Prize Packages – Startup Weekend Tampa 2016

Startup Weekend Tampa is all about becoming an entrepreneur in just 54 hours. You’ll accomplish more in one weekend than you otherwise would have with months of effort. But the real test for your business comes after the doors close on Sunday night – when the spotlight is gone and you crash from your weekend-long emotional high, will you be ready to build your startup? Over the course of the weekend, we want to make sure that we teach you useful skills and put you in a position to form lasting relationships with peers, mentors, judges, and sponsors. Our hope is that you can carry that momentum into your new life as an entrepreneur.

For teams that place in the top three at Startup Weekend Tampa, our community partners have made generous donations to ensure you have the resources you need to accelerate your startup after the event ends.

Below you’ll find the prize packages for first, second, & third place and the Community Leaders that made them possible.

First Place – Estimated $10,000 in value

Station House – Free 6 Months Coworking for 3 people, 6 hours of conference room time per month, 1 hour mentorship with Steve Gianfilippo

Tampa Bay Wave – 6 Months Free Coworking

Reef House Media – Free Intro Video Package

Alex Sink – Lunch with the team

Tony DiBenedetto – Lunch with the team on the Tribridge campus

Reuben Pressman – Lunch with the team at Check I’m Here

RIDG – Free 3 Hour Interactive Custom Visualization Story Session

Riehle Photography – Free Team Shoot in Studio

The Business Show with Jamie and Kelly – Free guest appearance on air highlighting your business

MyArea Network – Article Highlighting Company and Social Media Shoutout

MyArea Network – 5 Marketing Consulting Hours

Topher Morrison / Key Person of Influence – 3 hours consulting and pitch feedback

Ark Applications – 5 Hours Free Consulting

AppNexus – 3 Hours Free Consulting

Rashkin Law – 3 Hours Free Consulting

De La Pena & Holiday & Law / Brent Britton – 1 Hour Free Consulting

Red Wall Marketing – 4 Hours Marketing Consulting

FullShore Solutions – Free Consultation and 10% Discount on Services

Second Place:

Station House – Free 4 Months Coworking for 3 people, 4 hours of conference room time per month, 1 hour mentorship with Stationhouse owner Steve Gianfilippo

Tampa Bay Wave – 4 Months Free Coworking

Ark Applications – 3 Hours Free Consulting

MyArea Network – 3 Marketing Consulting Hours

AppNexus – 2 Hours Free Consulting

Rashkin Law – 2 Hours Free Consulting

De La Pena Law – 1 Hour Free Consulting

Red Wall Marketing – 2 Hours Marketing Consulting

FullShore Solutions – Free Consultation and 10% Discount on Services

Third Place:

Station House – Free 2 Months Coworking for 3 people, 2 hours of conference room time per month, 1 hour mentorship with Steve Gianfilippo

Tampa Bay Wave – 2 Month Free Coworking

Ark Applications – 2 Hour Free Consulting

MyArea Network – 2 Hours Free Marketing Consulting

AppNexus – 1 Hour Free Consulting

De La Pena Law – 1 Hour Free Consulting

Rashkin Law – 1 Hour Free Consulting

FullShore Solutions – Free Consultation and 10% Discount on Services

Who can pitch at Startup Weekend?

By: Allison Barkley

Here at Startup Weekend Tampa we get asked a lot about who is able to participate in the weekend.

The simple answer is: Everyone!

Startup Weekend attendees come from backgrounds in development, programming, business, education, PR, marketing, finance, law and more. Whether you are a serial entrepreneur or new to the startup scene, if you’re motivated to build a product or startup and open to new ideas, you’ll fit right in.

We know. Computers are hard. You don’t know how to code. The truth is, the teams that win at Startup Weekend are the teams with good ideas and presentations – the teams that can most effectively validate their concept and communicate the market potential as well as their ability capture that market. The judges are not there to do a code review. As long as you’re good at something and you make it a point to be useful somehow, you will be. The people who are not useful at Startup Weekend are the people who show up on Friday having firmly decided that they cannot be useful.

