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Pinellas County Economic Development
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The Top 10 Reasons to Locate and Expand in Pinellas County

·        Workforce: Pinellas has the second largest base of manufacturing employment in Florida (only Dade County has more workers in the industry). This results in excellent availability of a quality workforce in engineering, production, research and management of manufacturing firms. Florida is a right to work state and wage rates are below the national average. Career Source Pinellas assists employers with all of their recruiting needs at no charge.

·         Industry Clusters: We have well-developed industry clusters in the life sciences & medical technologies, aviation & aerospace, business & financial services, defense & homeland security, information technology and advanced manufacturing. This means there is an extensive network of suppliers, service-providers, joint venture partners and business associations to support operations and advancements in these fields.

·         Research and Development: Pinellas has become a center for research and development in marine science, electronic instruments & sensors and nanotechnology. Marine Science research is clustered around the University of South Florida-St. Petersburg campus and includes SRI St. Petersburg, USGS, and numerous other state and federal marine institutes. Draper Labs and SRI both have facilities devoted to the research, development and production of extremely small electro-mechanical devices.

·         Infrastructure: Pinellas has an extensive network of infrastructure for utilities and transportation. Water, sewer, electric, gas and fiber optic communications are available to every commercial and industrial site in the county. Two international airports, two deep water ports and the interstate highway system connect Tampa Bay to the world.

·         Available sites: Pinellas has available sites and buildings for nearly every conceivable need. Each company considering the area should be able to choose from several facilities that are ready to occupy and/or sites that are construction-ready.

·         Education: Pinellas offers an educational system designed to meet the needs of the local business community. Magnet Centers at elementary, middle and high schools partner with local businesses to provide relevance to a child’s education and demonstrate career paths available in the local market. Centers of Excellence in many of our high schools train youth for jobs in engineering, manufacturing, architecture, computer science, financial services and health care. Pinellas Technical Education Center and St. Petersburg College provide training that can be customized to the needs of individual businesses, offering everything from certificate programs to four year degrees. In addition, the nationally recognized, University of South Florida, St. Petersburg and Eckerd College are located in Pinellas County

·         Entrepreneurial Spirit: Pinellas has a strong entrepreneurial spirit. It’s a great place to start a new business. Educational and economic development organizations all offer numerous training and mentoring/counseling opportunities for those who want to start a new venture. The Tampa Bay Innovation Center business accelerator and programs provide space and extensive technical support to early stage technology companies.

·         Existing Industry Support: Pinellas County offers excellent existing industry support programs. For each of the past five years, Pinellas County led the state in the amount of Incumbent Worker Training (IWT) dollars awarded to local companies, bringing nearly $4.3 million to help train nearly 15,000 workers. We maintain close contact with the largest employers in our target industries through regular face to face meetings, industry associations and our 70 member Pinellas County Economic Development Council.  The Florida Medical Manufacturing Consortium and the Florida Defense Contractors Association are just two of many trade groups that support the needs of our local industry clusters. Florida Defense & Technology Showcase is a reverse trade show where subcontractors exhibit and defense industry contractors meet new suppliers. Pinellas County’s Annual Finance Fair offers entrepreneurs and business owners the opportunity to discuss their needs with loan officers or just browse among the many lending options available. Our Pinellas County Small Business Development Center provides technical assistance for SBA loans and SBIR/STTR grants throughout the year.

·         Arts and Culture: The county offers a wide variety of arts and culture opportunities. The Dali Museum is the only Michelin-rated art museum in the southeastern United States and brings visitors from around the world. The Chihuly Collection at the Morean Arts Center,  The Museum of Fine Arts, the Florida Holocaust Museum, the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, featuring Winter, the dolphin, are just a few of the many art, history and science museums located in Pinellas. American Stage Theater provides live professional theater using local and regional actors, while the Mahaffey Theater and Ruth Eckerd Hall feature the Florida Orchestra, Broadway shows, and top-rated concerts and comedy tours.  

·         Sports, Recreation and the BEST BEACHES IN THE WORLD: Finally, Pinellas County is known around the world as a top tourist destination, with 35 miles of award-winning, spectacular white sand beaches and endless recreational opportunities. We’re home to the Tampa Bay Rays, and host spring training and minor league franchises for the Philadelphia Phillies and the Toronto Blue Jays. The Tampa Bay area also boasts the NFL Tampa Bay Buccaneers (winners of Superbowl XXXVII) and the NHL Tampa Bay Lightning (winners of the 2004 Stanley Cup). The award-winning Pinellas Trail is a 34 mile long linear park that is popular with joggers, cyclists and inline skaters. The Grand Prix of St. Petersburg brings Indy Car and LeMans series racers to the area, and the PGA tour Tampa Bay Championship at Innisbrook gets golfers and their fans into the swing of spring. There’s also world-class fishing, scuba diving, sailing, tennis, kayaking and even bird-watching all right here in Pinellas County.

Pinellas County Economic Development
13805 58th Street North, Suite 1-200 Clearwater, Florida 33760
Phone 888-759-5627 Fax 727-464-7053