The Select LA 2017 Investment Summit received overwhelmingly positive feedback from local and international attendees. 37 speakers provided insights and expertise to grow foreign investment into LA County. The event attracted 493 registered attendees from 27 countries, where 41% were international attendees and over 60% were key decision makers at their respective organizations.
The in-depth panel discussion covered topics for traditionally strong industries such as entertainment, aerospace and defense, and real estate in addition to industries that are the foundation for LA’s new economy like technology, bioscience, and advanced transportation. The list of notable federal and local government speakers included Deputy Director General of the U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service Sarah Kemp, LA County Supervisor Kathryn Barger, LA Mayor Eric Garcetti and LA City Councilmember David Ryu.
The Rise of Silicon Beach and LA'S Emerging Hubs
In 2017, Inc. Magazine designated Los Angeles as the second most innovative region in the entire country. While many international investors look towards Silicon Valley for the US tech industry, a strong network of venture capital and creative entrepreneurs are showing that Los Angeles can no longer be overlooked as a tech hub. From rethinking the way solar energy can be stored, to personal assistants that employ artificial intelligence, this panel showcased what success looks like in the region’s incredibly diverse technology sector.
The Expansion of LA’S Bioscience Industry Cluster
The bioscience industry has garnered much attention recently as an influx of businesses have planted roots in Los Angeles and outside the traditional locales of San Diego and San Francisco. This session discussed the intersection of healthcare and technology and the importance of industry-related investments that has become one of the hottest industry clusters in LA County. Biocom, Larta Institute, Grifols Biological and NantHealth highlighted a few companies in the cluster’s vanguard as well as strong organizational and educational support that make-up this growing industry.
FDI Report Presentation
This report highlighted the changes from the inaugural report on foreign direct investment throughout Southern California, and took a deeper dive into the almost 10,000 foreign companies located in the six-county region (Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego and Ventura). The report’s clustering analysis revealed that cities with relatively higher concentrations of foreign-owned establishments have statistically larger labor forces, and lower unemployment rates, in addition to higher 3-year sales volumes than foreign-owned establishments in cities with lower concentrations. The presentation also revealed WTCLA’s new GIS tool, created by California State University at Northridge that maps all 9,964 foreign establishments throughout Southern California.
The Resurgence of the Aerospace Industry in Southern California
A recent LA Times article quoted CEO of Vector Space Systems Jim Cantrell saying, “There’s probably more rocket engine and launch vehicle expertise in Southern California than anywhere else in the United States or probably the world.” With the likes of SpaceX and Virgin Galactic calling Southern California home, a new frontier of the aerospace industry is here. This panel discussed what this new dimension means for Los Angeles, the country and the world with leaders from JPL, Interorbital Systems, Boeing and Starburst Accelerator.
Power Infrastructure and the Role of Advanced Transportation
With the surge of electric vehicle manufacturing and the advent of future transportation systems like hyperloop extending beyond personal use and to mass transit applications around Los Angeles, advanced transportation will be a cornerstone to the region’s new economy. This session brought together foreign companies in electric vehicle creation and charging solutions to understand how their leveraging this growing ecosystem. LA Metro provided a glimpse into the coming opportunities for transportation infrastructure in the city, and Hyperloop Transportation Technologies shined a light on what the future of goods movement might look like.
LA Real Estate Market: Growth and Opportunity
The final panel at Select LA discussed the ever-growing real estate investments from abroad and the form they are taking. The processes by which the investments were made and lessons learned were relayed by Gemdale, Trammel Crow and Shanghai Greenland executives. Deputy Mayor Doane Liu provided nuance to the conversation with his remarks regarding potential improvements to the LA Convention Center. Spencer Levy of CBRE opened the session with a presentation about the impacts of current macroeconomic and political shifts on the real estate industry.
The World Trade Center Los Angeles would like to recognize and extend its warmest thanks to this year's sponsors, including Title Sponsors American Airlines, Blank Rome LLP, Cathay Bank; Reception Sponsor International Vitamin Corporation; Presenting Sponsors JPMorgan Chase & Co, O’Melveny & Meyers; Media Sponsor Los Angeles Business Journal.