City of Long Beach 
Public Information Office
411 W. Ocean Blvd, 
Long Beach, CA 90802

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # CM: 100316
New Business Portal, Civic Innovation Summit Highlight Long Beach Innovation Week
Alma Castro
i-team Project Manager

The City of Long Beach will launch its new online Business Portal, BizPort, on Wednesday, October 5, and will also host a Civic Innovation Summit on Thursday, October 6. Both events highlight Innovation Week, which features a series of public events throughout October highlighting the creativity, diversity and entrepreneurial spirit throughout Long Beach.

“The City’s new Business Portal and the Civic Innovation Summit are both great examples of how Long Beach is embracing new, creative approaches to solving the city’s challenges,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “We’re excited that City employees, entrepreneurs and community partners are all helping Long Beach remain a regional and national leader in innovation.”

The new business portal will clarify and simplify the startup process for new businesses and add additional resources to help existing small businesses grow. Although 75 percent of applicants have their business license issued within 12 days, the major aim of the business portal is to better prepare all entrepreneurs to get through the process quicker. BizPort was designed by local entrepreneurs and developed by Code for America, a civic tech non-profit. The new tool reduces the cost and confusion of starting a business by simplifying the application process, and linking entrepreneurs to business support resources across multiple government agencies.

Civic Innovation Summit
Ten Civic Innovation Awards will be handed to various City Departments and community partners who have demonstrated their ability to implement innovative solutions to some of the City’s challenges.

In addition, twelve prominent thought leaders will provide outstanding examples of innovation, including:

• Dr. Shawn Landres, a civic and community strategist, will present “Government Innovation: Regional Best Practices.”
• Mark Rosetti, a fellow with Code For America, will review how “Agile Development and User Centered Design,” shaped the City’s business portal.
• Heather Barker, Assistant Professor of Design at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) College of the Arts, will highlight “Design Thinking in Government.”

“Innovation happens when thought leaders from the community, academia, and local government come together to network and learn from each other,” said John Keisler, i-team Director. “We want to make government innovation a permanent part of the City of Long Beach.”

Mayor Garcia will open the Long Beach Civic Innovation Summit on Thursday, October 6, at 9:00 am, at the Long Beach Convention Center, Seaside Ballroom, 300 East Ocean Boulevard. For more information, or to register to attend the summit at no cost, visit The Civic Innovation Summit is the first of its kind in the region, and will be live-streamed at

Innovation Week
Long Beach’s Innovation Week is part of InnovateLA, a celebration of the depth and breadth of innovation and entrepreneurship across Los Angeles County.

“The goal is to catalyze, evangelize, and to cross-pollinate the various assets we have across Los Angeles County,” said Chris Rico, Director of Innovation for the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. “We want the world to know that the Los Angeles metro region is the place where you can come to innovate anything.”

Innovation Week features more than a dozen events showcasing Long Beach’s contributions to the innovative, diverse, and creative fabric of the region, including:

• Geography Lab: App Challenge, hosted by ESRI, CSULB and the City’s Innovation Team (i-team)
• ArtOber First Friday Long Beach in Bixby Knolls
• Open Studio Tour to meet established Long Beach professional artists in their working environments that aren’t usually open to the public.

For a full list of events with dates and location visit For more information on countywide efforts and events visit www.Innovate.LA.