The Greater Daytona Region is Built with Precision

Technology-driven manufacturers from across the globe find a home in the Greater Daytona Region.

By
Bill Lewis
On Monday, April 27, 2020 - 23:32
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With a job-ready workforce, unmatched educational and training resources and a pro-business environment, the Greater Daytona Region is a prime destination for technology-driven manufacturers from around the world.

The region is home to some of the world’s best-known companies, operating across a broad range of sectors, including medical devices, aviation, aerospace, boat building and tool-and-die production.

“With over 450 diverse companies making rocket engines, propulsion systems, boats, medical devices and liquids, sunglasses, key lime pies and so much more, manufacturing has grown to over 12,000 employees representing over 7% of the area workforce,” says Jayne Fifer, president and CEO of the Volusia Manufacturers Association.

The community is committed to providing the educational and training resources necessary to prepare the workforce of today and tomorrow with the skills that keep manufacturers growing.

“Businesses speak, and this community delivers,” says Fifer.

Wealth of Resources

In the Greater Daytona Region, manufacturers benefit from advantages, including sales-anduse tax exemptions and a wealth of workforce development resources. Volusia County is home to seven post-secondary education institutions, six of which are engaged in providing the future workforce for manufacturers.

The public schools are also dedicated to preparing students for successful manufacturing careers, Fifer says.

“Volusia County Schools are focused on building a STEM workforce, with 39 career academy programs, 11 focused on advanced manufacturing, and increasing numbers of certification programs,” she says.

With the participation of businesses, career academies provide industryfocused preparation and student engagement.

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Jeff Adkins

Thriving on Innovation

The region is home to a growing cluster of manufacturers in marine trades, including boat builders and allied companies, such as Boston Whaler, Teledyne Marine, EdgeWater Boats and Everglades Boats.

Teledyne Marine’s campus encompasses two buildings with 100,000 square feet of manufacturing space and 50,000 square feet for research, development and administration. The company has more than 350 employees, ranging from skilled labor to technical engineering.

“We are fortunate to be able to recruit top talent from several local universities, including Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, University of Central Florida, Florida Institute of Technology and many others. We have been extremely successful in partnering with Daytona State College in terms of workforce training and apprenticeship programs in machining and drafting,” says Cheryl Perreault, the company’s human resources director.

SEAMAX AIRCRAFT, the U.S. affiliate of Brazil’s Construções Aeronáuticas, chose Daytona Beach for its U.S. headquarters, where it is creating 80 jobs. SEAMAX makes the M-22, an amphibious light-sport aircraft.

Other manufacturers with operations in the region include medical device companies Command Medical Products and Medtronic, automotive electronics company Metra Electronics and high-end eyewear and apparel maker Costa Del Mar.

B. Braun Medical Inc., one of the world’s largest medical device manufacturers, invested $100 million to establish its first Florida location in Daytona Beach in 2016. The company is expanding and building a $30 million, 400,000-square-foot distribution center.

Welcoming Community

TECHFIT Digital Surgery Inc. selected Volusia County as its launch pad for expansion internationally. The company was formed by Sampedro, a Colombian manufacturer of medical devices. It took space in Embry- Riddle Aeronautical University’s Research Park for its state-of-the-art prototyping and innovation lab.

The operation will explore new manufacturing technologies and produce products for the company’s trauma, pediatrics and patient-specific implant portfolio. That includes advanced machining facilities and additive manufacturing capability. The lab will be used for the development of new products and piloting of new manufacturing technologies.

“We found the perfect ecosystem from which to innovate and make our business thrive, with access to cutting edge technology and talent at Embry-Riddle, great technical talent in Daytona State College and a welcoming, businessfriendly community that we are sure will be an important catalyst for our strategic growth initiatives,” says Mauricio Velez, TECHFIT chairman.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Bill Lewis is an award-winning business journalist whose work has appeared in publications across the United States.