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VISIT OAKLAND ‘Urban Wine Trail’ is launched

October 2015


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Oakland Business Review

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> Chamber launches ‘Oaklanders Talk Tech’ series The Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce launched its new “Oaklanders Talk Tech” series with an inaugural event held at Pandora headquarters in downtown Oakland on Sept. 11.

Oakland tech employment, Q1-08, Q3-14

The event was attended by more than 100 business leaders, government officials, and members of the Oakland community eager to better understand the role of Oakland’s emerging tech ecosystem. The sold-out tech event featured remarks by Pandora Chief Financial Officer Mike Herring, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, a report on the Chamber’s District Indicators Project by founding partner of Beacon Economics Christopher Thornberg, and a panel discussion with Oakland tech leaders Brennen Byrne, CEO of Clef; Naveen Jain, CEO of Sparkart Group, Inc.; Tamir Scheinok, COO of Fluid; Ted Girdner, VP of Comcast; and moderated by Daniel Schacht, partner, Donahue Fitzgerald LLP. The event was held at Pandora because as the largest tech employer in the city it plays a prominent role in Oakland’s tech ecosystem. Recently celebrating its 10th anniversary, Pandora has a strong presence in the downtown economy. With an outwardly focused corporate culture integrated in its business practices, Pandora encourages its 1000+ employees to be engaged in the community. For example, the company intentionally does not have a cafeteria in order to promote and support local businesses. Herring articulated the company’s rationale for locating and staying in Oakland – “Oakland didn’t just – continued on page 4

Oakland tech establishments, Q1-08, Q3-14

▲ The panel discussion, “Priorities for Oakland’s Tech Ecosystem,” featured (left to right) moderator Daniel Schacht with speakers Tamir Scheinok, Naveen Jain, Ted Girdner, Brennan Byrne and Mike Herring.

> City Administrator Landreth > Pandora – Giving back to Oakland

to speak at Inside Oakland – by Stephanie Barnes

Pandora saw an opportunity in Oakland when the company decided to establish its headquarters on Webster Street ten years ago. Oakland also has a long history of arts and a rich music tradition, so the city fits perfectly with the culture and style Pandora has worked to create. The city has also been a significant advocate and supporter of the company over the years with local officials weighing in on the company’s rate setting issues in Washington, D.C. a few years ago. In turn, Pandora encourages its 1000+ employees to give back and get involved with the community. It purposefully does not provide an on-campus meal option like other tech companies so that employees will patronize local establishments. And Pandora’s Oakland employees performed more than 2,325 volunteer hours last year. Currently, approximately 20 percent of Pandora’s employees also live in Oakland. For those not living in Oakland, many access public transportation to the area. As such, the company recently wrote a letter of support for BART’s application for a federal grant for its Gateway to Oakland Uptown (GO Uptown) station modernization project to express the importance of this initiative to the area. ■ Stephanie Barnes is a member of the corporate communications team at Pandora.

Sabrina Landreth, the new City Administrator for the city of Oakland, will be the featured speaker at the Chamber’s Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum on Friday, Oct. 23. The meeting, free of charge for Chamber members, will be held at the Chamber offices from 8:30 to 10 a.m. Responsible for the day-to-day management of the city, appointed by Mayor Schaaf, and working for the City Council, the role of City Administrator is the crucial point where policy intersects action. Sabrina Landreth As an Oakland native, Landreth understands the city’s history while having a vision for Oakland’s future. Most recently Emeryville's City Manager, Landreth formerly served as deputy city administrator and budget director for Oakland, and spent time as an administrative services manager and legislative analyst to the City Council. During her tenure in Oakland, she helped lead the city to close over $175 million in budget deficits, led a massive overhaul of the budget and city organizational structure, and helped negotiate employee concessions and structural pension reform for all employee labor groups. To reserve your seat at the Oct. 23 Inside Oakland, visit ■ 1

Names in the news • The SuperBowl Committee’s 50Fund will donate $10,000 to Covenant House for their work to get homeless and trafficked youth off the street. In addition, former executive director Sean Sullivan has been nominated for a “Playmaker” Award. Covenant House provides 30 beds of shelter and transitional living to homeless youth ages 18-24 in Oakland. • Containerized import volume keeps growing at the Port of Oakland as peak shipping season nears. The Port reports that imports jumped 15 percent in August compared to 2014 totals. It was the sixth consecutive month of gains ahead of the traditional autumn pre-holiday cargo surge. The Port also reports overall container volume in August – imports, exports and empty boxes – was up 6 percent. Year-to-date total volume is still down 4.8 percent from a year ago. But that’s a significant recovery from double-digit volume declines in winter. Imports have led Oakland’s volume rebound. The Port said it lifted the equivalent of 82,492 20-foot containers last month. That was the most since March when the Port’s import rally began. Import growth has been continuous since the Feb. 20 tentative settlement of a West Coast waterfront labor dispute. • Keith Johnson has joined SVS Group as their branch manager in Oakland. He has enjoyed a stellar career in sales and sales management after having graduated from UC Davis. His new responsibilities include overseeing sales and recruitment for the Oakland market. “I am delighted to Keith Johnson become part of the SVS family. This is a tremendous opportunity,” he said. • The Home of Chicken & Waffles at 444 Embarcadero West across from Jack London Square is now offering “Thirsty Thursdays,” where patrons receive 50 percent off all house drinks and all you can eat “drummentes” from 7 p.m. to midnight. For information, call (510) 836-4446. • Family Paths, which strengthens family relationships by providing mental health and supportive services, will present its fourth annual Women’s Leadership Luncheon on Wednesday, Oct. 14 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Lakeside Park Garden Center at Lake Merritt. For information, call (510) 893-9230. • “Gather Together,” a benefit for low-income seniors, veterans and disabled homeowners, will be presented by Rebuilding Together Oakland on Thursday, Oct. 15 from 5:30 to 9 p.m. at Forage Kitchen, 478 25th St. in Oakland. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit www.rtoak • The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) presents “UNEARTHED: Found + Made,” a new exhibition intermixing work by Oakland-born, L.A.-based contemporary artist Jedediah Caesar with the creative practices of two local amateur clubs – California Suiseki Society and San Francisco Suiseki Kai. Referring to an interest in geology as well as to the literal act of discovering and gathering materials from the California landscape, the exhibition draws new connections between distinct works of art and creative practices, highlighting process and shared appreciation. It will be on view Dec. 12 through April 24, 2016 in OMCA's Gallery of California Art. ■


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

> Chamber’s programming accommodates all interests – by Chamber President and CEO Barbara Leslie


T HAS BEEN AN EXCITING SEPTEMBER FOR the Chamber highlighted by the very successful launch of our Oaklanders Talk Tech series, wide distribution of our tech sector economic analysis, engaging new member luncheon, insightful Economic Development Forum presentation from Sungevity, and a standing-room-only crowd for our Inside Oakland Forum with special guests Assemblymembers Bonta, Thurmond and State Senator Loni Hancock. We endeavor to provide robust and diverse Barbara Leslie programs to address the broad range of interests and priorities of our members; and this month was a significant example of this type of programming. Another big event in which the Chamber participated was the announcement of Uber’s purchase of Uptown Station (formerly the Sears building and for those of us around for a while, the Capwell’s building) and the company’s intention to bring 2,000-3,000 employees to Oakland in 2017. As the Mayor indicated during her remarks, this is a “game changer” for Oakland and ensures a critical mass of tech and other industries choosing Oakland to start, relocate or grow their business.

The Mayor was also quick to highlight the importance of growing our economy in a way that preserves the reason we are a place where residents and businesses want to be. For as Tamir Scheinok, COO of Oakland newcomer Fluid, noted during the Oaklanders Talk Tech event, “Given what Fluid does, it is important to have the backdrop of culture, art and creatives that we have in Oakland.” One key area where the Chamber’s current work supports the Mayor’s objectives is in education. With our partnership with OUSD and the Peralta Community College District we are working to create more opportunities for our young people to begin to develop their future school and career paths, paths that we hope include important work based learning opportunities and local internships resulting in college and employment right here at home! Our East Bay Linked learning HUB of Excellence staff will focus on these efforts in the coming months as we build the program. If you are interested in learning more about this work, please contact me directly. As we progress through the fall we will continue to provide an array of informational, educational and social programs for you. Don’t miss our October Inside Oakland Forum with special guest speaker Sabrina Landreth, Oakland’s City Administrator, and our annual Pulse of Oakland event on Nov. 6. We will be presenting our community poll results on a variety of quality of life issues in Oakland as well as a first look at candidates and Council races for 2016. And keep an eye out for our second Oaklanders Talk Tech program in December. ■

City Council Corner Editor’s note: The following is the first in a continuing series of stories from Aly Bonde, the Chamber’s new public policy intern, on the projects and discussions at Oakland’s City Council meetings. by Aly Bonde • The Council returned from a month-long recess on Sept. 8. Some of the issues they will likely deal with this fall include affordable housing, exporting coal through Oakland, and changes to waste and composting contracts. • The Council held a public hearing on Sept. 21 about the health and safety of transporting coal to the Oakland Bulk and Oversized Terminal at the former Oakland Army Base. Hundreds of people showed up, many speaking against/in favor of the project. The Council directed staff to return with more information and options for action including: an ordinance prohibiting coal, a temporary emergency ordinance regulating coal, a temporary moratorium, and any other possible binding measures. • This fall the Council will discuss the Housing Equity Roadmap. The Roadmap contains numerous policy recommendations including streamlining the development process, expanding condo conversion restrictions, and adopting a development impact fee for affordable housing. The required study to determine a feasible level for the fee is due to be presented to the Council in November, with potential action likely in early 2016. • The Council is also in the process of approving the development agreement between Strada Investment Group and the city to build a 262-unit residential building with 4,850 square feet of retail space at 1100 Clay St. The project may also include a hotel on an adjacent property in the future. ■ Aly Bonde is an intern in the Chamber’s Public Policy Department.

