Corrections or additions?
These articles by Kathleen McGinn Spring and others were prepared
for the January 31,
2001 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.
The New Economy: Paul Raetsch
Funky workspaces, competition leavened with cooperation,
restless workers, and ever more dependence on the Internet; that will
be the look of the New Economy, according to an expert who has logged
more than as three decades as an economic development expert.
Paul M. Raetsch, regional director of the Economic Development
Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce, will discuss ways
in which the New Economy is changing business when he addresses the
Middlesex Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, February 1, at 8 a.m. at
the Ramada Inn in North Brunswick. Cost: $30. Call 732-821-1700.
Raetsch, who received both his bachelor’s degree (Class of 1965) and
his master’s degree in regional planning from Penn State, was
to his present position in 1998, and has worked for the EDA for more
than 20 years. He has also held positions with the Army Corps of
and the Baltimore Regional Planning Council, and has taught political
science courses at Rutgers, the University of Southern Colorado and
Burlington County College.
He says his job "used to be chasing smokestacks." Now, with
a territory stretching from West Virginia to Maine and including
Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, Raetsch is spreading the word that
"human capital is more important."
"Going into this new century, we know technology won’t replace
roads and sewers, but it takes more than that," Raetsch says of
the basic infrastructure that held up the old smokestack economy.
"Places that will be competitive are open to technology and
he says of the companies and municipalities that will move ahead,
terming them "gazelles."
Among other attributes, these gazelles will understand what motivates
21st century workers. A father of four children, three of whom have
graduated from college and are out in the workplace, Raetsch has
knowledge of the mores of the New Economy worker. "Every year
they are changing," Raetsch says of his children. "Changing
jobs, changing everything."
Employers, Raetsch says, need to be flexible too, and to absorb the
realities of the New Economy:
are anymore," Raetsch says. As an example, he cites his son, who
recently left North Carolina for Boston, but kept his phone number.
"It used to be you could tell where a person was from by the first
three digits of his phone number," says Raetsch. But no more.
His son was 919 in North Carolina and, relying on his cell phone from
his new Boston address, is still 919. Among the lessons here is that
every business needs to be on the Internet, a medium that transcends
phone exchanges and reaches customers wherever they happen to be."
says Raetsch. People can telecommute. People can work from remote
locations. Where businesses once clustered around roads, sewers and
ports, they now cluster around bandwidth.
"Dot coms can be anywhere," Raetsch comments. "Younger
entrepreneurs are less interested in being on Route 1 than in being
along the river in Philadelphia in a funky area."
Raetsch says. "They have to be less afraid of competitors, and
understand that collaboration can work." A group of small
in the same industry, for example, might get together on employee
training programs, he suggests. "If you can’t afford a training
compound, maybe several companies could go together," says
according to Raetsch, who says young people, raised on tales of
greed a la Gordon Gekko, tend to distrust corporate America and show
little loyalty toward employers.
"It’s not even about wages," he muses, talking about how a
friend’s son was "dot comming" in this area and making good
money, but left to accept a lower salary in Colorado. The key for
employers, Raetsch says, is to offer employees "something
to work on, and perhaps to provide an interesting work setting as
And just as employees are often counseled to keep an updated resume
handy and to continually scan the horizon for new jobs, employers
should be aware that employees are unlikely to stay forever and should
remain on the outlook for replacements.
about the digital divide that yawns between those Americans who are
armed with PCs, laptops, Palm Pilots, and cell phones and those who
have yet to log onto a computer. In a tight labor market like this
one, however, Raetsch says "high tech companies are realizing
the digital divide can pay digital dividends." This is so, he
points out, because "you can train people to the skills you need.
"We all have to be open to the fact that it’s not that difficult
to learn," Raetsch says of computer skills. "It’s up to small
business to give access to computers and technology," he says
of the win/win proposition of business bridging the digital divide.
however, the problem was "the stock market and people speculating
on individual companies," Raetsch says. But make no mistake, he
stresses, it’s a dot com world. Every business depends on the
he emphasizes: "Whether it’s sales, catalogs, information,
it has to have a dot com on the end of it."
come — enhanced uses for wireless devices, for instance. But he
doesn’t expect to chase every rainbow. Unlike his children, he says,
"I’m from an era where you work someplace for a long time."
— Kathleen McGinn Spring
The aim: to introduce new venture capitalists to the
entrepreneurs, says Jim Buck, moderator of the New Jersey
Association’s venture capital fund panel set for Wednesday, February
7, at noon at the Doral Forrestal. Each of the three panelists will
give the standard description of what they offer, and then, says Buck,
"I will challenge them to differentiate their offering." The
that focused on emerging growth companies and IPOs, but as a venture
capitalist with LLR Equity Partners he invests in later stage growth
companies and undervalued, small cap public companies. His
fund has $260 million to invest (215-717-2900).
Princeton Forrestal Village. This $100 million fund invests in early
stage companies that do network computing, enterprise and E-commerce
software, and Internet-related financial services
until he was tapped to lead the New Jersey Technology Council’s
Fund. He is looking for early stage technology-related companies in
high growth markets (U.S. 1, January 3).
This fund plans to invest early stage capital particularly in
businesses (E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 856-787-9700). Gunton
is also vice president and principal at the Edison Venture Fund, one
of the few New Jersey venture capital companies that focuses on
stage, New Jersey-based enterprises (www.edisonventure.com or
Early stage falls between seed stage (an investment of $300,000 and
up) and the majority of current venture capital investment ($1 to
$5 million). "The appeal of early stage venture capital is that
you are looking for the home runs," says Gunton. He will look
for opportunities in such industries as optical networking, wireless,
and genomics, but will also be amenable to telecommunications,
financial services, electronics, and aerospace.
