MVCA launched a year ago with the general idea of bringing investors together to get deals done. Today, we are largely unknown to the world as a source of funding, despite Miami being the 2nd most Entrepreneurial city in the US. We are not Silicon Valley, New York or Boston, but we have capital, we do substantial transactions, and we are growing. Florida’s success stories recently include Google-backed Magic Leap, and the largest E-commerce acquisition ever, Chewy.com. Today, Miami’s investment opportunities are better known for real estate, tourism, entertainment, art, and international business, which begs the question: why isn’t Miami considered to be a player when it comes to the world of venture capital?
Over the last year, our team has thought deeply about this problem. We concluded that for Miami to be a player, we have to become known as a financial center for early and growth stage capital. If we can create a perception and reality that Miami is a private equity financial center, then we’ll enjoy more deal flow, with higher quality, and on better terms, leading to more alpha for your LP’s and a broader prosperity for the entire city.
We think a city is a financial center when it is a place that funders and those looking for funding go to transact business. By way of example, New York is a successful financial center because a real estate company in Atlanta calls a New York bank for funding, which ultimately comes from a pension fund or family office in California. The deal is not in New York nor is the money is in New York, but the deal is transacted there. We can build a similar financial center using Miami as the catalyst for private venture markets.
Miami has the existing prerequisites to be a top-tier, global financial center. We have billions of dollars in capital, excellent service professionals with tremendous deal experience, and disciplined intelligent investors. What is missing is a transparent capital market, where all market players are known to those seeking funding, with an understanding in regards to their average check size, investment mandate, time to close, market terms, and market pricing. As an organization, MVCA will seek to bring everyone together so that our disconnected and hidden capital can become known to the world as organized and efficient.
We envision a greatly improved growth funding process for entrepreneurs in Miami. First, an entrepreneur runs an auction process among multiple funding options, built with initial investor criteria in mind. This gets them optimal pricing and terms, and a fast close. Second, an entrepreneur goes to Miami’s capital market players through all the stages of its funding, in an assembly line-like process from seed to growth to IPO. This keeps winners local and generates returns for all stakeholders through the corporate lifecycle.
If we connect the capital markets, organize them, promulgate market conditions for closing, entrepreneurs will get faster funding and be introduced to the right investors sooner. Each win will lead to more wins for our community, ultimately resulting in a robust financial center.
In addition, we will be working with our members to share investor interviews, best practices, and thought leadership through the Miami Venture Capital Review. We are here to succeed together and create next generation investing paradigms for early stage investors.
If you’re interested in becoming a member, please apply at miamiventurecapital.org