Innovation inspires. Share Florida’s innovation revolution.


We welcome you to connect with Synapse Orlando and share the news about Florida’s thriving innovation communities. We have fascinating and inspiring stories to share with you. For more information about media opportunities, contact us at Laureen.Martinez@orlando.org




Download our Synapse Orlando Media Kit Here:

Media Apply Here


Synapse Comes to Orlando

Synapse, the non-profit organization founded to accelerate innovation throughout the state, will debut its first regional business event “Synapse Orlando” in downtown Orlando on Friday, October 18, 2019 in collaboration with the Orlando Economic Partnership

Orlando Poised to Become Capital of Autonomous Vehicle Research

Orlando is poised to become a hub for autonomous vehicles because of its designation as a national AV proving ground, history in space exploration, cluster of defense and aerospace contractors, specialized university research and unified government buy-in.

Synapse brings innovation event to Orlando for first time

Orlando is set to get a conference this fall with a focus on innovation and entrepreneurship across several industries.e.

Synapse looks toward Orlando for $40K innovation challenge

Synapse Florida is living up to its name and expanding its efforts across the state, most recently to Orlando with a $40,000 innovation challenge.

Orlando, Florida Looks to the Future With 5G and Clean Energy 

Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer discusses the city’s economy beyond tourism, support of 5G technology, and clean energy goals. He speaks with Bloomberg’s Taylor Riggs in this week’s “Muni Moment” on “Bloomberg Markets.”

Orlando makes a play to be sports media capitol

Sports media and entertainment is growing fast in the region that has long been known for theme parks and tourism.

AOL founder Steve Case awards $100K to Orlando health startup

The strategy worked: Ruth and her company, AireHealth, took home the $100,000 prize in a contest backed by America Online co-founder Steve Case.

Steve Case: Orlando has great ‘momentum’ for tech

The future is here, in Central Florida, or so local leaders and entrepreneurs hope.Their hopes are getting a push from some who help power the innovation economy.

Miami startup founder wins pitch competition at Synapse Summit

Paired in bracket-style matchups, the founders of eight startups went head to head at the Synapse Summit on a series of metaphorical scenarios and business philosophies and were judged by a panel of five judges from successful local companies.

What to expect at the Florida Venture Capital Conference in St. Pete this week

The new year has brought a slew of conferences: Synapse Summit in mid-January, Tampa Bay Startup Week will kick off in February, and this week the Florida Venture Capital Conference comes to town.

Tampa International Airport to evaluate using facial recognition tech

Tampa International Airport to evaluate using facial recognition tech, spokeswoman Janet Scherberger said during the Synapse Summit. 

How women entrepreneurs in Tampa Bay bucked the national funding trend

Female founders often find it tougher than their male counterparts to win venture capital backing. They shared their secrets for success during a panel discussion at the Synapse Summit.

Mobilizing Your Local Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

The Synapse 2019 Summit—orchestrated by a regional nonprofit to accelerate innovation and business opportunities in Florida—called forth startup companies, universities, local government economic development officers, accelerators, VC investors and cross-industry business leaders.

Digital tech conference in Orlando gets boost from Tampa entrepreneurship group

The partnership gives Tampa-based Synapse a foothold in Orlando as it tries to expand its support for business innovation across the state.

Strawberry Picking Robot at Synapse Summit; Tampa, FL

Harvest CROO Robotics has spent years developing a robot that can precisely recognize and pick ripe strawberries in the field. This month, they had the opportunity to showcase their progress at the 2019 Synapse Summit in Tampa, FL.

What others can learn from Smart City initiatives in Florida

As the Synapse 2019 conference took over downtown Tampa last week, representatives from several communities around Florida shared their experiences and perspectives on what it means to be a Smart City.

Looking ahead: Synapse Summit 2020

Organizers of the Synapse Summit are considering fine-tuning a few details when the event is held again next year.

Synapse Summit quotes that will stick

You go to a conference, hear sage advice and brilliant insights, and think, “I have to remember that” — and then you forget what you heard. Click through the gallery for some of the quotes that will stick. 

