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Shore thing: City's profile as tech hub on the rise

A new branding campaign touts St. Pete as the nation's next great hotbed for startups.

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  • | 6:00 a.m. February 21, 2020
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File. Chad Nuss and his sales software company, InsideOut, are part of a wave of tech firms that have started up in, or moved to, St. Petersburg.
File. Chad Nuss and his sales software company, InsideOut, are part of a wave of tech firms that have started up in, or moved to, St. Petersburg.
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The Greater St. Petersburg Area Economic Corp. wants to help position the Sunshine City as the nation’s next tech mecca. To get there, it recently unveiled a marketing campaign, Become St. Pete, aimed at luring New York- and New Jersey-based tech, data and financial services firms and workers to the area.

The first salvo is a video series that dubs St. Pete “Silicon Shores” — a play on San Francisco’s Silicon Valley, Seattle’s Silicon Forest and Denver’s Silicon Mountain tech communities. The first episode dropped Feb. 12 and features fast-growing St. Pete tech startups InsideOut, The Penny Hoarder, Intrinio and Station House. (Not to be outdone on the silicon strategy, late last year a group of tech companies in the Sarasota-Bradenton market launched a networking group, Silicon Beach SRQ, for the region's beaches and its airport call letters.)

“The St. Pete business ecosystem has helped fuel our growth to 200 employees in the downtown area over the past two years,” states Chad Nuss, InsideOut’s co-founder and chief revenue officer, in a news release. Nuss knows of what he speaks, too, considering he worked for a variety of tech companies in the San Francisco area for some 20 years before relocating to St. Pete in 2015. “Our company reflects everything that is St. Pete: diversity, equality, art, business, science, tech and the best quality of life in the country. St. Pete is poised for growth, and we couldn’t be happier to lead the charge for this great city.”

The Silicon Shores concept was developed by PPK, a Tampa-based advertising agency that also has an office in Tallahassee. Other PPK clients include PDQ, the Florida Aquarium, the Florida Lottery, Tires Plus and pool supply chain Pinch-A-Penny.

Additional videos in the Silicon Shores series, which touts St. Pete as “a haven for the brilliant minds fleeing four-hour commutes and corporate buyouts,” are forthcoming, the release states.

“People are often surprised by our regional assets, strong startup culture and density of technology companies and Fortune 1,000 employers,” states J.P. DuBuque, president and CEO of the EDC, in the release. “We know we’ve got something really special here in St. Pete, and our hope is to continue attracting even more innovative thinkers to be a part of our community.”


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