OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

college of business

Die-hard fans view ads linked with rival teams negatively

CORVALLIS, Ore. – A new study concludes that it doesn’t matter how compelling an advertisement may be, most die-hard Oregon State Beavers fans will simply not purchase a product associated with the Oregon Ducks.

Researchers at Oregon State University and California State University, San Marcos asked college students, who were a mix of average sports fans and “highly identified” fans, or super fans, to look at a generic ad that that featured an association with either the home or a rival team and included either strong or weak arguments about product quality.

The “less identified,” or average fans, responded positively to the strong advertising message regardless of team affiliation. However, even though the super fans were able to recognize which ads made a more compelling case, it did not sway their negative attitude and intentions toward the advertisement when there was an affiliation with the rival.

The study, co-authored by Colleen Bee, assistant professor of marketing in OSU’s College of Business, and Vassilis Dalakas, associate professor of marketing at Cal State San Marcos, was published online this month in the Journal of Marketing Communications.

“We found that less identified fans responded positively to strong, credible arguments,” said lead author Bee. “What we found interesting is that this effect went away for super fans when the ad featured a rival affiliation. Whether an argument was weak or strong did not make a difference – all that mattered was the association with the rival team.”

Study participants were either shown an ad with weak messaging, such as “Simply great!” or an ad with strong messaging, such as “Recommended by Consumer Reports.”  Fan identification was then assessed by asking respondents to rate themselves based on how they and others see them as team-specific sports fans.

Bee said this is the first study to consider the combined effects of fan identification, sponsorship affiliation, and message characteristics. Since sports sponsorship accounts for 77 percent, or $39.17 billion in revenue, of worldwide sponsorship spending, knowing potential pitfalls is important.

“Highly identified fans incorporate the team as part of their identity, which means it really influences and biases the way they process information much more than other consumers.”

Bee said sponsorship is still a highly effective and lucrative means of advertising and branding. She said that companies should just be aware that their message – and thus their product – may be viewed negatively when they align with certain teams. For this reason, she said savvy firms use brand loyalty to their advantage. One car rental company, for instance, with strong ties to the New York Yankees only ran ads promoting its alliance to the team in New York City. 

“When you associate your product or brand with a team logo, you need to keep in mind that you will alienate the super fans of the rival team, and potentially lose customers,” she said. “On the other hand, you can also leverage that social identification to win over those sports fans who will view this sponsorship favorably simply because it is their team.”

The study was funded by a grant from the OSU College of Business.

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Colleen Bee, 541-737-6059

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Accepting and adapting are keys to sustaining a career after acquired hearing loss

CORVALLIS, Ore. – For adults who acquire severe hearing loss, accepting and adapting to the loss play key roles in sustaining a career and thriving in the workplace, new research from Oregon State University indicates.

“People who are successful at adapting to hearing loss tend to accept that they are now biologically different from how they used to be,” said David Baldridge, an associate professor of management in the OSU College of Business

“People who remain successful tend to adapt what they do at work and how they do it,” he said. “They also tend to stay abreast of medical and workplace technologies such as hearing aids, cochlear implants, video relays, speech to text and interpreters.”

Hearing loss is a common disabling disorder that affects more than 360 million people worldwide. In the United States, more than 50 million people have hearing loss, including 60 percent of military veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. 

Hearing loss also is part of many people’s life course and careers. The percentage of the population with hearing loss increases exponentially as people age: 3.2 percent of people age 20-29, but 44.9 percent of those age 60-69.

The population overall is aging and people are working longer and delaying retirement, which leads to hearing loss becoming more prevalent in the workplace. Environmental noise also plays a role in the increasing prevalence of hearing loss. How well employers and employees adapt to this change may have significant implications for both a healthy economy and healthy aging, Baldridge said. 

“One of our goals with this study was to understand how people who acquire a severe hearing loss can remain productive and sustain their careers,” he said. “We found that there are some key traits to successfully doing so.”

The findings were published this month in the journal Human Relations. The co-author of the study is Mukta Kulkarni of the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore, India. The work was supported by Oregon State University, Indian Institute of Management and the National Technical Institute for the Deaf. 

Baldridge and Kulkarni interviewed 40 professionals, including doctors, lawyers and consultants, who had acquired a severe hearing loss as adults in an effort to pinpoint how their hearing loss has affected their careers and identify strategies that helped them remain productive and successful.

“It was not a random sample – these are the best and brightest, most successful folks we could find,” Baldridge said. “We wanted to know what they did to survive and thrive. The hope is that lessons learned from them might help others.” 

