Business Facilities Economic Development Organization Awards

Business Facilities recognizes EDOs for innovative or impactful programs and initiatives aimed at improving the communities they serve.

Economic Development Organization Awards

Florida Power & Light

Startup Support: Florida Power & Light Company (FPL), a subsidiary of NextEra Energy, a Fortune 200 world leader in clean energy, promotes innovative businesses and high-tech jobs in Florida. This is also the mission of FPL’s 35 Mules program, the first in-house innovation hub backed by the global energy leader. 35 Mules, which sits under FPL’s Office of Economic Development, helps startups of any stage and industry grow and scale their companies, with a focus on establishing roots in Florida. 35 Mules provides each startup with a $100,000 no-equity cash grant, access to Fortune 200 subject matter experts, mentorship/coaching, and rent-free workspace. 35 Mules has supported two cohorts and 13 startup companies, which to date have created more than 20 jobs, raised over $24 million in funding, and secured numerous pilot projects. Organizations in which 35 Mules provided sponsorships include: Synapse Florida, Florida Venture Forum, South Florida Tech Hub, and eMerge Americas. This year, 35 Mules provided $75,000 in no-equity funding for the Synapse Florida Innovation Awards.

Cleco Power

Reorganization Effort: Cleco Power and Cleco Economic Development (LA) completely relaunched and rebranded their economic development efforts. With help from Newmark, Cleco undertook a comprehensive examination of its service area, assets, and identified six target industries, which align to create competitive advantage to companies that locate. The utility hired a new team of professionals and are proactively marketing the region. Cleco is a privately owned, single state electric utility company with a service territory spanning a large portion of Louisiana. With roots dating back to 1935, Cleco is investing in innovative carbon capture and sequestration technology to make its service territory the most competitive and pro-business environment for growing companies. Operating at a scale that allows flexibility and creativity, Cleco is led by a dedicated economic development team of industry veterans with strong relationships among state and regional economic development partners and counts P&G and Nucor Steel among its corporate clients.

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