Investors and founders share how COVID-19 has impacted funding for startups and affected the process for entrepreneur’s looking to raise capital.

The Orlando Economic Partnership’s top priority is to keep the business community informed and prepared and help individuals and organizations obtain the needed resources currently available as we all navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Responding to COVID-19 Webinar Series: Raising Capital During and After COVID-19 is the ninth installment of a series of webinars focused on sharing guidance on how best to respond to the realities of COVID-19.

In this webinar, Orlando Economic Partnership Vice President of Innovation Sheena Fowler and the Orlando Tech Council hosted investors and founders who shared how COVID-19 has impacted funding for startups and affected the process for entrepreneur’s looking to raise capital as well as how entrepreneurs should approach funding moving forward.

Guest Moderator

Dennis Pape
Co-founder & CEO, SeedFundersOrlando
Dr. Dennis R. Pape is the CEO of SeedFundersOrlando, an angel capital group that invests in pre-revenue Central Florida technology startups. Prior to co-founding SeedFundersOrlando, he co-founded and managed Catalyst Spaces coworking space, founded and managed the VentureScaleUp Accelerator program as well as founded, scaled and exited Photonic Systems, a photonics startup in Melbourne, FL.

Guest Panelists

Chris Morton
Founder & CEO, NanoPhotonica, Inc.
Dr. Chris Morton is the CEO of NanoPhotonica, a provider of innovative nano-materials and fabrication techniques that enable higher quality electronic displays. He has more than 30 years of entrepreneurial and corporate leadership experiences in the communications industry.

Kunal Patel
Co-founder & CTO, BrandXR
Kunal Patel is the CTO of BrandXR, a builder of augmented, virtual and mixed reality tools to help clients access the most cutting-edge technologies and distribution strategies. He is a huge contributor to the Orlando startup community, having founded the Orlando Game Space coworking offices and community organization Indienomicon. 

Ben Patz
Founding Partner & Managing Director, DeepWork Capital
Ben Patz is a founding partner and managing director at DeepWork Capital, an early stage investment firm focused on finding and supporting technology startups in the state of Florida. The firm has been in operation since October 2015. Prior to starting DeepWork Capital, Ben was COO for Presidio Networked Solutions, a multi-billion-dollar information technology solutions provider. He joined Presidio in 2009 through the acquisition of Coleman Technologies, Inc., the firm he co-founded and ran as CEO. He was Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year for Florida in 2002 and received UCF’s Professional Achievement Award in 2006 and 2016.

Kenny Totten
Co-founder & COO, Bacarai
Kenny Totten is the COO of Bacarai, a startup that is helping the airlines industry bring group airfare programs online. He is an experienced airline industry professional whose startup Bacarai was invited to the prestigious SAP Concur Accelerator in San Francisco.