Small Business Marketing Austin

Helen asks…

Should I begin a business hosting murder mystery events and parties?

I’m totally into murder mystery parties and have been hosting them since high school. I also recently graduated from law school but have reservations about being a lawyer. I want to start my own small business doing murder mystery events but my friends think it’s nuts because there’s no market for that type of thing (we live in Austin, TX). Can anyone provide input?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Right off the RT 29, Burtonsville, there are restaurant which has murder mystery night. Their parking lot was always full every time I passed by. Good fun place to eat with your friends.
I think your friends have good point that there are very little market for the service, but there are very few businesses provide this kind of services as well . Low demand and lower supply. If you believe our market economy of supply and demand, than you might have a chance. Make sure you plan whole things before you begin. Good luck.

Richard asks…

What is the development like in Killeen, TX?

I plan on moving to the Killeen, TX/Copperas Cove, TX area within the next 3 months. What is this area like? Are there a lot of businesses? How is the job market? Any information or sites where I can get this kind of information would be helpful.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Hello :)

I lived in Killeen for 4 years and the area has grown quite a bit. I f you are off post there are lots of new shopping areas and the local mall is not too far. Although it is a small area, you can always find something to do since it is a military town HOWEVER use caution when checking out car dealerships becuase they try to scam most people (take it from me) – The job market is on the low end of the pay scale because most soldiers are on a limited income so the pay wages for non-soldiers is much lower than in Austin or Dallas for example. Here are some #’s to help you get started … Wishing you all the best !

Killeen Housing Authority
731 Wolf St
Killeen, TX 76541
2546345243

Target
(254) 526-8010
2500 E Central Texas Expy, Killeen, TX

Bush’s Chicken Willow Springs
(254) 519-2874
1111 Willow Springs Rd
Killeen, TX 76549

CHECK YAHOO LOCAL FOR MORE INFO ! :)

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Business Consultant Blog

Donald asks…

How can I advertise my local photography business?

I’m working for a local photographer who really needs more customers. She hired me to run her website and facebook page, but she’s really pushing for me to find out more ways to advertise her website and business. What are some creative, simple, free, or at least cheap ways to get the word around the area about her business?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Hello Cady,

There are several things you can do to help promote her photography business.
1.) Write a press release. This is a really good way to promote her business.
2.) On her website, I recommend she offer a FREE gift to prospective customers.
Offer a free gift to the next ten customers who pay to have themselves
photographed.

This will create traffic to her website like crazy! It will also draw alot of customers
to her photography studio.

3.) Place a message on her business card, saying first time buyers will receive
a FREE gift when they purchase a photograph. Limited time offer – one free
gift per customer.

4.) Promote the company using discussion groups and mailing lists.

5.) Place a “blog” on her website. A blog creates additional traffic because
it automatically adds extra content to a website. Search engines love
websites with lots of content.

This will also raise the ranking position of her website with search engines.
********************************************
From: Richard Westlake, richardw11001@yahoo.ca
Richard Westlake is a Financial Consultant. Http://www.loansdemanded.com

Thomas asks…

I start my Online Business and now want to promote it myself?

I recently launch a website where I put my products for sale and now I want to promote my website and products but I don’t have budget to do that. Can any body help me how I can promote my business myself. I heard about Internet marketing but its too expensive and cant afford it but I can spend few hours every day.
Thanks in advance

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

If you want to promote your online business and can spend few hours every week then follow these steps or work on these steps to promote your online business.
Top 10 Internet Marketing Strategies1. Start with a web promotion plan and an effective web design and development strategy and chose a right keyword for your business.
2. Get ranked at the top search engines and practice good Search Optimization Techniques.
3. Learn to use Email Marketing Effectively or use one of the free services.
4. Dominate your marketing niche with affiliate, reseller, and associate programs.
5. Request an analysis from an Internet marketing coach or Internet marketing consultant.
6. Build a responsive opt-in email list.
7. Publish articles on free article site or get listed in news stories.
8. Write and publish online press releases.
9. Facilitate and run contests and giveaways via your web site.
10. Blog and interact with your visitors.

Let me know if you need more information. Also i believe you need to do some keyword research for your business and if you know about HTML than its even better. Let me know if you want more information then i can guide you through.
Thanks
Dave

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Companies Hiring In Austin Tx

Jenny asks…

Graduate Schools for Starting a Start-up?

I want to go to graduate school in computer science, but I am also thinking about starting a tech company. Which schools do you think the best ones in the point of view starting a tech company (considering their locations etc.)
They don’t have to be in top-10 or top-50 ? Especially in USA and Europe. Thanks.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

In the US, there are centers of the tech/computer industries in and around Boston, in Silicon Valley near San Francisco, and in the Research Triangle Park area of the Carolinas. These are pretty much all areas where there are major computer science schools – MIT, Harvard, BU, Northeastern and etc. For Boston, Berkeley and Stanford for Silicon Valley, UNC Chapel Hill for the Research Triangle Park area. Boston and Silcon Valley are the big two, but you’ll find these sorts of computer industry clusters around any area that has a strong CS school and a decent economy. So there are some in Pittsburgh, around Carnegie Mellon, around U Toronto in Canada, in London due to Imperial College, Oxford and Cambridge, and naturally, there are clusters around the big computer companies – in Washington State and in Vancouver, etc due to Microsoft, hiring out of U Waterloo and U Washington, around Austin TX due to U Texas Austin, in Madison, Wisconsin due to U Wisconsin, and so on.

It can be important to think about what sort of tech company you hope to start, and who its customers might be, and then determine if those customers are clustered anywhere. If they are, you could locate there and have an advantage. For example, medical devices in eastern Mass, finance in Boston or NYC, insurance in Hartford CT, big pharma in NJ, surf culture in FL and CA and Hawaii, the military, the US government, Vermont for environmental services, etc.

Richard asks…

Yellow Cab of Austin – sexual assault?

if a personal is sexually assaulted by a Yellow Cab driver (Austin, TX) can they be sued? I’ve been told that since they are independet contractors that the answer is no. But, if seems that the cab company should be liable somehow.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Generally, no.

Your only possibility may arise if Yellow Cab claims to background check its contractors before hire and this man has a history as a sex or violent offender.

Then you can sue under a failure to exercise due dilligence.

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International Business Consulting Firms Nyc

John asks…

Starting a business vs. working for a company?

Hi. I have just been offered a job as a consultant at Boston Consulting Group. I would work in NYC. My goals in life is to become rich really early, have a family, have a mansion, and have a luxury NYC apartment. I got an MBA from harvard business school. This job at BCG would pay six figures each year, and after ten years, I would hopefully be promoted to partner and make 1 plus million a year. I would stay another 5 years with the firm after being promoted to partner. I would then take my business management skills I learned from BCG, and go to a fortune 500 media company like viacom international and apply for a senior position. I would then hopefully be promoted to an executive and make multi millions a year. I would the retire at around 55.

If I were to start a company, I would start a consulting firm that consults it’s clients on what they need to do with there websites or web companies to acheive specific goals. I am great with determining what a website needs to get traffic, revenue, etc. Or, I would start a website where users could pat questions about their website and how they could do better. Other users would then post replies. The winning user who posted the best reply would receive points that can be used to ask a question, or turned into cash. I would charge a user cash to get points in order to post a question.

Many people tell me that the only way to get rich is to get a good paying job and climb the corporate ladder to riches. I strongly believe this and plan on doing so. However, other people say start your own company because you worm your own hours and get as much cash as you want, even though it is an expensive startup and has huge potential risk.

Although I would tell someone making a poor income to quit their job and start a company, in my position where I have opportunities to have super paying jobs that could easily make me super rich, I am not sure if I should either bother starting a business. Maybe when I’m retired, I could start it as a fun project, because then I will have the time and the money to start up the company.

Any ideas?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Only way to get “rich” is to own a company or prostitute yourself for a corporation….not to bust your bubble but a degree from Harvard Business School doesn’t mean squat and may even work against you.
Harvard is very much over rated and stuck more in tradition vs being innovative. I read a book yrs ago entitled The End of Competition which had overtones of social Darwinism and ironically it came from Harvard..As a scientist I will tell you that to compare a natural ecosystem to business and to the coin the term “Business Ecosystem” is a false analogy that reeks of scial Darwinism. My point is that this is the type of crap that emmanates fro Harvard Business School and frankly it makes most people sick and I hate to tell you this but your degree will keep you out of more places than it will get you into. What company would want someone who has been tainted with the philosophy of Herbert Spencer and the insainity associated with his Social Darwinism?…especially in this insane economy.. .Emphasize on making a difference…and realize a degree is just an expensive piece of paper…or maybe they didn’t teach you that at Harvard?

Linda asks…

Starting a business vs. working for someone else?

