Wlodi / Flickr

Professional video gaming has emerged as a booming industry since the early 2000s.  According to E-Sports statistics, professional video gamers have won over 125 million dollars in tournament prize money since 1998 and over 12 million dollars this year alone.  Others have found high-paying careers in video game livestreaming and organizing tournaments. 

Connor Hall is a former professional video gamer from St. Louis.  He said that even as a kid he dreamt of playing video games as a profession.  His dream came true in high school, and Hall said he enjoyed every minute of it.

The Columbia business landscape hasn't always been as commercial as it is now.  Mike Brooks has been a fixture in the city's business outlook for five years, but that reign is coming to an end as Brooks announced his retirement from Regional Economic Development Incorporated (REDI) Wednesday.

REDI doesn't support removal of Columbia postal center

Apr 12, 2013

The Board of Directors of Regional Economic Development Inc., or REDI, says it’s not ready for the U.S. Postal Service to cut jobs in Columbia.

The Postal Service currently is considering moving 42 of 133 Columbia postal employees to Kansas City or St. Louis, or possibly shutting the Columbia center down entirely.

Karl Skala

Sponsored by Eric Schmitt of St. Louis County, the Missouri Export Incentive Act would create some new tax incentives, and put caps on others. The bill creating new tax credits cleared a Senate committee Wednesday.

The bulk of the bill is dedicated to tax credits for technology facilities and data storage centers. Exporters and self-employed Missourians also would benefit.

File / KBIA

Columbia’s economic development leaders are officially asking the Columbia City Council to effectively drop the effort to create an enhanced enterprise zone, or EEZ, in the city.

Kirksville development org. recognized for school funding

Jun 19, 2012
david_shane / flickr

Kirksville Regional Economic Development (K-REDI) was recognized by the new Missouri School of Dentistry and Oral Health for helping jump start the school’s funds with their initial donation. 

Inside the EEZ Part 3: A closer look at the program

May 11, 2012
Sarah Redohl / KBIA

In February, Regional Economic Development, Inc. proposed an Enhanced Enterprise Zone in Columbia. Facing a public backlash, city council has thrown out the original proposal, and will possibly start the process over, this time with more community input.  In part three of her three part series, KBIA’s Sarah Redohl tells us some of the EEZ statute is tough to explain.

Regional Economic Development Inc., or REDI, proposed an Enhanced Enterprise Zone in Columbia in February. The state program offers tax incentives to businesses investing in economically depressed areas. On Monday, Columbia City Council voted to throw out the original proposal, and possibly start the process over. It’s not yet clear whether the same area would be proposed for an EEZ, but KBIA’s Sarah Redohl analyzed the old data to see how it measured up to the blight designation. She explains the original proposal didn’t include some of Columbia’s poorest neighborhoods.

Inside the EEZ Part 1: A fit for Columbia?

May 9, 2012

A proposed enhanced enterprise zone in Columbia has generated a lot of discussion for the last few months. Concerns about the designation of blight required for the EEZ have been widely discussed in the news and at city council meetings. On Monday, Columbia City Council voted to throw out the original proposal and possibly start the process over.  In part 1 of her 3 part series on the EEZ program, KBIA’s Sarah Redohl explores whether Columbia is different from other EEZs.