Brightline exec: Theme park station on Orlando-to-Tampa route is ‘likely’

Brightline’s vice president of governmental affairs, Bob O’Malley, spoke about Brightline’s intercity passenger rail system at Synapse Summit on Jan. 23.

For Future Tech, It’s Still All About People: Deloitte CIO

At the annual Synapse Summit in Tampa, Florida, Larry Quinlan, global CIO of Deloitte, suggested that the future may not end up looking like some may think.

What one of Tampa Bay’s best-known entrepreneurs looks for in an investment

Steve MacDonald, a board member at Florida Funders, made his mark in healthcare technology as an entrepreneur, but he generally avoids the healthcare sector as an investor.

Need to know: Five things that happened while you processed your Synapse Summit experience

Another Synapse Summit has passed, but here are some things that happened while more than 5,000 attendees walked away from Amalie Arena with increased knowledge of tech an innovation.

Synapse Summit ends with a hopeful eye on the future of innovation

The Synapse Summit brought out some of the biggest players in the region, which have transcended the state.

Pitch Madness at Synapse pits local startups’ philosophies against each other

The founders of eight startups went head to head at the Synapse Summit on a series of metaphorical scenarios and business philosophies.

Synapse Summit seeks to knit together a growing Tampa Bay startup community

About 600 people attended three years ago. Last year, 3,300 came. This year, the crowd topped 5,500, turning Amalie Arena into an anthill of tech and entrepreneurship.

Tampa virtual reality firm to work with Johnson & Johnson for pilot program

Immertec CEO Erik Maltais and Johnson & Johnson Global Professional Education Manager Gregory Lightbourn announced the pilot program during the Synapse Summit on Jan. 23.

Introducing Tampa Bay Inno, an increased focus on local startups and innovation

Tampa Bay Inno officially launched this week at the Synapse Summit. American Inno’s mission is to reach the business leaders of tomorrow through a network of digital media and events.

Synapse spotlight: Top takeaways from investors

Experts and investors from the Tampa Bay area and beyond gathered Thursday morning to discuss not only how entrepreneurs can get ahead in the ecosystem with or without venture capital, but also what should be the focus for Tampa Bay investors.

3 takeaways from Synapse Summit Day 1

The Synapse Summit is like an all-you-can-eat buffet, with hundreds of choices of sessions to attend, speakers to listen to, exhibitors to visit and connections to make.

In the age of transportation renaissance, Uber will look toward the future in Tampa

With innovation, technology and new opportunities all at the forefront of the upcoming Synapse Summit, the one that combines all those sectors and is perhaps the most-watched at the summit will be transportation.

From Brightline to virtual reality, here’s ongoing coverage of Synapse Summit 

The Synapse Summit, held Jan. 23 and 24 at Amalie Arena in downtown Tampa, is bringing together executives from technology, transportation and finance alongside entrepreneurs.

Ultimate Medical Academy to Sponsor and Participate at the 2019 Synapse Summit in Tampa

Ultimate Medical Academyis pleased to sponsor and participate in the Synapse Summit,  Tampa Bay’s trong growth in the areas of innovation and technology.

Flipping the Narrative: How Tampa Bay and Florida Can Position Itself as Leaders in Innovation

We can tell the world what we already know – the true story of how incredible it is to build and grow a business here in Tampa Bay.

Synapse Summit kicks off by envisioning Florida’s innovation economy of the future

While the Synapse Summit will bring together technology, transportation, finance and entrepreneurs for the next two days, the organizers’ focus at the kickoff event was the one thing all attendants are striving for: to create and foster innovation in the Tampa Bay area.

What to expect at Synapse Summit Day 1

Two main stage events, multiple panels and even more informational sessions will all take place under one roof on Wednesday at the first day of the Synapse Summit. 

Synapse Summit 2019 expects record crowd of 5,000 in Tampa

Thousands of innovation-minded individuals will converge on Amalie Arena Wednesdday and Thursday for the 2019 Synapse Summit, and organizers say it’s on track to be the largest tech event the Tampa Bay Area has ever seen.