OCTOBER 2015 |


> ‘Oaklanders Talk Tech’ – continued from page 1

benefit from Pandora being here, Pandora has been successful because we are in Oakland…. There is a strategic advantage to be in Oakland.” “The ‘Oaklanders Talk Tech’ series is designed to convene local technology leaders, provide valuable data and foster discussions about the role this sector plays in Oakland’s growing economy,” said Barbara Leslie, the Chamber’s president and CEO. “What better way to kick it off than at Pandora, a key tech company in Oakland that is at the heart of the city’s renaissance.” In addition to presenting a six-month progress report on the Chamber’s District Indicators Project, a three-year economic study (2015-2018) to provide decision makers with actionable economic data, the preliminary results of which were announced at the Chamber’s 2015 Economic Development Summit in March of this year, Christopher Thornberg introduced Oakland’s first “Tech Trends Report,” the Chamber’s effort to track the growth, trends, and characteristics of the tech sector. According to Beacon Economics’ analysis, Oakland is becoming a powerful tech economy in its own right. The city’s 400+ tech establishments employed more than 5,600 workers in the city of Oakland during 2014. That’s up nearly 23 percent from 2010, growing by between 4 percent-10 percent per year over the past five years, and tech currently represents 3.1 percent of all jobs located within the city. Although tech’s 3 percent share is still a relatively small component of the overall economy, the city is home to roughly 7.2 percent of all tech jobs located within the East Bay, including Fremont and Berkeley, which have notable tech and biotech sectors. Today, Oakland has more tech firms than at any time in its past, and those tech firms are larger, on average, than they’ve ever been before. Several smaller sectors of tech have done exceptionally well of late, posting double-digit gains over the past year and as much as triple-digit growth over the last five years. These include software publishing, Internet publishing and web search portals, and graphic design. As Oakland continues to attract more tech firms to the area, especially in areas like its #1 individual tech sector, computer systems design, this will mean more high quality employment opportunities within the city. Much of the tech base within the city of Oakland is concentrated around the downtown area, and City Center is particularly popular among computer design and web search/internet publishing firms. This can be attributed in part to plentiful BART access and other transportation advantages, the area’s rich cultural and culinary amenities, and the fact that recent reports indicate that a growing percentage of the Bay Area’s tech workforce is choosing to reside in the East Bay. Finally, while data availability limited Beacon Economics’ ability to look at Oakland residents who also work in the city’s tech sector, it is clear that Oakland supplies a more diverse set of workers to the Bay Area’s tech firms than surrounding tech hubs. This owes, in part, to the fact that Oakland has a more diverse racial/ethnic composition than San Jose and San Francisco. The local tech sector is comprised of larger contingents of black, white, and multi-racial workers compared with its neighbors. Oakland’s tech industry is also more diverse from a gender perspective – more than one-third of all tech workers who live in Oakland are female, compared with 30 percent or less in San Francisco and San Jose. The Sept. 11 event also provided an opportunity to highlight the Chamber’s commitment to growing Oakland’s workforce through its partnerships with local school districts and community colleges. “We are striving for a holistic approach to support business growth on the one hand, while making sure we have a local, qualified workforce on the other,” said Alex Boyd, the Chamber’s director of economic development. The inaugural event in the Chamber’s Oaklanders Talk Tech series was generously sponsored at the Program Sponsor level by Comcast and at the Panel Sponsor level by Donahue & Fitzgerald LLP. “The tech sector is important to Oakland’s overall growth trajectory and Comcast’s goal to provide the best entertainment and online experiences in Oakland and the Bay Area. When presented with the opportunity to support the Chamber’s series as a local technology company, we jumped at the chance,” said Ken Maxey, Comcast’s director of external affairs. The next event in the series, “Accelerating Tech Ecosystems,” will be held this winter. For more information, visit ■


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

Oakland tech workers race / ethnicity composition

Tech worker demographics: Gender

> ‘Oaklanders Talk Tech’ Mike Herring, Pandora “Oakland didn’t just benefit from Pandora being here. Pandora has been successful because we’re in Oakland.” Mayor Libby Schaaf, City of Oakland “We have the diversity and creative energy to be an incubator for innovation.” ▲ Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf addresses the attendees.

“Oakland is attracting the talent and companies are following that talent.” “We’re in a moment in time when Oakland is coming into its own as a tech community.” Chris Thornberg, Beacon Economics “There are 21,000 people living or working in Oakland who are working in tech.”

▲ A welcome by Pandora Chief Financial Officer Mike Herring.

“If you're a company thinking about coming to Oakland, the workforce is already here. You don't have to attract people, they already live here.” Ted Girdner, Comcast “The availability of talent in Oakland is amazing. It's not just tech talent, it's people that have real perspective and personal perspective.” Tamir Scheinok, Fluid “Given what Fluid does, it is important to have the backdrop of culture, art and creatives that we have in Oakland.”

▲ Chris Thornberg provides a working definition of “tech.”

Brennen Byrne, Clef ”We want to make technology for everyone. It is good that it is not all just tech here in Oakland.” Naveen Jain, Sparkart Group, Inc. “Oakland needs to keep pace with what’s happening so we don’t lose our diversity.”

▲ Ted Girdner of Comcast is flanked by fellow panelists Naveen Jain (left) and Brennan Byrne.

Program Sponsor

OCTOBER 2015 |



> Sungevity urges commercial businesses to ‘go solar’ by Alex Boyd

In early September the Chamber hosted a special Economic Development Forum featuring Steve Birndorf, the director of commercial development of Sungevity, and Hilary Pearson, Sungevity’s director of government affairs. The speakers provided an overview of how solar power is helping businesses save money and reduce uncertainty about future energy costs.

Oakland-based Sungevity, a founding BCorporation, has nearly 500 employees in Oakland and a global headcount of more than 1,000. Pearson underscored how thrilled Sungevity is to have been able to scale so successfully in Oakland and help foster economic development in the city. Birndorf and Pearson discussed how much of the commercial solar market to date has focused on the “MUSH” market – Municipalities, Universities, Schools and Hospitals. But they then explained in detail how the economics of commercial solar have evolved to the point where a number of businesses are saving money and reducing uncertainty about future energy costs by going solar. The speakers provided case studies of local businesses that have gone solar and the resulting impacts on their bottom lines.

▲ Bedtime at Wag “Wag Hotels,” a new Chamber of ComHotels. merce member, opened its fourth state-ofthe-art location in the Jack London warehouse district in September. Wag Hotels Oakland features four themed ultra suites for dogs (separate suites for cats) with 200 square feet of space featuring 42” Internet-enabled TVs, a queen-size bed, fireplace mantle, virtual updates via Skype, On Demand Netflix with more than 3,000 movies, a bedtime story, and webcam access so that pet owners can view their pet from anywhere in the world 24 hours a day. Wag Hotels is also open 24 hours for check-in and check-out and has 5,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor play space and a convenient covered drive-through area that allows for speedy and safe drop off and pick up. Wag Hotels regularly raises money to benefit local nonprofit rescue groups, including the Oakland Animal Services. Says General Manager Jen Duryea, “The Oakland facility will be the best yet. Oakland is a perfect fit for Wag Hotels because of the strong sense of community and pet-friendly residents and businesses.” Local favorite “Happy Hound” has been a community icon in West Oakland for more than ten years. Located off Mandela Parkway close to the Emeryville border, Happy Hound has a 7,000-square-foot facility and offers a cage-free environment. “Every Dog Has Its Day Care” is pleased to call West Oakland home after 17 years in business in Emeryville. With nearly two decades of experience caring for dogs, Every Dog was able to convert a blighted, industrial warehouse in West Oakland into a state-of-the-art dog care facility. ■ Margot Lederer Prado is a senior economic development specialist, EWD, for the city of Oakland.

> Welcome Wag Hotels For example, J & R ▲ Guest speakers Hilary Pearson and Steve Associates, an OaklandBirndorf, both representing Sungevity. based real estate investment and management company, recently entered into a partnership with Sungevity and Community Bank of the Bay to install solar systems on more than 22 commercial real estate buildings in Oakland. They also spoke about Patrick Hyde, a satisfied residential customer who now has a commercial system at his business in Concord that is expected to be paid off in five years. When asked about future market developments, Birndorf noted how batteries and battery storage are going to be areas of innovation and excitement in the solar industry. Pearson also noted that more than 54,000 people are employed in California’s solar industry and highlighted some of the state and federal policy changes that could impact the market. The Chamber is very appreciative that Birndorf and Pearson spent time to converse with our members on this important topic, and we look forward to supporting their efforts to bring the economic and environmental benefits of solar power to our city’s businesses. ■ Alex Boyd is the Chamber’s director of economic development.

> The ever-growing pet care industry of Oakland by Margot Lederer Prado

Pet care services is a growing sector of Oakland’s economy. Along with ever-growing Pet Express headquarters located in East Oakland, three growing pet care facilities have, or will employ, more than 150 residents of the greater Oakland community, contribute to our revenue through taxes licenses, and have made substantial in-capital improvements in their facilities. The following facilities are among many others you can find in Oakland. Consider using an Oakland-based care facility for your holiday and weekday care needs.


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

Wag Hotels, which was designed to provide uncompromising fun, safety and comfort to pets – as well as convenience to their owners – has opened its fourth facility at 39 4th St. near Jack London Square. The grand opening was celebrated with a Chamber ribbon cutting. General Manager Jennifer Duryea (holding the scissors) is joined by executives (le to right) Jose Gonzalez, director of Guest Services & Innovation; Kristen Rau, regional business development manager; and Natalie Gonzalez, regional operations manager. Chamber President Barbara Leslie is third from the right. While staying at Wag, guests are given 24-hour attention and care by the highly educated, experienced and specially trained Wag staff. The focus is on the needs of not only the pets, but also the peace of mind of the pet owners. Guests will spend their stay participating in well planned activities ranging from K9 fit, to Agility, and daycare camps where they can romp around in real snow, sip on a pumpkin “puppachino,” and end their stay indulging in the aroma of a lemon sea salt bath. ■

Member update



Direct Line Tele Response

ADDENDUM The following is a list of new members of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and is an addendum to the Chamber’s 2015 Membership Directory & Buyers Guide. Please keep this page and refer to these members when you have a need for goods and services. 25SecondsPR 4100 Redwood Road, Suite 210 Oakland, CA 94619 (510) 454-0026 Website: Lori Shepherd Public Relations Devlabs LLC 1305 Franklin St., Suite 250 Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 333-7338 Website: Ruben Hernandez Computer Software – Specialized Heritage Bank of Commerce 101 Ygnacio Valley Road, Suite 100 Walnut Creek, CA 94596 (925) 287-4810 Website: John Duarte Bank HP Investors, LLC 333 Hegenberger Road, Suite 310 Oakland, CA 94621 (858) 271-4311 Website: Isaac Abid Real Estate Development & Investments Jones Digital Media 636 Poirier St. Oakland, CA 94609 (415) 420-5634 Chris Lynch Film & Video Productions Khyber Investment Partners 5 Maxwelton Road Piedmont, CA 94618 (510) 263-0303 Stephen Parker Realtors / Developers Otis McAllister 300 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza Suite 400 Oakland, CA 94612 (415) 248-9287 Website: Alison Montes Importers-Exporters PAXIO, Inc. 436 14th St., Suite 204 Oakland, CA 94612 Website: Kelyn Behrendt Telecommunications Service Opportunity for Seniors / Meals on Wheels 2235 Polvorosa Ave., Suite 260 San Leandro, CA 94577 (510) 582-1263 Website: Connie McCabe Nonprofit

