In another segment of our overall year-end wrap-up, I thought that you might be curious to know what the most read post of the year was on your dear old Prosperity Blog. And the winner is:
So, we here at the Prosperity Blog love cheese, in all its forms. Cheesy 80’s music? I’m listening to Flock of Seagulls right now! Delicious dairy goodness? I’m a conference attendee! (Ed. Note: Do you think this is the Society for American Cheese or the American Society for Cheese?) But most specifically, we’re not ashamed of being cheesy with our emotions, especially around the holidays. And the cheesiest thing you can do at Thanksgiving – besides potato gratin – is talk about what you’re thankful for. So here goes: I am really grateful that our region and state are a great place for economic development! Read the rest of this entry »
Well, it was a busy week, last week, with the Chamber’s Regional Leadership Conference and all (see this/last week’s B-MOW), so we’re just getting to last week’s REDEW this week. I know several of you were desperate over the weekend, hitting refresh over and over again, but hopefully you have recovered. So, without further delay, this week’s Random Economic Development Email of the Week: “North-Central-South American Cities of the Future 2011/12: Now accepting entries.” Read the rest of this entry »
So, our region has the “best economy“, according to an economic consulting company I’ve never heard of. And yet, here I am, slaving away at the Prosperity Partnership, trying to improve our region’s economy…am I wasting my time? Maybe, but not because there’s nothing to do to improve our economy. Read the rest of this entry »
When I moved here in 2001, it was after the Era of Big Events in Seattle seemed to have ended – no more Goodwill Games, no more NCAA Final Four at the Kingdome, the stymied Olympics bid…we had the MLB all-star game, and that was the last of it. Maybe it was all the stadium building or the post-9/11 economic bust or the rise of the Lesser Seattle movement, but somehow those huge drivers of tourism and economic impact drifted away. Until now… Read the rest of this entry »
As we all try to look ahead and see what the New Year has in store for this region’s economy there are some less visible but possibly more promising early signs of recovery. At the end of 2009 the Business and Economic Development Center celebrated the successes of small businesses from across the state at the 11th annual UW Minority Business of the Year Awards banquet. The 550+ attendees celebrated the incredible growth that minority-owned businesses have had in this state:
- When the awards program began in 1999 the 50 largest minority-owned businesses in Washington had combined revenues of under $1 billion.
- This year, the 50 largest had combined revenues in excess of $3 billion. And for the first time there’s a minority-owned business, PetroCard Systems of Kent, which has revenues in excess of $1 billion.
- As recently as five years ago companies could get on the largest minority-owned business list with sales of as little as $750,000 and this year, the smallest of the 50 largest businesses had revenues in excess of $3.4 million.
- The fastest growing minority-owned business this year (for the 5th time in 7 years) comes from the Spokane area. The Spokane Tribal Enterprise Corporation has grown its revenues by more than 760% in the last three years and has grown from just seven employees to nearly 50.
- The 25 fastest growing minority-owned businesses in Washington have added more than 600 jobs in the last three years, despite the recession.
I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about what to do with the information that we’re collecting on Recovery Act awards to industry cluster related activities. It’s certainly nice to know in general, but I’ve always said that we have to make sure that these dollars aren’t just a one-time windfall, but actually contribute to the long-term success of our regional economic development strategy. So I’ve started to think about the Recovery Act funds in three groups: Read the rest of this entry »