04/20/2014

Business Plan Challenge announces semifinalists

Challenge chairWho will win the 16th annual Business Plan Challenge? Twenty-nine business ideas are still in the mix.

Having the right ingredients in the plan to win over our judges isn’t easy: They were looking at the viability of the business model, the team, marketing strategy, financial projections and more. And a good idea alone won’t get you very far: Our judges were looking for a strong plan for execution.

To be sure, our three panels of judges — all serial entrepreneurs, investors or executives — had their work cut out for them. The Business Plan Challenge contest, sponsored by FIU's Pino Global Entrepreneurship Center,  drew nearly 200 entries. The Community Track included 101 entries, ranging from fashion, food and education ventures to logistics, finance and real estate concepts. Competition in the high school track was especially fierce, with 68 entries. A couple of entire Ransom Everglades classes broke up into teams and entered, and we love to see that!

For all 196 of you who entered, congratulations! You now have a strong start on your business plan, your road map to growing your business.

Yet the judges persevered and today we are announcing our first cut, the semifinalists. In two weeks, we will announce our finalists, who will also be part of the video competition, and the winners will be announced on May 19. Here, in alphabetical order are the semifinalists:

COMMUNITY TRACK

AthleticSelect, by Travis Smith and Eric Dooling, connects aspiring athletes and their parents with experienced private coaches in their area and offers tools to help coaches market and monetize their business.

Cirrus Pos, by Robert Vasquez, Christopher Hoffman and John Alicea, is a point of sale application affordable for a small single restaurant but powerful enough to manage large restaurants and franchises.

Feel Good’s, by Steve Capellini and Patricia Woodson, provides the spa experience in a novel manner and unique environment, focusing on community involvement and technological integration.

Fitting Room Social, By Brad Liff, is more than a consumer fashion app, it’s a full-service e-commerce platform designed to help women answer the question, “Will this fit me?”

Lil Stems, by Judith Felix, is a learning enrichment center in BrowardCounty that focuses on STEM education for minority children, ages 5 to 10.

Melt Haus, by Michelle Varat, Andy Varat and David Smith, is a website where customers merge fashionable garments with digital images using an easy online tool. Melt Haus transfers the image to the garment.

Miami Exchange, by Catherine Penrod and Audrey M. Nelligan, is a contact center business for small businesses, with a keen focus on healthcare service providers.

Munchkin Fun, by Valerie Schimel, Molly Blanco and Aleesa Adams, functions like a Ticketmaster for kids’ classes and camps, giving parents a single place to find and book children’s programs.

Playapy, by Amy Baez, is a child development resource for parents and educators created and supported by pediatric therapy professionals.

Play Corner, by Madeleine Funes and George Moss, provides a safe search process and enables kids to browse content on touch-screen devices independently, through a kid-friendly design.

Snapscore, by Ryan Del Rosal, Newt Porter and Taylor Auerbach, measures individuals’ qualifications and provides meaningful insights to accelerate their careers. Similar to a credit score, Snapscore is a baseline of their current professional merit.

Star and Moon Books, by Saba Haq, is an upcoming online retailer of Islamic children’s books and toys geared toward American Muslims.

Stylize, by Sara Fiedelholtz, creates a fashionable line of sunglasses with easily interchangeable looks, and has partnered with an optical manufacturer.

FIU TRACK



ADEM1508 Business Plan Logo 4C 2014Groove Caddy,
by Jose Espin, Carlos Martell and Mike Lowell, introduces a product that revolutionizes the way people clean their golf clubs, particularly in the grooves.

Kloset Karma, by Paula Celestino and Christopher Rivera, is a fashion exchange marketplace mobile app that allows users to affordably update wardrobes by finding new or almost-new clothing within their communities and pay using a controlled point currency system.

Moonlighter, by Daisy Nodal and Tom Pupo, is a tech cafe and lounge that allows local designers, entrepreneurs and the public to co-create, prototype and retail new products.

Recall Safe, by Steven A. Rojas Tallon, is focused on alerting consumers directly of recalls and safety warnings, seeking to change the entire process and help avoid preventable injuries or deaths.

Summer Camp Live, by Vicky <FZ,1,0,23>di Colloredo-Mels, Carlo di Colloredo-Mels, Felipe Ospina and Juan Pablo Villegas, is a new way for summer camp owners to promote their services and cost effectively communicate with camp seekers worldwide.