Direct Line Tele Response is a full-service provider of inbound call taking, messaging, dispatching and other answering and call center services. Since 1979, Direct Line has been a leading pioneer in the Tele Messaging industry and has just been awarded the industry’s top honor once again. The Association of Tele-Services International recently presented Direct Line with the Diamond Plus Award of Excellence. “It’s an incredible honor to have received our 14th consecutive Award of Excellence,” says Ken Goldenberg, president and owner of Direct Line. “It’s because of our commitment to excellence in everything we do, especially every call we take, that has positioned us as a pacesetter in the Tele Messaging industry. We are an extension of every client that we provide answering services to because we represent them when they can’t answer their phones. Our clients have entrusted us with being the voice of their business and because of this, we hold ourselves accountable for detailed excellence for every call, every time because ‘every call counts.’” Headquartered in Berkeley, professionally certified Live Virtual Receptionists are ready 24/7/365 to partner with you regardless of business type, profession or industry. We don’t just answer phones or take messages; we accurately gather information and act as a direct line of communication between you and your callers. For more information, visit ■

Otis McAllister Founded in 1892, Otis McAllister, Inc. is one of the oldest and most widely recognized companies dealing in the world wide trade of food products. While the services and products we provide may have evolved and expanded over the past century, Otis McAllister continues to be regarded as a leader in global trade. We have cultivated a distinctive culture founded on a history of service and commitment to integrity, innovation, and improving the lives of our customers and their communities. Our company has continued to evolve thanks to a staff that is diverse in skills, languages and ideas. Visit for more information about our products, people, and social responsibility initiatives. ■

PAXIO, Inc. Founded in 2003, PAXIO is a company specializing in state-of-the-art fiber optic network services including high-speed Internet and advanced IP services to businesses and residents in the Bay Area. PAXIO launched “Gigabit for AllTM” in 2013 with the idea that everyone should have access to next generation telecommunication infrastructure for the purpose of fostering a more communicative, efficient, and productive society. PAXIO is challenging traditional telecom practices through our OpenFiberTM model, which makes the PAXIO network open access. This means that any service provider, carrier, business, or individual can utilize PAXIO’s fiber optic network directly. As such, monopolies are eliminated, and the community is empowered by the luxury of being able to choose the best services at the best price in a free market. Our leadership in open access networks and the building of inclusive carrier partnerships has delivered excellent growth opportunities, and PAXIO is now an available community resource for Oakland and surrounding areas. For more information about PAXIO service, visit and submit a service request for a PAXIO team member to contact you. We look forward to serving you! ■

Service Opportunities for Seniors / Meals on Wheels Founded in 1966 by a compassionate community activist, Service Opportunities for Seniors (SOS) / Meals on Wheels is an independent 501C3 nonprofit organization dedicated to helping frail seniors who are vulnerable to hunger and poor nutrition maintain their independence and remain safely in their own homes. We produce and deliver hot meals daily from our own kitchen to homebound seniors living in the communities of Castro Valley, Hayward, San Leandro, San Lorenzo and the city of Oakland. We deliver 1,200 hot nutritious meals daily to homebound seniors 60 years of age and older who are unable to purchase or prepare food for themselves. Meals on Wheels’ drivers provide daily check-ins and social contact for our communities’ most vulnerable elders. The mission of SOS is to promote nutritional health, decrease the possibility of premature institutionalization, and foster and support independence and the dignity of homebound seniors by enhancing their quality of life through our meals on wheels system of care. SOS is part of a broader network of agencies that support seniors, and we make numerous referrals, as appropriate, that can further enhance the quality of life for meal participants. For more information, visit ■

OCTOBER 2015 |



Small Business


> Adoption of proposed

amendments to Prop. 65 by Rohit A. Sabnis Proposition 65, officially known as the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, requires that businesses provide a “clear and reasonable” warning to individuals before exposing them to a chemical listed as known to cause cancer or reproductive harm. The California Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) is the lead agency that implements Proposition 65. Rohit A. Sabnis OEHHA maintains a list of chemicals, currently numbering over 900, subject to Proposition 65 and has the authority to establish and amend regulations to further the purposes of the Act. The existing regulations mandating who must provide warnings and how they may be provided in order to be deemed “clear and reasonable” by the agency were adopted in 1988. The current proposed changes to OEHHA’s “clear and reasonable” warning regulations follow on the heels of Governor Jerry Brown’s May 2013 initiative to reform Proposition 65 by “improving how the public is warned about dangerous chemicals.” After two years of stakeholder workshops, submission of written comments and a public meeting held in March 2015, OEHHA appears poised to finalize and adopt the proposed regulations. Some critics of the modifications believe they will make compliance more difficult, result in increased Proposition 65 litigation and impose significant new costs on California businesses. The proposed amendments include: • Chemical Names Included in Text of Warning – The current regulations do not require businesses to specially identify the chemicals present in a product that require a Proposition 65 warning. A company is permitted to utilize a warning stating that a “product contains a chemical known to the State of California to cause” cancer and/or birth defects or other reproductive harm. The proposed regulations would require that certain chemicals be specifically named in the warning. These are (1) Acrylamide, (2) Arsenic, (3) Benzene, (4) Cadmium, (5) Carbon monoxide, (6) Chlorinated Tris, (7) Formaldehyde, (8) Hexavalent Chromium, (9) Lead, (10) Mercury, (11) Methylene Chloride and (12) Phthalate[s]. • Other Warning Content Changes – The proposed regulations would add a requirement that a “safe harbor” warning (one that is deemed “clear and “reasonable” by OEHHA) include a symbol consisting of a black exclamation point in an equilateral triangle. The language of the warning would also need to state that a product “can expose you to a chemical…” instead of stating that a product “contains a chemical…” Additionally, a warning would be required to include a URL for a proposed OEHHA website providing the public with supplemental information regarding exposures to listed chemicals. • Specific Warnings – The amendments also provide new warning methods and content requirements for specific types of exposures including for foods, alcoholic beverages, restaurants and non-alcoholic beverages, prescription drugs, dental care, raw wood, furniture, diesel engines, passenger vehicles, enclosed parking facilities, amusement parks, petroleum products, service stations and designated smoking areas. • Responsibilities of Retailers – The proposed regulations seek to reduce the burden on retail facilities relative to manufacturers, producers, packagers, importers or distributors of a product (“upstream business”) by, for the first time, specifically curtailing the circumstances under which a retailer would be required to provide a Proposition 65 warning. A retailer would remain responsible for providing a warning when (1) selling a product under its own private label, (2) introducing a listed chemical into the product, (3) covering, obscuring or altering a warning label, (4) selling a product without a warning after receiving information or warnings from an upstream business or (5) the retailer has actual knowledge of the potential product exposure and there is no upstream business that is subject to or that can be compelled to comply with the statute. The proposed regulations also permit an upstream business to enter into a written agreement with a retailer to allocate legal responsibility among the parties for providing a Proposition 65 warning. Such agree-


| OBR Oakland Business Review |

ments would bind the parties and supersede the allocation of responsibility set forth in the regulations. The state is expected to adopt the proposed regulations relatively soon in advance of its January 2016 deadline. Businesses would have two years from adoption to comply with the new warning requirements. Companies could provide a warning satisfying the proposed regulatory scheme prior to that time. This article is presented for informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. ■

Rohit A. Sabnis is a partner at the law firm of Burnham Brown. He can be reached at (510) 444-6800.


> Twelve principles to sales success by Joe Diliberto

Most business professionals we talk with tell us it is more challenging than ever to grow their business. There is continuing pressure on price; they continue to experience stalls from their prospects; and new business remains difficult to close. Yet most businesses have done little to significantly alter their prospecting strategies or sales methods and processes. I would like to share with you a collection of 12 simple principles all salespeople should Joe Diliberto live by to address some of these issues. 1. Being genuinely interested in your prospect’s personal and professional opinions will do more to develop rapport than identifying their personality style or discovering if they are a football, baseball or hockey fan. 2. It’s just as important to disqualify a selling opportunity as it is to qualify it. 3. What the prospect wants and what the prospect actually needs are rarely the same. 4. The prospect’s problem is never what they think it is. 5. It’s more important for the prospect to discover that they have a best – fit problem for your solution than it is to demonstrate that you have the best – fit solution for their problem. 6. When the prospect says “Money is no problem,” it’s guaranteed to become one. 7. A prospect with a budget and a strong reluctance to spend it is no different than a prospect with no budget at all. 8. The objective of each encounter with a prospect is to either pave the way to the next step in the selling process – and eventually a buying decision – or to end the process. 9. When the prospect states that they can’t make a decision, they just did. 10. The financial investment to obtain your product or service is often less significant that the other “investments” the prospect must make to implement it. 11. Identifying how and by when a prospect will make a buying decision is just as important as discovering who is involved in the process. 12. If you wait for your customers to voluntarily provide you with referrals as a reward for the exceptional service you have delivered, you’ll be waiting a long time. ■ Joe Diliberto is the president of Sandler Training serving the San Francisco Bay Area. He can be reached at (510) 967-7446 or at Learn more by visiting



> Chamber continues to lead in the convening of Public Policy, Economic Development programming Make plans to attend these informative, educational programs presented by the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce. To register, or for more information on any of the following, visit or contact Shaterica Sullivan at ssullivan@oakland or at (510) 874-4800, ext. 0.

