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Start-Ups, Entrepreneurs, Investors, Established Businesses Gather Together
Gold Coast Venture Capital Association Creates Inaugural Expo
"The concept here is to give a large group of entrepreneurs the opportunity to showcase their ideas to a large group of investors, service providers and professionals in an open exposition type format. There are no speeches or keynote addresses. We want to bring together a couple hundred bright people with resources and experience to visit the entrepreneurs' booths and mix and mingle as they see fit.” stated Bob Fitts, President of the GCVCA. He continues, “It's organized in that we're bringing them all together, but we want to let people gravitate to where they want, and go from booth to booth meeting these sharp entrepreneurs. This is great for the entrepreneurs as they get the opportunity perhaps to meet potential investors, they get to make connections with area professionals who may offer services or have connections that would be benefit these young firms and they get to practice articulating their business plan. It's also a great opportunity for area investors to see some of the better start-ups that the organization has met in the past year. And given that we expect several hundred professionals and investors to attend, the Expo is a great venue for area businesses to exhibit and make business connections as well."
Corporate sponsors thus far include Palm Beach based legal powerhouse Gunster, Miami-based web design, networking and development company DS Express, and Miami based EarlyShares, a crowdfunding platform that has been receiving significant local and national attention as of late. Oppenheimer & Co., Christopher & Weisberg, Searl Technology, Gustie Creative, EarlyShares, Mallah Furman, Young America Capital and Trident Global Advisors are also sponsoring the Expo.
Entrepreneurs slated to exhibit are all Florida based start-ups and include Renewed Waters, FlyInStyle, Elebev, Cydec, Demeter Power, RoomSurf, Appworx, Stadson Tech, Deliver Lean, Bar Maxx, AdMobilize, Design Comfort Shoes, Skulpt, Feathr, Logzilla, BoatSetter, BoaterRated and CleveMed. Many of the entrepreneurs have participated in and won area, regional and national business plan competitions and several are products of local incubators such as the Coral Springs based Enterprise Development Corporation of South Florida.
David Bates, Chairman of the GCVCA states, “We're very excited about the Expo. Our mission is to provide support and education and opportunities for Florida's growing companies to meet investors and the Expo is a fun and dynamic way to do that. I believe this will be an important event for the South Florida entrepreneurial community for years to come.”
About Gold Coast Venture Capital Association: The Gold Coast Venture Capital Association is a not-for-profit corporation whose mission is to provide information, association and capital formation opportunities in support of the entrepreneurial community in South Florida. Although the Association does no direct funding or matching of investors with those seeking funding, it develops and presents monthly programs which are designed to provide information and assistance to start-up, emerging and established growth companies while offering a unique venue for investors and invests to come together. The GCVCA meets the last Wednesday of every month at the Embassy Suites in Boca Raton. Sponsorships opportunities for the Expo still remain. Please visit GCVCA.org for additional information.
Nathan Smith, Silverstream Consulting, LLC