• May 2015

Cities of the Future — What will your town look like?

What will our biggest cities look like in three years? In five years? In 50 years?

That’s the topic we tackle in the May 2015 issue of Be Inkandescent magazine, and we shine a light on one of the cities that is busy planning ahead for the future.

Our featured entrepreneur is Jane Ferrara, the chief operating officer of the City of Richmond’s Economic Development Authority. Her expertise in commercial real estate transactions, honed over 30 years in the private sector, allows Ferrara to anticipate the real estate needs of prospects and negotiate deals.

Case in point: Making a deal with one of the hottest companies in the country, Stone Brewing Co. Find out how she, and 200 of her colleagues, got Stone to bring its operations to the River City.

And be sure to check out Ferrara’s Tips for Entrepreneurs on how to make your company attractive to a large economic development authority.

Also in this issue:

  • In Food news, we raise our glass to the craft brewery coming to Richmond by sharing some of the health benefits of beer.
  • Future in Focus founder Michael Vidikan explains that the innovative technologies being developed by a rising number of the world’s cities will not only cut costs and help the cities run more efficiently, but will reduce carbon emissions and possibly inspire other cities to do the same.
  • Our Book of the Month, by journalist Daniel Brook, looks forward by first looking back. Don’t miss our Q&A with him about A History of Future Cities.
  • We also celebrate Live Earth 2015 by helping to draw attention to the No More Bull crowdfunding campaign by our new client, ChompingClimateChange.org.

We leave you with this parting thought about the future of cities from Enrique Peñalosa, former mayor of Bogotá, Colombia: “Cities are only a means to a way of life, and whatever we do over the next 40 years will determine the quality of life for millions. I am convinced that we need radically new designs … that can lead us to more sustainable cities where people will lead happier lives.”

Cheers to your incredible, indelible, Inkandescent success! — Hope Katz Gibbs, publisher, Be Inkandescent • founder, Inkandescent PRInkandescent Radio • Inkandescent Speakers

How the City of Richmond Wooed Stone Brewing Co.

MAY 2015: BRINGING STONE HOME

Richmond means business! That’s evident in this Richmond, VA (RVA), video (above), and in Jane Ferrara’s success at helping to bring Stone Brewing Co. to Richmond. How did she do it? The COO of the city’s Economic Development Authority says “transformational change” was the key to landing the big brewery.

By Hope Katz Gibbs
Founder and Publisher
Be Inkandescent magazine

“I believe that one defines oneself by reinvention. To not be like your parents. To not be like your friends. To be yourself. To cut yourself out of stone,” said musician Henry Rollins.

What a perfect description of what Jane Ferrara did. The chief operating officer of the City of Richmond’s Economic Development Authority, she helped seal the deal in October 2014 to bring Stone Brewing Co. to Richmond.

Starting this year, the 10th largest craft brewer in the United States will begin to invest $74 million to construct a production brewery, packaging hall, destination restaurant and gardens, retail store, and administrative offices in Richmond.

Stone selected Richmond from among cities in more than 20 states that vied to be a host cite for Stone after the brewery sent out its request for proposals in January 2014.

Landing the Big One

“The search for our location east of the Mississippi River was no easy endeavor,” said Steve Wagner, Stone’s president, who co-founded the company in 1996 with California native Greg Koch.

“We received and reviewed hundreds of proposals, visited more than 40 sites, and received quite a bit of attention from communities and craft-beer fans.”

Stone is a very big fish. It:

  • Generates more than $135 million in annual sales
  • Employs more than 900 people
  • Has been listed 10 times on the Inc. 500 | 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies
  • Has been called the “All-Time Top Brewery on Planet Earth” by BeerAdvocate magazine — twice

Stone is also the first American craft brewer to independently own and operate facilities in Berlin.

Known for its bold, flavorful, and largely hop-centric beers, Stone has earned a reputation for brewing unique beers while maintaining an unwavering commitment to sustainability, business ethics, philanthropy, and the art of brewing.

Why did Stone choose Richmond?

“The three finalist cities each provided diverse offerings; however, we decided to begin next-step negotiations with Richmond because of their ability to meet our extensive site requirements, subject to the city’s approval,” explains Wagner, whose company produced 287,000 barrels of beer last year.

“We also feel that Richmond’s vibrant energy and impressive craft-beer culture, along with the uniqueness of the property, will allow us to create a truly memorable Stone experience for our fans,” he continued. “We are honored by the amount of time and effort all the communities that submitted proposals put forth.”

The Craft of Making the Deal

In the official announcement declaring that Stone had signed, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said, “Today’s announcement marks the fruition of months of partnership and aggressive efforts to show Stone that Virginia is the best state for its new craft-beer production and hospitality facility,” noting that Stone had received submissions from more than 20 states.

