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Bartering in Business Barter is back in style and spanning the globe. Here's what you need to know to become the master of your exchange.

By Chris Penttila

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Entrepreneur Chris DeMassa is busy trading on his company'sname. DeMassa, founder and president of 14-employee Arcata,California-based trademark research and consulting firm TradeMark Express,has bartered for everything from printing jobs to entertainmenttickets.

DeMassa, 49, thinks barter is a great way to build business. Heestimates 10 percent of his $1 million annual sales are generatedthrough barter. "That's 10 percent we wouldn't haveotherwise," he says. "It makes better use of ourresources and lowers our cost of doing business."

Barter is the oldest form of doing business. Today'scompanies barter for a number of reasons, from getting rid ofexcess inventory and finding new customers to conserving cash andsupporting the local economy. Companies exchanged $8.25 billion ingoods and services last year alone, according to the InternationalReciprocal Trade Association.

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