Wait! Before you register we have some simple guidelines to keep everything fun.


Everyone who attends the event as an attendee is expected to participate on a team. This is important not only to preserve the mission of Startup Weekend (teamwork!) but also to minimize distractions/disruptions for all working teams. Each person will get 60 seconds to pitch their idea to the audience. Only 10-15 ideas will be selected to move into the weekend. The teams that move on are decided by the attendees’ votes.

You can’t pitch your existing business/app. Startup Weekend is designed to be the most effective platform for growing new businesses from the ground up over the course of a weekend. A key facet of the weekend and a central value for participants is the spirit of complete collaboration, buy-in and ownership. We’ve found that having existing businesses in the mix undermines this spirit, in addition to creating an imbalance between those ideas that are truly ground-level.

In summary, Startup Weekend is an event to bring two types of people together: people who have ideas, and people who can execute those ideas. They work together to build a business over a 54-hour period, with enough research and hard work done to hit the ground running with the business when they’re ready.

Startup Weekend Tampa: Your Community Resource


By Irene Monokandilos

Startup Weekend Tampa is a fifty-four-hour event for developers, designers, enthusiasts, and entrepreneurs pursuing an encouraging space to hack their latest, and sometimes oldest, ideas. But, as we know well at Startup Weekend Tampa, starting can often be the most formidable opponent to any endeavor, and finding an empowering environment to grow our ideas is no easy task. Your community is here to help. At the heart of our event are community sponsors, local businesses whose aid allows Startup Weekend Tampa to offer unmitigated access to a number of venerable mentors, a slew of potential consumers, talented collaborators, curated coaching and esteemed judges to help you dive in, develop and seek validation for your startup.

We understand that this high-energy weekend can seem as daunting as it seems exhilarating, so our team reached out to former Startup Weekend Tampa participant, Rish, to share his experience and speak to why Startup Weekend Tampa is the place for you this November 11-13. Rish attended Startup Weekend after years of toying with new ideas, with marginal knowledge about marketing or how to approach obtaining validation – a developer with an impassioned idea: a passwordless authentication system for all of your internet needs.

With little to no knowledge of what Startup Weekend could do for him, Rish took a leap of faith after a simple google search. On the first night of the weekend, Rish chose a place among developers, designers, and hustlers (motivated non-technical participants from an array of backgrounds), then pitched his idea to a room of like-minded, equally zealous individuals in only sixty seconds. The best eight pitches would proceed to form teams, developing their startups over the weekend. Rish gained little traction, his pitch for a login with no username or password received only four votes – an outcome he attributes to not actively seeking out support from peers. Undeterred by the events of Friday night, Rish quickly pocketed the first of many lessons: the importance of being a go-getter when it comes to obtaining validation.

Rish returned the next morning, with no team, to a room of welcoming volunteers who recognized his determination and sought to elevate him to success after seeing his prototype. With the help of the invested volunteers at Startup Weekend, Rish borrowed diverse talent from every team and utilized the resources available to him to develop his business over the course of the next day. On Sunday night, Rish pitched his business to the crowd, and a panel of judges, in just five minutes. After the event, volunteers encouraged Rish to join the after party to celebrate the weekend’s work and discuss his plan with judges and mentors who believed in his business, including Greg Ross-Munro of Sourcetoad, the premiere custom app development shop out of Tampa. Rish followed this advice, and in the after party space created a lasting connection with Greg. Under Greg’s mentorship, Rish’s startup flourished well beyond Startup Weekend. SuperAuth, “the world’s first truly passwordless authentication system,” is gaining traction and achieving success daily.

With the resources made available to him during Startup Weekend, including sponsors and mentors like Greg, Rish not only grew his business plan and prototype but learned how to pitch to both potential consumers and sponsors. Rish “talked like a developer on Friday, and like a businessman on Sunday.” His experience is an example of how all of Startup Weekend’s moving parts – its volunteers, sponsors, mentors, and judges – are deeply committed to helping participants at all times. Like Rish, no matter where you are in the process on Friday night, you will leave Startup Weekend prepared to take the next steps on your personal road to success having met mentors, collaborators, and supporters along the way.  If you have an idea, a skill, or even an inkling of startup enthusiasm, join us at Ybor City’s Cuban Club this November for an experience that, in Rish’s words, will “change everything.”  

