Port of Stockton operations not crimped by COVID-19 pandemic

Central Valley Business Times

March 19, 2020

  • Operations modified where needed
  • “The Port of Stockton’s ability to support our business partners has not been impacted”

California’s largest inland seaport, the Port of Stockton, is open and operating normally, officials say, although some measures are in place to prevent the spread of the virus that causes the COVID-19 illness.

“The Port of Stockton’s priority is to ensure the health and safety of all Port stakeholders; to date, the Port of Stockton’s ability to support our business partners has not been impacted by COVID-19,” says Port Director Richard Aschieris. “With our quickly changing environment, we remain vigilant and engaged with private sector stakeholders as well as local, state and federal agencies to ensure we have the latest information available and are operating per their guidance and implementing the most effective measures to support our shared goal of keeping all Port users, partners and staff safe while maintaining business continuity.”

He says the seaport has implemented a variety of measures to protect and limit contact and exposure of COVID-19 to Port employees as well to reduce the risk of a disruption to the services provided to our customers and tenants, including:

  • Reduced domestic travel to only that which is critical for the Port’s business continuity
  • Encouraged telephone or video conferencing for internal and external meetings
  • Implemented mandatory wearing of Personal Protective Equipment for staff performing essential operations and maintenance functions requiring external in-person contact
  • Implemented strategic physical separation of Port staff functions at various sites within the Port premises
  • Encouraged preventive actions recommended by the Center for Disease Control

“We will continue to monitor and respond to the changing needs created by this pandemic, ” Mr. Aschieris says.

The Port’s police department remains open 24 hours a day and its maritime and real estate departments continue to operate during normal business hours.

Updates to the Port’s status will be posted as needed to the Port’s website www.portofstockton.com (COVID-19 stands for “coronavirus disease 2019, ” a respiratory illness caused by a virus named SARS-CoV-2. SARS stands for “severe acute respiratory syndrome,” a disease first identified in Asia in 2003.)

https://files.constantcontact.com/2cb20f61601/2f931797-fd73-4394-b999-f3037480f26c.pdf

Madera County named one of the fastest growing communities in the West

MADERA COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) — The sounds of construction have become the norm in Madera County.

“No matter what part of the county you look at, there is some major pieces of construction going on,” said Bobby Kahn, the executive director of the Madera County Economic Development Commission.

A recent study by the U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Economic analysis showed Madera County saw the fastest growth in the West in a medium-sized community with a 6.6% increase for its gross domestic product, which is the value of goods and services produced within the county.

The study highlighted growth areas in agriculture and forestry, especially in the mountains where trees have died.

“It’s creating a lot of forestries that we possibly didn’t have in the last, and you see a lot more logging trucks on the road in Eastern Madera County to places where it can be processed,” Kahn said.

In the city of Madera, new businesses are going up. Full Throttle suspension is expanding to this 100,000 square foot facility near the airport.

Nearby, a new fire station is expected to be completed in the next month.

At the Freedom Industrial Park, manufacturer TranPak is getting closer to opening.

Many projects are coming to fruition in 2020, including this loves travel stop. It just opened recently off Highway 99 and Avenue 17 and features space room for cars, trucks, and a dog park. More than 90 jobs were created.

Housing developments are changing the landscape of Madera.

“We have growth going on in Chowchilla, the city of Madera, and of course all of the growth going on along Highway 41 with River Stone, Tesoro Viejo, And then you’re seeing infrastructure work being done at children’s hospital, that’s part of the Gunner West project, which is fully entitled,” Kahn said.

Kahn believes a positive economy and planning are helping encourage growth. Leaders expect even more growth in 2020.

“It’s the geographic center of the state. It’s also one of the most affordable areas to develop in the state,” Kahn said.

All of the projects are benefitting the city and county with tax revenue and more job creation.

Business landscape looks bright for Shafter

January 9, 2020 | View PDF

Courtesy Wonderful Company

The Walmart distribution center is scheduled to open in the fall of 2020.

The City of Shafter has been enjoying a reputation of being one of the fastest growing cities in business in recent years, attracting such companies as Target, Ross and several other big retailers.

