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Pinsent Masons advises NTR group on €370 million refinancing

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has advised NTR on the €370 million refinancing of its 220MW onshore wind portfolio.

NTR plc is a leading renewable energy company based in Dublin and has transacted more than €3 billion of sustainable infrastructure investments in wind, solar, bioenergy, water treatment, energy storage and recycling over the past 15 years.

The transaction concerned the group’s NTR Wind 1 LP fund’s portfolio of twelve operational onshore windfarms across the United Kingdom and Ireland and saw the replacement of the individual project financing arrangements with new facilities totalling around €370 million, made available by five lenders.

The Pinsent Masons team acting on the transaction was led by Partner Gillian Frew and Senior Associate Michael Duffy, alongside a multi-discipline, multi-jurisdiction team.

Commenting on the deal Gillian Frew said “Reaching financial close on this transaction demonstrates robustness and resilience in the renewable energy sector during the pandemic and shows that well-structured deals can still be financed on flexible terms. We were delighted to support our long standing clients, NTR, through the process.”

5 Rules Of Money Management For Small Businesses

Individuals must know how to manage their money to become rich so you also need to know how to manage your business money to be successful.

Just like an individual, your business also needs to pay for the cost to survive. How to spend money effectively without getting caught in debt or going into debt?

Individuals must know how to manage their money to become rich so you also need to know how to manage your business money to be successful. With businesses, you will have to work with employees, suppliers, tax authorities. How to work with them, you always take advantage of the money you spend.

Here are 5 rules to help you manage money for your small business:

1. Minimise The Cost Of Life

If you are managing your own small business for the first time, the above principle is extremely important in the first few years. Calculate how much money you need to cover your monthly living and withdraw the right amount of income from your business. With the remaining profit, invest back into the company. Let that money serve growth.

It will be exciting to make money from a business, but many new business owners use it on expensive vacations or homes. Resist those impulses. Wait until the business has gone through a few years, then you can start taking those profits to enjoy yourself.

2. Do Not Hire Employee Early

In a fledgling business, the biggest expense, by far, is employee salaries. As the business gets busier and you seem to be overloaded, it’s time to hire a new employee right away. However, make sure it is essential.

Never hire staff until you need them. Always ask your current staff to work hard to make sure they work to the best of their ability.

3. Strategic Use “Jit”

JIT is an abbreviation of “Just In Time”. This is a strategy to reduce the cost of loans and inventory in all business forms.

For example, if you estimate you need to cover your expenses for next year, there’s no need to borrow the entire amount at once. Because if you do that, you’ll have to pay interest on the entire amount when you don’t use it up until the end of the year.

Instead, you will borrow that estimated amount in the first 2 months of the following year (except for the month of the new year holiday). Then borrowed it again for the next 3 months. Following this rule, you will reduce the total amount of interest payable to the bank. So that money will increase and you save a large amount of money after a long time.

4. Agreement With Supplier

When dealing with external contractors or suppliers, such as delivery services, food delivery, electricity, security services, do not hesitate to negotiate contract terms. Choosing a provider that allows you to pay after 30 days of receipt of service bills instead of paying immediately.

That grace period allows you to better manage your money and organise your bills in order of priority. Many peers always allow this but need to be willing to ask when they want to pay immediately.

Year: Do Not Pay Money To Wage Payments

State tax law requires business owners to deduct an amount in addition to employee salaries such as Social Insurance, Health Insurance, Union Funds and Unemployment Insurance for each payment period. Businesses will have a certain extension period before they have to submit this fund report. As a business owner, it’s important to keep those funds separate from other funds. Don’t use this money to invest or cover daily expenses.

Instead, put the money in a separate account that you cannot touch. This will help you avoid spending money that you don’t have to. It’s a good habit to keep your business free from violations at the end of every month. State fines will not tolerate such cases. Nowadays there are a number of maintenance planning training and maintenance planning courses were available online from that you can get more ideas for maintaining your business easily.

2020 Certificate of Excellence Logo

If you join Advisory Excellence you will be issued a 2020 Certificate of Excellence logo for your website and email signature. Founded in 2013, the Certificate of Excellence honours firms that deliver consistently great service. This designation is given to experts who have been recognised by Advisory Excellence over the past 12 months. Establishments earning the Certificate of Excellence are located all over the world and do outstanding work.

Advisory Excellence - 2020 Certificate of Excellence Logo

Advisory Excellence is fundraising for Get Kids Going!

Advisory Excellence is raising funds for Get Kids Going! on the JustGiving website and would appreciate our readers’ support. JustGiving is a global online social platform for giving. Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving – they’ll never sell them or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they’ll send your money directly to the charity. So it’s the most efficient way to donate – saving time and cutting costs.

