The Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance hosted its Mid-Year Luncheon, presented by FPL, on Thursday, May 14, 2015 to an audience of 500 members and guests at the Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty-Six in Fort Lauderdale.
President/CEO Bob Swindell and Chairman Mike Moore of COI access reported the following results of the Alliance’s ongoing work as the official public/private partnership for economic development in Broward County:
- More than $29 Million in capital investment by Alliance-assisted companies in the first two-quarters of the Alliance fiscal year; 390 new jobs and 406 retained jobs.
Selected announced company relocations and expansions at the mid-year point include:
- 1st Choice Aerospace, a company specializing in aviation components, is adding 40 new jobs and retaining 8 jobs with a capital investment of $4.5 million in Miramar;
- Aero Accessories and Repair, which provides repair solutions for fuel, hydraulic and electro-mechanical components, will be creating 30 new jobs and making a $2.2 million dollar capital investment in Miramar;
- Allied General Industries, a Brazilian company that develops and manufactures office supplies, is expanding into the United States, adding 33 jobs and making a capital investment of $6.4 million in Pembroke Pines;
- Charter Schools USA, which operates and manages charter schools, will be adding 159 jobs, retaining 188 jobs and making a $1 million capital investment to its headquarters in Fort Lauderdale;
- Polenghi, an Italian company that is a world leader in lemon juice distribution, is leasing 24,000 square feet of space in Deerfield Beach, creating 17 new jobs and making a $3.7 million dollar capital investment;
- Syntac Coated Products, which designs and manufactures pressure sensitive adhesive products, will add 20 new jobs, retain 9 jobs and make a $3.7 million capital investment in Deerfield Beach.
Moore also reported that Broward County continues to be a leader in the nation for job creation. In 2014, the County had the second largest year-over-year percentage employment increase among all 32 metropolitan divisions in the U.S. Broward was second only to the fast growing market of Dallas and tied for number two with San Francisco, one of the hottest job markets in the country because of its proximity to Silicon Valley.
“Our new job announcements, in addition to the strong employment increases we saw in 2014, are confirmation that our economy is one of the strongest in the nation,” said Bob Swindell, president and CEO of the Alliance. “The businesses that chose to locate or expand in Broward County are a testament to our marketing and branding of Greater Fort Lauderdale as a location for companies providing high-wage, high-value jobs. It also affirms the success of our collaboration as a community in developing and providing a talented workforce and creating a favorable business climate.”
The luncheon’s keynote speaker was newly named Florida Secretary of Commerce and President/CEO of Enterprise Florida, Inc., Bill Johnson. He gave an update on the current state of Florida’s economy and the work being done to attract new high-wage jobs to Florida.
The Alliance presented special honors including its World Class Faculty Award to Dr. David Serrano of Broward College and its Economic Development Partner of the Year award to the City of Miramar.
Additionally, the results of the Alliance’s fourth annual Executive Survey were announced. The survey, conducted by Kaufman, Rossin & Co., polls area executives on their perception of the business climate in Broward County and their plans for the next twelve months in terms of hiring and other investments. The entire report is available at kaufmanrossin.com/2015BrowardExecutiveSurvey.
Sponsors of the meeting included: presenting sponsor: FPL; platinum sponsors: Broward College, Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty-Six, JetBlue, JM Family Enterprises, Inc., Patriot National, Inc., South Florida Business Journal, South Florida Business & Wealth, Zimmerman; gold sponsor: AutoNation and silver sponsor: Becker & Poliakoff.
The Alliance’s Annual Meeting and dinner will take place October 22, 2015, at the Signature Grand.