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Business Daily


The daily drama of money and work from the BBC.


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The daily drama of money and work from the BBC.




Business Daily meets the Queen of Biscuits

How do you make an artisan product at scale? We head to the UK factory of Biscuiteers, where millions of biscuits are hand-iced every year, from treats shaped like designer bags to edible versions of favourite cartoon characters. Harriet Hastings is the co-founder of the company - in this episode, she shares her business advice, explains why marketing is key and talks about running a business with her husband. Producer / presenter: Sam Everett (Image: A ballerina biscuit being iced. Credit: BBC)


Is India ready for Tesla?

It’s been a long wait for tech billionaire Elon Musk to push into India’s EV market. High import duties have kept Tesla out of India so far. Mr Musk has repeatedly sought to lower those duties, but the government wants the company to manufacture cars locally before considering tax breaks. Now there seems to be an agreement on the horizon. But is India’s EV ecosystem ready for it? Presenter/producer: Devina Gupta


The cost of migration: Europe's response

In the third and final programme of this series on the economics of irregular migration across the Mediterranean, the BBC’s Frey Lindsay sits down with two spokespeople from the European Commission to discuss how irregular crossings across the Mediterranean affect European States, and how the bloc is using its resources to attempt to stop them. Presenter: Frey Lindsay (Image: Italian coast guard vessels patrol alongside the SOS Méditerranée rescue ship The Ocean Viking, near the Italian port of Ravenna. Image credit: BBC)


The cost of migration: The rescue boats

In the second of three programmes, we’ll hear about the increasing running costs facing charities involved in running search-and-rescue operations in the Mediterranean Sea. Inflated fuel prices, cost of living crises and political interference are all driving the costs of the operation up. So can the boats continue to operate? Presenter: Frey Lindsay (Photo: Search and rescue crew onboard the SOS Méditerranée rescue ship The Ocean Viking)


The cost of migration: The journey

In the first of three programmes, the BBC’s Frey Lindsay accompanies the charity rescue vessel the Ocean Viking to explore the myriad costs involved in irregular migration across the Mediterranean. Each year hundreds of thousands of people attempt the extremely dangerous crossing from Libya to Italy, paying smugglers thousands of dollars. We meet some of those people and find out how and why they're making the journey. Presenter/producer: Frey Lindsay (Picture: Rescuees huddle onboard the SOS Méditerranée rescue ship The Ocean Viking. Credit: BBC)


Business Daily meets: Mohit Lad

From losing his job in the 2008 financial crash, to a billion dollar idea. We speak to Mohit Lad, who teamed up with his old college friend Ricardo to trawl through the trash cans of shuttered businesses in Silicon Valley to get the first server for their tech start-up, ThousandEyes. A combination of grit, determination and a shortage of ready cash saw them think outside the box for solutions to grow the business and get customers. Twelve years later, the company described as the 'Google Maps' of the internet is now part of Cisco and is still going strong today. Listen to the full story behind the business and learn about Mohit's vision for a connected world. Presented and produced by Sam Clack. (Image: Mohit Lad speaks during a keynote address on June 07, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Credit: Getty Images)


Syria's broken economy

We hear from people protesting in the government-controlled city of Sweida. Criticism of President Bashar al-Assad has been growing in Sweida since demonstrations began in mid-August over the removal of fuel subsidies. It's the latest measure that has put a strain on people suffering from an economic meltdown. A resident and activist tells us what life is like for him living in the city, plus we hear from a Syrian economist, and a form adviser to President al_Assad now based in the US. Presenter: Ed Butler (Image: People protest in the Syria's southern city of Sweida on September 1, 2023. Credit: Getty Images)


K-Pop: Going green?

K-Pop, short for Korean Popular music, has become a global phenomenon with millions of fans worldwide. It’s a multi-billion dollar industry with 80 million units of physical albums sold in 2022. But a huge chunk of it goes straight to landfill. Why are the fans buying so many albums just to throw them away? We hear from fans, artists and tech companies who are trying to make the industry greener. Presenter: David Cann (Picture: Victon; Credit: IST Entertainment)


Business Daily meets: Desmond Shum

We meet the Chinese property tycoon and multi-millionaire who, along with his then-wife, once moved in the highest echelons of power in Beijing. But the couple fell foul of the Chinese government during Xi Jinping’s inexorable rise to power and in 2017 Desmond’s ex-wife was abducted – he says by the Chinese state. She vanished for two years and even now is restricted in her movements, although she’s never been charged with any crime. Mr Shum now lives in the UK, from where he gave us his extraordinary account of business life at the highest level in China. And he tells us why he thinks the current Chinese economy is rotten to the core. Presenter: Ed Butler (Image: Desmond Shum. Credit: Desmond Shum)