“This competitive, high-profile project really puts Virginia on the map and cements our standing as a serious player in the craft-beer industry,” McAuliffe added. “In addition to Stone’s significant investment and more than 288 new jobs, the far-reaching economic benefits of this operation are innumerable.”

  • McAuliffe approved a $5 million grant from the Governor’s Opportunity Fund to assist the City of Richmond with the project.
  • Stone will also be eligible to receive a grant of up to $250,000 from the Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund (AFID), administered by the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, depending on its procurement and use of Virginia-grown products in its operations.
  • Additionally, the company will receive benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.
  • Funding and services to support the company’s employee-training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.

Beginning With the End in Mind

When the nine-month process began, Richmond’s Ferrara knew that wooing Stone would take more than a great infrastructure, an available site and building, and natural resources to lure the brewing company.

It would take transformational change.

“A project of this magnitude takes a high level of communication, community engagement, and public support,” Ferrara explains. “The transactions necessary to compete for this project are very complex and difficult for many to understand.

“My biggest challenge was explaining the various aspects of the project in the public realm, while protecting the confidentiality of the negotiations. Now that was difficult.”

Don’t stop now! Click here to learn how Ferrara overcame the obstacles and sealed the deal with Stone Brewing Co.

Economic Development Rules: What Entrepreneurs Want From Big Cities

Wouldn’t you love for your company to be wooed to a vibrant city?

That’s every entrepreneur’s dream. And that’s exactly what happened when the City of Richmond began a nine-month process to bring Stone Brewing Co. to town.

Jane Ferrara stood at the helm of the project.

“I knew bringing Stone to Richmond would take more than a great infrastructure, an available site and building, and natural resources,” she says. “It would take transformational change.”

Scroll down to learn how she sealed the deal.


Be Inkandescent: Take us back to the beginning of the negotiations. How did Stone initially approach the City of Richmond about putting its East Coast headquarters here?

Jane Ferrara: Stone was in need of an East Coast brewery in order to meet the demand for their product throughout the United States. They are based in San Deigo, but approximately 40 percent of their beer is sold on the East Coast. An important quality of their beer is its freshness, so it has to be shipped in refrigerated trucks.

Transportation costs were beginning to have a huge impact on their bottom line, so an East Coast production facility made the most sense to address Stone’s need for increased production.

The site-selection process they undertook was extensive and entailed a comprehensive decision matrix. Richmond, along with over 250 other communities, was evaluated on many criteria. As with most companies, of course the cost of doing business was of utmost importance, but also important were the city’s capacity to provide large quantities of water, access to a quality labor pool, and a business-friendly locality. But Stone also included many qualitative criteria, such as the lifestyle of the community.

Be Inkandescent: Richmond is a vibrant city on the move — was that part of the attraction?

Jane Ferrara: Yes! We were named one of the Top Destinations in the World to visit in 2014 by “Frommer’s,” and one of America’s Top 5 Cities to Keep on Your Radar by Huffington Post. There are too many other accolades to name.

We are located midway on the Eastern Seaboard, making Richmond an ideal location for reaching three-quarters of the US consumer population. We have a rich cultural and arts community, four universities (enrolling more than 45,000 students) and an exciting food scene that is being recognized nationally. Stone took all of these and more into consideration when comparing communities.

Be Inkandescent: When I heard you talk about this big win at the Richmond Chamber’s Extraordinary Women’s Exchange earlier this year, you talked about this process being about transformational change. What did you mean by that?

Jane Ferrara: One of Stone’s qualitative objectives was to locate to a community where it could make a difference. While the City of Richmond has many positive attributes, it also has its challenges. For example, our poverty rate, 27 percent, is simply unacceptable.

We need to draw businesses here that will make investments and hire our residents. When we considered sites to present to Stone, it was important to identify a site that would accomplish more than one goal for the city. Our Redevelopment and Housing Authority owned a large site in the Greater Fulton Community, which has been long-overlooked.

Forty-five years ago, residents there were displaced from their homes to make way for an Urban Renewal Plan that today is largely unrealized. That land has been vacant ever since. We believed that the Stone project could transform the area and accomplish many important objectives. Of course job creation and investment were also important.

Stone’s brewery and bistro will employ at least 288 people and bring tourism to the area. Stone is committed to hiring locally and working with local businesses. We also saw an opportunity to revitalize the eastern end of the city’s riverfront and bring more tourism to the area. Stone’s Bistro & Beer Gardens is the third most popular tourist attraction in North San Diego County, drawing more than 600,000 visitors each year.

Be Inkandescent: What were your biggest challenges?

