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Big Ideas for your business? A lesson from Burger King’s new big idea…..

Big Ideas for your business? A lesson from Burger King’s new big idea…..

Is your new big idea simply an attempt to escape your poor execution of your last big idea?

I often see business owners trying to do too many things and they don’t do any particularly well.

Today I read a news report that burger king is experimenting with home delivery. My first reaction was…what a terrible idea. Then I gave it some additional thought and decided yep, it is absolutely a terrible idea.

Burger king has been an under performing biz for as long as I can remember. They seem to go from one idea to the next in an apparently useless attempt to hit the jackpot.

When I read the article I said to myself “really? Home delivery? How about you focus on getting me hot french fries at the drive in window. That would be outstanding!”

How good would it be know that every time you pulled into the BK drive-in you got fresh hot fries? I think that would generate real biz.

When I think about home delivery for BK I think…”why on earth would I want to wait for mediocre BK food when I can wait the same amount of time for decent food?”

The question for you is this. Does your business do a few things very, very well or many things all done poorly?

Circular Money and the U.S. Tax System

Circular Money and the U.S. Tax System

Listening to a financial radio station today I heard something that caused me to say…”what?” Here’s the outline:

First the Cash Source:
China has gobs of U.S. dollars that they get from selling us incredible amounts of stuff.
China is catching heat for owning so much U.S. Treasury debt, so they want to use the US Dollars for something other than lending it back to the US Treasury. So why not loan it to U.S. companies?

The Use of Cash:
A big U.S. company, that will remain nameless, pays 1.8% dividend on it’s stock. Note, this is important …Dividends for biz are not tax deductible, meaning companies pay dividends after they pay their tax obligations.

So what to do?
This company borrows US Dollars at 1.7% interest from China. The 1.7% interest is tax deductible which means the effective cost of the interest is about 1.2%…and remember the effective cost of dividends is 1.8% because dividends are not tax deductible. So the cost to the company for borrowing from China is 33% cheaper than the dividend cost.

The solution, borrow US Dollars from China, deduct the interest from taxes and use the cash to buy back the stock which eliminates the 1.8% cash dividend cost and replaces if with an effective $1.2% cash cost.

Incredible but true, another case of the perverted U.S. tax code. Borrowing is more tax effective than returning cash to shareholders as dividends.