Thursday, July 31, 2014

Ebola Virus - The Next Black Swan


There are many articles espousing the creepy parallels between 1914 and 2014 the start of WW I focusing on political strains and military (mis)adventures in Europe. Just under the radar is another nasty event similar to one that occurred just after WW I called the Spanish flu that killed more people than the combined total of WW I deaths. It’s not the poorly secured small pox samples. Rather it’s the Ebola virus, an equal opportunity killer, a WMD percolating in West Africa that’s the most lethal weapon in the world today. It’s more effective and terrifying than bombs or bullets and virtually unstoppable because of the unique delivery system – humans with easy access to unrestricted global travel. It’s the worst case scenario – multiplied by 10.
Already international organizations are evacuating their health care workers from the highly infected regions. The spreading ravaging virus is not front page news for two reasons: (1) it’s still mainly taking place in rural areas and (2) it’s in West Africa.
Ebola infected humans are an excellent delivery system. There’s no technical skill required because it’s already weaponized and all you need is literally a hands on proposition to spread it.
Ebola exists in a world of global travel and hyper-dense cities. Should this virus spread to cities, even democratic governments would seriously consider imposing draconian measures on its citizenry to contain its spread including mass quarantines, travel restrictions, curfews, and even martial law.
Expect the implementation of anti-terrorist laws for purposes of containment, not the virus but people, for panic crowd control. Liberia has already closed its borders a decision that’s right out of numerous sci-fi Armageddon themed movies. With respect to business, if you’re a heartless Gordon Gekko you’ll buy stocks in healthcare firms that produce hydration kits and manufacture protective clothing.
There is no medicine that will cure it – only extensive hydration. Even then it still has brutal kill rate of at least 50%.  The virus can spread within 2-21 days after symptoms appear and it’s highly contagious even through sweat. Psychologically it’s devastating because of it’s stealth, ease of transmission and high kill rate.
The horrifying thought is that some terrorist group can acquire this ‘weapon’ with minimal effort. Suicide bombers packed with explosives already know that they’re doomed but their potential kill rate is far lower than with a virus. Exposing themselves deliberately to a virus has numerous ‘benefits’.  After exposure, a trip to airports in Dubai, Heathrow, JFK or any other high-volume international transportation hub or international conference will expose the virus to globetrotters. In the meantime, the suicide carrier may actually live through this ordeal and no one would ever suspect that he/she was had the intention of infecting anyone. It’s 21st century viral terrorism similar to the plot of the film The Twelve Monkeys (1995) a case life imitating art.

As a guest speaker on the 2014 Emmy-award winning Fresh Outlook cable TV program on 2 August 2014:



Segment 1: Ebola death toll rises in West Africa



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Monday, July 28, 2014

Brazilian Groundhog Day | World Cup Deja Vu


Some world politicians have suggested that the FIFA change venues for the 2018 World Cup scheduled to be held in Russia to punish Putin’s violent escalating aggression in the Ukraine. Interestingly none of them have mentioned a suitable substitute country which represents nothing more than spouting off.

Even if tanks roll into Kiev tomorrow, the FIFA may not bend to international pressure. These are the same folks who awarded the 2022 to Qatar, a country located in an astoundingly inhospitable terrain for soccer – or most anything else for that matter. The Qatari government has promised the on-time completion of several billion dollars worth of several high-tech stadiums plus accompanying infrastructure which will provide a comfortable environment for the fans and players. Remember that Germany was awarded the 1936 Olympics before the Nazis took power in 1933 who were already persecuting Jews and other non-Aryans although military hostilities beyond German borders didn’t take place until 1939. Only World War II interrupted Word Cup play.

An alternative is for countries to boycott the World Cup in Russia. When Soviet tanks rolled into Kabul in 1979 the US and many other countries boycotted the 1980 Olympics in Moscow. This means that contingency plans must be made now. And what better alternate venue than Brazil? Brazil’s handling of the World Cup was imperfect yet admirable and they already gained valuable experience as global event planners. Brazil will host the 2016 Olympics which hopefully will go relatively smoothly with additional infrastructure in place.

The contingency plans must be developed shortly after whoever takes Brazil’s presidential office in October. Certainly the new or continuing administration will have its hands full with an already slowing economy and possible restive population agitated over lack of education, social services, etc. But who else is already prepared and willing to host the 2018 World Cup particularly on short notice? Included in this contingency plan would be the possibility of a shortened elimination series for the 2018 World Cup . In other words there would be a reduction of rounds, perhaps single elimination games in the first round instead of a 3-game series.

