Fairfax County EDA opens L.A.-area office; outreach to include southern and northern California

Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) has opened an office in the Los Angeles area, hiring Market Diligence Group of Newport Beach to work with California companies interested in expanding to the Washington, D.C., area and venture capitalists seeking investment opportunities in Fairfax County. Mark White and Tom Roberts of Market Diligence Group will direct Fairfax County’s marketing efforts that will target the Silicon Valley-San Francisco area as well as Southern California.

The FCEDA first opened a California office in the San Francisco Bay area in 2006. However, given the increased activity among Southern California businesses looking to expand operations into the Washington region – as such companies as Hilton Worldwide, CSC, SAIC and Northrop Grumman have done over the past few years – FCEDA is shifting its West Coast base to the Los Angeles area. In order to take advantage of federal and commercial opportunities, more than two dozen companies based in California such as Esri, HP, Salesforce.com and Technical Communities have offices in Fairfax County.

“Fairfax County is a great location for California businesses interested in establishing east coast operations. The workforce, technology community and proximity to Washington, D.C., provide companies with a base from which to grow in new markets. Our new team in California will be able to provide expert advice and assistance to companies throughout California and other technology centers in the West,” said Gerald L. Gordon, Ph.D., president and CEO of the FCEDA.

White has more than 20 years of experience in assisting companies, governmental agencies and investors in the United States and around the world in planning, economic development, marketing and implementation of business development and strategic plans. He has worked with the United Nations, the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, and for 10 years he has been engaged as an economic development consultant based in the western U.S. He brings in-depth knowledge of information technology, life sciences, health care, energy and financing. He is a frequent guest speaker for the U.S. Department of Commerce and U.S. state trade associations.

"We are excited to continue FCEDA's work in the California market to educate technology companies on opportunities with federal agencies and contractors as well as the many other benefits that Fairfax County offers,” White said. “With the current challenging economic environment in the U.S., providing California companies a platform to expand and take advantage of the federal marketplace is a welcoming sign during these times. Fairfax is the proven and perfect location for such an office."

Roberts focuses on helping private and public firms expand into new markets. He has identified new markets, developed strategic marketing plans and established systems and procedures for implementing and monitoring the plans. He has worked in the area of economic development for the past decade with Mark White.