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To Say the Leased

Ownership is overrated. Could leasing be the answer to the tough economy?

By Mark Henricks

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

When Kai Adams opened Sebago Brewing Co. with partners BradMonarch and Timothy Haines in South Portland, Maine, two years ago,he leased $30,000 worth of computers for the brewery andrestaurant's point-of-sale system and a $4,000 dishwasher forthe kitchen. Now that the 95-employee company is opening its thirdlocation, the 29-year-old brewmaster is opting to lease even moreof the equipment necessary to get up and running.

"Now is a good time to be doing that," Adams says."We don't have to buy all this equipment, so it frees upsome cash for us." Adams bases his decision, in part, on someof the perennial advantages of equipment leasing, namely, lowerupfront cash outlay and the ability to offload maintenance tasksonto the lessor. But, based on the increasing volume of inquiriesfrom financial institutions interested in setting up leases forhim, he also thinks the current environment creates something of alessee's market.

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