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Using Barter in Your Startup

If you’ve recently started a new business or are thinking about starting one, then you might be aware of the cash flow challenges that await you. However, consider a strategy that both startups and established businesses have used since commerce began that can help you preserve precious cash while still obtaining the goods and services you need to run your business: barter.

Barter is the exchange of goods or services between businesses or individuals. It can be especially beneficial for small and startup companies, because it allows each party to get what it needs by providing a product or service to the other party instead of laying out cash.

For example, consider a small Web site development firm with five employees. It wants to grow by gaining market share, but it can’t afford to pay for professional advertising or marketing services. If it could find an ad agency in need of Web site development, the firms could trade services with each other, each obtaining a valuable service it needs without having to spend money to get it.

Bartering can work just as well for manufacturers and retailers that have excess or outdated inventory that won’t move, which they can exchange with other businesses for needed goods or services. This allows companies to get some value out of inventory that they may otherwise have to mark down substantially or simply write off as a loss.

One of the best ways to engage in barter is to join a large barter exchange group with an excess of 1000 members. VCA is one of the few exchanges that can offer you this and the only one in Arizona. Here is the main premise behind what we do:

Companies sell their goods or services to other businesses in the network and receive trade credits (or barter “dollars”) in exchange, which they can use to buy goods and services from other member businesses.

VCA offers full business consulting to start ups that will explore all avenues of cash expenditures that may be needed during the first year. We develop a plan with you that may include a line of credit to help get you started without the out of pocket cash expense.

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What members say

Cindy Rarig

"Value Card is amazing. I have been a member of other barter companies and I can tell you none compare with VCA. When we built our house 5 years ago we used barter instead of cash for Landscaping, garage cabinets, epoxy floors in our garage, we put hard wood floors in 2 of our rooms and we painted our entire house. We also put custom framed mirrors in all of our bathrooms. We not only loved using barter for building our home, but we use it on a daily basis for every day maintenance of our home. We us barter to pay for our landscaper, pool maintenance, and dry cleaning. We also love to use barter for personal maintenance like manicures, pedicures, hair extensions, hair cuts, hair color and tanning. I have been with Value Card for about 7 years and I absolutely love it. Christmas is the best time of all, I try to do all of my Christmas shopping through them. Last year I bought my daughter a beautiful high end guitar at the Christmas show. The most important thing I have ever gotten through VCA is advertising. It really works and I have turned barter dollars into hard cash doing it. The best thing about VCA is the customer service. Any time I need anything they are there to help me. I really can’t think of one thing I have needed that they weren’t able to get for me. If you are considering VCA I promise you it will be one of the best decisions you ever make."
Cindy Rarig,
Designer Art Direct