Category Archives: Business News

18Oct/17
Allen & Company's team PHAT Assets, 2016 Champions

CORPORATE CHALLENGE 5K SUPPORTS COMMUNITY YOUTH

Allen and Co Phat AssetsCORPORATE CHALLENGE 5K SUPPORTS COMMUNITY YOUTH

LAKELAND, FLORIDA (October 18, 2017) — On Saturday, November 11, ten of your employees can run/walk the 5k event and compete against other organizations your size (small, medium or large) for bragging rights and possession of the traveling trophy for a year! Other employees can participate by making pledges to the existing runners which supports bullying and drug prevention in Polk County.

Our 2016 Corporate Challenge Champions, Allen & Company’s PHAT Assets team, dares other corporate teams to participate. Robin Chaddick, PHAT Assets team member and Director of Marketing at Allen of Company, says, “Bring your best game, Lakeland! We plan to keep the trophy!”

The trophies for the Corporate Challenge will be presented at the BIG Event by the Lakeland Chamber, at Lake Mirror that evening. Call the InnerAct Alliance if you need help setting up team!

Registration online:  http://www.redribbonhalf.com/

Fees:  $400 – by October 30; $500 – from October 31 – November 11

For questions & information:  InnerAct Alliance, 621 South Florida Avenue, Lakeland, FL  33801 – TeamRedRibbon@inneractalliance.org – Tel: (863) 802-0777

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What is the BIG Event?

Saturday, November 11, 2017, 4:00 pm – 10:00 pm

The BIG Event Lakeland is a free music fest featuring local businesses, makers, and delicious food! The event kicks off with the Red Ribbon Run Corporate Award and the Watson Clinic Poster Contest Award, immediately followed by a special Salute to Veterans by Green Construction. Then enjoy nonstop entertainment! Celebrate the best of Lakeland at this FREE music fest! The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce in partnership with InnerAct Alliance and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay present the second annual BIG Event Lakeland – and theme Pirates on the Promenade for 2017! The iconic and historical Frances Ford Langford Promenade at Lake Mirror Amphitheatre is the perfect backdrop for local fun on Saturday, November 11, 2017, from 4:00 pm to 10:00 pm!

What’s there to do?

Experience live music, family fun + great tastes – Lakeland style!

Exclusive Marketing Sponsor:

Tinsley Creative

Exclusive Beer Sponsor:

Bernie Little Distributing, LLC

Exclusive Wine Sponsor:

Tucker’s Southside Package & Lounge

Gold Sponsors:

Publix Super Markets, Inc.

“Big 4” WONN/WPCV/WLKF/WWRZ Radio

“Foodie” Partner:

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay – serving Polk County since 1970

Silver Sponsor:

Watson Clinic LLP

Salute to Veterans Sponsor:

Green Construction

Bronze Sponsors:

Bank of Central Florida

CPS Investment Advisors

City of Lakeland;

GEICO

Heacock Insurance

Highland Homes

Lakeland Surgical & Diagnostic Center

Lanier Upshaw, Inc.

SERVPRO of Lakeland

Community Partners:  JBT Corporation & Saddle Creek Logistics Services

Print Media Sponsor:  Ledger Media Group

Radio Sponsor:  “Big 4” WONN/WPCV/WLKF/WWRZ Radio

Bottled Water Sponsor:  Crystal Springs

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The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce

The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce represents 1,400 member businesses in the Lakeland area and provides opportunities for networking, professional development and advocacy for companies of all sizes. Five-Star Accredited by the US Chamber of Commerce, the Chamber upholds the following vision and mission statements: Vision Statement – The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce will be the premier catalyst for the advancement of Lakeland’s economic growth and enhancement of quality of life– creating Florida’s community of choice.  Mission Statement – The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce is the leading organization dedicated to creating a climate where business can prosper.

21Jul/17

Information Session for the Young Entrepreneurs Academy

INFORMATION SESSION FOR THE YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS ACADEMY

LAKELAND, FLORIDA (July, 21, 2017) — My Office & More will host two Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) Information Sessions for students in grades 6-12, their families, and local business leaders about YEA!, a 30 week program that guides middle and high school students through launching and running their own real businesses or social movements!

Attendees will learn about the structure, curriculum, and student application process for the program, as well as how business leaders can get involved as a mentor, guest speaker, field trip host, or investor.

Kate Lake, Chief Connections Officer of My Office & More remarks, “In May, I had the chance to meet a number of YEA entrepreneurs at a Lakeland Chamber event. Their creativity and determination was inspiring. It’s clear this program creates possibilities for aspiring students and we welcome the opportunity to advocate for and encourage these future CEOs.”

