Is the super hot Miami tech scene sustainable?

According to a recent article published by Fast Company, Florida ranks number one for Innovation and number three in Revenue per startup at $1.2 million.  There seems to be a consensus from the various media outlets that Miami’s high tech movement has legs.   I can attest to the veracity of the rankings and media buzz because almost every other day I learn about a new startup, technology event or product being launched either here in Miami or by a Miami based startup.

Brickell Ave

Brickell Ave

Unlike some hyper-local technology hubs, the theSouth Florida (SoFL) and in particular the Miami (MIA) tech hub has significant international influence and its ripples can be felt from as far as Buenos Aires (Argentina), Santiago (Chile),  Western Europe and of course San Francisco, California.  Much of the success can be attributed to the many local organizations doing a great job energizing and attracting talented individuals to the region.  Their hard work in conjunction with local and state leaders, educational institutions and local companies is paying off big.  I do want to mention some of the organization that should receive recognition, below in no particular order:

http://www.southfloridatech.org

http://venturehive.co/

http://refreshmiami.com/

http://sfima.com/

http://www.lift1428.com/projectlift

http://www.miamijobfest.co/

The good news is that all this attention is good for Miami.  The fact that media is labeling Miami’s Technology hub as “Silicon Beach” and social medial hash-tags like #SunshineEconomy are found frequently in twitter, has help attract some key technology events and conferences, like:

 http://tedxmiami.com/  

http://tfamericas.org/

http://fiba.net/

http://www.simemia.co/

http://webcongress.com/miami/

But I believe being able to attract great talent, foster collaboration and innovation, will only get you so far without a steady flow of capital.  To really make a significant and sustainable impact, investors must make money.  It seems traditional venture capital (VC) firms have just begun to expand their portfolios in SoFL, but most remain cautious and most continue to fund predominantly west coast startups based in “Silicon Valley”.

But not all the recent buzz has gone unnoticed, we have seen some organizations very active locally like the Knight Foundation and some non traditional organizations making inroads. Many agree that Miami already has the attention of the Latin American investors, or at least the local media is quick to point out in some of their recent publications like: “TechCrunch Disrupt Finale: Mark Zuckerberg, Marissa Mayer and .. The Latin Invasion” or “How Miami Is Filing The High-Tech Void In Latin America”.

And all this is beginning to sound very familiar, it it sounding like an excerpt from Andres Oppenheimer’s best seller book Cuentos Chinos, where he proposes a connection of between Miami’s success and the worsening economical and social situation in Latin-america.  I am not an economist, but one can easily extrapolate and conclude that if Miami’s high tech success is depending heavily in Latin-america, then the party will abruptly end by 2017 when Brazil economy decelerates and the rest of the region finds some form of equilibrium.

But independently of the outcome of Latin America and its impact on Miami, the region still must prove to the investors one thing and one thing only: it must show returns.  All this must produce success stories and demonstrate there are profits to be made.  If “Silicon Beach” is here to stay, it must produce a stable stream of IPOs (Initial Public Offerings), buyouts or any arrangement where institutional and private investors can see returns.

It takes a couple of years for the average startup to start seeing profits, this means if Miami’s high tech scene is going to be sustainable, we should be starting to hear the IPO chatter soon and hopefully thing getting ready to go no later than 2016.

So lets get the ball rolling, shall we?  What Miami based company do you think will IPO or be sold/bought first?

by Juan Meza

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Most Innovative Companies of 2013

The most innovative companies of 2013 can be considered to be the ones which are on the verge or already leading a market takeover. These companies combine together a diverse group of experts and innovators, all of which have their eyes set towards changing the world. Whether it is the creation of new technology or the innovative footwear, these are the top 5 companies which leaped all others according to the fast company magazine.

