TAMPA — Gov. Rick Scott swung through Tampa on Tuesday to celebrate the opening of Think Anew's first Florida location.
The company, based in Madison, Miss., specializes in providing information technology infrastructure and support to health care companies and just moved into a suite at an office park on Tech Boulevard, off Columbus Drive.
The company picked Tampa over locations in Florida and in other states mainly because of its stream of potential workers coming from local colleges and universities, said Don Glidewell, Think Anew's chief executive officer.
"That's really what brought us here, seeking out that tech talent that we couldn't find in other areas," Glidewell said.
The company has eight employees in the new office and is in the process of hiring another 19. The positions include help desk workers and computer engineers and Glidewell hopes to have them filled by the end of the year.
"A lot of people think about all the big companies that add 100 jobs here, 500 jobs there," Scott said. "But the reality is this state and most states grow with small companies that are adding five jobs here, 10 jobs there."
"Think Anew could have gone anywhere," Scott said. "They looked at a variety of locations but picked the Tampa area because they knew we have the right work force, we have a growing economy and there would be a lot of opportunities here."
Think Anew will receive a total of $100,000 in tax refunds over several years — $80,000 from the state and $20,000 split between Hillsborough County and the city of Tampa — if it produces 20 new high wage jobs, according to the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation.
Scott said the project was made possible through partnerships among Enterprise Florida, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the city of Tampa, Hillsborough County and the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation.
Stacy White, chairman of the Hillsborough County Commission, welcomed Think Anew, saying, "We recognize the tremendous value that the information technology sector contributes to our region's economic future."