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54 posts from October 2013

October 31, 2013

Hialeah small business turns up the heat in contest for Super Bowl ad

From almost 15,000 small businesses that entered the Intuit Small Business Big Game  competition, a Hialeah company won a spot among the top 20 semifinalists and is hoping that its longer-lasting all-natural charcoal will be the ticket to winning a spot in a 2014 Super Bowl ad.

KebroakcharcoalKebroak BBQ Co., run by Sebastian and Julia Bussert, sells a hardwood charcoal that is a healthier way of doing BBQ because it has no added chemicals and it burns hotter and longer than regular charcoal briquettes. The five-person small business, launched in 2010, sells over the Internet nationwide as well as to restaurants and supermarkets.

Kebroak, the only company in Florida to advance in the competition, and the other semifinalists will play for the ultimate prize – a 30-second custom television advertisement that will air during football's biggest game on Feb. 2, 2014. In the initial rounds of the program, these business owners told their stories in 90-second videos and rallied their fans in an online vote.

Kebroak Top20Julia, who is from El Salvador, and Sebastian, who is from Germany, said that theirs is a true family business. The company is based in Hialeah but the the product is made in Central America, and Julia’s father and mother,  Julio (pictured here with Sebastian) and Saumuy Suriano, manage production from there.

“We are very thankful to Intuit -- this competition has been a fun way to involve even more family. For instance, the video was created and put together by my sisters Alexandra and Sau, and we had the input from the rest of my siblings, Michelle, Julio and Brian,” said Julia.

As the contest nears completion, Intuit's 8,000 employees will vote to determine the final four announced on Nov. 11. The public will then vote online on the Small Business Big Game website through Dec. 1 to select the ultimate winner.

Visit Kebroak’s profile page in the competition.


15 South Florida companies to present at EDC's Nov. 14 showcase

The Enterprise Development Corporation, in partnership with the South Florida Technology Alliance, will host the 16th annual Emerging Business Technologies Showcase (ETBS) titled: “South Florida’s Got Talent.” At the Nov. 14 event, entrepreneurs, business leaders, investors and service providers will have the opportunity to network and learn about South Florida’s most promising technology startups.

Local emerging companies will showcase their innovative technologies on stage at this year’s “South Florida’s Got Talent” in the areas of medical technology, avatar text-to-speech technology, B2B mobile apps and more. ETBS presenters are entrepreneurs carefully selected by the Enterprise Development Corporation. Additionally, attendees will learn how last years’ presenter, Kipu Medical Systems, went from 1 to 50 clients in a matter of months, and how out-of-the-box thinking resulted in $1.5 million funding for Gui.de, a startup that endeavors to turn the web into TV.

Here are the presenting companies: AdMobilize, AppWorx, Elebev, ChampTrade, Cydec, DeliverLean, FlynStyle, Kipu Systems, LearnerNation, LevelBilling, Next Step, BookT, Gui.de, Demohire and Wind2share.

In addition to the presentations, this year there will also be a large area with booths, so attendees will be able to interact with more than 40 startups.

Keynote speakers:

  • Dean Hovey, CEO of Digifit, an app company that offers health and fitness solutions using sensors and wearable technology integrated with mobile devices and the cloud. Mr. Hovey will share his years of experience as entrepreneur, VC, co-founder of IDEO, and as the investor and designer of Apple’s computer mouse. 
  • Dr. Alejandro Badia, Head of Badia Hand to Shoulder Center and entrepreneurial surgeon. Dr. Badia served as chief of hand surgery at Baptist Hospital of Miami and recently inaugurated OrthoNOW, a center that is successfully franchised domestically and internationally.


WHAT:             16TH Annual Emerging Technology Business Showcase: “South Florida’s Got Talent!” presented by the Enterprise Development Corporation and South Florida               Technology Alliance

WHEN:             8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013

WHERE:           The DoubleTree Hilton Hotel Deerfield Beach, 100 Fairway Drive, Deerfield Beach, 33441

COST:              Full day conference pass: $200-$75; Entrepreneur showcase pass: $175; After hour event pass:          $50

WEBSITE:        www.edc-tech.org or www.southfloridatech.org

CareCloud, ZocDoc team up

CareCloud, the fast-growing provider of cloud-based practice management, electronic health records (EHR) and medical billing software and services, and ZocDoc, a service that helps patients receive faster access to care and optimizes doctors’ schedules, recently announced a partnership in which ZocDoc will fully integrate into CareCloud’s platform.

