Weekly Market Report – April 6, 2023

Apr 6, 2023 | 0 comments

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Restaurant & Retail Updates

Lyle’s Pizzeria has opened in a former Max I. Walker building at 5213 Leavenworth Street. The locally owned neighborhood pizzeria and wine bar serves hand-stretched sourdough pizzas, small plates, craft cocktails and wine.

We now know the names of the two bars planning to open later this year in the Capitol District downtown. The Stuffed Olive is a martini bar with a full food menu. Roxxy is a bar and restaurant described as “a new concept celebrating individuality and the weirdness that make all of us unique.” The bars have existing locations in Iowa City and Des Moines, Iowa. They will occupy a 7,500 sq. ft. space in the Texas de Brazil building.

El Vallarta Mexican Restaurant has opened its fourth location in a former McAlister’s Deli building at 12405 West Center Road. El Vallarta has existing locations in Gretna, La Vista and Blair.

Bottles and Barrels held a grand opening last weekend at 5331 South 204th Avenue in a new strip center southwest of 204th & Q Street. The locally owned liquor store allows customers to self-pour over 16 different wines, 16 bourbons and whiskeys, 24 beers, and four pre-batched cocktails.

D’Leon’s Mexican Food has opened near 168th & Harrison Street in an end-cap space formerly occupied by a Chinese restaurant.

Do you want to own your own restaurant? Brushi Bistro & Bar at 721 North 132nd Street in Linden Market is listed for sale. The popular, fine-dining restaurant serves European and American cuisine and has one year remaining on its 3,662 sq. ft. lease.

Coneflower Creamery was named Best Ice Cream Parlor in Midwest Living’s Best of the Midwest Awards last month. Coneflower is located at 3921 Farnam Street in the Blackstone District.

Malara’s Italian Restaurant at 2123 Pierce Street plans to close permanently on April 15th. The restaurant’s founder, Caterina Malara, died last month. Malara’s has been a popular destination on Omaha’s south side for the past 39 years.

Two locally owned restaurants have recently gone out of business. Saigon Surface closed permanently yesterday at 324 South 14th Street. The family’s other business, Saigon Restaurant at 12100 West Center Road, remains open. The Sojourn Café at 7614 Main Street in Ralston closed last week. The owner plans to announce a new venture soon.

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The “Restaurant & Retail Updates” section is sponsored by Anderson Convenience Market, featuring Quality AMOCO Fuels and serving Omaha since 1952, and proud to announce the return of Quality Amoco Fuels. Look for changes this Summer at Anderson Convenience Market – 8 Omaha area locations!

Learn more about Anderson Convenience market at www.Anderson1952.com

The Big Story

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digital rendering of Flatiron District project buildings

Photo above: Construction activity on Mutual of Omaha’s 45-story future headquarters building downtown.

Media Coverage of Omaha & Nebraska

At Grow Omaha, we strive to keep you up to date with national media coverage of our state, metro area and city. Below are three items published lately.

RE Journals

Chicago-based RE Journals released an article about Omaha’s commercial real estate market last week entitled “Rising Interest Rates? A Lack of New Supply? Omaha’s CRE Market Still a Resilient One.”

The author, Dan Rafter, addressed how the Omaha market is continuing its tradition of being resilient during uncertain times:

“This Nebraska city has long boasted a resilient commercial real estate market. Commercial real estate deals and development, for instance, continued throughout even the dreariest days of the COVID-19 pandemic. And while today’s higher interest rates might have slowed activity in this Midwest city, they haven’t brought it close to a standstill.”

In the article, Amy Lawrenson, a partner at Omaha’s Baird Holm law firm said there are a number of reasons why Omaha’s market is so steady: 1. Local developers take a conservative approach to projects; 2. Strong roster of Fortune 500 companies in Omaha; 3. The philanthropic nature of Omaha’s business and civic leaders.

Rafter highlighted several of Omaha’s major development projects including Mutual of Omaha’s 677-foot office tower, The Builders District in North Downtown, Heartwood Preserve near Boys Town and the future downtown-midtown streetcar.

Most Financially Literate State

WalletHub has published it’s 2023 list of the nation’s “Most & Least Financially Literate States.” Nebraska came in number one!

