The Bottom Line with Evan Davis

The Bottom Line with Evan Davis

Insight into business from the people at the top. Evan Davis meets influential business leaders for a round table conversation about the issues that matter to their companies and their customers. The BBC produces two radio versions of this programme - one for the UK audience that can be heard on BBC Radio 4 on Thursday evenings at 20:30 GMT, and one for the international audience that can be heard on BBC World Service on Fridays at 22:06 GMT.

  • Updated:
    Weekly
  • Episodes available:
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All episodes (116)

  • Upside-down Management 20 Nov 14

    Thu, 20 Nov 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    What is the role of a boss? To tell staff what to do or allow them to decide for themselves? This award-winning programme on upside-down management is presented by Evan Davis.

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  • Family Rivals 13 Nov 14

    Thu, 13 Nov 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Taittinger champagne, Clarks shoes, Theakstons beer: Evan Davis meets the entrepreneurs who left behind their famous family businesses to set up a rival brand of their own.

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  • Live long and prosper 06 Nov 14

    Thu, 6 Nov 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Very few companies survive for centuries. Evan Davis hears from those who have. How have they achieved extreme longevity? And is their history a burden or a motivator?

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  • Wearable Technology 30 Oct 14

    Thu, 30 Oct 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Medium Smartwatches, fitness bands and intelligent fabric: Evan Davis and guests discuss how the latest gadgets could keep us eternally connected, fully fit and super smart.

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  • Flash Sales 23 Oct 14

    Thu, 23 Oct 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    "Flash sale" companies are growing fast. Evan Davis and guests discuss how this new retail sector is changing the way we shop. Just how low can the prices go?

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  • TripAdvisor etc 16 Oct 14

    Thu, 16 Oct 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    TripAdvisor and other consumer ratings websites can make or break a business. Evan Davis and guests discuss the power of the user-generated review.

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  • Celebrities and Fans 09 Oct 14

    Thu, 9 Oct 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Social advertising: Evan Davis and guests discuss the power of celebrities, the rise of the profitable super-fans who "like" their products and the vloggers with consumer clout.

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  • The Saviour returns 01 Oct 14

    Thu, 2 Oct 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Bosses explain why they took back control of companies they had once founded. Why did they leave and what events brought them back? What had changed while they were away? And what were the very first decisions they made when they walked back through the doors? Evan Davis speaks to: Steve Morgan, founder, Redrow; Louise O'Sullivan, founder, Anam Technologies; Nick and Kath Whitworth, co-founders, Celtic & Co.

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  • Recalls 24 Jul 14

    Thu, 24 Jul 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Faulty airbags, mis-labelled horsemeat burgers and exploding dishwashers. What is the process for recalling defective items and how quickly must manufacturers and distributors act to protect consumers’ health and safety? Evan Davis and guests discuss the logistics of product recalls and the impact it can have on the reputation of a company. Guests: Gerard Bos, Customer Relations Manager for UK and Ireland, Ikea Chris Dee, Chief Operating Officer, E.H Booth Vince Shiers, Managing Director, RQA Global

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  • Location, Disaster, Location 17 Jul 14

    Thu, 17 Jul 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Civil war in Sierra Leone, political unrest in Ukraine, the Japanese tsunami and Hurricane Sandy on the east coast of the US - three guests tell Evan Davis how they led businesses through periods of unexpected and extended turmoil. Guests : Peter Kaye, Director of Business Development, Pilgrims Group Bryan Disher, Ukraine Country Manager, PWC Mary Bahsoon, Co-owner Bennimix

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  • Second hand trade 10 Jul 14

    Thu, 10 Jul 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    How much profit is there to be made from what others throw away? Making money from old phones, engines and plastic bottles is the topic for Evan Davis and guests. Guests Charlo Carabott, co-founder & CEO Mazuma Mobile Matt Bulley, managing director Caterpillar Reman Europe Chris Dow, Founder & CEO Closed Loop Recycling Producer : Rosamund Jones

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  • Mental Health 03 Jul 14

    Thu, 3 Jul 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Would you tell your boss you had depression? Worried you'd be judged as weak or unable to cope? In this edition of TBL, three successful business leaders talk openly about what it's like to experience severe mental illness whilst running their companies and explain the benefits of going public about mental ill health. Guests: Lord Stevenson of Coddenham, entrepreneur and former Chairman of HBOS and Pearson; Andrea Woodside, Founder, Minding Work Limited; and Charlie Mowat, Managing Director, The Clean Space

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  • Single Product Companies 26 Jun 14

    Thu, 26 Jun 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Can you conquer the world by selling only one product? Not every company wants to diversify. Some prefer to do one thing and do it well, rather than risk diluting the brand so Evan Davis and guests discuss the risks and rewards of focusing all energies on a single product range. Does it make good business sense to put all your eggs in one basket? Guests: Vince Gunn, Managing Director, Crocs Europe Carolyn Komminsk, Head of Creative, Maclaren Bill Noble, Managing Director, WD40 Company

