Central Florida Roundup
Central Florida Business Briefs - August 2017
CAPE CANAVERAL — SpaceX launched a recycled cargo ship to the International Space Station for the first time.
DELAND — The city’s historic downtown won the second America’s Main Streets contest, which includes a $25,000 prize.
EDGEWATER — Medicalmarijuana retailer Trulieve opened it is first dispensary in Volusia County and its fifth statewide.
LAKE COUNTY — The county will spend up to $2 million in hotel taxes building a fieldhouse at a 21-court beach volleyball complex.
ORANGE COUNTY — E-retailing giant Amazon plans a new fulfillment center near Orlando International Airport, according to documents filed with the county.
- SeaWorld Entertainment struck a deal to build a new Sesame Streetthemed attraction in its SeaWorld Orlando theme park. The company, whose parks include Sesame Place near Philadelphia, will build another Sesame Street theme park at a location to be determined.
- Orlando real estate investment trust Xenia Hotels & Resorts bought the 815-room Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress for $205.5 million.
ORLANDO — The city council established new rules for medical-marijuana dispensaries, setting a city-wide cap of seven locations and prohibiting dispensaries from opening with 1,000 feet of a school or within a mile of each other, among other restrictions. The new rules came days after Winter Garden-based Knox Medical opened the first dispensary in Orlando just north of downtown. Knox Medical also announced that it would open a dispensary in Gainesville.
- Florida Hospital began talks to absorb the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute in Lake Nona, according to a report in the Orlando Sentinel.London-based Keywords Studios bought Orlando-based GameSim for $4.76 million. GameSim, which had $4.1 million in revenue last year, provides outsourced engineers and artists to video-game developers and has a client list that includes Electronic Arts, Zynga and the U.S. Department of Defense.
- Financial-services firm KPMG broke ground on a $430-million training center in Lake Nona. Meanwhile, Lake Nona developer Tavistock Group plans a sportsthemed resort hotel.
- Universal Orlando completed a 400-room expansion of its Cabana Bay Beach Resort hotel.
SANFORD — The city and the Central Florida Zoo launched a free shuttle service to carry riders of the SunRail commuter train between the city’s train station, its historic downtown district and the zoo.
SEMINOLE COUNTY — The greyhound-racing industry sued the county in hopes of having a local ordinance regulating the industry declared invalid.
WINTER PARK — Outdoor equipment retailer REI opened its first location in central Florida and its second in the state.
- The University of Central Florida’s board of trustees extended the contract of 76-year-old President John Hitt for another year.
- Walt Disney selected a former company executive to fill a rare opening on the board of supervisors for the Reedy Creek Improvement District, the government agency controlled by the resort. Jane Adams, who is now vice president of university relations for the University of Florida, replaces Betty Duda, who passed away last year.
- The Orlando Magic named Jeff Weltman president of basketball operations. He had previously been the general manager of the Toronto Raptors.