The rankings were based on 17 key metrics of financial literacy and included all 50 states plus the District of Columbia. Nebraska’s best category is financial planning and habits, ranking 3rd. Here’s the top 5:

  1. Nebraska
  2. Utah
  3. Virginia
  4. Colorado
  5. Minnesota

Here are the worst financially literate states:

  1. Arkansas
  2. Louisiana
  3. New Mexico
  4. Oklahoma
  5. Mississippi

And finally, a few other states of interest: Iowa #6; Missouri #20; Kansas #23; and South Dakota #44.

Expensive Place to Start a Business

While Nebraska can be proud of its financial literacy, it is unfortunately one of the most expensive places to start a business. That’s according to Simplify, LLC, which released a study this week on the “Most and Least Expensive States to Start a Business” using the most recent data from Bureau of Labor Statistics, Small Business Administration, and Census Bureau.

The study considered the cost of labor, corporate tax rates, available commercial real estate, commercial electric bills, and the health of the business environment in all 50 states plus D.C.

Nebraska was the #8 most expensive state. Nebraska business owners pay workers $51,392 on average annually, pay 6.42% corporate tax rate, and the average monthly commercial electric bill of $431.95.

The five most expensive states were Minnesota, New York, Louisiana, Alabama, and Alaska.

The five least expensive states were Nevada, Colorado, Arkansas, Montana, and North Carolina.

This section is sponsored by RENZE. For over 128 years, we have been providing our clients with innovative solutions for interior corporate and retail branding, as well as unique exhibits and graphics for tradeshows and events. With leading-edge equipment and quality craftspeople working out of our 90,000 sq. ft. facility, we partner with you to help create your vision. Check out our recent branding of Toast’s Aksarben location HERE!

Grow Omaha Snippets

Grow Omaha Snippets Sponsored by:

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The Martin Luther King Jr. Pedestrian Bridge will close next week for five days to accommodate construction work on Lewis & Clark Landing. The bridge serves as an access point between the CHI Health Center Omaha and the Riverfront. It’s often used by people traveling between downtown Omaha and the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge.

The Riverfront Drive and the Douglas Street extension will open Friday, April 14th, giving motorists direct access through Heartland of America Park and Lewis & Clark Landing, according to KFAB. Riverfront Drive runs just east of CHI Health Center Omaha and through Lewis & Clark Landing. The Douglas Street extension begins at 8th Street and continues eastward, connecting with Riverfront Drive. In late 2020, Riverfront Drive was closed for Lewis & Clark Landing construction and remodeling work.

Construction has gone vertical and is progressing at Allora 168, a 17-acre, 18-building apartment development on the southeast corner of 168th & Highway 370, according to NGC Construction and Metonic Real Estate Solutions.

Metro Transit recently celebrated ORBT’s millionth ride, according to KETV. ORBT is Omaha’s bus rapid transit system, which opened in November of 2020 and operates between downtown and Westroads Mall.

The Omaha City Council voted 7-0 against roundabouts that would turn Farnam Street into a two-way all-day road, according to WOWT. Currently, Farnam between Happy Hollow Boulevard and Saddle Creek Road converts to a one-way road during weekday rush hours. A proposed engineering design supported by the city would turn it into a two-way all-day with roundabouts at the 50th and 52nd intersections.

Grow Omaha Snippets are brought to you by Omaha Car Care with four metro area locations – 131st & Dodge, 58th & Center, 85th & L and 144th & Harrison.

Omaha Car Care “We’ll be along for the ride.”

Business News

Local Business News Sponsored by FranNet of The Heartland:

NP Dodge Real Estate was recently ranked #67 in the 2023 RealTrends 500 brokerage rankings for independent brokerages. Despite the real estate market changes, NP Dodge continued to show growth in the 2023 RealTrends 500 brokerage rankings, an independently verified compilation of the nation’s leading residential real estate companies.

Omaha hotel revenue hit a record $251 million in 2022, up 25 percent from 2021, according to the Omaha World-Herald. Before the pandemic in 2019 — a fairly average year for Omaha hotels — revenue was $219 million.

After falling below growth neutral for three straight months, the Creighton University Mid-America Business Conditions Index, a leading economic indicator for the nine-state region stretching from Minnesota to Arkansas, has now expanded for two consecutive months. The index, which ranges between 0 and 100 with 50.0 representing growth neutral, sank to 50.8 from 56.1 in February.

Mutual of Omaha has been named as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work for in 2023 by Fortune magazine. The company is ranked 70 out of 100.

After a competitive bidding process, the University of Nebraska has chosen Omaha-based HDR, Inc. as architect and engineer for a massive renovation of Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, according to the Omaha World-Herald. The Board of Regents must approve the agreement. The project’s cost is expected to be somewhere between $200 and $500 million.