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  • The Muslim Pound 19 Jun 14

    Thu, 19 Jun 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    How big is the market for halal - not just food, but holidays, fashion and music too? How are Muslim consumers best served? Evan Davis talks to entrepreneurs who think they know the answer and asks how much can established companies learn from them. Guests : Shelina Janmohamed, Ogilvy Noor Elnur Seyidli, HalalBooking.com Shazia Saleem, ieat foods

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  • Sex and Drugs 12 Jun 14

    Thu, 12 Jun 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    So how do you market products that many people disapprove of? These companies, selling drugs and sex toys, are testing our morals and the regulations set up to protect them. Evan Davis discusses with his guests : Jean Rasbridge, founder E Cigarettes Direct Andy Williams, co-founder Medicine Man Denver Neal Slateford, co-founder LoveHoney

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  • Bitcoin 05 Jun 2014

    Thu, 5 Jun 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Bitcoins, computer-generated crypto-currency, are the subject for discussion. What can you buy with them, how did the bitcoin craze begin and does the world really need another currency? Evan Davis's guests are from new companies hoping to cash in - one trades bitcoins, another stores them and the third enables you to spend them online. Contributors are: Marc Warne, Bittylicious Nicolas Cary, Blockchain Moe Levin, Bitpay

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  • Cyber Security 31 May 14

    Sat, 31 May 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Can businesses be protected from Hackers? Many companies now feel besieged by constant attacks and few haven't been targeted. In the first of the award-winning series Evan Davis and guests discuss the anatomy of a cyber attack. Guests Richard Knowlton, Group Corporate Security Director, Vodafone Rashmi Knowles, Chief Security Architect, RSA Seth Berman, Executive MD, Stroz Friedberg Producer : Sally Abrahams

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  • Serving the super rich 27 Mar 14

    Thu, 27 Mar 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    What do the seriously wealthy do with their money? How do they preserve or spend their multi-million or even billion pound fortunes? Evan Davis meets the people helping the world's wealthy elite manage their lives, invest their money and donate to good causes Guests: Richard Wilson, CEO, Billionaire Family Office Karen Clark, Director and Head of Private Clients, SandAire Lucy Challenger, Manager, Bespoke Bureau Producer: Sally Abrahams

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  • Energy Upstarts 20 Mar 14

    Thu, 20 Mar 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    New energy companies are breaking into a market dominated by big established firms and turning up the heat but how do they go about the challenge of taking on established companies? Evan Davis talks prices, customer service and green energy with guests: Dale Vince, Founder and CEO, Ecotricity Stephen Fitzpatrick, Founder and Managing Director, Ovo Energy Ann Robinson, Director of Consumer Policy at uSwitch.com

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  • Transformation 13 Mar 14

    Thu, 13 Mar 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Corporate turnaround and transformational tales. Evan Davis and guests discuss how companies fail, struggle and find their way again. Guests: Bruno Cercley, CEO of Rossignol Group Harriet Green OBE, CEO of Thomas Cook Group Martyn Gibbs, CEO of Game Retail Ltd

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  • Chocolate 06 Mar 14

    Thu, 6 Mar 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Chocolate is a big business as well as a delicious indulgence. Evan Davis and guests discuss cocoa, chocolate and how to feed a global sweet tooth. Guests: Jonathan Horrell, Director of Global Sustainability of Mondelez International Sophi Tranchell, Managing Director of Divine Chocolate Kojo Amoo-Gottfried, Country Director of Cargill Ghana

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  • Self-Improvement 27 Feb 14

    Thu, 27 Feb 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    If you want to look better, feel better, perform better, there's no shortage of help available. Whether it's cosmetic surgery, fitness programmes, diets and self-help books there's plenty of choice. But do they promise the world and fail to deliver? Evan Davis and guests discuss the industry of making your life better. Guests: John Ryan, Founder and Chairman, Make Yourself Amazing Carole Tonkinson, Publisher, Harper NonFiction Jon Congdon, President and Co-Founder, Beachbody.com

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  • Life after CEO 20 Feb 14

    Thu, 20 Feb 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Business leaders spend their lives climbing the corporate ladder, so what happens when it is time to step off? Evan Davis and guests discuss life after CEO. Guests: Robert Polet, former CEO of Gucci Group Kate Wilson, former MD of Scholastic UK, Managing Director of Nosy Crow Lord Browne of Madingley, former Chief Executive of BP

