The Pacific Northwest is a region in North America that is bounded by the Pacific Ocean in the west and roughly by the Rocky Mountains on the east. It traditionally includes the states of Washington, Oregon, & Idaho and the Canadian province of British Columbia with broader versions incorporating Alaska, western Montana, western Wyoming, and the Yukon territory. Significant settlement of the region commenced in approximately 1836 when migrant trains of wagons started departing Independence, Missouri headed west inspired by dreams of establishing farms, ranches, and pursuing gold. Over the next 30 years, an estimated 350,000 people traveled the Oregon Trail seeding the region with a hard working, risk acceptant population. This population was supplemented by lumberjacks, fishermen, military transplants, talent recruited from outside of the region, international immigrants, and outdoor oriented people seeking to live in an area that featured oceans, mountains, and deserts over roughly 150 years. This diverse population had many of the characteristics commonly found in entrepreneurs woven into its fabric creating a fertile environment where numerous companies have been born that have reached regional, national, and international prominence.
The following are ten famous companies (many more could be provided) that originated in the Pacific Northwest:
The Boeing Company – William E. Boeing started the historic flight of America’s largest aerospace manufacturing company in 1910 in Seattle. Washington.
Microsoft – Bill Gates & Paul Allen changed the landscape of business & personal computing in 1975 when they started this worldwide leader in software in Seattle, Washington.
Nike – Phil Knight & Bill Bowerman took the first step toward revolutionizing the athletic shoe & apparel industry in 1964 in Eugene, Oregon.
REI – Lloyd and Mary Anderson started providing the equipment & apparel necessary to explore the outdoors in 1938 in Seattle, Washington.
Amazon – Jeff Bezos changed retail forever in 1994 in Bellevue, Washington when he started the company that would become the largest online retailer in the world.
Costco – Jeff Brotman opens his first warehouse store in 1983 in Seattle, Washington dramatically changing how businesses & families shop.
McMenamins – Mike and Brian McMenamin started to change the drinking habits of the region in 1974 in Portland, Oregon when they served their first beer to the public.
Harry & David – Samuel Rosenberg offered America premium quality fruit for the first time in 1910 from Medford, Oregon.
Alaska Airlines – Linious “Mac” McGee first took flight in Anchorage, Alaska on his way to creating a dominant regional airline.
Paccar – William Pigott, Sr. turned on the ignition at one of the world’s largest medium & heavy duty truck manufacturing companies in 1905 in Seattle, Washington.
Unfortunately, IBA cannot claim we were asked to represent the founders of any of the above companies in the sale of their business. However, on a daily basis we interact with entrepreneurs interested in selling privately held companies & family owned businesses that are integral parts of the lives of their employees, customers, and suppliers. We consider it an honor to confidentially represent the owner of a business throughout the sale process whether the business is a neighborhood restaurant or manufacturing company producing a component part for Boeing. We welcome the opportunity to discuss the business brokerage & real estate services we offer our clients with business owners with companies located in Washington, Oregon, and Alaska. Our experience, knowledge, and customer service are without peer in the Pacific Northwest.
Please contact our office if you have any questions regarding the representation we provide our clients or if you would like to schedule a time to meet with an IBA professional.