The most recent addition is Walmart, which is scheduled to open the most technologically advanced distribution center in the nation in Shafter in the fall of 2020.

Bob Meadows, business development director for the city, says Shafter is a sought-after destination for businesses, large and small.

“We have several irons in the fire. This year should see the city continue to build on this success and make 2020 a special one.”

Financially, the city has been touted as one of the most financially sound cities in the state. Meadows said that since he joined the city last year, he has become aware of the great reputation the city has in Kern County, as well as in the state of California.

A big draw for the city, Meadows says, is the willingness of the city to work with potential developers and retailers, as well as the technological advantages Shafter has. “Having the city connected through our fiber optic lines throughout the city has been a great benefit.”

Looking forward into 2020, Meadows said that the biggest item on the agenda so far is the opening of the Walmart facility. This will mean over 200 jobs for the community, with about a third of the jobs STEM-related – tied to science, technology, engineering and mathematics — with the other two-thirds general laborers.

“We are excited to see how many of the jobs are going to go to Shafter residents, which will mean the dollars staying here locally,” commented Meadows.

Another exciting development for 2020 is the growing relationship between the city and the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. The KCHCC has been very beneficial to county and its businesses, Meadows said, with a good many of businesses working with the chamber enrich the local communities.

In addition to the contacts that are made with a relationship with the chamber, they also have made a big impact on local businesses with holding their business academies. The academy is a 12-week program that helps small local businesses learn how to operate successfully, as well as how to market their products and services, and get their companies out in the community. “We are looking forward to the possibility of holding a business academy right here in Shafter for our local businesses,” said Meadows.

As far as new businesses on the horizon, Meadows said that there has been a lot of interest in several locations throughout the city, including the property at Central Avenue and Central Valley Highway that used to house Brookside Deli. “We have a couple of people that are very interested in the property, and they both are food-related, which is good because the property already is equipped to house a food establishment,” Meadows said.

He said that they also have had discussions about different businesses coming to Shafter, including a veterinarian, additional automotive service businesses, a drive-thru car wash and additional medical clinics. “Rural medicine is a big issue in our economy, with a lot of people looking for affordable healthcare,” Meadows said.

The city was the recipient of surplus of sales tax revenue last year. This unexpected development was the result of a large number of customers who ordered products online this year.

Retailer William Sonoma paid the city a large amount of sales tax money that was not forecast. “A lot of people ordered online this last year,” said Meadows, “which was very nice for us.”

Meadows said that the businesses at the Wonderful Logistics Park do amazing things when it comes to business relationships across the state and the United States, but there is not a lot of actual income that is produced out there.

“The difference in the William Sonoma retailer and retailers like Target and Ross is that for the online ordering, the sale is actually in the city of Shafter. With the distribution centers, the sales are not done here, the product is just shipped to and from a location, so the sales tax money goes to the city where the sale actually takes place.”

In addition to the Hispanic Chamber, the city also has been in contact with the Small Business Development Center in Bakersfield for a possible workshop in the near future. The group, based out of Cal State Bakersfield, held a workshop this last year that was well attended and gave local business owners valuable information about how to grow your business, including marketing and creating a presence on social media, as well as how to go about financing a business venture.

“What we are looking at would build on that workshop, becoming a regular meeting that would be set up for our small businesses who may need advice on how to operate their business, as well as getting them in contact with the correct people and agencies to further their success,” Meadows said.

“The business landscape is looking up for Shafter when it comes to all phases of the business arena,” Meadows concluded.

https://www.theshafterpress.com/story/2020/01/09/news/business-landscape-looks-bright-for-city/1204.html

FRESNO COUNTY ECONOMIC FORECAST: INTERNATIONAL INTEREST COMES ROLLING IN

Construction activity in Fresno keeps coming, including this three-story office building under construction near Palm and Herndon avenues. Photo by Edward Smith.

Published On December 4, 2019 – 1:33 PM
Written By 

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is one of four economic forecasts The Business Journal does every year for each of the four counties in our coverage area.

This seems to be a prime time for the world to kick the tires on Fresno County.

