6 things to know in #MiamiTech: Barry’s HQ makes move; Shrimp Society’s NFT drop; our guide to Miami Art(Tech) Week; Bitcoin mining eyed for Miami-Dade; Brightline’s timeline & more


Barry’s relocates HQ from LA to Wynwood

 Barry’s, the global fitness studio that’s a favorite in #MiamiTech, announced it is officially moving its corporate headquarters from Los Angeles to Miami as of Dec. 1. The 9,000 square feet of offices will be on the top floor of 2214 N.W. 1st Place in Wynwood.

“Miami provides a vibrant and diverse culture and our move here, in 2021 with so many others, poises Barry’s to be a part of something unique and special in the city. I love the excitement in the air,” said Barry’s CEO Joey Gonzalez. “Miami has always been special to me – it’s where my family live, where I got married to my partner, and now where Barry’s will be headquartered.” 

Earlier this year, the Miami Herald reported that bringing Barry’s HQ to Miami will create about 50 HQ jobs paying an average of $100,000. The South Florida Business Journal reported last week that the fitness company has already created 17 jobs and plans to hire about 30 more people for HQ roles next year. Barry’s also told SFBJ it is planning to expand its fitness studios to locations in Coral Gables and Tampa. It currently has locations in Miami Midtown, Miami Beach and Aventura.

The fitness company’s move began to come to fruition after Miami Mayor Francis Suarez reached out to Gonzalez on Twitter and invited him to have a dialogue about Barry’s growing presence in Miami and its appeal to tech founders. “Now one of the most exciting personal wellness brands is headquartered in the healthiest city in America,” the mayor said.

Barry’s HQ will be moving into the former headquarters of Goldman Properties, the developer known for its revitalization of Wynwood, South Beach, SoHo in New York City and Center City Philadelphia.  The Goldman team will move to a new office near the Wynwood Walls. “Wynwood has clearly become one of the most desirable neighborhoods in the U.S. for new and thriving businesses to plant roots,” said Scott Srebnick, CEO of Goldman Properties.


The Shrimp Society to launch NFT project

On Tuesday, Miami-based early-stage startup community the Shrimp Society will launch its inaugural NFT project. Purchasing one of their 6,305 NFTs, which start at 1 Solana (around $200) each, will enable owners to engage with the Shrimp Society’s network of entrepreneurs, technologists, investors, and community builders. NFT holders will also access a wide range of benefits (known as ‘bennies’ in Shrimp speak) including early access to top events and discounts at 20+ brick and mortar stores around town.

This project marks a new phase in the Shrimp Society’s efforts to become the “Y Combinator of Miami.” In the longer term, the organization, led by Chris Daniels, has plans to expand further afield, setting up other chapters in major tech hubs like New York City, New Orleans, and Buenos Aires.

Stay on top of the latest Shrimp Society NFT news by following along on Twitter.

Join the Shrimp Society to celebrate the launch of their NFT project at the Wharf in Downtown Miami on Saturday 12/4 from 1-4pm. The organization is also hosting an event for NFT holders to reveal the Shrimp Society mural in Wynwood on Thursday 12/2.

READ MORE: Knight funds #MiamiTrech initiatives that build community. Let’s meet them.


Your short guide to Miami Art (Tech) Week

Going to Miami Art Week? You’ll love it – it’s quite a scene. Here is our short guide to the week’s events – both art and tech. Make sure to make some time for the art 🙂

  • Tech, Tech, Tech: On Refresh, tech comes first. More than 120(!!!) tech-centric events and parties are planned during Miami Art Week. Miami Hack Week’s Ja’dan Johnson compiled a must-have list for you: Find it at  techbasel.com.
  • The latest on NFT BZL: Tickets are available for NFT BZL on Dec. 30 at FTX Arena, a signature event of the week with some 70 speakers, including @farokh, a huge voice in the NFT community, and singer/songwriter Pia Mia, along with art installations, immersive experiences and more.  More info on NFT BZL here.
  • Algorand event planned: Decipher, a decentralized by design live and virtual two-day event that convenes the community of builders, businesses, investors, and strategic stakeholders deciphering the future on Algorand, takes place Nov. 29-30. More than 60 speakers are confirmed. More info here.
  • Digital Art in the Wild: Check out the free The Flagler Street Art Festival Nov. 30-Dec 5 in Downtown Miami, featuring 100+ digital and mural artists, A Block Party is planned for Dec 5.  More info on both.
  • Can’t get enough NFT: BitBasel takes over the Sagamore for a weeklong series of events and an NFT showcase. More info on Eventbrite here
  • Still don’t know  what an NFT is? These Miami Art Week events will be your crash course, by the Miami Herald.
  • Interested in art of all kinds?  We are too. Check out the Miami Herald’s comprehensive special report on all things Art Week here for the lowdown. Also, check out The l Guide to Miami Art Week, which is live on SocialMiami.com and will be updated daily throughout Art Week. Prepare for some serious FOMO.
  • What is Miami art anyway? Learn more about Miami’s art and artists and where you can view their work this week in this excellent Miami Herald story.
  • Interested in a job? Venture Miami presents a job fair featuring more than 1,500 jobs at dozens of #MiamiTech startups and larger companies. More information on the hiring fair is here.
  • Seeking something different? Breonna’s Garden, an immersive AR experience, makes its Miami debut at PAMM for FilmGate Interactive. The Installation Experience at Maurice A. Ferré Park (Museum Park) is Dec. 1-6 and a panel discussion with the creator is Dec. 5.
  • Newish to Miami? Take #MiamiTech OG Brian Brackeen’s Miami Tour. You won’t be disappointed. Reserve here while space is available.

