"CONNECTING THE WORLD
TO THE TAMPA BAY REGION"
Welcome to the Tampa Bay Region!
The International Council connects the Tampa Bay Region with the
world by bringing a unique group of the world’s emerging leaders here and linking them with the region’s vast
professional, historical, cultural and education resources.
The Tampa Bay region consists of the three contiguous
metropolitan areas of Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater; Bradenton-Sarasota-Venice; and Lakeland-Winter Haven
in west central Florida. The region includes the seven counties of Hernando, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco,
Pinellas, Polk, and Sarasota with a population of 4.1 million (2009).
A little over 20 percent of Tampa Bay’s population is in the
highly desirable 18-34 age group. That is a market of more than three-quarters of a million of the most
sought-after consumers and workers.
Tampa Bay is home to over 15 billion dollar headquarter
companies of which eight are Fortune 1000 companies (Florida is home to 32 Fortune 1000 companies). There
have been recent major investments and announcements in Life Sciences, Bio-Technology and R&D - with SRI,
Draper Labs, and Merck & Co. locating facilities in the region.
The top five industry super sectors in Tampa Bay
· Trade, Transportation, and Utilities
· Professional and Business Services
· Education and Health
· Leisure and Hospitality
· Financial Activities
The key growth clusters sharing talent, technology, educational
resources and infrastructure in Tampa Bay include:
MEMS & Nanotechnology
Flavors & Essences
Logistics & Distribution
Agriculture & Agribusiness
Florida is best known for its narrow strip of coastal beaches, major hubs
for the tourism industry. Travel 20 miles inland and you’ll find Florida’s largest industry: Agriculture! Florida
· 67% of citrus in the US.
· 25% of the world’s phosphate (fertilizer)
· #1 US producer of of snap beans, fresh market tomatoes, cucumbers for fresh market, cucumbers for
pickles, bell peppers, squash and watermelons.
· Top US producer of oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, and sugarcane.
· #2 US output of greenhouse and nursery products, sweet corn and strawberries.
· #4 US producer of honey.
· Top 4 US producer of timber.
fisheries, vegetables & produce, organics, nurseries and landscape architecture are all found in the Tampa Bay
Region.The International Council has substantial program experience in this key sector of the Florida economy,
throughout the Tampa Bay region, statewide and internationally.
Tampa Bay Transportation Network
The Tampa Bay region’s infrastructure system encompasses
over-the-road transport, water transport, air cargo, and rail freight carriers, as well as freight terminals,
warehousing facilities, and local and regional distribution centers. It also includes the following
supporting transportation infrastructure:
• 500 miles of active CSX Transportation (CSXT) railroad and
• Approximately 143 million square feet of industrial space, with
an additional 76 million square feet approved for development;
• Extensive seaport facilities at the Port of Tampa and Port Manatee;
• Growing air cargo operations at Tampa International Airport, St. Petersburg-Clearwater International
Airport and Sarasota-Bradenton Airport.
Three of the 10 largest universities in the nation are within a 2-hour
drive of Tampa Bay. The University of South Florida (Tampa), the University of Central Florida (Orlando) and the
University of Florida (Gainesville) have a combined student population of 150,000. The region has 65 colleges and career institutes. There are three institutions with enrollment
of over 20,000 students. There are 29 four-year colleges, 9 two-year colleges and 27 dedicated career
The US’ 4th largest College of Education is part of the
University of South Florida. The area is also home to many innovative approaches to education at the K-12 level,
including the first “International Baccalaureate” program in the US for elementary school
students. The Hillsborough County School Board was awarded a $100 million grant by the Bill and
Melinda Gates Foundation grant in 2009, a major investment in K-12 education
Tourism, Sports & Recreation
Tourism is a major economic driver for Tampa Bay, generating
$12.7 billion in annual revenue. The Tampa Bay region hosts an estimated 35 million visitors per year. The
beaches and climate provide year-round swimming, sailing, water-skiing, jet skiing, windsurfing, parasailing,
diving and shelling. More than 300 species of fish can be caught in area waters, noted as one of Florida’s
premier fishing spots. Kayaking and canoeing are quite popular with a variety of rivers, streams and natural
coastline to explore.
At almost any time of the year, the Tampa Bay Region hosts major
professional and amateur sporting events. Last
year, visitors were able to attend an NFL official Super Bowl host community event, watch the Tampa Bay Rays win
their way to Major League Baseball’s American League Championship, and “racing in the streets” at the Honda
Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. Tampa Bay is home to the Super Bowl XXXVII Champion Tampa Bay
Buccaneers, the 2004 Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Bay
Lightning, and Major League Baseball’s 2008 American League Champions the Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay offers a great variety of theme parks and natural attractions
including Busch Gardens & Adventure Island, the Florida Aquarium, MOTE Marine Aquarium, Bok Tower and
Gardens, Sunken Gardens, Myakka State Park, Weeki Wachee Springs and Selby Botanical Gardens. The Lowry Park
Zoo, located in Tampa, has been rated “The No.1 Family-Friendly Zoo in the U.S.” byChild Magazine.
Culture and the Performing Arts
The arts are a key part of the Tampa Bay lifestyle. The Tampa
Bay region is home to 60 theater groups and world class concert halls. The Tampa Bay region has a tremendous
and eclectic offering of world class arts and exhibits. There are more than 36 major museums in the region,
among them the Salvador Dali Museum in St. Petersburg, and the Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota. The Museum
of Science & Industry (MOSI) is the largest science center in the southeast, 5th largest in the nation,
and the largest children’s science center in the nation. Other museums focus on childhood education, local
history, fine arts, and vintage automobile and aircraft collections.
Sources: The Tampa Bay Partnership; The International Council of the Tampa Bay Region; Pictures Courtesy of