Monday, July 18, 2016

When search failed me (or, those big buildings around us must be Pokemon gyms or something)

You're probably well aware that if you buy a product from someone, that product doesn't go from the manufacturer directly to you. There are a number of intermediate steps that are required to get that product to you. Even if you buy the product online, rather than in a brick and mortar store, those steps occur. Amazon, for example, has to secure warehouses all over the country - especially to fulfill orders for same day delivery.

According to PYMNTS, there's a problem with that:

The bad news for online brands that rely on same-day and express shipping came down this week from commercial real estate firm CBRE. In a report, Chief Economist for the Americas Jeffrey Havsy explained that, at the close of Q2 2016, available retail warehouse space had fallen to just 8.8 percent of overall capacity. Not only is that the 25th quarter in a row that retailers have been buying up floor space in fulfillment centers faster than contractors can build it, but out of the 57 major metropolitan markets Havsy and CBRE looked at, 37 posted net losses in retail warehouse availability.

Although PYMNTS didn't include a list of the 57 metropolitan areas, my guess is that the Inland Empire didn't post net losses in retail warehouse availability. Heck, we have warehouses all over the place, and there's the big fight in Moreno Valley over a proposed massive logistics center.

But to get the authoritative word on this, I went to the Inland Empire Economic Partnership website, and searched the site for warehouse information.

That was not the result I expected. Or perhaps those aren't really warehouses across our region; maybe they're something else.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

We are closer to ONTARIO International Airport

Source:, via

News Media Contact:
Amy Goethals
(909) 395-2496

Federal legislation facilitating transfer of ONT
to local control wins final approval

FAA bill now goes to President for signing

ONTARIO, Calif. - July 13, 2016 -- Ontario International Airport Authority (OIAA) officials hailed final passage today of federal legislation facilitating the transfer of Ontario International Airport (ONT) to local control.

The legislation for ONT was included in a bill to extend the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) programs and policies beyond Friday. Leading the effort to include the ONT provision in the bill were Rep. Ken Calvert (D-CA42) and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). The bill passed in the House on a voice vote Monday and was approved in the Senate today on a 89-4 vote. It now goes to President Obama to be signed into law.

"This is a landmark day in Southern California aviation," said Alan D. Wapner, OIAA President and Ontario City Council Member. "We are grateful for the tremendous bipartisan support this legislation received from throughout the Southland. It completes the funding plan for the transfer of ONT from Los Angeles World Airports to the OIAA, which we continue to expect will be completed in the second half of this calendar year."

The legislation allows future passenger facility charges (PFCs) collected at ONT to be used at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) as repayment for PFCs previously collected at LAX and used at ONT.

As one of the last steps before the airport transfer, the OIAA has already begun arrangements for issuance of bonds backed by airport revenues to replace existing airport debt of approximately $56 million.

The FAA continues to work closely with the OIAA and LAWA to provide a seamless transition of airport sponsors from LAWA to the OIAA. The FAA will issue a Part 139 Airport Operating Certificate to the OIAA concurrent with the transfer.

About the Ontario International Airport Authority

The City of Ontario and San Bernardino County formed the OIAA in August 2012 by enacting a Joint Powers Agreement. The OIAA provides overall direction for the management, operations, development and marketing of ONT for the benefit of the Southern California economy and the residents of the airport's four-county catchment area. Commissioners are Ontario Council Member Alan D. Wapner (President), Ontario Council Member Jim W. Bowman, San Bernardino County Supervisor Curt Hagman, Retired Riverside Mayor Ronald O. Loveridge (Vice President) and Orange County Business Council President/CEO and California Transportation Commission Chair Lucy Dunn (Secretary).

About Ontario International Airport

ONT is located in the Inland Empire, approximately 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles in the center of Southern California. It is a medium-hub, full-service airport with direct commercial jet service to 14 U.S. and Mexico cities. There are 61 daily departures offered by seven air carriers. ONT's service area includes a population of six million in San Bernardino and Riverside counties, and portions of Orange and Los Angeles counties. It currently is operated by Los Angeles World Airports, a City of Los Angeles agency also operating Los Angeles International and Van Nuys airports. Beginning in the second half of 2016, subject to FAA approval, ONT will be owned and operated by the Ontario International Airport Authority under a Joint Powers Agreement enacted by the City of Ontario and the County of San Bernardino.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Dick's and Sports Authority - anecdotally, recipe for disaster

While I am not much of a sportsperson, our family has hosted several exchange students over the years, and between these exchange student daughters and our own American daughter, we've spent some time in sporting goods stores.

And years ago, I concluded that some stores were better than others.

I've always had good luck at Big 5, and Chick's Sporting Goods was...well, it was GOOD when it was around. But Chick's gave way to Dick's several years ago, and I still remember a not-so-fruitful visit to Dick's in the Colonies. At one point, the salesperson told us, "You're not going to get the same service at Dick's that you did at Chick's." On this point, the Dick's salesperson and I were in complete agreement.

But at least I found a salesperson at Dick's. One day about nine years ago, I took my Swiss daughter to the Sports Authority store east of Montclair Plaza. We started looking for some assistance...and couldn't find any. Eventually it became a game, in which I was roaming around the store trying to find SOMEBODY. Finally I gave up and walked out of the store; I think we went to Big 5 (this was before the Upland Mountain Avenue location closed).

Now I am the first to admit that this is anecdotal and not scientific, and I'm sure that there are people who have received wonderful service at both locations. But my experience was a little different.

Having not set foot in either location (or any of the locations of the two stores) for years, I certainly raised an eyebrow when I read this article:

Over the last several months, Sports Authority has experienced a long, painful and visible death — the likes of which the retail sector would rather not see so often. For the last few weeks, Sports Authority has been going through the process of auctioning off what storefronts and inventory it could to make a little scratch back, and though it was rumored that some buyers were sniffing around the brand itself for a possible resurrection down the line, Dick’s Sporting Goods put a stop to that Thursday (June 30).

While rosy-eyed people may talk of synergies and other wonderfulness, I have steadfastly been of the opinion that the merger of two weak companies does not result in a stronger company; more often than not, the resulting company is weaker than the first two. And no amount of fluffery will negate the inherent problems of the merged firm.

And in this case, Dick's isn't even getting stores; it's getting "intellectual property," a mailing list, and (maybe) a few stores. But when you consider the intellectual property of Sports Authority, it makes the intellectual property of "Late Night With David Letterman" seem like deep philosophy.

Sports Authority and Dick's could only dream of having this.