Starting a business service Web marketplace in a down economy





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Uploaded on Oct 8, 2009

The trend of businesses going online forming more and more services is nothing new, but the number of online marketplace is increasing at a rapid pace, even in the current economic downturn. These marketplace Websites can help businesses accomplish tasks as varied as outsourcing work, recruiting employees, finding service providers and buying supplies. Although this trend has pre-bubble origins, the current recession has seen an increase in marketplace sites that power these marketplace and increased business adoption.

In this edition of Smith Business Close-Up with the University of Marylands Robert H. Smith School of Business, Reed Alexander Atkin, a recent MBA graduate, talks about how, despite the recession, he launched an online service business with the help of the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship.

Atkin founded and heads up Legal River, an online marketplace dedicated to helping lawyers and businesses connect. Businesses can use to post their legal needs and desired lawyer qualifications, and then receive responses from interested lawyers. Atkin has a successful track record of building, launching and growing businesses in the consumer services, e-commerce and b2b space. Prior to co-founding Legal River, he operated and grew a supplemental education business located near Seattle. He launched Legal River in January with the help of the Dingman Centers entrepreneurial Jumpstart program, an intensive two-week program to help University of Maryland students start and grow businesses.

Smith Business Close-Up is co-produced by the Robert H. Smith School of Business and Maryland Public Television. The television segment focuses on the latest thinking in business management, and features in-depth interviews with Smith School faculty and other members of the schools community of business leaders.

Where to watch
Smith Business Close-Up can be seen bi-weekly on Maryland Public Television's Your Business and Money. The program airs at 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays and is repeated the following Sunday at 7:30 a.m. and Monday at 4:30 a.m. on public television stations throughout Maryland and the Washington, D.C., metropolitan region, including:

WMPB-TV (Ch. 67), Baltimore
WMPT-TV (Ch. 22), DC metro/Annapolis
WCPB-TV (Ch. 28), Salisbury
WFPT-TV (Ch. 62), Frederick
WWPB-TV (Ch. 31), Hagerstown
WGPT-TV (Ch. 36), Oakland

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