> SMALL BUSINESS SEMINAR SERIES Friday, Oct. 9, noon-1 p.m., Chamber offices $10 for members, $15 for non-members Lunch included Features guest speaker Anna Scott, speaking on “Selling from the Inside Out” Anna Scott is a master somatic coach who has been studying and practicing leadership and sales development since 1996. Learn how to Anna Scott use methods to be fully present in the sales process and motivate the prospect to want to buy from you. ■


INSIDE OAKLAND BREAKFAST FORUM Friday, Oct. 23, 8:30-10 a.m., Chamber offices Featuring guest speaker Oakland City Administrator Sabrina Landreth. Responsible for the day-to-day management of the city, appointed by Mayor Schaaf, and working for the City Council, the City Sabrina Landreth Administrator is the crucial point where policy intersects action. As an Oakland native, Ms. Landreth understands the city’s history while having a vision for Oakland’s future. ■

> PULSE OF OAKLAND BREAKFAST Friday, Nov. 6, 8:30-10 a.m., Jack London Square Results from poll of Chamber members, which tracks Oakland voter attitudes about public safety, economic development, education, and quality of life issues that are core to the Chamber’s mission. ■


ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FORUM Wednesday, Oct. 14, 3-4:30 p.m., Chamber offices Features a presentation by Sam Veltri, project manager for SunCal, who will discuss the development of the 187-acre Oak Knoll master-planned community in the Oakland hills. Oak Knoll will have a pedestrian-friendly design oriented around a restored creek with 935 homes in a variety of styles. ■

▲ Pollster Alex Evans of EMC Research read the results at last year’s breakfast.

> Holiday Mixer ALEX AND ANI


Thursday, Dec. 10 6 - 8 p.m. Waterfront Hotel

Thursday, Oct. 22, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Alex and Ani, 5619 Bay St., Emeryville

OCTOBER 2015 |



Green Business

> Saving money through energy retrofits by Adhamina Rodriguez, LEED® AP

Undoubtedly, historic buildings are to be

California has a state goal of zero net energy in residential

preserved, but to sustain these beautiful

construction by 2020 and in commercial construction by 2030.

buildings for years to come they need to be updated with energy efficient technology. Old buildings are an operational challenge with inefficient and unreliable mechanical systems, lighting, and water fixtures, which

This is much more than the federal request of making existing buildings nationwide 20 percent more energy efficient by 2020 (Department of Energy “Better Building Challenge”). In addition, California requires all nonresidential buildings over 10,000 square feet to disclose their energy use (Assembly

often results in occupants’ discomfort. We

Bill 1103), so inefficient buildings cannot hide anymore their

all know that buildings can be upgraded.

poor performance with a “cosmetic façade cleaning.” Given

What not everyone knows, however, is that

these mandates, energy retrofits represent a cost-effective

it can be done at no out-of pocket cost

solution for building owners to achieve energy savings, reduce

thanks to current local and government

maintenance costs, decrease risk for utility cost inflation,

incentives, and to special financing available

increase occupants’ comfort, and enhance building value.

for energy efficiency.

In light of the growing demand for energy retrofits,

Courtesy of Swinerton Builders

Swinerton Builders – a general contractor – began offering turn-key retrofits with no money out of pocket from the client, no impact on building operations or balance sheet, and allowing the client to be cash-flow positive from day one. In order to accomplish this goal, turn-key energy retrofits takes a whole-building approach that maximizes savings by accomplishing synergies among building systems. It is also built on a suite of financing solutions to fit the client’s needs. Some of these special financing options are: 1) Energy Service Agreements, in which the contractor takes the performance risk along with the maintenance of the equipment during the pay-off period; 2) On-Bill loans, in which the retrofit is paid through the monthly utility bill; and 3) Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE), which allows the repayment of ▲ Drawing depicts how a whole-building approach analyzes all building systems and their interactions to maximize savings for the client.

the retrofit in up to 20 years with a special assessment in the annual property tax bill. Under all financing options, the annual energy savings exceed the annual repayment of the retrofit, making it a net-positive cash flow deal, still leaving years of significant savings to be enjoyed after the financed amount is paid off. In sum, energy and water efficiency matters now more than ever, for many good reasons well beyond the reduced carbon footprint and environmental significance. Energy retrofits, such as those offered by Swinerton Builders, represent a financially sound approach to accomplishing these goals.

Adhamina Rodriguez, LEED® AP, is director of sustainability and energy retrofits at Swinerton Builders.

Adhamina Rodriguez

10 | OBR Oakland Business Review |


Green Business

> Deep-rooted in Oakland

by Marlon Burns and Catherine Arlin

Established by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), LEED is the new industry standard rating system, certifying the greenest buildings in the world, and is the international benchmark for sustainability. The newest rating system LEED Version 4 allows building owners to get credits for health and environmental product declarations. Product declarations allow a standardized system for evaluating both the environmental and health impact associated with bringing a product to marketplace. New features and improvements included in LEED Version 4 include a streamlined registration process, restructured reference guides and webinars, an assessable online library for forms, new market sector adaptations for a range of industries, and a new online platform launching in December 2015 with case management options. Oakland is leading the nation in eco-friendly commercial real estate practices. All 29 buildings in downtown Oakland’s Class A office market have participated in the LEED program. “We are not only seeing a push towards greener office space from building owners and management in Oakland. The desire for a building that participates in the LEED program ranks high on the list of criteria for an overwhelming number of corporate users,” says Ken Meyersieck, managing director of Colliers International Oakland Office. California’s mandate of achieving zero net energy performance in commercial buildings by 2030, and the Department of Energy’s goal to lower building energy usage by 50 percent, have lit a fire that is driving commercial real estate into a greener future. Colliers International, Oakland is located in the Gold certified Lake Merritt Plaza. As a part of our commitment to sustainability, Colliers International is proud to be a founding sponsor of the World Green Building Council, the largest international organization influencing the green building marketplace.

Awareness and demand for environmentally friendly business goals has never been higher. As the U.S. and China lead the world in announcing ambitious plans to cut carbon emissions, in the lead up to a global environmental conference in Paris this fall, we can be proud of the ambitious agenda that our community has set in Oakland and the Bay Area.

About Colliers International Group Inc. Colliers International Group Inc. is a global leader in commercial real estate services with more than 16,300 professionals operating from 502 offices in 67 countries. With an enterprising culture and significant insider ownership, Colliers professionals provide a full range of services to real estate occupiers, owners and investors worldwide. ■

▲ Lake Merritt Plaza was the first existing LEED Gold certified building in Oakland.

Marlon Burns is a research analyst and Catherine Arlin is operations manager, both representing Colliers International Oakland.

OCTOBER 2015 | 11


Green Business

> Sustainability leads Oakland contractor to success project was the successful completion Specializing in pipelines, grading, of the city of Oakland’s 12th Street paving, concrete, mechanical, and Project. As part of Reconstruction landscape, Oakland-based contractor Measure DD (the Oakland Trust for McGuire and Hester has served the Water and Safe Parks), the 12th Clean greater Bay Area for nearly a century. Street and Lake Merritt location To McGuire and Hester, sustainability a facelift with improved received is more than a trend; it is the traffic lanes, a tree-lined boulevard foundation on which its success has signalized intersections and with been built. crosswalks, and a landscaped median, Sustainable business practices providing Oakland residents ultimately have given McGuire and Hester the and visitors with safer pedestrian and ability to meet the changing and access along the perimeter of cyclist growing needs of their clients. As the lake. The project also included a 100 percent employee-owned a section of open re-establishing company, each employee has a channel and removing the buried vested interest in the culture and ▲ In recent years, McGuire and Hester has worked on several of Northern at the interface with the lake. culvert profitability of the company which California’s most recognized landmarks and infrastructure projects, Overall, the 12th Street Reconstruction has led to multiple industry awards including Oakland’s 12th Street Reconstruction Project. The location received was a very significant Project including being named as one of the a facelift with improved traffic lanes, a tree-lined boulevard with signalized intersections and crosswalks, and a landscaped median. improvement for the environment as best places to work in the Bay Area four as for the city of Oakland. well years in a row. So far in 2015, McGuire and Hester has completed many projects that have Historical projects the company has worked on include laying all the the communities in which we work and live. These projects include improved underground utilities at the Oakland Army Base and Naval Depot during World Mission Bay Development Group’s Park P6, which is the only dedicated War II, as well as the installation of a section of the Hetch Hetchy water system children’s’ playground in Mission Bay, as well as Linear Park for Wilson Meany’s for the city of San Francisco. Bay Meadows development. Linear Park features custom artwork, a bocce ball In recent years, McGuire and Hester has worked on several of Northern California’s most recognized landmarks and infrastructure projects. One such

12 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

– continued on page 13


Green Business

> The lost definition of sustainable architecture The phrase, “sustainable architecture” gets thrown around a lot in the world of architecture. It is out there bouncing around next to “Green” and “environmentally friendly.”

by Theresa Bort

The common perception is that sustainable architecture seeks to reduce the negative effects of a building on its environment. What this perception often overlooks is that sustainability does not stop after construction. A building would not be wholly sustainable without that important post-construction element: the human factor. Maintenance, community need, and the kind of green that doesn’t grow on trees are what give a building a long, fruitful life. Look at the Leaning Tower of Pisa, for instance. This is a tower that has been a cause of concern for over eight centuries. The attempts to right the tower have been less than environmentally friendly, including the use of liquid nitrogen to freeze the ground below it; and yet, it stills stands. If it weren’t for the tourism this iconic building funnels into the city of Pisa, Italy, it would have been demolished centuries ago. The crowds drawn to the lasting experience of this attraction are what have made this structure “sustainable architecture” in the most holistic sense of the phrase. While it is laudable that architects are increasingly striving to design energy efficient buildings, this is a small piece of the larger puzzle that is sustainable design. Sustainable design should not just give back to the environment, but also to the community, its economy, and of course, to the building’s primary user. When one looks at the entries for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon competition, it is apparent that not all of these elements are satisfied after the fact, making some more or less successful than others, independent of how well the houses score in the competition. The Solar Decathlon, a competition which, as explained on its website’s home page, “challenges collegiate

Theresa Bort

teams to design, build, and operate solar-powered houses that are cost-effective, energy-efficient, and attractive,” rates the entries on how well they perform right out of construction.

Yes, the buildings use very little energy; yes, they are attractive; yes, they are forward-thinking. But it is the teams that have successfully pushed their buildings into the world – giving them renewed, long-lasting purposes as classrooms or laboratories – that have taken the initial goal of energy efficiency and turned it into something much more valuable: real, sustainable architecture.

Theresa Bort is a designer with Lowney Architecture.

