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2012 - New Year

Happy New Year! I hope you have enjoyed a wonderful holiday season. As we bring in this New Year there is some good news to share. Broward County’s prioritized goal to attract new businesses, while strengthening existing companies is moving forward with measurable success.

Last month, I mentioned my recent trip to Brazil to participate in the Sao Paulo, Brazil/Team Florida Economic Trade Mission with Governor Rick Scott and a delegation from Broward County. 

The primary purpose was to develop new business leads. Broward County is currently focused on increasing the presence of aerospace, communications, security and transportation industries. These industries offer the best opportunities to create new jobs and increase trade and commerce.

The secondary purpose, equal in importance, was to foster the growth of the County’s small businesses. We met with entrepreneurs and businesses seeking to relocate and/or enter into joint ventures with existing Broward County companies. In a short period of time, our accomplishments were many:

  • I was one of three Florida Mayors who attended a meeting with the Governor of the State of Sao Paulo, Geraldo Alckmin. We discussed strengthening mutual and beneficial relationships and bringing more business to Broward County.
  • I flew to Embraer Aviation, which has its North American headquarters at our Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Airport. I viewed their factory operation and met with their President /CEO Frederico Curado and President Gary Spulak to discuss future plans for expansion and to hear about the company’s long term commitment to Broward County.
  • The Broward County team hosted a meeting for a major logistics company representing many Fortune 500 companies, to discuss expanding their business into Broward County.  We also met with a major shipping company to discuss growing companies and cargo business at Port Everglades.
  • While attending the Florida Ports Council opening at the Brazilian Trade Expo, I visited the nine Broward County Companies in the Broward Delegation and assisted them with information and contacts for doing more business Broward County.

The immediate results of the Trade Mission included $650,000 in sales contracts, the creation of two jobs and one company relocation to Broward County. Within the next year, Broward County expects $7.5 million in sales and the relocation of a second Brazilian company.

Of course, the efforts will be ongoing. The hundreds of contacts made during the Trade Mission will prove to be invaluable as we move forward to ensure future results. Broward County is well positioned to capitalize on Brazil’s positive economy. Brazil is Port Everglades’ number one trading partner and we plan to build on that and the many other successes that will result from this trip.

I’m always interested in hearing your thoughts, comments or concerns. Please feel free to contact my office at 954-357-7006 or send me an e-mail at sgunzburger@broward.org