Business & Industry

Georgia Centers for Innovation

Helping Georgia businesses navigate, connect, compete and grow is the vital mission of the Georgia Centers of Innovation division of the Georgia Department of Economic Development.  "This is a program that is unique among the states," says Steve Justice, executive director of the 19 staff members who share their expertise through Centers of Innovation for Aerospace, Agribusiness, Energy Technology, Information Technology, Logistics and Manufacturing. The Centers of Innovation program was created through Governor Sonny Perdue's 2003 Commission for a New Georgia, chartered to develop public/private partnerships with the state's key industries. Perdue, who was governor from 2003-2011, is now U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.  For the full article, click here

Real Estate's Buyer and Seller

Buying or selling your home has its rewards. But a successful sale begins with education and research. If you follow some basic guidelines, chances are you will save yourself time and money. Click here for the article.

The J.W. Fanning Institute

It takes leadership to build healthy communities and developing those local leaders and equipping them to serve is the driving force behind the University of Georgia’s J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development in Athens, Ga. “We strengthen individuals, communities and organizations through leadership development training and education,” explains Fanning Institute executive director Matthew Bishop. “The center was really created as a way for the University to bring to light its services and outreach expertise on these local programs. Over time the Institute delved into other areas around community and economic development.” To read more, click here.

100 Years of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce

When the Georgia Chamber of Commerce was founded a century ago, its purpose was to grow the economy and be a strong advocate for business. It quickly tackled issues like building roads, improving education and fighting onerous regulations and tax policies. “And those are things we’re still doing 100 years later,” asserts chamber President Chris Clark. “It’s a part of our DNA.” On every major issue affecting the economic well-being of the state, the Georgia Chamber has helped guide the public and its elected representatives to workable solutions. The organization was founded by local chambers of commerce whose leaders realized they needed a bigger, more unified voice in Atlanta and Washington, D.C. To find out how the Chamber of Commerce found their voice, click here.

Northeast Georgia Regional Commission

Northeast Georgia is big and diverse and thanks to the Northeast Georgia Regional Commission (NEGRC) it has come together to tackle some big problems and score impressive victories. Stretching from Jasper and Newton Counties in the southwest to Elbert in the North, NEGRC includes 12 counties, 54 cities and more than 600,000 people. Find out more about the NEGRC by clicking here.

Small Businesses Up and Running

It’s Monday morning. You are back at your desk. You are on the clock. You are facing another week of sacrifice of your time for a paycheck, another week of your energy being spent for the benefit of someone else’s business. You’ve got a great idea for your own business. You want to set your own rules, your own schedule. But how do you break out of the mold and move forward with your ideas? Well, the truth of the matter is, business ownership isn’t for everyone. Starting and running a business is hard, time consuming, draining, and also can be expensive and involve a lot of risk. To find out more, click here.

Play Ball!

EvoShield protective athletic gear’s time has come. During  the  past  few  years,  concern  about major injuries to athletes from Little Leaguers to NFL players has become a national conversation about the
safety   of   athletics,   and   EvoShield speaks to that concern.“Two  things  came  together  from  2005  when  we  started  the company,  awareness  of  injuries in  sports  and  better  protection for  all  athletes,”  says  EvoShield  president Stan Kanavage.

Home is Where the Office is

FOR MANY PEOPLE, STARTING A HOME-BASED SMALL BUSINESS CAN feel like treading in unfamiliar water. It may appear calm on the surface, but unexpected details lurking beneath can topple even the most savvy business professionals. One of the best anchors for any small business is a functional home office.

In response to the economy and personal needs, many people ditched traditional 9-to-5 jobs in favor of telecommuting or opening their own business. 

Ginny Givens is one of them.

After working for family for years, Givens chose to venture out and launch Ginny's Custom Embroidery in 2007.  To find out more tips about how Ginny keeps her home business professional and savvy, click here.

From the Inside Out

Revitalization the Main Street and Better Hometown Way.

Bob Dylan once sang ‘the times they are a changin’ and in Georgia the signs are everywhere. In many cities across the state, downtowns are experiencing a shift in housing with small-scale, upper-floor apartments, to the construction of major new developments in-and-around the downtown core. From the smallest to the largest of cities, developers are discovering the benefits of investing in downtown and people are discovering the benefits of living there.

The catalyst driving this trend centers on two programs: Main Street and Better Hometown. For more than two decades, these two have helped Georgia cities reinvest in downtown development and protect the state’s aging historic landmarks with aggressive preservation efforts.

Mainstreet and Better Hometown communities throughout the region are full of opportunities.  Click here to learn about them.

TSPLOST is Georgia's Pathway to Progress

Will the Proposed TSPLOST Save Georgia’s Roads, Or Will the State Need to Develop an Alternate Route?

Sitting impatiently with hands wrapped tightly around the steering wheel, inching closer to the destination, one intently watches the bumper of the car ahead and rejoices as it starts to inch away only to feel a rush of disappointment when break lights illuminate once more. Whether on the way to work in the morning, heading home in the evening, or out for dinner with friends, traffic lurks as the often unpredictable variable that prevents one from arriving on time.

As Georgia’s economy and population grow, one aspect of the state seems to lag behind, unable to keep up with the state’s booming growth. That sluggish factor causing frustration in the daily lives of many Georgians is transportation. However, Georgians will have a chance to address the issue of traffic congestion and inefficient roadways during the summer of 2012. In July, Georgia residents will vote for or against a possible one-percent sales tax to raise revenue to improve transportation in the state.

To learn more how TSPLOST will save our region's roads and support our growing needs, click here.

From a Dream to a Reality

...For aspiring entrepreneurs, Georgia has the resources for startup assistance. In addition to resource availability, local communities are still developing strategies to centralize resources and information to assist entrepreneurs and small businesses. Making business dreams a reality no longer has to be confusing.

To find out more about Growing a Business of your own, click here(Photo by City of Elberton)

Looking for a Green Future

General Mills, one of the world’s largest food companies, opened a distribution center in 2010 located in the small community of Social Circle. The General Mills site is 125 acres, and with 1.5 million square feet, the actual distribution center is also immense – large enough to hold 28 football fields and still have room leftover for end zones. The facility is the largest LEED-certified industrial building in the United States according to Sheila Huntley, customer service manager.

To learn more about the General Mills Corporation, click here.