AECOM biomed biotech Bob Buter CEO cybersecurity CytoBioscience Dean Tanuja Singh economics entrepreneurship Events Features Graham Weston Jim Garvin San Antonio St. Mary's University Steve Nivin Tech Texas

Texas CEO Magazine San Antonio 2018 Economic Forecast: Acceleration

Texas CEO Magazine San Antonio 2018 Economic Forecast: Acceleration

San Antonio 2018 Financial Forecast: Acceleration

Occasions, Options

By Pat Niekamp

Graham Weston, Jim Garvin, Ph.D., Dean Tanuja Singh, Steve Nivin, Ph.D. and Bob Butler introduced on the 2018 financial forecast in San Antonio.

Steve Nivin, Ph.D., an affiliate professor of economics at St. Mary’s College, started his evaluation by noting the US financial system is now in its 100th month of enlargement—the third-longest stretch in historical past.

Nivin’s “go to” statistic on the financial system is discovered within the yield curve, which plots rates of interest on bonds of equal credit score high quality with differing maturity dates. The yield curve is a benchmark for debt, and it predicts modifications in financial output and progress.

Economist Dr. Steve Nivin is an Affiliate Professor at St. Mary’s College.

Whereas pointing to a yield curve chart from the Federal Reserve, Nivin stated when the curve inverts the financial system will go right into a recession a few yr later. “It’s a great indicator of going right into a recession; and, whereas it’s taking place, it has not but inverted, so we’re good for some time,” stated Nivin.

Whereas Nivin expects to see US progress charges decelerate a bit, San Antonio can anticipate a 2.2 to 2.5 % progress in employment in 2018. As for unemployment, it’ll stay low, within the vary of four.25 %.

If there are one other two years of progress within the US financial system, will probably be the longest steady enlargement in historical past. With this long term up, Nivin sees any additional will increase being pushed by inhabitants progress, productiveness and know-how.

“We’ve got to think about that we’d see a dip within the US financial system and the San Antonio financial system,” stated Nivin. “We’re not there but, however I feel it’s necessary we start to deal with this.”


Bob Butler wasted little time attending to the purpose. Within the first ten seconds of his presentation, he recognized the challenges of cybersecurity: “I feel our danger publicity is rising, and it’s rising at an alarming fee,” he stated. Butler is a senior vice chairman at AECOM and a retired US Air Drive colonel.

Bob Butler is Senior Vice President at AECOM.

Butler sees safety dangers in three elements: menace, vulnerability and consequence administration. He additionally acknowledges that each the army and personal industries are depending on the identical infrastructure and options, which come from working cooperatively. Together with exploitation, IP theft and interruption, Butler stated probably the most alarming menace comes from nation states and the evolution that has led to disrupting and destroying issues.

“A part of what we carry on doing is wanting again,” stated Butler. “We have now to look again to clear up vulnerabilities, however we have to look forward to handle this danger publicity.”

The best danger is from the four-plus-one nations of Russia, China, Iran and North Korea. The plus one represents the extremist jihadi community. In Texas, it’s Iran that’s of specific concern, as a result of their focus is on petrochemicals and pure fuel targets.

 “My sense is that we have now vital challenges in entrance of us as a result of our cyber hygiene shouldn’t be nice,” stated Butler. And with the extra interconnections from sensible cities tying IP addresses collectively, together with occasions like hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, Butler says our adversaries are utilizing pure catastrophes and sensible interconnections to masks their actual intentions.

On the constructive aspect, Butler just lately traveled to Washington, D.C., to satisfy with coverage makers within the Senate to debate shifting into lively marketing campaign planning for the army by cyber methods which are offensive slightly than defensive.

For companies, Butler recommends specializing in the fundamentals and prioritizing belongings. “In case you’re a product firm, you must shield IP, and in case you’re a service firm it’s a must to shield clients knowledge,” he stated. These fundamentals embrace constantly coaching staff and together with clients and distributors. One other primary? Don’t compete on menace info—share it.

Butler wrapped up his feedback with a number of suggestions and observations. First, San Antonio has good considering, good alignment, good schooling and good cooperation with greater schooling campuses; and but, the group must do extra to create companies tied to cybersecurity by making a stronger ecosystem of help, he stated.

Second, as a army metropolis with robust officers, NCOs and airmen, how can San Antonio greatest leverage that expertise?

Third, how can the group grow to be extra conscious that cyber is a part of every part and each sort of enterprise? Butler inspired creating resilient digital foundations via grasp planning and by adopting “safety by design” in metropolis planning.

Lastly, Butler stated San Antonio must scale cybersecurity. “First we’ve got to scale with expertise—we simply don’t have the pool of expertise we’d like—not in Austin, Houston or Dallas,” stated Butler. “We now have acquired to create a a lot bigger base of people that perceive what must be executed, then share these greatest practices in an effort to develop.”


Jim Garvin, the CEO of CytoBioscience, a agency within the enterprise of serving to drug builders higher perceive how human cells react to medicines, stopped in the midst of his presentation and advised attendees in the event that they remembered nothing else of what he had stated, they need to keep in mind these two issues.

First, “The perfect stored secret in San Antonio is that San Antonio is—not going to be or not eager to be—however is, a world chief in biotechnology and well being care,” stated Garvin.

Jim Garvin, Ph.D. is the CEO of CytoBioscience.