WHEN:                       Tuesday, August 8, 2017 & Tuesday, August 22, 2017, 5:30 PM – 6:30 PM

WHERE:                     My Office & More, 122 E Main St, Lakeland, FL  33801

WHO:                    Students grades 6-12 and their families; Business leaders and interested community volunteers; This event is free and open to the public, space is limited, so registration is strongly encouraged

Call (863) 688-8551 ext. 229 or email rfortier@lakelandchamber.com to RSVP or register online at http://bit.ly/2uGLnZX .

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy provides students in grades 6-12 with the knowledge and skills they need to start and run their own business. No business experience is needed – just creativity, enthusiasm, dedication and lots of effort.

The local chapter of the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce will accept up to 20 students; the application deadline is Friday, September 15. Classes will take place 4:30 – 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays at Southeastern University beginning in October. The tuition for the program is $495. There are some need-based scholarships available. The program offers the opportunity to participate in the YEA! Saunders Scholars Competition with the chance to win college scholarships. The application for the Polk County program is available at https://yeausa.wufoo.com/forms/z1s0mvgj0gb2hwv/.

YEA Info Session image

 

 

 

 

 

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Lakeland Chamber of Commerce

The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce represents 1,400 member businesses in the Lakeland area and provides opportunities for networking, professional development and advocacy for companies of all sizes. Five-Star Accredited by the US Chamber of Commerce, the Chamber upholds the following vision and mission statements:  Vision Statement – The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce will be the premier catalyst for the advancement of Lakeland’s economic growth and enhancement of quality of life– creating Florida’s community of choice. Mission Statement – The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce is the leading organization dedicated to creating a climate where business can prosper.

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) is a 501(C) 3 offering groundbreaking year-long classes that teach middle and high school students how to start and run their own businesses. Throughout the class, students develop business ideas, write business plans, conduct market research, pitch their plans to a panel of investors for startup funds, and launch and run their own, fully formed companies and social movements. The project-based program empowers students to take charge of their futures. Founded in 2004 at the University of Rochester with support from the Kauffman Foundation, YEA! today serves thousands of students nationwide. In 2011, the United States Chamber of Commerce Foundation became a national sponsor and partner of the Academy to help celebrate the spirit of enterprise among today’s youth and tomorrow’s future leaders. YEA! bridges the business and educational communities to fulfill its mission of teaching more students how to make a job, not just take a job. YEA! is made possible by The Kauffman Foundation, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and the E. Philip Saunders Foundation. For more information, visit yeausa.org.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation is dedicated to strengthening America’s long-term competitiveness and educating the public on how the free enterprise system improves society and the economy. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.

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12Jul/17

LOCAL SUPPORT IS “BIG” FOR LAKELAND’S BIG EVENT

BIG Sponsors ThanksLAKELAND, FLORIDA (July 12, 2017) — Community support helps ensure success of the second year of the BIG Event Lakeland. The Lakeland Chamber which hosts the event on Saturday, November 11, 2017 is excited to announce strategic sponsorships for this year’s event:

The Kids’ Breezeway is sponsored by Publix Super Markets, Inc., and the “Big 4” Stage is sponsored by Hall Communications / WONN/WPCV/WLKF/WWRZ Radio. The BIG Event is also supported by the Ledger Media Group and Tinsley Creative as Print Media Sponsor and Marketing Sponsor, respectively. Sponsorships in support of First Aid, T-Shirts, Poster Contest, Tailgate, Treasure Hunt, and Costume Contest are confirmed with Watson Clinic LLP, Bank of Central Florida, CPS Investment Advisors, Heacock Insurance, Highland Homes, Lakeland Surgical & Diagnostic Center, and Lanier Upshaw. For the second year in a row, Green Construction is sponsoring the Salute to Veterans.

The support received for the BIG Event helps to underwrite programs and initiatives of the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce. Since 1921, the Lakeland Chamber has served as an advocate for business. The Chamber is a 501 (c) (6) not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating a climate where business can prosper. It is the largest Chamber of Commerce in Polk County, and the 6th largest in the state, with over 1,400 investor businesses, the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce continues to be an integral component of the Lakeland community by offering a wide variety of programs and initiatives that positively impact the economic vitality and quality of life in our region. Initiatives and Programs include:

  • Pro-Business Advocacy:  The Chamber monitors local and state issues that affect business and the quality of life through the Advocacy Committee and BusinessVoice of Greater Lakeland, Inc.
  • Professional Development:  The Chamber offers seminars and educational activities throughout the year geared to assist the business community, specifically small business.
  • Convention & Visitors Bureau:  This bureau markets Lakeland and Polk County as an ideal convention and tourist destination.
  • Relocation Inquiries:  As the experts on Lakeland, families call the Chamber and visit LakelandChamber.com before they visit or move.  Allowing member businesses to be first to promote their product or service to these new residents before they establish their buying patterns.
  • Small Business Award:  A Chamber committee is responsible for selecting and recognizing one small business each month that epitomizes entrepreneurial spirit, business excellence and community involvement.  One of the 12 will be recognized at the end of the year with the Scott Linder Small Business of the Year Award.
  • Leadership Lakeland:  To identify and enhance future leadership for Lakeland; and, increase participants’ leadership skills and develop an “esprit de corps” among the participants which will provide a common ground for working together on present and future community and Chamber projects.
  • Public Leadership Institute of Polk County (PLI):  A nonpartisan “pre-campaign” candidate and public leadership school with the mission of identifying and educating local business-minded leaders who are interested in exploring the possibility of one-day seeking public office and using business principles to address public issues.
  • Young Entrepreneurs Academy, or YEA!:  A groundbreaking educational program that takes students in grades six through twelve through the process of starting and running real  businesses over the course of a full academic year. Students work in close cooperation with local leaders of industry, community members, and educators to develop ideas and objectives, write business plans, pitch potential investors, obtain funding, register with governmental agencies, develop their brand identity and much more! By the end of the class, students own and operate fully functioning businesses that can be carried on after graduation. Students learn to make a job–not just take a job! YEA!’s direct mission is to help students embrace their passion, energy, creativity and talents, launch a venture, and view entrepreneurship as synonymous with success and freedom.
  • EMERGE Lakeland:  A meaningful networking organization of dedicated, talented young professionals ranging in age from 21-42 in Lakeland. This organization is a partnership of the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce and the United Way of Central Florida. Groundwork for such an organization began in 2003. The partnership offers a unique opportunity for collaboration between the two organizations for the continued strengthening of the community.
  • Lakeland Chamber Foundation:  Through the generous contributions of member businesses and individuals, the Foundation is able to award small grants to not-for-profit organizations in the Lakeland area to support specific community and education betterment projects.

Vendor Booth Registration for the BIG Event is available at http://goo.gl/nydmXE. The registration this year features an interactive map that allows vendors to select their booth location! Vendors are encouraged to sign up early as booth prices increase by $50 after July 31, 2017.

The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce in partnership with InnerAct Alliance and Big Brothers Big Sisters Polk present the second annual BIG Event Lakeland – and theme Pirates on the Promenade for 2017! The iconic and historical Frances Ford Langford Promenade at Lake Mirror Amphitheatre is the perfect backdrop for local fun on Saturday, November 11th, 2017, from 4:00 pm to 10:00 pm! The BIG Event Lakeland is a free music fest featuring local businesses, makers, and delicious food! The event kicks off with the Red Ribbon Run Corporate Awards at the Main Stage, immediately followed by a special Salute to Veterans.  Then enjoy non-stop entertainment! Celebrate the best of Lakeland at this FREE live music fest!

What:  BIG Event Lakeland – Pirates on the Promenade

When:  Saturday, November 11, 2017, 4:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Where:  Lake Mirror Amphitheatre, 121 S Lake Ave, Lakeland, FL 33801

Fees:  Free admission!

Vendor registration:             http://goo.gl/nydmXE

Additional information:      https://goo.gl/K7qgew

Video:                                              https://goo.gl/GPGCkA

Contact:  Rebecca Fortier at (863) 688-8551 ext. 229  or by email at rfortier@lakelandchamber.com.

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The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce represents 1,400 member businesses in the Lakeland area and provides opportunities for networking, professional development and advocacy for companies of all sizes. Five-Star Accredited by the US Chamber of Commerce, the Chamber upholds the following vision and mission statements: Vision Statement – The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce will be the premier catalyst for the advancement of Lakeland’s economic growth and enhancement of quality of life– creating Florida’s community of choice.

 

13Jun/17
YEA! Polk Graduate Logan Soria, CEO of Stand Up!, Pitches to Investors

YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS ACADEMY RECRUITING STUDENTS

LAKELAND, FLORIDA (June 13, 2017) — The Young Entrepreneurs Academy is recruiting students for the Polk County chapter, only the fifth chapter in Florida, for the 2017-2018 school year.

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy is a 30-week program for students, ages 11-18, where students start and run their own business and form connections with community leaders. The program will feature guest speakers from businesses and five field trips.

The program has three main sections: the big idea, the pitch and the launch. In the big idea phase, students brainstorm ideas, explore their passions, and learn how to evaluate a business opportunity.

The pitch will be a five-minute presentation by the students to an investors’ panel, which is made up of sponsors. During the launch phase, students will open bank accounts and file for legal fictitious names. The students will display their products at a trade show in May 2018. LkldTV captures the magic of the program in their video from this year’s trade show http://lkldtv.com/2017/05/24/young-entrepreneurs-academy/.

