News Brief: "The Happs" Uber Raided, Polaroid Bought, NZ Stand-Out
December 29, 2014
This is what entrepreneurs, small business and startups need to know in our world wrap up today!
Australia:"UBER offices raided in Australia"
United States: "Polaroid survives to start another day"
New Zealand: "New Zealand rates as a stand-out economy in 2015"
"UBER offices raided in Australia"
It has been revealed today that UBER's problems with the law are not just restricted to countries such as Spain, India and Indonesia. Reports have emerged that the start-up venture capital darling has also been raided by the authorities in Sydney, Australia. Transport and Maritime officials raided the offices earlier in the year off the back of concerns around licensed and accredited drivers. The State of New South Wales Transport Minister has said that those drivers who use the car sharing network must respect the law. Officials from the Government did not disclose what they had found but did indicate that anything could be used in future action - which means the road for UBER in Australia is not over yet!
It comes at a time when investors are now reconsidering their approach to App's such as UBER with one disclosing to the EntreHub that the "investment drive had probably been driven more by a fear of missing out on the next big thing as opposed to putting clients money into the next best thing".
During the Siege of Sydney UBER had to back track when it emerged drivers were charging premium's for those caught up in the incident to get home when public transport links had become affected. They issued a statement after that was made public offering free rides.
"Polaroid survives to start another day"
It was an innovation that took the world by storm - an instant photo without having to go into a shop to have it printed - Polaroid. Unfortunately the business began to collapse when it was caught off guard as a result of the digital camera revolution. Today, however, a federal bankruptcy judge in the United States has granted the sale of the remaining stake in the Polaroid business to Pohlad family in Minnesota for $70 million.
Interestingly enough the business has been attempting to diversify with its brand names on everything from tablets to t.v's and electronic goods to cameras - yes, we think this could signal a rebirth of a much loved brand and is one to watch in 2015.
"New Zealand rates as a stand-out economy in 2015"
Its not often that you get to report a stand-out success story but New Zealand is worth a mention. Having been just about broke in the early eighties and having gone through immense social and economic rebuilding in the last 30 years New Zealand appears to have emerged into a middle economic power. Unemployment is continuing to trend downwards and economic growth is keeping pace with many forecast predictions. Unlike most other countries (including its neighbor Australia) the key has been relatively stable Government irrespective which of the main political powers are in Government.
As the OECD said in its May 2014 briefing "Economic growth continues to be strong, boosted by post-earthquake rebuilding, recovery from a drought and enormous terms of trade gains. Economic slack is being taken up, but so far inflation pressures have remained muted, thanks to renewed currency strength and moderate wage increases. But with growth projected to stay robust, such pressures are beginning to become manifest."
As EntreHub witnessed first hand on the ground in November, small business #entrepreneurs and #startups are in abundance with many now beginning strategies for export outside of traditional markets. With more New Zealanders returning home from Australia (last month we reported the trend of migration had reversed between the two countries) there could be an opportunity to arrest skills gaps providing wage rates increase to meet supply demands - and this is happening - New Zealand, like the United States, is seeing wage growth trend up.
So, the message - watch New Zealand as a stand-out economy for 2015
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