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Glossary

With over 300 terms, our business dictionary is designed to help you better understand the terms that you will come across daily while running your business or dealing with your accountant and your bank.

Accelerated payment

Accelerated payments reduce the borrower’s interest costs (the total fee paid to the lender for the loan). This can...

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Accounting Standards for Private Enterprises (ASPE)

The Accounting Standards for Private Enterprises (ASPE) are accounting...

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Accounts payable

Managing accounts payable is one of the most important financial responsibilities for any business...

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Accounts receivable

Accounts receivable refer to the money a company’s customers owe for goods or services they have received...

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Accrual cash accounting

Accrual- and cash-based accounting are two different methods that accountants use to prepare financial...

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Accrued expenses

Accrued expenses are those incurred for which there is no invoice or other documentation. They are classified...

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Acid-test ratio

The acid-test ratio compares a company’s “quick assets” (cash and accounts receivable) to its current liabilities...

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Administration expenses

Administration expenses are the costs of paying wages and salaries and providing benefits to non-sales personnel...

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Advisory board

An advisory board is a group of people chosen to give expert and unbiased advice to a business. Members arel...

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Amortization

Amortization expenses account for the cost of long-term assets (like computers and vehicles) over the lifetime of their...

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Amortization period

The amortization period is the length of time it takes a borrower to pay back the full amount of a loan principal plus ...

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Angel investor

An angel investor is a wealthy person who invests his or her own money in a company—usually a start-up...

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Artificial intelligence (AI)

If you run a business, you’ve almost certainly wondered if you should be trying to integrate artificial intelligence...

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Asset-backed securities

When investors invest in companies, they are issued a “security” to represent the money they have invested. The most...

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Asset-based lending

Asset-based lending occurs when a loan is granted primarily on the value of the assets the borrower offers as...

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Assets

Assets are the economic resources a business uses to increase sales, reduce costs or otherwise generate...

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Audited, accountant-reviewed and notice-to-reader financial statements

Audited, accountant-reviewed and notice-to-reader are three types of financial statements—documents that show...

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Average collection period (receivables turnover)

The average collection period is the average number of days it takes a business to collect and convert its accounts...

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Balance sheet

A balance sheet is one of the fundamental documents that make up a company’s financial statements, along with...

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Balloon payment loan

With a balloon payment loan, the final payment includes a large portion of the principal (the original amount...

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Bank debt

Bank debt is a long-term liability a business takes on by borrowing money from its bank. It appears under liabilities...

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Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy is a process governed by the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (BIA). It is initiated when a company that is unable...

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Barriers to trade

A barrier to trade is anything that makes it harder to trade goods and services across borders...

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Bill of lading

A bill of lading (BoL) is a legal document that describes what’s being shipped between a shipper and a logistics...

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Blended payment

Blended payments are a way of repaying a loan that sets equal monthly payments of principal and interest (blended)...

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Board of directors

A board of directors is a group of people who represent the interests of a company’s shareholders. It also...

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Bonded warehouse

A bonded warehouse is a warehouse operated by a private company in a foreign country under the regulatory...

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Borrower

A borrower is a person or business that receives money from a lender with the agreement to pay it back within a specified...

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Break-even point

The break-even point is when total costs are equal to total revenue. Below that point, you’re operating at a loss...

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Bridge capital

Bridge capital is temporary funding that helps a business cover its costs until it can get permanent capital from equity...

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Business accelerator

A business accelerator is a program that gives developing companies access to mentorship, investors and other...

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Business bank account

Operating a business entails managing a number of different types of transactions on a regular basis, including...

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Business incubator

Business incubators work with early-stage companies to get them to move beyond their embryonic phase...

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Business plan

Good business plans are based on real knowledge of the solutions customers want and how they’ll use them. They...

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Canada-Europe Trade Agreement (CETA)

The Canada-Europe Trade Agreement (CETA) is Canada’s most comprehensive free trade agreement. It was...

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Capital cost allowance (CCA)

Capital cost allowance (CCA) is the amount of amortization expense that the government will allow a company...

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Capital structure

Capital structure is the mix of debt and equity on a company’s balance sheet. It shows how much of a company...

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Cash

Cash is the amount of actual money a business has at its disposal. It is classified on the balance sheet as a current...

