Deadline approaching for entrepreneurs to get LAUNCHPOINT promotional package worth $10,000

Mesa, AZ – LAUNCHPOINT, Mesa Technology Accelerator, has a unique approach to growing businesses and creating jobs. LAUNCHPOINT is now “Open for Business!” and offering a promotional package valued at $10,000 to clients that apply before the Feb. 27 deadline and are accepted into the LAUNCHPOINT program.

The City of Mesa and Arizona State University (ASU) have formed a partnership to create LAUNCHPOINT on the ASU Polytechnic campus.  The mission of the accelerator is to stimulate the establishment and growth of small technology-based companies and other businesses in the east valley. 

Professional consultants with expertise in marketing, financial reporting, accounting, human resources, organizational development, information technology and business model development are available to help LAUNCHPOINT clients which will utilize ASU resources to “accelerate” their companies’ growth. 

While office space is limited, all LAUNCHPOINT clients will have access to meeting and conference room space, office equipment, phone and Internet service, mail service, access to LAUNCHPOINT’s Mentor Network and coordination with public and private partners.

Applications are being accepted at www.mesaaz.gov/economic/mesaaccelerator/default.aspx.

For more information, contact Project Manager Shea Joachim at (480) 644-3562 or shea.joachim@mesaaz.gov

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Mesa’s growing aerospace and aviation industry

The City of Mesa is an established player in the aerospace and aviation world. In 2008, the City received the Award of Excellence in Aerospace by Expansion Solutions magazine, recognizing Mesa’s exceptional progress in economic development in the aerospace industry.

Today, Mesa continues to strengthen its aerospace and aviation cluster. Companies such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, L-3 Communications, MD Helicopters, Cessna, Embraer, Allegiant, Timken, CAE Oxford Aviation Academy, Able Engineering, and Arizona Laboratories for Security and Defense Research (AZ Labs) all have significant operations in Mesa.

Key to Mesa’s aerospace and aviation success are its two nationally recognized airports and economic engines, Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport (PMGA) and Falcon Field:

  • PMGA just announced a $1.3 billion annual economic impact to the state.
  • CAE Oxford Global Academy recently announced expansion of its Falcon Field operations.
  • PMGA recently welcomed its five millionth passenger.
  • Both Falcon Field and PMGA have recently begun expansion and renovation projects.
  • More than 100 companies adjacent to the airports employ more than 10,000 employees in the aerospace/aviation, high-tech, manufacturing, and software industry clusters.

Mesa’s airports offer near-perfect, year-round flying weather (325 days of sunshine annually); a diverse portfolio of aerospace, defense, aviation and other high-tech industries; plus support operations such as maintenance, repair and overhaul operations (MRO), cargo services, and research and development activities.

PHOENIX-MESA GATEWAY AIRPORT

  • PMGA has three long runways, 10,400 feet, 10,200 feet, and 9,300 feet and can accommodate any size aircraft.
  • By 2030, PMGA is projected to serve 10 million total passengers.
  • Allegiant Air serves passengers through PMGA with 34 destinations nationally.
  • More than 300 acres of PMGA land is available for development.
  • U.S. Customs on-site with US Visit for international charters (up to 20 passengers and crew).
  • FAA-Contracted Air Traffic Control Tower.
  • http://www.phxmesagateway.org

MESA FALCON FIELD

  • Falcon Field is the fifth busiest general aviation airport in the U.S. and second busiest general
  • aviation airport in the Phoenix-Mesa metro area.
  • More than 700 aircraft are based at Falcon Field with more than 190,000 flight operations annually.
  • Two parallel runways of 5,100 and 3,800 feet accommodate a wide range of corporate aircraft. Helicopter operations also find accommodations at Falcon Field.
  • Unique on-airport facilities for aviation businesses and 120 acres are available for build-to-suit development.
  • Six industrial parks with more than 1,000 acres of industrial-zoned land are located throughout the Falcon Business District (adjacent to the airport), and provide a wide range of options
  • suitable for nearly any operation.
  • FAA Air Traffic Control Tower.
  • http://www.mesaaz.gov/falcon_field

To learn more about Mesa’s aerospace and aviation industry, visit http://www.MesaAz.gov/economic.

