Press Release

Applications Now Accepted for Tech-focused Grant Program

Orlando, Fla. –The Orlando Economic Partnership (the Partnership) is now accepting applications from organizations and companies who wish to apply for a grant through the Orlando Technology Community Support Pilot Program. The program, developed in partnership with and funded by the City of Orlando, provides matching grants up to $10,000 from a pool of $65,000 (pilot year) to help develop tech-focused events that will unite the local tech workforce and community.

“As part of the city’s economic development strategy, we continue to focus on growing and nurturing a strong tech and entrepreneurial community in Orlando,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. “We are pleased to partner with the Orlando Economic Partnership on this new matched-funding program to support technology focused activities and programs that will build our tech talent pipeline and increase Orlando’s reputation as a tech hub.”

To qualify, four key goals must be met including: increasing the connection and collaboration among start-up and existing tech companies; building the tech talent pipeline; catalyzing private capital investments; and increasing Orlando’s reputation as a tech hub. A panel of volunteer judges, brought together by the Orlando Economic Partnership, will review applications and make selections. Judges include industry and community leaders that reflect the breadth of expertise in areas considered critical to assessing the viability of the events. The panel includes:

  • Tom Carbone | Technical Director, FIEA / Studio Director, Iron Galaxy
    Before joining FIEA, Tom was one of the lead programmers on Madden Football, produced by EA at its Orlando-based Tiburon Studios. He is also currently Studio Director of Iron Galaxy Orlando. 
  • Katrina Deleon | Business Development, Gravitational Marketing
    Katrina is in business development for Gravitational Marketing, focusing on Partnerships and Emerging Markets. Also, as the President of the local American Marketing Association, Katrina strives to bring together the marketing community to learn, grow and connect to reach their fullest individual potential.
  • Tomas Diaz | CEO, flexReceipts
    A seasoned leader and visionary expert on what grabs – and holds – that attention of consumers, Tomas is flexReceipts’ founder and chief executive. A passionate, enthusiastic, and energetic leader, he holds people to a high standard precisely because he expects everyone – from employees to vendors and customers – to hold him to one as well. 
  • Phil Dumas | Founder, Unikey
    An engineer by degree, but entrepreneur by practice, Phil has played key roles in several startup and early-stage companies. Most recently, he founded Unikey Technologies, a secure mobile key platform and experience company focused on smart enabling leading access control company’s portfolios. Phil is also known for his appearance on ABC’s Shark Tank.
  • Jacques Fu | CTO & Co-Founder, Fattmerchant
    Jacques is a technology leader experienced in executing new technology products with early revenue and traction. As the current CTO and technical co-founder at Fattmerchant he and his team have built a payment platform processing over $1B annually.  

The City of Orlando will also appoint a representative, who is yet to be named. All judges are required to submit written disclosures of conflicts of interest and recuse themselves from evaluating specific application(s) for which there is a conflict. Additionally, the Orlando Economic Partnership staff will not serve on the panel.

The full grant program overview and application are posted online. Online applications must be submitted through the web site by midnight on Friday, June 29, 2018.

Judges will complete and submit their individual evaluations of qualifying applications to the Partnership support staff by Monday, August 6. Final award determinations will be made by consensus agreement among the judges by August 10, 2018. Announcements of awardees will be made by posting to the Partnership website on August 17, 2018.