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DeSantis highlights Tampa school

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis cited Tampa Bay Technical High School as a successful example of workforce education in his State of the State address. He has proposed a plan improve Florida’s workforce education, including grants for apprenticeships, money to train teachers in computer science and funds for workforce programs within the state college system.

3 area hospitals make Watson Health List

Mease Countryside Hospital in Safety Harbor and St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa are among the top large community hospitals in the U.S., according to Watson Health's new Top 100 Hospitals list. Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel (since renamed AdventHealth Wesley Chapel) was named one of the best small community hospitals.

Fallout from Laser Spine shutdown

Highwoods Properties (NYSE: HIW) will write off about $12 million as a result of Laser Spine Institute's decision to cease operations. Laser Spine leased a 176,000 square-foot, six-story building developed by Highwoods in Tampa's Westshore district.

Heritage ends 2018 in the black

Heritage Insurance Holdings (NYSE: HRTG) had $27.2 million in income, or $1.04 a share, on revenue of $480.2 million in 2018. It was a turnaround for the Clearwater property and casualty insurer, which had a loss of $1.1 million, or 4 cents a share, on revenue of $406.6 million in 2017. Heritage was licensed in two new states last year.

Tampa PE firm buys online quote company

Osceola Capital Management, a private equity firm in Tampa, bought 360 Quote, a Tampa company that operates lead generation websites in the insurance segment, with a focus on auto insurance. The purchase price was not disclosed. The digital marketing channel in the insurance sector has strong growth potential, said Ben Moe, managing part of Osceola.

FSU’s Jim Moran Institute unveils the Seminole 100

Sixteen companies from the Tampa-St. Pete area made the Seminole 100, a list of the 100 fastest-growing businesses owned or managed by Florida State University alumni. Boomerang Transportation, a Tampa logistics company offering freight transportation services, was the highest-ranked local company.

Publix 2018 profit, sales grow in 2018

Publix Super Markets Inc. reported $2.4 billion in net earnings on $36.1 billion in sales for 2018. Net earnings were up 3.9 percent and sales were up 4.4 percent year-over-year, a news release said. Sales also were up in the fourth quarter, but earnings dropped in Q4 because of an accounting rule change and a one-time tax adjustment.

Threshold 360 gets new CEO

Jordan Raynor has stepped down as CEO of Threshold 360, a Tampa tech company with 360 degree imagery of locations worldwide. Daniel Krause, a tech veteran most recently at ShareIQ, was named CEO, in a move that allows Threshold 360 to grow to a greater scale. Raymond said he will remain as executive chairman.

Cryo-Cell posts loss for 2018

Cryo-Cell International Inc. (OTCQB: CCEL), a private cord blood bank in Oldsmar, reported a net loss of $855,000 on revenue of $29.2 million for fiscal year 2018, ended Nov. 30. Revenue was up 15 percent over FY 2017, but the company said it dipped into the red as the cost of sales went up.

Kforce sells business unit

Kforce plans to sell its federal government solutions business for $115 million. The buyer is ManTech International Corp. The sale of Kforce Government Solutions Inc. is expected to close by March 31. Kforce, a Tampa staffing firm, said it also is looking at options for TraumaFX, its federal government product business,

Wells Fargo launches consumer redress program in Florida

Wells Fargo has begun a consumer redress review program for customers harmed by the banks’ alleged violations of consumer protection laws. Bank customers who did not receive full restitution for the violations can now seek account reviews by a Wells Fargo escalation team for possible relief, the Florida Attorney General’s office said.

Florida is top state for fraud

A new report from the Federal Trade Commission says there were more fraud complaints in Florida than any other state in 2018. Among the top 50 metros, Tampa-St. Pete ranked No. 14, with 748 fraud complaints per 100,000 persons. The local area was No. 26 for identity theft complaints, with 157 complaints per 100,000 persons.

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