April 24, 2024

Friday's Afternoon Update

What you need to know about Florida today

| 2/16/2024

High interest rates and inflation are impacting Florida's solar business

Interest rates continue to fluctuate around 6 to 7%, causing some hesitancy for people trying to invest in solar. Solar experts in Florida say they’ve dealt with issues following the pandemic with the supply chain and inflation, saying higher interest rates are leading to fewer people wanting to switch to the alternative energy source. More from Bay News 9.

How a Florida retail chain competes with big brands. What’s next for the department store?

One of Florida’s largest and oldest companies, the Bealls national department store chain, is growing despite economic challenges that have changed the dynamics of retail. Bealls started from humble beginnings on Bradenton’s Old Main Street in 1915, when 22-year-old founder Robert M. Beall opened the Dollar Limit store. Since then, Bealls Inc. has grown to 658 stores, including Bealls Florida, bealls, Home Centric, Rugged Earth Outfitters and Reel Legends, in 23 states. More from the Miami Herald.

How Jacksonville is looking to build upon the cruise industry's rebound

Nearly four years after the Covid-19 pandemic shut down the cruise industry, business has bounced back, with passengers levels and industry revenue hitting new heights. Amid the cruise industry’s upswing, Jacksonville is cashing in on the success, as Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. entered an agreement to homeport a ship in Jacksonville starting in 2025. More from the Jacksonville Business Journal.

SpaceX seeks to launch and land Starship rockets at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station

SpaceX officials want to launch and land Starship-Super Heavy rockets from a future site at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, and U.S. Air Force officials are studying potential environmental impacts. SpaceX's proposed Starship site is Launch Complex 37 at the northern portion of the military installation. That's where United Launch Alliance sends up its Delta IV rockets, but the program is retiring and the last rocket should launch sometime this year. More from Florida Today.

Dunedin Coca-Cola plant to shutter in May after years-long delay

Coca-Cola will begin laying off the plant’s 198 workers on April 5 and will shut it down on May 31, the company said in a federally mandated notice posted Feb. 6, though some employees could stay on into the summer to help close the facility. Though the company’s timeline for closing the plant changed, what will come next hasn’t, a company spokesperson said. It will still move operations to a plant in Bartow operated by a third-party co-packer, Peace River Citrus. More from the Tampa Bay Times.

Business BeatBusiness Beat - Week of February 16th

Get top news-to-know with Florida Trend's headline-focused video news brief, hosted by digital content specialist Aimée Alexander.



Florida Dining
He once ran local government in Florida — and now dishes it up at Pee Wee’s food truck

Pee Wee’s Canteen food truck brings focuses on soul food, barbecue, seafood, sandwiches and salads. And focusing behind the stove? A former administrator of Manatee County’s local government. It’s all a labor of love and a tribute to his mother, says owner Lee Washington.

» Read more from the Miami Herald.

Tags: Daily Pulse, Afternoon Pulse

In case you missed it:

Florida Trend Video Pick

Florida shoe cobbler mends more than soles
Florida shoe cobbler mends more than soles

Jim McFarland, a fourth-generation shoe cobbler in Lakeland, Florida, never anticipated his trade mending shoes would lead to millions of views on social media. People are captivated by his careful craftsmanship: removing, then stitching and gluing soles on leather footwear.

Video Picks | Viewpoints@FloridaTrend

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