Archive for September, 2015

Bond Villain Business Plan Reviews: Moonraker

September 28th, 2015

Business Plan Summary: Annihilate all people on the Earth, and then repopulate using genetically perfect specimens from an orbiting station.

Founder/Leader: Hugo Drax, CEO Drax Industries. While he’s led an impressive company that has incredible technology, Mr Drax is impatient and easily angered. Mr Drax wants people to have ‘amusing’ deaths – here’s a suggestion: imagine all the fun you could have by quickly killing your enemies and then having them stuffed.

Key Personnel: None.

Support Staff: Jaws, previously staff for Karl Stromberg.

Technology: Shuttle technology together with a very large space station that has radar jamming technology.

Review: Unlike the previous plan assessed, this plan deals much better with the side effects of annihilating all of humanity. There will be a much better world to inherit than a nuclear wasteland. On the other hand, Mr Drax will still be around, and a nuclear wasteland would be preferable to that.

Recommendation: Do not invest.

Bond Villain Business Plan Review: The Spy Who Loved Me

September 28th, 2015

Business Plan Summary: Trigger a nuclear war between the superpowers, so that the survivors can live on under the sea.

Founder/Leader: Karl Stromberg, shipping tycoon. A reclusive individual, with great wealth. Decisive, but a little prone to displays of overcomplicated revenge.

Key Personnel: None.

Support Staff: Jaws, assassin. Seemingly indestructible, methodical and effective.

Technology: Underwater city, with submersible main base/entrance.

Review: As the company founder would admit, there isn’t a lot of profit in this plan. But as opportunities to live as kings in the world of the future are also worth considering, we should still consider this plan carefully.

There are two real questions – first, why bother destroying the world. The underwater city would function just as well without destroying the world, and obviously secrecy has been maintained well to date.

Second, what happens to the oceans when the world is destroyed? Worldwide nuclear winter, high levels of nuclear fallout, and stray nukes going off in the ocean. None of that sounds good for living under the water.

Recommendation: Do not invest.

Bond Villain Business Plan reviews: The Man With the Golden Gun

September 28th, 2015

Business Plan Summary: Sell the rights to an advanced solar power technology.

Founder/Leader: Francisco Scaramanga. Grew up in a circus, becoming an accomplished trick shot on the way. Worked for the KGB as an assassin for a while, before going freelance.

Key Personnel: Nick Nack, aide de camp. A truly excellent assistant.

Support Staff: None.

Technology: Solex-based solar collector and energy storage. Very advanced technology, although liquid helium is an odd choice for energy storage cooling – the energy cost of keeping it cool will largely eliminate the benefits of the superconductors. Try flywheels or batteries next time.

Review: Solar power at this efficiency is a very valuable technology. The business plan is overly greedy – cutting out other parties who have developed the technology or provided the financing just adds to risk. Why not try this as a non-criminal enterprise, at least to start with.

Recommendation: Invest.

Bond Villain Business Plan Reviews: Live and Let Die

September 28th, 2015

Business Plan Summary: Distribute free heroin in order to drive competitors out of business.

Founder/Leader: Dr Kananga, Prime Minister of San Monique. Smart and capable, but overstretched and unwilling to delegate.

Key Personnel: Solitaire, a voodoo priestess. The advantage of being able to see the future is significant, so long as you ask the right questions. Start with lotto numbers.

Support Staff: Tee Hee Johnson, general henchmen. It’s always good to see diversity in hires at this level, such as a man missing a hand.

Technology: None.

Review: The ‘undercut the competition on price’ strategy is an old one, but it’s almost never a good idea. For a start, there’s a big hit to cashflow during the distribution of the free product. But more importantly there’s an assumption that the competition doesn’t respond. Gang warfare isn’t hugely profitable, especially when fighting against an established incumbent. Plus once you’ve gone to all the trouble to run the competition out and run up prices – what’s to stop new entrants joining the market now?

Recommendation: Do not invest.

