Tag Archives: phoenix

121277693

St. Joseph’s and Barrow’s add new board members

The Board of Directors of St. Joseph’s Foundation recently elected two new members for Fiscal Year 2015. The new board members are:

Barry Berman, of Scottsdale, graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a bachelor’s in business administration, a major in finance and a minor in accounting. He began his career as an equity trader at The Milwaukee Co. and Loewl & Co. Berman joined Robert W. Baird and Co. Inc. in 1974 as senior vice-president and director, working there for 32 years before his retirement in 2006.

Greg Valladao, of Phoenix, is a senior managing director at Cushman and Wakefield. He earned a bachelor’s degree with a double major in political science and history from Tulane University in New Orleans and a juris doctorate from the University of Arizona College of Law. For the past 30 years, he has used his extensive retail, sales, management and legal expertise to become a well-respected commercial real estate executive with a reputation as a regional retail expert.

The Board of Trustees of Barrow Neurological Foundation (BNF) recently added three new members and elected a slate of officers. The new members are as follows:

David Farca, of Scottsdale, is president of ToH Design Studio. Farca was born and raised in Mexico City. He earned a degree in biomedical engineering from Universidad Iberoamericana, a degree in medical imaging infrastructure from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a master’s in business administration from Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México. Farca built a medical imaging business in Mexico that grew into one of the industry’s largest government suppliers. In 2000, he sold the business and moved to Scottsdale, where he and his wife, Mavi, opened ToH Design Studio.

Michael Hecomovich, of Scottsdale, is the founder and chairman/CEO, Global Marketing Services. Hecomovich earned a bacheolor’s degree in engineering from the United States Naval Academy and a master’s in business administration from the Thunderbird School of Global Management. He has more than 30 years of experience in general management, sales, marketing and business development for a wide range of organizations—from Fortune 100 companies to small start-up ventures.

William R. Metzler, of Scottsdale, is the co-founder and principal of West Coast Capital Partners. Metzler received bachelor’s degrees with honors in accounting and real estate finance from the University of Arizona. He is a senior with the American Society of Appraisers and a certified public accountant. He has previously served as the managing director of New York-based ING’s Investment Banking Unit and Ernst & Young’s Real Estate Advisory Group.

BNF board officers are as follows: Chair—Michael Haenel, Phoenix, executive vice president, Cassidy Turley BRE Commercial Industrial Services Group; Vice Chair—Dan Pierce, Phoenix, president, Kitchell; Treasurer—Karen C. McConnell, Phoenix, partner, Ballard Spahr LLP; and Secretary—Michael R. King, Phoenix, founding partner, Gammage & Burnham.

St. Joseph’s Foundation and Barrow Neurological Foundation are nonprofit support foundations dedicated to raising funds for St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center and Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix. Each foundation is governed by a board of directors made up of community leaders who serve on a voluntary basis. More information is available at SupportStJosephs.org, SupportBarrow.org or at the Foundations of St. Joseph’s on Facebook.

R&R Partners expands into Mexico

R&R Partners has announced that the independent marketing communications firm would make its international debut, opening its ninth office through an ownership stake in CMV, a full service agency based in Mexico City.

CEO Billy Vassiliadis will make the formal announcement September 12 during a keynote address entitled “Translating Success – Learning to Do Business Across Cultures” at Austin’s BonusMX@ATX, a forum for creative industry executives in the United States and Mexico.

Mexico City marks a long anticipated move by R&R Partners into Latin America, and represents the firm’s fourth new office in six years behind Austin, Denver and Los Angeles.

“When you look at American brands like Microsoft, Pfizer and Wal-Mart, which are well-established in Mexico, you’re seeing how 20 years of NAFTA has helped erase many of the old trade barriers,” said Matt Silverman vice president and managing director of the R&R Partners Phoenix office. “R&R Partners is particularly well positioned to help international partnerships that already exist and are forming in Arizona and Mexico,” added Silverman.

Under NAFTA, intraregional trade in North America jumped from $290 billion in 1993 to $1.1 trillion in 2012, roughly half of which crisscrosses the U.S./Mexican border.

Vassiliadis sees opportunity in the 2014 Global Attitudes Survey conducted by the Pew Research Center, which found that six in 10 Mexicans are dissatisfied with their country’s economy.

“Mexico is at a critical point economically, politically and culturally and our skill set and partnership with CMV can have a real impact there,” said Vassiliadis. “Together, we bring an authentic Hispanic vision and voice and a proven track record in communications and government affairs work that will guide clients through this period of rapid change and growth.”

R&R Partners has long had a footprint in Mexico through their Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority client, which markets the Las Vegas destination there. In addition, R&R Partners serves international clients in West Africa, Central Asia, and Europe, as well as U.S.-based clients like Boeing that reach across the globe.

“R&R’s investment in CMV grew out of the recognition that our two agencies share a similar passion for tackling the tough issues, delivering key insights to our clients and building a strong internal culture of excellence,” said Diego Velásquez, founding partner and coach general at CMV. “It’s an ideal match that will continue to deliver top quality results across borders and languages.”

CMV/R&R Partners will use its deep experience in regulatory issues, public relations, crisis communications, research, media and branding to assist industries that face complex challenges in Mexico and Latin America. Areas of specialty include energy, telecommunications, packaged goods, technology, aerospace and travel and tourism.

“Being independently owned allows us to react quickly and guide our clients through the challenging regulatory environments they will find in Mexico,” said Vassiliadis. “It has also allowed us to pursue a rapid growth plan as an agency. International expansion was the next logical step for us.”

angel

Bioscience innovators will pitch at White Hat Investors

Bioindustry Associations from across the Rocky Mountain Southwest Region are coming together to present an opportunity for Angels, Venture Capitalists and Strategic Investors to connect with the biotech and healthcare investment opportunities from across the Rocky Mountain Southwest states at White Hat Investors 2014 in Phoenix, Arizona on September 17 and 18, 2014.

“The West was won by innovators, investors, and prospectors who understood the value of discovery and accepted the challenge of investing in new frontiers,” shared Joan Koerber-Walker, president and CEO of the Arizona Bioindustry Association (AZBio). “Now, industry leaders and accredited investors have the opportunity to meet a new generation of biotech and healthcare pioneers at White Hat 2014, the first annual biotech and healthcare investor conference that showcases the best of the Rocky Mountain Southwest Region.”

