San Jose State University
BUS.173B – Case Problems Finance
Preliminary Syllabus – FALL 2004
Revised May 24, 2004

 

Prof.

Anu Vuorikoski-Bullis

Office:                                         

BT 961

Telephone-voicemail

408 924 1341

FAX

408 924 3463

Office Hours

Monday and Wednesday
11:30-12:00, 2:45-4:00 AND 5:30-6:00

 

Email:

vuorik_a@cob.sjsu.edu

Required Materials

 

Recommended extra book:

 



 

Any 170 book, any 173A book
Purchased cases (at bookstore), 10K etc. downloaded from the Internet

Erich Helfert, Techniques of Financial Analysis. McGrawHill. Download of the TFAT templates. Buying Financial Genome is optional.  Check www.modernsoft.com or amazon.com for this book. I will not order it through Spartan due to the fact that many of you will not buy it and I cannot estimate quantity

Class Meets:  

Monday/Wednesday

Monday

 

1:30 pm BBC Room 320

6 pm BBC Room 107

 

This class is an “application” course and requires significant preparation time and your full attention during class time. You are intelligent adults with choices to make. You cannot not do the work and expect a passing grade. There are reading and research assignments, and cases that are due before they are discussed in class (reference Chapters to previous classes’ textbooks provided). 

PREREQUISITES
BUS. 170 required with C or above. This will NOT be waived under any circumstances and transcripts may be requested. Failure to meet the pre-requisite will cause a student to be dropped from the class.

BUS. 173A with C or above.  This may be waived only for students with a high grade in 170, but it is highly recommended that you take 173A first, or concurrently, as you may need to work harder in an already challenging class if you have not taken it.  

COURSE DESCRIPTION

The objective of financial management is to maximize the intrinsic value of the firm (Present Value of Future Cash Flows) or Shareholder wealth by maximizing stock value.  Thus a financial manager must understand not only what determines a firm's value, but also what actions, will increase value and what actions will not. This course is an application course for financial management concepts and tools you have been exposed to in previous classes. It will bridge you towards being ready to use the tools in a job setting.

It is presented from the perspective of the corporate CFO, and will investigate management decisions from a practical viewpoint. Given the current environment, ethical issues will be explored, as well as the plans for addressing those (time allowing). The instructor is a former Chief Financial Officer.

Taking the Financial Managers' point of view in a firm, we will explore the following by means of real Case situations in various types of industries and sizes of companies:

Assessment of Financial Condition, Financial Strategy, Cash Requirements. Sensitivity Analysis

Decisions regarding capital projects, such as acquisitions. Focus mostly on a growth industry; Valuing, Financing etc.; Debt or equity financing? Cost? Look at it from investor and company point of view.

Influencing Business Operations. Emerging industry. The role of the Finance function. Going Public? Should you or shouldn't you? When is the right time.?

COURSE FLOW

1. Student either reads assigned material and summarizes it before class in which it is discussed or prepares the case analysis to be discussed . Summaries and case analyses submitted by e-mail.
2. Professor leads discussion on the review topic or case, possibly reviewing one or two examples of her own as needed for the newer material. Active student participation is expected.
3. At the end of each module, the concepts will be tested in review exams

4. We will review exam answers in the session following. Exams will not be returned due to past ex-post-facto cheating incidents but you can review them during office hours, preferably within 2 weeks of the exam.
 
Students tell me it that the course IS a lot of work, but provides lots of practical learning.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

To gain an application view of Finance topics and the relationships of finance to other functional areas in a company and to providers of financing.

This class is a Finance transition course in managerial finance for graduating seniors.  The focus is on financial strategy and internal operations in companies.  The format of the class will start with lecture-type concept review and pre-view of new material and sharing of information by the professor based on her 20 years of experience at all levels of Financial and Operational Management. 

It will cover information and problems solved from first level analyst up to CFO. The focus will be on real world problem definition and solving using cases and team project presentations as a background for discussion.  Certain directed Brigham Finance, Harvard Business School Publishing and real life cases will be used to illustrate the types of analyses applicable.

