Reflections on our trade mission by WTCSD’s director

Thriving Cities Trade Mission to the Netherlands

Two weeks have passed since our return from the Netherlands Trade Mission, and I continue to think back on how effectively public and private sector forces work together to develop the infrastructure for trains, busses, bicycles, cars, and even canal boats to coexist in harmony. 

After three years of pandemic-related travel limitations, it was refreshing and inspiring to hit the road again, this time with San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria and 29 of our region’s most influential and collaborative business, academic, political, and economic leaders. This delegation carried the San Diego banner in one of the world’s leading metros for innovation and circular urban development—the Netherlands—a country engineered out of the sea. 

Learn why the netherlands → 

We kicked off the mission by hosting the Thriving Cities Mayoral Forum, where we explored the leading role that cities play in driving circular/sustainable development with insight from Mayor Gloria, Amsterdam Mayor Halsema, and other innovation leaders from both regions.

We visited Qualcomm’s largest AI research hub outside of San Diego to celebrate its expansion, and learn about its partnership with the University of Amsterdam, QUVA, which supports a pipeline of engineering talent.  

Joined by SANDAG Chair Catherine Blakespear and leadership at San Diego’s higher education institutions, we visited TNO, the premier applied research organization of the Dutch government to see its newest tool in action—a ‘digital twin’ of a region that overlays conditions for traffic, energy usage, pollution, and more, with the option to toggle different variables to see how the conditions interact with each other.  

Our delegation then headed to ‘the smartest kilometer in Europe’ to visit Philips and ASML, the largest medical systems and technology companies in the Netherlands, respectively, that both have existing and growing operations in San Diego. 

We also brought together three Commissioners and the CEO of the Port of San Diego in the Port of Rotterdam to learn about circular and efficient operations at Europe’s busiest port and share the exciting developments we have underway on our beautiful waterfront. 

And perhaps one of the most inspiring moments of our trade mission happened on our last day, when WTCSD’s MetroConnect companies Trabus Technologies and Nano PharmaSolutions pitched to Port of Rotterdam and Leiden Bio Science Park leaders, respectively, for foreign investment. 

As we settle back into life in San Diego, our delegation brings home a fresh perspective on the ways we can address challenges in critical areas such as transportation and urban development. We see more clearly than ever the value of closer collaboration between the public sector, academia, and private business. In the coming years, we hope to see engineering solutions and transformative technologies like TNO’s Digital Twin being used to aid decision-making in large public works, and large multinationals like ASML and Philips successfully growing their operations in the region. 

Most of all, we look forward to the meaningful relationships and connections built through the mission and the collaboration that will lead to smarter, stronger, more inclusive development for all, right here in San Diego.  

The trade mission is organized by WTCSD, an affiliate of the San Diego Regional EDC, with assistance and support provided by the Consulate of the Netherlands, and sponsorship by ASML, Lufthansa, and Qualcomm Technologies.

Dankjewel,

Lucas Coleman
Lucas Coleman

Director, WTC; Export Specialty SBDC

Read EDC’s Monthly Report

EDC is moving (and rebranding!)

As we work to build a more inclusive, resilient economy, EDC is excited to share that we’re moving to UC San Diego Park & Market…and debuting a fresh new brand to mark the occasion.

At our new home downtown, we’ll continue to collaborate with regional partners like you to grow quality jobs and thriving households across San Diego.

We can’t wait to have you with us for this next chapter.

New address effective November 8:
San Diego Regional EDC
1100 Market Street, Suite 438
San Diego, CA 92101

San Diego’s Good News of the Week – October 7, 2022

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week.

Get Good News of the Week in your inbox every Friday. → Sign up

For the week of September 30, 2022, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

EDC is hiring; join our team!

EDC is hiring an Economic Development Manager (Life Sciences) with five years of experience in business, real estate, planning, or a related field to enable business attraction, retention, and expansion in San Diego County’s life sciences industry.

Apply Now


Additional resources:

Be in the know – sign up below to receive future editions of GNOTW.

Want to submit your event or news update to our weekly newsletter? Contact us for more information.

Candela Delucchi
Candela Delucchi

Coordinator, Investor Relations & Marketing

Building the future: Manufacturing Month 2022

Blog brought to you by our friends at Walmart.

Manufacturing Month is a time to celebrate the industry’s impact and to inspire the next generation of skilled workers to grow their careers in modern manufacturing. With its highly-skilled workforce, robust training programs, and close proximity to Mexico, San Diego is a hub for advanced manufacturing, with nearly 3,583 firms currently supporting more than 114,000 jobs across the region.

