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JUNE 2017 SFBWMAG.COM 7.95 BILL PERRY & GEORGE LEMIEUX Growth at Gunster 2 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com You earned it we protect it For more than 75 years Brown & Brown has met the needs of the mass a uent community. Signi cant personal assets and wealth require a higher level of attention o en with unique coverage requirements not available on standard insurance policies. Our personal approach helps to identify client s long-term goals and create a customized risk management program which adjusts along with the client s nancial pro le. Fort Lauderdale s Private Client Group and Group Benefits Division Fort Lauderdale Division - 1201 West Cypress Creek Road Suite 130 Ft. Lauderdale FL 33309 Ph. 1-800-330-3241 Fx. 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Visit your nearest retailer and experience the difference. hastens.com BRICKELL MATTRESS 1030 SW 8 Street Miami FL 33130 Tel. 305-326-4000 Email Sales BrickellMattress.com Designers Welcome NEW STADIUM NEW LUXURY EXPERIENCE As par t of the 50 0 million new stadium modernization all suites will be remodeled for the 2017 season. Enter tain your top clients prospec ts and employees with best-in- class benefits and amenities. F O R M O R E I N F O R M AT I O N P L E A S E C O N TA C T D AV E B A L D W I N AT 3 0 5 - 9 4 3 - 6 6 5 4 O R D B A L D W I N D O L P H I N S . C O M . www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 7 TABLE OF CONTENTS 26 14 30 32 36 40 42 8 How Gunster went from one lawyer to a statewide powerhouse firm COVER STORY ONE LINERS BANKING Catch up on the news you missed from around the region 44 48 54 58 64 66 Shorecrest Construction grows by building high-end projects CONSTRUCTION 68 George Taylor talks about his nonprofit engagement NONPROFIT GOVERNANCE Grove Bank & Trust adds talent opens new headquarters How four families developed multi-generational businesses FATHERS IN BUSINESS MARINE INDUSTRY CEO CONNECT 69 TECHNOLOGY 70 71 72 PetSmart scoops up an industry leader in Chewy.com Steve Newman grows the Closet Factory and exceeds expectations ENTREPRENEUR FEATURE The contributions and challenges for a top economic engine SALES STRATEGIES What really motivates your people Different talents add up to success at Xtreme Action Park Albert Santalo tells how to succeed in the world of VC Is someone pressing your buttons Learn how to cope PEOPLE PASSION AND PROFITS THE FAMILY OFFICE FAU medical school expands use of realistic mannequins EDUCATION The new leadership mantra Faster cheaper and better EXECUTIVE ROUNDTABLE Looking at bitcoin as an uncorrelated asset class Connections for Business wants to be the tech Justice League TECHNOLOGY How South Florida compares to national commercial leaders REAL ESTATE 74 HISTORY VIEWPOINT The financial devastation of Andrew and the 1926 hurricane Fort Lauderdale Auto Museum at Xtreme Action Park JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com CONVENIENCE ACCESS SERVICE In today s global business environment service is essential convenience is mandatory security is vital and time is more valuable than ever. Owned and operated by the City of Fort Lauderdale Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport offers a diverse range of aviation services business resources and amenities that include 4 Full Service Fixed-Base Operators A 24-hour FAA Air Traffic Control Tower U.S. Customs & Border Protection Service Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Station Downtown Helistop with Lobby 24-hour Contract Security A 200-acre Industrial Airpark FOR EFFORTLESS TRAVEL TO FORT LAUDERDALE VISIT WWW.FLYFXE.COM. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 9 LETTER FROM THE EDITOR The right partners Getting the right mix of leaders at the top of an organization can be crucial to success and things can change rapidly if the mix isn t right. This issue has some examples of both starting with our cover story about the Gunster law firm. The firm exemplifies what might be termed the right alignment. Gunster went through a revisioning process around the time Chairman George LeMieux and CEO and Managing Shareholder Bill Perry took over leadership. A lot of law firms try to be a lot of different things but Gunster decided to focus on growth in Florida as a key part of its strategy. Check that box because the firm now has 13 offices across the state in all the key markets. Then there s culture. While most companies say customers come first Gunster s philosophy is that putting employees first makes them happy and productive which leads to high rates of customer satisfaction. Gunster is also aligned in what I would call collegiality. A lot of law firms have an eat-what-you-kill mentality but Perry and LeMieux say they want to avoid silos and make sure the most capable lawyer on a particular subject is helping the Editor-in-Chief Kevin Gale client. Our article on Xtreme Action Park shows how three investors with different backgrounds came together to start a unique business in South Florida. There s real estate and car guy Michael Dezer technology and serial entrepreneur Aaron Parkinson and PrimeTime Amusements owner David Goldfarb. The result is definitely one of those where the sum of the parts is greater than the whole with the success of the first phase of the park being followed by a second phase. There s a distinct possibility the Xtreme model could be replicated in other locations. Our CEO Connect subject Albert Santalo has had great success but also offers some candid observations on what went wrong. At one of his companies he became unhappy with some of the wishes of investors. There was a lack of alignment. I never saw a pattern of success based on what certain investors were pushing and I felt like it was against my principles so I walked away Santalo says. We also talked about alignment at a management meeting for Lifestyle Media Group which publishes this magazine. Currently on my reading list is The Power of Alignment How Great Companies Stay Centered and Accomplish Extraordinary Things. Lead author George Labovitz worked with the U.S. Navy to help realign after budget cuts. We re looking forward to hearing Labovitz speak at an upcoming SFBW Veterans of Influence event so look forward to reading more about alignment in an upcoming issue. Kevin Gale 10 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 11 CHAIRMAN AND PUBLISHER EDITOR-IN-CHIEF AND SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT OF STRATEGY Gary Press gpress sfbwmag.com Kevin Gale kgale sfbwmag.com ASSOCIATE EDITOR Andrea Richard arichard sfbwmag.com COPY EDITOR Jason Davis CREATIVE DIRECTOR ART DIRECTORS Melanie Smit Alexander Hernandez Frank Papandrea Evelyn Robles Creative Writers CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Gerry Czarnecki Chris Fleck Stephen Garber Kevin Kaminski Martin Lenkowsky Darcie Lunsford Julie Neitzel Greta Schulz Patrick Clinton Photography Downtown Photo Fort Lauderdale Rasmus Hjortsho Thomas Rollo Larry Wood Photographers Managing Director CLAYTON IDLE cidle sfbwmag.com rlopez sfbwmag.com lcastle sfbwmag.com JORDAN KNOWLES-BARTLEY jknowles sfbwmag.com LORI CASTLE CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER CONTROLLER Market Directors ALAN HELLER aheller sfbwmag.com RICH LOPEZ GINNINE PELLERITO gpellerito sfbwmag.com Sandy Lechner slechner lmgfl.com Josh Wachsman jwachsman lmgfl.com OPERATIONS DIRECTOR Monica St. Omer monica lmgfl.com DIRECTOR OF MARKETING & EVENTS Jennifer Barb jbarb lmgfl.com MARKETING & EVENTS COORDINATOR Estefania Marin emarin lmgfl.com Editorial Advisory Board Bob Birdsong OK Generators President Mark Brown Miami Heat VP of Sales Andy Cagnetta Transworld Business Brokers CEO Matt Dernis Fortune 360 Group Partner William O. Fuller Barlington Group Managing Partner Gerald Greenspoon Greenspoon Marder Co-managing Director Steven Gurowitz Interiors by Steven G. President Michelle Homoky Celebrity Cruises Director of Eastern Sales Rufus James Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport Airport Manager Michael Gorham Brown & Brown of Florida Executive Vice President Patrick Lee Shorecrest Construction CEO Alan Levan BBX Capital Chairman and CEO Rick Mancinelli C3 CEO Neil Merin Merin Hunter Codman Chairman Teddy Morse Ed Morse Automotive Group Chairman & CEO Sam Robbins National Jets President & CEO Pablo Pino TD Bank South Florida Market President Commercial Lending Steven Sadaka Steven Douglas CEO Rachel Sapoznik Sapoznik Insurance CEO Erik Sussman Mass Mutual CEO Jeremy Walls Miami Dolphins CMO SFBW Magazine 3511 W. COMMERCIAL BLVD. SUITE 200 FORT LAUDERDALE FLORIDA 33309 954.377.9470 FAX 954.617.9418 WWW.SFBWMAG.COM Manage Your SFBW Subscription Is SFBW arriving in your office with an outdated subscription label Contact Monica St. Omer at monica LMGFL.com or (954) 377-9473 to give us updated information such as a new executive or someone no longer with your organization. Visit sfbwmag.com to see our digital content and sign up for our weekly newsletter 2016 SFBW magazine is published by Lifestyle Media Group all rights reserved. SFBW is a monthly advertising magazine. All contents are protected by copyright and may not be reproduced without written consent from the publisher. The advertiser is solely responsible for ad content and holds publisher harmless from any error. 12 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com S I T T I N G O N T H E E D G E O F FA B U L O U S . Dewar s Rail Seating at AmericanAirlines Arena is an ideal experience for Miami s elite movers and shakers. Your ticket gives you a superior view of AmericanAirlines Arena inside the posh Dewar s Clubhouse--as well as valet parking VIP entry into the building a Chef s Table of deliciousness and generous servings of house beer or wine. GET YOUR TICKETS ON DEWARSRAIL.COM OR BY CALLING 786-777- HOOP. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 13 ONE LINERS PALM BEACH Real estate operating firm Madison Marquette proposed to redevelop the struggling Downtown at the Gardens shopping center. Carl Von Luger Steak & Seafood an offshoot of the famed Peter Luger Steak House of New York plans to open two restaurants at the North Palm Beach Country Club. Real estate financing firm Walker & Dunlop processed two multifamily loans worth 49 million for Avesta Communities which were used to purchase a development in Tampa and acquire Avesta Costa Del Lago in Lake Worth. Benefactors Phyllis and Harvey Sandler donated 7 million to Florida Atlantic University which will establish two centers within the newly named Phyllis and Harvey Sandler School of Social Work. West Palm Beach-based self-storage company Elite Stor Capital has changed its name to SROA Capital and nearly doubled its facility size. Loggerhead Marina sold 11 of its Florida-based marinas to Suntex Marina Investors of Texas. th C O Le Removal a student engineering company won 10 000 during Florida Atlantic University s annual Business Plan Competition. Chef Dale Talde of Bravo s Top Chef fame will open two restaurants at Grange Hall Market in West Palm Beach s emerging arts and entertainment destination. Florida Atlantic University s Leon Charney Diplomacy Program is a recipient of the 2017 National Model United Nations Distinguished Delegation award. Florida Atlantic University s College of Business launched a new center for forensic accounting. Nashville-based Bricktop s opened its third South Florida restaurant on the Intracoastal Waterway in Palm Beach Gardens. Port of Palm Beach signed a 10-year contract with Tropical Shipping. Accounting firm Gerson Preston will relocate to a larger and new office in Boca Raton 1951 NW 19th St. Protection Against Physical Element Crocker Partners the developer behind Mizner Park proposed to develop Midtown Boca a 270-acre live-workplay district that includes Boca Center. Quantum Foundation gave six grants to organizations including the Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County the Children s Behavioral Health Collaborative the Pediatric Oncology Support Team El Sol Florida Atlantic University and Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County. Boca Raton-based PEBB Enterprises made its largest transaction with the acquisition of Germantown Village Square a retail property in Tennessee for 28 million. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 15 16 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 17 ONE LINERS BROWARD The Broward Performing Arts Foundation s annual celebration raised more than 250 000 for the education and enrichment programs at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts. Moffitt Cancer Center entered a clinical partnership with Hollywood s Memorial Healthcare System. The Jim Moran Institute will host the seventh annual Business and Leadership Conference at the Fort Lauderdale Convention Center June 21-22. Greystar paid 19.5 million for a 1.92-acre site at 790 East Broward Blvd. with plans to build a 25-story apartment tower. Office Reworks a South Florida-based retailer of office furniture moved into Pompano Center of Commerce II 1550 NW 18th St. 13th Floor Investments Hidden Trails a single-family home community in Tamarac for mid-market buyers will break ground this year. Hollywood-based and environmentally friendly dry cleaner Oxxo Care Cleaners struck a deal with Grupo Nexo Franquicia to expand in Latin America. A 22-story hotel is planned for the Broward County Convention Center. Cushman & Wakefield negotiated the 30 million sale of Pompano Plaza a 126 928-square-foot retail space to Pittsburgh s investor Echo Realty. Montage at City Center a multifamily residence in Pembroke Pines sold for 158.5 million to an affiliate of Harbor Group International. Fort Lauderdale software giant Citrix Systems expanded its Dublin operation adding 150 new jobs. Fort Lauderdale green tech company Future Energy Solutions Lighting Group secured a 75 million financial partnership with Orion Energy Partners with the intent of expansion. Fort Lauderdale s Alpha Impact Windows and Doors expanded with a new division Alpha Premier Interiors. Society 8 purchased a 2.3-acre development site at the edge of Fort Lauderdale s Flagler Village with plans to build a microbrewery and liveand-work micro lofts. The Frank C. Ortis Art Gallery an arts and culture venue opened at Pembroke Pines City Center 601 City Center Way. The Pompano Beach Cultural Center on the southeast corner of Atlantic Blvd. and North Dixie Highway opened. Institutional Property Advisors a division of Marcus & Millichap sold Sherwood Forest Apartments in Coral Springs for 68.2 million. Miami s Mojito Bar and Plates by Douglas Rodriguez opened at Sawgrass Mills. The South Florida Accelerator an innovation aggregator and Nova Southeastern University formed a partnership to develop new startups via NSU s research network. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 19 20 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 21 ONE LINERS MIAMI-DADE Gibraltar Private Bank and Trust donated 30 000 to a field study scholarship program at Deering Estate. The 325 million Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum debuted in downtown Miami. U.S. Century Bank appointed Aida Levitan as board chairman. The Superior Bike Shop opened in Wynwood 2105 NW Second Ave. Miami International Airport the sole North American airport designated as a pharmaceutical freight hub by the International Air Transport Association received global certificates of excellence from the IATA. AC Hotel Miami Aventura by Marriott opened last month at 20805 Biscayne Blvd. in Aventura. Cushman & Wakefield negotiated the sale of the Econocaribe Building a 164 432-square-foot warehouse distribution facility at 2401 NW 69th St. NAI sold the SAAM Building in Coral Gables for 4.4 million. Goldman Properties broke ground on the first parking garage in Wynwood. General contractor Grycon topped off its mixed-use project the nine-story Giralda Place in Coral Gables. FirstLight Home Care a veteranoperated provider of nonmedical home care opened a new location in Miami 895 SW 86th Court. Brickell City Centre organized an outdoor meditation A Mindful Miami on Earth Day drawing roughly 500 attendees. The Biennale of Moving Images a collaboration of visual artists and filmmakers opened at the Faena District and drew a large crowd of art aficionados. Angelo Elia Pizza Bar and Tapas has opened its fifth location in CityPlace Doral. Eden Multifamily and Florida Value Partners broke ground on NOMA North Miami Beach a 354-unit apartment complex at 2134 NE 164th St. New York Thor Equities proposed to develop Wynwood Walk a 2.3-acre commercial site at 2800 NW Second Ave. Wireless provider Sprint is expanding with new stores across the region including in Hialeah bringing more than 250 jobs. The Tank Brewing Company opened a 25 000-square-foot tasting room and 120-seat brewery at 5100 NW 72nd Ave. Miami-based tech startup TIKD launched BetterPay a payment method alternative for traffic tickets. Melo Group s Aria on the Bay a waterfront condominium in downtown Miami topped off at 53 stories. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 23 24 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com Where Your Passion for Your Business is Celebrated Fort Lauderdale The Greater of Commerce was Chamber founded as our community s first trade organization 107 years ago. Since that time the Chamber has worked in support of programs that strengthen companies and create a stronger community while promoting positive change. Become a member and EXPERIENCE BETTER BUSINESS today Visit FTLChamber.com join or call us at 954-462-6000 for more information. FTLCHAMBER.COM JOIN 512 NE 3rd Ave Fort Lauderdale FL 33301 Info FTLChamber.com 954-462-6000 www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 25 COVER STORY Growth at Gunster George LeMieux Bill Perry lead a statewide charge BY KEVIN GALE PATRICK CLINTON PHOTOGRAPHY Gunster started out as a law firm with one lawyer in 1925 and 92 years later it has nearly 400 lawyers in 13 offices across the state. It s a go-to firm in the world of business and wealth. Two longtime veterans of the firm Chairman George LeMieux and CEO Bill Perry talked about the firm its culture and strategies. LeMieux also talked about his time in government service as Florida s deputy attorney general the governor s chief of staff and as a U.S. senator. The following transcript has been edited for brevity and clarity. WHAT ARE YOUR MAJOR PRACTICE GROUPS Perry We have eight major practice areas and four of those are larger groups real estate corporate law business litigation and private wealth. The private wealth group is the largest of any of the large firms in Florida and one of the largest nationally. We are seeing a huge wealth migration to Florida from all parts of the country and all parts of the globe. The basis for our strategy is that we want to stay here in Florida and focus on all the good things here. That has worked for 92 years and should work for the long haul. LeMieux In 2007-08 we positioned ourselves as a statewide firm with a strategy to build a statewide platform. We were very fortunate that we did well financially during the recession. A lot of what Bill and I have done is seek out talent across the state. For a professional firm the most important thing is people-- attracting best-in-class lawyers. Perry We had a strong balance sheet and no debt going into the recession. We hadn t grown too fast in the heyday of the early 2000s. We went through a strategic planning process in 2006-07 and had a tightknit group of shareholders who had a common vision for the firm--what it was and what people cherished such as camaraderie and collegiality. In our expansion model we didn t want to sacrifice culture. We may have had the financial opportunity to grow faster but we were careful to maintain the culture. Each office has its own set of personalities culture and heritage. We are a very diverse firm in terms of race gender and opinion--and that s embraced--but we re all in this together. LeMieux A huge value at Gunster is we care about each other and work hard for each other. When a colleague calls you no matter whether you are in Jacksonville or down the hall you drop everything to help your colleague. Whoever is the best lawyer at the firm is going to do the work. It s not an eat-what-youkill sort of silo. If it comes in through Tampa and the best lawyer is in Miami that s who it is. We hire slow. We spend a lot of time with a person before we bring them on board. Candidates meet with more than a dozen folks to make sure it s a fit. WHAT ARE THE KEY ATTRIBUTES OF THE FIRM LeMieux The most important thing is the people who work here. Most businesses would say customers are the most important. Clients are tremendously important but we want people here to be happy successful and productive. When they are they will do G 26 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com George LeMieux and Bill Perry www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 27 COVER STORY great work for clients. Whether it s the receptionist the person in the mailroom or a senior partner we all have to deliver first-tier quality work for clients HOW DO YOU DEFINE YOUR ROLES Perry I would say we are organized as a law firm like some of our corporate clients. We have a strong managing shareholder day to day with a strong administrative team supporting and making the trains run on time. Then the board with George as chairman provides strong policy advice. Then like most chairmen of the board George s role is externally focused positioning the law firm around the state. We have tried to divide management George LeMieux responsibility in the past year by appointing individuals as local and regional managing partners. Perry I was given responsibility at LeMieux It has been a great partnership since I came back to the firm in 2008. It s a relatively young age. Seven to eight a huge job to run a law firm. Bill has done years in the practice in the