Hello. I just got my MBA from harvard business school, got my undergrad from Cornell, and have taken many business management courses. I currently have job offer at Boston Consulting Group as a consultant. I will be working in NYC, and I get to travel every week (I love business travel.). I would love to retire young and very rich. I would like to have my own family, a mansion, and a luxury apartment in NYC. So far, i would like my career to be as follows.

1. I would work as a consultant at BCG for 10 years. Each year, I would be making a six figure salary.

2. After ten years, I would still be with the company and hopefully be promoted to partner ( this company has great job growth rate).

3. I would stay and be partner for 5 years making 1 plus million dollars a year.

4. After five years as partner, I would take my skills I learned from BCG (management consulting, business management), and apply for a senior management position at a fortune 500 company specializing in media such as viacom international (MTV, vh1 , paramount pictures, etc.). After some time at the company, I would hopefully be promoted to an executive level and hopefully make multi millions a year, until I retire at around age 55.

I know these are big goals, but they are my goals.

Now for the question…..

I also have an entrepreneur spirit. I would like to start an online company. The company would be a consulting firm that consults clients regarding their websites, web companies, etc. I am great at determining what a website needs to do in order go achieve certain goals ( revenue growth, target market, marketing, turn over rates). Currently, not to many companies do this, and I would like to fill the gap. Or at least, I would like to create a site where users could post a snapshot of their website and post info on what they want to achieved from there sites. Then other users could review there sites, and give the user some tips. The user who gave the other user tips would receive points which could be redeemed for cash. However, I would make money by selling points to users to post there website on our site. If no one posted on someones site within a month, the user could get refunded or keep the points for later use.

Many people tell me that in order to get rich, you need to study hard, get good grades, go to a good college, get a good job, and make your way up the corporate ladder. That is one of my options. And it is a proven way to become very rich. I have the grades, I have the great colleges on my resume, I have a six figure starting job already being offered to me, and I plan on climbing the corporate ladder and achieve wealth and knowledge a long the way.

Other people say you should quit your job, start a company, work your own hours, and make as much money as you want. However, starting your own business has huge risk, huge potential loss, and has huge start up costs. However if you do it correctly, you could make many millions.

What are your suggestions? Should I go for my career path as planned and climb the corporate ladder to riches, or should I start my own company with risk and hopefully get rich? Some of you might suggest to do the company on the side, however I don’t have time due to the many hours of working at an consulting firm. For some people who are making low income at their jobs, I can see and agree that they should quit and start their own business. But with me, with potential career posit s that could make me millions, I am not sure if I should stick with a job, or venture off into my own company?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

I don’t know if you have considered God in your plans or not but you should not leave Him out. God has control over life and death. Ask the Lord Jesus Christ to come into your heart and you will prosper with His Guidance.

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Print Business Cards Austin

David asks…

how genuine are all these work from home /online stuff?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

0%. Consider them all scams.
Here is an example of some. Funny how people keep falling for them.
The Federal Trade Commission has gone after some 500 work-at-home schemes in recent years. Still, the recession and joblessness are mighty incentives for people to try programs that promise easy money. Our reporter sampled a few such offers. The result: He won’t be giving up his day job.

‘Stuff envelopes! Get paid!’
The setup
“Get paid $5 per envelope, up to $1,276.57+ weekly … stuffing envelopes and mailing company circulars,” said an EASYHomeJOB online ad, which also said you could earn as much as $350,000 a year.

The hook
We signed up for a free trial membership but then had to pay $67 for the EASYHomeJOB System, sold by IVI Global Enterprise of Buffalo, N.Y. The company, like the others mentioned here, had a Better Business Bureau rating of F.

The sting
The payment bought us access to a Web site with a guide to selling get-rich-quick information. Here’s how it works: You place classified ads—”EARN $1,500+ Weekly”—online or in print to get customers to send you $5, for which you’ll mail them reports such as “How to get big dollars in your mailbox every day!” and circulars for products like the EASYHomeJOB System.

We tried to contact the company by phone and e-mail but got no response.

‘Assemble products at home’
The setup
“Stop sending money to ‘stuffing envelopes’ scams … make money by assembling products in the comfort of your own home,” said Wes-State Mortgage, of Eugene, Ore. We spent $26 for its Home Employment Directory, which lists companies seeking home assemblers.

The hook
We chose one listed company at random, Gone Fish’n Tackle, of Austin, Texas, and went into the business of tying fishing flies. “If you make 3,000 flies, you will be paid $1,500 … make 20 to 40 flies per hour,” the listing said.

The sting
We paid $50 to Gone Fish’n for a starter kit that enabled us to make 24 flies. The company would pay us $12 for those, if they passed inspection, leaving us $38 in the hole. To continue, we’d have to keep buying materials: $40 for the makings of 144 flies. We’d have to spend $890 on materials, including the initial outlay, to produce 3,048 flies, for which we’d be paid $1,524. That nets $634 for about 190 hours of labor, or slightly less than $3.35 per hour, about half the federal minimum wage.

Heather Smith, president of Gone Fish’n, says the company sells 1,500 starter kits per year, but only 20 regulars have actually made a business of selling flies back to the company. “Selling of the kits is where we make our money,” she says, adding that dissatisfied customers can get a full refund within 45 days of purchase.

‘Start an Internet business’
The setup
“Learn how to make $107,389 in six months, just filling out forms and doing searches on Google and Yahoo,” said an ad for the Google Money Tree kit. The fine print disclosed that it’s not affiliated with Google. A ticking “Order now!” clock added urgency; the price of the “free” CD kit would shoot up to $197 in just 15 minutes.

The hook
You must give your credit-card number to pay $3.88 shipping for the CD. By so doing, you consent to let Google Money Tree charge your account $72.21 a month for access to its Web site if you don’t cancel within seven days.

The sting
The Web site and compact disc give disorganized information on selling on the Internet. The BBB has 478 complaints on file against the company related to unauthorized credit-card charges; it failed to respond to 460. Calls to the company for comment took us to a call center in an undisclosed location. Managers promised to pass on our request to the company.

Ken asks…

Is this company is true online job provide?

http://online-home-jobs.com/index.php
I would like to know if you have any experience in this online job providing company?
I would also like to know your monthly income and the registration fees….

Will select as best answer for quick and clear information about the website..
pls help
thank you for ur cooperation

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

How online work at home scams work.
From: Consumer Reports.org

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/magazine-archive/june-2009/money/work-at-home-stings/overview/work-at-home-stings-ov.htm

(anything to make money at home is basically a scam).
The Federal Trade Commission has gone after some 500 work-at-home schemes in recent years. Still, the recession and joblessness are mighty incentives for people to try programs that promise easy money. Our reporter sampled a few such offers. The result: He won’t be giving up his day job.

‘Stuff envelopes! Get paid!’
The setup
“Get paid $5 per envelope, up to $1,276.57+ weekly … stuffing envelopes and mailing company circulars,” said an EASYHomeJOB online ad, which also said you could earn as much as $350,000 a year.

The hook
We signed up for a free trial membership but then had to pay $67 for the EASYHomeJOB System, sold by IVI Global Enterprise of Buffalo, N.Y. The company, like the others mentioned here, had a Better Business Bureau rating of F.

The sting
The payment bought us access to a Web site with a guide to selling get-rich-quick information. Here’s how it works: You place classified ads—”EARN $1,500+ Weekly”—online or in print to get customers to send you $5, for which you’ll mail them reports such as “How to get big dollars in your mailbox every day!” and circulars for products like the EASYHomeJOB System.

We tried to contact the company by phone and e-mail but got no response.

‘Assemble products at home’
The setup
“Stop sending money to ‘stuffing envelopes’ scams … make money by assembling products in the comfort of your own home,” said Wes-State Mortgage, of Eugene, Ore. We spent $26 for its Home Employment Directory, which lists companies seeking home assemblers.

The hook
We chose one listed company at random, Gone Fish’n Tackle, of Austin, Texas, and went into the business of tying fishing flies. “If you make 3,000 flies, you will be paid $1,500 … make 20 to 40 flies per hour,” the listing said.

The sting
We paid $50 to Gone Fish’n for a starter kit that enabled us to make 24 flies. The company would pay us $12 for those, if they passed inspection, leaving us $38 in the hole. To continue, we’d have to keep buying materials: $40 for the makings of 144 flies. We’d have to spend $890 on materials, including the initial outlay, to produce 3,048 flies, for which we’d be paid $1,524. That nets $634 for about 190 hours of labor, or slightly less than $3.35 per hour, about half the federal minimum wage.

Heather Smith, president of Gone Fish’n, says the company sells 1,500 starter kits per year, but only 20 regulars have actually made a business of selling flies back to the company. “Selling of the kits is where we make our money,” she says, adding that dissatisfied customers can get a full refund within 45 days of purchase.

‘Start an Internet business’
The setup
“Learn how to make $107,389 in six months, just filling out forms and doing searches on Google and Yahoo,” said an ad for the Google Money Tree kit. The fine print disclosed that it’s not affiliated with Google. A ticking “Order now!” clock added urgency; the price of the “free” CD kit would shoot up to $197 in just 15 minutes.