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Cash flow

Cash flow measures how much cash a company takes in versus how much it expends. More cash coming in than...

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Cash flow statement

The cash flow statement records where a company’s money is coming from and where it’s going over a specific...

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Cash position

A cash position is the amount of cash that a company has on its books at a specific point in time...

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Change management

Change management is a way to move an organization to a new state of operating to better meet demands...

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Collateral

Collateral is an asset of value that a borrower pledges as a guarantee that a loan will be repaid.

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Commercial letter of credit

 A commercial letter of credit (CLC) is a bank-issued document that ensures a supplier to a company gets paid...

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Commercial mortgage

Owning your place of business can give you more freedom to shape and control your operations and let you build...

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Commodities

A commodity is any good or service that is interchangeable with another good or service of the same type...

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Common shares

Common shares are issued to business owners and other investors as proof of the money they have paid...

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Competitive advantage

A competitive advantage is anything that gives a company an edge over its competitors, helping it attract more...

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Competitive forces

Competitive forces are the factors and variables that threaten a company’s profitability and prevent its growth. They...

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Content Marketing

Content marketing is an online marketing strategy that helps companies attract and engage customers by publishing...

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Content syndication

With content syndication, companies post or promote their own blogs, articles, videos and other online content...

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Contract employment

Contract employment involves hiring a person for a specific job under particular terms for a fixed period of...

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Contributed surplus

Contributed surplus is the accounting term used whenever shares are sold at a price above their stated par value...

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Controlling interest

A shareholder has controlling interest in a business when he or she owns more than 50% of the company’s voting...

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Conversion rate

Conversion rate is the percentage of visitors to a company’s website who take a desired action. For example, the...

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Convertible debt

Convertible debt (also called convertible notes) is a form of financing that is often used by high-growth early-stage...

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Copyright

In general, copyright means the sole right to produce or reproduce a work or a substantial part of it in any form. It...

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Corporate governance

Corporate governance is the practice of ensuring a corporation conducts itself accountably, fairly and openly in all...

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Corporate social responsibility

In the business world, CSR is often associated with sustainability, and environmental, social and governance (ESG). All three...

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Corporation

A corporation is a legally established entity that can enter into contracts, own assets and incur debt, as well as...

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Cost advantage

A company has a cost advantage when it can produce a product or provide a service at a lower cost than its...

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Cost of capital

A company’s cost of capital is the cost of all its debt (borrowed money) plus the cost of all its equity (common...

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Cost of goods sold (COGS)

Cost of goods sold (COGS) is the direct cost of making a company’s products. It is an important line on your...

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Cost of sales

Cost of sales (COS) indicates how much a retail or wholesale business spends on the products it purchases from...

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Covenants

When giving out a business loan, a lender will often ask a borrower to respect certain conditions that go beyond...

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Cover letter

The cover letter introduces a company’s financial statements and is written by the business’s accountants. It...

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Credit card debt

Credit card debt is money a company owes for purchases made by credit card. It appears under liabilities on the...

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Credit insurance

Credit insurance guarantees a lender will be repaid if a borrower is unable to pay his or her debt due to, for example...

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Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding usually entails a private company asking large numbers of people for small contributions. This differs...

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Currency hedging

Currency hedging helps businesses protect themselves against changing currency exchange rates (the rates that...

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Current assets

Current assets (also called short-term assets) are assets a business uses, replaces and/or converts to cash within..

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Current liabilities

Current liabilities (also called short-term liabilities) are debts a company must pay within a normal operating cycle...

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Current portion of long-term debt

The current portion of long-term debt (CPLTD) is the amount of unpaid principal from long-term debt that has accrued...

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Current ratio

Current ratio compares a company’s current assets to its current liabilities. It is one of six main calculations...

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Customs

Customs authorities (agencies) control the flow of goods in and out of their respective countries. These goods can...

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Customs Union

A customs union is an agreement between two or more countries to remove trade barriers and lower or eliminate...

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Debenture

A debenture is a type of long-term business debt not secured by any collateral. It is a funding option for companies...

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Debt service coverage ratio

The debt service coverage ratio (DSCR) is a key measure of a company’s ability to repay its loans, take on new...

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Debt-to-equity ratio

The debt-to-equity ratio shows how much of a company is owned by creditors (people it has borrowed money...

