Pinellas County Economic Development (PCED) was recognized as an Honoree in the Supporter category at the Tampa Bay Inno Awards held in Downtown Tampa on Thursday, September 28. This accolade acknowledges PCED’s unwavering commitment to fostering a vibrant and innovative business ecosystem in Pinellas County. The award highlights the organization’s commitment to establishing the ARK Innovation Center, a new regional incubator in St. Petersburg.
Tampa Bay Inno aims to showcase the startups and entrepreneurs elevating Tampa Bay as a leading innovation hub. These awards are a celebration of the growth-stage businesses, enterprises and innovators who are working above and beyond to set the ecosystem ablaze.
In recognition of PCED, Tampa Bay Inno acknowledges PCED’s dedication and collaboration in the Tampa Bay Innovation Center’s programming for regional entrepreneurs and startups. PCED successfully secured grant funding from the U.S. Economic Development Administration, and established partnerships with the City of St. Petersburg, the Tampa Bay Innovation Center and ARK Invest to design, construct, and equip the new facility. The incubator is scheduled for a soft opening this October.
Dr. Cynthia Johnson, PCED Director, explains, “Our work is rooted in a drive to cultivate continual economic growth, vitality, and a strong workforce in Pinellas County. We’ve long partnered with the Tampa Bay Innovation Center to foster business innovation, and that partnership became the cornerstone of this state-of-the-art business incubator. We know that the opportunities that will come with the ARK Innovation Center’s opening will not only add to Pinellas County’s prowess as an innovation hub but will also add to the Tampa Bay region’s propensity for innovative economic growth.”
The 45,000-square-foot ARK Innovation Center, located in the heart of St. Petersburg’s Innovation District, will drive economic impact by catalyzing future startups and technology companies in the areas of fintech, energy, artificial intelligence, blockchain and Internet of Things, in the Tampa Bay region. The Tampa Bay Innovation Center was selected through a competitive process to operate the incubator with a well-established team of board members, advisors, and mentors with a track record of generating successful graduates in the tech industry.
“We are delighted to have our work recognized by Tampa Bay Inno,” shares Dr. Johnson, “and especially so as a supporting partner in the drive to further innovation as a means of regional economic prosperity. Partnership and pooled resources are critical to our success as a region, and we are honored to be a part of that crucial dynamic.”
For more information about PCED’s work with entrepreneurship and innovation, visit PCED.org.
About Pinellas County Economic Development
Pinellas County Economic Development works with existing businesses to encourage expansion and seeks to attract new companies with high-wage careers to our community. Through investment tools, business classes, professional counseling services, trade missions to open new markets, and strategic partnerships, PCED fosters a pro-business environment and promotes the ideal business climate of Pinellas County, Florida.
Public Relations & Media Manager