early 1990s I was chair of the associate committee a great job and we coordinate really well. for the firm. I did that for a decade. That group works on associate issues such as WHAT HAS BEEN THE compensation and mentoring. In 2001-02 GROWTH STRATEGY I moved from the associate committee and SUCH AS GEOGRAPHY OR got on the board. In 2007-08 I took over PRACTICE AREA LeMieux We want to be in all the as managing partner and George took over major city centers in Florida and we are in as chairman. LeMieux I was a young lawyer and was Orlando Tampa Jacksonville West Palm Beach Boca Raton Fort Lauderdale and asked to co-chair the litigation department Miami. We also are in the wealth centers in Fort Lauderdale in 2000. Then I went because we have a strong tradition back to the Florida attorney general s office and to 1925 of being lawyers for some of the then the governor s office until the end of wealthiest people so we are in Vero Beach 2007. I came back in 2008. That s when Stuart Palm Beach and Ocean Reef. I the firm was going through a revisioning think we are in all the markets we want to process and I assumed a leadership be in but we do look at the west coast-- position. Naples and Sarasota--and think there are opportunities. But we wouldn t jump in WHO ARE YOUR ROLE MODELS Perry We ve had a lot of good role without an A-player joining us. models in the firm. Marshall Criser comes back occasionally to speak to lawyers. He WHEN DID YOU START TO had a long and distinguished legal career ASSUME LEADERSHIP ROLES and public career. He was president of the University of Florida. Ken Beall a partner who retired last year had 54 years of legal practice with the firm. That s sort of unheard of in today s firm. LeMieux We have had some great legal lions in South Florida such as Chesterfield Smith of Holland and Knight who helped build great firms. Sandy D Alemberte was at Steel Hector [& Davis]. He was an American Bar Association president and dean of the Florida State University Law School [and later president of the university]. GEORGE TELL ME ABOUT YOUR EARLY LIFE. LeMieux I was born in Fort Lauderdale and went to Emory University undergrad and Georgetown Law. I became interested in being a lawyer in the sixth grade. In health class they did a profession a week and they had a trial and I was one of the lawyers in the trial. HOW DID YOU END UP INTERNING FOR CONGRESSMAN E. CLAY SHAW JR. AND U.S. SEN. CONNIE MACK III LeMieux My dad was a homebuilder and built a house for a gentleman who was friends with Clay and he got me an interview. I interned for him and then Connie Mack the first year he was in the Senate while I was in college. It solidified my interest in public service. After college I started at Gunster on day one. I joined the firm in 1994. SO HOW DID YOU END UP BECOMING DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL WITH CHARLIE CRIST LeMieux I was president of the Young Republicans in Broward County. In Broward that s a tough route. Republicans 28 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com COVER STORY were getting a foothold in politics. Democrats had been in the governorship since Reconstruction. The Legislature turned in the mid-1990s and we would have speakers come in including Jeb Bush Charlie Crist and Katherine Harris. The Republican world was small. I got to know Crist when he was a state senator. I helped him with his attorney general campaign as a volunteer and he asked me to be on his transition team and then picked me to be his deputy. It was a fantastic job if you really like to practice law. We handled a whole variety of legal issues and I worked with 400 great lawyers. I got to to argue a case in the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the state. It was a death penalty Bill Perry case Florida v. Nixon. He was a murderer who tortured and killed someone about two miles from my house in Tallahassee. [LeMieux successfully argued that that the concession of Joe Elton Nixon s guilt by his attorney was not automatically prejudicial ineffective assistance of counsel.] He s still on death row. Crist had aspirations but was not sure he was going to run for governor. Then Lt. Gov. Frank Brogan left to become president of Florida Atlantic University. That changed everything. Everyone expected him to be the leading candidate. I left the office to run Crist s campaign and spent a year outside of legal practice. I used to tell people I increased the size of jury pool. SO THEN YOU BECAME THE GOVERNOR S CHIEF OF STAFF IN 2007 LeMieux That was the hardest job I ve ever had--an 18-hour a day job. You slept with your Blackberry on your chest. They don t wake the governor up in the middle of the night. They wake you up and I decided if we needed to wake up the governor. of responsibility but it was a wonderful experience. BILL WHERE WERE YOU BORN Perry I was born in Jekintown Pennsylvania just northeast of Philadelphia and grew up in Connecticut. I finished high school in Palm Beach Gardens. My father was a lawyer. I decided I was going to medical school until I got in college and then I had a couple of professors in English literature that I enjoyed and I started shifting. At the University of Pennsylvania I was an undergraduate English literature major and qualified for a program with Kings College University in London. In law school you read a lot and write a lot. I went to the University of Florida law school and as I neared graduation Gunster was interviewing on campus. I knew I wanted to come back to South Florida preferably Palm Beach County. Gunster had been the largest firm in Palm Beach County. I started in fall of 1986. FINAL THOUGHTS LeMieux South Florida is transforming into one of the most dynamic regions in the world. With the new Brightline train connecting three cities there will be even more business attracted to South Florida. Bill uses the analogy that Miami is Manhattan Fort Lauderdale is Uptown and West Palm Beach is Greenwich Connecticut. There is a convergence of wealth from people fleeing Latin America and people fleeing the Northeast for economic and regulatory reasons. It s giving South Florida the potential to be the capital of the Americas. There s no place I d rather be than South Florida. It s a great time to be in Florida and a great time to be at Gunster. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 I never expected to stay in governmental service as long as I did. I always intended to come back to Gunster. I came back in 2008 and helped open the Tallahassee office. HOW DID YOU FIND OUT YOU WERE GOING TO BE APPOINTED A U.S. SENATOR LeMieux I was in the West Palm Beach office and the governor s chief of staff Eric Eikenberg called and said the governor wants to see you at the governor s mansion. I said to myself This is going to be good because I didn t know what he was going to say. It was unusual because we were very close. He sat me down in the front foyer and said I want you to serve the people well in the U.S. Senate. I was shocked and I was amazed. I had this moment when I was there for training. They bring you on the Senate floor and walk you to your desk and say This is where you will stand when you speak on behalf of the state of Florida. This is how you address the president and seek recognition. I could feel the weight 29 BANKING Charles Stuzin Phillip Frost Rick Kuci Past and Present Grove Bank has a rich history but it s focused on the future BY KEVIN GALE Grove Bank & Trust saved the University of Miami early in its history but it has undergone major changes recently and is poised for expansion north of Miami-Dade County. In recent months the bank changed its name from Coconut Grove Bank to Grove Bank & Trust moved into a new headquarters that s next to the new Park Grove condominiums and beefed up its trust team with major players. With locations beyond Coconut Grove the new name more accurately reflects our geographic footprint while honoring our proud past says President and CEO Rick Kuci. The bank currently has offices in Aventura Coconut Grove Coral Gables Palmetto Bay and South Miami. Attendees at the bank s grand opening were told the bank was planning to expand further north and it s in solid financial shape to do so. Bauer a national bank-rating service gives Grove Bank its top rating of five stars. The bank s largest investor is South Florida entrepreneur Phillip Frost who is worth an estimated 3.4 billion according to Forbes. Frost bought a major stake in the bank in 2011. The bank sold its old 5.2-acre headquarters site to Park Grove s developers Terra Group and Related Group for 55 million in 2013. It bought its new 30 000-square-foot headquarters from the developers for 12.75 million in April. Grove Bank even kept its longtime address of 2701 S. Bayshore Drive. While the bank simply added trust to its name it actually has had trust powers for 60 years. The bank recently added Sheldon Anderson to its board of directors. Anderson joined Northern Trust in 1992 and was president and CEO of the bank s southeast region before retiring. He has been heavily involved in the community for decades including a stint as chairman of the United Way of Miami-Dade County. Grove Bank also recently hired Charles Porter as executive managing director of trust and wealth management. Porter a chartered financial analyst was president managing director of BNY Mellon in Florida from 2000 to 2016. Anderson and Porter have extensive experience in helping individuals and families build manage and preserve wealth. We are very excited to have them as part of our team says Charles Stuzin chairman of the bank s holding company Coconut Grove Bankshares. Stuzin previously CEO of Citizens Federal Bank and is president of SF Partners Financial a family office. Kuci has ample banking experience too. He was CEO of Kislak National Bank and Premier Community Bank of South Florida before joining Grove Bank in 2005 as executive vice president and chief lending officer in 2013. He was promoted to CEO in 2013. Grove Bank s new office and online banking system are emblematic of its slogan Honoring the past embracing the future. While the bank is called the oldest continually operating bank in Miami-Dade County online banking grew 40 percent at 30 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com BANKING Top left Phillip Frost Patricia Frost Rick Kuci Charles Stuzin and Roz Stuzin. Top right Charles Porter Rosie Pachon and Joe Rebak. Lower left Phillip Frost Melanie Brown Bowman Brown and Peter Pruitt. Lower right Grand opening attendees enjoy the festivities. the bank last year Kuci says. While the bank embraces technology it s still focused on human interaction he says. We are still a believer that people still want that personal touch especially when you deal in the higher net worth area. They don t want a 1-800 number. The bank also doesn t require the 5 million net-worth minimum that some larger trust banks do to offer similar personalized service. That makes sense given the bank s history of doing more than what might be normally expected. In 1929 three years after it was founded it helped bail out the University of Miami Kuci says. UM was a struggling fledgling university at that time and was having financial difficulties. They were about ready to sell Kuci says. Several of our founding fathers went to UM. They figured out a way they could lend the university money--take an assignment of their assets and agreed to give them back over time as they repaid the loan. Otherwise they were going to be sold to the University of Florida and be renamed Pan American University. In the middle of the Great Depression the bank provided a loan to Ralph and Jim Ryder to expand their trucking company. That eventually turned into Ryder System a logistics company that today ranks No. 395 in the Fortune 500 with 6.57 billion in annual sales. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 31 ENTREPRENUER Closet Factory continues to exceed home storage expectations in South Florida BY KEVIN KAMINSKI Adventures in Space 32 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com It s been 13 years since Steve Newman having sold his laminate flooring company in Atlanta returned to South Florida to provide a custom residential service more pressing to tri-county homeowners than the surface beneath their feet. How do you maximize home storage opportunities when space especially for those who have downsized is at a premium Since launching a Closet Factory franchise in 2004 with only 10 people Newman has tasked an ever-growing stable of designers and consultants to answer that question. As the numbers suggest his team has delivered--and then some. Today in addition to boasting a workforce of some 100 employees the Deerfield Beach-based company is the topselling Closet Factory among the 51 outlets across the United States. The most fulfilling part of my job is seeing the employees grow professionally and from a compensatory standpoint says Newman 54 who grew up in Coral Springs but now lives in Lighthouse Point. We promote from within the organization all of our current managers started with the company in entry level positions and have grown as the company has succeeded. Part of that success lies in its ability to think outside the closet. The company continues to expand its offerings providing buildouts and design solutions for home offices laundry rooms man caves play rooms wine rooms and other spaces. Recently Closet Factory added a garage division as well as a builder division that gives developers and contractors access to customized storage options that can be installed before the completion of a Opposite page and this page Examples of Closet Factory s residential work. Inset Steve Newman residential project. SFBW spoke to Newman about the trends that are driving the industry. Part of the company s success seems to involve anticipating the next big thing. Why did you feel a builder division and custom garage division would be wellreceived Our market has [several] high-end residential builders semi-custom builders and production builders in need of our products. Our company has the infrastructure to accommodate the builders timelines and product needs. Also South Florida is ripe with car enthusiasts who value the space in which they store their vehicles. The garage segment has seen a substantial increase in past years and is a natural evolution of our products from the inside of the home. Are closet makeovers and buildouts still primarily about maximizing space Or have the available upgrades changed the landscape Your closet is where you start and end your day. Clients are looking for ways to maximize the space but also to decrease the cycle time it takes to create their daily wardrobe. Closet Factory designs a functional space then lets the client layer the look relative to their own individual budget. This has transcended [closets]. We can take a basic organizational plan for an office or garage and create a look from the simple to the spectacular. Can you point to three current trends that you re seeing at Closet Factory 1. Design trends have been moving toward simple cleaner lines for a few years now. Closet Factory has the ability to mix and match door and drawer faces of accentuating colors to accomplish this more transitional look. 2. We have a licensing agreement with Motor Trend the industry leader in automotive publications. This alignment has created a garage line of cabinets and flooring which has been in desire by this segment of the buying population. 3. Investing in high-tech manufacturing equipment has allowed Closet Factory to reduce the cycle time from order placement to completion of install. Clients have asked for shorter lead times. This is also accomplished with our state-of-the-art design software. This software allows the client to see in 3-D how the finished product will look in their home. What trends on the horizon have you most excited As this product continues through its natural product life cycle it is still in its early adolescence. We are just now seeing second- and third-time purchasers of our products. The future is very bright for this industry as a greater percentage of the buying population becomes more familiar with custom-storage solutions. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 33 Get your team on track Opening soon a physical adventure game perfect for team building challenges With over 200 000 sq ft of Attractions Entertainment & Event Space Xtreme Action Park is the Largest Entertainment Venue in Florida. We offer something fun for everyone including Go Kart Racing Bowling Arcade a Ropes Course Adventure GLow-in-the-Dark Bazooka Blast a Trampoline Park Roller Skating Rink Antique Auto Museum Escape Rooms All American Caf Hershey s Ice Cream Shake Shoppe a full Liquor Sports Bar and more to come Customize your team building event in our variety of spaces offering unique features such as Trackside Views Skybox Second Level Seating and Custom Themed Decor. Most rooms offer easy plugin A V Features. On-site Catering and a Full Liquor Bar is Available. conveniently located in Fort Lauderdale Florida 954.491.6265 34 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com PRESENTED BY CALL FOR NOMINATIONS SFBW s Fourth Annual Apogee Awards will recognize distinguished leaders in the region s C-suite from Chairman CEO Vice President COO and President to CFO CIO CMO and HR Leader. An executive in each category will be honored for Miami-Dade Broward and Palm Beach counties. TO NOMINATE VISIT OUR WEBSITE www.SFBWmag.com signature-events apogee Please visit our website for more information and to purchase tickets. GOLD SPONSORS www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 35 36 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com HOSPITALITY Action park targets corporate and family markets By Kevin Gale Photography by Larry Wood Xtreme Partnership Michael Dezer If you are looking for a fun venue for team building Xtreme Action Park awaits. Want an adrenaline rush Compete with your coworkers on a half-mile go-kart track. Want something Aaron Parkinson intellectually challenging Try solving puzzles to get out of an escape room. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 37 David Goldfarb There are also bowling a ropes course and a bar where you can banter about the experience. There s plenty of event space ranging from conference rooms to a roller rink that can transform into a 2 000-person gathering place. Xtreme s location is strong for corporate events since the Fort Lauderdale Uptown area employs 70 000 people. Xtreme is a pioneer in what s called the Envision Uptown movement. A 2014 Urban Land Institute study says the area near Commercial Boulevard and Cypress Road has a good population density but needs to transform into more of a live work play neighborhood. Xtreme definitely fits the definition of play. Behind Xtreme are three partners who each brought something to the table Michael Dezer calls himself the real estate guy. He started collecting buildings in New York and found great success in Sunny Isles Beach by doing projects with Donald Trump and collaborating with The Related Group. He s also a notable car collector which is reflected in his family s new Porsche Design Tower in Sunny Isles Beach. Aaron Parkinson is a technology guru and serial entrepreneur who found success in the wastewater treatment field and has developed the electric Golf Skate Caddy and Fiik Skateboards. David Goldfarb is literally the fun guy as he owns PrimeTime Amusements. He started out with a couple of pool tables in his fraternity house and now operates more than 2 000 arcade games including cutting-edge models found at Xtreme. SO HOW DID THEY COME TOGETHER Goldfarb s company was a supplier to Xtreme Go Kart before the latter closed and also had provided games for Dezer s Miami Auto Museum in North Miami. He told Dezer about the 340 000-square-foot building going on the auction block back in 2014 and Dezer won the bid. They converted part of the building into office condominiums. Bekins Van Lines took 110 000 square feet and Goldfarb took 20 000 square feet for his business. Then Goldfarb became involved in the roughly 125 000-square-foot first phase of Xtreme which kept and overhauled the gokart track. Dezer owns about 80 000 more square feet which includes the museum with his cars and a trampoline park which is a tenant. This month Goldfarb was scheduled to open a 24 000-square-foot sports performance training center called Hard Knocks 365 Inside Xtreme Action Park. He expects many mixed martial arts and professional athletes to use the gym and has lined up three trainers who will be owner-operators Henri Hooft a top professional trainer for martial arts fighters Mario Sperry a top jiujitsu coach and Tony Villani whose XPE Sports in Boca Raton is a top performance-training site for NFL players and collegians preparing for the draft. There s synergy among Xtreme s individual elements. For example Goldfarb expects Xtreme to get exposure when sports networks cover big-name athletes training there. There also will be some crossover activity because some football players enjoy mixed martial arts and some MMA players want performance training. What s unique is it will fall under one roof here Goldfarb says. The partners were encouraged by the success of the first phase of Xtreme which included the go-kart track bowling the arcade a ropes course and Bazooka Ball a combat game with elements of laser tag and paintball. They managed to double their initial forecast for revenue. The second phase included leasing out space for the trampoline park doubling the arcade space and opening the museum roller-skating rink and the escape rooms. Dezer said he was attracted to the building by its sheer size. Everything I do I like to do big Dezer says. He needs a lot of space for his growing car collection. However the attractions part of the business has done so well that Dezer says his attitude is less about car museum space and more about games. Dezer who also owns 15 acres of land in