Assisting companies with their business and recruitment efforts is just one part of our role here at Greater Spokane Incorporated. A lot of times big, highly visible recruits like Caterpillar and Vivint get a lot of attention – and rightfully so.
But a lot of our work has to do with assisting companies with expansions. Helping companies expand within the community (or from one community to ours) has a lot of positive impacts throughout the area. A mix of local business expansions and assistance projects combined with the recruitment of outside companies allows for a balanced economic development strategy.
Our work in assisting companies changes with each one. We know Spokane’s cost of living is very competitive, and our livability is great. Spokane and the surrounding area has been named a “Best Town” by Outside Magazine, a top place to live after college, a best place to live, a best place to retire to, a ‘winner’ in economic growth for the next 20 years, and much more.
Recently, we helped an intriguing startup expand in Spokane: Minapsys.
Minapsys develops a user-friendly online platform for scheduling and group collaboration. The video above does a great job of showcasing the company’s offering. It currently employs eight people and plans to grow. Minapsys is currently located in the McKinstry Innovation Center.
The company’s Founder and CEO – Mark Colby – is originally from Spokane but has spent the past few decades in Japan, where he started a number of companies before launching Minapsys. Colby said he wanted to move the company back to his hometown and did so earlier this year. Spokane’s cost of living and available talent were drivers of his decision. We helped the company find a good location in the aforementioned McKinstry Innovation Center.
Finding these companies to assist happens in a number of ways and involves a variety of strategies, including targeted outreach to specific industries, networking, referrals and working with local real estate brokers and national site selection consultants. We target certain industries and work to put Spokane on the map.
In the case of Minapsys, Gary Mallon, GSI’s Technology Industry Manager, met Colby at a Connect Northwest investment and networking event in September. From there, future meetings were set, and GSI provided a host of support including wage, occupation and education information, as well as data around residential housing, cost of living and commercial real estate information. GSI introduced Minapsys to the McKinstry Innovation Center among other locations. We would provide much of the same support for companies looking to move here as well. Expanding companies within the region have many of the same needs as companies looking to move here from another location.
Each company is looking for something unique in addition to a good location and talent to hire. That’s why we work to provide the assistance a company needs so it can make the choice to move or expand to the greater Spokane region. The industries we focus on include manufacturing, aerospace, technology, health sciences, clean technology and others.
Bringing businesses to Spokane brings jobs to the region, expands our economy, can create new customers, suppliers and partners, brings new residents, and contributes to our mission of growing jobs and business investment.
For Minapsys, relocating to Spokane allows local folks to be employed in an exciting startup, and also gives Colby a nice homecoming.
Do you know a business looking to move to or expand in the greater Spokane region? Let us know!