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Thread: That other forum may be for sale?

  1. #1
    Diamond Member wynn's Avatar
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    That other forum may be for sale?

    I have just recieved the following from Mark Corke, I have not been a member of BW for a year or more so I can't say what this is about.

    About six years ago Peter Carruthers started an online forum community for the information, growth, support and, dare I say, amusement of the small business community. It grew very rapidly to hundreds and then thousands of users and members. Some members preferred to stay in the background and "lurk", while others were quite vociferous and made their presence known - good, bad and ugly.

    I'm convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non successful ones is pure perseverance.
    - Steve Jobs

    Many, many discussions were initiated, some rants about the way things were done, requests for help with issues that arose in the small business environment, shared experiences, business opportunities and networking galore. For the small business owner, very often the streetwise answer to dealing with a recalcitrant employee was to be found locally with a few key strokes and a mouse click. People helped one another deal with such diverse issues as getting a Landrover out of gear with a broken clutch, to dealing with insurance claims, banks, debtors, creditors, government, accountants and lawyers.

    Indeed many members of the community were lawyers, accountants and other professionals. For almost any problem encountered by the single business operator in his own lonely place, there was a wealth of experience available live and online. Being a small business person had become a lot less lonely.

    With time some members were upset by others, some were offended and many left. Pete was in the unenviable position of herding a thousand cats while pandering to their emotions and emoticons. At times the forum was so dynamic that it was difficult to keep up with all the posts. At all times he resisted censorship.

    With time some members were upset by others, some were offended and many left. Pete was in the unenviable position of herding a thousand cats while pandering to their emotions and emoticons. At times the forum was so dynamic that it was difficult to keep up with all the posts. At all times he resisted censorship.

    Some changes were made to the offerings, things calmed down, and so did the forum - particularly when it was moved offshore. Many perceived threats to the small business environment became less threatening, or were dealt with. New threats were not addressed as Peter grew into a new marketing venture and domain from which he is doing very well in another country, targeting the international community.

    Last week I was told that the Business Warrior community was to be divested of Pete because he no longer has the passion to deal with the day to day humdrum of the... Well in his words: "I no longer have that steam. Not being in SA, not being vitally affected by the daily machinations of the haemorrhoids in charge, makes a difference." He opened up a thread to deal with the issue of continuity, on the forum.

    Anyway, I was approached by someone who wanted me to find another few investors to take the whole shebang off Pete's hands and bring it back to South Africa. At the time I was very caught up with some other clients, and I let it slip. Then another person approached me with an idea of getting some other people involved. I went back to the original person with an idea. Very quickly a shortish list was drawn up of people who I should approach to ask first if they would be investors, and second if they could nominate other investors they would want involved.

    In the meantime I contacted Pete to establish that we would not be wasting our time with establishing an acquisition strategy that he had no interest in entertaining. It was a new idea to him, but he expressed himself interested. We are currently in the process of discovering what is to be taken over - more particularly, understanding the cash flows and a price.

    In a few days the shareholder call has daisy chained to almost fifty interested people, mostly members of the current community, but some former members, and others as well. All have been nominated by someone else, and subsequently accepted the role of listening to suggestions and making them.

    This is an invitation to you to join the conversation on a non committal basis for now. With so many interested shareholders the investment will be relatively small, but the punch in the small business sector will be enormous. There will be new challenges, issues and opportunities as we get into the teens of this relatively new century. When Business Warriors started we were allowed to take out of South Africa a once off amount of R750,000. Today South Africans are allowed to remove to other shores R4M, each and every year. The challenge is no longer how to get your money off shore, but how to earn the amount of money you are allowed to take, again and again and again.

    Business Warriors allows for the interraction and cooperation between business owners, the sort of gearing one gets in the old boys clubs, exclusive hangouts and expensive associations. There are few networks to match its effectiveness.

    As I say, this is a call for possible investors. Ultimately these investors will elect a few directors who will appoint the moderators and managers of the community. Shareholders will not be required to manage yet another small business. Pete wore himself out by doing it all himself. The intention of the current prospective shareholders is to apply the principles of delegation and responsibility. Please complete the form to be found here with first name and surname, as well as contact telephone number. There is absolutely no call for any money at this stage, or before all your questions have been satisfied. (At this stage nobody has paid a single cent.) By registering, you will be kept apprised of the developments as the transaction develops, and we will know who to talk to when the time is right, but probably in the next week or two.

    Mark Corke

    PS: With so many potential investors, the money we talk of is likely to be extraordinarily small.
    Last edited by Dave A; 12-Nov-10 at 01:38 PM.
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  2. #2
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    I also got the email - wonder who nominated me.

    Mark certainly knows how to get the best price for his clients

    I honestly don't know whether to respond or not - kinda like it here and why complicate things...

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