White Hat Presenting Companies were selected from the region’s emerging innovation leaders in the fields of Diagnostics, Therapeutics, Medical Devices, and Health IT. Presenting companies are developing lifesaving and life improving innovations that will benefit people today and for generations to come while addressing some of our greatest health challenges including cancer, cardiovascular and pulmonary disease, neurological disorders, infectious disease, and more.

On September 17th, over 400 life science industry leaders will gather to view a company showcase, browse a student discovery zone and listen to presentations from local life science entrepreneurs on the BioAccel Best of the Best Stage from 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. in the North Ballroom of the Phoenix Convention Center. Free and open to the general public, it presents an opportunity for members of the community to connect with the region’s fastest growing innovation sector. The public pre-event will be followed at 6:00 p.m. by the AZBio Awards gala (registration required) honoring life science pioneer Roy Curtiss, III, PhD; Charles Arntzen, PhD, the Arizona State University Researcher who, with his team, played a key role in the development of ZMAPP, the experimental Ebola drug given to two health workers who were sickened by the deadly virus earlier this year; W.J. “Jim” Lane, Mayor of the City of Scottsdale for his work in developing the Scottsdale Cure Corridor; innovative educator Miles Orchinik, PhD of the School of Life Sciences at Arizona State University; Jack B. Jewett of the Flinn Foundation for leadership of the longest running statewide bioscience development initiative in the United States; emerging technology leaders SenesTech, Pinnacle Transplant Technologies, and Cancer Prevention Pharmaceuticals along with the 2014 Arizona Bioscience Company of the Year, Insys Therapeutics, Inc.

White Hat events continue on September 18th at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Phoenix with presentations by privately-held life science companies presenting to attending representatives of family offices, investment funds, corporate investment/business development professionals for life science oriented firms (strategic investors), granting foundations, venture capital firms, and accredited investors. In addition to great company presentations in the areas of Medical Devices, Diagnostics, Therapeutics and Health IT, White Hat includes THREE general sessions featuring panel discussions on the investment environment from the perspective of Angels, Strategic Investors, and VCs.
Presenting Companies were selected from the Rocky Mountain Southwest’s emerging innovator leaders in the fields of: Diagnostics, Therapeutics, Medical Devices and Health IT and include:

• Aviratek, LLC
• Breezing
• Calimmune, Inc.
• CardioCreate, Inc.
• Convoy Therapeutics
• DiscGenics
• Elutin Vascular Inc.
• EndoShape, Inc
• Fluonic
• Imagenonics LLC
• Iron Horse Diagnostics
• INanoBio
• Kalos Therapeutics
• Kulira Technologies
• Meditope Biosciences, Inc.
• MSDx
• NeuroRecovery Technologies, Inc.
• NuvoMed
• NuvOx Pharma
• Pediatric Bioscience, Inc
• Portable Genomics, Inc.
• MedTalk Companion (Real Phone Corp)
• Recursion Pharmaceuticals
• RiboMed Biotechnologies
• Savoy Pharmaceuticals
• SenesTech
• Skylit Medical
• Sonoran Biosciences
• T-MedRobotics
• Valley Fever Solutions
• ValveXchange
• ViroCyt
• VisionGate
• Yolia Health

Cholla

APS proposes compromise for Cholla Power Plant

The coal-fired Cholla Power Plant in Joseph City, Ariz., will close its 260-megawatt Unit 2 by April 2016 and stop burning coal at the other APS-owned units (1 and 3) by the mid-2020s if the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approves a compromise proposal offered by APS, the plant’s owner. APS also will ask the Arizona Corporation Commission to approve the plan.

APS made the proposal with the understanding that it would not be required to install expensive emission control equipment on the units to comply with current rules under the agency’s Regional Haze program. The environmental benefits of this proposal are greater in the long term than the benefits that would have resulted from adding the emissions control equipment.

“This proposal provides the best outcome, allowing Cholla to continue to operate, while meeting environmental requirements,” said David Hansen, APS Vice President of Fossil Generation. “This solution balances several needs — supporting the local economy the best way possible; the need to provide reliable, low-cost generation resources for customers; and complying with federal rules and regulations.”

In 2010, APS was notified that Unit 2 needed to upgrade its scrubbers and add a super-sized sophisticated air filter called a “baghouse” to meet the new Mercury and Air Toxic Standards. In 2012, the EPA published a federal implementation plan, which overrides certain parts of Arizona’s plan to deal with regional haze. The federal plan requires Cholla Unit’s 2 and 3 to add expensive Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology used to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions.

“When the EPA issued its final rules to manage regional haze, we told the agency that the cost of adding SCRs along with the other technologies required to meet the mercury rules placed the unit at risk of being uneconomic to operate,” said Hansen. “We are clearly aware of the potential impact closing Unit 2 may have on the neighboring communities and arrived at this decision only after carefully weighing the options.”

By closing Unit 2, mercury emissions are anticipated to decline by 51 percent, particulates by 34 percent, nitrogen oxides by 32 percent, and carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide by 23 percent. There would be additional environmental benefits after units 1 and 3 stop burning coal. APS intends to continue working closely with the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality on environmental issues.

According to Hansen, there were three alternative approaches – investing hundreds of millions of dollars in equipment, converting the entire plant to natural gas by 2016, or closing the plant.

If EPA approves the APS compromise, it will save more than $350 million in potential costs that otherwise would be passed along to customers for emission control upgrades.

Potential job losses will likely be mitigated through normal attrition and retirements. Today the plant has 249 employees with an annual payroll of $29 million. It pays approximately $15 million in state, local and federal taxes annually.

The unit has been in service since 1978.

APS has been closing older, less reliable units and replacing them with newer, cleaner and more efficient sources of energy. This includes closing three units at the Four Corners Power Plant in Farmington, N.M., and two units at the Ocotillo Power Plant in Tempe, Ariz.

From an accounting perspective, APS intends to reclassify the remaining book value as a regulatory asset.

APS, Arizona’s largest and longest-serving electricity utility, serves nearly 1.2 million customers in 11 of the state’s 15 counties. With headquarters in Phoenix, APS is the principal subsidiary of Pinnacle West Capital Corp. (NYSE: PNW).

health.education

Rural Health Program offers another side of medicine

Jordan Roberts was reminded of his calling to be a physician nearly 200 miles from the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix.

