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Archives: December 2008

Is your bank on this list?

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 30

ProPublica is keeping a running tally of banks that took TARP money (via NPR). I was surprised by how many small regional and community banks were on the list. One...

How we attempted to measure startup success

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 29

Michael Arrington at Techcrunch raised an eyebrow today at our list of startups that have received the most venture capital over the last four quarters, saying that search engine Cuil...

What Is the SBA Doing to Free Up Small Business Capital?

Posted by: Nick Leiber on December 29

We talked about the Treasury's Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) on this blog back in November. Now it's time to mention another government-backed financial relief program, the Term Asset-Backed Securities...

Catching up on reading

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 29

Some reading to catch up on for those who have been away: Online holiday sales drop for the first time ever, by 2.3 percent, says MasterCard's SpendingPulse, and overall store...

Stick Around.

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 24

We launched this blog six months ago to the day. One of our goals was to build connections among small business owners -- a broad gaggle of folks that encompasses...

Madoff Scandal Also Hits Small Business Owners

Posted by: Stacy Perman on December 24

In recent weeks, a galaxy of marquee names in finance, philanthropy and even Hollywood have turned up, ensnared in the far-reaching Ponzi scheme allegedly orchestrated by Bernie Madoff. However, today’s...

More on retail's cold winter: snowed in in Portland

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 23

Via NPR's Planet Money blog, retailers in Portland have been walloped by more than a week of snow and ice that basically shut down the city. Laura Gunderson writes in...

Spanx For Men?

Posted by: Stacy Perman on December 23

That is exactly how the British-based Equmen are touting their new line of high-performance brand of men’s underwear. Using compression technologies Equmen’s singlets, tees and long-sleeves boast that they improve...

More Concerned About Falling Sales Than Access to Credit

Posted by: Nick Leiber on December 22

Despite ongoing alarms about the credit crunch, small business owners are actually more concerned about sales than they are about access to credit. That's according to a recent National Federation...

Cold snap adds to retail woes

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 22

We've been checking in with some small retailers to see how their holiday sales have been. Keri Holmes, who actually reported stronger sales than last year at her independent bookstore...

New Administrator for the SBA

Posted by: Jeremy Quittner on December 19

I was happy to learn that Karen Gordon Mills is President-elect Barack Obama's choice to head the Small Business Administration. I talked to Mills in September when I was working...

New Fed credit card rule doesn't apply to small business cards

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 19

The Fed adopted new rules yesterday that would crack down on some practices by credit card companies in an attempt to make credit card agreements fairer and more transparent. Issuers...

New Orleans business plan competition draws entrepreneurs

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 19

A few months ago we got a heads up about a business plan competition in New Orleans called 504ward (after the city's area code). The competition will give $100,000 in...

A Job Matchmaker for the Newly Laid-Off Masses

Posted by: Stacy Perman on December 18

Reader Scott Barham wrote in response to my recent story What Layoffs Meant for Small Businesses: "It's true there is a lot of talent available for hire at the moment...

Predicting the Success of a Startup

Posted by: Nick Leiber on December 18

How do you predict the success of a new company? One approach is to look at the amount of money its founders have raised from venture capitalists and other equity...

The Outlook for Venture Capital

Posted by: Nick Leiber on December 17

The predictions for venture capital investment in 2009 aren't good. In a survey released today by the National Venture Capital Association, 92% of the 400-plus VCs who responded expected investment...

One more place to find top talent: the military

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 17

We just published a special report on where to find -- and how to keep -- top talent. I did a slide show on 10 places small businesses can look...

A Competition for Women Business Owners

Posted by: Colleen Debaise on December 12

Ladies, take your marks. Make Mine a Million has kicked off early registration for its year-long race challenging women to ramp up business, create jobs and – let’s hope --...

Taking the Pulse of Hispanic-Owned Small Business

Posted by: Nick Leiber on December 12

I have a guest post here from Manuel Baigorri, who has been interning in BusinessWeek's Chicago bureau. In it, he reports on the effects of the credit crunch on Hispanic-owned...

What the auto bailout means to small business

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 12

The New York Times today looks at how suppliers are being affected by the trouble in Detroit. If GM or Chrysler files Chapter 11 -- a growing possibility since the...

Holiday sales: More work, more hours, less profit

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 11

Jeremy Shepherd, founder of in LA, checked in today with an update about how his holiday sales look for the first 10 days of December. Sales volume has more...

Thinking of Starting Up in a Recession?

Posted by: Stacy Perman on December 11

Given the tsunami of grim statistics and an even grimmer economic outlook going forward, the Ewing Kauffman Foundation, a private, nonpartisan organization supporting entrepreneurship and innovation, decided to examine the...

Small Business Bankruptcy

Posted by: Jeremy Quittner on December 11

I'm looking for small business owners who have filed for Chapter 11 in the past 12-24 months. Please contact me at:

Predicting a Drop in Angel Investment

Posted by: Nick Leiber on December 11

What's the outlook for angel investment this year and next? An estimated drop of about 10% in 2008 compared to 2007 and a decline in 2009 as well. That's according...

Good News Anyone?

Posted by: Amy Barrett on December 10

It seems like the economic news today veers between just awful to plain horrifying. So I was surprised when I spoke with business owner David Sullivan today. Sullivan runs...

Good times at the ‘Savor the Success’ party

Posted by: Colleen Debaise on December 10

Earlier this week, I attended an event sponsored by Savor the Success, a social network for female entrepreneurs. And in a holiday season marked by pessimism, this one provided some...

Is it worth blogging your small business?

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 10

Over at Blogspotting, Heather Green reports on a Forrester survey that says only 16 percent of people who read company blogs trust them. The report doesn't distinguish between small company...

Auto dealers face problems, with or without Detroit bailout

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 05

I've been mulling the consequences of the auto industry's troubles on small businesses. One thing seems pretty clear: whatever happens with the bailout, we're going to see fewer car dealers...

Dispatches from the retail front lines

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 03

Earlier this week, we asked small retailers to tell us what you're seeing this holiday season. So far I haven't heard any tales of real slow sales. Keri, who runs...

Senator Olympia Snowe on Change at the SBA

Posted by: Jeremy Quittner on December 02

The Small Business Administration, with its loan programs, coaching, and educational curriculum is vital to the nation’s small businesses. That’s particularly true now, with the U.S. economy in full...

Retailers: What are you seeing?

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 01

Was your store empty over the weekend? Filled with browsers instead of buyers? Did discounts translate into sales? Are shoppers clicking through on your Web site? We want small retailers...


What's it like to run your own company today? Entrepreneurs face multiple hurdles new and old, from raising capital and managing employees to keeping up with technology and competing in a global marketplace. In this blog, the Small Business channel's John Tozzi and Nick Leiber discuss the news, trends, and ideas that matter to small business owners. Follow them on Twitter @newentrepreneur.

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