XDG Technologies, by Carlos Honda and Dr. Juan C. Roig, has developed a proprietary hand held medical device for the treatment of a genetic medical condition called polydactyly (i.e. extra fingers or toes) and the removal of skin tags.

HIGH SCHOOL TRACK

Amplify, by Adam Chiavacci, Daniel Stein and Jack Davis of Ransom Everglades, would link up to six phones together so the host smartphone playing music can utilize all the other phones’ speakers as though it were its own.

Chinese Picture Dictionary, by Dante Bolzan, Adam Moreno-Mendelson and Ethan Arteaga of Ransom Everglades, is an app called Xue Wen, the Chinese word for knowledge, that provides a Chinese/Chinese-English dictionary with photo recognition software.

FoodNection, by Gavin Sitkoff-Vuong and Sabrina Ibarra of Ransom Everglades, will connect chefs, restaurants and passionate foodies through a web platform and app.

Maestro Rhythm, by Annabel Chyung of Ransom Everglades, is a game app that will help both beginner and advanced musicians triumph over their frustrations with rhythm.

MoodPoint, by Catherine Lindsay of Ransom Everglades, is an iPhone app that detects and offers basic relief for all forms of mental illness, including depression, bipolar disorder and anxiety.

PurchaSync, by Ryan Amoils and Alvaro Ortega of Miami Country Day, is a smartphone app for digital receipts that also eases corporate reimbursement and income tax itemizing.

Reel Cause, by Andrew and Edward Hurowitz of University School of NSU, provides affordable video production services to help small- and mid-size nonprofits get their messages out.

Tutor Talk, by Bradley Jackson of Ransom Everglades, is the Yelp for SAT/ACT tutors, with a social mission of offering free tutoring to those in need.

Word Avenger, by Gerlannda Asse, Evanson Telisme, Franceline Pierre-Louis and Frantz Senat of Miami Edison, is a fun mobile app game created to help improve vocabulary and word knowledge.

YDatabase, by Yeyenne Telisme of Miami Edison, is a service business that will help create databases for small businesses to help them affordably manage their operations.

 

Entrepreneurship Tools: Take care to clearly convey your vision, mission

Susan Amat

By Susan Amat

No matter where I go, entrepreneurs want to share their ideas. I love the excitement and passion that comes through when she starts telling me the big idea, but oftentimes, after a few minutes of a pitch, I still don’t get it. Sometimes it takes many questions and going back and forth before I do get it. My hope is in reading this, you come away with some thoughts about how to ensure your message and vision are clearly communicated — otherwise opportunities for feedback, mentoring, and even customer and investor opportunities may be lost. This isn’t about your elevator pitch to a crowd; it’s about how you engage a person one-on-one in a friendly and conversational way so the person doesn’t feel like you are reciting your memorized spiel.

As an entrepreneur, you are sharing what may be your raison d’être with someone who may be of help in bringing the business to fruition or the next level. If you aren’t getting your points across, the person will tune out, move on, or worst of all, give you feedback on an incorrect interpretation of your concept.

1. Don’t make assumptions about the listener’s knowledge in the space or your unique solution. Even if your target is experienced in your industry, start from step one and walk him on a journey of the development of the concept and how it solves the problem/addresses the needs of customers and keep it short and simple. When our friends at Do You Remember, the site for all things nostalgic, explain their business to visitors, they start with how founder Michael Gitter wrote popular coffee-table books in the ’90s of the same name, then the use of nostalgia in marketing and amazing ROI companies are experiencing, then their shock that no one had captured that space online, and finally the impressive traction of 500<TH>million interactions they have achieved in less than a year. It’s a simple and straightforward story that they tell in 30 seconds and then, invariably, the listener asks question after question, sharing their own memories of music and TV from their childhood, and they are hooked.

2. Slow down! Most of the people I spend time with are fast talkers. We are all in a hurry and have lots of stuff to do, but when you are explaining your idea, pace yourself and show your audience that you are calm and in control. Give 100<TH>percent of your attention to sharing your vision in succinct terms and concepts. It shouldn’t feel like a rapid-fire regurgitation; make it conversational and engaging.

