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Business briefs: Jabil in the cloud, Washlava patent and more

Margie Manning

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A push into making products for the cloud computing space is expected to be a $1 billion a year business for Jabil Inc.

Mark Mondello, CEO, Jabil

There’s growing demand for increasingly complex products, but it’s not a stretch for the St. Petersburg-based electronics manufacturing firm, said CEO Mark Mondello.

“It fits squarely into what we know how to do really well,” Mondello said during a conference call with analysts Tuesday afternoon.

Mondello highlighted the company’s accelerated investments in manufacturing cloud products and a handful of other areas, and he provided an update on another $1 billion initiative, a strategic collaboration between Jabil and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) first announced in September.

“Jabil will support and protect the J&J brand in the areas of endosurgical, spine, trauma and instrumentation,” Mondello said. “This exciting new business award elevates our technical capabilities, further diversifies our healthcare business and expands our team with tremendous talent.”

For the three months ended Nov. 30, Jabil reported $6.5 billion in revenue, a 16 percent increase from Q1 2018. Net income nearly doubled to $123.6 million for the three months ended Nov. 30, with 76 cents in earnings per share.

The better-than-expected results sent the company’s stock price up almost 10 percent between the close of the market Tuesday and the open of the market Wednesday.

Laundry tech

The U.S. Patent Office plans to issue a patent to Washlava, a Tampa company with technology that lets users reserve and pay for clothes washers and dryers with their smart phones.

“The traditional commercial laundry industry in the United States has failed to innovate and continues to do so. We’ve advanced the Washlava platform well beyond what they can achieve,” Todd Belveal, Washlava’s founder and CEO, said in a press release. “This patent, the first of many soon to come, is an indication of not only our superior technical and engineering capabilities, but of our relentless commitment to delivering a seamless, modern, shared laundry experience for the thousands of users we serve now, and the millions to come.”

Washlava, which launched its technology in 2017, is poised to begin scaling operations in 2019, Belveal said.

Surge cities

Embarc Collective will be at East Whiting Street and Jefferson Street in downtown Tampa

The Tampa Bay area ranks No. 24 on Inc. magazine’s new Surge Cities index, a ranking of the 50 best places in the U.S. to start a business.

Tampa has more high-growth companies per capita than New York City, according to Inc.

Inc. cited investments by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik in Water Street Tampa and Embarc Collective as positive developments.

The magazine also said the upcoming Synapse Summit, which highlights innovation in Florida, is Tampa’s answer to South by Southwest.

SxSW is the annual conference in Austin, Texas that draws thousands of people.

Acquisition

Electronic Data Inc., a professional services and software firm in the Carillon Office Park, agreed to be acquired by Arora Engineers Inc., an engineering firm in Philadelphia.

Financial terms were not disclosed in a news release announcing the deal.

Electronic Data, or EDI, specializes in maintenance, asset and facility life cycles and the business processes and software that support them. The deal bolsters Arora’s information technology, facilities management and geospatial services, the company said.

The acquisition is expected to close in the second quarter of 2019.

 

 

 

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