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Topics - Reyed Mia (Apprentice, DIU)

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Venture Capital / Bangladesh Investment Handbook - A Guide for Investors
« on: August 19, 2020, 11:58:19 AM »
Bangladesh Investment Handbook - A Guide for Investors

See the full (220 pages) Guideline for Investors:

Download from the DIU Library:

Investment Process / Investment Process
« on: October 14, 2018, 10:54:10 AM »
Investment Process

Investment Process / Giving poor people cash is a good idea
« on: October 14, 2018, 10:51:50 AM »
Giving poor people cash is a good idea. Giving entrepreneurs cash might be a great one

Give the people money
The idea of giving poor people people cash, no strings attached, has gotten increasingly popular over the past several decades. Rather than offering education, job training or food, mounting evidence shows that simply handing people money and letting them decide what to do with it, is usually a more impactful poverty alleviation option. Experiments find that people are far less wasteful with that money than you might think, using it almost entirely on food, health, and education.

This evidence has buoyed the movement for a taxpayer-funded universal basic income (UBI)—an amount of money that would ensure every person can purchase their basic needs. It has also led the US Agency for International Development to benchmark many of their programs against a cash transfer that costs the same amount as the intervention. While giving people cash isn’t a panacea to all the world’s problems, unlike many more complex programs, it is clearly effective at giving people a boost.

But for all the good giving people money has done, there is research that suggests there might be an even better way to give that cash away. Instead of giving money to just any anybody, governments and philanthropists can give it to entrepreneurs who have ideas for creating or expanding a business, but don’t have access to financing. When their businesses succeeded, they create jobs that allow people to provide for themselves, and governments to spend less on direct welfare. That was the big idea behind YouWin.

Nigeria Wins
All sort of companies emerged from YouWin. Almost 30% were manufacturing companies, 15% were agricultural and another 15% were in information technology. A number of education startups also won grants, including several private schools, as well as a company that made educational comic books.

The World Bank conducted an impact analysis on the first phase of the program,, in which 1,2000 entrepreneurs out of 24,000 applicants were awarded $50,000. Of the the 2,500 finalists in first phase, the 480 best business plans were selected based on the assessments  of independent judges from the audit and consulting company PricewaterHouseCoopers and Nigeria’s Enterprise Development Center. Among the other 1,920 top-rated plans, 720 were chosen at random for grants.

To see whether the grant made any difference, the World Bank would compared those 720 randomly-selected winners to the 1,200 finalists that received nothing.

YouWin seems to have been an astonishing success. Based on follow-up surveys three and six years after the program, a study by the World Bank economist David McKenzie, published in the American Economic Review (paywall), found that grant winners were far more likely to have businesses with over 10 employees, and that their businesses were both more innovative and profitable than businesses created by those who weren’t selected. In other words, that $50,000 grant made a huge difference—not just to the entrepreneurs, but to the people they hired.

McKenzie estimates that program generated a little over 7,000 new jobs, costing the government about $8,500 per job. This is an excellent return on investment compared to other job-creation programs, which typically cost between $11,000 to $80,000 per job, according to McKenzie’s research. These other programs include business training, wage subsidies, and smaller grants (pdf). The result is so impressive that the development economist Chris Blattman wondered on his blog if this was the “most effective development program in history.“

Unfortunately, politics doomed YouWin’s future. In 2015, then-president Goodluck Jonathan lost an election to Muhammadu Buhari. Jonathan was a major proponent of YouWin, and Buhari was not interested in extending a program he wouldn’t get credit for. Rather than conducting more business plan competitions, YouWin has been reorganized into an education program for entrepreneurs, not just those who won the competition. There is little evidence that such capacity building programs work.

Business-plan fever
Though YouWin may be essentially dead, the program’s results didn’t go unnoticed. It’s caught the interest of both development economists and leaders across Africa facing youth unemployment issues. And YouWin’s results are not an aberration. Although the Nigerian competition is the most powerful evidence in favor of the business-plan competition, another smaller study of a competition held in Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Zambia also had promising results.

Several countries across the continent have since held, or are going to hold, competitions for entrepreneurs. The biggest of these competitions is set to be held in 2019 in Kenya. Over $20 million will be disbursed to Kenyan entrepreneurs. The program will be primarily funded by the World Bank.