> Sustainability – continued from page 12 court and multiple seating and relaxation areas. Currently, McGuire and Hester is working on a number of notable projects in Oakland including improvements to San Pablo Avenue and Latham Square, both of which include storm water bio retention filtration systems. The company is busy below ground as well including work for the San Ramon/Dublin Water Services District where their crews are installing a pipeline designed to bring recycled water to 35 sites west of Interstate 680 in Dublin for landscape irrigation. The project will save close to 49 million gallons of potable water annually, enough to supply 865 Dublin households. Future work for McGuire and Hester includes a contract for landscape and irrigation for another prominent Bay Area project known as the Transbay Transit Center Roof Park. The project consists of a 5.4-acre rooftop park that is 1,400 feet long and elevated 70 feet above the adjacent roadways. The park includes an outdoor amphitheater, gardens, trails, open grass area, children’s play space, as well as a restaurant and cafe. This park will also double as a landscape “green roof” for the Transbay Transit Center which is being called the Grand Central Station of the West. Once complete, the rooftop park will host concerts and fairs, and be a destination for patrons looking for a place to eat (in the rooftop restaurant) or a quiet area to relax. Through sustainable construction practices, which include the efficient use of resources by reducing, reusing and recycling all possible materials and debris that their construction sites generate, McGuire and Hester takes every opportunity to build quality projects that create a positive impact on our environment and communities for generations to come. ■

OCTOBER 2015 | 13


Green Business

> Hot tips for a tenant to ‘green’ its space by C. Gregg Ankenman and Daniel B. Myers

Companies of all shapes and sizes

C. Gregg Ankenman

Daniel B. Myers

ranging from office and commercial tenants to those in the retail sector continue to look for ways to ensure their spaces are as “green” as possible – especially in today’s climate with a focus on water conservation due to the increasingly worsening drought and the continuing efforts to conserve energy. Parties negotiating a new lease can enter into a “green lease,” which establishes sustainability goals at the outset of the landlordtenant relationship and allocates responsibility for implementation of sustainability measures. However, parties to existing leases can agree to “green up” the premises (including amending an existing lease) to achieve sustainability goals.

Green updates in your existing space Tenants should look at and consider the following sustainability upgrades that can be made – for an often significant environmental return – in their existing spaces, particularly those occupying older single-tenant buildings: • Water Use – Make sure all break and restrooms in your space utilize low-flow systems. Tenants in the retail sector might want to look into water-savings systems and practices that allow them to enjoy resulting savings (i.e. metered faucets). Particularly with the current drought, there are a number of exterior changes parties can make to reduce water usage, such as turf conversions and the installation of native landscaping, drip irrigation and the greywater recapture systems. While installing these systems can be expensive, rebates and reductions in water bills can help offset the initial installation costs. • Energy Use – In multi-tenant buildings, to accurately track energy use, tenants will want to request that separate meters be installed. • Solar – Occupants of single-tenant buildings with long-term leases may want to explore whether it makes sense to install solar systems to serve the building. However, before doing so, the parties should carefully review and revise lease documents to specify each party’s rights and responsibilities. • Energy Efficient Lighting – Inquire as to what kind of lighting your space uses and request more energy efficient systems if available. Occupancy sensors for lighting systems are another measure that should be considered. • Parking/Transportation – Tenants might consider implementing green transportation solutions for employees or customers, such as electrical charging stations, bicycle parking and other sustainable transit measures. • Recycling – While recycling is more than commonplace in buildings today, make sure there are easily accessible recycling bins in all areas (i.e. a basket in every office). Take efforts a step further by implementing a composting system and educating employees on how to use it. • Janitorial – A relatively low cost measure is to require janitorial services to use sustainable cleaning products. In addition, tenants and landlords should make sure the janitorial service providers are turning off all lights and following recycling procedures. • Furniture/Carpets/Paints – Another good measure is to look for and purchase low-VOC (or VOC free) furniture, carpeting and paint when making improvements in the premises. In most cases, an existing tenant’s lease will not give the tenant the right to require the landlord to spend money to make green upgrades. However, for parties with long-term leases, such capital improvements may result in long-term cost savings for both landlords and tenants (as well as improving the green credibility of the building). Therefore, even for parties in existing landlord-tenant relationships, there are opportunities to negotiate and document responsibility for installation and payment of green improvements

■ Gregg Ankenman and Dan Myers, both partners in the Real Estate Practice Group at Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP, frequently represent clients on leasing and green issues throughout the country. They can be reached by phone at (510) 834-6600 and by email at /

14 | OBR Oakland Business Review |


Green Business

> Green business is everyone's business

by Misha Gonzalez

Sustainable business practices and sustainable design go hand in hand. murakami/Nelson has designed many sustainable projects including the Lake Chalet Restaurant, LEED Gold, and most recently the San Lorenzo Library with Group 4 Architects, LEED Silver. We’ve always made strides to conserve resources and minimize waste in our workplace. Recently, we renewed this commitment to sustainability by renewing our certification as a Bay Area Green Business. Our desire to maintain a healthy, efficient workplace falls

solutions. Working in this way allows you to benefit from their expertise and experience “greening” other offices. Suggested improvements will vary in complexity but where more expensive upgrades are required, a green consultant can help you to calculate a realistic pay-back period ▼ murakami/Nelson has enabling your business to see designed many sustainable tangible savings down the road. projects including the San Energy consumption in the Lorenzo Library. workplace is an area where

in line with our commitment to preserving our environment. Any Oakland business can promote sustainability by operating as a green business. Small and medium-size local businesses can become certified as a Green Business through the Bay Area Green Business Program. This program distinguishes businesses that protect, preserve and sustain our environment. Pursuing this certification requires a business to evaluate its energy consumption, recycling efforts, purchasing practices, use of green cleaning and office products, among other criteria. The practice of using less more efficiently provides the dual benefit of environmental stewardship and tangible savings. The Bay Area Green Business Program assists local businesses in connecting with environmental agencies and local utilities, offers incentives, and verifies that their robust standards have been met or exceeded. The improvements we made during our recent recertification range in scale from simple changes, such as providing new labels for recycling and waste sorting areas, to more comprehensive upgrades to lighting and plumbing fixtures. Complying with California Green Business standards can cost a lot less than you'd think due to rebates and incentive programs available. To begin this process, conduct an internal audit and begin a California Green Business Program application. This is a free process that generates awareness about how your business is using resources and where there is room for improvement and savings. Though comprehensive, this process need not be overwhelming. Green business consultants will advise your business and provide information about programs that can help cover the cost of upgrading your facilities. At each step your consultant will put you in contact with green business professionals from East Bay Municipal Utility District, Waste Management, and others who will collaborate with your business to perform audits and help match areas for improvement with green

every business has room for improvement. murakami/Nelson faced a challenge with outdated fixtures in parts of our office, but through SmartLights, a program that helps businesses with energy efficiency, we were able to receive a free energy audit and learn about our PG&E rebate eligibility. This allowed us to replace 90 percent of our lights and upgrade to more efficient lighting fixtures at a fraction of the cost. Water use is a topic on everyone’s mind with the current drought. In addition to peace of mind, a reduction in consumption can have very real savings for many businesses. A water efficiency audit from EBMUD can help you determine where additional conservation efforts can be made. By replacing our sinks’ aerators, an upgrade free to EBMUD customers, and switching to High Efficiency Toilets (HETs) that only use 1.28 gallons per flush (gpf) we’ve seen our water use decrease dramatically. A number of subtle improvements when taken all together can enhance your company’s operations as a green business and produce long-term savings through reduced operational costs. Waste considerations begin with purchasing decisions. The quantity and quality of products your company purchases have a direct impact on what enters the waste stream. Pollution and wastewater measures are easy, cost-effective ways to improve the health and safety of your workplace. One component of certification requires forming a “Green Team” within your office. This simple step has helped murakami/Nelson collaboratively make green choices to meet our office’s specific needs and allows us to continually improve the way we operate as a green business. There are many benefits to receiving a California Green Business certification. It is a clear way to express your values as a company and indicates that your practices meet a standard of excellence in environmental stewardship. An additional advantage of certification is your inclusion in the California Green Business directory. As "green" consumers increasingly become the rule rather than the exception, inclusion in a resource such as this can be a great boon. This directory can be found at and allows you to contact California Green Businesses of any kind by searching in your region. Getting certified as a Bay Area Green Business is a wise decision any business can feel good about. ■ Misha Gonzalez is a designer at the architectural firm of murakami/Nelson.

OCTOBER 2015 | 15


Green Business

> Community Bank goes ‘green’ for blue – works to promote marine conservation Photo courtesy of Community Bank of the Bay

In keeping with an ongoing which is why so little of the blue commitment to support the part of the planet has been preservation of natural explored,” says MARÉ Executive resources, Community Bank of Director Dirk Rosen, who points out the Bay (CBB) recently signed the important role the ocean plays on as the title sponsor of the for life on land, providing us with Marine Applied Research & oxygen and protein for much of the Exploration (MARÉ)'s 3rd world. “You can't be green without Annual MARÉ Soirée. being blue,” says Rosen. The “Sustainable Feast” (a “Community Bank of the Bay is fundraiser for MARÉ's core initiaproud to support Dirk and his team tives) will take place on Saturday, as they work to protect our ocean Oct. 10 at San Francisco's historic resources,” said William Keller, Dolphin Club. Event highlights will president and CEO. “Our partner▲ Dirk Rosen, director of Marine Applied Research & Exploration (left) include auction items, a sit down ship with MARÉ spans over a decade receives a check from Vicente Lopez, relationship manager at dinner featuring sustainably caught and was instrumental in our developCommunity Bank of the Bay. seafood, and special guest speaker ment of the Bay Area Green Fund Cindy Walter, owner of the Pacific (BAGF). Since then, MARÉ's research Grove trailblazing and award-winning restaurant Passionfish. has provided private and public entities with the information they need The event will also showcase MARÉ's efforts to explore and underto make more informed decisions. Their impact has been far reaching stand deep sea habitats that are as vulnerable as they are inaccessible to and beneficial to us all.” most people on land. “The deep sea is nearly as challenging as space, CBB's partnership with MARÉ exemplifies the mission of the BAGF, – continued on page 17