This is not your father’s Cold War military brinkmanship. Nowadays it’s all about business. The possibility of rescinding the decision to hold the 2018 World Cup site or even boycott it will infuriate a short-tempered Putin – if he’s still in power. It will mean lost revenue and enormous loss of “face” and prestige. That’s why Europe should aggressively plan to secure sources of energy from elsewhere before Russia turns off the tap in retaliation. With respect to prestige, Russia may be bruised but economically, because of its recent energy commercial agreement with China, it has options in other large markets.

 

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Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your inter-cultural and global business endeavors.

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Treacherous Tango on the South China Seas



The China-S Korea alliance is one of convenience with a mutual history of being under a brutal, long-term Japanese occupation. Nonetheless S Korea is savvy and is playing both sides of the China-Japan squabble while maintaining a strong military & economic alliance with the US.  The US. China and Japan represent the largest economies in the world so doing business with all simply makes business sense. For China, it needs all the allies it can muster in its maritime disputes and its connection with S Korea can soften its stance. Another seldom mentioned factor is that S Korea’s political relationship with China provides it offers an effective back door, go-between diplomacy and communication with N Korea. This serves the interests of both the US and China because neither country wants a calamitous breakdown should N Korea implode.

The key element in the simmering South China seas is the shifting weight of alliances for self-defense amongst the Asian countries. Their continuous shifting positioning is never as strong alliances nor bitter enemies rather a fluid, carefully balanced, ebb & flow martial arts dance. Any alliance can be strengthened or weakened simply by evoking historical references which are only a century old. To Americans this must seem like ancient history but in this part of the world, outright brutality and barbarism took place on an industrial scale resulting in millions of casualties and remains fresh in the psyche of every Asian country today. These memories mask an undercurrent of hostility hidden just beneath the weak façade of trade and pop culture. Thus all these alliances are one of temporary convenience like a one-time use computer password. It defies the saying, “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” because it does not necessarily apply in this region because of the highly complicated historical relationships.

Additionally, there are no absolutes. Within the overall alliance there may be strong alliances in one or two sectors between two countries and simultaneously weak ones in others. Japan and S Korea may collaborate in trade by securing and outbidding Chinese firms for raw materials and energy in Russia yet are loath to collaborate closely on military matters.

Often these series of alliances may appear to be similar to those that provoked WW I. However there are major differences.

First, because the Asian alliances are informal and fluid thus nations re not “locked in” to any obligation. Embedded in these arrangements is always a political “out” or “termination for convenience” when the external or internal political tide shifts. Aggravating an already tenuous situation is the presence of powerful Asian economies with a well-equipped, modern military in China, Taiwan, Japan and S Korea. They are all equipped with state-of-the-art military hardware but no recent combat experience. The most recent combat experience any of these countries has had is the brief China-Vietnam conflict in 1979 – 35 years ago. Today is a new world, new technology, new weapons and a new generation of people all of whom are untested.

Second, complicating matters is that the territory in dispute is maritime not land as in Europe which makes occupying and holding territory considerably more difficult.

Third, the Americans have the most advanced and comprehensive military satellite surveillance systems in the world. Should hostilities break out and seriously threaten to escalate, to what extent will the Americans use their surveillance information to help its Asian allies? Under a re-interpreted Article 9 would Japan shoot down a Chinese missile heading into space to knock out US satellite?

In business, especially in a hyper-competitive field, learn to dance. And dance well. Regardless of numerous commonalities you may have with your equally sized competitor(s) vs a much large one, it will always be business. As Gordon Gekko infamously told young Bud Fox, “If you want a friend, get a dog.” Alliances shift and change, sometimes for no logical reason whatsoever, completely unanticipated. Your competitor will always be your competitor even in the non-profit world.  Just make sure you don’t step on any toes.

 
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Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your inter-cultural and global business endeavors.
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Monday, July 21, 2014

Russian Tanks Roll into Kiev


As emotions reach a fever pitch over the Malaysian flight 17 tragedy and “kidnapping” of the deceased passengers by pro-Russian rebels with Russian assistance continue, a critical question overlooked by the media has been: who has the most to gain with the downing of Malaysian Flight 17?

