Thursday, May 29, 2008

Origin of companies- Bed bath and Beyond

Remember the film "Click" where adam sandler plays the lead role? then you must remember the store "bed bath and beyond" where he goes to and has a sweet nap(and thats where the entire story takes place, though not literally.. )

Being an Indian, i was surprised to find that BB&B is a company that features in the Nasdaq100.
lets look at the history of that company now.

BB&B was founded by Leonard Feinstein and Warren Eisenberg. Both men possessed over a decade of retail experience in 1971 when they formed Bed 'n Bath, a small chain of specialty linen and bath shops in suburban New York. As employees in management positions at Arlan's, a discount chain that fell on hard times during the early 1970s, the two sensed an essential change in retailing trends. "We had witnessed the department store shakeout, and knew that specialty stores were going to be the next wave of retailing," Feinstein told Chain Store Executive in 1993. "It was the beginning of the designer approach to linens and housewares and we saw a real window of opportunity." Bed 'n Bath's first two 2,000-square-foot stores were located in high-traffic strip malls and carried such brand-names as Cannon, Wamsutta, and Fieldcrest, as well as a line of lower&ndash′iced linens and bath towels.

During the 1970s Bed 'n Bath expanded at a healthy but unremarkable pace, and by 1985 the chain had grown to 17 stores located in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and California. During this time, however, a number of similar bath and bed specialty shops had opened. What had begun as a niche market was growing increasingly competitive as retailers sensed a "cocooning trend" among baby boomers. Specialty chains such as Linens 'n Things, Pacific Linens, and Luxury Linens sprang up to tap into this new market. Feinstein and Eisenberg opened their first superstore in 1985 in an effort to set themselves apart from the sudden wave of competition that had appeared.

The new superstore was revolutionary in a number of ways. Over ten times the size of Bed 'n Bath's original shop, this 20,000-square-foot outlet offered a comprehensive line of home furnishings in addition to Bed 'n Bath's traditional linens and bath products. While most department stores and specialty shops offered only a few select brands, Bed 'n Bath's superstore offered seemingly every possible color, style, and size of each product. Until this time, most independent home textile retailers either copied department store merchandising techniques or followed the mundane merchandising style used by discount retailers. Eisenberg and Feinstein did neither. Bed 'n Bath, along with chains such as Toys "R" Us and Blockbuster Video, became pioneering "category killers": large specialty retail outlets that beat their competition by offering virtually every possible product in their specific category at everyday low prices. Other than semi-annual clearances to reduce inventory, the company never held sales. They claimed that their prices were already lower than other stores' sale prices.

In 1987 Eisenberg and Feinstein changed the name of their organization to Bed Bath & Beyond in order to more accurately reflect their superstore format. By 1991 Bed Bath & Beyond had opened seven new superstores in New Jersey, California, Virginia, Illinois, Maryland, and Florida, and expanded two existing stores into the superstore format. Sales reached $134 million that year, generating earnings of $10.4 million. Eisenberg and Feinstein funneled the revenue back into the company.

The company's success was considered unusual for the home products industry. As one analyst said, Bed Bath & Beyond "took a less than strong category and made it important." It did so by making ordinary household products seem exciting, even romantic. Customer service was an essential part of this marketing strategy. The company strove to build word-of-mouth advertising through a unique combination of family atmosphere and attentive customer service. Both management and sales personnel worked the floor, arranging merchandise displays, helping shoppers carry products, and otherwise making themselves useful. According to Fortune, even Feinstein and Eisenberg would gather on the floor on Saturday, to "tidy merchandise and ... pick up bits of litter." Check-out waiting time was reduced by increasing the number of cash registers, and the company developed a policy wherein, if the store was out of a desired product, Bed Bath & Beyond would deliver it to the customer's home, free of charge. Due to this strategy, Bed Bath & Beyond was able to keep paid advertising to a minimum. The company often saturated the market with advertising when a new store opened, then successfully relied on word-of-mouth to keep customers coming in.

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Monday, May 26, 2008

Origin of companies- Baidu, is the first chinese company that has made it to the Nasdaq 100. here's the origin of their name

"Many people have asked about the meaning of our name. 'Baidu' was inspired by a poem written more than 800 years ago during the Song Dynasty. The poem compares the search for a retreating beauty amid chaotic glamour with the search for one's dream while confronted by life's many obstacles. '...hundreds and thousands of times, for her I searched in chaos, suddenly, I turned by chance, to where the lights were waning, and there she stood.' Baidu, whose literal meaning is hundreds of times, represents persistent search for the ideal."

