Issue 97 – June 2022
Message from the Executive Director
As we are closing in on another successful fiscal year, I would like to thank all Florida entrepreneurs for their continued dedication and focus despite our current economically demanding times. Florida technology companies and entrepreneurs are not only helping to improve and save lives but also creating many additional, much-needed, high-wage technologies right here in the Sunshine State. Furthermore, I’d like to thank our investors, public research partners, local community partners, and our Board of Directors for continuing to share our vision of a truly diversified innovation economy. Now, more than ever, it is time to increase our commitment to helping improve capital access for all Florida Innovators. Due to current economic challenges all across the United States, we need to continue, accelerate, and truly diversify Florida’s innovation economy with founders across Florida of diverse socioeconomic backgrounds, from different technology industries, supported by public and private research.
Quest Diagnostics Extends Care Services with IRIS on Diabetic Retinopathy Screening
Quest Diagnostics (NYSE: DGX), the world's leading provider of diagnostic information services, recently announced a collaboration with our portfolio company IRIS (Intelligent Retinal Imaging Systems) to deliver diabetic retinal imaging services across the United States. Nearly one-third of patients with diabetes over 40 years have diabetic retinopathy. With technology developed at the Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition and located in Pensacola, IRIS developed tests for the early detection and diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma helping patients to prevent sight loss.
More on this article can be found here.
Florida Institute Funds Flexbase Technologies in Miami
The Institute has finalized a funding agreement with Flexbase Technologies, a company that specializes in financial operating systems for construction companies. Today, millions of contractors face severe cash flow pains and margin erosions. Flexbase aims to reduce the time until contractors get paid while providing them with improved tracking capabilities, 0% interest for 60 days, and reduced liability risk.
More on Flexbase Technologies can be found here.
Miami on the rise - Florida Funders Top Startup Investor in Miami
According to reports from CB Insights, investors are looking to Miami as the next big US tech hub. In Q1 2022 Miami-based startups received $1.1B in funding while deals increased to a total of 81, signaling increased interest in Miami tech startups. An increased focus of the Miami scene has been blockchain technologies. Not only does Mayor Francis Suarez vocally support the influx of crypto business but also many significant players in the space, including Blockchain.com have recently moved their headquarters to this vibrant city. The Florida Institute and its private fund manager, Florida Funders, remain active in the area enabling promising early-stage tech companies to flourish. CB Insights also reported that Florida Funders has been recognized as the most active VC fund and angel network in the region for Q1 2022.
Formed by the Florida Legislature in 2007, the Institute for Commercialization of Florida Technology supports and funds innovation companies that create clean jobs in new industries that are driving the global economy. The Institute provides company building services, and seed funding through the Florida Technology Seed Capital Fund, to promising Florida startups that are developing products that improve and save lives and help companies improve their bottom line. The organization’s investment decisions are guided through a strong partnership with its Private Fund Manager, Florida Funders. The Institute’s economic impact over the last ten years was $3.4 billion, with fiscal revenue impacts of nearly $382 million to federal, state, and local governments.