The hook
You must give your credit-card number to pay $3.88 shipping for the CD. By so doing, you consent to let Google Money Tree charge your account $72.21 a month for access to its Web site if you don’t cancel within seven days.

The sting
The Web site and compact disc give disorganized information on selling on the Internet. The BBB has 478 complaints on file against the company related to unauthorized credit-card charges; it failed to respond to 460. Calls to the company for comment took us to a call center in an undisclosed location. Managers promised to pass on our request to the company.

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Small Business Efficiency Consultants

David asks…

Independent Agencies Questions!!!?

The Selective Service Commission
a. determines which responsibilities are assigned to the different federal agencies.
b. selects the heads or managers of all federal agencies.
c. determines which private businesses and industries are awarded government contracts.
d. administers the United States military draft.

Which government organization manages national museums and carries out important scientific research?
a. the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
b. the United States Information Agency
c. the Smithsonian Institution
d. all of the above

Objective 4

Which of the following is not a criticism often made against independent agencies?
a. They move too quickly and without caution.
b. They fail to adequately regulate.
c. They often overregulate.
d. They are indifferent to public interest.

Which of the following exert pressure and influence on independent agencies and thus reduce their independence?
a. Congress
b. the president
c. the industries being regulated
d. all of the above

Which of the following is not a suggested reform of independent agencies?
a. accelerate antitrust prosecution
b. protect whistle-blowers
c. decrease congressional supervision of independent agencies
d. regulate the regulators

Consumer advocates believe that consumers should be protected by
a. abolishing all regulatory agencies.
b. creating a super-consumer protection agency.
c. stopping the enforcement of antitrust laws.
d. all of the above.

True/False

Generally, the longer a regulatory agency exists, the more likely it will be found taking the view of the industry it regulates.
a. true
b. false
Government red tape creates low costs and greater efficiency.
a. true
b. false
The jobs of “whistle-blowers” are not currently protected by law.
a. true
b. false
A Consumer Protection Agency currently exists.
a. true
b. false
Points of Interest
True False

The term “red tape” originated with the British rule of India.
a. true
b. false
Some government agencies like AMTRAK are actually government corporations.
a. true
b. false
The Smithsonian is a privately run company that serves as a consultant to the federal government in science matters.
a. true
b. false
The growth of the federal bureaucracy is due in part to an increase in technology.
a. true
b. false
The government bureaucracy has little impact on our individual lives.
a. true
b. false
Thought Questions

Instructions: These questions will require some thought on your part. The answers to these questions are not necessarily found in your reading, but instead require you to analyze what you have learned and then apply it.

Which of the following is an example of an independent agency’s quasi-legislative power?
a. The ICC suspends a trucking company’s license because of safety violations.
b. The ICC sets the maximum shipping rates for a private transportation company.
c. The FCC monitors citizen’s band radios to prevent misuse.
d. The FTC fines a company for using deceptive packaging to disguise a product’s true size.
Which of the following is an example of an independent agency’s quasi-judicial power?
a. The airline industry is deregulated.
b. The FAA spot-checks planes to determine their general safety.
c. The SEC determines how much of a stock’s price must be paid in cash.
d. The FTC approves the merger of two large companies.
Suppose you discover that your “new and improved” hair shampoo is really the same old product in a new container along with a higher price. Such consumer fraud should be brought to the attention of what federal agency?
a. Federal Trade Commission
b. Small Business Administration
c. Office of Government Ethics
d. Selective Service System
Assume that you are confined to a wheelchair due to a serious car accident, and that you also work for a company that does business with the federal government. You apply for a position that comes open but someone with less qualifications than you is given the job. You feel you have been a victim of job discrimination. What independent agency could help you?
a. FTC
b. NLRB
c. EEOC
d. OPM
Assume you are an average, working American citizen. Which of the following reforms would you most likely favor?
a. increase the size and numbers of the current regulatory agencies to improve the speed and response
b. increase the power of independent agencies in order to reduce outside influences on them
c. create a consumer protection agency
d. appoint agency heads who come from the industries they are supposed to regulate

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Have you thought about asking this in the homework section?

Paul asks…

Engineering Business?

What kind of private business can an engineer conduct? I mean pharmacists can open up a pharmacy and a a doctor can set up a clinic as their private businesses. What about engineers?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

You will need the PE license to open up your own firm, even if it is small. In my state all engineering firms must have at least one full time PE on staff in order to do business. There is also special insurance required if you become a full service engineering firm, which can make or break many small firms especially in today’s tough economy. Otherwise you could open up a consulting service – but you need to adress niche industries to be a good consultant (i.e. Energy efficiency, home wiring or HVAC, etc.).

It’s all about certification, certification, certification! I work as an engineer, and my supervisor heads the engineering department in my company. He has his PE and MBA.

One reason engineers are not commonly associated with private businesses because engineers tend to be team players. Engineers understand their individual strengths and weaknesses, and use their team members efficiently. It’s diffacult for an engineer to do everything by themselves. Architects think they can, but look how in demand they are haha.

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Consulting Jobs Austin Texas

Mark asks…

Grace Marketing, Austin Texas?

I need someone to explain to me how this company is a scam and how I can avoid being scammed by them? Their job advertisement seems very fishy and they appear to be total thieves.

Grace Marketing, Austin Texas, “Grace Marketing and consulting“; Grace Marketing Austin

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Ok let me set anyone who is smart enough to google this firm straight. This company is bullshit, and I use the term company loosely.

Basically this is a conglomeration of retards who are in search of even bigger retards to suck dry. If you are stupid enough to “work” for this company I pity you…don’t waste your time with these leeches. This is as close as you’ll come to a pyramid scheme without the tip of it poking you in the ass.

Seriously folks, do you want to sell coupons for 11 hours a day without being compensated for gas or receiving health insurance (or any benefits for that matter)? Not only does this job suck, they are actually recruiting college grads to do work suited for convicts…jesus, tell me you didn’t get all that education to work for peanuts…

Don’t end up like the no doubt hundreds of suckers who have already fallen for the faux interview process these goons have set up. No legitimate company requires 9 hours of your time for interview purposes; however this company will ask you to do just that. The cat is out of the bag: this company is a scam. No doubt someone is getting rich in this company but it certainly won’t be you.

They have shrouded the structure of their business in secrecy to get your foot in the door, win your friendship, and ultimately have you do their bidding for a pittance.

This is a site called ANSWERS in which some idiot clearly hasn’t answered the question at all, but instead posted a very uninformative and opaque link to one of their phony recruitment ads. Yes we have all seen the job advertisement, but what the hell is this company really?

The ANSWER is drive by their office and see for yourself–or let me save you even more time: it’s a freaking hole in the wall with appliqué letters for the names of the THREE companies that share an office to do this illegitimate shit.

Allow me to answer the primary question you no doubt have. THIS FIRM WILL NOT PAY YOU A SALARY. In fact they will give you between 7 to 20 dollars for each unit you sell. If that sounds great to you, then congratulations you are a moron…go club yourself please. Even if you managed to sell 14 units at 7 dollars worth of commission a pop (about what a pro should expect daily) thats still only $100 for a 9:00 a.m – 8:00 p.m shift–the equivalent of $24,000 a year on salary with no benefits, compensation, stock options, etc.

Why am I on here and so bitter? Because I lament being crammed into a shitty situation with many others who no doubt recognized the nature of the predicament and like myself were also too polite (or stupid) to say anything in protest. But I am on here saving hopefully many others the anguish of getting all dressed up to get farted on by a bunch of brainless turds in fancy suits.

Why can’t you find any information on this company? Why does their website look like a high school student programmed it? Why is their headquarters next door to an archery store? Does this job offer a salary? What qualifications are needed to do this job? What will my official title be at this job? Is this a sales or management job?

Admit it, before you read my post you couldn’t answer half of these questions could you? THAT IS A PROBLEM FOLKS! Any reputable or legitimate business will provide you with all of this information. If you are anxious about the availability of information regarding this job you should be, that is your manure detector going off–use your damn brain.

The very success of this business seems to be built on the recruitment aspect of things. Like any other tried and true pyramid scheme new blood is always necessary in order to keep a steady profit flowing for those on top.

I’d expect a company to interview 40-100 qualified candidates in order to fill a position. Grace Marketing and Consulting interviews about 30 people a day and appear to have very little criteria. They have been renewing job advertisements for the past four months meaning they have interviewed literally thousands of candidates to fill the “6 new account executive” positions past advertisements claimed they were looking to hire.

Obviously something is amiss. Please don’t put money in these baboons’ pockets by participating in a recruiting scam that clearly only benefits some idiotic lard ass who behaves like the proverbial Fagin, subsidizing a bunch of miscreants whose sole mission is to make you believe you aren’t getting ripped off.

