Tag Archives: RTP Companies

Fidelity Celebrates Anniversary in RTP

Congratulations go out this week to Fidelity Investments, celebrating 10 years of operations in the Research Triangle region!

Fidelity is a leading financial services firm with over $3.5 trillion of total assets under their administration. The company provides investment management, retirement planning, portfolio guidance, brokerage, benefits outsourcing and many other financial products to more than 20 million individuals and institutions. Founded in 1946, Fidelity is the nations’ largest provider of 401(k) savings plans. Their nationwide employment is 40,000, with over 2,000 employees in our region.

The company first established a local presence in 2002, when IBM signed an agreement with Fidelity to outsource their human resources services. The 10 years following have brought steady growth. Over time they began leasing space within the Research Triangle Park, while looking into land opportunities for building a major RTP campus. In 2011, Fidelity purchased the 676,000 sq ft Network Center campus, a cluster of 4 buildings formerly belonging to Nortel Networks. This presented an outstanding opportunity to repurpose and revitalize an underutilized property with a prominent RTP location.

Over the past year Fidelity has been hard at work upfitting the Network Center property and gradually expanding to fill the space. In their brief history as an RTP company, they have already become one of our top 10 largest employers. Eventually they will consolidate all of their Triangle region employment at this location, with room to grow. Fidelity also has a parking garage under construction onsite that will hold over 2,000 vehicles!

The arrival of Fidelity in RTP demonstrated a growing presence of financial services operations, allowing the Park to broaden its industry portfolio. At their RTP campus, Fidelity Investments sustains its competitive edge in the industry through continuous research, rapid adoption, and effective deployment of leading-edge technologies. They offer a training and development program for recent IT graduates, while also offering job opportunities in customer service, accounting, business consulting and more.

Click here to see a video highlighting the history of innovation at Fidelity. Some of their recent success stories include a new online trading platform and cutting-edge mobile brokerage apps. A timeline of innovations is also available here. Read more »

Our Bags are Packed… with School Supplies

What can we say about the number 349? First, it’s a prime number.  It can be represented in binary code as 101011101, in Roman numerals as CCCXLIX, or in words as “three hundred forty-nine.” But to me, what is most special about the number 349 is that it’s the total number of students that will be receiving complete backpacks as a result Community Outreach@rtp’s RTP Back 2 School drive this year!  That’s right — with donations from employees from the Park and beyond, we were able to stuff 349 new backpacks with a full set of essential school supplies.

Collection bins at RTP Headquarters were overflowing with supplies.

Working with Communities in Schools of Durham and Communities in Schools of Wake County, these backpacks will go to students in need to help them start the school year off right!  This year, we focused our efforts on collecting and stuffing bags for Middle and High School students, as this was as area where the need was greatest, particularly because the costs of supplies for these students can be much higher than for younger students.  Here’s how the math works:

     159 High School Backpacks
     139 Middle School Backpacks
      36 Elementary Backpacks
+    15 Kindergarten Backpacks

=   349 Happy Students

Considering every High School and Middle School backpack included a scientific calculator along with 12 other supplies, and each High School backpack also contained a USB flash drive, that’s quite an accomplishment! And, in addition to the backpacks, several boxes of surplus supplies were donated to each organization to help them continue to provide supplies throughout the school year!

Volunteers stuffed backpacks with essential school suppliles on August 10th.

On behalf of Community Outreach@rtp, I’d like to thank everyone who was involved in our drive, including each and every donor, those who organized drives at their companies, those who helped stuff backpacks, and those who helped deliver them to Communities in Schools.  The following companies deserve special recognition for their efforts:

  • BASF
  • Biogen Idec
  • Cisco
  • Ericsson
  • GENBAND Inc.
  • NetApp
  • Research Triangle Foundation
  • RTI International
  • Summit Hospitality Group

If you missed your opportunity to donate to the RTP Back 2 School drive this year, but would still like to give, Communities in Schools of Wake County and Communities in Schools of Durham will continue to accept your supply donations directly. And for more information on Community Outreach@rtp, please visit www.rtp.org/community.

349 Backpacks

349 completed backpacks, along with additional supplies, were delivered to both CIS organizations on Tuesday, August 14th.

Reclaiming Sustainability One Drop at Time

Reclaimed water is always distributed in lavender (light purple) pipes to distinguish it from potable water. The turning of this valve represents several years of hard work and cooperation among a number of partners to complete this project.

Officials from multiple agencies came together yesterday morning to mark the completion of the first phase of the Jordan Lake Reclamation and Reuse Project, a project which provides reclaimed water from the Durham County Triangle Wastewater Treatment Plant to existing water customers in Durham County, the Wake county portion of RTP, and western Cary.

Committed to innovation, cost conscientiousness and environmental stewardship, using reclaimed water, a valuable and highly treated resource produced from wastewater, lessens the amount of drinking water that ends up on lawns and landscaping, reduces the amount of nutrients discharged into Jordan Lake, and reduces the maximum daily demand from water treatment facilities.

The event, held at Delta Products in RTP, was emceed by the Research Triangle Foundation’s very own Bob Geolas, who remarked that this event marked one of the first steps in sustainability surrounding RTP’s Master Plan. Bob noted that in addition to the environmental benefits of using reclaimed water, “it saves our businesses money in their efforts to keep Research Triangle Park as beautiful and attractive as it’s always been.”

Officials turn the valve to celebrate the completion of Phase I of the Jordan Lake Reclamation and Reuse Project.

Cary Mayor Harold Weinbrecht; Congressman David Price; Betty Joe Shepheard for Senator Richard Burr; Mike Carson, Vice President of Sales Regional Manager for Delta Products Corporation; Glen Whisler, Durham County Engineer, Maggie Dennison for Congresswoman Renee Ellmers; and Wake County Commissioner Erv Portman all made comments regarding the importance and significance of the system.

Along with Delta Products, Biogen Idec, Cisco, NetApp, Credit Suisse will be some of the first users of the new system. Other users, both inside and outside of RTP will be added to the system. Read more »

Give Back with Backpacks

It seems like summer has just barely begun, but in about a month, students across the Triangle and nation will be gearing up to head back into the classroom.  And that means over the next month, families will begin the annual ritual of “Back to School Shopping.”  Unfortunately, 1 in 5 children in the US live in poverty, and that means 16 million kids will go without basic school supplies.

Beginning Monday, July 16, and running through August 9, Community Outreach@rtp will be hosting its annual Back 2 School backpack and school supply drive to help provide essential school supplies to students in need in Durham and Wake counties.  RTP has partnered with Communities In Schools of Durham and Wake counties to help deliver as many completed backpacks as possible to area students.  This year, we are focusing our efforts on providing backpacks to middle and high school students, where the need is greatest.

How Can You Help?

There are a number of ways individuals working for companies in RTP can participate.

  1. Simply shop for a new backpack and/or any of the school supplies on this form and drop them off (with a completed donation form) Monday-Friday from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM at The Research Triangle Park Headquarters, 12 Davis Drive (directions). Or talk with your HR rep to learn if your company is collecting supplies on-site. Individual company collections dates may vary from those of the overall drive.
  2. Visit our Amazon.com wishlist to purchase items and have them sent directly to us. Be sure to include the name of your company in the gift note so we know which company you work for.
  3. Don’t have time to shop? Consider giving a tax-deductible donation (via check) with which the Research Triangle Foundation will purchase needed items on your behalf (monetary donations can only be accepted at The RTP Headquarters drop-off location). Cash donation form. If you prefer to mail your contribution, please send a check made payable to “Durham-Wake Counties Research and Production Service District at 12 Davis Drive, RTP, NC 27709. Please indicate if you would like to receive a receipt for tax deduction purposes.

Important Dates

  • July 16 | RTP Back-to-School Drive kicks off
  • August 3-5 | 2011 Tax-Free Weekend
  • August 9 | Back-to-School Drive ends

For more information about the RTP Back 2 School Drive, including downloadable promotional materials such as posters and bin signs, visit www.rtpback2school.org.

And the RTP Corporate Challenge Has a Winner!

Teams gathers

Colorful teams gathered to learn the rules of the games.

Rising with the sun, 13 hopeful teams converged in RTP for the inaugural RTP Corporate Challenge this past Saturday. With representatives from a variety of companies of different sizes and ilk, teams were pitted against one another in six fun and competitive challenges, presented by TriSports Social Club and The Research Triangle Park.

Our team, the RTF Innovators, began our day with a round of elimination volleyball. Managing to win two of our five games, we moved on to a few quick rounds of cornhole, where I’d rather not mention our performance.

Darren Jousting

Darren of the RTF Innovators had the jousting technique down.

There was some down time before our next event, the joust, so like others, we managed to get in a little friendly smack talk with other teams, hoping we might be able to pull ahead with our sheer force of will and fearsome demeanor. Our very own IT Manager, Darren, managed to win our first jousting bout with some impressive balance, quick thinking, and sharp moves. Unfortunately, the rest of our jousters fell prey to some pretty great competitors.

The Redonk-u-lator obstacle course

Two team members race their way through the Redonk-u-lator obstacle course.

