September 29, 2023

Miami-Dade Roundup

Making headway in diversifying Miami's economy

An effort to diversify Miami's economy is making progress.

In 2011, Miami-Dade's economic development partnership, the Beacon Council, joined with the private sector, county government and other economic development organizations to launch a One Community One Goal initiative. The effort aims to diversify the county's economy and sustainably grow its employment base.

Through studies, surveys, inperson interviews, workshops and focus groups, participants identified seven industries with the most potential for growth: Aviation, creative design, information technology, international banking and finance, life sciences and health care, trade and logistics, as well as hospitality and tourism.

FLORIDA TREND spoke to Larry Williams, CEO of the Beacon Council, and Matt Haggman, Miami program director for the Knight Foundation, who co-chairs One Community One Goal this year along with Miami- Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and Nelson Lazo, CEO of Doctors Hospital.

FLORIDA TREND: Where is One Community One Goal now?

Larry Williams: It's meant to be a five-year plan, and we're two years into the implementation of that five-year plan.

FT: What do you see as the initiative's highest-impact accomplishments so far?

Matt Haggman: The Talent Development Network (an online platform that connects college students with paid internships in Miami-Dade). It is a way to better connect young talent to employers here in Miami-Dade, and the theory is that if we can do that well, it will lead to more people choosing to stay here upon graduation from college.

Williams: The Academic Leaders Council (which has been instrumental in the Talent Development Network) — that is the presidents of all the colleges and universities in Miami-Dade County and the superintendent of K-12. They get together and discuss what the jobs of the future are and how they can make sure that they have the curricula and training in place to make sure that residents here can meet that demand. ... They've actually adjusted their curriculum around those needs.

FT: What other actions can we expect to come out of this process?

Williams: For example, in our banking and finance committee we're looking at creating a center of excellence around how we deal with banking security and privacy issues. That's a very interesting convergence of academia with industry and also research and development.

We're also looking at setting up financing for micro-businesses. So we're going to create a pool of dollars that we'll be able to deploy through other organizations that do the retail on a day-to-day basis.

FT: What are you asking the business community to do?

Williams: Get engaged by providing internships. Get engaged by making sure that you understand the connection between the startup ecosystem and your company and how we can continue to grow companies here.

FT: What is the biggest challenge in implementing the initiative's suggestions?

Haggman: We need to assess how we are doing and build and change as we look at progress and look at areas that aren't going as fast as they should. That is a startup mentality, and that's something we're trying to bring to all of our work: Constantly assessing, iterating and changing where you need to change.

Also, it's critically important that we always focus on the diversity in our community because it's one of our great competitive advantages.

Brian Duffy will take over as CEO of law firm Greenberg Traurig on Jan. 1, replacing Richard Rosenbaum, who will become its executive chair. Duffy is co-president of the Miami-based firm.

Royal Caribbean International hired Jim Berra as chief marketing officer. Berra had been senior vice president and chief marketing officer for Carnival Cruise Line.

Art Basel hired Noah Horowitz to fill the new position of director of the Americas, overseeing both the Art Basel Miami Beach show and relationships with galleries, collectors, artists, museums and institutions around the hemisphere. Horowitz was previously executive director of The Armory Show in New York.

Profile - > Entopsis

Hialeah-based Entopsis has developed a microscope-slide-sized device that quickly and cheaply identifies a wide range of molecules in a smear of urine, saliva, blood or other liquid. The device's millions of nano-sized pockets each attracts and binds molecules differently, creating a colored pattern. After scanning the device, a program matches the patterns and colors against a database of healthy and diseased molecules, then produces diagnoses.

Co-founder Obdulio Piloto is backed by $160,000 in funding from Breakout Labs and another $800,000 from Miami-based Krillon Ventures, G3 Capital Partners and others.

Business Briefs

DORAL - Carnival will spend nearly $33 million to build a second private cruise terminal at the Port of Barcelona. The company is also adding two ships to the four that it already has in China (for its Princess and Costa lines).

MARATHON - Developer Singh Co. Has proposed turning the Knights Key RV park into a 199-room resort with a marina and workforce housing.

MEDLEY - Chicago-based Ridge Development will build a 182,057-sq.-ft. spec industrial project called Airport North Logistics Center on a 9.75-acre site it acquired recently for $5.3 million.

MIAMI - Miami Beckham United is negotiating with the city of Miami to build a privately funded Major League Soccer stadium in Little Havana across from Marlins Park, on the former site of the Orange Bowl, which is mainly county-owned land. Former soccer star David Beckham's option to purchase an MLS franchise expires this fall. > Developer Moishe Mana continues a string of building and land purchases in downtown Miami, having spent more than $110 million during 2015. Most recently, he paid $6.83 million for a corner retail building on a lot now zoned for much taller development. Earlier this year, Mana paid $32 million for the two buildings adjacent to the property, as well as a parking garage. Reports say he plans to redevelop the properties. Mana also owns some 30 acres in the city's Wynwood district. > Espirito Santo Bank, which Venezuelan investors and bankers are purchasing from parent company Banco Espirito Santo, has been renamed Brickell Bank.

Miami Beach-based Goldman Properties paid $12 million to buy t h e Wynwood Doors art installation, the land it sits on, a warehouse and a vacant lot, totaling 0.71 acres, from owners Ismailia and Ali Rashid.

Toronto-based Colliers International Group acquired Pointe Group Advisors, a commercial property management, sales and leasing brokerage with about 70 employees and more than 7 million square feet of property under management. > New York-based TriStar Capital purchased Atlas Plaza in the Design District for $65 million. The plaza houses well-known restaurant Michael's Genuine Food & Drink, Rolex and other retailers, and includes three buildings.

MIAMI BEACH - The city's planning board approved an urgent care facility to be built in South Beach by Baptist Health South Florida; the approval included conditions such as ground-floor retail and a cafe, parking and security provisions. Company co-builder Rokk3r Labs closed $5 million in funding, led by New York-based venture capital firm Scout Ventures and investor Jon Gosier. The firm plans to work with entrepreneurs to invest in and co-build about 100 companies during five years and start companies of its own. > The city will add two new free trolley routes to its two current routes next year, extending its system to cover the entire city. Miami- Dade County still has to approve the system.

MIAMI-DADE - The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida charged six former chief executives of Miami-Dade and Broward county affordable housing companies with conspiring to defraud the U. S. government; they are accused of stealing about $36 million in federal tax credits, grant funds and property that were supposed to be used to develop low-income housing. Next year, Norwegian Cruise Line will sail in Asia and Australia for the first time since 2002 and will offer its first itineraries in India and the Persian Gulf. > Lennar invested $504 million into Lennar Multifamily Venture, a $1.1-billion fund that will invest in multifamily rental properties around the U.S. Lennar put 19 of its own undeveloped multifamily projects under the fund. > HCA Holdings requested permission from the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration to build a 100-bed acute-care hospital in the western part of the county. Jackson Health System has also filed a request to build a 100-bed acute-care hospital, in Doral.

TAVERNIER - Florida Keys Community College plans to acquire property for a campus in the Upper Keys and move out of its current location at Coral Shores High School. It hasn't selected a site but plans to have space for 300 students.

Tags: Miami-Dade

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