Roberts, a fourth-year student, spent five weeks earlier this year at the Summit Healthcare Regional Medical Center in Show Low. Having grown up not far away in Snowflake, Roberts had a pretty good idea of life in the White Mountains but was reminded of a case he initially encountered as a first-year student.

Roberts has participated in the university’s Rural Health Professions Program since enrolling in the UA College of Medicine – Phoenix. That program began at the UA College of Medicine – Tucson since 1997 but was expanded to include a Phoenix office this year. The first students from the downtown Phoenix medical school spent part of their summer in far off places, including one just outside of Arizona.

In describing his return to his White Mountain roots to complete the Rural Health program commitment, Roberts talked about a patient he first met three years ago with diabetes and how he manages his condition after not seeing a doctor for many years.

“I learned that one of the special things about these folks is their resilience – to the elements, to change, and even to disease,” Roberts said. “But I was also reminded that medicine is my medium to meaningful living.”

The program was created to help address the shortage of physicians faced by Arizona that is even more critical outside its urban centers. While the state ranks near the bottom in numbers of physicians per capita, the statistics for rural physicians are even more stark and problematic.

For every 100,000 Arizonans there were 124 doctors in rural areas compared with 231 in urban areas, according to a 2005 study. This places Arizona far below the national average.

The program also allows students a concentrated clinical experience after their first year of medical school. It also exposes them to procedures outside the urban clinical setting and work with different populations.

“Rural doctors are in short supply and the clinic faculty, staff and patients will want to convince you to return one day as a board-certified physician,” said Jonathan Cartsonis, MD, who is overseeing the program. “You will surely feel the difference your first day in a rural clinical site.”

For the first year of the Phoenix-based program, students spent time this summer at clinics in Page, Prescott Valley, Yuma and Silver City, N.M.

“The summer was part freedom and part ideal mentorship,” said second-year student Brock Bennett, who served in the Silver City clinic. “The freedom came as I was liberated from the walls of the library that are so familiar the first year of med school and able to finally see patients. Despite no required ‘homework’ I found myself studying more in the evenings, on cases I had seen that day, than I did during most block curriculum days.”

The Phoenix program also will recognize students who demonstrate a strong commitment to future rural medical practice with a “Distinction Track in Rural Health” recognition on their transcript.

“The physicians I worked with were willing to provide as much practical teaching as I would embrace,” Bennett said. “The more I put into the experience the more I continued to receive. I learned incredible lessons I will not forget.”

cox-hires-stephen-rizley

Long-time Cox leader Rizley announces retirement

Cox Communications Senior Vice President and General Manager Steve Rizley will retire at the end of the year. During his 34-year career at Cox in Phoenix, Rizley motivated and galvanized those around him, and created unique relationships with his employees, customers and the Southwest community through his many years of service to area non-profits. Rizley announced his retirement to employees last month.

In announcing Rizley’s decision to retire, Paul Cronin, Sr. Vice President of Operations, Cox Communications said “It’s never easy to say good-bye to a friend and colleague, especially one that has been a part of the Cox Family and the cable industry for more than 30 years. As general manager, Steve worked tirelessly on his employees’ behalf each day, and made sure Arizona was at the forefront of new product launches for our customers, including brining the company’s first gigabit residential product offering to the Valley and the latest Internet speed increases to customers statewide.”

Rizley has long been a community advocate for organizations including the American Red Cross, Greater Phoenix Leadership, Arizona Historical Advisory Commission, and Cox Charities to name a few, and is a past-chair of the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce and campaign cabinet co-chair for the Banner/M.D. Anderson Cancer Center capital campaign. He has also received several prestigious business and industry awards and honors including the National Cable & Telecommunications Vanguard Award and the “Man of the Year” from the American Cancer Society, as well as the Cable Television Advertising Bureau’s President’s Award.

“Steve’s well-deserved reputation was built on much more than his professional excellence serving Cox’s Southwest Region. During his time as Chairman of our Board of Directors, he left his mark on our Chamber and the business community with strong, visionary servant leadership that has helped shape our organization and our state. We are all indebted to Steve for his dedication and service, and I, personally, am proud to call him my friend.” said Todd Sanders, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Chamber of
Commerce.

”It has been a great pleasure and inspiration having a leader like Steve at the helm for Cox for so many years. While the company has enjoyed great success in Arizona and Nevada under Steve’s leadership, he has also made our communities stronger with his commitment to local service and business leadership,” said Susan Anable, Vice President of Public Affairs, Cox Communications Southwest Region.

The company said it plans to announce Rizley’s replacement in the coming weeks.

airport

Sky Harbor launches enhanced free Wi-Fi

Boingo Wireless, the leading DAS and Wi-Fi provider that serves consumers, carriers and advertisers worldwide, and Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport announced the launch of the airport’s upgraded Wi-Fi network, offering enhanced Wi-Fi services for travelers.

Phoenix Sky Harbor visitors can enjoy complimentary, ad-supported Wi-Fi access throughout the airport, with improved coverage and capacity courtesy of the new Wi-Fi network featuring advanced 802.11ac technology. The airport will also offer new premium access options for travelers who need additional bandwidth to download high definition video or upload large files.

The upgraded network will also support the new Passpoint wireless industry standard, which was developed to make connecting to Wi-Fi as simple as connecting to cellular. Boingo’s “Passpoint Secure” network provides seamless, instant access to the secure Wi-Fi network using the industry’s latest technologies. Boingo subscribers and roaming partners who have Passpoint-capable devices and have installed a Passpoint profile will automatically be connected to the WPA2-encrypted network.

“The Phoenix Sky Harbor team knows that staying connected is important to our travelers. We’ve been offering complimentary Wi-Fi to our passengers since 2005, and in the last few years we’ve seen usage skyrocket,” said Mike Youngs, Deputy Aviation Director for Technology at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. “Our upgraded Wi-Fi network and services will offer improved free connectivity and new options for power users with heavy data needs, or with multiple devices.”

“The new Boingo Wireless network at Phoenix Sky Harbor takes the airport’s current Wi-Fi services to the next level. This new standalone network was built with state-of-the-art equipment to meet the growing demands of travelers who expect greater coverage, faster speeds, and advanced, seamless Passpoint connectivity,” said Scott Phillips, Boingo Wireless vice president of business development for North American airports. “The new Phoenix airport network is designed to meet both current and future traveler demands, including improved complimentary Wi-Fi and premium access services.”