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  • TV Formats 13 Feb 2014

    Thu, 13 Feb 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Successful TV formats like Big Brother, Pop Idol, X-Factor and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire are part of a multi-billion pound global industry. But how can you protect such a valuable asset? Evan Davis finds out from those at the top of this lucrative international business. Guests: Charlie Parsons, Creator of Survivor and CEO, Castaway Television Productions Louise Pederson, Managing Director, all3media international Ricardo Pereira, TV Globo Director for Europe

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  • MBAs 06 Feb 14

    Thu, 6 Feb 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Business school or school of life? An MBA from a top business school is what defines many of today's high powered CEOs but can real world acumen be just as good? Evan Davis discusses with his guests: Colin Drummond, Chairman of Viridor and Harvard MBA graduate Kim Winser, former CEO of Pringle, now CEO of Winser London Glenn Sykes, Associate Dean of The University of Chicago Booth School of Business, London

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  • The Sharing Economy 30 Jan 14

    Thu, 30 Jan 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    The “sharing” economy is built around renting our possessions to strangers sharing our homes, cars, bikes, clothes, tools and much more besides. As entrepreneurs pile in, how much money can be made and is that the point anyway? In the first of a new series Evan Davis is joined by Ali Clabburn, Founder, Liftshare; Even Heggernes, UK & Ireland Country Manager, Airbnb and Fiona Disegni, Founder, Rentez-Vous

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  • Design 21 Nov 2013

    Thu, 21 Nov 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    In the UK and around the world Decorating your home is big business but who sets the trends? In China and India the home decor market is evolving fast - but will the result be a global homogenous style? Evan Davis and guests discuss the volatile world of design. Guests: Kelly Hoppen, founder Kelly Hoppen Interiors Andrew Graham, CEO Graham and Brown Lois Jacobs, Global CEO Fitch

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  • Shipping 14 Nov 13

    Thu, 14 Nov 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Shipping is changing: vessels and ports are getting bigger and competition for trade is coming from the Far East. Evan Davis and guests from the world of shipping discuss how ports are run and how the shipping business manages the risk of accidents and piracy. Guests: James Cooper – CEO of Associated British Ports. , a private company which owns and runs 21 ports in the UK. Kenneth MacLeod – Chairman of Stena Line UK and President of the UK Chamber of Shipping. Rupert Atkin - CEO of Talbot Underwriting and Chairman of the Lloyd's Market Association.

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  • Planning for the future 07 Nov 13

    Thu, 7 Nov 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    How do you plan for the future? Planning for infrastructure projects - in the UK and overseas - all require assumptions and predictions about the future. Evan Davis and guests discuss the problems and pitfalls of planning for the long view. Guests: Alison Munro, CEO HS2 Tushar Prabhu, co-owner, Pell Frischmann Richard Deakin, CEO NATS

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  • Deals 31 Oct 2013

    Thu, 31 Oct 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Why is deal making so seductive? When the world economy is booming corporate bosses love nothing more than to take each others companies over, mergers and acquisitions soar. However, the evidence suggest that they're a waste of money and time. Evan Davis and guests discuss why deals go right and what happens when they go wrong. Guests: Sir George Buckley – former CEO, 3M and currently Chairman Designate of the engineering group Smiths Sir Michael Rake - Chairman of BT Group and Deputy Chairman of Barclays Juergen Maier - MD of Siemens UK and Ireland

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  • Who's the boss? 24 Oct 2013

    Thu, 24 Oct 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Who is the boss? What is the role of the business leader? One theory about management is that it should turn itself upside-down and permit those closest to the customer to dictate business decisions. From pricing, marketing and how to deal with complaints. Should staff be told what to do or should they be allowed to take decisions for themselves? Discussing this week with Evan Davis are John Timpson, Chairman Timpson Group; Nikki King, CEO Isuzu Truck UK; Sir Gerry Robinson, Chairman Moto Hospitality

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  • Digital marketplaces 17 Oct 2013

    Thu, 17 Oct 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    You want to buy a tank? Whether it's an armoured vehicle, a place to keep exotic fish, or a tank top it's available online. Trading online makes it easier than ever to find a marketplace and gives the consumer a different and faster way to shop and browse. Discussing with Evan Davis this week are Nic Jones, Senior Vice President International, VEVO; Nicole Vanderbilt, MD Etsy; and Francios Coumau, General Manager for Continental Europe, eBay.

