The Latest

The hair design business keeps growing

thelatestOn Saturday mornings, Beau Monde College of Hair Design in downtown Portland is a hive of energy, with customers coming and going, students honing their skills and even a little dance session to get things started. The scene is emblematic of a niche industry that has grown in Oregon while many others have suffered.

California’s brain drain is Oregon’s gain

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Out-of-state tuition dollars are saving the Oregon University System from financial strains as money for higher education continues to dry up. More and more Californians are pouring into Oregon schools, and university officials are happy to take their money.

Change brightens lighting opportunities

imo-blogIn September, General Electric, with its ties to American inventor and light bulb luminary Thomas Edison, closed its last major incandescent light factory, laying off more than 200 workers.  This seismic shift, mandated by energy efficiency standards, has created headaches for some companies and opportunities for others.

Lululemon's ground-level business strategy

thelatestAthletic apparel company Lululemon’s marketing strategy includes cupcakes, camp outs, dances and running clubs. It does not include broadcast or print advertising, or any other traditional marketing approaches. The company relies solely on social events, word of mouth and social media to get customers to its stores. Last week it took the unusual step of organizing an overnight camp-out in upscale Bridgeport Village.

Oregon ARRA funds go to Washington businesses

thelatestThe recently completed Tillamook North Jetty project was awarded to an out-of-state company over local bidders, raising questions about the future use of federal stimulus funds awarded to Oregon projects.

Oregon Zoo cashes in on dinosaur fever

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The Oregon Zoo has extended its animatronic "Prehistoric Predator" exhibit an extra month due to popularity and financial success. The animals will return to extinction on October 3.

 

Subsidies dry up for green business

thelatestLegislators presented a doom and gloom message to Oregon green business leaders last week: The Oregon General Fund continues to plummet. State subsidies, once readily offered through tax credits to green businesses, will now be more difficult to obtain.

Group creates a bed bug fighting bed

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A Portland nonprofit has invented a bed that it hopes will help fight the bed bug infestation that has hit apartments, hotels and other buildings throughout the city.

Running events gain momentum

thelatestOregon is getting pounded in the recession - pounded by the soles of runners clamoring to snag a spot in marathons, relays and races filling up around the state.

Jobs return to Portland Harbor

thelatestThe Greenbrier Companies, headquartered in Lake Oswego with a strong presence in Portland Harbor, has received $130 million worth of new railcar orders and will increase its workforce by 260 at its Gunderson railcar manufacturing facility in Northwest Portland.  The company has received over 1,700 new orders and 1,200 refurbishment orders from five companies in North America.

South Waterfront finally comes to life

thelatestThe ribbon-cutting of Elizabeth Caruthers Park last Thursday sent a strong signal that the idealized South Waterfront District isn’t completely lost to a stalled economy. Quite the contrary, it looks as though the neighbors are finally moving in, and so is business.

Oregon Business named top 10 business publication

thelatestOregon Business magazine has been named one of the top 10 small business publications in the country by the national American Society of Business Publication Editors, which also awarded five additional honors to the magazine for excellence in writing and design.

Social entrepreneurship heats up in Portland

thelatestPortland is earning a reputation as a hub for business minds who want to change the world. Several local companies are finding a way to make a profit and actually do a little good for the world at the same time.

FLIR purchases ICx Technologies for $274 million

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Wilsonville-based FLIR Systems announced this morning an agreement to acquire ICx Technologies for $274 million. FLIR, maker of thermal imaging and camera system products, will pay $7.55 per share for the detection and surveillance company based in Arlington, VA.

The Latest: Here Comes Walmart

thelatestWalmart is making plans for seven new stores that could bring an estimated 2,000 jobs to Oregon. The 152,000 square foot Cornelius Supercenter is set to open next Wednesday morning, the first new Walmart in Oregon since 2007.

A little boost for downtown retail

thelatestDowntown Portland will try to inject the fun back into shopping this fall by joining a host of worldwide cities to indulge in a “Fashion’s Night Out” of events, fashion shows and parties to showcase downtown retail.

PDX developer launches next phase of live video

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Portland-based Cascade Web Development has launched a product that takes live video to the next level. From the offices of their 1930's railcar, Cascade Web Development recently introduced new video software called Brandlive.

Solar co-op shines in Salem

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The solar co-op effort, which originated in Portland, made its way to Salem yesterday with a goal of bringing solar energy to 100 area residences. The initiative is part of a grass-roots model that provides bulk-pricing to homeowners who want to install solar panels on their homes.

Hamburger Mary's back in town

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The legendary Hamburger Mary’s is headed back to Portland and sparking a fury of excitement, especially from the gay community that remembers the flamboyant and popular burger joint from years past. The franchise announced it's planning to make the Rose City its 11th outlet, but has kept the location under wraps while negotiating a lease.

Polar Fleece inventor now pushing wool

thelatestDoug Hoschek spent the 1980s traveling the country selling his new invention — Polar Fleece, which he says he invented in 1980. Hoschek, 64, has lived and breathed the textile industry his entire life. Although his claim to fame is the innovation of synthetic textiles, Hoschek argues that Oregon could have a bright future in wool.

Port looks ahead for new connections, deeper channel

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The docking of the Westwood Victoria in Portland early Sunday morning brought cause for celebration at the Port of Portland, but it doesn’t signal an end to the rough waters in the future of shipping.  A new service linking Portland to Japan and Korea may alleviate some of the ailments nagging the port, but whether it will last remains to be seen.