1. Nike

FuelStefan Olander,  the lead of the Nike’s Digital Sport division, is working in collaboration with a team of engineers who are creating of a pair of Nike Shoes with embedded sensors. These sensors would be able to detect the pressure which is created by the shoes. The data collected is then digitally fed to an iPhone. This device is just a fragment of the innovative products and services the company plans to launch.

2. Amazon

Having introduced the same day shipping options in a number of US Markets, and then same day delivery service Amazon deserves to be at the top grabbing the 2nd spot among the most innovative companies. In all, the entire retail industry has by now realized the true potential of Amazon, as it notches up its market shares with every second that passes by. That’s not all, as every other week the company manages to make the news through the launch of a new technology or service.

3. Square

Empowering the customers with the credit card management and transaction services using a mobile device, is the basic idea which Square had at the start, but now it has managed to extend its lead over all of its competitors.

4. Splunk

Whether it is the billions of clicks on Facebook and Twitter or any activity on all other websites, Splunk has the expertise and the resources for monitoring, indexing as well as collecting the data and putting it to good use through which has provided new business opportunities and profits for its clients.

5. Fab

With dozens of online boutiques and design centric products, Fab managed to capturea revenue of about $ 150 million in 2012. Moreover, the membership for the company is also progressing at maddening pace which earns it the right to be termed among the top innovation companies.

For the complete list go to http://www.fastcompany.com/section/most-innovative-companies-2013

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BitCoin (BTC) an alternative to cash – Trends to watch in 2013

According to Global Trends in their GT Briefing December 2012: Trends to watch in 2013, they mention BitCoin as an alternative to cash under “Who needs Banks anyway?” section of their report.  This along with Mobile-wallets and Crowdfunding, are definitely things to keep close tabs on as I suspect they will gain significant traction to in 2013.

 

The Global Trends to watch in 2013 are:

  1. Social everything: New generations and their digital world stepping forward
  2. Redefining value: The consumer is winning the fight to own the new consumer
  3. Distributed everything:  Mobility in production and consumption
  4. The next “industrial” revolution: Robots and smart machines reshaping work
  5. The new space race: Pushing the frontiers of technology once again?
  6. Geopolitical wars: The fight to control the future
  7. Resource wars escalating: From a world of abundance to shortage
  8. Business stepping up:  From profit to purpose
  9. Information is power: The security challenge
  10. Who needs banks anyway? Reshaping the financial system

Extracted from Global Trends http://www.globaltrends.com/monthly-briefings/176-gt-briefing-december-2012-10-key-trends-to-watch-in-2013  Related presentation materials can be downloaded in PDF for further reading at http://www.globaltrends.com/images/stories/GT2013/Global%20Trends_Ten%20Key%20Trends%20to%20Watch%20for%202013.pdf

10 Crucial Consumer Trends for 2013

According to @trendwatching the top 10 Crucial Consumer Trends for 2013 are:

  1. Presumer & Custowners
  2. Emerging
  3. Mobile Moments
  4. New Life Inside
  5. Appscriptions
  6. Celebration Nation
  7. Data Myning
  8. Again Made Here
  9. Full Frontal
  10. Demanding Brands

Extract from Trendwatching.com  http://trendwatching.com/trends/10trends2013/

Top 20 Trends in 2013 Forecast – 2013 Trend Report from Trend Hunter.

 

Are you a trend junkie?

If so what is on your “Dashboard”? http://bit.ly/TawHUu

13 Crucial Consumer Trends for 2012

Crucial Consumer Trends for 2012  by  @trendwatching   My favorite is #5 Cash-Less, I can’t wait for this one anymore!

  1. Red Carpet
  2. DIY Health
  3. Dealer-Chich
  4. Eco-Cycology
  5. Cash-Less
  6. Bottom of the Urban Pyramid
  7. Idle Sourcing
  8. Flawsome
  9. Screen Culture
  10. Recommerce
  11. Emerging Maturalism
  12. Point & Know
  13. More-ism

Extract from Trendwatching.com http://bit.ly/SMAJC5

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