By Melanie Haselmayr
Over the course of 3½ months, 30 ambitious startup founders followed a strict curriculum. Only a handful of them made it to graduation day.
The Founder Institute is renowned worldwide as one of the toughest yet rewarding incubator programs. The goal of the foundation is to support early stage startups in the most crucial phases of their companies’ phases: from conceptualization to launch. The program consists of weekly meetups, mentor presentations and detailed assignments based on a lineup of topics - all in all, an orchestrated ensemble of elements that guides young entrepreneurs in achieving their milestones toward their startup launch.
Program directors Juan Meza, Gustavo Fernandez and Enrique Sierra invited some of Miami’s most outstanding business leaders to share their knowledge and insights with the aspiring newcomers, and included Cody Littlewood of Codelitt, Kevin Levy of GrayRobinson PA, Leonel Azuela of Quaxar and Nestor Villalobos of Tudor Ice Company.
Just five companies survived the rapid pace of the program and concluded the Miami semester in a ceremony Tuesday night:
LiVi - Live Stream by Request, led by Carlos Romero, is the only live stream mobile App that gives the control to its users. LiVi is redesigning this technology by applying peer-to-peer and on-demand models while the competition is focused on mass broadcasting, making it difficult to monetize.
VOICE YOUR VOICE, led by Camilo Silva and Jose Aliaga, aims to encourage the public to actively engage in politics and democracy by addressing issues that impact them through a mobile platform that aims to connect the community with its respective political leaders on the city, district, county, state and national level.
IMPACT COACH, led by Coach Guillermo Juliao, is an educational coaching platform to help the Hispanic community find their passions, purpose and strengths so they can start their own companies or find their dream jobs.
DRONELANCER, led by Matt Hall, is a marketplace to connect licensed drone owners with businesses looking for aerial photos and videos. the marketplace allows clients to interview, hire and work with drone owners through its easy, transparent platform.
TRANSPARENT, led by Melanie Haselmayr, helps renters, realtors and landlords engage in simplified rental transactions. The company helps landlords and realtors filter potential applicants, and offers an escrow service to renters to safeguard their money until move-in.
The Founder Institute is a startup incubator out of Silicon Valley that hosts programs in 110+ around the world to help startup founders build sustainable companies. For more information about the Miami program, please visit http://www.fi.co.
The graduation ceremony took place Tuesday at TamboWorks, a co-working space in South Miami, located at 5790 Sunset Drive. "TamboWorks is proud to have hosted this first group of entrepreneurs who have met in our space on a weekly basis," said TamboWorks co-founder Adolfo Taylhardat.