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  • The Business of War 10 Oct 2013

    Thu, 10 Oct 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis talks to ex-army leaders turned businessmen about the world of private defence and security work. How do they maintain their business reputations amid the conflict and the danger? Why do governments need outsiders to step in? And can you marry ethics and profits? Guests: Major General Graham Binns CBE, DSO, MC, a former British army officer, now CEO of Aegis Defence Services Limited Major General Andrew Pringle, CB, CBE, President of KBR UK and a former British army officer Gabriel Carter, Managing Director in charge of Operations at Risk Management and Intelligence

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  • Big Data 03 Oct 2013

    Thu, 3 Oct 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Big data has become big business. Improvements in computer memory storage and how we store information about ourselves has created new industries and transformed others. Evan Davis and guests discuss the money making world of Big Data. Guests: Dave Coplin, Chief Envisioning Officer and Director of Search, Microsoft UK; Konrad Feldman, CEO Quantcast; Lawrence Jones, Founder UK Fast

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  • Investor Relations 25 Jul 2013

    Thu, 25 Jul 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    What is it like to be voted off the board by your shareholders? Is investor activism here to stay? Evan and his guests discuss the power of investors and their role in changing how business functions. Guests: Alison Carnwath, Chair Land Securities Helena Morrissey, CEO Newton Asset Management Nigel Wilson, Group CEO Legal & General Producers: Rosamund Jones/Lucy Proctor

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  • Water 18 Jul 2013

    Thu, 18 Jul 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Water is the world's most precious resource. It's also big business and getting water where it needs to be is a huge global challenge. Evan Davis and guests discuss an industry which has changed almost beyond recognition in just a few decades - from state-owned water providers to international business players. Guests: Peter Simpson, CEO Anglian Water Bryan Harvey, Vice President CH2M HILL Olivier Bret, CEO Veolia Water UK Producer : Rosamund Jones

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  • Futurology for Business 10 Jul 13

    Thu, 11 Jul 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Predicting the future is a skill that can earn investors and businesses a fortune - but get it wrong and disaster looms. How can business leaders know what the world will look like in 2030? This week Evan Davis meets three business leaders who place bets on the future. They are: Guests: Dorothy Thompson, CEO, Drax Hans Vestberg, CEO, Ericsson Jim Rogers, Investor

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  • Managing in a Crisis 4 Jul 13

    Thu, 4 Jul 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    How do you manage a corporation in a crisis? The odds are high that at some point in their careers most business leaders will be in charge when it all goes wrong. So how prepared can you be and what does it feel like to face the unexpected? Evan Davis hears tales of crisis with his guests Michael Woodford, former chief executive & president, Olympus Corporation; Ann Cairns, president international markets, Mastercard; Eddie Bensilum, director, Regester Larkin

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  • Start Ups 27 Jun 13

    Thu, 27 Jun 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    How much money do you need to start a business? Why do some start ups require millions and others only a few hundred pounds? Evan Davis discusses these and other questions with his guests Mark Popkiewicz, founder MirriAd Julie Deane, founder The Cambridge Satchel Company, Jonathan Medved venture capitalist and founder Our Crowd Producer : Rosamund Jones

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  • Food 20 Jun 13

    Thu, 20 Jun 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Food comes from a supermarket or over a counter for most of us. But how do the companies that make our curries and custard or cater for us at work get it from field to fork? Evan Davis discusses the food supply chain with his guests Gavin Darby, CEO of Premier Foods, Perween Warsi, founder and CEO of S&A Foods and Alastair Storey, CEO of WSH.

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  • Travel 13 Jun 13

    Thu, 13 Jun 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Travel companies have had to deal with upheaval in popular destinations and recession for their customers at home recently so how do they plan their seasonal business for places in crisis and political unrest such as Greece and Egypt? Evan Davis discusses this and the future of tourism in Greece with his guests Peter Long, CEO TUI Travel; Carolyn McCall, CEO Easyjet and Andreas Andreadis CEO SANI Resort

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  • Recruitment 06 Jun 13

    Thu, 6 Jun 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    What permanent marks has the recession made on the recruitment business and the job market? And how have companies caught in the eye of the storm adapted to survive? Evan Davis speaks to three recruiters from different ends of the market - the shop floor to the top floor. . Guests : Virginia Bottomley, Odgers Berndtson Matthew Sanders, CEO de Poel Ian Temple, chair Hydrogen Group Producer : Rosamund Jones

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  • The App Industry 30 May 13

    Thu, 30 May 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    The App industry has a global marketplace and "appreneurs" are trying to make money in markets where traditional business rules do not apply. Evan Davis meets appreneurs and asks how they make a living if their product is free? And how do they market to customers if they don’t know who they are? Guests : Barry Meade, co-founder Fireproof Studios Professor Anthony Steed, co-founder Animal Systems Max Whitby, co-founder & CEO Touch Press

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  • The Education Business 28 Mar 13

    Thu, 28 Mar 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis chairs a round table discussion with business people who make money from education - from running low cost schools in Africa to training the next generation of lawyers.

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  • Wine 21 Mar 13

    Thu, 21 Mar 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis and guests explore the challenges and pitfalls of the wine trade.

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  • BottomLine:Turnarounds14 Mar 13

    Thu, 14 Mar 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis asks his guests about their tales of corporate turnarounds and explores what it takes to rescue a sinking company.

