Tampa Bay: Finding a Home
New arrivals and business expansions tap into ready talent pool and right sites.
Amenity rich: Anchoring the Tampa Bay region is Hillsborough County, home to the city of Tampa, Tampa International Airport, the Port of Tampa and the main campus of the University of South Florida. Tampa has hosted the Super Bowl four times, including the 2009 game, and in 2008, its international airport served more than 18 million passengers. The Port of Tampa provides a gateway for products flowing into and out of west and central Florida businesses.
Expanding in place: Chromalloy, a supplier of components and component repairs for turbine engines used by commercial and military customers across the world, in April 2009 launched a $16.5-million expansion of its Tampa engine component production facility. The expansion, which includes installing new vacuum furnaces, is expected to be completed by the end of 2009. As new equipment comes on-line, Chromalloy anticipates hiring up to 200 additional employees.
The Hillsborough River is a focal point for development in downtown Tampa.
Providing centralized services: Nortrax Inc., a John Deere construction and forestry equipment dealer, announced in April 2009 that it would open a 24,000-square-foot shared services center in eastern Hillsborough County. Employing some 60 people in accounting, finance, credit, human resources, sales and marketing and information technology, the new center will provide centralized services to all 40 Nortrax U.S. branches as well as offices in Canada.
Ready labor pool: In June 2009, Vangent Inc. opened a new customer service center in the south Hillsborough County community of Riverview. The Arlington, Va.-based information technology management and outsourcing company moved into a 99,000-square-foot center where it will handle calls to the 1-800-Medicare toll-free phone line for the federal government. Staffing needs are expected to number 600 permanent employees. Vangent chose Tampa Bay for two reasons: a pre-existing structure was available for immediate occupancy, and the region offered a pool of Hispanic workers with the language fluency needed to answer questions from Spanish-speaking Medicare beneficiaries.
Adding space: In June 2009, Tampa-based CoreRx Inc. began an expansion of its pharmaceutical development headquarters and is spending more than
$5 million on the renovations needed to grow its current facility from 10,000 to approximately 80,000 square feet. When completed, the new facility will have more than 15,000 square feet of laboratory space and is expected to create 55-plus new jobs over a three-year period.Biotech cluster grows: In another nod to increasing its already thriving bioscience industry sector, Hillsborough County in May 2009 bought 57 acres near the main campus of the University of South Florida to be used as a research and development park.