3. Read your listener well. I make a lot of introductions and then hear startups make pitches to colleagues and friends. The test comes later that day or the following week when I hear that person who spent 10 minutes speaking with one of our entrepreneurs try to retell their exchange. Usually it is about 70<TH>percent correct. Although I left academia, we are calling that a C-minus. The challenge is that a lot of people don’t want to seem out of the loop or unsavvy so there may be a lot of nodding as you are going on about your technology, but that doesn’t mean that anything actually registered. My friend Michael Gerber, a renowned author and business coach, paid Venture Hive a visit last weekend and met with some of our businesses. Unlike most people, Michael keeps asking questions until he understands what you are saying and you understand how little sense you made in your first five attempts. Painful to go through, but entertaining to watch.

4. Practice with 7-year-olds and 70-year-olds. If people from both age groups can explain your basic value proposition to someone else their age, you are in great shape.

The heart of this comes back to the fact that people invest their resources (time, money, energy) in people they like. Remember that these interactions aren’t about getting buy-in on your project, but on your ability to bring it to life. Everyone has ideas — everyone — and they have no value until someone does the hard work. Make sure that anyone with whom you speak knows you are going to do what it takes to execute big and that it will be a fun ride.

Susan Amat is the founder and CEO of Venture Hive, offering innovative solutions in entrepreneurship education. Follow her on Twitter at @SusanAmat.

 

04/19/2014

Entrepreneurship datebook

DATEBOOK

TecheggTREPTRANSIT: Join this new meetup group’s kick-off session as TrepTransit aims to connect entrepreneurs and developers for 60 minutes on the third Monday of every month in a metro mover car starting at Government Center Station. Free but sign up here.

MEET KNIGHT: Join Matt Haggman, Miami program director, for a breakfast conversation about the Knight Foundation’s work in Miami, 8:30-10 a.m. Tuesday, April 22, 200 S. Biscayne Blvd., Suite 3300. More info: refreshmiami.com

POWER BREAKFAST PANEL: Miami Finance Forum’s topic is VC Culture in South Florida, 7:30-10 a.m. Wednesday, April 23, at the Conrad Hilton. $25 for members; $65 for nonmembers. More info: miamifinanceforum.com (click on Local Workshops)

HEALTHY CITIES: AS/COA and YPA Miami present a panel discussion on “Our Cities, Our Future: Making Cities Healthy, Green and Sustainable.” $10 for AS/COA and YPA Miami members; $25 for non-members and includes a copy of the Winter 2014 Americas Quarterly issue. More info: as-coa.org (click on Leadership Events.)

SMART CITY DEMO NIGHT: A collections of startups from around the world will demo their solutions for making cities smarter at this Urban.Us event at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 24, at The LightBox in Wynwood.

BUSINESS BASICS: The Beacon Council presents a free small business workshop with County Commissioner Jean Monestime on about growing your business, 5:30-7:30 p.m., Thursday, April 24, Bethel Apostolic Temple, 1855 NW 119th St., Miami. More info: beaconcouncil.com (click on Events)

SEO LOWDOWN: SCORE Miami-Dade presents “Increasing Online Traffic, Leads and Profits with Search Engine Optimization,” 9:30-12:30 p.m. Saturday, April 26, SBA offices, 100 S. Biscayne Blvd. $40 in advance. More info: www.miamidade.score.org

STARTING GATE

An exit, VC funding, columns, new organizations coming to town, eMerge Americas plans, an upcoming hackathon, columns and views are all part of last week's news on Starting Gate. Keep up with startup news and community views on Starting Gate blog on MiamiHerald.com/business.

Nancy Dahlberg @ndahlberg

UM entrepreneurship students get hands-on experience helping South Florida businesses

World of Beer

Matt Lull, co-owner, World of Beer franchise (second from left), with student consultants Juan Pablo Aguirre (left) and (left to right) Shannen Quinn, Javier Rodriguez, Edgardo Jaramillo, and Joseph Lopez

By Rochelle Broder-Singer

Choosing restaurant locations is often more about gut feelings and anecdotal evidence than quantitative data, and a large World of Beer franchise group in South Florida wanted to change that. Company partner Matt Lull believed the group could make better decisions about restaurant locations by examining data from successful World of Beers locations around the U.S. It wasn’t something the group could do on its own, though. Rather than turn to an expensive consulting firm, he turned to the students in a Student Entrepreneurial Consulting course at the University of Miami School of Business. The course puts teams of student consultants to work on real problems for client companies.

For World of Beer, five students gathered reams of data from the company, figured out which pieces were relevant to the success of individual locations, and created a statistical model that will help identify future successful locations.