Get Kids Going! is a national charity which gives disabled children and young people – up to the age of 26 yrs – the wonderful opportunity of participating in sport. We provide them with specially built sports’ wheelchairs so they can do: athletics, marathons, tennis, skiing, rugby, sailing, boccia, basketball, sledge hockey, table tennis, fencing, shooting, archery, powerlifting and many more sports. Get Kids Going! inspires British disabled youngsters to compete in sporting events, from start to Paralympic level, by also giving them sports grants to help with their; training, physiotherapy, travel, competition fees, design and development of sports’ equipment etc. With your help many can become world record holders and Paralympic champions!

Our aim is to give support to all our budding Paralympians in the build up to the 2020 Tokyo Summer Paralympics, the 2022 Beijing Winter Paralympics and many more such events. Like any aspiring athletes all our youngsters need long-term support, often over many years, to achieve their sporting dreams. Sadly, we are aware of cuts in funding for such youngsters from the government and other sources, and so many of our youngsters are forced to rely on friends and family for financial help. As you can imagine, this causes enormous burdens on many, already cash strapped, families and a constant worry as the cost of participating in their favourite sport is forever increasing.

There are hundreds of talented, disabled, youngsters who have the potential to participate in events throughout the UK and all over the world but receive either none or very little funding and are desperate to achieve their life-long sporting dreams. With your help, together we can turn their dreams into reality and help make them into sporting heroes!

Not only does Get Kids Going! focus on helping disabled young athletes but it also provides manual wheelchairs for children to use every day; at home, at school, and to enable them to play with their friends. These are our wonderful athletes of the future! We believe that all disabled children and young people should receive the right equipment to get them going!

We support children with all disabilities and from all backgrounds. We take pride in ensuring that any equipment which is out grown is recycled to other children, so our supporters’ valuable donations are never wasted. Many people who support Get Kids Going! feel a marvellous sense of achievement and satisfaction. They see that even the smallest donation makes an amazing difference! Get Kids Going! gives disabled children and young people the chance of a life time, freedom, and many wonderful opportunities that you and I take for granted. Opportunities they may never have without you and the support of Get Kids Going! No other charity in the UK focuses on helping disabled children and young people with sport in the same way.

The cost of a bespoke sports wheelchair is about £4,000. A lightweight manual wheelchair is around £3,000. All are designed individually, and perform just like a Formula 1 Racing Car!

The cost of a sports grant can be anything from £500 to £15,000 per year for each youngster.

In general there are over 200,000 disabled children and young people in Britain who need the help of Get Kids Going!

Help us turn their dreams into reality!

Commercial Arbitration in Zimbabwe

Adjudication, arbitration, conciliation and mediation are some of the alternative dispute resolution mechanisms in use in Zimbabwe. Of these, arbitration is the most prominent one. On the 13th of September 1996, Zimbabwe repealed its outdated Arbitration Act (Chapter 7:02) and replaced it with the Arbitration Act (Chapter 7:15). Through section 2 of the said Act, the country adopted with minor modifications, the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Model Law. The said Act applies to every arbitration agreement, whether made before, on or after the 13th of September 1996. It covers both domestic and international arbitration.

Matters that are not capable of determination by arbitration in Zimbabwe

In Zimbabwe, the following matters are not capable of determination by arbitration:

      (a) An agreement that is contrary to the public policy.
      (b) A dispute which in terms of any law, may not be determined by arbitration.
      (c) A criminal case.
      (d) A matrimonial cause or a matter relating to status, unless the High Court gives leave for it to be determined by arbitration.
      (e) A matter affecting the interests of a minor or an individual under a legal disability, unless the High Court gives leave for it to be determined by arbitration.
      (f) A matter concerning a consumer contract as defined in the Consumer Contracts Act (Chapter 8:03), unless the consumer has by separate agreement agreed thereto.

Arbitration in Zimbabwe

Since the introduction of the Arbitration Act (Chapter 7:15) the use of arbitration as an alternative dispute resolution mechanism has gained momentum. Most commercial contracts contain an arbitration clause that enables the parties to choose arbitration as their preferred method of resolving any existing or future dispute between them arising out of or in connection with the contract, including any question regarding its existence, validity or termination.

Most contracts nominate the Commercial Arbitration Centre (CAC) in Harare as the appointing authority in the event that the parties are unable to agree on an arbitrator. The CAC was founded in 1995 by Muchadeyi Masunda and Ian Donovan, the godfathers of arbitration in Zimbabwe. It was the first arbitration centre to be established in Zimbabwe. The second centre, Africa Institute of Mediation and Arbitration (AIMA) is relatively new. It was established by Justice Moses Chinhengo (retired) in 2013. Most of AIMA’s panellists are retired judges. The CAC’s panellists are mostly senior lawyers, retired judges and professionals within fields such as Construction, Engineering, Accounting and Banking.

Advantages of Arbitration

More and more businesses are resorting to arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism. This is because arbitration offers them the following advantages:

      (a) It helps them resolve their disputes in a less antagonistic manner, thereby enabling them to preserve their business relationships.
      (b) They are able to keep the dispute and its resolution away from the public, and are thus able to protect their secrets.
      (c) They are able to appoint or contribute towards the appointment of the arbitrator.
      (d) The flexible nature of the arbitral process makes it possible for them to structure the arbitral process the way they want.
      (e) It tends to be quicker and more cost effective than litigation.
      (f) The arbitral award is final.