Interest from companies from far-flung countries including China and Japan has kept economic development officials busy, and even corporate America is taking a closer look at locating in Fresno County on the heels of Amazon and Ulta’s investment in e-commerce distribution centers.

At the same time, Fresno County’s agricultural sector continues to reassert itself as a force to be reckoned with. In fact, based off 2018 crop statistics, Fresno County once again became the top agricultural county in California and the U.S. — a position it hasn’t held since 2013.

Economic development and job creation are job one for Fresno County Economic Development Corp. Will Oliver, director of business services for the Fresno County EDC, noted that 2019 “was filled with much activity, interest and momentum.”

Fresno County welcomed new out-of-state e-commerce operations who either located facilities here or contracted with local third-party logistics partners, Oliver said.

Oliver noted considerable interest in the small cities of Fresno County. One example is Initiative Foods, which is one of the nation’s largest baby food manufacturers, and a major international exporter. It recently completed a 30,000 square foot addition at its Sanger manufacturing plant. Another city, Reedley, is using available resources to lure an advanced food manufacturer.

The region’s designation as a federal Opportunity Zone has done much to jumpstart some of that interest, Oliver noted. The geographical designation provides incentives in the form of reduced capital gains taxes on investments for capital projects.

Fresno County is preparing to kick Opportunity Zone marketing of the region into high gear.

“Much groundwork has been laid to support Opportunity Zone investments by preparing projects and developing a digital prospectus to market the region’s assets, which will be live in 2020,” Oliver said.

Kingsburg recently made big news with T-Mobile’s announcement that it planned to locate a call center there that would create 1,000 jobs, which would be a major jolt to the local economy. That project is contingent on the telecommunication company’s successful merger with Sprint.

Fresno had a bit of a coming-out party earlier this month as host of the California Economic Summit, which included announcements of millions of dollars in investment into the Central Valley. It provided some much-needed momentum heading into the New Year, Oliver noted.

“2020 will certainly be focused on recruiting and expanding high-growth, traded sector companies and industries, such as in health care, agricultural technology and manufacturing,” Oliver said.

On the international front, while much of the economic development work is understandably behind the scenes and not for public consumption, word has trickled down that a Japanese company called Manda Fermentation Co. is on the verge of locating operations in Fresno County. Other Asian countries are looking at the county, undoubtedly drawn to it as a center for international agriculture.

On the agricultural front, Jan. 31, 2020, is a pivotal deadline as the state’s water managers — large and small — must provide plans for how they will manage groundwater usage under the state’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act.

Ryan Jacobsen, CEO/executive director of the Fresno County Farm Bureau, said the sustainability plans will take 20 years to implement, with progress reports required every five years. But just getting to this stage has taken a lot of time, not to mention paperwork, as each plan is “hundreds, if not thousands of pages long,” he said.

Jacobsen said a number of factors — ongoing trade negotiations with China, new federal scientific guidelines on the pumping of water from the delta and engaged leadership on the local, state and federal level — give him reason for optimism.

Trade friction with China has been especially worrisome.

“The trade issue is front and center,” he said. “I’m optimistic that we can come to an agreement with China. I’ve been an eternal optimist.”

https://thebusinessjournal.com/fresno-county-economic-forecast-international-interest-comes-rolling-in/

VALLEY’S FASTEST GROWING COMPANIES SHINE BRIGHT

The number of employees at Solar Maintenance Pros, Inc. dba Solar Negotiators increased to 78 this year. Photo contributed by Solar Negotiatiors.

Published On November 4, 2019 – 12:02 PM
Written By 

With The Business Journal’s 2019 Fastest Growing Companies list (published Oct. 25) comes a variety of companies ranging from upstarts in their industries to recognizable, household names that continue to grow today.

Three companies on the list — No. 5 Boling Air Media you might see at Fresno State games and at the newly revived Lemoore Naval Air Show; No. 2 Suncrest Bank has been in Tulare County since 2008, expanding beyond the Valley in recent years; and the No. 1 company, Solar Maintenance Pros dba Solar Negotiators — found success offering a variety of services in an emerging market.