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  • Doing Business with Governments 7 Mar 13

    Thu, 7 Mar 13

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis meets three business leaders who sell goods and services to governments. How hard is it to win contracts and what are the challenges of doing business with the state?

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  • Bottom Line: Retail 28 Feb 13

    Thu, 28 Feb 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and three top names from the world of retail swap thoughts on how to save bricks and mortar shopping. They also consider what makes a good shop assistant.

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  • BottomLine:Business in Africa 21 Feb 13

    Thu, 21 Feb 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis cuts through confusion and spin to present a clearer view of the business world. This week his guests talk about the challenges of doing business in and out of Africa.

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  • Alternative Finance 14 Feb 13

    Thu, 14 Feb 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis chairs a discussion providing insight into business from people at the top. This week, he meets three pioneers of alternative finance and asks - can they beat the banks?

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  • Books 07 Feb 2013

    Thu, 7 Feb 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    The traditional print book industry is being shaken up by the digital revolution. Evan Davis and guests examine what the publishing landscape might look like once the dust settles.

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  • Gambling 31 Jan 13

    Thu, 31 Jan 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis cuts through confusion and spin to present a clearer view of the business world. This week he explores the gambling industry and how it's being tranformed by technology.

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  • Bottom Line: Family Businesses 24 Jan 13

    Thu, 24 Jan 13

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Family firms are the backbone of the world's economies, but only a third survive to the second generation. Evan Davis and guests explore the ups and downs of running a business with your relatives.

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  • Bottom Line: New 15 Nov 2012

    Thu, 15 Nov 12

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Planet New – the world of wonderfully innovative ideas that give rise to new products. There are many arguments about how to solve the world’s economic problems. But if there’s one solution that most will agree on it’s that we need more new products to drive capitalism and make us richer. Evan Davis and guests discuss the importance of innovation for the global economy and the impediments to this kind of creativity. They also swap thoughts on the ‘pivot’ – when to change your mind in business.

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  • Bottom Line: Financial services 8 Nov 2012

    Thu, 8 Nov 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Financial services have the power to enrich an economy – or to ruin it completely. But what kind of reform is required to get them fit for the 21st century? Evan Davis and a panel of top business brains discuss.

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  • Bottom Line: Prices 1 Nov 2012

    Thu, 1 Nov 12

    Duration:
    29 mins

    What is the right price for a product or service? Evan Davis and guests discuss the different strategies companies use to decide what to charge. How much of it is educated guesswork as to what they can get away with?

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  • The Bottom Line: The Business of Sport 25 Oct 2012

    Thu, 25 Oct 12

    Duration:
    29 mins

    The Business of sport – Evan Davis speaks to the top business brains in the industry. How did they re-invent their sports and bring in new and bigger audiences?

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  • The Bottom Line: Overcrowded markets 18 Oct 2012

    Thu, 18 Oct 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    There's competition - and then there's super-competition. Evan's guests consider the perils and possibilities of doing business in an overcrowded market. And, ahead of the latest James Bond film, they swap thoughts on product placement and celebrity endorsement. How do you ensure your products are seen in all the right places and none of the wrong ones?

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  • Bottom Line: Quality 11 Oct 2012

    Thu, 11 Oct 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Business is obsessed with quality - but does it really mean? Evan guests swap thoughts on how to get it high, and why might it end up low. They also compare notes on their respective weaknesses.

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  • Bottom Line: Boardroom politics 4 Oct 2012

    Thu, 4 Oct 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Handling the company board is a delicate art. Stephanie Flanders' three guests have spent many years around the top table – they share their tips for mastering the hidden agendas and clashing egos. They also swap thoughts on the risks and rewards of running large incumbent companies as opposed to smaller startups.

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  • Bottom Line: Products 27 Sep 2012

    Thu, 27 Sep 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    The product that made us: Evan Davis’s guests tell the stories of a product that has shaped the fortunes of their companies. They also discuss firing people - how easy should it be to dismiss an employee?

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  • Bottom Line: Europe 20 Sep 2012

    Thu, 20 Sep 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Is Europe in decline? Or are its current woes mere bumps on the road to greater prosperity? Evan Davis and guests also debate the pros and cons of silos, those invisible barriers that can develop in almost any organisation.

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  • Bottom Line: Infrastructure 12 July 12

    Thu, 12 Jul 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Roads, bridges, tunnels, pipelines, runways, cables - Evan Davis and guests examine the costly business of building and running infrastructure. They also debate the pros and cons of media training.

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  • Bottom Line: Brands 5 July 12

    Thu, 5 Jul 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Big brands vs own-labels. Evan Davis and guests swap thoughts on the evolution and hierarchy of brands. Who has the upper hand in the many battles being fought between big consumer brands and shops’ own-labels? They also consider consumer tastes – do their own customers have good taste, or do they just buy what they’re given?

