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I saw this tweet from Phil Sanderson, a SF based VC about his favorite coworking spaces around the country and his FL pick was The LAB Miami where I invested, sit on the Board and spend time when I’m in Miami.
The LAB was a great experience and helped me understand the interesting correlation between coworking and other important pieces from within the entrepreneurial ecosystem. The LAB started around four years ago with the simple idea to create a “meeting point” for entrepreneurs, mentors and investors around the tech community in Miami. Only four years ago it was almost impossible to connect the dots between these communities in South FL. We were fortunate to partner with the Knight Foundation and a couple of great friends, and we choose Wynwood as our location. Choosing Wynwood was not a coincidence. We researched many different alternatives and identified the importance of mixing creative people (Wynwood is hugely popular with artists, art galleries, design shops, etc.) and tech entrepreneurs. We were the first coworking space in the area and we immediately experienced the magic collision between these communities. After four years we saw hundreds of startups growing throughout the area and thousands of entrepreneurs, investors, mentors, students and corporate people coming to events at The LAB. We launched LAB.Ventures a couple of weeks ago as a natural evolution of this model combining a vibrant startup community, strong entrepreneurial education and a firm bridge with the corporate and investor communities in order to co-build more successful and robust startups in South FL. All these amazing things would not be possible without coworking as an initial step to facilitate collaboration between creative people sharing their own dreams and ideas, while making their city and the world a better place. There are plenty of successful and great coworking spaces around South FL now and each of those initiatives will keep bringing more and better entrepreneurial talent into the ecosystem. Our goal with The LAB and LAB.Ventures, in collaboration with many other related initiatives in South FL, is to continue evolving into an entrepreneurial-friendly community that will attract the best global talent and form the base for launching their future initiatives. I’ve lived in Miami for almost 15 years now and the progress made in these areas during the last couple of years is really impressive and encouraging to dream about, with magic companies being built in a magic city in the years to come.

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