 

Absorbing the rays

At the beginning of 2016, then-Solar Negotiators and Solar Maintenance Pros hadn’t yet finished the leg of their journey that brought them to being a multimillion-dollar company experiencing nearly 12,000% revenue growth over three years.

The solar brokerage firm that connected homeowners to installers was still separate from the solar panel cleaning service, Solar Maintenance Pros. But by this year, Solar Maintenance Pros surpassed Negotiators in revenue and employees. Leadership decided to combine the two companies into the same entity, offering both installations under their own contractor’s license and upkeep throughout the solar panel’s lifetime.

Owner Chris Moran started Solar Negotiators in 2009, offering consultative services to customers and contracting with a network of installers. They would do marketing, project management and consultations and “anything that didn’t require a contractor’s license,” said Leroy Coffman, president/co-owner of the now-combined Solar Maintenance Pros, Inc., dba Solar Negotiators. This allowed contractors to focus on installations instead of marketing and business development. In 2014, ownership expanded their offerings with maintenance services.

In the Central Valley’s four-county area, 10,000 solar permits are issued every year, estimates Coffman. And in the Central Valley’s dry, dusty climate, Coffman says panels should be cleaned every year to optimize efficiency. Dirty panels limit a panel’s power intake. That’s when Moran, Coffman and others started Solar Maintenance Pros, Inc.

“Solar Maintenance Pros enabled us to be more proactive in that we visit the customer site once a year and give it a visual inspection,” Coffman said. “It turned out that was a very important need that wasn’t being filled.”

Now, Coffman calls Solar Maintenance Pros the “largest provider of solar panel maintenance in the Central Valley.” They even started a company to monitor a system’s power intake and output called Solar Data Pros.

At the beginning of 2016, Solar Maintenance had 3 employees, grossing $44,095 in revenue. With the consolidated company, they now employ 78 people and in 2018, grossed $5.29 million.

“Those people are counting on that power to offset their bill,” Coffman said. “We want to become the top provider of maintenance services and cleaning services for all of those systems.”

 

Growth as a strategy

What was once limited to $99 million in assets and two branches in Tulare County ended up with more than $1 billion in assets and seven branches, stretching from Yuba City to Porterville.

Visalia-based Suncrest Bank is no stranger to lists measuring growth.

As part of a strategy of acquiring assets dating back to 2013, the 800% asset growth the bank experienced between 2013 and 2018 made them the fastest growing community bank in the nation, said Ciaran McMullan, president/CEO.

“We wanted to grow quickly and we wanted to grow by acquisition,” McMullan said.

Three successful capital raises primed them to acquire banks in Fresno, Yuba City and Sacramento, the latter two being new markets for the bank.

They called the goal “Five-in-five” — to grow by $500 million in five years. They met that goal 18 months ahead of schedule in July 2017. By their target date of May 2018, they held more than $900 million in assets.

“We surpassed even our grand ambition we set out at the end of 2013,” McMullan said.

Those assets have translated into 468% revenue growth since 2016, allowing the bank to expand from 25 employees to 108. The market expansion and asset acquisition put Suncrest in a good position long into the future, he added.

“What it does more than anything else to ready us for the future is it really deepens our talent pool,” McMullan said. “It also broadens our geographic exposure.”

 

Eye to the skies

At No. 5 on The Business Journal’s Fastest Growing Companies list, football fans and aeronautics advocates alike might recognize Boling Air Media’s presence in the skies.

Husband-and-wife team Chris and MaryAnn Boling started the advertising company in 2014 as a way to combine their two passions — marketing and flying.

“My passion has always been to fly, which is a very expensive hobby,” said Chris Boling.

The duo found a way to monetize the pastime by offering marketing opportunities, flying banners and blimps. While technically called a thermal airship due to its using exhaust to move and stay afloat, the company began with the “My Job Depends on Ag” blimp, said Boling. They signed a contract with Fresno State, using skydivers to bring in messages and enliven crowds during halftime shows. They’ve started making appearances at air shows, including the newly revived Lemoore Naval Air Show in September. They’ve done marketing campaigns for national advertisers towing banners and dropping divers to deliver messages.

“Anytime someone wants to put a message up in the air, we can find a media for them,” Boling said.

