Pasco company to add 110 jobs in new research center

Published February 16
Updated February 20

NEW PORT RICHEY — Welbilt, a manufacturer of commercial kitchen equipment, is expanding its operations in Pasco County, adding 110 jobs in a planned research and development center.

The company, which is receiving $650,000 in county incentives, plans to build a 35,000-square-foot office building and a 190-space parking garage. The deal, previously called Project Apple 2.0, represents a $13 million investment from Welbilt, the county said.

The Welbilt Technology Center currently employs 80 in a 41,000-square-foot building on 5 acres on a street that carries its name, Welbilt Boulevard, in Trinity in the southwest portion of the county.

The average salaries for the new jobs will be $68,770, or double the average annual wage in Pasco County. Tuesday morning, Pasco commissioners approved the incentive package which includes $50,000 for each job created, plus tax breaks and training dollars.

Bill Cronin, president and CEO of Pasco’s Economic Development Council, previously said the county was competing with sites in Texas and the Midwest for Welbilt’s research and development center. Commissioner Kathryn Starkey said the company also considered moving to Pinellas County.

Welbilt operates in 38 locations in 12 countries with over 5,000 employees providing the world’s top chefs, premier chain operators and growing independents with industry-leading equipment, the PEDC said in a released statement.