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Small Business

The Takeaway

First Take: Afghanistan, Evan Bayh, Turning Hobbies into Businesses

Monday, February 15, 2010

UPDATED: 8:35 p.m. 

Alex Goldmark here on the holiday night shift. 

Tomorrow we'll continue our ongoing effort to understand as many ripple effects of the Haitian earthquake as possible. We will hear from two doctors, one of them Haitian-American, about the strains and stresses on the medical community and the medical workers administering necessary care in the battered country. 

On an uplifting note, it is Mardi Gras time. We'll get Grammy award winning musician Terence Blanchard to tell us about his favorite carnival time music. Good listening will abound. 

 

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The Takeaway

Small Business Owners Assess President Obama's Jobs Plan

Friday, January 29, 2010

In his State of the Union address, President Obama proposed to spend $30 billion to help small businesses weather the tough economy. This is the latest move by the administration to support small business owners, but has any of these plans materialized into practical help? We put the question to small business owners in different parts of the country.

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The Takeaway

Credit Crunch Leaves Small Businesses Wanting

Monday, December 07, 2009

At last week's White House Jobs Summit, small business owners from across the country pressed President Obama on dozens of issues related to the economic downturn. Credit, though, was a central issue: The credit crunch has prevented thousands of businesses from obtaining loans to expand, shift gears, or even just fund day-to-day operations. Today, Maryland governor Martin O'Malley will unveil a strategy intended to help small business owners get credit. One such business owner, Dawn P. Jackson, is the owner of NuDawn Marketing Group in Maryland and president of Women Business Owners of Prince George's Country. Dawn hoped to expand her small marketing business, but she has been discouraged from applying for credit after several banks told her that she was unlikely to get any. Maryland's Secretary of Commerce, Christian Johannson, joins us with a preview of what the governor's plan entails.

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The Takeaway

First Time Shop Owners Face Black Friday

Friday, November 27, 2009

Today, on what's marketed as “the biggest shopping day of the year,” we check in with two small business owners facing their first Black Friday: Michael Sclafani, who operates the Park Delicatessen skateboard, flower, and dry goods store in Brooklyn, New York; and Julie Lapier, who owns a Dresscode, a consignment shop in Plattsburgh, New York.

We also chat with Spencer Ante, Businessweek writer and author of "Creative Capital," about the the rise of entrepreneurship in a recession.

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The Takeaway

A Quart of Milk, a Loaf of Bread ... and Childhood Obesity?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A wave of obesity blamed (at least in part) on kids slurping cheap slushies and scarfing chips from local convenience stores has the Los Angeles City Council considering an unusual proposal: limiting the development of new corner stores in South L.A. Is the council's proposed moratorium a smart way to address a public health epidemic? Or is it an unfair attack on the convenient storefronts that serve low-income neighborhoods, where big chain grocery stores don't dare to enter?

We speak to public health expert Dr. Deborah Cohen; Lark Galloway-Gilliam, the executive director of a nonprofit health policy and education organization in South Los Angeles; and Jeff Lenard, the spokesperson for the National Association of Convenience Stores.

"The problem is that we have too many food cues that make us hungry, and make us eat too much. People were designed to overeat."
—Public health expert Dr. Deborah Cohen, on the danger that the kinds of cheap, highly processed foods usually available in convenience stores pose to public health

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The Takeaway

Business Takeout: Lender to Small Businesses Falters

Thursday, October 01, 2009

One of the largest lenders in the country to small businesses, CIT Group, may be headed for collapse. CIT is working to present restructuring plans to federal regulators by the end of today. New York Times finance reporter Louise Story joins us with the details.

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The Takeaway

Why You Might Start a Business in a Recession

Thursday, August 20, 2009

With so much talk about the ailing economy, it may not seem like the best time to start a new business,  but in our weekly work segment we look at some reasons why it might make sense to do it now. Takeaway contributor Beth Kobliner, author of Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your Twenties and Thirties, joins us with two entrepreneurs who are doing well in the recession: Marva Allen, co-owner of Hue-Man Bookstore in New York, and Jo-Ellen Stammen, who runs her own design business. ...(continue reading)

What they see is [that] bigger, more established competitors may be having to cut back and lay off people, maybe not having that great service they used to have. So a new company could start, a small business could start, and really have that edge.
—Financial author Beth Kobliner on why starting a business during a recession can be a good idea

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The Takeaway

The Takeaway checks in with small business owner Laura Richards

Monday, April 27, 2009

This week we’re marking our one-year anniversary by checking in the people who have helped us understand the lives behind the numbers on the news. Real people with real stories about every issue from the Presidential campaign to the impact of the housing crisis to the state of the economy. Laura Richards is one of the voices we heard earlier this year. She owns two California Tortilla restaurant franchises in Maryland. We met her in October when small businesses were the canaries in the economic coalmine. At the time Ms. Richards was hoping to expand her franchise, just as credit was freezing. She joins us from Annapolis with an update.

The Takeaway is looking at the economy through the eyes, webcams and cell phones of Americans. Watch the stories and add your own.

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The Takeaway

The Takeaway checks in with enterpreneur Jim Svetz and student Jesse Acosta

Monday, April 27, 2009

This week we’re marking The Takeaway's one-year anniversary by checking in the people who have been, in many ways, the backbone of the show. We’re not talking about the newsmakers, we’re talking about the folks who have been living the news. From the plummeting economy to the Presidential election, we’re returning to those who gave these big national headlines a very real and personal voice. We’re kicking off the conversation with entrepreneur Jim Svetz. We first met him last September. He was the CEO of Muddy Cup, a small coffee house franchise in upstate New York. He was dealing with hostile bankers, an uneasy partner, and customers who had financial jitters. And back then economists weren’t even confident that we were in a recession. Jim joins us from Beacon, New York with an update.

We also are checking back with Jesse Acosta, a student in the Class of 2009 at the Yale School of Management. As a veteran of both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars he is used to surviving in tough times. And all his hard work has paid off, because he has a job lined up for next year. He joins us with his take on the mood on campus.

The Takeaway is looking at the economy through the eyes, webcams and cell phones of Americans. Watch the stories and add your own.

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The Takeaway

It's a DIY economy

Monday, February 16, 2009

In order to save a few bucks, we've all tried our hands at Do It Yourself projects and in these trying economic times we will all probably try again. These DIY projects may be helping prop up the economy, but now how you might expect. Teresa Guidet says that failed DIY projects booster her thriving business. Guidet runs an upholstery business in Barry County Michigan, where, from time to time, she ends up taking over the abandoned projects of well-intentioned do-it-yourself-ers, who try reupholstering their old couches and dining room chairs instead of buying news ones.

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The Takeaway

New lead testing law angers small manufacturers, retailers

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

On February 10th a controversial new consumer product law goes into effect. It requires manufacturers of goods aimed at children under the age of 12 to test their products for lead. It also forbids retailers to sell goods with unacceptable levels of lead. While that is certainly well-intentioned, small business owners say they don’t have the money to test their products. They worry the law, which is meant to protect children, will actually put them out of business. The Takeaway talks to Scott Wolfson, a spokesman for the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and Marilyn Seitz, owner of the not-for-profit Pennyworth Thrift Shop in Silver Spring, Maryland, for their take on the situation.

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