Princeton University, Class of 1981, Buck joined TDH in 1990 after
a stint with J.P. Morgan in Manhattan. When TDH was founded 23 years
ago as a family business in Rosemont, there were very few other
funds in eastern Pennsylvania. "We are what is called a balanced
fund," he says. "We have some early post development stage
investing, but we tend more and more to expansion stage venture
He looks to invest about $1 million, up to $2 million, in a company
that is not going to require multiple infusions of cash.
All you ever wanted to know about what is going on in
the Capital City will be covered by Steven E. Goldin at the
Princeton Chamber’s luncheon meeting on Thursday, February 8, at 11:30
a.m. at the Doral Forrestal. Goldin will speak on "The Next Year
in the Redevelopment of Trenton." Cost: $33. Call 609-520-1776.
Goldin used to be the executive assistant to John Lynch, former mayor
of New Brunswick and now president of the State Senate. An alumnus
of Harvard, Class of 1982, with an MBA from Columbia, he has been
a project executive with Hovnanian Enterprises, director of planning
and development, Woodbridge’s director of planning and development,
and president of the Woodbridge Economic Development Corporation.
He is now vice president of King Interests, based at the Carnegie
Center; it does commercial development, construction, brokerage, and
Tech may not be as hot as it was last summer, but the
once-booming sector is sure to rise again, and when it does, New
wants to position its cities to get in on some of the action.
Toward that end, Governor Christie Whitman announced a
initiative, the first such program in the country, in her final State
of the State address. As part of a $165 million economic development
package, 30 cities received $2 million in grants under the
program to plan or market high tech districts. Among the cities
the highest dollar amounts are Trenton, New Brunswick, and Hamilton.
Marketing firms and real estate development companies could flourish
as a result of these grants. Trenton will use its $130,000 to plan
for two cyberdistricts, one along East State Street and one in the
former Roebling Complex. Marketing is on New Brunswick’s agenda as
it plans to use its $100,000 grant to promote itself to high tech
businesses. Hamilton, which received $50,000, will seek to reinvent
vacant factories in the East State Street area as homes for technology
Cities using cyberdistrict funds for planning will assess the
of success for a high tech zone within their boundaries. Factors to
be studied include suitability of buildings in the district for high
tech industry, proximity of high-speed data transmission services,
the cost of upgrading buildings, and the level of interest on the
part of developers and companies.
Business & Professional Women of Hightstown/East Windsor
are accepting applications for Career Development through February
28. Awards are given to women 25 years of age or older who are
or returning to school, in a two to four year college, or vocational
training program. Call 609-426-4117 for an application.
southern counties are available from the Scholarship Foundation of
the Builders League of South Jersey . Students must plan to
a qualified trade school or choose a college major in a field related
to real estate development and construction. Deadline for applications
is April 6; call 856-616-8460.
entries for its 2001 Impact Awards honoring excellence in business
marketing communications. Any business to business related work
last year — by or for any New Jersey-based corporation — may
be submitted by the corporation or by any marketing communications,
advertising or public relations agency, sales promotion, or premium
incentive company. The judging panel is composed of ad agency,
marketing and advertising, and publishing executives. All entries
are judged on their effectiveness as well as concept originality and
Deadline for entries is Friday, February 9. For details, contact
Serenyi at 732-715-5198 or E-mail: email@example.com.
from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation in renewed support for
the John S. Watson Institute for Public Policy, a nonpartisan,
funded research office that provides practical policy analysis and
other technical assistance to decision makers in the public and
sectors. In particular, the grant supports the Center for the Urban
Environment Program, directed by Liz Johnson.
Komen Breast Cancer Foundation for its New Jersey Race for the
Cure program. Last week the foundation presented "The
a bronze sculpture created by Charles Sherman, a gift for the Merrill
The Lilly Endowment Inc. has given Princeton
Seminary’s Institute for Youth Ministry $380,948 in support of
the institute’s Bridges project. The program was designed to
new pastors’ transitions from seminary into professional ministry
so it develops practices of youth ministry.
Bridges 2001 is a pilot program for professional development for 25
pastors who are transitioning from seminary to youth-ministry-focused
pastorates. Recognizing the high burnout rate in the first three years
of ministry, this program aims to stem the burnout by finding
approaches to pastoral effectiveness for leaders and young people.
The project will survey relevant literature on seminary-to-pastorate
transitions; identify exemplary youth ministries; assess needs and
concerns of new pastors; and pilot a program of support and
education to provide a replicable model for seminaries. Data gathered
in each of these areas will be submitted for publication in trade
Community Foundation (PACF) , which distributed the money among
23 member organizations. Some organizations that received funding
included Arts Council of Princeton, Princeton Blairstown Camp Center,
Homefront, Trinity Counseling Services, Princeton Education
and the several children’s choirs.
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospitalhas received
an $8 million gift from the estate of Elizabeth R. Waldron, who
medical care at the hospital before her death in 1999, at the age
of 91. The donation will help pay for the Bristol-Myers Squibb
Hospital at the hospital, due to open on March 21, 2001. The
hospital at Robert Wood Johnson will be the first free-standing
hospital in New Jersey.
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