By Nancy Dahlberg
1 Life goes on at Miami area WeWorks
While the parent company is going through extreme financial difficulties and battling constant national controversy, including the ousting of its CEO, nothing has changed much at WeWorks in the Miami area, one of the company’s largest markets per capita. At least not yet.
And this week, WeWork officially announced two more of its Miami area WeWorks are up and running -- WeWork at Wynwood Garage and WeWork Giralda Place -- bringing to nine the number of locations the company has opened or are in the plans.
WeWork at Wynwood Garage, 360 NW 27th Street in Miami, occupies the eighth floor across 32,000 square feet of office space at Wynwood Garage. With an art-filled common area, the design is meant to be reminiscent of a loft-style, artist space with floor-to-ceiling windows with sweeping views of both Wynwood and Downtown Miami.
WeWork Giralda Place, 255 Giralda Avenue in Coral Gables, offers over 54,000-square-feet over six floors in downtown Coral Gables. The space fuses Mediterranean and Spanish architecture styles with arched doors and windows, alcove nooks with arched ceilings, and an elegant spiral staircase with wooden railings.
WeWork Giralda Place will be hosting a welcome week October 21-25 where guests are invited to work out of the space free of charge. Networking events, community happy hours and member meet and greets are planned throughout the week. Individuals must reserve a spot ahead of time via the event page here. The first 100 people to RSVP will also receive $100 off their first two months of Hot Desk membership.
Also this week the company announced it is opening the first South Florida WeWork Labs in the WeWork Security Building location. For a cost of $475 a month, WeWork Labs will offer up to 60 startups programming, mentorship and introductions as well as co-working space and other benefits that come with a typical membership. A number of startups have signed up, despite the implosion of the parent company. Like goes on, for now.
2 Equity crowdfunding grows in popularity; SunVessel rides in with a new campaign
In the wake of Caribu’s success with equity crowd-funding – $1.7 million raised on WeFunder – more South Florida companies are using the platforms to raise seed or later stage funding.
With less than three weeks to go, Aquavault has attracted nearly a half million dollars in investment from more than 660 funders. Its fundraising campaign is on the StartEngine crowdfunding platform.
AquaVault, based in Aventura, went from $87,000 in sales when pitching on Shark Tank to generating nearly $3 million in 2018 and is on track for $7 million this year, according to the company. AquaVault’s retail partners include Disney World, Bed Bath and Beyond, Bass Pro Shops and MSC Cruise Lines, plus hotels, theme parks and water parks. The team is currently developing and patenting several new products in the security world. “We believe this is just the beginning and we have barely scratched the surface,” said CFO Jonathan Kinas. Kinas co-founded the company with Avin Samtani and Robert Peck. Click here to view the campaign.
And just out of the gate, SunVessel has already attracted some $22K.
Miami-based SunVessel, a last-mile mobility solution, was founded by Sebastian Gomez Puerto and his team of designers and engineers from MIT, FIU, UM and Babson College.
Gomez Puerto previously co-founded Café X, a robotic coffee bar company in San Francisco backed by Peter Thiel, Khosla Ventures and others. Earlier in his career he worked at Ford Motor company and obtained his MBA at went to Babson, where he co-founded Cafe X.
“‘I have personally been obsessed with transportation, movement, and robotics all my life,” said Gomez Puerto. ‘It was during my time in San Francisco that I dreamed about how I could change micro-mobility in a way that was scalable, responsible, and beautifully designed. So I decided to come back to Miami, to build that dream here. After all, Miami is the quintessential city of the future - that is, a city plagued with traffic problems and the threat of the effects of our sea levels rising.”
You’ve likely seen the SunVessel around town. The startup has been piloting them at Building.co and showed them off at eMerge Americas.
3 Miami-based MyPark expands service to Dolphin Mall
Dolphin Mall has launched MyPark, a Miami-based parking service that allows customers to reserve a premium parking spot prior to or upon arrival to the center for $3 for the first two hours and $3 per hour thereafter near the entries.
To take advantage of the service, users can go to the usemypark.com or download the app directly from the Android or iOS stores by searching “MyPark.” After registering, customers simply need to tell the app where and when they would like to park at Dolphin Mall. Once users arrive at the reserved space, they simply tap “Let Me In” and the parking device will lower to provide instant access.
Founded in 2013 in Miami and led by CEO Luis Mavendia, MyPark also offers its service at Dadeland Mall, International Mall and the Falls as well as other malls around the state and country.
4 Wyncode and Ironhack named as top coding schools
Congratulations to Wyncode and Ironhack, both named as top coding schools in the U.S. by Course Report. Wyncode and Ironhack ranked No. 12 and 15 respectively, among company such as Flatiron School, Hack Reactor, FullStack Academy and General Assembly, which recently entered the Miami market and came in at No. 7 on the ranking.
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- Q&A with REEF Technology’s Ari Ojalvo: Challenging the conventional path - January 15, 2021
- The year in VC, Part 2: Top VC deals in 2020 for South Florida – and more - January 14, 2021
- REEF kicks off $1M program to help local restaurants in Miami and other select markets - January 14, 2021