The researchers found that those who tried to hide or deny their hearing loss tended to struggle more in the workplace, avoided social engagements and often became isolated.

Those who were able to sustain their careers tended to accept and adapt to their hearing loss using a wide range of strategies, including communicating more via email and less by phone, or holding individual meetings rather than participating in group meetings. 

The researchers found that those who were most satisfied in their careers found ways to adopt a new work role or craft a new career around their hearing loss, sometimes becoming advocates for others. They also tended to redefine their own success, with a shift away from economic success and toward social success through service to others.

“Some people are able to figure out that the hearing loss can be a positive,” Baldridge said. “Those are probably the people with the highest satisfaction in their work.” 

Additional research is needed to better understand how employers adapt to hearing loss changes among employees, with an emphasis on the roles of managers, supervisors and human resources personnel, Baldridge said.

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David Baldridge, 541-737-6062, david.baldridge@bus.oregonstate.edu

Venture capitalists to choose teams in ‘Next Great Startup’ competition

CORVALLIS, Ore. - The Oregon State University Advantage Accelerator has launched its first annual Next Great Startup competition, to begin in February with a round of auditions.

The competition, which offers more than $30,000 in prizes, is not an ordinary business plan or pitch competition, organizers say. The event is seeking the best student-led business with the chance to create a real company and win $18,000 or more. 

The first elimination round will be from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Feb. 9, in Stirek Auditorium in Austin Hall on the OSU campus. All events are open to the public.

Student-led teams pitched their business ideas to contend for one of 16 spots in the competition. In the first round, four venture capitalists will choose from among the 16 teams, and each pick one to coach through the competition.

A knockout round will be held on Feb. 23 and the finals on March 9, both in Stirek Auditorium of Austin Hall, starting at 5:30 p.m. On March 9, a panel of judges will select a winning team.

Each team is provided a small amount of working capital as they move to the next round. The winning team will be awarded more than $18,000 in prizes, legal and accounting services, entrance to the Advantage Accelerator, and the opportunity to pitch during the Willamette Angel Conference in May, 2017.

The following 16 teams have been selected for the first round: 

  • Sunshot Energy, a carbon dioxide-based power generator designed for rural areas
  • Blip, a platform for short-form content creators to monetize their work
  • GobTech, a platform toolset to make it easy to implement neural networks for use in gaming applications
  • HEARTH Technologies, a sensor that can be implemented with a biomass cook stove to monitor fuel usage
  • Cool Bubble Tech, a vapor chamber component designed to prevent overheating in wearable devices
  • Clear Run Filtration, long-term, sustainable storm water treatment
  • Rambuta, remote sensing for plant stress via a new and more efficient proxy using machine learning
  • Assure, “safe jewelry,” GPS-based wearables for women designed to notify authorities in risk situations
  • Tour de World, a centralized platform for tour guides to market their tours to travelers
  • Mole Drone, a rover for use during fracking that can determine safety zones for workers
  • Seiji’s Bridge, a line of products designed for children and those with developmental disabilities
  • Sensiplicity, a customizable, low cost, and modular sensor system for “big data” agriculture and other industries
  • Top TEC, a device that can serve as a chair, scale and help patient mobility in hospitals and nursing homes
  • PNW Dulse, a nutrient-dense food product that tastes like bacon
  • SeeSD, building an outreach program for STEM education and research and development in Senegal
  • CYLBiotechnologies, using algae to develop four high-margin products, from chitin to glucosamine to metal oxide nanomaterial.
Source: 

Mark Lieberman

 mark.lieberman@oregonstate.edu

 

Oregon State University Advantage Accelerator plans ‘Next Great Startup’

CORVALLIS, Ore. - The Oregon State University Advantage Accelerator program is launching the Next Great Startup competition for OSU students in winter term of 2017.

Developed in collaboration with several OSU colleges, the event will feature the first student-based, university-wide business competition. It will begin in January, 2017, and the finals will be held on March 9. 

The Next Great Startup goes beyond ordinary business plan or pitch competitions, organizers say. It’s about real, viable student startup ventures created in Corvallis, and each team will receive direct access to venture capitalist coaches, business mentors, and additional funding as they advance in all three rounds.

The winning team will receive more than $10,000 in cash, goods and services. Cash and in-kind prizes will be awarded to the top four teams. Additionally, mentors from the community and the accelerator will participate in coaching the teams. 

