St. Louis Press Pass

by Gary Broome | Sep 25, 2015
St. Louis angel investors among most active in Midwest
(St. Louis Business Journal, 9/24/15)
Two angel investor groups based in St. Louis are among the most active in the region, according to a new report from the Angel Resource Institute (ARI). The ARI’s Halo Report found the St. Louis Arch Angels and Saint Louis University’s Billiken Angels Network were two of the top three most active angel groups (for number of deals) in the Great Plains region — made up of Missouri, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota — since 2011. >> CLICK FOR MORE

Gil Bickel, chairman of the St. Louis Arch Angels
Tech firm Square to open St. Louis office, hire 200
(KSDK, 9/23/15)
The company Square has opened an office in St. Louis and plans to hire more than 200 people over the next five years, offering a big boost to the effort to make St. Louis a Midwest hub for tech businesses. >> CLICK FOR MORE

Medical device firm Veran raises $30.6 million
(St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/24/15)
Veran Medical Technologies, an Overland-based company developing devices for diagnosing and treating lung cancer, has raised $30.6 million from a group of venture capital funds. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Stadia Ventures raises more than $1 million
(St. Louis Business Journal, 9/22/15)
Officials with Stadia Ventures have raised more than $1 million, as the startup accelerator looks to focus on early stage sports companies. The $1.06 million came from seven investors, according to a federal filing, with Stadia officials looking to raise a total of $5 million. >> CLICK FOR MORE
University of Illinois, Washington University among top schools for venture-backed entrepreneurs
(St. Louis Business Journal, 9/25/15)
Two regional colleges — the University of Illinois and Washington University — have been ranked by PitchBook as two of the top universities for venture capital-backed entrepreneurs. The list is sorted by total number of entrepreneurs a university has produced from the start of 2010 through the end of July 2015. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Mack tapped as co-chair of Greater St. Louis Financial Forum
(St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/25/15)
Mary Mack, president of Wells Fargo Advisors, has been named co-chair of the Greater St. Louis Financial Forum. Mack succeeds Jim Weddle, managing partner, Edward Jones Investments and founding co-chair of the forum. The forum is a CEO-led industry roundtable that aims to promote and expand the region’s financial services industry. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Enzymes firm lands breakthrough deal in ag industry
(St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/25/15)
Brian and Katie Thompson took an unusual path into the agriculture industry, but the destination is starting to look lucrative.The Thompsons’ company, Elemental Enzymes, recently signed a collaboration agreement with Bayer, the giant German company that’s among the world leaders in seeds and crop protection. It’s a breakthrough deal for the 15-person firm, which grew out of Brian Thompson’s postdoctoral research at the University of Missouri. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Washington U. to host Presidential debate in 2016
(KMOV, 9/23/15)
Washington University has been selected to host one of three presidential debates in 2016. The university will host the debate on October 9.>> CLICK FOR MORE

(Credit: Washington University / Twitter)
DOL Official: STL Has ‘Secret Sauce’
(Construction Forum STL, 9/22/15)
When it comes to workforce development, St. Louis has all the right elements in place, according Deputy Secretary of Labor Christopher Lu. “You have accountability, transparency, and collaboration,” he told a roundtable discussion at the Carpenters Joint Apprenticeship Program training facility in Affton. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Ground Breaks for Multi Modal Center
(WBGZ Radio, 9/21/15)
Yesterday marked the beginning of a new wave of transportation, including a higher speed rail, to not only the River Bend but to the county and the state. Ground was broken yesterday morning on the Multi Modal Transportation Center on Golf Road in Alton. The city has been getting the paperwork in order for the project for a number of years.>> CLICK FOR MORE
A-B InBev buys largest craft brewer in Los Angeles
(St. Louis Business Journal, 9/23/15)
