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Fort Myers CRA Wins Awards

Need to catch up on business news in Southwest Florida? No problem. Here are the top stories of the week pulled from our daily newsletter, Gulfshore Business Daily


Friday, Oct. 25


The Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) of the City of Fort Myers received two awards in the “Large City” category at this year’s Florida Redevelopment Association (FRA) Best of Florida Redevelopment Awards Program. This year’s FRA Roy F. Kenzie Awards program, hosted in Tampa, recognized the “Best of the Best” in redevelopment in Florida. The Fort Myers CRA won a FRA Roy F. Kenzie Award for Outstanding Rehabilitation Renovation or Reuse Project. Fort Myers CRA also jointly received FRA’s Roy F. Kenzie Award for Planning Studies with Stantec Consulting Ltd. for its “Redevelopment Areas, Boundary Reviews, and Recommendations Study.” The Collaboratory won FRA’s 2019 Best Outstanding Rehabilitation Renovation or Reuse. The Collaboratory is the catalyst for revitalizing the Midtown section of Fort Myers’ Downtown redevelopment area, and is a joint venture with SWFL Community Foundation, City of Fort Myers, the Fort Myers Community Redevelopment Agency.


Thursday, Oct. 24


Capital Bank is unified under the new name of First Horizon Bank today, Friday, under holding company First Horizon National Corp. The branding change brings together First Tennessee Bank, FTB Advisors, FTN Financial and Capital Bank at more than 250 locations in the southeastern U.S., with 12 branches in Southwest Florida. All brand signage changes will be completed in early 2020 and customers will experience a smooth transition according to Jeff Jackson, Florida Regional President. The bank will be adding city center locations for Florida in 2020 as part of a state-wide growth. Jackson has led the bank’s growth in Florida during the past 11 months and has brought in over 40 new team members.  More hiring will take place throughout the state in 2020.


Wednesday, Oct. 23


Naples Yacht Club has completed its $10-million clubhouse renovation and expansion. The refurbishment completely updated the clubhouse that was originally built in 1960. The enhancements maximize views of Naples Bay and offer members expanded opportunities to enjoy outdoor dining and cocktails. The club also is able to accommodate larger groups of up to 350 people for private functions. The expanded Naples Yacht Club features a two-story clubhouse with full-service boat slips situated right on Naples Bay. A portion of the original building was torn down and completely replaced. The remainder of the building was modified to include a new gathering lounge and expanded bar along with more terrace dining. A corner stairwell on the exterior was also removed to greatly enhance waterfront views. The interior design of the clubhouse was inspired by a historical mural by local artist Paul Arsenault depicting sites around Old Naples.


Tuesday, Oct. 22


The Southwest Florida Regional Technology Partnership (SWFRTP) will host TECHMatch 2019, a technology jobs event designed to match technology employers with students and prospective job seekers, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Oct. 29 at Florida Gulf Coast University, Cohen Center Ballroom. The event is designed for current tech job seekers, technology students of all levels, and current technology professionals to come meet representatives from the region’s leading technology organizations and employers. This year’s event is sponsored by CareerSource Southwest Florida and will feature a record number of regional companies. Registration is required at www.swfrtp.org and the event is free to attend.


Monday, Oct. 21


Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Southwest Florida’s unemployment rate was 2.9 percent in September, down 0.3 percentage point from one year ago. The Fort Myers area added 11,000 new private-sector jobs in the past year. The area’s unemployment rate was 2.9 percent in September, down 0.3 percentage point from one year ago. The industries with the highest growth over the year in the Naples area were leisure and hospitality with 1,600 new jobs, construction with 1,100 new jobs and trade, transportation and utilities with 1,000 new jobs. In September, the Naples area had 4,560 job openings and of those, 790 were for high-skill, high-wage STEM jobs. The industries with the highest growth over the year in the Fort Myers area were education and health services with 2,500 new jobs, professional and business services with 2,300 new jobs, construction with 2,200 new jobs and trade, transportation and utilities with 2,000 new jobs. In September, Fort Myers area had 9,912 job openings and of those, 1,881 were for high-skill, high-wage STEM jobs. To view the September 2019 employment data, click here.


Publicly Traded Companies


TGR Financial, Inc. (TGRF), the holding company for First Florida Integrity Bank, announced a third-quarter net income of $4.5 million. Earnings growth resulted in an 11% increase when compared with third-quarter results, one year ago. For the three months ended Sept. 30, the return on average assets was 1.21%. Quarter-to-date earnings represented $0.24 per diluted share. Common shares of TGRF closed on Tuesday at $10.60. TGR Financial, Inc. reported a net income of $12.67 million for the nine months ended Sept. 30, up from $10.85 million the year prior.


In Other News…

Following the bank failures of the Great Recession, Southwest Florida is seeing an influx of new financial institutions and mergers. Full story here.


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