More information on the competition and eligibility is available online at http://nextgreatstartup.oregonstate.edu

Media Contact: 

Anna Walsh, 541-368- 5206

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Mark Lieberman, 541-368-5203

mark.lieberman@oregonstate.edu

Top Oregon family businesses to be honored at Nov. 2 event

PORTLAND, Ore. – Several Oregon family businesses will be honored at the Oregon State University College of Business’ 2016 Excellence in Family Business Awards ceremony on Wednesday, Nov. 2, at the Portland Hilton and Executive Tower.

Bill Stoller, co-founder of Express Employment, will speak at the event, which is sponsored by the college’s Austin Family Business Program. Domonic Biggi, president of Beaverton Foods, will emcee. There are fees for attendance.

“Our Excellence in Family Business Awards recognize the achievements of family businesses in entrepreneurship, community involvement and multigenerational planning,” said Mitzi Montoya, dean of OSU’s College of Business. “With upwards of 80 percent of Oregon’s businesses being family-owned, it is really important that we honor the hard work and drive of these families and continue to foster a culture of support and shared-learning within the family business community.” 

Founded in 1985, the Austin Family Business Program provides inspiration, education, outreach and research to support family businesses.

“We want everyone to access these stories and learn why these businesses are so successful.” said Sherri Noxel, director of the Austin Family Business Program.

The awards feature categories that reflect sound family business practices. Honorees are:

  • Family Harmony: The Charlton Kennels & Farm, Portland. Finalists in the category included C & D Landscaping, Dayton, and Jag Forms, West Linn.
  • Generational Development: Benchmade Knife Company, Inc. C & R Remodeling, Salem, was a finalist in this category.
  • Business Renewal: GK Machine, Inc., Donald. Finalists included The Cronin Company, Portland, and Pride Disposal Company, Sherwood.
  • Student Award: Nicholas Strebin, Strebin Farms, Troutdale.

Stoller will receive the 2016 Dean’s Award for Family Business Leadership.

The event begins with a reception at 4 p.m. and the program at 5:50 p.m. Tickets are $45 for the reception alone, $75 for the reception with a buffet or $25 for children ages 3-10. The Portland Hilton and Executive Tower is at 921 S.W. 6th Ave., Portland.

Tickets are available online at http://bit.ly/2cNO3ga, by calling 1-800-859-7609 or by contacting Melissa Elmore at Melissa.elmore@bus.oregonstate.edu. The deadline to register is Oct. 26.

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Sherri Noxel, 541-737-6019, Sherri.noxel@bus.oregonstate.edu

Antitrust laws may hinder socially-responsible business collaboration

CORVALLIS, Ore. – A new study suggests that U.S. antitrust laws could hamper the efforts of companies to collaborate on sustainable and socially-responsible business practices, even as consumers and businesses increasingly value them.

Both the public and many businesses are worried about natural resource limitations and the threat of climate change. Current anti-trust laws don’t fit with today’s global concerns, said Inara Scott, an attorney and assistant professor in the College of Business at Oregon State University.

“When it comes to the environment, we’re used to thinking of companies as part of the problem,” said Scott, who studies environmental law issues. “But today a lot of companies want to be part of the solution. They want to become more socially-responsible and drive sustainability for themselves and the consumer.

“The question for them becomes ‘How do I promote better environmental practices without losing market share?’ ”

Antitrust laws alone may not completely prevent businesses from collaborating, but the ways in which the laws have been interpreted and applied over time has had a chilling effect on businesses, said Scott, whose research on the issue was published in the spring issue of the American Business Law Journal.

Businesses do not want to risk even the appearance of impropriety, she said.

“The law is increasingly recognizing the role that sustainability has to play in the marketplace,” Scott said. “But out of an abundance of caution, companies avoid anything that looks like it might be considered a violation of antitrust laws.”

A chief concern that Scott found is that some types of behavior trigger accusations of “per se” antitrust violations, in which the facts are secondary to any appearance of impropriety. In such cases, she said, it is difficult for companies to defend themselves when faced with those types of accusations.

Price-fixing is one example. Companies go out of their way to avoid even the appearance of it, lest they face antitrust penalties. But fixing prices might not be a bad idea in some circumstances - it might be worth considering if it could help protect valuable rainforests or provide better income for independent coffee growers around the world, Scott said.

The per se standards were designed with the idea that markets are functional and operate properly, but that is not always the case, especially in today’s global marketplace, Scott said. Environmental factors, limited resources or even a dominant regime may unduly influence markets around the globe.