Exciting Speakers Featured At Synapse Summit in Tampa January 23-24

If you are an educator, business executive, entrepreneur, or other individual fascinated by how various aspects of technology and innovation are coming together to change today’s world, then you will want to attend the Synapse Summit. 

Positively Tampa Bay: Synapse Summitt

With five-thousand attendees, 250 speakers, 300 exhibitors and a dose of Pitch Madness, Synapse is growing innovators among military veterans and university students.

Countdown to Synapse Summit in Tampa Two Days of the Best in Florida Technology and Innovation

 Check out the Synapse Summit. This year’s theme is Innovation Lives Here and will showcase the best of Florida’s tech and development community.

Community Brands Supports Florida Technology and Innovation at Synapse Summit

Community Brands will highlight its economic development and community involvement initiatives by participating in this week’s Synapse Summit.

Exclusive: Here are the startups chosen for Pitch Madness

Eight Florida companies have been selected for Pitch Madness, the competition for funding and awareness that will be a centerpiece at the 2019 Synapse Summit. 

Business briefs: Magic Leap at Synapse, MarTec honors and more

At the 2019 Synapse Summit, attendees are encouraged to experience Magic Leap’s augmented reality headsets and check out the seven companies in Tampa Bay Wave’s post-accelerator cohort. 

Nine things to not miss at the 2019 Synapse Summit

The Tampa Bay Business Journal breaks down nine can’t miss events at this year’s Synapse Summit. 

Pasco Business Digest: Synapse Challenge Winner Announced

Won by Team Blitz, led by Ibrahim Allam, the Synapse Challenge invited local teams and individuals to create a high-tech wearable device for Crystal Lagoons in Wesley Chapel.

‘Alexa, what are my sales?’ Find out how AI will change your business at Synapse

Steve Tingiris, founder and managing director of Dabble Lab, will talk about the role of artificial intelligence and digital assistants during the Synapse Summit.

How SunTrust Foundation’s $50K grant to Synapse will deepen the innovation community

The SunTrust Foundation-Tampa/Southwest Florida has awarded a $50,000 grant to Synapse to help companies and…

Marc Blumenthal talks Synapse origins, the recipe for a…

On this episode of SPx, Joe welcomes Marc Blumenthal, founder of Synapse and partner at Florida Funders. In this acumen-packed episode, Blumenthal shares his thoughts on the Tampa Bay startup community and… 

Synapse Summit adds business executives to growing list of speakers

Speakers will run across all industries at the upcoming Synapse Summit, which will feature key players in Tampa’s banking, startup, technology and real estate scenes. 

myMatrixx founder is behind the Synapse appearance of these Silicon Valley money guys

Two early-stage venture capitalists from the San Francisco Bay area will be at the Synapse Summit to check out local investment possibilities

These Are the 50 Best Places in America for Starting a Business

The second Synapse innovation summit–Tampa’s answer to SxSW–was expected to attract 5,000 people in January.

Business briefs: Jabil in the cloud, Washlava patent and more

A push into making products for the cloud computing space is expected to be a $1 billion a year business for Jabil Inc.

People on the move: Daniel Cura

Daniel Cura, President of Tidal Marketing, is a University of South Florida alumnus and first-generation Cuban-American entrepreneur 

INNOVATE‘Alexa, what are my sales?’ Find out how AI will change your business at Synapse

Remember the web 20 years ago in 1998, or mobile apps a decade ago in 2008? That’s where artificial intelligence is now, with enormous possibilities ahead, a Tampa tech veteran says.

2019 Synapse Summit spotlights innovation in Florida

The 2019 Synapse Summit returns to downtown Tampa January 23rd and 24th with a full slate of programming designed to spotlight Florida’s growing presence in the world of innovation.

What one judge in the Synapse pitch contest will be looking for in startups

When Synapse holds its pitch competition for startups next month, one of the judges will have some specific criteria in mind that will make winners stand out.

Brian Kornfeld

In the startup world, Synapse is an organization that connects entities in the entrepreneur economy to allow everyone to work together.