Jane Ferrara: A project of this magnitude takes a high level of communication, community engagement, and public support. The transactions necessary to compete for this project are very complex and difficult for many people to understand. My biggest challenge was explaining the various aspects of the project in the public realm, while protecting the confidentiality of the negotiations.

Be Inkandescent: This wasn’t the first time you tried to attract a big brewery to town. Tell us about that experience.

Jane Ferrara: Yes, in fact we actually had to lose so that we could learn how to win. About three years ago, we went through a similar process with New Belgium Brewing Company, which is located in Fort Collins, Colorado. While the company put Richmond on its short list and liked what we had to offer, they ultimately chose Asheville, North Carolina, as its East Coast site.

That experience taught us so much about the craft-brewing industry and what is important to it. We also began to more fully understand and be able to articulate why and how the craft brewing industry is a great fit for the City of Richmond. It’s a desirable industry for us to have here because it is a high-growth industry, creates good new jobs, stimulates new investment, and generates tourism.

Be Inkandescent: How did you differentiate Richmond from the other cities that Stone was considering?

Jane Ferrara: We knew that it was important to anticipate Stone’s needs every step of the way. Every time they came to town, we made sure all the right people were in the room to answer the company’s questions and concerns.

We also focused on not simply naming a list of Richmond’s wonderful attributes and instead discussing those attributes in terms of why and how they would benefit Stone. Once example is the James River. Not only does it provide great recreational opportunities and lend beauty to our downtown landscape, but its natural resource is critical to brewing.

I think the way that the brewing industry fits in Richmond is kind of like the way Napa Valley is so suited to the wine industry. Napa Valley’s natural resources — the soils and climate — are important to making wine. Richmond is blessed to have an abundance of the natural resource brewers need — good-quality water!

Be Inkandescent: Whom did you pull onto your team? And did you know whom to listen to?

Jane Ferrara: It took a diverse team of people to land Stone’s business. First, we had to assemble subject-matter experts who could help us address the technical aspects of Stone’s Request for Proposals (RFP). We also engaged the business community to help us tell our story and answer Stone’s questions about doing business in Richmond.

In fact, during one of Stone’s visits, we assembled a group of business owners in a conference room and then left, allowing Stone to ask any questions they wanted without having us there.

As for whom did I listen to, we had to listen to everyone! Citizens, city administration, outside consultants, elected officials, etc. But most importantly, we had to listen to Stone!

Be Inkandescent: What kind or response have you received from the communities?

Jane Ferrara: Generally, the community was very supportive of the project. Especially the Greater Fulton community, where the brewery will be located. It is a passionate, enthusiastic community that understood the impact that Stone would have on their neighborhood. Of course, we also had those who opposed the project.

For the most part, it wasn’t Stone that they were opposed to, it was the business terms of the transactions and incentives that drew the most opposition. The City of Richmond took all of these comments very seriously. We consulted with the city’s financial advisers and other subject-matter experts to review our proposals every step of the way.

We carefully reviewed Stone’s financial statements to make sure they were fiscally sound. It was critical to ensure that we protected the best interests of Richmond’s citizens.

Be Inkandescent: What are some of your biggest lessons learned?

Jane Ferrara: One of the biggest lessons I learn time and time again is the importance of good communication related to projects of this nature.

Be Inkandescent: Would you do it all again?

Jane Ferrara: Absolutely! This was such a huge, high-profile win for the City of Richmond. Stone received more than 350 proposals from 250 localities along the Eastern Seaboard. They chose Richmond and we are proud of that!

Be Inkandescent: What other companies does Richmond have an eye on?

Jane Ferrara: Well, we don’t typically disclose names of companies in order to protect their confidentiality. However, after the announcement by Stone that it had chosen Richmond, we began receiving inquiries from other companies interested in looking at the city. Generally, in addition to the Food and Beverage industries, our targeted industries include: Advanced Manufacturing, Financial Services, Health and Life Sciences, Logistics and Transportation, Professional and Creative Services, and Corporate Headquarters.

Be Inkandescent: When it comes to thinking about the future of Richmond, what do you envision in the next three years, five years, 50 years?

Jane Ferrara: I think Richmond is just beginning to realize its true potential. Winning such a highly sought-after project like Stone proves that we can and will continue to win. In the future, I envision a community that continues to thrive and grow, but in a thoughtful and deliberate way.

I am hopeful that our public transportation will be fully developed so everyone has access to jobs, entertainment, and services, and so we can stop being so car-centric in our redevelopment. I hope my kids will want to stay here and raise their families, but if not, that they will want to come and visit often!

Be Inkandescent: What is your favorite thing about Richmond today? And what do you look forward to in the future?

