April 26, 2016

EcoTech to host second #LOCALIS Digital Conference on Thursday

Submitted by EcoTech Visions

 EcoTech Visions will host the second annual #LOCALIS Digital Conference on Thursday, April 28 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST.

#LOCALIS is a fun digital conference that focuses on the meaning and impact of living locally and supporting local green businesses. The goal of the event is to build awareness and engagement around eco-sustainability topics through noted virtual presenters and institutions who are creatively impacting the ways people interact with the environment and eco-business development. The conference takes place on various social media channels including: Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

“We’re very excited for this year’s #LOCALIS Digital Conference and expect national and global participation,” says Justin Knight, director of marketing and programming at EcoTech Foundations. “Participants will engage in meaningful conversations around what ‘local is’ and ways people can encourage and further develop sustainability in their local communities.”

This year’s schedule includes a scavenger hunt with clues revealed online, plus an in-person lunch event hosted at EcoTech Visions.

Topics on this year’s agenda include:

8am-9am: Solar Power

9am-10am: Renewable Energy Technology

10am-11am: How the not-for-profit sector is advancing local change

11am-noon: Blue Collar to Green Collar

Noon-2pm: Scavenger Hunt

2pm-3pm: Benefits of Supporting Small Businesses/ How to Buy Locally

3pm-4pm: Solving for Sea Level Rise

4pm-5pm: How to make an impact with Water Conservation

5pm-6pm: A Healthier You: What is the impact of eco-sustainability on health

7pm-8pm: Tips for "Glean" Living (Green-Clean Living)

The majority of the conversation occurs on the Twitter platform using hashtag: #LOCALIS. Real-time conversations around “what #LOCALIS means to you.”

A partial listing of presenters for this year's event includes:

  • Andrew West, National Black Information Technology Leadership Organization
  • James Jiler, Urban Greenworks
  • Jen Boynton, Triple Pundit
  • Kamalah Fletcher, American Red Cross
  • Dr. Pandwe Gibson, PhD, EcoTech Visions
  • Valencia Gunder, Make the Homeless Smile
  • Victoria Fear, The Miami Foundation
  • …and more

“LOCALIS represents a unique opportunity for my business to promote the local manufacturing of environmentally friendly and sustainable products," says Michael Caballero, chief executive officer of Earthware Inc. "The benefits of my business model - economically, environmentally and to one's health - are an important message that everyone needs to hear.”

Interested participants can get in on the conversation between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 28 by using hashtag #LOCALIS.

To view the full schedule and list of digital presenters, visit: localisconference.com, and for more information about EcoTech Visions, please visit: EcoTechVisions.com.

EcoTech Visions is a green technology business incubator and accelerator that is turning blue collar jobs to green collar.


April 24, 2016

Entrepreneurship Datebook: Events, workshops in South Florida April 25-May 1

Tech eggMarketHack: The digital marketing training program presents Tricks of the Twitter Trade, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Monday, Idea Center at Miami Dade College, Wolfson campus, fifth floor. More info on Eventbrite.

From Idea to Prototype: In this Gold Coast Venture Capital Association event, learn from two leaders in the prototyping industry and an entrepreneur who turned his idea into a prototype and then a funded startup, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., Wednesday, Mindwarehouse, 111 NE 1st Street, 7th Floor. More info here.

Waffles After Work with LiveNinja: Join the Miami tech and startup community for this monthly evening version of #WaffleWednesday, 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday, LiveNinja HQ, 120 NW 25th Street, Suite 301, Miami. More info on Eventbrite

Brainfood with Zumba: The Brainfood speaker series presents “The Zumba Case” with CEO Alberto Perlman, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, The LAB Miami, 400 NW 26th St., Wynwood. More info here.

MIT Enterprise Forum: Topic is “The Future of On-Demand Manufacturing: Printing 3D Products” with a panel of entrepreneurs and 3D printing experts, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, Florida International University, 11200 SW 8th St. (Park in Garage 6). More info and ticket information here.

If you have an event you would like considered for Entrepreneurship Datebook, email it to ndahlberg@miamiherald.com and put Datebook in the subject line.


Miami-Dade startups can apply for the American Entrepreneurship Award contest sponsored by the Libra Group. The contest comes with a $25,000 prize, and the entry deadline is Friday. Find out more at www.americanaward.com.


Find startup news and community views on the Starting Gate blog on Miami Herald.com.

April 17, 2016

Entrepreneurship Datebook: Events, workshops in South Florida April 18-24

eMerge Americas: Miami’s homegrown technology conference will feature speakers, an expo, contests, a hiring fair, parties and more. On Tuesday, finalists in the Startup Showcase will pitch for $175,000 in investment. Conference is Monday and Tuesday, Miami Beach Convention Center. Tickets are sold out. More info: emergeamericas.org.

