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    Welcome to the Thunderdome Project.

    “Competitive advantage often comes from leveraging the discovery of others”
    ~ Henry Chesbrough

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The Thunderdome Project, Inc. is a Tampa, Florida based 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation formed in coordination with the Tampa-Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation (EDC) and leaders from academia, industry and government. The company was born from a desire within the Tampa Bay region to support US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) and create a high-tech ecosystem that would bring together entrepreneurs, researchers and industry around a common goal of solving tough problems.


Leverage local and national entrepreneurial talent to speed up the “spinning-in” of new technologies to solve shared public/private sector problems.


A vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem where public and private sector innovators collaborate seamlessly to accelerate technology innovation for our country’s benefit.


The Thunderdome Project is a part of a rapidly growing Tampa Bay high-tech ecosystem supporting a world-class innovation district for national security and wellness technologies. On the national security side, the anchor is USSOCOM with global responsibilities and the requirement to rapidly innovate to respond to both near peer and asymmetric threats. Tampa Bay is home to numerous defense contractors and a workforce with a unique understanding of the challenges faced by America’s warfighters. To increase access to commercial technology and innovators, USSOCOM has recently established SOFWerx, an off -base collaboration center. On the Health and Wellness side, Tampa Bay is home two of the largest VA hospitals in the Nation as well as the University of South Florida (USF) Morsani College of Medicine, Moffitt Cancer Center, USF’s Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation (CAMLS), and Tampa General Hospital, a nationally recognized teaching hospital. Rounding out the ecosystem is a vibrant community of entrepreneurs anchored by multiple incubator/accelerator programs in Pinellas, Hillsborough, Polk and Sarasota Counties; strong academic institutions including USF and the University of Tampa; and a community of leaders who want to make a difference.

The role of Thunderdome Project, Inc. is to extend and leverage our ecosystem, both locally and nationally, to increase the speed to market for technology solutions to hard problems. Anchored by a core group of successful technology entrepreneurs, the Thunderdome Project is applying insights learned in creating innovative products and services in over two-dozen commercial organizations. We incorporate the latest startup thinking, Lean Methodology and Open Innovation to bring together entrepreneurs, innovators and larger organizations to solve problems. Using collaboration, experimentation and focused development methods, our goal is to create prototypes suitable for evaluation in a few months, instead of years. We will accomplish these efforts using both commercial and public funding as well as resources from industry and community partners to reduce the cost of development and acquisition by any one community.