Below are the 10 companies included in 2012's list and a brief description of any news they made this year.
Avery Brewing Co.: Avery received approval for its new brewery in Gunbarrel and also expanded its potential capacity at its existing facility.
DDR Corp.: The owner of Flatiron Marketplace, a Best Buy-anchored retail center hard hit by vacancies in recent years, continued talks with Broomfield officials on potential redevelopment options for the center.
NewMark Merrill Companies: The former manager of Twin Peaks Mall in Longmont purchased the property and moved forward on redevelopment plans.
Orbotix: The TechStars alumnus' Sphero product not only got test-driven by President Barack Obama, but the robotic ball landed in more than 3,000 stores in North America.
Phillips 66: The spinoff of ConocoPhillips put its 432-acre Louisville property -- a site once eyed for a "world-class" research and training campus -- up for sale.
Revelry Brands: After making its first acquisition at the tail end of 2011, the Boulder investment firm remained relatively this year.
Sierra Nevada Corp.: The Louisville space systems division of the Nevada company received a $212.5 million award from NASA to further its Dream Chaser spacecraft.
Sundrop Fuels: The Longmont company said it had moved forward on entitlements for its biofuels plant in Louisiana and was nearing completion of additional milestones, including financing. Construction on the plant is expected to begin next year.
Sunflower Farmers Market: The Boulder grocer merged with Sprouts Farmers Markets. Sunflower's former CEO Michael Gilliland, who was facing a felony charge after he was arrested following a prostitution sting in Phoenix, reached a plea agreement with the district attorney in Maricopa County, Ariz.
Zayo Group: The Louisville provider of bandwidth infrastructure continued its massive buying spree, including snapping up rival AboveNet for $2.3 billion.
The Camera today takes its annual look at the companies that could generate significant news during the coming year in Boulder and Broomfield counties.
Most of the firms highlighted below are locally based; however, the list does include some non-local companies that could have a significant impact on the region's business landscape.
The top 10 companies to watch are listed below in alphabetical order:
Description: Biopharmaceutical firm
What could come in 2013: When Clovis Oncology executed a nearly $130 million initial public offering late last year, the company's founder and CEO said the timing was critical.
At the time of its IPO, Clovis was one year away from releasing pivotal data on its pancreatic cancer program. The proceeds from the IPO would allow the firm to get to proof-of-concept data for that program and others for small tumors and small cell lung cancer.
However, when the highly anticipated pancreatic cancer data was released, the results rocked Clovis and its stock. After CO-101 failed its trial, Clovis suspended development on the pancreatic cancer program that could have been a big boon to the firm.
Clovis officials said they plan to direct their attention to other products in their portfolio. The coming year could provide a clearer picture as to the advancement of those programs and Clovis' direction.
Community Development Group
Description: Residential and commercial developer
What could come in 2013: Community Development Group, the developer of master-planned communities such as Broadlands and Coal Creek Ranch, is behind two housing projects that could result in a population boom and financial windfall for Erie.
Construction activity on CDG's 2,900-unit BridgeWater project -- a development located near County Road 3 and Erie Parkway that could house 8,000 residents at build-out -- is anticipated to begin next spring.
Next week, Erie's Board of Trustees will consider an annexation agreement for CDG's proposed Summerfield project, a 2,152-home community that could result in Erie receiving up to $86 million from building permit fees.
A month after CDG pulled the application to annex the development into Erie -- citing the "arduous" process -- the town's trustees approved a pre-annexation agreement that included allowing a 200-foot setback from well sites.
CDG officials have said that if the project does not move forward as expected in Erie, they would strike up discussions with neighboring Frederick.
Famous Brands International
Description: Franchiser of Mrs. Fields and TCBY
Founded: 1977 (Mrs. Fields), 1981 (TCBY)
What could come in 2013: In 2012, Mrs. Fields Famous Brands, which does business as Famous Brands International, moved its headquarters to Broomfield from Utah.
The uprooting would mark one of several significant moves for the company, which later announced plans to open flagship locations for Mrs. Fields and TCBY near its headquarters at Arista Place.
During the coming year, the company plans to "re-launch" both established brands.
Description: Contract manufacturer
What could come in 2013: Fresca Foods continued to expand its local manufacturing operations in 2012, bringing its footprint in Louisville to 250,000 square feet and its workforce to roughly 250 people.
