December 22, 2004

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REDUX: 2004 Annual Family Report

First posted: March 25th, 2004

Finally after much pressure from the various authorities (hereafter collectively referred to as the "grandparents") I present the 2004 Annual Family Report: Overseas and Over There.

Thank you fellow shareholders for attending this year's Annual General Meeting. This report intends to summarise the key events in the company for the previous calendar year. 2003 was an important year in the company's (herein referred to as the "family") development. Since the family was started in December 1998 (please see 1998's Annual Report: The Wedding, The Honeymoon and Real Life) it show consistent growth in line with our core values. We have stuck with our core competencies of recreation and procreation with a strong stable of future prospects. Going forward 2004 and beyond are looking solid and the family expects to continue to exceed market expectations.


The Mrs M division continues to remain the main driver of the family. Fulfilling all roles to the highest standards of the industry, this division is truly a world class organisation in its own right. Be it cooking, cleaning, organising social events, keeping the other divisions in line, keeping the HQ in order and the other important functions of this division consistently exceed the targets set. The family is extremely lucky to have such a talented Chairwoman who can do several things at once. Her sporting group has proven capable to compete at top levels in tennis after re-entering the market following an extended absence. The organisation of the family's internationalisation in late 2003 followed hard on the massive early 2003 move to larger headquarters (see the 2003 Annual Report: My that's a lot of boxes) saw the division stretched to its limit and yet it came through with flying colours. There is no doubt in your CEO's mind that without this division the company would cease to exist in any meaningful form. There is also no doubt in your CEO's mind that at crucial times this division has provided your CEO with much needed support. Additionally acting as main tour guide and hostess for the various overseas visitors who come to see the family at work and play is handled with much aplomb. At the time of writing this division is in the process of developing the newest division in the family, at the moment known as Project Ubul. Amazingly this has not constrained the division's performance in the slightest.

The JC and PB divisions astound with their rapid growth. Following a recent merger these two divisions now share a common head office, despite an overnight noise problem with JC's area. These two divisions work extremely well both together and separately and show stunning potential for the future. JC's mastery of all movies ever made by Pixar along with her mastery of numbers (up to 2) show the kind of genius we are working with. She has taken the expansion into pre-school like a Shrek to mud. PB's curly hair line has seen more photographs per day than any other gweilo child of her age since the move to Hong Kong in early 2003. Both divisions coped well with the major change of country without a whisper of complaint. They continue to experience teething problems (literally) as any greenfields site is likely to do. Occasionally there are rivalries between these areas, but these tend to be resolved without intervention and in amicable ways (these include clops over the head, fingers in the face and the old favourite leg pulling). That said it is not too early for this CEO to say that based on his years of experience we are developing two world beating divisions.

The Misti division has shown recent signs of turn around after a much needed injection of both care and capital. She has regained much of her old pep and vim, meaning no leg is safe from her effervescent attentions upon entering the HQ. Having this division back to full strength and here with us in the international HQ enables the other divisions to continue working solidly and happily.

As for your CEO he has happily presided over an operation that mostly looks after itself. Under the guiding hand of Chairwoman Mrs M the machine that is the family is well-oiled. This is just as well given the significant amounts of time your CEO's attention is diverted by his other activity, being work (OK, yes, and blogging). Bedding down the internationalisation of the family has proved to be far easier than this CEO expected. The new domicile of the family has proven a far more hospitable and family-friendly place of business than the CEO ever expected. The side activity of work has exceeded expectations and having the other divisions running smoothly eases the CEO's mind immensely.

Profits and Balance Sheet

The move to the new domicile has proven financially rewarding in some senses. Moving from a high taxing to low taxing country has assisted cash flow and enabled the previously stretched debt ratios to be brought under control. The financial recovery plan (see the 2002 Annual Report: We're up to our eyeballs in it) remains in place and the future goals so established remain achievable. Indeed there is now potential to make some acquisitions, such as the all important LCD TV (according to your CEO) or food (according to the Chairwoman). In other senses there have been the inevitable financial drags but inevitably they are for good causes or important reasons. The family financial situation continues to improve and your Chairwoman and CEO remain confidant that the key financial ratios and positions are poised for ongoing improvement. Previous attention to costs has left the family in the happy position of being able to fund such future developments such as JC and PB's education and Ubul's arrival without relying on credit card debt.

The Future and Summary

As mentioned earlier the Mrs M division is working on the continued expansion of the enterprise. With two such immensely talented young divisions already, the track record is there to expect only good things from the third division. Your Chairwoman and CEO continue to work closely together to run and improve the company.

Overall all divisions and operations this year have made this one darn proud CEO. We have the very best company in the world, bar none, and it will only get better from here. I love my job and I love my divisions and I have no qualms about continuing to work hard to keep this successful endeavour moving onwards to bigger and better things.

posted by Simon on 12.22.04 at 12:47 AM in the


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Simon, very good stuff, I am about to depart the States for an expat experience down under, specifically melbourne, anything I should watch out for in particular? Or just general words of wisdom for those embarking on the expat life?

posted by: Greg on 12.22.04 at 02:50 PM [permalink]

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