Las Vegas said his love of cars goes back to when he was a teenager in Israel 38 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com HOSPITALITY and he got into trouble once for taking a spin in a car that wasn t his. Among his earliest purchases were a Vespa scooter a Harley Davidson motorcycle and a 1949 Plymouth. After being a paratrooper in the Israeli armed forces he moved to Queens. Dezer says he bought a former Chevrolet dealership in New Jersey to have a place to put his cars and then sold it for three times what he had paid. He went on to create a real estate empire in Manhattan s Chelsea and Flatiron districts by purchasing industrial and manufacturing buildings in the 1970s. Dezerproperties.com says the holdings include 20 buildings with 1.3 million square feet. After he moved to Florida he bought a string of hotels in Sunny Isles Beach that turned into sites for condos and the Trump International Beach Resort. His car museum in North Miami has two buildings with 250 000 square feet and is worth 10 times what he paid for it Dezer says. He thinks the value of his Xtreme real estate has doubled in value already. He is looking for a tenant to lease the former Syms building which is in front of Xtreme. Dezer s car museum at Xtreme has a huge collection from the movies including Back to the Future and every James Bond movie he says. Admission is 10 for Florida residents. Dezer says he also has 250 micro cars which is the world s largest collection. He also has a big collection of Vespas and just spent 500 000 on 31 more. Parkinson learned about Xtreme from Goldfarb who is a fellow member of the Entrepreneurs Organization. I m a bit of an adrenaline junky. I saw an opportunity to get into a fun business he says. Parkinson who has offices upstairs at Xtreme is bringing his technology chops to the business including integration of the various systems for the go-karts such as point of sale signing the waiver and selecting race times. That will also help give more functionality to Xtreme s mobile app which allows live views of races. Xtreme already gathers a lot of analytics such as accidents and average lap times. Drivers have to pay for an 8 annual license that also comes with a helmet liner. The systems then track them so drivers who crash a lot are automatically slowed down. Dezer was asked if Xtreme could be replicated elsewhere. Yes after we do this and have a couple of good years running of course. We would be stupid not to do it in other places. One potential site is Dezer s Las Vegas property. He s turned down a number of would-be buyers but Lady Luck might have just rolled his way. The preferred site for the new pro football stadium that will house the NFL s relocating Oakland Raiders at Dean Martin Drive and Russell Street is a block from his land. Something like this when they go to the game could be great Dezer says. Xtreme Action Park Attractions Location 5300 Powerline Road Fort Lauderdale near Interstate 95 and Commercial Boulevard Hours Open 365 days a year starting at 11 a.m. daily and closing at 10 p.m. (Sunday-Thursday) and midnight (Friday-Saturday). Parking is free. Website xtremeactionpark.com Phone 954-491-6265 Go-Karts A half-mile track--the only indoor asphalt course in South Florida with gas-powered cars. Pro Karts go up to 45 mph and Super Karts go up to 65 mph. Sky High Indoor Ropes Course Includes 24 platforms and 48 challenging elements such as bridges suspended logs and monkey bars. Bowling alley Six full-size lanes and four mini lanes. The Arcade A 15 000-square-foot space with more than 100 interactive games. It includes the first XD Dark Ride in South Florida which uses 3-D glasses eight fullmotion seats and laser shooting devices. The Arena Roller Skating Rink & Performance Venue A 16 000 squarefoot venue including a 12 000-square-foot roller-skating rink plus a DJ booth and VIP seating. It can hold up to 2 000 people for private events. Bazooka Blast Glow in the Dark Arena Teams suit up with scoring vests and masks and use 2-inch foam balls fired from paintball guns. Evolution Escape Rooms Players are locked in a room and have to solve a series of puzzles and escape within a set time limit. It is marketed for corporate team-building and other events. Rockin Jump Trampoline Park An 18 000-square-foot area featuring dodge ball stunt bag X Beam slam dunk zone rock climbing wall obstacle course Vertical Ops Rock Climbing Tower and a large open jump arena. Hard Knocks 365 Inside Xtreme Action Park Performance training for athletes. It also includes two basketball courts which also can be used for volleyball and martial arts events. Fort Lauderdale Auto Museum The Dezer Collection features the world s largest micro-car collection plus classic cars military vehicles and famous movie vehicles such as James Bond cars and the six-wheeled monster convertible from The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. The museum can be booked for galas seated dinners cocktail receptions birthdays and corporate gatherings. Conference and party rooms Can hold 20 to 75 people. Blast Ballroom 5 000-square-foot banquet center with flexible space. The Pit Bar A full liquor sports bar with 50 high-definition televisions that feature DirectTV sports packages and the UFC Fight Nights. Live bands play on Saturday nights. All American Caf Pizza wings burgers shakes and fries plus catering for private events. Hershey s Shake Shoppe With 30 flavors of ice cream. Skybox Lounge A unique 2 520-square-foot space overlooking the track for corporate entertaining by day and private bar and restrooms. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 39 EDUCATION Quantum Foundation helps FAU expand use of realistic mannequins Florida Atlantic University s medical and health care students soon will have even more modern state-of-the-art learning tools with which to hone their skills thanks to a 300 000 grant from the Quantum Foundation to the school s new Advanced Clinical Skills Training Facility. The grant was designed to advance the ability of medical students nursing students residents and other health care trainees to deliver high quality technologically advanced humanistic and culturally competent care to the community. Construction on the new training facility was slated to be completed in May. The facility is being built adjacent to the FAU Simulation Center which has also received Quantum Foundation funding in the past. The Quantum Foundation was founded in 1960 in order to provide funding for various health projects in Palm Beach County says Kerry Jamieson Quantum s senior director of communications. Only nonprofits are funded she says. Our mission is to improve the health of Palm Beach County residents. Because of South Florida s growing-- and aging--population Jamieson says the region could be facing a physical shortage of health care professionals in the future. We fund educational projects from elementary school all the way through the college level she says. The grant money will provide FAU with various types of advanced high-tech learning equipment. They have a facility there that replicates a hospital room Jamieson says. Students work in that state-of-the-art hands-on training facility. It s a lot more realistic than a textbook. Mark Goldstein senior director of the Simulation Center at FAU s Charles Schmidt College of Medicine says the Simulated Patients BY MARTIN LENKOWSKY grant money is going to help fund the construction of additional space adjacent to the original 7 800-square-foot simulation center. We are now adding 6 700 to 6 800 square feet he says. The additional space is well needed. We are now at 256 students Goldstein says. We had well outgrown our space. We needed to expand our training space and add more technology. Rooms at the new building will be twice the size. We ve added a new multipurpose room. It s all related to being able to advance training and add technology. The new building will provide eight additional exam patient rooms four breakout rooms for debriefing an enlarged 70-seat classroom a standardized patient lounge and office and two large multipurpose rooms dedicated to clinical teaching. We wanted to expand Goldstein says. Our space was limited therefore the amount of training was limited. The simulation center is no stranger to Quantum funding. My relationship with Quantum goes back 12 years Goldstein says. We re very indebted to Quantum for their support. They ve always been a big supporter since 2004. Goldstein says there are two simulation centers in Palm Beach County the one at FAU s Boca Raton campus the second at St. Mary s Hospital in West Palm Beach. We ve trained residents from JFK and the University of Miami and more than 3 000 practicing nurses he says. A visit to the simulation center features--among many other lifelike educational tools--a number of highfidelity mannequins. Thanks to the Quantum grant money an additional four rooms at the new training facility will have mannequins as well. We bought two with Quantum grant money Goldstein says. The four new additional rooms will be set up like patient exam rooms Goldstein says. The goal of the program is to emphasize the teaching of good clinical skills critical thinking and using the whole technology package he says. These kids are really tech-savvy. They would much prefer active learning. The clinical skills training center will enhance technology and provide a better learning experience. FAU medical student Michael Migita who is entering his fourth year at the 40 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com The FAU mannequins can communicate and produce sounds that simulate abnormalities in the heart lungs and abdomen medical college has used the simulation center multiple times. I ve used it since my first year. It s part of the curriculum. As a med student it s a great way to learn to communicate with patients. It would definitely help in an emergency situation. It helped our learning process to communicate and to take a patient s history he says. The mannequins are not only programmed to communicate but also allow students to listen to lung heart and abdominal sounds as they would on an actual patient when assessing for any abnormalities. Third-year medical student Nicolas Heft also finds the mannequins to be an exceptional learning tool. We use mannequins and the staff controlling them as live patients he says. Heft an emergency medical technician who works at a hospital emergency room while going to school says says the mannequins are on a hospital bed and can be programmed to produce any sound. They will purposely put in pathology like abnormal heart lung and abdominal sounds he says. He finds examining the mannequins realistic compared with what he sees in the ER. We face similar situations all the time Heft says. