by Bob Meyer, Editor of BarterNews
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From the desk of Bob
This past week I’ve been
communicating, via e-mail and phone, with a company
that’s located in a LDC (lesser developed country).
Experiencing, second-hand, the effort they must
expend and routinely face to secure a simple
purchase of a product, once again reinforces how
fortunate those of us are who live and work in a
more developed country. It’s certainly something we
generally take for granted.
Because of our considerable infrastructure,
technological advancements, and grounding in
capitalism we can accomplish so much more within the
I admire the tenacity of these entrepreneurs who
must struggle continually. By doing so they are
providing a valuable piece of the groundwork that
will help their country move forward, from a
business perspective, in the years ahead.
The Message In Disney’s Experiences
The Walt Disney Co., an icon of mainstream America,
is going against the grain of conventional business
strategy this spring as it will stop distributing
their 80-page catalog that has filled the mailboxes
of tens of millions of households for the past
decade. Instead it is embarking on a solely
electronic initiative—pushing its products via the
The decision was made after the recent holiday
season, wherein Disney spent $9 million to mail 15
million catalogs and then experienced a 45% drop in
phone orders. At the same time customers responding
to their online marketing efforts skyrocketed.
Disney won’t stop using print materials altogether,
but rather than producing and sending a weighty
catalog they will save a pile of money by mailing
out a postcard or invitation which will be used to
drive traffic online.
How Barter Became An Integral Part Of The
The Olympic logo of five interlocking rings
represents the union of the five continents and the
meeting of athletes from around the world at the
Olympic Games. In addition, by staging the games
every two years (alternating between the winter
events and the summer events) it offers the world an
opportunity to observe man’s many similarities and
the hope for a more united world.
Today eleven major corporations, ranging from
McDonald’s and Coca-Cola to Chinese computer
manufacturer Lenovo and Canadian insurer Manulife,
are paying $80 million each to be top-tier Olympic
sponsors from 2005 through 2008. A large part of the
payment is through barter, i.e. payment in kind,
because the Olympic Committee needs an enormous
amount of goods and services to stage the 16-day
These in-kind barter payments were first introduced
in the 1984 Summer Games in Los Angeles, when Peter
Ueberroth was the young and dynamic U.S. Olympic
Executive Director. In the book he authored, Made
in America, he chronicled the use of barter and
how he traded the licensing rights to the Olympic
logo for $116 million in needed goods and services.
Because of his
trading savviness, the ‘84 Games turned a phenomenal
profit of $222 million which was subsequently used
to fund amateur athletes nationwide. But it was his
barter strategy that forever changed how sponsors
would handle the payments for licensing rights. And
both parties benefitted...the Olympics get what they
need and the sponsors appreciate the economics of
Business People Love Barter—It’s A Proven
There are many reasons for loving the barter
technique. But one that’s seldom mentioned is the
insurance it provides against unexpected downturns.
In the financial arena, for example, the most common
insurance derivative is a swap wherein two parties
exchange portions of their risk as a hedge against
A good illustration of this occurred when movie
producer George Lucas bartered a 1% share of the
profits in his yet to be released Star Wars for a 1%
share in John Milius’ surfing film, Big Wednesday.
They bartered because it provided a safety
net...neither producer was certain what his movie’s
future earnings would be.
Although Big Wednesday proved to be a big bust,
Milius’ small share of Star Wars netted him more
than $300,000. Lucas, of course, made less money on
the deal, but it could just as easily have gone the
other way. And on many levels it does.
In the case of investment bankers the purpose of a
typical swap between two client companies would be
for added cash-flow security. It might involve a
company exchanging 5% - 10% of its annual cash flow
with that of a similar-sized company in another
region of the world. Such an arrangement insulates
each company from the financial volatility of its
local market, interest rates, and currency.
Tourism Industry Needs New Strategy
Maybe someone from the barter industry should contact
Jay Rasulo, the national chairman of the Travel Industry
Association, and suggest he put on his barter cap to get more of the
global tourism market!
Jay Rasulo, chairman of Disney parks and resorts, has
warned travel industry executives that the United States is in
trouble as a competitor in the global tourism market. Hence the
group must adopt new strategies in 2006, or continue to lose its
share of international visitors.
Rasulo contends there is a revolution going on in the
global tourism market. “The way people travel, where they travel,
how they travel...it’s all changing.”
