HUEY: Sarasota area’s reputation for entrepreneurship spreading


The Sarasota County area has long been known for tourism, real estate and retirees as economic strengths. But it is increasingly growing an organic entrepreneurial ecosystem that is getting noticed nationally and maybe even internationally.

Recently, the North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton area was ranked No. 1 on’s list of the best cities for young entrepreneurs to start a business — beating out such notables as Austin, Texas, Raleigh, North Carolina, and Provo, Utah.

Downtown Sarasota now has two co-work, startup incubators, with BOLD joining the venerable HuB in that growing bio-health sector. The area also has gained new angel investors, an increasing number of tech companies and, now, a coordinated consortium of all six institutions of higher education here.