In coming months as a result of the partnership, CareCloud practices using ZocDoc will enjoy a more seamless experience by allowing patients to instantly book appointments online via ZocDoc.com or the free ZocDoc mobile apps.

The partnership addresses growing concerns regarding a potential shortage of available physicians in coming years, exacerbated by the arrival of millions of newly insured patients associated with the Affordable Care Act. “Physician practices across the country are under acute financial pressure due to declining reimbursement and evolving government mandates, leaving many concerned about their ability to accommodate patients as millions of newly insured Americans enter the healthcare system,” said Albert Santalo, CEO and chairman of CareCloud.

CareCloud’s platform currently powers over 3,700 providers in 47 states, supporting more than 5.5 million unique patients.

ZocDoc houses the nation’s largest real-time database of available doctors’ appointments, and more than 4 million patients in 1,900 cities use the free ZocDoc service each month to find and book appointments with nearby, in-network doctors.

Posted Oct. 31, 2013


October 30, 2013

SIME MIA: Expect an interactive experience for the senses


By Demian Bellumio

Sime-logo-black-transSIME MIA is one of the most anticipated technology events coming to South Florida. This Dec. 3-4th, Sweden’s SIME, MIA Collective and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation are pulling out all the stops to create a conference unique in its depth of discussion and ability to keep all attendees on their feet.

You know it’s not a typical digital conference when you are greeted by the sounds of a live symphony performance and people offering free hugs to attendees, accompanied by a glass of champagne and strawberry; and its only 9 in the morning. Whether you are hugger or a fan of classical music, what stands out about this conference is the top-notch list of speakers from Europe, the U.S. and Latin America that will be visiting our city, many of them doing so for the first time.  Furthermore, we will be discussing topics that are at the forefront of the industry, such as big data, venture capital, and artificial intelligence; all of which have been rarely explored in-depth at local events.

“SIME MIA aims to create an atmosphere optimal for the exchange of ideas and innovation.  We want to stimulate the mind, body and soul through in a complete sensory experience,” explains Ola Ahlvarsson, the founder of SIME and host for the event. “In addition to the amazing keynotes, we will have a variety of intimate breakout sessions where attendees can make a personal connection with each other, as well as with the speakers themselves, and hopefully make a lasting connection that will positively impact the local ecosystem.”

It is also no coincidence that SIME MIA will launch at the eve of Art Basel week, one of the most heralded art exhibitions around the world.  The event founders are firm believers in the intersection of art and technology, and SIME MIA will take full advantage of it.  

The highlight of the event will be the keynote presentations and discussions that will include industry leaders, such as FON’s Martin Varsavsky and Gigaom’s Paul Walborsky.  SIME MIA’s newly added list of speakers include: Cate Ambrose, President and Executive Director of the Latin American Venture Capital Association (LAVCA); Juan Diego Calle, CEO of .CO; Gonzalo Martin-Villa, CEO of Wayra; Guibert Englebienne, co-founder of Globant; Salim Ismael, Global Ambassador of Singularity University; Jessica Melcher-Claesson, co-founder of think tank Healthy Business; Andres Moreno, founder and CEO of OpenEnglish; Silvina Moschini, founder and CEO of Intuic; Christian Hernandez, Managing Partner of Whitestar Capital and many more.

[Read Q&As with some of the speakers on the Knight Foundation blog: Shel IsraelChristian Hernandez and Martin Varsavsky]

Making the right connections and creating an intimate networking opportunity that stimulate the senses is the powerful differential SIME MIA will bring to Miami. This conference will bring new and challenging conversations to Miami from around the world, invigorating our technology and entrepreneurial drive to keep our city striving to achieve our true potential.

For more information and tickets for SIME MIA, visit www.simemia.co.  

Demian Bellumio is a founding Partner of SIME MIA Collective, COO of Senzari, a serial entrepreneur and an angel investor.

Posted Oct. 30, 2013





ITPalooza unites South Florida's 50 tech groups with 12/12 event


Launched last year on 12/12/12, ITPalooza is back for a second year and organizers are expecting about 1,000 people for the all-day event that includes developer workshops, exhibits, networking and a party. Register now for free, with a $25 toy donation. Here are the details:

ITPalooza: Bringing together South Florida's tech community.

