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Pinellas Business Events & Deadlines (September 21, 2018)

Sept. 25: Lunch Pals Summit
A conference for personal and professional development: Sept. 25, 7:00 - 8:30 a.m. at Raymond James, 880 Carillon Pkwy., Towers 3-4, St. Petersburg. Register here.

Sept. 25, 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.: Marketing to Increase Sales
No more trial and error! Develop a plan to market your business effectively and efficiently to the right customers all the time. Effective marketing will help you find more customers and increase revenue. $20 registration:

Sept. 26 – 27: Florida MED Conference
The 26th Annual Florida Minority Enterprise Development Conference (MED Conference) will take place Sept. 26 -27 at the Double Tree Hilton, 4500 West Cypress St. in Tampa. MED Conference was created to recognize the success of minority business across the country. The conference will include opportunities to gain knowledge from industry leaders through workshops and discussion panels, and a Business Matchmaker Expo to connect minority business owners to corporate and government purchasing agents. Learn more and register at

Sept. 26: SPC Creative Career Summit
St. Petersburg College is hosting the 2nd annual Creative Career Summit at the Palladium Theater Side Door for students, alumni, faculty, and employers to discuss opportunities in the arts. John Collins, Executive Director of St. Petersburg Arts Alliance, will share the economic impact of the arts on the St. Petersburg area, followed by discussion and networking with local employers and panelists. Register to attend this free event at

Oct. 14 – 16: 2018 BioFlorida Conference
The 21st Annual BioFlorida conference will be held Oct. 14 - 16 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The two-day event will include:

  • A program featuring scientific advancements and business achievements
  • General sessions with keynote speakers and 3 session tracks
  • BioPitch Competition giving emerging companies the opportunity to present their business plan and financing needs to investors
  • Several networking receptions and an Awards Ceremony
  • One-on-One Partnering
  • Opportunities to connect with leaders in the biopharmaceutical, medical technology and bioagricultural sectors

 Click here for more details, including sponsorship opportunities.

Oct. 19: Pinellas County Reverse Trade Show, 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Meet Pinellas County department buyers, as well as purchasing agents from surrounding counties, at this free annual event. Learn how to grow your business by providing products and services needed by local government agencies, and learn about the new Pinellas County Vendor Portal. Full details and registration can be found at

Oct. 22 – 25: Export Sales Mission to Chile
Join Global Tampa Bay on this export sales mission to Santiago, Chile. With its open market policies, zero tariffs, stable democratic government, solid business practices and low corruption, trade with Chile continues to grow. Participant opportunities include group networking events, customized counseling on market entry/expansion strategy, and pre-screened one-on-one matchmaking appointments. Contact Brent Barkway at, or call (727) 464-7332, to learn more.

2019 Florida Venture Capital Conference - Apply to Present
Is your Pinellas business a contender for venture capital? Apply to present at the Florida Venture Capital Conference, Jan. 31 - Feb. 1, 2019 in St. Petersburg, FL. Applications will be reviewed by a selection committee comprised of venture capitalists and private equity investors. Learn more and register at

Pinellas County Business Events Extra, September 2018  

Pinellas County Business News, September 2018

Events & Opportunities (updated weekly):

News Archive (releases, newsletters, events extra)

 Tools, Announcements & Opportunities to Grow Your Business

Develop talent from within through the Employed Worker Training program

CareerSource Pinellas offers the Employed Worker Training grant program to assist local employers with staff training needs. A 2018 Request for Proposal has been issued and local employers may apply until funding is fully obligated. The program will reimburse for pre-approved, direct training costs of industry and occupational training at a rate of up to 50 percent of the training cost. Learn more and apply at

Pinellas Economic Indicators, 2018 Q2
Signs of a healthy Pinellas economy: employment rose 2.3% over the past year, and consumer spending is also on an upward trend, while the unemployment rate dropped by 7.9% and the labor force grew by 1.9%. Find these data points and more in the 2018 Q2 Economic Indicators report at

RFN: Pinellas STAR Center, 96-Acre Mid-County Industrial Park
The Pinellas County Industrial Development Authority (IDA) is soliciting a sealed Request for Negotiation (RFN) for the sale of the Young-Rainey Science Technology and Research (STAR) Center, a 96-acre manufacturing and technology campus on Bryan Dairy Road in Largo. This is a prime mid-county location with ample parking and easy access to I-275, Tampa International Airport and St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport. It is zoned M-1, as a light manufacturing and industry district. The leasable square footage of the property's main building and leased out-buildings totals 661,697 square feet and is currently 81% occupied. Please visit for full details and RFN instructions.

Pinellas on Track for a Bright Economic Future
From 2015-2017, Pinellas County's employers created 5,730 new high-wage jobs in primary industries, exceeding the original 3,958 job goal set in a 2014 study. "Pinellas is on track for a strong economic quality of life," shared Mike Meidel, the Director of Pinellas County Economic Development. "We can influence job creation within our targeted primary industries in Pinellas, and our continuing goal is to create more and better jobs for our citizens." Click here to read the full story.

