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“FCEDA provides a wide array of services to guide businesses with their expansion to Fairfax County” –Juhi Naithani, Business Development Manager, FCEDA

While establishing its presence globally, every business needs to have a strategic plan for expansion, as well as to utilize all the resources available to them in the target market. The plan should include research, a budget, timeline, objectives, and monitoring process.

Fairfax County is considered one of the best business locations around the world. Businesses choose Fairfax County for several reasons—60% of the adult population holds a bachelor’s degree or higher, has a large technology presence and impeccable quality of life, having around 9,000 technology firms, to name a few.

We recently interviewed Juhi Naithani, International Business Development Manager, Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA), to know why businesses choose to expand to Fairfax County, how FCEDA helps in doing so, crucial steps for global expansion and more.

1. Let’s begin with a brief introduction of Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA). What is the mission of the authority?

The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) promotes Fairfax County, Virginia, USA as one of the world’s best business locations. Business growth helps Fairfax County fund public services such as a top-ranked public-school system, infrastructure, parks, and recreational facilities, that improve the quality of life. A seven-member board of Fairfax County business leaders oversees the work of the authority, which is funded by the Fairfax County government.

The FCEDA has three marketing divisions—National, International, and Business Diversity – that work with companies interested in starting, expanding and relocating businesses to Fairfax County. The FCEDA also has market intelligence, real estate services and communications divisions.

In addition to its headquarters in Tysons, Fairfax County’s largest business district, the FCEDA has permanent offices in Bangalore/Mumbai, London, Los Angeles, Berlin, Seoul and Tel Aviv to assist with the marketing effort and handle the increasing number of international companies interested in establishing operations on the east coast of the U.S. Of course, we want them to land in Fairfax County!

2. From starting a career in the paper industry to handling the international business development at FCEDA, please share a quick overview of your roles throughout your career.

My first job was in business development and marketing for a family-owned paper technology firm in India, working with principals from all over the world while catering to clients in India. That sparked my interest in marketing as well as international business. I then moved to the United States and completed an MBA program at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut. Earning the MBA solidified my interest in marketing and, following graduation, I began teaching marketing and business classes at Quinnipiac.

At the same time, I developed an interest in intercultural training. While teaching at Quinnipiac, I established my own practice, providing intercultural training and international business consulting to business leaders and government entities.

From my professional experience in India, working with international companies, as well as my personal experience from immigrating to the United States, I realized how important it is for business leaders to understand a culture and a workforce that is much different than their own when expanding to a foreign market. I enjoyed this work because it allowed me to work with clients across sectors and industries.

It was during this time that I moved from Connecticut to Northern Virginia (Fairfax County). After my move, I decided to begin exploring job opportunities within the area. I came across an opening at the FCEDA for an international business development manager for India and Canada, so I applied and have been with the FCEDA since then.

3. What inspired you to join FCEDA when you were owning your own international consulting firm?

I enjoyed working with individuals and businesses one-on-one all over the country, but because of Fairfax County’s heavy international focus and the FCEDA’s ongoing efforts to attract and retain international firms, I realized my skills could be of greater use in assisting those efforts right here where I live.

I find this job incredibly fulfilling because I am able to draw on my personal and professional experiences of what it is like to adapt to new culture, both professionally and personally.

4. Why do businesses choose to start, expand, or relocate to Fairfax County? How does FCEDA help businesses in this?

Fairfax County was the first U.S. county to establish a presence in India, and it has a long history of working with Indian businesses. We know the Indian market well, and know what Indian businesses are looking for when they decide to do business globally.

Businesses choose Fairfax County because of its highly educated workforce. It has one of the top-ranked school districts in America, and more than 60 percent of the adult population holds a bachelor’s degree or higher. As part of the Washington, D.C., metro area, it has a convenient location along the eastern seaboard only a short distance from major cities such as Boston and New York. And it has a large technology presence and impeccable quality of life. The county has close to 9,000 technology firms, directly accounting for more than 149,000 employees.

5. What according to you are the key steps for successful global business expansion?

It is important for businesses to have a strategic plan for expansion as well as to utilize all the resources available to them in the market in which the company wants to expand.

Regardless of your company’s size, you should always have a plan for expansion. This plan should include research, a budget, timeline, objectives, and monitoring processes. To make the expansion a success, make sure you explore and use every available resource. Do your homework—many state and local governments have organizations with dedicated resources to assist with international expansion. For example, the FCEDA provides a wide array of services such as one-on-one business counseling sessions and helping to identify possible real estate locations, to guide businesses with their expansion, every step of the way.

6. Many Indian companies are going global, including OYO and Ola. Are there any companies from India that have expanded to Fairfax County?

Yes, there are about 30 Indian companies with a presence in Fairfax County, and I have been fortunate to work with many of them during their expansion process into the area. Examples of such companies include the Hyderabad-based pharmaceutical company Granules India, which established its Fairfax County presence in 2014 and announced a $35 million investment in 2017, which includes expanding their manufacturing and research and development facility in Fairfax County.