Manufacturing in San Diego

By 2023, the U.S. will need to fill four million manufacturing jobs—a demand San Diego is particularly well-positioned to help meet. Between 2017 and 2021, San Diego’s manufacturing employment grew 5.5 percent compared to a nation-wide decrease of 0.9 percent. Even California experienced a net loss of overall manufacturing jobs during that same period (-2.0 percent).

The industry’s continued growth through the pandemic is driven by the resilient and advanced nature of San Diego’s manufacturing base, which uses innovative technology to improve products or processes. From craft beer to virtual reality technology, to shipbuilding and life-saving pharmaceuticals, manufacturing has long been a pillar of the region’s economy, with impact spanning far beyond San Diego.

Find manufacturing talent and jobs

Looking to build your manufacturing team? Advancing San Diego’s Preferred Providers of manufacturing talent is a great place to start. Preferred Providers are vetted education programs recognized by employers as delivering top-quality training for high-demand jobs across San Diego. Contact the Advancing San Diego team to get connected.

For seasoned manufacturing professionals looking for new opportunities, visit San Diego: Life. Changing.’s job board to explore open roles at some of San Diego’s top employers. And, sign up to receive some of San Diego’s coolest jobs delivered to you monthly through its newsletter, The Lead.

Grow your company

California’s Manufacturing Network (CMN), formed and led by CMTC, provides services exclusively to small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs) throughout California. The Network is a collaboration of more than 25 manufacturing-focused partners that deliver a broad range of technical assistance services to SMMs in both urban and rural areas. The Network’s mission is to generate a positive financial impact for manufacturers and the California economy.

Receive free to low-cost services through CMTC including supplier scouting services, accelerator programs, and general assistance.

Plus, contact the EDC team to get connected to the resources you need to thrive in San Diego, from strategic partnerships, to site expansion and selection services.

Data collected from Lightcast 2022 unless otherwise cited.

Other posts you may like:

Investor Spotlight: Commute with Enterprise

As a nonprofit, San Diego Regional EDC is supported by investment from nearly 200 private organizations, companies, and public agencies. With their support, EDC provides direct services to help companies grow and thrive in San Diego, and leads initiatives to enhance the region’s recovery and resilience.

We sat down with Neil Semcheski, sales manager at Commute with Enterprise, to discuss the company’s mission to combat traffic congestion and carbon emissions with affordable commuting solutions. Check out its Investor Spotlight below!


Tell us about Commute with Enterprise and its mission.

Commute with Enterprise‘s vanpool solutions are one of the largest and most cost-effective available today. As the largest U.S. vanpool operator, our company addresses both local and global needs by reducing traffic congestion, commute times, travel costs, parking land usage, and carbon emissions, all while providing commuters with a smarter and more efficient way to get to work.

Each year, our commuting solutions eliminate more than one billion commuter miles, clearing more than 45,000 individual vehicles from the road, and reducing carbon emissions by 812 pounds annually. Additionally, businesses that offer our programs not only build their sustainability profiles, but gain a competitive edge in the battle for talent.

In the wake of the pandemic and with the rise of hybrid working arrangements, we know commuters are looking for affordable and convenient alternatives for getting to and from work. For little to no cost to the employer, Commute offers customizable programs that benefit workers and their employers—an investment in employee well-being, attraction, and retention. Our vanpools have alleviated traffic congestion and reduced commuting costs by more than 80 percent.

A few EDC investors currently using Commute with Enterprise include Illumina, Thermo Fisher Scientific, and Scripps Health, among other San Diego giants hailing from a variety of industries.

Why San Diego?

Commute with Enterprise established its first vanpool in San Diego 25 years ago, which still operates today. Commute with Enterprise has since served numerous employers in the region across industries including healthcare providers, manufacturing firms, tech and biotech startups, universities, DoD affiliates, and other military and federal entities.

One of the most significant partnerships Commute with Enterprise offers is with the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG), which provides financial incentives for vanpool offerings—a valuable complement to other forms of public transit offered in the region, especially for the 20-30 percent of the population who commute more than 60 miles each day.

Looking ahead, what’s on the horizon for your organization?

Commute with Enterprise is dedicated to continuing to grow our services in the San Diego region. With essential workforces still on site and as employees continue to return to the office, there’s a great opportunity for businesses to offer vanpool services as a valuable addition to their employee benefits package.

Tell us about Commute’s collaboration and partnership with San Diego Regional EDC.

Commute with Enterprise is excited to be a new San Diego Regional EDC investor and for the opportunity to add value to the organization. We are proud to support EDC investors’ goals of leading San Diego’s economic prosperity and global competitiveness, while investing in the workforces that power our great binational region.