The philosophy of the course is:  Practice, not observation, makes perfect. The knowledge gained by practicing will make you successful in the first post-graduation finance job (as well as earning a good grade in this class).

Students are a key part of the success of this class and will be asked to share their expectations and experience on class learning and effectiveness.

 

 

See summary schedule and grading schedule below (an Excel format Calendar is also posted for you). Grading will be based on end of session points using a combination of % of max, % of highest score, and "Break Points" (to be explained in class). I grade from A+ to F. No Incomplete grades will be given without serious and compelling reasons.  Serious and compelling does not include having a bad grade. Documentation is required for serious and compelling medical reasons. Grades are NOT negotiable, so please do not even ask.

 

*    Factors such as homework submission on time, class participation, improvement on examinations, rank in class, or others will be considered in the grading process.

 

STUDENT RESPONSIBILITIES

1.   Read the assigned material and prepare cases ahead of the class session in which they will be discussed. BONUS points will be awarded on a random check basis for homework submitted on time for dates selected (after the final exam presentations).

 

2.   If you miss class, you should get the assignments and class notes from one of your peers. Do not ask the professor: you should have been in class.

 

3.   You must take the midterms, case exam and final examination presentations when they are scheduled.  Problems with taking the exams on the appropriate dated must be discussed with the instructor before the date.  If you must miss one for a legitimate, approved reason, that examination's value will be transferred to the next Midterm.  Under very rare and unusual circumstances, a make-up examination may be arranged.  This highly unlikely occurrence will be at the totally arbitrary discretion of your professor.

 

  1. If you wish to drop the class, you must do so by the drop deadline. The professor is not automatically dropping anyone.

     

STEPS TO MAKING THE GRADE:

1.   Attend class pro-actively and ready to learn and ask for clarifications when something is unclear. If you have a question others will, too. All questions are good questions.

 

2.   Complete ALL assignments. Do not expect to “learn by viewing/hearing” (i.e. by listening to the professor talk), expect that you must “learn by doing” (i.e. reading all the materials, asking questions when you don’t understand, doing the assigned cases..  Remember: You get out of a class that which you put into it. Effort (=time spent in and out of class) has its rewards in terms of learning outcomes and exam performance as well as opportunities to shine in a job setting. Professor can facilitate your learning, but you must do the work.

 

  1. Allocate enough time in your schedule to accommodate Steps 1 and 2. This is absolutely critical.

 

 

POLICIES & PHILOSOPHIES

I do not allow cheat sheets in review exams. Nor are they open book. No exams will be thrown out. All exams are questions and calculations (no multiple choice). I prefer that you use your calculator although Present Value Tables may be used. On midterms partial credit may be available.

Due to having taken 6 Six-Hour closed book exams on everything ever learned at the end of high school at 18 - all essays and problems, as well as several multi-hour multi-test professional certification exams also in essay/problem format I believe that it is fair to expect you to have learned a lot of the material covered in previous classes, so that we can move on to the application and bridging to the real word.  

 

However, the work does require time (all A&F professors expect 2-3x the hours in class outside of class, meaning 5-7.5 hrs a week on an average, some weeks a bit more, some a bit less) that some students do not have due to course overload, family/social, or work commitments.

 

Anyone taking a professional certification exam (CPA, CMA, CFM, CFA etc) during the semester will be exempted from the review exam following that exam (with proof of having taken it).

 

The presentations are expected to be professional (ready for the “real world”).

 

GRADING

 

MIDTERMS: There will be 2 Review Exams. They will be questions and calculations (no multiple choice). They will not be returned to you, but you can review yours during the next 3 office hour dates  after the midterm grades have been published. An attempt will be made to grade each exam within a week of the date of the exam.

 

CASE EXAM: Will be similar to cases we have done in class and will be a couple of weeks before the end of the semester.

 

FINAL EXAMINATION PRESENTATIONS: Your last presentation is your final examination.

OTHER TWO TEAM PROJECTS: There are team presentations at the end of each module.