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Debt-to-total assets ratio

The debt-to-total-assets ratio shows how much of a business is owned by creditors (people it has borrowed money...

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Default

The first two are indicators of default. If the third is true, the lender may take steps to reduce losses by...

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Demand loan

A demand loan is a loan that a lender can require to be repaid in full at any time. This condition is understood by...

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Depreciation

angible assets, such as buildings, equipment, vehicles and so on, are purchased in large lump sums. The value...

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Developed country

A developed country—also called an industrialized country—has a mature and sophisticated economy, usually...

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Developing country

A developing country—also called a less developed country or emerging market—has a lower...

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Differentiation

Differentiation occurs when a company, product or service stands out from the competition by meeting a unique...

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Digital marketing

Digital marketing is marketing that uses the Internet to reach customers and learn about them...

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Direct costs

Direct costs are the expenses a business incurs to make a product or deliver a service, or when it buys a wholesale...

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Direct marketing

Direct marketing is any marketing activity that communicates directly with a potential customer through mail, emails...

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Diversification

Diversification is a strategy companies and investors use to ensure they are not dependent on a single source of income...

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Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI)

Diversity, equity and inclusion are three linked principles that aim to ensure all people—including those from historically...

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Dividend payout ratio

The dividend payout ratio shows how much of a company’s earnings after tax (EAT) are paid to shareholders...

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Dividends

Companies pay dividends to shareholders in return for using their capital. Dividends are paid out of the company’s...

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Duty

A duty is an import fee (tariff) charged on goods entering a country, as specified in the country's tariff schedule...

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Early-stage investing

Early-stage investing funds the first three stages of a company’s development. It is divided into three distinct funding...

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Earnings after tax (EAT)

Earnings after tax (EAT) is the measure of a company’s net profitability. It is calculated by subtracting all expenses...

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Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT)

Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) indicate how effectively a company generates earnings over a specific...

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Earnings before tax (EBT)

Earnings before tax (EBT) measures a company’s profitability before income taxes are factored. It is the amount...

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Earnings per common share

Earnings per common share (EPS) is a measure of profitability that shows how much of a company’s profit...

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EBITDA

EBITDA is short for earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. It is one of the most widely used...

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E-commerce

E-commerce (electronic commerce) is the process of buying, selling or exchanging products and services...

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Economic environment

The term economic environment refers to all the external economic factors that influence buying habits of consumers...

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Economic union

An economic union is an agreement between two or more nations to allow goods, services, money and workers to...

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Efficiency, effectiveness and flexibility

The terms “efficiency,” “effectiveness” and “flexibility” are used to describe the way a company operates in its...

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Emerging markets

An emerging market (sometimes also called a developing economy) is a country with a fast-growing economy. It has...

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Employee buyout

An employee buyout occurs when employees purchase the company they work for. To do so, they usually take on a...

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Employee coaching

Employee coaching for performance happens when a manager helps an employee achieve his or her performance...

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Entrepreneur

An entrepreneur is someone who starts or owns a business. Whether it’s in farming, retail, manufacturing...

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Enterprise resource planning software

Companies use enterprise resource planning (ERP) software to manage the various aspects of their operations...

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Equipment

Equipment is a tangible long-term asset that benefits a business over several years of use. Computers, trucks and...

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Equity

Discover what equity means, where to find it on a balance sheet and how to...

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Equity dilution

Equity dilution occurs when a company issues new shares to investors and when holders of stock options exercise...

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Equity financing

When companies sell shares to investors to raise capital, it is called equity financing. The benefit of equity financing...

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Exchange rate

An exchange rate indicates how much it costs to buy units of one currency using a different currency. It also shows...

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Exit

An exit occurs when an investor sells part or all of his or her ownership. In a healthy or growing company, an investor...

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Export plan

An export plan outlines how a company will establish or grow its business internationally, and usually identifies...

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Exports / Exporting

Selling goods and services to buyers in another country is called exporting. To ensure they follow all appropriate laws...

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Financial statements

Financial statements are a key tool for running your business. They’re a snapshot of your company’s finances...

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Fiscal year end

The fiscal year end is the date on which a company finishes a 12-month business cycle. Most companies’ fiscal years...

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Fixed costs

A fixed cost is an expense that does not change when sales or production volumes increase...

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Fixed-rate (term) loan

In a fixed-rate loan (also called a term loan), the interest rate stays the same for the loan’s entire term. For example...