Synapse readies for ‘March Madness for startups’

One Tampa accelerator is moving right past Christmas and getting in the spirit of March Madness instead.

Meet the UT grad student who won $10,000 for his wearable tech

He was one of five finalists who presented in Synapse’s Innovation Challenge this past weekend, with the winner receiving $10,000.

BNY Mellon Wealth Management Calls Tampa Home!

Synapse is proud to be sponsored and affiliated with BNY Mellon Wealth Management and we encourage all attendees to connect with the firm at the second annual Synapse Summit on January 23 and 24, 2019.

Fortune 100 Food Retailer Publix Calls Florida Home

Publix has been innovating for 89 years, and today has more than 1,200 locations as well as online ordering and delivery options.

Heavy hitters join Synapse inaugural board

Representatives from BayCare Health System, Publix Super Markets, University of South Florida and a retired major general are all part of the inaugural board of advisors and directors for Synapse.

Tampa’s Premier Music and Education Innovator, the Straz Center

The 335,000 square foot Straz Center is one of the largest performing arts complexes in the country.

The Evolved Marketing Agency: Schifino Lee Branding & Advertising

Staying true to its mantra of “Innovate or Die,” Schifino Lee finds countless ways to push the boundaries of advertising and branding.

Augmented reality C-level exec will be Synapse summit keynote speaker

As Tampa-based company Synapse tries to prove innovation lives in Florida, it just secured a good example.

Tampa-based virtual reality tech firm works to partner with local health care leaders

“We’re essentially going to be the Netflix of surgical training experiences.”

As Wave adds to its board, its chair looks ahead

The former Florida CFO, gubernatorial candidate and longtime banker and entrepreneurial advocate was officially named board chair earlier this month.

Synapse’s Brian Kornfeld immersed himself in Tampa Bay’s innovation economy

Brian Kornfeld says he wakes up every day determined to break entrepreneurs free from fear by providing them with the encouragement, guidance and resourcefulness “to achieve their dreams.”

Innovation challenge to float new ideas for Crystal Lagoon payment system

Metro Development is seeking a payment solution for its 7.5-acre Crystal Lagoons; the first is complete but not open yet in Wesley Chapel.

2019 Synapse Innovation Summit

Synapse Summit is a live celebration of innovation, where visionaries, doers, and success-makers connect with the latest transformational innovations across all industries.

SunTrust Foundation Awards $50K Grant to Support Innovation

According to a recent announcement, Synapse, an accelerator for innovation in Florida, is the recipient of a $50,000 grant from the SunTrust Foundation – Tampa/Southwest Florida, to support future Synapse Challenges.

Women thought leaders: Bridging the gender gap in Tampa Bay

In partnership with the nonprofit Synapse, Women Ambassadors Forum is holding a one-day conference on January 22 to help women of all ages achieve their break-throughs.

What Tampa Bay needs to grow its innovation economy

A growing talent pool and a deeper capital base have made the Tampa Bay area a better place for startup tech companies. But the area still has a way to go to achieve its full potential, said Linda Olson, president and CEO of Tampa Bay Wave, a non-profit that services and houses growing companies.

Business briefs: St. Pete’s most profitable banks, entrepreneurship and more

Freedom Bank, the only community bank headquartered in St. Petersburg, nearly tripled its net income in the third quarter of 2018.

Synapse, Embarc, St. Pete EDC leaders talk about building a brand for Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay has come a long way from being a place known just for its weather and vacation hotspots. Now, the area has an opportunity to capitalize on the burgeoning technology industry here and create a brand around it

Tampa Bay hosts Global Entrepreneurship Week celebrations

As the Tampa Bay entrepreneurial ecosystem heats up, the community has for the first time coordinated its GEW programs into a calendar of events that are easier for the community to access.

Potentially life-saving VR technology being developed in Tampa Bay

It’s called MEDOPTIC and It’s real-time, 3D virtual reality streaming used in the medical field for training, observation and even consultations. Doctors, wearing VR goggles, can watch surgeries or procedures as they happen.

