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Why Entrepreneurs Are Flocking to South Florida to Start Companies

Why Entrepreneurs Are Flocking to South Florida to Start Companies

It wasn’t long after Brad Saft, a lifelong New Yorker, launched his education-focused startup in the Northeast that he found his attention drifting south.

After several trips to South Florida, he became enamored with the sunshine, lifestyle, and the comparatively lower cost of living. He soon moved his business, EverBright Media, to West Palm Beach.

Saft found more than pristine beaches and year-round warm temperatures in the region. EverBright Media, No. 135 on the Inc. 5000 list of the fastest-growing private companies, benefited from the region’s strong infrastructure–including incubators and university entrepreneurship programs–for startups.

Saft is not the only entrepreneur who’s bypassed hubs like Silicon Valley and New York City in favor of South Florida. The region is emerging as a hotbed for startups, local entrepreneurs say, with 139 companies on the Inc. 5000 list based in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach metro area. No one particular industry is flourishing in the region–everything from health technology to media to food boast fast-growing companies.

Locals say the startup and innovation culture has been helped by the area’s international flavor. Miami’s status as the gateway to Latin America has drawn an influx of immigrants and ideas, says Aaron Lee, president-elect of the South Florida chapter of Entrepreneurs’ Organization, a peer-to-peer network of business owners.

It wasn’t long after Brad Saft, a lifelong New Yorker, launched his education-focused startup in the Northeast that he found his attention drifting south. After several trips to South Florida, he became enamored with the sunshine, lifestyle, and the comparatively lower cost of living. He […]

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