How To Get The Most Out Of Startup Weekend


You’ve bought your ticket and the weekend is quickly approaching. You suddenly realize that you have no idea what to expect and you start to panic. What do I need? Who is going to help me build my business? What if nobody likes my idea? Will there be food? Did I leave the oven on? What is the meaning of life?

Stop. Take a deep breath. We’ve got your back.

Here is a list of the things you should bring:

  • Laptop + charger
  • Phone charger
  • Business Cards
  • Something to take notes on
  • A paper ticket is not required. Your name is on a list.
  • Students bring your student ID

When you arrive on Friday night you’ll have some time to mingle with your peers before we get started with initial pitches. You’ll be in a room with a ton of talented and motivated individuals so use this time to get to know them, to scope out who you’d like to work with, and maybe even get people thinking about how brilliant your business idea is. After everyone grabs some pizza and the organizing team does brief intros we’ll jump right into initial pitches. If you came to Startup Weekend with an idea this is your chance to win over the crowd.

You, a microphone, and 60 seconds to convince everyone that your idea deserves to be built.

  • Who are you and what is your background? (5-10 Seconds)
  • What is the problem that your product is solving? Or begin with a story (10-20 Seconds)
  • Explain the product and how it solves the problem (10-20 seconds)
  • Who do you need on your team (a developer, marketing, designer?) (5-10 seconds)
  • Finally, make up a name for your startup so the facilitator can give it a title

After everyone who came with an idea does an initial pitch we’ll narrow the ideas down through a voting system. There could be 50 ideas pitched and somewhere around 10 will be chosen to be worked on over the course of the weekend.

What if my idea doesn’t get chosen?

Chin up. You’ve got two options:

  1. Join someone else’s startup. You’ve got skills and they’ve got needs. Figure out which idea you can get behind and become a cofounder.
  2. Convince at least 3 other people that your idea deserves to be built and recruit them to join your team. I hope your sales skills are better than your initial pitch because you have to have at least 4 team members to move forward with the idea. We’ve seen teams who didn’t make it through initial pitch voting go on to win the weekend.

Keep in mind when choosing your team it is good to find people with complementary skills. You’ll want business people, marketers, designers, developers, and hustlers to help you bring your startup to life.

Now you’ve got an idea and you’ve got a team. What’s next?

Friday night you’ll flesh out your idea and figure out what role everyone is going to play. Consider using this time to research competitors as well as nail down your value proposition and how you plan to validate it. Accomplish as much as you want before we kick you out of the venue around 1:00am and after that it is your call whether you go home and get some rest or stay up all night working.

Doors will be open from 9:00am to 1:00am on Saturday and you’ll be working from 9:00am to 5:00pm on Sunday.

Everything that happens in between then is totally up to you.

You’ll need tenacity, passion, determination, and a great attitude to stay productive and positive throughout the course of the weekend. Get to know your team and how they operate to ensure that you’re getting the most out of everyone. Our organizing team and experienced mentors will be there to guide you throughout the course of the weekend. We’ll also have some lean startup concepts and scrum/agile development principles to get you thinking, not to mention tons of food, coffee, and Red Bull. We’ll lay out the judging criteria for you early so you can keep that in mind as you are building your minimum viable products and honing in on your business model. Come Sunday you should be getting ready to pitch. This could be a working demonstration of your product, a video, or anything you can come up with to win the judges over.

This weekend is going to be intense, but more than anything it should be fun.

Startup Weekend is a one of a kind event where you can get some real hands on experience. It is one big learning process so don’t stress too much when everything doesn’t go smoothly. You’re going to meet a ton of incredible people that are driving towards their passions and the energy that you all create is going to leave you feeling like you could take on the world.

So congratulations, you’re about to build something remarkable.