Kenya’s competition shares many similarities with YouWin. Quartz spoke with Joseph Kanyi, an entrepreneurship specialist in Kenya’s department of trade who helped get the program off the ground. He said the evidence of YouWin’s success was an essential factor in gaining support from the World Bank and Kenya’s government to implement the program. Through the Kenyan competition, researchers hope to learn even more about what makes these programs effective. For the Kenyan program, 250 applicants will have their business plan randomly selected with only the most minimal screening and no additional support. (In the Nigerian competition, by contrast, once applicants passed the first threshold, they  got help developing their business plans.)

If these unscreened Kenya applicants are successful, it would demonstrate that business-plan competitions might work with little administrative cost. The Kenyan competition will also be testing the impact of grants of $9,000 and $36,000. If smaller grants work nearly as well as big ones, that could also make the program less costly.

All of these tests are being done with the intention of making future business competitions, in Kenya and elsewhere, more efficient.

The economics
The most interesting aspect of these programs is that they suggest that there are a lot of good ideas out there that are not getting financed. Economic theory holds that people with good ideas should be able to get the money to make it happen. Banks and investors exist to make loans and get equity to promising businesses.

In the US and other rich countries, the financial system generally works well at funneling financing to people with sound business plans. But in many African countries, that isn’t the case. World Bank economist Francisco Camarate de Campos notes that African entrepreneurs often face serious capital constraints because the financial sector isn’t large and sophisticated enough to identify the best loan candidates.

Startup / Look for Mission, Culture and Growth in Your Next Startup
« on: September 25, 2018, 01:19:25 PM »
Look for Mission, Culture and Growth in Your Next Startup

New startups are popping up everywhere. Bloomberg suggests private technology companies and VC investment is already 28% higher this year. These new companies are doing incredible things, in everything from blockchain to fashion.

Whether you’re looking to launch your career or take it to the next level, finding the right position at a startup can be incredibly exciting and rewarding. But, it’s important to not get distracted by the hype around disruption and perks.

Before you join a startup, assess its culture, mission and plans for growth:

1. Find a startup that’s mission driven. Understand the long-term mission of the company. Beyond the cool product or fancy announcements, determine if the company has clear goals in five, or even ten years. Next, make sure the company is connecting its mission with its end game. This will help you gauge the startup’s long-term viability and ensure you’re a culture fit. If you find an inspiring startup with a bold, audacious mission and a clear path to achieve that mission, it likely means that you’ll be working with like-minded, passionate people who are building a company for the future.

2. Learn how they spell culture. Culture is not always easy to evaluate. Many startups will tout theirs as amazing, but you need to look deeper. Culture is the foundation of any business. It’s important that startups map out tenets of culture and truly believe that these concepts are central to building for their future. One way to test this is to check if people who you interview with can easily characterize company culture. Do they talk about it in the same way? Does it seem important to people at all levels? If so, you’re a step closer to understanding if the company has a strong sense of culture and if it’s the right culture for you.

3. Uncover avenues for professional growth. Many new startups don’t invest resources in opportunities for professional development. This makes it difficult when they scale quickly because leaders aren’t properly trained to assume their expanding role. The number one reason why people leave an organization is because they don’t feel they have strong mentorship by their direct manager. Attrition can be greatly reduced if startups help train their people to be strong mentors from the very beginning. With this in mind, it’s important you ask questions about how a startup invests in the development of its people. You want to look for a place where you can learn not just your day-to-day job, but where you’re challenged and provided the right training to take on new responsibilities. This is a sign that your leaders are also receiving training as well. It’s a way to ensure the company is shaping leaders who can adapt to the changing demands of the business. It’s a way to ensure that your leaders don’t just care about their own future, but yours as well.

As you assess your options and market yourself to different startups, don’t forget to look past the shiny lettering and bright lights. You need to make sure that wherever you end up is a culture fit with structure growth opportunity. Ask questions and do your research, and I promise you’ll be able to find the right startup to move forward in your career.


Newspaper / Funding Opportunity of BVCL
« on: April 04, 2018, 01:43:25 PM »
Take your business into the next level

Funding Opportunity

Amazing Opportunity to grow your business with Bangladesh Venture Capital Limited

Bangladesh Venture Capital Ltd is looking for scalable business for investment. If you want to scale up existing startup business, expand business or want to start a new innovative business, please submit your business proposal considering following points

1. What makes your investment proposal an attractive investment opportunity?
2. How much money is needed, and how will it be used?
3. What will be the return on investment (ROI) and when?