“Some kind of defense to antitrust law violations should be available if there is a market failure,” Scott said. “Behaviors that benefit consumers should be allowed. We can find ways to make exceptions for that.”

People who have a strong mistrust of big businesses may fear a change to the laws might lead to abuse, Scott said. But that fear and mistrust may be limiting our options for tackling the big issues of climate change and declining natural resources. Changes to the law could allow for better disclosure, transparency and monitoring to ensure businesses are working for societal good, she said.

“We are so deeply rooted in our assumptions about markets and competition,” Scott said. “It is very hard to challenge that. But these laws were written at a time when resources seemed inexhaustible, whereas today we live in an era of limited resources.”

Changing antitrust laws to allow for more flexibility will likely require legislative action, given companies’ limited ability to challenge them in court. But it is time for people to begin considering such changes, Scott said.

“Climate change and sustainability are such overwhelming problems,” she said. “We need businesses to take on those problems. Government and individuals are not going to be able to solve them on their own. How can we foster the positive power of businesses and not shut down opportunities?”

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Inara Scott, 541-737-4102, Inara.Scott@oregonstate.edu

OSU College of Business establishes Portland headquarters, launches innovation MBA

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Oregon State University College of Business is launching a new MBA in innovation and establishing a Portland headquarters in the Pearl District.

The new space, located at 220 N.W. Eighth Ave., will be celebrated with several events, including informational meetings for the new MBA track in innovation as well as an upcoming open house for alumni, students, prospective students and industry representatives. 

“It’s an exciting time for us to grow in the Portland market,” said Dean Mitzi Montoya, who joined OSU’s College of Business in September.

OSU’s hybrid MBA program, based in Portland, offers a mix of online and in-person work. The innovation MBA will focus on one of Portland’s core values, entrepreneurial business growth, as it pertains to starting new businesses and advancing existing Oregon companies.

The MBA program in Portland also includes tracks in executive leadership and business analytics. Tracks in supply chain and logistics management and a certificate in financial planning will be offered beginning in the fall.

The flexible hybrid program format makes it accessible for the working professional. It involves working online about 80 percent of the time and gathering twice per 10-week term for team and faculty meetings, professional development, alumni networking and applied project work.

“OSU is an engine of innovation, and Portland is an exciting and growing innovation economy,” Montoya said. “I am excited about the tremendous potential of our work to grow Portland’s capacity to innovate even further.”

The College of Business’ new Portland headquarters will be located in the WeWork building in the Pearl District. WeWork is a national chain of shared office buildings and offers “co-working communities” that house multiple ventures, often startups. The businesses share office space, equipment and related amenities.

“WeWork’s entrepreneurial environment and its mission, to support hard-working members who produce results, aligns with the culture of the College of Business, our alumni and our programs,” Montoya said. 

The open house will be held on Feb. 18 from 4-6 p.m. Alumni, industry representatives, current MBA students, prospective students and community members are invited to attend the free event, which will be hosted by Montoya and other college leaders.

Information sessions for the new MBA track in innovation will be held on Feb. 11 from noon to 1 p.m. and from 4-5 p.m. The track will be offered starting in fall 2016. Business professionals in the metro area are invited to attend. RSVPs are appreciated but not required and can be made at osumba@oregonstate.edu.

In addition to the new WeWork space, the College of Business will continue to offer courses at the Collaborative Life Sciences Building in Portland’s South Waterfront district and expand its collaboration with OSU’s Food Innovation Center in Northwest Portland.

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Steve Lundeberg, 541-737-4039, steve.lundeberg@oregonstate.edu

Top Oregon family businesses to be honored at Nov. 19 event

PORTLAND, Ore. – Several Oregon family businesses will be honored at the 2015 Excellence in Family Business Awards ceremony on Thursday, Nov. 19, at the Sentinel Hotel in Portland. 

Shobi Dahl, co-founder of Dave’s Killer Bread, will speak at the event, which is sponsored by Oregon State University’s Austin Family Business Program. Nik Blosser, chairman of Sokol Blosser Winery and CEO of Celilo Group Media, will emcee.

“After 30 years of family business education at Oregon State we continue to meet new and inspiring families running successful businesses in our communities,” said Sherri Noxel, director of the Austin Family Business Program. 

Founded in 1985, the Austin Family Business Program  provides inspiration, education, outreach and research to support family businesses.

The Excellence in Family Business Awards recognize the achievements of family businesses in entrepreneurship, community involvement and multigenerational planning. More than 200 companies have been honored since the awards began in 1988. 

