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May 24, 2015

Business Florida 2013 - The Regions

North Central Florida

Alachua, Gainesville, Ocala, Perry

| 9/20/2012

QUALITY OF LIFE

Natural beauty
Inland and along this region’s Nature Coast, an abundance of lakes, rivers, trails and natural springs await “ecotourists” of every age. Paddle along the scenic Suwannee and Withlacoochee rivers, venture into 31,000 acres of wetlands accessible only by boat at Waccasassa Bay Preserve State Park for a glimpse of bald eagles and black bears or step back in time at Cross Creek to see the cracker-style cabin where writer Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings penned her Pulitizer Prize-winning novel The Yearling.

Hankering for clam chowder?
America’s best can be found on Cedar Key at Tony’s Seafood Restaurant, member of the Knorr Great Chowder Cook-Off hall of fame. Cedar Key has become one of the top producers of farm-raised clams in the nation, with an estimated 150 million clams harvested from the Gulf of Mexico each year.

NOTABLE ADDITIONS/EXPANSIONS

Information technology
MindTree Limited, a global IT and product engineering services company, will open its first major U.S. Development Center in Gainesville, generating an estimated 400 jobs and a $2.9-million capital investment. MindTree officials considered site locations in two other states but ultimately selected Gainesville for its innovative workforce, community spirit and unparalleled quality of life.

Financial and professional services
Sitel Worldwide Corporation, an international business process outsourcing company, plans to locate an inbound call center in downtown Ocala and create 500 customer service positions over the next three years.

Healthcare
HealthSouth Corporation broke ground in November 2011 on a $21-million, inpatient rehabilitation hospital, the first of its kind in Ocala. Slated for completion in late 2012, the 40-bed facility is expected to generate 112 new, full-time jobs.

Tags: North Central, Business Florida

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