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  • Bottom Line: Capital 28 Jun 12

    Thu, 28 Jun 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Capital allocation - do deserving companies get the money they need for investment, or do the undeserving get more than they should? Evan Davis asks his executive panel how well the market distributes capital to the right businesses.

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  • Bottom Line: Day in the Life 21 Jun 12

    Thu, 21 Jun 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    How do top executives spend their time each day? What does running a company actually involve? Evan Davis asks his guests to reveal the inner secrets of their diaries. They also consider the so-called Shareholder Spring – how investors are rebelling against corporate pay.

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  • Bottom Line: Gratification 14 Jun 12

    Thu, 14 Jun 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    How restrained should business be when selling products to customers that aren't necessarily that good for them? Plus, the psychology of competition - how focussed are companies on their rivals? Evan Davis and a panel of top executive guests debate the issues.

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  • Bottom Line: Employment 7 Jun 12

    Thu, 7 Jun 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and his guests discuss different types of employment contracts and ask how far employers should go in checking their employees' behaviour. Featuring Nick Buckles, CEO, G4S, Eric Born, CEO, Wincanton and Jason Iftakhar, Co-founder, Swifty Scooters.

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  • Bottom Line: Europe 31 May 12

    Thu, 31 May 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Europe is top of the agenda as Evan Davis asks his executive guests about the outlook for the Euro, and the risks and opportunities in the global economy more generally.

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  • Bottom Line: Ruthlessness 29 Mar 12

    Thu, 29 Mar 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Hard-boiled or soft-hearted - when is it right to be tough at the top? Evan Davis and his executive guests debate ruthlessness in business. Plus, capitalism in places that business overlooks - they also talk about investing and selling in deprived areas.

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  • Bottom Line: Decisions 22 Mar 12

    Thu, 22 Mar 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Anatomy of a decision. Evan Davis and guests discuss executive decision making using examples from their professional life. They also swap thoughts on stress – their own and that of their employees.

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  • Bottom Line: Leadership 15 Mar 12

    Thu, 15 Mar 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Good leadership - can you turn a mediocre manager into a brilliant boss? Self-help books and management courses may try, but good leaders are still hard to come by. So what does great leadership consist of, and do Evan's three guests have it? They also discuss dematerialisation - could their companies survive using 20% less of everything?

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  • Bottom Line: Cock-ups 8 Mar 12

    Thu, 8 Mar 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Cock-up or conspiracy? Evan Davis asks his executive guests about mistakes and malpractice in business - why they occur and how best to avoid them.

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  • Bottom Line: Reinvention 1 Mar 12

    Thu, 1 Mar 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Reinventing a business is something this week's panel have all had some experience of - they work in pubs, cinemas and telecom services. But what are the possibilities and pitfalls of reinvention? They also swap ideas on what they think our children should be taught at school.

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  • Bottom Line: Expertise 23 Feb 12

    Thu, 23 Feb 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    The curious business of expert advice. Evan Davis's guests this week come from very different industry sectors, but have one thing in common - they're to some extent selling expertise, knowledge that the customer doesn't have. If consumers are in a state of relative ignorance, how can they shop around? What stops them getting ripped off? They also swap thoughts on religion in the workplace.

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  • Bottom Line: Young Entrepreneurs 16 Feb 12

    Thu, 16 Feb 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Three young entrepreneurs share their headaches and hopes as they discuss the challenges of creating and running a business. Presented by Evan Davis.

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  • Bottom Line: Big Egos 9 Feb 12

    Thu, 9 Feb 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Does it really take a big ego to be successful in business? Evan Davis asks his panel about egos and narcissicm. And what's so special about the US when it comes to successful startups?

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  • Bottom Line: Automotive 2 Feb 12

    Thu, 2 Feb 12

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis and his panel talk cars. What road is the automotive industry on? Just where is it headed? They also consider whether it’s best to be a wage slave, with a regular salary, or to take a share of the profits of a business.

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  • Bottom Line: Capitalism 26 Jan 11

    Thu, 26 Jan 12

    Duration:
    28 mins

    It's become a dirty word, often associated with negatives like 'crony' and 'crisis'. Evan Davis asks his executive panel how they would redesign and rebrand capitalism. They also swap thoughts on when you reach your prime in business. First in a new series.

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  • Bottom Line: Ambition 17 Nov 11

    Thu, 17 Nov 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and his panel consider whether now’s the time for companies to pursue big, ambitious ideas – or is it a time for more modest aspirations? They also discuss banking with the boss of retail banking at Royal Bank of Scotland, and take stock of the consumer sector in the run-up to Christmas. Last in the current series.

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  • Bottom Line: Bonds 10 Nov 11

    Thu, 10 Nov 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis asks his panel about the importance of bonds to business. The boss of Heathrow reveals the trials of running an airport. And the panel considers whether a good manager can run any company of any type.

