Highlights of Economic and Business Growth in the Tampa Bay Region (News Briefs)

    TAMPA BAY, Fla., July 18 /PRNewswire/ -- News briefs concerning the
 economic and business growth in the Tampa Bay Region from the Tampa Bay
     Tasty Relocation
     Taste Advantage, a flavors company from Lake Charles, LA, is expanding
 into a 19,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Polk County with a $7
 million capital investment and 30 new jobs. Taste Advantage joins a strong
 flavors and essence manufacturing cluster in the Tampa Bay region with ties
 to a number of international companies in France, Germany, Denmark,
 Switzerland, Ireland and U.K. including Treatt USA, Jean Niel USA and
 Monin, Inc. The flavors and essence industry has grown to become a
 worldwide billion-dollar business. In Polk County alone, the flavor plants
 provide that county with 200 jobs and plant sales range from $4 million to
 $152 million according to annual reports. (Contact: Tom Patton, Central
 Florida Development Council, 863-534-4370, tompatton@cfdc.org .)
     Communities of Tampa Bay Named Among "Best Metros for Business
     The communities of Tampa Bay have been designated a "5-Star Business
 Metro for Business Expansion" by Expansion Management and are profiled in
 the upcoming July/August issue of the magazine. The ranking compared 362
 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) to determine the communities with a
 combination of the best overall secondary school districts, the greatest
 concentration of workers with post-secondary advanced and technical
 degrees, high quality health care at a reasonable cost, a place where
 employees can enjoy exceptional quality of life at a reasonable salary, the
 best logistics infrastructure, and the best business climates as
 established by the state legislature in terms of taxes and spending. The
 ranking is a compilation of six major research studies the publication
 conducted during the past 12 months and the top 20 percent are designated
 at "Five-Star Business Metros." To learn more about living and working in
 the Tampa Bay region, visit http://www.TampaBay.org . (Contact: Jennifer
 Taylor, Tampa Bay Partnership, 813-872-2809, jtaylor@tampabay.org .)
     Tampa Bay to Host Big International Conference on Tiny Matters
     The 11th Annual International Commercialization of Micro and Nano
 Systems Conference (COMS 2006) will be held August 27-31, 2006 in St.
 Petersburg, FL. COMS is the leading annual conference on
 micro-nanotechnology commercialization education. It brings together
 leaders in the field from across the world, representing organizations and
 companies from almost every sector of the community. These include leading
 industrialists, researchers, equipment vendors, customers, VC and angel
 investors, educators, media, professional organizations, and government.
 Tampa Bay has unique centers of excellence supporting the growth of MEMS
 and NANO technologies including the largest MEMS facility in the Southeast;
 a major research university -- University of South Florida; one of the
 country's top cancer center research facilities -- Moffitt Cancer Center
 and Research Institute; and a cluster of technology manufacturing companies
 with applications in medical device manufacturing, electronic components
 and national defense. (Contact: Dr. Carol Steele, USF Collect of Marine
 Science / Center for Ocean Technology, 727-553-3975,
 csteele@seas.marine.usf.edu .)
     Tampa Bay Hospitals Cited Among "America's Best"
     U.S. News and World Report named Sarasota Memorial Hospital, Tampa
 General Hospital and H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute to
 its list of "America's Best Hospitals." Moffitt, which appears on the list
 for the eighth year in a row, moved up to the No. 11 spot on the list of
 "America's Best Hospitals for cancer." Tampa General was listed No. 45
 among hospitals cited for their orthopedics offerings. Sarasota Memorial
 ranked No. 25 for heart and heart surgery, No. 31 for orthopedics, No. 42
 for digestive disorders, No. 44 for respiratory disorders, No. 50 for
 cancer and No. 50 for gynecology. The hospital guide appears in U.S. News
 and World Report's July 17 edition and online at
 http://www.usnews.com/besthospitals .
     Tampa Company Launches Tree Trimming Software
     Each year, utility companies across the country spend billions of
 dollars trying to combat tree growth around power lines. Enporion, a
 leading provider of sourcing and procurement services for energy and other
 industries, has launched its Electronic Vegetation Management Solution
 (eVMS), software designed to plan, execute and report on every aspect of
 transmission and distribution vegetation management around power lines.
 Enporion also announced that Asplundh Tree Expert Co. has signed a license
 and distribution agreement to bring eVMS to its customers in North America,
 the U.K., Australia and New Zealand. The eVMS software provides detailed
 tree species information in different geographic areas, and using different
 climate algorithms and other environmental influences can predict when and
 where trees near power lines would need to be trimmed. When the system
 detects that a tree does need trimming, it automatically issues a work
 order, allowing tree-trimming companies to concentrate on areas that need
 trimming rather than simply going region to region and just cutting all
 trees near power lines. (Contact: Michael Grohman, Enporion, 813-864-8128,
 mgrohman@enporion.com .)
     STAR TEC Accelerator Adds Two New Tenants
     The STAR Technology Enterprise Center (STAR TEC), a manufacturing and
 technology business accelerator located at the Young-Rainey Science,
 Technology and Research (STAR) Center in Largo, has admitted two new
 tenants. Alaka'i Consulting & Engineering, Inc., founded in Hawaii,
 provides next- generation sensor and technology services for the defense
 and security markets. Homeland Intelligence Technologies, Inc. designs,
 develops and manufactures antiterrorism equipment. STAR TEC supports the
 growth of early stage manufacturing and technology-based companies,
 enabling them to migrate their product/service to market more rapidly and
 effectively. Eight companies call STAR TEC home. Visit
 http://www.startecflorida.com to learn more about how STAR TEC accelerates
 small business success in Pinellas. (Contact: Paul Sacco, Young-Rainey STAR
 Center, 727 541 8942, psacco@co.pinellas.fl.us .)
     Ringling School of Art and Design to Host International Design Summit
     The world renowned Ringling School of Art and Design will host its
 inaugural Sarasota International Design Summit on October 9-11, 2006. The
 Summit will focus on the role design and design thinking occupies in global
 business strategy today. An international group of thought leaders and
 practitioners will convene to network and share knowledge about the
 transformational effects of design in their businesses and communities.
 Speakers from Target Corporation, Procter & Gamble, UK Design Council and
 Metropolis Magazine will address topics including how innovative design
 thinking and processes are shaping the future of education, healthcare,
 urban development, corporate operations and strategy, and responses to the
 needs of an aging population. For more information, visit
 http://www.sarasotadesignsummit.com .
     St. Petersburg Seeks Vendors for Wi-Fi Network
     The City of St. Petersburg wants you to imagine surfing the Internet on
 your laptop computer or answering e-mails while lounging at a sidewalk cafe
 downtown. That day may not be far off if the city succeeds in setting up a
 wireless fidelity, or Wi-Fi, network that would serve residents, tourists,
 businesses and educational institutions throughout the city. Mayor Rick
 Baker is seeking proposals from companies to create a citywide wireless
 network that would enable people to access the Internet using laptops or
 some handheld devices. In addition to public access, the Wi-Fi St. Pete
 initiative would also help the city in delivery of governmental services,
 stimulate private investment, and promote job creation, business growth and
 economic development. The city is seeking vendors that can build and
 maintain the wireless network. Reponses are due by August 16, 2006.
 Interested vendors are invited to review the details of the RFP and
 frequently asked questions by visiting http://www.WiFiStPete.com .

SOURCE Tampa Bay Partnership

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