Meet Brian Kornfeld, a 40 Under 40 honoree

Brian Kornfeld is the co-founder of Synapse

Catching up with Brian Kornfeld: From Satellites to Synapse

Brian Kornfeld’s brain runs hotter and faster than an average person’s. Some serious organizations have put that brain to serious use for things like making sure very expensive satellites don’t float off into deep space. As it turns out…

Influencers – Marc Blumenthal

There are people who sit still. There are people who do small things. And there is Marc Blumenthal who does the complete opposite of those people. Blumenthal has left a trail of success throughout Tampa Bay.

It’s year two for the Synapse Innovation Summit. Here’s why organizers say you’ll want to come back

Synapse, a Tampa organization formed to help local entrepreneurs, investors and others make connections, has opened registration for its second Innovation Summit and is taking nominations for speakers.

‘Best Of St. Pete’ Book To Collect The Best And The Brightest

Published in 2016, Best of Tampa Bay is an oversized, stylish, full-color hardcover book – yes, it looks weighty and important on a coffee table

Catching up with Brian Kornfeld: From Satellites to Synapse

Brian Kornfeld’s brain runs hotter and faster than an average person’s. Some serious organizations have put that brain to serious use for things like making sure very expensive satellites don’t float off into deep space. As it turns out…

Downtown Tampa’s Synapse Innovation Summit Moves To January, Opens Registration

Organizers told CL that the date change (the 2017 edition was in March) is all about looking to expand Synapse and turn it into the region’s premier innovation event.

Synapse Innovation Summit To Return In 2019

Following up on the success of the 2018 summit, the Synapse Innovation Summit will return to Tampa in 2019. The summit will be held Jan. 23 and 24 at Amalie Arena.

Synapse Gears Up For Next Innovation Summit 2019

Medical tech executive Scott Minniear discovered the Tampa Bay Technology Incubator at the Innovation Summit in March.

Putting You In Control Of Your Healthcare

Health providers, doctors, and health insurance companies take a huge role in healthcare. However, people should be at the helm of their own well-being. Here are a few steps to take.

HyperloopTT – Transforming Transportation Between City Centers

On April 12, 2018, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies announced the shipment of the very first full-scale freight and passenger tubes.

Peerfit Is Revolutionizing Wellness. Learn How!

The definition of “fitness” may vary from one person to another. Some employees who are just starting to get on a healthy lifestyle may choose the stairs over riding the elevator.

Transforming The Future Of Retail Using AI And VR

What does digital transformation really mean in the future of retail? It is simply transferring an old, obsolete product-centered model that has been followed for so many years to a customer-centered model.

American Freedom Distillery’s Legendary Spirits

Utilizing their military expertise and backgrounds, they are now applying their bold strategies in running a distillery. American Freedom Distillery is a dream come true for a special group of colleagues who served America in its darkest period.

Whipster: Ridesharing Cost-Comparison Software Gaining Traction

With so many new players in the rideshare space, competition for services and new users is stiff. This shakeup has inspired a new company to come up with the bold idea of creating a third party app which provides a complementary service…

ConnectWise: Lessons From Building A Billion Dollar Company

Privately held startups worth over $1 billion, are disrupting several industries in the last few years. ConnectWise, currently worth about $1.2 billion, is paving the way and making a solid example of how to do it well – but they did not get there overnight.

Startups And Women Entrepreneurs – Here’s The Region For You!

Ecosystems that support entrepreneurs and innovation hubs are sprouting across America. Regions of the country are working hard to be startup havens. This includes creating an environment that supports innovations and helps investors find the next bold idea.

Creating Infrastructure That Powers Innovation

Disruptions turn traditional business models upside down. The need for a more resilient and more efficient innovation infrastructure has become more crucial. Cities and communities must create ecosystems that supports innovation.

The Bold Impact Of Self-Driving Cars On Society

Autonomous driving is the future of transportation. And by future, we mean not so distant future. We are already seeing some of these disruptive concepts racing their way to the market.

Crowd-Powered HyperloopTT: Innovating Transportation And Shaping Company Structure

Crowdstorming is HyperloopTT’s method of planning and achieving their innovation. It is the ability to obtain fresh ideas from several sources, mostly external, managing brainstorming via the Internet.

