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Friday's Afternoon Update

House Gaming committee votes to ban Internet cafes

The House Select Committee on Gaming took a step towards banning strip center Internet cafes that opponents say are simply illegal gambling establishments. The committee voted 15-1 today on an amended bill (HB 155) that would further clarify the definition of slot machines used at Internet cafés and adult arcades, essentially outlawing the facilities. More from the Tallahassee Democrat, the Orlando Sentinel and the AP.

Deco District Renovations

deco district

Spurred by strong tourism numbers, hospitality companies have been purchasing and renovating South Beach hotels at a furious pace during the past two years.

» Deco District Renovations

Sarasota entrepreneurs catch ride on Startup Bus

When Lindsey Nickel-de la O and Miguel Elasmar boarded a Greyhound bus bound for the South by Southwest music and interactive festival this month, they didn't expect to fully launch their startup businesses during the five-day road trip. [Source: Sarasota Herald-Tribune]

Shark Tank’s Daymond John shares story at EO conference

Shark Tank star Daymond John parlayed his passion for hip-hop and entrepreneurship to go from waiting tables to founding and growing FUBU, a $4 billion urban fashion empire. But as John told nearly 400 entrepreneurs in a Fontainebleau ballroom, there is no such thing as an overnight success. [Source: Miami Herald]

» FRIDAY PREVIEW: Coming next week to FloridaTrend.com:

  • Advocacy: Florida's Top Lobbying Firms 2013
  • Cargo Opportunity: Tampa Port Authority's new CEO Paul Anderson plans to target imports from Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • Flying High on Renewable Biofuel: The first-ever civilian flight powered by 100% renewable biofuel marked a triumphant conclusion to six years of research at the Panama City offices of Applied Research Associates.
  • Profile: Summit Learning Services: Entrepreneur Ed Cwieka and public school teacher Jeanee Thompson met in 2006, opened their tutoring business in 2007 and plan to get married this year. Their Plantation-based Summit Learning Services has blossomed like their relationship.

» You'll find all these stories first on the Daily and Afternoon Pulse e-mails.

Florida Dining
Digital Menus

digital menusMenus and wine lists are going digital across Florida at all levels of price and style, from sleek new French bistros like Stephane’s in Boca Raton to longstanding white tablecloth spots like Michael’s on East in Sarasota. Besides offering gorgeous pictures, some digital and touch-screen menus let diners sort through wine pairings, rate the place on Yelp or even swipe credit cards. At the same time, restaurants can use the devices to track cannelloni sales, measure a waiter’s revenue and reorder Oyster Bay sauvignon blanc when inventory runs low.

» Full story