“It’s fun to work with a team who have freshly trained minds and remember what they were taught in Statistical Analysis 101, perhaps,” said Lull, who along with other business owners participating in the program, came together with their student consultants to celebrate the close of the program April 17.

“It’s an interesting experiment for us to apply the academic skills to what is really an industry that is run by the gut in a lot of ways. We’re going to probably bet seven figures worth of money based, in part, on what the team is helping us figure out.”

The consulting projects are part of the capstone course for the entrepreneurship major at the UM School of Business. This year, it grew to 10 client companies – all but nine of them run by UM alumni. For the clients, it’s a way to give back to their alma mater, interact with a new generation of potential customers and employees and receive important help for their business.

“The School of Business is trying to make business education as international, entrepreneurial and relevant as possible,” said Gene Anderson, dean of the UM School of Business. “Getting our students out into the world, where you can see how learning in the classroom applies, is important. You can learn about marketing over there, about accounting over there, about operations over there – but when you get out in the real world, you’ve got to put those things together.”

In addition to World of Beers, student consulting teams worked with South Florida companies including artist Xavier Cortada, Holstein Housewares, the Miami City Ballet, the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Miami franchise of moving company College Hunks Hauling Junk, Pasha’s restaurants and Edda’s Cake Company. They also worked with Austin, Texas-based Phunware, a mobile app company that was recently named to Forbes’ list of “Americas Most Promising Companies.”

PhunwareThe Phunware consultants analyzed competitors and performed SWOT (strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats) assessments for two new markets the company plans to enter: the automotive industry and the entertainment industry. Phunware, which recently raised a $30 million round of venture capital, “gets to give them the Silicon Valley treatment, like I’ve received over the years,” says CEO Alan Knitowski, a UM alumnus. “No one cares about age or background or anything. It’s all about massive ideas.” Although the student consultants haven’t yet presented their findings to Knitowski, he expects their work will help the company determine which of the two markets to enter first.

Phunware’s student consultants relished the opportunity to work with a fast-growing tech star. “We were all excited to work with a company like Phunware that’s really respected in the mobile industry,” said senior Alex Ostbye. “It’s exciting to get a project to work with in school that has real-life meaning, and we’re trying to do our best to help the company. We really do appreciate them looking at it really hard.”

Photo above: Alan Knitowski, chairman, CEO and co-founder, Phunware (center) with student consultants Alex Cantwell (left) and Roy Ishakov

  

 

04/18/2014

MoneyTree: Florida companies draw $72M in VC funding in Q1

Venture capitalists and angel investors pumped $72 million into Florida companies during the first quarter of this year, and two-thirds of that flowed into seven South Florida companies, according to the MoneyTree report from PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association released Friday.

MDLIVE, a Sunrise-based tele-health provider, led the state by drawing $23.6 million in financing from Heritage Group and Karyne Anderson Capital Advisors. Pure Life Renal, a dialysis company in Hollywood, raised $10.5 million, according to the MoneyTree report.

The other South Florida companies, all raising between $1.2 million and $5.6 million according to the report, were Aplicor of Boca Raton, Next University of Miami Beach, 71 Lbs of Fort Lauderdale, Mela Artisans of Boca Raton and Kairos of Miami.

Overall, funding in Florida ventures was up sharply compared to the first quarter of last year, when $20 million was invested, but down sharply from the $132 million raised in the last quarter of 2013.

“Right now we are in the ‘Goldilocks’ phase of the angel-entrepreneur-VC market cycle, meaning we are seeing quality deal flow, solid management teams, truly innovative technologies, and valuations are still reasonable — not too low, not too high,” said Rhys L. Williams, president and co-founder of New World Angels. “This said, we are just now beginning to see the first signs of the next stage in the cycle, where every second person is seeking to get into the act, and where valuations sought by entrepreneurs begin to lose touch with market realities. As long as the IPO [initial public offering] window remains wide open, and the public markets are healthy, we will see continued expansion of the tech economy.”

New World Angels participated in the funding rounds of both Aplicor and Kairos, and Williams said the Boca Raton group had also invested in OBMedical of Gainesville and Bioceptive of New Orleans, which has operations in Deerfield Beach.

Nationally, venture capitalists invested $9.5 billion in 951 deals during the first quarter of 2014. Quarterly VC investment activity rose 12 percent in terms of dollars but fell 14 percent in the number of deals compared to the fourth quarter of 2013, when $8.4 billion was invested in 1,112 deals.