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  • Bottom Line: Special relationships 03 Nov 11

    Thu, 3 Nov 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    What's the secret of a happy business marriage? Evan Davis asks his panel about the key partnerships they have with other companies. They also consider whether flat organisations work best.

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  • BottomLineExtra: Stephanomics 3: 02 Nov 11

    Wed, 2 Nov 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    In the third programme in her series of debates about the financial crisis, Stephanie Flanders asks a panel of top economic thinkers whether the world has the institutions it needs to confront today's problems. Stephanie is joined in the studio by Willem Buiter, Chief Economist at Citigroup, Jim O'Neill Chairman of the asset management division of Goldman Sachs and Katinka Barysch, Deputy Director of the Centre for European Reform in London. They'll also discuss whether the lesson of the last few years - especially in the eurozone - is that national democracies and global markets simply don't mix. Producer: Caroline Bayley Editor: Stephen Chilcott

    Download 14MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: Proliferation 27 Oct 11

    Thu, 27 Oct 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    A smorgasbord of topics as Evan Davis and his panel of guests discuss everything from Swedish business and Ikea, to the Eurozone crisis and product proliferation.

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  • Bottom Line Extra: Stephanomics 2 26 Oct 11

    Wed, 26 Oct 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Should we blame the bankers or the economists when it comes to the global financial crisis? And what can we learn from the current crisis? In the second of three programmes, BBC Economics Editor Stephanie Flanders discusses the global economy with high-profile economic thinkers, including billionaire investor George Soros; Sir Howard Davies, former director of the London School of Economics and Dr DeAnne Julius, chair of Chatham House and a former member of the Bank of England's monetary policy committee.

    Download 14MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: Financial services 20 Oct 11

    Thu, 20 Oct 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    As protests continue around the world against the financial sector, Evan Davis and three guests from that industry consider a fundamental question: does the sector create genuine wealth, or is it essentially parasitic, finding ingenious ways of distributing other people’s wealth to its own workers?

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  • Bottom Line Extra: Stephanomics 1 19 OCT 11

    Wed, 19 Oct 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    What does the future hold for the Euro? BBC Economics editor Stephanie Flanders discusses how the current economic crisis will play out over the next decade. Joined by a panel of top economic thinkers, she ask if Western economies can expect to grow at all over the next few years, and will the Euro exist in ten years time? Stephanie is joined by Nicola Horlick of Bramdean Asset Management; David Roche of global investment research firm Independent Strategy and Will Hutton, chair of the Big Innovation Centre - a new think tank set up by the Work Foundation.

    Download 14MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: Marketing 13 Oct 11

    Thu, 13 Oct 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Stephanie Flanders asks her panel about the dos and don’ts of marketing. They also discuss messiness in the workplace - does a cluttered desk really mean a cluttered mind?

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  • Bottom Line: Startups 06 Oct 11

    Thu, 6 Oct 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and guests consider whether it’s getting easier to create a new business in the wired world, or do lower barriers to entry mean it’s trickier to get noticed? They also discuss how good businesses are built on the back of mistakes.

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  • Bottom Line: Tech slowdown 29 Sep 11

    Thu, 29 Sep 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and guests discuss McDonalds. After a rocky period in the middle of the last decade, how well has the global burger chain managed to revive its famous fast-food formula? They also debate whether the progress of radical new technology has slowed down.

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  • Bottom Line: Rumours 22 Sep 11

    Thu, 22 Sep 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis asks his guests if it’s time to declare a state of emergency in the world economy. They also discuss the role rumours, hearsay and speculation play in business.

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  • Bottom Line: Automation 14 Jul 11

    Thu, 14 Jul 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis asks his panel of top executives about the limits of automation. How far can they go in removing human beings from their business? Which processes are beyond automation? They also swap thoughts on the benefits of the corporate awayday.

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  • Bottom Line: Hyper growth 07 Jul 11

    Thu, 7 Jul 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis asks his panel of top executives about the perils and possibilities of running a fast-growing business. Many a company has crashed and burned due to a failure to manage rapid growth – but what are the speed limits? They also chew over the role of the business lunch.

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  • Bottom Line: 2020 Foresight 30 Jun 11

    Thu, 30 Jun 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis challenges his high-flying corporate guests to cast their minds forward to how the Web will look in 2020. Just what will have changed? They also consider the importance of storytelling. What business benefit is there in a good yarn?

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  • Bottom Line: Short-term 23 Jun 11

    Thu, 23 Jun 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis asks his guests if we live in a world of short-term contracts – and other business relationships too. And he discovers how companies measure how well they’re performing. Is it just about the financial results?