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Sunday, May 25, 2008

Origin Of Companies - Amazon

When you are in doubt and you dunno how to decide, then use "Regret Minimization Framework".
How does it work? think that you are 80. now ask yourself, if you , at 80 would regret not having chosen to undertake a venture? if the answer is yes , then minimize the regret and go ahead. this was exactly how JeFf bezos decided to start
Named after the largest river(not longest), it was previously called but it was soon dropped cos it sounded close to cadaver(meaning corpse). A company folklore says that the founder(jeff) wrote the business plan while he and his wife drove from Fort Worth, Texas to Bellevue, Washington, but this is largely denied by early employees
The first book sold was Douglas Hofstadter's Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought

The Business plan funda
Amazon's initial business plan was unusual: the company did not expect a profit for four to five years; the strategy was effective. Amazon grew steadily in the late 1990s while other Internet companies grew blindingly fast. Amazon's "slow" growth provoked stockholder complaints: that the company was not reaching profitability fast enough. When the dot-com bubble burst, and many e-companies went out of business, Amazon persevered, and, finally, turned its first profit in the fourth quarter of 2002: U.S. $5 million, just 1¢ a share, on revenues of more than U.S. $1 billion, but the profit was symbolically important.

The amazon umbrella.
lots of companies come under the amazon umbrella, namely,


Alexa Internet,
and few other companies

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Saturday, May 24, 2008

origin of companies - adobe

This is in keeping with my promise of writing about the origin of companies along with a few other trivia.. here's the second of the series. the first u'd remember was the post about RIM research in motion..
Adobe- origins

the company was founded when charles geschke and john warnock left Xerox Parc to develop and sell Postscript page description language. the name of the company Adobe was named after the creek that ran behind the house of one of the company's founders..
a picture of the creek (useful for quiz purposes)

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Friday, May 23, 2008

origin of companies - Akamai

when u log into ur mail, if u check the status bar of ur browser, u can find this word appearing and disappearing.. akamai.. Akamai is basically a hawaiian word meaning smart or intelligent.

The origin of Akamai..

Akamai's beginnings lie in a challenge posed by World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in early 1995. The father of the Web foresaw the congestion that is now very familiar to Internet users, and he challenged colleagues at MIT to invent a fundamentally new and better way to deliver Internet content. What he probably didn't expect was that posing such an academic problem would ultimately result in a service that is revolutionizing the Internet.

MIT Professor of Applied Mathematics Tom Leighton, who had an office down the hall from Dr. Berners-Lee, was intrigued by the challenge. Dr. Leighton, a renowned expert on parallel algorithms and architecture, has served as head of the Algorithms Group at MIT's Laboratory for Computer Science since its inception in 1996. Dr. Leighton recognized that a solution to Web congestion could be found in applied mathematics and algorithms. He solicited the help of graduate student Danny Lewin, and several other top researchers, to tackle the problem.

Dr. Leighton and Mr. Lewin were joined by other scientists with expertise in computer science and data networking to develop the mathematical algorithms necessary to handle the dynamic routing of content and solve what was, by then, a frustrating problem for Internet users.

Building a Business
These world-class scientists developed a set of breakthrough algorithms for intelligently routing and replicating content over a large network of distributed servers — without relying on centralized servers typically used by Web site owners today. Jonathan Seelig, then enrolled in the MIT Sloan M.B.A. program, joined the founding team, and they began building the business plan that would lead to Akamai's inception.

In 1998, the group entered the esteemed annual MIT $50K Entrepreneurship Competition, where the company's business proposition was selected as one of six finalists among 100 entries. The distinction signaled that Internet content delivery had serious market potential. Akamai obtained an exclusive license to certain intellectual property from MIT, and development efforts began in the fall of 1998.

In late 1998 and early 1999, a group of experienced Internet business professionals began to join this founding team. Most notably, Paul Sagan who was a former President of Time Inc. New Media, a founder of Road Runner cable modem service and who helped launch NY 1 News, became chief operating officer and eventually president of Akamai Technologies. George Conrades, former chairman and chief executive officer of BBN Corp. and senior vice president of U.S. Operations for IBM, assumed the helm as chief executive officer a few months later.