Case Study Group Projects: Will be presented in class, to the class, by one or more of the team, as selected by the team leader.   ALL team members are required to participate in team preparations and will be partially individually and partially team graded. Presentation dates will be assigned by lottery. First project topic will be assigned.

Individual work pieces can be in Excel or PowerPoint but ALL final presentations must be in PowerPoint format in the same font and style. Excel sheets must be incorporated into PowerPoint.  Extensive outside references must be footnoted on the overheads. Speaker notes must be in good English and incorporated into PowerPoint. Handouts of the Presentations for the class are optional but are strongly encouraged.

A copy of the Group presentation in the PowerPoint format that gives speaker notes as well as the overhead itself must be given to the professor, with names of entire team included before the presentation on the day of Presentation or earlier.  Professor will keep this copy, so each team member should print a reference copy. NO late submissions will be allowed. Grading criteria will be further discussed in class. Members of the team receive the combination project grade of individual submission, and team presentation. Team member participation feedback will be solicited to identify anyone deserving bonus points.

It is the students' responsibility to demonstrate proficiency and understanding of the subject matter through class contributions and team presentations. An important element of the course is demonstrating a thorough understanding of key financial ratios, terms and abbreviations used in business (i.e. WACC, ROI, PE Ratio, Market Cap, Beta etc.)

Teams will be self selected unless otherwise requested by the majority of the class. There will be a mandatory pre-review meeting with the professor. There will be peer review of participation.

 

CALENDAR & GRADING SUMMARY (Day Section First, Then Eve)

Please print the Excel version that has complete and better formatted information.

 

  FALL 2004 - Business 173B Schedule Monday/Wednesday 75 minute class    
         
Session Date Topic (Case Analysis or Review summary due before class today) Keown Reference Brigham Reference
  Module I: Analysis and Forecasting for Funding needs      
1 Wednesday, August 25, 2004 Course Introduction/Intros    
2 Monday, August 30, 2004 Review of Finance, Financial Analysis/Forec  Ch 1,2,3,4,16 Ch, 1,2,6,7,8
3 Wednesday, September 01, 2004 Forecasting Case (1st One in Case Book) Ch14 Ch 7, 8
  Monday, September 06, 2004 LABOR DAY - NO CLASSES    
4 Wednesday, September 08, 2004 Real Company Analysis/Forecasting Exercise    
  Financial Analysis/Forecasting Presentations      
5 Monday, September 13, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
6 Wednesday, September 15, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
7 Monday, September 20, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
8 Wednesday, September 22, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
  Module II: Analysis and Forecasting for Asset Valuation      
9 Monday, September 27, 2004 Valuing Assets: Review of Time Value of Money, Risk Return, Stocks and Bonds Ch 5,6,7,8 Ch 2,3,4,5
10 Wednesday, September 29, 2004 Valuing Projects/Options: Capital Budgeting Case (1st One in Case Book) Ch 9, 10 Ch 11, 12, 13
11 Monday, October 04, 2004 Analysis & Forecasting Review Exam    
12 Wednesday, October 06, 2004 Cost of Capital Case (West Coast Semiconductor) Ch 11 Ch 9
13 Monday, October 11, 2004 Merger Case (Computer Concepts)   Ch 10, 25
14 Wednesday, October 13, 2004 Real Company Analysis Merger Exercise    
15 Monday, October 18, 2004 Team Time ( Presentation)    
  Project Valuation Presentations      
16 Wednesday, October 20, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
17 Monday, October 25, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
18 Wednesday, October 27, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
19 Monday, November 01, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
  Module II: Analysis and Forecasting for Start-Ups      
20 Wednesday, November 03, 2004 Start Up Valuation Primer    
21 Monday, November 08, 2004 Start Up Valuation Case (TBD)    
22 Wednesday, November 10, 2004 Financing Options Case: Julian Eastheimer    
23 Monday, November 15, 2004 Asset Valuation Review Exam    
24 Wednesday, November 17, 2004 Team Time (Final Exam Pres Prep/Minutes)    
25 Monday, November 22, 2004 Case Exam (Not on Start-ups)    
26 Wednesday, November 24, 2004 Team Time (Final Exam Pres Prep/Minutes)    
27 Monday, November 29, 2004 Case Exam Answers/Harvard Case Part I   Ch 17
28 Wednesday, December 01, 2004 Harvard Case on IPOs - Part II    
  Final Exam (Start-up) Presentations      
29 Monday, December 06, 2004 Quarter of Presentations (ALL  MUST ATTEND)    
30 Wednesday, December 08, 2004 Quarter of Presentations (ALL  MUST ATTEND)    
  Exam Day (See Exam Schedule) Half of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
         
