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April 11, 2000

In this week's report. . .

  • Analyst claims bartering over the web not easy
  • American travelers barter along the way
  • Maytag trades refrigerators for college tuition
  • TEA launches new web site
  • Westwood One acquires state in
  • Malaysia countertrades palm oil for railroad tracks
  • Here and there. . . . .


Pang Says Web Barter Not Easy

Not everybody, understandably, is enthralled with the potential of barter operations on the web. Albert Pang, an analyst with International Data Corp., disclosed that "the whole idea of exchanging (bartering) goods and services between businesses over the web is fairly new and not easy at all."

Pang says it's much more difficult than exchanging something for money, plus the potential is more limited than in an open trading system. "Open exchanges let buyers and sellers, typically within a vertical industry like steel or other commodities, post their goods and services. But buyers pay cash rather than exchange their wares."

According to Pang, there are now 200 of these trading communities for various vertical sectors; he estimates there will be at least 1,000 of them a year from now.

Americans Are Taking Their Bartering Skills On The Road

According to National Geographic Traveler, savvy tourists are packing everything from scissors to fanny packs, hoping to trade them for local products. In Peru the trading of cooking pots, baseball caps, flashlights, and batteries have been bartered for blow guns and jewelry made of palm fiber and seeds. Most outfitters OK the practice, as long as it's not culturally insensitive.


Maytag Exchanging Refrigerators For College Tuition is working with Maytag's Galesburg Refrigeration Products Division and Carl Sandburg College of Galesburg (IL), wherein refrigerators will be moved through the trade exchange network. Maytag plans to spend the earned trade dollars to pay for employee tuition at the college. In turn, Sandburg College will use their trade for physical plant improvements and advertising.

Detwiler's Trade Exchange of America Launches New Web Site

One of the top independent trade exchanges in the U.S. is Trade Exchange of America, located outside of Detroit, in Oak Park, Michigan. On Wednesday, April 12th, their new website,, will be unveiled at the company's Spring 2000 Barter Expo, which is being held at the Southfield Civic Center.

Detwiler's exchange has 5,000 members and he expects to double the membership with the addition of the new site. "With our site we will vertically integrate our members by providing real-time access to their account," Detwiler affirmed, "plus we have special classified and travel sections with maps by MapQuest that show where other members and their services are located throughout the U.S."

He continued, "In addition, to stimulate new business opportunities for our clients, we plan to create personalized web sites free of charge for all members...which will define their business and highlight their products and service."

Largest Radio Company in America Barters For Equity

Westwood One, Inc., made its first investment in an online company by bartering for a 6 percent minority stake in, an online listing and portal for internet radio stations. (Plus, Westwood One will earn another 4.5 percent stake in the company by marketing the site to more radio stations.)

Hamid Kohan, president of, announced, "Westwood One is the largest radio company in America and now all their full-service stations will be available worldwide through In addition, we will benefit tremendously from the marketing and revenue sharing possibilities."

As part of the agreement, the radio stations and will heavily cross promote each other online and on the air, and work together to develop other marketing ties. also will assist the 1,000 radio stations nationwide that are part of Westwood's 24/7 network in streaming their stations as soon as possible and developing web sites, online games, audio and video Webcasting technologies and e-commerce solutions. An additional 6,500 stations that Westwood One provides programming to on a part-time basis will be integrated into the deal in the future.

Palm Oil Traded For $121 MIllion of Railroad Tracks

The biggest barter deals in the world are countertrades, often done government to government. An example is a recent barter effort between Malaysia and India.

Malaysia is supplying India with palm oil (from six state-owned companies) worth $121 million in exchange for a contract awarded to the Indian Railway Construction International Company. They will lay 31.5 km. of tracks in the southern Malaysian state of Johor.

Malaysia is the world's largest palm oil producer and India is one of its largest customers. Interestingly, Malaysia's Transport Minister, Ling Liong Sik, was quoted as saying, "We have done similar barter trade with other countries, but this is the first time we are doing it with India." The deal also reinforces the growing significance of such countertrades, when Malaysia is willing to barter with one of its largest "cash" customers.

Here And There...

  • BigVine CEO Bippy Siegal says that one of the keys to successful bartering online is providing assurance to the traders (members of BigVine.) This can be done, he says, through the use of a digital certificate...a tiny computer file that serves as an ID card and a signature. Siegal says use of this "certificate" will assure potential trading partners of each other's legitimacy.

  • was selected by CommerceNet as Entrepreneur #1 at its B2B Big Bang Conference, held in Palm Springs. uWork was thus awarded a $100,000 grant to continue its development of a global business-to-business staff exchange for Fortune 500 companies... enabling companies to buy, sell, barter, and trade outsourced professional services.

  • is a new private-label (outsourced) provider of online barter. The company seeks to offer an exchanging service to members of various web community sites. Current categories include home goods, children's items, collectibles, and sporting goods.

  • Debra Chrapaty, E-Trade's chief media officer and formerly CIO of the National Basketball Association was hired by to become the president and COO of the online barter service. (Welcome to the barter industry Debra!)


We welcome your comments, questions, and observations.
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