July 2013 Archives

July 24, 2013

California Food and Agriculture Head to lead Trade Mission to Vietnam and China.

State food and agriculture secretary Karen Ross will lead a trade delegation to China and Vietnam in September, according to a press release issued by the California Deparment of Food and Agriculture. She will be leading an agricultural trade delegation to China and Vietnam from September 16-21, 2013, as part of the California State Trade and Export Promotion program.

This mission will visit Shanghai and Ho Chi Minh City with the goal of providing export business opportunities for California farmers, ranchers and food processors. The new California-China Trade and Investment Office in Shanghai, opened by Governor Brown during his trade mission, will help coordinate this mission by facilitating links between California businesses and Chinese counterparts who have shown interests in purchasing California products.

Funding for this trade mission will come from a grant administered by the U.S. Small Business Administration. Companies interested in participating in the trade mission should contact the Fresno Center for International Trade Development at (559) 324-6401or visit www.fresnocitd.org, The full press release can be read at this link:

http://www.cdfa.ca.gov/egov/Press_Releases/Press_Release.asp?PRnum=13-019

Filed under Agriculture and Food, China, Vietnam by

July 25, 2013

California shark fin ban now in effect

California’s law that prohibits the sale, possession, trade, or distribution of shark fins went into full effect on the first of this month ending the Chinese custom of serving shark fin soup in California restaurants.

The legislation went into effect in January, but had exemptions allowing the sale of previously obtained shark fins until the end of June. Anyone now caught violating the law could face a penalty of up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

the law caused a controversy between environmentalists, concerned about the declining shark population and some Chinese-Americans, who want to continue to honor this Chinese tradition. The soup is an expensive delicacy, has been popular in China since the Ming Dynasty, and is often served during weddings, banquets and other Asian ceremonies.

As reported in the Los Angeles Times, however, it is thought that close to 73 million sharks are killed for their fins each year. Many, are obtained by the process of finning – slicing the fins from live sharks and throwing the disabled animals back into the ocean, where they drown. The market for shark meat is nowhere as great as for the fins, the Times reported, and demand for the fins has reduced some shark populations to 10% of historical levels.

Filed under Agriculture and Food, China, Environment and Climate by

July 26, 2013

California might benefit from White House Manufacturing Initiative

The Obama Administration has launched a new program called rogram the “Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership” (IMCP) and recently held their first and only meeting in California. This roundtable event in Woodland was sponsored by the White House and the USDA and attracted about 125 people.

As part of a national manufacturing strategy. 25 communities around the country will be awarded $200,000 each to create an implementation strategy for this program. In addition, a half dozen or so communities will be awarded up to $25 million each next year from the U.S. Commerce Department for manufacturing strategies that are ready to be implemented.

According to a report by the California Economic Summit, a public-private partnership group called Innovate North State proposed concentrating on five industries: agriculture, cleantech, health, web and information technology as well as manufacturing. They have identified 100 manufacturing companies in the northern part of the state, and are planning to submit a proposal to the IMCP.

Filed under Economic Development, Manufacturing, U.S. Government by

July 29, 2013

Boeing moving more engineering jobs to Southern California

Boeing has announced that it will be moving as many as 300 engineering jobs from Washington State to its facility in Long Beach. According to the Seattle Times, about 375 employees are currently doing the aftermarket engineering work on modifying jets for current customers and converting aging passenger jets to freighters work that is expected to move, but some of these jobs are expected to be eliminated.

Boeing has previously announced that the company would establish new engineering centers in Southern California and South Carolina for modifying out-of-production airplanes and that about 300 jobs would be moved to Long Beach This new move, however, involves a separate group of engineers who work on modifications such as aircraft performance upgrades or interior refinishing, as well as the passenger jet-to-freighter conversions.

The Seattle Times quoted Boeing engineering chief Mike Delaney as saying “We expect the Southern California and South Carolina design centers to grow over time,” and that, “We are presently studying other potential work packages” for those centers.

Boeing’s manufacturing facility in Long Beach has a long history. Established by the Douglas Aircraft Company in 1941, during ring its the facility produced more than 15,000 airplanes, including the DC-3, DC-8, DC-9, DC-10, MD-80, MD-90 and MD-11 and 717 passenger planes, as well as such military aircraft like the C-47 the B-17 the A-20, A-26, C-74, C-124, A-4D, C-133 and early models of the C-17. In recent years, however, business has declined and Boeing stopped producing commercial aircraft there entirely in 2006, when the last 717 rolled off the line

The news was both good and unexpected. Southern California has a large number of highly qualified aerospace engineers and Boeing already employs about 1,200 engineers in the area. A decade ago, however, Boeing had 35,000 workers and was the largest private employer in Southern California.

Filed under Aerospace and Aviation by

July 30, 2013

Cisco buys Sourcefire for 2.7 billion in cash

Cisco Systems, the worlds biggest maker of networking equipment has agreed to acquire Sourcefire Inc., a cybersecurity firm, for about $2.7 billion in cash.

Sourcefire, based in Columbia, Maryland, builds security platforms including firewalls, intrusion detectors and malware protection that is used extensively by the U.S. Government and major corporations. The company was founded in 2001 and has grown into a major cybersecurity provider – last year it had revenue of over $200 million.

According to a report in Bloomberg Markets Watchlist, many of Sourcefire’s products are built on Snort, an open-source program developed by Sourcefire founder Martin Roesch. The system is used by most Fortune 100 companies and 30 of the largest U.S. government agencies to detect attempted attacks on their networks. Sourcefire’s business with the U.S. government is a “very valuable” part of the deal and will give Cisco more access to key federal cybersecurity decision-makers, according to Christopher Young, senior vice president of Cisco’s security group.

The deal is Cisco’s biggest since its $5 billion acquisition of NDS Group Ltd. last year and is thought to reflect a growing interest for companies that can help guard against computer-based attacks by governments and corporations.

Filed under Information Technology, Mergers and Acquisitions by

July 31, 2013

Microbusiness is a major job creation engine in California

Small companies in California have had a far greater impact on job creation than previously estimated, and this has been going on for an number of years. According to an analysis issued by Small Business California, businesses with less than five employees, sometimes called “microbusinesses”, were the state’s main engine of job growth between 2003 and 2010. These firms added 719,729 positions over that time period, while all other small businesses lost a combined 460,368 jobs during the same time frame.

California’s microbusinesses added jobs even during the depths of the recent recession, creating 120,818 positions between 2008 and 2010. Larger businesses, including firms with more than 500 workers, lost a combined 1.02 million jobs in those years. The report was based on an analysis of data from the U.S. Small Business Administration, Office of Advocacy and can be viewed at this link http://www.smallbusinesscalifornia.org/1.pdf

It is possible that the role of microbusiness has been far greater than previously estimated and this should provide some serious food for thought for economic development professionals and those responsible for business policy formation in California.

Filed under California Economy, Small Business by

Made with an easy to use WordPress theme • Blues skin by TechieCoach