Friday, April 29, 2011

Starting and Building YOUR Business in the New Economy

Seattle, Wa -  On Saturday, April 23rd, 2011, The Filipino Chamber of Commerce of the Pacific Northwest (FCCPNW), in partnership with the Filipino American Civic Employees of Seattle, the Filipino Community of Seattle, and the Filipino American Association of Certified Public Accountants, held their 3rd Annual Business Development Conference appropriately themed, "Starting and Building Your Business in the New Economy".

This event's main purpose was to connect entrepreneurs with business opportunities in the region and educate with legal requirements and tax benefits related to conducting a business as well as empower business owners and managers by creating networking opportunities. This event also provided professionals to earn continuing education credits. As Sheila Burrus, FCCPNW Chamber President, stated, "We are seeing more Filipino businesses emerge in the services sectors like the legal profession, financial planning and real estate. This conference is to encourage young and old alike amid these fields to start thinking entrepreneurial. Hence the growing demand of these conferences within the Filipino community."

Invited to kick off the event was Steve Johnson, the Director of Seattle's Office of Economic Development (OED). He painted an overall picture of what industries weathered the recession, how Seattle's new economy centers around creativity and providing value-driven services, his office's role in helping you do business in Seattle, as well as the importance of shared prosperity for all in our region.

The City of Seattle Department of Finance and Administrative Services are reporting approximately $80 billion of revenue from Seatle based businesses last year. Of that, $40.6 billion were generated from service related businesses, an increase of 1% from the previous year. The harder hit of the industries, Real Estate and Cons/Residential businesses, $7.0 billion and $4.6 billion were generated, respectively. The glimmer of hope here is that income increased incrementally quarter by quarter last year with at total income of $101.2 billion, including business income from outside businesses.

Steve's key message was how Seattle can bring increased revenue and maintain our quality of living here in Seattle. He pointed to our creativity and providing value-added services through innovation. His example were the start-ups in Pioneer square developing mobile applications. That said, this is an industry that is growing.

In terms of education, it pays. Steve pointed to key data to show the relation of higher degrees and the unemployment rate. If you have a highschool deploma, you are likely to experience more unemployment than if you have a higher degree.

All around the conference was successful in terms of attendance and content. Other sessions include:

Morning sessions
  • Testing out your business idea
  • Your business plan, Road map or Road hazard?
  • Accessing Capital to Start or Grow your business (Panel)
  • Growing your business via marketing

Afternoon sessions
  • Investing and Sharing the Wealth and Opportunity of the US and Global Economy
  • Cash Flow - the Life and Blood of your business
  • Using Social Networking Technology to Promote yourself and your business
  • Mastering your talents - A key ingredient in Achieving your success
  • Doing business in the new economy (Panel)


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