While there are only 10 pilots in the world who can fly the airship, Boling added, they rely on pilots looking for commercial certification to tow messages. Renting planes to get the necessary 1,500 hours of flying time can be expensive, he said. So, the company contracts with those pilots to deliver messages to the public.

“We’re all living out our wildest dreams thanks to this business,” he said.

https://thebusinessjournal.com/valleys-fastest-growing-companies-shine-bright/?utm_source=Daily+Update&utm_campaign=6cd41e0e0c-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_11_04_09_09&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_fb834d017b-6cd41e0e0c-78934409&mc_cid=6cd41e0e0c&mc_eid=a126ded657

uBreakiFix Expands California Footprint With Central Valley Store

 

By: uBreakiFix

Industry-Leading Tech Repair Brand Brings High Quality Electronics Support to Fresno

FRESNO, Calif., Sept. 19, 2019

uBreakiFix services anything with a power button, including smartphones, game consoles, tablets, computers, drones, hoverboards, and everything in between. To date, uBreakiFix has completed more than 5 million repairs. While common fixes include cracked screens, software issues, and camera issues, the brand offers support for most technical problems on any electronic device, regardless of make or model.

Through strategic partnerships with leading technology companies, including Samsung and Google, uBreakiFix provides Samsung Galaxy customers and Google Pixel and Pixelbook customers with manufacturer-backed, same-day repair services using genuine parts. Through the partnership with Samsung, Galaxy owners can get in and out-of-warranty repairs at more than 350 locations nationwide, with most repairs completed in two hours or less.

uBreakiFix Fresno is the first location for owners Ryan McDaniel and Kali Mey. They have plans to another store in Clovis in the near future.

“I truly believe that uBreakiFix is the best tech repair company in the world, and we were thrilled to open the first location of this franchise in the central valley,” said McDaniel. “My business partner, Kali, and I were born and raised in this community. We feel so fortunate to give back by offering high-quality, affordable device repair to the people of Fresno.”

uBreakiFix was founded in 2009 by millennial duo Justin Wetherill and David Reiff, who later partnered with Eddie Trujillo to transition their Internet-based brand to a brick and mortar model. By offering convenience, accessibility, and unparalleled customer service, uBreakiFix filled a gap in the repair marketplace and has since emerged as an industry leader in growth, service offerings, and authorized partnerships. In 2018, Wetherill was inducted into the Forbes Technology Council, and uBreakiFix earned a top spot on Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500® list, ranking #18 overall, #1 in the Electronics Repair category, and #1 on the Top New Franchises list.

uBreakiFix has nearly 500 locations open across the U.S. and Canada. The brand opened nearly 130 new stores in 2018 and plans to increase growth in 2019. For more information on uBreakiFix franchising, visit http://ubreakifix.com/franchising.

“At uBreakiFix, our goal is to take the hassle of a broken device and create the most positive, convenient experience possible for our customers,” Wetherill said. “We are a customer service company first, and a tech repair company second. As we expand into Fresno, we look forward to becoming the trusted resource to keep consumers and businesses connected to the things and people who matter most.”

uBreakiFix Fresno is located at 7029 North Ingram Ave., Suite 101 Fresno, CA 93650 and can be reached at: 559-930-8243. For more information and to view a service menu, visit https://ubreakifix.com/locations/fresno.

About uBreakiFix

Founded in 2009, uBreakiFix specializes in the repair of small electronics, ranging from smartphones, game consoles, tablets, computers, and everything in between. Cracked screens, software issues, camera issues, and most other problems can be repaired by visiting uBreakiFix stores across the U.S. and Canada. Since 2016, uBreakiFix has served as the exclusive walk-in repair partner for Google Pixel customers. In 2017, uBreakiFix expanded the partnership to include exclusive after sales support for Google Pixelbook customers. In 2018, uBreakiFix became a Samsung Care authorized service provider offering same-day, in-person support for Samsung Galaxy customers across the U.S. In 2018, uBreakiFix also ranked #18 on Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500®, #1 in the Electronics Repair category, and #1 on the Top New Franchises list. For more information, visit https://www.ubreakifix.com.

