I can’t mention how many times people refer to Orlando, FL, my home, as that place with Disney. There is far more going on here than many are aware of. There is a lot of work to do to dispell the ‘only for tourism’ myth about O-town, but it’s being done right now .
Orlando is noted as the simulation capital of the world. The defense department injects a lot of money for local business to devlope software systems to train their people. Because of this, there’s plenty of local talented tech people. EA has a huge center here, so when you get your chance to play Madden ’08 , think about Orlando.
I could go on and on with my rant, but I think you get the point.
UPDATE – August 14, 2007
I’d like to thank John, for pointing out other avenues of ‘investable’ interests that Orlando has / is offering. I got on my rant after reading a post from someone else, who was first inspired by him. Thanks John!
I originally mentioned tech opportunities for VC folks to be excited about. However, there’s a lot of culture coming out of the Central Florida region as well.
Film Slam is a film event showcasing local indy film makers. The event draws a larger crowd every year, and it’s not alone. The FMF, is another huge music, film, and visual art festival drawing thousands every year. I’m sure John could name a few others that I’m forgetting. However, the point is that there is large opportunities for ‘art’ money around here, supplemented by talent draws like Full Sail , a world renowned entertainment industry vocational school drawing thousands of the worlds brightest every year.
The talent is here already. There’s no need to pay $1,000 per square foot for an office to build a business. That sort of mentality is why so many hopefuls to the investment entrepreneurism fail quickly. The only folks that ever succeed big in investment, are the ones who were brave enough to ‘leave the pack’.
A related note: I’m not going to get any friends by bringing this up, but Orlando is also the birth place of Death Metal, my favorite genre of music. Chuck Schuldiner , the founder of the band Death, and the first band to earn the moniker of Death Metal, started his band in Altmaonte Springs (where I just bought my first house ). Tampa is the home of the legendary Morrisound Studios , where Death Metal was pioneered in the early and mid 90’s.
It may not sound appealing to many, however, Death Metal was, and is, a unique investment opportunity for the entrepreneur with limited capital. Generally speaking, Death Metal bands do not require the same level of initial funding to reach the same profitability margins of more popular music.