IBBA Members Hopeful in 2009

A recent survey of those on the frontline of business sales, mergers and acquisitions finds hopeful results looking ahead at 2009.
Eighty-six percent of the more than 1,950 International Business Brokers Association members surveyed believe though the economy will be down in 2008, it will continue to be a buyers’ market.
“While the economy continues to put a damper on business sales, the continuing trend of baby boomers looking to sell and retire will provide opportunities for potential buyers,” said Andrew Cagnetta, IBBA chair and president of Transworld Business Brokers, Fort Lauderdale. “The survey of our members indicates that money will continue to be tight and the number of sellers will still easily outpace the number of qualified buyers.”
In a buyer’s market, purchasers are more selective, so it’s important for sellers to make their business more attractive to buyers. The survey said sellers should focus on improving cash flow, update documents and records and determine the company’s actual worth to make their business more attractive to a potential buyer.
“Certainly, the type of business is also important for a potential buyer,” said Tulsan Rob Firestone, IBBA board member and principal and general manager of Bluestem Resources Affiliated Group, 2642 E. 21st St, Ste. 285. “The historical performance of a business is also critical. Buyers search for companies that have demonstrated success with sustainable market share and growth opportunity.”

Arvest Mortgage Loans Top $1 Billion Again in 2008
Arvest Bank, releasing the results of its mortgage lending and servicing activities in 2008, reported that for the sixth consecutive year, the bank originated more than $1 billion in new mortgage loans. Arvest currently services $4.9 billion in mortgage loans
The company originated mortgage loans totaling $1.04 billion in 2008 compared to $1.13 billion in 2007, or a decrease of less than 8 percent.
RSU and RCB Bank Receive JOBS Grant
Rogers State University’s Innovation Center and RCB Bank received an $18,000 JOBS grant from FHL Bank of Topeka, Kan., to establish a regional business intelligence center.
Other partners besides the RSU Innovation Center include the Claremore Industrial Development Authority, and the Oklahoma Alliance for Manufacturing Excellence. In addition to the $18,000 provided by the FHL grant, CIEDA provided $10,000 in matching funds. RCB, RSU, and the Alliance will provide $64,930 in in-kind contributions and matching funds for the project.

Accountants Group Announces Scholarship
The Oklahoma Society of Certified Public Accountants Educational Foundation is accepting applications for its $500 high school scholarship.
All Oklahoma high school seniors planning to major in accounting at an Oklahoma college or university are eligible to apply. Applications are available on the OSCPA Web site at www.oscpa.com, and are due April 1, 2009.
Oklahoma City CPA Karen Tucker, chair of the Educational Foundation, said the award demonstrates the commitment OSCPA members have to the future of the profession.
“We hope to encourage younger students to pursue careers as CPAs because of the versatility the designation has for its holders,” she said. “Virtually any field you are interested in can be parlayed into professional occupation if you’re a CPA.”
Each year, the OSCPA Educational Foundation awards thousands of dollars in scholarships to college students. In 2008, the foundation awarded more than $20,000 in scholarships to offset rising education costs.

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