Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Two Morning Stories on the Emerald City Economic Development Theme

A high adventure recreation invention contest, and an outlier from the IT sector

We find a pair of interesting stories in this morning's Standard-Examiner, which we suppose can be loosely tied together as promoting Ogden City economic development. The first involves a contest designed to provide seed money to local inventors, while simultaneously enhancing Ogden's reputation as an outdoor recreation center. We incorporate Ace Reporter Schwebke's informative paragraphs below:
A $20,000 prize will be awarded in September as part of a contest to attract new product ideas and companies to bolster Ogden’s burgeoning reputation as an outdoor recreation center.
The city is sponsoring the “Concept to Company” contest in connection with primary sponsors Zions Bank, Grow Utah Ventures and Utah Science, Technology and Research.
The winners and two runners-up will be announced Sept. 27 as part of the city’s Mountain to Metro festival.

$10,000 prizes will reportedly be awarded also to runner-ups.

The contest also has a potload of secondary sponsors, including Amer Sports Winter & Outdoor,, Black Diamond Equipment Ltd., Deer Valley Resort, Descente North America, Goode Skis, Mountain to Metro, Ogden city, Outdoor Industry Association, Ogden Climbing Park, Petzl America, Rossignol Group North America, and Seed Weber Davis Morgan.

We think it's great to see these above companies joining together to promote entrepreneurship in our community. And for a couple of them, it's a relief to see them diverting their attention (however temporarily) from crackpot projects like urban gondolas.

Got an outdoors product design scrawled on a notepad of cocktail napkin somewhere (and what self-respecting Ogden skier or boarder doesn't)? Now's the time to dig it out and sent it in.

Today's second Std-Ex article is a slight outlier, inasmuch as its business model goes against the grain of Boss Godfrey's High Adventure Mecca marketing scheme theme.

Flush with $6 million in newly obtained venture funding, a local internet technology company is planning an expansion at Business Depot Ogden. From today's Jeff DeMoss story:

OGDEN — Armed with a $6 million infusion of venture capital, a young Internet company is embarking on an aggressive expansion that could bring up to 100 new technology jobs to Business Depot Ogden.
TopTenReviews, which tests thousands of products and rates them online, secured the investment from two separate venture capital firms through the Utah Fund of Funds, a state program that matches entrepreneurs with potential funding sources.
The money will allow Top-TenReviews to add as many as 100 positions to its 48-member work force, company President Stan Bassett said.
And yes, we realize that there are some within our readership who will be disappointed that TopTenReviews is an IT company -- and NOT a ski company -- and that it therefore fails to conform to the "visionary" high-recreation theme. And to those readers we say this:

It's never a good idea to put all your economic eggs in one basket... and you caught the part above... about the 100 new jobs... right?

Time to turn it over to our gentle readers.

We know you're out there BTW; we can hear you breathing.


Jason W. said...

This is fan-freaking-tastic; I have hundreds of high-adventure urination and squirrel-eradication plots, ideas and extrapolations already on paper! All I have to do is tweak, scrutinize and flush out my schemes and Geigerian fantasies, and I will be flush with 20K! That's only $15K away from a THE GONDOLA car sponsorship, sold by THE SKI IS BEAUTIFUL BLUE! And the best part is that THE SKI IS BEAUTIFUL BLUE and Short-deck will be footing part of the bill when they swoon, much as they do when they gaze at Lying Little Matty Gondola Godfrey's gigantic divining rod forehead, and expel onion-reeking gasps over my high-adventure rocket boot pack, which propels me into the foothills, along the path of THE GONDOLA, where I can remove a High-Adventure Handgun Apparatus with DESCENTE logos and kill varmint squirrels! This is the best thing ever! Behold, the High-Adventure Handgun Apparatus rocket boot pack, THE GONDOLA freaks! Climb aboard the HAHA Train! You can be heroes or zeroes! HAHA!


Kill em all, Let God sort em out! said...

Interesting new developments in Supreme court execution ruling. Apparently there acctualy are federal laws that support the death penalty for child rapists, contrary to Justice Kennedy's assertion about the absence of federal laws and the evolving standards of decency.