As Anheuser-Busch InBev officials mull a pitch to buy SABMiller, creating a $245 billion brewing giant, the company is beefing up its craft portfolio with Los Angeles-based Golden Road Brewing. Terms of the deal, which is expected to close by the end of the year, were not disclosed. Gold Road is the largest craft brewery in Los Angeles County; the brewery expects to sell approximately 45,000 barrels of beer in 2015. >> CLICK FOR MORE
City Welcomes New Businesses
(WBGZ Radio, 9/23/15)
The Wood River City Council is looking forward to the opening of more new businesses across town. While there hasn’t been a lot of new construction recently, several old buildings are being repurposed as entrepreneurs are giving the Wood River area a try. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Illinois business among BBB's Torch Award winners
(Illinois Business Journal, 9/15)
Better Business Bureau serving Eastern Missouri and Southern Illinois will present Torch Awards to 11 businesses and two charities and Student of Ethics awards to four students at a luncheon at noon Friday, Nov. 13, at the Chase Park Plaza in St. Louis. "To succeed in today's business environment, businesses need be ever more connected to their customers and, at the same time, continue to earn their highest level of trust," said William L. White, BBB board chair and senior vice president of Commerce Bank. "Our Accredited Businesses and Charities have met those challenges, and the Torch Award recipients for 2015 reflect some of the best examples we can offer in terms of their exceptional service and ethical interaction with those with whom they come in contact.">> CLICK FOR MORE
SIUE Morris University Center staff recognized internationally
(Illinois Business Journal, 9/15)
Two Morris University Center staff members have been acknowledged for their continuous work at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Cathy Passananti, the center's associate director, and Jamie Matthews, assistant director, have for several years directed their efforts in improving the programming, student initiatives and more at the center.>> CLICK FOR MORE
New SLU scholarship honors Jesuit saint
(St. Louis American, 9/24/15)
Saint Louis University has established the new St. Peter Claver, S.J., Service Endowed Scholarship. The new scholarship is designed to assist first-generation, full-time freshmen from an urban setting who have financial need and foster a love of community service.>> CLICK FOR MORE
Fed survey finds businesses upbeat about local economy
(St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/22/15)
Nearly two-thirds of St. Louis area business people say economic conditions here are improving, a survey by the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank finds.That is a "noticeable improvement" over the past few months, the Fed's Burgundy Book report says. In May, slightly more than half of survey respondents said the local economy was getting stronger. >> CLICK FOR MORE
St. Louis ranks third for rate of homeownership
(St. Louis Post-Disptach, 9/22/15)
Affordable Midwestern cities have higher rates of homeownership than their coastal competitors, a new report shows, and St. Louis ranks near the top.>> CLICK FOR MORE
St. Louis home sales, prices and starts outpace the U.S.
(St. Louis Business Journal, 9/24/15)
The Federal Reserve Bank had quite a bit of good news about St. Louis this week. In the second quarter, growth of home sales, house prices and building permits in the St. Louis metropolitan area outpaced the nation and other areas of the St. Louis Fed district, which includes Arkansas and parts of six other states. Mortgage loan delinquency rates here fell significantly, to the lowest level since 2007.>> CLICK FOR MORE
$49 Million Luxury Apartments Coming to West St. Louis County
(Construction Forum STL, 9/21/15)
A long dormant tract of land in the heart of West St. Louis County is awakening with the construction of a new $49 million luxury apartment with numerous amenities. The Residences at Sunset Ridge is a joint venture project by TriStar Properties and Propper Construction Services. The 254-unit apartment is emerging on an 11-acre track northwest of I-270 and Manchester Road along Des Peres Road. It is the largest project being built within a $100 million mixed-use development that will also feature an assisted living facility, office and a planned hotel. Residences at Sunset Ridge will open late summer 2016. >> CLICK FOR MORE
St. Louis Children’s Hospital receives grant from Hyundai for cancer research
(KTVI, 9/22/15)
St. Louis Children`s Hospital will be able to further its research in fighting childhood cancer thanks to a generous grant Tuesday from Hyundai. Children`s received a $250,000 grant from the philanthropic branch of the Hyundai car company called Hyundai Hope on Wheels. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Mississippi River economic impact twice the expectation, mayors conclude