Another company is Mumbai-based Tata Communications, which established its Fairfax County presence in 2004 and holds an annual anticipated growth of 15 percent.

7. Please throw some light on the need for intercultural training or cross-cultural training for corporates. How important is it for companies expanding globally?

Intercultural training is extremely important for business leaders to understand the norms and mores of the workforce they are employing. Difference between individuals can be a combination of cultural, ethnic, generational and national. There is an added layer of complexity from functional culture differences, for example marketing versus finance versus engineering departments of a company.

When expanding globally, the host culture can hold a completely different view on the importance and meaning of business-related issues than those held by the expanding business. For example: deadlines. The meaning, emphasis and implication of meeting or not meeting a deadline can vary across cultures. For a business to be successful in the host market, it must understand all these differences and how to navigate them.

8. In 2015, Site Selection magazine named FCEDA as one of the top 10 economic development groups in North America. Please brief us about this achievement.

The FCEDA prides itself on its many pioneering initiatives over the years: creating an international division to market overseas and creating offices in important technology markets overseas such as Bangalore and Mumbai, for example. Our global initiatives have increased the number of foreign-owned firms here to more than 430 and diversify our economic base. The FCEDA was honored in 2005 to be named one of the top 10 economic development groups by Site Selection magazine.

Site Selection, published by Conway Data, Inc., is a leading publication written for corporate executives who make decisions about business locations. Award winners were selected according to their overall performance in these categories: Total capital investment; jobs created; investment per capita; jobs per capita; overall economic vitality; depth and breadth of economic strength; diversity of industry; ability to generate breakthrough deals; and the overall quality of the group’s nomination package, including verifiable documentation.

9. You are also a member of the Board of Directors of The Indus Entrepreneur (TiE) DC chapter. Can you please tell us about TiE and your role there?

TiE is an organization with chapters worldwide, but it was originally conceived in Silicon Valley. The organization’s members are mostly Indian American businesspersons who want to help entrepreneurs recognize and realize their goals. While the membership largely consists of business executives of Indian origin in the Washington DC metro area, TiE DC is open to anyone with an interest in entrepreneurship.

I serve on the board for the D.C. chapter of TiE, where I help mentor startups and promote entrepreneurship by providing opportunities for members to learn from experts, connect with potential investors, and share ideas. Along with other board members, I also help organize events related to technology, generating awareness about TiE within the Washington area – including Fairfax County – and finding opportunities for startups to best use their skillset, scale up and go to market.

10. Give us a strategy that you always use to take your decisions in personal or professional life.

Ask questions. When in doubt, get advice from someone who knows more than you about the particular topic. Ideally, reach out to multiple people and their different perspectives combined can help you develop your own approach on how you can best handle your unique situation. No one expects you to have all the answers, so never hesitate to tap into your resources for support.

Suggested reading: “Submer is a trailblazer and our innovations will be the catalyst to re-define datacenter design and operations”— Jeff Brown, MD North America, Submer Immersion Cooling

11. What’s new in the roadmap for FCEDA in the financial year 2019?

The FCEDA will appoint a new president and CEO in 2019 after the retirement of Gerald L. Gordon, Ph.D., who led the organization for more than 30 years until he retired at the end of 2018.

In the meantime, the FCEDA continues to focus on attracting and retaining companies – from the U.S. and from overseas, Fortune 500 companies and startups – that are in the industries that are a good fit for the Fairfax County economy. These companies often are doing business in our traditional strengths in IT, software development, aerospace and defense, financial services and corporate headquarters operations. Now we also are seeing a lot of activity in emerging sectors such as cloud computing, data analytics, blockchain, artificial intelligence and personalized medicine.

These companies are spurring innovation and job creation and bringing even more energy to our business community and economy, and we look forward to promoting Fairfax County as a diverse, dynamic and forward-looking community this year.

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News

Telx Opens New Cloud Connection Center In Silicon Valley

DAILYHOSTNEWS, December 7, 2011 – Data center provider Telx recently revealed an expansion of its data center presence in Silicon Valley.

With the move, the company’s Santa Clara, California Cloud Connection Center receives an additional 32 thousand square feet of room.

Commenting on the matter in a press release, Telx President and CFO Chris Downie stated, “Leveraging our new Vantage Data Centers campus location, Telx is well positioned to meet the demands of Silicon Valley organizations by offering a rich portfolio of colocation and interconnection services—at the lowest energy pricing—that surpass area competitors.”

The Santa Clara facility will provide interconnection and colocation. The data center facility’s current anchor tenant is Vantage Data Centers.

Telx recently announced (in November) that cloud provider Cirracore had joined the company’s Cloud XChange, a partnership that makes Cirracore’s cloud service available to Telx customers in the Atlanta, Georgia area.

As a colocation provider, Telx has various data centers throughout the United States, including others in Chicago, Charlotte, New York, Phoenix, and more.

