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Growth in business-for-sale marketplace

Increases reported in San Bernardino County

Staff Writer

BARSTOW • Twenty-six small and mid-sized businesses were sold in Barstow last year, according to findings by commercial real estate website

Business sales in all of San Bernardino County totaled 692 in 2012 — up 31 percent from the 528 businesses sold during 2011, the company stated in a press release.

Small business sales are an indicator of economic health in the state, according to Peter Siegel, the company’s founder and president.

“If small businesses are to grow and provide more jobs, they need to be transferred to new, and often more energetic ownership when the current owner is ready to retire or undertake some other enterprise,” he said in the press release.

Carol Randall, economic development chairwoman and vice president of the Barstow Chamber of Commerce, said the findings most likely represent only name changes on business licenses.

“Most small businesses sell between themselves,” she said, noting owners “tend to pass hands to the next generation.”

The report stated Helendale (8), Yermo (4) and Newberry Springs (1) also had businesses change ownership in 2012.

Just last month, 81 small and mid-sized businesses were sold in San Bernardino County, the report found — an increase of 37% over sales in December 2011 and fifth highest in the state behind Los Angeles (297), Orange (171), San Diego (100) and Riverside (87) counties.

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