Enterprise

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Enterprise

A business firm.

Enterprise

A company or any other business.

business

or

firm

or

enterprise

a producer or distributor of GOODS or SERVICES. The economic form of a business consists of:
  1. a horizontal business, a business which specializes in a single activity, for example the production of bread. See HORIZONTAL INTEGRATION;
  2. a vertical business, a business which combines two or more successively-related vertical activities, for example flour milling and bread production. See VERTICAL INTEGRATION;
  3. a conglomerate or diversified business, a business that is engaged in a number of unrelated production activities, for example bread production and the supply of financial services.

See DIVERSIFICATION.

A business can take a number of ‘legal’ forms:

  1. a sole proprietorship, a business owned and controlled by a single person;
  2. a partnership, a business owned and controlled by two or more persons who are parties to a partnership agreement;
  3. a JOINT-STOCK COMPANY, a business owned by a group of SHAREHOLDERS and whose capital is divided up into a number of shares;
  4. a cooperative, a business owned and controlled by a group of workers. See WORKERS' COOPERATIVE.

For purposes of COMPANY LAW and the application of many company taxes and allowances (for example, CORPORATION TAX and CAPITAL ALLOWANCES) a distinction is made between ‘small and medium-sized’ companies and ‘large’ companies. Small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) are defined as follows (Companies Act, 1995):

  1. annual turnover of less than £11.2 million;
  2. gross assets of under £5.6 million;
  3. not more than 250 employees In 2000 there were some 3,662,000 firms in the UK, of which 80% were run by the self-employed. Most businesses are small with around 3,630,000 firms employing under 50 people; 24,600 firms employed between 50 and 249 people, while only 6,700 firms employed over 250 people. However, in terms of their contribution to gross domestic product (GDP) firms employing over 50 people contributed in excess of 75% of total output.

The total stock of firms fluctuates from year to year depending on the net balance of new start-up businesses and those businesses ceasing trading (see INSOLVENCY). Generally the total stock of firms increases when the economy is expanding (or as a result of some ‘special’ factor, e.g. the surge in newly established INTERNET businesses) and falls in a recession.

A final point to note is that with the increasing globalization of the world economy MULTINATIONAL ENTERPRISES are becoming more prevalent in economies such as the UK.

enterprise

see FIRM.
References in classic literature ?
Beside the regular operations of these formidable rivals, there have been from time to time desultory enterprises, or rather experiments, of minor associations, or of adventurous individuals beside roving bands of independent trappers, who either hunt for themselves, or engage for a single season, in the service of one or other of the main companies.
IN A RECENT WORK we have given an account of the grand enterprise of Mr.
As the journals, on which I chiefly depended, had been kept by men of business, intent upon the main object of the enterprise, and but little versed in science, or curious about matters not immediately bearing upon their interest, and as they were written often in moments of fatigue or hurry, amid the inconveniences of wild encampments, they were often meagre in their details, furnishing hints to provoke rather than narratives to satisfy inquiry.
The facts, however, will prove to be linked and banded together by one grand scheme, devised and conducted by a master spirit; one set of characters, also, continues throughout, appearing occasionally, though sometimes at long intervals, and the whole enterprise winds up by a regular catastrophe; so that the work, without any labored attempt at artificial construction, actually possesses much of that unity so much sought after in works of fiction, and considered so important to the interest of every history.
As he had pyramided in Dawson City, he now pyramided in Oakland; but he did it with the knowledge that it was a stable enterprise rather than a risky placer-mining boom.
Dull Emma Jane had never seemed to Rebecca so near, so dear, so tried and true; and Rebecca, to Emma Jane's faithful heart, had never been so brilliant, so bewildering, so fascinating, as in this visit together, with its intimacy, its freedom, and the added delights of an exciting business enterprise.
His fancy kindled early at the recitals he read of daring enterprise and maritime adventure, and he followed with enthusiasm the discoveries that signalized the first part of the nineteenth century.
This was an essential condition to the success of the enterprise, and continued actively to engage the public attention.
Their president, Barbicane, the promoter of the enterprise, having consulted the astronomers of the Cambridge Observatory upon the subject, took all necessary means to ensure the success of this extraordinary enterprise, which had been declared practicable by the majority of competent judges.
Things stood thus, when an incident took place which increased the interest attached to this great enterprise a hundredfold.
You will rejoice to hear that no disaster has accompanied the commencement of an enterprise which you have regarded with such evil forebodings.
I can, even now, remember the hour from which I dedicated myself to this great enterprise.