Endeavor’s Claudia Durán on the state of Miami Tech and South Florida’s role as an international innovation hub
Few people have been as deeply entrenched in Miami’s tech movement than Claudia Durán. As the Managing Director of Endeavor Miami, she not only has first-hand exposure to some of our region’s most exciting startups, but she also has a clear idea of how Miami fits into broader international tech trends.
Endeavor is a global community for entrepreneurs, currently active in 42 markets. Their mission is to support entrepreneurs by scaling their companies. “Endeavor is by and for entrepreneurs, so we work with them across their entire journey, from startups to scale up and growth,” Durán told Refresh Miami.
The secret ingredient to Endeavor’s recipe is the cycle in which successful Endeavor founders return to mentor a new batch of startups. “We feel like we’ve accomplished our mission when we see companies exiting, and then founders becoming investors in early-stage startups and advising other companies in the ecosystem,” Durán explained.
The community also benefits from these positive feedback loops, said Durán. “We want to support as many companies in being successful so they can generate more jobs, hire local talent, and bring talented people to the city.”
Endeavor has been active in South Florida for nine years, with Durán at the helm for the last three. In that time, she’s had a front row seat to the explosion of entrepreneurship in our region. Durán pointed out a few trends in South Florida tech:
- The Miami tech migration is real. “Lots of entrepreneurs decided to choose Miami as their base,” she explained. Durán noted that the City of Miami’s mayor, Francis Suarez, has led the way in attracting top talent and companies from around the country.
- Latin American founders are increasingly keen to move to the Magic City. While Durán acknowledged that Miami has long been a gateway to the US for Latin American entrepreneurs and companies, this trend has accelerated since the pandemic due, in part, to turbulent political situations around the region. She sees a particular increase in migration from Argentina, Colombia, and Mexico.
- It’s not just ‘Miami’ tech anymore. “At Endeavor, our mission has always been to develop the entrepreneurial ecosystem in South Florida, but interestingly now we’re having companies from other cities in Florida like Orlando, Tampa, and Jacksonville,” she said. “I think there’s a lot of talent and entrepreneurs in other areas of the state that want to connect with our community of entrepreneurs.”
Endeavor has a handful of exciting initiatives coming up. They are currently working with the local government in Boca Raton to launch an EndeavorLAB accelerator this Spring. Information on how to apply is here. .
Recently, Endeavor launched a cohort of cleantech and climatetech companies. It also has plans to collaborate with Dell on an accelerator program.
Durán signaled that Miami is playing an increasingly important role in the wider Endeavor ecosystem. In May, the company will host its North Atlantic Regional Selection Panel in Miami, bringing together eight US offices, plus an outpost in Canada and another in Ireland.
Closer to home, Endeavor will host a panel discussion and have a booth at eMerge Americas. They are also making local history, becoming the first external company to host the Miami Herald’s pitch competition.
Endeavor Miami currently supports 32 companies and 51 entrepreneurs, such as EveryMundo, EcoSystems, NovoPayment and SellersFunding. Learn more here.
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