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Floating-rate loan

In a floating-rate loan (also called a variable-rate loan), the interest rate varies over the term of the loan...

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Foreign market

Foreign markets are any markets outside of a company’s own country...

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Foreign sales agent

A foreign sales agent represents a business in a market outside of its home country (i.e., a foreign market)...

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Franchise

With a franchise, a company licences its processes, intellectual property (e.g., trademarks), trade secrets...

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Free cash flow

Free cash flow is a way to measure the amount of cash a business generates in a specific period.

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Free on board (FOB)

Free on board (FOB), also referred to as freight on board, is a commercial shipping term used in overseas...

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Free Trade Agreement (FTA)

A free trade agreement (FTA) is a treaty between two or more countries to facilitate trade and eliminate...

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Free trade zone

A free trade zone is any location where goods can be shipped, handled, manufactured, reconfigured...

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Freight bill

A freight bill, like any other invoice, informs you of what your business owes the logistics company for...

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General expenses

General expenses are the costs a business incurs as part of its daily operations. They can be found in the selling...

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General partnership

In Canada, two or more people can start a business as a general partnership. It is one of the three most common...

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Global business

A global business is a company that operates facilities (such as factories and distribution centres) in many countries...

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Global strategy

A global strategy is a plan to help a company grow from an international business (which sells products or...

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Global supply chain

A global supply chain covers all the steps involved in manufacturing and delivering a product or service when...

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Global value chain

Global value chain refers to five interrelated activities, taking place in more than one country, that...

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Globalization

Globalization is a process of increasing social and economic integration among countries around the world...

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Goods and Services Tax (GST) / Harmonized Sales Tax (HST)

The GST/HST is a sales tax on supplies of most goods and services in Canada, as well as many supplies...

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Goodwill

Goodwill refers to the value a company gets from its brand, customer base and reputation associated...

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Gross domestic product

The gross domestic product is the standard measure of economic output. It represents the monetary value of all final goods and services made...

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Gross margin

Gross margin is one of the most important indicators of a company’s financial performance. It’s the portion of business...

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Gross profit margin

The gross profit margin tells you what your business made after paying for the direct cost of doing business...

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Guerrilla marketing

Guerrilla marketing refers to unconventional approaches to promote products or services. Its purpose...

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HACCP certification

Designed for use in all segments of the food industry, it ensures that hazards and critical points in food preparation...

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Hedging

Companies use hedging to minimize the impact of potentially negative financial events on their business...

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HS Code

HS codes are developed by the World Customs Organization (WCO). HS stands for Harmonized System...

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Import

An import is a good, product or service brought into a country from another country...

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Inbound marketing

Inbound marketing is a marketing strategy designed to generate interest in a company’s products or services...

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Income statement

An income statement is a key financial document for your business. It shows what your company earns...

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Income tax

Governments collect income tax on the profit earned by businesses in their territory—whether those businesses...

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Indirect costs

Indirect costs are the costs of going to market with a product or service that cannot be directly traced to the...

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Industrial design

Industrial designs are about how things look. Industrial design registrations protect a new or original...

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Information technology

Information technology (IT) refers to a company’s networks, hardware, software and data storage and...

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Inflation

Inflation can have a significant impact on the profitability of your business. It's a very good idea to learn how...

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Initial public offering (IPO)

An initial public offering (IPO) refers to the first time a company sells shares publicly. It is a form of equity...

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Insolvent

A business is insolvent when it has both a negative debt service coverage ratio—meaning it can’t make its...

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Intellectual property

Intellectual property (IP) covers products, artistic or literary works, inventions, logos and other things...

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Interest

Interest is the fee a business pays a lender (creditor) to borrow money. Interest payments are usually based on...

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Interest-only loan

With an interest-only loan, the borrower’s regular payments include only interest, not the principal amount of the...

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International business

An international business is one that sells products or services in other countries but operates facilities

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International certification standards

An international certification standard outlines the requirements and specifications a product, process or...

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International commercial terms

International commercial terms (Incoterms) are rules and standards for commercial transactions published...

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International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS)

International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) are the rules, standards and procedures accountants use...

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International market

An international market is any market outside a company’s home country—which is its domestic market. For...

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International trade

International trade is the exchange of goods or services between countries. Free trade agreements facilitate...

