This week, the Orlando region receives new national and global accolades and more local companies announce plans for growth.
Message from the Orlando Tech Council Chair
Members of the Orlando Tech Community,
Can you believe 2021 Q1 is already behind us? I received my first vaccine this week and feel I’m slowly stepping out of the shadows of 2020. With the vaccine rollouts being opened up to all adults next week, I hope everyone is taking advantage of the fantastic work being done by our tireless health care professionals.
This week in the Orlando region, Rollins College’s annual Venture Plan Competition announces its finalists, including Athliance, which bases its tech operations in Orlando. The program continues to see an increase in applications year over year, with its pool of finalists continuing to be top-tier, including past winners Fattmerchant and Luminar. Congratulations to this year’s winners.
Another local startup grown right out of the University of Central Florida announces plans to double its production capacity and create more jobs this year. Capacitech’s Cable-Based Capacitor (CBC) was developed by a UCF student and his professor and launched out of UCF’s I-Corps startup training program. This CBC will prove to be crucial as mobile electronics continue to grow smaller and smaller.
ESI ThoughtLab just announced Orlando as one of 20 global ‘Cities 4.0’, which are categorized as “cities that are leaders in the use of smart technology, data and partnership to achieve social, environmental and other goals,” according to GCN. One of only six cities in the U.S. to receive this title, their report found “a complete correlation between technology and achieving better social environment and economic returns,” according to ESI ThoughtLab CEO Lou Celi. Our government partners have been working hard on sustainable initiatives and it’s wonderful to see it being recognized on a global scale. You can read the full report here.
Focusing now on biotech, the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford triangle was just named the third fastest-growing region for life sciences employment after comparing industry employment rates across the past five+ years. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue and the Atlanta area top the list. On that note, I will be doing a webinar with GuideWell Innovation Lab next Wednesday @ 10:30am titled “Lean Experimentation & Culture Building”. You are welcome to join – click here to RSVP.
Stay tuned for more news, events and ways to connect with the Orlando region’s tech and innovation economy.
Orlando Tech Council Chair
Profiles in Tech
Nick Walsh, COO of Envy Labs
This week’s Orlando Profiles in Tech features Nick Walsh, COO of Envy Labs. Read how Star Wars Weekends led to one of his best clients and what it means to have a “yes, and…” tech culture. Click here.
Rollins College Venture Plan Competition announces finalists, companies plan to expand
Rollins College’s annual Venture Plan Competition announced this year’s three finalists, including Athliance, which bases its tech operations in Orlando. The pitch event saw a 20 percent increase in applications over 2020 and the Crummer Graduate School of Business expects it to continue to grow. Click here to read more.
UCF I-Corps training program graduate Capacitech to double its manufacturing and add jobs
A supercapacitor company born from the partnership of a UCF student and his professor is now planning for significant growth in 2021. Capacitech’s Cable-Based Capacitor (CBC) is unique in its application and is ideal to optimize space when miniaturizing electronics. Read more here.
Orlando named one of 20 global ‘Cities 4.0’, where smart meets sustainable
Orlando was named one of 20 global “Cities 4.0” by ESI ThoughtLab. Determined by data collected from 167 city leaders from 82 countries around the world, as well as additional information on city services and quality of life from sources including World Bank, Numbeo and others. ESI’s study found “a complete correlation between technology and achieving better social environment and economic returns.” Learn more about this global accolade here.
Orlando region makes top three list of fastest growing biotech hubs in the country
A new report from JLL names the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford triangle the third fastest-growing area for life sciences employment after comparing industry employment rates across the past five+ years. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue and the Atlanta area top the list. Read more here.
Save the Date | Upcoming Events
Events for the Week of April 5
Tuesday, April 6
9 a.m., UCF – An Intro to the SIR/STTR Programs
4:30 p.m., Synapse – Libate & Learn: Creative Financial Strategies for Business Owners
Wednesday, April 7
9 a.m., 1 Million Cups (1MC)
9 a.m., America’s SBDC Florida – Registration for Government Contracting: Overview
10:30 a.m., GuideWell Innovation – Lean Experimentation & Culture Building (featuring OTC Chair Rajiv Menon)
1 p.m., General Assembly – Non Tech Jobs in Tech
Thursday, April 8
11 a.m., Central Florida Tech Grove – Combat Casualty Care Training Success Story: Blending Learning and Content Delivery
7:30 p.m., General Assembly – The Reality of Virtual and Augmented Reality
Events on the Horizon
April 13 – UCF – National Science Foundation (NSF) Proposal Preparations
April 15 – GrowFL – GrowFL East Central Florida Chapter Membership Mixer
April 20 – UCF – Department of Defense SBIR/STTR Proposal Preparations
April 22 – leAD Lake Nona Sports & Health Tech Academy – Demo Day
April 27 – UCF – SBIR/STTR for Start Ups: Building your Team and Preparing your Budget
June 2-4 – VR/AR Global Summit
October 15 – Synapse Orlando
October 15-17 – Creative City Project – Immerse
ICYMI | News from the Orlando Region
- Synapse Summit 2021 – A Community Making Innovation and Business Growth Happen – Nasdaq
- Game on: Pandemic pivot will lead to new jobs at esports startup Player Epic – Orlando Business Journal
- These 9 Black women business owners in Orlando won Fifth Third Bank grants and other help – Orlando Business Journal
- Life-changing advances in animal medicine to be presented at the 27th annual Veterinary Meeting & Expo (VMX) – KPVI
- Partnerships with Orlando Magic and others lead to fast growth for startup Violet Defense – Orlando Business Journal
- Transportation Innovators: VHB exec Courtney Reynolds on the benefits of smart community design and more – Orlando Business Journal
- City of Orlando funds minority entrepreneurship and high-demand jobs program Orlando Business Journal
- Transportation Innovators: OneRail CEO Bill Catania on the benefits of data-driven automation and more – Orlando Business Journal
- Epic Games complains about Apple to UK competition watchdog – Click Orlando
- Research grants, the Silicon Valley way – Freethink
- Simplicity Esports to offer limited edition NFTs to esports centre members – Esports Insider
- Tech Bridges 101: Network built to accelerate solutions to the warfighter – Naval Sea Systems Command
- New UCF nanotech gives boost to detection of cancer and disease – EurekAlert!
- Orlando Pride star Ashlyn Harris reveals 2021 jersey’s special message in starry shoot – People
- Lake Nona: Life inside the living lab – Verizon
- AdventHealth offering $1.2M in grants to local nonprofits for innovative health solutions – AdventHealth
- Grandson of Conrad Hilton to oversee new tech system for Orlando lender – Orlando Business Journal
- Transportation Innovators: Omnimodal CEO David Thomas Moran on the benefits of open data and software – Orlando Business Journal
- Tampa airport to use new facial recognition technology for international travelers – Tampa Bay Business Journal
*Have a story you would like OTC to feature? Email Sheena.Fowler@Orlando.org
The Orlando Tech Council is composed of private industry, resource organizations and public partners that work to develop new programs with the core objectives: strengthen the Orlando region’s innovation resources, create new opportunities for companies to scale, and to amplify the region’s success stories, raising the global profile of Orlando as a leading community for entrepreneurship and innovation.