Press Club

This article was written by Arlington Economic Development.

Arlington is an innovative and forward-thinking community. Our business community is comprised of many high-tech industries that are innovating in their fields, while also leading the way in sustainability. Arlington boasts more than 17 million square feet of certified green development.

Arlington is the first community in the nation to be certified LEED Platinum and is a nationally recognized leader in creating a sustainable and resilient urban environment. Our residents, businesses and government work collectively to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, combat climate change and promote energy efficiency — with an eye toward the ambitious goal of carbon neutrality by 2050. We take our environmental responsibilities seriously and encourage citizens, businesses and government agencies to be “green” in all they do.

For our business development, we’ve adopted a voluntary green building program that offers site plan developers bonus density in exchange for (at least) LEED Gold certification, additional energy requirements and other environmental components in an effort to encourage developers to build high-performance green buildings to reduce environmental impacts. This program uses the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED® green building rating system as a standard to measure the comprehensive green approach of each project.

And it’s a philosophy that is Countywide, not just for our businesses. Arlington’s Department of Environmental Services is always looking at new and innovative methods of recycling. The Arlington Solar and Electric Vehicle Charger Co-op offers opportunities for those interested in using solar power. Our transportation initiatives look at cleaner and accessible public transit; in fact, more than half of Arlington commuters travel to work via transit, bike or on foot.

Urban agriculture is taking hold to create new, sustainable ways of creating fresh food in our urban community. And Arlington’s Green Home Choice provides free professional project consulting on home energy efficiency, comfort, water efficiency, indoor air quality and other sustainability measures.

In recent years, companies have put a greater emphasis on sustainability when making location and real estate decisions. Here in Arlington, that commitment to sustainability is already a way of life, and we continue to strengthen that commitment every day.

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This article was written by Adam Henry, CEcD, Senior Business Development Manager for Arlington Economic Development.

This month Arlington Economic Development is celebrating innovation month — a time to celebrate all the innovative companies that call Arlington home.

Coming off a record-breaking year for venture capital investment in the United States, the first quarter of 2022 showed a lot of promise for Arlington-based companies seeking capital to launch and grow their innovative products and services. In total, Arlington-based companies saw five venture capital raises totaling $129.2 million in funding. Notable raises from this quarter include:

Since 2020, Arlington-based companies have raised $829.6 million in venture funding across 54 deals. Funding for local companies remained robust for the last three quarters, as over $125 million was raised in Q3 2021, Q4 2021 and Q1 2022, respectively.

Looking at the North American landscape of venture capital, startup investments declined by 11 percent in the first quarter of 2022, the first decline in nearly two years according to Crunchbase. The most notable decrease comes from early-stage investments (Series A and B).

According to Crunchbase, “Investors put a total of $26.3 billion into early-stage startups in North America in Q1, down 22 percent from the prior quarter.” According to the National Venture Capital Association’s Pitchbook-NVCA Venture Monitor for Q1 2022, Metro DC logged 94 venture deals totaling $1.78 billion this past quarter, up slightly from 95 deals with a total value of $1.1 billion in Q4 2021. Nationally, NVCA estimates that the United States saw 4,822 deals totaling $70.7 billion in Q1 2022.

As the innovation ecosystem continues to grow in Arlington, access to venture capital will remain a critical component to further establishing the community as a nationally recognized hub for innovation in the United States.

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This article was written by Conor Courtney, Strategic Initiatives Manager for Arlington Economic Development.

Associates, bachelor’s and master’s degrees traditionally dominate the education component of workforce development. However, a lesser-known alternative is poised for tremendous growth and opportunity: continuing education programs. Companies choose to locate in Arlington because of its highly-educated workforce, making Arlington a prime destination for continuing education programs.

What are Continuing Education Programs?

Continuing education encompasses any post-secondary education that degree-holding professionals pursue. These programs are agile, affordable, responsive and customizable, showcasing their importance in a rapidly changing economy. They come in various formats, including micro-credentialed programs, industry certificates and customized courses based on company needs.

