CUSTOMER ACQUISITION COST Definition

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CUSTOMER ACQUISITION COST is calculated by dividing total acquisition expenses by total new customers. However, there are different opinions on what constitutes an acquisition expense, e.g. rebates and special discounts do not represent an actual cash outlay, yet they have an impact on cash (and, presumably, on the customer). There is no set standard, i.e. acquisition costs vary across industries. When acquisition data is available, it is best to try to determine if you are comparing apples to apples. This is not easy, as customer acquisition data is usually scarce and the methodology is often questionable.

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NET PRESENT VALUE (NPV) is a method used in evaluating investments, whereby the net present value of all cash outflows (such as the cost of the investment) and cash inflows (returns) is calculated using a given discount rate, usually REQUIRED RATE OF RETURN. An investment is acceptable if the NPV is positive. In capital budgeting, the discount rate used is called the HURDLE RATE and is usually equal to the INCREMENTAL COST OF CAPITAL.

MR see MEMORANDUM FOR RECORD.

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