Institute for Commercialization of Florida Technology Delivers Nearly $1.9 Billion Economic Impact
Increases Underscore Importance of Seed Funds to Spur Company Growth and Economic Prosperity
Boca Raton, FL – October 21, 2019 – The Institute for Commercialization of Florida Technology (the Institute) announced today results of a new study conducted by The Washington Economics Group, Inc.® (WEG), a Coral Gables-based boutique economic consulting firm led by nationally recognized business economist Dr. J. Antonio (Tony) Villamil. The study measured economic impacts of the Institute during FY 2018-19 to update prior years’ studies and concluded that the organization’s impact increased nearly 19% as funded companies continue to raise investment capital, increase sales, create jobs, and bring innovative products to market.
The Institute supports new companies in Florida that create clean jobs in knowledge-based industries that are driving the global economy. By providing seed and early-stage funding, the organization enables businesses to develop and launch products in key industries, including life sciences, information technology, homeland security and defense, logistics and distribution, and manufacturing.
“Although the Institute hasn’t received new funding since 2017, portfolio companies continue to support an innovation and technology-driven economy in Florida, which is a key goal of the State's Economic Development Strategy,” said Renee Finley, Institute Board Chair. “The resources provided by the Institute and its subsidiary, the Florida Technology Seed Capital Fund, have enabled many of Florida’s most promising companies to gain the traction and visibility they need in order to reach critical milestones and bring new products to market.”
Highlights of the new study include:
- overall economic impact for FY2018-19 of $485 million, a 19% increase over FY 2017-18;
- 3,136 total jobs supported in FY2018-19; a total of 12,077 between 2011 – 2019;
- average earnings per direct job created exceeded statewide average;
- capital raised in excess of $300 million, a ratio of 14:1 of additional private investment to State funds;
- GDP impacts of $257 million in FY18-19, a total of $981 million over the eight-year period;
- annual return on investment (ROI) to the state of Florida of over 31x.
"The economic impacts of the Institute increased again in 2019, marking the seventh year of growth and positive results for Florida’s economy,” said Dr. Tony Villamil, founder and senior advisor of The Washington Economics Group, Inc. “Positive outcomes include increases in high-wage employment in 21st century knowledge industries, household income for Florida's residents, and fiscal revenues to the State, all resulting from economic activity created by the Institute."
“Often, a small amount of money can have a great impact during the earliest stages of development,” said Matt Rice, Partner, Ballast Point Ventures. “The Institute has provided a much-needed bridge to help young companies transform ideas into marketable products and services, access larger funding sources and develop entrepreneurial partnerships.”
About the Institute
Formed by the Florida Legislature in 2007, the Institute for Commercialization of Florida Technology is a non-profit organization that supports the seed funding and growth of innovative startup companies in Florida across multiple industries of strategic importance to the state, including the life sciences, information technology, fintech, artificial intelligence, and cybersecurity.
Through the generosity of mentors, advisors and donors, the Institute provides company building services, and seed funding through the Florida Technology Seed Capital Fund, to promising Florida startups. Seventy-two companies have been funded to date, and the Institute’s overall economic impact through June 30, 2019 was nearly $1.9 billion.
About the Washington Economics Group, Inc.®
Founded in 1993 in the City of Coral Gables, The Washington Economics Group is a boutique economic consulting firm specializing in comprehensive economic solutions for businesses. WEG engages a limited number of clients each year in order to ensure the best client experience within premiere areas of specialization, and possesses expertise in the economies of Florida, the U.S., Latin America as well as the global economy and emerging markets.