November 2008

Slash and sell

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Archives - November 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008

Chris Sherland recognizes trouble when he sees it. “It’s a weak year for the retail industry.”

 

 

Graphic: Value of Oregon squash (including pumpkins)

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Archives - November 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008

SquashProductionChart

 

 

Small hats win big bucks

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Archives - November 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008

PistilDesignHat

Sometimes honesty pays. Midway through his public-funding pitch to a committee of angel investors, Peter Hixson described his company as “a three-man baseball team,” then shrugged and said, "I have no experience with taking a company from $1 million to $5 million."

 

 

Graphic: Value of sold U.S. businesses

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Archives - November 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008

SoldBusinessesChart

 

A good grape harvest

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Archives - November 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008

NewPinotGrapes

Despite a potentially devastating year for wine grape growing because of erratic weather, early word from Oregon vineyards is that the 2008 crop is shaping up to be better than expected.

 

 

Wave energy’s message to critics: You’re wrong

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Archives - November 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008

WaveEnergyBuoy0607

On a windless morning this past September, Oregon State University researchers towed a prototype wave energy buoy off the coast of Newport and dropped anchor.

 

 

Olympics give Nike’s China sales a huge boost

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Archives - November 2008
Saturday, November 01, 2008

NikeBeijing

 

 
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See How They Run

January-Powerbook 2015
Friday, December 12, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER

Studying ground-running birds, a group that ranks among nature's speediest and most agile bipedal runners, to build a faster robot.


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Political Clout

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY KIM MOORE

Businesses spend billions of dollars each year trying to influence political decision makers by piling money into campaigns.


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Editor's Letter: Power Play

January-Powerbook 2015
Thursday, December 11, 2014

There’s a fascinating article in the December issue of the Harvard Business Review about a profound power shift taking place in business and society. It’s a long read, but the gist revolves around the tension between “old power” and “new power” as a driver of transformation. Here’s an excerpt:

Old power works like a currency. It is held by few. Once gained, it is jealously guarded, and the powerful have a substantial store of it to spend. It is closed, inaccessible, and leader-driven. It downloads, and it captures.

New power operates differently, like a current. It is made by many. It is open, participatory, and peer-driven. It uploads, and it distributes. Like water or electricity, it’s most forceful when it surges. The goal with new power is not to hoard it but to channel it.

The authors, Henry Timms and Jeremy Heimans, don’t necessarily favor one form of power over another but merely outline how power is transitioning, and how companies can take advantage of these changes to strengthen their positions in the marketplace. 

Our Powerbook issue might be viewed as a case study in the new-power transition. This annual book of lists provides information on leading businesses, nonprofits and universities in the state. Most of the featured companies are entrenched power players now pursuing more flexible and less hierarchical approaches to doing business. Law firms, for example, are adopting new technologies and fee structures to make legal services more accessible and affordable.

This month we also take a look at a controversial new U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rule requiring public companies to disclose the median pay of workers, as well as the ratio between CEO and median-worker pay. 

Part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law, the rule will compel public companies to be more open about employee compensation, with the assumption that greater transparency will improve corporate performance and, perhaps, help address one of the major challenges of our time: income inequality.

New power is not only about strategy and tactics, the Harvard Business Review authors say. “The ultimate questions are ethical. The big question is whether new power can genuinely serve the common good and confront society’s most intractable problems.”

That sounds like a call to arms. Or a New Year’s resolution. Old power or new, the goals are the same: to be a force for positive change in the world. Happy 2015!

— Linda


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Top stories in 2014

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Thursday, December 18, 2014
10-listthumb

2014 was a year of wild contradictions, fast-paced growth and unexpected revelations.


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Free Falling

Contributed Blogs
Thursday, December 18, 2014
121714-oilprice-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | OB CONTRIBUTOR

The implosion of the energy complex: The best thing for low oil prices is low oil prices.


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The short list: Holiday habits of six Oregon CEOs

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Thursday, December 11, 2014
121214-xmaslist1BY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

We ask business and nonprofit leaders how they survive the season.


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Old school: Paulsen's Pharmacy maintains old fashion ethos

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Thursday, December 18, 2014
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VIDEO: Under the radar — complete with a soda counter, the traditional Paulsen's Pharmacy looks to compete with big box retailers.


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