Since its beginning, California has been a symbol of preternaturally golden opportunities.
In 1848, the California Gold Rush enchanted nearly 300,000 prospectors from around the world — ax picks in calloused hand, dreams haloed on crowns.
Before even that, there were the Native Californians — 70 distinct ethnic groups and chiefdoms, such as the Chumash, Pomo and Salinan tribes, fostering their own economies and the most diverse cultural mosaic in pre-Columbian North America.
Now with over 39.5 million residents, California enjoys the world’s largest and most diverse population. California’s economy has a gross state product of $3.2 trillion and is the largest sub-national economy in the world.
If it was a nation, California would be the 5th largest economy in the world. That bears repeating: larger than Russia, Brazil or the United Kingdom, California is the world’s 5th largest economy.
In the California cosmopolitan, Carlsbad is the 5th richest city; a jewel of the Tri-City area that includes Vista and Oceanside. Carlsbad is the 5th of the 5th.
The “Flower Capital” boasts a GDP of nearly a quarter of a billion, enjoys a future job growth index ahead of the national median, income tax double that of America’s, median household income of just over $100K and routinely shows up on lists of America’s best or most affluent neighborhoods.
In a state that features global power centers as Silicon Valley, the trillion-dollar Hollywood entertainment industry, San Diego’s multi-billion dollar biotech industry, the Central Valley’s agricultural industry (the crops and “black gold” cannabis of Bakersfield and Fresno as well as wine orchards of Napa Valley), Orange County’s world-class investment banking region, and a wealth of national leadership from President Ronald Reagan to Vice President Kamala Harris… that is saying something profound about Carlsbad.
The Beat’s (The Coast News) extraordinary podcaster Kellie Kyle asked me a question during our interview: “What were the inspiration and big picture for ‘Getting Deals Done‘?”
My reasons for starting “Getting Deals Done” is simple — I enjoy a surreal passion for deal-making, as well as a business acumen curated by decades spent on Wall Street, OC banking and Market Street San Francisco investment banking sectors, some schooling from the University of Hard Knocks, and a tenured entrepreneur with ventures such as the San Diego Investment Conference in my back pocket.
Every molecule in my being is attuned to the incredible business environment in a seaside town bordered by crescendoing beaches, rolling hills, lush valleys and the dreaming impresario’s oasis.
Carlsbad is eclectic but tethered boasting four core industries: biotechnology (medical devices and life sciences) anchored by Life Technologies, tourism (Legoland, Flower Fields and beach town) and technology (gaming, robotics and information technology).
Matter of fact, in 2013, Google awarded the city of Carlsbad as the digital capital of California with the strongest online e-business community in the state.
Perhaps, however, Carlsbad’s most distinct “micro-macro” is as “Titanium Valley,” a center of the golfing universe with Callaway Golf Company, Taylor Made Adidas Golf Company, Titleist and Odyssey Golf. Coupled with Carlsbad’s 56 golf courses including my favorites at The Crossing, Aviara Golf Club and Omni La Costa Resort and Spa, Carlsbad is tailor-made (pun intended) for the international and aspirational business fluent.
Carlsbad Mayor Matt Hall recognizes Carlsbad’s bounty, reflecting that “since the mid-1980s, the city has been known for its thoughtful vision which is reflected in the growth management plan.”
Astute conglomerates have cosigned with over 25 international brands as Coco’s Bakery Restaurant, Jenny Craig, Rubio’s Restaurant and Viasat Satellite Communications headquartered in coastal Carlsbad.
“Now, 25 years later, we need to once again take the time to create our vision for Carlsbad; we need to create a plan that will guide us to 2050,” Hall said. “Our goal must be to involve residents and small businesses in developing a plan that ensures the next generation can continue to enjoy the quality of life that Carlsbad is known for.”
With the international pandemic increasingly under control and the Roaring Twenties come full circle in the 21st century, Carlsbad is poised for growth.
Or, as Chris Kydd, publisher of The Coast News, noted in our initial conversation at Encinitas’ Everest Himalayan restaurant while vibing our vision for the region:
“Patrick, there is gold in these hills and beach towns,” Kydd said. “There are pockets of pure gold everywhere.”
It’s not that hard to fathom. Puissantly breathe the ocean seaside air. Smell that?
AUTHOR’S NOTE: Future “Getting Deals Done” columns will feature the business climates of Encinitas, Vista, Oceanside, Del Mar, Encinitas, Oceanside, Solana Beach, Escondido, Poway and San Marcos.
Patrick A. Howell is an award-winning financier, tenured entrepreneur and author of “Dispatches from the Vanguard.” He lives in Carlsbad and is his son SharkHeart’s No. 1 fan.