What it is: Second annual tech education day, charity event and holiday gathering of IT professionals and industry groups. Includes free seminars, networking, a special "job opportunities room” and a hands-on developer workshop. Organizers say about 50 tech organizations from across South Florida will be participating and there will be plenty of booths to browse. 

Date and time: Dec. 12: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. all-day developer workshop; breakout sessions begin at 1 p.m. Event culminates with party featuring ITPalooza Band.

Location: Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences, Nova Southeastern University, 3301 College Ave., Davie

Cost: Register for free tickets, with a $25 toy donation, at www.ITPalooza.com. On-site registration is $40

More infoITPalooza.com

Posted Oct. 31, 2013 

October 29, 2013

Büro to expand in Midtown, nearly doubling its co-working space

BuroFast-growing shared workspace provider Büro Group is set to expand its flagship location in the heart of Midtown Miami.

The company secured an additional 8,000 square feet on the 2nd floor of the Midblock building, where it has been operating at capacity since opening in late 2010. With the addition of the new floor, Büro will have close to 20,000 square feet of modern workspaces available for its community of entrepreneurs, creative professionals and growing companies, said Büro founder and CEO Michael Feinstein.

“I’m a huge fan of the Büro brand. They have created the ideal work environment for startups and creative companies and I’m certain they will continue to thrive in Midtown and other locations,” said Jack Cayre of Midtown Equities, the developer of Midtown Miami and owner of various commercial spaces in the neighborhood.

Büro is home to over 150 member-companies across its two South Florida locations, including its 10,000 square foot site in the Sunset Harbour neighborhood of South Beach. The company is currently taking reservations for its new Midtown workspaces which should be ready for occupancy in early 2014. Call (786) 888-1698 or visit http://www.buromiami.com for more information.

Hackathon for immigration coming to Miami and 20 other cities this weekend

Americas Datafest is a multi-city immigration hackathon that will take place this Nov. 2 in more than 20 cities across 12 countries -- and Miami is one of the locations. The Miami event will be held at Newsport, the amazing new home of Univision News and Fusion TV, and later in the day at Venture Hive.

The hackathon will be focused on migration in the Americas with a goal of:

* Contributing to the immigration debate in the U.S. by analyzing and visualizing public data.
* Building apps, websites, and other tools for migrants and nonprofits that study human migration in the Americas.

The hackathon is an opportunity to showcase your skills and contribute to an important cause while having fun and connecting  with like-minded people. Participants can follow a list of challenges or of course they can work on their own ideas, the organizers say. Projects will focus on issues that are local, national, or regional.

The local event in Miami is sponsored by Univision Noticias. The event’s page for more details is here: www.americas.datafest.net . The event is free but registration is required. You can register here:



October 27, 2013

Free TigerDirect Tech Bash Nov. 7 to celebrate all things geek

Sfl_logo_3Virtual reality, 3D printing, all the latest hardware and software: Expect to see a lot of this at the free TigerDirect Miami Tech Summit and Holiday Bash at Marlin’s Park next month, where at least 7,500 people are expected to attend. NBC 6’s Joe Rose will MC the upcoming tech bash, which TigerDirect says aims “to celebrate all things tech, geek, nerd and chic.”

At the event, there will be first looks at products such as Sony’s new laptop and demos on Raspberry Pi and Xbox Kinect, for instance. Here are a few more highlights:

* Electronics company iON Worldwide is bringing out its Air Pro 3, and its newest addition in the super-successful line of lightweight POV cameras will be for sale.

* Attendees can try out the new Oculus Rift Virtual Reality headset that tech blogs have been calling the next big step in gaming technology.

* iON is bringing veterans of the BMX/Skating world Rob Nolli, Tom Haugen, Chad Degroot and Dante Debose to participate in the BMX/ Sk8 demo being built for the Bash.

* Florida International University will provide an insider’s look into the world of robotics, showing that we’re not that far off from the stuff of sci-fi movies.

* TigerDirect.com is teaming up with The LAB Miami to create a tech circus, complete with stilt walkers and clowns amid the tech demonstrations and product unveilings.