16 | OBR Oakland Business Review |


Green Business

> Going ‘green’ for blue – continued from page 16

which is to reduce emissions and protect natural resources by offering FDIC-insured bank accounts that support the financing of local and environmentally sustainable projects and businesses. Says Rosen, “When I launched MARÉ in 2003, an accountant at Save the Bay recommended CBB as a nonprofit friendly bank that also gives back to the community. Over the years, they've offered stellar customer service, helped us grow, and shared our commitment to a healthy, sustainable environment. We couldn't ask for a better partner and are proud to be a part of their conservation efforts.” To further promote marine conservation and environmentally sustainable business practices, CBB and MARÉ are teaming up to offer a unique “Day at Sea.” A drawing winner (and his or her guest) will join the MARÉ crew as they Explore - Discover - Protect the ocean along the coast of California, using innovative deep-water robotic technology to analyze marine ecosystems. To be eligible for this fun and informative opportunity, participants must refer or apply for financing of a sustainable business or project between Sept. 15 and Dec. 31. For more information about CBB, the BAGF and/or to refer or apply for sustainable business financing, visit greenfund. Note that sole-proprietors, nonprofits, schools and faithbased organizations are eligible to participate. To learn more about how to support MARÉ and/or its upcoming “Sustainable Feast,” visit More about CBB Community Bank of the Bay (CBB) is a relationship bank, headquartered in Oakland, which offers FDIC-insured deposit services to individuals, businesses and nonprofits. It is also an SBA Preferred Lender that specializes in providing flexible financing to small and mid-sized businesses. CBB was the first bank in California to be certified by the U.S. Department of Treasury as a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) and is one of only three CDFI banks in the Bay Area. CBB is also a certified Bay Area Green Business, rated 5-stars by Bauer Financial for safety and soundness and Bank of the Year by the Western Independent Bankers Association in 2015. For more information, visit ■

> Marstel-Day – outstanding revenue growth


OR THE SIXTH CONSECUTIVE YEAR Marstel-Day has been named to Inc. magazine’s 5000 list. The prestigious list recognizes privatelyheld U.S. firms that have achieved outstanding revenue growth over a three-year period.

Marstel-Day is listed at No. 34 on the list of fastestgrowing environmental services companies and No. 3688 for companies overall. (The ranking of environmental services companies is derived from all environmental services companies listed in the overall Inc. 5000 ranking.) Inc. magazine’s editor in chief Eric Schurenberg expressed his congratulations to company founder Rebecca Rubin saying, “Congratulations to you and your team. You should be proud of all Marstel-Day has achieved to date. I wish you many more years of

> Make plans


to attend the soiree

as being particularly satisfying.

3rd Annual MARÉ Soirée: A Sustainable Feast Oct. 10, 2015 • 6 – 9:30 p.m. San Francisco Dolphin Club 502 Jefferson St. • San Francisco, CA 94109 Tickets: Website:

Rubin recognizes this award “What is most meaningful to us in this recognition is that we have continued to promote a strong environmental ethic, one that remains undiluted by our growth and expansion.” As a repeating Inc. 5000 honoree, Marstel-Day continues to

This fundraiser for Marine Applied Research & Exploration’s (MARÉ) will support the nonprofit’s core initiatives and advance important marine conservation work. Special guest speaker will be Cindy Walter of Passionfish, the trailblazing, award-winning Monterey restaurant that showcases sustainably harvested seafood. Other highlights will include an auction and sustainable fish dinner. Event sponsored by Community Bank of the Bay (CBB).

share a pedigree with such notable companies as Intuit, Microsoft, Oracle, Under Armour and other prestigious alumni. ■

OCTOBER 2015 | 17


Green Business

> Efficient buildings

> Body and Planet:

for the rest of us, SB 350 and the Golden State Standards 50-50-50

One Planet Granola feeds both

by Regan Martin SB 350 (officially the Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act of 2015) increases the renewable portfolio standard to 50 percent renewable energy for utilities, and increases energy efficiency in existing buildings 50 percent by the year 2030. Opposition from the oil industry stripped an earlier provision to decrease the use of oil for transportation by 50 percent. And yet, California is currently on track to meet the goal established by AB 32 in 2006 of reducing emissions to equal 1990 levels by 2020, mostly through a cap and trade market and transportation sector. SB 350 extends this goal and gives California’s energy agencies the authority to review and revise our state’s energy efficiency programs to marshal the funds and regulatory actions necessary to reach Regan Martin a target of 50 percent increase energy efficiency in buildings by 2030. We know 10 years later that we can meet these goals and continue to grow our economy; SB 350 could generate about one million more jobs and increase Gross State Product by $338 billion by 2050. Energy efficiency measures in the state are mostly focused on the profound difficulty in expanding grid and generation capacity within the state. It’s practically impossible to permit construction of a new power plant, or even long distance transmission lines. If you remember the rolling blackouts, the state agencies’ efforts are focused on preventing a repeat and are increasingly focused at the point of service. Building operations uses 40 percent of the state’s energy consumption, and of course 100 percent of our building stock today is existing. Requiring existing building efficiency legislatively, however, is new territory, and implementation challenges include the lack of enforcement mechanisms and accountability. Under current law, California has energy efficiency standards for new buildings and appliances. New buildings meet and often exceed the toughest energy efficiency codes in the country and will be required to be Net Zero Energy starting in 2020, and all buildings by 2030. Most enforcement currently is at the time of a building permit application for a new building or a new use in an existing shell. Efficiency measurement for existing buildings is to be enforced by an as yet unidentified program. So how is all of this to be achieved? Fifty percent increase in energy efficiency in buildings will be done through the use of existing energy efficiency retrofit funding and regulatory tools already available to state energy agencies under existing law. The addition made by this measure requires state energy agencies to plan for, and implement, those programs in a manner that achieves the energy efficiency target. Perhaps by adopting an existing, voluntary rating system as mandatory or requiring a certification of measures at time of sale or assessment such as the city of Berkeley currently requires. Most current efficiency gains in new buildings are through installation of better windows, better appliances, and more efficient lighting. But for building technology, the low hanging fruits have been plucked. Any bigger steps are going to come from the buildings themselves. ■

A new law recently passed the California Assembly which, for perhaps the first time, extends mandatory energy efficiency measures to existing buildings.

When tapping into this perspective, values include social responsibility, excellence, inclusiveness, integrity, learning, authenticity and, of course, love. By making simple lifestyle changes, people can often heal themselves, the planet and lead longer, healthier, and happier lives. Inspired by living and eating consciously means exploring the synergy between the two, the reflection of one on the other. Naturally from this state of being it is no longer a concept but a continuing conversation of how to reduce waste with the least economic impact. One Planet Foods is a manufacture of certified organic, gluten free and non-GMO baked granolas with a focus on delicious food for conscious living. A Sandra Madanat significant part is examining every single stage in the life cycle of their product. From keeping their production local, supporting locally grown ingredients, 100 percent recyclable packaging and building partnerships with organizations like Sustainable Business Alliance of Oakland. One Planet Food’s owners, Sandra and Rana Madanat, actively incorporate their company’s motto into their own lives. The dynamic mother-daughter duo behind One Planet Foods shares the belief system of living consciously and feeding your soul with thoughtfully produced products. Rana spends her time in the kitchen, creating nutrient-dense products while Sandra heads up the business end. Sandra has been leading the charge to gain awareness and shelf space for One Planet’s line of granolas. They both share the belief that the organic ingredients in their products strongly reflect in their community’s choice to live consciously. Consumers want clean, fresh and natural ingredients and also want to know where those ingredients come from. Both women look at their community, and even family members, every day and see the effects of not giving your body the best it deserves. Now as they continue to focus on health conscious living, they continue to advocate for the use of non-GMOs, fair trade, and for everything to be made locally. These two break the traditional business mold. Other businesses around the community would prosper under these different values. Businesses can achieve sustainability by making better choices in where their products are manufactured, what local products to choose from, and by how good these products make the consumer feel. Making these changes can sometimes be difficult. However, even making little changes in the production of products can be crucial in helping the planet. For example, manufacturers can switch their packaging to recyclable, reusable alternatives to create less waste in resources. Changing old habits into better ones is key to sustainability. ■

One Planet Food lives by a simple motto – everything you need is within. That means appreciating the humanity, creativity, and positivity found in all of us.

Regan Martin is an architect with Lowney Architecture. 18 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

Oakland, CA

> Cutting Edge Capital

> Oakland state

facilitates $10 million California direct public offering

representatives address the Chamber by Aly Bonde

Cutting Edge Capital (CEC), a leading firm helping social ventures and entrepreneurs raise capital, has announced that its HydroRevolutionSM received regulatory approval for a California limited public securities offering (DPO) to accredited and nonaccredited investors in the amount of $10 million.

All three highlighted the legislature’s success in passing a strong budget in June, but noted the difficulties that still remain in the ongoing special sessions on transportation and healthcare. Many of the questions from the audience focused on funding infrastructure and public transportation improvements. The legislators were candid about the difficulty of reaching the required 2/3 votes to pass any fee or tax to address these issues. If nothing is accomplished in the special session, transportation funding would likely be included in next year’s budget process. “I remain optimistic, but realistic,” Assemblymember Bonta said. Assemblymember Thurmond urged businesses to supply legislators with data about how the state’s lack of investment in infrastructure projects affects them so they can better advocate in Sacramento. “I believe that defining infrastructure in terms of economic development is our best chance,” he said. The legislators also fielded questions about what the state has done to help cities build affordable housing. They pointed to several bills passed this year including AB 35, which would increase the amount the state can allocate in low-income housing tax credits from $70 million to $100 million. Also AB 2, signed in September, creates entities similar to redevelopment agencies to fund affordable housing in disadvantaged communities. These Community Revitalization Investment Authorities would have considerably less tax money to use and would be more restricted to low-income areas photo by photographers@large

The Chamber’s Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum in September featured a frank and informative discussion from all three of Oakland’s state representatives – Senator Loni Hancock, Assemblymember Rob Bonta, and Assemblymember Tony Thurmond.

than redevelopment agencies ▲ At the Inside Oakland breakfast – (left to right) were. “A dedicated source for Assemblymember Rob Bonta, affordable housing statewide Chamber President Barbara should be the goal,” Bonta said. Leslie, State Senator Loni Hancock, and Senator Hancock highlighted Assemblymember Tony the improvements to education Thurmond. funding included in the budget, but said there was still more to be done. California is no longer last in per-pupil funding, but closer to the median, she said. She praised Oakland for leading the way on school programs for restorative justice and mental health. She also stressed the value career technical education and “learning by doing” to build our local economy. Hancock highlighted the importance of the $900,000 grant awarded to the Chamber by the Irvine Foundation to develop a regional, replicable model to more deeply connect education and industry. This discussion was part of the Chamber’s monthly “Inside Oakland” series – a public forum for Chamber members and their guests featuring public and private decision makers who affect Oakland. The next Inside Oakland on Friday, Oct. 23 will feature Oakland’s new City Administrator Sabrina Landreth, who will discuss her goals and priorities for the city. ■

