In defense of the Apopka UCF Business Incubator

first_img Please enter your comment! OpinionBy Alan ByrdLast week, opinion writer Greg Jackson showcased the UCF Business Incubator in an extremely negative light, saying it was an example of how the Apopka CRA has failed its citizens.Unfortunately, before asking a series of questions publicly, the writer did not call the Incubator to ask the questions privately. If he did, he would have found out this investment in businesses by the CRA is paying off, creating companies and spurring economic development.In 2012, the city’s CRA partnered with the UCF Business Incubation Program to open a location in the heart of the city. After all, the UCF Business Incubation Program has shown tremendous success throughout the region. It is directly responsible for the creation of 2,364 jobs from 2014-16 alone. Its total impact to the economy of Central Florida was $725 million. Its client companies had direct sales of $694 million.Apopka, rightfully so, believed this could be a way to kick-start its economic development. The UCF Business Incubation Program would provide a place where select companies could receive all the tools they need to grow significantly. It provides office space and expert consultants. It provides an atmosphere of collaboration. It breeds successful businesses.The city did invest approximately $1,000,000 into the program, for an average of approximately $170,000 per year over six years starting in 2012. Over the course of the Incubator’s history, the city has collected approximately $1.4 million in taxes, a “profit” of $400,000.It’s not just the city that sees an increase in revenue. Annually, the businesses involved in the Incubation Program spend approximately $700,000 for goods and services in the Apopka community. Those are dollars being spent on accountants and banking, marketing and staffing, restaurants and retail shops and much more.In total, for every $1 the CRA invests in the Incubator, the city, and local businesses receive $5.50.The UCF Business Incubation Program has clearly provided a return on its investment, not just for the city coffers, but for businesses throughout Apopka.But, Jackson specifically asked if anyone could tell him the number of jobs created or the number of businesses that have been helped.Absolutely. Those are all numbers provided to the city every six months.According to its June report, since its inception, 107 jobs have been created in the Apopka area from Incubator companies. There have been 20 companies that have utilized the services directly, of which eight are current companies and three are working to meet the requirements to start their incubation process.Those companies are growing. The current client companies had combined revenues of $2.1 million for just the first six months of this year alone. That increased more than 50 percent over the same time period a year ago.Without an Apopka Incubator, those companies may not exist. They may not have grown. They wouldn’t be spending $700,000 in the Apopka community each year. They wouldn’t have revenues of $2.1 million.The biggest issue facing incubator clients today is where to headquarter their business after graduating. Currently, a lack of office space in the Apopka area means graduating companies must look outside the area for a location. They want to stay, but the office market has not caught up to the Incubator’s successWhile the value of the CRA program can be debated, one thing that is not up for debate is that UCF Business Incubation Program provides a return on its investment. It is helping Apopka businesses grow. It is helping grow our community’s economy. It is doing exactly what a CRA should do, provide opportunities and economic growth for its citizens.Note: The Apopka Voice is a client of The Apopka UCF Business Incubator. TAGSUCF Apopka Business Incubator Previous articleDistrict performing aerial herbicide treatment at Lake Apopka North ShoreNext articleCity Council meets on New Errol project Denise Connell RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Please enter your name here Support conservation and fish with NEW Florida specialty license plate You have entered an incorrect email address! Please enter your email address herecenter_img The Anatomy of Fear Free webinar for job seekers on best interview answers, hosted by Goodwill June 11 Alan Byrd is the president of Alan Byrd & Associates. The UCF Business Incubation Program is a client of the firm. Share on Facebook Tweet on Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replylast_img read more

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Lighter muffins

first_imgAnthony Alan (Barnsley, Yorkshire) has developed a ‘healthier’ muffin under the Weight Watchers range, for which it holds the licence.The range includes double chocolate chip, fruity blueberry and lemon and sultana vaieties. The muffins are available in four packs or individuals (mini muffins in 12s and triple packs). The firm claims that sales of its Weight Watchers cakes grew by 11.6% for the year to January 1, 2006, and account for over 50% of sales of low-fat cakes in the UK.last_img

