TAMPA, Fla. — Startups usually begin with a great idea, but too often great ideas never see the light of day because of the lack of funding. 

What You Need To Know

  • Tampa Bay Ventures is investing $20 million in startup companies

  • Tampa's tech scene is growing, launching more companies

  • Tampa Bay Ventures' goal is to invest in those companies over the next five years

"You definitely need capital to be able to get to market with your product as fast as possible," said Block Spaces founder Gabe Higgins. 

Higgins says as more problems come up, tech companies are launched to help solve them. 

The company he launched in 2018 is an example. 

"Block chain is all the rage lately as far as technology goes and creates a safe trusted secure database for business operations," said Higgins. "Really updating certain processes within these older industries to be more digitally focused."

Higgins is looking for more funding to expand his company located at Embarc Collective — a hub for Tampa startups. 

He's looking to get a portion of the $20 million seed fund established by Tampa Bay Ventures

"We're seeing that Tampa Bay is one of the best places in the country to build a tech company," said General Partner Andreas Calabrese. "Getting funding for these startup companies was not always the easiest thing to do locally.

Tampa's tech scene pales in comparison to Silicon Valley according to Calabrese, but after our area saw the beginning of world-class tech companies like Wikepedia and ConnectWise he believes the Bay area can deliver more. 

"We're hoping that we're going to back the most promising local founders regardless of their background, regardless of sex, sexual orientation or race," Calabrese added. "What we're looking for is the best people to run the best companies and we're really excited to find 20 of those people here locally."

Tampa Bay Ventures' goal is to invest in those companies over the next five years.