Ted Radio Hour's Guy Raz Launches New Podcast

Oct 6, 2016
Brad Horn

Many Peoria Public Radio listeners know Guy Raz from the TED Radio Hour.  He’s also served as weekend host of All Things Considered, NPR defense correspondent, and bureau chief in both London and Berlin.  Now, he’s hosting a new NPR podcast called How I Built This, featuring conversations with the founders of some of the world’s best known companies.

The privately run and funded economic development corporation that Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner created to attract new businesses to Illinois has a new name.

The Illinois Business and Economic Development Corporation announced Monday that it will now be known as Intersect Illinois. Rauner used his executive powers in February to establish the nonprofit. Democrats raised questions about transparency and a few weeks later formed a bipartisan committee to review the corporation.

BU’s Convergence center sees major donation

Jun 21, 2016

Retired Caterpillar CEO Glen Barton and his wife Polly are making an undisclosed seven figure gift to Bradley University for the school’s proposed Business and Engineering Convergence Center.

Bloomberg Businessweek

Bradley University's business programs are in the national spotlight. Bloomberg Businessweek listed BU’s Foster College 42nd in the nation in its annual rankings.

The university says the ranking reflects the hard work of the college’s faculty and staff as well as the career center staff.

The scores are based on metrics derived from students, employers, salaries and internships.

Profits fell for Deere and Company in the first quarter, but still beat expectations on Wall Street. This morning, the company reports it earned 254-million-dollars, or 80-cents per share, compared to a-dollar-twelve last year. Before this morning's report, the consensus among analysts was 71-cents per share. 

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

A new retailer is setting up shop in Peoria’s warehouse district, and it’s bringing a new business model along with it. 

Banu and Mike Hatfield, who are married, own Zion Coffee. Last month, they announced plans to bring their coffee business to the historic Union Depot Hotel building on SW Adams St. 

Caterpillar CEO Doug Oberhelman presented the mayors of Peoria and East Peoria with two trucks Monday.  Both cities purchased the trucks to help combat the winter weather.  Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis says the trucks highlight a connection between the city and the region’s largest-employer:

Oberhelman To Chair Business Policy Group

Dec 2, 2015

Caterpillar’s CEO will chair a group of leaders from major corporations that focuses on public policy. Doug Oberhelman is will chair the Washington, D.C. based Business Roundtable group starting next month. He will serve a two year term, replacing AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson.  Oberhelman first joined the Business Roundtable in 2010. Stephenson says Oberhelman’s leadership with the group helped secure Congressional approval of trade agreements and infrastructure investments.

Caterpillar cutting 475 management, support jobs

Aug 25, 2015

SBA Grant Aims to Boost Local Startups

Aug 5, 2015

The U.S. Small Business Association awarded the City of Peoria a $50,000 grant.  The funds aim to make it easier to start a business by reducing the amount of time to register and apply for local permits and licenses.  Peoria City, County and the Economic Development Council say they will use the grant to help small businesses launch faster and support minority-owned projects.


The Peoria International Airport has a new gift shop. The shop called Moonlighting is open 7 days a week from 5 a-m to generally 8:30 in the evening. Hedy Elliott-Gardner is with the Moonlight Coalition for Adult Learning through the Peoria Park District Foundation. She says the shop has been open since April and is out performing the business plan:

So far, no food truck applications for Peoria

Jul 29, 2015

A month has passed since food truck owners could apply to operate in Peoria’s public right-of-way. But no mobile food vendor has yet filled out the paperwork.  Assistant City Manager Chris Setti says there are possible reasons why food truck operators haven’t applied:

Caterpillar second quarter sales take a hit

Jul 23, 2015 / Flickr/Creative Commons

Peoria-based Caterpillar is reporting 2nd quarter adjusted profit per share of $1.27. It’s a 42 cent decrease from the second quarter of 2014. But it still topped analysts’ expectations by a penny.    

Sales and Revenues posted at 12.3 billion dollars. That’s down 13 percent, in the second quarter of 2014 and is last down when compared with expectations.

The company is still expecting a challenging second half of the year. But CEO Doug Oberhelman says Caterpillar continues its “track-record of solid operational performance in the face of difficult conditions.”

