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Tampa Bay Innovation Center Launches StartUp Studio 2.0, Kauffman FastTrac(R) Program

LARGO, Fla., May 7, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Tampa Bay Innovation Center, an innovation and entrepreneurship center for technology businesses, has launched StartUp Studio 2.0, featuring the Kauffman Foundation's FastTrac program.

"Kauffman FastTrac TechVenture™ is the second element of our StartUp Studio program, and helps aspiring and existing technology and life sciences entrepreneurs gain the business skills and insights, tools, resources and network they need to start and grow successful businesses," says Tonya Elmore, president of Tampa Bay Innovation Center. "As with our other StartUp Studio program, entrepreneurs with military experience who complete the program can be reimbursed for program fees, thanks to a grant from Enterprise Florida, Inc. and the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity."

The first FastTrac TechVenture program begins in June, with participants attending three-hour evening sessions for eight weeks. The Innovation Center will host an Open House for individuals interested in either phase of StartUp Studio from 5-7 p.m. on Thursday, May 16 at the Center, 7887 Bryan Dairy Rd., Suite 220, Largo, Fla. 33777. More information is available on the Innovation Center website, www.tbinnovates.com or by calling 727-547-7340.

FastTrac programs will be taught by the Innovation Center's two certified FastTrac facilitators – Elmore and New Venture Manager Danielle Weitlauf.

FastTrac TechVenture takes an analytical look at the business concept to help entrepreneurs discover what they need to consider in starting, operating, funding or growing a technology or life sciences-based business. Participants will learn the following:

  • Identify market opportunities and business strategies and pursue them successfully
  • Define target markets and customers
  • Develop a solid marketing plan
  • Learn to assess and build a top management team
  • Calculate the funding needed at each stage of the business and discover the best ways to access it
  • Learn the importance of protecting intellectual property through licenses, patents, trademarks and copyrights
  • Develop/hone an elevator pitch and investor presentation

"The Kauffman program offers unique insights for life sciences entrepreneurs, and we are extremely pleased it will be available to our faculty members who are developing entrepreneurial initiatives," says Jarett Rieger, director, office of technology management & commercialization and associate general counsel, Moffitt Cancer Center. "We look forward to our involvement with the program."

In addition to Kauffman FastTrac (StartUp Studio 2.0), the Innovation Center's StartUp Studio includes Wendy Kennedy's "So What? Who Cares? Why You?™ (StartUp Studio 1.0). Both programs are taught by certified Innovation Center staff who utilize toolsets and frameworks that are being used successfully throughout the world with technology entrepreneurs.

"We are particularly pleased with the collaborative environment that is a part of the Kauffman program as well as the Wendy Kennedy program at the Innovation Center," says Stuart Hart, M.D., director of the Tampa Bay Research and Innovation Center at the USF Health Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation (CAMLS). "These are a welcome addition to our partnership with Tampa Bay Innovation Center that assists us in providing a cost-effective way to develop and commercialize the efforts of our faculty and partners."

Information about StartUp Studio and applying for the programs is available on the Innovation Center website, http://www.tbinnovates.com/SSApplication.cfm. For additional information, please contact Danielle Weitlauf at weitlaufd@tbinnovates.com or 727-547-7340.

About Tampa Bay Innovation Center:

Tampa Bay Innovation Center (http://www.tbinnovates.com) supports entrepreneurial success, fosters the creation of high-tech jobs and develops new sources of technology and manufacturing capabilities by nurturing early stage ventures as they grow and launch their products into the marketplace. Programs are tailored to the innovator/entrepreneur and address business intelligence, planning and business formation, strategy execution and technology transition. Tampa Bay Innovation Center recently announced the Entrepreneurs' Hub, which includes programs and a new online community geared toward entrepreneurs, innovators, investors and others interested in the growth of the local technology community. Follow Tampa Bay Innovation Center on Twitter, http://www.twitter.com/tbinnovates, or on Facebook, http://www.facebook.com/tbinnovationcenter.

CONTACT: MEDIA CONTACT: Suzie Boland RFB Communications Group 813-259-0345 sboland@rfbcommunications.comSource: Tampa Bay Innovation Center