Impossible Foods opened a large-scale production facility in East Oakland last month, and national media salivated over their plans to pump out one million pounds of plant-based meat every month and change the U.S. diet. "Our mission is to reduce the environmental impact of the food system," said Pat Brown, the former Stanford biochemistry professor who founded Impossible Foods in 2011 and serves as CEO. "You can think of this as the birthplace of a whole new industry." Want to be one of the first to try the plant-based Impossible Burger? You can find it at Kronnerburger on Piedmont Avenue. For more information on Oakland’s production and manufacturing facilities, contact Economic Development Specialist Steve Lautze.
A big winner at South By Southwest this year was Oakland-based CNote, a women-owned financial startup that brought home a SXSW Accelerator Pitch award from the popular Austin conference last month. At home at the Fox Theater, two Oakland companies were recognized by the East Bay Economic Development Alliance as 2017 East Bay Innovation Award Winners: Catalyst award winner Kapor Center for Social Impact and Information and Communication Technology Award winner Captricity, a Kapor Capital investee. Finally, the San Francisco Business Times recognized two Oaklanders in its 2017 “40 under 40:” Shaun Tai, CEO of Oakland Digital and Billy Parish, CEO of home solar lender Mosaic. For more information, please contact Business Development Manager Aliza Gallo.
Oakland business service partner Project Equity released a report on upcoming Baby Boomer retirement, finding that 6 out of 10 Bay Area small business owners plan to sell their business in the next decade. Many business owners have a hard time finding a buyer and do not recognize one that is immediately available: their employees. Project Equity supports existing, profitable businesses transitions to employee ownership. Their mission is to scale employee ownership to strengthen the fabric of our local economies and help individuals gain access to business ownership. Project Equity supports the selling owner and the employees to structure the sale, bringing in advisors, resources and financing, and providing support throughout and after the transaction. You can learn more from Project Equity and other business service providers at Oakland Small Business Week, May 1-5. For more information, please contact Economic Development Manager Aliza Gallo,
On March 28th, the City Council adopted new regulations that permit mobile food vendors, including food trucks, trailers, carts and bicycles, to locate throughout the commercial and industrial areas of Oakland. Mobile food businesses will now be allowed at more locations, so long as they respect buffer distances from existing businesses and new operational standards. Coming after two years of stakeholder participation and public hearings, the new program will become effective in June 2017. More information is available at the project website or contact Project Manager Devan Reiff at 510-238-3550.
Applications are open for the 2017 Startup in Residence (STIR) program! STIR connects government agencies with startups to develop technology products that address civic challenges. Over 16 weeks, startups and government work together to co-develop a solution that creates real impact. The City of Oakland is participating again this year with a set of civic challenges focused on financial empowerment for Oakland residents and businesses. To learn more about how the program works, watch how startup Binti helped San Francisco’s Human Services Agency improve the foster family placement and approval process. Applications are due April 10. Visit the STIR website for more details and to apply. For more information on startups and civic innovation, contact Marisa Raya.