DiMuto Breaks Into US Market Through Deal With Central Valley Citrus Packer Fancher Creek Packing

 

 

DiMuto Produce September 23, 2019

Singapore – DiMuto, a tech-based trade solutions platform that provides end-to-end supply chain visibility for global businesses, has expanded its footprint into the USA by closing a deal with major citrus packer Fancher Creek Packing (“Fancher Creek”). Using DiMuto’s Track & Trace blockchain solution, Fancher Creek will tag citrus fruits, including oranges, lemons and grapefruits, from the US to various parts of Asia.

Located in Visalia, within the agricultural San Joaquin Valley, Fancher Creek’s packing facility is strategically situated in the heart of California’s Central Valley, which grows over 250 different crops, with an estimated value of US$17 billion, annually. Central Valley is also responsible for a quarter of the food production in the US. Fancher Creek works with growers, packers and shippers to provide citrus produce to the rest of the US, as well as overseas markets, such as Japan and Korea. Additionally, DiMuto will aid Fancher Creek in expanding its distribution channels by penetrating Southeast Asian markets in DiMuto’s trade network, including Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore.

As part of its trade solutions, DiMuto’s Track & Trace blockchain technology is a low-cost, effective solution that seamlessly integrates with supply chain workflows and existing systems to create traceability and accountability for each fruit, from farms, factories, cold chain to distribution channels and end consumers. Every single fruit is tagged with a QR label, photographed and tracked at each stage of the supply chain to provide end-to-end, 24/7 visibility from farm to fork. Data is encrypted and loaded onto the distributed digital ledger, enabling verified documents and data to be shared on a single platform, reducing trade disputes over quality and strengthening trust amongst all parties.

Mr Gary Loh, DiMuto’s Founder and Chairman, said, “We are tremendously excited to be working with Fancher Creek to break into the US market and establish a presence in California’s Central Valley. The adoption of our technology by more players across the global produce industry underscores the scalability of our all-in-one trade management platform. It is platform-agnostic and interoperable among the different blockchain systems currently used by the big international retailers, and we envisage a faster rate of market adoption for our trade solution as retailers are increasingly requesting for suppliers to go on the blockchain to complete end-to-end traceability. As such, DiMuto ensures that we meet the needs of our global clients by adhering to internationally-accepted and business-led standards.”

DiMuto was most recently inducted into the GS1 Singapore Solution Partner Program (“SPP”) to offer blockchained trade management solutions for member companies of the not-for-profit Global Standards 1 (“GS1”) based in Belgium. As part of the SPP, DiMuto’s solutions can be easily adopted by GS1 supply chain players all over the world for their trade management needs

https://www.perishablenews.com/produce/dimuto-breaks-into-us-market-through-deal-with-central-valley-citrus-packer-fancher-creek-packing/

Central Valley Continues to Charm Logistics Buyers

sf-prologis.jpg

STOCKTON, CA—Newport Beach, CA-based CT purchased the 345-acre industrial site for the 4.4 million-square-foot NorCal Logistics Center in May 2017 and has now completed the first phase development, including three spec buildings. The last to be completed is a 1.12 million-square-foot building, one of the single-largest speculative industrial buildings in Northern California. The second phase of development will begin toward the end of 2018 and include three additional buildings totaling approximately 1.6 million square feet.

The first two buildings in phase one totaling 575,127 square feet have been sold to Prologis for $47 million. Prologis paid approximately $82 per square foot for the buildings, which were unleased and in shell condition at closing.

“These transactions reflect the high demand for world-class logistics facilities in major distribution markets nationwide,” said Carter Ewing, managing partner of CT. “The speed with which these buildings transacted following completion mirrors the strong interest we are experiencing in several other projects we currently have underway. In this case, the transaction allows Prologis to enjoy a fair profit on their investment going forward while providing CT with a sizeable return and well ahead of schedule; a true win-win.”

Prologis’ interest in the Central Valley is well known. As of the end of 2017, it has taken ownership of 31 buildings, approximately 15 million square feet, and is projected to continue producing oversized returns.

CT was represented in the sale by Kevin Dal Porto, Blake Rasmussen and John McManus of Cushman & Wakefield. Prologis was self represented.

