2023 Impact Report
East Bay Resilience & Innovation
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From the Executive Director
In 2023, the East Bay economy was impacted by a variety of forces and trends as our region continued to emerge from the impacts of the past few years. While topline economic and employment numbers showed considerable resilience, several notable companies experienced reductions in their workforce due to uncertainty about future economic conditions. Industries conducive to remote work experienced shifts that reduced demand for office space, presenting difficult questions about future development and commercial real estate valuations. Higher interest rates cooled the white-hot Bay Area housing market while also making it more expensive for developers to secure financing for projects. It was a difficult year for many East Bay small businesses as they grappled with higher costs, softening demand, and growing public safety concerns that shifted choices around dining, recreation, shopping, and more.
Heading into 2024, East Bay EDA will continue to provide timely information and leadership on key issues impacting our region. We will continue to highlight the opportunities and innovation shaping the East Bay. We invite you to join our network of business, civic, and elected leaders to ensure that our region’s economy remains strong and vibrant.
Executive Director, East Bay EDA
East Bay by the Numbers
East Bay Economy
The East Bay is home to the 50th largest economy in the world. At $267.7 Billion, it is roughly equivalent in size to Peru or Portugal.
Through 2022, the East Bay raised $7.54 billion and had the smallest year-over-year decline in funding in the Bay Area (-8%)
East Bay Jobs
Between November 2022 and November 2023, the total number of jobs located in the East Bay increased by 17,200 or 1.4 percent.
Resilient East Bay
The East Bay continues to be one of the nation’s leading manufacturing regions. The Resilient East Bay initiative seeks to enhance connectivity and advance partnerships between business, education, government, and others to ensure that our manufacturing ecosystem receives ongoing investment and support.
THE RESILIENT EAST BAY WEBSITE
At its annual membership meeting on October 18, 2023, the East Bay Economic Development Alliance (East Bay EDA) unveiled Resilient East Bay, a website designed as a resource to support the region’s key innovation industries: biomedical, clean tech, electronics, food and beverage, and transportation, which spans across 3,500 businesses, 150,000 jobs, and contributed over $40.7 billion in GRP in 2022. The website will serve a broad range of stakeholders, such as manufacturers, public agencies, industry associations, and others interested in this work. Key features of the evergreen website include industry profiles and recommendations to support the East Bay’s innovation ecosystem.
INVESTING IN EAST BAY INDUSTRIAL AREAS
On June 28, 2023, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission awarded pilot grants to the East Bay Economic Development Alliance (East Bay EDA) and Contra Costa County to advance their Priority Production Areas (PPA), which are regional growth areas that have been prioritized for economic development investments and a key part of MTC Plan Bay Area’s broader effort to achieve a better jobs-housing balance across the Bay Area. The East Bay’s industrial employment lands are one of the region’s greatest strategic advantages within the greater Bay Area, offering incomparable quantity and diversity of industrial land uses and buildings compared to the rest of the region.
EAST BAY INNOVATION TOURS
In April and May, East Bay EDA hosted exclusive tours of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and Tesla Fremont Factory. These tours provided an opportunity for our members and partners to get an inside look at the innovation and cutting-edge technology developing in the East Bay. At LLNL, the tour included a visit to the National Ignition Facility (NIF), the world class facility that made headlines in 2022 for achieving fusion ignition in a laboratory setting, and a visit to the Advanced Manufacturing Lab (AML), which facilitates partnerships between LLNL, industry, and academia to address manufacturing challenges across a range of commercial and government projects.
CONNECTING MANUFACTURING SECTORS
East Bay EDA was excited to work with a team of local officials from the Consulate General of Mexico in San Francisco to host members of a Mexican trade mission, including representatives of state governments, municipal authorities, mayors and business leaders on a tour of Laney College’s highly-acclaimed Machine Technology and other training programs in the skilled trades on Friday, March 3, 2023. This group, which was organized out of the Congress for the Internationalization of Mexican Municipalities (CIMM), came to the Bay Area to explore opportunities for trade, cooperation, and investment at the state and municipal levels, and to strengthen connections between companies operating in California.
