How Is FedBizOpps Useful in Business Development?

Anyone in the know in business development doesn’t get too excited if they happen to see something that looks exactly like what they are trying to bid on when searching FedBizOpps.gov (FBO). The Federal Government is supposed to post all unclassified opportunities over $25,000 on FBO. It is safe to say, however, that FBO is pretty much useless to you for bidding purposes because most of the opportunities that appear there have been discovered already by your competitors.

Your competitors may have been planning for these opportunities for a while, throughout the entire acquisition process from when the opportunity was created to the point of its culmination in a Request for Proposal (RFP) or Quote (RFQ). Rarely do you stand a chance of winning if you pick an opportunity off a website as public and popular as FBO late in the game, once a draft RFP, and especially the final RFP, has been issued. It has probably been “spoken for” or “wired” by some company that has taken its time to prepare.

Why would FBO be useful in business development, then?

It is actually useful for many purposes. Let’s take market research, for example, that every business developer should do periodically to figure out how the market is behaving, and if the company needs to adjust its course. You could use FBO to figure out which agencies buy what you sell. For example, you could search for “marketing communications.” Remember to use quotation marks if you use multiple keywords. See what contracts show up in the results. Make note of the contract titles and numbers that look especially interesting.

You will also see what companies are winning these contracts, and what companies may be issued sole source awards. Make a note of them, because these are your potential competitors or teammates. Look at the details about the contracts’ scope to zoom into the kinds of work you might be interested in bidding on.

FBO is a perfect place to learn about upcoming opportunities for educational and planning purposes and figure out what types of opportunities exist for a company like yours, and what are their key characteristics. You may not be using FBO for something to bid on, but the information on the solicitations is representative of the patterns of your potential customer agencies. You can see who buys what, how they do it, and how much and how frequently they buy.

Of course, you may indeed find some good opportunities in the early stages of procurement that don’t yet require proposals. All is not lost when the government issues a Request for Information, announces “Sources Sought,” or notifies of a “Presolicitation.” You may still have a fair shot at the opportunity if you start preparing right away.

On FBO, you can see what companies are registered to receive notifications about the RFPs and amendments. This will help you with your competitive analysis and teaming strategies. Some contracting officers may even require that your company register on FBO.

You may also use FBO for marketing yourself as an interested vendor to the government and partners.

Another great use of FBO is to find information about vendor outreach events, with its “Search Small Business Events” and “Vendor Collaboration” buttons.

As you can see, FBO has many uses – but all of them should be appropriate to your goals.

Amazon Rainforest – Deforestation

The main and most important reason why tropical rainforests need to be preserved is the fact that they’re enabling life on Earth. Not only are they absorbing carbon dioxide and creating oxygen in the process, they’re also regulating temperature and are producing important nutrients like nitrogen and phosphor and are protecting watersheds from erosion of salt as well. Tropical rainforests can be also quite helpful on field of pharmacology and new medication researching because between thousands of different plants that have their habitat here and perhaps they’re even hiding potential cure for menaces of the modern world like cancer and AIDS.

But what about their destruction, can this process be stopped? Between 1970 and now, Brazil lost more than 600,000 sq km (232 000 sq miles) of Amazon rainforest which is very disturbing information. Through this article main reasons for such deforestation will be presented and methods that could mean preservation of Amazon rainforest will be pointed out. First let’s point out the main reasons that are causing this high amount of deforestation.

Most important deforestation factor is clearing forest area for cattle pasture and it causes 60-70 % of total deforestation. Since cattle breeding is very profitable business and doesn’t require high maintenance expenditures and gives very solid profit, it’s very clear why such big percent of Amazon forest is being destroyed because of cattle pasture. Increasing number of cattle needs more area on which they can pasture and because of this reason forests are often being replaced by savannas and other coarse grasses.

Second great cause of deforestation is also connected with agriculture but this time with farms. Since most population in Brazil is still very much oriented on agriculture, large areas of forests are being cleared in order to leave more space to cultivable areas, where especially poor farmers are being stimulated by government politics to settle and work on these areas. Since farmers use fire in this process, whole procedure has its negative effect doubled, because not only forests areas are being destroyed but also large quantities of carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide are being released in atmosphere having negative impact on whole biosystem and polluting air we breathe.

