HUFFINGTON POST: Tips for Women Starting Businesses


bernice.ledbetter.facultyResearch has shown that strong network ties are critical for women entrepreneurs, especially when it comes to accessing capital, writes Pepperdine management professor Bernice Ledbetter, a contributor on Huffington Post. While women are making headway in securing financing, Pitchbook reports that women-founded companies represented 13 percent of Venture Capital deals through the first half of 2013. “Having strategic connections can help women navigate the complex investment environment and secure the financing they need to support their business,” she writes.

Dr. Ledbetter offers advice to women starting businesses. She highlights the importance of building a network, take advantage of numerous organizations dedicated to helping women succeed, and encourage women to find a mentor and then become one.

View Full Article at: Huffington Post


HUFFINGTON POST: Tips for Women to Lead in the Workforce


bernice.ledbetter.facultyMany men are willing to take risks, including asking for a promotion or a raise. Women, on the other hand, can be very pragmatic, considering the risks, but not the rewards. “Gender diversity is important in the workforce and armed with the right tools, it is a great time for women to aspire to leadership positions,” says Pepperdine University management professor Bernice Ledbetter, blogging for Huffington Post.

She outlines five things that women should do to move ahead professionally. “This advice will help women overcome the myriad invisible barriers that exist within the corporate world and political system,” she writes.

Women – A Force in the Los Angeles Workforce



Published originally in the Los Angeles Business Journal

Women have recovered all jobs lost since the 2008 economic recession, while men lag in regaining the 6 million jobs lost according to a report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics released in November. Today there are 67.6 million women in the workforce, up from 67.4 million in March 2008. By comparison, there are 69.2 million men working today, which still lags from the 70.9 million peak in June 2007. Based on the current data and workforce trends, women are poised to exert much greater workplace power in the years ahead.

At the same time women in certain industries are poised to climb to the c-suite.  Sectors that have weathered the financial crisis and are now experiencing significant growth are more often women-led industries. Areas in which women are regaining jobs are in the healthcare, education, hospitality, and retail industries. Meanwhile, in male-dominated sectors, like construction and manufacturing, men are struggling to recoup from the economic downturn altogether. Continue reading

Pepperdine’s Paglia Delivers Cautious Outlook at Los Angeles Economic Forecast Roundtable


LABJ_Economic-Forecast-Trends_2_10_14Associate Dean and finance professor John Paglia shared his insights on the business issues impacting the Los Angeles region as a member of a roundtable discussion on economic trends and forecasts. Hosted by the Los Angeles Business Journal and San Fernando Valley Business Journal on January 31st, the event included executives from Norton Rose Fullbright, CBRE, CTBC Bank USA, Bank of the West and Goodwill Southern California.

Asked to rank the economic outlook for the L.A. region on a 1 to 10 scale, Paglia said:

John Paglia, Ph.D.I feel we’re at about a six. We have had some very positive things happen. On the top line, if you look at GDP numbers, they’re positive, they’re relatively robust, unemployment is decreasing, and things look favorable. If you look at housing prices, they are increasing, and all those on the top line look very attractive. The market is near 6000 although I know it was off a little bit today. That’s a significant increase from where we saw the Dow Jones industrial average at 6500 back in 2009 but then as you look underneath the hood a little bit and look at some of the internals, there’s some cause for concern. If you look at the labor participation rate, that’s been declining through time, the number of people with bachelor’s degrees moving back home with their parents is increasing and probably at an all-time high. As we look to other things along this line there’s a tendency for some inconsistent messaging. Food stamp usage, for instance, reached the 48 million people mark — that’s about 15% of the workforce.

So despite what appears to be economically prosperous times on the top line, if you look underneath the hood a little bit it’s not quite so great. I think that this leads to the Fed. If we look to the Federal Reserve Bank, its balance sheet now is over $4 trillion. I think to a large degree they’ve helped keep this economy looking pretty good from a top line approach. So I think over the next twelve to 18 months a lot of this is really going to depend on the Fed involvement and what happens when they start tinkering with policy.

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2014 Faculty Perspective on Private Capital Market Trends

Dr. Craig Everett

Dr. Craig Everett

The past several quarters have been characterized by a slow, but consistent decrease in demand for growth capital. Fortunately, this trend appears to be turning around. This is particularly the case for small businesses which are poised for stronger growth in 2014. Medium-sized businesses, on the other hand, are likely to experience a similar year as 2013, with slow growth, if any, says Pepperdine University’s Dr. Craig Everett, an assistant professor of finance and director of ongoing research on small business financing through the Pepperdine Private Capital Markets Project.

This is unfortunate for the jobs situation, because medium-sized businesses are the engine for white-collar employment growth. One factor contributing to this situation is continued uncertainty over health care costs and bottom-line impacts of the Affordable Care Act.

We will continue to see increased consolidation in the middle-market with strong M&A deal flow, anticipates Everett. This will be driven in part by a continuation of the low cost of senior debt, which is borrowed money that a company must repay first if it goes out of business as well as the low cost of mezzanine debt.

Mezzanine debt is frequently associated with acquisitions and buyouts, where it may be used to prioritize new owners ahead of existing owners in case of bankruptcy.

These factors are resulting in business valuations continuing to be relatively high, which means 2014 will be a good year to sell a growing business, predicts Everett.