April 20, 2024

Economic yearbook 2010

Treasure Coast Yearbook 2010

Are Internet companies and alternative energy firms the answer?

Mike Vogel | 4/1/2010

Stuart/Martin County

The recession brought change to Martin County. Always protective of its quality of life and suspicious of growth, Martin finally jumped into the incentives game last year to help local companies and bring in new ones. “I think that we learned we can’t be an island unto ourselves,” says chamber President Joe Catrambone. The housing inventory is shrinking at last, but high demand for new construction is far off. Snowbirds continue to be a vital part of the economy.

Person to Watch

» James Crocker opened the new headquarters for his Waterblasting Technologies in July and plans to hire 20 workers to add to its existing 100 as he rolls out a new product and accessory line. The company makes vehicles that use ultra-high-pressure waterblasting to clean and remove paint and rubber buildup from runways and roadways. In January 2009, the company had no back orders. One year later, it has orders for 16 trucks. Crocker expects 15% growth this year. “We are thriving.” He has come out with a new filter system that allows his equipment to reuse its water, reducing overall water use to a fraction of that used by older gear.

Business to Watch

» After hiring 15 in 2009 in production, engineering, tooling and facilities, airframe structure manufacturer Vought Aircraft Industries will hire 20 by year-end, mostly in production, to add to its existing 235 employees. It plans to hire another 65 by 2012.

Who’s Hiring

» SOL, a Palm City solar lighting company, won attention for sending 130 outdoor solar light systems, valued at $300,000, to Haiti to aid recovery efforts there. The company will add three to its Florida workforce this year. CEO Rick Schuette has been on the job less than two years.

» The six-employee Level 3 Inspections, which specializes in high-tech inspection of precision products and production tooling in the aerospace, biomed and other industries, plans to hire 33 over three years at an average wage of $58,000. “We need people who understand computer-aided design, dimensional blueprints and inspection requirements,” says Bill Greene. Knowledge of jet engines and orthopedic implants also helps.

» Coaxial Components in Stuart, a maker of connectors, adapters and cable assemblies for the military and commercial market, will add 10 to 14 over three to five years to its existing 14.

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