While the world may have stilled for a brief moment in mid-2020, moves in the technology sector never slowed. We’ve tracked the closures, expansions and new hires you may have missed throughout the year below.
Promotions and new hires
• Clearwater-based Vology, a managed services and cloud provider, saw its CEO Barry Shevlin step down. Steve Torres now serves as the president and IBM executive Tom York is CEO.
• Derek Apanovitch quietly took the role as CEO for Wesley Chapel-based Global Safety Management, taking over for founder Julia MacGregor-Peralta. MacGregor-Peralta later sued the company in April, alleging she was forced out and did not receive pay for work in 2019 and 2020.
• Tampa-based Immertec brought on six senior-level hires, with experience from Apple, Microsoft and Magic Leap.
• Cyber Florida, a state-funded organization hosted at the University of South Florida, appointed former NSA director Mike McConnell as its new executive director.
• A-LIGN hired Michael Branca, a former senior level executive at IBM, as its new chief financial officer in June. It later hired Mike Herdegen, a co-founder of Tribridge, as its new chief technology officer in October.
• Validity, a Boston-based customer data quality startup, laid off 28 in its Tampa office.
• Launchcode, the St. Louis-based nonprofit that offers coding classes throughout the country, closed its Florida operations.
• Canadian company Codeboxx announced it would be moving its headquarters to the Tampa Bay area in 2021.
• St. Pete’s InsideOut announced it would be hiring 150 employees as the coronavirus pandemic came to a head. The hirings came after partnering with IBM, Google and T-Mobile.
• UK-based iO Associates, a digital technology firm, announced it will be opening in Tampa Bay and bringing 40 jobs with it.
• Clearwater-based cybersecurity company KnowBe4 announced it expanded into Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It marked the company’s 10th office.
• Tampa-based Lumina Analytics partnered with IBM. In November, the company announced former IBM executive Michael Browne would join as COO. In December, Browne was announced as the new CEO, taking over for co-founder Allan Martin.
• Florida Funders, the venture capital fund and angel investor network, partnered with Florida Polytechnic University, the Lakeland-based STEM university, to further grow the talent pipeline in the region.
• The University of South Florida Health Taneja College of Pharmacy partnered with Tampa-based biotech firm Morphogenesis. The two-year partnership runs the gamut. It will allow for clinical and clinical research collaborations, opportunities for students to intern for Morphogenesis, and the company will co-chair USF’s College of Pharmacy Industry Advisory Board.
• SynsorMed, a health care technology startup with major Tampa Bay ties, partnered with the Charles Barkley Foundation to combat health disparities in the Black community.
• Phonism, a technology startup with a focus on the communications industry, partnered with publicly traded Ribbon Communications Inc. for an undisclosed amount.
• Tampa-based online tutoring platform Knack teamed up with Florida Polytechnic University to expand the STEM talent pipeline in local high schools.
• Innovation hub Embarc Collective, largely backed by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik, had its grand opening of its space in February.
• Tampa General Hospital announced it will be launching a $15 million fund meant to bolster innovation from both within the hospital walls and beyond. It will be headed by Rachel Feinman, the now-former executive director of the Florida-Israel Business Accelerator.
• Morgan Hill Partners, a boutique investment firm and longtime startup supporter, rebranded to Orchid Black. The name change follows opening offices in both New York City and West Coast earlier in 2020.
• A number of new investment firms started by local tech giants came to light. ConnectWise co-founder Arnie Bellini announced the launch of Bellini Capital, myMatrixx founder Steve Macdonald announced he will be launching MacDonald Ventures and Vology co-founder Barry Shevlin has launched CAVU Capital.