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Bob Meyer

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August 16, 2011

Written by Bob Meyer, Editor of BarterNews

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From the desk of Bob Meyer... 08/16/2011

Small Business Entrepreneurs Prefer Contract Workers

In today�s economic environment everyone is focused on controlling costs. And that�s the major reason why small business owners are so attracted to part-time or free-lance �contract workers.�

Such workers provide staffing flexibility in addition to avoiding costly full-package employee benefits, such as retirement and health insurance, which can cost between 20% and 28% (or more) on top of a base salary.

Malaysia Airlines Trading Shares

Malaysia�s two largest airlines are collaborating in a bid to reduce competition and cut costs in one of Asia�s key economies. The two competitors have also agreed to barter shares of their respective companies further cementing the companies� ties.

NATE Has New Banc Web Site

The National Association of Trade Exchanges (NATE) has announced that the NATE intercity currency, called the Banc, has a new web site ( It will provide additional information, as well as a Banc membership agreement.

NATE members can also contact

The Economy, Not Credit, Is Today�s Issue

The myth that small business can�t get credit is incorrect, according to the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB). The organization reports that two-thirds of their members that requested loans were approved.

What members of NFIB are concerned about is the depressed economic climate and lack of consumer purchasing power,

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IMS Acquires Saint Louis-based National Commercial Exchange

International Monetary Systems announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire certain assets of National Commercial Exchange in St. Louis (MO). As one of the oldest trade exchanges in North America, NCE is the leading barter network in the St. Louis marketplace.

�We are extremely pleased to announce this acquisition of National Commercial Exchange,� stated IMS Chairman Don Mardak. �As founders of NCE, Richard Harris and his late brother Bruce created one of America�s finest trading systems with a strong barter currency. Richard is a past president of NATE, serving several years on the association�s board of directors. He will be joining IMS to oversee the St. Louis operation, and to help us develop a program for entering new markets.�

Richard Harris disclosed, �Don Mardak and the members of the IMS management team have been my friends for many years. We have been active reciprocal trading partners and have shared numerous enlightening and profitable experiences throughout our long relationship. This merger of our two fine companies should enable us to take barter to a new, higher level of excellence.�

Is Your Trade Exchange Missing Out On Valuable New Business?

If your barter company�s listing on isn�t current, you are definitely missing out on new business. The web site receives heavy traffic � with over 150,000 page-views every month. Entrepreneurs and corporate executives check the thousands of articles, the weekly �Tuesday Report,� and the �Contacts Section� of our site. They use the latter to find barter companies with which to do business.

Is your barter company�s listing up-to-date?

To keep your listing current is very easy. See the links below to (A) update any changes to your company�s listing, such as new location, phone number, web site or other information, and (B) if your company has not been listed.

Here�s how to get on board:

To make changes to your listing click here.

For new listings click here.

5 Reasons Why NOW Is the Right Time To Expand Your Business

By Shelly Sun

Have you created a successful business and are wondering what your options are to grow in today�s �New Normal?� Like you, many entrepreneurs have created great businesses through hard work, innovation, and simply exceeding the needs of customers in a local area. But without access to significant capital, it�s challenging to contemplate growing from a few locations to hundreds or thousands of outlets.

You�ve most likely invested hundreds-of-thousands of dollars to build your business, secured trademarks, developed your brand, documented processes, implemented technology, and hired staff. You have a solid foundation. But in today�s economic environment, when�s the best time to expand and do so in the smartest, risk-controlled way? Here are five reasons why now just might be the best time ever to expand your business:

1. Expand Your Thinking On Expansion:

You have a great local business. You know you have a product or service that your customers want. Eventually there comes a point when you begin to wonder how to reach more customers. The traditional approach involves raising capital to allow you to open more locations. True, this approach can grow your brand and allow you to reach more customers, but it also means that expanding your business is all up to you. You will be securing and signing for the debt or outside equity and ultimately signing on the dotted line, thus taking on the increased risk of expansion.

Another avenue for achieving growth in revenues and customers, with limited capital and less risk, is through franchising. Though many business owners do not consider it, franchising is a great vehicle to help you reach more customers, promote your brand, and increase your visibility and credibility as a brand.

2. Know The Leverage Effect:

In thinking of ways to leverage the large investments you have made already, franchising can be a great way to scale your brand to more markets, building upon those investments and years of fine-tuning that made your business a success locally. Franchising links your expertise and investments as the franchisor with the capital and personal oversight of a franchisee to replicate your model in a new geographical market.