Such programs can last anywhere from two weeks to a semester, and you no longer must enroll in a multi-year program to reap the benefits. Employers, universities and working professionals have a unique opportunity to further higher education’s role in workforce development.

The Learner’s Perspective

Newly acquired skills from a continuing education program can unlock immediate career growth potential. Several universities even offer self-paced courses to meet the time constraints of many working professionals. Acquiring new and relevant skills for your profession dramatically increases your earning and career growth potential. Perhaps you are looking to change careers but don’t want to spend tens of thousands of dollars for a new degree; continuing education programs help break down those barriers. They equip you with industry-relevant skills, grow your professional network and increase your marketability.

The Employer’s Perspective

Investing in your employees is not a new concept, but identifying how to invest in your employees is not always straightforward. Employers, especially those in rapidly changing industries, need their employees to constantly adapt and grow to meet industry demands. Offering continuing education programs to employees is a strategic investment that can produce immediate and long-term benefits.

Your employees will learn cutting-edge technologies and best practices within weeks, improve retention and identify your company’s future leaders. Some universities even offer custom employer cohort programs, where the employer and university collaborate in developing a tailored curriculum for that specific employer.

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This article is sponsored by Arlington Economic Development in partnership with Arlington Transportation Partners.

Is your workplace located within three miles of I-66 inside the beltway? Are your employees stuck in traffic on I-66? If this is the case, then you may want to consider joining the Sustain & Save commuter benefit program to help the environment, to improve your team’s wellbeing and save money.

The Sustain & Save* program is a unique commuter benefit program where employees who commute alone on I-66 and pay tolls can receive $100 each month they commit to a sustainable commute. By switching from driving to one of the eligible options you are taking a vehicle off the road or helping your company to improve employee retention. Eligible options include public transit, carpooling, vanpooling, walking or biking.

Companies enrolled in Sustain & Save will receive support for those who are currently going into the office, those who are considering it, or if the return to office date is a couple months away.

Start today with our quick enrollment process:

  • Reach out to a Commute66 rep to express your interest in Sustain & Save
  • Meet with a Commute66 rep to verify your company is qualified
  • Sign the Employer Participation Form

Commute66 has strived to make a low-maintenance program for enrolled companies. To achieve this, Commute66 manages the program, the enrollment of individual participants, and the covers the monetary contribution.

*Sustain & Save is I-66’s incentive program managed by Commute66 — an Arlington County and Northern Virginia Transportation Commission initiative to provide transit consultation to businesses and properties located inside the beltway along the I-66 corridor respond to the Transform66 Program.

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This article was written by Conor Courtney, Strategic Initiatives Manager for Arlington Economic Development.

Recently, Arlington Economic Development (AED) hosted the winter edition of its Arlington Premiere. Arlington Premiere is a semi-annual event welcoming Arlington’s newest businesses — connecting new business owners with County resources, business improvement district contacts, the Arlington Chamber of Commerce, and community leaders and resource partners.

In the second half of 2021, 620 new businesses received an Arlington business license, up slightly from the 511 business licenses issued over the same period in 2020. While starting a new business during a pandemic may be particularly challenging, the Arlington business community maintains its resilience.

Because the in-person networking experience of past Arlington Premieres cannot be replicated virtually, AED has chosen, rather, to highlight interested businesses in the hopes of gaining community support for their new ventures.

AED remains optimistic that our spring event will be in-person — please be sure to follow Arlington Economic Development on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to stay in the loop on future opportunities to meet Arlington’s newest businesses.

Check out and support some of Arlington’s new businesses:

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This article was written by Arlington Economic Development.

Two years into a global pandemic, the way people work has been permanently altered and the commercial real estate market is in the preliminary stages of determining how the changes will impact future office building utilization.

As the public health situation continues evolving, companies and commercial real estate brokers are still working through the structure and timing of return-to-work plans, which will ultimately decide the future of the office market. To understand the current dialogue around these decisions, Arlington Economic Development spoke with three local commercial real estate brokers about the key trends they believe will shape the office market in 2022 and beyond.