Jumpstart your Business with American Entrepreneurship Award: The American Entrepreneurship Award (AEA) is an annual business plan competition offering $25,000 in startup funding, as well as mentorship and free business support; entry deadline is April 29. Join a free session by Daymond John’s company Shark Branding, 5 p.m. Wednesday, The Idea Center at Miami Dade College, Wolfson campus, Building 8, Fifth floor.

Startupbootcamp Launch: Startupbootcamp Miami, an accelerator for digital health companies, celebrates its launch and will include a discussion on its plan to make Miami a hub for healthcare innovation, 6:30-9:30 p.m. Wednesday, Building.co, 120 SW Eighth St., 3rd Floor, Miami. Register on Eventbrite.

The Lowdown on Intellectual Property: FIU Miami Beach Urban Studios hosts “Make Money Trough Innovation! Intellectual Property and Patents,” a discussion led by Peter Hernandez, director of the office of technology management and commercialization for FIU, 6 p.m. Thursday, 420 Lincoln Rd., Suite 440, Miami Beach.


Have you wondered what it is like to be a women in technology? Could the tech community be more welcoming to women? Several guest posts on the Starting Gate blog last week addressed this. Also, Juan Pablo Cappello weighs in on “Silicon Beach” — can we bury that in the sand, he asks? Find these posts and more startup news and community views on Starting Gate blog at on MiamiHerald.com/business.

Nancy Dahlberg @ndahlberg

April 09, 2016

Entrepreneurship Datebook: Events, workshops in South Florida April 11-18

Tech eggU Innovation Seminar: In its 2016 Concept to Commercialization Seminar Series, the University of Miami’s U Innovation presents “Exploring the Differences between Inventorship, Authorship and Ownership on the Road to Commercializing University Intellectual Property,” 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, UM Life Science and Technology Park, 1951 NW 7th Ave., 1st Floor Room.

Angel Summit Americas Conference: Join 300-plus startup influencers, investors, entrepreneurs, industry and community leaders to discuss ways to unleash the potential of startup investment in Miami and beyond, Thursday and Friday, Intercontinental Miami. Tickets: http://americas.angelsummit.io.

ChallengeHER: ChallengeHER works with the Small Business Administration’s Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) federal contracting program as a tool to help to assist women business owners leverage federal awards, learn the federal procurement process, and to connect them with the right people. Learn about WOSB set-asides and how to market your business under this program, 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday (registration begins at "8 a.m.), FIU Biscayne Bay Campus, Hospitality Management Building, 3000 NE 151 Street, North Miami. Free. More info here.

eMerge Americas: Miami’s homegrown technology conference will feature speakers, an expo, contests, a hiring fair, parties and more, April 18-19, Miami Beach Convention Center. Tickets: emergeamericas.org


The Miami Herald Business Plan Challenge drew a record number of entries, and our judges have their work cut out for them. Semifinalists will be announced on Monday, April 18, in Business Monday and on MiamiHerald.com/challenge. Winners will be announced May 9 in a Business Monday special section.

Nancy Dahlberg @ndahlberg


April 08, 2016

6 things not to miss at AngelSummit Americas next week


By Mack Kolarich

With less than a week left till AngelSummit we wanted to give you a sneak peak at the 6 most exciting happenings during the course of this 2-day conference for current and aspiring startup investors, at the InterContinental Miami, Thursday, April 14th and Friday,  April 15th.

The event will be hosted by Univision’s Silicon Valley Correspondent, Diego Graglia and feature moderators and panelists like CNET en Español’s Claudia Cruz, William Crowder of Comcast Ventures and Christian Seale of  Startupbootcamp.

  1. What’s next for Cuban Entrepreneurs?

Will Cuba truly grow into its nickname of ‘Silicon Island’? Will American startups expand to the country? Will Cuban startups expand their creativity and hustle beyond their borders? Learn what’s next for Cuban founders and investors over the coming years. John McIntire will chat with Cuban entrepreneurs Ubaldo Don of Itopia, Sergio Lazaro of Ingenius and Eliecer Cabrera of ConoceCuba on what exciting opportunities are in store Cuba’s startup community.

This is a panel not to be missed with a very exciting announcement to take place exclusively at AngelSummit Americas.

Keynote: Thursday, April14th at 5:00PM.

  1. Harnessing your city’s angel potential

Techstars has become synonymous with tech disruption and startup acceleration with over 700 portfolio companies and over $2.2B collectively raised since 2006. They’ve made tech startups like Sphero, SendGrid, ClassPass and Plated household names and fostered cities like Boulder, Boston, Seattle and New York City to become some of the most recognizable tech hubs in the world.

