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January 6, 2009

Written by Bob Meyer, Editor of BarterNews

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From the desk of Bob Meyer...01/06/2009

Microsoft Uses Barter Strategy To Increase Market Share

Microsoft is putting pressure on Adobe Systems� dominance of web design software. Microsoft�s competing software, Silverlight, has been aggressively courting the operators of popular websites and advertising agencies that are Adobe�s core customers. They�re doing so by bartering �development and support,� which reduces the new client�s costs tremendously.

Virginia�s Bill Meacham Sees Big Jump In Trades

Bill Meacham, owner of two Virginia-based trade exchanges, says he saw a 50% increase in activity for November over the same month a year earlier.

CBS News Airs Barter Segment

The CBS Evening News on December 31 had a segment on �The Business of Bartering.� Several direct trades were illustrated, as well as a story of a trucking company that utilized the IMSBarter exchange to save its business.

Credit Card Companies To Reduce Credit Lines By $2 Trillion

The three largest U.S. credit-card issuers are J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Bank of America, and Citigroup. As of June 30, these three banks had nearly 60% of the $724.44 billion in outstanding loans of the ten biggest credit-card issuers, according to the Nilson Report, a Carpinteria (CA) newsletter that follows the industry.

Analysts following the industry estimate that credit-card issuers will reduce credit lines by more than $2 trillion in the next 18 months.

Holiday Barter Faires Are Big Winner For IMSBarter

IMSBarter reported that their Holiday Barter Expo�s generated over $3 million in income this year...these sales figures were for one side of the trade.

Kansas Man Shows Las Vegas Moguls How To Make Money

Phil Ruffin Sr., a 73-year-old businessman, has achieved spectacular success in his Las Vegas real estate dealings. Consider his impeccable moves:

In 1998 he bought his first Las Vegas casino, the New Frontier (when the casino was mired in a six-year union strike) for $165 million. Less than ten years later he sold it for $1.24 billion � when everyone in Vegas was in a land-buying frenzy.

Then in 2008, with cash in-hand, he approached the cash-strapped MGM Mirage about buying its Treasure Island Hotel & Casino. He recently did so, for $500 million cash and another $275 million in notes. Ruffin says it�s a good deal, as a 3,000-room Vegas hotel/casino today would cost $3 billion to build. In another decade or so Ruffin will likely pocket another billion in profits!

All back issues of �From the Desk...� can be accessed by clicking here.

(Please feel free to forward our newsletter to your friends and colleagues. We have a �box� at the end of the newsletter for your convenience. See you next week. . .)

Don Mardak To Appear On iTV Barter Network Tuesday, January 6

Bob Meyer, publisher of BarterNews, and David Cooper, founder of the iTV Network, will be talking with a special guest, the CEO of IMSBarter, Don Mardak, one of the giants of the Modern Trade & Barter industry.

Mardak founded his barter company in 1985 from his kitchen table. Today IMSBarter is located nationwide and boasts a corporate barter division. IMSBarter is a publicly-traded company.

Mardak has been one of the leaders of the commercial barter industry having served in both industry associations. He�s twice served as president of the National Association of Trade Exchanges, and is currently on the world-wide Board of Directors for the International Reciprocal Trade Association.

Mardak will share with the iTV audience where he foresees IMSBarter moving in the days ahead, what makes the company unique, and his vision of the future for the commercial barter industry.

Viewers will be provided with a unique opportunity to become a part of the IMSBarter trade network, where one can immediately begin making barter sales and buys, with nearly 20,000 member businesses across America in a network that has more than $150 million of quality products and services to choose from.

The IMSBarter trade dollar is one of the strongest in the industry. And the company�s trade-marked motto is, �Changing the way the world does business!�

Spend time with Don Mardak, an accomplished pioneer in the commercial barter industry. We trust you won�t want to miss this very special show on Tuesday, January 6, at 3:00 p.m. Central Standard Time.

To view the show see


25 Years Of BarterNews Issues Now In Digital Format

Welcome to the largest repository of barter contacts, strategies, and barter techniques in the world. All 64 issues of BarterNews now available in digital format at

IRTA 2008 Update & 2009 Goals

Submitted by Ron Whitney, IRTA Executive Director

It was an honor and a privilege to serve as Executive Director for the International Reciprocal Trade Association this past year. I am proud of the many accomplishments we achieved in 2008, and am extremely excited about the coming year with the ambitious goals we have set for IRTA. This is an important year, as it marks IRTA�s 30th Anniversary as the worldwide leader in the Modern Trade and Barter Industry. With your help and enthusiasm I know we can make 2009 an incredible year! 

