Pinellas County Business News
November, 2017
SHARE the facts about Penny for Pinellas before the Nov. 7 vote
On Nov. 7 Pinellas County voters will make an important decision about the future of our community: the 10-year renewal of the Penny for Pinellas 1% sales tax. For the next seven days, we will SHARE important facts each day about the Penny on social media until the November 7 referendum.  
Check in daily on Pinellas County's Facebook and Twitter pages for updates with #PennyforPinellas to share on your networks.

Tampa Bay's low cost of living means big business to Pinellas County's top employers
The Center for Community Economic Research (C2ER) recently released their second quarter cost of living index (COLI) for 2017 and the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater region continues to be one of the most affordable and best value major metropolitan statistical areas in the country. This should come as no surprise to Pinellas County's largest target industry employers, which are led by the likes of Raymond James, Home Shopping Network, and Tech Data.

Click here to view the 2nd quarter COLI report, and view the entire list of Pinellas' Largest Target Industry Employers at
Find more information on our Ideal Business Climate at

Team Tampa Bay rolls out Amazon proposal videos
Tampa Bay's world-renowned quality of life and tolerant, diverse communities helped companies like Raymond James to attract and keep the best talent. Raymond James' Tom James, Equality Florida's Nadine Smith, and Tampa Bay Rowdies midfielders Marcel Shäfer and Justin Chavez share with Amazon what makes life in this region so perfect.

Pinellas County Economic Development, St. Petersburg Area Economic Development Corporation, and Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation - the team that put together the Tampa Bay region's response for Amazon's HQ2 - have released videos created in support of the proposal to the public.

"The videos were created to help us introduce our community to Amazon in a way that text alone cannot do," said Mike Meidel, director of Pinellas County Economic Development. "Amazon can experience the personalities of our leaders, hear what they have to say about why Tampa Bay would be a great fit for HQ2, and take a visual tour of our region. Our goal is to have Amazon imagine what it would be like for their people to live and work here and engage with our community leadership."

Each video speaks to a specific decision driver Amazon outlined in their request for proposals (RFP). You can find all of the videos on our Facebook page at

IRMA UPDATE: Pinellas County Recovers
Click here to view more photos on our Faceook page
In Pinellas County, 25 SBA Small Business Disaster Loans to local business owners have been approved for a total of $878,000. In addition, six Florida Emergency Bridge Loans have been approved for $250,000.  For SBA Disaster Loans, the filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is Nov. 9, 2017, and the deadline to return economic injury applications is June 11, 2018.  Applications for the Florida Business Emergency Bridge Loan will be accepted by qualified Florida small businesses through Nov. 30, 2017, contingent on availability of funds.
For assistance with these program, local business owners can visit the Pinellas Business Recovery Center. Details and hours at:
Export Sales Mission to Colombia: how did Pinellas companies fare?
Pinellas company Aero Supply USA, LLC had a great Gold Key meeting with Colombian Air Force officials.

The Tampa Bay Export Alliance's Export Sales Mission to Bogota, Colombia was a resounding success for the nine companies (four from Pinellas) and twenty delegates that participated. The mission resulted in projected sales of $6.9 million and $700,000 in sales closed during the mission.

Could your Pinellas business benefit from upcoming Tampa Bay Export Alliance missions? Visit for details, or contact Brent Barkway at  

ProductCamp Gulf Coast 2017: Nov. 3

This one-day regional event will bring together thought leaders and practitioners in product management and marketing to network and explore new and strategic practices, practice tactical techniques.

For more information and to register, please visit
2017 Reverse Trade Show drew 120 local business owners
Over 100 local business owners gathered to meet Pinellas County's departments and other local purchasing agents. This annual Pinellas County Economic Development and Florida SBDC event held at the St. Petersburg College Seminole Campus was sponsored by Wells Fargo and hosted by the SPC Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions. Thank you to our partners for supporting our local businesses. Click here to view more photos from the event.
Pinellas News

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Quick Links
Business Workshops
The Florida Small Business Development Center at Pinellas County Economic Development hosts a number of business workshops each month. Find a full schedule of upcoming workshops at

Pinellas County Economic Development | 727-464-7332 | |
13805 58th Street N.
Suite 1-200
Clearwater, FL 33760