The offering is being listed on CuttingEdgeX, a web-based platform that showcases DPOs for all types of investors. CuttingEdgeX’s Online Investment Tool (OIT) streamlines the investing process by allowing issuers like HydroRevolution to post the offering documents, explain the investment, stay in compliance with the securities laws, and receive commitments from investors, all electronically. Using solar energy to reclaim compromised groundwater, HydroRevolution is the first

desalination plant in the U.S. that does not use fossil-fueled electricity to desalinate water, which leads to higher levels of atmospheric carbon and is thought to lead to global climate change, a problem it is trying to remedy. True to its pioneering ways, it is employing the “Direct Public Offering” approach to raising capital, as opposed to the traditional route many start-up ventures take by seeking funding from accredited investors only. The $10 million that HydroRevolution raises will be leveraged with an additional $20 million in debt financing for the construction of the $30 million project. The HydroRevolution DPO represents the largest offering of this type filed by Cutting Edge Capital and its sister law firm, Cutting Edge Counsel. “The tools we have developed are designed to allow everyone to make a big impact with a small investment, all within the boundaries of securities laws,” said John Katovich, president of Cutting Edge Capital. “For the New Economy to grow, we must offer equitable opportunities for everyone to invest, allow meaningful interpersonal connections between investors and companies, and provide benefits to the entire ecosystem.” Available for decades as the original securities-based crowdfunding model, Direct Public Offerings are a popular option for companies to self-underwrite and self-administer public securities offerings directly to both accredited and nonaccredited investors in one or more states. A company can market and advertise its offering publicly by any means it chooses. Not only do DPOs allow organizations to raise money from their most fervent supporters, but they allow unaccredited investors to join with wealthier investors to invest in something they all believe in, and in alignment with their values. Cutting Edge Capital has successfully completed DPOs for a variety of businesses, including Massachusetts composting business CERO Cooperative; California organic farm Capay Farms (known as Farm Fresh to You); Washington general store Quimper Mercantile; and California community grocery store People’s Community Market. In addition, seven new DPOs filed by the firm are currently live and raising funds, with another 25 DPOs being structured by the firm or in the process of being approved by state regulators. For more information, visit ■

Aly Bonde is an intern in the Chamber’s Public Policy Department.

OCTOBER 2015 | 19


Campovida, Cerruti Cellars, Dashe Cellars, Irish Monkey Cellars, Jeff Cohn Cellars, Periscope Cellars, Rosenblum Cellars, Stage Left Cellars, Two Mile Wines, and Urban Legend. More than 10 million glasses of East Bay wines have been poured in the last year alone, with over 15,000 patrons visiting local tasting rooms. To help visitors navigate the trail, an Oakland Urban Wine Trail brochure and map, as well as microsite, have been launched. Visit Oakland is installing street decals throughout the city to help wine enthusiasts find the closest tasting room. On the digital strategy front, a new advertising campaign focused on display advertising and video recently debuted. The launch of the Oakland Urban Wine Trail coincided with California Wine Month in September. The month was a great time for visitors to learn about the harvest season and experience one of the state’s signature agricultural products. For more information on the trail or to learn more about participating wineries, visit ■

> Visit Oakland launches Oakland’s ‘Urban Wine Trail’

> Safeway hosts Chamber’s September mixer

photo by photographers@large

Visit Oakland, the city’s destination ▲ Cerruti Cellars near Jack London Square welcomes you. marketing organization, has debuted the Oakland Urban Wine Trail, showcasing 10 wineries within the city’s limits. The wineries cover a 10-mile radius throughout Oakland, and the trail is walkable and easily accessible by public transportation. What makes Oakland’s trail unique? Variety in an already different location. Oakland’s urban wineries are housed in renovated warehouses and offer visitors tasting rooms in industrial neighborhoods, artist community spaces, and even waterfront locations. Oakland vintners source their grapes from throughout California and bring a unique Oakland flavor to the trail, influenced by their different backgrounds and winemaking experiences. “You no longer have to travel to traditional wine country for great, quality wine,” said Alison Best, president and chief executive officer of Visit Oakland. “These winemakers were drawn here because Oakland’s the place to try something different, like building your winery in a warehouse instead of a vineyard. We are proud that our vintners are putting a new spin on winemaking in our state, adding their authentic Oakland flavor.” The Oakland Urban Wine Trail represents a growing interest in winemaking outside of the traditional wine country. Wineries include

The Chamber’s September “After Five Reception” was held at Safeway’s newest location, at College and Claremont avenues near the Berkeley border. The new store brought an additional 65 jobs (estimated) to the community and employs a total of 160 people. The 24-hour grocery store offers an expanded selection of organic produce, full-service meat and seafood. The building design maximizes energy and water efficiency, incorporating numerous greenhouse gasreducing features to save resources. In addition, the new facility offers customers a pharmacy, Starbucks and more convenient rooftop parking. It is 45,500 square feet with rooftop parking and adjacent retail. A public plaza connecting the store to retail shops features outdoor seating and artistic tiles along the store’s wall, created by local students. Ellen Oppenheimer’s art class of Peralta Elementary School designed the square ceramic tiles featuring fresh fruits and vegetables. Among those at the mixer (below) are Keith Turner, Safeway’s senior manager of public and government affairs (and a member of the Chamber’s Board of Directors), Barbara Leslie (center), Chamber president and chief executive officer, and Jodi Silva, the store’s first assistant manager. ■

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20 | OBR Oakland Business Review |


Small Business


> Three common construction contracts by Garret Murai Like Baskin Robbins, construction contracts come in a variety of different flavors although, thankfully, significantly fewer than 31. Here are three of the more common types of construction contracts between project owners and contractors:


Garret Murai

Fixed price construction contracts, also commonly referred to as “lump sum” or “stipulated sum” contracts, are the most common types of construction contracts. As its name suggests, under

a fixed price contract a contractor agrees to construct a project for a “fixed” or agreed upon price. Benefits: These provide price predictability for project owners because absent changes in the scope of work, unforeseen conditions, or other circumstances that cause the project to change, the contractor must complete the work for the agreed upon price. Drawbacks: These can be more expensive for project owners than other types of construction contracts because contractors, knowing that they are going to be subject to a “fixed” price, will often build in a buffer to protect from cost overruns, for which the contractor would not be compensated. They can add to the time and cost of the design phase of a project, which can affect the overall project timeframe. They also can result in lower quality work because contractors may adopt a “cheaper is better” approach knowing that any cost savings they can achieve will improve their profit margin. Best Use: Projects with well-defined scopes of works, where the project owner wants price certainty.

COST PLUS Under a cost plus construction contract, also known as a time and materials contract, a project owner agrees to pay a contractor for its costs plus a fee, which may either be a fixed fee or calculated as a percentage of costs. Benefits: These offer the most design flexibility for project owners and best price predictability for contractors since owners can make design decisions along the way, and contractors know they will be paid for their time and cost of materials, no matter how long the project takes or the quality of materials used. Drawbacks: Because time and materials are variable, these contracts provide owners with the least control over costs. Because of the cost uncertainty, it can be difficult for owners to obtain construction financing. Finally, it can be difficult for contractors to schedule their work on the project and juggle workforce and other resources. Best Use: Smaller projects or specific scopes of work within larger construction projects where more flexibility is needed.

GUARANTEED MAXIMUM PRICE Under a guaranteed maximum price contract, project owners agree to pay contractors for their time and cost of materials plus a fee – but only up to a “guaranteed maximum price.” Benefits: Under this approach, contractors get a degree of price predictability because they will be paid for their time and materials and project owners retain more design flexibility. Similar to a fixed price contract, project costs are capped at a “guaranteed maximum price.” These contracts can include a shared savings provision whereby the parties agree to split any savings if the actual costs of construction are less than the guaranteed maximum price. Drawbacks: Contractors under a guaranteed maximum price contract often build in a buffer to protect from cost overruns that cause the contractor to exceed the guaranteed maximum price. If there is a shared savings provision, a contractor may try to increase the guaranteed maximum price in order to benefit from “more” shared savings. These contracts can take more time to negotiate and administer. Best Use: Best for sophisticated project owners and contractors. ■ Garret Murai is a partner in the construction practice at Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP. He writes for the firm’s construction blog at He can be reached at (510) 834-6600 or

OCTOBER 2015 | 21

> Wells Fargo shows appreciation to those who serve in the armed forces by Micky Randhawa To show appreciation to the brave men and women who serve in the U.S. Armed Forces, Wells Fargo has partnered with the nonprofit Operation Gratitude to host a series of military volunteer events.

Micky Randhawa

Hundreds of team members from Alaska, California, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Minnesota and Iowa participated in a community initiative to prepare, package and donate 13,000 care kits to Operation Gratitude’s care package program. The care packages will be sent to military troops deployed overseas and to new recruits upon their graduation from “Boot Camp” here at home. Bay Area-based Wells Fargo team members have completed more than 2,000 care kit boxes and have written more than 4,500 letters of support that will be going to military troops deployed overseas. It is an honor for us to partner with Operation Gratitude on such a meaningful cause that benefits U.S. military service men and women around the world. Wells Fargo takes great pride in giving back to these heroes who are defending our nation and supporting our local military communities. Operation Gratitude annually sends more than 150,000 care packages filled with snacks, entertainment, hygiene, and hand-made items, plus personal letters of appreciation to veterans, new recruits, first responders, wounded warriors, care givers and to individually named U.S. service members deployed ▲ Wells Fargo team members gathered in different Bay Area locations to overseas. Their mission is to lift the spirits and meet the fulfill more than 2,000 care kit boxes and write more than 4,500 letters of evolving needs of our active duty and veteran communities, support that will be going to military troops deployed overseas. and provide volunteer opportunities for all Americans to express their appreciation to members of our military. Each package contains donated product valued at $75-$100 and costs the organization $15 to assemble and ship. Since its inception in 2003, Operation Gratitude volunteers have shipped more than 1.25 million care packages. Wells Fargo is committed to supporting military communities and supporting military service members, veterans and their families. Since 2012 Wells Fargo has provided more than $49 million in financial education, job assistance and home donations to military veterans. These efforts exemplify our gratitude for the service and sacrifice of military families. Thanks to Wells Fargo team members’ help this year, Operation Gratitude will send more than 30,000 letters, and 13,000 care kits will be mailed overseas. ■ Micky Randhawa is the Greater Bay president at Wells Fargo.