Launching Commercial Service
Together, these computer scientists and experienced Internet professionals founded Akamai, a company dedicated to ending the "World Wide Wait" through intelligent Internet content delivery. The company launched commercial service in April 1999 and announced that one of the world's most trafficked Web properties, Yahoo!, was a charter customer

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Friday, May 16, 2008

Chilling stories of the chinese earthquake

Nearly every building in the tiny rural town of Wufu withstood the forceful earthquake that shook China on Monday. One major structure - the New Number Two Primary School - collapsed, killing some 300 children.Now grieving parents, many of whom dug through rubble with their hands in a frantic effort to save their children, are venting their anger at local officials who they claim knew the building was substandard.Jumbled mounds of concrete and brick are all that remain of the three-storey schoolhouse that caved in just moments before afternoon classes were to begin. Notebooks, backpacks, clothes and a tin lunch box litter the picked-over rubble.The scene is repeated in towns and cities across the quake-damaged section of Sichuan, where more than 50,000 people may have died, including hundreds of students crushed when their schools collapsed.

Millions of survivors left homeless or too terrified to go indoors faced their fourth night under tarpaulins, tents or nothing at all as workers patched roads and cleared debris to reach more outlying towns in the disaster zone.

"There are still bodies in the hills, and pits are being dug to bury them," said Zhao Xiaoli, a nurse in the ruined town of Hanwang. "There's no way to bring them down. It's too dangerous."

One couple with a baby told Hatton that at their house they had no food, no water and so they walked for two days to get to a refugee center. After watching the interview, bystanders gave precious milk to the couple's granddaughter before the family waded into the crowd hoping to find shelter.

At the crematorium, some grieving relatives were rushed through funeral rites by harried workers. Scores of bodies lay on concrete in a waiting area - outnumbering the handful of chapels usually used in funerals.

Thick black smoke streamed from the crematorium's pair of chimneys as families cleaned and dressed the dead in funeral clothes, including fresh socks and sneakers for children.

Fireworks were set off every few minutes and families burned incense, candles and spirit money. Such traditions meant to send the dead peacefully into the afterlife were once banned by the communist authorities but have revived in recent years with free-market reforms and rising prosperity. Burial, which likewise the government once tried to stamp out, has become common in the countryside, although still difficult for people in crowded cities.

In a sign of nervousness, 50 troops lined the road outside Luoshui. Five farmers watched them dig the burial pit, after performing brief funerary rites. Local police detained an Associated Press reporter and photographer who took photos of the scene, holding them in a government compound for 3½ hours before releasing them without explanation.

Today in Dujiangyan an eight months pregnant woman was pulled to safety after spending 50 hours trapped in rubble.In Yinxiu – one of the worst-hit towns – soldiers said only 2,300 people may have survived among the population of 9,000.

Chinese officials now plan a minute’s silence before each leg of the Olympic torch’s journey through the country ahead of this summer’s Beijing games.

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I signed up for PPP

yippeee. i've atlast got my blog approved by PPP. For those who dont know what i am writing about, PPP is PayPerPost. doesnt it sound interesting? you get paid for posting ppl, believe that?
Well let me tell you why i signed up for payperpost. payperpost is one easy way to make money.
i heard about PPP from one of my school mates, called ramanujam. we named him blogger boy, and his antiques online are now spreading like wildfire

How does it work?
it works like this. an advertiser asks u to write about them, and you can air your views about them. If what you write is approved by them then, Voila, you get paid..

Do you really get paid?
yes you really get paid. they pay you thro your paypal account. dont have a paypal account? sign up right away, its very easy and simple.

Why PPP?
PPP is one of the most famous websites to make money. online. I have a lot of spare time for the next few months and so i decided to sign up for it.

What to do with the money?
good question. if you earn money, then its your hard earned money and u have all the rights to use it. AFAIK, i'm going to buy a bike for myself and decided to earn as much possible and as fast as possible.


Friday, May 9, 2008

The Italian job

I saw this movie The Italian Job. starring Mark Wahlberg and Charlize theron. Mark you must be remembering from the Departed as the last man standing in the movie. in this film he plays Charlie the master mind behind a heist. The way they brought down (literally) the safe was seriously amazing. but it was just a precursor to the things to come. after pulling it off beautifully, one of their gang betrays them and takes the gold all for himself. the rest of the story is how they track him and get the gold back from him. a repeat of the safe bringing down incident takes place but this time they bring an entire armoured vehicle down. (to know what i am speaking of grab a packet of chips and watch the movie;)

though the techniques used were good, it was a sort of deja vu. a few things were predictable.

charlize theron was hot property wasted in the movie. jus to add to the glamour quotient. she plays an important part in the film as the one who cracks the safe.

edward norton, of Fight Club fame was a bit too crass here. a villain, i expect, need to be strong person. meaning a seemingly invincible fellow and not like a stupid crook who has money with him.
the rest of the crew deserve no special mention. a rating of 7 would do for the film

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Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The Importance Pradarshanam