Pro tips for the week: Please be patient with the traffic, the restaurants and the crowds. Make a plan for your priorities Buy your tickets to art fairs online. Wear sensible shoes and pack your happy self. 


This just in: Bitcoin mining may be coming to Miami-Dade

Miami-Dade may be getting its first industrial Bitcoin mining facility operation. The city of Homestead is in talks to welcome a $15 million Bitcoin mining plant with thousands of computers that would use 10 megawatts of power — the equivalent to demand from at least 2,000 homes, the Miami Herald reported this morning.

The team behind the project  – the Esperanza Opportunity Fund, a Miami-based investment fund, and Redivider Blockchain Opportunity Zone Fund, a data center investment fund launching throughout US Opportunity Zones, is working with Homestead city adminstrators and engaging the members of the Homestead City Council in hopes of obtaining final approval for the manufacturing facility by end of year. Homestead’s mayor is already in favor. Read more here.


BrightBikes planned for WPB; plus the latest Brightline timelines

The City of West Palm Beach has approved a new bikeshare program sponsored by Brightline, The Related Companies and the West Palm Beach DDA called BrightBike. Upon its launch in the coming months, BrightBike will be part of Brightline+, Brightline’s new door-to-door service powered by its app and supported by a fleet of Brightline branded vehicles.

The new bikeshare program will be included in Brightline+, the multimodal trip planning and booking experience that includes train service, local transit, and ridesharing. The program will be a fully dock-based system with pedal-powered BrightBikes placed in up to 17 locations with 170 BrightBikes throughout downtown West Palm Beach in its first phase of launch. “We are thrilled to bring the BrightBike share program to West Palm Beach thanks to the generous support of Brightline, The Related Companies, and the West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority,” said Colby Reese, operator of BrightBike and president of Micromobility Management. “Improved mobility is a win-win for the City and all of its residents and visitors.” 

In other Brightline news, The Next Miami reported that Brightline is 70% done with construction of its Miami to Orlando rail line and the $2.7 billion project remains on track to open for customers in early 2023.

 Brightline also told investors last week that the Aventura and Boca Raton stations are on schedule for completion in Fall of 2022.



Opportunity knocks

  • The Florida Venture Forum is calling for high growth companies to apply to present at the 2022 Florida Venture Capital Conference, taking place at the Dr. Phillips Center in downtown Orlando, February 8-9, 2022.  The Conference, now in its 31st year, is one of the largest gatherings of venture investors in the Southeast, attracting 500+ attendees, including 200+ active venture investors. In addition to company presentations the event features panel discussions, keynote speakers, and multiple networking and social events. Learn more and apply here.
  • The Florida Panthers and the Alan B. Levan | NSU Broward Center of Innovation located at Nova Southeastern University are launching  the ‘Magical Hockey Stick Challenge’ to identify local startups with research and projects of note in the sports technology industry. There are three focus arenas included in the challenge: The future of wearable technology; Fan experience; and Consumer insight products. The Challenge invites startups, but also individuals, students and groups to submit an application by Jan. 19 (deadline was extended).  The winner will receive tickets to an upcoming Panthers game at FLA Live Arena, a custom Panthers jersey and in-game recognition for their winning solution. Apply here.
  • Join the University of Miami for the 6th Annual Big Data Conference on Thursday, Dec 9, from 2:00-5:00 PM, for an in-depth discussion of the effects of Big Data, blockchain, AI, and real-time analytics on organizational change with some of the top industry leaders in innovation, business, and technology from local, national, and international arenas. Register here (free)

ICYMI on Refresh Miami:

Have #MiamiTech news to share? Email me at [email protected] and follow me on Twitter @ndahlberg.

Nancy Dahlberg