Pasco County opens third business incubator to connect entrepreneurs

Pasco County is looking to further cement itself in the startup community, this time by opening a third business incubator space. The SMARTstart program, which is through the Pasco County EDC, announced it will open the incubator this fall. The space, called SMARTstart at the Grove, will have a coworking lounge, 10 private offices, 32 desks, huddle rooms, classrooms, meeting spaces, an executive boardroom and digital media studio. The Grove is a 203-acre property that has plans to host shipping containers and retail space.

With $35M in Series C Funding, Pittsburgh’s Niche Aims for College Search Supremacy

Looking for a one-stop-shop for information about a school, neighborhood, or city? With $35 million in new funding, Niche, headquartered in Pittsburgh’s Strip District, aims to become the ultimate resource for rising college students and others hoping to learn more about schools and their communities.  Niche began life as College Prowler, a series of physical guidebooks about specific universities written “by students, for students,” explained CEO and Founder Luke Skurman, who launched the company as an undergrad at Carnegie Mellon University in 2002. 

San Diego-Based Mindera Software to Open Office in Pittsburgh

San Diego-based Mindera Software said Wednesday it will open an office in Pittsburgh. It is the second U.S. office for the technical services company, which also has outposts in Portugal, the United Kingdom, and India. The Pittsburgh Mindera office will join the Pittsburgh Innovation District, part of the public-private partnership InnovatePGH, which aims to put Pittsburgh on the map as a hub for innovation.  

Upbeat signs for Greater Victoria tech firms amid pandemic

Billed as nimble, innovative and resilient, Victoria’s high-tech sector appears to be weathering the economic storm of the pandemic, says a report from the Victoria Innovation, Advanced Technology and Entrepreneurship Council (VIATEC). The survey of local tech firms found the vast majority of companies have either held onto all employees or increased their workforce over the last three months, while the bulk of them believe they can handle pandemic restrictions for at least a year.

Lululemon To Buy Mirror For $500M

When the acquisition is completed, Mirror will operate as a standalone company within Lululemon, and Mirror CEO Brynn Putnam will continue working as the fitness startup’s chief executive, according to a statement from the company. Mirror, which is backed by investors including Spark CapitalPoint72 Ventures and Lululemon, has live classes, on-demand workouts, and personal training options. The company, which launched in 2018, is based in New York.

Newzoo forecasts 2020 global games industry will reach $159 billion

ames and esports analytics firm Newzoo released its highly cited annual report on the size and state of the video gaming industry yesterday. The firm is predicting 2020 global game industry revenue from consumers of $159.3 billion, a 9.3% increase year-over-year. Newzoo predicts the market will surpass $200 billion by the end of 2023.

Back to Work

Recoveries have always mattered in business. Some of the biggest shifts in market share occur coming out of downturns, when new industry leaders—and new industries—often emerge. Rarely, though, has recovery meant putting people’s lives at risk.  Yet that’s where we are today.

UF’s Sid Martin Biotech named top global incubator for record third time

For the third time, the International Business Innovation Association (InBIA) has awarded its highest honor – the Randall M. Whaley Incubator of the Year award – to UF Innovate | Sid Martin Biotech. “Being named the best incubator on the planet is amazing. Receiving this award three times in a decade speaks volumes to the tremendous resource we have here in Florida with the Sid Martin Biotech incubator,” said David Norton, UF’s vice president for research. 

Stanford Grad Who Created The World’s First ‘Robot Lawyer’ Raises $12 Million In Series A

In the summer of 2015, Stanford-bound high school grad Josh Browder spent his nights coding and developing an automated program that would help people contest parking tickets. The native Londoner had recently gotten his driver’s license, and had himself assembled a respectable collection of fines, some of which he felt were unjustly rewarded. 

How TikTok’s Owner Became The World’s Most Valuable Unicorn

ByteDance, the China-based unicorn behind the video-sharing app TikTok, was recently valued at up to $140B. Now, the company is leveraging its recommendation algorithms to expand its portfolio in a bid to join the ranks of Big Tech.