If at any point in dealing with these people you ponder to yourself, with the thought in mind that these people are all gifted salespeople, “how predictable,” it’s time you turn your car around and drive home.

Linda asks…

How can someone get a health care consulting job in Austin Texas when they are not qualified?

Seems fishy to me. Many of these jobs require 5 years experience and a health care degree or a science degree, plus a knowledge of health. I know some stupid girl who just got one of these jobs in Austin. She has zero experience, no relevant degree, and she knows basically zip about health. Her Mom is an LPN in NC. Maybe she knew someone to get her daughter the job. Plus, she waited months for this job, so maybe the company was desperate and decided to hire her. She taught ESL abroad for 1 year. Maybe she slept her way into the job, also. What a sick world we live in. A few weeks ago, she cried all over facebook about her life sucks because after teaching abroad for 1 year, no one in the states hired her until now…almost 8 months later. Maybe if I become a slut I can get a good job someday myself.
Oh no. She didn’t take a job I wanted. I don’t even want to stay in the states.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Just because she got the job doesn’t mean she will keep it, if she has no relevant skills or experience and can’t do the job, she will be fired soon enough. However, you seem to know a lot about this person, and yet, angry that she caught a break. Is this a ‘frenemy” of yours? Unless she took the job you wanted and were qualifed to do, just let it go. Her success should not impact your own, unless you let it.

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Austin Business Consulting

Robert asks…

So Business or Medicine?

Ok so guys I’m 18 and about to go to college and need some tips or something. So I’m thinking of majoring in Business but then suddenly I also feel like doing Medicine too. I mean I want to do Business because I kind of like it and Medicine because I like that too and plus its really useful in life. BUT which one should I do. I want to make a LOT of money.

Now before you guys judge me on the money issue being sound greedy, its just that I need a lot of money cause I have to take care of my parents and my little brother (It’s a traditional thing, even if it wasn’t I’d still help them) plus my furture family (when I get married and kids and stuff) PLUS some of my mom’s poor side of the family and some of my dad’s poor side of the family since they are poor and I need to help them in the future.

Plus it’s not like I’ll e doing something I detest, I find both these paths to be interesting but I don’t know which one to choose. Which one makes more money and if I do go into Business, which business field makes the most money, please tell me how they do and how much money they make.

Oh I live in Texas and the colleges I applied to are University of Houston, Stephen F Austin, University of North Texas, and Sam houston. Which one is better for what career.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Earn your undergraduate degree in business and take as electives the medical school prerequisite classes which are listed on medical school websites. If you do well in them, take the MCAT medical school admission test at the end of your junior year at university and if you do well on it, make your career decision then.

As to money, almost all physicians who want a long workweek earn between $300,000 and $500,000 after medical school and a residency of three to five years.

Business earnings start at about $45,000 a year and are unlimited in potential amount, but most people whose highest degree is an undergraduate business degree earn less than $100,000. If you go on to earn an MBA, earnings after you receive the MBA start at $100,000 and have unlimited potential if you graduate from a top-thirty MBA program. However, MBAs from lower ranking programs do not necessarily increase earnings. Finance and consulting are two of the business fields with higher earnings.

Never mention money in any phase of medical school application or study, including the admission essay, interview, and discussions with professors. You will be disqualified or looked upon with scorn.
Money is a very poor reason to go through the long and difficult training to become a physician. Most physicians who become rich do so as a result of accurate advice on how to invest their professional earnings.

Best wishes.

Sandy asks…

what are the legal issues?

NEW SOUTH WALES SUPREME COURT

CITATION: Ehsman v Nutectime International [2006] NSWSC 887

CURRENT JURISDICTION: Equity

FILE NUMBER(S): 5189/05

HEARING DATE{S): 31 March 2006

DECISION DATE: 01/09/2006

PARTIES:
Patricia Mary Ehsman (P/A)
Nutectime International Pty Ltd (D1/R1)
David Neilan Brady (D2/R2)
Francis Joseph Frasca (D3/R3)
David Bruce Paix (D4/R4)
Timentel Pty Ltd (D5)

JUDGMENT OF: Austin J

LOWER COURT JURISDICTION: Not Applicable

COUNSEL:
R Harper SC (P/A)
M J Cohen (D1-4/R1-4)

SOLICITORS:
McDonald Johnson (P/A)
Sparke Helmore (D1-4, R1-4)

CATCHWORDS:
CORPORATIONS – statutory derivative action – application by 35% shareholder/director to bring derivative proceedings after company’s assets were transferred to a company from which the applicant is excluded – inadequacies of proposed points of claim – whether those inadequacies prevent the court from determining the application under s 237 – distinction between personal and derivative claims – whether court is satisfied concerning good faith, best interests of company and serious question to be tried – ancillary order for applicant to indemnify company with respect to costs of derivative proceedings – considerations relating to the bringing of derivative and personal claims in single proceedings

ACTS CITED:
Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) ss 180-184, 232, 236-242

DECISION:
See under heading “Conclusions”

JUDGMENT:

IN THE SUPREME COURT
OF NEW SOUTH WALES
EQUITY DIVISION
CORPORATIONS LIST

AUSTIN J
FRIDAY 1 SEPTEMBER 2006
5189/05PATRICIA MARY EHSMAN V NUTECTIME INTERNATIONAL PTY LTD & 4 ORS

JUDGMENT

1HIS HONOUR: Before me is an application by the plaintiff, Mrs Ehsman, for leave under s 237 of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) to bring proceedings on behalf of the fifth defendant company, Timentel, by filing and serving a further amended originating process and amended points of claim.

2 , 3, 4, 5 and 6 Deleted

The plaintiff’s case
7The parties agree that Mr Brady and Mr and Mrs Ehsman came together in a business venture before Timentel was formed. Mrs Ehsman owned some patents for a split face wristwatch display, and she wished to exploit them commercially. Mr Brady had some marketing experience. There are disagreements about the commercial utility of Mrs Ehsman’s patents, and as to the precise terms of their arrangements, which need not be resolved for present purposes. It is common ground that they respectively brought to the business of Timentel, when it was formed in 1998, the patents (such as they were) and a measure of marketing/commercial input.

8When Timentel was formed, Mrs Ehsman granted it a licence over her patents, for no consideration (although she received shares in the licensee entity). There is disputed evidence as to whether, as Mrs Ehsman asserts, she entered into the licence agreement in reliance on the assumption, encouraged by Mr Brady, that the licence would always be held by a company in which she would be a director and shareholder. The licensee’s interest in the licence agreement was assignable. Mrs Ehsman claims, and the defendants deny, that it was a term and condition of the licence agreement that the licence would not be assigned by Timentel to a company in which Mrs Ehsman was not a shareholder and director.

9Initially the only shareholders were the Ehsmans and Mr Brady, and Mr Brady and Mrs Ehsman were the directors. Mr Brady’s evidence is that he devoted very considerable time and effort, and expense, to travelling to Europe to negotiate for the commercial exploitation of the split face wristwatch display. According to him, the people he consulted in Europe told him that Mrs Ehsman’s patents were just concepts and it would be necessary to work out the most efficacious interior wristwatch mechanisms to support the split face. That is disputed by Mrs Ehsman. But it is clear enough that Mr Brady did do some amount of developmental/marketing work in Europe, the cost of which was shared or partly shared with the Ehsmans.

10Mr Brady’s evidence is that he came up with the idea of having movements in each half of the split face watch case for the forward and return hand movements, all controlled by an electronic integrated circuit, and that Mr Claude Ray, an experienced watchmaker, carried out the necessary design work. The eventual product, which he called a “hinged electronic watch”, was based on ideas that were fundamentally different, he said, from Mrs Ehsman’s patents. These matters are contested.

11Mr Brady said he negotiated a development agreement with Mr Ray’s company, using a company with which he was associated, Renaissance Management, for that purpose. In turn he caused Renaissance Management to enter into an agreement with another company with which he was associated, DNB Global Corporation (registered in the Philippines), which made advance payments to Mr Ray’s company. At a final hearing of this case it will be necessary to explore these corporate relationships and their purpose, and to understand better the nature of Mr Brady’s interests. DNB Global appears to bear his initials, but there is some evidence that he is just one of five directors and is indirectly a shareholder. DNB Global is important in this case because, according to Mr Brady, it incurred substantial expenses through payments for development work, for which Timentel reimbursed it out of monies borrowed by Timentel from Mr Brady, Mr Frasca and Mr Paix. But Mrs Ehsman questions whether loans were ever in fact made by those three directors.

12Mr Brady said the development of the hinged electronic watch was very expensive and under the arrangements between them, Ms Ehsman was to contribute to that development. He alleges that she defaulted in that obligation. He claims that by March 2005 she owed and had not paid about $86,000. That is contested. According to Mr Brady, the development was eventually successful and the hinged electronic watch is protected by patents in various countries, procured at a cost to DNB Global, recoverable from Timentel.

