Make us your home page

Tampa Bay's biggest public companies enjoy strong year

The billionaire's club is back.

For the first time in four years, the 10 biggest public companies based in the Tampa Bay area each posted revenues north of $1 billion.

Unemployment is still high; the bay area has reclaimed the unwanted throne as king of foreclosures; and financial distress among Tampa Bay residents remains at an "emergency crisis" level, according to one analysis.

Yet the region's corporate community — at least based on its relatively small cluster of public companies — is doing just fine.

Nine of the top 10 public companies here enjoyed rising revenues, with six of them relishing double-digit percentage increases. The sole exception was TECO Energy, which, unlike those companies in tourism and construction, does not do as well financially during milder weather due to the related lower electric bills.

Does that corporate resurgence bode well for the area's overall economy?

Raymond James Financial chief economist Scott Brown, whose company happens to be among the Top 10, said a rebound in corporate revenues and profits "certainly doesn't hurt" the area's economy. But he hesitated to draw a corollary between how well businesses do compared to the average citizen.

"You'd probably expect to see more job growth relative to strong sales activity, but you're still seeing an emphasis on cost-cutting," Brown said.

"Corporate profits have done pretty well. Real wages haven't really done much at all. Hopefully, we'll see raises this year, but I'm not counting on it. My sense is there is still a lot of downward pressure on wages unless you are in a high-skill field, certain technical fields."

The leaders of Tech Data and Jabil Circuit — by a broad margin the two biggest public companies in the bay area — say their good fortunes globally are having a broader impact in giving the community a lift.

"I think a rising corporate tide will help the local economy," Tech Data chief executive Bob Dutkowsky says, "but it may take a little time."

Adds Jabil CEO Tim Main: "The better the company does globally, the better the staffing payroll and stability and employee growth will be locally."

Jabil is the region's biggest public company by market value; Tech Data is No. 1 by revenues. Both devote most of their focus and manpower far away from Tampa Bay, however.

Out of Tech Data's 8,500 workers in 100 countries, only 1,700 live in the bay area; Jabil, with a much grander global workforce pushing 121,000, has nearly 2,000 local employees, including about 100 hired over the past six months.

Jabil has significantly expanded product development and design locally, although its defense business out of St. Petersburg has not done as well as hoped, Main said.

During the recession, Jabil tabled plans for a major headquarters expansion that promised to bring as many as 2,000 more jobs in return for millions of dollars in tax incentives. Last week, Main said there still is no news about the expansion, but "we'd sure like to decide sometime in the near future, in the next three to six months."

Regardless of the verdict on the expansion, Main indicated that companies like Jabil are already having a positive impact in spending more locally. "When the companies do well, they hire additional corporate staff, product development," he said. "They spend more and they invest more."

Tech Data's Dutkowsky said a desire to focus on community building spurred this month's launch of the Tech Data Foundation, an enterprise created to invest in education and health initiatives.

It was long overdue, Dutkowsky said. "In almost 40 years in business, we had not had a charitable organization here at Tech Data."

The charitable foundation will support community efforts everywhere the company does business.

"But we have the single biggest concentration of employees anywhere in the world here in Tampa Bay," Dutkowsky said. "Chances are, employees are more involved here than anywhere else."

Jeff Harrington can be reached at or (727) 893-8242.



 Several companies posted huge revenue jumps: Jabil Circuit revenue was up 23 percent to $16.5 billion, while Cott Corp. jumped 30 percent to $2.3 billion.

 More than half the companies reported a double-digit increase in revenue.

 Only one company (TECO Energy) saw falling revenues.

 The names haven't changed, but the order jumbled a little bit. Raymond James leapfrogged HSN to become fifth-largest.

 Look for OSI, the parent company of Outback Steakhouse, to immediately jump back into the Top 5 when it goes public again this year.

 The smallest of the top 10 had the highest-paid chief executive. Kforce CEO David Dunkel made $11.7 million in total compensation, up 43 percent from the prior year.

 Lincare CEO John Byrnes was the lowest-paid leader with total compensation of $968,770. Byrnes is a few years removed from when he led all comers with his 2009 payout of $19.8 million. That compensation package was inflated with one-time stock awards intended to carry him through until his contract ends after 2012.

 TECO Energy CEO John

Ramil had the single largest percentage increase in compensation (up 73 percent to $5.07 million) while Cott Corp. CEO Jerry Fowden had the single-biggest drop (down 63 percent to $2.15 million)





Tech Data Corp.


Jabil Circuit Inc.


WellCare Health Plans



Energy Inc.


Raymond James



HSN Inc.


Cott Corp.








Kforce Inc.


TOP 10


Tech Data Corp.

2. Jabil Circuit Inc.

3. WellCare Health Plans

4. TECO Energy Inc.

5. Raymond James Financial

6. HSN Inc.

7. Cott Corp.

8. Lincare Holdings

9. Sykes Enterprises

10. Kforce Inc.

Tampa Bay's biggest public companies enjoy strong year 05/26/12 [Last modified: Saturday, May 26, 2012 4:32am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Pinellas licensing board asks Sen. Jack Latvala for $500,000 loan

    Local Government

    The troubled Pinellas County agency that regulates contractors wants Sen. Jack Latvala to help it get a $500,000 lifeline from the state to stay afloat.

    State Sen . Jack Latvala, R- Clearwater, is being asked to help the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board get $500,000 from the state so it can stay open beyond February.  [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
  2. In advertising, marketing diversity needs a boost in Tampa Bay, nationally


    TAMPA — Trimeka Benjamin was focused on a career in broadcast journalism when she entered Bethune-Cookman University.

    From left, Swim Digital marketing owner Trimeka Benjamin discusses the broad lack of diversity in advertising and marketing with 22 Squared copywriter Luke Sokolewicz, University of Tampa advertising/PR professor Jennifer Whelihan, Rumbo creative director George Zwierko and Nancy Vaughn of the White Book Agency. The group recently met at The Bunker in Ybor City.
  3. Tampa Club president seeks assessment fee from members


    TAMPA — The president of the Tampa Club said he asked members last month to pay an additional assessment fee to provide "additional revenue." However, Ron Licata said Friday that the downtown business group is not in a dire financial situation.

    Ron Licata, president of the Tampa Club in downtown Tampa. [Tampa Club]
  4. Under Republican health care bill, Florida must make up $7.5 billion


    If a Senate bill called the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 becomes law, Florida's government would need to make up about $7.5 billion to maintain its current health care system. The bill, which is one of the Republican Party's long-promised answers to the Affordable Care Act imposes a cap on funding per enrollee …

    Florida would need to cover $7.5 billion to keep its health care program under the Republican-proposed Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017.  [Times file photo]
  5. Amid U.S. real estate buying binge by foreign investors, Florida remains first choice

    Real Estate

    Foreign investment in U.S. residential real estate recently skyrocketed to a new high with nearly half of all foreign sales happening in Florida, California and Texas.

    A National Association of Realtors annual survey found record volume and activity by foreign buyers of U.S. real estate. Florida had the highest foreign investment activity, followed by California and Texas. [National Association of Realtors]