Accomplishments in 2008:

         A 35% increase in the IRTA membership base.

         A 100% increase in attendance at the 29th Annual Barter Congress Convention at Westgate River Ranch.

         The finest convention keynote speaker IRTA has had in many years.

         The completion of the Operation Outreach marketing video.

         The creation of the non-industry member category for large corporations.

         The move and consolidation of the Rochester office to the new Portsmouth (VA) offices.

         A 20% increase in the Euro Chapter membership and its successful conference in Poland.

         The creation of the Community Currency Council to focus on community currencies.

         Expansion of the Global Board to 13 directors in recognition of IRTA�s overall growth.

         Record setting Universal Currency (UC) trading.

Goals for 2009:

         A complete re-design and modernization of the IRTA website.

         25 new IRTA members by the convention this coming fall.

         Convention attendance of 150+ for the 30th Annual IRTA International Convention.

         Monthly e-mail newsletters to begin 2/1/09.

         Weekly press releases on IRTA and UC activities, beginning 2/1/09.

         Pro-active brokering and hands-on Executive Director involvement in UC.

These are exciting times for IRTA and UC. So fasten your seat belts, because 2009 is going to one heck of a great ride for all of us in IRTA. And thank-you for your unwavering support of IRTA and UC, it means so much to the future of our industry.

For more information go to

(Ron Whitney can be reached at (757) 393-2292 or

Attention Trade Exchange Owners. . .It�s GROW OR GO!

The magic bullet for growth is sales, always has been and always will be...yet the industry�s overall growth is anemic. Why? Maybe it�s because we�re not providing on-going education about our unique way of doing business. Knowledge is always a pre-requisite to taking sustained action.

And for those newcomers, the lifeblood of an exchange, awareness of and understanding about the value of trading is even more important.

If you expect prospects to come aboard and your members to be more active traders, but you are perplexed when the results are less than you desire...there�s a good reason. You must continually educate and motivate every month--month after month after month!

Such action is necessary because, let�s face it, more cash business, not trade, is of paramount importance to your members. You must break through this �cash only� focus and redirect their thinking toward barter. Although most exchanges don�t see the importance of doing so, many industry leaders are taking action and so can you.

As the owner of your own operation, there is an easy and inexpensive solution for moving forward...look into using The Competitive Edge newsletter. It�s a camera-ready, 4-page, professionally written, informational marketing tool...available in PDF format as well as print. So regardless of how you reach your prospects and clients, you will have the necessary vehicle.

Written especially for you, the busy trade exchange owner, I am certain it will be the best investment you ever make.

For more information about The Competitive Edge, and how it can benefit you click here.

         International visitors look for BARTER CONTACTS in our Global Barter Section. If YOUR exchange isn�t listed see the forms on the lower left of the page. (Click here.)

         Attention trade exchange owners...thousands of visitors every month visit our BARTER CONTACTS section on our web site where we have names & addresses of barter companies in the USA. If YOUR exchange isn�t listed, or the information is incorrect, you can correct the situation by using the forms to the lower left of the USA map. (Click here.) 

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What�s Happening In Today�s Marketplace...The Use Of Trade Exchanges & Corporate Barter Companies

(Part 3)

Mixing Trade Exchange Dollars With Non-Profit Time-Dollars

In Ashland (OR), a new idea is taking hold. OurNexChange, a for-profit trade exchange, will be interacting with a sister program called the Time-Dollar Community Exchange.

NexChange will charge a 3% to 7% transaction fee on every trade, while Time-Dollar intends to pay for �neighborly help� or volunteer work at a fixed rate of 16-credits per hour. The Time-Dollar Community Exchange is considered �community enhancement,� and can be accumulated untaxed.

Time-dollar credits will enable non-profit organizations to attract more volunteers, since they are paid in credits, and would promote their mission through exposure on the barter website at the same time.

Members of the trade exchange (OurNexChange) are able to trade more expensive professional services at the lower Time-Dollar Community Exchange rate as a form of �giving back to the community.� Time-dollars also can be used for the barter of used goods which, under IRS codes, are non-taxable.

Presently the IRS considers the commercial for-profit trade exchange and the non-profit Time-Dollar system to be �apples and oranges� i.e., different systems that should not be operated under the same corporation and technology.

The developer and owner of these systems, Sharon Miranda, is working with the IRS to allow members to use both systems, enabling transfer of credits from the trade exchange to the Time-Dollar accounts.

According to Miranda, U.S. dollars are limited and hard to come by, but human energy and idle resources are virtually unlimited. She hopes her idea of a joint bartering system will benefit everyone in the community.

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