Guyana: The world’s fastest-growing economy

The former British colony in South America boasts the world’s fastest-growing economy at the moment – it expanded by 62 per cent last year, according to the International Monetary Fund. The reason is oil. Since 2015, US oil major Exxon and its partners have made a series of massive discoveries in Guyanese waters, catapulting the country into the world’s top 20 in terms of reserves. That’s bringing billions of dollars into the economy but also challenges: how can Guyana avoid the ‘resource curse’ - the mismanagement and corruption that have afflicted other commodity-rich nations? How can it exploit the oil bonanza with a population of less than a million people? And has the oil come too late anyway – just as the world move away from fossil fuels? We talk to the country’s president Irfaan Ali. Presenter and producer: Gideon Long (Image: President Irfaan Ali. Credit: Keon Blades/ Office of the President Guyana)


Business and Science: Communicating science

Science is all around us but a lot of it can be difficult to understand. Gareth Mitchell speaks to people building careers around helping make science understandable to the general public. We speak to a YouTuber making music about science, a science festival organiser and a science communication consultant who works with different businesses to make science more engaging and easy to access. Producer: Hannah Mullane Presenter: Gareth Mitchell (Image: Ellie Mackay at work. Credit: Ellie Mackay)


Business and science: Quantum computing around the world

It's a rapidly emerging technology that has the potential to solve problems at an incredible pace. At the moment its uses are limited but that hasn’t stopped investment rolling into the sector and businesses from making money as the technology develops around the world. Gareth Mitchell speaks to three different quantum businesses to discuss its viability and its risk. Presenter: Gareth Mitchell Producer: Hannah Mullane (Image: Quantum entanglement. Credit: Getty Images)


Business and science: What is quantum computing?

We travel to a facility in the south of England to see one of the super-fast computers in action. We’ll find out what quantum computing has the potential to do, what its going to take to make that a reality and importantly whether quantum businesses are making any money... Presenter: Gareth Mitchell Producer: Hannah Mullane (Image: A quantum computer. Credit: Oxford Quantum Circuits)


Business and science: How risky is SynBio?

For all the exciting developments in the synthetic biology industry, there are also concerns. People can edit genes in their garages these days, so who’s regulating this space? Plus - we’ll hear about the exciting new business models with biology at their core, including one of the first synbio businesses to trade as a public stock - Ginkgo Bioworks. Presenter: Gareth Mitchell Producer: Izzy Greenfield (Image: A petri dish in a lab. Credit: Getty Images)


Business and science: What you need to know about SynBio

In this week’s series focusing on business and science, we start things off by looking at the world of synthetic biology. The industry is estimated to be worth around $30bn in the next few years, but how is that money actually made? We speak to businesses across the world to find out how they’ve taken the building blocks of synthetic biology and engineered them into products that we use on a daily basis. Presenter: Gareth Mitchell Producer: Izzy Greenfield (Image: A scientist working with lab grown meat. Credit: Getty Images)


Cutting waste in the beauty industry

Many of us have drawers and boxes full of beauty products that we never end up finishing. We meet the Nordic start-ups who are trying to cut some of that waste by changing the way we shop. We find out about tech which personalises products, and then makes it 'on demand' rather than in bulk. And will the use of AI actually end up encouraging people to buy more, rather than less? Presented and produced by Maddy Savage (Image: A scientist at Swedish tech start-up Ellure. Credit: BBC)


The row over Uruguay's pulp mills

Does the paper industry use too much water? As concern about plastic waste grows, many companies have switched from plastic packaging to paper, but how environmentally friendly is paper production? Uruguay, in South America, has been suffering from drought and its forestry and pulp milling industries are coming under increasing scrutiny for the amount of water used. We’ve been to an enormous new pulp mill in central Uruguay, capable of producing more than two million tonnes of pulp every year, to find out more. Producer / presenter: Grace Livingstone (Image: Water protests in Uruguay; Credit: BBC)


The importance of sleep

How does sleep relate to your job, your income, or your socio-economic status? We look at the impact of a good, and bad night’s rest. We discuss the factors affecting sleep, including access to health care, where and how you live, and how that might influence other aspects of your life. Plus we look at the growing market in devices to ‘cure’ sleep problems. Producer and presenter: Elizabeth Hotson (Image: A man in bed in a deep sleep. Credit: Getty Images)


The UNESCO effect

Delegates will soon descend on Saudi Arabia for perhaps the most consequential meeting in UNESCO’s history. With an extended agenda after last year’s cancellation, it’s the first World Heritage Committee meeting to be held in-person for four years. In this episode we examine the so-called ‘UNESCO effect’ - and hear from entrepreneurs around Angkor Wat, in Cambodia, about the mixed consequences of its listing. We also hear from officials in Liverpool, in England, about UNESCO's decision to remove World Heritage status from the city's historic centre and docklands. Presenter / producer: Laura Heighton-Ginns Image: Angkor Wat; Credit: Getty Images


Ireland's data centre boom

These tech powerhouses bring in money and jobs but can be environmentally problematic and in Ireland data centres account for almost a fifth of the electricity consumption. We explore how Ireland can keep hold of this valuable industry and make sure it's energy supply isn't affected. Producer / presenter: Leanna Byrne (Image: Data centre; Credit: Getty Images)