This year’s awards feature new categories that reflect sound family business practices. Honorees are:

  • Family Harmony: Roe Motors of Grants Pass. Finalists in the category included Lee Farms of Tualatin and Nicholas Restaurant, which has three locations in the Portland area.
  • Generational Development: David H. Sutherland & Co., Inc. Finalists include Hagan Hamilton Insurance, McMinnville, and Newberg Steel & Fabrication, Inc.
  • Business Renewal: Rose City Label Company, Portland. Hillsboro Implants & Periodontics was also a finalist in the category.
  • Student Award: Mackenzie Day of Estacada, Day Wireless Reliance Connects.

The event will also feature the designation of Oregon’s Oldest Family Business, which will be recognized and announced with the Dean’s Family Business Leadership Award.

The event begins with a reception at 4:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 6 p.m. and the program at 6:45 p.m. Tickets are $30 for the reception alone, $90 for the reception and dinner, or $25 for children ages 3-10. The Sentinel Hotel is at 614 S.W. 11th Ave., Portland.

To reserve a seat, register online at http://bit.ly/1yVW32k or contact Melissa Elmore at Melissa.elmore@bus.oregonstate.edu or 1-800-859-7609. The deadline to register is Nov. 6.

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Sherri Noxel, 541-737-6019, Sherri.noxel@bus.oregonstate.edu

Mundorff to join Oregon State’s Advantage Accelerator

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Karl Mundorff, an entrepreneur and business development expert, has been named senior program manager for the Oregon State University Advantage Accelerator/RAIN Corvallis, an initiative focused on high-growth, innovative companies in the South Willamette Valley and greater OSU community.

“The accelerator is key to creating an innovation culture at Oregon State and creating impact in the local economy and beyond,” said Mitzi Montoya, dean of the College of Business. “The college’s and university’s investment in creating this culture, and in assuring a pipeline for start-ups is an important part of the pipeline we have for student and faculty to contribute to the entrepreneurship community.”

Mundorff most recently was the director of research programs for Oregon BEST, a state signature research center focused on developing the Cleantech economy, in which he worked with university and national laboratory technologies. He helped secure an Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership designation from the Economic Development Administration, which created an opportunity for the Pacific Northwest Manufacturing Partnership to compete for more than $1billion in new federal agency grant opportunities.

Mundorff was also president and chief executive officer of BioReaction Industries, an air pollution control technology firm, and has created and taught master’s level courses in business model generation and commercialization at Portland State University and Concordia University. He is a graduate of the OSU College of Business and holds an MBA degree from Concordia University.

The OSU Advantage Accelerator/RAIN Corvallis, recently designated an I-Corp site, is an integral component of the Oregon Regional Accelerator and Innovation Network, or Oregon RAIN, which is a collaboration of OSU, the University of Oregon, local governments, communities and economic development agencies.

Since its launch more than two years ago, the OSU Advantage Accelerator/RAIN Corvallis has admitted 30 business startups into the program. The companies that graduated from the program have generated over $6.6 million in revenue and grants and the creation of more than 40 jobs.

 

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Brian Wall, 541-737-9058

Family Firm Institute honors OSU’s Austin Family Business Program with award

CORVALLIS, Ore. – The Austin Family Business Program in Oregon State University’s College of Business has been selected as the 2015 recipient of the Family Firm Institute’s Interdisciplinary Achievement Award.

“This prestigious award is the pinnacle of achievement in the field and we are pleased to name the Austin Family Business Program as its recipient for 2015,” said Judy Green, president of the institute, which is the leading association worldwide for family enterprise professionals.

Established in 1999, the Interdisciplinary Award recognizes outstanding achievement in the advancement of interdisciplinary services to business families. It is the highest professional honor presented by the Family Firm Institute, which provides research-based learning and relevant tools for advisors and consultants, academics and family enterprise members to drive success.

“We’re thrilled to receive this recognition from FFI that honors our commitment to delivering quality education to family businesses,” said program director Sherri Noxel. “It’s particularly special for us because 2015 is our 30-year anniversary.”

Founded in 1985, the Austin Family Business Program provides inspiration, education, outreach and research to support the success and survival of family businesses.

The program works with family business advising practitioners and consultants to design educational programs to prepare family businesses to balance the well-being of the business, the family and individuals, Noxel said.

Noxel will accept the award on behalf of the program at the FFI Gala Awards Dinner in October in London, England.

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Sherri Noxel, 541-737-6019, Sherri.noxel@ oregonstate.edu