Jeff Randle of Randle Communications stated in his December 2015 editorial, “I believe 2016 will determine Sacramento’s future. Decisions made by our leaders plus choices made by residents will set a course for generations to come.” See the editorial from the Business Journal: Key issue of 2016: private-sector growth

Of course, I completely agree, but in addition to decisions, I think the leaders have to stay out of the way and help accelerate Sacramento’s growth of prominence in California, nationally and worldwide.

As a commercial real estate professional, I deal with companies from all over the region. Over the last couple of years, we have seen more and more companies from outside of the Sacramento region acquire major real estate assets, and we have seen companies from outside of the region establish or expand their presence in the region. When companies expand from other markets into Sacramento, that means Private Sector Growth.  Consider the stats:

According to Bureau of Labor Statistics Data, Sacramento is evolving and becoming less dependent on public sector job growth. For example, in 2010, 29% of the region’s non-farm workforce was government. As of December 2015 that number stood at 25%. So in 2015 of the 927,000 non farm jobs, 695,000 were private sector. In 2010, of 830,000 non farm jobs, 589,000 were private sector. Net increase in private sector, non farm jobs: 106,000. Nice!

It is no surprise that we are seeing accelerated private sector growth.  Sacramento has so much to offer.  It goes without saying that companies need a quality work force.  Sacramento is home to two major college campuses, Sacramento State and UC Davis. In addition, University of the Pacific’s McGeorge law school and MBA programs contribute. More and more companies are choosing to expand into the market than ever before, and a big draw is the trained labor force our superior college institutions deliver.

In the past, many of our graduates would seek greener pastures in big markets.  Now, Sacramento is rivaling these big markets with a diversified and progressive offering in the entertainment, sports, arts and restaurant arenas.  The country is taking notice.

In October 2016, the Golden One Arena opens up with Maroon 5. In 2017 The NCAA Basketball Tourney will be here. Events like these combined with the Kings improved performance in the league, will contribute to Sacramento’s Brand growth. I wouldn’t be surprised if the sale of a Kings player’s jersey breaks into the top 10 by 2017.  I think this is a solid economic indicator.

Last year, the Del Paso Country Club hosted the US Senior Open, eating up hotel rooms and fine food from local restaurants. According to Steve Hammond, CEO of the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau, “There isn’t enough money in our budget to purchase that level of promotion, not just nationally, but the grandeur of this event and the international exposure.”

All these events are the byproduct of a great city growing up.  Throw in other great Sacramento offerings like the Crocker, the Mondavi Center, B Street Theater, and a burgeoning restaurant market, and you have a place where Millennials and Boomers want to be.   Anyone have an extra ticket for the Farm to Fork dinner?