• Nov 9, 2007
  • Baltimore Examiner

Region’s small-business market follows national trends

BALTIMORE - A water treatment and air purification company for $150,000, an ice cream franchise for $375,000, a tavern for $1.7 million.

Those are just a few of several hundred small businesses for sale in the Baltimore region, according to San Francisco-based BizBuySell.com, one of the largest online business-for-sale marketplaces.

The city’s development leaders, with office, retail and residential development radiating from downtown, have said the area is prime for economic investment.

“There are a lot of business opportunities here,” said Robert Aydukovic, vice president of economic development for the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore.

Prospective business buyers in the Baltimore region will be asked to fork over, on average, $250,000 to take on a new local venture, said Mike Handelsman, general manager for BizBuySell.com. Baltimore’s average asking price is equal to the national average.

“In terms of activity, we’re seeing an increasing number of businesses for sale in the area,” Handelsman said. “As many baby boomers who own businesses move closer to retirement, we should see more businesses for sale, and that will likely put some downward pressure on pricing.”

Most of the businesses for sale in the Baltimore region are retail businesses, followed by service businesses, Handelsman said.

The listed Baltimore-area businesses averaged about $428,000 in revenue. Average cash flow, meaning the money that comes out of the business, was about $100,000, according to BizBuySell.com data.

A volatile housing market, the current credit crunch and rising energy prices could prevent potential buyers from thrusting hundreds of thousands of dollars into a new venture, Handelsman said.

Handelsman added that increasing unemployment could create a larger batch of prospective buyers. Maryland’s unemployment rate rose to 3.9 percent in September from 3.7 percent in August, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

According to the Small Business Administration, two-thirds of new employer establishments survive at lease two years, and 44 percent survive at least four years.

About BizBuySell

BizBuySell is the Internet's largest business for sale marketplace. Since 1996, BizBuySell has offered tools that make it easy for business owners and brokers to sell a business, and potential buyers to find the business of their dreams. BizBuySell currently has an inventory of approximately businesses - spanning 80 countries - for sale at any one time and receives more than monthly visits. The site also features an extensive franchise directory as well as an easy-to-use business valuation tool. Please visit www.bizbuysell.com for more information.

BizBuySell was founded in 1996 and in 2012 became a division of CoStar Group, Inc. (NASDAQ - CSGP) - commercial real estate's leading provider of information and analytic services. CoStar conducts expansive, ongoing research to produce and maintain the largest and most comprehensive database of commercial real estate information and offers a suite of online services enabling clients to analyze, interpret and gain unmatched insight on commercial property values, market conditions and current availabilities. For more information, visit www.costar.com.

Media Contact:

Bobby Chilver
Walker Sands Communications
office: (312) 546-4712
email: robert.chilver@walkersands.com

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