‘Builders Summer’ wraps up with 30 new startups launched in Miami

By Chris Daniels

If you’ve been in Miami long enough, you’ll notice that the summer is a little different. The heat and humidity crank up, the daily rain showers arrive, and the tourists dissipate. Many locals spend summer up north in New York, the Midwest, Colorado, or travel around Europe. 

While many people were off vacationing, Venture Miami, the Shrimp Society, and Argent Strategies saw an opportunity to build new startups here in Miami. Hence, “Builders Summer” was born. 

Builders Summer marked the second phase two of the year-long Built in Miami Startup Program. The first phase of the program consisted of 115 entrepreneurs embarking on the rigorous “Zero to One Startup Sprint,” where they progressed from startup idea to a user-validated prototype. Builders Summer, a five-week program, aimed to transform these user-validated prototypes into minimum viable products (MVPs). Participants were encouraged to launch their new products on Product Hunt at the end of the program.

The results were unprecedented in Miami. The cohort successfully launched 30 new technology products in just five weeks, and dozens of other local founders and builders initiated their products as well. 

The primary goal of Builders Summer was to connect founders and builders, encouraging them to collaborate and launch an MVP on the popular startup platform, Product Hunt. Of the 30 products launched on Product Hunt, two even reached the esteemed Top 10 list. This was a great accomplishment as there are hundreds of new products posted to Product Hunt every day.  

Some of the notable launches included:

  • FriendApp – Your people top of mind, no posting required
  • Satosa – The internet’s clickwrap platform
  • Off-Market.io – Monetize, democratize and digitize off-market real estate
  • Pawcracy – The AI best friend for dog parents

“Turning an idea into a functional MVP is no small feat and it’s been incredible to see so many founders and developers put in the necessary work to get it done. Everyone has put in serious effort and I can’t wait to see what they do next,” says Argent Strategies Managing Partner Aaron Chavez, who is also Education Lead for Builders Summer. 

Here is a thread featuring more launched products from Builders Summer. 

The program consisted of two tracks: Founders and Builders. Founders were the entrepreneurs that went through the Zero to One Sprint Program and emerged with a user-validated prototype. Builders were local software developers, engineers, designers, and other technical talent that was looking to join an early stage startup. 

Builders Summer had over 130 local builders, including individuals from developer partners like Brainstation and 4Geeks Academy, as well as local developer communities like MakeItMVP and Prentus.  

Builders Summer participants during a weekly workshop

On the founders’ track, entrepreneurs learned how to recruit technical talent, structure equity packages, and fine-tune the product deliverables based on user feedback. On the Builders’ track, developers learned how to work with CEOs and startups, prioritize features, negotiate compensation, and build emerging technology. Shrimp Society CTO Jackson Harris hosted countless office hours to help builders make technology decisions and find a fast path to shipping an MVP. 

There were also various mixers, networking events, and notably a CTO Fireside Chat where three local CTOs shared their expertise on creating over $1 billion of value in technology products.

Jackson Harris (Left) Moderates a CTO Fireside Chat during Builders Summer Roly Vicaría (Center), Mohit Kukreja (Right), and Bugrahan Akcay (Not Pictured)

Binsen Mejia, founder of Acendi and Builders Summer participant, remarked, “I’m so grateful for Builder Summer. I met my co-founder, found tech talent that we want to hire, and built our MVP. This is the real deal.” 

Startups that successfully recruit a team and launched an MVP during Builders Summer graduated into the Miami Accelerator program. This is an eight-week accelerator program focused on traction and fundraising. Currently, there are 48 startups in the Miami Accelerator, with about 70% coming from Builders Summer program. 

The Miami Accelerator program is the last phase of the Built in Miami Startup Program hosted by Venture Miami, the Shrimp Society, and Argent Strategies. There will be a large Demo Day on October 5th to showcase the new startups that have emerged from the Miami ecosystem.

Chris Daniels is a serial entrepreneur and community builder focused on Miami’s startup scene. He leads a local founder community, incubator, and accelerator called the Shrimp Society. Email him at [email protected]

Photo at top of post: Product Hunt Launch Day celebration during Builders Summer.

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