Valpak Hosts CEOs at Manufacturing Center, Discusses Tampa Bay’s Growth as Tech Hub
St. Petersburg, Fla. (February 24, 2023)— Valpak, America’s direct mail marketing leader and trusted source for data collection capabilities, recently welcomed local Tampa Bay area technology CEOs to its manufacturing facility to discuss raising the area’s profile as a center for technological innovation.
The event marked the first 2023 meeting of the Tampa Bay Tech CEO Council, a select peer group within the larger non-profit organization that brings together the “largest and fastest growing tech organizations in Tampa Bay and beyond.” With a focus on engaging and uniting the local technology community, it has worked to foster industry growth in the greater Tampa Bay and St. Petersburg areas for 22 years.
Valpak CEO & President Chris Cate welcomed the CEO Council, a collaborative group of 38 executives from industry-leading tech companies in the area, to its state-of-the-art production facility on February 15. The Valpak Manufacturing Center – where Valpak prints and mails hundreds of millions of direct mail pieces each year – is itself a testament to technological innovation, making it the ideal setting for this gathering.
Cate led a tour for attendees, highlighting the technological capabilities of the 470,000 square foot building that is virtually run by automation. He also offered an operations overview and description of how Valpak helps local businesses grow, consumers save and neighborhoods thrive, all thanks to its cutting edge technological infrastructure. Together, the CEO Council discussed challenges and opportunities around hiring and retaining local talent in the area, as well as how to help each other grow through referrals and/or direct collaboration. Both tasks will remain core objectives of the peer group, with select CEOs already partnering with local high schools and colleges on educational initiatives.
Having served on the Board of Directors for Tampa Bay Tech for five years, Cate is no stranger to capitalizing on innovation to grow a company. He brings expertise built on decades of work in IT, including supporting the development of the Valpak Manufacturing Center and countless business transformations.
When asked about his path to CEO and how IT has factored into the evolution of his career, he said, “My technology background and mindset have directly contributed to my ability to take on the CEO role. Building forward-thinking teams that execute and achieve their goals, leading with an Agile Enterprise/Servant Leadership focus and driving a culture of innovation that generates company growth are all highly transferrable skills. These have prepared me for my current role, and I hope to leverage them into success for the CEO Council as we work to foster a thriving tech hub in Valpak’s backyard.”
Jack Berlin, CEO at Tampa software company Accusoft and Chair of the CEO Council added, “Many thanks to Valpak for hosting the first CEO Council of 2023. The entire group, myself included, was so impressed with the investment, efficiency and range of technology being used at the VMC. A facility like this sparks many conversations about what is possible in the Tampa-St. Pete area, which is full of innovators and future tech leaders. What a wonderful ambassador Chris and Valpak are for the region.”
Synergy between Valpak and the local tech community has encouraged the company to explore new opportunities in data collection, business intelligence and digital marketing, with a discernible increase since Cate was promoted to CEO & President in 2021. It’s also led to a collaboration with a local cybersecurity company, saving Valpak thousands of dollars and helping local businesses to thrive – a core part of the Valpak mission.
For Valpak, the recent CEO Council event was part a larger, fruitful discussion about the area’s emergence as a technology hub. Since 1968, the company has been a staple in the greater Tampa Bay community, delivering the Blue Envelope of savings to 41 million homes across the country from its St. Petersburg location. It looks forward to continuing this mission as it collaborates with other tech leaders to support and develop the next generation of talent in Tampa Bay.
About Tampa Bay Tech
Tampa Bay Tech is a non-profit technology council engaging and uniting the local technology community for 22 years. Through our memberships and partnerships, our mission is to build a radically connected, flourishing tech hub where opportunity is abundant for all. To learn more about getting involved with a membership for your company visit www.tampabay.tech.
Valpak is the nation's premier direct mailer, trusted for 55 years by thousands of local and national businesses. We drive sales and brand awareness through easy-to-measure, results-oriented advertising solutions that work. Our network of nearly 140 local offices provides unparalleled customer service and market knowledge to business owners in 42 U.S. states. Each month, our Blue Envelope of savings mails to more than 41 million demographically targeted households, and we offer a diverse suite of additional, fully customizable solutions driven by best-in-class data and targeting capabilities. Contact us today at valpak.com/advertise or connect on Twitter: @Valpak and Facebook: @ValpakAdvertising.