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U.S. middle market carries strong momentum into 2017;
Ohio predicting strong revenue growth

The U.S. middle market closed 2016 on a high note and has carried that momentum into 2017, with all indicators pointing to an increasingly robust performance.

Actual and projected revenue and employment growth rates continue to rise significantly, and economic confidence is keeping pace, according to the National Center for the Middle Market's 1Q 2017 Middle-Market Indicator (MMI) survey.

Meanwhile, Ohio’s middle-market companies are expecting their revenue to grow over the next 12 months at a higher level than their counterparts across the U.S. (9.5 percent compared to 8.8 percent).

Ohio middle-market executives who participated in the survey also are more confident in their local economies when compared to their peers nationwide with 89 percent expressing confidence compared to 88 percent nationally.

That optimism also carries over to the national and global economies. For the national economy, 97 percent of Ohio respondents expressed confidence compared to 90 percent nationally. Likewise, for the global economy, the confidence rate was 84 percent (Ohio) and 77 percent (nationwide).

Welcome, new GCP members

Meet the Northeast Ohio companies that recently joined the Greater Cleveland Partnership as Investor members. Click the links below to learn more about them.

OHTec honors top Northeast Ohio tech companies

OHTec, a program of the Greater Cleveland Partnership, focused on connecting the companies, people and support resources for Northeast Ohio’s technology community, held its 11th annual Best of Tech Awards Night on April 27 in front of approximately 200 people at Cleveland’s Trinity Cathedral.

Awards were given in seven categories, including: Tech Team of the Year; Tech Company of the Year; Most Promising Startup; Best Tech Workspace; Best Software Product; Best IT Services Company; and Best Healthcare Tech Product.

“This year’s crop of finalists shows the deep bench of tech talent that exists in Northeast Ohio,” said OHTec Executive Director Dean E. Brainard.

“At OHTec, we’re proud to support the work of these innovative companies and individuals and connect the fabric of the region’s IT community together through a variety of collaborative and educational efforts.”

The winners included these GCP Investor members:
  • Tech Team of the Year: PolyOne
  • Best Software Product: OEC
  • Best IT Services Company: Bluebridge Networks
  • Best Healthcare Tech Product: OnShift
  Read more about the awards and view a list of the winners.

Linking Talent to Opportunity event a big success

The Greater Cleveland Partnership's Business Development team, in collaboration with OHTec and NEO Talent Exchange, held the Linking IT Talent to Opportunity job fair on Wednesday, April 26 at the Brecksville Community Center.

This is the sixth year for this event, which connects IT graduates, college students and professionals with some of the region's leading tech companies to discuss career paths and opportunities. This year's job fair attracted 26 Northeast Ohio employers exhibited and 150 attendees.

We thank this year's exhibitors for making the event such a success, including:

The need for talent in the IT industry has been well-documented by our business team’s outreach visits in the last few years, and Linking IT helps address that need.

According to Ian Kimbrell, owner/founder of Boundary Systems: "The “Linking IT” job fair was incredibly valuable for our company. We have been looking to fill an IT position for many months, and we found more candidates in three hours than we did in six months.

“The event was meticulously planned ,and the number and the quality of candidates who came to speak to us was diverse. They were all local talent, which is a huge value to our company.

“I hope this event is run annually. We plan to participate again."

Special thanks to our location sponsor, the City of Brecksville, and to Kevin Goodman of BlueBridge Networks LLC for his introductory remarks about the vitality of the Northeast Ohio and the importance of mentoring within the profession.

For more information about the event, or to discuss how GCP's Business Development team can assist your company with growth and retention strategies, please call 216.592.2208.

Help CMSD eighth-graders set goals for career success

Recognizing that career readiness starts early, an innovative program—True2U—a collaboration between the Cleveland Foundation’s youth development program, My Com, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD), the Greater Cleveland Partnership and Neighborhood Leadership Institute—provides CMSD eighth-graders with support to explore their purpose, identify their strengths and set goals for success.

Business professionals are invited to volunteer as True2U mentors for the program for the 2017-2018 school year. This career exploration and mentoring program focuses on raising career awareness for CMSD students on the cusp of entering high school.

Mentors will be trained on a structured curriculum and work in teams of two or three mentors with small groups of students once a month, for the duration of the school year, and will be supported by a CMSD teacher once a month.

Click here for more information about True2U.

If you have questions, or want to sign up as a mentor, please contact Angela Finding at or 216.592.2385.

Could your summer internship program connect 
to Cleveland students?

It’s well-established that internships and jobs for youth during the summer can have an immediate economic impact for a student on a tight budget and the experience can benefit both the intern and the employer for many years afterward. 

The Greater Cleveland Partnership’s own annual Cleveland Internship Summit continues to highlight how many business professionals look back to summer internships and other structured experiential learning experiences as being extremely beneficial to their careers.

There is always a need for more of these impactful opportunities, particularly for students in more distressed Cleveland neighborhoods. 

If you have an interest in learning more about how your summer internship program could potentially connect to these students this summer or in the future, please contact Shana Marbury at or 216.592.2249.

Your input is needed on Ohio’s career tech standards

The Ohio Department of Education has a plan for keeping Ohio’s Career Technical Content Standards current with employers’ changing needs, so that students are always learning the industry skills they need for careers and college.

The Department will revise the career-technical standards in all 16 career fields on a five-year, rotating cycle, updating a set of standards each year. This begins in 2017 with Ohio’s information technology, engineering and manufacturing technology standards. 

As the first step, the department is asking for input from industry professionals. 

Please complete this survey by May 6 about the standards in the career field or fields most relevant to your work. Your review will help ensure that the standards are clearly written, industry relevant and in sync with what students will learn in post-secondary programs and aligned with industry credential requirements.

Click for more information or email a career field program specialist.

Cleveland Chain Reaction seeking local entrepreneurs; application deadline is May 8

Cleveland Chain Reaction, an economic development project aimed at bringing jobs and additional economic activity to the city, is currently accepting applications from entrepreneurs who are interested in being considered to work with investors to grow their business in the Slavic Village neighborhood.

Applications will be accepted until 8 a.m. Monday, May 8.

The total economic boost to the neighborhood will likely exceed $1 million.

Click for details about how to apply.

Visit the website for more information about Cleveland Chain Reaction.

Cleveland Chain Reaction is produced by: