Is Spokane a High Tech Mecca?

Downtown Spokane web site (July 2010):

Spokane is already home to high-tech firms including General Dynamics, Cyan, Vivato, Telect and Itron. This clustering of mutually beneficial businesses provides a synergism that attracts businesses providing support services to help high-tech companies grow.

That would be a good description of “industry clustering” except that:

  • General Dynamics’ Itronix division in Spokane Valley, Wa, closed in 2009.
  • Vivato of Spokane Valley, Wa closed in 2006.
  • Telect laid off most of its 1,360 local workers and now employs 100+ 80 in Liberty Lake, Wa. (April 7, 2011, Journal of Business, page A17)
  • Cyan Worlds, located outside Spokane in Mead, Wa, has scaled back.
  • Itron moved to Liberty Lake.

Sadly, the “synergism” of “mutually beneficial businesses” has been broken as dozens have left the area or scaled backLess than 1/2 percent of all jobs, for example, involve creating software solutions. According to the Milkin Institute, Spokane ranks very low as a place to run a technology business.

Area promoters have stated since 2004 that downtown is home to 150+ technology-based businesses. It is unclear where the estimate comes from but it was first used and posted on the Fernwell Building web site in 2004 – and the 150 number has remained constant ever since.

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One Response to Is Spokane a High Tech Mecca?

  1. Pingback: Spokane’s High Tech Trend Line « Spokane Economic And Demographic Data

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