Miami Tech Update: SoftBank announces $100 Million Fund

SoftBank Group Corp. is a Japanese multinational conglomerate holding company headquartered in Minato, Tokyo.

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Image Credits: Softbank

Tech Scene in Miami is about to get change with very positive node. SoftBank announced $100 Million fund drawn from across its funds, into Miami-based startups.

The initiative is led by SoftBank CEO Marcelo Claure. The fund will back companies who are in Miami or plan to move there.

“Miami is quickly evolving to accommodate increasing demand as it becomes a growing startup destination. From emerging ‘elder tech’ to biotech, Miami is an attractive investment market that offers unique opportunities for immigrants and minorities to pursue entrepreneurship opportunities,” Claure

SoftBank owns stakes in many technology, energy, and financial companies. It also runs Vision Fund, the world’s largest technology-focused venture capital fund, with over $100 billion in the capital.

The company is known for its leadership by founder Masayoshi Son.[10] It operates in broadband, fixed-line telecommunications, e-commerce, internet, technology services, finance, media and marketing, semiconductor design, and other areas.

Claure knows the potential of Miami tech firsthand. In 1997 he founded Brightstar, a global wireless company. In 2013, SoftBank purchased a majority stake in the company for a cool $1.26 billion. His brother Martin is a tech entrepreneur too, and currently the founder and CEO of Aprende Institute, a Miami-based Spanish language skills retraining

“At SoftBank, we invest in technology-focused companies in various sectors — from fintech, to agritech, to education,” Claure said. “[SoftBank] invests in the entrepreneurs and companies that are leading the digital transformation of these sectors.

The Wednesday announcement was made on Miami Mayor Francis Suarez’s #CafecitoTalk series posted on Twitter.

“Many of the businesses we’re seeing pop-up in Miami are natural fits for what we’re looking to invest in,” Claure said. “Through our Latam Fund, we invest in companies focused on the Latin American region.

So far, we’ve evaluated over 700 companies and have made ~20 investments totaling $20 million. These investments span multiple sectors (healthcare, SaaS, fintech, gaming and more) — sectors we’ve seen growing in Miami.”

Miami is certainly looking to scoop up its share, with the Mayor taking an active role in turning it into a center for tech and finance by luring business magnates like Elon Musk and Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey to its sandy shores.

In early December, prominent venture capitalist Delian Asparouhov tweeted, ‘Ok guys hear me out, what if move silicon valley to miami.’ Suarez immediately responded:

“Now that SoftBank has made this move, we will see more funds follow their example and this is a huge win for diversity not just from a race perspective, but also from a socioeconomic perspective, and from a gender perspective,” Harris said, who is thinking about moving to the city. 

What unique potential Miami Tech has and how the tech scene is going to change?

  • Miami is very versatile in terms of a great combination of International and Local resources. It has very diversified talented youth from all across the USA who can change the game for the better.
  • Most of the resources in Tech Space do like coastal lines. Sunny weather and great food that makes the place exotic for working.
  • Everyone can chill, take a long drive and look out for sunny weather all across the year.
  • Miami has always had fun and games. Still, in 2013, Manny Medina, one of Miami’s early tech entrepreneurs with a successful exit (he sold real-estate-turned-data center Terremark to Verizon for $1.4 billion in 2012), launched eMerge Americas, an annual tech conference.
  • By 2019, the event attracted more than 16,000 attendees from 400 participating companies and more than 40 countries. With a world-class airport within 15 minutes of the city center, few other cities can compete with Miami’s strategic geographic location and easy access. But the question remains: Can Miami become another great tech hub?
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Abhishek Shah

Journalist at TechMantle Technology Writer, Entrepreneurship, Business, IoT, Management

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