Following the joust, we refueled our bodies and prepared for the daunting obstacle course. The course itself comprised of a tire high step, foamy slip and slide, dizzy bat spin, a monstrous inflatable obstacle course, scuba slalom, a bouncy house ball hunt, an army crawl, and a super slide. None of us were prepared for how taxing the course would be, but we managed a great finish in our first run through the course, scoring one of the top times. Our second run through proved less stellar as one of our teammates went down with an injury. We rallied to her aide as best we could. With her out of the competition, our team was down to just seven members, and it just didn’t seem right to continue to challenge without her. In team solidarity, we decided to forfeit the rest of the competition.


Two teams vie to maintain their hold during the tug-o-war.

Even though we were out, the excitement continued for the other teams. There were two events left: kickball and tug-o-war. Had we been able to compete, I’m confident we would have been some serious competition for those other teams. We’ll just have to find out next year.

Final Team Rankings

The final team rankings from the inaugural RTP Corporate Challenge.

In the end, it was the GSK team that proved victorious, earning all the bragging rights for being the first winners of the RTP Corporate Challenge. They can proudly display the RTP Corporate Challenge trophy, a perpetual trophy that will forever have their name engraved at the top. Congratulations to GSK! With five 1st places wins out of six events, they surely deserved it this year. But will they be able to hold on to it next year?

For more information on the RTP Corporate Challenge and other RTP leagues, visit http://trissc.com/rtpsa3.htm and http://rtp.org/park-life/recreation.

Danny Lefebvre with TriSports presents GSK with the RTP Corporate Challenge Perpetual Trophy.

And of course, congratulations to all the teams that participated in the inaugural Challenge. See you next year!









Bayer CropScience Shows Their Patriotic Side

The Gadsden flag on display at the State Capitol

For all you history buffs out there – you’re in good company with some of RTP’s finest. But who in RTP would you expect to be an avid collector of early American flags? The answer, as it turns out, is ag-bio giant Bayer CropScience.

Beyond its core mission of providing sustainable crop solutions from seed to harvest, Bayer has many initiatives that demonstrate its commitment to the community. This includes charitable endeavors, educational programs, and also less tangible community involvements – in this case, a collection of nine historical flags of the United States. Read more »

4,000 Books on the Summer Reading List

When Community Outreach@rtp met with Book Harvest to coordinate the inaugural RTP Books on Break book drive, the committee was given a lofty goal of helping to provide over 1,200 students with books to take and home and keep, before the summer break began.  After all, books are one of the best ways to arrest the summer slide that plagues low-income children and that contributes to the achievement gap.

With generous donations from RTP employees throughout the Park, Community Outreach@rtp was able to collect a whopping 4,000 new and gently used books to aid the program! Companies that hosted collections sites and events included:

  • Avaya
  • NetApp
  • BD Technologies
  • Biogen Idec
  • Research Triangle Foundation
  • Cisco
  • RTI International
  • Ericsson
  • Underwriters Laboratories
  • Fidelity Investments
  • US EPA
  • First Flight Venture Center

There were a number of donations from many other individuals and companies throughout the Park as well, and their support and generosity is greatly appreciated, not only by Community Outreach@rtp, but also by over 1,200 students at 16 different schools who now can look forward to a summer filled with the joy of reading.

Cisco Employees Sorting Books

40 Cisco employees sorted a total of 6,273 books on May 23

I’d also like to extend a special note of thanks to Cisco and its 40 wonderful employees that took an afternoon on May 23rd to sort the books into appropriate categories.

As to what will happen with all these books (and more), each child participating in Books on Break will be able to select ten books to take home to keep.  This infusion of ten self-selected books will help stop academic regression that disproportionately affects low-income children over the summer.  All the children selecting books are underprivileged, don’t have easy access to books in the summer, and in many cases own no books (until now).

Students with Books in Hand

1200 students with 10 books each makes for one great summer!

On behalf of Community Outreach@rtp and the Research Triangle Park, I’d like to say think you everyone involved.  With the Park’s donation of books, Book Harvest will be able to distribute over 12,000 books this week and next.

For more information on Community Outreach@rtp visit www.rtp.org/community. To learn more about Book Harvest, visit www.bookharvestnc.org.

Research Triangle Park is Alive with Wildlife

Research Triangle Park is home to over 38,000 full-time employees in over 170 diverse companies.  Most people are aware of its regional importance for research and development and its importance to North Carolina.  One thing people may not be as aware of is the flourishing wildlife within the Park.  In addition to the 38,000 employees, hundreds of plants and animals call the 7,000 acre campus home and coexist within RTP.