Fresca also started an "evolution" of its business model by bulking up its efforts to provide brand management, sales, marketing and product development services. The diversification allowed Fresca to ink an agreement with General Mills to produce a new line for Progresso Foods.
The new services and larger space could help Fresca continue to grow its manufacturing operations and also become a larger player in new product development.
Description: Grocery store operator
What could come in 2013: As Boulder's grocery industry grew even more competitive -- plans moved forward for both a Trader Joe's and an unnamed 52,000-square-foot grocer at Diagonal Plaza -- the locally owned Lucky's Market was doing some expansion of its own.
After extensive renovations on its north Boulder café and grocery store, Lucky's opened its Lucky's Bakehouse and Creamery in a neighboring building.
In 2013, Lucky's plans to open a store in Longmont, a city that is seeing a boom in natural grocers. The city's existing Natural Grocers By Vitamin Cottage soon will have competition from Lucky's, Sprouts Farmers Market and a yet-to-be-determined grocer slated to fill a space at the redeveloped Twin Peaks Mall.
The Macerich Co.
Headquarters: Santa Monica, Calif.
Description: Real estate investment trust
What could come in 2013: Mall operator Macerich once again became the sole owner and operator of FlatIron Crossing in Broomfield in 2012. Three years after selling a 75 percent ownership stake in the mall to private equity firm GI Partners, Macerich officials said they planned to buy back the stake for "roughly" $323 million.
During a third quarter earnings call, Macerich's CEO also spoke of plans to lure JCPenney to Broomfield from Westminster and redevelop the open-air Village.
Macerich's fourth-quarter conference call, slated for February, could provide more insight on these moves and others at the Broomfield mall.
Description: Developer of cloud-based e-mail services
What could come in 2013: The former TechStars alumnus appears poised to continue its torrid growth pace.
SendGrid started 2012 with a $21 million funding round and reaching an agreement with Microsoft that allows the Boulder firm to provide its services to customers of Windows Azure. SendGrid grew its workforce to more than 100 employees and added sites in Denver, San Francisco, Anaheim, Calif., Germany, London and New York.
SendGrid, which its executives say they hope will become one of the "largest e-mail platforms in the world," has 60,000 web application firms and developers using its service.
Description: Manufacturer of natural foods such as spreads, milk and cooking oils
What could come in 2013: Smart Balance Inc. will have a bit of a homecoming in Boulder this coming year.
The publicly traded natural foods firm -- a holding company that was incorporated in Longmont -- plans to move its headquarters to Boulder from New Jersey and operate as Boulder Brands Inc.
Boulder Brands Inc. is expected to employ at least 50 people in Boulder during its first year of operation. That number is expected to grow as the firm eyes additional material acquisitions in the natural products space.
Earlier this year, Smart Balance added Denver-based Udi's Healthy Foods to its portfolio that includes brands such as Glutino and Bestlife.
Description: Manufacturer and seller of electronics parts and kits
What could come in 2013: After a couple years of double- and triple-digit sales growth, SparkFun is close to filling out its nearly 52,000-square-foot headquarters in Gunbarrel.
To solve the space woes and help position the firm for long-term growth, its founder recently purchased land just north of Highway 52 in the Boulder Tech Center. CEO Nathan Seidle this year hopes to break ground on an 80,000-square-foot building that would serve as SparkFun's new headquarters.
The new building could come to fruition as SparkFun continues to branch out into the educational realm, developing kits and curriculum for a variety of schools.
Headquarters: Bentonville, Ark.
Description: World's largest retailer
What could come in 2013: Earlier this year, a minor modification application and building permits were submitted to the city of Boulder for a nearly 52,000-square-foot grocery and general merchandise retailer at Diagonal Plaza.
Speculation swelled that the unidentified tenant occupying the store was Walmart, which had been unsuccessful in entering Boulder in the past with its larger-footprint retail stores.
While no information identifying the tenant was included in the city documents, details included with the floor plans -- including a store number, paints, shelving, layout and cart corrals -- align with existing Walmart Neighborhood Markets, a new grocery-based concept.
Other major grocery chains have denied they are opening a store at Diagonal Plaza, while Walmart representatives have not responded to repeated inquiries from the Camera over the past few months.
Based on the existing work that has occurred at the 3303 30th St. store, it appears an opening could come later in 2013.
Contact Camera Business Writer Alicia Wallace at 303-473-1332 or firstname.lastname@example.org.