South Florida gains a new business accelerator

Broward College is launching a business accelerator at its downtown Fort Lauderdale campus on Las Olas Boulevard.

The accelerator will be led by Don Cook, who was previously chief marketing officer at Learn.com, vice president of product marketing at Taleo and co-founder and chief marketing officer of iCare.com. Cook joined the college in March as executive director of marketing and strategic initiatives.

One side of the 7th floor accelerator will have small meeting spaces surrounding a training and idea center with white boards, tables and décor to inspire creativity and camaraderie. The other side will be outfitted for networking events and business presentations with a veranda overlooking the boulevard.

Acclerators share some of the similarities of incubators, which are popping up all over Florida, but focus on companies that already have solid business plans and are close to launching products or ideas to market.

The college and other sponsors will provide initial funding, work space and expertise in return for a small equity stake, a press release said. The college says it may invest up to a 2 percent equity stake.

Bob Swindell, President / CEO of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance, who spoke at a kickoff party on May 23, said, “Broward College’s new business accelerator will be an important addition to South Florida’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.”

A press release from the college says South Florida has 139 companies on the Inc. 5000 list and entrepreneurs like the region’s climate, international flair and access to Latin America, lack of income tax, cheaper cost of living than Silicon Valley and New York City.

“According to the Pew Research Center, approximately 10 percent of working Americans are self-employed and about 30 percent of American jobs are held by the self-employed and the people who work for them,” said Mason Jackson, President and CEO of CareerSource Broward. “Entrepreneurship is a career pathway that should not be overlooked, and Broward College is doing something about this path to the American Dream.”

CareerSource will partner with the college to create programming and provide mentorship and contacts to businesses across the South Florida through the accelerator. Curriculum will cover everything from coding and marketing to accounting and human resources.

Broward College also has an Innovation Hub directed by Enrique Triay with support from Professor Steven Gross. Twenty companies are either located in the Hub or have weekly contact with it. Two of the companies will also be part of the accelerator program.

“This marks an exciting time for startup companies in Broward County,” said J. David Armstrong, Jr., president of Broward College. “Our business community partners have shared with us the need for support beyond the initial planning and business plan phase. We listened, and our accelerator will provide wraparound services to budding entrepreneurs as they refine their businesses to seek funding.”

Those interested in the accelerator can contact Cook (954) 201-7238 or dcook@broward.edu.


You May Also Like

Reaching Out

I know that Stephen Garber knows people. The president of Third Level is a seasoned expert on change management, relationship building and quality-of-life issues. He is an international executive coach,

Stephen Garber

This is the time and this is the page when the new editor-in-chief typically would tell you to get ready for a new SFBW experience—but since you’ve seen the cover,

Are Your Salespeople Taking Shortcuts?

Connor, a software sales rep, had been having a rough day. He’d been bombarded with questions from several customers and gotten behind on work he needed to finish before the

COVID and the Commercial Sector

[vc_row css_animation=”” row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” angled_section=”no” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern”][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_column_text] For South Florida’s vigorous commercial real estate sector, there is a Grand Canyon-size fissure between market conditions on March 1 and

Other Posts

Aroma360 Purchases Next Scent LLC and Launches New Commercial Division

The acquisition merges luxury fragrances and technology to enhance the consumer experiences in Miami.

PMG Unveils One Twenty Brickell Residences 

The property will feature dedicated office suites and over 60,000 square feet amenities.

Amerant Bank’s Chairman and CEO, Jerry Plush, Joins Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Florida Board of Directors

The move continues the bank’s expansion into the South Florida community.

Helping Students Plan

Stuart Rohatiner, CPA/JD, and a partner at Gerson Preston, is addressing the need for financial literacy. Students at Alonzo & Tracy Mourning Senior High School on April 25 will hear

Drew Limsky

Drew Limsky



Drew Limsky joined Lifestyle Media Group in August 2020 as Editor-in-Chief of South Florida Business & Wealth. His first issue of SFBW, October 2020, heralded a reimagined structure, with new content categories and a slew of fresh visual themes. “As sort of a cross between Forbes and Robb Report, with a dash of GQ and Vogue,” Limsky says, “SFBW reflects South Florida’s increasingly sophisticated and dynamic business and cultural landscape.”

Limsky, an avid traveler, swimmer and film buff who holds a law degree and Ph.D. from New York University, likes to say, “I’m a doctor, but I can’t operate—except on your brand.” He wrote his dissertation on the nonfiction work of Joan Didion. Prior to that, Limsky received his B.A. in English, summa cum laude, from Emory University and earned his M.A. in literature at American University in connection with a Masters Scholar Award fellowship.

Limsky came to SFBW at the apex of a storied career in journalism and publishing that includes six previous lead editorial roles, including for some of the world’s best-known brands. He served as global editor-in-chief of Lexus magazine, founding editor-in-chief of custom lifestyle magazines for Cadillac and Holland America Line, and was the founding editor-in-chief of Modern Luxury Interiors South Florida. He also was the executive editor for B2B magazines for Acura and Honda Financial Services, and he served as travel editor for Conde Nast. Magazines under Limsky’s editorship have garnered more than 75 industry awards.

He has also written for many of the country’s top newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Boston Globe, USA Today, Worth, Robb Report, Afar, Time Out New York, National Geographic Traveler, Men’s Journal, Ritz-Carlton, Elite Traveler, Florida Design, Metropolis and Architectural Digest Mexico. His other clients have included Four Seasons, Acqualina Resort & Residences, Yahoo!, American Airlines, Wynn, Douglas Elliman and Corcoran. As an adjunct assistant professor, Limsky has taught journalism, film and creative writing at the City University of New York, Pace University, American University and other colleges.