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Office of Economic Development
Office of Economic Development

Updates: Office of Economic Development


OED presents Berkeley City Council with ways to support Berkeley’s small businesses

Visionary Lab brings together startup founders and the Berkeley community to honor local innovators

OED hosts a Revolving Loan Fund recipient site tour for the Loan Administration Board

Michael Christian’s Home sculpture selected for the renovated Downtown BART plaza

OED updates its website to provide current information for local businesses


OED presents Berkeley City Council with ways to support Berkeley’s small businesses

On January 16, 2018 OED made a presentation to Berkeley City Council that provided an overview of Berkeley’s small businesses, a summary of the issues and trends impacting the profitability and sustainability of these businesses, and five “near term, high impact” initiatives the department will implement in the next two years to support small businesses in Berkeley. The presentation also summarized existing OED services for small businesses, acknowledged cross-departmental efforts to improve the City’s support for small businesses; and shared an initial analysis of other programs and policies the City Council might consider in the future. The presentation was a summary of key findings from a longer report, which reflects months of research and business outreach by the OED business services team and can be found here.   

Berkeley small biz by numbers

Visionary Lab brings together startup founders and the Berkeley community to honor local innovators

The City of Berkeley's Office of Economic Development and its Berkeley Startup Cluster partners worked with the Berkeley Chamber of Commerce to kick off the 2018 Visionary Lab event series. A new spinoff to the successful, long-running Berkeley Chamber Visionary Awards ceremony, Visionary Lab is a new event series that will create regular opportunities for Berkeley’s leading entrepreneurs to interact with the broader Berkeley community. On January 18 at the David Brower Center in Downtown Berkeley, Stephen Donaldson of Radiant Brands moderated a panel discussion with the CEOs of Berkeley-based startups EnChroma, Clarity Movement, and Socos Learning. The startup founders shared what inspired them, where their companies are going and how Berkeley can continue to support their innovation. When asked “Why Berkeley?”, all three described Berkeley’s talent pool as critical to their business success.  David Lu, Founder of Clarity Movement, even described Berkeley as a “dream enabler”, citing the university resources and city’s unique character.

Visionary lab

OED hosts a Revolving Loan Fund recipient site tour for the Loan Administration Board

On Wednesday, January 24, 2018, members of the Loan Administration Board (LAB) participated in the annual Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) Recipient Site Tour.  The LAB members visited eight businesses in Berkeley and received a presentation from each business on its current status and how it has utilized RLF funding to sustain operations or fuel business growth.  At the conclusion of each presentation, LAB members asked questions, provided feedback and provided recommendations on topics such as business management, marketing, production and distribution.  The tour also created additional opportunities for networking and support from the LAB members to the business owners and operators. 

The sites visited were: California Jazz Conservatory (2087 Addison St.), East Bay Media Center (1939 Addison St.), SlingFin (1355 Fourth Street), Minuteman Press (1101 Fifth St.), Kitchen on Fire (1509 Shattuck Ave), Anton Salon (2887 College Ave), The BioFuel Oasis (1441 Ashby Ave) and the Vault Café & Restaurant (3250 Adeline Ave).

SlingFin design studio


Michael Christian’s Home sculpture selected for the renovated Downtown BART plaza

OED’s Civic Arts Program staff organized a review process with the Public Art Subcommittee who chose Michael Christian’s HOME as the sculpture that will be featured at the renovated Downtown BART plaza. The piece was chosen from 38 submitted applicants based on scale, durability and the representation of International Unity. Michael Christian was born and raised in Dallas, TX. He graduated with a BFA at the University of Texas at Austin. Christian moved to the San Francisco Bay area 1995 where he discovered his love of steel and large scale sculpture.

HOME description: 2010, Steel, halide bulb - 14’ x 10’ x 10’; Metal cut in shapes of street maps from around the world.

Home metal sculpture


OED updates its website to provide current information for local businesses

In an effort to improve its communications with local businesses and other stakeholders with commercial interests in Berkeley, OED has updated the content on its website.  Content now falls into six main categories (Business Assistance, Data & Reporting, Business Networks, Berkeley Innovation Ecosystem, Civic Arts Program, and Boards & Commissions) and the Contact Us page can you point you toward the right person to ask, given your interests or concerns.

 

 

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Office of Economic Development, 2180 Milvia Street, Berkeley, CA 94704
Questions or comments? Email: ecodev@cityofberkeley.info Phone: (510) 981-7530
(510) 981-CITY/2489 or 311 from any landline in Berkeley
TTY: (510) 981-6903
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