Bond Villain Business Plan Review: Diamonds Are Forever

September 20th, 2015

Business Plan Summary: A blackmail auction of world powers to preserve their nuclear arsenal from a laser killer satellite.

Founder/Leader: Mr Blofeld once again has provided no additional background information. Given his past track record this will be the last application to be considered.

Key Personnel: Professor Doctor Metz, a brilliant laser technician. A noted disarmament campaigner, he probably should have checked references better before working for Mr Blofeld.

Support Staff: Mr Wint and Mr Kidd – while effective and methodical, they are further members of the SPECTRE ‘it doesn’t count unless it’s complicated’ school of killing.

Technology: Diamond-based laser satellite capable of destroying rockets and missiles from space.

Advanced plastic surgery and voice disguise: While quite useful in creating doubles, it would perhaps be more useful if used to make you look less like the subject a vengeful secret service agent is seeking.

Review: An improvement on previous plans, in that it’s not a doomsday weapon, but this plan is still far too vulnerable to a single point of failure at the control centre. If world powers can protect themselves by blowing you up, they’re probably going to try it.

And, as a small suggestion – cassette tapes are a poor medium for storing control codes. Locks on critical control mechanisms are also a great idea.

Recommendation: Do not invest. Given the track record Mr Blofeld’s SPECTRE will not be considered for further funding.

Bond Villain Business Plan Reviews: On Her Majesty’s Secret Service

September 20th, 2015

Business Plan Summary: Blackmail world powers over the release of a biological weapon of immense power.

Founder/Leader: Ernst Stavro Blofeld, AKA Comte Balthazar de Bleuville. Mr Blofeld continues to provide few details of his background, although our researchers have found that while the noble title is probably a false claim, his background is Polish. Mr Blofeld’s track record is developing poorly.

Key Personnel: Irma Blunt, operations officer and assistant. With a menacing manner Ms Blunt has what previous SPECTRE operatives have lacked – a willingness to just get the job done.

Support Staff: None identified.

Technology: A biological weapon capable of removing the ability to reproduce from all living plants or animals.

Review: Step one in effective blackmail is having a credible threat. But step two is living to spend the money. Sure, this is the kind of threat that will bring a quick payoff from the governments of the world. But with a literal doomsday hanging over them it’s unlikely that they would ever cease trying to find and eliminate (or perhaps keep for themselves) the technology. Some threats are simply too strong to use for blackmail.

Recommendation: Do not invest.

Bond Villain Business Plan Reviews: You Only Live Twice

September 20th, 2015

Business Plan Summary: Work for hire creation of a war between the US and Soviet Union.

Founder/Leader: The head of SPECTRE, Ernst Stavro Blofeld, has agreed to provide his name but no other details.

Key Personnel: Operations and Finance: Mr Osato, head of Osato Chemicals. Mr Osato is an impressive individual – he clearly identifies threats quickly, and chooses a clear course of action. He places strong trust in subordinates – too much trust, at times.

Support Staff: Assassin/Liaison: Helga Brandt (Number 11). Good at disguising her true intent, but would (as with several other junior members of SPECTRE) really benefit from learning about moving away from elaborate death traps towards a simple bullet in the back of the skull.

Technology: Single Stage to Orbit (SSTO) heavy lift capability with space capsule retrieval ability, with sufficient fuel to change orbital planes to the same plane as a launch from Canaveral.

Radar jamming technology capable of preventing nearby tracking stations from spotting a launch.

Volcano Lair: OK, it’s not really technology, but this place is worth mentioning. It’s the lair you think of when you think ‘Volcano Lair’. Great stuff, all the mod cons. Definitely a plus for the investment.

Review: The approach here deals nicely with the criticism of previous plans about providing for a useful cashflow from the end of the world. While it might be a bit difficult to see how you can spend $500 million in gold when the world is in ashes – hey, gold is gold.

But $500 million seems like a small payoff for the investment in technology. The SSTO capable craft could return more than that launching communications satellites for a year or two.

Recommendation: Invest with a view to installing new management and pivoting strategy.