NOVEMBER 16, 2011

Shop & celebrate local businesses at Small Business Saturday

You’ve heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday – but this year, join in Small Business Saturday on Nov. 26 to support and celebrate the role of small businesses in our economy.

SHOP SMALL LOGOSmall Business Saturday is a national push to encourage people to “shop small.” Scottsdale is hosting this year’s Arizona celebration of small businesses – one of 15 events being held across the country as part of the national Small Business Saturday campaign.

What: Small Business Saturday on the Scottsdale Waterfront.  The event will feature an array of small businesses with special offers and discounts along with raffles and giveaways, food vendors, holiday music, gift wrapping and more

When: 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 26

Where:  The Plaza on SouthBridge at the Scottsdale Waterfront (6th Avenue and Stetson Drive)

Who: Scottsdale Mayor W.J. “Jim” Lane will kick-off the event, joined by small businesses and the consumers who support them

Why: To celebrate and support the small businesses in every community that provide goods and services for residents and visitors and jobs for residents

Why shop small?
According to the Small Business Administration, small businesses generated 64 percent of net new jobs over the past 15 years and employ just over half of all private sector employees.

Local governments in Arizona are also quick to point out that dollars spent locally generate sales tax that supports the municipal services that residents count on, like police and fire protection, transportation, recreation programs and libraries.

Local First Arizona, a non-profit organization that supports and promotes local businesses in Arizona, reports that when money is spent at locally owned businesses, that money is re-circulated over and over and creates up to 75 percent more tax revenue to the community and state.

In Scottsdale, business and sales taxes account for 27 percent of all city revenues – more than $154.5 million last fiscal year. Much of that comes from small, locally-owned business like those being promoted at Small Business Saturday.

"Scottsdale is thrilled to host Small Business Saturday to support small businesses all across Arizona,” says Jim Mullin, the city’s business and economic vitality director. “Our team is ready to assist business owners who want to open a new business or expand an existing one in Scottsdale. 

Contact the city’s business and economic vitality department at 480-312-7989.

Do you “like” small businesses?
The Small Business Saturday Coalition has created where consumers and business owners can participate in many ways, including:
To build online buzz and drive customers to their stores on Small Business Saturday, American Express is giving $100 of free Facebook advertising to 10,000 business owners who sign up at By simply entering a few pieces of information and clicking a button, these business owners can create a personalized, geo-targeted ad that will run on Facebook leading up to Nov. 26.

Small business owners can go to to download online promotional materials that will help them drive sales to their business on Small Business Saturday.

$25 for American Express users
American Express is giving a $25 statement credit to 200,000 card members who register their card at and use it to shop on Small Business Saturday at any locally-owned, independent small business that accepts American Express.

NOVEMBER 16, 2011

ASU, City University of Hong Kong Partner in flexible electronics

TEMPE – Arizona State University is partnering with City University of Hong Kong (CityU) to advance flexible electronics systems. The “CityU-ASU Collaborative on Flexible Systems” was launched on November 2 at an event held at CityU. The two universities paved the way for such projects when they signed a Memorandum of Understanding last April.

“This exciting collaboration allows our universities to leverage one another’s expertise and industry links, and provide our students with a valuable global research experience,” said ASU President Michael M. Crow. “We know there is interest in flexible electronics among Asian technology companies and believe this is a field that holds great promise in the competitive economic environment.”

ASU is already a leader in developing flexible electronics through its Flexible Display Center, created in 2004 through a cooperative agreement with the United States Army Research Laboratory. The FDC seeks to accelerate the commercialization of flexible, lightweight, low-power and rugged display and electronics technologies.

Such devices could provide a wide variety of applications. For example, soldiers in the field could receive real-time maps, mission briefs and other information on screens sewn into their uniform sleeves. In the commercial realm, flexible displays offer possibilities for improving technologies from e-readers to conferencing systems.

“The collaboration will promote the exchange of faculty, students and researchers between the two sites, and it will help us to secure research grants from Hong Kong and the U.S. in order to expand our efforts,” explained Sethuraman “Panch” Panchanathan, senior vice president for ASU’s Office of Knowledge Enterprise Development.

In this alliance, ASU provides expertise and unique pilot line manufacturing capability in flexible microelectronics based on state-of-the-art amorphous silicon thin film transistor (TFT) technology, and emerging metal oxide TFT technology.

CityU offers expertise in flexible nanowires, a potential high-performance TFT technology. If nanowire TFTs can be implemented on a manufacturing scale, they could open the door to powerful new applications for flexible electronics.

ASU already has worked with CityU on a pending proposal for an NSF Engineering Research Center on Large Area Sensing Arrays. These arrays would use bendable transistors in a plastic sheet and could detect phenomena such as radiation or biomarkers for applications ranging from security to infrastructure health monitoring to assistive technology for the sight-impaired. The proposal is led by the University of Texas at Dallas and includes Princeton, North Carolina A&T State University and Seoul National University.

David Allee, director of Research for Backplane Electronics at the FDC, will lead ASU’s side of the partnership. Gregory Raupp, the founder and former director of the FDC, will manage the collaboration in Hong Kong in his current role as vice president (research and technology) at CityU. Technical leadership is provided by Edwin Pun, chair and professor of electronic engineering, and Johnny Ho, assistant professor of materials science, both at CityU.

“This venture is quite exciting, both from a perspective of the potential impact of a major technology breakthrough, as well as the opportunity for CityU to become engaged in a large international technology R&D collaboration,” said Raupp, adding that on a personal level, it affords the “opportunity to continue and deepen my relationships with ASU and other global leaders in the field.”

“ASU’s vision and mission align beautifully with CityU’s,” said CityU President Way Kuo. “The launch of this collaborative project represents the first of several key strategic partnership targets we have identified, which collectively will open up new research avenues and industry engagement possibilities and help us provide a truly global education to our students.”