This sophisticated missile system equipped with radar requires a highly trained crew to operate it. One can’t simply download a pdf from the Russian military customer service website. What did the missile battery crew see on their radar system to justify a launch? How high up the chain of command ordered the firing of the missile? Did they know the target was a commercial airliner? Only days earlier the rebels were a bunch of “cowboys” shooting at everything in sight.

Most airspace around the world is operated by the military. Regularly scheduled commercial flights are registered with each country that they intend to fly over and these commercial flights are routine. Prior to the Malaysian shoot-down, 400 flights daily crossed Ukrainian airspace without incident above the required minimum altitude of 32,000 ft. Additionally, those commercial flights have transponders that clearly identify them just in case they should stray off course. Thus any combatants on the ground know that it’s a commercial airliner.

Putin’s public relations misinformation/disinformation campaign of lies, deceptions and feints, a hand-crafted propaganda campaign (by Russian standards) is in tatters and resembles more the clumsy and crude Soviet official explanations during the Cold War.

It’s important to remember that even dictatorships are not monolithic. Sure you have the top guy surrounded by his inner circle of sycophants. Nonetheless, as in any small or large group, there are always competing factions within the system who will go to great lengths to influence or seize power whatever the cost. The Russians surely have their hawks and hardliners aching to roll tanks into Kiev while others prefer a moderate militaristic approach. Power is power anywhere in the world whether it’s achieved with a fountain pen or the barrel of a gun. Either way someone ‘at the highest levels’ approved such a ghastly tactic to force their governmental adversaries into a difficult position with few options.

Putin’s trump card is that with so many European countries having their own agenda, they will be unable to form a strong united front in punishing him. Additionally, if such a strong collective front should form, Putin he can always shut off natural gas supplies to Europe this upcoming fall and winter. They’ll be no serious loss of revenue in the European market because of his earlier commercial deal with China. Putin is wilier than most experts give him credit for. He has markets, he has options.

Putin will continue to play hardball until he gets what he wants especially since the Ukraine is of the highest importance to him. Russia will never yield on not having a direct influence on Ukrainian politics and will protect the Near Abroad at all costs eve if it means rolling tanks into Kiev. And there’s nothing to stop him from doing it.

An economically and politically powerful blow to Putin would be to boycott the 2018 World Cup scheduled to be held in Russia. Because the World Cup is one of the few genuinely worldwide events (and potential revenue), the Russians would suffer an enormous loss on all fronts. Most galling is that the Americans do not dominate World Cup play. Sure it’s four years away and many people have short attention spans. But if the West is unable to apply strong enough punishments over Russia’s blame game, gross insensitivity in the Malaysian tragedy and ghoulish body-snatching, this could be an option.

 
Copyright Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC 2014. All rights reserved.

Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your cross-cultural and global business endeavors.


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"Forget It Jake, It's Motor City"


The worldwide and nationwide trend in urban development is increased urban density. Additionally in the US, more and more well-off and wealthy (aka Caucasian) residents have moved from the suburbs into the cities which have become gentrified displacing poor and even middle class residents.

One can strongly draw conclusions that these policies to shut-off utilities are meant more to harm than help. This is a larger scale version of a landlord fiddling with utilities to force a rent-controlled resident out in favor of a resident willing to pay market-rate rent.

Even developing countries w
ith dire financial problems the urban utilities still function at least part of the day in the form of rolling blackouts. For Detroit, a major city in a first world country with plentiful access to water from the Great Lakes, the water supply is turned off based solely on economic considerations.

Whatever cabal is behind choking off Detroit from its water supply, particularly to the poor folks, must make Noah Cross (Chinatown, 1974) quite proud. It’s the powerful irony of plentiful water available from the nearby Great Lakes yet financial considerations are used as an excuse to disrupt water supply while many states in the mid and southwest portion of the country are completely parched from a severe drought. The responsibility is never one person, at least publicly, always a political and corporate collective and hidden behind obscure and confusing regulations whose interpretations are twisted and then legally given the Good Housekeeping seal of approval to protect the guilty.

The blatant thirst for power continues in the urban jungle into the 21st century. It’s eerily similar to what Russia, operationally a dictatorship, is doing in the Ukraine by cutting off natural gas because of alleged unpaid bills. And you thought this stuff happens in only politically unstable regions of the world.

They key question to the Detroit water crisis that disproportionately impacting the poor, as with any urban crisis, is who stands to benefit in the long-term? One could just, “Follow the money.” The old investment edict states that one should invest when there’s blood running in the streets. In this case it’s lack of water and land, abandoned and unoccupied, is cheap.

