South franchise owner grows trade

Bartercard has come a long way since Rod Brown and his wife, Barbara Cooper, bought the single WA franchise in 1994.

Mr Brown had spent about ten months working as a trade consultant for Bartercard until he bought the franchise at a time when its monthly trade turnover was $79,000.

He helped build the WA member base so successfully through his franchise, known as Bartercard Perth South, that he played a leading role in helping the national organisation carve out a second franchise, Bartercard Perth North.

The total trade turnover in the State is now $4 million a month.

“We now have about 1,500 members in WA and about 24,000 in the Bartercard Directory, which is completely updated and reprinted every twelve weeks. It’s a growth business and it tends to bring instant growth to most members,” Mr Brown said.

About 15 per cent of the trade in WA is done with interstate members.

Bartercard was launched in 1991 in Queensland and was the first trade exchange in the world to record $2 billion turnover in trading between its members.

Bartercard’s highest trading on a single day is $6.6 million – a world record for a trade exchange.

Mr Brown describes Bartercard as “the only interest-free credit card in the world”.

The way purchases made on the card are paid for is through the extra sales generated through the Bartercard network of businesses.

“We generate those extra sales for you by marketing you through Barter-card’s directory and through the trade coordinator actively looking after your account,” Mr Brown said.

“There are weekly faxouts and a bimonthly newsletter to also promote members’ goods and services.

“Bartercard is not there to replace your existing cash business. It is a supplement to your cash sales and by using it correctly you conserve cash for use in other areas. This is done by offsetting existing expenditure with the extra sales Bartercard generates.

“Because the extra sales really come out of ‘down time’, they also reduce the costs of all sales by picking up a share of the overheads. This, obviously, directly increases the profitability of the business.

“Some businesses are up by a couple of hundred extra dollars in business each month; some are doing an extra $100,000 a month.

“Bartercard is a tool to be used by the business. Depending on how it uses that tool, the benefits will flow accordingly.”

Bartercard can be contacted on 1800 804 800 or on the Internet at

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