There is no question that it is a hard decision for a person to make the decision to come forward as a whistleblower. A dark shadow used to be cast on people that blew the whistle on corruption, particularly as an employee coming out against their employer, and for the most part, employers were able to bring a lot of harm to these whistleblowers. Fortunately, things have changed dramatically over the last several years, as there have been protections that have been put in place that significantly improve the plight of a whistleblower. Since 2010, employees that want to shed light on any type of violation of the securities laws to the SEC will be protected by the SEC whistleblower program and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
While coming forward to blow the whistle on this type of a violation, a potential whistleblower can also stand to make quite a bit of money, which serves as another huge incentive. Based on the fact that these types of violations can be costing the SEC millions of dollars, the SEC is willing to pay out a percentage of the fines inflicted on these businesses that are in violation. For example, if a whistleblower comes forward to expose a violation and the company they exposed has to pay out ten million dollars, then the whistleblower would in turn get somewhere between one and three million dollars. This is a win-win situation for the Securities Exchange Commission, as well as the whistleblower, so anyone that wants to come forward with such information has quite a bit of protection and likely a decent payout.
Before jumping the gun and making the decision to come out as a whistleblower, the smartest thing to do is to hire an attorney for representation. Rather than simply hiring a regular lawyer, there are now attorneys who specialize in whistleblower cases. Hiring the representation of an SEC whistleblower attorney is a great idea, as they work on these types of cases day in and day out and will be able to work your case far better than a typical lawyer. These types of cases with the SEC have only really been around in such numbers for the last six years ago, as these protection acts were only finalized in 2010, so hiring an SEC whistleblower lawyer that only deals with these types of cases is a huge advantage.
Geoffrey Cone is of the strong opinion that New Zealand is not a tax haven and is adamant in changing the mind of anyone who seems to think so. To this regard, he has published an article that states facts that prove that New Zealand is not a tax haven. To argue his case, he starts by pointing out that New Zealand has never featured on the list of the world’s tax havens as maintained by the OECD. He believes that New Zealand’s exclusion from this list is because it does not have a private banking industry nor does it dawn a single characteristic that is common with tax havens. According to Geoffrey, the characteristics associated with tax havens are the presence of laws or procedures that make the exchange of information related to tax difficult, lack of transparency and no or only nominal taxes.
The second fact that Geoffrey points out is New Zealand being among the first countries to be included in the OECD’s white list. This list includes countries that operate in line with the 2002 OECD Model Agreement on Exchange of Information on Tax Matters. The model agreement supports the global exchange of information to enforce domestic tax laws. In Geoffrey’s opinion, New Zealand works hard to demonstrate transparency and the best example to prove this would be its hard line on the requirements for trustees. The goal of New Zealand in putting up the stringent requirements is to ensure that all information regarding trusts is accessible to other countries upon request.
Geoffrey also notes that there has been an increase in the number of foreign trusts administered in New Zealand. He attributes this to the appreciation of the international community of New Zealand as a safe country to put their assets. He also gives credit to the well-regarded judiciary and extensive professional and legal infrastructure for the influx. While Geoffrey gives thanks to the past governments for creating a regulatory environment that encourages foreign trust administration, he is of the opinion that those that act as foreign trustees have had a more significant impact on the increase of foreign trusts. He believes that the fact that respectable lawyers and accountants manage the foreign trusts lifts the country’s reputation in the OECD and amongst international experts. Geoffrey continues to state that, in the trade of managing foreign trusts, New Zealand only competes with country’s that apply tax principles that are similar to the ones that it applies to its foreign trusts. These are countries such as U.S, Singapore and Britain.
About Geoffrey Cone
Geoffrey has a rich educational background having graduated from the University of Otago. In addition to that, he holds a diploma in trust and tax law. He started his career in Auckland in 1980 before moving to Christchurch, where he made partner in a leading law firm. He founded Cone Marshall in 1999.
There are a lot of things that a startup needs to achieve total success and this is an area that Mike Baur has invested in to help small businesses in Switzerland that are struggling to make their first step. A professional banker and an experienced entrepreneur, Mike Baur launched the Swiss Startup Factory in 2014, a company that is providing startups the requisite environment to nurture their ideas and later access financing.