Union Pacific is working with Metra to safely and seamlessly transfer its commuter rail operation in Chicago, including the employees who perform the work. Union Pacific anticipates completing the transfer by the end of first quarter 2024. Metra is the commuter rail system in the Chicago metropolitan area serving the city of Chicago and its suburbs.

Werner Enterprises, Inc. will release its first quarter earnings on Wednesday, May 3rd after the market close. The company will also hold a conference call to discuss the first quarter 2023 results and updated 2023 outlook on the same day, beginning at 4:00 p.m. CDT.

A unique partnership between Omaha-based Scoular and Boys Town will provide mental health care services to both Scoular families and to youth in the Omaha community.

The Scoular Foundation has provided $250,000 to Boys Town to offset the administrative costs of providing increased mental health care by a licensed psychologist dedicated to the new partnership. The psychologist will serve the children of Scoular employees as well as prioritize services to children in the north and South Omaha communities, and those enrolled in the Boys Town LIFT Together program. LIFT Together is a prevention initiative that provides adolescents living in north and South Omaha with resources to improve school success and family stability.

Valmont Industries, Inc. will host its first quarter 2023 earnings conference call on Friday, April 21st beginning at 8:00 a.m. CDT.

This section is sponsored by FranNet of The Heartland, the local, trusted franchise experts. They are “in the business of helping you get into business!”

Grow Omaha Residential

Professional Relationships in Real Estate

By Joe Finlay

Omaha residents have a variety of choices when buying or selling property. Who you work with matters, and in Omaha, people like working with locals. A real estate transaction involves a number of professionals who can make the buying or selling process go smoothly.

Mortgage Lenders

Buyers can choose from hundreds of mortgage lenders in Omaha. These lending institutions range from small credit unions to online startups to national banks. Picking the right one can save someone thousands of dollars over the life of the loan.

When evaluating lending institutions, a few things to look for include – mortgage rate, closing costs and types of loans they offer. Not all banks have the same products. While one bank may be best for first-time homebuyers, another might be better for jumbo loans, and another might specialize in VA or USDA loans. Some banks offer physician loans and target the medical professionals at UNMC, CHI, Methodist, Children’s and other area hospitals.

Developing a relationship with the bank that best fits the buyer is important. A buyer may need that relationship to establish mortgage and interim financing and a Realtor may need that relationship to verify funds during the buying or selling process.

Title Services

The title company’s job in a transaction is to protect the buyer’s and seller’s information during the real estate transaction. Whether it’s researching liens on a property or holding funds in escrow until the transaction is complete, a reputable title company is an important part of every real estate transaction.

Home Inspectors

Selecting a home inspector prior to a purchase can also be beneficial. Many Omaha home inspectors are willing to tour a home with buyers and give some sort of verbal inspection prior to an offer. This helps eliminate the inspection contingency.


In some larger cities, Realtors can focus their energy on specific areas of town. Omaha is small enough that a Realtor can represent buyers and sellers throughout the entire market. A seasoned Realtor with knowledge of market values and connections in each neighborhood is invaluable.

Insurance Agents

We’re entering hail storm season, and having an insurance agent who you know and will answer your phone call is sometimes half the battle. Agents help their clients choose the right coverage and have vast knowledge on roofing materials in Omaha!

Bottom Line

There are more people involved in a real estate transaction than you may think. Let’s connect and I’ll help introduce some of these people to you.

Grow Omaha Residential is developed and sponsored by Joe Finlay, REALTOR with NP Dodge Real Estate.

Grow Omaha University

Leadership & Sales Insights for Ambitious People

Compiled by Grow Omaha co-founJeff Bealsder and sales trainer 

Sponsored by MyStaff, Inc.


As employers tighten their belts amid economic uncertainty and sky-high interest rates, pay raises are already set to be smaller. Now benefits are on the chopping block as well, according to Fortune. Nearly half (47%) of companies surveyed plan to trim employee benefits this year. The most popular benefits executives are keen to curtail? Adoption and fertility assistance, as well as commuter benefits.