13In about June 2002 Ms Ehsman and Mr Brady decided to bring in two other parties, namely Mr Frasca and Mr Paix. There is quite a bit of evidence, not all consistent, about the circumstances in which Mr Frasca and Mr Paix were invited into the company. What is clear is that Mr Frasca and Mr Paix joined the board of directors and acquired shares, they provided some capital, and in due course they sided with Mr Brady and against Mrs Ehsman. After they joined the board, the company’s issued 100 ordinary shares were divided as follows: Mr Brady 35 shares, Mr and Mrs Ehsman 35 shares, Mr Frasca 15 shares, and Mr and Mrs Paix 15 shares.

14During 2002, it seems, Mrs Ehsman visited Europe and met with one of Mr Brady’s contacts, Manuel Spode of Les Artisans Horlogers. There is conflicting evidence as to what happened at the meeting. Mr Frasca gives evidence in his affidavit that the meeting led to Mrs Ehsman being criticised by the other directors for intervening secretly without the board’s authority, and for her suspicious approach. Mr Frasca also says that at a meeting he had with Mr and Mrs Ehsman in 2003, they told him that they were determined to bring Mr Brady down. These matters are also disputed. Nevertheless it appears that, some time after Mr Frasca and Mr Paix arrived on the board, if not earlier, the relationship between Messrs Brady, Frasca and Paix, on the one hand, and the Ehsmans, on the other hand, deteriorated. By now the relationship has completely broken down.

15There is a considerable amount of correspondence in evidence, and minutes of board meetings. I shall not describe this material in detail here. The correspondence shows that at least since early 2005, Mrs Ehsman has been concerned about verifying payments allegedly due by Timentel to DNB Global, and also about the financial management of Timentel more generally. The evidence is that the only bank account of Timentel has been relatively dormant at times when, the defendants allege, Timentel made payments to DNB Global. Mrs Ehsman’s solicitors have written to Timentel’s solicitors about these matters.

16Mr Brady claims that by about May 2005 there was a pressing need for capital for Timentel, to pay invoices to DNB Global of about $216,000 and certain other smaller debts. It appears that at this time Mr Brady, Mr Frasca and Mr Paix developed a proposal to lend Timentel up to $246,000 for a term of 60 days with interest of 17% compounding monthly, secured by a registered charge. Mrs Ehsman asked the copies of the draft loan facility and charge documents but received them only after they had been executed. A board meeting attended by Mr Brady, Mr Frasca and Mr Paix, but not Mrs Ehsman, on 9 May 2005 approved the loan proposal and authorised execution of the documents. Mr Brady, Mr Frasca and Mr Paix, acting as directors of the company, purported to authorise the company to enter into the loan facility and charge agreements in which they were the counterparties, without the consent of the other director/shareholder, Ms Ehsman.

17The defendants claim that the loan facility was drawn down and the money was used directly for payment of outstanding debts of Timentel, rather than for deposit into Timentel’s bank account. Mrs Ehsman, by her solicitor, sought to verify the making of the loan but she says she has not received proper documentation. The evidence includes minutes of the board meeting of DNB Global on 18 August 2005, at which the directors of that company confirmed that the company had been paid for certain invoices, but the evidence is incomplete because, for example, the identity of the paying entity is not given.

18On 11 July 2005 Messrs Brady, Frasca and Paix as lenders made a formal notice of demand for payment to Timentel of an amount of about $247,000. But they gave the company a limited extension of time to repay. Mrs Ehsman’s solicitors alleged in correspondence that any attempt to enforce the charge would render it void under s 267 of the Corporations Act, because the chargees were “relevant persons” for the purposes of that section.

19The security was not enforced but instead, at some stage it was proposed that the company would enter into an asset sale agreement and a deed of assignment of the licence, in favour of the other three directors or their vehicle, for a price supported by a valuation by Les Artisans Horlogers. In correspondence, Mrs Ehsman’s solicitors endeavoured unsuccessfully to obtain information about the valuation – indeed, they approached the valuer directly without success. They alleged that the valuation did not cover all of the assets sold. They strenuously opposed the proposed transaction, on several grounds including that the transaction would be in breach of the contractual arrangements and understandings between Mrs Ehsman and the other three directors.

20Nutectime was formed in August 2005. The directors are Mr Brady, Mr Frasca and Mr Paix. The company has issued 100 ordinary shares. Mr Brady owns 60 shares, Mr Frasca owns 20 shares in Mr and Mrs Paix own 20 shares. Mr and Mrs Ehsman do not hold any shares.

21The asset sale agreement and the deed of assignment of licence were entered into by Timentel and Nutectime on 2 September 2005. The transaction was considered at a board meeting not attended by Mrs Ehsman. Messrs Brady, Frasca and Paix went through a procedure of formally disclosing their interest in the purchaser but then they proceeded, purporting to act as directors of the company, to approve the transaction. It appears that the contract was made and completion took place on the same day. The total sale price $277,000. According to Timentel’s solicitors, the sale proceeds were used to pay out and discharge the charge over the company’s assets. That appears to have meant that the bulk of the sale proceeds were directed to Mr Brady, Mr Frasca and Mr Paix. It is not clear from the evidence whether there was any actual movement of money.

22Up until May 2005 Mrs Ehsman had been a director and (with her husband) substantial shareholder of Timentel, which was the licensee for no consideration of her patents. On one view, the company owed a substantial amount of money to DNB Global, but it had procured substantial development work for its split face watch design. Any profits from the realisation of that development work would have come to Timentel, and Mr and Mrs Ehsman would have had a 35% interest in those profits. After 2 September 2005, Mrs Ehsman was still a director of Timentel and Mr and Mrs Ehsman remained 35% shareholders. But the company’s substantial assets, and any prospect it may have had of earning profits from the development of the split face watch, had gone. Mrs Ehsman was still the licensor of her patents, but she was entitled to receive no consideration for the licence. The new licensee, Nutectime, was a company in which she had no interest, and that company had acquired Timentel’s assets and any profit-making opportunity relating to the split face watch. The controllers and shareholders of Nutectime were her fellow directors and shareholders of Timentel.

The draft APC and draft FAOP
23From this brief account it appears that if Mrs Ehsman could substantiate her allegations, this would be a case of self-dealing by her co-directors to her considerable disadvantage, and unauthorised diversion of a corporate opportunity. Experience shows that in such cases it is important for the plaintiff to identify with particularity the precise duties said to have been breached and the circumstances of the breach. That is important in the interests of clarity of presentation of the plaintiff’s case, and to ensure that the defendant is not surprised by having to meet a case at trial different from what she had been led to expect. These considerations strongly suggest that in such a case, the plaintiff should proceed by statement of claim. Where the plaintiff is proceeding in her own right, invoking the oppression remedy, and also seeking to assert the company’s rights in a derivative action, the need for clarity of pleading is especially strong.

24 Deleted
25I have endeavoured to identify those allegations that relate to some right of Timentel, and distinguish them from allegations relating to some right of Mrs Ehsman personally. In summary, for reasons given below, paras 7, 18-21, 22, 23-26, and 27-29 (and the claims to relief in paras 1-5, perhaps 7, and 8) of the draft APC are claims made on behalf of Timentel, and paras 8-16, 17, 30 and 31 (and claims to relief in para 6 and perhaps 7) are claims made by Mrs Ehsman personally.

26It is important to maintain the distinction between derivative and personal claims in the interests of clarity. But nothing in Part 2F.1A requires that a derivative action be in a separate proceeding in which no personal claims are made by the person who has carriage of the proceeding. For example, in Fiduciary Ltd v Morningstar Research Pty Ltd (2005) 53 ACSR 732 the plaintiffs were an individual and corporate plaintiffs, and leave was granted under s 237 so as to permit the individual plaintiff (who was a shareholder and officer of the corporate plaintiffs) to assert the rights of the companies in a proceeding in which he also asserted rights of his own. The combination of corporate and personal claims was not unlike the combination of claims in the present case, though the pleading was by an elaborate statement of claim. In that case, and here, the asserted derivative and personal rights arise to a large degree out of the same alleged facts.

27Here the sole plaintiff is Mrs Ehsman, and Timentel is a defendant. It is not proposed that Timentel should become a plaintiff if s 237 leave is granted, because Timentel is properly a defendant to some of Mrs Ehsman’s claims. Nor is it proposed that the derivative action be constituted as a separate proceeding, because there are substantially overlapping facts concerning the derivative and personal claims, which should therefore be heard together. Section 236(2) says that proceedings brought on behalf of a company must be brought in the company’s name. But there is now a substantial line of decisions holding that, despite the literal wording of s 236(2), leave under s 237 can be given where the company is a party to the proceeding as a necessary defendant in respect of other claims, without requiring the company become a plaintiff or insisting that the derivative action be brought in a separate proceeding: see especially Keyrate Pty Ltd v Hamarc Pty Ltd (2001) 38 ACSR 396, per Santow J at [18]-[19]; Metyor Inc v Queensland Electronic Switching Pty Ltd (2002) 42 ACSR 398, per McPherson JA at [14]-[15]; Charlton v Baber (2003) 47 ACSR 31, per Barrett J at [5].