A recent graduate of the Young Entrepreneurs Academy, 18-year-old Logan Soria, CEO/Owner of Stand Up!, shares his experience, “You are going to go through a part-time business boot camp. That isn’t something you should be afraid of. As an entrepreneur, you have to embrace the barriers ahead – whether it be a lack of knowledge, funds, or ability. Trust me, if you try your best, you will make it through those hard times and you will be rewarded by your success.”

The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce chapter will accept up to 20 students; the early application deadline is June 30. Classes will take place 4:30 – 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays at Southeastern University beginning in October.

The tuition for the program is $595, but there are some need-based scholarships available. The program offers the opportunity to participate in the YEA! Saunders Scholars Competition with the chance to win college scholarships.

The application for the Polk County program is available at https://yeausa.wufoo.com/forms/z1s0mvgj0gb2hwv/.

To learn more about YEA! visit yeausa.org, or for information on our local chapter, please visit at http://www.lakelandchamber.com/pages/YEA, or contact Rebecca Fortier at (863) 688-8551 ext. 229 or by email at rfortier@lakelandchamber.com.  The YEA! Polk Sponsors and the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce are helping to build the next generation of business leaders in Polk County.

Lakeland Chamber of Commerce

The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce represents 1,400 member businesses in the Lakeland area and provides opportunities for networking, professional development and advocacy for companies of all sizes. Five-Star Accredited by the US Chamber of Commerce, the Chamber upholds the following vision and mission statements:

Vision Statement:  The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce will be the premier catalyst for the advancement of Lakeland’s economic growth and enhancement of quality of life– creating Florida’s community of choice.

Mission Statement:  The Lakeland Chamber of Commerce is the leading organization dedicated to creating a climate where business can prosper.

 The Young Entrepreneurs Academy

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) is a 501(C) 3 offering groundbreaking year-long classes that teach middle and high school students how to start and run their own businesses. Throughout the class, students develop business ideas, write business plans, conduct market research, pitch their plans to a panel of investors for startup funds, and launch and run their own, fully formed companies and social movements. The project-based program empowers students to take charge of their futures. Founded in 2004 at the University of Rochester with support from the Kauffman Foundation, YEA! today serves thousands of students nationwide. In 2011, the United States Chamber of Commerce Foundation became a national sponsor and partner of the Academy to help celebrate the spirit of enterprise among today’s youth and tomorrow’s future leaders. YEA! bridges the business and educational communities to fulfill its mission of teaching more students how to make a job, not just take a job. YEA! is made possible by The Kauffman Foundation, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and the E. Philip Saunders Foundation. For more information, visit yeausa.org.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation is dedicated to strengthening America’s long-term competitiveness and educating the public on how the free enterprise system improves society and the economy. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.

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16Jun/15

Florida legislature reaches tax deal as budget crisis nears end

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Reuters) – Florida legislators voted to send Republican Governor Rick Scott a package of more than $400 million in tax cuts on Monday, trimming fees on a wide range of services, from cellular phone and cable TV bills to yacht repairs.

The tax-cut package negotiated by House and Senate budget managers was a major piece of a 20-day special legislative session that members expect to conclude on Friday with passage of a state budget of around $76 billion.

The tax deal and a separate hospital funding solution appear to have ended a bitter and long-running dispute between the Republican leaders in both houses that forced the special session.

Division among Republican leaders over expanding Medicaid and funding for hospitals treating indigents caused the regular legislative session to dissolve April 28, but negotiators scored a breakthrough last Friday on a formula to divide $2 billion in hospital money – using $400 million from the surplus and forcing reduction of other programs.

The House had earlier killed a Senate-passed bill that would have expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

Scott had sought about $700 million in tax cuts at the start of the session and the House approved a $690 million package. Having to put up the hospital money killed numerous hometown projects sought by members in the special session, along with the scaling back of tax cuts.

The Senate voted 34-2 for the package and a few hours later the House passed it 91-2. Scott said he will seek more tax cuts in 2016 when the legislative session reconvenes.

“Cutting Florida’s cell phone and TV tax is particularly important because it will save money for Florida families who pay a cell phone, satellite or cable TV bill,” Scott said in a statement.

Reducing the communications services tax accounted for $226 million of the total package and works out to about $20 a year for a consumer paying $100 a month in cable and cellular bills.

The package also includes a 10-day “sales tax holiday” for back-to-school shopping and a full-year exemption for college textbooks, adding up to about $110 million.

One point of controversy was a $60,000 cap on sales taxes for boat repairs, which means renovation and overhauls costing over $1 million would pay the same tax as less extensive work. But supporters of that $5.5 million tax break said it would help generate jobs in South Florida’s marinas and boatyards.

(Reporting by Bill Cotterell; Editing by David Adams and Eric Beech)

http://news.yahoo.com/florida-legislature-reaches-tax-deal-budget-crisis-nears-200754422–business.html?soc_src=copy