In an extreme conspiratorial example is the US government. By using an actual scenario, what would be the short-term psychological results if the water supply was disrupted or cut-off? A financial basket case like Detroit is the perfect US city to pull this off . Even if there is no conspiracy and the actions are a result of sheer incompetence, you better believe that there are numerous US agencies collecting data on the developments of this “crisis.”

Whether this crisis was intentionally engineered or not, it’s a fascinating case study for the US government. It provides an excellent case study with respect to the results, reactions and fallout of a major US city whose utilities have been disrupted. How will the population react? By demographics? Riot? Stay calm? Leave Dodge? Go to a black market?

Our infrastructure is out dated and breakdowns resulting in extended outages of water & power may not be uncommon due to natural disasters or simple structural fatigue. Face it. It ‘s happening now!

In business, overwhelming reliance on one source, regardless how historically solid, is a high risk policy. Changes can take place suddenly without warning. A major supplier could be impacted by a natural disaster, government shutdown, strike, scandal, the failure of a key subcontractor to a key subcontractor, regulatory changes, or war. That’s why a even a small firm should, actively seek and maintain a secondary source and contractually lock in a minimum amount of purchases and an addendum stipulating price and your firm as a top priority customer for shipment in case of emergency. This makes a huge difference between received limited supplies at probably a premium price over a complete cut-off from your main supplier. And insure that you utilize this secondary supplier during your current business transactions to create a business and personal relationship so that when it all hits the fan, you’ve already established a track record to continue business.
 
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Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your inter-cultural and global business endeavors.
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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Brazil's National Nadir

The Selecao loss to Germany in the World Cup semi-finals was a seismic emotional shock to the Brazilian psyche that reads like a Greek tragedy on an unimaginable scale. The painful symbolism abounds: most goals allowed (7) and largest margin of defeat in the semis (6), and

Germany’s Miroslav Klose surpassing Brazil’s Ronaldo with the career World Cup record goal # 16 (1+6=7). Unfortunately the current generation of Brazilians is forever psychologically indelibly ‘stained’ by this traumatic event.


Because the defeat was so monumental the frustrations will ultimately carry over into violent protests before and after the national elections. And regardless of which candidates win these protests may continue unabated up to the 2016 Olympics for which the Brazilians have no traditional or emotional connection.

If someone had consulted the Oracle, she would have warned about ominous and perverse precursors:

  1. The an overpass near Mineirao Stadium near Belo Horizonte collapses just days earlier, killing two people, the same stadium in which Brazil lost.
  2. Brazil’s top young star Neymar breaks his back in previous match and is hospitalized. In the next game Germany broke Brazil’s back (and heart). For this reason he is only one two people (Silva is the other due to suspension) associated with the Selecao that comes away unscathed.

Long-term could Brazil slip into a Portuguese fado melancholia recalling and living on past glories on the pitch? Nonetheless from these ashes as a result of such a defeat, Brazil has the opportunity to embrace change and create a tougher, grittier squad with a completely different playing style and strategy more suitable to today’s football for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Copyright Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC 2014. All rights reserved.

Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your inter-cultural and global business endeavors.

Contact us at agoldson888@gmail.com
 

Monday, July 7, 2014

Luxury Higher Education in China


In China, the desire to obtain higher education from a Western institutions parallels the luxury goods market trend.  When Western luxury firms initially established stores in China, Chinese consumers still traveled overseas to shop in those same Western luxury stores because the overseas’ prices were lower than domestic ones. Western products and services have the perception of being of better quality and prestige.

 

With respect to prestigious higher education institutions, in order for them to succeed in China, there are several key steps that must be undertaken:


1.       Consistently populate the staff with well-known Western academics.

2.      Provide the same or similar courses and choice in China as in the institution’s home country.

3.      Establish tuition levels comparable to that in the higher education institution’s home country. It’s counter-intuitive, but the creating of exclusivity will provide the perception of the same quality education in China as if they traveled overseas to the same institution in the US or UK and thus the education received will not be compromised.

 
Copyright Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC 2014. All rights reserved.

 

Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your inter-cultural and global business endeavors.

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World Cup Hangover in Brazil


Initially the post-World Cup period will feature a brief calm before the next domestic ‘storm’ in Brazil. The dicey period will be before and after the elections regardless of what candidate and parties triumph. Though many of the expenditures for stadiums and infrastructure were for the World Cup, these same venues will serve the upcoming 2016 Olympics. Certainly more monies are needed to complete this task for new and uncompleted venues and this is how the protests will build into a crescendo.