Mike Baur has always wanted to venture into business and his dream materialized when he left the Swiss banking sector in 2014 to enter into entrepreneurship. Through the Swiss Startup Factory, Mike Baur is impacting lives by empowering startups to become strong and established businesses.
The Swiss Startup Factory incubates startups through the three months acceleration program that allows them to understand the ins and outs of entrepreneurship and business. During the acceleration stage of the program, the startups are taken through several vital elements that define entrepreneurship and some practical knowledge is imparted to help them shape their ideas better.
There is also room for testing to know whether the idea can compete well in the market. The startup is also taken through legal procedures and offered information that defines the legal aspect of business.
Carve out stage
At the carve out stage, the startup has grown and become a legal entity capable of standing on its own. This stage involves a one-month tour abroad to have a look at top ecosystems and helps the startup to have a real picture of the business environment.
This is the last stage and it involves a five months post-accelerator support. This is time for all what is taught through the three months to come into application. The startup is required to use the knowledge acquired at this stage and if anything seems to bring an impediment, one can take advantage of the post-accelerator support to get assistance from the Swiss Startup Factory.
About Mike Baur
Born in Fribourg, Switzerland, Mike Baur is an entrepreneur and a successful venture capitalist. Before joining business, he worked as a banker and exited at an executive position in 2014 to start his own business. Mike is an educated professional with an Executive MBA and MBA. Having exited banking, he founded the Swiss Startup Factory in 2014, which would later become the number one Switzerland ICT Startup accelerator. The accelerator is so far successful and enrolling a huge number of startups within the country.
The digital age has made it easier than ever for people to voice their opinions about businesses. Previously, companies that wanted feedback from their customers would have to either make phone calls to request surveys, send correspondence in the mail or depend upon the feedback letters that patrons sent them.
Things have changed quite a bit, and your company’s reputation is now online for the world to see. That’s why it’s so important to pay attention to the image that is being created about your company by the reviews and comments that clients leave online. Use this information to learn more about why online reputation management matters to your business, and what you can do about it.
Patrons Trust Online Reviews
According to recent statistics, 90 percent of consumers read online reviews before they’ll even visit a business. Of this group, 88 percent trust the information that is listed there.
What this means is that if you have negative reviews about your company in cyberspace, you could be missing out on a substantial number of customers that could help your business grow and expand.
Trust The Experts
Taking the time to track the various virtual mentions about your business can be time consuming. Letting the experts handle it may prove to be a much wiser decision. Fixsearchresults.com is one such online reputation management company that can be of assistance. They extend free consultations to businesses who want to find out more about the services offered by the experts there. Contact them today so you can request an initial consultation and learn more about your options.
Davos Real Estate Group has released a new mobile app, “Davos Cap Calculator.” It is a tool designed to help investors when considering purchasing property in the United States. This group wants to offer real estate alternatives to meet their clients financial expectations. They have a team of experts who can help with sales process, rent, mortgage, and legal aspects.
Davos suggests property in any real estate portfolio to diversify the assets. Real estate can be low risk and produce returns. David Osio has other factors that he includes in his analysis of clients and their portfolios. How diversified are the assets? How are the improved levels of performance on each asset? How can you protect yourself against inflation with rental income? Real estate investments require a person to look at the buying, selling, and maintaining of property as part of the investment. Real estate will take time to capitalize and grow. An investor needs to understand that real estate may not be a quick flip. It can be a steady and low risk income alternative.
The “Davos Cap Calculator” was designed for this scenario. It allows the investor to see the capitalization, net income, and cash flow for the investment. There is even a mortgage section that allows you to enter the mortgage information to see how the terms and conditions of the mortgage will affect your investment. The App is available for both Apple and Android devices. This app will be the first in a series of apps developed for the customers. Other apps they are looking at developing is a Multiple Listing Service and Mortgage Calculator. All tools to help those in need to see how real estate can help diversify portfolios.
David Osio is the founder and CEO of Davos Financial Group. He has helped to grow DFG into a multinational financial group with offices Geneva, Lisbon, Miami, Panama, and New York. He has spent the past 20 years using his financial experience in growing and expanding the Davos Financial Group and its affiliates into a successful company. Davos Real Estate Group is a company under DFG.
Follow him @davidosio1