Oakland Economy Now - Vol. 20 May 2016

Oakland Economy Now Masthead Volume 20 May 2016 News from the City of Oakland

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Small Business Week May 1 – May 7 Packed with Free Workshops, Resources and Events

Get ready for an Oakland Small Business Week befitting our vibrant business community. Here’s the week’s lineup of free workshops and events:

Sunday: Kiva Oakland Pledge Drive 
Monday: Access to Capital Lenders Fair & Opening Reception
Tuesday: Digital Solutions & Worker Owned Co-ops
Wednesday: Diversity in Entrepreneurship
Thursday: Artists & Makers Workshops and Mixer
Friday: "Healthy Business, Healthy Communities" closing reception with Congresswoman Barbara Lee and US SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet. Includes a VIP tour of Revolution Foods with food industry leaders.
Saturday: Shop Local in Participating Neighborhoods

Click here for the full program and partners. 

Small Business Week

Oakland is for Readers: Independent Bookstores Thriving

Marcus Books has been in Oakland for 56 years; Book/Shop in Temescal Alley for three. The six bookstores on Piedmont Avenue call themselves “The Bay Area’s Biggest Book Row,” with more than 100,000 books among them. Oakland’s independent book store cluster is only growing – and offering exciting programming to nurse Oaklanders’ literary love. The Octopus Literary Salon offers nightly events, food and wine with their books, while E.M. Wolfman on 13th Street has an art exhibit, "Inner Cities," exploring our psychological connections to place and cities. On Saturday, May 22, celebrate book culture at the Oakland Book Festival, featuring 200 writers and 60 events at City Hall.

Inner Cities Gallery Exhibit, May 2 to May 31 at EM Wolfman Bookstore

People’s Community Market Purchases West Oakland Location

Advancing their vision for a full-service food market, cafe, and social hall in West Oakland, People’s Community Market has secured 3103 Myrtle Street to build a grocery store designed for the neighborhood. People’s goal is to make Oakland’s food scene inclusive and to bring healthy food options to West Oakland. Other local organizations contributing to the project include Cutting Edge Capital, who supported fundraising through a Direct Public Offering, East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation, Lowney Architecture and St. Matthew Missionary Baptist Church, who will rent their parking lot to the market. The store is planned to open in 2017.

people's Community Market architectural drawing of new store

Rainin Foundation Launches New Grant Program for Local Artists

The Kenneth Rainin Foundation announced a new arts program, Open Space, to fund up to four temporary public art projects with grants between $50,000 and $200,000 per project. The program aims to "engage communities, showcase artistic experimentation and energize public spaces." Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf stated, “Programs like Open Spaces help ensure that the arts are supported and celebrated in Oakland.” The foundation is accepting Letters of Inquiry between May 16 and June 30. Kenneth Rainin was the founder of East Oakland-based Rainin Instruments, one of Oakland’s largest manufacturers.

AECOM Bringing 600 Workers to Kaiser Center

The Bay Area’s largest engineering and design firm, AECOM, has secured a major office lease in Downtown Oakland. AECOM is taking 120,000 square feet in the Kaiser Center at 300 Lakeside Drive. The new location, two blocks from BART with lake views, will bring together 600 workers currently at AECOM's two San Francisco locations and its current Oakland office at 1313 Broadway. 

Kaiser Center on Lakeside Drive


Need help for your business? Contact us!

Business Assistance Center

Zoning & Permits

Quarterly Economic Dashboard

Minimum Wage & Employment Laws 

KivaZip Oakland

Foreign Trade Zone


Congratulations to the following businesses, who will be recognized during Small Business Week:

Northern CA Emerging Business of the Year
Nona Lim

Legacy Businesses
Dreisbach Enterprises
Marcus Books
McGuire and Hester
Otaez Mexicatessen
Vien Huong Restaurant

Council Recognition
Park Street Burger
Oasis Food Market
Beast Oakland
Kingdom Builders Thrift and Furniture Store


Independent Bookstore Day
April 30 @ Multiple Locations

Oakland Small Business Week
May 1 – 7 @ Multiple Locations

Bicycle Career Day
May 7 @ 81st Avenue Library

Vator Splash Spring
May 12 @ Scottish Rite Center

Oakland Indie Awards
May 12 @ Oakland Museum


Oakland's food-and-wine scene reflects the city's unrivaled hipness
April 22, East Bay Times

Vator Splash Back in Oakland to Host Tech Influencers, VCs, Entrepreneurs on May 12
April 19, Busbyway.com

Construction and engineering giant fills Oakland's last big office vacancy
April 15, San Francisco Business Times

Oakland drawing more tech startups
April 10, East Bay Times

New proposed Oakland hotel could sate some downtown visitor demand
April 7, San Francisco Business Times

Startup correction hits S.F. funding in Q1, but Oakland investment soars
April 6, San Francisco Business Times

Huge Oakland development site next to BART nears sale
March 31, San Francisco Business Times

Sneak peek: Oakland's new Highland Hospital tower
March 25, 2016, San Francisco Business Times 

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