Johnson Joins BOLD Community of Entrepreneurs

Todays News

BY JACOB OGLES SRQ DAILY MONDAY BUSINESS EDITION MONDAY AUG 31, 2020

Nationally renown entrepreneur Cameron Johnson just joined the BOLD community in Sarasota. The arrival of someone in the tech space joining in the business effort has business leaders buzzing about whether Sarasota can become a more serious spot for incubating companies.

“I’ve been pushing Sarasota to be ‘Silicon Beach’ for years,” said Jesse Biter, BOLD co-founder. “I’d like to attract more tech investors to the area. It’s good for Sarasota and the small business in our area.”

BOLD is a project Biter, a software developer-turned-real estate developer and a serial entrepreneur, has worked on for years. The idea is to create a workspace and networking environment where company founders work in close proximity and draw from one another’s energy and skillsets.

The “live, work, play” campus, which houses both coworking spaces and lofts in Downtown Sarasota, announced Johnson’s arrival last week. Johnson, CertificateSwap.com co-founder, said the startup community in the region played a major role in his decision to relocate to Sarasota.

“I knew I wanted to be in Florida and I wanted to be near other young entrepreneurs looking to make a difference,” he said. “I fell in love with Sarasota after my Mastermind club held a meeting on Siesta Key. Earlier this year I came down on vacation with an eye to live here and I came across BOLD. I saw a thriving community of young entrepreneurs and I felt right at home.”

Johnson purchased a condo at the recently-completed BLVD Sarasota, but has joined BOLD Cowork, the 40,000-square-foot shared office program, which now serves over 60 individual businesses. Some work in office suites, but there is also workspace for many solopreneurs and smaller businesses who don’t require full offices. A press release from Bold states Johnson is now “often found at BOLD Cowork.”

"While I don't have any specific investments yet defined, as I get deeper involved in the community I'm sure those will come naturally," he told SRQ. "I love supporting other entrepreneurs and startups and have invested in 50+ over my business career, separate from my own businesses."

As for Johnson’s background, he’s been launching businesses from a home computer since age 9. He and friend Nat Turner launched CertificateSwap.com while he was still a student at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. That was after he’d already become a millionaire in high school launching companies like EZ Mail and SurfingPrizes.com. He’s since appeared regularly on Oprah Winfrey programs and been featured in Forbes.

Tom Frascone, a BOLD co-founder, said he was excited to see Johnson join the region’s growing entrepreneur network.

“He became a millionaire when he was in high school, he wrote a top-selling book when he was 23,” Frascone said. “He was a finalist on Oprah’s ‘Big Give,’ he owns multiple car dealerships and he has investments in all types of other businesses. The BOLD Community is excited to have Cameron as part of the community.”

 

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