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SVN Economic Forum 2024: Navigating the Future of Salem’s Economy with Record Attendance

Written by Luis Ramirez on Mar. 13th, 2024
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The annual Economic Forum hosted by SVN Commercial Advisors, held on February 23 at the Salem Convention Center, achieved unprecedented attendance this year, with over 330 industry professionals gathering in person to share insights and strategies for navigating current and future market landscapes.

“We could have a lot more if we wanted to, but we place a premium in making sure the right people are in the room,” said SVN Managing Director Curt Arthur, highlighting the event’s focus on quality engagement over sheer numbers. “It’s gotten as big as it has largely because we’ve had so many people reach out that want to be sponsors.”

The forum featured a stellar lineup of speakers from various sectors, including Katherine Banz (Powell Banz Valuation), Erik Andersson (SEDCOR), Blinn Carstensen (AgWest Farm Credit), Mike Erdmann (Home Builders Association of Marion and Polk County), Curt Arthur (SVN Commercial Advisors), Nick Williams (SVN Commercial Advisors), Chris Hoy (City of Salem Mayor), and Tom Hoffert (CEO Salem Chamber of Commerce). These experts shared their valuable perspectives on a range of topics from Office and Agricultural Markets to Industrial, Retail, Multi-Family, and Residential Development.

“This is an interesting economic time as we seem to be having more difficult times working through the city, the planning and the permitting department,” Arthur noted, expressing hope for productive discussions with city officials to streamline processes. “The mayor and city manager were there, and the hope is that it’ll lead to good dialogue with the city. They were able to listen to some concerns and what we can do to fix things.”

Arthur also reflected on the event’s history and its significance in providing a platform for critical analysis and forecasting. “I spend a lot of the time looking back on the year and looking forward to what will happen in the next year or two,” he said, commenting on the noticeable slowdown in construction and new developments.

Originating in 2008, the SVN Economic Forum has grown from a small gathering of 70 people at Chemeketa Community College to a landmark event drawing widespread interest, particularly during economic uncertainties. “What we find is the interest in coming to this event has always peaked during turbulent years,” Arthur observed, emphasizing the value of the insights shared at the forum.

Attendees, ranging from small business owners to city officials, praised the forum’s informative nature and networking opportunities. “An excellent and informative event,” Spence Powell of Powell Banz Valuation remarked, highlighting the quality of information and the chance to connect with local professionals.

Looking ahead, SVN Commercial Advisors aims to continue fostering this vital community dialogue, keeping the various sectors of Salem’s business community connected and informed.

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