The Starting Gate

SuperConf and other scenes of Miami Tech Week

 

ndahlberg@miamiherald.com

Miami Tech Week. Social Media Week. Entrepreneurship Week. A Wahwah Bike and Beer Ride in Wynwood, culinary rock star demos at Refresh Miami, a Startup Blastoff at SuperConf, UHack for college students. These were just a few of the highlights last week in South Florida’s tech community.

For some entrepreneurs, it was a week to showcase their new companies. Jose Pimienta, for instance, won the SuperConf blastoff for his pitch for his recently launched company, Vinylfy. Vinylfy.com helps record collectors keep track of their collections, as well as trade and share with fellow collectors.

In December, Pimienta had little more than an idea and a simple landing page for his passion for vinyl when he and one of his co-founders, Osniel Gonzalez — who had just moved here from Cuba in July — decided to devote nights and weekends the past two months to launch Vinylfy, Pimienta said, showing some of the iterations of the site on his smartphone. Both men have full-time jobs at a local tech company in Miami now, but their friendship goes back more than 10 years. Gonzalez was even Pimienta’s programming professor in Cuba for a while. Read their story here.

After the $22,000 prize for Vinylfy was announced, Wifredo Fernandez, co-founder of The LAB Miami, offered the team six months of free co-working space. “You can build your company at The LAB and we can all help you,” Fernandez told Pimienta. Other offers of support also came in tweets. That’s the entrepreneurial ecosystem at work.

Auston Bunsen, founder of the three-year-old homegrown SuperConf that concluded Friday, said he was pleased with the success of this year’s two-day event, which attracted a record 210 attendees and included presentations by eight startups, speeches by nine tech experts and social events and benefits provided by a host of sponsors. But he and his co-organizers, Brian Breslin and Davide DiCillo, are already looking ahead to next year. “This conference was definitely a step above the others but it can be so much better,” Bunsen said. “We’re taking the appropriate measures next year to make sure it’s a conference everyone wants to come to.”

Read more startup news and views at The Starting Gate on Miamiherald.com/business, including a wrap-up of the Herald’s Small Business Forum, a guest view by Mike Greenberg, a rundown on the winners of UHack and a Q&A with Nicolette Moreno of Open English.

This week, Starting Gate will bring you some dispatches from Geeks on A Plane by Adam Boalt, a serial entrepreneur who moved back to Miami from the Washington, D.C. area last year. I am also lining up some guest posts from SXSW in early March.

Have startup news or a view to share? Email me at ndahlberg@miamiherald.com and follow me on Twitter @ndahlberg

Read more Business Monday stories from the Miami Herald

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category