Image Credits: GEtty Images/Alex Baxter
TAMPA BAY, Fla., Feb. 14, 2020 – There’s a lot to love about Florida, and Florida Realtors® showcased some of the Sunshine State’s best qualities to a 74-plus member delegation of the Spanish International Realty Alliance® (SIRA) this week, just in time for Valentine’s Day.
The group visited the Tampa Bay area on Feb. 12 as part of an “inbound trade mission” to learn more about Florida and potential business opportunities, as well as strengthen ties between SIRA and Florida Realtors, according to 2020 Florida Realtors President Barry Grooms, a Realtor and co-owner of SaraBay Suncoast Realty Inc. in Bradenton.
“Bringing our real estate colleagues from other countries here gives them the opportunity to personally experience what Florida has to offer and explore new ventures,” Grooms said. “This inbound trade mission with SIRA kicks off a new initiative for Florida Realtors, and we look forward to strengthening our global partnerships this year through this exciting new program.”
The two organizations signed a cooperative agreement last year to develop a stronger relationship and explore increased global business opportunities, said SIRA CEO Francis Fernandez Ariza, who headed up the visiting delegation.
With 195,000 Realtor members, Florida Realtors is the largest professional trade association in the state, while the Spanish International Realty Alliance is devoted to training real estate professionals; its members belong to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) as “international Realtors.”
Several area Realtor organizations partnered with Florida Realtors on the inbound trade mission: Greater Tampa Realtors®, Pinellas Realtor® Organization and Central Pasco Chapter, and the Realtor® Association of Sarasota and Manatee.
“Our world is quickly becoming a global village, and the opportunity to show people from other countries all that our area has to offer is so important,” said Corina Silva, chair of Suncoast Global Council, Pinellas Realtor Organization and Central Pasco Chapter. “Seeing photos online is one thing, but actually meeting in person takes it to the next level.”
Added Darlene Davenport, 2020 Greater Tampa Realtors president, “Our Global Business Council, along with adjoining associations, are honored to welcome our real estate colleagues from Spain for a luncheon at the Columbia restaurant followed by tours of our city. We also look forward to sharing insights of Tampa Bay business growth and development opportunities.”
“We are excited to host our colleagues from Spain and show them what makes Florida’s Gulf Coast so special,” said David Clapp, 2020 president of the Realtor Association of Sarasota and Manatee. “Our association has previously partnered with SIRA and we look forward to continuing this partnership as a member of Florida Realtors.”