Be Ready, Pinellas: 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season
Throughout the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane season, we will be here, sharing information and resources, to help Pinellas businesses prepare for and recover from any storms that may come our way. Now is the time to make sure you have a plan in place for your business and to assess potential risks! You can find tips and tools to make your business storm-ready at and

Veterans Florida Business Training Grant Program
The Veterans Florida Business Training Grant program provides grant funding for customized, skills-based curriculum development and training to businesses in Florida’s targeted, high-growth and high-wage industries. Funding is provided in the form of a performance-based reimbursable grant for a 12-month maximum term per new employee. A business pays for pre-approved, direct training-related costs and is reimbursed by Veterans Florida, up to $8,000 per veteran employee trained. Learn more in this short video and visit for full details.

Explore the Florida Virtual Entrepreneur Center
The statewide online directory of agencies has been revamped to provide an improved browsing experience for all stages of entrepreneurship. Discover resources to assist you in developing a business idea, formulating an action plan, launching a start-up, and growing and optimizing an existing small business. Additionally, scroll down the portal to read start-up success stories from entrepreneurs located in Pinellas County.

Florida's Online Global Program
Globalize your website by making it local - with fully customized websites in your target markets. Enterprise Florida's Florida Online Global was created to help small to medium-sized companies expand internationally through an online globalization program to build and market country-specific websites. Choose between a Two Market Expansion or a Fully-Customized Multi-Market Web Presence. Qualifying participants will automatically receive a $6,000 reimbursable trade grant from Enterprise Florida to offset the cost of the website development. Learn more at

Foreign Trade Zone 193: The Best Kept Secret for Manufacturers and Distributors
Do you manufacture, assemble or process imports? Would you like to defer, reduce or eliminate duties paid on imported products? FTZ 193 can increase your profits and decrease your frustration. Learn more about FTZ 193 at

Join Raymond James and make a difference through Pinellas County Lunch Pals
Join the Pinellas County Schools/Raymond James partnership along with Nielsen, Power Design, Tech Data and many others, and offer your employees the opportunity to be Lunch Pals. Each company is matched with a school nearby. Lunch Pals are matched with students who can especially benefit from a relationship with a positive and caring adult. They meet each week for 30 minutes during the student's lunch time, on school grounds, when school is in session.  Pinellas County Schools provides orientation/training and materials to promote Lunch Pals to employees. Raymond James provides company support.
Click here to learn more about the program and become a Lunch Pal.  Contact Ron Diner, Director of Strategic Community Partnerships at Raymond James at (727) 567-5043 or to discuss the advantages of Lunch Pals for your organization and the major impact it can have on the economic vitality of Pinellas.

Free Pesticide Pick Up & Disposal for Pinellas companies, up to 750 lbs!
Operation Cleansweep provides farmers, nursery operators, golf course operators, and pest control services a one-time safe and economical way to dispose of their cancelled, suspended, and unusable pesticides.  Click here to learn more and see if your company is eligible.

Mechatronics Training Available to Local Manufacturers
A wide range of training opportunities is now available through the College Alliance for Advanced Manufacturing, a partnership between local manufacturers, St. Petersburg College, and Polk State College. Find a listing of upcoming classes and other offerings, as well as additional information about the program and grant funding opportunities, at

Need help financing employee training? 
Florida's Incumbent Worker Training and Quick Response Training programs offer opportunities to help businesses seeking to add to their employees' skills. The two programs collectively provide a variety of options to suit a company's unique needs. Contact us at (727) 464-7332 to learn more about the programs, or visit

AMSkills, the American Manufacturing Skills Initiative, seeks Manufacturing Partners

Pinellas County's AMSkills program is seeking local manufacturers to partner in training initiatives for the next generation of manufacturing professionals.  This innovative program, using the German dual education model, will train apprentices tailored to employer partners' needs, and design programs to develop highly skilled employees who are prepared for long-term careers. Visit to learn more, and click here to contact the team and become a manufacturing partner.

Attention Pinellas businesses: Upcoming SBIR/STTR Phase 1 Solicitations
Find a full list of the numerous upcoming Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer Phase 1 opportunities at

Tampa Bay IT Apprenticeship Program
CareerSource Pinellas has partnered with Pinellas Technical College to provide tuition-free education, hands-on training, and IT industry-recognized certifications in four key occupations: Applications Developer (Software); Applications Developer (Web); Help Desk Technician; and Network Support Technician. Pinellas employers and workers can find more information on the program at

Target Sector Trade Grants to Help Grow Export Sales
Through an initiative from the State of Florida and Enterprise Florida Inc., event-specific grants are available on a reimbursable basis to eligible small and medium-sized manufacturers and services providers in one of Enterprise Florida's target sectors: Aviation & Aerospace, Clean Energy, Homeland Security & Defense, Information Technology, Life Sciences, Professional Services, Marine Industry, or any other manufacturing industry. These grants will cover 50% of turn-key booth space costs; up to a maximum of $6,000.00.  Grants can be used for trade shows that Enterprise Florida participates in or for other trade shows in one of our target sectors. Click though to find more details and contact information.

Internship Portal for Pinellas Employers. An internship program was rated by employers as one of the most effective recruiting methods for hiring college students.  Find the perfect intern for your team from St. Petersburg College, University of South Florida St. Petersburg, Eckerd College, CareerSource Pinellas or the Pinellas County Job Corps Center at

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