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Speedibake fire results in £25m exceptional charge

first_imgA fire that destroyed the Speedibake factory in Wakefield has resulted in a £25m exceptional charge for owner Associated British Foods (ABF).The blaze, in February this year, destroyed two buildings and damaged others. After a review of options, the company announced the factory would close permanently and some products would transfer to its Bradford site.Announcing its interim results for the 24 weeks ended 29 February, ABF said exceptional charges including Speedibake and the closure of Primark stores had resulted in statutory profit before tax falling 42% to £298m. Reported revenue across ABF rose 2% to £7.6bn over the period.The company said “significant” cost reductions had been implemented by Allied Bakeries to mitigate the division losing its own-label contract to supply Tesco stores. These had included the closure of Allied’s bakery in Cardiff.ABF reported that the expected sales decline at Allied Bakeries had been offset by higher sales at George Weston Foods in Australia, AB World Foods and Silver Spoon. As a result, grocery division revenues were flat year-on-year.Overall operating profit fell slightly at ABF’s ingredients division despite a 2% increase in revenue.Sales and operating profit rose at AB Mauri, with the company reporting strong sales growth in yeast and operational efficiencies in the US.Referring to the impact of coronavirus across ABF, chief executive George Weston said he had been “humbled” by the willingness of staff to come to work “while so many of the rest of us sit this disease out safely at home”.“Our food businesses, and in particular our food factories and depots and drivers, have equally been put under intense pressure since this pandemic began, but in very different ways.“ABF businesses produce more food in the UK than any other organisation and we are significant producers of food in other countries, too. It has been essential that they all keep fully running. Indeed, during the weeks of panic-buying, they had to produce more than ever before.”Weston added that this has been done while reconfiguring factory layouts to ensure safe working for staff, and during higher than normal absence and while often being isolated from outside sources of technical support.“Our success in keeping the nation fed is testament to the robustness of the modern food chain; it is also testament to the reality that you don’t need to tell most people how to behave well, you just need to allow them to do so; and it is the finest thing I have seen in a career in business.”last_img read more

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Cesc Fabregas snubs Pep Guardiola as he names Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho as best coaches he’s worked with

first_imgCesc Fabregas has played under some of the best managers in history (Picture: Getty)Cesc Fabregas has delivered a snub to former Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola after naming Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho as the two best managers that he’s worked with in his career.The Spaniard left Barcelona for Arsenal as a 16-year-old but he returned to the Camp Nou in 2011 for a fee of around £35m. Guardiola handed Fabregas his old no.4 shirt and often played the midfielder in a false-nine position as Barcelona romped to the title in the 2011/12 campaign. It was arguably Lionel Messi’s finest season in his career and much of that was down to the chemistry the Argentine had with Fabregas.ADVERTISEMENT Cesc Fabregas snubs Pep Guardiola as he names Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho as best coaches he’s worked with Advertisement Comment Metro Sport ReporterWednesday 1 Apr 2020 4:35 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link745Shares Fabregas spent three years back at Barcelona (Picture: Getty)However, Fabregas left after a mixed three years in Barcelona to join Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea in 2014.AdvertisementAdvertisementHe guided Chelsea to the Premier League title during his first season back in England and Fabregas admits he preferred playing under Mourinho and Wenger than Guardiola. Quizzed about his former bosses on Instagram, Fabregas initially tried to duck the question by insisting: ‘I had the best in the world, so I cannot complain.’However, fans weren’t happy with his answer and Fabregas was forced to go further, where he named his two favourite managers.‘Wenger and Mourinho,’ said Fabregas.MORE: Paul Merson defends Cesc Fabregas over Arsenal transfer decisionFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page. Advertisementlast_img read more

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Ditlev Engel: Why Would You Tax Something You Want More Of?!

