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37 posts from October 2015

October 28, 2015

Colin Powell, Monica Lewinsky and Tony Hawk to headline eMerge Americas 2016; registration open



Gen. Colin Powell, Monica Lewinsky, skateboarding giant Tony Hawk, and Marc Randolph, cofounder of Netflix, will be among the headliners at the eMerge Americas technology conference next year, the eMerge Americas team announced Wednesday night.

Registration for the conference April 18-19 also officially opened Wednesday night on emergeamericas.org. Last year, the two-day conference at the Miami Beach Convention Center and auxiliary events drew 10,000 attendees and 500 companies participating from 50 countries.

Colin_PowellPowell, former U.S. secretary of state, will speak about how technology is disrupting the face of leadership, said Xavier Gonzalez, eMerge Americas’ executive director, and “if you’ve seen her TED talk, Monica Lewinsky has been focusing on her experience being patient zero of cyber-bullying.” Tony Hawk, well-known in the skateboarding world and ahead of his time in video gaming, will talk about building a business empire, very analogous to what Pitbull has been doing building an empire around his fame, said Gonzalez.

Also among the 21 speakers announced during eMerge’s annual kickoff party in Miami’s Design District were: motivational speaker, self-help author and entrepreneur Tim Storey; Scott Wise, an Andreessen Horowitz partner specializing in cyber-security; and Naveen Jain, co-founder and executive chairman of Moon Express, a Silicon Valley startup aiming to mine the moon. Other speakers hail from BBG Ventures, OfficeNet, GE Healthcare, Mozilla, Georgetown University and WeaRobot.

In addition to its expo hall and keynote addresses, eMerge Americas 2016 will bring back its Startup Showcase, featuring a pitch contest on stage and judged by investors, the WIT (Women, Innovation & Technology) summit focused on women-led innovation, and eGov, which brings together government leaders from around the world for a private summit. As in past years, events and parties will be added before and after the summit.

“The global tech community is growing fast, and our own rapid growth is testament to that. As the community continues to evolve, eMerge Americas will too, working to inspire and address the needs of this innovative community,” said eMerge founder Manuel D. Medina.

Nancy Dahlberg, @ndahlberg

October 25, 2015

Entrepreneurship Datebook, Events, workshops in South Florida Oct. 26-Nov. 1

Tech egg

UX ESSENTIALS FOR STARTUPS: Kerry Thompson and Dan Zola from SwayUX explain principles of designing meaningful mobile app and web experiences, 5-7 p.m. Monday, Venture Hive, 1010 NE 2nd Ave., Miami. More info: https://miami.venturehive.com/dashboard/home

IDEA CENTER SPEAKER SERIES: Local tech entrepreneur Eliam Medina will share his experience at the prestigious Y Combinator, 7-8:30 p.m. Monday, Idea Center at Miami Dade College, Wolfson Campus, Building 8/fifth floor. More info here.

NORTHSIDE INNOVATION MEETUP: Hear a discussion by leaders and innovators in Miami’s growing music scene at this meetup by Dell and Intel, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, 360Spaces, 220 NW 27th St., Miami. More info on Eventbrite. More info here.

#W3RTECH LAUNCH: Join Digital Grass Innovation & Technology for the launch of #W3RTech, a photo display of community leaders and activists, entrepreneurs and employees of South Florida’s tech and innovation community that illustrates the diversity and inclusion of the ecosystem, 6-9 p.m. Wednesday, WeWork, 350 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach. Free. More info: http://w3rtech.com/w3rtech-events/


EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES AND BUSINESS SHOWCASE: This all-day business matchmaker event includes a pitch competition with $150,000 in prizes, investor panel, luncheon and networking opportunities, Nov. 4, Hyatt Regency, Coral Gables. See what companies are pitching here. For tickets to the event and more info: www.flventure.org.

TIGERDIRECT TECH BASH: The free expo and party returns on Nov. 6 for an evening of innovation, emerging technology, interactive entertainment and shopping opportunities. Now in its fourth year, the free TigerDirect Tech Bash will be at Miami Marlins Stadium. Get your ticket here: tigertechbash.com


WeWork’s co-founder Miguel McKelvey sheds light on plans for Miami. Find out if a Miami entrepreneur survived the Shark Tank on Friday with his company, Three Jerks Jerky. Boatsetter picks up former Miami Dolphin star Jason Taylor as spokesman and advisor. Find much more startup news on the Starting Gate blog on MiamiHerald.com/business.

