I.P.O.'s and the Global Marketplace
At the turn of the century, the global market was setting records that, unlike nowadays, were leading us to more optimistic and progressive times. The fourth quarter of 1999 boasted the highest amount of money raised by initial public offerings of stock - $66.1 billion. Over three-quarters of that money was earned in the American market, mostly for technology companies.
Ten years later, however, new records have been set that will not help the future of the current market. The final quarter of 2010 showed $127 billion raised, but less than a quarter of that occurred in the United States. Many more companies from India and China have emerged and strongly contributed to the growth of developing markets around the world.
The market has reached a 10-year high in the number of proposed offerings withdrawn, due to the lack of market. In the second quarter of 2011, 98 I.P.O.'s were dropped, according to Dealogic. These offerings were projected to raise $21 billion.
This data points to a phenomenon that has been occurring since the beginnings of digital technology and the decentralization of business: globalization. It is obvious that the United States is not the only super-power anymore, as evidenced by the booming developing markets of India, China and Japan. If Americans do not devote more energy and trust into their own market, the United States could see an even steeper financial decline.
| Whom Can I Trust?|
A while ago, I had the opportunity to have a discussion with students in a marketing class at Eastern Michigan. Whom did they trust? Bottom line they did not trust anyone, most of all the government.
Trust has been disintegrating over the past decade. The accountants, bankers, priests, Wall Street. What a shame that people in their early twenties who should be enthused, energetic and a bit idealistic are tarnished by lack of trust.
Is the pervasive lack of trust made the new buzzword "transparency?" Whom do you believe and do you keep a bit of skepticism in the back of your mind?
|"On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog"|
All of the mistrust that has developed over the years in many factions of life, brings me to another skepticism in our society.
I am bothered by the disintegration of journalism. Journalists have been our "watchdogs" by vetting situations and stories they write about. It is a matter of finances that have forced the closing of print editions of papers. Information is online and that is fine. But WHO is writing that information and what are their credentials? Can I trust what I am reading to be thoroughly vetted and true? Is it attributed or merely some blogger's rant? Probably not, unless I recognize the name on the article as a journalist who I have read in the past and ascertained they are writing the truth.
But that can also be misleading. Very often, people are not required to sign their names. They fill in fictitious and unreal names. In other cases, like the recent News of the World phone hacking scandal, journalists invade people's privacy to obtain the most exclusive stories possible. Journalists of this British newspaper hacked into the voicemails of a 13 year-old murder victim and relatives of fallen British soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In order to form one's own opinions on particular issues, readers must know who wrote an article and where the writer got their information from. Knowing this information, what does that do for belief and trust in the United States?
|Medical Marijuana Concerns Continue to Grow Like Weeds|
One of the United States' unresolved matters is the use, legalization and decriminalization of medical marijuana. Developments in this legal dispute have basically led to nowhere; federal and state law contradict one another with regards to medical marijuana. While federal law strictly prohibits marijuana under the classification of a schedule I drug (the same classification as heroin and ecstasy), state law allows for its citizens to decide. Currently, 16 states, including Washington D.C., allow for the medical use of marijuana with a doctor's approval and a state registration.
|States with some medical marijuana legislation|
The Obama Administration began with a fairly lenient stance on medical marijuana, and the Department of Justice released "the Holder Memo," which stated that federal resources would typically not be used towards activities that are legal under state law. However, as the issue has become more of a concern, the Obama Administration (particularly the Department of Justice) has warned and reminded states of the superseding federal laws, which has ultimately prevented states from developing sophisticated medical marijuana programs.
This is certainly the case in southeastern Michigan, where medical marijuana dispensaries are being raided and closed down on a weekly basis. And because Ann Arbor is renowned for being a pot-tolerant city, the issue has developed a lot of local attention. There are about 20 dispensaries in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti, meaning that medical marijuana is a serious issue around here.
We have recognized the importance of this dispute, acknowledging pros and cons of the legalization of medical marijuana. Despite the opportunity for statewide revenue, the legalization of marijuana could contribute to further health and safety problems. We believe that it is important to educate the public on the pros and cons of medical marijuana, so that they may come to individual conclusions about its legalization. The issue is receiving national attention, and must be dealt with in a pragmatic and thoughtful way.
|Eiler Communications' New Video Blog|
This summer, we have decided to delve into the film and video world by creating our own video blog, entitled Marketing Made Simple. This project will feature Larry Eiler giving presentations on how to improve marketing and public relations in your business. A few 2-3 minute videos will be released each month, each discussing a specific component of marketing and PR.
From now on, the links to the current month's videos will be posted on the left side of this newsletter. Videos from previous months will be archived on our website.