         
         
  Grading Points Summary      
  Analysis & Forecasting Exam 200    
  Valuing Assets & Projects Exam 250    
  Case Exam 250    
  Forecasting Presentations (Indiv/Pres/Qual) 75    
  Asset Valuating Presentations (I/P/Q) 75    
  Final Exam (Start-up) Presentations (I/P/Q) 150    
  TOTAL 1000    
         
  On presentations: each team submits one e-mail consisiting of:      
  1. Individual pieces of work      
  2. Team PowerPoint Presentation      
  3. Back-up material      
         
  Presentations will be evaluated      
  33% of I submitting individual contribution  This applies to individuals and is guaranteed if submitted    
  33% on preparing presentation This applies to all team members and is guaranteed if submitted    
  33% on presentation quality/correctness This applies to all team members and is va    
         
  Bonus Points Awarded at the end of semester on random draw basis    
  Homework      
  Participation      
  LOST Points      
  Not submitting individual pieces of team projects      
  Not attending all Final Exam Presentations - 15 points each day      
         
  Anticipated (BUT NOT GUARANTEED) Grading 90% and above    
  900-1000  80% and above    
  800-899   60% and above    
  600-799  50% and above    
  500-599  Below 50%    
  Below 500       
         

 

 

 

  FALL 2004 - Business 173B Schedule Monday Night Class (Run 6p to 8p without break - courteous biobreaks ok)    
         
Session Date Topic (Case Analysis or Review summary due before class today) Keown Reference Brigham Reference
  Module I: Analysis and Forecasting for Funding needs      
1 Monday, August 30, 2004 Course Introduction/Intros    
2 Monday, August 30, 2004 Review of Finance, Financial Analysis/Forec  Ch 1,2,3,4,16 Ch, 1,2,6,7,8
  Monday, September 06, 2004 LABOR DAY - NO CLASSES    
3 Monday, September 13, 2004 Forecasting Case (1st One in Case Book) Ch14 Ch 7, 8
4 Monday, September 13, 2004 Real Company Analysis/Forecasting Exercise    
  Financial Analysis/Forecasting Presentations      
5 Monday, September 20, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
6 Monday, September 20, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
7 Monday, September 27, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
8 Monday, September 27, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
9 Monday, October 04, 2004 Analysis&Forecasting Review Exam    
  Module II: Analysis and Forecasting for Asset Valuation      
10 Monday, October 04, 2004 Team Time ( Presentation)    
11 Monday, October 11, 2004 Valuing Assets: Review of Time Value of Money, Risk Return, Stocks and Bonds Ch 5,6,7,8  
12 Monday, October 11, 2004 Valuing Projects/Options: Capital Budgeting Case (1st One in Case Book) Ch 9, 10  
13 Monday, October 18, 2004 Cost of Capital Case (West Coast Semiconductor) Ch 11 Ch 9
14 Monday, October 18, 2004 Merger Case (Computer Concepts)   Ch 10, 25
15 Monday, October 25, 2004 Real Company Analysis Merger Exercise    
  Project Valuation Presentations      
16 Monday, October 25, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
17 Monday, November 01, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
18 Monday, November 01, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
19 Monday, November 08, 2004 1/4 of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
20 Monday, November 08, 2004 Start Up Valuation Primer    
21 Monday, November 15, 2004 Asset Valuation Review Exam    
22 Monday, November 15, 2004 Team Time (Final Exam Pres Prep/Minutes)    
  Module II: Analysis and Forecasting for Start-Ups      
23 Monday, November 22, 2004 Case Exam (Not on Start-ups)    
24 Monday, November 22, 2004 Team Time (Final Exam Pres Prep/Minutes)    
25 Monday, November 29, 2004 Start Up Valuation Case (TBD)    
26 Monday, November 29, 2004 Case Exam Answers/Harvard Case Part I    
27 Monday, December 06, 2004 Harvard Case on IPOs - Part II   Ch 17
28 Monday, December 06, 2004 Boston Beer (A)    
  Final Exam (Start-up) Presentations      
29 Monday, December 13, 2004 Quarter of Presentations (ALL  MUST ATTEND)    
30 Monday, December 13, 2004 Quarter of Presentations (ALL  MUST ATTEND)    
  Exam Day (See Exam Schedule) Half of Presentations (ALL MUST ATTEND)    
         
