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State's startups raise $100 million in third quarter, report notes

,Minnesota's startups had a strong third quarter, according to a recent report from the Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal. The publication noted that venture capital investment in the state showed a rebound over previous quarters, with med-tech firms leading the surge.
 
Companies that raised large rounds include Segetis Inc., a firm specializing in sustainable chemistry solutions, and Torax Medical Inc., a medical technology company focused on treatments for digestive, incontinence, and obesity disorders.
 
One down note in an otherwise sunny report: $20 million of the third quarter revenue was raised by Mainstay Medical Inc., a device firm that plans to move out of the Twin Cities. Since its funding was provided by an Irish venture capital firm, the company will be relocating to Dublin.

Sports Illustrated highlights Vikings stadium architects

The architectural firm that designed stadiums for the Dallas Cowboys and Indianapolis Colts will be taking on the new $975 million Minnesota Vikings stadium, noted Sports Illustrated in a news item on the magazine's website.
 
Dallas-based HKS Inc. won the bid for the project, with a $34 million design contract. The stadium is due to open in 2016, and drawings of the new facility could be unveiled as early as this January or February.
 
According to the Sports Illustrated article, HKS is considering whether a retractable roof, wall, or window can fit within the current budget. The Vikings management is hopeful that such functionality can be part of the finished design.
 
Some developments that are likely to make it to the finished stadium are wider concourses, more restrooms, and a "game-day plaza" that connects the facility with surrounding neighborhoods.

Minneapolis named a Gold-Level community for walking

Because of "excellent planning policies, high level of staff commitment to pedestrian safety and pedestrian campaigns and events," Minneapolis is a gold-level community for walking, according to Walk Friendly Communities.
 
As also reported in Southwest Journal, the city's extensive sidewalk network is an example of how Minneapolis is devoted to providing pedestrian facilities. Over 90 percent of streets in Minneapolis have complete sidewalks, and over 80 percent of streets have sidewalks on both sides of the street.
 
Walk Friendly Communities also noted the city's pedestrian street lighting, parking standards, and crosswalk practices as other indications of the walking friendliness of Minneapolis.

Miami Herald shares story about Minneapolis-based charity assisting Haiti

The Minneapolis-based charity Feed My Starving Children is getting closer to its goal of establishing a full-time packing center in Miami, and a recent effort to build support in the area was a success, according to a recent story in the Miami Herald.
 
At an event to pack meals for Haitian children, a group of nearly 500 Miami volunteers put together 25,000 rice meals in just two hours. One volunteer noted that it was a fulfilling experience, and said that it felt important to her to show her kids that "the world doesn't have opportunities like we have."
 
The article went on to add that the event was the first step in an effort to generate community support for the charity's efforts, and a group of volunteers was already planning another event in January. Feed My Starving Children has seven full-time sites in Minnesota, Chicago, and Arizona, and if all goes well, Miami will be its eighth.

NPR highlights state's iPad gambling strategy

National Public Radio (NPR) recently highlighted a technology-based gambling tactic that's being used to help fund a new NFL stadium for Minnesota.
 
In its "All Tech Considered" blog, NPR noted that state residents can use approved iPads to play a digital pull-tab game, and the money will go toward financing the stadium, which is estimated to cost about $975 million.The Minnesota system is the first of its kind in the United States

The iPads are available in bars, where patrons can play at their own tables. Gamblers can place bets of either $1 or $2, and boxes at the bottom of the screen keep a running tally of cash reserves. 

AdAdge reports on developments at creative agency Periscope

Minneapolis creative agency Periscope recently picked up three liquor brands, according to a recent article in AdAge, the magazine covering the creative industry.
 
UV Vodka, Prairie Organic Vodka, and Revel Stoke Spiced Whisky--all owned by local firm Phillips Distilling--came to Periscope after a review. Phillips corporate director of marketing Katie Alvino noted in a statement that Periscope offers "an in-depth approach to brand building from consumer insights to amazing creative and campaign development."
 
AdAge's article pointed out that the liquor brands join a roster of Periscope clients that include Cargill and ExxonMobile. The agency has about 410 employees, with offices in Minneapolis, Toronto, Hong Kong, and Delhi.

Local marketing agency Haberman lands on Outside's list for best places to work

Marketing firm Haberman made the list of best places to work in the country, as determined by Outside magazine. The publication singled out companies that "allow people to pursue ambitious careers but also spend time with their families, give back to their communities, and fulfill their passion for adventure."
 
Minneapolis-based Haberman was singled out for its location in the Warehouse District, as well as its distinctive employer-sponsored garden. The article noted that Haberman employees also benefit from a "wellness inferno" competition, where teams can earn weekly prizes for completing various wellness tasks like hosting a walking meeting along the Mississippi riverfront. Also noted were flexible hours and a company-endorsed "fun committee."
 
Outside's list of 100 best places to work includes companies of all sizes, and others that garnered the title include well-known enterprises like Patagonia, SmartWool, Trek Bicycle Corporation, and New Belgium Brewing.
 

