Created on August 16, 2016
Okaloosa County, Fla. — American Elite Molding LLC is among 50 statewide companies expected to see significant growth over the next several years. The companies were selected from more than 500 nominees for Florida Companies to Watch, a statewide program managed by economic development group GrowFL, in association with the Edward Lowe Foundation.
The companies’ entrepreneurial management teams, competitive market positions and strong community involvement were among several factors that put them in contention for the award.
“We applaud the men and women of American Elite Molding for achieving this prestigious designation. Now, thanks to Grow FL, the rest of the state knows what we here in Okaloosa County have known for some time – that American Elite Molding truly is a company on the move,” said Nathan Sparks, executive director of the Economic Development Council of Okaloosa County.
“These stand-out companies are all led by entrepreneurs, and have demonstrated their capacity and intent to grow,” said Dr. Tom O’Neal, executive director of the Florida Economic Gardening Institute and associate vice president for the University of Central Florida’s Oﬃce of Research and Commercialization.
“They also all have critical intellectual property or a niche position that gives them a competitive edge in their markets,” he said.
Joining American Elite Molding LLC on the Florida Companies to Watch list are the following Florida-based businesses:
Aerospace Technologies Group (Boca Raton)
Analytics Partners (Jacksonville)
Automotive Broadcasting Network (Jacksonville)
Bracken Engineering, Inc. (Tampa)
CO2Meter, Inc (Ormond Beach)
DirecLogix (Fort Lauderdale)
DynaFire, Inc. (Casselberry)
Findsome & Winmore (Orlando)
Gator Cleaning Solutions (Odessa)
Hell’s Bay Marine, Inc. (Titusville)
HotelPlanner.com (West Palm Beach)
Interactyx (Bonita Springs)
Interventions Unlimited, Inc. (Oviedo)
IT Authorities (Tampa)
iVenture Solutions, Inc. (Jacksonville)
Jeremiah’s Italian Ice (Winter Park)
Jerry Harvey Audio (Orlando)
JK2 Construction & Scenic (Apopka)
JMX Brands (Sarasota)
Karins Engineering Group, Inc. (Sarasota)
Key Lime Interactive, LLC (Doral)
LeanSwift (Cocoa Beach)
OZNaturals, LLC (West Palm Beach)
Pegasus Transportation (Orlando)
PrimeGroup Insurance (Tampa)
Private Label Skin (St. Petersburg)
Progressive Dental (Clearwater)
Residential Acoustics (Tampa)
RISA (Land O Lakes)
Science First (Yulee)
TerraCom Direct (Melbourne)
That’s Us Technologies (Tampa)
The Spice Lab (Pompano Beach)
VALiNTRY (Winter Park)
Wicked Dolphin Distillery (Cape Coral)
Widerman Malek, PL (Melbourne)
Wood’s Fisheries, Inc. (Port Saint Joe)
Woof Gang Bakery (Orlando)
X-Link Medical Software Interfacing (Land O Lakes)
Xeleum Lighting, LLC (Boynton Beach)
ZIO (Winer Park)
“This is a strong group of companies that deserve this special recognition given annually to the state's top second stage companies,” said Dr. O’Neal. Second-stage companies are defined as those with six to 150 full-time employees and between $750,000 and $100 million in annual revenue. There are many programs and incubators promoting start-up businesses; GrowFL is the only Florida program that focuses exclusively on second-stage companies.
The 50 companies named the 2016 Florida Companies to Watch generated a total of more than $1.1 billion in revenue and added nearly 1,200 employees between 2012 and 2015.
Together, the companies project a 30 percent increase in revenue and 33 percent increase in job growth in 2016.
Companies named to the list will be officially recognized November 3rd at the Hard Rock Live, Universal CityWalk, Orlando. For more information, visit growfl.com/flctw16.
About the EDC of Okaloosa County: Established in 1989, the Economic Development Council of Okaloosa County is a nonprofit, public-private partnership committed to the economic growth and diversification of Okaloosa County and its nine municipalities through existing industry retention and expansion, workforce development and expansion of key industry clusters.
More About GrowFL: GrowFL was created in 2009 by the Florida legislature as an economic development program focused on assisting second-stage growth companies prosper in the state of Florida. By providing strategies, resources and support to second-stage companies for next level growth through Strategic Research, Peer Learning and Leadership Development, GrowFL helps companies overcome obstacles to growth and leads them towards prosperity. Based on the philosophy of Economic Gardening®—to grow existing businesses in a community, region or state—GrowFL, the Florida Economic Gardening Institute, is a critical component to the state’s economic development strategy and Florida’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. GrowFL is a statewide economic development organization certified by the National Center for Economic Gardening through the Edward Lowe Foundation. Website: growfl.com
About the Edward Lowe Foundation: Established in 1985, the Edward Lowe Foundation is a national, nonprofit organization that supports entrepreneurship through research, recognition and educational programs, which are delivered through entrepreneur support organizations (ESOs). The foundation focuses on second-stage companies — those that have moved beyond the startup phase and seek significant, steady growth. In addition, the foundation has a second mission of land stewardship and is committed to preserving the natural resources and historically significant structures at Big Rock Valley, its 2,000-acre home in southwest Michigan. ###