         
         
  Grading Points Summary      
  Analysis & Forecasting Exam 200    
  Valuing Assets & Projects Exam 250    
  Case Exam 250    
  Forecasting Presentations (Indiv/Pres/Qual) 75    
  Asset Valuating Presentations (I/P/Q) 75    
  Final Exam (Start-up) Presentations (I/P/Q) 150    
  TOTAL 1000    
         
  On presentations: each team submits one e-mail consisiting of:      
  1. Individual pieces of work      
  2. Team PowerPoint Presentation      
  3. Back-up material      
         
  Presentations will be evaluated      
  33% of I submitting individual contribution  This applies to individuals and is guaranteed if submitted    
  33% on preparing presentation This applies to all team members and is guaranteed if submitted    
  33% on presentation quality/correctness This applies to all team members and is va    
         
  Bonus Points Awarded at the end of semester on random draw basis    
  Homework      
  Participation      
  LOST Points      
  Not submitting individual pieces of team projects      
  Not attending all Final Exam Presentations - 15 points each day      
         
  Anticipated (BUT NOT GUARANTEED) Grading 90% and above    
  900-1000  80% and above    
  800-899   60% and above    
  600-799  50% and above    
  500-599  Below 50%    
  Below 500       
         

 

College of Business Policies and Procedures

 

To ensure that every student, current and future, who takes courses in the Boccardo Business Center has the opportunity to experience an environment that is safe, attractive, and otherwise conducive to learning, the College of Business at San José State has established the following policies:

 

Eating

Eating and drinking (except water) are prohibited in the Boccardo Business Center.  Students with food will be asked to leave the building.  Students who disrupt the course by eating and do not leave the building will be referred to the Judicial Affairs Officer of the University.

 

Cell Phones

Students will turn their cell phones off or put them on vibrate mode while in class.  They will not answer their phones in class.  Students whose phones disrupt the course and do not stop when requested by the instructor will be referred to the Judicial Affairs Officer of the University.

 

Computer Use

In the classroom, faculty will allow students to use computers only for class-related activities.  These include activities such as taking notes on the lecture underway, following the lecture on Web-based PowerPoint slides that the instructor has posted, and finding Web sites to which the instructor directs students at the time of the lecture.  Students who use their computers for other activities or who abuse the equipment in any way, at a minimum, will be asked to leave the class and will lose participation points for the day, and, at a maximum, will be referred to the Judicial Affairs Officer of the University for disrupting the course.  (Such referral can lead to suspension from the University.)  Students are urged to report to their instructors computer use that they regard as inappropriate (i.e., used for activities that are not class related).

 

Academic Honesty

Faculty will make every reasonable effort to foster honest academic conduct in their courses.  They will secure examinations and their answers so that students cannot have prior access to them and proctor examinations to prevent students from copying or exchanging information.  They will be on the alert for plagiarism.  Faculty will provide additional information, ideally on the green sheet, about other unacceptable procedures in class work and examinations.  Students who are caught cheating will be reported to the Judicial Affairs Officer of the University, as prescribed by Academic Senate Policy S98-1. 

Mission

The College of Business is the institution of opportunity, providing innovative business education and applied research for the Silicon Valley region.