NorCal Logistics Center is home to General Mills, KeHE Foods, Allen Distributors and Fox Head, and is in the heart of California’s Central Valley, a 185 million-square-foot industrial market. The region is an extension of a global logistics supply chain infrastructure directly linked to West Coast ports in Oakland/Stockton, Los Angeles/Long Beach, Portland, OR and Seattle/Tacoma.

Since its establishment in 1994, CT has completed more than 300 transactions valued at more than $3 billion. CT has acquired more than 2,000 acres of industrial land since 2010, and the company is primarily focused on the investment of class-A US industrial logistics developments. CT has active developments in Southern California, New Jersey and other East Coast markets. CT has more than 10 million square feet under development and another 10 million square feet in its development pipeline.

For example, CT is in development on logistics centers near Chicago, Atlanta and in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex, where the company last month announced the development of Oakdale Logistics Center in Grand Prairie, TX. The company plans to announce three new development projects in the next few months, further extending its nationwide logistics footprint.

Nationwide, industrial vacancy stands at 7.3%, the lowest since first quarter 2001, according to the first quarter 2018 CBRE US industrial availability index. The first quarter 2018 construction totaled 35 million square feet with absorption at 41 million square feet. This is the 32nd straight quarter of positive absorption. The drivers of supply chain demand–consumer consumption, business inventories, industrial production–all showed growth in first quarter 2018. Consumer consumption is directly linked to demand for warehouse and logistics real estate, which is fueling investment and development activity. PREA’s fourth quarter 2017 consensus forecast survey projects a 7.1% return for logistics real estate from 2017 to 2021; more than apartments, retail or office, GlobeSt.com learns.

Originally appeared in GlobeSt

https://www.cbicommercial.com/blog/2018/7/6/central-valley-continues-to-charm-logistics-buyers

HILTI GETS BIGGER HOME IN VISALIA FOR FUTURE GROWTH

Visalia Mayor Bob Link, in the white shirt, shakes hands with Hilti, Inc. employees following a ribbon cutting at the company’s new, larger distribution center at the Visalia Industrial Park. Photo contributedåç

Published On June 20, 2019 – 3:12 PM
Written By David Castellon

If you aren’t in the business of constructing homes, commercial buildings or other structures, chances are you never heard of Hilti.

But in Visalia, the Luxemburg-based maker of professional-grade power tools and other construction products has made a name for itself over the past 24 years as a business and employer in the Visalia Industrial Park.

Now, the company is expanding its presence, having leased a newly-built, 166,000-square-foot building to house its West Coast distribution and Value-Added Service centers.

On Wednesday, the new facility at 4630 N. American St. was opened to local business people and dignitaries for a ribbon-cutting ceremony conducted by executives from Hilti, Inc. — the company’s Oklahoma-base U.S. division — and Visalia Mayor Bob Link.

The Visalia distribution center is the largest of 12 Hilti distribution centers in the U.S. and Canada, covering the West Coast and Pacific Rim.

Among the tasks performed at the Value-Added Service Center are assembling prefabricated parts installed with new walls to prevent the spread of fires and equipment to mount lights and heavy equipment to ceilings.

The European company has eight factories around the world, making tools mostly for commercial-builders, but some Hilti products can be found at Home Depot hardware stores and at about 100 Hilti stores in the U.S.

Hilti vacated two smaller buildings in other parts of the Visalia Industrial Park — which combined offered about 65,000 square feet of space — to move into the new building. Staff, work spaces, inventory and supplies occupy only about two thirds of it, said Patrick O’Connell, vice president of logistics for Hiliti, Inc.

He said sales for the company are on the rise, particularly in the U.S., so moving to a larger building is intended to prepare for growth.

Currently Hilti employs 30 people in Visalia, both at the new building and at a separate tool repair center also in the Industrial Park. While there are no immediate plans to expand that staff, there now more than 50,000 square feet available to make room for added hires and equipment in the future if the growth continues, as expected, O’Connell said.

https://thebusinessjournal.com/hilti-gets-bigger-home-in-visalia-for-future-growth/