Nancy Dahlberg @ndahlberg

Startup Spotlight: Tio Foods aims to reinvent soup

Tio gazpachoCOMPANY NAME: Tio Foods

Headquarters: Wynwood

Concept: Tio Foods is on a mission to reinvent soup. Ditch the spoon, get rid of the bowl, forget about the mess: Its first product line, Tio Gazpacho, is soup that is as convenient as it is delicious, offering single-serve bottles for a premium organic light lunch or healthy snack on the go.

Story: Austin Allan lived in Spain for four years in the early 2000s and fell in love with gazpacho. He returned to the U.S. and worked at a startup in Washington, D.C., and then later for a large bank in New York, but he never found his calling. In 2012, he left his career and New York City behind to move to Miami to start a gazpacho company — with no food industry experience. 

“I am passionate about this product because it is a game-changer for the soup industry. We make a product that is certified organic, harms no animals, creates little waste, can be consumed on the go, and is going to shake up the soup industry,” Allan said. “Gazpachos are the first of many products that we are going to offer that will change people’s perceptions about soup.”

Tio Gazpacho has wholesale distribution in 14 states; it also has direct distribution in all 50 states through tiogazpacho.com. Its biggest customers are Whole Foods, FreshDirect.com, King’s Markets, Balducci’s and Shop-Rite. The company works with UNFI and Kehe, two of the largest distributors of natural, organic and specialty foods in the U.S., and is actively working to expand distribution in Florida and the Southeast.

Launched: Company founded in January 2013; first product launched in September 2014.

Management team: Austin Allan, founder, CEO and Totally Important Officer. Carolina Braunschweig, VP of sales.

Number of employees: Four.

Website: www.tiogazpacho.com.

Financing: Allan invested $100,000 of personal funds to start the business, then raised $325,000 in a friends and family/seed round that closed December 2014. Currently raising $500,000 through CircleUp: https://circleup.com/c/tio-gazpacho/

Recent milestones reached: CEO was chosen to participate in a two-year emerging brands forum organized by Coca-Cola. Won a Best of East award at Natural Products Expo East, the largest organic food trade show on the East Coast. Drinkable soup named as one of the hottest food trends of the year by the Specialty Food Association (organizers of the Fancy Food Shows), SELF Magazine and CNN Money.

Biggest startup challenge: Without having a finance background, Allan said convincing investors that the concept was financially viable was a huge challenge. He spent the summer updating his business plan with the help of his advisors to show investors why this is a winning proposition. He turned to Circle Up to attract the interest of investors who want to write smaller checks. “And Circle Up is a great way to market your business in the investment community,” he said.

Next step: Launching a Watermelon-Cilantro Gazpacho in early 2016, and in the planning stages of an entirely new line of chilled soups (that are not gazpachos) in mid-2016. West Coast expansion in early 2017.

Strategy for next step: “I have assembled a rock-star team of food industry veterans that are advising me every step of the way,” Allan said. They include Eric Schnell, founder of Steez Tea, and Debbie Wildrick, a former Tropicana executive.

Nancy Dahlberg, ndahlberg@miamiherald.com


October 23, 2015

Miramar teen presents video game at the nation's Capitol


Andrew Gayle of Miramar was one of 20 innovation students selected from across the U.S. to present the educational video game he created to Congressmen and women at the U.S. Capitol. Gayle's game is called "The Trash Eliminator: World Pollution." Video by Sara Shouhayib/Medill News Service. Twitter @SaraShouyab


October 22, 2015

Miami entrepreneur will feed beef jerky to the Sharks. Will they bite?


Daniel Folgelson and Jordan Barrocas founded Three Jerks Jerky, which makes premium beef jerky made from filet mignon. They will be pitching on Shark Tank on Friday.

By Nancy Dahlberg / ndahlberg@miamiherald.com

Will the Sharks taste a good deal from a couple of beef jerky entrepreneurs? Perhaps — because their product is “the filet mignon of beef jerky,” most literally.

Jordan Barrocas, a Miami resident and University of Miami alum, will be appearing on ABC’s Shark Tank with his co-founder, Daniel Fogelson, on Friday night to pitch their company, Three Jerks Jerky. They are seeking $100,000 in funding for 15 percent of the business. The company makes five flavors of premium beef jerky, all made with 100 percent filet mignon.

The show was recorded earlier this year, and like all Shark Tank entrepreneurs, Barrocas is sworn to secrecy about whether any of the Sharks decided to fund the company. But whatever happens, the show will put the young brand in front of millions of viewers — and potential customers.

