Investor support has helped us succeed in uncertain times

August 31, 2020

Back in March when our world came to an abrupt standstill, my team and I huddled to strategize ways we might handle the loss of projects, Investors, and other potential misfortunes that could result from the pandemic. Like many others, we prepared for the worst. But we made the transition to a virtual work environment, kept working our leads and projects, adjusted our marketing and promotion efforts, and collaborated with our partners to shift as needed along the way. While we’re not out of the woods yet, the Tampa Bay EDC is on pace to achieve our goals this year despite the hurdles we’ve faced. And it is thanks to our Investors and the unwavering support they’ve shown us that we’re able to keep our momentum going.

Earlier this month, we polled our Investors to understand if the strategic priorities we set prior to the COVID outbreak were still relevant, and if we should stay our course or recalibrate. I am happy to report that the overwhelming majority of our Investors are still fully supportive of our core business development efforts as well as our talent recruitment and development initiatives. They are enthusiastic about the virtual site visit program we have in the works, and are eager for us to continue on with our placemaking and competitiveness initiatives. And to show they are serious, 95% of them have renewed their investment in our organization this year. The overwhelming support they have shown the EDC is truly humbling.

We’re not the only ones who recognize and our grateful for our Investors’ leadership and commitment to our community. Last week, we hosted our first virtual Meet the Projects event. Five incredibly diverse companies that relocated to Hillsborough County this fiscal year – Fisher Investments, Drift, iO Associates, Penske, and PennyMac – were all effusive in their praise of our Investors, the business community, and the EDC team. They noted how they were made to feel truly welcome here, with our Investors contacting them to offer help or give them the inside scoop on talent or other concerns. The fact that our Investors made them feel confident that their businesses would succeed here and that they would find supportive peers in Tampa sealed the deal for them. While other communities can offer different amenities, incentives, public transportation and other desirable items on the checklist, not many can offer the kind of genuine hospitality this community does again and again. That makes us so proud to get out there and sell this market every day.

As we move into the final month of fiscal year 2020, our team is buoyed by the confidence our Investors have in us. We are determined to finish strong and help our community get back on its feet as quickly as we can.

Better days are ahead of us, and we’ll face every challenge as a new opportunity.