Hear from Marc Nager Chief Community Officer of Techstars, one of the world’s foremost experts on startup communities about what it takes to build successful startup communities that activate their local angel community.

Lunch Keynote: Friday, April 15th at 1:30PM

  1. Debut of Lean Angel Workshop

This year, the summit will debut the Lean Angel Workshop as a track for new investors. Developed under the guidance of Brad Feld and other startup investment leaders, the objective of the workshops is to provide new angels, wealth managers and RIAs an introduction to the business of investing in technology startups.

  1. The latest on investment platforms

Startup investing has gotten a whole lot more mainstream in the last decade, and the changing SEC regulations are paving the way for greater investor participation. Don’t miss the perspectives from the entrepreneurs who’ve built some of the most successful investment platforms like SeedInvest and FundersClub, on how they are helping more investors get involved in startups worldwide.

Emerging Investment Platforms: Thursday, April14th at 3:30PM.

  1. Investing in real estate innovation

Constance Freedman of Moderne Ventures will share how her real estate background led her to fund one of the few early-stage venture funds investing in technology companies that are revolutionizing real estate, mortgage, finance, insurance, and home services.

Keynote: Friday, April 15th at 9:30AM

  1. Finding investment opportunities across spanish-speaking markets

With nearly 500 million Spanish speakers and an ever growing Spanish speaking population in countries like the US, the possibilities to invest in countries other than one’s own is increasing. Pedro Sorrentino of Funder’s Club, Hernan Fernandez of Angel Ventures Mexico and Andres Barreto of Socialatom will share why as an investor, you should look for opportunities across the region.

Keynote: Friday, April 15th at 10:45AM

Check out the full 2-day agenda at www.americas.angelsummit.io where you can still purchase tickets and view the full list of speakers. Don’t forget to follow the live action on Twitter by following @StartupAngelsCo and #AngelSummit.

Mack Kolarich is co-founder and VP of Product of Startup Angels and AngelSummit Americas, taking place April 14th-15th, 2016 in Miami. AngelSummits are highly curated gatherings of startup influencers, investors, industry and community leaders for a 2-day conference on the future of startup investing.  Since 2014 they have hosted more than 1,200 participants at Summits in Dallas, Madrid and Chattanooga with Dublin scheduled for June 2016.



April 03, 2016

Entrepreneurship Datebook: Events, workshops in South Florida April 4-10

Code For Miami: Join innovators, hackers and community leaders as they come up with applications for the public good, 7 p.m. Monday, The LAB Miami, 400 NW 26th St. More info: TheLabMiami.com

Office Hours at the MIC: Microsoft Technical evangelists will be available onsite hosting office hours to help answer questions, provide technical guidance on your engineering projects, 10 a.m. Tuesday, Venture Hive, 1010 NE Second Ave. Sign up here: http://www.meetup.com/MICMiami/events/229098067

Design Thinking for the 2016 Public Space Challenge: Design Thinking Miami is partnering with the Miami Foundation for the 2016 Public Space Challenge Workshop, 6:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m. Tuesday, The Miami Foundation, 40 NW Third St., Suite 305, Miami. More info here.

#WaffleWednesday: A weekly breakfast networking event for Miami’s tech and creative community to come together, 9 a.m. Wednesday, LiveNinja offices,120 NW 25th St., Loft #301, Miami. More info on Eventbrite.

Breaking into the Miami Fashion Scene: The Miami Beach JCC Conversations series presents two featured speakers, fashion stylist Rachael Russell and blogger Maria Andy Tettamanti, at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, tickets $18. More info: mbjcc.org/conversations.

Starting Gate

Keep up with startup news and find community views and resources on the Starting Gate blog on MiamiHerald.com/business. Email news to ndahlberg@miamiherald.com.

Nancy Dahlberg @ndahlberg

March 27, 2016

Entrepreneurship Datebook: Workshops, events in South Florida March 28-April 3

Tech eggFUNights: The Anti-Portfolio: A candid discussion with investors Tigre Wenrich, Mark Kingdon and Ben Wirz moderated by AGP’s Nico Berardi about their biggest missed and/or failed investments, "5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, CIC Miami, 1951 NW Seventh Ave., Miami. More info: Refreshmiami.com (click on Events)

Waffles After Work: Join the Miami startup, tech and creative community for this once a month night version of #WaffleWednesday, 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday, LiveNinja HQ, 120 NW 25th Street, Loft #301. More info on Eventbrite.

The State of Miami’s Tech Hub: Miami has made some important strides in startup activities, but what is the true state of where it is in the growth process? Real vs. hype, let the discussion begin with a panel discussion, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday, Miami Ad School, 571 NW 28th St. More info on Eventbrite.