The biggest investments were in San Francisco companies Dropbox, $325 million, and Airbnb, $200 million.

The software industry experienced another significant increase nationally during the first quarter, capturing $4 billion, the highest level since the fourth quarter of 2000, and further distancing it by more than three times from the second-largest industry, biotechnology.

While expansion-stage investments rose, seed-stage investments fell 64 percent in dollars and 41 percent in deals, with $125 million invested in 41 deals during the first quarter. The average size of the deals also fell.

“Seed and early-stage financing numbers are down from the previous quarter, but expansion-stage dollars invested are up 34 percent. This was to be expected when you consider the domination by seed and early-stage deals in 2012 and 2013,” said Bobby Franklin, president and CEO of NVCA. “The spring thaw of the exit markets is providing some firms with new life, but overall capital remains constrained for most venture capital firms.”

The MoneyTree Report is available www.pwcmoneytree.com and www.nvca.org.

04/17/2014

6 ways Twitter’s redesign can help build your small-business brand

 By Tasha Cunningham

TashaTwitter began rolling out a redesign this month that includes features to help brands promote their products and services. Reaction from users and advertisers has been mixed, with many pointing out the obvious similarities to Facebook. While the redesign may borrow elements from Facebook, there are several improvements that make it easier for brands to get their marketing messages to consumers.

Let’s take a look at the new design, what it means and how it can help you build your small-business brand.

1. Profile page: One of the first things about the new design that users will notice is the larger photo, akin to Facebook’s cover photo, at the top of the profile page. The old background image feature will no longer exist. A profile picture inset is also displayed as part of the new design. A larger photo offers brands the opportunity to use eye-catching images to draw users to their Twitter timeline. Change pictures often to keep your page fresh.

Continue reading "6 ways Twitter’s redesign can help build your small-business brand" »

04/16/2014

Sustainatopia opens with focus on growth of impact investing

By Jenny Staletovich

With impact investing expected to grow into a $1 trillion segment of the financial market by 2020, the social entrepreneur is no mere fluke, Calvert Foundation CEO Jenn Pryce said Wednesday at the opening of the 5th annual  Sustainatopia conference in Miami Beach.

"If you look at search engine volume around this issue," she said, "it’s really getting sticky."

Hoping to raise awareness, Sustainatopia founder John Rosser created the annual gathering to connect the investment world and businesses that do social good. This year’s line-up for the three-day conference at the Miami Beach Convention Center features a smattering of both. On Wednesday, for example, the owner of the Olomomo Nut Company in Colorado shared a panel with the principal of Crowdfund Capital Advisors.      

      "If you can align dollars with values, that’s the most efficient use of capital and that’s what we want to do," Rosser said.

Since it was founded 20 years ago, the Calvert Foundation has raised over $1 billion from 13,000 investors, Pryce said. Contributions have been as small as $20 and as large as $20 million. The foundation then invests in organizations that support socially conscious businesses, including a day-care center in Illinois and a coffee farm in Peru. Forty percent of its loans go abroad, while 60 percent stay in the U.S.

"We cater to the wealthy," Pryce said. "But the real heart and essence is the idea of democratizing impact investment and enabling people to jump on the train and be part of it."

Wednesday’s opening also included remarks from Bina Venkataraman, a senior advisor on climate change to the White House.

Sustainatopia, which is actually three conferences, continues Thursday with speakers and panel discussions on impact investing, sustainable strategies and ethical fashion and sustainable design at the convention center and Miami Beach Botanical Gardens. There are also a number of free Sustainatopia events over the weekend and early next week at various locations. For more information:  sustainatopia.com.

Posted 4/14/2014

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2014/04/16/4063406/sustainatopia-opens-with-focus.html#storylink=cpy

Calling all developers: Hackathon with $30K in prizes open for registration

Emerge+TW eMerge Americas Techweek will host hundreds of developers, designers and technology enthusiasts vying for $30,000 in prizes at the eMerge Americas Techweek Hackathon.  The hackathon will bring together competitors from across the Americas from May 2-4 at the University of Miami Life Science and Technology Park’s Miami Innovation Center.

More than 100 developers have already signed up to participate, and organizers are expecting up to 300 competitors, said Xavier Gonzalez, executive director of the Technology Foundation of the Americas.

