The PDC has designated Jennifer Nolfi as their official liasion to the bicycle industry. She will travel to Las Vegas next week to attend the Interbike bicycle industry trade show and attempt to recruit new bike companies to Portland.
Last month I attended a meeting to learn about the PDC’s role in promoting Portland bicycle industry and their plans to move the effort forward. At the table was Nolfi and reps from the City of Portland, Alta Planning, and Commissioner Adams‘ Office.
Here’s what came out of that meeting:
- An advisory committee will be formed to provide industry input/guidance on short and long-term strategies to grow the industry, as well as to help identify resources, partnerships, etc.
- Nolfi will meet with individual business owners to help better understand their needs, challenges, and barriers and to identify potential solutions to help those businesses expand.
- Nolfi will attend Interbike to look for recruitment opportunities.
I met with Nolfi again recently to get an update on her work and her plans for Interbike.
Nolfi said she has heard many exciting ideas including; sponsoring business workshops, setting up a bike industry alliance group, and starting a bike builder’s co-operative. She is also working on a new loan program to help get some of the smaller companies off the ground.
As for Interbike, here’s what Nolfi said about her plans:
“My objective in going to Interbike is three fold: meet with Oregon companies or at least touch base with them; meet with companies that have an interest in expanding, relocating or opening a distribution center in the Portland region; and to met with industry leaders to spread the word that Portland is open for business and that cycling is a key industry for us. We do have some meetings already scheduled.”
Interbike is one of the largest bike industry conventions in the world and Nolfi has a long list of companies she hopes to woo to Portland. She also said that next year the PDC and the City of Portland might have their own booth that would showcase our local bike industry.
Transportation Commissioner Sam Adams—who spear-headed the bike industry resolution—is also hoping to send a representative to Interbike. As of this morning, they’re still working out their plans.
Portland is serious about this initiative and I’m sure there will be some exciting developments in the next few months. Stay tuned…
Check out my list of Portland-based bike companies.