Three Jerks Jerky was hatched during a discussion between friends about why beef jerky doesn’t taste better. “The next day we made jerky and it was awesome,” said Barrocas, who likes to cook. They began sharing their creation made with filet mignon with friends and getting a great response. About two years ago, they incorporated the business, taking it from the kitchen table to a commercial kitchen.

“We started literally from nothing,” said Barrocas. The 30-year-old received his MBA from UM and worked in the footwear industry before starting the company, his first entrepreneurial adventure. “We raised $45,000 on Kickstarter and after that quickly built our wholesale business, which started with one New York City store. ." space="1"." space="1". We went door to door handing out samples.”

They still go door to door, and today Three Jerks Jerky products are in about 120 specialty stores and high-end hotels. Barrocas said sales grew 150 percent in the last year. A two-ounce pack (two servings) of Three Jerks beef jerky sells for $11.99 on www.three"jerks"jerky.com.

About the name Three Jerks, there was a third partner in the beginning, but they parted ways. “The rest is kind of obvious — we’re nice guys most of the time but also jerks sometimes,” he said.

If the Sharks — Mark Cuban, Lori Grenier, Kevin O’Leary, Daymond John and Robert Herjavec — don’t take a liking to the “Original” flavor, the best seller, they may like Memphis BBQ, Chipolte Adobo, Maple Bourbon Churro or one of the company’s newest flavors, “Hamburger.”

Yep, “Hamburger” made with filet mignon, Barracos said. “It’s called ‘I can’t believe it’s not hamburger.’ "

UPDATE AFTER THE SHOW: Mark Cuban bowed out, but Lori Grenier, Kevin O'Leary, Daymond John and Robert Herjavec were eating up the deal. O'Leary, who wanted 33 percent of the company, made the first offer, and one offer came with two sharks (Grenier and Herjavec). The entrepreneurs asked about how active the Sharks would be in the company; this particularly impressed Daymond John. In the end, the team chose John -- $100,000 for 15 percent, and if the partnership works out after the test drive, an option for another $100,000 for 15 percent. They have their new third Jerk.

Nancy Dahlberg; 305-376-3595; ndahlberg@miamiherald.com




ETBS chooses 24 startups to pitch for $150K in prizes; 10 are from South Florida

 Florida Venture Forum, Space Florida, and Enterprise Development Corp of South Florida have selected  twenty-four Florida-based companies to present at the Emerging Technologies & Business Showcase (ETBS), to be held at the Hyatt Regency in Coral Gables on November 4.

In addition to presentations and other programming, the ETBS will feature $150,000 in awards presented to winning companies in the early and growth-stage categories. The awards will be provided by Space Florida.

Presenters were selected from a record pool of applicants by a committee of active Florida venture capitalists and other investors, and will present to an audience of investors, other deal professionals and entrepreneurs.

Presenting companies from South Florida are:

BDEX, LLC, Coral Springs (www.bdex.com), is the first ever Data Exchange Platform (DXP). BDEX is a market-driven exchange platform combining all of the functionality, data and reach of traditional Data Management Platforms (DMP) in a true marketplace environment. The DXP is disruptive cloud-based innovation that will revolutionize how data is bought and sold across all industries.

ClassWallet, Miami (www.classwallet.com),is the leading end-to-end digital solution for schools and teachers that manages funds disbursement, e-commerce and tracking in a single platform designedfor maximum simplicity and accountability. ClassWallet brings an unprecedented efficiency to a a $23B system that relies heavily on cash, checks and purchase orders that add up to 40% transaction costs and a fund-spend-track lifecycle that takes weeks. ClassWallet reduces these costs to less than 5%, and the lifecycle to same day.

EGLA COMMUNICATIONS, Boca Raton (www.eglacorp.com), is a cloud-based multimedia streaming platform that delivers multimedia content to cable and telecommunication operators with hundreds to thousands of subscribers in mobile, cable systems, web, and over-the-top. Mediamplify provides music, tv, and video experiences to its affiliates.

Neocis, Miami (www.neocisinc.com), creates a robotic guidance system for the dental implant market. It reduces surgeon time and improves clinical performance through a minimally invasive approach. With 1M-2M implant procedures annually in the US, dental implants are the standard of care for tooth replacement, and the dental implant market totals nearly $15B with a 15% growth rate. Neocis uses a recurring revenue model by tracking implant placement in the software.