Health and Wellness 

Health, not surprisingly, is at the top of the list for both potential tenants and property owners. Property owners are, at a minimum, upgrading their buildings to MERV air filters and creating more touchless spaces. Some landlords are even adding air filters to elevators and upgrading their HVAC systems to direct outdoor air systems to circulate more fresh air.

Nick Gregorios, Principal, Avison Young said that his clients are also thinking beyond air filter upgrades to maximizing outdoor spaces. “In the past, a landlord might consider basic furnishings for an outdoor space for their tenants to utilize, but now what we’re starting to see is thoughtful, deliberate design of those areas with architects to make them functional for outdoor meetings and collaboration, essentially an extension of the office,” Gregorios said. “Landlords are also creating more private outdoor areas that are reserved for a particular tenant.”

Personal wellness is also becoming a leading priority for tenants. Peloton bikes are becoming much more common in gyms and property owners are even creating private gym spaces. “An employee could reserve a private room with a Peloton bike from 1 to 2 p.m. and then the janitorial staff comes in to clean it for the next person,” Gregorios said.

Ken Biberaj, Managing Director, Savills North America said personal health also extends to people’s food choices at work. “Sweetgreen delivery outposts are just as popular in buildings as Peloton bikes so employees can order food and it will be right downstairs, just like at home,” he said.

The Office Experience 

Along the same lines as the custom outdoor spaces and personal wellness offerings, the office of the future will also be more experiential now that the office must compete with the home environment.

“If the purpose of the office is going to be more about collaboration and coming together, then inherently it’s going to be a little bit more about hospitality,” said Biberaj. “So as people are thinking about getting back, part of it is creating an ecosystem that warrants people actually getting up and leaving their home.”

Companies may shrink their footprints to create this new experiential space, but they are going to be more willing to upgrade to a higher-quality space in a prime location that provides the amenities that employees want.

“We are seeing an acceleration of “flight to quality” within the office ecosystem, demonstrated by factors such as building access to extensive retail, adjacency to metro and mass transit, high-end building amenities, views and natural light, and building efficiency,” Gregorios said.

David Cornbrooks, Senior Managing Director, Savills North America said that the Ballston Exchange building in Arlington is a great example of a building that companies may upgrade to for quality. It has numerous collaborative spaces, outdoor areas and is right in the heart of Ballston, across the street from the recently transformed Ballston Quarter and its exciting dining and entertainment offerings.

Arlington is ideally positioned for the shift to the experiential office with its 18-hour, mixed-use development, and proximity to transit. Biberaj said that the value proposition for companies looking at Arlington is similar to pre-pandemic, but “it’s amplified. Amenities you may have taken for granted before now, you really value and appreciate.”

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This article was written by Adam Henry, CEcD, Business Development Manager for Arlington Economic Development.

Venture activity continues to play a critical role to Arlington’s thriving innovation ecosystem, providing capital and strategic investment opportunities for startups and high growth ventures to fuel their expansions.

The 2021 calendar year brought continued uncertainty with the COVID-19 pandemic’s delta and omicron variants, growing inflation, and sustained global supply chain issues that impacted many sectors including hospitality, restaurants and construction. On a positive note, Arlington-based businesses continued to thrive with venture capital raises, mergers and acquisitions, and initial public offerings (IPOs) which equate to more commercial leases and employment for the community.

According to data collected from Pitchbook.com and independent media sources, Arlington-headquartered companies were involved in more than 30 deals totaling more than $2.5 billion from venture capital raises, mergers and acquisitions, strategic corporate investments and other activity.

Specifically, venture capital provides investment for startups and high growth ventures that show long-term growth potential which in turn creates a larger industry cluster and generates more employment opportunities in the growing technology sector in Arlington and throughout the region.