About Telx
Telx is a leading provider of interconnection and data center services in strategic, high demand North American markets.  With 17 premier facilities, Telx increases speed to market and reduces connectivity costs by providing direct connections to a community of the industry’s highest performance networks and access to 950+ customers, including leading telecommunications carriers, ISPs, cloud providers, content providers and enterprises. Telx is a privately held company headquartered in New York City with five facilities in the New York Metro area, two facilities in Chicago, two facilities in Dallas, four facilities in California, (Los Angeles, San Francisco, and two in Santa Clara) and facilities in Atlanta, Miami, Phoenix and Charlotte, N.C. Website:  www.telx.com

 

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News

Voxel Launches Cloud Hosting Facility in Silicon Valley

DAILYHOSTNEWS, October 30, 2011 – Leading cloud and hybrid hosting provider, Voxel, announced an expansion of its US operations with a new VoxCLOUD Point of Presence (PoP) in San Jose, CA. Following its recent expansion in Singapore, the new West Coast hosting facility further strengthens Voxel’s presence in the country’s top tech innovation hubs: Silicon Valley and New York.

“We reached a point in our growth where it made sense to expand nationally as well as internationally,” said Zachary Smith, COO of Voxel. “A West Coast hosting facility allows us to provide a more robust service offering to our customers, including disaster recovery and redundancy solutions inside the United States continent. As always, all of Voxel’s cloud servers, regardless of location, have the same CPU and disk pricing, as well as the same performance guarantee our customers love so much.”

Unlike other cloud hosting providers, each VoxCLOUD instance offers dedicated compute and memory resources as well as persistent disk storage. Voxel also provides the flexibility to mix cloud servers with physical servers or contracted resources in the same network allowing customers to create one of the most consistent, secure and cost-effective infrastructure environments available in the market today.

“As a video platform company with customers around the globe, delivering online media content quickly and efficiently is important to our core business,” said David Wadler, CEO of Twistage. “We currently host most of our services out of Voxel’s New York facilities using a combination of managed hosting, VoxCLOUD servers and VoxCAST CDN to ensure high availability and broad geographic distribution. We are excited about Voxel’s new West Coast facility because it will allow us to respond to traffic spikes even more quickly – dynamically adding geographically disparate, load balanced application and processing servers in just minutes.”

Also read: Top Data Center in Singapore

The VoxCLOUD hosting facility is an expansion of Voxel’s existing IP Transit, IP Transport and CDN service location. Options for private interconnection between Voxel PoPs, dedicated layer 2 interconnection and aggregated commits are all available from the new Silicon Valley location.

About Voxel
Voxel delivers high-performance Internet infrastructure that is scalable, fully-supported and cost-effective. The company offers industry leading hosting services via VoxSTRUCTURE, its open Infrastructure automation platform, and its unique Universal Transfer bandwidth aggregation model. Services include on-demand dedicated and virtual cloud servers, the VoxCAST Global Content Delivery Network (CDN), and a full suite of Managed Services for complex hosting deployments.
Website: http://www.voxel.net

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News

Virtustream Expands Its Silicon Valley Presence

DAILYHOSTNEWS, October 21, 2011 – Virtustream has announced that it will open an office in San Francisco. The new space is in response to increased interest in the company and its offerings from potential customers and partners. The new San Francisco office will be located at 455 Market Street and move in is expected in early November.

Virtustream owns and operates its own data centers in the U.S. and U.K., and has offices in Washington, D.C., New York, San Francisco, Atlanta, London, Dublin and the Channel Islands.

The company provides ongoing support for its Cloud Platform Services through two groups: its Cloud Cover team provides a managed service, from core infrastructure through enterprise applications and the Cloud Staging and Networks group that provides colocation, security and network services.

The San Francisco office will headquarter the company’s Cloud Advisory Services unit. This unit offers cloud analysis, design and migration strategies for complex enterprise IT landscapes. The Cloud Advisory Services unit deploys Virtustream’s Advisor, a software tool that provides fact-based analysis of a company’s current IT environment and delivers specific recommendations based upon its proprietary algorithms.

In his statement, Michael Hoch, leader of the Cloud Advisory Services unit said: “Virtustream’s Cloud Advisory Services are unique in the industry and result in tailored cloud computing designs that meet the most demanding enterprise needs while recommending precise resource configurations. We can provide these designs without bias as we are technology vendor agnostic.”

Also read: Colocation Data Center Singapore

The new office will also house a part of the company’s product development team working on next generation releases of xStream, the company’s enterprise cloud platform. By creating SLA-based resource pools normalized to containers of virtual compute referred to as Infrastructure Units, Virtustream xStream offers compelling guarantees of CPU, memory, network and storage I/O resources. xStream supports on-premise, off-premise or hybrid cloud deployments as customer needs warrant.

About Virtustream
Virtustream is an innovative cloud provisioning firm committed to delivering next-generation infrastructure services to enterprise class customers. The company leverages its secure high performance platform, xStream, to deliver highly available and elastic compute resources at true consumption-based pricing.
Website: www. virtustream.com