And these laws were passed by Congress in 2006, in revisions to the UCMJ.

Even though the military has not actually executed anyone for decades. "Its last execution took place on April 13, 1961, when Pvt. John A. Bennett was put to death by hanging. His crime: the rape of an 11-year-old girl."

see the story in the New York Times copy and paste link below.

In Court Ruling on Executions, a Factual Flaw

Curious 1 said...

Can anyone tell me how many jobs with a decent wage was created by all of the ski companies re-locating their management here? Any real numbers, without they add to the local economy, with quantifable numbers? How are the hotels doing, any market analysis compared to the last few years. I want to know that my tax money has gone to worth while programs, and not to build empty parking garages.

al said...

Curious 1-

The Convention and Visitor's Bureau along with the Utah State Office of Tourism have made a significant investment in promoting the Ogden area in recent years. I'm sure those efforts have a greater impact on our local hotels and restaurants than any business trips/vacations to our area tied to the ski companies that have located here. Positive press doesn't hurt either...unless you're a local accustomed to untracked powder and uncrowded trails at local recreational hot spots.

Not about to turn over my cocktail napkin said...

Interesting detail from the outdoor invention contest website:

What prevents someone from stealing my idea?

We believe that all involved are trustworthy and they are volunteering their time just to help you move your idea and invention along. Of course, if you don't share your idea you won't receive advice on how to grow your idea, not to mention that you obviously can't win the money. But since we can't control what someone else may do with your idea, if you feel your innovation is proprietary or you have a patent pending, you should not submit your entry without getting legal advice first.

Trustworthy huh???

Curmudgeon said...

Hmmmm.... I wonder if the Ogden Group of the Sierra Club entered the contest and suggested a Wilderness Area being established in the Mts. above Ogden [as the Ogden Group of the Sierra Club has been advocating for some time], would the award go to it? That' be great. After all, the experience of towns/cities with Wilderness Areas close by has been that they draw people to them. Surely Ogden's desirability as an outdoor adventure destination couldn't help but be significantly enhanced by having a National Wilderness Area adjacent to the city.

A map of the club''s proposed wilderness areas can be found here.

googleboy said...

Concept to Company Details and FAQ

Concept to Company home page

Tom Tooter said...

Someone made a comment about hotels, and I don't have any facts or figures just observations. I walk by the Marriot everyday, twice a day for work. The parking lot is always stinking full, as I have to zig-zag across it each time.

So, atleast those guys are busy!

However, I doubt that really answers anyone's question...

danny said...

Once again, an example of how real business activity happens outside the purview of Ogden's bureaucrats.

Godfrey didn't have to pay these guys to move here, and he can't take credit for them, nor can his high priced help.

It's a lose-lose all around, for Godfrey.

But it shows how real life goes on entirely without him.

Bill C. said...

Two short comments, obviously the illusion of High Adventure is dissipating rapidly as folks clear the post-hype fog from their wishfull eyes to realize, High Adventure, there is none. Three years and they just aren't coming.
There's nothing High Adventure here in Ogden, it's just a nice place to live, despite our lousy dishonest lying little mayor that worships P.T. Barnum and hates everything this town really is and will do anything to remake it and it's population into some figment of his perverted little myopic mind.
The other observasion is that it's all ass backwards, this new idea bounty. The most stupid, non adventurous non feasable scam ever, an indoor artificial icecicle has been rewarded more than half a million bucks, and a potentially decent idea might reap ten grand cash with in kind equal donation of ideas from the likes of brain dead idiots that believe that a warehouse represents High Adventure outdoor recreation.
Oh hell, I can't resist making one more comment. For all those so blind as to be persuaded by the bogus philanthropic intentions uttered by jeff lowe regarding his desire to serve the disadvantaged with this icecicle, ask yourself one thing. Why didn't he start with the taxpayer built climbing wall at the Jackass center? There all kinds of open time.

dan s. said...

Thanks, Googleboy, for the links.

Interesting array of sponsor logos on that web site. Mostly it's the usual suspects, but it seems a bit odd that the only ski resort represented is Deer Valley. Anyone know what's up with that?

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