6+ things to know in #MiamiTech: Kaseya expands in Orlando, plus news about WeWork, the rental market and more


Kaseya is growing in Central Florida, too

Miami-based Kaseya has big hiring plans for Orlando. 

According to a report in Orlando Inno, the information technology unicorn began expanding in Central Florida in October and already employs 125 people there. As its new global center of excellence for technical support, the Orlando office plans to grow to about 1,000 by the end of 2024.

The 22-year-old company already has nearly 5,000 employees in offices in more than 20 countries around the world, including 2,200 in Miami. Chief Operating Officer Joe Smolarski told Orlando Inno the company wanted to stand up another center of excellence in the Sunshine State beyond Miami and liked its talent pool and the fact that Brightline would soon be servicing Orlando. Read more about the expansion plans here.

Earlier this year, Kaseya expanded its North American headquarters in MIami to the top three floors at 800 Brickell, signing a lease for 42,872 square feet. In all, the company quadrupled its Miami office space this year.  

Kaseya is a provider and developer of unified IT management and security software for managed service providers and small to medium-sized businesses. The company delivers technologies that allow organizations to efficiently manage, secure, and backup IT. In 2019 the company became a unicorn, a private business valued at $1 billion or more.


WeWork’s Miami locations are company’s best performing worldwide

The pandemic has roiled the office market and forced many companies to debate whether they allow employees to work partly or entirely remote, but Miami appears to be weathering the shakeout better than other large U.S. cities, according to a report from CoStar.

In fact, when it comes to office occupancy, Miami is the top performing market for WeWork globally when it comes to office occupancy.

WeWork’s offices in Miami were 97% occupied in the second quarter – far above New York (68%), San Francisco (75%), and Boston (57%). Globally WeWork Miami ranked higher than Berlin (86%) and Dubline, Paris and London ranging from 78% to 80%.

WeWork declined to give third-quarter specifics, but a spokesperson said Miami remains the firm’s most occupied market. WeWork had 801 owned and franchised locations across 39 countries as of Sept. 30.

The Miami market also is a top performer for WeWork’s  on -demand bookings. Year to date through August, hourly or daily users more than quadrupled from a year earlier, while all-access bookings, which give members access to locations around the world, rose 75%, according to Co-Star.

Other coworking operators are seeing similar results in Miami, and are looking to expand. Read more in CoStar.


Report: Demand for Miami rentals highest in US

If you need evidence the Miami migration is continuing at a break-neck speed, look no further than rental occupancy rates. Miami was the hottest residential rental market in the U.S in 2022, according to a new study by RentCafe. The analysis showed that 97.5% of units in Miami-Dade County were occupied  – the highest of all major markets.

The lease renewal rate in the county was also the highest in the study, at 75%. When apartments did become available, there were 32 prospective tenants for each unit.

Miami had the highest recorded new inventory of the top 20 markets, with a “staggering” 2.8% share of new apartments in the first part of the year. It still was “far from meeting the high demand” in Miami, the report said. RentCafe researchers analyzed data from Yardi Systems across 135 rental markets in the U.S. for the study.

Of course, the unfortunate flip side of the demand from the influx of tech professionals has also led to soaring rents, pricing many people out. Miami also ranks at or near the top of the list in housing inaffordability studies and surveys.


FIU lands grant for researching 3D printed concrete

Florida International University has received a $3.2 million grant from the Army Corps of Engineers to research the 3D printing of Ultra-High Performance Concrete (UHPC). The innovative research looks to help military personnel and industry professionals create extra-strong, customized structures on demand.

UHPC is stronger and more durable than traditional concrete. The material is projected to become very important to the construction industry in the coming years, said Atorod Azizinamini, Director of Infrastructure Research and Innovation at the Office of Research & Economic Development and Professor of Civil Engineering at the FIU College of Engineering & Computing.

“Just a shell of UHPC wrapped around a structure adds to its total strength,” said Azizinamini, principal investigator of the grant. “The properties of UHPC allow us to make structures smaller and more lightweight. This translates to energy savings and smaller carbon footprints.”

Another major benefit of UHPC is that it is difficult for water to penetrate. This is important because if a substance like saltwater breaches through a building’s concrete and reaches its reinforcing steel, it can cause corrosion. Read more in FIU News.


Class-action suit targets celebrity spokespeople, Yuga Labs, MoonPay and others

Celebrities such as Justin Bieber, Paris Hilton and Jimmy Fallon allegedly violated state and federal law for promoting the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT collection without disclosing their financial ties to Miami-based Yuga Labs, according to a new class action lawsuit.

Filed Dec. 8 in the U.S. District Court of the Central District of California, the lawsuit was submitted on behalf of plaintiffs Adonis Real and Adam Titcher. The 95-page complaint names more than 30 defendants, including Yuga Labs’ executive team and MoonPay, another cryptocurrency startup headquartered in Miami. Read more in the South Florida Business Journal.


Miami hosts trade mission for 8 Chilean edtech startups

In November, eight edtech startups from Chile were in Miami the city to be part of EdTech Immersion Week 2022, an initiative hosted by Base Miami and ProChile, the government agency promoting the country’s goods and services abroad. The program aimed to introduce them to its education ecosystem.

The participating businesses were appoderado.cl; BRAVE UP!; Cinder Capacitación; Efecto Educativo; mine-class.com; Rocketbot; Tu clase, tu país; and Yoy Simulators.

The activities included visits to Miami Dade College, Florida International University, and Belen Jesuit Preparatory School, plus five workshops with experts in their fields, such as Carlos Vazquez, CEO of Miami EdTech and lead mentor for the trade mission; Lourdes Aviño, CEO and co-founder of YTeach; Francisco Cornejo, CEO and co-founder of the Storybook app; Megan Fitzpatrick, founder of The Fitz Solution; and Pedro Sostre, CEO, and co-founder of Navigate Accelerator.

“With more than one million students, from K-12 to college, Miami is the perfect ecosystem for an education technology hub. Authorities from the city’s school district are committed to integrating new tools in the classroom,” said Vazquez.


Opportunity Knocks

  • Founders have the chance to win $400,000 in investments at eMerge Americas’ Global Startup Showcase in Miami Beach. 100 startups – a mix of university, early-state and later-stage ventures — will be selected to showcase their company at the two-day event April 20-21. Learn more and apply here by Jan. 6 (deadline extended)
  • Florida Venture Forum, Florida’s largest statewide support organization for investors and entrepreneurs, is calling for growth stage companies to apply to present at the 2023 Florida Venture Capital Conference, taking place at the J.W. Marriott on Brickell Avenue in Miami on February 8-9, 2023. The Conference, now in its 32nd year, attracts 500+ attendees, including 200+ active venture investors. Apply to present here. Final application deadline is Jan. 6.
  • Seaworthy Collective, a Miami-based BlueTech community and venture studio, is opening applications for its flagship Venture Studio program, with cohort 3 launching in March 2023. The venture studio hosts 12-week cohorts that consist of two types of program participants: aspiring founders co-creating new startups and current founders growing existing startups. A Current and aspiring founders worldwide are encouraged to apply on the Seaworthy website.


Nancy Dahlberg