 

The World Cup is a one sport (football specific), team sport – a collective - consisting of an exclusive handful of countries capable of winning the World Cup. Brazil as the host country with a deep football tradition represents a once-in-a-lifetime event for the citizenry and the World Cup is their big, feel-good party.

Psychologically the Olympics are profoundly different than the World Cup because it involves more countries for mostly individual sports in which Brazil is not a dominant country. For this reason because there is a significantly lower psychological connection to the Olympics than the World Cup, it justifies intensifying protests by all classes against government spending and alleged corruption on these projects.

In business, there is a short-term euphoria after completing a large, complex and difficult project.  Upon gearing up for an equally challenging project, management should prepare a careful assessment on why and how this new project is different than the just completed one taking into consideration possible additional funds, time and effort.  No two projects are ever alike in the corporate wars.  Just like the military wars, the French and German battled to a bloody stalemate in WW I.  But in WW II the Germans changed tactics over the same terrain while the French clung to their old model and lost within a month.

Copyright Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC 2014. All rights reserved.

 

Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your inter-cultural and global business endeavors.

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Direct contact: agoldson888@gmail.com

 

Asian Alliances, Endless Encirclements


China and Pakistan are engaged in an alliance of convenience because both countries have few, if any, friends in the region. They need each other on all levels specifically: political, military, and trade. Their alliance represents an “encirclement” of India whose intents they view with suspicion given their occasional violent border disputes. Ironically China must be trend carefully with their alliance with Pakistan, a Muslim country, because China’s far west regions have a large Muslim population who are violently subjugated. In turn as a counter-weight, India and Japan are seeking to renew the “strategic global partnership” in 2006-2007 during Abe’s during his first period as Prime Minister.

 

China and Pakistan are dictatorships seeking power and control. India and Japan are large democracies who seek power and freedom. Because these alliances speak the same political language, each joint venture can be quite effective that enables them to “watch each other’s back” so to speak. Additionally all these countries have new leaderships that may seek to change the rules and make their mark creating increasing an already highly volatile situation.

 

China: Squeezed between India to the west and Japan to the east.  Has the money but can’t buy friendship because of territorial bullying.

Japan: Island nation must protect imports which they are dependent but have considerable historical baggage which reduces their credibility for strong alliances.

Pakistan: A feudal nation with a cauldron of problems inside and outside its borders and always suspicious of Indian intentions who have considerable business and political interests west of Pakistan.

India: Has the most friends in the region due to lack of hegemony desires but must deal with a militarily aggressive China and schizophrenic Pakistan on its borders.

Underscoring the impact of the dynamics, these countries represent 40% of the world’s population within their own borders and 50% of the world’s population with respect to the entire Asian region!

In business, in certain highly competitive industries, every firm has unusual strengths (perhaps financing, expertise) at the same time unusual weaknesses (poor management, high turnover, lack of technical skills).  No one is as strong or as weak as they appear to be.  The danger is that they themselves may not think so.  As a corporate leader it’s a delicate dance how to proceed forward both short-term and long-term.  Nevertheless one must take calculated risks – become a moving target - because remaining still or on the fence is the greatest risk.  A possibility is to hire a neutral party without the emotional connection to dispassionately propose options.


Copyright Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC 2014. All rights reserved.

 

Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your inter-cultural and global business endeavors.

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Direct contact: agoldson888@gmail.com

 

 

Compelling Living in Chinese Tech Hubs


If one creates an architecturally compelling urban and living design tech and innovative hub it will attract young Chinese talent for the long-term both professionally and personally. Domestically it will minimize brain drain. Internationally it will attract Chinese living and working overseas to a culturally more comfortable environment. This will create a “brain drain” of high-tech Chinese talent outside of China both short and long-term.


