Oakland Economy Now - News from the City of Oakland Vol. 35 November 2017

Oakland Economy Now Newsletter Masthead News from the City of Oakland November 2017 Volume 35

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Plaid Friday logo

Shop Oakland on Plaid Friday Weekend Nov. 24-26

Plaid Friday began in Oakland as a more relaxing, enjoyable and inspired local shopping alternative to the “Black Friday” experience. This year, nearly 200 participating businesses from across the city are participating in Plaid Friday Weekend (November 24-26) to encourage shoppers to explore Oakland’s shopping districts and meet local merchants. Plaid Friday Weekend will feature entertainment, holiday decorations, sales and extended hours, special events, artisan pop-ups and lots of love for their shopping community, including free parking. For more information, visit www.OaklandGrown.org.

Section heading Toursim

West Elm Hotel in Uptown to Partner with Local Businesses to Showcase Oakland

National retailer West Elm will open a 120-room hotel in Uptown Oakland in 2020 in partnership with Signature Development Group and Jordan Real Estate Investments. West Elm selected Oakland as an “iconic place” with an independent spirit, and the hotel aims to connect visitors to the local culture by partnering with local businesses, artisans and makers on the new space. If you would like to be featured at the hotel, contact West Elm at local@westelmhotels.com.


Oak Knoll Aerial Image of Proposed Development

Oak Knoll Recommended at Planning Commission, would include 918 homes, Retail, $20 Million for Affordable Housing

On October 18th, the Oakland Planning Commission recommended that the City Council approve the Oak Knoll Plan to develop 918 homes and 72,000 square feet of commercial space in the East Oakland hills. The historic Club Knoll property would be moved, renovated and re-opened as a 4,000 sf central community building with 10,000 sf of commercial space. The Plan also includes 85 acres of open space, tree planting and a creek restoration. The Oakland City Council will discuss Oak Knoll at its Community and Economic Development committee meeting on October 31 and at the November 7th Council meeting. For more information, please contact planners Scott Gregory or Heather Klein.

Manufacturing Events: Nov. 2 Manufacturing Day, Nov. 9 Bay Area Urban Manufacturing Initiative Summit

On November 2, partners Oakland Unified School District, Laney College and City of Oakland will host the annual Manufacturing/Career Technical Education Day. Participating students will visit Oakland companies AB&I Foundry, Creative Wood, Everett Graphics, KSI Keyboards, Nor-Cal Metal Fabricators and OCHO Candy. Oakland’s excellent training pipeline will be one of many manufacturing strengths discussed at the Bay Area Urban Manufacturing Initiative (BAUMI)’s sold-out summit in West Oakland on November 9. BAUMI brings Bay Area cities together to shape the future of manufacturing and connect industry across the region. For more information on Oakland manufacturers, please contact Industry Specialist Steve Lautze.

BRT series: Design that Pops on International Boulevard

Daily Fresh Roses

Photo Courtesy of Daily Fresh Roses, 7223 International Boulevard

After operating Artesanías y Botánica Del Sol on International Boulevard for the last 18 years, Roció Navarro decided to increase her exposure. She moved a few blocks down and connected with City partner AnewAmerica, who matched her with Oakland Digital, a non-profit that helps local business increase their marketing and digital presence. Oakland Digital Designer Yudy Herrera assessed the business and determined that they needed to modernize their brand, creating a new custom logo, social media presence and business cards. Roció was so impressed by the look that she ordered an 8’x 22’ banner to serve as a storefront sign, reporting that her sales increased $400 more on the day the signage was installed. 

Also on International Boulevard, City partner Mason Tillman Associates collaborated with Hack the Hood, another award-winning non-profit that introduces low-income youth of color to careers in tech, to develop websites for two more businesses: Daily Fresh Rose Shop and eco-friendly Lockwood Cleaners. Manuel, owner of Daily Fresh Rose Shop, praised the new website and said that “I’ve wanted to have more people all over Oakland know that we are here and ready to serve them!” Businesses located along the planned AC Transit Bus Rapid Transit route on International Boulevard can receive free assistance from City partners. For more information, please contact Project Coordinator Susana Villarreal.

Eight Oakland Companies Make Inner City 100 List

This year’s Inner City 100 List, a roster of the fastest growing inner city businesses in the U.S., includes eight Oakland companies, making us the top West Coast location and second in the nation to Chicago. The program is a reminder that businesses are thriving in Oakland and other American urban centers and creating jobs. Congratulations to the following Oakland-based companies ranked on the 2017 100 Inner City roster: OCHO Candies, Fathom Studios, Oaklandish, Blossom Foods, Blaisdell’s Business Products, CORE Foods, JRVD Architecture and ProActive Business Solutions. For more information, please contact Business Development Coordinator Aliza Gallo.  

Third Space Media Interview Being Filmed

Oakland Startup Network Profile: Third Space Media

Third Space Media began as a web series featuring local creatives and entrepreneurs such as Daghe Digital and Joel Flory of VSCO, interviewed by founder Faiza Farah in a “third space” away from work or home, such as a cafe, restaurant or other gathering place. The startup is now evolving into a subscription-based video platform uplifting diverse voices of independent creatives. The platform will not only house content, but will support artists by paying them for their work, allowing them to maintain ownership, and getting the content out into the world. For more information about Oakland startups and the Oakland Startup Network, please contact Industry Specialist Marisa Raya.

image of nonprofit survey postcard

Nonprofits! Take our Real Estate Survey

The City of Oakland Business Development team and technical assistance partner the Northern California Community Loan Fund are identifying and aiding nonprofits feeling the space squeeze due to risings rents and real estate costs. If you are an Oakland nonprofit searching for space, connect with us by taking this short survey! For information on nonprofit space in Oakland, please contact Industry Specialist Marisa Raya.


Opening a Business? Contact us!

Business Assistance Center

New! Business Permits Navigator

New! ZoningCheck

Quarterly Economic Dashboard - Q2 2017

Minimum Wage & Employment Laws 

KivaZip Oakland

Foreign Trade Zone


Belotti Bottega
Copper Spoon  
Hasta Muerte Coffee
Paulista Brazilian Kitchen & Taproom
Pintoh Thai Street Food
The Fifth Quarter Charcuterie
The Temple Club


Art Spark: Creative Arts Practice for Your Business
Nov 1 @ Impact Hub Oakland

2017 Assets Matter Annual Symposium
Nov 2 @ Preservation Park

Uptima: Startup Networking Night
Nov 2 @ Impact Hub Oakland

Art Murmur
Nov 3 @ Uptown

Luna Mexicana
Nov 3 @ Oakland Ballet

Patchwork Show: Modern Makers Festival
Nov 4 @ Jack London Square

Supporting Our Schools
Nov 6 @ SPUR

New Ways to Get Around the East Bay
Nov 7 @ SPUR

A Vision Plan for the Capitol Corridor
Nov 8 @ SPUR

Economic Development Forum
Nov 8 @ Oakland Chamber

Freelancing for Moms
Nov 9 @ Impact Hub Oakland

Jack of All Trades Market
Nov 11 @ Jack London Square

Sketches of Oakland: The Town Explored Through Dance
Nov 16-19 @ Malonga Casquelord

Clean Power, Healthy Communities 2017
Nov 16-17 @ Oakland Asian Cultural Center

Training Great Teachers in Oakland
Nov 20 @ SPUR


155-room hotel in Jack London Square moves forward 
Oct 25, San Francisco Business Times

3 Small Businesses Brought to Oakland by an SBA 504 Loan From TMC
Oct 25, Newswire

East Bay Mini Maker Faire becomes magnet for makers, crowds, fun
Oct 25, East Bay Times

Oakland: Top Business-Friendly City in Northern California
Oct 24, Thumbtack.com

Cal Performances announces new Oakland shows
Oct 24, East Bay Times

Oakland Entrepreneur Pays Forward Mentoring She Received On Her Way Up
Oct 23, KPIX

San Francisco/Oakland One of Top Foreign Investment Destinations as Global Appetite for Industrial Assets Surges
Oct 20, The Registry

Bay Area metro areas rank among nation’s best in analysis of local economies
Oct 20, San Francisco Business Times

Oakland developer eyes longterm improvements for Havenscourt neighborhood
Oct 20, East Bay Times

Seven Bay Area cities collectively pitch Amazon for second headquarters
Oct 19, San Francisco Business Times

Oakland businesses lend hand to North Bay fire victims
Oct 19, East Bay Times

First Record Pressing Plant to Open in Oakland Since 1930s
Oct 19, KQED

These Oakland Entrepreneurs Didn’t Need a Shark Tank to Raise $237K
Oct 18, Next City

Upcoming Restaurant Zys_Oakland to Give Ex-Cons a Second Chance
Oct 17, East Bay Express

Ambitious Cafe, Restaurant, and Bar Oeste to Reflect Oakland in Its Food and Staff
Oct 17, East Bay Express

Facebook snaps up Oakland-based viral app for teenagers
Oct 17, San Francisco Business Times

Absinthia Brings Organic Absinthe to Oakland
Oct 16, East Bay Express

New airline service between Oakland and Los Angeles promises faster travel
Oct 13, East Bay Times

Airbnb reports tourists spend millions on local Oakland restaurants
Oct 12, SFGate

Oakland building sale brings company HQ to Jack London Square, but wine room departs
Oct 10, East Bay Times

Developers kick off 110 pre-fab homes, half-affordable, half-market-rate, in East Oakland next to Coliseum BART
Oct 8, San Francisco Business Times

Could a downsized A's ballpark be a hit?
Oct 6, San Francisco Business Times

New plaza in East Oakland touted as neighborhood improvement
Oct 6, East Bay Times

Oakland seeks ways to help nonprofits facing rising rents
Oct 5, East Bay Times

Brown Sugar Kitchen Earns Michelin Nod
Oct 5, East Bay Express

Peerless Coffee is America’s First Hospitality Craft Roaster to Win 18 Medals at Golden Bean Roaster Awards
Oct 5, Coffee Talk

A Reclamation of Power for Black Women in Oakland
Oct 5, KQED

From Waterfront To Lakeside, Here's Where To Stay The Night In Oakland
Oct 3, Hoodline

33 things you didn’t know about Oakland
Oct 3, San Francisco Chronicle

Oakland megaproject could drop housing for 1.57 million square feet of office
Oct 3, San Francisco Business Times

Oakland fintech CNote gets SEC approval to offer masses a savings account paying 2.5 percent — with caveats
Sept 27, San Francisco Business Times

Large housing project proposed on eastern edge of West Oakland
Sept 27, San Francisco Business Times

These are the 10 biggest tech employers in Oakland and the inner East Bay
Sept 27, San Francisco Business Times

Impossible Foods Launches Production at First Large-Scale Plant
Sept 7, Business Wire

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