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International trade show

An international trade show is an event where companies from different countries showcase and demonstrate...

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Inventory

Inventory includes finished units of a product being held for sale, as well as unfinished works in process...

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Inventory management

Inventory management is the practice companies follow to ensure they have enough raw material, parts...

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Inventory turnover (number of days in inventory)

Inventory turnover shows how many times per year a company converts its inventory into sales. It is one of six...

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Investments

A company’s balance sheet may show funds it has invested in other companies. Investments appear on a...

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ISO 9001

ISO 9001 is an international standard that sets out the requirements for a quality management ...

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Joint venture

A joint venture is a business entity created by two or more firms throung an arrangement that typically includes...

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Kaizen

The Japanese word “kaizen” means “continuous improvement” and refers to a structured process for...

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Kanban

Kanban is a tool and scheduling system for managing interdependent manufacturing processes. Invented...

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Key success factors

Key success factors (also known as competitive emphasis or strategic posture) state the important elements required...

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Labour expenses

While all companies pay for labour (in the form of the wages they pay to people who work for them), labour...

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Labour productivity

Labour productivity is the value a business adds in goods, services or both and is calculated by the...

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Land and buildings

Land and buildings are tangible, long-term assets companies use and benefit from over time. They are...

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Late-stage investing

Late-stage investing supports companies that have moved beyond the start-up phase of development...

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Leadership

Leadership is the ability to clearly define a vision for your business and to motivate people to achieve that...

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Lean manufacturing

Lean manufacturing is a systematized approach to production that helps companies manufacture the most goods...

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Lender

A lender gives money to a borrower with the agreement that it will be paid back within a certain time...

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Lending agreement

A lending agreement (loan agreement) is a formal contract between a lender and a borrower...

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Letter of guarantee

A letter of guarantee is a document issued by your bank that ensures your supplier gets paid for the goods or services...

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Leverage

Leverage is the amount of debt a company has in its mix of debt and equity (its capital structure). A company...

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Leveraged buyout (LBO)

A leveraged buyout (LBO) occurs when the buyer of a company takes on a significant amount of debt as part...

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Liabilities

Liabilities are the legal debts a company owes to third-party creditors. They can include accounts payable...

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Limited partnership

A limited partnership is a form of general partnership, which is one of three ways of organizing a business...

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Line of credit

A line of credit is convenient for bridging gaps between the points when accounts payable are settled and accounts...

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Liquidity

Liquidity is a company’s ability to convert assets to cash or acquire cash—through a loan or money in the...

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Loan

A loan is a sum of money borrowed by a company with the agreement to pay the lender back within a...

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Loan acceptance

Loan acceptance occurs when a borrower accepts the terms and conditions of a loan in writing. The details...

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Loan authorization

Loan authorization occurs when a lending institution completes its “due diligence” (comprehensive...

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Loan maturity date

Loan maturity date refers to the date on which a borrower’s final loan payment is due...

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Loan-to-value ratio

The loan-to-value ratio (LTV) determines the maximum amount of a secured loan based on the market...

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Local culture

Local culture is the set of behaviours, beliefs and customs that exist in a country—everything from how...

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Logistics

AS one component of supply chain management, logistics is the process of coordinating and managing the flow of material goods as they make...

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Long-term assets (fixed assets)

Long-term assets (also called fixed or capital assets) are those a business can expect to use, replace and/or...

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Long-term liabilities (long-term debts)

Long-term liabilities, also called long-term debts, are debts a company owes third-party creditors that are...

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Managerial preferences

Managerial preferences are the likes, dislikes, beliefs and perceptions that influence a manager’s contributions...

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Market capitalization

Market capitalization refers to the total value of a publicly traded company’s outstanding common...

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Market entry

Market entry includes all the activities involved in bringing a product or service to a new market—whether...

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Market entry strategy

A market entry strategy is a company’s plan for delivering goods or services to a new market (a new country...

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Marketing mix

A company’s marketing mix is the combination of products, pricing, places and promotions it uses to differentiate...

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Marketing plan

A company’s marketing plan outlines its intended marketing and advertising activities for a specific period...

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Market research

Market research is information about customers, competitors and emerging trends that helps companies...

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Mergers and acquisitions (M&A)

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) combine two business entities into one. A merger occurs when the two...