The U.S. market share of international travel has
dropped since 1992 to an all-time low. With a six percent share, it
ranks third in the world behind France and Spain in attracting
international visitors, the World Tourism organization reports. (Editor’s
note: Many pundits claim China will lead the world in attracting
international visitors by 2020.)
What can be done to turn the situation around?
According to Rasulo we must take action on three fronts:
a destination marketing campaign that makes the United States a top
choice for travelers, funded by industry and government.
barriers to travel, such as overly complex visa and passport
the travel industry a voice at the highest level of governments to
ensure jobs and bolster the nation’s image.
Growth and Use of Secondary Capital (New Money) Creates
Unprecedented Wealth In Today’s New Age Of Possibility
There are many forms of secondary capital—which can
be defined as any financial instrument that measures and
communicates value in a common language. Would you like to see and
learn more about the many forms of secondary capital?
We have 75 free,
informative and inspiring, articles for you in our “Secondary
Capital Section.” Check it out...
ITEX Convention In Las Vegas Could Be Industry’s Largest
Word from the ITEX Bellevue (WA) headquarters (OTCBB:ITEX)
is that this year’s convention, slated for May 21-26 in Las Vegas,
will have over 200 in attendance. Alan Zimmelman from the corporate
office reports the convention is officially sold out...with 140
rooms and suites snapped up in record time.
This year’s theme, “The Winning Team,” will have
outside presentations from Fred Pryor Seminars, Sales Coach
International, and Team Bonding.
The six days of
strategizing and sharing will be kicked off with a keynote address
by Steven White, the Chairman and CEO of ITEX. He will be covering
his favorite topics—the cashless marketplace and how he expects ITEX
to set industry trends. For more information visit
Trade Exchange Owners...
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Would You Like To Make 2006 Your Greatest Year Ever?
“We have secured the funding
necessary to continue our industry roll-up program on attractive
—Don Mardak, IMS
President & CEO
International Monetary Systems (OTCBB:INLM) reported that its
revenue for January was $538,000, an increase of 57% over January
CEO Don Mardak says he has never been more excited about the
company’s future, since their growth strategy of acquiring
independent trade exchanges to add (to the Continental Trade
Exchange network) has been a huge success.
Now, with secured funding in hand, Mardak believes the company is
ready to continue with an aggressive industry roll-up program. For
more information go to
IMS Featured In ValueRich
Monetary Systems is one of eight companies featured in the current
issue of ValueRich magazine, which has over 58,000 readers
including 8,000 public-company CEOs, fund managers, money managers,
investment bankers, and others. Mardak will present a corporate
overview of the IMS growth strategy at the ValueRich Small-Cap
Financial Expo, to be held March 8-9 in Miami (FL).
New Money-Making Ideas And Valuable Contacts!
You can obtain
useful, informative ideas and contacts in every available back-issue
Other Barter Company Happenings Globally
After a four-year hiatus from rugby sponsorships, Australia’s BBX
announced a significant agreement with South Sydney Rugby League
Club. The sponsorship will provide a high visual presence at the
“Souths” Telstra Stadium home games in Homebush, home of the
The firm also
reported in a recent news release the imminent expansion into China.
BBX trades on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX). For more
information go to
barter company in the world is listed on our web site,
click through to our Global List
of Barter Companies.
Gas Bartered For Vehicle Ad Space In Southern California
An Oceanside-based promotional company,
came up with the idea of trading, with drivers who accumulate 1,000
miles a month or more, free gas cards in exchange for advertisements
placed on their vehicles. The idea is a result of looking for ways
to gain additional exposure for an eBay drop-off company,
Traffic for the eBay drop-off company has increased an estimated 30%
from each driver’s circle of influence...by mentioning the product
name to friends and neighbors. It was also noted that drivers are
often asked if they work for the advertised company, prompting
further explanation about the program and the advertiser.
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Ivana Trump’s Barter Deal Still Secure
In Las Vegas major condo developers are pulling in their horns as
the market is quickly changing. According to Applied Analysis, a Las
Vegas real-estate research firm, six ultra-luxury projects are
uncertain and three have been canceled in the past year.
One of the splashiest projects was a condo tower named after Ivana
Trump, an ex-wife of real-estate mogul Donald Trump, which is now up
for sale. The developer, Victor Altomare, says he could possibly
make more money selling the project than by building the condos
Regardless of the
new owner, the project will continue in its current design. And,
Altomare affirmed that Ivana will get her condo.