28I turn now to consider the draft APC, paragraph by paragraph.

29After preliminary allegations, para 7 of the draft APC asserts that by reason of their appointment as directors of Timentel, Mr Brady, Mr Frasca and Mr Paix owed Timentel various duties. There is a list of the standard duties of directors. The list reflects ss 180, 181, 182 and 183 of the Corporations Act, and also a duty to act honestly in the exercise of their powers and the discharge of their duties as directors (a formulation no longer found in the statute). [deleted latter part of paragraph]

30Having made allegations about the defendants’ duties as directors of Timentel, the draft APC (paras 8-16) makes allegations about the licence agreement, leading to the assertion that the purported sale by Timentel to Nutectime of its rights under the licence agreement was in breach of the licence agreement. That is a personal claim by Mrs Ehsman against Timentel (and no other defendant) for breach of contract. It is not a claim for breach of any duty owed to Timentel.

31Para 17 pleads that, by reason of matters pleaded in paras 8-11, the first to fourth defendants are estopped from asserting that Timentel was entitled to sell or assign to the first defendant the rights of Timentel under the licence agreement. This was said to arise because Mrs Ehsman entered into the licence agreement in reliance on the assumption, encouraged by Mr Brady, Mr Frasca and Mr Paix, that the licence would always be held by a company of which she was a director and shareholder. Clearly the allegation of estoppel is made for the benefit of Mrs Ehsman personally rather than to vindicate some right or interest of Timentel. The document does not reveal how the allegation can be made against any defendant other than Mr Brady, given that the assumption is said to have been created and acted upon at the time of the licence agreement, which was made well before Mr Frasca and Mr Paix became involved.

32Paras 18-21 make allegations about breaches of duties owed by the other three directors to Timentel. They allege that Timentel did not receive any of the proceeds of sale of assets, or received only part of the proceeds, and Messrs Brady, Frasca and Paix received those proceeds or part of them. It is claimed that their conduct in receiving those proceeds constituted a breach of all of the duties pleaded in paragraph 7. I find it impossible to justify that claim, with respect to some of the duties identified in para 7, even taking into account the “particulars” to para 21. Moreover, the mere assertion that Timentel did not receive proceeds of sale and the other three directors did (even when the “particulars” to para 21 are added) cannot, per se, establish a breach of any of the duties identified in para 7. These allegations fall well short of a proper pleading.

33Para 22 alleges that by reason of the matters alleged in certain other paragraphs, Messrs Brady, Frasca and Paix have been unjustly enriched as a result of breach of the duties referred to in para 7. Presumably this is intended to establish a ground of recovery for Timentel. Again, the precise matters that might constitute unjust enrichment have not been adequately pleaded and, moreover, it is not easy to see why para 22 combines breach of directors’ duties with unjust enrichment.

34Paras 23-26 make allegations against Nutectime, intended to support orders declaring void and setting aside the purported sale of assets or requiring Nutectime to hold the assets in trust for Timentel. These paragraphs seem to assert some entitlement to relief on the part of Timentel rather than Mrs Ehsman, although the remedies would obviously operate for her benefit as well. The precise foundation of the remedies is not clear. The drafter has not invoked the equitable principles concerning accessory liability for breach of trust with any specificity or clarity. To the extent that entitlement to the relief is said to arise out of Nutectime being “knowingly concerned in the breach” there is a suggestion of statutory accessory liability, but the statutory directors’ duties do not create any accessory civil reliability for being knowingly concerned in the primary breach. There is “accessory” liability under the statute for de facto and shadow directors, but the allegations in the draft APC do not in terms invoke that liability.

35Paras 27-29 allege that the deed of charge dated 9 May 2005 is void and should be set aside because Timentel did not receive the benefit, or received only part of the benefit, of the money purported to be advanced. This seems to be the assertion of rights of Timentel rather than Mrs Ehsman personally. A deed of charge merely provides security for advances made under some other arrangement such as a loan facility agreement. It is not easy to see why the fact (if it be so) that the chargor did not receive the benefit of loan monies purported to be advanced under a loan facility agreement should, per se, lead to the consequence that the security for the loan is void. If the charge is security for money advanced under a loan facility agreement, and no money is advanced to the chargor, then nothing is secured by the charge but the charging instrument is nevertheless valid.

36Para 30 contends that the other three directors repeatedly failed or refused to furnish information to Mrs Ehsman relating to the affairs of Timentel. Particulars are given. As expressed, this is an allegation of breach of duty to Mrs Ehsman rather than Timentel. There is no allegation of any particular duty but it seems that the drafter had in mind either or both of the statutory rights of a director to gain access to certain information under ss 198F and 290, or the director’s general law right of access to the information needed to discharge her fiduciary duty (eg Edman v Ross (1922) 22 SR(NSW) 351). A director seeking to assert those rights is not required to show that inspection is sought in good faith and for a proper purpose, whereas a shareholder seeking inspection under s 247A must do so. Para 30 is not clear enough.

37Para 31 asserts that, by reason of the matters asserted, the other three directors have conducted the affairs of Timentel in a manner oppressive to, unfairly prejudicial to or unfairly discriminatory against Mrs Ehsman, or contrary to the interests of the members as a whole, contrary to s 232. Mrs Ehsman has personal standing to complain under that provision. The difficulty with para 31 is that it relies globally on all of the other allegations, some of which do not seem to be pertinent (for example, the pleadings against Timentel itself based on breach of contract and against Mr Brady based on estoppel). It should be re-formulated with more precision.

38 Deleted
39The draft FAOP contains the same claims for relief as the draft APC, and therefore suffers from the defects just noted. It also contains a prayer for an order under s 237. This is inappropriate, given that the interlocutory application presently under consideration seeks a s 237 order and also leave to file the FAOP, so that the question of s 237 leave will have been addressed before the FAOP is filed. Further, in the draft FAOP the application is said to be made pursuant to ss 232, 236 and 237. Sections 236 and 237 do not need to be mentioned, for the reason just given, and s 232 appears from the draft APC to be only one of the statutory provisions under which relief is sought, the others being the various directors’ duties provisions.

40My conclusion is that the draft APC and the draft FAOP are seriously defective, and therefore I shall not accede to Mrs Ehsman’s application for leave to file and serve them in their present form. What is needed is a carefully considered pleading by statement of claim. However, my view is that the draft APC identifies in broad terms, though imprecisely and at times in a confused way, some derivative and personal causes of action that emerge on Mrs Ehsman’s account of the evidence. The causes of action are:
(A)a personal claim by Mrs Ehsman against Timentel for breach of contract arising out of Timentel’s purported sale and assignment to Nutectime, sounding in damages (paras 8-16);
(B)a personal claim by Mrs Ehsman against Mr Brady based the allegation that at the time of the making of the licence agreement he encouraged her to assume that the licence would always be held by a company of which she was a director and shareholder – though the appropriate remedy, if this ground is established, is debatable (para 17);
(C)claims by Timentel against Messrs Brady, Frasca and Paix for breach of ss 182 and 183 and their general law duty to avoid conflicts of interest, by virtue of their self-dealing in the loan and security transactions and then the sale and assignment transactions, leading an order for an account of profit or an order setting aside the transactions, or a compensation order under s 1317H (paras 18-21 and 22);
(D)a claim by Timentel against Nutectime for accessory liability under equitable principles which apply to a person who assists in a breach of fiduciary duty or receives property transferred in breach of duty, leading to an order requiring Nutectime to hold acquired property on trust or to account as a constructive trustee (paras 23-26);
(E)a personal claim by Mrs Ehsman against the other three directors asserting infringement of her right of access as a director to information of Timentel, under the general law and perhaps under ss 198F and 290, leading to an order for access or to restrain obstruction (para 30);
(F)a personal claim by Mrs Ehsman for relief under the “oppression” remedy in s 232, arising out of specifically pleaded facts and circumstances, leading to a range of possible remedies to address the oppressive or unfair conduct (para 30).

41I am not persuaded that there is any viable course of action underlying paras 27-29.

42I think the appropriate course is to dismiss the application for leave to file and serve the amended points of claim, and to direct Mrs Ehsman to file and serve a statement of claim to give effect to her personal and derivative claims having regard to these reasons for judgment.

