We all know it’s true — Lakeland loves entrepreneurship. Whether you’re thinking of turning your side hustle into a full-time gig or you’ve been building a business for years, Lakeland is a great place to plant your idea. Because of that, there’s no shortage of startups and small businesses to keep our eyes on. Luckily for us, we have an expert in the field who can help us break it down.
We connected with Christin Strawbridge, President of Catapult Lakeland, to learn more about the difference between startups and small businesses. “I am a believer that it is helpful to differentiate between a startup and a small business. They both can positively impact our local economy, but they need different resources and grow in different ways.”
Startups vs. small businesses
Here’s how Forbes breaks it down:
- Funding — Startups require initial investments; small businesses are self-sustaining and generate their own revenue.
- Growth — Startups aim to be market disruptors who take over their market; small businesses aim to be profitable alongside other businesses in their market.
- End goal — Startups often hope to transition into a larger company or be bought out by a larger company; small businesses hope to stay in business.
Who we’re watching
- CRE Academy — As of July 2023, the professionals behind this commercial real estate coaching and training startup have supported $56,651,228 in total sales volume in the last 12 months.
- Hook Security — This cybersecurity business known for taking a psychological approach to security training recently secured $5.5 million in funding.
- Nautical Bros Customs — This dealer and installer of Marine Foam Decking has partnered up with Youtuber Jiggin’ with Jordan, a marine scavenger with 3.2+ million subscribers.
- East of These — Shop from best-selling collections or order your own custom designs on hand-made turbans, scrunchies, and more.
- Plates on Deck — Known for eclectic soul food, this eatery hosts private events and pop-ups and offers private chef and catering services.
- Robert Berganza Furniture — Modern sculptural furniture made in the heart of downtown Lakeland? Our attention is piqued — you can commission a custom piece online.
This piece is ongoing. Check back later to find more of our featured startups and small businesses. And, if you have one we should be paying attention to, tell us about it.