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Mesa Gateway Area: A Premier Business Destination

The Mesa Gateway area has all the right ingredients to become one of the nation’s premier destinations for companies looking to relocate or expand: great companies; an industry-critical supplier; significant technology assets; the fastest growing airport in the U.S.; robust infrastructure; business assistance tools; business-friendly city leadership; and acres of available land.

In Good Company

Bordered by US 60, Pecos, Signal Butte and Power Roads, the Mesa Gateway area is roughly 37.5 square miles (24,000 acres) of land, much of which has been earmarked for commercial and industrial development. This includes land and buildings available for companies to expand or relocate. Companies such as TRW, Lockheed Martin, L-3 Communications, CMC Steel, MGC Pure Chemicals, FujiFilm, CRM Rubber, Able Engineering, Cessna, Embraer and many others call Mesa Gateway home.

New Businesses Locating

Not only is Mesa Gateway home to the facilities of several Fortune 500 companies and other large companies, but Matheson Tri-Gas, Inc. recently announced it would build a tri-gas operation where it will separate and sell gasses critical to a wide array of industries. Matheson’s presence will be a critical draw for new companies and very attractive to existing businesses.

Mesa Tech Corridor

The Mesa Tech Corridor is an area near the northern end of Mesa Gateway along Elliot Road between the 202 Freeway and Signal Butte Road. The Mesa Tech Corridor has great assets in place such as water, freeway access and, most importantly, significant power capacity and infrastructure. The Corridor is a great fit for tech companies of all types, especially data centers and other large power users.

Breeding Ground for Technology

The Mesa Gateway Area is also a great place for research and development (R&D) and for tech companies to grow. Arizona State University (ASU) Polytechnic’s College of Technology and Innovation is located at Mesa Gateway with more than 12,000 students and significant R&D activity. Moreover, Mesa and ASU have launched the Mesa Technology Accelerator, a place where high-tech companies can go to super-charge their growth. Also in the area is Arizona Laboratories for Security and Defense, a place for companies doing highly sensitive research and manufacturing.

Fastest Growing Airport in the U.S.

In the southwest quarter of Mesa Gateway is the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, which recently announced it had over 1.3 million passengers in 2012, a 44 percent increase over 2011.The airport’s fifth expansion will be completed this fall and long-term expansion plans call for a new terminal to be built near its eastern border with links to Ellsworth Road, three Loop 202 interchanges, and the future Gateway Freeway. The airport provides not only passenger services, but also air cargo services. On the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport alone you will find more than 50 organizations providing products and services in the aerospace and aviation industries.

Robust Infrastructure

Mesa Gateway has all the key infrastructure assets in place including tremendous power capabilities, available water, waste water capacity, natural gas, freeway access, airfreight access and telecom redundancy, to name a few.

Business Assistance Tools

Foreign Trade Zone – 2,200 acres have been designated as Foreign Trade Zone #221 where companies can reduce, defer or eliminate the payment of import duties and tariffs. Active users of the zone who qualify can also receive a significant reduction in real and personal property tax.

Military Reuse Zone – Portions of Mesa Gateway have been designated as a Military Reuse Zone offering companies a transaction privilege tax exemption, tax credits for job creation, and property reclassification allowing both real and personal property to be reclassified, which could result in property tax savings of up to 75 percent for a period of five years.

Business-Friendly City Leadership

Mesa city leaders understand and strive for well thought-out and executed economic development efforts. They recognize that we must create fertile ground and remove roadblocks so responsible companies can grow and thrive.

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City of Mesa Launches Mesa Educates U Campaign & College Scholarships

On behalf of the Office of Economic Development, we are pleased to announce a new campaign called “Mesa Educates U,” promoting Mesa as a premier destination for higher education. This marketing campaign is an initiative of Mesa Counts on College, a collaborative effort between the City, Mesa Public Schools and Mesa Community College, whose goal is to improve college completion rates in the City.

