Tony Mansour is getting a little help from a friend. Envision Pharmaceuticals President and CEO Kevin Nagle will join Town Center management as partnerships that funded the retail project that defines “downtown” El Dorado Hills expire at year end.
Nagle will assume a “consultative” role.
The last time Nagle graced the pages of Village Life he was entertaining Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson and Sacramento Kings co-owner Gavin Maloof, helping lead the local effort to save Sacramento’s NBA franchise.
As the campaign to keep the Kings heats up, Nagle’s own business continues a multi-year growth spurt.
Envision handles prescription drug insurance coverage for more than 5 million people. He quadrupled his office space in the El Dorado Hills Business Park last year, and currently employs an estimated 130 people in El Dorado Hills with revenue in excess of $1.5 million.
The 4,684-store retail giant Rite Aid recently announced a partnership with Envision to provide Medicare drug coverage.
So Nagle’s plate was already full when fellow University of Southern California alumnus Mansour mentioned that his partnership agreements in Town Center east would soon expire.
“I saw tremendous opportunity for everyone involved,” said Nagle. “It was sort of a natural; a good business relationship requires a certain amount of personal chemistry, and we’ve got it.”
The two business leaders got to know each other at chamber events and other El Dorado Hills business functions. They found that they shared a passion for the perennially successful USC Trojans, and also for their community.
The terms Mansour-Nagle relationship hasn’t been finalized, but this much is clear. For an undisclosed investment, Nagle will become a part of Mansour’s life work.
Nagle stressed that Envision remains his primary focus.
His motivation for becoming a part of Town Center? “Business people have passions for certain things in their communities and find ways to contribute,” he said, “sometimes through philanthropy, sometimes through other business relationships.”
Mansour formed El Dorado Hills Investors Ltd. in 1979 to acquire 8,000 acres of what became Serrano, Blackstone, Valley View, most of the freeway-proximate commercial sites north of Highway 50 and Town Center, east and west. The county adopted his specific plan for the area in 1988. Mansour then sold much of the property to focus on Town Center.
That original partnership expires at year end for Town Center East, but remains intact for the largely undeveloped Town Center West, located west of Latrobe Road and north of White Rock Road.
On a crisp fall morning in front of Town Center’s Olympus Café, Mansour recalled dismissing plans for a traditional shopping mall on the site in 1994, a decision that shaped not only his future, but that of El Dorado Hills. He enlisted his son Louis to create the homey European village downtown that exists today, a commercial retail prototype that would later become known as “lifestyle center.”
“This has been a family operation from day one,” said Tony. “I was the big picture guy and Louis came in and made it happen. Kevin fits right in as part of the family.”
When growth in Town Center slowed, Louis shifted his energies to the resurrection of Latrobe Road Self Storage and U-Haul, now thriving. He remains a member of the Town Center management team.
“This place has a pulse,” said Tony, who can often be spotted plucking weeds from planters and picking up litter early in the morning. “If you stop that pulse it dies. That’s why I’m here all the time. I have to see it. I have to feel it.”
In recent months Tony has publicly worried that a bottom-line driven investor might one day gain control of some or all of Town Center and corrupt his vision.
The decision to bring in a local partner of Nagle’s stature helps ensure Tony’s vision of a vibrant “downtown” El Dorado Hills. “Kevin and I have the same goals and aspirations for the Town Center,” Tony said. “This has always been about more than numbers.”
Nagle praised Tony’s vision for Town Center. “El Dorado Hills is a great place to live and this is its center,” he said. “I think I can help grow Town Center and create some jobs in the process. I see things getting better and better.”
“I’m an emotional person and I run my business that way,” Tony said. “Kevin brings a more analytical perspective, a fresh look at what we’re doing. Together we can take this to the next level.”