Challenges of arbitration in Zimbabwe

Whilst the use of arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism in Zimbabwe continues to grow, the field faces various challenges. For example, there are hardly any resources on commercial arbitration in Zimbabwe. Moreover, there is virtually no training for arbitrators taking place in Zimbabwe. Although there are several Fellows or Members of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators in Zimbabwe, most of these received their training outside the country or by correspondence.

Finally, apart from a few articles, there are no publications on commercial arbitration in Zimbabwe. The one book written many years ago by Muchadeyi Masunda and Ian Donovan has been out of print for over a decade.

The Book Commercial Arbitration in Zimbabwe

In my forthcoming book entitled Commercial Arbitration ln Zimbabwe, I highlight the undesirability of the state of affairs described above, underscore the importance of having trained arbitrators, and call for the training of arbitrators.

The book will be of interest and benefit to arbitrators, lawyers, students of arbitration, judges, and t hose who deal with local and international contracts which include arbitration clauses.

Anyone wanting to know about commercial arbitration in Zimbabwe, the relationship between the Zimbabwean judiciary and the arbitral process, the attitude of the Zimbabwean Courts towards arbitration agreements, how arbitral awards are enforced in Zimbabwe and the circumstances under which arbitral awards might be set aside by the Courts should struggle no more as through the book they will have easy access to that information.

The formation of the African Arbitration Association in 2018 should encourage each African country to have readily available resources on the conduct of arbitration in their jurisdiction. This way, arbitration practitioners from different jurisdictions can share information and draw from each other’s experience with arbitration. The book Commercial Arbitration in Zimbabwe is aimed at doing exactly that for Zimbabwe.

Topics Covered by the book Commercial Arbitration in Zimbabwe

The book covers a wide range of topics, including:

  • The historical background of commercial arbitration in Zimbabwe,
  • Characteristics of arbitration,
  • A comparison of arbitration with litigation,
  • The advantages of arbitration,
  • The appointment of arbitrators,
  • The qualities and qualifications of arbitrators,
  • Types of arbitrators,
  • The difference between the seat of arbitration and the venue,
  • Principles of natural justice,
  • The arbitrator’s powers,
  • Interim measures,
  • Security for costs,
  • Termination of an arbitrator`s mandate,
  • Liability of arbitrators,
  • Preliminary meeting,
  • The hearing,
  • How to deal with a dilatory disputant,
  • The Zimbabwean judicial system,
  • The courts and arbitration,
  • The structure and types of arbitral awards,
  • The registration of awards,
  • The functus officio doctrine,
  • When an arbitral award may be set aside and the effect of setting aside an award,

It is hoped that this book will promote the use of arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism and shine a spotlight on commercial arbitration in Zimbabwe.

Davison Kanokanga (http://www.kanokangalawfirm.net/)

Is NOW the right time to expand your business Internationally?

Expanding your business Internationally is a monumental task but, if done right, can be a significant driver of growth. We are proud to say that we now have coverage in 190 countries, with a small team and no outside funding.

Invest in a scalable infrastructure

Build a platform that is designed to scale from day one. For example, we made sure that Advisory Excellence was set up with infrastructure where it was easy to add new countries, and track KPIs globally.

A focus on marketing channels that can scale, such as Google, Youtube, Pinterest and Linkedin, can also prove useful in building a strong foundation for future growth. Whatever your budget, these platforms allow you to test the waters as knowledge of your market increases. As campaign metrics demonstrate positive growth, your company can expand budgets to grow reach Internationally.

Think globally, act globally

Being in hypergrowth mode is exhilarating but there are plenty of opportunities to learn from mistakes. When you scale very quickly, there is no time to micromanage locally. Only tailor locally what has been proven to make a significant impact.

Build a small but mighty team

Crafting a small but mighty team is key to moving forward in a positive direction. Even if there are only a small number of individuals, a dynamic team can move mountains when the focus is right. Create a high passion and energetic team which is invested in the future of the business.

If you instil one motto in your team, it should be: fail fast, learn and improve. We love trying new ideas and encourage the whole team to continuously test, especially when it’s outside their comfort zone. The only requirement we set is to approach it methodically, to document the results and to share learnings with the team.

Stay community-focused

Nurture your brand ambassadors; your first and most loyal members or customers will be your strongest voices if they can be involved. We’ve been around since 2013 and have built a community that continuously stays engaged. Listen to your members or customers, speak with them every week and make changes based on your insights. As a result of listening to our members, we decided to start hosting events. There is nothing stronger than a real-life experience and it really makes us stand out from the crowd in a competitive market.

Getting more feedback from your audience can push your business to new heights. We collaborate with our members, so a lot of our content is member-generated.

Work smart

Automate time-consuming tasks. We believe we have a strong proposition for individuals around the world and (while there have been many lessons along the way!) expanding into new markets has been one of the most rewarding things we have done.