Page 9 - Business Facts

Ikea uses an insane amount of wood every year—I couldn't believe just how much!

Ikea seems like the place to go for people looking for cheap furniture. The Swedish company owns and operates 349 stores in 43 countries and had total revenue of over $28.5 billion in 2013.

Such a large company, whose products are almost all partially made of wood, is bound to use quite a bit of it. Indeed, the retailer uses 1% of the world's entire commercial wood supply, which amounts to about 17.8 million cubic yards of lumber.

Ikea is very conscious of this and is doing a lot to become more environmentally friendly. The company has a long-term goal to have all of it's materials come from forests that have been sustainably managed and harvested.

Idea wants to have 50% of it's wood to be certified by the Forest Stewardship Council by 2018, and currently have 25% of their wood certified this way. They also participate in several forestry projects aimed at improving the company's environmental impact, such as Sow a Seed and WWF.

Whether you're a fan of Ikea's furniture or not, there's no denying that they're doing their best to be environmentally friendly and reduce their environmental impact.


The Acclaim, Activision and Accolade video game companies chose their names to be before Atari in phone books!

Accolade was a gaming company founded in 1984 by Alan Miller and Bob Whitehead, the same people who had previously started up the gaming company Activision.

Activision was the world’s first ever third party game developer. Miller and Whitehead chose the name Activision, because it came before Atari alphabetically and likewise they chose Accolade, because it came before Activision alphabetically.

Each was to make a statement of superiority over the rest; the whole “you want to be at the top of the list in the phonebook” idea. Later some other ex-Activision employees started up their own gaming company, Acclaim, named for, you guessed it: it being alphabetically ahead of Accolade.

Then, another group of ex-Activision employees said “hey, we can do it too!” and they started up Absolute Entertainment, which became the ultimate alphabetically first gaming company. So, the real question to ask is whose controller is bigger and better?


Millions of disposable chopsticks used in China are made in America! Find out why the Chinese have to import chopsticks

How many products that you use on a daily basis carry a “Made in China” label? Cameras, computers, mobile phones and many toys, do. But here is a surprise – a product that is so quintessentially Chinese like the chopstick, and are used in China by the millions every day, now carry the label “Made in U.S.A”!

In the south-eastern state of Georgia, a small company is producing chopsticks for shipment to China and other countries. “Right now we are making about two million pairs of chopsticks per day but we are increasing," says Jae Lee, president of Georgia Chopsticks.

China is apparently running short of wood, but wood is something the U.S. Town of Americus (where Georgia Chopsticks is located) has no shortage of. Sweet gum and poplars grow like weeds in central Georgia, and, as luck would have it, these trees make for the perfect chopsticks because their wood is pliable, straight and has a pleasant color. Georgia chopsticks, unlike their Chinese counterparts, do not have to be lightened with bleach or other chemicals, and that makes them even more attractive for health-conscious consumers.

When Georgia Chopsticks opened, they employed 57 people. Lee hopes to ramp up production and to hire more employees, as the area had a 12% unemployment rate in 2011.


Some awesome lists!

U.S. corporate giants like General Electric did not pay ANY taxes at all between 2008 and 2010! How do they get away with it?

According to a report by the non-partisan Public Campaign, thirty multi-million dollar U.S. Companies cleverly used a myriad of tax-dodging techniques and spent more money lobbying Congress than they paid in federal income taxes between 2008 and 2010! Collectively they spent about $400,000 every day, seven days a week during that three-year period, to lobby lawmakers and influence political elections.

These companies managed to make a profit of $164 billion despite a widespread economic instability that has swept the U.S since 2008. During that period they also received tax rebates totaling about $11 billion. Displaying no conscience, these companies lay off some of their employees and increased the salaries of their executives while spending about $476 million during the same period to lobby the U.S. Congress and another $22 million on federal campaigns.

A staggering twenty-nine of those companies paid no federal taxes at all during that time frame, even though the statutory federal corporate tax rate is 35 percent! The companies mentioned in the report include giants like General Electric, Verizon Communications, Wells Fargo, Mattel and Boeing.

According to the report, big corporations and their CEOs get special deals in Washington at the expense of poor and middle class Americans. Congress continually votes to give tax breaks to oil companies and hedge fund managers, cutting important programs that benefit the majority of Americans.


Some LEGO employees get LEGO people business cards!

This is a very creative way to get your brand out. Some senior LEGO staff get a minifig that looks like them to hand out instead of business cards. Check out the card on the right. Pretty creative no?



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