General Mills rolls out new content site, with help from the Huffington Post

Golden Valley-based General Mills recently took a step into the arena of "branded content," assisted by popular news site Huffington Post, according to an article in The Wall Street Journal.
 
The site, LiveBetterAmerica, is aimed at giving visitors information on healthy living, with a focus on eating more nutritious foods, and it's built on the Huffington Post technology platform. Although the site isn't directly linked to the news source, articles from Huffington's writers will appear on LiveBetterAmerica.
 
The move is part of a growing shift in online content that pairs publishers like Huffington with advertisers like General Mills, creating journalistic-style articles that tie to brand awareness and online advertising.

BrightScope lists local companies with best 401k plans

BrightScope, an investment research firm, released its second annual list of the Minneapolis-area-based companies that boast the highest-ranked 401k plans.
 
Twenty five companies were highlighted, including newcomers to the list like M.A. Mortenson Company, The Valspar Corporation, and American Medical Systems.
 
The top three companies were Fish & Richardson, Briggs and Morgan, and Leonard Street and Deinard.
 
"It is apparent that the companies on this list have created high quality and effective 401k plans for their employees, making each of them a standard in which all other companies in the Minneapolis area should strive to imitate," noted Dan Weeks, BrightScope founder, in a press release about the results.

Minnesota Recruiters releases hiring and jobs survey

Minnesota Recruiters, a network of recruiters and HR professionals, released its annual hiring and jobs survey, yielding some insights into the current jobs scene.
 
The survey found that hiring continues to be strongest with jobs that require a two- or four-year degree, and that moderate hiring is the theme. IT hiring seems to be a stress across the board, the report notes, and the results are similar to national trends.
 
Marketing continues to be in the "fewest jobs" category, but the interactive side of the industry is very strong. The most jobs tend to be in IT, sales, finance, and engineering.

Cities expert shares thoughts on Twin Cities

Renowned urban expert Charles Landry recently spent time in Minneapolis and St. Paul, and shared numerous thoughts on how citizens and developers could make the area into a world-class region.
 
As noted in a recent article in MinnPost, Landry spoke with more than 1,000 people during his seven-day visit, and gave advice on how to increase appreciation for diversity, view community projects in a broader context, and rally behind small-scale efforts.
 
Writing about Landry in MinnPost, Erik Takeshita noted that the Twin Cities show up on many national "Top 10" lists, but that we shouldn't get complacent. "So, as we bask in the glory of national kudos for best this and best that, let's rededicate ourselves to making sure Minneapolis-St. Paul continues to have a place high on those lists for many years to come," he wrote.
 
For more on Landry's visit to the metro and his insights on our urban landscape, check out Camille LeFevre's recent article in The Line.

Business Journal notes return of summer jobs for teens

The Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal recently noted a positive trend in the economy: summer jobs for teenagers.
 
This particular economic indicator has been ailing throughout the recession, and it's been reported that 2010 was the worst summer for teen jobs since 1949.
 
But analyzing data from Chicago-based outplacement consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, local reporter Jim Hammerand saw that almost 160,000 teens found summer jobs last month. That's more than twice the number of jobs added in May of last year.

Colorado newspaper highlights Minneapolis as a model city for biking

Minneapolis joins Hangzhou, China and Amsterdam as cities that could serve as models for better bicycling policies, believes a columnist for Valley Courier, a newspaper in Colorado.
 
The article notes that in addition to the extensive bikeway system in Minneapolis, the area is also home to the founders of Bike Fixtation (see previous coverage in The Line here), a new kind of vending machine that dispenses bike accessories and patch kits.
 
"We could learn something from these models," the article notes. "[W]e'd save a lot of money and a lot of gas, while dropping the pounds that weigh us down."

Placemaking conversation regarding Hennepin Avenue at Walker Art Center

The Walker Art Center magazine features a story about the “Art of Placemaking,” as it pertains to Hennepin Avenue in Minneapolis.

“Despite its status as a major, historic thoroughfare in Minneapolis--or maybe because of it--Hennepin Avenue has for decades been regarded as a problematic, contested public space,” it reads.

A project called Plan-It Hennepin aims to change that, by turning it into a “lively, compelling cultural corridor,” the story says.

The story touches on the Walker’s perspective on the process, in which it’s a participant:  It quotes the Walker’s Olga Viso, who says, “Along with our partners in Plan-It Hennepin, we thought that the Walker could help lead a different conversation in terms of creativity and envisioning possibilities, by bringing artists’ voices into the process.”

This story dovetails with The Line's feature this week on Candy Chang.








Venture Beat nods to local coworking space, business accelerator

Venture Beat mentions the local CoCo coworking space and Project Skyway business accelerator in a story about the coworking trend.

Skyway is an example of the kind of collaborations that can come out of coworking, it expains.

For the vast majority of startups, coworking may be a better alternative than the traditional business incubator, it argues.

“Co-working shifts the startup mentality away from the tunnel-vision focus on getting funding, and onto the 'first-things-first' task of growing a company culture, developing ideas, and most importantly, nurturing support networks,” it states.



55 Coordination/Collaboration Articles | Page: | Show All
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