Learn more: commutewithenterprise.com

LinkedIn: Commute with Enterprise

Read more about EDC’s investors in our investor spotlight blog series. Or, join Commute with Enterprise by becoming a member of EDC.

Interested in publishing an investor spotlight? Contact our team:

Candela Delucchi
Candela Delucchi

Coordinator, Investor Relations & Marketing

Monthly Report – October 2022

This month, EDC’s World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD) and Mayor Todd Gloria led 29 of some of our region’s most influential and collaborative business, academic, political, and economic leaders on a Trade Mission to the Netherlands—carrying the San Diego banner in one of the world’s leading metros for innovation and circular urban development.

See EDC’s month in review below, made possible with and through our investors.

By the numbers

  • 29 delegates join WTCSD on Mayoral Trade Mission to the Netherlands
  • 12+ meetings/events across three-day trade mission
  • $267.7M gross regional product (Q3 2022)
  • $27B in GRP attributed to the tech sector

Featured stories

New and renewing investors

  • The Clay Company
  • CDC Small Business Finance
  • Stockdale Partners
  • MAAC
  • Curebound
  • Apple
  • City of Chula Vista
  • Homefed Corporation
  • Insulet
  • SeaWorld
  • Alexandria Real Estate Partners, Inc.
  • Booz Allen Hamilton
  • Gosite
  • IQHQ
  • La Mesa RV
  • Northrop Grumman
  • Taylor Guitars

See our current Monthly Report

San Diego’s Good News of the Week – September 30, 2022

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week.

Get Good News of the Week in your inbox every Friday. → Sign up

For the week of September 30, 2022, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

EDC is hiring; join our team!

EDC is hiring an Economic Development Manager (Life Sciences) with five years of experience in business, real estate, planning, or related field, to enable business attraction, retention, and expansion in the life sciences industry.

Read More


Additional resources:

Be in the know – sign up below to receive future editions of GNOTW.

Want to submit your event or news update to our weekly newsletter? Contact us for more information.

Candela Delucchi
Candela Delucchi

Coordinator, Investor Relations & Marketing

San Diego small businesses pitch for Dutch investment as part of mayoral trade mission

Trabus Technologies and Nano PharmaSolutions join delegation to Netherlands to drive local growth

This week, as part of Mayor Todd Gloria’s trade mission to the Netherlands, coordinated by World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD), an affiliate of EDC, San Diego small businesses pitched their technology solutions to potential international partners and investors. Trabus Technologies (TRABUS) and Nano PharmaSolutions, both San Diego-based, minority-owned small businesses, joined this three-day trip to establish business relationships, pursue investment, and grow local jobs.

San Diego is the birthplace of many successful large, multinational companies, including Qualcomm who is represented in the delegation as well. However, small businesses—those with fewer than 100 employees—are the backbone of the regional economy and drive regional economic growth and innovation. Small businesses employ more than 60 percent of San Diego County’s workforce, nearly double the national average, and represent nearly 98 percent of the region’s firms. Yet small companies face outsize barriers to international expansion.

“Having an economy driven by small, innovative companies has been great for San Diego, and we want to support their expansion into overseas markets so they can stay strong and competitive in their industries,” said San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria. “This trade mission gives us the chance to lay that groundwork for small businesses that face headwinds overseas.”

In order to drive economic resilience, Mayor Todd Gloria and WTCSD have prioritized small businesses as part of the Netherlands trade mission. TRABUS and Nano PharmaSolutions—both innovative, minority-owned small businesses involved in WTCSD’s export accelerator program MetroConnect—pitched to the Port of Rotterdam and investors at the Leiden Bio Science Park respectively:

  • TRABUS and Port of Rotterdam: TRABUS is a service-disabled, veteran- and minority-owned small business providing innovative solutions to the U.S. government and private sector. The 50-person TRABUS team specializes in the development of technology across five major portfolios—wireless technologies, artificial intelligence and data science, maritime transportation, environmental informatics and cybersecurity. To be spotlighted in its pitch to the European port, TRABUS has developed the first AI-based voyage planning software, RippleGo, for the inland waterways. While the SaaS product is currently being tested on U.S. waterways, RippleGo could have tremendous potential to enhance voyage planning and supply chain logistics on EU based waterways for greater economic efficiencies.

 “We are excited about the potential partnerships and opportunities to work with the European maritime industry. The EU has an impressive, interconnected waterway network already. We hope to learn more about their network and offer up some of our technologies that can aid in waterway management and intermodal supply chain logistics,” said Art Salindong, Managing Director, TRABUS.

