*This column appeared first in the QCBJ’s May 2 issue.
It has been gratifying to reflect on the past six months of publishing the Quad Cities Regional Business Journal. After assembling an amazing team of journalists led by Jennifer DeWitt, we started publishing articles online at quadcitiesbusiness.com in December and in our flagship bi-weekly print publication beginning on Jan. 24.
The response from the business community has been overwhelmingly positive.
We are filling a void in the market since the local daily newspapers have drastically cut back on business and regional economic news over the years while also undergoing additional recent staff reductions.
Here’s just a small sampling of the stories we have broken in the market: The City of LeClaire landing a Fareway store; a new hotel planned for the former Clarion Hotel site in downtown Davenport; the City of Moline prepping for its 150th anniversary; and Tappa’s Steakhouse celebrating 40 years in business in west Davenport.
In this issue, we’re breaking Carver Aero’s rebranding to revv aviation; WOE Foods expanding its healthy food line; and a new Lynnie’s Diner opening in Woodhull, Illinois. We’ve also had Q&As with St. Ambrose University President Dr. Amy Novak; John Deere’s Mara Downing; and Doug House, the retired deputy director with Illinois Department of Transportation.
You can expect much more original business news content from us in the coming weeks and months, but please don’t mistake our daily e-newsletters or a trial print subscription as a complete picture of our news coverage. Those e-newsletters will only give you a sliver of our total content. To ensure you get the complete package, you need to become a paid subscriber. Subscribers have access to our online content as well as receive our bi-weekly print publication. Giving away original business news for free is not a good business strategy.
Part of the business journal business model also includes hosting events that celebrate, inform and connect the business community. We held our first event in the Quad Cities called 90 Ideas in 90 Minutes on April 21 at the Adler Theatre in Davenport. We were fortunate to have nine of the region’s most distinguished business and community leaders share 10 of their best ideas. It was an inspiring morning.
It was not lost on me the significance of hosting that first event in a venue named after E.P. Adler and his son Phillip D. Adler. The great local newspaper publishers and philanthropists made the continued legacy of the Adler Theatre possible.
Our next event will be our Mid-Year Economic Review luncheon event on June 15 at the Rhythm City Casino in Davenport with keynote speaker Phil Levy, a distinguished national economist. He will share his research on national and international economic trends with a special emphasis on trade and supply chain challenges. The event also includes a panel discussion of business and community leaders from Deere, Arconic, NAI Ruhl Commercial Co., Parr Instrument Co. and Western Illinois University.
I want to end this brief update by saying thank you to the entire Quad Cities community for welcoming me and our publication to the market. We see a bright future for the region and are privileged to be part of it. Please don’t forget to subscribe and keep reading the QCBJ.
John Lohman is Group Publisher of the Corridor Media Group. Contact him at johnl@quadcities business.com