RedCap, Ft. Lauderdale (www.redcapvalet.com), has developed technology and business process that transforms the current experience of buying and servicing a vehicle. The integration of RedCap's software enables any automotive dealer to offer their customers "out of store" experiences which not only allows a customer to service and purchase without ever leaving their home or office but allows the dealer to extend their brand and services beyond the property of the dealership. Most importantly, the software improves customer satisfaction by nearly 40 points, revenue by 18% and reduces loaner expense by as much as 40%. RedCap is working with leading Connected Car players to fully integrate RedCap software into the connected car experience.

Settleitsoft, Ft. Lauderdale (www.settleitsoft.com), has identified an enormous business opportunity in the debt settlement and financial services industry.  The Company's flagship product, SettleiTsoft® system platform has been developed using the latest technology to address the ever-growing problem of consumer default on contractual debt obligations.   SettleiTsoft® web-based, self-help debt settlement software is accessible 24/7; encapsulating the debt settlement process in an automated, intuitive and user-friendly experience where debtors may electronically communicate and virtually negotiate with their creditors in ways never before possible.  SettleiTsoft® not only offers effective solutions for consumers in need of debt settlement, but also provides debt relief alternatives to those who want to control and manage personal finances, achieve savings goals, and improve their financial situation through a worldwide data-mining platform.

71 Pounds, Ft. Lauderdale (www.71lbs.com ), is a "set-and-forget" system that automated the FedEx & UPS money-back guarantee (MBG) policy. Did you know that if an overnight, ground, or international shipment is late - even by 60 seconds - customers are entitled to 100% refund? Not many businesses do, as $2 Billion are left unclaimed each year.

Symptify, Sunny Isles Beach (www.symptify.com ), is a virtual doctor. It helps users figure out causes for their symptoms, what to do about them and where to go for help. Millions of people turn to the web to self-evaluate their symptoms everyday but they rely on the use of web search engines which often lead them to erroneous conclusions, needless anxiety and unwarranted doctor visits. Symptify is a powerful decision aid that helps users discern which conditions are amenable to self-treatment, which require immediate attention and which ones can be cared for at lower acuity venues. It is made available as an API to health systems, governments, payers, ACOs and health plans interested in improving patient engagement, promoting health literacy and curbing healthcare costs.

SirenMD, Miami (www.sirenmd.com), is an enterprise created to offer efficiencies and improvements in healthcare communications, and its signature product is a real-time, medical case collaboration platform. Through its multimedia, telemedicine application, SirenMD facilitates coordinated communication between caregivers and patient advocates (doctors, nurses, athletic trainers, and other medical personnel) using mobile and web systems.

Videoo, Miami Beach (www.videoopro.com), is new technology (SaaS) built for brands and publishers to better engage audiences in collaborative social broadcasting. Videoo takes social media to the next level; They call it “living media"! Now passive viewers become active participants in social storytelling. Videoo automatically pulls content from Vine, Twitter, Instagram & YouTube for all-in-one playlists that re-order in real-time as audiences watch, vote, upload and share. Use cases: News feeds, social storytelling, events, contests and social TV. Early adopters include: The Huffington Post, NHL, Bob Marley and Fusion (Joint venture between ABC, Disney & Univision). Results are deeper engagement and monetization: 40x impressions, 11.64 clip views per user, +408% time on site, +267% social referrals.

In addition, 14 other companies from other parts of the state will also be presenting.

Pre-registration for the Emerging Technologies and Business Showcase is available until November 2, 2015. Walkup registration rate will apply thereafter, based on availability.  Attendees have the opportunity to listen to pitches from leading Florida companies, an investor panel and a guest luncheon speaker, retired NASA Astronaut Captain Winston Scott.  Additionally, on November 3, 2015, registered attendees are invited to register for a Pitching to Investors workshop, taught by lead instructor Troy Knauss of the Angel Resource Institute. The workshop is an add-on event with an additional charge to the November 4th Showcase.

Visit www.flventure.org for more information.

FIU's SJMC names Jeff Brown its first Entrepreneur in Residence

The School of Journalism and Mass Communication  at Florida International University has named Jeff Brown, an angel investor and
founder of Fourth Estate Public Benefit Corporation, its 2015-2016 Entrepreneur in Residence.

As the program’s first Entrepreneur in Residence, Brown will work with SJMC students and faculty to foster a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation, as well as guide students through the process of honing their ideas into marketable proposals. Brown will mentor the student teams that enter the International Scripps Innovation Competition, which will begin with Startup Weekend on Nov. 20 and culminate in PantherCage, a “Shark Tank” style competition held on March 23, 2016, during SJMC’s Communications Week.

