Today’s Business Buzz
Bad Time for Startups: It’s hard enough to launch a new venture in the best of times. But the worst economic environment since the Great Depression? C’mon, that’s not fair! If business is slower than you expected, you can take small comfort in knowing that it’s probably not your fault. No, you can’t blame Bernie Madoff, but you can direct your ire at the free-falling economy. The entrepreneurs featured in this Associated Press article share their war stories. And, to their credit, they’re not giving up. They understand that opportunity is still out there. It’s just a matter of figuring out where your customers are spending their money, and where to focus your energies.
Feeling Chatty? The economic climate may not have in the most talkative of moods. But the SBA is still hoping you’ll join them for an online chat session on Jan. 15. The topic: How Small Businesses Can Deal with the Credit Crunch.
A Booming Business. Yeah, we know the holidays are over. But we can’t resist telling you about this cool toy company. American Toy and Invention Corp. is selling a kit that lets you build and then implode huge skyscrapers and other multi-story structures. The toy set, called Advanced Engineering, comes with 244 pieces, enough to build a 4-story structure that can go up to 10-feet tall. When you’re finished, just plunge the detonator and watch your creation come crashing to the ground. The best part: the toy is built super tough to be demolished over and over again for years. The good folks over at American Toy are also savvy marketers. They’re winning over skeptical parents by positioning their product as a “learning tool” that can help kids “develop their hand to eye coordination while advancing their skills in building their structures.” Hey, who needs an excuse to blow stuff up?
Wanna buy a business, cheap. Ok, it doesn’t take a Harvard MBA to see this one coming, but small business owners looking to cash out are finding fewer buyers due to the crumbling economy. A survey by BizBuySell.com found that the number of closed transactions reported in the fourth quarter of 2008 dropped 20 percent as compared with the same time period in 2007, to 1,232 transactions from 1,541 transactions.