Refresh Miami: Topic is the future of gaming, with speakers from Alienware, Origin PC and SEGA Networks and pre-event demos of the Ocolus Rift VR Headset, local game developers and the latest Origin PC products, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, Miami Dade College Auditorium, Room 1261 (Building 1), Wolfson Campus. More info: RefreshMiami.com


Find startup news, community views and tools for entrepreneurs on the Starting Gate blog on MiamiHerald.com/business. Have news? Email ndahlberg@miamiherald. com.

Nancy Dahlberg@"ndahlberg

March 20, 2016

Entrepreneurship Datebook: Workshops, events in South Florida March 21-27

Tech eggMarketHack Presents: Topic is Master Facebook with Christian Pretelt, who will share strategies on building successful campaigns, 5:30 to 8 p.m. Monday, The Idea Center at Miami Dade College. More info on Eventbrite.

The Basics on Bitcoin and Blockchains: This free talk will provide you with a basic understanding of the economics and science behind bitcoin and the blockchain, 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, The LAB Miami, 400 NW 26th St. More info: thelabmiami.com

MIT Enterprise Forum: This event’s topic is “Music on Demand: The Next Iteration: with panelists including a Grammy producer and a Warner Music executive, 6:30 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, Venture Hive, 1010 NE Second St., Miami. Tickets: http://www.mitforumfl.org.

South Florida Technology Alliance: Topic of the SFTA forum is “Cracking the Code on Tech Talent in South Florida” featuring CEOs of 3C Interactive, Modernizing Medicine and ClubMed, 5 to 8:30 pm Thursday, Citrix Systems, 851 W Cypress Creek Road, Fort Lauderdale. Tickets: https://www.southfloridatech.org.


Find startup news, community views and tools for entrepreneurs on the Starting Gate blog on MiamiHerald.com/business. Have news? Email ndahlberg@miamiherald.com.

Nancy Dahlberg @ndahlberg


March 14, 2016

Entrepreneurship Datebook: Workshops, events in South Florida March 14-20

Tech eggStartup Nation Technology Fair: Explore technology and meet innovators of Israel as well as acquire internships at Career Fair, 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, University of Miami, third floor of the Shalala Student Center, 1320 S. Dixie Hwy., Coral Gables. More info: www.startupnationtechfair.org.

Design Thinking: Three-hour workshop is an interactive introduction to the concepts and techniques of Design Thinking, 6 to 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, Moonlighter Makerspace, 2041 NW First Pl., Miami. More info: http://www.designthinkingmiami.com/

Growth Hackers Series: Event will bring corporate and startup growth leaders together under one roof. Topic: Recruiting, retaining, engaging, developing and scaling a high-performance growth team, 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, The LAB Miami, 400 NW 25th St. More info: thelabmiami.com.

Master the Skies with Drones: Event showcases how to master drone technology across different industries, 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday, The Idea Center at Miami Dade College, Wolfson Building 8. More info on Eventbrite.

MarketHack Presents: Topic is Master Facebook with Christian Pretelt, who will share strategies on building successful campaigns, 5:30 to 8 p.m. March 21, The Idea Center at Miami Dade College. More info on Eventbrite.

Starting Gate

Find startup news, communty views and tools for entrepreneurs on the Starting Gate blog on MiamiHerald.com/business. Have news? email ndahlberg@miamiherald.com.

March 13, 2016

Hyperloop: Racing ahead with a new way to build a company


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By Nancy Dahlberg / ndahlberg@miamiherald.com

Hyperloop – Will this be the future of mass transit?

Imagine a 30-minute commute from San Francisco to Los Angeles. Leave the driving to the Jetsons: It would be through a high-speed tunnel costing just $30. Hyperloop Transportation Technologies is using the power of the crowd to bring Elon Musk’s vision to life.

Dirk Ahlborn, CEO, said more than 500 people -- including experts from Fortune 500 companies and academia -- have been hired for the team so far, each committing 10 hours a week for stock options only. This crowd-sourced company is one of several pursuing the Hyperloop dream, first mentioned by Musk in 2007.

Ahlborn gave a presentation on its plans for the Hyperloop, first planning to roll out a small Hyperloop in 2018 in Quay Valley, California, a Central Valley community known for its forward-thinking, and Slovenia, the first international market to sign on.  He said then company has been working on user experience, and showed a video on its vision to bring augmented reality windows to its windowless tubes with views and information that riders could enjoy together.  The hyperloop will be equipped with wifi, he said, which is no easy feat for a train moving at the speed of sound.

The design would be environmentally sound, including pylon that not only take up very little real estate but also collect rainwater. Also, the Hyperloop would be energy positive -- it would generate more power than it uses, he says.

For more information or to apply to join the effort: hyperlink.global. Ahlborn said more than a thousand people have applied and the company is working on finding ways to expand the team.