Boingo is the world’s leading airport Wi-Fi provider, managing services at more than 75 airports, representing more than 40% of the world’s top 50 airports. The company manages Wi-Fi services at five of the top ten highest traffic airports in the United States, including Chicago’s O’Hare International, Los Angeles International, New York’s John F. Kennedy, and Miami International.

hispanic

Valley cities rank high for Hispanic business climate

The United States is often dubbed “a nation of immigrants.” But lately the path to American citizenship has been a rough road, especially for an increasing number of Hispanics. Whether they’ve entered U.S. borders lawfully or otherwise, many have felt the sting of marginalization, racism and discrimination in every kind of social environment. And despite the unfriendly welcome, they’re as motivated as ever to put down roots in American soil in order to find better opportunities and improve their lives.

For Hispanics who’ve successfully integrated into American society, they also have managed to contribute significantly to the economy. Their collective impact is reflected in the growing quantity of Hispanic-owned businesses in the country, which stood at 3.1 million in 2013. Together, they hauled in an estimated $486 billion in revenue, as reported by Geoscape and the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Even the estimated 11.7 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. bestow net positive gains on the national economy over time.

Equally as impressive, Hispanics opened businesses — many owned by self-employed individuals — at a rate more than twice the national average of 18 percent between 2002 and 2007, according to the most recent U.S. Census Bureau figures. Today, Hispanics and Latinos constitute the largest ethnic minority in the U.S. And by 2050, they could make up a third of the country’s population, quickly becoming what USHCC President and CEO Javier Palomarez appropriately described as “America’s business future.”

In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month beginning Sept. 15, WalletHub, a leading personal finance social network, assessed the minority business climate within the 150 largest U.S. cities. It did so by examining 19 key metrics such as Hispanic entrepreneurship rates, corporate tax systems and the share of businesses owned by Hispanics.

Among the Top 20 best cities for Hispanic entrepreneurs, Metro Phoenix is represented by two cities — Gilbert and Chandler. Below are the rankings of each of them together with the top metrics.

Gilbert ranks No. 4 for Hispanic business climate:
4th – Hispanic Renters to Hispanic Owners Ratio
12th – Unemployment Rate of Hispanics
15th – Housing Affordability for Hispanics
18th – Length of Average Workday

Chandler ranks No. 10 for Hispanic business climate:
15th – Unemployment Rate of Hispanics
18th – Income Growth of Hispanics
18th – Length of Average Workday
19th – Hispanic Renters to Hispanic Owners Ratio

rain

Record rain wreaks havok in Phoenix

Storms that flooded several Phoenix-area freeways and numerous local streets during the Monday morning commute set an all-time record for rainfall in Phoenix in a single day.

The National Weather Service recorded 2.99 inches of rain by about 7 a.m., breaking the old record of 2.91 inches set in 1933.

The Monday morning rainfall also eclipsed Phoenix’s average total rainfall of 2.71 inches for Phoenix’s entire summer rainy season.

A flash flood warning was issued for most of the Phoenix area and its outskirts through late Monday morning because of heavy thunderstorms and showers. Flash flood watches cover most of the rest of Arizona.

Sections of the major commuter freeways Interstate 10 and 17 in west Phoenix were closed during the commute.

ML-Daytime-Testing_10_10_2013-(4)

Reconnecting Tucson

While Phoenix is in the throes of commercial recovery, Tucson is, comparably, about 18 to 24 months behind. The city’s proximity to the border is touted as a draw for investors, but the player with the best hand remains the University of Arizona (UA), which is not only the largest employer in southern Arizona but also the nucleus to an otherwise stagnant city.

As development stands, experts point out Tucson has added 1,900 student housing units in the last year and the retail and office sectors in proximity to UA and Pima Community College show promise. In April, Colliers closed the largest office sale in Tucson since 2008.

“Multifamily has led the recovery in almost all markets,” says Cindy Cooke, who heads the Cooke Multifamily Investment Team at Colliers. “Since so much of Tucson is UA and the medical school, I think you only see that continue to be strong. The growth will be fantastic.” The first sign in recovery, she says, is when vacancy increases. Right now, Tucson’s multifamily vacancy is at 7.9 percent. In 2009, it exceeded 11 percent.

The UA is working to spin its innovation to the private sector and create small firms offering high-paying jobs in many areas of core competency, says President and Managing Shareholder of Cushman & Wakefield | PICOR, Mike Hammond. “The UA more than ever drives our community in a positive direction,” he says.

Kurt Wadington, Sundt Construction’s Tucson building group leader agrees. He adds that “apart from downtown and other isolated projects, Tucson’s market continues its softness in the shadow of a very slow economic recovery.”

Tucson’s streetcar project, Sun Link, aims to strengthen those existing assets and ignite future development. “With the recent infusion of student housing and corporate offices, downtown has become a desirable location for restaurants and bars as more people live and work in the area,” says Wadington. “This increased day and nighttime activity, that is expected to increase when Tucson’s new streetcar becomes operational on July 25, has numerous developers considering additional retail, office and housing projects.”

Though pens are to drawing boards, and the Sun Link has generated a “flurry of land sales,” there is some hesitation in development. Cushman & Wakefield | PICOR called Tucson a market in search of demand in its Q1 2014 reports. “One-liners are always a little true and at the same time false,” says Hammond. “Tucson says it wants good jobs but it acts differently when they appear.

Tucsonans tend to like the environment and object to nearly any attempt to develop on the land. This depresses demand as the process to develop anything is cumbersome and expensive with very little certainty of success, so we grow slower and some would say that is good. The right balance is tough to achieve.

“As government indebtedness drops, it is anticipated Pima County, followed by other jurisdictions, will pursue bonding authorizations for badly needed capital projects. Other needs may be met through public-private partnerships as public infrastructure needs continue to mount.”

UA is closely followed by Raytheon Missile Systems, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base and the State of Arizona as top employers. Simply, southern Arizona relies on government funding.“I think the big rock the southern Arizona market is waiting for is some resolution at the national level on debt and how government goes forward at the federal spending level,” says Hammond.

