Black Angels Miami helps African-Americans become angel investors
A Boost for Black Entrepreneurs
Investors who fund early-stage startups are usually white and male — as are the startups’ founders — but a new investment group, Black Angels Miami, aims to diversify the mix by helping African-Americans and other minorities become angel investors.
Angel investing “is not like the stock exchange, where you can just say, ‘Buy me 100 shares of whatever.’ It’s a completely closed system,” says the group’s executive director, Kevin Cadette, a Cornell-and Wharton-educated technology professional who previously worked for Johnson & Johnson in New Jersey. “Miami is really on the rise as a startup city, and we want to make sure that the pool of investors is diversified and that black people especially don’t miss out.”
Black Angels Miami launched in January with $250,000 from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. The money has enabled the group to hire a Miami-based staff to organize events and recruit members. It will charge annual dues (still to be determined) but won’t require members to invest a minimum amount per year, Cadette says.
- Treo Group is building VOX Miami, a 99-unit student housing project near Metrorail’s South Miami station. The development will be marketed to University of Miami students. Miami-based NGD Homesharing and San Francisco-based Airbnb settled lawsuits filed by the two companies over a venture in which NGD was to develop apartments that would be offered as short-term rentals through Airbnb’s platform. Airbnb, which invested $11 million in NGD last year, accused the developer of fraud and deceit, while NGD accused Airbnb of violating their business agreement.
- A South Dade developer agreed to set aside at least half of 60 planned units at the Island Gate Garden Apartments project as affordable housing after buying part of the 1.1-acre site from the county for $100.
- The Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami signed an affiliation agreement with Jupiter Medical Center, expanding access to its doctors and clinical trials.
- Miami-based Cano Health bought Primary Care Physicians of Hollywood, increasing its number of primary care centers in South Florida from 24 to 35.
- Private equity firms SearchLight Capital and ForgeLight acquired a 64% stake in Univision Holdings, the parent of Miami-based Univision Communications. Financial terms were not disclosed. Mexican media company Televisa retains 36% ownership, and former Viacom CFO Wade Davis replaces Vince Sadusky as CEO.
- Miami-based financial technology company DadeSystems plans to use part of a $9-million funding round to expand DadePay, software that automates account receivables processing for businesses and banks.
- Mario Oliva is the new CEO of Miami-based Banesco USA. He succeeds Jorge Salas, who left Banesco to become CEO at Panama-based lender Bladex.
- Miami-based venture capital firm Rokk3r Fuel led a $25-million funding round for PredaSAR, a satellite imaging technology company based in Boca Raton.
- Arizona-based online car seller Carvana opened its first South Florida location in Doral.
- Target will open a store at Sawyer’s Walk, a planned mixed-use project in Miami’s Overtown area.
- Los Angeles-based Entertainment One Reality Productions wants $50,000 in local tax incentives to film a new reality TV series in Miami-Dade County about three Latin-American singers.
- The University of Miami’s Interactive Media Program, established in 2013 under the School of Communications, will become its own department this fall. The program teaches game design, data visualization, digital user experience and interactive storytelling.
- Bacardi USA donated $5 million to Florida International University to support its CasaCuba cultural center and Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management.
Plans for the following projects were announced before the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, which could change start and completion dates.
- An affiliate of Coral Gables-based Elite Restoration plans to develop a 439-room hotel near Miami International Airport.
- Maryland-based Baywood Hotels will build a dually branded Home2 Suites and Tru hotel with 218 rooms in Miami’s Blue Lagoon area.
- Miami Beach-based developer Urbanica The Hotels plans to build a 209- room, 11-story hotel on what is believed to be the last vacant oceanfront property on Collins Avenue.
- Natiivo, a planned 51-story residential condo in downtown Miami, will include 104 condo-office units, which will range from 431 to 2,499 square feet and cost $290,000 and up.
- New Jersey-based Dharma Home Suites plans to convert part of a 196-unit apartment complex in Coral Gables to hotel rooms. Dharma initially would make 20 units available for hotel customers and ultimately turn 100 units at the eight-story Gables Grand Plaza into hotel rooms.
- Music streaming service Spotify plans to open a 20,000-sq.-ft. office in Miami’s Wynwood Arts District. The company, which currently has an office on Brickell Avenue, will be part of Oasis at Wynwood.
Read more in Florida Trend's May issue.
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