If it’s a smooth road, it’s not worth traveling. I believe you only truly learn by making mistakes, stumbling, and having your experiments turn out differently than you expected (I don’t see those as failures). When we met, my co-founder just happened to be living in Miami, too. Since the ecosystem here was still nascent, we could be a big dolphin in a small pond.
But being a female-funded startup based in Miami and trying to raise a seed round in a young ecosystem was extremely tough. We had as much against us as we did going for us, but we’ve overcome that challenge, thankfully. For every person who found some aspect of Caribu to be a drawback, someone else found it to be a benefit. We never stopped hitting the pavement and beating our drum, and I’ve only gotten stronger from all of the people that underestimated me.
Every other challenge, I can truthfully say, was overcome because there is an incredibly supportive and collaborative group of women in our ecosystem who will do everything in their power to lift each other up, celebrate each other, and help each other succeed. I think the future IS Miami.
Soon, more cities will look like us when it comes to diverse communities, the rate of small business creation, and the effects of climate change. What we accomplish here will be an example of what the future of cities will look like.
I was born and raised in Miami, and even though I’ve lived all over the US at one point or another, Miami was always calling me home. In the past 3 years, we at Caribu have invested as much in the Miami ecosystem as they’ve invested in us, and I’m honored to be building and growing our company in my hometown.