“Much of our area is dependent of spending at the federal level and that has been decreasing, whether for infrastructure, military in general — the A10 fighter specifically — and Raytheon. No one expects funding to increase in these areas and these are very good jobs that bring new money into the area. The multiplier effect is real in the creation of jobs or the loss of jobs as the case may be.”

AMR-US Airways

Passenger Numbers Increase at Sky Harbor

Passenger traffic numbers at Phoenix Sky Harbor have increased yet again for the eighth month in a row. July numbers were 5.7% higher than last July. Year to date, numbers are up by 4% over 2013. In fact, passenger numbers have been rising every single month this year spanning from 3.0% to 5.7% increases.

“We are so fortunate to live in a community with an airport that offers flights to 100 nonstop cities and to anywhere in the world with direct or easy connecting service,” said Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton. He added, “This is great news for our local businesses and our partners outside Arizona who want to do business here.”

March 2014 was the busiest month in the history of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport when the airport served more than 4 million passengers. The airport’s facilities are being updated as these numbers increase. Terminal 4’s restaurant overhaul is near completion, the new Sky Train station is set to open by Super Bowl and plans to modernize Terminal 3 are underway.

“We operate in a constantly changing environment, ready to adapt to passenger demand,” said Danny Murphy, Phoenix Aviation Director. “We are likely to continue to see the airlines making adjustments to their schedules and cities as they operate flights based on demand,” he said. “The great news is that passengers are flying again and Sky Harbor is ready to meet that demand.”

housing

No Housing Bubble Right Now in Phoenix

The Phoenix-area housing market is NOT creating another housing bubble to pop anytime soon. The latest monthly report from the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University shows a lack of enthusiasm from both buyers and sellers. Here are the latest details on Maricopa and Pinal counties, as of July:

• The median single-family-home sales price went up 8 percent from last July, but forward price movement is greatly slowing down.
• Activity in the market was also much slower this July than last July, with the number of single-family-home sales down 19 percent.
• The W. P. Carey School is launching an enhanced-content website where those interested in more in-depth housing-market statistics can get customized views of what’s happening.

Phoenix-area home prices dramatically recovered from the housing crash, quickly rising from September 2011 to last summer. This year, prices dropped a little, leveled off, and then finally, the median single-family-home price rose this summer. The median jumped 8 percent — from $194,000 last July to $210,000 this July. Realtors will note the average price per square foot also went up about 8 percent. The median townhouse/condo price went up about 6 percent to $130,000. However, don’t expect much more upward momentum.

“Most of the median-price increase over the last 12 months is because a greater percentage of the homes being sold are in the luxury market, not because home values overall are increasing,” says the report’s author, Mike Orr, director of the Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice at the W. P. Carey School of Business. “We anticipate pricing will move sideways or slightly down over the next few months until supply and demand get back into balance.”

At the moment, both demand and supply are low in the Phoenix area. The amount of single-family-home sales dropped 19 percent from last July to this July. (The only bright spot is new-home sales, which increased their market share from 9 to 12 percent.) Investors have focused on other areas of the country with better bargains, so the percentage of residential properties they bought in July was just 13.6 percent, down from the peak of 39.7 percent in July 2012. Orr says other home buyers aren’t stepping in, and supply isn’t rebounding.

“Usually, when demand is weak for an extended period, supply starts to grow, as it did in the second half of 2005 and throughout 2006 and 2007, heralding the collapse of the housing bubble,” Orr explains. “However, this summer, supply is slowly weakening. It appears that the lack of enthusiasm among buyers has spread to sellers, instead of causing them to panic. Many sellers clearly have the patience to wait for better times and are unwilling to drop prices to dispose of their homes.”

Orr adds the choices for anyone who wants to buy a Phoenix-area house for less than $175,000 are pretty slim. For example, bargain foreclosures are few and far between. Completed foreclosures on single-family homes and condos are down 45 percent this July from last July.

The limited options at the low end of the market are also contributing to the booming demand for single-family rental homes. Orr says fast turnover and low vacancy rates have already pushed the rent on single-family homes in the most popular areas up 7.5 percent over the last 12 months. Affordable apartment and condo rentals have also become hard to find.

In order to better serve the public with more insight on the Phoenix-area housing market, Orr and the Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice at the W. P. Carey School of Business are launching a new enhanced-content website today. In addition to the free news releases distributed by the school, those wanting more housing data can subscribe at www.wpcarey.asu.edu/realtyreports. The premium site includes statistics, charts, graphs and the ability to focus in on whatever interests you most about the market.

“Though we’ve already had a great response to our housing reports, we wanted to make our real estate information even more useful to people,” says Orr. “With the enhanced site, you’re able to customize your view to more closely examine data in particular price ranges, specific parts of the Valley, and even certain transaction categories. We think the real estate community will be really pleased with the new tools.”

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Hotel Palomar Offers LGBTQ Wedding Give-Away

In celebration of Kimpton’s long-time support of the LGBTQ community, Hotel Palomar Phoenix is awarding one lucky couple an all-inclusive Wedding Give-Away.

Couples are invited to share their love story to enter to win a paid trip to California to get married, a reception at Hotel Palomar Phoenix upon your return to Arizona, and a Mini-Moon at Amara Resort and Spa in Sedona.

A trip to California, where you can legally tie the knot, includes:

• Flight for two to San Diego
• Two-night stay at Hotel Palomar San Diego
• Transportation to San Diego City Hall for ceremony and marriage license

Back at home, your Wedding Celebration at Hotel Palomar Phoenix includes:

• Ceremony on LUSTRE Rooftop or Calavera Ballroom
• Celebration Dinner and Celebratory Champagne Toast
• Custom Wedding Cake
• A Signature Cocktail Designed with LUSTRE’s Lead Mixologist
• Upgraded Leather Chairs, Table Linens, and Centerpiece Appointments
• Coordinated Wedding Rehearsal and Ceremony Sound System
• Overnight accommodations at Hotel Palomar Phoenix for the Newlywed Couple the evening of the Celebration
• Newlywed Breakfast for Two at Breakfast Club

Mini-Moon at Amara Resort and Spa in Sedona includes:

• Two Night Stay in a Suite
• Dinner for two at the newly renovated SaltRock
• Couples Massage at the Amara Spa

To enter to win, couples should submit their love story in the form of a short essay, video, or photo collection to catering@hotelpalomar-phoenix.com, by December 10, 2014.