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Mezzanine financing

Mezzanine financing is a business loan that offers repayment terms adapted to a company’s cash flows. It is a...

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Most favoured nation

The most favoured nation (MFN) principle is based on the idea that countries should treat all their trade partners...

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Multinational corporation

A multinational corporation is a company that does business in a select few countries around the world and operates...

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National Treatment

National treatment is a principle that says countries should treat imported goods, services and intellectual...

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Net profit margin ratio

The net profit margin ratio shows the percentage of sales revenue a company keeps after covering all of...

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Net revenue

Net revenue is the revenue a company earns in a given period after any purchaser discounts or allowances...

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Notes payable

Notes payable are long-term liabilities that indicate the money a company owes its financiers—banks...

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Notes to financial statements

Notes to the financial statements disclose the detailed assumptions made by accountants when preparing...

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Offer advantage

A company has an offer advantage when its product or service stands out from the competition by meeting...

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One-time expenses/revenues

One-time expenses or revenues arise from non-operating activities, that is, those outside a company’s usual...

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Online marketing

Online marketing (also called Internet marketing or web marketing) is marketing and advertising on the...

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Operating activities/non-operating activities

Operating activities are all the things a company does to bring its products and services to market on an...

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Operating expenses (selling, general & administrative expenses)

Operating expenses, also known as selling, general and administrative expenses (SG&A), are the fixed costs...

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Operating profit margin

The operating profit is the difference between the revenues of a business and its costs and expenses, excluding...

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Operations

Operations refers to all the tasks a company performs to turn raw materials into finished goods or services...

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Opportunity cost

Opportunity cost (also known as “alternative cost,”) is the difference between a project’s cost estimate...

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Organizational behaviour

Organizational behaviour refers to the ways people communicate and work together to accomplish the...

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Organizational culture

Organizational culture is generally understood as all of a company’s beliefs, values and attitudes, and how...

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Overhead

Overhead is a general term describing indirect costs—i.e., all costs not directly related to manufacturing...

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Pari-passu

When several lenders jointly finance the same assets, this is referred to as co-lending. A co-lending...

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Par value of shares

Par value is the value of a single common share as set by a corporation’s charter. It is not typically related...

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Patents

Patent protection applies in the country or region that issues the patent. In Canada, a patent lasts for 20 years...

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Patient capital

Patient capital is money a small or medium-sized private business raises. Its name refers to its lenient...

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Pay per click

With pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, companies are charged for online ad space only when users click on their ads...

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Payables turnover

Payables turnover shows how many times a year a company pays its suppliers. It is one of six main calculations...

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PDCA

The plan, do, check, act (PDCA) methodology is one of the main tools used by professionals to test improvements and...

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Performance appraisal

Performance appraisal is a process for evaluating and documenting how well an employee is carrying out his...

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Performance management

Performance management is a process of continuing, in-person dialogue between an employee and a manager...

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Personal loan

A personal loan (also known as a consumer loan) describes any situation in which an individual borrows money...

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Point of sale (POS)

Point of sale systems help businesses conduct transactions with their customers, primarily for...

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Preferred shares

Preferred shares are issued to business owners and other investors as proof of the money they have paid...

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Pre-paid expenses

Pre-paid expenses are intangible assets a company has already paid for and expects to benefit from in the short...

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Price-earnings ratio (P/E multiple)

The price-to-earnings ratio (also called PE multiple or P/E ratio) is a financial tool that investors on financial...

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Pricing decisions

Pricing decisions are the choices businesses make when setting prices for their products or services...

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Prime interest rate

The prime interest rate is used as a reference rate by financial institutions to set the variable interest rate for...

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Principal

Principal is the amount of money a company borrows when it takes a loan. This amount is recorded on a...

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Principal + Interest payments

In a principal + interest loan, the principal (original amount borrowed) is divided into equal monthly amounts...

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Private company

A private company is a business with private ownership. Typically, private companies have one or a small number...

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Procurement

Procurement is the activity of finding and acquiring goods and services. Its aim is to ensure a company makes...

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Product adaptation

Product adaptation is the process of changing a product to meet the needs of customers in a market other than...

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Promissory note

promissory note is a written promise to pay a sum of money, to a specified individual or organization, at a...

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Public company

A public company is a company whose shares trade on a stock exchange. Typically, public companies have sold...

