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Real Business Christmas Countdown: The Best of 2014: 4 December

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Whether you’re more Grinch than you are elf, Christmas is on its way and Real Business is counting down to the big day with the hottest articles from across the year.

Day three included HMRC’s 2,000 job cashback; an interview with Kopparberg’s MD on how the UK was penetrated; why Dragons’ Den makes a mockery of entrepreneurs, and 5 entrepreneurs under 30.

So let’s crack on with day four.

News: Everline Future 50: Britain’s most disruptive new businesses revealed

In February, we revealed the 50 most exciting and innovative young companies from across the UK, which was judged by CEOs, chairmen, entrepreneurs and hosted by comedian Seann Walsh at London’s Silicon Roundabout on Old Street. The businesses on the 2014 list span a number of different sectors from manufacturing, recruitment, technology, investment, analysis and beyond, with names on the list including Boticca, CompareTheCoffin, Hiring-Hub and Kabbee.

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Interviews: Lara Morgan: What I learnt from screwing up my first exit attempt

First off, business buyers dont give a f*** about you. This is the harsh lesson entrepreneur Lara Morgan revealed during her attempt to sell her company she did, of course, successfully sell her toiletry business Pacific Direct for 20m. She says of an attempt to exit early on I was deluded and recommends securing the right advisor to make sure your money is being well spent.

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Opinion: Why is Starbucks so successful Attention to detail

Starbucks was once a myth in the UK, but the company now boasts almost 800 stores in the country. But what is it that makes the American coffee shop chain so appealing Perhaps its the whole-bean coffee, full-leaf tea or, simply, the wi-fi. We looked at the three key reasons its impacting small businesses.

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Surreal Business: 10 worst business decisions ever made

Innovation is considered a key quality for business strategy in order to keep ahead of the game sometimes those choices are slightly outlandish, however, and don’t always have the best outcomes. For example, at the the top of the dodgiest decisions was when Quaker Oats decided to buy beverage firm Snapple, which didn’t go according to plan as the drinks required refrigeration unlike its other drier products. 

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