first_imgDitlev Engel speaking at the opening session of the Offshore Wind Conference 2018 in Amsterdam. Photo: Jeroen Tresfon/ Navingo.Taxation of electricity produced by offshore wind and other renewables, as well as taxing these technologies, is something the industry needs to stand up against if it wants to see even lower costs and accelerate the energy transition, according to Ditlev Engel, CEO at DNV GL Energy. In most countries, the industry is talking about cost of energy and lowering cost of energy, but the real matter should be taxation of electricity, according to Engel.“Taxation is what most people are paying for the most, it is not the cost of generation. Therefore, the real question here is not about the technology, but about how most regulators and politicians have decided to tax it and, if we are trying to meet the goals from the Paris Agreement, will they tax the electricity and why would they do that,” Engel said.“The reason we taxed it in the old days is because we wanted to lower CO₂ emissions, so why would you now tax something you want more of?!”Speaking about the energy transition at the opening session of the Offshore Wind Conference 2018 in Amsterdam, Engel said that the energy transition can only happen with public support and with people understanding why this is being done.It is the industry’s obligation to make sure people understand the challenges and what needs to be achieved, Ditlev Engel emphasised.At the session that took place on 22 October, he also presented DNV GL’s Energy Transition Outlook, saying that the report is not offering a selection of scenarios, but that it is a forecast based on scrutinised information and the company’s involvement and expertise in the energy sector.In a short chat with our team after the A new dawn for offshore wins session, Engel summarised the main points of the report. Learn more by watching the video:Reporting: Nadja Skopljak, Rebecca van den Berge – McFedries, Jeroen Tresfon; Editing: Adrijana Buljan, Adnan Durakovićlast_img read more

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LIVE: St. Lucie County holding news conference on coronavirus

first_imgOfficials in St. Lucie County are holding a news conference related to the coronavirus.last_img

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England lead Spain in mixed international

first_img9 May 2015 England lead Spain in mixed international England made a strong start to this weekend’s mixed international at Burnham & Berrow in Somerset and take a four point lead into tomorrow’s matches.It’s the first time in the 30-year-history of the match that the teams have been mixed – and the women quickly made an impression.In the morning foursomes Bethan Popel had a hole-in-one on the 14th. Then, in the singles, Gemma Clews sealed a successful day for the team when, playing in the last match on the course, she fought back from three down to win on the 18th.She contributed to a 9½-5½ scoreline which included a host of other highlights on a testing day, when a stiff breeze blew relentlessly across the superbly prepared course.England had got off to a flying start in the match, winning four of the five morning foursomes. There were some big wins as the England players proved themselves better at coping with the tough conditions, notably from English amateur champion Nick Marsh and Michael Saunders who closed out their game on the 12th.In the afternoon the Spanish came out in determined mood and had the upper hand over the opening holes. But, as Graham Walker, the England men’s coach commented: “We managed to stem the tide and the first few matches were ours.”Ashley Chesters, the double European champion led the way in the singles with a 5/4 win which was especially notable for a run of three consecutive threes. He birdied the 12th, eagled the 13th and parred the 14th after his tee shot hit the pin and ricocheted off the green into a deep hollow, from which he played a magical pitch.Ashton Turner and Jimmy Mullen followed Chesters to get those important early points on the board. Turner had to wait until the 13th before he finally got ahead in his match, eventually winning 2/1. Mullen, by contrast, was never behind and dismissed his opponent on the 14th. Meanwhile, Nick Marsh battled away and secured a half point, despite having been two down after 10.Alice Hewson was a couple under par on the outward half and was another very comfortable winner, finishing 4/3. Then, attention focussed on Clews (image © Leaderboard Photography) who was clawing her way back, having been three down after 11.She won the 12th with a birdie, fired a super-accurate shot into the 13th to win that hole, and got back to all square with a solid par on 15. By now, a sizeable gallery which included fellow team players and officials, had gathered to watch her win 16 with another immaculate par.Both players missed makeable birdie chances on the short 17th and on the 18th they both ran through the green with their approaches. But, Clews chipped dead to secure the point for England.Women’s team captain Steve Robinson commented: “We set ourselves the target of not losing a session against Spain, who are a very strong team, and we’ve seen some great quality golf and some really good, battling performances from all the players in tough conditions.”Men’s team captain Graham Walker echoed him: “The standard of golf from the England players matched the warm welcome from Burnham & Berrow members and staff.“We got off to a great start this morning with all the players keeping the ball in play in blustery conditions and with some trick pin placings.“Overall it’s been a pretty good day for the England team.”last_img read more