Large growth of cultivable areas is also connected with advanced production of soybean because Brazilian scientists have discovered new sorts of soybean and soybean is very expensive and very appreciated on world market and Brazil has such rapid growth with soybean production that according to some predictions soon will go even past the USA which at this moment holds first place in soybean production. Although many people would think that logging is main cause for such huge deforestation that’s not true because it causes only 2-4 % of total deforestation. Tropical rainforests are presenting large source of expensive wood among which special place has precious ebony and that’s the reason why illegal logging is so much expanded and profitable business, namely because of high prices of this wood.

Just for example of that in September 2003, 17 people were arrested under incrimination that they destroyed 10 000 hectares of forest area and this is just small drop in the sea of illegal logging. Last factor that causes deforestation is infrastructure building, especially of roads and dams and it makes about 2-4 % of total deforestation.

Famous example of this politic is building of Trans-Amazonian Highway which had its purpose not only in connection between distant places but also in opening of new areas to farmers and easier exploiting of wooden riches. After this famous project was done, deforestation has gone to a whole new level and this presents a real example how building of infrastructure can cause complete ecological chaos. But can these factors be prevented or could they be at least slowed down until the level that could be more tolerable to environment?

There’s still hope but only under this conditions.

First of all, former forest areas should be rehabilitated which is not that difficult process if at least small part of former biosystem is saved. Rehabilitation also needs higher productivity of cultivable areas and intellectual approach to agriculture by using modern methods and by influencing on farmers and their ecological conscience which often brakes down the whole procedure. Number of protected forest areas should also be increased and for that strong and systematic politic is needed.

Laws should be very precise and very strict with huge punishments for its offenders, not only fines but also jail sentences for more severe lawbreaking. But the most important thing is to influence on ecological conscience of all people by trying to present them negative consequences of deforestation that could easily cause catastrophic effect to all life on Earth and result in even more expressed climate changes. Only fast intervention on all fields can have success, because humanity needs to find the right way while it still can. To make harmony between ecology and economy is very difficult task but by no means impossible.

Business Development Requires a Multitude of Skills

Business development is one of the functions that every company, from inception to exit, performs at one time or another. It’s also one of the most “unbounded” roles within a company. For some companies, business development means acquiring new customers. Others, it means raising capital. And, for yet another set of people, it means to build alliances and partnerships.

Whatever the term ultimately means to anyone, it is a function that clearly requires a multitude of skills. Let’s take for example, raising money. A business development person in a small startup company would be responsible for building relationships to raise venture capital and/or general financing for startup operations. Oftentimes, the reason this function falls under business development is because the business developer is building strategic partner relationships. Some of these strategic partners deem the relationship critical to grow new business opportunities. In that respect, the strategic partner will then invest money in return for an equity stake in the startup company.

In the case of building and managing partnerships, the business development team is often called Alliances. In this example, business development or Alliance is responsible for recruiting, managing, and supporting partner companies. In addition to this, the Alliances organization would also have a responsibility for driving a certain amount of revenue through the partners, as well. This alliance function essentially builds a core ecosystem around the host company. The ecosystem effectively allows the host company to be in more markets, capture certain geographic territories, or even drive more revenue than it could on its own.

Building joint ventures is also a form of business development activity. There are times when a company needs to work together on a specific business opportunity. The opportunity could be related to driving new business in a specific country or perhaps in a particular industry. The two companies would develop an operating agreement under which they will work together. Shared revenue and expenses, team alignment and sales targets are examples of agreements created as part of this joint venture relationship.

Driving sales is another function where business development is often categorized. This is especially true when a company is first starting off in business. Many small companies categorize their sales efforts as business development rather than sales. One of the reasons for this is because the territory is new or perhaps the product line is untested with customers. The business development group is responsible then for selling new business in an uncharted environment.

Corporate development is another function often interrelated with business development. In general, though, a corporate development function handles aspects of mergers and acquisitions for a company. Their role is to identify companies that have synergistic business models and would complement the host company. In many aspects, a corporate development officer for a company has similar skill sets and experience as all of the above organizational roles.

As one can ascertain, business development is a “catch-all” term that can encompass many different roles within an organization. That said, the skill set and experience for a business development executive is fairly broad. He/she must be versed in areas, such as building partnerships, strategy, technology, geographic markets, sales, and, of course, finance. In addition, understanding the specific industry in which the company operates is icing on the proverbial cake.

The business development executive is a key contributor to the success of a company. This individual, if used properly, can help create the very foundation on which a company operates.