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Dean Anderson Headlines Talk on How Education and Business are working together as Miami Becomes a Powerhouse for Innovation

April 26, 2016
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dean anderson at invest miami

Panelists, including the School's dean Eugene Anderson, pose with their
copies of Invest: Miami 2016.

Making Miami more attractive for investment will require tighter collaboration between business, government, schools and nonprofits, especially to strengthen the eco-system for start-up companies.

That was a key conclusion from panelists at the launch event for “Invest: Miami 2016,” an in-depth guide geared to global audiences and aimed to showcase Miami for business.

From the stage, Dean Gene Anderson shared examples of how the University of Miami School of Business Administration is stepping up collaboration to bolster start-ups and investment locally.

The School is helping nurture new businesses at the University’s Life Science and Technology Park and promoting entrepreneurship through The Launch Pad program at the university’s career center. More than 3,000 students have taken part in Launch Pad and started nearly 300 companies, he said.

In a video taped during the event, Dean Anderson discussed how the
School of working with the business community as Miami established
itself as a world-class city. WATCH IT HERE

The School now offers an entrepreneurship consulting course that gets business students working with start-ups “to see what things are like at street-fighting level,” said Andersen.

Plus, it’s encouraging students to work on projects to market new products developed in the University’s science labs, the dean told more than 150 people gathered for the April 14 launch in downtown Miami.

“We really want to be Miami’s go-to business school,” attracting talent from around the world and working closely with local businesses to keep talent in the Miami area, Anderson told the audience.

Other community leaders on the panel were Jaret Davis, Miami co-managing partner at law firm Greenberg Traurig and a University of Miami law alumnus; Brian Kareen, founder and CEO of facial recognition software company Kairos; and Steve Altschuler, CEO of UHealth, the University of Miami Health System.

Attorney Davis called “access to capital” a key challenge for Miami startups and said he’s helped convene a course to teach wealthy individuals locally how to fund new companies as “angel investors.”

“We need to keep evangelizing Miami to the angel community” worldwide, Davis said.

Local hospitals and universities could play a greater role in funding those startups developed from research labs, UHealth’s Altschuler suggested. By providing early capital the way that angel investors or venture capitalists now do, the health systems stand to reap larger profits as companies grow, he said.

Attracting investment also means keeping an eye on new technologies, such as Kairos’ software that recognizes faces and can help companies reduce fraud and identity theft. Kairos now serves some 9,000 customers in 40 countries and has raised about $6 million in funding in South Florida so far, said Kareen.

Of course, new technologies may portend disruption to existing businesses, panelists said.

Anderson raised questions about the future of the traditional four-year, on-campus, full-time model of undergraduate education “when the digital model is becoming more and more efficacious.” He sees the possibility of a “hybrid model” for the college to include a bigger online component.

Capital Analytics Associates prepared the “Invest: Miami 2016” guide based on input from some 200 business executives and political officials. Its first Miami guide in 2015 had readership topping 110,000 in three dozen nations. The second annual edition even has been translated into Mandarin for distribution by a Miami-Dade County delegation visiting China and Taiwan this spring, publishers said.

The School of Business Administration is a sponsor of the new business guide that spans nearly 200-pages and includes sections on Miami-Dade’s economy, real estate, construction, transportation, trade, banking, technology, health, education, retail, tourism and other topics. 

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