(Illinois Business Journal, 9/23/15)
A Mississippi River mayors group, which includes two from Metro East, says that revenue generated by the river is $405 billion, supporting 1.3 million jobs — significantly higher than anticipated. More than two dozen river mayors were in Dubuque attending a three-day meeting this week for the Mississippi River Cities & Towns Initiative, a mayoral-led effort comprised of 68 mayors committed to creating a coordinated voice for the Mississippi River.>> CLICK FOR MORE
What’s the big deal? IKEA is
(BND Magazine, 9/24/15)
The vastness of the new IKEA in St. Louis was hard to envision as I stood on the parking lot Wednesday. Two hours later, my tired feet knew just how big it was: 380,000 square feet (about six football fields) filled with display rooms (46), full model homes (three), a kids’ playland that looked like a cartoon Swedish forest, a cafeteria (seating for 450) and the warehouse. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Fred Weber acquires concrete pipe businesses from J.H. Berra
(St. Louis Business Journal, 9/23/15)
Fred Weber Inc. has acquired two businesses that manufacture concrete pipes from J.H. Berra Construction. The acquisition of Beco Concrete Products and Independent Concrete Pipe adds a new product to Weber's portfolio. Beco's customers include the Missouri and Illinois departments of transportation and the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District.>> CLICK FOR MORE
A-B acquiring LA's Golden Road Brewing
(St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/23/15)
Golden Road Brewing, the largest craft brewery in Los Angeles County, is being acquired by Anheuser-Busch. Golden Road Brewing will join A-B's high-end business unit that includes other craft brewers acquired across the country — Goose Island Beer Co., Blue Point Brewing, 10 Barrel Brewing and Elysian Brewing. Last month, A-B announced its Goose Island subsidiary is acquiring a majority stake in Michigan-based Virtue Cider.  >> CLICK FOR MORE
Pagedale to see new movie theatre and health services in community
(KTVI, 9/22/15)
If all goes as planned, Pagedale could see revitalization along Page and Ferguson Avenue around the 6800 block for a project called Pagedale Town Center. The project is the brain child of Beyond Housing, a developer of affordable housing. The non-profit became a commercial developer in 2010 with the construction of a Save-A-Lot grocery store that now serves the low income of Pagedale and the surrounding communities.. >> CLICK FOR MORE
Stay Tuned: Forward Through Ferguson
(Nine Network of Public Media, 9/25/15)
The Ferguson Commission released its “unflinching” report last week with many calls to action. Members of the commission insist the report won’t just collect dust on a shelf and noted that the hard work fixing issues that have plagued our region for years is just beginning. Tonight at 7:00 p.m. on Stay Tuned on Nine PBS, two Ferguson Commission members discuss their work. Rasheen Aldridge and Sgt. Kevin Ahlbrand seemingly couldn’t come from farther apart in terms of their viewpoints but ended up being friends and working together to do the hard work on the commission. They built a friendship from the unlikeliest circumstances. Says Aldridge about Ahlbrand: “He wasn’t the first person I wanted to have coffee with, but I do appreciate Kevin for extending that handout. It was something that at the beginning really changed the outcome of our relationship.” Adds Ahlbrand about Aldridge, “Reforming broken relationships and creating new ones is the key for all this to begin.” >> CLICK FOR MORE
Boutique burned to ground in Ferguson unrest to get $20,000 gift before reopening
(St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/22/15)
Juanita's Fashions R Boutique, burned to the ground in the Ferguson unrest last November, will get a financial boost Tuesday from Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc. The group will give $20,000 to fuel the store as it prepares to reopen in a new spot.>> CLICK FOR MORE
Beyond the report: Ferguson Commission seeks applications for group that would follow its work
(St. Louis Public Radio, 9/22/15)
The Ferguson Commission is looking for a group that will help follow through with its policy recommendations. The commission’s final report called for major changes to the region’s health care, education and policing policies. And since the commission is set to expire on Dec. 31, Commissioners want to find an existing organization that will monitor efforts to implement those ideas.  >> CLICK FOR MORE