Peoria-based Caterpillar is calling the re-establishment of diplomatic relations with Cuba a great start. But with that, company CEO Doug Oberhelman is also calling on the President and Congress to work together to lift the 54 year-old trade barrier. Fully normalizing trade relations and  integrating Cuba into the global economy, Oberhelman says, will improve the everyday lives of Cuban people.     Caterpillar leaders visited Cuba in April. The goal of that trip was to better understand the potential market and to meet with Cuban business and government leaders.

Developers give update on Peoria Warehouse District

Jul 9, 2015

  Peoria’s Warehouse District is seeing significant interest for new businesses and community projects.  That’s the message shared by multiple developers at yesterday’s Peoria Downtown Advisory Commission meeting.  There are multiple factors behind the boost in investment:

The unemployment rate fell in every metro area in the state for the 15th month in a row. The Illinois Department of Employment Security is reporting an unemployment rate of 5.4 percent in May for the Peoria area. That’s slightly higher than last month, but a 1.4 percent decline from the same time last year. The Peoria lost 25-hundred jobs year-over-year

Kankakee Community College is ending operation of its public radio station, WKCC.  KCC President, Dr. John Avandano says enrollment is down 17 percent for the Fall semester, and with shrinking real-dollars from the state, the trustees determined it can no longer afford to carry the bulk of the station’s costs.

Northwoods mall talks upgrades with City of Peoria

May 21, 2015

The Peoria City Council spent six hours discussing long-term policy priorities Thursday.  One goal is to help develop business corridors, including along Sterling Avenue.  City Councilman Jim Montelongo says he’s met with the general manager of Northwoods Mall to talk about how the city’s role in outdoor upgrades:

Peoria County has millions of dollars it can loan to businesses to boost economic development. The program could also include dollars for not-for-profits.

The Illinois House is spending today hearing testimony about Illinois' civil justice system. Governor Bruce Rauner has made making Illinois more business-friendly a priority. 

Article says Schock failed to file financial docs

May 5, 2015
Alex Rusciano / Peoria Public Radio

Former U.S. Congressman Aaron Schock failed to file a financial disclosure statement within 30 days after leaving office.  That’s according to a report from Politico. The report also says Schock is using leftover campaign funds to pay one staffer’s legal fees. The report also says it’s unclear if Schock repaid the government for thousands-of-dollars in questionable mileage reimbursements. The news comes as questions surrounding Schock’s congressional finances practices are the subject of an ongoing federal criminal investigation.   

Rauner reports his finances

May 4, 2015

We have an updated picture of how Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner is making money.

Peoria ranked-high as new business spot

May 4, 2015

A consumer-advocacy website ranked the Peoria area one of the best places to start a business. The personal finance website, NerdWallet, ranked Peoria 10th out of 183 select metro areas. The study touted Peoria’s location to both Chicago and St. Louis, and listed Caterpillar and Bradley University as steady employers that help boost local business.  Peoria was ranked the best community in the state to open a business.

Caterpillar is laying off 150 full-time production workers at its Decatur plant in response to weak demand for mining equipment.  Company officials say the indefinite layoffs of the workers are expected to begin May 11 at the central Illinois plant.  Cat says the layoffs are intended to bring production in line with demand as the mining industry continues to face weak market conditions.  The company's Decatur plant makes engine liners and engine blocks that wind up in, among other things, Caterpillar mining equipment.

Private equity investor Governor Bruce Rauner often says his goal is to make Illinois more competitive.  At a recent speech to business owners, he sang Illinois' praises. 

The ousted executive director of the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission is responding to the group’s move to fire him.  

Rauner touts Right To Work

Mar 9, 2015

Governor Bruce Rauner has been traveling the state laying out his vision for creating a more pro-business climate in Illinois.  Monday the governor toured a transportation company in St. Anne which is looking to expand.

At least three doctors are listed in records as being involved with medical marijuana businesses in Illinois.  The businesses are approved to open dispensaries or cultivation centers in Chicago, the Rockford area and the area near East St. Louis.

Local study: small manufacturers need to diversify

Feb 17, 2015

Metal machinery businesses in Central Illinois are vulnerable to market downturns because they don’t sell products to enough different clients. That’s the result from a new study presented by The Economic Development Council of Central Illinois. Jennifer Daly is the group’s CEO.