Over the years, Brown has mentored and advised potential investors and
innovators through Honey Tree Holdings, of which he is a founding member, as well as Startup Quest, Digital Venture Capital Association and Palm Beach Angels. He has also founded various tech and media startups since 1988, and is a past director of Gold Coast Venture Capital Association. He is an organizer and founding trustee of Awesome Journalism, which funds innovative journalism projects around the world.

Read more about Startup Weekend here.

October 21, 2015

WeWork co-founder reflects on Miami market, company vision

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Leigh Sevin of Zeel, an on-demand massage company, and Frederic Prisse of Labelium, a digital marketing agency, chat in a lounge area at the WeWork co-working center on Lincoln Road in Miami Beach. PATRICK FARRELL pfarrell@miamiherald.com

By Nancy Dahlberg / ndahlberg@miamiherald.com / @ndahlberg

As WeWork officially celebrates the opening of its first South Florida location in Miami Beach, the New York-based co-working company has already put plans into motion for several more centers in the greater Miami area.

WeWork co-founder and Chief Creative Officer Miguel McKelvey got his first look at the completed space on Lincoln Road on Wednesday, when he flew into town for launch events. In an interview in one of the WeWork conference rooms, he expounded on the WeWork vision for South Florida and globally.

WeWork’s decision to open in Miami Beach came down to the “right time and right location,” McKelvey said. The 40,000-square-foot location spanning four floors above TD Bank at Lincoln Road and Washington Avenue began opening in stages in July and has more than 500 members, said community manager Anna Prisse. At capacity, it can hold about 750.

Miguel mckelvey of WeWork (1)While Miami Beach may be more synonymous with tourism than business, “we’ve attracted a really great membership who is very enthusiastic about being here,” said McKelvey (pictured here), who co-founded the company with CEO Adam Neumann. For the first location, with views of the ocean from the top floor, WeWork wanted a signature location: “We don’t always want to do the most obvious thing from a brand perspective.”

Once inside, the layout is purposeful and designed for interaction, said McKelvey, a serial entrepreneur with a background in architecture. For example, he said the reception area shares space with the common area — often used for community events — a coffee bar and work spaces. “When you walk in, you can’t help but run into something happening,” he said.

Each floor has its own common area and a variety of offices and communal work areas, phone booths and conference rooms, some with tables and others with lounges. Neon signs and local artwork adorn the walls. With a passionate entrepreneurial membership of startup entrepreneurs and small businesses, freelancers and service providers, the space itself needs to respond to that kind of passion, McKelvey said. “To me, building spaces that people feel good in is crucial to what we are doing.”

WeWork plans multiple locations in the Miami area – it’s part of a wave of new spaces opening in South Florida. WeWork recently leased the historic Security Building in downtown Miami, with plans to open it early next year. The next location will be nearly 100,000 square feet, almost 2 " v:shapes="_x0000_i1025">1/2 times the size of the Miami Beach center. And because WeWork has leased the entire building, expect more engagement at the street level, with a large entrance and cafe, McKelvey said. The narrow 16-story building, built in 1926 with high ceilings, also will allow for creativity in the layout, McKelvey said.

He said besides the SecurityBuilding, WeWork is currently in talks with two other Miami area locations and also is looking into a new construction opportunity. “This is just the start,” he said, reiterating that the longer term strategy is to have at least five to seven locations, including a possible second location in Miami Beach, because a network of locations is more valuable to members. With $1 billion in venture capital backing and a track record of opening locations, WeWork now has the profile developers desire, he said.

WeWork, founded in 2010, now has more than 25,000 members at 56 locations in 17 cities around the U.S. as well as Israel, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. Its next big challenge is more international growth, including Latin America, McKelvey said. “Our motivation is to create cool spaces with cool energy; our motivation was never to grow as fast as we can.”

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Guest post: Why tech startups should incorporate in Florida

By Lior Leser

LeserEvery journey, even an entrepreneurial one, starts with a first step. Every new product, innovative service or groundbreaking technology starts with the formation of a company. Forming a company, forces us to move beyond the theoretical, the idea. It enables us to create a concrete vehicle in which to form, crystalize and enable our dreams. More so, forming a company, provides the us with many important legal benefits; chief among these are (1) limited liability (2) tax benefits and (3) deduction of expenses. But where should you form the company?

