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Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist

Robert Trigaux

Robert Trigaux joined the Times as a business writer in 1991. In 2000, he began writing a business column three times a week. He served as business editor from 2005 to 2008, when he resumed his role as business columnist. While at the Times, he has covered a range of beats including banking and finance, technology, telecommunications, energy and economic development. He has received various awards for business writing, including two Green Eyeshades from the Society of Professional Journalists, a commendation for column writing from the Society of American Business Editors and Writers and a first place in business columns from the National Association of Newspaper Columnists.

In the late 1970s, Robert started his business journalism career in New York writing for various business publications covering topics from technology to the furniture industry. At the American Banker, a daily national newspaper, he covered the financial industry in New York and London, then served for eight years as its bureau chief in Washington, D.C. He holds an economics degree from Colgate University.

Phone: (727) 893-8405


Blog: Venture

Twitter: @VentureTampaBay

  1. Brexit backlash hits Tampa Bay companies


    'Brexit' backlash hits Tampa Bay companies

    Backlash to Britain's "Brexit" vote to exit the European Union pounded stocks worldwide with the Dow closing down Friday by 610 points. Shares of Tampa Bay's companies were not immune.

    Nearly every publicly traded area corporation watched its stock price drop in response to the Brexit vote and the sharp uptick in global uncertainty spurred by that action....

    St. Petersburg's Raymond James Financial is one Tampa Bay company that saw its stock price drop on Friday. 
DAVID W DOONAN   |    Special to Times
  2. New Major League Baseball stadiums face high prices and shrinking lifespans

    Economic Development

    The Tampa Bay Rays are hardly alone in their anxious enthusiasm to vacate their current baseball stadium for a new and shiny one that will generate more revenue and, baseball gods willing, higher attendance.

    Stadium fever is alive and well in a surprising number of Major League Baseball metro areas across the country. It's as if all 30 MLB franchises see a bigger, better, newer stadium as much or even more of a competitive asset as the team that wins games on the field. ...

    Fans arrive at the new Marlins Park stadium in Miami before the 2012 Opening Day baseball game between the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals. [Associated Press (2012)]
  3. Tampa Bay Partnership 2.0: To meet regional challenge, economic advocacy group reinvents itself

    Economic Development

    As Tampa Bay struggles to meet growing regional challenges, the need is greater than ever for a reinvigorated economic development group that can transcend parochial city and county borders.

    So goes the argument of business leaders who fear this metro-wide area lacks a clear and influential regional voice when it comes to driving real progress on major initiatives from transportation, workforce talent and education to entrepreneurship and marketing....

    Rick Homans, the new CEO of the Tampa Bay Partnership, is leading an effort to re-invent the group's leadership. SKIP  O'ROURKE  |  TImes

  4. Stock markets may waffle in 2016 but these 10 Tampa Bay area stocks are heading up — or down


    The overall stock market may be unable to make up its mind this year which way it's heading. But the shares of some leading Tampa Bay area companies seem to have chosen their own direction.


    Or down.

    Sure, the stocks of many of the dozens of publicly traded area corporations have continued to waffle back and forth since the start of 2016, up briefly on good news only to droop weeks later on more somber information. Just like the broader markets....

    SeaWorld must reinvent itself without its killer whale shows.
  5. St. Petersburg's Jabil looks to fresh markets as demand slows for Apple's iPhone


    Thanks a lot, Apple.

    That's the simplest way to explain the sharp decline in earnings just reported by St. Petersburg-based Jabil. The bottom line of the manufacturing design and production company, which has long made iPhone parts for Apple as the smartphone took the world by storm, is wincing now that the world's iPhone obsession appears to be waning.

    Apple is Jabil's biggest customer and accounts for a substantial portion of its profits....

    St. Petersburg-based Jabil is feeling the effects of slowing Apple Iphone sales. The company is looking to cut costs and is turning to robots to replace workers at its factories in China. This file photo shows a Jabil factory in Guangzhou, China.
  6. Florida generated 7th fastest growing GDP in 2015 but still trailed major rivals


    Florida enjoyed a bullish gain to its state gross domestic product of 3.1 percent last year, ranking it seventh among the states. But some of Florida's biggest rivals — large population states that it likes to compare itself against — outgrew the Sunshine State.

    Specifically the GDP of California, the state Florida Gov. Rick Scott most likes to disparage for its high taxes and costs, grew 4.1 percent, tied with Oregon as the fastest-growing state economy in the nation. And Texas, the giant Sunbelt state Scott most likes to fashion Florida after, saw its GDP grow 3.8 percent in 2015. That ranked Texas No. 2 in the country in GDP growth....

  7. Survey: To woo millennial talent, Tampa Bay must stand out from competing metros

    Economic Development

    If Colleen Chappell had her way, she would run every person in the Tampa Bay area through a marketing boot camp to learn precisely what makes this region great now and even greater tomorrow.

    Then she'd send them all out to those metro areas deemed arch competitors of Tampa Bay. In Atlanta, Charlotte, Nashville and Dallas, they'd make their pitch directly to talented millennials on why the bay area is a more promising and affordable place to build a career and enjoy the lifestyle....

