This week in the Orlando region, we remember the victims of the Pulse tragedy, and introduce two new tools that will further the reach of the Orlando Tech Council’s message.

Featured Headlines | Upcoming Events | News from the Orlando Region

Message from the Orlando Tech Council Chair

Happy Friday, all.  

There are many exciting announcements to share this week but first I’d like to take a moment to acknowledge an important date for the Orlando region.  

This Saturday, June 12, will mark five years since the Pulse nightclub tragedy. Since that day, our community has worked hard to ensure that hate will never win. The region’s dedication to inclusiveness and support of all lives are reasons why so many businesses succeed and feel welcomed here. I encourage you to take a moment of reflection this weekend and if you are so inclined, support the Five-Year Pulse Remembrance Ceremony  happening tomorrow, June 12. The One Pulse Foundation also shares a number of ways for you to show additional support for our LGBTQ+ community members. 

I’m excited to share that the Orlando Tech Council is launching a new podcast, “O The Innovation,” which highlights our thriving innovation ecosystem and gives listeners insight into the latest innovations being dreamed up right here. Each episode of “O The Innovation” features interviews and stories from the Orlando region’s top startup founders and business leaders including Daryl Holt, Vice President & General Manager of EA-Tiburon; Sean Pinnock, CEO of CyberDream; Justin Mitchell, CEO/Founder of Yac; & Junior Smizmaul, CEO/Founder of Voxtell. Telling these stories is critical to attract high quality talent and further solidify Orlando as a top destination for growing tech businesses. I ask for your help in spreading the word by subscribing to Orlando.org/techpodcast and sharing on social media. 

Another exciting new asset for the region’s tech community is that we are teaming up with the Orlando Business Journal and other founding partners including The Florida High Tech Corridor, Crummer Graduate School of Business, Soliman Productions, Inc. and Lowndes to launch Orlando Inno – the definitive source for the people and businesses driving and shaping the future of Orlando’s innovation economy. You can sign up here to receive the free, twice-a-week newsletter launching on June 22. More information about this partnership is to come. 

I also invite you to tune in to WFTV Channel 9 on Juneteenth (Saturday, June 19) at 7 p.m. for a one-hour special titled Town Hall: Race and Reform in Central Florida with Greg Warmoth and Vanessa Echols. This important discussion with local leaders will focus on the history of the black community in Orlando, as well as segments focused on policy and accountability, economic opportunity, and best practices that local organizations have adopted in the past year concerning diversity, equity and inclusion efforts.  

Stay tuned for more news, events, and ways to connect with the Orlando region’s tech and innovation economy. Also, feel free to share this newsletter with friends and colleagues who can get on our mailing list here

Cheers, 
Rajiv Menon 
Founder/CEO, Informulate
Orlando Tech Council Chair 

Profiles in Tech

Carlos Carbonell, CEO of Echo Interaction Group

This edition of Orlando Profiles in Tech features Carlos Carbonell, CEO of Echo, an Orlando-based tech company that developed mobile applications and augmented reality solutions. Discover how “cheese” and an inclusive, collaborative spirit make Orlando the perfect place for him and his business. Read more here.

Headlines

DeepWork Capital launches new fund for startup investment

Orlando-based venture capital firm DeepWork Capital is seeking up to $20 million for a new fund, which will be invested into startups both locally and across the region. The firm has a track record of successful investments, assisting local companies including Stax, AireHealth and NanoPhotonica. DeepWork Capital’s continued commitment to funding local startups will only expand the number of high-wage jobs created and further increase the amount of venture capital injected into the economy. We look forward to seeing what DeepWork Capital does next. Read more here.

Orlando among the biggest winners from tech migration

Orlando ranks among the top metropolitan destination for tech worker migration according to data from LinkedIn. The region received a net inflow of 70.1 tech workers per 10,000 from May 2020 to April 2021, with Florida recording the largest total net migration rate in the country. High-cost tech hubs like San Francisco and Boston saw huge out-migration trends, with talent flocking to smaller, more affordable markets with high growth like Orlando, Jacksonville and Tampa. This data reflects the economic development trends we’re watching as our region’s thriving tech ecosystem gains national traction and more and more new and established tech firms choose to relocate or expand in the region to fuel their growth. It also further highlights how our region’s unparalleled quality of life and collaborative business environment continues to attract top talent from across the nation and world. 

Florida leads the nation in economic recovery

Florida ranks No. 2 in CNN Business’ ‘Back-to-Normal Index,’ which tracks America’s recovery by ranking statewide economic activity in comparison to pre pandemic levels. With 100 percent representing an economy fully returning to its pre-pandemic level, Florida scores 101 percent, placing it second for economic recovery. Only South Dakota, with a recovery of 106 percent, outperforms Florida. Rankings are updated weekly and based on unemployment claims, job postings, consumer spending, air travel and more. This ranking is further evidence that our regional economy is well on its way to exceeding pre-pandemic levels as we return to normal operations, especially given our upcoming busy travel season, safe reopening measures, increasing vaccination rates and rising consumer confidence.

Save the Date | Upcoming Events

Events for the Weeks of June 14

Tuesday, June 15
8:30 a.m. – 23rd World Aviation Training Summit (WATS)
4 p.m. – National Center for Simulation – Doing Biz in the Roaring 20’s
9:30 p.m. – General Assembly – LinkedIn for Business: A Guide for Content Planning

Wednesday, June 16
8 a.m. – 23rd World Aviation Training Summit (WATS)
9 a.m. – 1 Million Cups

Thursday, June 17
12 p.m. – VRARA – How VR Training Helps Grow Your Bottom Line
4:30 p.m. – GrowFL – East Central Florida Networking Happy Hour

Events on the Horizon

June 22 – Synapse – Successful DEI Initiatives in Action: A Community Conversation
June 23-25 – 2021 Serious Play Conference
June 24 – Legion Capital – Webinar with J. Bradley Hilton to discuss the future of Technology & Investing
June 30 – VRARA – The Future of the Digital Immersive Enterprise
August 4-25 – Foundation for Orlando’s Future – SKILLFUL® Talent Series presented by JPMorgan Chase
August 17 – GrowFL – East Central Florida Finalist Celebration
August 19 – Orlando Regional Chamber – All Women Empowered (AWE) Impact Forum | SAVE THE DATE
September 16 – GrowFL – East Central Florida Chapter Membership Mixer
October 15 – Synapse Orlando
October 15-17 – Creative City Project – Immerse
October 22 – GrowFL – Statewide Membership Meeting

ICYMI | News from the Orlando Region

*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.

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Special thanks to our Orlando Tech Council Members