43Section 237 authorises the court to grant leave to permit a person to bring proceedings on behalf of a company. Part 2F.1A does not explain the word “proceedings” or give any direct indication of the level of specificity of pleaded allegations and prayers for relief that the applicant for leave must achieve. Typically the applicant will provide the court with a draft statement of claim or (as here) points of claim, or some other document giving particulars of the derivative claims. But in my view it cannot be the case that a full statement of the derivative claims must be presented before the court can consider and determine a leave application. Were that to be required, any subsequent amendments to the pleaded case would need to be treated as a leave application under s 237 to which the criteria in s 237(2) would have to be applied. That, in my view, would be an unnecessary burden for case management.

44In my opinion the applicant for leave must identify and describe the proposed proceedings with sufficient precision that the court can properly assess the application having regard to the criteria that it is required to consider under s 237(2), and the opponents can respond to the application in terms of those criteria. That may be achieved by presenting the court with a draft pleading, but it may be achieved in other ways such as by outlining the claims in affidavit evidence. It is not hard to envisage an application that falls so far short of identifying the derivative causes of action to be asserted that the court is left unable to assess, for example, whether it is in the best interests of the company that the applicant be granted leave, and whether there is a serious question to be tried. Here, however, Mrs Ehsman has done enough in her draft points of claim (defective though they are) and in the voluminous evidence that has been adduced, to permit me to identify the causes of action broadly described in paragraphs (A)-(F) above, of which paras (C) and (D) are derivative claims. I am able to consider the application for leave under s 237 as an application for leave to bring proceedings on behalf of Timentel by a statement of claim that would assert the causes of action identified in paras (C) and (D) and seek appropriate equitable and statutory relief.

The requirements for leave to bring a derivative action
45Section 236(1)(a) allows a member or officer, inter alios, to bring proceedings on behalf of the company with the court’s leave. Ms Ehsman has standing both as a member and an officer of Timentel.

46Under s 237(2) the court is required to grant the application for leave if it is satisfied of five matters set out in subparagraphs (a) to (e). Subsection 237(3) and (4) establish a rebuttable presumption that the granting of leave is not in the best interests of the company in certain circumstances, but it is agreed that those circumstances have no application to the present case. There is no suggestion of the members of the company purporting to ratify or approve the conduct of the other three directors, so as to invoke s 239.

47Of the five matters that the court must address under s 237(2), the parties agree that the notice requirement in subparagraph (e) has been satisfied here. The defendants did not concede, in terms of subparagraph (a), that it is probable that the company will not itself bring the proceedings, or properly take responsibility for them, or for the steps in them. However, the evidence before me plainly establishes that this criterion is satisfied, in respect of proceedings to pursue any derivative claims of the kind identified at paras (C) and (D) above. Timentel is under the control of the other three directors, who are acting together in respect of the company’s dealings with Mrs Ehsman. The other directors (and spouse, in the case of Mr Paix) are the majority shareholders. They have caused the assets of Timentel to be passed to Nutectime, a company in which they but not Ms Ehsman are the directors and shareholders. They have asserted, in answer to the present application, both on their own behalf and on behalf of Timentel, that there is no foundation for derivative claims to be brought. It is clear from their attitude, revealed in the evidence and upon the application, that they would not authorise the company to bring such proceedings.

48That leaves for consideration subparagraphs (b), (c) and (d) of s 237(2). In their submissions, the parties referred me to a substantial number of decided cases. It seems to me, however, that the courts’ approach to these subparagraphs has become relatively clear in the course of decisions, and it is unnecessary for me to refer to authorities extensively. Additionally, I have reached the conclusion that this is a plain case in which all three criteria have been established, and that extensive exposition is unnecessary.

Good faith
49In the Swansson case, Palmer J expressed the opinion at least two questions are generally relevant to this issue: namely, whether the applicant honestly believes that a good cause of action exists and has reasonable prospects of success; and whether the applicant is seeking to act in a derivative capacity for such a collateral purpose as will amount to an abuse of process. This approach has been followed frequently in subsequent cases. I was referred, inter alia, to the discussion by Brereton J. in Maher v Honeysett & Maher Electrical Contractors Pty Ltd [2005] NSWSC 859, at [30].

50The evidence shows that Mrs Ehsman believes that a derivative action exists which has reasonable prospects of success. She has given sworn evidence in para [24] of her affidavit of 9 December 2006 to the effect that the company has a good cause of action with reasonable prospects of success for the claims that she outlines. I can see no proper basis in the evidence for doubting that this belief is honest. The highest the evidence goes is in the affidavit of Mr Frasca, where he deposes to a discussion with Mr and Mrs Ehsman in 2003 in which, on his version of it, they conveyed an implacable desire to destroy Mr Brady. But that evidence is contested and in any event, if accepted, it would not point to any lack of honesty in Mrs Ehsman’s belief at the present time of her prospects of success in a derivative action.

51Mr Frasca’s evidence might be taken to point to a collateral purpose on the part of Mrs Ehsman. But the evidence, if accepted, relates to a conversation some years ago, and the assertion of a collateral purpose is inconsistent with Mrs Ehsman’s affidavit evidence. It seems to me that if Mrs Ehsman succeeds in making out her factual contentions, there is a plausible derivative action along the lines of paras (C) and (D) above. If such a derivative action is pursued successfully it will have a beneficial effect on the position of Mrs Ehsman in Timentel. Those conclusions, arising out of the evidence as a whole, makes it difficult to maintain that Mrs Ehsman’s purpose in pursuing the derivative cause of action is a collateral one. As Brereton J remarked in Maher v Honeysett (at [33]), the objective facts and circumstances speak louder than an applicant’s words about her honesty and purpose, and here the objective facts and circumstances, supported by much evidence, are reasonably eloquent.

52My conclusion is that Ms Ehsman has succeeded in satisfying me that she is acting in good faith for the purposes of s 237(2)(b).

Best interests of the company
53In Maher v Honeysett, at [44], Brereton J observed that the phrase “best interests” directs attention to the company’s separate and independent welfare, a notion that imports the familiar concept of the interests of the company as a whole. Here it is unnecessary to investigate the qualifications to that proposition arising where the company is insolvent or near to insolvency. In the present case Mrs Ehsman’s pursuit of derivative claims will, if she is successful, enure to her benefit, as I have explained.

54As Brereton J pointed out (at [45]), “the existence in an applicant of a personal interest in the outcome of a proposed derivative action, or even of a personal animus against the company or other members of it, cannot be significant, let alone decisive, because they are usual concomitants of the types of disputes which lead to derivative actions, and few if any such actions would be brought but for personal interest on the part of the relevant applicant and in the absence of animus against the company or other shareholders”. I respectfully agree. The fact that Mrs Ehsman has a personal interest in the outcome of Timentel’s derivative claims, and even the existence of personal animus against Mr Brady (if Mr Frasca’s disputed evidence is excepted), are not matters standing in the way of the conclusion that the pursuit of the derivative claims is in the best interests of Timentel.

55Relief having the effect of returning Timentel’s assets or their beneficial ownership to the company cannot be obtained by Mrs Ehsman ‘s pursuit of personal claims (except perhaps through some creative orders on the “oppression” ground). The most direct and obvious way of recovery of the property is for Timentel to assert claims for recovery orders derivatively through Mrs Ehsman. If those claims are successful the result will be orders for the restoration of Timentel’s property, an outcome which will be in the best interests of the company, although obviously not in the best interests of the majority shareholders.

56In my view it is appropriate for the derivative claims to be pursued in proceedings in which Mrs Ehsman also asserts personal claims, provided that great care is taken to distinguish the two categories of claims and the ingredients of the case to prove each category. I hope that a first step along that path will be taken by the preparation of a statement of claim. Although there is a risk of confusion in allowing a single proceeding that asserts personal and derivative claims, there is considerable advantage in doing so where, as here, there is a substantial common substratum of fact underlying the two categories of claims (see Maher v Honeysett at [53]).

57In all the circumstances I am satisfied that it is in the best interests of Timentel, for the purposes of s 237(2)(c), that Mrs Ehsman be granted leave under s 237.

Serious question to be tried
58In my view this case should be treated as a case where the applicant is applying for leave to bring derivative proceedings, rather than to intervene in existing proceedings. The effect of my granting leave to her to file a new initiating pleading will be, if the job is done properly, to overhaul and substantially reconstitute the proceedings, as proceedings in which she pursues clearly articulated derivative and personal claims. Where the applicant is applying for leave to bring proceedings, s 237(2)(d) requires the court to be satisfied that there is a serious question to be tried.

59As Barrett J explained in Charlton v Baber at [55], the applicant bears the onus of proving sufficient material to enable the court to make this determination. But as I explained above, referring to Palmer J’s judgment in Swansson (and see Maher v Honeysett at [19]), the court does not normally enter into the merits of the proposed derivative action to any great degree. The evidence must reach the same standard as applies for an interlocutory injunction, set out in such cases as Castlemaine Tooheys Ltd v State of South Australia (1986) 161 CLR 148 and Australian Broadcasting Corporation v Lenah Game Meats Pty Ltd (2001) 208 CLR 199. The standard has been described as “relatively low” (Maher v Honeysett at [19]).

