Monday, March 26, 2012

New Netflix Competitor from Comcast: Xfinity Streampix

Okay, I'm a little late in writing about this. I love my WSJ but sometimes I just don't get a chance to read it like I'd like! In those cases, I'll go back and look at the old issues that I missed. Well, in looking back I saw an interesting article in the February 22nd issue of the Wall Street Journal.

In case you are late like me and haven't heard, Netflix has new competition from Comcast. Comcast has opted to somewhat cannibalize it's own services (only partially, mind you), as a means of staying ahead of the game and ahead of the rising power of Netflix. It launched a new streaming subscription service called Xfinity Streampix.

Admittedly this service is not on par (yet) with Netflix. It provides old movies and old tv shows. Not old as in "classic" but old as in "not current in the last couple of years". Xfinity Streampix will cost Comcast subscribers $4.99 per month which is less than what Netflix costs on a monthly basis.

Ahh. As always, success brings in competition. Stay tuned for more...

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B of A to Let (a Few) Foreclosed Homeowners Stay

According to an article in Friday's Wall Street Journal, Bank of America is rolling out a new alternative to foreclosure to a select few. That alternative: The homeowner hands over the deed to the bank and the bank lets the homeowner stay in the house as a renter. The first "wave" will be up to 1,000 homeowners in the foreclosure process in Nevada and Arizona (two states with very high foreclosure and default rates) and New York.

That 1,000 may not seem like many but you have to start somewhere. Not all the homeowners will accept the offer. Some will likely pursue the short sale option or loan modification alternative, assuming either makes sense for them and B of A has been responsive.

I think this new option is tied to another Wall Street Journal article I read earlier in the week or the previous week which essentially celebrated the move of large investors into the housing purchase and rental market via the purchase of "packages" of properties from Fannie Mae. When there's demand, it's always amazing how another entity will do something creative - i.e., create a new product or service - to fulfill that demand.

Anyway, I think this is a great option for Bank of America to explore. And this, especially if the deed handover/home rental option proves successful, could lead the way for B of A to clear a lot of those failed Countrywide loans off their books faster.

If you are a skilled landlord and have owned/managed a number of rental homes, I recommend you identify and contact the cash-rich entities that are buying up foreclosed properties or considering doing so. They have cash and you don't. They need house rental management and you have it. It's a match made between Wall Street and Main Street.

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Monday, March 12, 2012

Atlanta Team Ivy Business Breakfast Networking Event

March Meeting
Small Business Access to Capital






Are you wondering what this year and the next few years portend for small businesses? Are you in the market for a business loan but aren't sure what that market looks like? Would you like to know what can be done to increase the likelihood of accessing the capital that is available? Well, come here to hear Bill Holt speak. Bill will give us his insights on accessing capital to grow and expand your small to mid-sized business. You asked. We answered. Come hear him speak!

Click here to register


"What does it take to access money in today's environment?"

Click here to register

Event details:
When: March 21st, 2012 7:30am - 9:00 am.
Where:  City Club of Atlanta (Buckhead)

3343 Peachtree Road
Suite 1850
Atlanta, GA 30326

(404) 442-2600
COST: $20 pre-registration, $25 after March 18th
(Parking is included).
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Sunday, March 11, 2012

Venture Debt and Economic Development Assistance

According to Dan Primack's Term Sheet, Virdia (whose name was changed from HCL CleanTech), "a Redwood City, Calif.-based developer of cellulosic sugars, has raised $20 million in new VC funding from existing backers Khosla Ventures, Burrill & Company and Tamar Ventures. The company also has secured $10 million in venture debt from Triple Point Capital and signed a $75 million  with the Mississippi Development Authority to build manufacturing plants in the state."

The interesting thing here is the venture debt from Triple Point Capital and the assistance from Mississippi to build manufacturing plants. Venture-backed firms and strong angel-backed firms can access debt even though they don't fit the typical debt profile for a bank. Any company that will make a large enough impact on job creation can access economic development funds from a number of different states, counties and cities, depending on the economic impact that company will provide. Investigate. Check first with your (or your targeted) state's economic development entity for a list or introduction to available resources.

Like what you read here? Sign up for Dan Primack's Term Sheet by going to:

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