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 41 The Justice League of Tech David Bennett expects his team to exhibit superpowers BY KEVIN GALE avid Bennett initially was given mundane tasks such as swapping out computer tapes at his father s tech company but his fast work gave him time to devour technical manuals. No wonder then at age 14 he thought it would be fun to guess the password for a vacationing systems administrator and play with the system. (By the way it s not a good idea to use your name spelled backward as your password.) 42 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com TECHNOLOGY Then there was the time he dropped an 800 printer while running down the stairs. He disassembled it bent the frame back in place and got it running again. Never mind that there were parts left over. He laughs about David Bennett how his dad later rented the printer to a client for four years for 50 a month. At 15 Bennett overheard his father talking with client Stadler Real Estate in Coral Gables. The network had gone down and his dad was in a pinch with his senior engineer unavailable. I can fix that Bennett told his father who said Are you sure Absolutely was the response. Bennett s father drove him there and was asked Is this bring your kid to work day Bennett fixed it in 15 minutes. I had saved the day and I felt good about it he says. These days Connections for Business has 20 employees and Bennett is all about efficiency when it comes to his organization or his clients. Rather than just solve a particular problem Bennett likes to focus on eliminating problems systematically for clients. Now my people have more time to spend with your team about what your dreams and problems are he says. That s what I preach to my people here. He learned early in his career that technical feats such as rolling out a Citrix server in 4 hours instead of 20 also are a good business strategy. By the time he graduated from high school he was selling about 500 000 in products and services. That number hit 750 000 when he was studying math at Barry University-- he chose the major after finding computer course work at universities was too focused on aging technology he says. Early in his career a lot of the sales involved replacing hardware-- All the hardware was crappy and broke he says. However he found his passion wasn t replacing motherboards but putting together systems and making technology relevant to customer needs. Hardware still has its place but these days solutions often are more focused on cloud computing which Bennett simply translates as it means not in my building. The real computing is not happening on a browser it s happening on servers at places such as Salesforce.com he says. Why should I invest in an accounting package when I can buy an accounting package in the cloud Connections for Business helps customers by doing a gap analysis. The basic question is where they want to be vs. where they are now. On the morning of the interview with SFBW Bennett visited a 14year customer who has a small factory making wafers for semiconductors. Ten years ago the client was doing 1.2 million in revenue with 23 employees. Now it s doing 3 million with seven people. That s a perfect example of how we can make something more efficient Bennett says. He s seeing entire industries shift from legacy products to subscription models where features and improvements come out every month or two months. Companies that take advantage become more efficient and can provide a better price point for customers. The question he asks is Am I building businesses that are statues or living art like trees that grow and morph He also relishes doing things differently whether it s hiring a landscaper to redo his yard in a unique fashion--he gets upset if he sees the same approach in someone else s yard--or coming up with superhero characters for his advertising. Take a look at every IT website and they all look the same if you don t see the logo he says. He came up with the idea for cartoon characters he says adding I fought for it. A lot of people said it was stupid. The characters represent various attributes. For example Sir Speedy is about speeding up productivity while Ms. Shields is about security. Bennett who took over running the company from his father in his mid 30s says his team has the ability to both speak geek and plain English with customers. Some tech people need to be kept in a cave and thrown raw meat he jokes. That may be just fine for someone who works on a help desk or takes a whack-a-mole approach to solving problems. He wants his team to be like the Justice League for technology as his characters suggest. Admitting that some might say the notion sounds childish Bennett is serious when he says I firmly believe we have superpowers. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 43 Patrick Lee Luxurious Detail Shorecrest Construction finds success in high-end commercial residential projects By Kevin Gale CONSTRUCTION www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 45 Patrick Lee was frustrated working as a consultant for the Four Seasons Hotel Miami. He was hiring contractors to do work and they weren t operating the way he wanted. Finally he spoke up to the hotel s owner Millennium Partners. We are hiring these general contractors and I feel I am fighting them all the time he said. I have a license. Can I do it myself Lee got his wish and over the past 11 years he has grown Shorecrest Construction into a 10 million annual company with 16 employees. Shorecrest is a general contractor known for bringing a high degree of craftsmanship to commercial and residential projects. One of the most prominent examples is Casa Bahia a 13 483-square-foot ultraluxury tropical-modern home in Coconut Grove. It hit the market at 50 million last fall and recently was priced at 43 million as market conditions cooled in the Miami area. Casa Bahia which is on Biscayne Bay was designed by Zyscovich Architects and filmmaker Alejandro Lanes. It won an Architizer Popular Choice A-plus Award in the Architecture and Water category. One of its signature features is a stairway that steps through a pond and then seems to float unsupported up to the next story. Casa Bahia is an example of how architecture in South Florida has moved from Mediterranean Revival to precise modern design. People see it as simpler but it s not. They have taken away hiding places for imperfections. There s no crown molding to hide it or baseboards to hide it says Lee Shorecrest s president. Lee first became familiar with construction when he was living in a master-planned community that was being developed near his childhood home of Plant City near Tampa. He had a couple of friends who majored in building construction at the University of Florida which turned into his major as well. After working in Tampa and Orlando he came to Miami to work on the Four Seasons for Bovis one of the giants in the Shorecrest handled the construction of Casa Bahia which was first listed for 50 million construction and construction management field. The Four Seasons was held up because of Federal Aviation Administration height concerns so Lee switched to being a consultant during the delay. (At 789 feet the Four Seasons recently lost its crown as Miami s tallest building to the soon-toopen Panorama Tower which stands at a reported 868 feet.) Between 2006 and 2017 Shorecrest has had an array of projects at the Four Seasons including renovating the pool deck and the Edge restaurant redoing some office tower amenities and working on units. Lee says he has learned from the shortcomings of other contractors. A lot of those guys weren t systemsbased. They made a lot of promises that they weren t following up on. They weren t transparent in how they were doing business. You often felt like you weren t getting what you were paying for he says. The workers weren t the problem--it was more the supervision either spread too thin or workers were not given clear directions on what expectations were. The Four Seasons work led to work on penthouses amid Miami s luxury condominium boom. Lee steadily has built his company s infrastructure--whether it was hiring his first construction superintendent and a receptionist and now having a controller vice president of operations and an inhouse project estimator. He also has built a stable of trusted subcontractors such as specialists in millwork and electricians who are 46 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com CONSTRUCTION versed in smart-home technology. Shorecrest teamed with renowned interior designer Andrew Sheinman of Pembrooke & Ives to tackle a makeover of a 7 000-square-foot condo on Fisher Island. The renovation presented a lot of logistical challenges including being reachable only by boat. People joke that it s the only one finished in one season on Fisher Island Lee says. Lee has also put his stamp on Shorecrest s headquarters at 48 NW 25th St. in Miami s Wynwood neighborhood. It has an open airy design and Lee was able to squeeze in more space by adding a partial mezzanine. Lee looked at other locations but says We kept coming back to Wynwood because the energy feels good. We want artistic and creative people. Shorecrest typically does 15 to 20 projects a year with four making up the bulk of the work. When asked Lee said he would consider making an acquisition to help grow the company if it provided a foothold in a different market. He wants Shorecrest to turn into a large regional contractor. There s still an important day-today quest though--to go beyond craftsmanship and provide excellent experiences not only for customers but also collaborators such as architects interior designers and his employees. Lee who once was disappointed himself doesn t want to do that to others. A swinging door bamboo screens a reclaimed wood bridge and a floating staircase create a tropical modern ambiance at Casa Bahia www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 47 Dad s Footsteps Fathers build their next generation of leadership with the help of their children BY ANDREA RICHARD FATHERS IN BUSINESS FATHERS IN BUSINESS For some fathers separating their parental instincts from their business instincts can be a difficult feat when working with their children. But when family businesses are done right the opportunity can pave the way for success for family generations to come. To commemorate Father s Day SFBW profiled four companies in which dads successfully led the way for their children to follow suit. THE ROGERS Rogers Morris & Ziegler is the oldest law firm in Broward County. My grandfather started the firm in 1925 says Romney Rogers. His son Romney Cam Rogers Jr. belongs to the fourth generation and joined the firm five years ago straight out of law school. The family legacy is something that I wanted to continue to build on he says. While Rogers Sr. worked with his dad for 29 years he says Cam matured faster than he did. I call it the knucklehead status Rogers says. I think he s overcome the knucklehead status quicker than I did because his mother raised him right. Managing family and business isn t always easy Rogers says. It s a back-and-forth [situation]. It was a process for me and my dad. It s a process for me and Cam. To navigate the