60In this case Mrs Ehsman has filed quite extensive evidence, which she relies on for the purposes of the application, and I also have before me substantial evidence on behalf of the defendants. I infer that the evidence before me is substantially the evidentiary cases of the parties for final relief. This is certainly not a case of affidavits hurriedly cobbled together to meet the exigencies of an interlocutory occasion. Having considered the evidence my view is that, although there are many disputed questions of fact, which I am not in a position to resolve, Mrs Ehsman’s allegations are sufficiently substantial to cross the “serious question to be tried” hurdle. I am therefore satisfied that s 237(2)(d) has been met.

The court’s powers
61The court is empowered by s 241 to make any orders, and give any directions, that it considers appropriate in relation to proceedings brought with leave, or an application for leave. That section affirms the court’s power under the Civil Procedure Act 2005 (NSW) to make an order requiring that the proceedings be brought by statement of claim, a step that I shall take for the reasons I have explained. It also expressly permits the court to make orders requiring mediation, a step that the court is also empowered to take by s 26 of the Civil Procedure Act. During the course of the hearing, I floated with the parties the question whether it would be appropriate to make an order for compulsory mediation. The suggestion was not opposed and I formed the view that if the parties did not voluntarily agree to mediate I should make an order. Unless the parties have, in the meantime, organised for mediation to take place, I shall include a mediation order in the orders that I make pursuant to these reasons for judgment.

62Section 242 permits the court to make any orders it considers appropriate about the costs of various persons, including the company, in relation to proceedings brought with leave under s 237 (see Fiduciary Ltd v Morningstar Research Pty Ltd (2005) 53 ACSR 732, at [56]). In such a case as the present, where the company is essentially a vehicle to pursue the commercial interests of four parties, one of whom is at odds with the other three, who oppose the bringing of derivative claims, and the plaintiff wishes to combine derivative claims with personal claims largely arising out of the same facts, it seems to me appropriate to require the plaintiff to indemnify the company in respect of costs it may incur, either directly or by virtue of a court order against it, with respect to the pursuit of the derivative claims. If the indemnity were not given, the other three directors would as a practical matter be required to bear the burden of 65% of the company’s costs of pursuing derivative claims which they do not want it to pursue. Obviously, to the extent that the plaintiff makes a personal claim against the company, she should not be required to give such an indemnity. Further, the indemnity needs to be qualified so that it does not apply to any cost order made by the court with the intention of overriding the effect of the undertaking. The main purpose of that qualification is to enable the trial judge to make such order as to costs as he or she thinks appropriate after the final hearing, untrammelled by an undertaking that may cause an order for costs against the company to rebound against the plaintiff; but the qualification may also be useful to allow the court to override the undertaking in circumstances not presently foreseeable.

63Mrs Ehsman has succeeded in establishing that leave should be granted to her to bring derivative proceedings on behalf of Timentel, and to file and appropriate pleading to initiate those proceedings (and also to clarify her personal claims). That suggests that she should have her costs of the interlocutory application of 12 December 2005, against the defendants other than Timentel. In my view the fact that she will be required to give an undertaking as to the company’s future costs is immaterial to the question of the costs of the application. Although I have found that the draft amended points of claim are seriously defective, they nevertheless convey plainly enough the nature of the derivative claims that Mrs Ehsman wishes to pursue. The defects in the pleaded case did not, in my view, provided a justification for the attitude of complete opposition to the application that the defendants presented to the court.

Conclusions
64For the reasons I have given, I propose to make orders along the following lines:
(1)Subject to the condition identified in order (2), grant leave to the plaintiff, under s 237 of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth), to bring proceedings on behalf of the fifth defendant against the first, second, third and fourth defendants, asserting the causes of action generally identified in these reasons for judgment and seeking all or any appropriate remedies;
(2)Order (1) is subject to the condition that, before any such proceedings are brought, the plaintiff must indemnify the fifth defendant for and in respect of all costs that the fifth defendant may incur (either on its own account or under an order of the court) by reason of the bringing, maintenance and conduct of the derivative proceedings, provided however that the indemnity is not required to extend to costs that the fifth defendant may incur in the proceedings as a defendant in respect of any personal claim made by the plaintiff, and shall not apply with respect to any final order for costs in the proceedings;
(3)Direct the plaintiff to file and serve a statement of claim to give effect to her personal and derivative claims, having regard to these reasons for judgment, by no later than a date to be specified;
(4)Order the first, second, third and fourth defendants to pay the plaintiff’s costs of her interlocutory process filed on 12 December 2005, as agreed or assessed;
(5)Subject to orders (1), (2) (3) and (4), the plaintiff’s interlocutory process filed on 12 December 2005 is dismissed;
(6)Order that the proceedings be referred for mediation by a mediator agreed to by the parties, such mediation to take place by no later than a date to be specified;
(7)Liberty to apply to Austin J on 2 days notice.

65However, I shall give the parties the opportunity to draw my attention to any particular matters that might affect the question of costs, by (for example) causing me to award costs on a different measure or to limit the order for costs in some way. I shall also give them the chance to consider my proposed orders. I shall stand the matter over for the purpose of hearing any such submissions and making orders.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

HAHAHA, there is no way in he** anyone is going to read that whole thing…this has to be a joke.

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Austin Web Development

Betty asks…

What are the requirements to get into the University of Texas?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Hello:

These are the minimum requirements. Please note that UT, Austin is the most competitive university in Texas. I’m including web references for UT, Austin admission below.

Good Luck in your academic pursuits!

====================================================

Minimum High School Coursework Requirements

Language Arts

4 units
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Required: Four units of English, one of which may be writing, world literature, speech, or journalism. English for speakers of other languages may not be used to fulfill the language arts requirements for English III or IV.

Strongly recommended: At least one unit of English should include the development of writing skills.

Foreign Language

2 units
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Required: Two units of a single language; three units are recommended. American Sign Language may be used to fulfill the foreign language requirement.

Mathematics

3 units
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Required: Three units at the level of Algebra I or higher: algebra, plane geometry, trigonometry, analytic geometry, elementary analysis, probability and statistics, solid geometry, calculus with analytic geometry, number theory. Informal geometry and prealgebra are below-achievement-level courses and may not be counted toward the mathematics requirement; they may be counted as electives (see below).

Strongly recommended: Prospective students interested in studying architecture, business, geosciences, natural sciences, engineering, or other technical fields are advised to prepare by taking math every year of high school. The additional unit may be counted as an elective (see below).

Science

2 units
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Required: Two units of physical science, biology, chemistry, physics, physiology and anatomy, geology, meteorology, marine science, astronomy.

Strongly recommended: Prospective students interested in studying architecture, business, geosciences, natural sciences, engineering, or other technical files are advised to prepare by taking science, including chemistry and physics, every year of high school. The additional unit may be counted as an elective (see below).

Social Studies

3 units
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Required: Three units of anthropology, area studies, ethnic studies, economics, geography, government (civics), philosophy, social science, psychology, sociology, Texas history (advanced), United States history, world history, work/study programs.

Electives

1 ½ units
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Required: One and one-half units, including (1) any units beyond the minimum required in areas explained here; (2) any units in Fine Arts; (3) vocational and other subjects, except drill subjects (such as driver training and military training) and physical education.

Fine Arts

½ unit (recommended)

Lizzie asks…

Julia & Julie, is this a true story or based on 2 people & made up about what could have happened?

I haven’t seen it but heard friends who have & they thought it was a good movie….I have no money to go to the movies but still wonder about what I am missing. Thanks

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Both characters are real people.

Julie Powell (born 1973 in Austin, Texas, USA) is an American author known for the book Julie & Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen.

While working for the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation in August 2002, Powell began the Julie/Julia Project, a Web log chronicling her attempt to cook all the recipes in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking. The blog quickly gained a large following, and Powell signed a book deal with Little, Brown and Company. The resulting book, Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen, was published in 2005. The paperback edition was retitled Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously.

Julia Child (August 15, 1912 – August 13, 2004) was an American chef, author and television personality. She introduced French cuisine and cooking techniques to the American mainstream through her many cookbooks and television programs, notably The French Chef which premiered in 1963. Her most well-known cookbook is Mastering the Art of French Cooking, published in 1961.

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Austin Web Marketing

Thomas asks…

What is the best way to drive people to my Website at a reasonable cost per click?

We sell dry rubs like JALPENO STEAK BUTTER – Austin Texas Style on the web (www.danandbucks.com) and in small to medium sized meat markets. I have a My Space site but doesn’t seem to drive traffic. Click throughs are OK but a little pricey for the response you get. Any other suggestions?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Currently on Google’s search engine a search for “dry rubs laguna niguel” bring up you website out of 1,080 search entries. However when a similar query is done using “dry rubs,” your website does not appear in the top 10 out of 209,000 search results. 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