1. Business has to be located in Bangladesh
2. Experienced management team
3. Working prototype and final products
4. Established revenue model
5. Rapid growth potential
6. Good financial and operational structure
7. No financial liability with the Bank
8. Solid business experiences

Priority Sectors:
1. ICT
2. Agri tech
3. Tourism & Lifestyle
4. Health and Services
5. Education
6. Fintech

Deadline: April 30, 2018

Apply online:

Contact Address:
Bangladesh Venture Capital Ltd.
Daffodil Business Incubator Building, Level-04
105, Shukrabad, Mirpur Road, Dhaka-1207
Cell: +8801713-493016, +8801811-458880
Email :

MOU/MOA / Confidentiality Periods in Non-Disclosure Agreements
« on: March 27, 2018, 05:02:14 PM »
Confidentiality Periods in Non-Disclosure Agreements

MOU/MOA / Non-Disclosure Agreement Template (General)
« on: March 27, 2018, 05:01:13 PM »
Non-Disclosure Agreement Template (General)

MOU/MOA / What You Need to Know About Non-Disclosure Agreements
« on: March 27, 2018, 05:00:05 PM »
What You Need to Know About Non-Disclosure Agreements

MOU/MOA / How to Write a Standard NDA
« on: March 27, 2018, 04:59:22 PM »
How to Write a Standard NDA

MOU/MOA / Who Should Use a Memorandum of Understanding
« on: March 27, 2018, 04:58:35 PM »
Who Should Use a Memorandum of Understanding

MOU/MOA / Memorandum of Understanding Definition
« on: March 27, 2018, 04:56:57 PM »
Memorandum of Understanding Definition

MOU/MOA / Is a Memorandum of Understanding Legally Binding?
« on: March 27, 2018, 04:56:04 PM »
Is a Memorandum of Understanding Legally Binding?

MOU/MOA / Memorandum of understanding
« on: March 27, 2018, 04:36:08 PM »
Memorandum of understanding

A Memorandum of understanding (MOU or MoU) is a document describing a bilateral or multilateral agreement between parties. It expresses a convergence of will between the parties, indicating an intended common line of action. It most often is used in cases where parties either do not imply a legal commitment or in situations where the parties cannot create a legally enforcement agreement. It is a more formal alternative to a gentlemen's agreement.

A Memorandum of Understanding or MOU is put in place to establish a clear understanding of how the deal will practically function and each party's role and compensation.

A MOU must (a) identify the contracting parties (b) spell out the subject matter of the agreement and its objectives (c) summarize the essential terms of the agreement, and (d) must be signed by the contracting parties.

In international public law, a memorandum of understanding is used frequently. It has many practical advantages when compared with treaties. When dealing with sensitive or private issues, a memorandum of understanding can be kept confidential, while a treaty cannot.

How MOU is Different from Agreement
MOU is like a contract, but it does not have to carry the same legal weight. If the wordings used in the MOU are vague and unclear and do not create any binding effect, then the same cannot be enforced. It does not create a valid contract. But if one party do anything on reliance of MOU and sustains any loss he can recover back losses but cannot get enforce the MOU. Both Parties of MOU are bind by estoppel and any of them cannot take adverse stand.

A memorandum of understanding is an agreement between two parties in the form of a legal document. It is not fully binding in the way that a contract is, but it is stronger and more formal than a traditional gentleman's agreement. Sometimes, a memorandum of understanding is used as a synonym for a letter of intent, particularly in private law. A letter of intent expresses an interest in performing a service or taking part in an activity, but does not legally obligate either party.

While, Agreement contains proposal and its acceptance and intention of parties is to bind each other with the terms of agreement. It is intention of parties that if any one violet the terms other will go to court and get it enforced.

Implementation of MoU in Transnational dealings
In international public law, a memorandum of understanding is used frequently. It has many practical advantages when compared with treaties. When dealing with sensitive or private issues, a memorandum of understanding can be kept confidential, while a treaty cannot. The other advantage of MoUs over more formal instruments is that, because obligations under international law may be avoided, they can be put into effect in most countries without requiring parliamentary approval.