The challenge for the hackathon will be Doing Social Good: Using Technology to Solve Problems in Communities in Emerging Markets.   The applications developed by the teams of developers and designers will be judged based on:

  • * Presentation - Ability to clearly articulate the functionality of the application
  • * Sophistication - Difficulty of technical implementation
  • * Functionality - How well the technology works

"The Hackathon is the ultimate event that will engage developers, designers, entrepreneurs and technology enthusiasts in the overall eMerge Americas Techweek event,” said Brian Breslin, founder of Refresh Miami, South Florida’s largest tech organization.  “This will be a truly unique opportunity for the top developers in South Florida to compete against peers from Latin America and the Caribbean. "  

With support from Amazon Web Services (AWS), .CO and Wexford Science and Technology, a $20,000 cash prize will be awarded to the first place team, $7,500 to the second place team and $2,500 to third place team.  In addition, $100 in AWS Activate Credits will be provided to each participant.

The Hackathon will kick off the evening of Friday, May 2, with an informational session and pizza for participants. Saturday, May 3, the teams will be provided with the APIs and directions for the challenge and the teams will present their applications for final judging on the afternoon of Sunday, May 4.

For more information on the hackathon, visit http://emergeamericas.org/experience/exhibitions/hackathon

Read more about eMerge Americas Techweek plans here.

 

eMerge Americas Techweek to bring in array of experts, events

With more than 100 speakers and about a dozen events, contests, expos and parties, next month’s eMerge Americas Techweek will bring together executives and entrepreneurs from large technology companies and emerging ventures throughout South Florida and Latin America. Together with leaders from Miami’s key industries, such as healthcare and entertainment, they will explore technological advances and trends and shine a spotlight on the region’s emerging tech community.

eMerge Americas Techweek, May 2-7, will be the inaugural conference produced by the Technology Foundation of the Americas, an organization founded by tech entrepreneur and Terremark founder Manny Medina. It’s not just a conference, it’s the kickoff of a movement, said Diane Sanchez, CEO of the Technology Foundation of the Americas.

“The foundation’s objective is to ignite a vision of Miami as the technology hub of the Americas. We will do this by leveraging the unique features of the Miami region to build a new model for technology centers and be the catalyst that combines the South Florida technology community of today with Miami's Latin American connections and cultural assets to achieve that vision,” she said.

At the heart of Techweek will be the summits, Sanchez said. More than 100 experts will talk about the latest developments in technology, their application to their fields and the implications for the future. A few of the speakers include Paul Maritz, CEO of Pivotal; Sue Siegel, CEO of GE Ventures; Dave Thomas, managing director of Intel Capital; Peter Diamandis, CEO of XPrize; and Armando Christian Pérez, better known as Pitbull.

Continue reading "eMerge Americas Techweek to bring in array of experts, events" »

04/15/2014

Startup Grind coming to Miami; first event May 13

Startup Grind LogoWe’ve got Tech Cocktail, CreativeMornings and soon Startup Grind.



Aimed at shining a light on the local movement, Startup Grind is in 85 cities in 35 countries, including Silicon Valley, San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York City, Singapore, Dubai, Stockholm, Tel Aviv and London. Jason Ibarra, a South Florida digital marketing entrepreneur and leader, worked to bring a Startup Grind chapter here.

Startup Grind is designed to educate, inspire and connect entrepreneurs and will hold monthly events in which an entrepreneur, investor or leader is interviewed. The conversations will be videoed and released on the global Startup Grind website, powered by Google for Entrepreneurs.

Notable guests globally have included Clay Christensen (Innovator's Dilemma), Steve Blank, Ben Silbermann (Pinterest), Jessica Livingston (Y Combinator), Bill Maris (Google Ventures), Vinod Khosla (Kholsa Ventures), Dave McClure (500 Startups), Ali Pincus (One Kings Lane), Naval Ravikant (AngelList), Tony Conrad (About.me), Jeff Clavier (SoftTech VC), and Kevin Rose (Digg, MILK). 

Jason Ibarra - HeadshotIbarra plans to have the first event from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. May 13 at The LAB Miami and interview South Florida entrepreneurs, investors and supporters.

 “My motivation for doing this is to give Miami tech a global spotlight, a megaphone if you will, to get our talent, determination and successes known around the world. Startup Grind is here as a tool to help all of Miami's techpreneurs,” he said.

 Find out more about Startup Grind here