How Colorado Companies Can Take Advantage of the Current Business Climate
Favorable business circumstances: Geographic resources, affordability, access to capital and more
The rolling Rocky Mountains, river canyons and national parks are enough to attract flocks of tourists year-round to the Centennial state, but a thriving economic environment is what’s enticing them to stay. Colorado is ranked as having the No. 1 economy in the nation by U.S. News & World Report and the market continues to grow, impacted by the state’s geographic resources, affordability, job opportunities and access to capital and government incentives for businesses.
Companies of all sizes that are based in Colorado – from startups to mid-size companies and large corporations – are capitalizing on the favorable business circumstances, whether completing an acquisition, opening a new manufacturing facility, going public or investing in technology. New industry hubs are springing up throughout the state and new business filings in the third quarter increased by 9 percent year-over-year. With a growing tech sector in Denver and Boulder, out-of-state businesses are relocating their headquarters to Colorado, and more tech companies are launching in downtown Denver to compete for talent. Additionally, there is significant growth in the aerospace and defense, life sciences, health and wellness and renewable energy industries. And with one of the top airports in the nation, foreign multinational companies are increasingly investing in the region.
WHAT DOES DENVER HAVE TO OFFER TECH PROFESSIONALS?
As the business landscape evolves and new talent and industries continue to enter the market, what should companies be thinking about now to stay competitive into 2019?
- INVEST IN TALENT
Colorado’s dynamic landscape is attracting a wave of millennials and companies across industries are relocating parts of their operations from places like Seattle and San Francisco to the state’s major cities. This influx is causing an increasing need for more workforce housing and new office space, evolving the communities of Denver, Colorado Springs, Fort Collins and Boulder.
Also, development programs like CareerWise Colorado are working to help close remaining skills gaps. Over the next few years, one of the biggest challenges for local companies will be creating an environment where employees want to work. To stay ahead of the curve, businesses should factor in housing proximity when choosing or building new office locations.
- THINK GLOBALLY
Denver is increasingly becoming a notable (air)port city, propelling its cross-border growth. With the expansion of the Denver airport planned through 2021, both domestic companies with global aspirations and foreign multinational companies with U.S. growth plans are setting up shop here to attract new customers and talent. More than half of American mid-sized business leaders are active in the global marketplace and 71 percent expect their overseas sales to increase in the next five years, according to a JPMorgan Chase study. Some of these companies are looking for merger and acquisition opportunities to fuel international growth. All businesses should be thinking about ways to scale their companies and plan for future growth opportunities cross-borders.
- EMBRACE EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES
New technologies are disrupting every industry and have the potential to evolve the way companies do business. However, some organizations are holding back on adapting. When it comes to banking and payments, the majority — 95 percent — of business leaders still cite paper checks as the most common form of payment, despite the digital solutions available to boost efficiency. Learning about and adapting to new technology trends, like artificial intelligence and machine learning, can transform businesses, streamlining processes to improving the client experience, helping companies save time and money.
- PREPARE FOR RAPID GROWTH + THE LONG-TERM
New businesses are entering Colorado at various stages in their life cycles and some are experiencing rapid growth. The key to remaining competitive is working with the right partners to plan for all stages of a company’s lifecycle. Having access to comprehensive financial solutions – whether its balance sheet solutions, cash management, international banking or investment banking – will help companies grow into their futures.
Colorado’s business landscape will continue to be ripe for growth. However, with rising interest rates, the evolving local political landscape and changing regulations, making sure that capital structures will withstand any cycle is critical. Moving forward, companies will need to invest in talent, embrace new technologies, identify the right partners and plan for long-term growth with a global outlook, to be successful in such a fast-changing economy.
Chris Jensen is the region manager for Middle Market Banking and Jeff Bloomquist is managing director for Corporate Client Banking