To help his assertion, Garvin listed statistics on the biotech group. In Texas, there are three,900 biotech companies, with the overwhelming majority inside a 150-mile radius of San Antonio; there are 100,000 biotech jobs in Texas and extra Ph.D.’s in biotech that graduate from Texas faculties than another state; Texas has over 20,000 lively medical drug trials, and there are greater than four,000 researchers and practitioners in San Antonio. What’s extra, six of the highest 100 medical faculties are in Texas, and three are inside 200 miles of San Antonio.

Second, Garvin sees San Antonio because the tip of the spear. “What you’re going to see occur on the planet of drugs, on the earth of biotech, goes to vary how individuals are handled and the way illnesses are cured, and it’s occurring in San Antonio,” stated Garvin, “ and, with all due respect to the individuals from Austin or Houston or Dallas, none of them can compete with San Antonio.”

Garvin additionally claims the remedy for most cancers will come from San Antonio. “I consider that with all my coronary heart,” he stated.

Garvin informed attendees, “We’re the chief, and we’ve obtained to behave just like the chief. Perceive, with out equivocation, we’re primary.”


Lower than a day earlier than the beginning of the forecast, San Antonio metropolis leaders introduced they might not take part within the RFP for Amazon’s HQ2. What’s at stake? The prize is $5 billion dollars in capital expenditures—equal to 5 USAA buildings—and 50,000 jobs at a $100,00 per yr common.

“I need to speak about one thing small and boring,” stated speaker Graham Weston, “and there’s in all probability just one individual on this room who cares about this, and that’s Jenna Saucedo-Herrera.” Saucedo-Herrera is the CEO of the San Antonio Financial Improvement Basis. Weston is the founding father of Rackspace, Geekdom and the 80/20 Basis, and he constructed the Weston Centre, an workplace tower in downtown San Antonio.

Graham Weston is an entrepreneur who began Rackspace, Geekdom, and the 8020 Basis.

In actuality, everybody within the room needed to listen to Weston’s insights and the professionals and cons of San Antonio’s choice to not bid for HQ2. Weston sees each the massive and small employers of San Antonio and the for-profit establishments as those that may transfer the needle—not authorities.

Utilizing Wisconsin for instance of their bid to convey the Foxconn manufacturing plant to that state, Weston identified the state authorities agreed to a $three billion incentive package deal. “For each job created, the motivation package deal is the same as $15,000 a yr, per job,” stated Weston. “They spent some huge cash to get these jobs.”

Weston requested three questions on a deal like Amazon’s. First, does San Antonio need Amazon? Second, is the group prepared to pay the worth? And third, will they win?

Choosing up his telephone, Weston pulled up the Amazon RFP and skim out loud what cities have to do to win. “First they’re on the lookout for cities that produce a pipeline of gifted individuals,” stated Weston. Acknowledging San Antonio has nice universities producing a pipeline of gifted individuals, he additionally identified probably the most necessary methods to supply sufficient gifted individuals is to have a metropolis that draws them from different locations.

Studying from the RFP, “Amazon states may have, along with the perfunctory enterprise local weather, shut proximity to transportation infrastructure, mass transit, together with mild rail, strolling and biking choices, simply accessible tradition, recreation in inexperienced areas and cities that embrace sustainability and renewable power, recycling, rebuilding and a artistic strategy to the setting,” stated Weston.

“I might simply say if we’ve to have these issues to win, we’re not going to win,” stated Weston.

Utilizing Denver for instance, Weston stated, “Ten years in the past, Denver was zero on all of these issues, and immediately they’re one of many nice cities on the earth. I feel it’s there for us, and we’ve made a terrific begin by being in Texas, being within the South and being San Antonio. We now have all the tailwinds any metropolis might dream of. The query is that this: in ten years once we get an RFP like this, will we bid, and can we win?”

“That’s as much as us,” stated Weston.


Greehey Faculty of Enterprise dean, Tanuja Singh, Ph.D., lead the Q&A with the audio system, and she or he started by asking Weston if a scarcity of funding capital holds the town again. Whereas agreeing it does,

Tanjua Singh, Ph.D. is the Dean of the Greehy Faculty of Enterprise at St. Mary’s College.

particularly on the early stage, Weston went on to say, “Capital will discover the great alternatives.”

When Dr. Singh requested Butler what sort of expertise the cybersecurity business is in search of, Butler stated, together with aptitude and angle, “They should have the power to maneuver throughout disciplines and the psychological agility to consider safety.”

Singh requested Garvin about discovering extra enterprise capital for biotech. “Should you take a look at Purple McCombs and the opposite massive philanthropists within the metropolis, they’re giving cash to Dallas and Houston as a result of they assume that’s the place it’s occurring,” he stated. “We now have to do a greater job of claiming, ‘Hey, it’s occurring proper right here.’”

“One of many perceptions of San Antonio is as a journey and tourism vacation spot metropolis,” stated Singh. “As we transfer away from that notion to a high-intellect and high-talent metropolis, do we have now the human and monetary capital to make that transition?”

Based on Nivin, “The brief reply is sure, we’ve clearly diversified. What drives financial improvement is schooling and coaching. You need to have the individuals to have a enterprise—that’s the lifeblood—nicely educated from pre-Okay by means of greater ed.”


  • AECOM, biomed, biotech, Bob Buter, CEO, cybersecurity, CytoBioscience, Dean Tanuja Singh, economics, entrepreneurship, Graham Weston, Jim Garvin, San Antonio, St. Mary’s College, Steve Nivin, Texas

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