Central Florida commercial real estate monitors have suspected it for the last two years. Now a new study by an Austin, TX consultant group notes metro Orlando’s high-tech industry brings in more dollars to the community than any other category of business, including king tourism and queen entertainment.

But this area received failing grades for neglecting to trumpet its high-tech companies to the rest of the nation and the world. And in doing so, the community fell far behind other metro areas in attracting venture capital for even more high-tech startup companies, according to Angelos Angelou, president of Angelou Economic Advisors Inc., who coordinated the 200-page study.

For example, Orlando has more high-tech firms than Austin, TX, a high-tech hot spot, but Austin easily attracted more venture dollars than Orlando. Orlando picked up $18.32 million in venture-capital deals last year. Austin landed $232.6 million worth of transactions. Raleigh-Durham, NC was right behind Austin with $193.5 million; San Diego, $192.7 million; Atlanta, $178 million; and Dallas, $156.7 million.

Even more embarrassing, area entrepreneurs search for seed money in Silicon Valley, Boston, New York and Atlanta but not in Orlando where the banking community isn’t yet attuned to the needs and value of the high-tech industry here, the report concludes.

In a line-by-line economic value comparison with tourism, another researcher, Technology Strategy Reports of Metro Orlando, shows:

Jobs–technology, direct, 69,961; indirect, 174,900; total, 244,861. Tourism, direct, 163, 414; indirect, 81,700; total, 245,114.

.Wages–technology, direct, $2.8 billion; indirect, $7 billion; total, $9.8 billion. Tourism, direct, $2.9 billion; indirect, $1.5 billion; total, $4.4 billion.

Average annual pay–technology, $40,300; tourism, $18,000.

In metro Orlando’s immediate four-county hub, 4,800 high-tech firms employ 70,000 in Orange, Seminole, Osceola and Lake Counties. Factoring in neighboring Volusia and Brevard Counties, there are 6,841 companies with a work force of 119,311.

Among the big-name companies based in Orlando are Cirent Semiconductor, Lockheed Martin Corp. and Milcom Inc. The $40,000 study was commissioned by the city of Orlando, Orange County and the Economic Development Commission of Mid-Florida Inc.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?


© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.


Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join GlobeSt.com now!

  • Free unlimited access to GlobeSt.com's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2024 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.