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GOVERNOR CRIST TOURS ST. PETERSBURG BUSINESSES


GOVERNOR CRIST TOURS ST. PETERSBURG BUSINESSES

October 13, 2008

Contact:

GOVERNOR'S PRESS OFFICE
850-488-5394

ST. PETERSBURG - As part of his ongoing focus on local businesses and strengthening the economy, Governor Charlie Crist today visited St. Petersburg business Valpak Direct Marketing Systems Inc. and Techno-Solis, a manufacturer of solar pool heating panels.

"Florida's business leaders and entrepreneurs are among the most innovative in the world, and we must continue to ensure that the Sunshine State preserves our business friendly environment," Governor Crist said. "I applaud Valpak and Techno-Solis for their commitment to do business in a way that cuts energy costs - and is good for our natural environment."

In 2007, Valpak announced plans to consolidate its production facilities and build a new $200 million state-of-the-art production facility in St. Petersburg. Valpak's 470,000 square feet of manufacturing and office space make it one the largest manufacturing facilities in the Tampa Bay area. Valpak has designed a completely new manufacturing process and built the facility to support its anticipated growth over the next 10 to 20 years. The new facility utilizes some of the world's most advanced systems in printing, collation, packaging, warehouse, material movement, and mail distribution.

To help reduce energy costs, Valpak has invested in energy-efficient systems and equipment. In addition, many of the raw materials used at the facility are recycled through built-in waste management systems. Valpak selects material suppliers that have environmentally friendly products and services. Valpak currently has about 1,300 full-time employees in Pinellas County, along with another 200 temporary contract employees. Governor Crist met with the company's president, Joe Bourdow, chief executive officer Bill Disbrow and employees.

Sebastian Bourgeois, owner of Techno-Solis, demonstrated for Governor Crist how the company makes durable and reliable solar panels. With an international distribution, Techno-Solis panels withstand freezing temperatures, blistering heat and hurricane force winds.