Mesa Educates U Cooperative Marketing Program

Mesa’s established institutions A.T. Still University, Chandler-Gilbert Community College and Mesa Community College are sponsoring the campaign in partnership with newcomers Albright College, Benedictine University, Upper Iowa University, Westminster College, and Wilkes University. The focus of the campaign is to raise awareness about Mesa’s higher education opportunities by providing a web-based, one-stop-shop to learn about and interact with the colleges and universities, www.MesaEducatesU.org, and also includes an advertising schedule,  an App, and a Facebook page. The Mesa Educates U website and App provide information about things to do in Mesa, how to choose the right school, and even how to pay for college – including details on the Mesa Educates U scholarship program.

 “We want everybody to know that Mesa is Arizona’s newest college town, with more than a dozen colleges and universities to choose from with programs in business, science, technology and education to name just a few,” Mayor Scott Smith said. “We are excited to partner with these institutions and Mesa Counts on College to show prospective students nationwide what we have to offer.”

The program is anchored by Discover U Weekend scheduled for March 8-9, 2013. This special event is designed to give prospective students a chance to meet with school representatives during signature events in Mesa, including Free 2nd Fridays in Downtown Mesa and a Chicago Cubs spring training game at Hohokam Stadium. Sign up to win tickets to the game and learn more at www.MesaEducatesU.org.

Mesa Educates U College Scholarships

Additionally, we are pleased to announce the new Mesa Educates U Scholarship Program being offered by several of the new colleges in Mesa. A partnership with four of the new liberal arts colleges expanding into Mesa, these scholarships will be offered annually to Mesa residents who have demonstrated strong academic performance and financial need. The scholarships will be awarded by the participating institutions as part of their admissions process. To find out more about education opportunities and Mesa Educates U college scholarships, join us for Discover U Weekend or visit www.MesaEducatesU.org.

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Mesa’s Higher Ed Conference & Expo Features New and Existing Post-Secondary Institutions

Mesa’s recently announced higher education institutions will come together with Mesa’s existing colleges and universities in one location on Friday, September 21, 2012 from 3:00-6:30 pm at the Mesa Arts Center in downtown Mesa.

The Mesa Higher Education Conference and Expo is being presented by Mesa Counts on College, a program funded by a $3 million grant from the Gates Foundation which focuses on increasing Mesa’s post-secondary completion rates. Educators, business and community leaders, students and parents will have the opportunity to learn about Mesa’s four new colleges and universities, Mesa’s existing post-secondary institutions and a new program being launched out of the Mesa Counts on College program.

Higher education is one of Mesa’s economic and workforce development initiatives put into effect under the leadership of Mayor Scott Smith and is represented by the acronym HEAT—Healthcare, Education, Aerospace, Tourism and Technology.

The City of Mesa’s Office of Economic Development has been successful in their pursuit of higher education institutions having announced the establishment of four, new liberal-arts colleges in Mesa in the past eight months. These institutions are: Albright College, Benedictine University, Westminster College, and Wilkes University.  Albright College will begin offering classes in the next few months while Wilkes University will begin its MBA program in Spring 2013. Benedictine University and Westminster College plan to begin their classes in the fall of 2013.

This opportunity to showcase Mesa’s educational assets will also highlight the city’s emphasis on workforce development and the fact that better education ultimately leads to jobs. Each of these new colleges are private, traditional, liberal-arts’ institutions that complement the existing community college and secondary education systems in the region. The Expo that follows the conference will feature representatives from more than ten universities and colleges with complimentary food and beverage being provided to attendees.

Registration is required and is available at http://tinyurl.com/mesaexpo. Please join the City of Mesa on Friday, September 21, 2012 from 3:00-6:30 pm and learn how you and others can engage and benefit from all that is happening in Mesa, the nation’s 38th largest city!

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Mesa plays key role in Arizona’s aerospace and defense industry

As one of the key players in Arizona’s collaborative pursuit of developing the aerospace and defense (A&D) industry, Mesa is strategically positioned to attract and grow additional companies in the high-tech sectors.