It’s Year Two For The Synapse Innovation Summit. Here’s Why Organizers Say You’ll Want To Come Back

Synapse, a Tampa organization formed to help local entrepreneurs, investors and others make connections, has opened registration for its second Innovation Summit and is taking nominations for speakers.

Suncoast Business Forum – The Story Of Synapse

Marc Blumenthal is a Partner with Florida Funders and is a high tech entrepreneur in the Tampa Bay area. He sold his company to Tony DiBenedetto of Tribridge a few years ago, and he is currently organizing an Innovation Summit in Tampa at the end of March.

What Is The Formula For Entrepreneurial Success?

What is the formula for entrepreneurial success? Bold Business asked the founders, CEOs and managers of companies making bold impacts what traits propel entrepreneurs to success.

The Venture Capital Game – The Deck Is Stacked Against Women Entrepreneurs

Research recently conducted at Columbia University highlights how common gender discrepancies vary when it comes to investment funding. Because of this, women entrepreneurs are at a clear disadvantage compared to men.

Could This Region Be The Next Silicon Valley?

Over 3,500 participants, 50 speakers, and 257 exhibitors attended the recently concluded Synapse Innovation Summit at the Amalie Arena in Downtown Tampa on March 28 and 29.

Tampa Innovation Summit Features Hyperloop, Tesla, IBM, Water Street Tampa, And More

Imagine traveling from Tampa to Tallahassee or from Tampa to Miami in 20 minutes or so? Or zipping across the continent from Florida to California on the ground, at airplane speeds, safely and securely? It may sound like a science fiction plot, but it isn’t.

Vinik To Tech Community: Tampa Bay Is 15 Years Behind Nashville And Needs To Step Up

Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik told his love story with his adopted hometown to hundreds of local tech workers Wednesday. But it was a message of tough love, too.

Secret Behind Creating A Thriving Start-Up Ecosystem

What is the Holy Grail for economic development? For most cities it is a thriving start-up ecosystem. Cities everywhere want to become the next Silicon Valley. States want their economic engines loaded with fuel. Non-for-profit Synapse is trying to do just that in the state of Florida.

Tampa Bay Needs To Step Up Its Game, Vinik Tells Crowd At Synapse Innovation Summit

The Tampa Bay Lightning owner and summit organizers offered ideas on how the area could help the startup community succeed.

3 Ideas Tampa Bay Can Steal From Chicago To Grow Its Startup Scene

A veteran of a top-ranked Chicago innovation center tells what worked in the Windy City.

Tampa Bay Times, Synapse Summit

more than 5,500 entrepreneurs, startup founders, investors and assorted techies converged on Amalie Arena Wednesday and Thursday for the second annual Synapse Summit.

Tampa Bay Business Journal, Synapse Summit

Leaders in the innovation scene started off the summit by going more in-depth into what they have been doing within their organizations and region.

Florida Venture Sourcing, the Institute

Florida Funders has dramatically expanded its assets under management, after winning a bid to manage the portfolio of the Institute for the Commercialization of Florida Technology.

St. Pete Catalyst, the Institute

A veteran of a top-ranked Chicago innovation center tells what worked in the Windy City.

St. Pete Catalyst, PitchLyst

It’s part of a series of moves by Tampa-based Florida Funders to broaden the base of technology investors in the state and support a growing technology sector that is expected to bring more high-skill and high-wage jobs to Florida.

Miami startup founder wins pitch competition at Synapse Summit

The panel of startup gurus chose a South Florida-based company for the top prize in a four-round, March Madness style event.

Vinik at Synapse Summit: “Tampa Could See More Development”

Vinik invested heavily in the downtown Tampa area through property purchases and Water Street Tampa, which is currently being developed. 

Looking ahead: Synapse Summit 2020

Organizers of the Synapse Summit are considering fine-tuning a few details when the event is held again next year.

Q&A with startup expert Steve Blank: Fire the plan

What makes them unique? What makes them work? What makes them grow? — that led to the creation of an innovation strategy known as the lean start-up method.