A memorandum of understanding can also be put into effect in a timelier manner than a treaty, because it doesn't require ratification. In addition, a memorandum of understanding can be modified without lengthy negotiations. This is especially useful, except in multilateral situations. In fact, most transnational aviation agreements are a type of memorandum of understanding.

• The Memorandums of Understanding on Labour Cooperation between The People's Republic of China, Singapore and New Zealand on 2008, in parallel with their respective free trade agreements
• An international memorandum of understanding is the Oil for Food Program, which was created by the United Nations in 1995 and lasted until 2003. This agreement allowed Iraq to sell its oil to the world in exchange for humanitarian help, such as food and medicine for Iraqi civilians.
• The Memorandum of Understanding on Hijacking of Aircraft and Vessels and Other Offenses between the US and Cuba, meant to criminalize hijacking in both countries (February 3, 1973)
• The agreement between the government of Indonesia and the GAM in the Aceh peace process, 15 August, 2005.

“How to write a Memorandum of Understanding?”
Since each deal is vastly different, there is no particular convention of writing MoU. As said above the MOU can be a simple statement e mailed to the other party with a response saying they agree. In reality, you can make the Memorandum of Understanding as simple or complicated as is necessary for the Joint Venture and the comfort of those involved. Some want every detail and possibility ironed out ahead of time; others don't.

MOU/MOA / What are the benefits of a memorandum of understanding?
« on: March 27, 2018, 04:33:24 PM »
What are the benefits of a memorandum of understanding?

Aboriginal joint management arrangements for parks can ensure that local Aboriginal people are involved in the management of country that is important to them and that Aboriginal people's cultural rights and practices can be recognised and taken into account in managing the park. At the same time, the NPWS benefits from Aboriginal people's knowledge and experience (see How does Aboriginal joint management work?).

joint management agreements are the simplest way of establishing a formal written arrangement. Some advantages include:

an MOU can be negotiated with Aboriginal people nominated by the Aboriginal community, and is not restricted to 'native title holders' and 'Aboriginal owners' defined by legislation
an MOU can be as detailed or as general as the community and the NPWS want, unlike lease-back agreements and indigenous land use agreements which must address certain issues required by the legislation, however the outcomes agreed in an MOU must be consistent with the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974
an MOU can be as binding or as flexible as the community and the NPWS want
the negotiation of an MOU can follow a process determined by the community and the NPWS, can evolve over time and does not have to fit a process set by legislation
the negotiation of an MOU does not require complex property transactions and legal advice
the negotiation of an MOU will probably take less time than the negotiation of a lease-back arrangement or an indigenous land use agreement.

Do Aboriginal people get jobs in joint managed parks?
This will depend on the park, the size, location and nature of the park, and the joint management agreement and what employment opportunities are available.

There may be scope for improving employment for Aboriginal people in the long term - by employing Aboriginal people when existing jobs become vacant or by involving local Aboriginal people in the recruitment process.

The NPWS may be able to provide access to its training programs and other educational opportunities to Aboriginal people who are involved in a joint management arrangement.

MOU/MOA / Understanding memorandums of understanding (MOUs)
« on: March 27, 2018, 04:30:14 PM »
Understanding memorandums of understanding (MOUs)

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Resumail Network wasn't going to survive. The Dallas-based company's flagship product -- Resumail, resume digitization and applicant-tracking desktop software -- was too limiting in a world of Monsters and HotJobs.

So in the spring of 2000, the company's CEO charged CTO Scott Howitt with reinventing the company as the one-stop online shop for HR services by January 2001.

But to pull off such a feat in Internet time, Howitt would have to bring in new partners while simultaneously finding a way to cut back on the lengthy, complex legal processes inherent to forming business partnerships.

"My idea was that we would create a bare-bones applicant-tracking system and plug in related services from all our different partners -- become best-in-breed for HR services," Howitt says.

An MOU is no contract -- understood?

Call that agreement an MOU (memorandum of understanding) or a letter of agreement, just don't call it a contract. An MOU is not a binding contract, says Steve de Groot, chair of the technology transaction group and partner at the law firm of King and Spalding in Atlanta. Although both documents define an agreement between two parties, significant differences exist.

* Contract

A contract spells out the "who, what, where, when, and costs" that define a deal. "Contracts also include representations, warranties, indemnifications, and risk sharing," de Groot says.


