High-tech firm moving to Ferndale

Growing company makes camera-stabilization systems


Sequoia Technologies, a technology manufacturing and engineering company that pioneered high-definition camera technology now used in popular televised events, is in the process of moving almost its entire operation into Whatcom County.

The company will leave one employee in its New Mexico office and the remaining six employees are in the process of moving to Whatcom County. Sequoia could hire up to 25 new employees for its new location.

On June 27, Sequoia signed a 10-year lease for nearly 10,000 square feet with the Silver Creek Business Park in Ferndale. The space will be used for offices, engineering and design space, research and development, and composite manufacturing.

Keith Denoyer

Keith Denoyer, Sequoia’s president and founder, said Whatcom County has a great quality of life for employees and their families, a significant pool of skilled workers to draw from and a mild climate.

“We were looking for a smaller community that we could grow with,” Denoyer said.

Sequoia Technologies has done well for itself since Denoyer formed the company in 2003. In 2007, the company grossed $1.6 million and was recognized as having the highest revenue growth of all the companies in New Mexico’s 2007 Flying 40, a list of the state’s top-rated technology companies.

Denoyer said Sequoia Technologies has developed a balance of government-funded research and development and commercial applications for the resulting technologies.

“That’s really the core of what we are doing here,” Denoyer said.

Since 2003, Sequoia’s bread and butter has been the federal government’s Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program, which promotes the development of new technology for both government and commercial applications. One of the perks that led Denoyer to choose Whatcom County for the future of Sequoia Technologies was a B & O tax exemption for companies that participate in the SBIR program.

Sequoia’s first commercial product was a high-definition camera-stabilization system, which was paired with Cablecam International’s cable-suspended camera systems to produce the high-definition, cable-suspended camera systems now common in professional football, basketball, baseball, hockey, ultimate fighting, boxing and awards shows.

Denoyer said the government was interested in stabilized, high-performance camera systems for a variety of military surveillance applications.

“We have been able to leverage a military application into a commercial product,” Denoyer said.

Sequoia Technologies is now working on the next generation of stabilized cameras: the Falcon 3X, which is similar to the original camera that launched Sequoia but with some improvements.

Denoyer said all the engineering and fabrication for those cameras will be done at Sequoia’s new location in Whatcom County.

Cleo and Maria Callen, owners of Silver Creek Business Park, said they are excited that their business park was able to attract a company such as Sequoia Technologies.

“We like tech companies and they certainly are that,” Maria said.

Cleo Callen said Sequoia has a singular quality that he thinks will rub off on Silver Creek.

“They will add a presence that will distinguish us from other business parks,” Cleo Callen said.

Denoyer said the company is poised to move into its new location as early as September, when the building has been remodeled, employees have successfully relocated and initial hiring has concluded.

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