New companies to compete for 2021 Startup of the Year

Every year, thousands of startup companies join a community to gain exposure, develop key relationships and vie for the title of Startup of the Year. This year’s deadline to apply, September 30, is approaching.

“The Startup of the Year partners with local entrepreneurial support organizations like Embarc Collective and Tampa Bay Wave, thus providing a local on ramp to this global community and awards opportunity,” explains Frank Gruber, co-founder and co-CEO of Established® and Established Ventures, Startup of the Year® Community and Awards.

While early startups can join the community and participate in the events and resources, only independent companies with functional prototypes that have raised less than $5 million in funding are eligible for the award.

“We strive to be inclusive geographically and with the founding teams as we believe anyone can start up an amazing company from anywhere,” Gruber says.

A subset of companies will be invited to participate in the annual award and contest.

It is free to apply to the community and to be considered for the Startup of the Year contest. The winner will be announced at the end of the year at a summit; details about the summit are not yet available.

The lending firm, SoLo Funds, claimed the title of Startup of the Year 2020, and Established Ventures, the investment arm of Established, invested in its latest round of funding. 

“The Startup of the Year is a growing community that aims to help startup founders along their journey with an aim at elevating them as they grow,” Gruber says.

The award dates back to 2006 to a company called Tech Cocktail or Tech Co.

“That previous company would tour the country showcasing startups at local events, and covering them online via Tech.Co,” Gruber explains. “Tech.Co was acquired in 2018 and Established was born thus continuing this longstanding community effort and program.”

Learn more about Embarc Collective and Tampa Bay Wave.
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Read more articles by Cheryl Rogers.

Cheryl Rogers is a freelance writer and editor who enjoys writing about careers. An ebook author, she also writes Bible Camp Mystery series that shares her faith. She is publisher of New Christian Books Online Magazine and founder of the Mentor Me Career Network, a free online community, offering career consulting, coaching and career information. Now a wife and mother, Cheryl discovered her love of writing as a child when she became enthralled with Nancy Drew mysteries. She earned her bachelor's degree in Journalism and Sociology from Loyola University in New Orleans. While working at Loyola's Personnel Office, she discovered her passion for helping others find jobs. A Miami native, Cheryl moved to the Temple Terrace area in 1985 to work for the former Tampa Tribune