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  • Bottom Line: Contacts 16 Jun 11

    Thu, 16 Jun 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and his panel of executives swap thoughts on the importance of having the right contacts in business. Is it who you know that counts, as the cliché goes? His guests also reveal their greatest regrets.

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  • Bottom Line: Materials 9 Jun 11

    Thu, 9 Jun 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis asks his panel of influential business leaders how they plan to economise in their use of raw materials. They also talk about building design - which matters more: how they look, or how well they work?

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  • Bottom Line: Bold v cautious 4 Jun 11

    Sat, 4 Jun 11

    Duration:
    25 mins

    Evan Davis asks his panel of influential business leaders if now is a good time for companies to sit tight and play it safe, or to be bold and take risks. They also debate whether there's anything wrong with a touch of greed in business.

    Download 12MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: Fashion 24 Mar 11

    Thu, 24 Mar 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis and his panel of top executives from the world of clothing and fashion discuss whether normal business rules apply in their world. They also talk about marketing, and the role of PR in getting their products noticed.

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  • Bottom Line: Continuity 17 Mar 11

    Thu, 17 Mar 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis and his panel of top business executives discuss recent events in Japan, and explore to what extent companies can prepare for major disasters. They also reveal how much they really know about life on the shop floor.

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  • Bottom Line: 10 Mar 11

    Thu, 10 Mar 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Stephanie Flanders and guests discuss whether the economic future for countries like the UK will be flat. And as the German economy storms ahead of the rest of Europe, just what is the secret of its success?

    Download 13MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: Timing 3 March 11

    Thu, 3 Mar 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Stephanie Flanders and a trio of chief executives swap thoughts on how successful companies manage the business of time. They also discuss if it matters whether companies keep up with current events.

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  • Bottom Line: Research 24 Feb 11

    Thu, 24 Feb 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis asks his panel of top executives about the value of consumer research. Can companies learn anything useful about their consumers? They also debate whether business awards serve any purpose.

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  • Bottom Line: Hyperconnectivity 19 Feb 11

    Sat, 19 Feb 11

    Duration:
    24 mins

    Stephanie Flanders and guests discuss hyperconnectivity - the idea that there are more devices in use around the world than there are people using them. How does the panel cope with the sheer mass of incoming information, and devices to carry it? And does more technology mean better communication, or just less time to think? They also consider the role of intuition when making important decisions.

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  • Bottom Line: Instability 10 Feb 11

    Thu, 10 Feb 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Stephanie Flanders and her top business guests discuss the impact of political instability on how and where they do business. They also talk about how companies value their employees. Are they really their "most important asset", as is so often claimed?

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  • Bottom Line: Rejuvenation 3 Feb 11

    Thu, 3 Feb 11

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis asks his guests how companies can keep up with the times and avoid becoming out of date. They also discuss which laws they would most like to scrap.

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  • Bottom Line: Predictions 27 Jan 11

    Thu, 27 Jan 11

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis asks his panel of top business executives to fast-forward five years and give their economic predictions for 2016. They also discuss the value of networking for your business and career.

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  • Bottom Line: Location 18 Nov

    Thu, 18 Nov 10

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis asks his panel of top executives about the decisions companies make about where they put themselves. What are the advantages of being near the competition? They also discuss the role of email in business.

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  • Bottom Line: Plan B 11 Nov 10

    Thu, 11 Nov 10

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and guests discuss how companies plan for unforeseeable events and prepare for life's nasty surprises. The panel also talks about what to wear at work.

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  • Bottom Line: Incumbents vs upstarts 4 Nov 10

    Thu, 4 Nov 10

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and guests discuss how young upstarts can compete in a market dominated by an incumbent company. They also talk about company names and the obsession with changing them.

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  • Bottom Line: Who's the boss? 28 Oct 10

    Thu, 28 Oct 10

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis and guests examine the relationship between company chairman and chief executive. They also discuss the merits of youth and age in the workplace.

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  • Bottom Line: Raw materials 21 Oct 10

    Thu, 21 Oct 10

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and guests discuss raw materials and emotion in the workplace.

    Download 13MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: Logistics 14 Oct 10

    Thu, 14 Oct 10

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Evan Davis and guests discuss business logistics and customer service.

    Download 13MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: New marketing 7 Oct 10

    Thu, 7 Oct 10

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis and guests discuss new forms of marketing and the role of optimism in business.

    Download 13MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: Number One 30 Sep 10

    Thu, 30 Sep 10

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis and top business guests debate whether market share is the best strategy. And corporate claptrap - why do intelligent business people sometimes fall in love with complete gibberish?

    Download 13MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

  • Bottom Line: US economy 23 Sep 10

    Thu, 23 Sep 10

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Evan Davis and top business guests discuss whether the world economy can flourish even if the US does not. And sponsorship - how companies decide which events to back, and how much to spend.

    Download 13MB (right click & "save target as / link as")

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