The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically changed our lives, and each one of us likely has a personal story to tell that underscores that fact. But there are also stories to be told of sweeping changes that virtually all of us have felt. One of those is the altered state o...Continue Reading
As someone who lives in a city (albeit not a large one), I am perhaps not the most qualified to discuss the topic of rural economies. On the other hand, both my parents were raised on wheat farms in eastern Washington. Consequently, one of the most pressing issues in rura...Continue Reading
Of course, the big factor impacting office and industrial parks going into 2021 is COVID-19. The pandemic has reduced business production and workforce (through illness, social distancing, and remote working), disrupted the supply chain and cash flow, and brought about significant investments in technology.
Across the nation, the demand for suburba...Continue Reading
Many executives are increasingly weighing the impact of environmental changes and catastrophic weather — which already have devastated communities — on their businesses and future needs. Examples include the millions of acres that have been scorched in California and Colorado this year, and hurricane damage in the Gulf States. Louisiana...Continue Reading
Minnesota’s real estate market, both in the Twin Cities and in other regions of the state, saw stronger-than-average activity last year, despite the pandemic.
New purchase agreements for the Twin Cities market were up 13.4 percent for November 2020 compared to the same month the previous year, according to data fro...Continue Reading
Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, business leaders throughout the Twin Cities donated their time and resources until it hurt, giving what they could to those in need, even as their own companies faced uncertain futures.
Then after a second gut punch when racially tinged riots left many businesses looted and damaged, many reache...Continue Reading
Factories in the U.S., Asia and Europe boosted their output as 2020 drew to a close, aided by a rise in new orders and a revival in trade that has continued despite a sharp rise in coronavirus infections across many large economies.
The resilience of the global manufacturing sector contrasts with weakness i...Continue Reading
When Mankato entrepreneur Kate Hansen tried to find the perfect shirts to mark a hiking adventure to the Porcupine Mountains of Michigan, the uninspiring selection managed only to inspire her to design some herself.
Recognizing a business opportunity, she started planning an online store she decided to call Cabin No. 4. The...Continue Reading
Though the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) ended August 8, 2020—with a lack of clarity as to when it might be revived—businesses are still in need of capital.
Though more than 5 million PPP loans have been approved, accounting for $525 billion, according to data from the Small Business Administration (SBA), it’s still no...Continue Reading
At the onset of the pandemic, companies hit the pause button on sustainability initiatives to focus on their people's immediate health and wellness.
But they have since re-established momentum, driven by cost-saving opportunities and competitive advantages.
"At the very beginning of COVID – 19 there was a slowdown in activity on sustainabilit...Continue Reading
They’re cities of dreams. They’re the nation’s glamor capitals. But they’re attracting the lion’s share of Opportunity Zone funds meant to spark the economies of neighborhoods struck more by poverty than by fame.
Analysis published in September 2020 by tax break experts Novogradac found that investment in more than 800 Qualifie...Continue Reading
E-commerce has exploded in recent years, but as COVID-19 emerged the sector has seen unprecedented growth. While many industries battled disruptions, e-commerce provides opportunity. E-commerce and logistics companies are accelerating planned innovation and restructuring initiatives to stay ahead of the curve — if that’s even possible — spurring the implementatio...Continue Reading
In recent years, geopolitical and economic trends have been encouraging pharmaceutical drug manufacturers to shift their active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) sourcing and physical manufacturing plants onto domestic soil or near-shore locations. This has been a gradually turning tide that accelerated this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and, in it...Continue Reading
Our attitudes about food and beverage influence the brands we purchase, how we socialize, where we shop — and sometimes even where we live. Our expectations are high when it comes to product mix and availability. When our wants and needs are not met quickly, as was the case a...Continue Reading
As the world shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the earth took notice of clearer air, cleaner water, wildlife returning to their natural habitats and more.
Now there’s a growing desire to reopen the world in a way that respects ourselves, our society and our environment, as well as t...Continue Reading
Who doesn’t like cookies? The food industry usually avoids NIMBY objections. The facilities smell nice, they are not too big, and they often have a company store open to the public! This article is focused on food plants in the $20 million to $80 million range, perhaps 40,000 square fee...Continue Reading
Is there anything new to discover in using wood for building construction? There’s evidence that people have been building wood structures for some 10,000 years. Has it all been done?
Nope. Washington State University and NRRI submitted a provisional patent application this year for developing thermally modified cross-laminated strand-veneer timber building materials...Continue Reading
If you want to see what a transformative year 2020 was for Amazon’s e-commerce business, don’t just look at its share price — look at its real estate decisions.
Black Friday shopping mall foot traffic was down 52%, according to Sensormatic Solutions, but online sales were up 22%, data from Adobe Analytics showed. COVID-19 has turbocharged the move towar...Continue Reading
Lake Country Power's Board of Directors have named Mark Bakk general manager of the 43,000-member rural electric cooperative serving northeastern Minnesota. He is responsible for leading the not-for-profit utility's power delivery, managing member resources and helping local communities prosper.
“We are very happy to announce that Lake Country Power’s chief financia...Continue Reading
First, I’d just note that we gathered state leaders, partners and startups from across the state last week for a virtual event to celebrate the one-year anniversary of Launch Minnesota, a program designed to accelerate startups. You can find out more in Launch Minnesota’s First-Year Progress Report.
I’d like to share a message I wrote &ndash...Continue Reading
The COVID–19 pandemic has negatively impacted a number of industries, perhaps none more than those engaged in food packaging, preparation, and service. The impact on the consumer end is well-discussed. Because of social distancing and other precautions related to employee and patron health and safety, many restaurants still operating do so well below capacity. Others have suspended operation; six in ten will not reopen...Continue Reading
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) hosted a virtual event to celebrate Minnesota’s startup community and Launch Minnesota’s first anniversary. Participants included two state legislators, six startups and seven partners from across the state who are part of the Launch Minnesota Network.
Launch Minnesota is a statewide collaborative effort to accelerat...Continue Reading
To say that Covid-19 has thrown businesses for a loop would be an understatement. Yelp recently reported that, of the more than 160,000 U.S. companies that have closed since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, 60% are now shut down for good.
With businesses across the country struggling to keep their doors open, scalin...Continue Reading
FTZs Are Making a Comeback
There was a double-digit growth in foreign trade zone use [in 2018], according to the federal government's report for that year. When the 2019 report comes out, that double double-digit growth will have increased even more. The reason is that these tariffs are a whole ne...Continue Reading