Florida ranks the nation’s fourth-largest export state with a record $64.8 billion in exports last year. Business is so great that Florida saw a 17 percent increase in exports in 2011 in comparison to 2010. Who got the top 3 spots? Texas, California and New York.
Even through a down economy, U.S. Department of Commerce shows that exports grew 18 percent overall in 2011. Companies that weren’t exporting before are trying it now, and the Latin American market is their target. Allen Brinkman, chairman, president and chief executive of SunTrust Bank-Tampa Bay said, “Twenty-five percent of SunTrust commercial customers in the Tampa Bay area do business in Latin America, Brazil and Colombia,” according to an article by Tampa Bay Business Journal in July 2011
Why is Tampa Bay a hot market for exporting. It’s simple: central location in Florida, access to I-75, and access to the ports. But wait, it’s supposed to get better! This week, Tampa Bay business and community leaders signed a deal with the federal government to help boost exporting for the region. The hopes of course are to boost manufacturing, and of course create jobs!