NewsPinellas County


'1 Million Cups' program helping Tampa Bay area startups and entrepreneurs get off the ground

Posted at 3:48 PM, Sep 04, 2019

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Many of us have had an idea to start a business, but whether or not that business will actually work is the big question.

There is a program in St. Petersburg called 1 Million Cups that is giving small businesses the chance to explore whether they have what it takes.

On Wednesday, the Sun Coast Developers Guild gave their best pitch about why their Code Academy is a valuable startup.

“Startups get that market validation from the crowd and they know if they have an idea that’s worth investing their time and their treasure into, or whether if its something they need to take back, retweak,” said Sean Kennedy, with 1 Million Cups.

Every Wednesday, two startups or entrepreneurs address the St. Pete business community about their dream endeavor and it’s usually over coffee, hence the name 1 Million Cups.

“The connections they make here at 1 Million Cups really propel their growth here in our community,” said Kennedy.

After every pitch, there is a question and suggestion period with the audience, some of whom are looking to partner or invest in a good idea.

“We want to hear what the community needs, so if the community needs developers or needs training in certain areas we want to know that,” said Toni Warren with Sun Coast Developers Guild.

The folks at Sun Coast Developers Guild are typically the teachers but at 1 Million Cups they become the students and what they are learning is how to be a success.

“Without their support, their community connection, and their collaboration, we wouldn’t be where we are,” said Warren.

There are 1 Million Cups branches across the U.S. For more information on how to participate go to