News Brief: "The Happs" in Canada, Japan & New Zealand
December 17, 2014
This is what entrepreneurs, small business and startups need to know in our world wrap up today!
Canada: “Oil smacks Canada, tech sector strong, SME retail on the up, Maple syrup to be regulated!”
Japan: “Entrepreneurship on the up in Japan, wage growth likely, business told to support small business”
New Zealand: “Kiwi entrepreneur’s tequila takes on the Mexicans”
“Oil smacks Canada, tech sector strong, SME retail on the up, Maple syrup to be regulated!”
The Canadian economy is about to take a hit as oil prices continue to drop. "The recent dive in crude oil prices is an unprecedented development for the Canadian economy," the report by CIBC economists Avery Shenfeld, Peter Buchanan and Warren Lovely says. What does this all mean? A revenue hot of $5 billion. This comes off the back of the Australian Government forecasting a further hit to its bottom line when it released its mid-year economic forecast on Monday. Canada’s energy sector accounts for 10% of the nation’s GDP but when you break the provinces and regions down then GDP is those regions account for a lot more. In Alberta and Newfoundland its more like between 25-30%.
Combined with a fall in commodity prices there is concern among small business and start-ups that as bigger companies pull back spending then they will be impacted. Consumer confidence is already sitting at a low even though the biggest retail spendaton is just around the corner. Its not all doom and gloom with data showing a better performing tech sector and retail outlets are still expecting shoppers to show up.
On a side note – and just for a little fun – we thought we’d report on Government moves to ensure that the famous Maple Syrup isn't prone to knock offs! After nearly ten years governments and agencies have finally agreed to tighten the rules to make sure consumers know what they are buying. It will all come down to a classing system based on color. We say smack those pancakes in a pan and get cooking! We wonder – could Maple Syrup be an alternative fuel source?
“Entrepreneurship on the up in Japan, wage growth likely, business told to support small business”
Meanwhile in Japan things are improving as the Government, unions and leaders of the main business organisations got together to agree on a wage growth strategy. Prime Minister Abe (famed for the good old Abenomics theory) has also been talking tough with larger manufacturers who have benefited from a slide in the Yen. He’s asked them to focus more on growing business towards their subcontractor and supply chains which should result in a boost to local small business. In basic terms Abe is banking on reforms trickling down to benefit the small end of town. After nearly two decades of deflation the troika is betting this approach will work.
There is still pain ahead with the refreshed Abe Government pushing ahead with reforms. “The acid test of Abenomics is results — i.e. economic reform that raises growth,” Robert Feldman, chief Japan economist at Morgan Stanley MUFG Securities Co., wrote in a Dec. 15 note. “The short-term policy agenda focuses on budgets and the consumption tax, and may disappoint investors looking for growth policy. However, come spring, we expect the growth agenda to re-accelerate.” Japan is on the up for entrepreneurs, small business and start-ups so which this space.
“Kiwi entrepreneur’s tequila takes on the Mexicans”
New Zealand entrepreneur Terry Knight is taking on the Mexicans at their own game after his boutique distillery released its new tequila product called “TeKiwi Agave”. It took 16 years to perfect the process and also establish the business. Based in New Zealand’s South Island the small business has gone to great lengths to be truly local with an eye on regional and international expansion. "It was incredibly positive, no-one else produces it here, so that made it really special," said Knight "We plant here, the bottles are hand blown here, the bottle stoppers are made from manuka wood found here, it's all produced here," "By making the drinks here we aren't copying the rest of the world, we are making drinks that make up our nation."
Of course its not only Te Kiwi that the Takaka based business is producing they also produce a range of other spirits (including our favourite – rum). Find them by searching “Te Kiwi Takaka) and remember everyone – drink responsibly.
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