  • Nano PharmaSolutions (NPS) and Leiden Bio Science Park: A platform technology startup for nanodrug delivery of small molecule drugs, NPS offers improved solubility and convenient dosage form development. Founded in 2019, the company is seeking Seed and early-stage VC investment, with plans to expand into the European market and access increased pharmaceutical customers in the years ahead. NPS plans to co-manufacture clinical trial materials for their customers at Mikart Pharmaceutical, a contract manufacturing organization in Atlanta, GA, beginning Q3 2023. Mikart is a commercial scale oral dosage form company, which can support NanoTransformer™ nano-granulation and downstream dosage form manufacturing and QC activities.

“Not only does our NanoTransformer™ technology expedite drug development at a lower R&D cost, but it helps drugs absorb into the body more quickly and efficiently” said Dr. Kay Olmstead, Founder & CEO, NPS. “This is an incredible opportunity to share our story and build partnerships at the famous Leiden Bio Science Park, and we’re excited about what’s to come.”

With the right partners, small companies that solve important problems—like TRABUS and Nano PharmaSolutions—become big companies that change the world. That has always been San Diego’s story, and it is why we work so hard to open doors for innovators and entrepreneurs both overseas and back at home,” said Nikia Clarke, executive director of WTCSD and SVP, EDC.

This session is one of a dozen meetings and programs on the three-day trade mission to the Netherlands, September 26—29, 2022. See a summary of the trip here and follow along for more: #SDinNL

Learn more on SD and NL

The trade mission is organized by WTCSD, an affiliate of the San Diego Regional EDC, with assistance and support provided by the Consulate of the Netherlands, and sponsorship by ASML, Lufthansa, and Qualcomm Technologies.

 

San Diego mayor, WTCSD visit ASML HQ in NL

A visit to ASML HQ in Veldhoven seeks to strengthen an already strong relationship between ASML and San Diego

This week, as part of Mayor Gloria’s inaugural trade mission with World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD), an affiliate of EDC, the delegation visited ASML headquarters in Veldhoven, Netherlands.

With major operations in San Diego, and more than 35,000 staff around the globe, ASML is the most important technology company you’ve never heard of.

ASML is the leading provider of semiconductor manufacturing equipment to every major chipmaker around the world, playing an integral role in driving the global chip industry forward.

In San Diego, ASML designs, develops, and manufactures the lasers and lights sources that power its lithography machines—the systems chipmakers use to produce semiconductors featured in every piece of technology across nearly every industry.

From cell phones and life-changing medical devices, to self-driving cars and the James Webb Space Telescope, semiconductors are ubiquitously part of everyday life—and ASML represents the foundation for them all.

The company expanded its global footprint in 2012 with the acquisition of Cymer, a San Diego-based industry leader in laser sources for semiconductor equipment. In the 10 years since this acquisition, ASML San Diego has doubled its local headcount to 1,600, and counting.

Learn more about the connection between SD and NL

Follow along with us for more: #SDinNL

 

Mayor, WTCSD delegation cut ribbon on Qualcomm Amsterdam operation

Today as part of Mayor Todd Gloria’s trade mission to the Netherlands, coordinated by World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD), an affiliate of San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation (EDC), Qualcomm Technologies Netherlands B.V., cut the ribbon on Matrix One in Amsterdam. In the Amsterdam Science Park, Matrix One will serve as Qualcomm Technologies Inc.’s largest AI hub outside of the U.S.

The cornerstone of San Diego’s technology ecosystem, Qualcomm is a global leader in 5G wireless technologies. Per a 2018 report, the company supported more than 28,000 San Diego jobs and had a $4 billion local economic impact. For every job at Qualcomm, an additional 1.8 jobs were supported elsewhere in San Diego economy.

“Nearly 40 years ago, a small tech company made a commitment to this region that would shape our innovation ecosystem—and our world—as we know it,” said San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria. “I’m proud to support Qualcomm’s continued growth in San Diego and around the world.”

Amsterdam Science Park is home to one of Europe’s biggest concentrations of scientific talent. The unique combination of high-quality education, pioneering research and knowledge-intensive business boosts the kind of innovation that will transform our society in the future.

“With our move into the new Matrix One building in Amsterdam Science Park, I am very happy to see us well positioned for further growth. Our highly innovative AI research in diverse topic areas and continued collaboration and co-location with the University of Amsterdam confirm us as the prime employer for AI & ML researchers and engineers in the region,” said Michael Hofmann, Director, Engineering, Qualcomm Technologies Inc.

The trade mission is organized by WTCSD, an affiliate of the San Diego Regional EDC, with assistance and support provided by the Consulate of the Netherlands, and sponsorship by ASML, Lufthansa and Qualcomm Technologies. This session is one of a dozen meetings and programs on the three-day trade mission to the Netherlands, September 26—29, 2022.

see a summary of the trip here

More on SD and NL