GrowFL, Florida’s leading organization in support of second-stage growth companies, is now accepting applications for its annual Florida Companies to Watch® awards program. The event – now in its eighth year – honors 50 select second-stage companies from throughout the state for developing valuable products and services, creating quality jobs, enriching communities, and creating new industries throughout Florida.
Eligible applicants must be privately held, second-stage commercial enterprises. Qualifying companies must also be headquartered in the state of Florida, employ between 6 and 150 employees, and earn between $750,000 and $100 million in annual revenue. A selection panel of judges representing areas of finance, technology, entrepreneurship and small business select honorees that have demonstrated past and future growth opportunities, entrepreneurial leadership, product innovation, community responsibility and competitive business practices.
“We are excited to again present this prestigious awards program to honor exemplary second-stage businesses who have become an integral part of Florida’s economic landscape,” says Dr. Tom O’Neal, GrowFL Executive Director. “We received a record number of nominations last year and expect the same in 2018. This, in itself, says a lot about the drive and motivation of entrepreneurs throughout our state.”
GrowFL is a statewide economic development organization certified by the National Center for Economic Gardening through the Edward Lowe Foundation, a national, nonprofit organization that supports entrepreneurship through research, recognition and educational programs. The foundation focuses on second-stage companies — those that have moved beyond the startup phase and seek significant, steady growth. GrowFL, in turn, helps second-stage companies in Florida overcome obstacles and leads them towards prosperity by providing strategies, resources and support designed to prepare them for next level success. A typical Florida Companies to Watch class is comprised of businesses who collectively gross over $450 million in annual revenue, add more than 350 new jobs per year, average a 30% increase in earnings and experience almost 20% growth in employees annually.
Applications are open through July 9, 2018. The 2018 Florida Companies to Watch awards ceremony will be held on Saturday, February 9, 2019 at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts in Tampa, Florida. For more information or to apply for Florida Companies to Watch, please visit GrowFL.com/flctw18.
GrowFL is generously supported by FloridaMakes, Wells Fargo, University of Central Florida, Orange County, Research Park at Florida Atlantic University, The Jim Moran Institute for Global Entrepreneurship, USF CONNECT, The Corridor, SCB Marketing, Traction in Florida, Blue Sentry, Coastal Cloud, Florida Power & Light, NanoPhotonica, OUC – The Reliable One, WithumSmith+Brown, PC, AMTIS, Custom Manufacturing & Engineering, Engineering & Computer Simulations and QuantumFlo.