  • Arizona is one of the top five states for defense contracts and one of the top eight in A&D, serving as a hub for the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)/Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) industry.  Mesa is home to 12 aerospace, defense and aviation companies including Boeing; MD Helicopters; Lockheed Martin; Nammo Talley; Timken; ATK; and others.
  • Aerospace and defense is Arizona’s largest industry cluster employing 42,000 people and is a high-wage, knowledge-based cluster. Home to Arizona State University Polytechnic, two community colleges and ASU’s Aerospace & Defense Research Collaboratory, Mesa’s academic partners offer specialized training in aerospace technology, defense, science, and aviation.
  • The A&D industry contributes $8.8 billion annually to our state’s economy. As one of the state’s significant drivers in terms of payroll and taxes, the A&D industry provides $3.5 billion in payroll and produces about 12% of our state’s export activities. Recently, the City of Mesa just converted the former US Air Force Research Lab to the Arizona Laboratories for Security and Defense Research, retaining critical talent in the area and preserving the valuable high security clearance of the facility.

New opportunities

Currently, the focus of Arizona’s efforts is on the UAV and UAS business ventures. Unmanned aerial systems are being developed by Boeing in Mesa for other uses than just the defense industry’s UAVs. This same technology will be employed for other business-related purposes including use in commercial airlines. As a result, the FAA issued a mandate to designate and establish six national test sites where new flight-safety protocols will be developed for unmanned aircraft to be commercially ready for the national airspace by 2015.

Mesa has partnered with the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA), Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) and the Arizona Aerospace & Defense Commission to develop proposals convincing the FAA to award Arizona several of these sites, two of which are in Mesa. This is part of the statewide effort lead by the ACA, GPEC and Science Foundation Arizona to attract more aerospace and defense contract providers, especially those in the UAV arena. Mesa and Arizona are both ideally positioned to increase our foothold in these industries. If you’d like more information about these efforts or any other Economic Development issues, please contact our economic development team at econdev.info@mesaaz.gov.

 

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National Study Ranks Mesa #7 for Use of Social Media

National Study Ranks Mesa #7 for Use of Social Media

In a recent study done by the University of Illinois-Chicago examining the 75 largest cities in the US for their use of social media, the City of Mesa came in 7th for its use of social media to communicate with residents. Overall, what they found is the top-ranked city governments in this study have made technology a priority, especially for transparency or civic engagement.

The study conducted from March through May 2011, examined the cities on their social media presence involving interactivity, transparency and accessibility attributes that encourage social engagement.

Specifically, Mesa was studied in 2009 and again in 2011 for its use of social media and also for basic civic engagement with items that are included on Mesa’s website such as: online newsletters, e-mail subscriptions, downloadable materials, RSS Feeds, virtual town halls, etc.

“As the 38th largest cities in the United States, we take pride in our efforts to use technology, especially new tools and trends, to communicate with the residents, businesses and visitors of Mesa,” said Mesa City Manager Chris Brady.

 More than six times as many big city governments reached citizens via Facebook in 2011 compared to 2009, while use of YouTube and Twitter grew fourfold and threefold respectively. The cities’ rankings reflected opportunities for citizen participation and information including:

– hosting of open data portals or apps
— comments allowed on blogs and social networks
— online discussions concerning policy and city services
— information on officials, budgets, city council meetings and neighborhood issues

Tied with New York at #1, Seattle has long been an innovator in this area, with programs to address the digital divide online and offline while New York has long used the web for transparency.

Twitter was used by 87 percent of the cities, compared with 25 percent in 2009. Facebook also was used by 87 percent of the cities, up from 13 percent. YouTube links appeared on the websites of 75 percent of the cities, up from 16 percent. Nearly all city sites allowed comments on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube and presented policy content such as discussions of city budgets.

As Director of Mesa’s Economic Development efforts, I’m very pleased that the Office of Economic Development has prioritized efforts to build a more robust and comprehensive social media program. Since January of this year, our office has launched a LinkedIn Mesa Economic Development group page attracting 395 members, this blog page and actively tweeted to more than 1,350 followers. We are very happy this is just one more step towards achieving Mesa’s objective as the 21st Century City of Innovation.


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