Finalists will be selected by December 15, 2014 and will be placed on the Hotel Palomar Phoenix Facebook page to be voted on by the public.

To enter, contestants must comply with the Official Rules available here.

The winning couple will be announced on January 22, 2015.

For additional information, visit http://www.hotelpalomar-phoenix.com/weddings/LGBTQ-wedding.html.

Nicole France-Stanton, office managing partner, Quarles & Brady.

29 Quarles & Brady Attorneys make ‘Best Lawyers’

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP announced that 29 of its Phoenix attorneys – and a total of 169 Quarles & Brady attorneys nationwide – have been selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2015.

Quarles & Brady Phoenix attorneys distinguished for excellence in their practice areas are:

• Scott M. Berg (Banking and Finance Law)
• Brian R. Booker (Commercial Litigation / Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
• Joseph A. Drazek (Environmental Law / Litigation – Environmental / Natural Resources Law)
• Steven P. Emerick (Corporate Law / Equipment Finance Law / Securities / Capital Markets Law)
• Nicole France-Stanton (Commercial Litigation / Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants)
• Jeffrey B. Fugal (Tax Law)
• Jeffrey L. Gage (Real Estate Law)
• Diane M. Haller (Real Estate Law)
• John A. Harris (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law / Litigation – Bankruptcy)
• Robert P. Harris (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law)
• Christian J. Hoffmann III (Corporate Law / Mergers and Acquisitions Law / Securities / Capital Markets Law / Securities Regulation)
• Eric B. Johnson* (Employment Law – Management)
• Don P. Martin (Commercial Litigation / Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants / Litigation – Banking and Finance / Litigation – Real Estate)
• Matthew Mehr (Banking and Finance Law)
• Roger N. Morris (Health Care Law)
• P. Robert Moya (Corporate Law / Leveraged Buyouts and Private Equity Law / Mergers and Acquisitions Law / Securities / Capital Markets Law)
• Daniel L. Muchow (Environmental Law / Natural Resources Law)
• John Maston O’Neal (Commercial Litigation)
• Jon E. Pettibone (Administrative / Regulatory Law / Employment Law – Management / Labor Law – Management)
• James A. Ryan (Bet-the-Company Litigation / Commercial Litigation / Tax Law)
• Edward Salanga (Commercial Litigation / Litigation – Construction)
• Brian Sirower (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law / Litigation – Bankruptcy)
• Derek L. Sorenson (Real Estate Law)
• Peter A. Terry (Banking and Finance Law)
• James A. Ullman (Franchise Law)
• C. Bradley Vynalek (Commercial Litigation)
• Jacque N. Westling (Banking and Finance Law / Corporate Law)
• Lori L. Winkelman (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law)
• Jeffrey H. Wolf (Franchise Law)

* Lawyers who are listed for the first time in Best Lawyers.

Freeman Farms

Fulton ‘Legacy’ at $15M before opening

While news headlines in August continue to declare sluggish new home sales figures in the Metro Phoenix market, one new Fulton Homes’ community in Gilbert is experiencing just the opposite.

As of Aug. 25, the Tempe-based homebuilder has sold 20 homes and has hit $15 million in sales at its Legacy at Freeman Farms community—and the models are not even open yet. Legacy’s single-level, 105-homesite community features floor plans ranging from 3,800 to 6,600 square feet, with 11-bedroom and six-bath options. Basements, a rarity in the Valley, are also. Price points begin at $575,000, some $300,000 more than the current average median price of a new home in Phoenix.

Homebuyer interest in Legacy has even outpaced that of past Fulton Homes’ communities, including the popular Fulton Ranch community in Chandler which opened in October 2006.

“We have been astounded by the enormous interest in Legacy,” said Doug Fulton, CEO of Fulton Homes. “These are among the largest homes we have even built. We are offering a luxury product with increased square footage, more bedroom space and room for vehicles, boats and storage to meet the demand of our customers. The sales spike even before the models open is a testament to both the quality homes we build and our awareness of what our customers are now looking for in a larger, modernized home.”

Located on S. Greenfield Road, Legacy will also feature swing-in motor courts, open spaces, ramadas, basketball and bocce ball courts, horseshoe pits and a shaded tot lot. Legacy is located near San Tan Mall and other amenities.

For further information, call 602-452-1000 or visit www.fultonhomes.com.

Photo by Cronkite News Service.

Arizona Lottery Scratchers Ticket Offers $2.5 Million Prize

The Arizona Lottery announces the launch of its newest Scratchers ticket, $185 Million Cash Explosion. This is the largest $20 Scratchers top prize in Arizona Lottery history.

The new ticket launches Sept. 2 and offers players a chance to win one of six $2.5 million top prizes. Winners will have the option of a 30-year annuity or a lump sum of $1.25 million before taxes. The total value of all prizes for Cash Explosion is more than $185 million, including three $100,000 second place prizes and 15 $50,000 third place prizes.

The Arizona Lottery is hosting a special launch event Tuesday, Sept. 2, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Lottery offices in Phoenix and Tucson. Players in attendance who buy a $20 Cash Explosion ticket will get $10 worth of Scratchers for free. Free tickets consist of a $5 Lucky Life ticket and a $5 Heat Wave ticket, limit one pair of free tickets per person.

The Arizona Lottery street team will be at the Phoenix office with a “Spin-to-Win” promotion and a chance to win one of three ultimate sports prize packs. Buzz n’ Beez food truck and its eclectic menu of southern style comfort foods will be on site for the lunch crowd. There also will be special appearances made by the Phoenix Suns Gorilla, Arizona Cardinals cheerleaders and Big Red, Baxter from the Diamondbacks, Scorch from the Phoenix Mercury and Howler from the Arizona Coyotes.

“Our new Cash Explosion ticket offers the highest top prize of any of our previous $20 Scratchers, which is extremely exciting,” said Karen Bach, director of budget, products and communications for the Arizona Lottery. “Keeping Lottery players happy is essential, that’s why we are always looking for games that offer new and different top prizes.”

The Cash Explosion Scratchers ticket can be purchased for $20 at any Arizona Lottery retailer.

For more information about the new $185 Million Cash Explosion Scratchers ticket, please visit ArizonaLottery.com.