Dr. Kim Hoogeveen of Bellevue-based MindSet, LLC recently wrote about the “12 Essentials for Supervising Remote Workers.” Here’s the first one:

“It’s Not About You. When employees are working remotely for the first time, their personalities don’t change. Think about which of your employees normally need more reassurance or guidance from you and make a reminder to contact them more frequently. Make sure they know you are available weekends and evenings for a call; that may be the only time they get a calm enough household in which to work…Leadership is all about the employee on the other side of the desk. Well, now we are going to tweak that to say: it’s all about the employee on the other end of the phone. Leaders still need to adapt to what each individual needs from you to grow and succeed.”

Read the rest of the article HERE.


Here are four reasons why recessions can actually be good for sales pros who have the right attitude and keep prospecting no matter how bad things might get:

  1. Many of your competitors will have fatalistic, defeatist attitudes and will pull back on prospecting efforts.
  2. Clients who may have been taken for granted by your competition might use a recession as an excuse to change vendors.
  3. When clients are under stress, they look to trusted advisers to guide them. If you are a solution-focused, client-centric professional, you can pick up new clients during a downturn.
  4. A recession weeds out competitors who aren’t serious or truly committed.

By making just a few more call attempts, sales reps can boost conversion rates by up to 70 percent, according to Call Hippo.

If you’re trying to gauge how committed a prospect is to your competitor, HubSpot recommends you try asking, “Is there any chance you’ll decide to stay with your current solution or are you definitely moving on?” This could help you determine if they’re serious or if they’re just using you for leverage against their current provider.

The Greater Omaha Chamber is presenting a “Sales Workshop with Jeff Beals” on April 25th at the Jewish Community Center of Omaha. This half-day program is designed to help sales pros find better prospects, land more deals and capture greater market share. For more information or to register, click HERE!


“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller

Grow Omaha University is sponsored by MyStaff Inc, a locally owned staffing firm whose purpose is helping Nebraska companies recruit for corporate office positions.

My Staff Inc – Our team helps you find yours!

Upcoming Events in the Metro

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The Wizard of Oz on April 7th: Get ready to follow the Yellow Brick Road once again! The smash-hit production that everyone’s been talking about is back, and it’s better than ever. Join choreographer Erin Alarcón as she takes us on a magical journey through the world of Oz in this full-length story ballet. Alarcón’s lifelong passion for the classic film and fantasy novel shines through in her imaginative interpretation of the iconic characters we all know and love: from the fearless Dorothy to the lovable Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Cowardly Lion, to the wicked witches and the mysterious Wizard himself. Come experience the magic of dance and the wonder of Oz in this unforgettable production!

Joslyn’s Mini Masterpiece Museum on April 7th: Experience the ultimate fusion of art, friendship, and fun at Joslyn’s Mini Masterpiece Museum! Co-hosted by BFF and the Joslyn Art Museum, this unique event is taking place on April 7th from 6-8 pm at The Sydney. Get inspired by the miniature replica of the gallery and fountain court, and let your creativity run wild. Best of all, it’s completely free and open to the public!

Blackstone 2nd Saturday on April 8th: Enjoy the ultimate night out at Blackstone’s Second Saturday! Get your groove on and indulge in some delicious drinks and mouth-watering cuisine, while you revel in the electrifying music that will be flowing throughout the entire Blackstone strip! The good times are set to roll with the arrival of the warmer weather, so make sure you don’t miss out on this monthly celebration of music, food, and fun! Scriptown Brewing Company will have sensational Wooden Music playing in their Tasting Room, bringing their acoustic vibes to rock your world from 7 pm to 9 pm. Bring your friends for a night of fun to kick off the spring season!

Tuesday Cruiseday at the Granary Green on April 11th: Bring out your hot rod, classic or custom ride to the Tuesday Cruiseday! Enjoy food from the Granary Grill and drinks from Bushwackers Bar. Beginning Tuesday, April 11th, Tuesday Cruise Day will be happening weekly at the new venue, The Granary Green. Bring out your special ride to showcase or admire the other local custom rides while enjoying music and drinks!

April Modus Coworking Free Coworking Day on April 13th: Elevate your productivity and take advantage of a free coworking day every second Thursday of the month from 8 am to 5 pm! With high-speed wifi and top-notch office amenities at your fingertips, you’ll be able to work in peace and focus on your goals. And don’t forget to stick around for a complimentary happy hour starting at 4 pm – enjoy free wine, snacks, and connect with like-minded individuals.

This Upcoming Events section is sponsored by Eagle Mortgage Company, is a locally owned and full-service mortgage company in Omaha.

Eagle Mortgage can help you realize your dream of owning a home.