Friday, July 4, 2014

Battle for the China Seas


China has literally created its own physical beachheads through the construction of man-made islands at enormous expense.  These newly constructed land aircraft carriers will enable them to plant their flag on an actual island in disputed territories.  This goes to show that SPECTRE, SMERSH and even Dr. Evil were well ahead of their time with the construction of their own “underground” island lairs decades ago.  More importantly and ominously, just as land is a commercially and militarily valuable commodity, this project represents a serious long-term effort with the possible objective of forcing a negotiated peace for territorial recognition.
In business a similar tactic is employed when the big boy in the market, usually a large, well-financed corporation with almost unlimited resources “intrudes” into your commercial stronghold or niche by creating a base behind enemy lines for the purposes of capturing market share, poaching talent, stealing customers and in general under-mining your efforts.  With several “bases” they’re everywhere and can strike from anywhere which is always quite disconcerting.  A retreat will result in a smaller pie for your firm and you’ll be reduced to scavenging for crumbs and commercial irrelevance.
An effective and cost effective counter-measure is by securing strong alliances (preferably beforehand in the form of good relationships with customers, suppliers, and banks) and utilizing guerilla tactics to turn the tide and put the large competitor on the defensive.  The good news for you is that your competitor is now already within your territory so he is already surrounded and must either expend more time and money in a face-saving maneuver by defending the position or acquiesce through a face-losing breakout.  Smaller forces are always nimbler and lightning quick with a shorter chain of command and fewer operational restrictions vs. well-financed firm even with smaller independently operating units.

 
Copyright Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC 2014. All rights reserved.

 
Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your business endeavors.

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Nippon Vantage Point


The Japanese government is cleverly using alleged Chinese commercial and military incursions into Japanese territory to raise the ultra-sensitive, almost taboo, issue to re-interpret Article 9 of the Constitution to allow Japan to use military force to come to the aid of its allies if they are attacked.

One of the allies is understood to clearly mean the U.S. but it doesn’t indicate who the other allies are.  Then again, who and how is the word ally’ or “closely connected” as the Japanese government has stated, defined? Are allies those countries with whom you have trade agreements? Joint military exercises?  Cultural exchanges?  UN programs?  It’s an open interpretation that can be used as a pretext for military engagement not only in the surrounding China seas but anywhere else in the world. This can lead to an ironic misinterpretation of a re-interpretation of an official document.

Even if Japan has no intention of coming to the aid of an ally under attack, domestically it’s a psychologically powerful tool to shift the mindset of the Japanese government and citizenry as to how they see themselves as participants in world affairs and an opportunity to becoming a “normal” country.  This shift worries China in the short-term and the rest of Asia in the long-term.

China builds man-made islands in disputed territory and Japan re-interprets Article 9 on how they are to defend themselves. For the first time in history both Japan and China are strong which, without precedent, creates a situation that is sailing into uncharted waters.

In business in a highly competitive market with two heavy-weights, similar to the tensions in the China Sea, even the most subtle shift can generate reactions from your competitor you may not expect.  To fully engage management and rank & file for a potentially intense commercial battle you can create an enthusiasm in a subtle way to shift the mindset going forward.

 
Copyright Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC 2014. All rights reserved.

 
Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your business endeavors.

Follow us on Twitter: @caerusNYC
Direct contact: agoldson888@gmail.com

 

 

Middle East Blitzkrieg


The stunning swiftness of capturing large swaths of territory, oil refineries and major cities in Iraq by ISIS by a small, yet determined and battle-hardened force vs. a large American-trained government army with all the firepower and technological advantages is simply another déjà vu in the annals of military history.  Most recently this happened in Vietnam when American forces trained the South Vietnamese and provided all the weaponry required to defend its territory.  But upon American withdrawal, the South Vietnamese Army collapsed to the Vietcong and North Vietnamese.  In both cases the government army was under command by a corrupt leadership so there was little incentive to die for the Motherland.  And once again we are at the brink of "deja vu all over again" moment with a last minute helicopter evac as we did in Vietnam in 1975.

The same scenario can be applied to the business world in which large companies with competing fiefdoms and dubious business practices are unable to hold market share against hungry, smaller and less capitalized firms.  Often these large companies deliberately foster rivalries and keep them weak to maintain control.  The same has occurred within the Iraqi government fearful that a strong army could eventually overthrow it yet make itself vulnerable to outside forces.

Just because a competitor appears to be big and all powerful, circumstances can reveal specific weaknesses to be exploited.  Smaller firms can take advantage of such situations through the discovery of the larger firm’s highly dissatisfied customers and suppliers who feel have been neglected or not received the service they are paying for.  The key is top-down discipline, focus and speed.

 
Copyright Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC 2014. All rights reserved.

 
Indo-Brazilian Associates LLC is a NYC-based global advisory service and think tank with connections at the highest levels. We provide you the tools to get on the "Short List" in your business endeavors.

Follow us on Twitter: @caerusNYC
Direct contact: agoldson888@gmail.com