Players must be 21 years or older to purchase or redeem tickets. Winners have 180 days from the drawing date to claim their prize at an Arizona Lottery office or by mail. Overall odds vary by game. All sales are final. In accordance with the ADA, these materials may be made available in an alternative format. Gambling Problem? Call 1.800.NEXT STEP (1-800-639-8783). Please Play Responsibly™. Scratchers® is a registered service mark of the California Lottery.

WebPT founder Heidi Jannenga

WebPT Among Fastest Growing For 2nd Year

WebPT, the leading web-based electronic medical record (EMR) solution for rehab therapists, today announced it has ranked No. 362 on the Inc. 500 list of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. Touting a three-year growth rate of 1,316 percent, WebPT boasts two consecutive appearances on this prestigious annual list of elite independent businesses.

“We are honored and excited to be named one of America’s fastest-growing companies, which puts the physical therapy industry in the national spotlight,” said WebPT founder and COO Heidi Jannenga. “The sustained growth is a testament to our customer-centric culture and our focus on producing innovative products to solve real business problems.”

WebPT, which ranked No. 231 on the Inc. 500 list in 2013, recently announced a significant round of growth capital financing from Battery Ventures. The company intends to use the new capital to further accelerate the growth that landed it on Inc. Magazine’s list of the nation’s fastest-growing companies two years in a row.

Since its inception in 2008, WebPT has helped more than 35,000 rehab therapy professionals transition to EMR, leading the rehab industry into the digital age by enabling fast, secure, paperless documentation. In the last four years, the company has added more than 150 jobs and has grown in revenue from $1.2 million in 2010 to a projected $25 million this year. WebPT also ranks among the top ten Arizona companies and the top ten Phoenix Metro Area companies.

“This is a true team award, and I am enormously proud of the hard work, dedication and commitment to excellence displayed by everyone at WebPT,” said WebPT CEO Paul Winandy. “Only a select few companies make the Inc. 500 two years in a row, and we are honored to be part of such an elite group.”

Having created a comprehensive, industry-specific platform, WebPT is changing the way rehab therapists manage the day-to-day operations of their clinics. In addition to offering defensible, compliant and intuitive documentation, the web-based application provides physical therapists, occupational therapists and speech-language pathologists with intelligent business reporting, interactive and organized scheduling, and integrated billing.

Chandler Innovation Center

GM Officially Opens Information Technology Center

General Motors is adding to its roster of Information Technology Innovation Centers with today’s grand opening of a facility in the Phoenix area.

The center, which will enable GM to in-source the company’s innovation capabilities and tap into a pool of new and experienced IT talent, joins innovation centers already operating in Warren, Mich., Austin, Texas, and Roswell, Ga.

Randy Mott, senior vice president, Global Information Technology & chief information officer, was joined at the ribbon-cutting ceremony and grand opening by more than 20 local and national elected officials including Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny, U.S. Reps. Matt Salmon and Kyrsten Sinema, Arizona House of Representatives President Andy Biggs and Speaker of the House Andy Tobin. Approximately 500 facility employees also attended the event.

GM’s IT innovation centers are part of a companywide transformation to improve performance, reduce the cost of ongoing operations and increase its delivery of innovation. GM announced Chandler as the site of the company’s fourth IT Innovation Center in March 2013, and construction on the 170,000 square-foot center was completed in June this year.

“We have made significant progress transforming GM IT over the past 20 months,” Mott said. “The success of the Chandler Innovation Center is yet another important proof point that illustrates our progress.”

GM expects to hire a total of 1,000 employees at the Chandler Innovation Center over the next five years. Approximately 500 employees are employed at the facility, about 25 percent of whom are recent college graduates.

“The official opening of the IT Innovation in Chandler and the creation of about 1,000 high-paying, skilled jobs is great news for the local economy,” said Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer. “Today’s event speaks volumes about the business-friendly environment we have created in Arizona, including our high-tech talent and competitive cost of operating. I could not be prouder of our state and what this announcement means for the future of Arizona’s economy.”

Said Tibshraeny: “GM is exactly the type of technology employer we need in Chandler and in our state. The GM Innovation Center is a perfect complement to Chandler’s Price Corridor, and furthers the city’s reputation as a regional hub for innovators and world-class IT professionals.”

challenge

Barrow docs conquer Ice Bucket Challenge

Nearly 30 doctors, researchers, residents and staff from the Gregory W. Fulton Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Neuromuscular Disease Center at Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix joined the Strike Out ALS Ice Bucket Challenge on August 15 after being challenged by the staff at the ALS Clinic at SUNY. The doctors poured buckets of ice water over their heads and dared the Arizona Diamondbacks, other VIPs and doctors to join the awareness campaign or donate to the Barrow Neurological Foundation for ALS research. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease after the New York Yankee star was diagnosed with the disease in the 1930s.

The Strike Out ALS Ice Bucket Challenge started in July in Massachusetts with former Boston College baseball player Pete Frates, who hoped to raise awareness after being diagnosed with the disease in 2012. The Gregory W. Fulton ALS and Neuromuscular Disease Center at Barrow Neurological Institute is the state’s only comprehensive ALS center.

The Fulton ALS Center at Barrow was founded to improve both care and research for neuromuscular disorders and offers complete multidisciplinary care within a single center while providing access to advanced clinical trials and promising basic science research. The Fulton ALS Center’s physicians, allied health personnel, and research scientists work with and for patients to deliver the vanguard of therapy for neuromuscular diseases while simultaneously developing the treatments of the future.

mayor

Stanton Joins Arizona Summit Law School Faculty

This fall, Arizona Summit Law School will welcome Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton to the faculty as an adjunct distinguished lecturer-in-residence. Mayor Stanton will bring his experience as a practicing attorney and public servant into the classroom, teaching Designing Land-Use Policies, and providing valuable instruction to future real-estate-transactional and land-use attorneys.

“This will be a great opportunity to work with talented and engaged students, and to provide them with an understanding of the complex issues they’ll handle when they become attorneys,” Stanton said. “I look forward to helping them navigate the intricacies of land use as it relates to public policy.”

Designing Land Use Policies covers the intense legal and social conflicts associated with land and its usage. Students learn the basics of development and regulation processes, including zoning and planning, as well as planning and subdivision law with an emphasis on Arizona state law. In addition, the course explores contemporary land-use struggles, such as population and job growth, environmental and quality of life concerns, affordable housing, and managing transportation issues while respecting property rights. The course features experiential learning, training students to advocate on behalf of conflicted stakeholders in a highly politicized land-use public hearing.

