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  • Lakeshore Advantage Releases 2015 Business Intelligence Report Investment In Innovation, Growing Sales & Talent Challenges Are Key Highlights

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    July 15, 2015
    Lakeshore Advantage Releases 2015 Business Intelligence Report
    Investment In Innovation, Growing Sales & Talent Challenges Are Key Highlights
    Ottawa County, MI- July 13, 2015 -- Lakeshore Advantage recently announced the release of its 2015 Business Intelligence Report. This information, developed from more than 180 one-on-one conversations with primary businesses throughout Otttawa and northern Allegan counties, shows businesses expect growth to continue.
    “Our business intelligence gathering system allows our team to customize support to meet business trends, challenges and opportunities,” said Jennifer Owens, president, Lakeshore Advantage. “Overall the sales and investment outlook is very positive for our region. However, talent constraints continue to be the number one economic development challenge facing our growing businesses.”
    The Business Intelligence information illustrates how investment in research and development by local companies has played a key role in their continuing success. Eighty-five percent of companies providing insight expect to release new products or services in the next two years.
    The R&D investment and innovative thinking leads to new, ground breaking product developments and new sales.  Seventy-seven percent of area companies expect increasing sales in the year ahead. Of those forecasting increasing sales, more than half have seen increased sales from international markets.
    While a majority of companies project continued growth and the development of new products, many have identified talent acquisition as their greatest challenge. Ottawa County’s unemployment has dropped to a level not seen since 2005.  Seventy-six percent of companies are reporting challenges with talent recruitment.
    In response to the talent challenge, Lakeshore Advantage is working with the Ottawa Area Intermediate School District on the futurePrep’dSM program to connect students with over 30 participating companies. This summer, futurePrep’dSM iChallenge U teams are working with 13 area companies to gain a deeper understanding of a variety of career opportunities. 
    Lakeshore Advantage, the West Coast Chamber of Commerce and the Grand Haven Chamber are hosting a series of intern education events throughout the summer.  The events, targeting over 400 college interns, are designed to help them understand why West Michigan should be their choice for employment. You can find more about this at: facebook.com/MichiganSmartCoast
    “This is the fifth year Lakeshore Advantage has published its Business Intelligence Report driven by the Synchronist Business Information System.  The national data analytics tool is used by economic development organizations throughout the country.
    You can find the full Business Intelligence Report at www.lakeshoreadvantage.com.
    About Lakeshore Advantage
    Lakeshore Advantage is a non-profit organization that catalyzes business growth in West Michigan. In 2014, Lakeshore Advantage efforts brought $10.5 million in value to Ottawa County companies in 52 growth projects resulting in over $250 million in new private sector investment.  Our team links area companies with the tools and resources needed for continued growth in Ottawa and northern Allegan counties.
    Jennifer Owens
    (616) 772-5226
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