An MOU provides a nonbinding road map to the parties' agreement. "It's a shorthand version of the deal, written in plain English. An MOU needs to lay out the economic sharing, the principal obligations of each party -- who's to do what and when, who's bringing the technology to the table, and who owns it," de Groot says. MOUs do not provide the relationship exit strategies nor the penalties for violating the agreement that a binding contract provides.

* MOU advantages

Drafting and negotiating an MOU often takes less time than a binding contract. And, as in the experience, an MOU allows parties to explore partnership possibilities before entering into a long-term, contract-defined relationship.

* MOU disadvantages

One MOU disadvantage that de Groot has observed is the negotiations and events that take place prior to signing the MOU. "Oftentimes, the companies haven't addressed significant terms before signing an MOU: They haven't done all the due diligence surrounding the services that support the relationship," de Groot says. "They may come to the table guessing that a platform will support the technology agreement, and it ends up not [to be] the case."

* MOU mistakes

Strong language is the most common mistake with MOUs, de Groot says. Sometimes an MOU is written with terms that really make it a binding contract, with penalties for nonperformance and violations of the agreement. "Make sure an MOU spells out that it is explicitly nonbinding and will be subject in all respects to a binding agreement," de Groot says.

* MOU complements

If an MOU does not cover licensing and protection of proprietary information, de Groot suggests that parties also sign a licensing agreement and a nondisclosure agreement.

CTOs know that meeting partnership legalities could slow speedy partnership formation. But Howitt learned a valuable legal lesson that all CTOs should know: To devise agreements in Internet time, use MOUs (memorandums of understanding).

Tackling transition details

The company ditched the Resumail name, changed to, and went with a high-profile URL -- Howitt and Jeff Whittle,'shouse attorney and vice president of business development, had a goal to sign a service-partnering deal each week during the fall and winter.

But Howitt soon discovered that working quickly to find partners then integrating their services into the site wasn't the problem. Negotiating the contract was.

An early deal Howitt struck was with Recruiters-Aid, which would provide technical recruiting services through the URL. Finalizing the lengthy contract's details delayed the partnership two months. Time and energy was wasted on paperwork that could have been spent on technical issues or closing other deals, Howitt says.

"After that, our in-house counsel and I talked it over: We could use a 1-or 2-page MOU, [defining] basic revenue splits and an agreement with our partner that we'd write 'the rules' as we went along," Howitt says.

Key partnership points

The MOU must-haves for Howitt and Whittle included the service offering target launch date and key partnership milestones, a loose configuration of revenue splits, brand protection and creation of joint marketing tools, a broad understanding of each party's responsibility, and the ability for either party to walk away from the deal without penalty.

Closing deals with MOUs has another advantage over contracts for Howitt: flexibility. "We can see how the new package works out; we're not sure we'll ever get to the 'telephone book' contract," Howitt says.

Working with MOUs is similar to dating, says Whittle, who writes the MOUs that either he or Howitt signs. Using an MOU, the partners "can find out if we like each other and what we need to tweak. This tells us where to build additional structure into the next level," Whittle says.

And if the partnership has potential beyond the initial trial and the first MOU, Whittle and Howitt are prepared to write a lengthy contract, or another MOU, to cover new contingencies.

Making your case

Whereas Howitt had little problem moving from contracts to MOUs, other CTOs may face resistance from legal departments or other executives. If that's the case, Howitt suggests pairing an MOU with something to capture their attention: competitive edge.

"Make them understand the competitive edge that [you] stand to lose by taking the time to get together a contract instead of an MOU," Howitt explains. "In today's world, battles are won and lost over the course of a couple of months. If you are not careful, your competitor can be the first to market with your idea while you are sitting on the sideline assembling the contract."

Another strategy for CTOs who need to make a case for cutting out complexity is to quantify the benefits of doing so.

"CEOs want to see the relationship in dollars and cents," Howitt says. "If you can put a dollar figure to the relationship, they will want to get those dollars rolling in the door as soon as possible."

Finally, Howitt suggests one other advantage to the MOU arrangement to try out on reluctant CEOs. "I also try to pose the MOU as a 'try before you buy' relationship, where neither [partner] is at risk as we see how well we work together," he says. In today's fast-paced business environment where partnerships can determine a company's future, the MOU is the kind of flexible device that deserves a place in the CTO toolkit.

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