MEET THE INNOVATORS
Meet the Innovators was East Bay EDA’s 2023 speaker and networking and event series highlighting innovative companies and organizations in the East Bay. These events provided an opportunity to hear from business leaders, East Bay Innovation Awards alumni, and network with industry professionals. 2023 events included Emeryville, San Ramon, Richmond, and Hayward. Read the blog posts below to learn more about each showcase.
MEET THE INNOVATORS RECAP
EAST BAY NOW
On September 14, East Bay EDA had the pleasure of hosting East Bay NOW at Uptown Station in Oakland. It was an exclusive evening dedicated to celebrating innovation in the East Bay, covering its past, present, and promising future. This event marked the culmination of our Meet the Innovators series and the kick-off of the 11th Annual 2024 East Bay Innovation Awards nominations, an event that shines a spotlight on pioneering companies and organizations from Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.
MEETINGS & WEBINARS
Our 2023 Annual Membership Meeting, Resilient East Bay, was presented in partnership with Bank of America. We were excited to unveil the new Resilient East Bay website and welcome stakeholders from across the East Bay manufacturing ecosystem. We continued to host virtual webinars, including Education to Workforce Pathways in partnership with Cal State East Bay, The Future of Public Transit in partnership with the Bay Area’s transit agencies, and State of the East Bay with our regional EDO partners.
ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING
East Bay Hot Spots
Launched in partnership with San Francisco Business Times, East Bay Hot Spots is a series highlighting stories from our region’s diverse economy. From innovation to adaptation and growth, this series offers a unique snapshot of the East Bay and its innovative subregions. Read these features on our blog.
CENTRAL ALAMEDA COUNTY
The East Bay cities of Hayward and San Leandro are among the oldest communities in our region and state. Centered in the heart of some of our region’s most important infrastructure that led to the Bay Area’s early development and growth, they are home to key industrial lands that have helped to support and sustain their economic significance. Even in the face of considerable economic changes, these two cities have been remarkably resilient, effectively harnessing the power of their industrial past. By using their shared legacies, they have been able to pivot toward a future driven by innovative companies that are creating the industries of tomorrow.
SOUTHERN ALAMEDA COUNTY
Over the past several months, the East Bay Economic Development Alliance (East Bay EDA) has been leading a study of industrial lands and the companies that occupy them. A few notable findings of this work so far has been the impressive 71.1 million square feet of industrial inventory and more than 60,000 industrial jobs in southern Alameda County, a grouping that includes the advanced manufacturing, life sciences and goods movement sectors. In just these three cities, these industries grew by more than 26,000 jobs, or 77%, in the 10-year period between 2011 and 2021. Beyond the torrential growth of Tesla, whose Fremont factory is now…
NORTHERN ALAMEDA COUNTY
The East Bay cities of Berkeley and Emeryville have been among the region’s hot spots when it comes to supporting growth and innovation in new industries and technologies, particularly in the cleantech, food and life sciences sectors. Drawing from their proximity to University of California, Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, both cities offer a variety of amenities and resources to help aspiring entrepreneurs launch and scale new businesses in emerging fields, including abundant accelerator/incubator and lab spaces, support with commercialization, funding and more.
The city of Richmond has a long and storied history as one of the industrial centers of the Bay Area. Incorporated in 1905, the city has been at the vanguard of many developments, investments and technologies that have defined its past and are now helping to shape a more promising future. From its early days as a transit hub for rail and ferry service to its ensuing growth and legacy as a manufacturing and shipbuilding powerhouse in the mid-20th century, Richmond has seen many economic cycles come and go. Much to the city’s credit, it is now using these experiences to position itself to attract industries of the future…
Sponsors & Partners
East Bay EDA sponsorship provides visibility and engagement around events and initiatives that include the East Bay Innovation Awards, Meet the Innovators, virtual events, and more.
We are a cross-sector, public-private partnership that promotes strategic economic development throughout Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. Our 150+ membership includes business, academic & research institutions, and nonprofits.
2022 Membership Overview
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As a regional voice and networking resource for the East Bay, we strive to provide timely information through our newsletters and social media channels. Follow us on social media for the latest news and information on the East Bay economy and Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.