Are A Weak Currency And Low Wages Good For Business?

By on April 10, 2015

A little over four years ago, Cam Wallace and Scott Baigent founded Eight Degrees Brewing, an independent craft brewery based in County Cork, Ireland. We set up probably in the deepest, darkest time of the recession, Wallace told CNBC.com in a phone interview.

Ireland has faced

 its fair share of hardship over the last few years: recession, a bailout from the European Union and International Monetary Fund, spending cuts and tax rises. For Wallace, while 2010 was perha

Interestingly, theres a lot of benefits for setting up in a recession, he added. In terms of being able to keep the costs low, that certainly is far more easily achieved in a recession because youve got a lot more bargaining power.

ps not the ideal time to start a business, there were still some advantages.

Wages And Child Labour

I have always been fascinated by the question: How can for-profit corporations innovate to solve the worlds toughest challenges? My passion for this topic was formed at a very early age. Growing up in India, I realized that the country has too few resources to confront its many challenges; the only way India can hope to solve its problems is through innovation. I therefore committed my professional career to research how to make innovations happen. For instance, I challenged businesses to design a $300 house for the poor.

Recently another seemingly intractable problem but one that businesses could eradicate came to my attention. This past winter, I had the distinct honor of meeting activist Kailash Satyarthi, the co-winner of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize. The occasion was the Tuck Global Leadership 2030 executive education program, which took place in Chennai, India, and Satyarthi was the distinguished guest. He gave a 45-minute heartfelt speech about his decades of work freeing child and adult slave laborers from bondage in Indian mines and factories. Recently, Fortune named Satyarthi one of The Worlds 50 Greatest Leaders, highlighting his conviction that child labor is as much an economic issue as a human rights one. I couldnt agree more with this belief. But I would go even further, and humbly suggest that the exploitation of children and adults as slave laborers is a business issue where suppliers and consumers have and should use their power to apply pressure to violators.

Business This Week

The French government did little to assuage critics who think it meddles too much in business matters when it blocked any attempt by Orange,…

Shell said it would buy BG Group, an oil-and-gas company based in Britain, for 47 billion ($70 billion), the biggest sign yet of the pressure to consolidate on the energy industry following the sharp fall in oil prices. BGs share price had dropped by over 30% since last summer, making it a tempting takeover target. Shells acquisition will increase its energy reserves by 25% and make it the worlds third-biggest producer of liquefied natural gas. See article.

In an all-French affair Vivendi, a media group, started exclusive talks with Orange, which used to be known as France Telecom, to buy its Dailymotion video-sharing website. The French government did little to assuage critics who think it meddles too much in business matters when it blocked any attempt by Orange, in which it holds a 25% stake, to sell Dailymotion to a foreign bidder.

Separately, Vivendi said it would return 6.8 billion ($7.3 billion) to shareholders, resolving a dispute with P. Schoenfeld Asset Management, an activist hedge fund that had put pressure on the company to pay out more to investors. http://economist.com

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