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Bartercard�s Man In New Zealand, CFO Michael Parsons, Doing Bang-Up Job

Bartercard, the world�s largest trade exchange now doing an estimated $1.2 billion annually, operates in 14 countries around the world. One of their early expansions occurred in New Zealand, when founding director Kerry Gordon stepped off a plane from Australia in 1992.

Under his arm was Bartercard New Zealand in a shoebox of files and four floppy discs. The following year, Bartercard New Zealand Ltd. was established as an independent franchise.

In 1997, the Australian shareholders purchased the company back. Then in 2001, Tony Falkenstein�s Red Eagle Corporation acquired 90% of the New Zealand operation, with the remaining 10% held by Bartercard International.

Last year Bartercard New Zealand turned over $185 million in barter transactions, involving 5,500 businesses countrywide. Such figures show that Chief Operating Officer, 32-year-old former Wall Street trader and expatriate Canadian, Michael Parsons is doing an exceptional job.

But according to Parsons, more can be done. �One of our biggest challenges, if not the major hurdle, is the fact that explaining the Bartercard concept isn�t done in five minutes. We need the time to sit down and talk to business owners, to help them really understand how Bartercard can work best within their business.�

Parsons says his goal is to have every business owner realize and understand that a structured barter system is a profitable and valuable option for their business. Case in point, is the immensely varied services offered through the 540-page Bartercard Directory, which include individual trade listings as well a display advertising.

One growing area is property exchanges, as Baby Boomers are beginning to plan for retirement. More than $50 million in real estate sales have taken place among New Zealand members, with over $15 million of that figure being paid in Bartercard trade dollars. Currently there are 79 properties listed on www.bartercardproperty.co.nz.

Overseas travel is another area where Bartercard excels. From their travel desk in Tauranga, they moved over $600,000 last year. The main destinations were Australia, Rarotonga, Fiji, Thailand, Britain and Hong Kong.

Entertainment services available through Bartercard New Zealand range from accommodations at boutique B&B�s, to five-star international hotels, car and limousine rentals, restaurants and bars, as well as a host of other leisure activities.

For more information: www.bartercard.co.nz.


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