Jane Ferrara: My favorite thing about Richmond is its easy lifestyle and accessibility. Most everything I need is within five miles from my home. I walk whenever I can. But, if I want to get away, I can be at the beach, or the mountains, or the nation’s capital within a two-hour drive.


For more information about the City of Richmond, visit www.richmondgov.com.

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A great secret of success is to go through life as a man who never gets used up.”

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The aim of life is to live, and to live means to be aware, joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware.”

– Henry Miller

He who wants to tear down a house must be prepared to rebuild it.”

– African Proverb

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”

– Seneca

Destiny is a name often given in retrospect to choices that had dramatic consequences.”

– J.K. Rowling

We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give.”

– Winston Churchill

Education is an admirable thing to have, but it is well to remember that nothing worth knowing can be taught.”

– Oscar Wilde

I always maintained that the greatest obstacle in life isn’t danger, it’s boredom. The battle against it is responsible for most of the events in the world — good or ill.”

– Dr. Evelyn Vogel, Dexter

A truly forgiving person is someone who experiences all the anger merited by injustice and still acts with fairness and compassion.”

– Martha Beck

What is the point of having free will if one cannot occasionally spit in the eye of destiny?”

– Jim Butcher, White Night

They who give have all things. They who withhold have nothing.”

– Hindu Proverb

Part of your destiny is to live in the zone of maximum satisfaction.”

– Martha Beck

You don’t go into a field that requires cracking people’s heads open or operating on something as delicate as the spinal cord unless you are comfortable with taking risks.”

– Dr. Ben Carson

Women once had the goal of being Superwoman; I think most of us now simply strive to have a super day.”

– Author, Activist Lee Woodruff

We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us.”

– Joseph Campbell

When we speak we are afraid our words will not be heard or welcomed. But when we are silent, we are still afraid. So it is better to speak.”

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We need to learn to set our course by the stars, not by the lights of every passing ship.”

– General Omar Bradley

Many people prefer to play it safe when it comes to business matters. Are you willing to take risks in the pursuit of entrepreneurial success?”

– Steven Schussler

Change is a math formula. Change happens when the cost of the status quo is greater than the risk of change.”

– Alan Webber, author, "Rules of Thumb"

When I was younger I thought success was being a star, driving nice cars, having groupies. But today I think the most important thing is to live your life with integrity.

– Ellen DeGeneres

If you were independently wealthy and never had to work a day in your life, would you still choose to spend your time attempting to become a successful entrepreneur?”

– Steven Schussler

I can’t go back to yesterday—because I was a different person then.”

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Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them!”

– Madam C.J. Walker

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly,
 what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

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In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.”

– Albert Einstein

Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any one thing.”

– Abraham Lincoln

If you look at what you have in life, you’ll always have more.
 If you look at what you don’t have in life, you’ll never have enough.”

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Always look at what you have left. Never look at what you have lost.”

– Robert H. Schuller

I was taught at a very young age that you can do whatever you want to, but you have to make it happen — not just talk about it.”

– Kathleen Jo Ryan

Instead of loving your enemies, treat your friends a little better.”

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Success is the necessary misfortune of life, but it is only to the very unfortunate that it comes early.”

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A lot of people have ideas, but few decide to do something about them now. Not next week. But today.”

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Happy are those who dream dreams and are ready to pay the price to make them come true.”

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My task is really not to change myself but to become familiar with who I am.”

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There are risks and costs to a program of action. But they are far less than the long-range risks and costs of comfortable inaction.”

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Practice kindness all day to everybody and you will realize you’re already in heaven now.”

– Jack Kerouac

If you think you are too small to make a difference, try going to sleep with a mosquito in your room.”

– A wisdomism

Your own words are the bricks and mortar
of the dreams you want to realize.
 The words you choose and their use establish the life you experience.”

– Sonia Croquette

The true entrepreneur is a doer, not a dreamer.”

– Nolan Bushnell, founder, Chuck E. Cheese's

The gem cannot be polished without friction; nor man perfected without trials.”

– Chinese proverb

Once you find something you love to do, be the best at doing it.”

– Debbi Fields, Mrs. Fields Cookies

Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”

– Martin Luther King Jr.

If you limit your choices only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is compromise.”

– Robert Fritz

Nurture your mind with great thoughts; to believe in the heroic makes heroes.”

– Benjamin Disraeli

There is little success where there is little laughter.”

– Andrew Carnegie

Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt

The follow-your-gut mentality of the entrepreneur has the potential to take you anywhere you want to go or run you right out of business.”

– Bill Rancic, "The Apprentice"

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”

– Leonardo da Vinci

To follow, without halt, one aim: There’s the secret of success.”

– Anna Pavlova

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