Toptal Finance Blog

The Toptal Finance Blog is a hub for in-depth studies and analysis on all facets of finance, ranging from innovative strategies on raising capital to detailed coverage of new finance trends and technologies. Subscribe for daily updates.
Melissa Lin
Advanced PowerPoint Presentation Tips & Hacks

Many have a love-hate relationship with Microsoft’s PowerPoint. While super flexible, the tool can also be manual, tedious, and all-consuming, especially for the uninitiated. Authored by a former management consultant and finance expert, this article will help every user—from the beginner to the advanced operator—smooth out some of their points of friction and become an expert-level user of the application.

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Solon Molho
The Greek Debt Crisis Explained

After several months of relative quiet, Greece is back in the spotlight as the latest repayment deadline on its bailout debt comes due in July. We take the opportunity to review the root causes of the crisis, what has been happening since it kicked off, and what needs to be done to resolve the situation.

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Melissa Lin
Is a Cashless Society the New Reality?

A cashless society is approaching, with progress particularly pronounced in certain parts of the world. This piece examines global payment trends, as well as benefits and drawbacks of a cashless economy. It also includes case studies on India and Sweden, two countries already transitioning to a cashless future.

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Rajeev Jeyakumar
The State of Fintech in 2017

The financial services industry is seeing a wave of innovation that is bringing with it new technology, but also a need to attract and develop talent that have the skillset needed to operate in this changing environment. This article delves into some of the most important trends affecting the industry.

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Ellen Su
Power Pivot for Excel Tutorial: Top Use Cases and Examples

With the arrival and growing ubiquity of big data, Excel, as a data-mining and processing tool has been pushed to its limits—reflected in its dated 1,048,576 row hard limit and the application’s processing speed slowing to a crawl. As of 2010, Microsoft released a Power Pivot function that transformed the scope and usefulness of Excel where the extraction, combination, and analysis of large datasets are concerned.

Using live cases, Finance Expert Ellen Su explores in detail how to master Power Pivot and explores its hidden advantages as a big data tool.

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Tayfun Uslu
SaaS Pricing Models - Pricing Strategy Examples and Best Practices

Pricing strategy is one of the most important financial levers that companies have at their disposal to influence the financial success of their business. However, it is not an easy task. This article analyzes SaaS software pricing strategies and finds that several of the operational characteristics of the business model generate some very useful pricing advantages that can help drive financial performance.

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Natallia Chykina
Open Source Software - Investable Business Model or Not?

Open-source software is a catalyst for growth and change in the IT industry, and one can’t overestimate its importance to the sector. In recent years, there has been a surge in venture capital dollars pouring into the sector. In this article, we analyse whether recent valuations make sense, and whether the open-source model lends itself to the returns profile that venture capital investors look for.

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Alex Graham
Term Sheet Templates - Clauses to Look Out For During Negotiation

Despite the large increase in resources aimed at helping founders navigate the fundraising process, many still struggle when it comes to particular term sheet clauses that can have unintended consequences if misunderstood.

These clauses can lead to founders losing control of their company or payout structures upon exit down the road, regardless of how much capital they succeeded in raising. This in-depth post by Toptal Finance Expert and VC Alex Graham fills the knowledge gap by breaking down the term sheet’s trickiest clauses and the implications thereof.

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Ryan Downie
Getting the Most from Equity Research - Lessons from a Former Research Analyst

Equity research provides a very useful function in our current financial markets. Nevertheless, the profession has come under fire in recent years.

In this post, Toptal Finance Expert Ryan Downie details how to utilize research reports more effectively. Additionally, he outlines the equity research’s main value for both sophisticated and retail investors and highlights the pitfalls of this profession, its causes, and how you should evaluate research in order to avoid these issues.

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Scott Brown
Hiring a Startup CFO - When to Hire a CFO and Why You Need One

For young companies, the value of a full-time CFO is hotly contested. At the debate’s core, is the trade-off between the sheer expense of an experienced CFO at such an early stage (not cheap), and the value said individual posits to confer where growth, strategy, fundraising, and operations are concerned.

Borrowing elements from Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and adapting them for this purpose, Toptal Finance Expert Scott Brown introduces a unique framework for how startups might go about thinking through and making this decision.

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