People in the News

Sponsored by Baird Holm Attorneys at Law

a beautiful blue and white house with a green lawn
digital rendering of Flatiron District project buildings

RENZE, a provider of exhibits, branded environments, event graphics and point-of-purchase solutions, has promoted Scott Buchanan to vice president, general manager. He is the fourth generation in his family to be involved with RENZE and will manage the company’s production operations and facility. Buchanan has been with the company for 17 years, most recently as director of estimating & purchasing. RENZE also hired Will Philbin, CPA as controller. He most recently worked as a senior corporate accountant with Spreetail as well as Election Systems and Software.

WoodmenLife has appointed Timothy Buderus to vice president, WFS Operations, in addition to his current role as president, Woodmen Financial Services. Buderus joined WoodmenLife in 2002 as a senior sales auditor. He was promoted to senior compliance consultant in 2005; director, operations in 2006; and president, Woodmen Financial Services, Inc. in 2008. Prior to WoodmenLife, Buderus worked at both Securities America and INVEST Financial Services.

Core Bank has added Lesley Valadez as a bilingual mortgage loan originator. She has seven years of experience in the local banking industry. Omaha-based Core Bank has six locations in Omaha and Kansas City as well as a loan production office in Mesa, Ariz.

Farm Credit Services of America stockholders elected three agricultural producers to serve on the board of directors. A fourth director was appointed by the board. Each will serve a four-year term that began April 1st.The directors are Steve Henry of Nevada, Iowa; Shane Greckel of Broomfield, Neb.; Rick Maxfield of Lyman, Wyo.; and Bill Yates of Elkhorn. Jim Kortan of Brookings, S.D. retired from the board.

The “People in the News” section is sponsored by Baird Holm LLP. Baird Holm’s dedicated team of real estate lawyers has extensive experience in all aspects of real estate law, including purchases, sales, zoning and land use, leasing, and dispute resolution. Click HERE for more information.

Wall Street: The Week in Review

with George Morgan

The author is founder of Morgan Investor Education of Omaha.

Sponsored by Baird Holm Attorneys at Law

Views and opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author.

This week I head the most hypocritical statement ever. During a commercial for his Mad Money show Jim Cramer said, “Stocks are not companies. Look for bad stocks not bad companies.”

Cramer confirmed that the reliability of predicting stock prices based on the financial fundamentals of the underlying company died with Santa Claus and the Easter bunny. This also explains why Jim’s CNBC acolytes keep saying that the market just doesn’t understand reality.

It reminds me of when I was living in beautiful Muncie, Ind. One night, Johnny Carson – for those of you under the age of 40, look that up in your Funk and Wagnalls – said there was a toilet paper shortage. The next afternoon my wife came home and told me to get the groceries out of the car. I opened the back of our VW rabbit and it was as filled with dozens of rolls of toilet paper.

Translation: If a bunch of Wall Street flunkies think that Tesla is going to the moon, they are right.

This is a corollary to John Maynard Keynes’ story of Mr. Market and the beauty contest. In his strenuously analytical magnum opus, Keynes detours into the apropos statement that if one were to bet on who would win a beauty contest, the smart money should choose the one they think the judges will choose, not the one they believe to be the most beautiful. Keynes made himself and his alma mater – Cambridge College – quite wealthy using this approach. Evidently Cramer agrees because CNBC pays him $3 million year to jibber jabber for few hours per week.

At the top of this weeks “Poor Baby” column is an article from the Wall Street Journal announcing that last year’s bonuses for Wall Street bankers were the lowest since the financial crisis of 2008. The average payout is around $275,000. Last year, it plummeted to $143,000.

Why the massive decline? Because there were few new hot deals to be had. During a normal year, the queue is crammed with upstart tech newbies dying to become publicly traded juggernauts.

P.S. – Last year a unsophisticated slop who held a Dow index fund in a no-fee account at a discount brokerage firm gained 8.5 percent. Less pay to Wall Street; more pay to me.

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Have You Watched Grow O on Video Yet?

Jeff Beals, Trenton Magid and a guest in the KFAB 1110 Radio Booth

The Grow Omaha radio show broadcasts live every Saturday morning at 9:00, but now you can watch videos of each episode instead of just listening.

Grow Omaha’s brand-new website features video footage shot inside the radio studio during each week’s show!

Videos include News of the Week, Lightning Round, guest interviews, and “Grow Omaha Uncut,” a behind-the-scenes look at what happens during commercial breaks.

Support the Grow “O” Mission

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