Most entrepreneurs know that they need to form an entity. What few understand is in what state should they form their next tech startup? Many are advised to incorporate in Delaware. Others are intrigued by having a California or New York company. Most are surprised to find out that Florida is one of the best and most popular states in which to incorporate tech startups.

Technologies startups are unlike startups in most other industries. The tech industry is unique in allowing successive failures and missteps to grow into tremendous successes. In many industries failure can be hard to overcome. Failure brands the individual and makes him less likely to attract talent and funds in the future. Not so in technology. One of the keys to success in technology is the ability to innovate, execute and most importantly pivot.

Entrepreneurs are continuously challenged to develop new and innovative products and services with full knowledge than many, if not most, will fail to gain market traction. What professional investors backing these startups are looking for in entrepreneurs is the ability to execute, learn and where necessary change. The ability to realize as quickly as possible where failure lies can often be the key to future success.

In a few states, Florida included, the legal environment supports this unique take on corporate evolution and growth. In these states, forming a corporate entity is (1) inexpensive (2) quick (preferably online)(3) and can easily be accomplished by the entrepreneurs themselves.

The reality is that across the 50 states, Florida stands among only a handful of states that enable tech entrepreneurs to quickly, easily and inexpensively form companies. Today, California claims it takes about a week to form a company. In my experience, it can take as long as a couple of months. In comparison, in Florida you form a company immediately and receive a confirmation by email the next business day.

In Delaware and California, all company formations are submitted in writing. Legal documents together with a cover letter must be typed, submitted by mail and use explicit formatting styles delineated by the state. In comparison, in Florida company formation can be done online using a simple fill in the blank format. No complicated legal forms need to be drafted.

In Florida, entity formation fees are straightforward. Forming a corporation costs $70 and forming a limited liability company (LLC) costs $125. In California, in comparison, forming a corporation costs $100. When forming an LLC in California, you pay $70 at the time of formation but are also likely to face a minimum tax of $800 a year. In NY corporate formation costs $125 and an LLC costs $200 for formation and an extra $50 for a required newspaper publication. In Florida the process is just simpler, faster and cheaper.

It is important to accept the possibility that the company you form today is not likely to be the one where all your dreams are realized. Spending weeks on forming the company, expending resources on drafting legal documents is likely to result in wasted efforts. You can imagine that if you had to do this multiple times, the legal process is even worse.

Everyday I speak with tech entrepreneurs struggling to get their next big idea off the ground. When they ask about where to form their next venture, I always recommend Florida. We are lucky to live in a state that long ago invested in the tools needed to enable quick and inexpensive corporate formations. The unintended consequence of this was that Florida has quickly become one of the best places to form new tech startups. Add to that the state’s favorable tax code and one of the strongest corporate shield laws protecting your personal assets, and it is easy to see why entrepreneurs across the US flock to Florida to form their new companies.

So head out to www.sunbiz.org. Start a new company and execute on your great idea. If you need to pivot or close down an entity as a stepping stone to the next idea, feel assured that forming the next company will be just as easy, quick and inexpensive. And when the day comes when ideas, execution and opportunity converge and a venture capital firm is ready for a multimillion dollar round, rest assured that, if needed, you can move your company to another jurisdiction, like Delaware.

Lior Leser is an attorney trained at Stanford Law School and licensed in Florida and California. He works predominately with technology startups. If you have any questions about this or any other tech startup topic, feel free to reach out at lior@lwesq.com.


October 20, 2015

Event news: FIU College of Business presents alumni panel of successful entrepreneurs

At 35,000 alumni, FIU’s College of Business has delivered a sizeable share of successful entrepreneurs. On Thursday, four local entrepreneurs, all FIU alumni, will share details about their journeys, successes, failures, and lessons learned along the way. The 2015 Hall of Fame Alumni Panel will be held October 22 at 6 p.m. at the CBC Special Events Center at FIU’s Modesto Maidique Campus.

Moderated by FIU professor and entrepreneur Seema Pissaris of the Department of Management and International Business, the panelists will share their insider tips for success:

  • Andres Campo (BBA ’00) – CEO of Axxis Solutions management and technology consulting firm
  • Jose Manuel Diaz (BBA ’86)– CEO of Compass Office Solutions, a full-service office furniture dealer
  • Misha Kuryla-Gomez (MIB ’04) – founder of Misha’s Cupcakes, which owns five bakeries in Miami
  • Lorenzo Perez Jr. (MSIRE ’07) – CEO of Premier International Properties commercial and real estate brokerage firm