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Purchase discounts and allowances

Businesses use discounts and allowances to encourage customers to buy from them or to pay an outstanding bill...

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QR code

QR codes are an inexpensive, efficient and effective customer engagement tool. By simply pointing their...

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Quick assets

Quick assets include cash on hand or current assets like accounts receivable that can be converted to cash...

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Ratio analysis

Business owners, managers and financiers use ratio analysis to understand how effectively a business is...

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Raw material expenses

Raw material expenses refer to the cost of the components that go into a final manufactured product. They...

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Retailer

A retailer is a business that finds, buys and gathers products or services from multiple suppliers and sells them...

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Retained earnings

Retained earnings are the amount of profit a company has left over after paying all its direct costs...

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Return on common equity ratio

The return on common equity ratio measures how much money common shareholders receive from a company...

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Return on investment (ROI)

Return on investment (ROI) is the broadest measure of profitability used by shareholders to gauge how efficiently...

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Return on shareholders’ equity ratio

The return on shareholders’ equity ratio shows how much money is returned to the owners as a percentage of...

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Return on total assets ratio

The return on total assets ratio is obtained by dividing a company’s earnings after tax by its total assets. This...

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Revenue

Revenue is a dollar figure that indicates how much money a company has earned by selling its products and...

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Reward and recognition

Companies use rewards and recognition to motivate employees and demonstrate that they are appreciated...

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Rules of origin

Rules of origin are laws, regulations and procedures that identify where an imported product originally came...

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Search engine

A search engine is a software program that helps people find the information they are looking for online using...

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Search engine optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the practice of using keywords and other techniques to ensure a company’s...

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Seasonal payment

A seasonal payment (seasonal loan) is a loan that is repaid in keeping with a company’s seasonal cash flow...

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Secured loan

In a secured loan, the lender has a legal claim against a borrower’s assets. If the borrower defaults, the lender...

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Securitization

Securitization is the process used to create asset-backed securities (ABS). It takes the illiquid assets...

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Seed capital

Seed capital is the initial amount of money an entrepreneur uses to start a business. Often, this money comes...

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Segmentation

Segmentation is the process of dividing a company’s target market into groups of potential customers with...

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Self-employed worker

A self-employed worker is an individual hired by a company to perform a specific service. According to the...

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Selling expenses

Selling expenses are the costs associated with distributing, marketing and selling a product or service. They are...

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Semi-variable costs

Semi-variable costs are expenses that include a mixture of fixed and variable costs.

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Senior debt

Senior debts are loans secured by collateral (assets) that must be paid off before any other debts when a...

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Setting objectives

Setting objectives is important. Objectives communicate to employees what is a priority and what is expected of them. ...

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Share capital

The term “share capital” refers to the amount of money the owners of a company have invested in the business...

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Shareholder

A shareholder is a person or institution that has invested money in a corporation in exchange for a “share”...

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Shareholder injections/redemptions

A shareholder injection occurs any time a company’s existing shareholders put cash into the business. In return...

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Shareholders' equity

Shareholders’ equity is the amount that the owners of a company have invested in their business. This includes...

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Shares authorized, issued and outstanding

he term “authorized, issued and outstanding” refers to shares in a company that have been sold publicly...

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Short selling

Short selling is a strategy used by stock market traders to make a profit on shares they expect will lose value...

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Six Sigma

The Six Sigma program was created to help companies continuously improve the quality of their products and...

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SKUs (stock keeping units)

A stock keeping unit, also known as a SKU (pronounced "skew"), is an internal identification code for a...

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SMART objectives

SMART is an acronym that defines important criteria for setting ideal goals and objectives to manage your staff...

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Social entrepreneur

A social entrepreneur is a businessperson whose goal is to create long-term social or environmental value...

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Social media marketing

Social media marketing is the use of social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, X, Instagram...

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Sole proprietorship

A sole proprietorship is a business with a single owner who is solely responsible for all liabilities. In the eyes...

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Standard operating procedures

A standard operating procedure is a step-by-step set of instructions that communicate to employees the...

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Start-up

start-up is a business in the earliest stages of getting established. Companies may stay in start-up mode for as...

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Statement of retained earnings

The statement of retained earning shows the accumulated profit of a company after dividend are paid...

