2009 Business Outlook

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There”s been a lot of economic news that”s just down right scary, but that doesn”t mean that there aren”t businesses that will continue to grow in Gwinnett next year. Several business and company leaders were willing to share what”s up with their business for 2009.

You may be surprised to hear about all the positive things these businesses have planned for next year. Most are cautiously optimistic that next year will continue to bring growth and new business opportunities for Gwinnett.

Customers value credit union approach

>> Ryan Behrens, business development
officer, Georgia”s Own Credit Union

"For the most part, credit unions have not engaged in irresponsible lending and have therefore not been susceptible to the risks and losses some other lenders have experienced. As a result, credit unions are uniquely positioned in 2009 to deliver competitive rates, products and services in a time when other lenders are tightening requirements or no longer offering loans, such as home equity lines of credit. Additionally, because cooperation and collaboration have been the hallmark of the credit union movement since day one, credit unions will continue to work together to deliver greater value to our members. For example, many credit unions are part of the Shared Service Center Network, which enables a member to conduct their Georgia”s Own financial transactions at any participating CU Service Center credit union. This greatly expands our reach, giving our members close to 3,000 locations in Georgia alone to handle their Georgia”s Own financial business."

Relocation creates local jobs

>> Toby Wyman, assistant general
manager/ business operations, Gwinnett Braves

The Gwinnett Braves are looking forward to a positive presence in Gwinnett. "In addition to some front office personnel that have relocated from Richmond, Va. to Gwinnett County, we will employ approximately 300 game day staffers when the new ball park opens this April," Wyman says.

"I think, like most businesses, that the current state of the economy and how consumers react to it will be a challenge in 2009. Consumers have many entertainment options, and it”s our job to provide a value proposition that is attractive to consumers while providing exceptional customer service to keep them coming back." When asked if officials were nervous about relocating a team in a shaky economy, Wyman responds, "The success of Minor League Baseball over the past several years has been driven by providing a quality family entertainment experience at a solid value. That approach has proven to hold up despite the state of the economy. In times like these, consumers are more stringent on how, when and where they spend their money, and they will continue to spend on things that are high quality at a good value."

Gwinnett Tech sees record growth and the opportunity to serve

>> Sharon Bartels, president,
Gwinnett Technical College

"Based on all the indicators we see across the country, I think 2009 will be a tough year…But, the main trend I tend to watch is the number of new, high quality jobs that have been brough

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