Male Bluebird in RTP

Male Bluebird in RTP

The Research Triangle Park is home to over 40 bluebird boxes, 8 duck boxes, 4 bat boxes, 2 purple martin houses, and this does not include the various boxes other companies have on their private campuses.  The boxes can be found all over the park off pedestrian trails we they are easily accessible. These houses provide homes for the unique and important species within the Park.  The wildlife box program has been active within the Park since 2005 and has helped shelter hundreds of birds and mammals since then.  Other than the wildlife box program there is also a butterfly garden within the Park at the RTP headquarters, a tree ID trail off of Davis drive, and an ongoing Park wildlife inventory.

Male and Female Bluebird

Male and Female Bluebird

The main emphasis throughout the wildlife programs at this time of year is on wildlife boxes, notably the bluebird boxes.  Currently there are 40 bluebird boxes throughout the Park which are all available for adoption by RTP employees.  Employees adopt a Bluebird box (es) and monitor the boxes over the breeding season, from late March to August.  All of the data collected on nesting and reproductive habits is then collected and sent to NestWatch through Cornell University.  Cornell uses this data to look at reproductive success and species movement and work to develop better wildlife management for the birds.

Eastern bluebirds experienced a sharp decline in populations from the 1920s to 1970s due to pesticides and other manmade disturbances.  Since then bluebird box programs across the nation have worked amazingly well to bring back populations.  The story of the bluebird’s re-establishment is such an interesting success story, not only for the bird’s recovery, but also for the fact that it was primarily citizens who have worked to bring the birds back and not a specific agency or organization. Read more »

What Drives RTP Companies?

One of the greatest assets of RTP is its companies. With more than 170 of them employing more than 38,000 full-time workers, they range from the 1-2 person start-ups to campuses with thousands. They represent a vast array of cutting edge technology that works to resolve some of the world’s most pressing problems or to create the next best app/device/tool to increase productivity in a range of disciplines. In short, they all do pretty neat stuff.

Recently, as I was trying to get a sense of industry trends and issues most critical to our companies,

I found blogs by the leaders of two of RTP’s
I’ll be on the look out for other examples, but in the meantime, here is a glimpse of what GSK and  Cisco see on the horizon:companies that give a sense of the challenges facing their companies and their ideas to address them.

  • GSK’s Triple Solution: The first is a blog that Deidre Connelly, GSK’s President, Pharmaceuticals NA posted for the British American Business Council. Within the blog, she notes  GSK’s approach to prevention, intervention and innovation to help the people of the world “do more, feel better, and live longer.” She references an article by GSK CEO Andrew Witty in which he discusses how the company — and entire industry — must better “harness intellectual diversity and unleash creativity” to develop drugs more efficiently but also its need to apply that ability to innovate to reconsider its business model.
  • Using the Network to Drive Innovation: In this blog post/video, Cisco CEO, John Chambers suggests that mobility and connectivity will push content and drive innovation. He also notes the importance of bringing together diverse groups to tackle today’s and future problems. Nothing how smart networks have fundamentally changed the way people live — not only how we work and play, but how we address issues like healthcare and how we collaborate to innovate and discover more. He notes how innovation must be enabled by technology and operational excellence if it is to be effective.

Year in Review: RTP Expansions

RTI's Building O9, opened in 2011

It’s certainly been an eventful year for the Research Triangle Park.  There’s a lot we could talk about: grant funding and capital infusion, conferences and events, a new CEO for RTP.  But one of the most exciting topics has been growth and expansion over the past year. In 2011, over 750,000 sq.ft. of  new office and industrial space was announced by various Park companies. Several of these projects are now well into the construction phase, or even complete. Here’s a quick breakdown of what’s been going on in 2011:

In September, Fidelity Investments purchased a group of four office buildings on NC Highway 54 formerly occupied by Nortel Networks. Fidelity is renovating the 676,000 sq.ft. of space, and will then consolidate its regional operations into one campus. This one purchase will go a long way towards reducing vacant space in RTP and rejuvenating its building stock.

Medicago held the ribbon cutting for its new $42 million, 97,000 sq.ft. facility in November. Breathing new life into North Carolina’s heritage, Medicago will produce influenza vaccines developed using tobacco leaves. Their cGMP facility has the capacity to produce more than 40 million doses of seasonal influenza vaccine or 120 million doses of pandemic influenza vaccine per year.

RTI International, our flagship research institute, held its grand opening for Building O9 in April. The office facility is a 127,000 sq.ft. companion to Building O8, completed several years earlier. Both facilities have been certified LEED Gold. RTI is now looking into opportunities to develop greenhouse space and a biocrude pilot production plant, either in RTP or nearby.

Syngenta Biotechnology is reinventing a site on Davis Drive that was home to one of the Research Triangle Park’s first buildings. Read more »