    A new survey shows Tampa Bay ranks highly among millennials when compared to cities it competes with for young talent -- Atlanta, Dallas, Charlotte and Nashville. CHERIE DIEZ  | Times

  8. Media, health care giant Hearst buying majority stake in Tampa software firm MedHOK


    Media giant Hearst, known for its ownership stakes in the A&E and History cable channels as well as the Houston Chronicle newspaper and Cosmopolitan magazine, is expanding its health care interests with the purchase of a majority stake in Tampa medical software firm MedHOK.

    Launched in 2010, MedHOK provides health care compliance software connecting pharmacies and medical data. It ranked 25th nationwide in 2014 in Inc. magazine's annual ranking of the fastest-growing companies in America. That year, MedHOK grew more than 9,000 percent with revenues of just over $17 million. Last year's revenues topped $40 million....

  9. Will an Obama policy change squeeze Tampa's Health Insurance Innovations out of its key market?


    Shares in an 8-year-old Tampa insurance company that administers short-term medical plans dropped to an all-time low Monday following last week's proposed change in federal rules governing its business, as well as an analyst's downgrade.

    Health Insurance Innovations, which went public in 2013 and now employs nearly 200, saw its shares top $15 early that year. But the stock started to droop in latter 2014 and hit a low of $4.25 last fall. After improving to $7.47 last month, the latest double whammy on Monday drove down Health Insurance Innovations' stock by 11.3 percent, closing at a record low of $4.03....

  10. Trigaux: People in the Tampa Bay area are paying way too much for cars


    When it comes to car buying, concerns are accelerating that too many folks are getting stretched too thin. There's even some talk of a financial bubble.

    Certainly not on par with the Florida housing bubble that burst in 2006. But still one that could damage the economy and even hasten the next recession.

    That is, of course, a guess. But a good one. What we know for sure is that too many people are buying too many higher-priced new vehicles with too little down while borrowing too much for too long....

    The average monthly payment for a car loan has shot above $500 for the first time and the average length of car loans is now 5 years and 8 months, both signs that people are likely busting their budgets to pay for cars they cannot afford. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)  GAJB201
  11. Tampa-based Outback Steakhouse and Carrabba's Italian Grill fall from top spots in restaurant poll


    Outback Steakhouse and Carrabba's Italian Grill, two of Tampa-based Bloomin' Brands anchor restaurant chains, were deposed from their No. 1 rankings in an annual Harris Poll Equitrend survey that measures how people feel about restaurant brands.

    Outback, which ranked tops in the "casual dining" segment of restaurants in 2015, lost its spot to the International House of Pancakes (IHOP) but still managed to hold on to the No. 2 spot. And Carrabba's, No. 1 in last year's Harris Poll for Italian restaurants, fell further, dropping below this year's new segment winner, Olive Garden, but also below Maggiano's Little Italy restaurant chain....

    Tampa-based Outback Steakhouse has fallen from its No. 1 ranking in the Harris Poll. Photo courtesy Plaza Advisors.
  12. As more costly nuclear power plants face closure, industry's rebound only gets tougher


    The more the nuclear power industry mopes over its once bright future the more that vision darkens.

    The latest marketing pitch aimed at reviving a clearly overpriced nuke business is to claim that nuclear power is America's best new friend in the battle against climate change. Close those polluting coal power plants, nuclear proponents say. Build more nukes instead and enjoy round-the-clock electricity — carbon free....

    Duke Energy's Crystal River nuclear plant, shown in this 2013 photo, was decommissioned. [Times]
  13. Trigaux: St. Petersburg's Raymond James Financial cracks Fortune 500 rankings


    Seventeen public corporations from Florida made the 2016 Fortune 500 list, unveiled Monday, of the largest companies ranked by revenues.

    The new area arrival to the list: St. Petersburg's Raymond James Financial, ranked No. 482 after jumping 39 spots from No. 521 in 2015. Ten years ago, in 2006, Raymond James ranked No. 769. Its ascendancy to the Fortune 500 list this year reflects its aggressive growth strategy, one likely to be demonstrated in next year's ranking as well. The Florida investment and brokerage firm continues its push into the Northeast and California markets to pursue deep and long established pockets of wealth on both coasts of the country....

    St. Petersburg’s Raymond James Financial is now a Fortune 500 company. [DAVID W. DOONAN | Special to the Times] 
  14. Home values further divide bay area haves and have-nots

    Real Estate

    The so-called housing recovery across the Tampa Bay metro area has proved to be grossly uneven and in many ways unfair.

    Since 2004, shortly before the Florida housing bubble burst, some pockets of high-end homes by 2015 appreciated strongly. Yet broad swaths of the Tampa Bay region — notably coastal Pasco and Hernando counties, where average-priced housing already was less expensive — suffered major declines in value between 2004 and 2015....

    A study of home values since 2004 shows that ZIP codes of pricey homes, including this area of Davis Islands in Tampa, have increased in value, while neighborhoods with more modest homes have decreased in value. The large home in the middle of this photo belongs to former New York Yankess star Derek Jeeter. SCOTT KEELER | TIMES
  15. Household icon Johnson & Johnson nabs Clearwater hair care firm Vogue International in $3.3 billion deal


    After nearly 30 years of building a hair and body care products business, a privately held Clearwater company called Vogue International hit it big financially Thursday when it sold for $3.3 billion to one of the world's best regarded consumer products companies: Johnson & Johnson.

    Multibillion-dollar transactions involving a local company and a global giant with a household name don't come along every day....