Corporate Governance: The Magic of Using Debt and Equity
Paul A. Zaman (MBA, MSC) shares insights on the importance of a company choosing the right capital structure to enhance shareholder value … the alchemy of debt and equity. One of the key ways for a company, small or big to improve long term shareholder value is by having the appropriate mix of debt and equity and making good investment choices. Even a seasoned executive director often misunderstands this aspect. Lets first explore the history of equity and debt. The Dutch started joint stock companies, which let shareholders invest in business ventures and get a share of their profits. In 1602, the Dutch East India Company issued the first shares on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange. It was the first company to issue stocks and bonds. This was a massive investment aimed at building the biggest merchant fleet to break the monopoly the Portuguese held. At its peak the company paid a dividend of 40% and had 50,000 employees worldwide, trading from Europe, Peru, China, Japan and Batavia. In 1798, after 196 years it failed financially due to funding its army and fighting wars with other countries to protect its business franchise. Other stock exchanges were set up after the Amsterdam … Continue reading →
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