You are able to leverage the passion, commitment, and capital of franchisees to deliver your goods and services to more customers across a larger geographic region. You may want to expand regionally, nationally, or globally, and franchising is the least capital-intensive (and most proven) way to do so, with less risk and more upside than any other method of brand expansion.

Launching a franchise brand still requires an additional financial commitment of several-hundred-thousand dollars by the franchisor to lay and build the franchise system foundation. To open more company-owned locations requires significantly more capital than opening locations through franchising.

Given that lenders are facing a stricter regulatory environment, record high and long-lasting unemployment rates, and less business collateral, creativity and innovative ideas are required to figure out the best way to expand with limited access to capital. The beauty of franchising is that the geographical expansion into new markets also uses the capital of the franchisees, in essence allowing the brand to expand using other people�s money.

3. A National Strategy, Creating Jobs Locally

It�s not just about the money. In addition to taking less risk in terms of capital investment, franchising mitigates the challenge of trying to take your great local business and manage it in the next state � or 6 states away. Franchising enables great local ownership where business owners invest not just in your concept, but in the community they serve.

Franchising helps spread the risk between the franchisor and the franchisee. The franchisor has invested in the pilot locations and secured their initial success. By experiencing mistakes and fixing them to develop a solid business model that franchisees can replicate, the franchisor has developed and protected the brand and the systems that the franchisee can license and use in its business.

4. Succeed & Grow Together

Both the franchisor and the franchisee benefit from this approach. Franchisees invest capital to grow their local business, but they don�t have to spend significant amounts of time and resources to figure out the business. As a franchisor, you�re licensing your knowledge to them. In doing so, you will leverage the investments you have already made in your brand and in your systems. In return, you earn a stable revenue stream, normally based upon the revenue results of your franchisees.

Franchising is also a powerful mechanism for accelerating growth. Franchisees provide new sources of passion, ideas, and capital. Franchisees work hard to build their local businesses and spread the word for the brand and bring great ideas back to make the business model stronger for everyone. Franchising is truly about shared success � growing smart � with less risk than going it alone. Good alone, better together.

5. Franchising: Be In Business For Yourself, Not By Yourself

The franchisee is acquiring the right to use the brand and the systems to get started much faster and with much stronger resources than they would on their own, and that right has considerable value. Essentially, to be a franchisee is to be in business for but not by yourself. The franchisor benefits in offering this opportunity to a franchisee because it helps offset past, current, and future investments in the brand and in the operating systems. When done right, franchising benefits the company which wants to expand geographically and benefits the franchisee who gets to learn the business and execute the model at the local level.

Launching a franchise system is a big step � it requires evolving your leadership and growing your business from a successful local one to a larger regional, national, or international brand. You had the passion, skills, and determination to get you to here. Yes, you will need to learn new things to grow your business through franchising, but you can do it.

You will be the ambassador within your organization that will set the tone and the passion for the huge opportunity that franchising can provide when it is done well and with absolute commitment to the interdependent relationship with your franchisees. Franchising provides a means for you to grow and expand your business, reach more customers, empower others to own their own businesses and create countless jobs. Enjoy the journey!

Shelly Sun is a Certified Franchise Executive and CEO and co-founder of BrightStar Care�, with over 200 locations nationwide. She is author of the forthcoming book, Grow Smart, Risk Less: A Low-Capital Path to Multiplying Your Business Through Franchising, which will be released October 4, 2011. It can be pre-ordered from, and


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Give Yourself A Break

If you�re burning a lot of energy and concentration on a task, you should take more breaks not fewer. Because even a few minutes away from the task will increase your overall productivity by easing tension � keeping you upbeat, and refocusing your mind.

If you find that hard to accept, consider this: You can work for two hours at an unfocused 75% to 80%, but a 15-minute break will allow you to work for an hour and 45 minutes at 100%.

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The Growth and Use of Secondary Capital (New Money) Creates Unprecedented Wealth In Today�s New Age Of Possibility

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Company Mottos That Encourage Innovation

The following slogans show innovation is valued over possible mistakes:

1.    We reserve the right to make mistakes. (Hewlett-Packard)

2.    Use your good judgment at all times. There will be no other rules. (Nordstrom department stores)

3.    We don�t shoot managers that err; we shoot managers who do not take risks. (MCI)

Every barter company in the world is listed on our web site, click through to our Global List of Barter Companies.

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