Why Your Business Will Make It in Tampa Bay

There are constant opportunities, creating a perfect synergy of community, growth and a superb way of life. Tampa Bay is also one of the top 20 markets for startup activity (Kaufmann Index).

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#1

Tampa is the #1 city Americans are moving to now (Realtor.com), and also boasts the highest percentage of 20-29 year olds, according to the latest U.S. census data.

#2

Forbes’ 2nd best city for Young Entrepreneurs.

#3

KPMG ranked Tampa Bay as the 3rd most cost-friendly U.S. business location.

Amazing Talent

Great universities and quality of life attract the best.

Global Connections

International airport, railways and Florida’s largest seaport put the world within your grasp.

Collaborators

Strong support system of investors, business leaders, organizations and mentors who want to help you and Tampa Bay grow.

Window shop some of the many local organizations that excel at launching or helping grow ventures. You could be the next new thing in Tampa Bay.

Incubators and Accelerators

Dreamit UrbanTech Accelerator: Get unprecedented access to Dreamit’s national customer and investor network, and interface with one of the largest real estate development projects in North America.

Embarc Collective: A startup collective – curators of experiences, resources, and environment that help forward-thinking founders and their teams thrive. The mission of Embarc Collective is to make Tampa Bay a prime destination for diverse startup talent to make an impact – professionally and personally.

First WaVE Accelerator: Focus on helping startups build, launch and grow. They’ve helped startups reach $1 million in revenue or investment.

Florida Israel Business Accelerator: Florida-based technology accelerator that is designed to establish and grow successful, high-growth Israeli and Florida tech ventures in the Tampa Bay Area.

Synapse: A non-profit that empowers the innovation community to connect directly with the resources and opportunities they need to find success through an online community and an annual Innovation Summit in Tampa, Florida (January 23 & 24, 2019).

Tampa Bay Innovation Center: Their incubator program provides tech businesses with mentors, educational opportunities, networking and resources to help develop an executable business plan.

USF Tampa Bay Technology Incubator: Supports technology research and advocates the creation and development of facilities for technology companies.

UT Entrepreneurship Center: The University of Tampa Entrepreneurship Center in the Sykes College of Business teaches skills that are critical for today’s entrepreneur.

Capital Providers

Ballast Point Ventures : Seek to invest $5-$12 million in companies that meet their Investment Criteria. They also provide financial resources, operational insight and strategic counsel to entrepreneurs.

Florida Funders: Blends the best of angel investing, venture capital and equity crowdfunding to provide Florida companies with capital and support companies in their early stages.

Florida Venture Forum: A statewide organization that helps entrepreneurs obtain funding through education and effective networking.

Hyde Park Capital: Florida-based private investment banking firm that specializes in mergers and acquisitions, capital raising and other financial advisory needs for middle-market public and private companies.

KLH Capital: KLH infuses more than money into your business, get access to broader capital markets without personal guarantees or risk to personal assists.

Lovett Miller: Provides growth capital and shareholder liquidity for rapidly growing, privately-held companies, with a particular emphasis on technology-enhanced services and healthcare companies.

Skyway Group: Actively advising and investing in lower middle market businesses, they provide capital and strategic resources to accelerate growth and build stronger companies.

Stonehenge Capital: Nationally recognized specialty finance company with expertise in structured tax credit finance, community development and private equity.

Co-Working Spaces

Bay 3: An inspired and flexible coworking environment offering memberships, dedicated desks and private offices inside Armature Works. Executive office suites without the lease! Start or grow your business without being tied down to a lease or contract.

CoCreative South Tampa: Executive office suites without the lease! Start or grow your business without being tied down to a lease or contract.

CoWorkTampa: Provides one-of-a-kind workspaces for like-minded professionals that are comfortable and without distractions. Complete projects, collaborate, launch startups or grow a business.

FirstWaVE Venture Center: In the heart of downtown, the 16,000 sq. ft. center is home to tech startups and entrepreneurial support organizations.

Industrious Tampa: Premium coworking and private offices on the 33rd floor of SunTrust Financial Center in Downtown Tampa.

Regus: Office buildings in several locations across the city that offer businesses the opportunity to expand or contract as needed.

Tampa Hackerspace: A non-profit, member-based workshop that provides equipment, classes and mentoring for various types of projects.

Chambers & Associations

Bay Area Manufacturers Association : BAMA provides a forum to exchange ideas and share best practice information; network with colleagues; and learn about manufacturing related topics through educational programs and tours.

Emerging Leaders of Tampa Bay: A leadership program of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, designed for emerging leaders ages 21 to 35.

Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce: The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit business membership organization dedicated to providing its members with innovative leadership, influential advocacy, inside access and increased opportunities.

Manufacturing Alliance of Hillsborough County : The Manufacturing Alliance of Hillsborough County fuels the growth and longevity of our manufacturing sector. They cultivate the next generation of workers and leaders and help businesses access talent and resources.

New Town Connections : Creates a new kind of social family. One that invites not just memorable experiences, but also genuine connections.

Tampa Bay Technology Forum : Empowering Florida’s largest and fastest growing tech hub.

Tampa Downtown Partnership: Serves as the steward of downtown Tampa, cultivating public and private partnerships, and encouraging downtown’s physical and economic development.

Westshore Alliance: The voice of Tampa’s Westshore district. With 400 member businesses and hundreds of volunteers, the Alliance’s mission is to promote, shape future growth and foster economic prosperity of the Westshore Business District.

Resources & Training

Florida Small Business: Advice for small businesses, from planning to asset protection to branding and funding.

Hillsborough County Startup Business Checklist:  If you are starting a business in Tampa Bay and need some direction, this checklist is a great place to start.

SOFWERX:
Encourages collisions between innovators and special operations officials, created under a Partnership Intermediary Agreement between Doolittle Institute and the United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) Encourages collisions between innovators and special operations officials.

StandUp Tampa: Helps growing businesses take the next step towards success.

StartupBus Tampa: Jump on a bus, create a concept and launch a startup.

Tampa Bay Innovation Alliance: A district anchored by global companies that drive economic activity in the area. Engaging talent, experts and consumers, it acts as the region’s technology hub.

The Florida SBDC at USF: The most experienced economic development network in Florida, this organization provides businesses with the expertise and resources needed to succeed.

USF Connect: The University of South Florida’s business and economic development initiative that provides support for technology startups and is the point of entry for companies that want to do business with the university.

Major Colleges and Universities

Hillsborough Community College :
Comprehensive community college located in Tampa. Founded in 1968, HCC serves over 46,000 students annually at five campuses, three centers and through online offerings.

St. Leo University:
Founded in 1889, Saint Leo University is a leading Catholic teaching institution that enrolls almost 15,000 students across their traditional Florida campus, more than 40 education center and office locations, and online degree programs.

University of South Florida:
High-impact, global research university dedicated to student success. USF is a Top 50 research university, among both public and private institutions nationwide in total research expenditures, according to the National Science Foundation.

University of Tampa:
World-class institution of higher education, offering dynamic opportunities for all learners. Celebrated scholars from around the globe and 7,500 students from all 50 states and 136 countries join in the daily rigors and rewards of an innovative curriculum focused on students’ success.