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Five more suits filed in deadly mudslide

first_img However, residents believe terracing the hill – which would cost tens of millions of dollars – would stabilize it and prevent further slides. State officials also have been reluctant to try to shore up the hillside. The county and state have talked about conducting a comprehensive study of the bluff, but no cost figures or timelines have been set. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESanta Anita opens winter meet Saturday with loaded card The county was aware of the potential threat and had a sufficient time before the landslide to take protective measures, the lawsuit states. “They should have required the hillside to be fixed,” plaintiffs’ attorney Anthony Murray said. “They took no steps to assist residents by requiring the La Conchita Ranch Co. (which owns the hillside) to make the area safe.” Ventura County Counsel Noel Klebaum declined to comment Friday about the lawsuit. Attorney Frank Sabaitis, who represents the ranch company, said the lawsuit doesn’t have any merit. “Based upon research, facts and information from experts, there is no factual basis for the ranch’s liability,” Sabaitis said. County officials have said that they have warned residents about the dangers of living in La Conchita, about 70 miles northwest of Los Angeles, and are unsure there is anything that can be done to prevent the landslides. Several geologists who have examined the hillside believe it will collapse again. Residents of a seaside town hit by a deadly landslide last year filed lawsuits against Ventura County and a private ranch company, claiming both were negligent in protecting the community. Twenty-three lawsuits have been filed in Ventura County Superior Court, covering a total of 39 plaintiffs. Five of the cases were filed Friday. Among the allegations are wrongful death, negligence, trespassing and damaged property. The plaintiffs are seeking unspecified damages. The lawsuits claim Ventura County officials failed to protect residents of La Conchita from a Jan. 10, 2005, mudslide that killed 10 people, destroyed 13 homes and damaged 23 others. A towering bluff above the community became saturated from a series of winter storms and a torrent of earth cascaded into the streets. last_img read more

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A dummy’s guide to cricket’s biggest standoff

first_imgFor a lot of you wondering what’s all the fuss about India’s participation in the upcoming ICC Champions trophy and what this BCCI-ICC standoff is made of, its all about money. Here’s an explainer.1. The Indian cricket board (BCCI) is the richest in the world and on the basis of its commercial importance in the game, had carved out a revenue arrangement whereby it would get $ 570 million out of a total $ 2.7 billion generated by International Cricket Council (ICC) in the 2015-23 cycle.2. The ICC has now scrapped the old arrangement and reworked a new equitable revenue model whereby the BCCI only receives $ 293 million.3. The ICC Chairman Shashank Manohar had offered to the BCCI representative at the ICC meeting and acting Secretary Amitabh Choudhary, a compromise offer of $393 million share in return of accepting the new revenue and governing model which he rejected. Subsequently, BCCI lost the vote and now have to make do with $ 293 million.4. Although the Supreme Court allowed the acting Secretary Choudhary to present India’s case at the ICC meeting, the overall BCCI functioning is currently overseen by Court appointed Committee of Administrators (COA) who were previously negotiating with the ICC. The COA claim to have found a common ground with the ICC and agreed on a more respectable $ 445 million share for BCCI. They blame the existing office bearers acting on the advice of BCCI’s once powerful old guard for the loss at ICC.5. The acting Secretary is now set to call for a SGM next week where it’s likely the various state associations will refuse to adopt a conciliatory stand as COA and mull over resolving to pull the Indian team out from the Champions trophy to devalue the ICC Champions trophy.advertisement6. Although BCCI has used such strong arm tactics in the past on the strength of the commercial value Indian cricketers enjoy, with the Shashank Manohar led ICC no longer on the back foot, there could be similar ugly tactics from the other side as well. Sources don’t rule out the ongoing IPL itself to be impacted if some of the member boards refuse to allow their players to continue playing.7. If other member boards decide to take on an adamant BCCI, the Indian team could be isolated with influential boards refusing to play bilateral cricket with India.8. If the Indian team pulls out it will also mean legal ramifications for the BCCI and a headache for ICC. With the broadcasters having shelled out top dollar to acquire rights for ICC tournaments, both ICC and BCCI will have to tread carefully before taking any extreme step against the other.Expect some more days of uncertainty and ugly power play between the game’s administrative bodies. It’s after all a fight for big moolah that cricket generates. Still some gap between the cup and the lip before we know if Virat and his men will get to defend their Champions trophy crown.last_img read more

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