From the Editor: Stories of success bring springtime to February

| Print |  Email
Articles - February 2011
Thursday, January 27, 2011

As I look at the sum of all the parts of this issue, I’m more than a little surprised at how the unintentional theme is success. Big and small, urban and rural. We didn’t plan it that way, but there it is.

Rural success is harder to come by than almost any other. But there’s a mill returning to life in Rogue River and a pellet plant in John Day beginning operations with both bringing dozen of jobs to areas with few prospects and high unemployment. Then there’s the hard fought and enduring success of Painted Hill Natural Beef. The classic Oregon story of an independent rancher going his own way defines how Merhten Homer created a path for cattle ranchers near Fossil to take charge of their own destiny.

On the other side of the state and on a much larger scale, Knowledge Universe, which has its U.S. headquarters in Portland, is a steadily growing force in the child care delivery space and is the largest private provider of childhood education services in the country. With about 1,400 employees in Portland and in 29 centers around the state, it is also one of the city’s largest employers and has ambitious plans to grow. The global giant might be one of the state’s best-kept business success secrets. Until now.

And in my favorite category, entrepreneurs, we’re busting at the seams. My favorite has to be Mike Slinkard, the man who invented the Human Energy Concealment System, which is a hunting suit that blocks the electromagnetic field emitted by the human body so that animals can’t detect them. The music scene seems to be particularly fertile for entrepreneurs. Taggr is a Portland-based start-up putting QR barcodes on music posters while Mike Thrasher has turned his concert promotions company into one of the biggest in the Northwest with his stealthy grassroots marketing.

Which brings us to the cover story on the Oregon Angel Fund. It has invested almost $8 million in 16 companies. The group is so successful at what it does, not one of those companies has failed. On the contrary, they have created 443 jobs and earned collectively almost $60 million in annual revenues. Six years old and already king of the playground.
All this says to me that it might be February, but I’m seeing some pretty sweet green shoots.

robin-BLOG

 

Robin Doussard
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

More Articles

Leading with the right brain

News
Tuesday, December 09, 2014
120914-manderson-thumbBY LINDA BAKER

On the eve of the Portland Ad Federation's Rosey Awards, Matt Anderson, CEO of Struck, talks about the transition from creative director to CEO, the Portland talent pool and whether data is the new black in the creative services sector.


Read more...

Water World

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

Fred Ziari aims to feed the global population.


Read more...

The short list: 4 companies engaged in a battle of the paddles

The Latest
Thursday, December 04, 2014
pingpongthumbBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Nothing says startup culture like a ping pong table in the office, lounge or lobby.


Read more...

A Complex Portrait: Immigration, Jobs and the Economy

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY JOE ROJAS-BURKE & KIM MOORE

Oregon Business reports on the visa squeeze, the skills gap and foreign-born residents who are revitalizing rural Oregon.


Read more...

Behind the curtain: What students should know about accreditation and rankings

Contributed Blogs
Thursday, December 04, 2014
120414-edurating-thumbBY DEBRA RINGOLD | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR

How important are institutional and/or program evaluations provided by third parties in selecting a college or university program?


Read more...

Justice for All

January-Powerbook 2015
Thursday, December 11, 2014
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY

Lawger upends the typical hourly based fee model by letting clients determine the cost.


Read more...

Dan and Louis Oyster Bar opens up to a changing neighborhood

The Latest
Thursday, December 11, 2014
121114-oystervidBy MEGHAN NOLT

VIDEO: Revamping a Classic — an iconic eatery stays relevant in a changing marketplace.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS