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Placer County's 
In Progress Online Newsletter

January 2011
In This Issue
Webvanta Helps Web Designers Work Faster and Smarter
County Continues Grant to Assist At-Risk Businesses
Kaiser Roseville Named on List of Nation's Top Hospitals
PMC-Sierra Plans to Hire 15 Engineers
Sunflower Farmers Market to Open Roseville Store in April
Auburn Office Supply Lands Major Contract
Penryn's Notorious Valencia Club Back in Business
The New Home Company Comes to Lincoln Crossing
Squaw, Northstar Sales Mark a New Era for Ski Industry
Sierra Moon Goldsmiths Noted for Unique Designs
Study Shows County Mandarins Can Help Fight Colds
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Issue: Vol. 12 #1  
Dear Subscriber: 
Placer County is giving you the same great information only in a new and improved format.  We hope you like it and welcome any feedback that you may have. 
Webvanta logo 

Webvanta Helps Web Designers Work Faster and Smarter

Officially launched three years ago, Webvanta, co-located in Auburn and Sebastopol, offers a hosted content management and database system. "Hosted means we run the product within our own data centers and provide all of the improvements, maintenance, security, backups, and other support to our customers who use our software through a subscription model," said co-founder Christopher Haupt, Webvanta's CTO and CFO. Haupt and his business partner Michael Slater, Webvanta president and CEO, worked together for several years at Adobe Systems, Inc. before starting their own company, which has since grown to include six full- or part-time employees and a handful of independent contractors. Webvanta's customers are primarily web designers and agencies that build web sites for a wide variety of markets, such as real estate. "Our product is extremely flexible, giving our customers the ability to build sophisticated, database-backed web sites without needing to be technically oriented," Haupt said.  For details, visit Webvanta at Click here.

BAN Logo 

County Continues Grant to Assist At-Risk Businesses

 

Attention businesses in danger of closing or laying off employees! Rapid-response help is available through a county economic development program called Vital Assets. Designed for Placer County's "at-risk" businesses, the program helps employers get the help they need to avoid or reduce the impacts of layoffs, and to strengthen their businesses in these tough times. Vital Assets resources include referrals for financial assistance, business plan development, government contract resources, and recruitment help. Funding is now available to utilize a 50/50 wage subsidy incentive for up to six months for qualified new hires. The program is funded through a grant from the Golden Sierra Job Training Agency and Golden Sierra Workforce Investment Board. For details or to schedule a confidential consultation, contact Pamela Pierce at placervitalassets@yahoo.com or (530) 886-4651. For more information and a Vital Assets business questionnaire, click here. 


Kaiser Permanente Logo  
Kaiser Roseville Named on List of Nation's Top Hospitals

Sixteen Kaiser Permanente facilities were recently named on the list of 65 Top Hospitals in the country, including Kaiser Roseville Medical Center. The 2010 Leapfrog Top Hospitals rewards medical centers for outstanding success in such areas as infection rates, safety practices, mortality rates for common procedures, and measures of efficiency. The 65 facilities were selected from a field of nearly 1,200 hospitals around the country. As a result of using technically advanced 21st-century medical care, noted Dr. Robert Pearl, Permanente Medical Group's executive director and CEO, "We have lowered the chances of our members dying from heart disease 30 percent below the community around us, reduced mortality for patients admitted with sepsis by 50 percent, and dramatically reduced the risk of our members dying from cancer compared to the rest of the nation." For details, visit Roseville Press Tribune at click here or 2010 Leapfrog Top Hospitals at click here.

PMC Sierra logo 

PMC-Sierra Plans to Hire 15 Engineers

High-tech firm PMC-Sierra is expanding its Roseville operation with plans to add 15 engineers to its product design center there - a 20 percent increase to about 70 employees already working within the division. Derek Dicker, vice president of marketing for the firm's Enterprise Storage Division, said the jobs will fall under product development and device design as well as validation, which is responsible for testing products before they go to market. Santa Clara-based PMC-Sierra focuses on Internet infrastructure semiconductor products such as technology used in servers. For details, visit the Sacramento Business Journal at click here.

 
Sunflower Farmers Market to Open Roseville Store in April

Sunflower Farmers Market will open its first California store in Roseville Square, at Douglas and Harding Boulevards, on April 13, 2011. With that opening, the Boulder, Colorado-based retailer plans to expand to San Jose and other California cities, the company says. The chain currently operates 32 stores in the West. The Roseville store will offer produce, meat and seafood, a bulk section, and health and wellness products. Sunflower Farmers Market was launched by Mike Gilliland, who founded the Wild Oats supermarket chain in the 1990s. Whole Foods Market later acquired the company. Sunflower is on a growth spurt in the Southwestern states, with $30 million in venture capital funds helping it toward its goal of opening seven to 10 stores a year. For details, visit the Sacramento Business Journal at

click here or Sunflower Farmers Market at click here.

Walker 
Auburn Office Supply Lands Major Contract

 

A local family-owned office supply has captured a multi-million dollar sales contract. Walker's Office Supplies on Hwy. 49 is part of a nation-wide $500 million contract to supply public agencies, schools, counties, cities, and nonprofits. "We have just over $4 million," said Jared Anderson, who owns the business with his brother Matt. The national contract is through U.S. Communities, a buying co-operative for public agencies. Walker's was included through its buying co-operative, Independent Stationers, which is actually the contract holder, Anderson explained. Through a process of being certified, Walker's was awarded a territory that extends from Auburn to Sacramento. Nationwide, there are 250 office supply dealers servicing agencies through the contract. Through the contract, Walker's is authorized to sell nearly 20,000 items to the public agencies that choose to buy from it. For details, visit the Auburn Journal at click here or Walker's Office Supplies at click here.

Valencia Club
Penryn's Notorious Valencia Club Back in Business

The storied Valencia Club has a new lease on life thanks to new owners who are intent on retaining its timeless appeal. Freshly painted and cleaned to a sparkle, the bar and new café opened in November, five and a half months after the local landmark's doors were shuttered. The establishment was initially opened in the 1930s, first as the Hill Top Café. Its distinctive neon Valencia Club sign was added in the early 1950s. Through more than 70 years it had never closed, so the previous owners' decision left a void in the life of the tiny, rural community centered around Taylor and English Colony crossroads. New owners Matt Madsen and Jamie James are hoping a combination of good food, friendly bar, and historic location will be a winning one. For details, visit Lincoln News Messenger at click here.


New Home Company Logo
The New Home Company Comes to Lincoln Crossing

The New Home Company, a Roseville-based homebuilder, held a grand opening in January for its new 27-home neighborhood at Lincoln Crossing, off Ferrari Ranch Road. The homes, ranging from 1,948 to 2,204 square feet, will be priced starting in the low $290,000s. Homes will include up to five bedrooms and four baths. "We understand the intricacies of navigating a difficult economy from both a consumer and organizational perspective," said Kevin Carson, New Home's Northern California Division president. "For that reason, we are able to build and sell homes that our buyers respond to while intelligently and thoughtfully growing our own business." New Home sold out the first three phases of its Madeira neighborhood in Elk Grove, and plans to build on 17 finished lots it has acquired in Granite Bay. For details, visit the Lincoln News Messenger at click here or The New Home Company at click here. 

KSL Capital Partners 
Squaw, Northstar Sales Mark a New Era for Ski Industry

The sale of Squaw Valley USA and the purchase of the management contract for Northstar-at-Tahoe represent a continued shift in the ownership and operating structure of major destination ski resorts. In late November, KSL Capital Partners of Denver purchased Squaw Valley for an undisclosed amount. The resort was founded in 1949 by the late Alex Cushing and owned by his wife, Nancy, and a handful of investors. The management contract for Northstar, possessed by CNL Lifestyle Properties and run by Booth Creek Ski Holdings, was purchased a month earlier by Vail Resorts of Broomfield, Colorado. Vail also owns and operates Heavenly Mountain Resort at Stateline. Both transactions represent a movement at big ski resorts away from smaller corporate ownership to larger, well-funded companies, said Michael Berry, president of the National Ski Areas Association. Corporations own virtually all of the premier resorts in California, Utah and Colorado, he said, primarily because increased lift ticket sales have led to higher revenues. For details, visit Sierra Sun at

click here.

Sierra Moon Storefront 

Sierra Moon Goldsmiths Noted for Unique Designs

Jewelry designer John Lynch has responded to some unusual requests. Last year Lynch, co-owner of Sierra Moon Goldsmiths in Old Town Auburn, created a ruby slipper necklace for a resident who had hit a $1.6 million jackpot on a Wizard of Oz slot machine at Thunder Valley Casino. For another client he created a piece of jewelry out of a bear claw. Lynch and business partner Linda Pierce, also a jewelry designer, were longtime employees of Sierra Moon, established in 1978, and purchased the business from original owners Jan and Gary Lord two years ago. The store specializes in custom-made pieces, but also carries ready-made jewelry and provides repair, redesign, and restoration services. "We take a very artistic approach to jewelry design," Lynch said. "We're not looking to replicate something, but taking those ideas and adding our own impression." For details, visit the Auburn Journal at click here or Sierra Moon Goldsmiths at click here.

Mandarin Tree 
Study Shows County Mandarins Can Help Fight Colds

A study by the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirms that Placer County's popular Owari Satsuma mandarins contain significant amounts of synephrine, a natural decongestant that relieves common cold and allergy symptoms. Ten ounces of mandarin juice contain as much synephrine as one over-the-counter decongestant pill, according to the study. "A good idea for business owners is to have a box of mandarins in the lunch room," advised agricultural advocate Joanne Neft. "One Penryn business owner is convinced it's the reason his employees have not lost a day of work for the last five years. They snack on mandarins through the workday." Placer County is home to nearly 70 mandarin orchards, many of them open to the public through January. For details, visit Mountain Mandarins at click here or Rocklin Today at click here.

What's in Your E-mail Newsletter?

In Progress Online (IPOL), an economic development e-mail newsletter, is published bi-monthly. IPOL covers the latest news on Placer County business and industry, agriculture, tourism, and the arts. It reports on new projects in our cities and towns and keeps readers up to date on the state of the region's economy. IPOL posts news of state and local training, incentives, and loan programs that benefit business. It provides links to more information on each item. News about your business is always welcome.  Please send items, questions, comments, or suggestions to the Office of Economic Development at econdev@placer.ca.gov or visit the OED Web site. For past In Progress Online newsletters, go to Placer County Biz News