In 2021, Arlington companies were involved in 21 venture capital deals totaling over $367.8 million. The most notable raise of the year was Interos’ July 2021 $100 million Series C raise, enabling the company to join an elite group of only 4% of ‘unicorn’ startups not only nationally valued at more than $1 billion but also led by a female founder-CEO. Some other notable raises among Arlington-based companies last year include:

In addition to the dynamic venture capital activity, Arlington companies were also involved in some notable mergers and acquisitions and IPOs.

Despite another turbulent year for business, Arlington-based companies continue to shine in venture activity, which contributes towards establishing the community as a major innovation and entrepreneurial hub nationally. As we continue to see more companies launching, AED is very excited about the prospects of 2022 for startups to raise capital, scale and grow into established companies.

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This article was written by Arlington Economic Development.

In early December, Arlington Economic Development honored the winners of its fastest growing companies competition — known as the Arlington Fast Four. The winners were formally announced and recognized at a small reception at Ballston Local. County Board Chair Matt de Ferranti presented the award to the four winning companies.

Award nominees were privately held companies that showcased sound revenue growth from 2018-2020. Applicants were required to provide income statements to show proof of growth and revenue. The competition recognized the leading companies within four levels of revenue, spanning from $500,000 to $25 million and above per year.

Congratulations to the 2021 Fast Four winners:

  • $500k-$1.5M: Eminent Future (Rosslyn) is a digital product and innovation company that focuses on helping organizations and government agencies revamp business processes and technologies. Eminent Future began operations in Crystal City in 2009 and has since expanded and moved to Rosslyn, with a client roster that includes the Department of Defense, Air Force as well as nonprofits such as Global Village. This is the second Fast Four win for Eminent Future. See what CEO Jose Risi says was key to Eminent Future’s growth.
  • $1.5M-$5M: GoTab (Ballston) empowers consumers with contactless technology that puts them in control. GoTab operators run lean, profitable hospitality operations like contactless ordering, contactless payment and a QR-based Point of Sale system. It’s a favorite tool of a number of Arlington restaurants. Find out what CEO Tim McLaughlin says contributed to GoTab’s growth.
  • $5M-$25M: Quantitative Scientific Solutions (Ballston) is a scientific and technical consulting and data analytics firm that supports Federal, State, local and commercial clients with science and technology needs. Clients include the Office of Naval Research in Ballston, NASA and the U.S. Army to name a few.  Hear Founding Partner Dr. David Guarrera’s thoughts on business in Arlington.
  • $25M and above: Fors Marsh Group (Ballston) combines the power of research and strategy to solve social, commercial, and health-related challenges. In business since 2002, it has applied science and strategy to create positive behavior changes in people and program improvements in government. As a B Corporation, FMG governs from a unique set of values that compound the positive impact achieved for employees, clients and partners. See what CEO Ben Garthwaite says about growing his business.

Arlington is fortunate to have companies like these that drive growth and innovation in our region while solving some of the world’s greatest challenges.

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This article was written by Susan Soroko, of Arlington Economic Development.

What better time to shop local? This season’s Arlington holiday pop-up markets will put shoppers in control of supply chain, delivery and all the unique factors needed for gift giving.

Handmade holiday gifts that are Made in Arlington range from boutique soaps and scrubs by All that Yazz that are free of palm oil to unforgettable chocolate and finely crafted furniture. Spread out over several weeks, the variety of makers and artisans will fill practically every gift need thanks to these new market partnerships.

Starting on December 4, the entire loop of The Crossing Clarendon will be a wonderland filled with Made in Arlington vendors alongside artisans from across the area. Kingsbury Chocolates has been a favorite of the Courthouse Plaza Made in Arlington pop-ups and will be there with an array of sweet treats. Ready to splurge on hand crafted furniture? You won’t want to miss custom woodworker Jeff Spugnardi.

November 30 kicked off another chance to get smart about shopping with six evening pop-ups at Arlington’s George Mason University Van Metre Hall. Check out more Arlington makers like Adriana Jaramillo from Trapillo Art. Her beautiful baskets and containers from recycled fabrics are first rate. Cooler weather is the perfect time to be kind to your skin. Who wouldn’t want organic skincare with a French accent from Elodie’s Naturals?