> Signage for Family Paths Family Paths, which has been located at 1727 Martin Luther King Jr. Way (at 18th Street) near downtown Oakland for the past 30 years, never had permanent signage – until now. Thanks to Oakland Rotary 3, which provided a community service grant to underwrite the cost of two new signs, the nonprofit has a sign on the façade of Martin Luther King and a billboard at the entrance to its parking lot on 18th Street. At the recent billboard unveiling, the Chamber held a ribbon cutting ceremony. For more than 43 years, Family Paths has been a leading community provider ▲ At the recent unveiling, Linda Chew, of direct mental president of Oakland Rotary 3 (third from health counseling the right), prepares to cut a ribbon along and supportive with (left to right) staff member Misty services to children, Finney, clinical director Barbra Silver, parents and families former California State Assemblymember of Alameda County. Nancy Skinner, clinician and development Its toll-free 24-hour manager Kimberly Cohn, and former Parent Support Hotline Oakland City Auditor Courtney Ruby. offers one of the largest referral and resource databases in Northern California. For more information, visit or call (510) 8939230. ■

22 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

> Uber Oakland headquarters Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf and Uber’s Global Head of People and Places Renee Atwood have announced the expansion of Uber’s greater Bay Area headquarters to include Oakland.

Uber has purchased “Uptown Station” to house more than 2,000 new employees who will work out of the former Sears building on the corner of 20th Street and Broadway above the 19th Street BART station in Oakland’s Uptown neighborhood. “Uber is an innovative and game-changing company and its move to Oakland is a game changer for our Uptown – solidifying that area’s status as the hottest new urban center for innovation,” said Mayor Schaaf. “Uber was attracted to Oakland because of its unique qualities and progressive values and we look forward to partnering with them to preserve that Oakland magic. We’re thrilled that Uber has discovered what Oakland has always been about and is coming here to share in and help maintain that special character.” “As we continue to build our teams across the hundreds of cities where we operate, the Bay Area remains our original home,” said Atwood. “We are excited to deepen our roots across the bay by investing in the revitalization of historic downtown Oakland and to become a permanent part of the fabric of the East Bay community by adding thousands of jobs at our Oakland site.” Uptown Station, at 1955 Broadway, is a seven-story building with 330,000 square feet of office space and 50,000 square feet of dedicated retail space open to pedestrian traffic on the ground floor. The revitalization efforts will focus on opening up the long-closed windows and bringing the entire site to life as a work and retail ▼ New Uber headquarters at 20th center. The street level of the building will primarily and Broadway. be dedicated to retail. ■

All events held at Chamber offices, 475 14th Street, unless otherwise noted. Call 874-4800 to confirm dates and times. Meetings are open to all Chamber members.

Small Business Seminar


Selling from the Inside Out

Oak Knoll development | Oct. 14

| Oct. 9

After Five Reception

Inside Oakland

Alex and Ani, Emeryville

Sabrina Landreth to speak

Annual Holiday Reception

| Oct. 22

| Oct. 23

| Dec. 10

Keeping you connected and informed

> OCTOBER 2015

Mayor’s Director of Equity & Strategic Partnerships

9 | Small Business Seminar series | noon-1 p.m. E X ECUTI V E COM MI T TEE


Chair of the Board MARK EVERTON Waterfront Hotel


featuring guest speaker Anna Scott, speaking on “Selling from the Inside Out,” $10 for Chamber members, $15 for non-members, and lunch is provided

VICTORIA JONES The Clorox Company

14 | Ambassador Committee

PAMELA KERSHAW Port of Oakland

| noon - 1 p.m.

Vice Chair CHARISSA FRANK FMG Architects GREG CHAN East Bay Municipal Utility District DAN COHEN Full Court Press HILARY PEARSON Sungevity DAVID TUCKER Waste Management of Alameda County ZACK WASSERMAN Ex Officio Corporate Counsel Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP

MICHAEL LEBLANC PICÁN Restaurant KEN LOWNEY Lowney Architecture KEN MAXEY Comcast ED MCFARLAN JRDV Urban International SAM NASSIF Creative Hospitality Corporation MICKY RANDHAWA Wells Fargo

KIM ARNONE Cutting Edge Capital

JACKIE LYNN RAY Schnitzer Steel Industries


Seminar series | noon-1 p.m.

9 | Ambassador Committee meeting

| noon - 1 p.m

$10 for Chamber members, $15 for nonmembers, and lunch is provided

10 | Annual Holiday Mixer | 6 - 8 p.m. Waterfront Hotel

@OaklandChamber #OaklandChamber #TheOaklandAdvantage




11 | Small Business

JENNIFER SCANLON Kaiser Permanente DENNIS SCHRAG UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland DAVID STEIN Donahue Fitzgerald LLP KEITH TURNER Safeway

RON FOREST Matson Navigation Company

Bj WASHINGTON J.P. Morgan Chase

BENJAMIN HARRISON Colliers International


STAN HEBERT California State University, East Bay

STACEY WELLS Alta Bates Summit Medical Center

14 | Economic Development Forum

|3 - 4:30 p.m. featuring a presentation by Sam Veltri, project manager at SunCal, who will discuss developing the Oak Knoll master-planned community in the Oakland hills

22 | After 5 Reception | 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. hosted by Alex and Ani, 5619 Bay St., Emeryville, no charge for Chamber members. $15 for non-members.

OBR OAKLAND BUSINESS REVIEW (ISSN 1092-7220) is published monthly at $100.00 a year by the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, 475 14th Street, Oakland, CA 94612-1903. Membership dues include subscription. Periodicals postage at Oakland, CA. Contents can’t be reproduced without permission. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to OAKLAND BUSINESS REVIEW, 475 14th Street, Oakland, CA 94612. Editor

HANK MASLER, (510) 874-4808 |

Design/Production Editor

CARTER DESIGNS The articles published in this publication do not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.


After 5 Reception

23 | Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum | 8:30 - 10 a.m. featuring guest speaker Oakland City Administrator Sabrina Landreth

> NOVEMBER 2015 4 | Economic Development Forum

|3 - 4:30 p.m. 6 | Pulse of Oakland breakfast | 8:30 - 10 a.m. with results from poll of Chamber members, Jack London Square

Alex and Ani founder, creative director and CEO Carolyn Rafaelian

ALEX AND ANI 5619 Bay St., Emeryville

11 | Ambassador Committee meeting

| noon - 1 p.m 13 | Small Business Seminar series | noon-1 p.m.

The purpose of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce is to promote commerce and industry, to advance economic growth and to enhance the quality of life in the city of Oakland.

Thu. Oct.

No charge for Chamber members. $15 for non-members. 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.

$10 for Chamber members, $15 for non-members, and lunch is provided.

17 | Nonprofit Roundtable Committee meeting | 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

> DECEMBER 2015 4 | Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum | 8:30 - 10 a.m. featuring a briefing on Mayor Schaaf’s first year priorities from David Silver, the Mayor’s Director of Education, and Jose Corona,

OCTOBER 2015 | 23

> About Town – News from the BIDs

The following is another in a series of columns featuring news and events in Oakland’s Business Improvement Districts (BIDs).

> In Oakland’s Downtown Business Improvement Districts, it’s easy being green In the Lake Merritt/Uptown & Downtown Oakland Community Benefit Districts (CBD), being green isn’t just a trend; it’s a way of life. In fact, Oakland is consistently ranked as one of the greenest and most sustainable cities in the U.S., with many of the highest profile green businesses calling the districts home. Are you drinking Fair Trade coffee? Independent certifier Fair Trade USA is based in the downtown district, at 1500 Broadway. Do you live or work in Alameda County and want to know where to recycle or how to reduce waste at your home or business? Public agency StopWaste is based at 1537 Webster St. in Uptown. In fact, within the boundaries of the two jointly managed CBDs are 11 LEED Certified buildings and well over 50 businesses recognized by the Bay Area Green Business Program. The CBDs are deeply invested in growing the green economy by attracting sustainable businesses and organizations to the downtown corridor and spreading the word that Oakland is committed to attracting and expanding businesses with an environmental product or service. Other organizations that reside here include: • Green for All works in collaboration with business, government, labor, and grassroots communities to increase quality jobs and opportunities in the green industry. • Integral Group specializes in the design of simple, elegant, cost-effective systems for high-performance buildings. They provide a full range of building system design, sustainability ▲ These Big Bellys hold more trash than standard garbage consulting and energy analysis services. Located in 13 offices cans, offer appropriate recycling options, and utilize across North America, along with an international network of technology that digitally alerts staff when the trash affiliates, their passion for sustainable design runs deep. compactor needs to be emptied. • The Sustainable Business Alliance is a business association committed to building a vibrant community of locally-owned, sustainably-minded businesses in the East Bay because they know that shopping locally-owned and independent not only preserves our unique Oakland flavor, but is better for the economy and environment. • Vigilent, Inc. is the leader in dynamic cooling management systems, an essential solution for data center infrastructure management (DCIM). Vigilent is committed to green energy solutions that reduce and inform energy use, making for a more sustainable planet. • GreenBiz provides clear, concise, accurate, and balanced information, resources, and learning opportunities to help companies of all sizes and sectors integrate environmental responsibility into their operations in a manner that supports profitable business practices. • Build It Green works with building and real estate professionals, local and state governments, and homeowners to increase awareness and adoption of green building practices. In addition to attracting green businesses to the districts, the CBDs also work to advance the citywide goal of zero waste by the year 2020 through the implementation of various programs and projects. Since 2012, the districts have installed 21 solar-powered Big Belly Trash Compactors on high traffic street corners. These Big Bellys hold more trash than standard garbage cans, offer appropriate recycling options and utilize technology that digitally alerts staff when the trash compactor needs to be emptied, saving precious time and resources. Our Maintenance Ambassadors work six days a week to collect garbage in the public rights of way, keeping it out of our parks, public spaces and waterways, and they coordinate with city agencies to ensure that cigarette butts and other micro-trash are diverted from entering the storm drains. And, as we mentioned in September’s issue of Oakland Business Review, we’re working on a new initiative that will recycle cigarette butts and give them new life as useful products such as plastic pallets. ■

24 | OBR Oakland Business Review |

October Oakland Business Review  
October Oakland Business Review