FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACTS: Jeremy Scheinberg/Chris Harden
Date October 13, 2015
TROBO Founders Support FireSpring Fund
ORLANDO, FLORIDA – The founders of connected toy startup TROBO the Storytelling Robot have donated $1,000 to the FireSpring Fund, Orlando’s first non-profit seed stage fund.
TROBO co-founders Jeremy Scheinberg and Chris Harden attended the Orange County Commission meetings where Mayor Teresa Jacobs and the Commission discussed a $100,000 commitment to the FireSpring Fund. To show support for the County’s donation, Harden and Scheinberg pledged to donate $1,000 of their own funds if the County would support the Fund. At the September 2, 2015 Commission meeting, the County unanimously pledged the funds to FireSpring so TROBO was thrilled to provide their support as well.
“FireSpring Fund is a much-needed part of the Orlando startup ecosystem,” said Scheinberg. “As a ‘Central Florida startup’ we have seen many different parts of what it takes to start a business here – Startup Weekend, Starter Studio, Canvs, etc. But we are still missing that seed stage capital to get businesses going.”
TROBO has seen many of their friends leave Central Florida to attend other accelerators like TechStars and Y Combinator. Harden and Scheinberg believe that FireSpring Fund will help to keep talent, great products, and jobs here. Donna Mackenzie, FireSpring Fund’s Executive Director adds, “The commitment the founders of TROBO made demonstrates the urgency of the need. There are exciting companies leaving our area every day. TROBO is the very profile of a company that FireSpring Fund will help to remain in our area. For them to make a donation to the Fund, that is a very powerful message indeed.”
"We know that our contribution is tiny compared to the amount the FireSpring team is raising, but we also know that when many individuals contribute, the community wins," said Harden. “We look forward to seeing the rest of the Orange County community jump on board.”
FireSpring Fund plans to meet its first-year funding goal of $1 million from individuals and companies by year-end and launch its first business accelerator class in January 2016. FireSpring Fund’s goal is to raise $5 million over five years.
TROBO the Storytelling Robot is a connected, talking plush toy that helps inspire children ages 2-5 to learn about the amazing science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) in the world around them through interactive, personalized stories that run on iPads and iPhones. TROBO was funded by a successful Kickstarter campaign as well as an SBIR grant from the National Science Foundation. Learn more at www.mytrobo.com.
Jeremy Scheinberg/Chris Harden
About FireSpring Fund
FireSpring Fund was founded in April 2015 to provide seed capital to early-stage technology companies that show significant growth potential and a broad national or international reach of customers. It is led by experienced local business people and community leaders. It is housed within Canvs, the downtown Orlando coworking space, but is a separate 501(c)(3) with its own Board of Directors. For more information, visit FireSpring Fund’s Facebook page or follow @FireSpringFund on Twitter.
FireSpring Fund is not affiliated with or officially connected with Firespring. The Firespring trademark remains the exclusive property of Firespring. For Firespring information, visit http://www.firespring.org/.