First this must be a new word to all my overseas readers. So let me first explain what it is. Pradarshanam is the act of going around a Deity a specific number of times. I go to my neighbourhood Anjaneya temple almost everyday and come around the presiding deity 12 times. all these days, i did it without thinking why. I tend to become introspective, when i am really troubled or when i feel i am contended. i am currently feeling both these expressions while i write this.
today when i was doing this pradarshanam i decided to think y i was doing all this. firstly going to a temple makes one happy. it gives me a peace of mind and lets me relax a bit. secondly i do this pradarshanam thing as a routine. but y did i do so? parents asked me to ? yes. what was the reason behind it? i didnt know.
let me find out. firstly when u go in circles in a clockwise direction, it stimulates your chakras, which also spin in a clockwise direction, thus reinforcing their speed. this looked like one possible explanation to me. but what about those who dont believe in this chakra theory? there must be a possible explanation or a hidden meaning. here's one i found out - no matter what you do, even if u come back to the starting point, just keep doing it. sounds to me as a living example of the Gita.
it can also mean this - You start and end at the same point ( the alpha is the omega, the beginning and the end are the same) this sounds like too good to be true, and is one of the simplest truths man can comprehend. one can only experience it, not understand it. and this act of pradarshanam is the closest way one can realize this.
may be i am reading too much into too little or trying to justify a baseless superstition, but one thing i learnt from this effort was that every act of stupidity makes sense at one level or the other. What say ? :)

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Monday, May 5, 2008

E Commerce - Shopping Cart

E commerce

Electronic Commerce is nothing but the buying and selling of goods online, over the internet. it gives you the freedom of sitting at your home and buying and selling stuff like groceries, books, gadgets, you-name-it. there are many ways in which you can use e-commerce, that is there are many models involved. the prime ones being shopping cart model, storefront model, auction model, name your price model and reverse auction model. lets see about the shopping cart model

online store software

One of the ways in which online shopping can be done is through the Shopping Cart Software. Shopping cart software is used to assist people in making purchases online. This application typically provides a means of capturing the clients payment information or they may make use of credit cards.

Shopping cart software typically consists of two components namely the store front and the admin. store front is where you get to see the user end of the software and how users interact while the admin part is where the administrator has ful control over the software.

An Example of a Shopping Cart software : Ashop Commerce's shopping cart store software

Ashop Commerce has created a cutting a cutting edge shopping cart software. Before we go about the software, let me first tell you readers about what a typical online software cart should contain
1. easy to access
2. user friendly
3. customizable
4. contain intuitive features

Ashop commerce's award winning software contains it all. this has been built to provide services to small and medium business. Companies which need their current internet presence to turn into a profitable venture must use this software. the software is fully customizable and users have full control over its functionality. if you wanna test this software click here.

My Experience
i tested the shop front demo of the software, and i was impressed. It provides a 128 bit SSL security which is really secure. there is also a live sales chat plug in which one can use. It also gives a free news letter option, which can help retain users. it even provides for multi currency support. and helps in choosing our payment option. overall its a great software to use, and i would surely recommend this to companies who want to use it

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Saturday, May 3, 2008

Cafe Coffee day

My Favorite coffee hangout? yeah thats Cafe coffee day..

The tasty Devils Own, the sizziling brownie, the chocolate fudge, yummmm.. i just cant help control myself. befor i go into detail, lets get to know more of the company

A division of Amalgamated Bean Coffee Trading Company Ltd. (ABCTCL), it is commonly known as Coffee Day or CCD. It opened its first cafe in 1996 on Brigade Road Bangalore and today has the largest cafe retail chain in India - with 436 cafes in 69 cities. The cafe chain has had much success riding, and to some extent creating, the cafe culture wave that swept across metropolitan India following strong economic growth resulting in an increase in youth spending power.
Cafe Coffee Day sources coffee from 10000 acres (40 km²) of coffee estates, the 2nd largest in Asia, that is owned by a sister concern and from 11,000 small growers. It is one of India’s leading coffee exporters, with clients across the USA,Middle East Europe and Japan.
The strategy CCD has adapted is to place a cafe in every possible location where some business can be generated. So in Bangalore, in the main shopping district, there are 6 outlets in a 2 km radius. Another model which CCD has adapted is to be present in educational institutions and Corporate campuses either in the form of detailed Cafes or its economical model of CCD express. These innovative strategies have ensured that the competition is at bay and ensured CCD's dominance in the Indian market though many of its outlets are incurring losses.

they even opened India 's first ever cyber cafe. Its first Wi-Fi cafe was opened on Lavelle Road,Bangalore

its not just the coffee thats great there. they dont just sell coffee. they sell an experience.. an experience thats worth the money. truly

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