Florida’S Growing Fintech Ecosystem

“The FinTech Revolution: Talents, Rebels and Disruptive Innovation” was the first official event hosted by BlockSpaces in their new home at

Ian Quinn
February 25, 2020
Florida’S Growing Fintech Ecosystem

“The FinTech Revolution: Talents, Rebels and Disruptive Innovation” was the first official event hosted by BlockSpaces in their new home at Embarc Collective. With a great turnout, thought-provoking presentations, and lively discussions, this meetup made 2/20/2020 a date to remember.

The event drew interest from banking representatives, blockchain core developers, community activists, VC investors, and local entrepreneurs, leaving a lasting impression on all.

One theme that rings true from the evening is the common pursuit of supporting Tampa Bay and the state of Florida as a successful technology innovation ecosystem for years to come.

Tampa Bay: A Technology Innovation Hub.

Warm weather, great people, and a welcoming attitude towards business growth make Tampa Bay a prime location for technology innovation. Those who share a high level of optimism about the potential for the area today understand that there is still a great deal of work ahead.

Embarc Collective provides Tampa Bay startups with access to the resources necessary for success. BlockSpaces aligns with these values, by utilizing the space for events designed to immerse attendees in both the technical and interpersonal sides of education and emerging technology.

Building a reputation through rationale: Raising awareness for the right reasons.

The United States is playing catchup with blockchain from a regulatory perspective. Taking the lead on this matter, the state of Wyoming passed 13 blockchain-friendly bills, making itself a magnet for businesses with ambitions in this field.

Florida has wisely followed suit, with Senate Bill 1024 being approved in May 2019, forming the Florida Blockchain Task Force as a proactive measure for blockchain research, advocacy, and community growth.

Synchronizing disruptive innovation with regulatory bodies is challenging as it is. Amid the hype, misinterpretation, and short-sighted operations that have emerged surrounding blockchain in the past few years, it makes it even more important for those who care about the future of blockchain in Florida, to advocate for community awareness through credible education and pragmatic solutions.

Here are a few of the concrete steps being made today:

Teaming up with state universities to craft blockchain education.

Funding educational programs is a direct and effective way that the state government can positively impact residents’ interactions with emerging technology.

Accredited degrees in blockchain-related software engineering, economic theory, and entrepreneurship will draw world-class educators and ambitious students, effectively grooming a homegrown talent pool capable of bringing use-cases to life.

Prototyping use-cases for future scaling: Digital identity.

Another way the state government can benefit from blockchain-friendly legislation is by utilizing relevant use-cases. Medical records, voting registration, taxes, and titles all require some form of legally verified identification.

With the digitalization of government-issued documents occurring in full swing, distributed ledger technology presents a very strong option that can improve cost-effectiveness, transparency, and security compared to present-day centralized data repositories.

Migrating existing data structures to entirely new systems isn’t something that can, or should, happen overnight. Now is the time for innovators to develop prototypes that can be tested thoroughly in local markets, then scaled up to the state level, and beyond.

BlockSpaces has partnered up with Seminole County Tax Collector to pursue the management of digital identity for tax collection purposes. This is a promising pilot project that can take root and scale to implementation at the state level once proven viable.

Attracting local capital by addressing pain points in legacy systems.

Keynote speaker Matteo Rizzi touched on the matter of disruptive thinkers and their ability to move the needle within corporate structures in the realm of FinTech innovation.

Matteo has a proven track record of spotting and facilitating disruptive innovations. He cofounded InnoTribe, in 2009, the first FinTech movement of its kind. InnoTribe gave a platform for successful FinTech companies Revolut and TransferWise, in their earliest stages.

His latest project, FinTechStage maintains a strong commitment to reinforcing forward thinkers in FinTech and building strong networks between banks, nations, entrepreneurs, and early-stage projects.

During an engaging discussion with the room about Tampa Bay, in particular, Matteo listed some key areas ripe for innovation in real estate, including crowdfunding, smart contracts, and optimization of data transfer. He implored those with ideation in the real estate vertical to continue pushing their solutions, both within their teams and to investors alike.

It is important for the Tampa Bay FinTech community to maintain an interactive platform for networking and the exchange of ideas on these evolving topics, right here in our own backyard.

Community engagement across traditional barriers: Embracing creative problem solvers.

Another main point of Matteo’s discussion focused on the role of lateral thinkers in organizational structures. We must remind ourselves constantly, that the best ideas and innovations can be put forth by those who may not fall directly in line with the status quo. This truth may not be simple to unpack within a corporate regiment; however, refusing to address the potential of engaging with creative minds at all can be a grave mistake.

BlockSpaces provides consultation to companies looking for a credible and trustworthy opinion on matters surrounding blockchain implementation, and fintech innovation. In a phase with no turnkey solutions, BlockSpaces establishes structured information and actionable feedback based on clients’ industry and desired goals.

Beyond consultation, BlockSpaces is a proponent of community outreach through its local partnership with the Junior Achievement program, and advocacy for statewide tech education. Coming into 2020, Tampa Bay is displaying great potential as a tech innovation hub. It’s exciting to witness and participate in real-time.