By Nancy Dahlberg
A coalition of business and technology leaders in Broward County have rolled out a new joint venture, TechLauderdale, to help amplify the attributes of the tech community while also connect entrepreneurs with resources to grow their companies.
“TechLauderdale is a new joint venture between the Broward Workshop and the South Florida Technology Alliance to build, inspire, celebrate and collaborate in enhancing the technology ecosystem in Greater Fort Lauderdale,” said Bob Fitts, executive director of SFTA. Nova Southeastern University and Broward College are also supporting the venture.
The organization has been in the works for more than a year but was officially revealed this week at the CIO Council on Wednesday, Broward Workshop’s State of the County event on Friday and in South Florida Business Journal’s report.
Broward Workshop, an organization of 100 CEOS in Broward County who meet regularly to discuss a number of economic development issues, wanted to do this because they saw the metropolitan region as a place where there are lots of startups, but not enough scaleups. Studies by Kauffman Foundation over the years bear this out.
“What’s critical to attracting and retaining talent here is creating labor market liquidity, so people will move here and know they can find other amazing jobs should that one not work out and also so our Florida based high school and college job applicants want to stay here.” said Fitts, noting that the county is already rich with tech, including Magic Leap, Ultimate Software, Citrix, Mako Surgical, eBuilder and Jet Smarter. It’s also home to Boatsetter, MDLive, Nearpod, BabySparks, CarePredict, 71 Lbs, The Fastmind and others.
Fitts said the Broward Workshop is bringing new membership, strategic direction and funding to TechLauderdale while the SFTA’s main activities going forward will be in support of TechLauderdale and under the “TechLauderdale powered by SFTA” brand. SFTA will still hold events, including ITPalooza and Sup-X, but as part of TechLauderdale will be able to expand its mission with other programming and will be studying best practices at similar organizations. Once such initiative could be an internship program.
“Growing the information economy here in South Florida is an important economic development goal for all of us in the region,” Fitts said.
Find out more about TechLauderdale on its new website, which is still evolving, at TechLauderdale.org.
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