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Statement of work

A statement of work (SoW) is a document that describes the products or services one party will provide another...

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Stepped payment

With a stepped-payment loan, a borrower’s monthly payments start low and increase gradually over time...

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Strategic goals

Strategic goals are the specific financial and non-financial objectives and results a company aims to achieve...

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Strategic plan

A strategic plan is a document that summarizes how a company plans to operate and grow over the next three to...

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Strategic planning

Strategic planning is a process that helps a company decide what market opportunities to pursue and how to do...

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Strategic scope

Strategic scope refers to the products and services a company plans to offer over a specific period, and...

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Subordinate financing

Subordinated financing (junior debt) is a loan secured by collateral (assets) that are to be paid if a company goes...

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Subsidiary

A subsidiary is a legal entity controlled by another legal entity. Subsidiaries are often used to facilitate...

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Succession planning

Succession planning is the process of preparing successors for key roles so disruption is minimized during leadership changes.

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Supply chain management

Supply chain management refers to the ways a company controls all the steps involved in manufacturing...

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Sustainability

Sustainability is a framework for business success that balances economic growth with social well-being and...

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SWOT analysis

A SWOT analysis breaks down a company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) to inform...

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Syndicated loan

A syndicated loan is a substantial loan provided to a large borrower ($1 million or more) by several lenders together...

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Tangible and intangible assets

Assets can be tangible or intangible. An intangible asset is a non-monetary asset that cannot be seen or...

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Target market

A company’s target market is the set of customers it chooses to serve out of all the possible customers it could...

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Tariffs

A tariff is a fee on goods and services being imported into a country. It is usually imposed and collected by a...

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Taxes payable

Taxes payable are the amount of money a company owes in federal, provincial and municipal taxes. Harmonized...

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Technical barriers to trade

A technical barrier to trade (TBT) is any regulation, standard or procedure that could make exporting goods...

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Total cost of ownership

The total cost of ownership (TCO) is the cost to buy something plus the cost to operate it over its useful life...

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Total quality management (TQM)

Total quality management (TQM) is a management philosophy that asks all of a company’s employees...

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Trade credit insurance

Businesses buy trade credit insurance to protect against the risk of non-payment when selling goods and services...

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Trade mission

In a trade mission, government officials and businesspeople from one country travel to another to promote...

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Trade secret

Trade secrets include any valuable business information that derives its value from secrecy. In Canada, there...

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Trademark

A trademark is one or many words, sounds or designs used to distinguish the goods or services of one...

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Trend analysis

A trend analysis examines the factors that drive business success. The analysis is used to make projections for...

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Unit selling price

The unit selling price is the amount a company charges for a single item of a product or use of a service...

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Unsecured loan

In an unsecured loan, a lender provides money to a borrower without any legal claim to the borrower’s assets...

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Valuation

Valuation is a process used to establish a company’s worth in dollars. A variety of methods are used...

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Values

Values are what a company stands for—the beliefs that drive its organizational behaviour and the characteristics...

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Variable costs

Variable costs are the expenses a business incurs that change with the amount of goods produced or services...

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Venture capital

Venture capital is a form of early-stage financing sought by companies with high-growth ambitions and significant...

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Venture Capital Action Plan

The Venture Capital Action Plan (VCAP) was created by the Government of Canada to encourage investment...

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Venture capital fund

A venture capital (VC) fund is a sum of money investors commit for investment in early-stage companies...

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Viral marketing

Viral marketing is an online marketing strategy that involves the creation of engaging and entertaining content...

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Vision and mission statements

A vision statement expresses a company’s main goal for the future while a mission statement concisely explains...

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Web analytics

Web analytics allow a company to collect, measure and evaluate data on visitor traffic that comes to and...

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Weighted average cost of capital

The weighted average cost of capital (WACC) is the average rate that a business pays to finance its assets...

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Wholesaler

Wholesalers are companies that buy in large quantities and sell by volume. They are the intermediaries...

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Working capital

Working capital is the amount of cash and other current assets a business has available after all its current...

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Working capital loan

A working capital loan is used to finance the everyday operations of a business such as sales and marketing...

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World Customs Organization (WCO)

The World Customs Organization (WCO) is an international group of more than 180 customs agencies. The WCO...

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World Trade Organization (WTO)

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an international body dedicated to making trade flow smoothly, predictably...

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