 Participating exhibitors include Intel, Western Digital, Alienware, HP, Kingston, Microsoft, Seagate, Patriot, SMS Audio, ASUS, Discount Laptop Shop, Centon, CoolerMaster, Sony (VAIO), eBay, Tripplite, Epson, Thermaltake, TCL (TTE), Swann, Planar, PayPal, Night Owl, LG, Belkin/Linksys, AT&T Wireless, United Stationaries, NZXT / iBuyPower, Kensington, Autodesk, Squaretrade, Verbatim, XFX, Viewsonic, TrendMicro, Sandisk, MSI, EVGA, OCZ, Drobo and Actiontech.

At the show, some of the vendor partners will be making new product announcements and giving previews before the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, said Lonny Paul, vice president of marketing and strategic initiatives for TigerDirect.

“There is a need for consumers to see all the cool stuff that is out there, so being able engage with the brands will be amazing,” he said. “And it’s going to be Miami chic, not boring buttoned up suit and tie.”

Paul said TigerDirect’s successful holiday event a year ago and a Tech Summit this past May convinced TigerDirect “there was huge interest in a tech show and for us it was go big or go home.” Having the show at Marlins Park allows TigerDirect to continue to grow the event every year, even to potentially 50,000 people. TigerDirect, which is putting on the event with Intel, is also partnering with community organizations such as the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, Technology Foundation of the Americas, Refresh Miami, The LAB Miami and WebCongress.

The first 5,000 consumers and 1,000 business customers attending the bash will receive a free “swag bag” from TigerDirect. All attendees will be eligible to participate in various additional giveaways throughout the night, and there will be free food and drink.

The event will be 8 p.m. to midnight Nov. 7 at Marlins Park. Register at: www.miamitechbash.com.

Follow Nancy Dahlberg on Twitter @ndahlberg 

Entrepreneurship Datebook


•  BLACK GIRLS CODE LAUNCH: Open house to introduce the nonprofit to the community will be Tuesday, Oct. 29, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Miami Dade College's Meek Entreprenial Education Center, 6300 NW 7th Ave., Room 1101, Miami. More info and to register: https://miamibgckickoff.eventbrite.com/.

•  INTERNET DOMINANCE: SCORE Miami-Dade presents “Dominating Your Industry on the Internet,” 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 29, SBA offices, 100 S. Biscayne Blvd., 7th floor, Miami. $30 in advance. Info: miamidade.score.org

•  CODING FOR BEGINNERS: Free Intro to Coding workshop presented by the Miami-Dade Chamber and the Young Professionals Network, 6 p.m.-8 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 30, Miami Dade College North Campus, 11380 NW 27th Ave., Building 3, Conference Room 3249. RSVP: ypnmiami.com/featured/intro-to-coding-workshop

•  PROGRAMMING FOR NON-PROGRAMMERS: The LAB Miami offers a series of beginner programming workshops Wednesday, Oct.30 through Saturday, Nov. 2. $25 ($20 with discount code: digestpi); free for students. More info: thelabmiami.com

•  10KSB INFO SESSIONS: Find out about the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program at these Miami Dade College sessions:

2 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 29, MDC Wolfson Campus, Bldg. 7, Room 7128;

2 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 30, MDC North Campus, 11380 NW 27th Ave., Miami, Room 3249;

3 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 31, MDC InterAmerican Campus, 627 SW 27th Ave., Rm 3103.

Info: http://www.mdc.edu/10ksb

•  TECH SWIZZLE: Networker from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 1, combines the design, tech, art and business communities at The LAB Miami. More info: thelabmiami.com

•  GEEKS NIGHT OUT: Makers bring out their projects at this networker Friday, Nov. 1, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Caffeine Spaces in Boca Raton: More info: caffeinespaces.com/

Follow Nancy Dahlberg on Twitter @ndahlberg


Refresh Miami launches open mentor network

The huge tech-entrepreneurship organization Refresh Miami has launched a free mentor network, in partnership with Miami startup LiveNinja, a video chat platform where experts market their services. South Florida mentors can register for free on the site listing their specialties, and entrepreneurs seeking mentoring can request a virtual mentorship chat. Find out more and register here: www.refreshmiami.com/mentors/.

Brian Breslin, founder of Refresh Miami, says this can help to fill a big community need.

“One big issue the local community faces here in South Florida is a lack of mentorship from the experienced entrepreneurs to the younger generation. There are great programs in schools such as UM, FIU, and private accelerators, but that mentorship is limited to a small group of mentees and mentors,” said Breslin in comments last month. “We need widespread mentorship at scale.”

Posted: oct. 27, 2013