preoccupied with getting in the education sessions purely related to hospitality finance, technologies and hotel pre-opening, I made sure to participate in Fun with Fraud and Enchanting Employee Embezzlement in Clubs and Hotels presented by Jerry Trieber, CPA, CHAE, CFE, CFF, CGMA, HFTP Global past president and director of audit services/support at HEI Hotels and Resorts.

  • Members Only: 2018 HFTP Compensation and Benefits Report

    By Tanya Venegas, MBA, MHM, CHIA. Results to the biannual survey conducted by Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP). Information includes data on compensation and benefits trends for finance and technology professionals in the club and lodging industries.

The four 'P's' to help you build a great business

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·18 April 2019
How do you manage a great business, as opposed to be a survivor? Well, here are the four areas you should focus upon every day.

Here's how NOT to define your competition

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·11 April 2019
We investors see this all the time. An entrepreneur pitches using a deck with no slide for competition. When asked (as we always do,) the response is “This is new. We have no competition.”

What's the minimum information to give your investors?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus· 4 April 2019
Every investor wants regular information from companies taking their money. And most of us investors are frustrated by the lack of regular communication – unless of course – the company needs more money.

Think ahead when raising your early investments

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·28 March 2019
Some businesses just can’t fit within the angel capital or friends and family model for raising funds. Sooner or later you may need to seek venture capital and accommodate the needs of the venture community in negotiating the terms of an investment.

How much of my business do I have to give to an investor?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·21 March 2019
If you’re looking for growth capital, this one’s for you. We’ll cover what information you’ll expect to provide, your range of expected values and amounts of investment to expect. All to help you set your expectations.

Can you overcome five risks and crate wealth?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·14 March 2019
Of course, we are speaking of increased valuation of your company when we speak of “wealth.” Especially if you are in the early stage of growing a business, these five risks can and often do derail entrepreneurs before realizing the riches of a great exit. So, let’s examine them and mitigate them. Make you wealthy someday.

Could you have created a "dirty cap table?"

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus· 7 March 2019
Oh, I know. When you started the business, you took investments from friends and family in small amounts just to get you started. Of course, that worked at the time. But…

Would you sign a personal guarantee if you have investors?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·28 February 2019
It’s a fact of life that a banker, lender or lessor will ask for a personal guarantee from the founder or entrepreneur most every time. But what if you’ve diluted your interest from 100% to something less than 50%?

Oh, go ahead and ask for a five-million-dollar investment in your startup.

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·21 February 2019
I cannot tell you how many times I have seen executive summaries of business plans in which the entrepreneur seeks $5,000,000 to build the business.

Can you become a master negotiator?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus· 7 February 2019
Think you don’t use negotiation most every day of your life? From the time we learn to manipulate our parents from the crib to today, we learn to negotiate to obtain our wants and needs. As we grow, we negotiate constantly with our parents, then with our peers. As we enter the business world, we negotiate with our bosses and our subordinates. We negotiate with our suppliers, customers, investors, and even our auditors. At home, we certainly negotiate with our spouses or significant others.

What would you do if told to "fail fast?"

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·17 January 2019
Here’s a question that should strike close to home. Professional investors like to quote this mantra to anyone who will listen. “Fail fast,” they say. But what if you believe so strongly in your budding enterprise that this seems to be the most ill-advised directive you’ve ever heard?

Investors, your board, and you: Who controls strategy?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·10 January 2019
You’re building a company from your vision and a passion, and lots of people are going to tell you that you have this or that wrong, and that it just won’t work.

Missed Expectations and The Eighty Percent Acquisition Rule

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus· 3 January 2019
Eighty percent of all businesses purchased by another company or by a new investor-operator fail to meet the stated expectations of the buyer after one year.

Risk, insanity, and the 50% startup rule

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·27 December 2018
Fifty percent of all businesses formed fail within the first two years. There are many variations of this number since there are a number of ways to measure failure. But the number is a startling reminder that creating a business is not easy, nor is it any assurance of success.

Should I license my IP, sell a royalty stream, or just produce products?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·20 December 2018
This week we contacted royalty licensing expert, the well-respected Arthur Lipper, asking the magic question. Why are you so strongly sold on royalty licensing as the most effective way to finance a tech-based early stage company?

Can a revolutionary concept be too late to market?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·13 December 2018
Too many startup businesses, especially in the technology world, are built upon brand new concepts that have not yet been proven in the field against products from other companies that already have revenues flowing.

The most satisfying life journey is never about the money.

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·15 November 2018
Allow me to reminisce. This is the final post of this cycle. Next week we return to the start of the journey, focusing upon the “what and how” to ignite a successful enterprise from start-up to exit.

Money is not the only measure of success.

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus· 8 November 2018
I am sure you heard of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs that motivate our behavior, in which Abraham Maslow laid out a human’s needs – from the physiological, to safety, then love and belonging, on to esteem and finally self-actualization. A little too esoteric for you? Let’s make it more personal.

Why not share your liquidity success with those who got you there?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus· 1 November 2018
So, you are close to selling your company, and counting the profits a bit early. Well, that’s human nature. Here’s a thought for you to recall later when and if the event happens. Remember thosewho got you there. And for tax reasons, remember them before the closing of the deal, so that you can do so by sharing a bit of your proceeds without paying personal income tax upon those amounts.

Everyone wants to leave a legacy.

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·25 October 2018
Be honest now. Have you ever thought of what legacy you’ll leave behind? If you are an entrepreneur or CEO, surely you’ve thought of how you’ll be remembered by your associates and stakeholders after you move on.

Take advantage of the good times to build stakeholder loyalty.

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·18 October 2018
There are several times when stakeholder loyalty is tested to the limit. For employees, a late or missed payroll is the ultimate test of corporate loyalty, divorced even from an employee’s ability to make do without a paycheck.

Will your company's sale be celebration or silence?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus· 4 October 2018
I’ve been involved with well over twenty successful exits and four initial public offerings over the years, some of them with monstrous gains, some more modest. Then in addition, there are the exits that returned some portion of capital, but nothing more. And finally, there are the thirty-plus sad exits that were complete write-offs for the investors, sometimes regaining some portion of note-holder or creditor money in the process.

Another personal story: Timing is everything in a sale.

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·27 September 2018
Almost anyone who has sold a company has a story to tell about their good deal, the problems with the buyer, a last-minute change of terms, or more.

Can you list ten buyers for your business?

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·20 September 2018
Most entrepreneurs and certainly all investors would like to see “a positive liquidity event” (a good sale of the business) someday. Boards of directors should be aware that one of their duties could be to evaluate offers from potential buyers, or even to initiate efforts to sell the business for the benefit of all stakeholders.

Selling your business? Find the emotional buyer

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus·13 September 2018
This is one of my favorite insights, since I lived this one in a positive exit from my computer business.

Everything you do adds or reduces company value

BERKONOMICS by Dave Berkus· 6 September 2018
Each decision you make to commit resources – your money or your use of corporate or personal time – affects the future value of your business.

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