Thursday, May 04, 2006

Biz Buzz Goes Online

Biz Buzz Goes Online
'Electronic Update' via e-mail
By Amanda Janis/Business Writer

An electronic newsletter highlighting Solano County's economic virtues and development news debuted last week.

Targeted primarily toward its 175-plus private investor members throughout the county, the Solano Economic Development Corp.'s "Electronic Update" is meant to be a quick, informative, online read.

"We think that most people are Internet-savvy now," explained Mike Ammann, president of the organization, as to why the newsletter is e-mailed as opposed to printed and mailed.

"A lot of people appreciate getting things electronically, as they then take part of it and send it on to others," he added. "I would imagine people will do that with our newsletter."

The quarterly newsletter from the Solano EDC - which is a public-private organization whose mission is to attract and retain business enterprises - is a collective of different sources of information, Ammann explained.

"We all team up together to come up with what goes in," he said. Ammann's "we," refers to the organization's marketing task force, whose 2006 marketing plan and branding strategy - both of which revolve around the "Plant Your Business in Solano County" slogan - are easily reviewed by clicking links within the newsletter.

The newsletter's components include a message from Brooks Pedder, board chairman, in which he briefly discusses positive economic indicators he's observed, such as increasing values of business park real estate and improving business park leasing. Pedder also addresses the hot topic of "the interchange," of Interstates 80 and 680, its shortcomings and their impact on business.

In addition to listing and linking new Solano EDC members, the newsletter provides an overview of recent economic and development news for each of Solano's seven cities.

For example, it details Calbee America's recent decision to move its snack food manufacturing operations from Sebastapol to Fairfield, as well as State Compensation Insurance Fund's purchase of 32 acres in Vacaville's Vaca Valley Business Park.

While the newsletter's primary purpose is to update and inform Solano EDC members, Ammann noted that its format allows for easy repackaging of information that may be used to stimulate and encourage local business growth.

"All or part of that newsletter can be repurposed to other readers or groups," he explained. "For instance, there's one section about real estate deals; so, we'll take that portion of it and repurpose it for brokers and real estate folks so they can see there's activity up here, and may want to work with us in some way."

In much the same way, Ammann said, he will be able to utilize various segments of the newsletter when putting together packages for businesses that have expressed interest in Solano cities.

Amanda Janis can be reached at

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