Stanton is the latest in a number of qualified, high-profile members of the legal and public service communities whose expertise and real–world experiences enrich the academic training of Arizona Summit Law students. He joins esteemed faculty such as retired judges Penny Willrich, Michael Jones and Stephen Gerst in training students through their extensive experience at the highest levels of the legal profession in our state.

“At Arizona Summit Law School we are committed to providing students with real-life experience and instruction, which takes traditional legal education beyond legal theory and includes the practical application of the law,” said Arizona Summit Law School Dean Shirley Mays. “When Mayor Stanton expressed interest in joining our faculty, we immediately recognized the beneficial insight he would provide to students as a policy maker, public servant and practicing attorney. We are thrilled to have him at our downtown Phoenix Campus.”

skd258400sdc

7 Ogletree Deakins attorneys earn honor

Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. (Ogletree Deakins), one of the largest labor and employment law firms representing management, announced today that seven attorneys from the firm’s Arizona offices were selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2015. The 2015 list was compiled based on an exhaustive peer-review survey that included more than 5.5 million detailed evaluations of lawyers by other lawyers.

The Arizona-based Ogletree Deakins attorneys appearing on the 2015 Best Lawyers in America© list include:

• Joseph T. Clees (Employment Law – Management, Labor Law – Management)
• L. Eric Dowell (Employment Law – Management, Labor Law – Management, Litigation – Labor and Employment)
• Leah S. Freed (Litigation – Labor and Employment)
• Mark G. Kisicki (Employment Law – Management, Labor Law – Management, Litigation – Labor and Employment)
• James K. Mackie (Employment Law – Management, Litigation – Labor and Employment)
• Tracy A. Miller (Employment Law – Management, Labor Law – Management, Litigation – Labor and Employment)
• Tibor Nagy, Jr. (Employment Law – Management, Labor Law – Management, Litigation – Labor and Employment)

Best Lawyers® has also named Kisicki as the 2015 Labor Law – Management “Lawyer of the Year” in Phoenix, and Nagy as the 2015 Litigation – Labor and Employment “Lawyer of the Year” in Tucson. The publication awards this honor to a single lawyer in each practice area and designated metropolitan area.

Firm-wide, 184 Ogletree Deakins attorneys were named to the Best Lawyers© list. Many earned recognition in multiple categories—144 were named under the Employment Law – Management category; 104 were named under the Labor Law – Management category; and 105 were named under the Litigation – Labor and Employment category.

Diane Haller

Quarles & Brady’s Haller Named Lawyer of the Year

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP announced that Phoenix partner Diane Haller is one of 14 Quarles & Brady attorneys nationally to have been selected as a “Lawyer of the Year” in The Best Lawyers in America®.

Each year, Best Lawyers compiles its list of “Lawyers of the Year,” in which only a single lawyer in each practice area and designated metropolitan area is honored. Lawyers with this designation are chosen based on peer-review assessments conducted with thousands of leading lawyers each year. Receiving this honor reflects the respect a lawyer has acquired among other leading lawyers in the same practice areas throughout the same communities.

Haller is at the center of many major development projects in Phoenix, not only as a lawyer, but as an advocate of smart development. She is a board member of Habitat for Humanity, as well as a member of the American College of Real Estate Lawyers, and serves as vice-chair on the board and executive committee of the Phoenix Community Alliance.

Haller has been named among the Top 25 Female Lawyers in Southwest Super Lawyers and honored as the Most Influential Women in Arizona Business by AZ Business Magazine. She serves as the national chair of Quarles & Brady’s Real Estate & Land Use Practice Group and is Martindale-Hubbell AV Peer Review Rated.

Members 1

Four RDP attorneys honored as Best Lawyers

Roshka DeWulf & Patten, a Phoenix-based business law firm representing clients in litigation and regulatory issues, said four attorneys have been honored as 2015 Best Lawyers®.

The Best Lawyers in America is the longest-running peer-review publication in the legal profession, now in its 20th edition. Attorneys who are recognized as Best Lawyers® are confidentially evaluated by their peers. Attorneys from Roshka DeWulf & Patten who received the 2015 honor are:

· Michael Patten – communications law, energy law, and administrative/regulatory law. In addition, Patten has been honored as Best Lawyers’ 2015 Phoenix Energy Law “Lawyer of the Year.”
· Paul Roshka, Jr. – commercial litigation, litigation – regulatory enforcement (SEC, telecom, energy), and litigation – securities.
· John DeWulf – bet-the-company litigation, commercial litigation, and litigation – securities.
· J. Matthew Derstine – bankruptcy and creditor debtor rights/insolvency and reorganization law, and litigation – bankruptcy.

“We’re very honored to receive this recognition, as it’s a testament to our entire team’s breadth of knowledge and experience,” said Roshka. “We are extremely committed to our clients and hold ourselves to very high professional and ethical standards.”

To learn more about Roshka DeWulf & Patten attorneys and practice areas, visit www.rdp-law.com.

doggies, web

Is Phoenix-based PetSmart for sale?

Bowing to pressure from investors, Phoenix-based PetSmart Inc. said Tuesday that it is considering putting itself up for sale.

The pet supply chain said that it will weigh “strategic alternatives” after a board review that included conversations with shareholders.

Investment firm Longview Asset Management and hedge fund Jana Partners have both called on PetSmart to sell itself, a move they say would benefit shareholders. Longview has about a 9 percent stake in PetSmart, while Jana holds nearly 10 percent, according to FactSet.

The company also said it plans to cut costs. It said it will provide more details next quarter and expects to realize the savings by the end of its next fiscal year.

Its shares rose 3.4 percent to $72.10 in after-hours trading. The stock has dropped 4 percent this year.

The Phoenix-based company in May cut its earnings outlook for the year, citing a challenging consumer environment and competition.

PetSmart said Tuesday that it is focusing on pet food, exclusive brands and services, online shoppers and a loyalty program. It also announced a $130 million acquisition of online retailer Pet360, whose websites include Pet360.com, PetFoodDirect.com and petMD.com, to bolster its online business.

In the fiscal second quarter, PetSmart’s earnings rose 5.1 percent to $98.1 million, or 98 cents per share. Revenue in the quarter that ended on Aug. 3 rose 1.4 percent to $1.73 billion.

It left its guidance for the year unchanged.