By Nancy Dahlberg
The 21 companies led by Endeavor Entrepreneurs in Miami generated $250 million in 2019 revenue, up 39% since 2016, and have created nearly 3,000 jobs, according to Endeavor Miami’s 2019 Impact Report released today.
The report also highlights the successes of some of the Endeavor companies, including YouVisit’s sale to EAB in December and Endeavor’s Entrepreneurs of the Year: Nearpod and EcoSystems. For example, EcoSystems, a nationwide leader in water conservation, has saved its clients more than $15 million on utility bills. Ed-tech player Nearpod’s year was highlighted by its acquisition of Flocabulary. It recently announced it will be providing access to its platform to all schools in Utah.
Claudia Duran, who took the helm of Endeavor Miami as Managing Director in June, said she has been focused on strategically building up the mentor network, with an emphasis on “targeting the needs of the entrepreneurs in a more specific way” through “strategic matchmaking.” The report highlights six of the most active mentors in 2019: Laura Gonzalez-Estefani of TheVentureCity, Nabil Malouli of DHL, Danial Heise of WCI Capital, Manuel Steremberg of Mastercard, Aldo Polak of Cisneros Group and Jocelyn Cortez-Young of Minerva Capital.
“Last year after listening to the entrepreneurs about their challenges – which are access to capital and access to talent – we realized it was important for us to start creating a local investor network for South Florida,” she said.
Endeavor Global offers an investor network, but Duran believes Miami needs its own because there is still a gap. The network not only includes locally based VCs, angels and private equity investors, but also investors from other parts of the United States and Latin America. Later this year Endeavor plans an event that will bring together the funds and entrepreneurs from the Greater Miami ecosystem in a speed dating type of networking event. “Now more than ever, you need strategic partners as you scale up, and now is the time to be very selective; it’s a relationship and the trust needs to be there,” she said.
Another goal, she said, is to build up partnerships with local universities’ MBA programs so that MBA students can work with the entrepreneurs. “I think more and more talent will be available in this market, and I want to make sure to bring that top talent to the growing companies.”
Endeavor Miami graduated nine companies in its first cohort of its ScaleUp Program, a four-month program aimed at increasing the pipeline of Endeavor-ready companies. The application deadline for Cohort 2 is this week, April 30. Endeavor will be announcing its selections in May, and launch the program soon after, applying learnings from the inaugural year in 2019 as well as best practices from Endeavor ScaleUp programs in other cities and countries.
“Our work, our mission, is to support entrepreneurs and I feel now, more than ever, our work is very relevant,” Duran said. “My job to get more people that can support entrepreneurs and be ready for whenever we go back to the new normal to support entrepreneurs – not only the ones in our network – any way we can.”
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