Capping off the season of pop-ups is the National Landing Business Improvement District (BID). Creative makers from all over the area will gather on Friday, December 17, 5-10 p.m. and Saturday, December 18, 12-5 p.m. Sponsored by JBG SMITH and the National Landing BID, this market is a curatorial partnership between DCBB Productions and Bun’d Up.

Vendor registration is now open (until filled).

Sneak peek: get a glimpse of fine craftsmanship from new Arlington maker Voyage Bag Works. Beautiful, ecofriendly, durable and designed for all of life’s journeys.

Feeling floral for the holidays? Let’s not forget custom arrangements from Arlington florists. Too fragile to withstand outdoor markets, but perfect for a scent of spectacular. Among them, Tiny Bloom Shop, HB Fiori, Prive Roses and  Company Flowers to name a few.

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This article was written by Arlington Economic Development. In honoring our veterans this week, we would like to share a wonderful program the Commonwealth of Virginia sponsors in support of those leaving the military seeking employment.

Did you know the Commonwealth of Virginia is one of the most veteran-friendly states in the nation?

Virginia is comprised of the most veteran-owned small businesses in the country. Not so surprising considering Virginia is home to the Pentagon in Arlington and the world’s largest naval base in Norfolk. There are hundreds of thousands of active-duty service members serving within the Commonwealth’s borders and many have chosen to call Virginia home upon leaving the military.

With more than 750,000 veterans located in Virginia, the Commonwealth has had the fastest growing veteran labor force over the past 5 years and is projected to continue to have the fastest growing veteran population over the next few years.

With such a highly skilled and adaptable workforce living here, Virginia recognizes the opportunity to promote veteran talent to the civilian workforce and to help businesses become more successful by focusing on hiring the right people for the job.

One such initiative, the Virginia Values Veterans (V3) Program, provides education, training and connectivity resources to assist companies to implement nationally recognized best practices in recruiting, hiring and retaining veterans. Virginia companies who have completed all V3 training requirements and have submitted a veteran hiring plan will be recognized as an official “V3-Certified Company.”

Furthermore, V3 qualified companies with fewer than 300 employees may qualify for up to $10,000 in grants, with $1,000 being awarded per eligible veteran that is hired and retained for at least one year.

There are more than 70 Arlington organizations participating in the V3 Program, from large companies like Nestlé, Boeing and Lockheed Martin to mid- and small-size companies like Ideal Innovations, Millennium Corporation, Lunarline and Cydecor.

We encourage Arlington companies to consider becoming V3 certified to seize the opportunity to find the workforce they need within the veteran community

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This article was written by Arlington Economic Development.

Arlington Economic Development is proud to announce its seventh annual Fast Four Awards. The award program honors the fastest growing companies in the Arlington business community and recognizes their success, creativity, and in this year’s edition, resiliency in the face of the global pandemic.

The Fast Four Awards honor Arlington companies that are exhibiting significant revenue growth in the following four annual revenue categories:

  • $500,000 to $1.5M
  • $1.5M to $5M
  • $5M to $25M
  • $25M and above

To be eligible, companies must be privately held, non-retail, headquartered in Arlington and show continuous revenue growth between 2018, 2019 and 2020.

Interested companies must submit a simple online application and provide income statements to show proof of growth and revenue. The company with the fastest growth rate in each revenue category will be honored as one of Arlington’s fastest growing businesses. Applications are due by midnight on Friday, November 12, 2021.

The winners from the previous edition of the Fast Four Award winners were:

(Awards were not held in 2020 due to the pandemic)

The 2021 Arlington Fast Four winners will be announced virtually during the week of December 6. Please follow Arlington Economic Development on LinkedIn to see which companies take home the prize.

Arlington companies may apply for the 2021 Fast Four Awards here.

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