Gulfshore Business Daily: July 24, 2018

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During June, 546,159 passengers traveled through Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW) in Fort Myers, an increase of 3.4 percent compared with June 2017. Year-to-date, passenger traffic is up 5.2 percent from the same period last year. The traffic leader in June was Delta Air Lines with 133,000 passengers traveling to and from Fort Myers. Rounding out the top five airlines were Southwest Airlines (122,838), American (92,300), JetBlue (67,451) and United (49,819). Southwest Florida International Airport had 4,850 aircraft operations, a decrease of 6.3 percent compared with June 2017. Page Field saw 7,639 operations, a 24.6 percent increase from June 2017. In addition, more than 2.5 million pounds of air freight moved through Southwest Florida International Airport in June 2018. Southwest Florida International Airport served more than 8.8 million passengers in 2017 and is one of the top 50 U.S. airports for passenger traffic. No ad valorem (property) taxes are used for airport operation or construction.


Arthur Rutenberg Homes/Lyons Housing LLC will build single-family luxury golf villas in Villa d’Este at Miromar Lakes Beach & Golf Club. The home builder has introduced three floor plans for the neighborhood, which overlooks a large fountained lake and the 18th hole of Miromar Lakes’ Arthur Hills Signature championship golf course. Arthur Rutenberg Homes/Lyons Housing joins Randall Mitchell Custom Homes as a preferred builder in Villa d’Este and expects to begin construction in fall 2018 of a three-bedroom, three-bathroom model. The designer-furnished home will offer 2,514 square feet under air and 3,579 total square feet. A similar unfurnished model is also planned. Villa d’Este is a private gated neighborhood adjoining Miromar­ Lakes’ golf clubhouse. A designer-furnished model home by Randall Mitchell is currently available.


Tamiami Angel Fund III (T3) has invested in ConnexPay, a financial technology firm with corporate offices in Naples. Tamiami Angel Funds are member-managed funds that allow high-net-worth individuals and families to invest in promising early stage and expansion-stage companies located in the U.S., with a preference to those in the state of Florida. Founded in 2017, ConnexPay is the first company to combine credit card payment processing and the use of single-use credit cards to corporate customers in a consolidated platform, helping them accept and make payments more easily and at a lower cost. ConnexPay is custom built for business intermediaries operating in large markets, including online travel agencies and other electronic commerce platforms. In total, the members of T3 invested $355,000 in ConnexPay, part of a larger round that attracted significant early-stage capital from a small syndicate of professional investors. Part of the funds raised will be used to continue to build ConnexPay’s technology platform, which has already attracted customers.


The Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce has collaborated with Atilus, a full-service web design and digital marketing firm based in Bonita Springs, to develop a commercial property listing feature on to create one cohesive place for local businesses to find commercial real estate. Collier EDO is an extension of the Naples Chamber and the Collier County Office of Business and Economic Development. The organizations work to provide local businesses and relocating businesses the resources they need to be successful in Collier County. To help further assist commercial brokers/agents and businesses, Collier EDO worked with Atilus to add property listings on the website. A new section has been released that allows local commercial agents the ability to submit their property to display on the website. Furthermore, the new “Available Properties” section allows local and relocating businesses to browse available properties for purchase. Atilus also implemented a chat system on, which will allow users browsing properties to connect with economic developer experts immediately.  


Bryan Wild has been appointed business development manager for Southwest Florida's Tri-Town Construction. Wild brings more than 25 years of sales and community relations experience to his new position, based in both Florida and Michigan. He serves as Tri-Town's ambassador throughout region's building and real estate industries, working with architects, building managers, homeowners' associations, and interior designers. In addition to his community involvement with business and civic organizations, he assists the company in its charitable work with nonprofits, especially those serving children's needs. 


The Above Board Chamber of Florida will host two meetings related to cybercrime called “Avoid being hacked–Learn ways to protect your data.” The first meeting will take place from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. on Aug. 9 at the Crowne Plaza Fort Myers at Bell Tower Shops. The second meeting will follow from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at Aug. 13 at Hilton Naples. Both meetings will feature an expert panel and dive into the risks created by the rapidly growing number of connected people and devices. Panelists include Carrie Kerskie, director of identity fraud at Hodges University; James Bryan Caudill-Ritter, founder and CEO at Pulse Technology; and Jeff Alluri, principal and vice president of Element Technologies LLC. Javier Fuller, vice president of web development for CONRIC PR & Marketing, will serve as master of ceremonies for the Fort Myers event. Cory O’Donnell, digital engagement editor at The News-Press and the USA TODAY NETWORK, will serve as master of ceremonies for the Naples event. The cost to attend is $28 for members and $33 for non-members before Aug. 1 for the Fort Myers event and before Aug. 7 for the Naples event. After those dates, it’s $32 for members and $38 for non-members.  For more information, visit ​​​


Junior Achievement Bowl-A-Thon fundraiser returns in August

Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida will host its seventh annual Bowl-A-Thon fundraiser from 6-8:30 p.m. on Aug. 29 at HeadPinz Entertainment Center in Fort Myers. Bowl-A-Thon is led by event chair Taylor Loethen of Scott Fischer Enterprises. The annual social event creates an opportunity for colleagues, friends, neighbors and families to spend an evening together at the bowling alley while raising funds for Junior Achievement’s business-oriented programs for students. Participants are being challenged to raise at least $750 for a six-member bowling team. Each individual will receive a team T-shirt, food and drinks, two adult beverages, bowling shoes rental and lane rental. Bowl-A-Thon sponsors include Arthrex Inc. and Entech as gold level sponsors and Data Ninjas as a silver level sponsor. Additional sponsorships are available. Proceeds from the Bowl-A-Thon will be used to provide work readiness programs, entrepreneurship guidance and financial literacy programs to more than 11,000 area students. For more information about the event, visit or contact Stephanie Hoffman at (239) 225-2590 or​

Jennifer’s collects 1,000 pounds of food for Community Cooperative

Jennifer’s women’s boutique collected canned goods for Community Cooperative’s “Summer Drive for Hunger” throughout the month of June. Jennifer’s customers donated 1,000 pounds of canned foods and non-perishable food items. Jennifer’s hosts food drives for Community Cooperative every summer. More than 70 percent of Lee County students qualify for free or reduced breakfast and lunch during the school year, but the summer months can be difficult for families who can’t rely on schools to feed their children, according to a press release.​

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