MIAMI and TAMPA, Fla., July 20, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — eMerge Americas, a venture-backed platform focused on transforming Miami into the tech hub of the Americas, today announced the closing of an investment round led by Florida Funders, a hybrid of a venture capital fund and an angel investor network recognized as the top VC in the Southeast region by Pitchbook. Marking the close, Marc Blumenthal, General Partner at Florida Funders will assume a board seat. The City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez has also been appointed to the board of directors, effective immediately. eMerge Americas and Florida Funders will capitalize on this partnership by hosting La Casa, an exclusive in-person event gathering investors and startup founders in Miami on November 30th and December 1st, 2021, coinciding with the commencement of Art Basel.
The partnership brings together two of the largest brands serving the venture capital, tech, and innovation ecosystem throughout the state of Florida. The resulting transaction will further amplify eMerge Americas’ year-round platform with content, events, pitch competitions and a match-making agenda for investors and entrepreneurs with expanded programming and engagement across the state of Florida, in addition to an office in Miami.
As an official member of the Board of Directors, Mayor Francis Suarez will support eMerge Americas’ mission to build a thriving tech hub and ecosystem in South Florida as businesses, entrepreneurs, and investment talent migrate to Miami. Mayor Suarez will also help to strengthen the growth and long-term strategy of eMerge Americas.
Florida Funders’ partners investing in this round include Rachael Sapoznick, Board Member at Florida Funders and founder of Sapoznik Insurance, and Steve MacDonald, Partner, Board Member, and Investment Committee member at Florida Funders and founder of MacDonald Ventures.
Leadership, Governance, and Structure
The eMerge Americas Board of Directors is composed of Manny Medina, Founder and Executive Chairman; Marc Blumenthal, General Partner at Florida Funders; Francis Suarez, Mayor of the City of Miami; in addition to Felice Gorordo, CEO, and Melissa Medina, Co-founder and President, who will both continue to lead eMerge Americas alongside Diane Vidoni, COO.
Manny Medina, Founder and Executive Chairman of eMerge Americas, says:
“This strategic partnership with Florida Funders and the appointment of Mayor Francis Suarez to the Board allows us to super serve our ecosystem stakeholders with the resources, programming, and capital they need. We could not think of better partners that are aligned with our vision and enthusiasm to accelerate innovation statewide.”
Tom Wallace, Managing Partner at Florida Funders, says:
“eMerge Americas is an integral part of the gravitational pull that’s led entrepreneurs and investors to relocate to South Florida. At Florida Funders, we work tirelessly to ensure we are finding, funding, and building the best early-stage technology companies, and now we’ll have an expanded pipeline of new investors and founders through the eMerge Americas network.”
Marc Blumenthal, General Partner at Florida Funders, says:
“This transformative partnership with eMerge Americas was a natural next step as we expand our footprint — we have a shared mission, and we’re excited about helping grow the tech and innovation ecosystems in Miami and around the state.”
Francis Suarez, Mayor of the City of Miami, says:
“eMerge Americas has laid the groundwork for the city of Miami to become a bastion of entrepreneurship, tech, and innovation for over a decade, and I couldn’t be more honored to join the Board of Directors. Working closely with eMerge Americas uniquely positions us to attract more businesses, entrepreneurs, and investment talent.”
Upcoming In-person Event
Marking the return to physical gatherings in a post-COVID era, eMerge Americas and Florida Funders will host La Casa, an in-person event on November 30th – December 1st, 2021. The event will be a precursor to the annual eMerge Americas global tech conference, scheduled on April 18-19, 2022, anchoring Miami Tech Week.
Sign up at lacasamiami.co to receive updates on the networking events and planned agenda for La Casa, which includes panels, keynote presentations and more.
About eMerge Americas
eMerge Americas is a venture-backed platform focused on transforming Miami into the tech hub of the Americas. The eMerge signature event, launched in 2014, is a global tech conference held annually at the Miami Beach Convention Center, attracting more than 16,000 attendees from 40 countries and over 3,900 unique participating organizations. In addition to the annual conference, eMerge organizes and hosts year-round executive summits, innovation challenges, startup pitch competitions, masterclasses, webinars, as well as publishes venture activity and investment insights reports. For the last decade, eMerge has served as a catalyst for innovation and investment across the Americas, working at the forefront of building the South Florida entrepreneurial and tech ecosystem. Visit www.emergeamericas.com for more information.
About Florida Funders, LLC
Recognized as the top VC in the Southeast region by Pitchbook, Florida Funders is a hybrid of a venture capital fund and an angel investor network that discovers, funds, and builds early-stage technology companies in Florida and beyond. In order for Florida to evolve from the Sunshine State to the Startup State, we ensure there is as little friction as possible in the ecosystem, that investors have access to meaningful deal flow, and entrepreneurs have access to a wide range of accredited investors, capital, and experience. Florida Funders educates our community of investors, provides transparency during the funding process, fosters communication across the ecosystem, and empowers the strategic relationships that drive investments. Our team is composed of serial entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and experienced angel investors singularly focused on uncovering Florida’s next breakout technology companies. To learn more, visit www.floridafunders.com.
SOURCE eMerge Americas