challenges of working with family--one of them being perceived favoritism among staffers--Cam has turned to a supportive network. There s a group I belong to called the SOBs sons of bosses Cam says. The group has been going on for 2 years and it meets once a month to discuss family business issues and we always end with a funny family story he says. Romney says his son continuously proves himself as an attorney. That s why they call it the practice of law you re always evolving he says. Cam is very well-rounded. He has his priorities right. I don t think he s tried to take advantage of any situation he s been in. He does an excellent job in leadership and he has a servant s heart. That all makes me proud as a dad. 48 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com THE EASTONS In 1974 Edward Easton Sr. founded the Easton Group a commercial real estate firm that has grown into an industry leader. Eddie Easton Jr. joined in 1987 and oversees acquisitions. Edward Sr. believes in letting children decide their own paths a piece of advice he would share with any entrepreneur considering bringing family on board. When he originally started I said to him I want you to work here for a year and see if you like the business and if you do we ll decide how we ll handle this going forward he says. And Eddie Jr. did that. He worked for a year and he had a knack for the business. Before joining full time he did maintenance work around the properties while he was in high school and college. In addition the Easton family has a partnership in Jacksonville buying income properties which its other son Mack runs. Easton Sr. says his children have taught him about patience an attribute he says he doesn t naturally possess. My boys have wonderful patience and they ve taught me a lot about it. The family gets together on Sundays for barbecues Edward Sr. says. Eddie has five children. Mack has three children. And I have 12 grandchildren altogether. I have three daughters also. We spend a lot of family time together and don t mind talking about business. There are hundreds of benefits he said. I think it s fantastic because you can do tax planning around the family a lot easier. You get to spend time together. I have lunch with my son three days a week. So it s very bonding from that perspective. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 49 FATHERS IN BUSINESS PRESTON AND BURSTEIN Melisse Burstein recalls what was on her mind when she joined her father s public accounting firm Gerson Preston 21 years ago. I remember when I first started here and my mother and siblings were all very curious what my father was like in the office she says. I told them he s actually the same. The company s partners would hold Monday night meetings and her dad Gary Gerson would talk or scold the staff just as he would do at his home. Burstein a certified public accountant worked as an audit manager for Ernst & Young in New York and later in South Florida before joining Gerson Preston which her dad established in 1959. Gerson is a highly active philanthropist and so is his daughter which he says enhances his business. She decided to join because she wanted to gain litigation experience. She s now the firm s director. The full-time working mother now with three kids quickly discovered that working for him wouldn t come easy. When I had my son my father showed up to the hospital with a file to talk business she says. We had a litigation meeting and I went into labor early. So he came to the hospital to discuss the case because he had to meet with the attorneys the next day. Gerson quips back But I didn t go into the delivery room. Seriousness aside the duo are playful and enjoy each other s company--even at work. There s no greater pleasure than having a daughter working with me as a partner he says. It s so great to have her along. 50 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com FATHERS IN BUSINESS THE LYNCHES Tom Lynch CEO of Delray Beach-based Plastridge Insurance Agency never thought his two sons would work for him. Now roughly 17 years later Brendan who joined the agency first serves as the chief financial officer and his brother Connor three years younger is the chief operating officer. The two brothers oversee the company. Lynch is retiring in a year-and-a-half after working there for 50 years. In the 1970s he bought the company from his dad who purchased it in the 40s. I m lucky that my kids wanted to come in and it has worked out perfectly Lynch says. I ve seen the opposite when the siblings don t get along and it tears the family apart. Lynch advises that when hiring family to make it work be sure that all involved are on the same page. The hardest part for some parents is that this is their little child and they can t let them make mistakes he says. You have to have a clear path on what it is that they are going to do and what you are going to do. I think if you talk about that upfront and come to agreement on those things you ll do much better. He especially finds it satisfying that his children came to him of their own will and that the work they do is reputable. They also are active community leaders following the example of their dad who served as the mayor of Delray Beach. Brendan is part of the Community Redevelopment Agency in Lake Worth and Connor is head of planning and zoning for the city of Delray Beach. The greatest thing is when people come up to me and say Oh I met your son Connor or Brendan and he is such a great guy. I know they are great kids but it is so nice when people come up to you to tell you how happy they are working on a project with them he says. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 51 When your company needs more Certainty. Influence. Significance. Growth. In Business Development Brand Amplification Market Expansion Talent Strategies www.GROWINGandEXPANDING.com COI access ...connecting centers of influenceTM 52 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com - Deck Hand - Captain WE ARE MPT One School. Unlimited Possibilities. - Stewardess - Engineer Gain the professional maritime training you need for the level of success you want to achieve. MPT is the most complete full-service private maritime school in the country. Our training programs are internationally acclaimed and are utilized by government agencies global maritime businesses and individual crew members. Our campuses boast over 61 000 sq ft of classrooms deck and engineering training labs student service facilities and several off-site training facilites. Whether it s captaining a vessel safeguarding marine environments designing advanced ocean engineering structures crewing a luxury megayacht or keeping the world s goods moving MPT can provide the training you need. USCG MCA RYA PYA NI MARSHALL ISLANDS YACHTING MERCHANT COMMERCIAL PASSENGER VESSEL To get started call or email us today info mptusa.com Sea The World 954.525.1014 1915 South Andrews Avenue Fort Lauderdale FL 33316 mptusa.com www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 53 Marine Mainstay INDUSTRY LEADER PHIL PURCELL TALKS ABOUT IMPACT CHALLENGES BY MARTIN LENKOWSKY 54 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com eP y MARINE INDUSTRY local boating industry. The association is the largest trade organization in the Southeast the maritime industry has created 110 000 middle-class jobs in Broward County alone and 136 000 jobs regionally. In order to ensure the boating industry can continue to grow and flourish in the area Purcell spearheaded an effort to improve and build better infrastructure in Broward County. And we recently passed a tax cap [on boat refitting and repairs] so we can remain competitive with other countries. We want to be forward-thinking. All we re doing is making sure we re competitive globally he says. Does Purcell ever think his industry is being taken for granted All the time he says. We want to make sure our voice isn t just heard at boat show time. We give scholarships we do water cleanup. We re always advocating on behalf of the community. The benefits of the boat show outweighs the five days. However Purcell believes some people are resentful because of the way they perceive the boating industry. We re always reminding people this is not just a rich man s sport he says. An important goal of the association has been the dredging of area waterways which enables larger vessels to navigate and have access to docks and various amenities. Purcell says some people do not fully understand the importance of that activity. If people see a dredge it s not there to harm the environment. We re the greatest environmental steward you ll ever see he says. One of the industry s greatest concerns in recent years has been All Aboard Florida s Brightline a highspeed rail service on the Florida East Coast Railway which is starting this summer and crossing the New River in downtown Fort Lauderdale. Tri-Rail also wants to add a commuter line on the railway. We worked closely with All Aboard Florida Brightline representatives to understand the implications of a bridge crossing that is 4 feet above the water and at-grade along our major roadways Purcell says. With 30-plus Brightline trains and 50-plus Tri-Rail Coastal Link trains expected we want to ensure that those trains do not paralyze navigation and create great economic harm along our waterways and our roadways. While the association advocates for the infrastructure needed by the thirdlargest state in the nation Purcell doesn t want to see his industry sacrificed. Purcell says Brightline adversely would affect many marine businesses upriver from the train crossing. There are 13 boatyards upriver of the FEC bridge which along with the Dania Cut-Off Canal predominantly comprise the bulk of the refit and repair business he says. Before joining the association Purcell was a partner and held senior management positions with Westport Shipyard of Washington State the largest yacht builder in North America. During his tenure Westport grew from a small company to a leader in the industry within the United States and internationally. As for Purcell s professional and personal plans after he steps down he says I ll be spending time with my family children and grandchildren. I have no additional plans at this time. hil Purcell the Marine Industries Association of South Florida s CEO and executive director considers the local marine industry as perhaps the most important guiding economic force in South Florida. It s an 11 billion industry from Palm Beach County down to Miami-Dade says Purcell who took the leadership helm in 2014 and will step down in January. Nationwide it s a 35 billion industry. Statewide it s a 15 billion business. Florida ranks as No. 1 in the world. The association s flagship event is the renowned Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show which it owns. The boat show is the biggest in the world he says. People come to Florida from all around. More than 100 million in sales took place in last year s show. It brings more than 100 000 people from more than 52 countries. Purcell says the boating industry is a huge job creator for the entire region with a positive effect on other businesses as well. For example the Publix supermarket near the 17th Street Causeway does a lot of business helping provision yachts. He adds that many people who first moved down here to work on ships eventually settled here to raise families and are now working on land. A lot of our finest restaurant chefs were on our boats Purcell says And their kids are in our schools. During the boat show local restaurants have their best days of the year he says. And there are more than 1 000 planes on the tarmac coming and going. A yacht is the greatest creator of jobs he adds. They pay 28 percent more in salaries than the state average. Purcell says his association has been active in trying to get local youths involved in the boating industry. Under his tutelage it has created a Salty Jobs video shown at local schools that fits in perfectly with the association s goal to protect advocate grow and promote the Celebrate the Industry 400 SW Second St. from noon to 5 p.m. To showcase the impact of the area s marine industry the fourth annual Marine Industry Day--hosted by the Marine Industry Association of South Florida--will be held Saturday June 17 at Fort Lauderdale s Esplanade Park The family-oriented event includes fun interactive marine-related activities live music children s areas educational games and food trucks. Admission is free. More than 2 500 people attended last year. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 55 PRO-FI FACILITY MAINTENANCE GENERAL CONTRACTING PRESSURE CLEANING - PORTER HANDYMAN SERVICES www.profifm.com 954.946.4340 info profifm.com A REPUTATION B UILT OVER FOUR GENERATIONS ESTABLISHED IN 1925 B R O WA R D S O L D E S T L AW F I R M D E E P LY R O O T E D I N T H E C O M M U N I T Y. 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Most recently he founded 8base a technology company looking to revolutionize the enterprise software industry and co-founded Thrillient a financial technology and processing company. Previously he was founder chairman and CEO of CareCloud an IT health care company and Avisena a venture-backed revenue cycle management company for physicians. Santalo is the recipient of Florida International University s 2004 Charles E. Perry Visionary Award and was inducted to the FIU Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame in 2006. Santalo was born in Baltimore to Cuban parents and moved to Miami at age 11. He graduated from Christopher Columbus High School studied computer science at the University of Miami and has a master s degree in business from FIU. This edition of CEO Connect was held at Prestige Imports Lamborghini in North Miami. Santalo was interviewed by SFBW Chairman and CEO Gary Press with some questions at the end from the audience. The following transcript has been edited for brevity and clarity. You joined Answerthink when it was a startup in 1997. What drew you there and what experience did you gain I had just finished my MBA. My whole plan was to start a health technology company but I got lured into Answerthink. I thought it was too good of an opportunity to pass up. Ted Fernandez who was the national partner in charge of KPMG Strategic Consulting Services had left and raised 20 million of venture capital. I got the opportunity to come in and get founder shares. Serial Success 58 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com We all know you have to get experience before you go out on your own. It s gotten a lot easier to start companies but I think it s good to get some experience. I think if a person gets an opportunity to start a company in their 20s these days I think that s the right pursuit--assuming they have the DNA to do it. What compelled you to start your own company Before CareCloud I had started another company in 2001 Avisena which was also a health care technology company. That was a very terrifying experience. I was 32. I was out there trying to raise money trying to be a tech entrepreneur trying to be CEO for the first time in an environment where the dot-coms were just blowing up. The economy was in the tank. I had to invest my own money and go without pay. I managed to get through it built the company successfully raised the money we needed. In 2008 I ended up leaving and thinking about what was next. I had the contacts to raise the money. We do live in South Florida and there is an abundance of high net worth individuals. I had been able to perfect the playbook of starting a company with private capital. We raised a little under 3 million all from private individuals. You built up Avisena. What made you make the leap after you built up that company In short it was investor dysfunction. It was one of those moments in a person s life where they think about and decide who they are. One of those moments where you can capitulate and say I could stay on board and do the wrong thing. I ve worked six years in this company and built it up successfully but I never saw a pattern of success based on what certain investors were pushing and I felt like it was against my principles so I walked away. The second time with CareCloud I got CareCloud up to about 25 million in revenue and the board was beginning to impose certain management decisions on me mostly around key personnel and some of that stuff didn t work. It s the kind of situation where I was asked to step down. After six months of being in a different role I felt like life was too short. What s your advice for entrepreneurs What is your advice for people who want to take that leap but are a little scared What I ve always done is study what happens in Silicon Valley and maintain contacts there but adapt that playbook to South Florida. We don t have the same resources where you look at capital engineering talent even professionals such as lawyers or accountants that know how to support technology companies. One of the things that has made me successful is I prepare a lot before I pitch to investors. We all believe in it and are going to drive returns and not go off and do some crazy idea that s not going to work. How do you work with investors to get clear-cut expectations so that you stay on the same page as much as you can You can make a lot of mistakes with private investors such as overpromising things and giving away too many things. For instance if private investors have the rights to block things that can lead to dysfunction that isn t good for investors. It s being able to orchestrate the right kind of deals in a private setting. Then in venture settings venture capitalists--regardless of what percentage of the company they own--are going to try to impose control provisions and protective provisions. Unless you are Facebook or Google you are probably going to have to live with them. The important thing No. 1--and this is an absolute--is integrity. You have to be honest and you have to show up with the Alina Gavrushenko and Rob Ceravolo Karl Schwartz and Eric Donner www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 59 CEO CONNECT bad news and deliver it early. You have to create a structure of transparency and try really really hard to recruit the best team and build a highly scalable model. Can you tell us a little about your current ventures The first one is Thrillient which is really helping with merchant processing and credit card processing. I have a team in place that s operating the company dayto-day. I m spending a little bit of time there but most of my time is being spent on 8base which is a very very disruptive software company. We are developing a product that allows business people to roll out enterprise software and do it very quickly. It s very powerful and very scalable enterprise software without developers. So it s literally cutting out developers architects dev-ops [development and perations] designers out of the process. What type of company would it make sense to use it Just about any type of company. If they want to track customers and they go out and buy Salesforce.com it costs you a fortune. There are other solutions--they may or may not be good--and then you may have to buy a marketing automation software and you may have to buy accounting software billing software and HR software. Before you know it you are spending tens of thousands a month that most small businesses cannot afford on all of this stitched-together software. Imagine that you had a software framework that could drop into your business like water and could fill the container. You could do it at a much lower cost get better technology not have to ever worry about backups and disaster recovery and if the business triples in size not worrying about the computing infrastructure. All of that is automatically taken care of for you. Tell me a bit more about Thrillient. How are you doing merchant processing differently One of the last things I did at CareCloud before I stepped out was a strategic deal with First Data Corp. which is the largest credit card processing company in the world. My contact there the CEO and I Jordan Knowles Luis Arango and Philip Jacobs Fernando Gomez Jorge Najera and Delle Joseph The CEO Connect was held at Lamborghini dealer Prestige Imports in North Miami 60 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com Prestige Imports CEO Brett David welcomes guests to CEO Connect sat down and he showed me a vision of where the company was going. I ended up designing a product at CareCloud that lives on that platform. It s called Clover. First Data ended up investing in CareCloud and brought along PNC and they ended up doing an investment of about 12 million. I fell in love with where that industry is going. The dialogue that needs to happen is How do we elevate your capabilities using new technology at the point of sale loyalty programs gift card programs all of these kind of things that help the merchants elevate the conversation and their capabilities What are the rising trends in technology Technology such as artificial intelligence and driverless cars and drones are going to completely eliminate jobs. You think about truck drivers taxi drivers even Uber drivers--all sorts of professionals cashiers clerks even certain elements of accounting and law. All of these things are quickly being taken out. I worry about the future of jobs and society. I m not a proponent of stopping the trains but I really don t have a clear answer for what the solution is. What keeps you up at night People more than anything. I love people. People are your best opportunity and your biggest challenge. You can t be successful without them but you have to treat them as individuals. That means you are going to have to deal with their individual problems and the problems they bring you the challenges of motivating them and managing them and so forth. Always trying to look for the best people and having them bring their A game is what keeps me up more than anything. You said earlier when I asked about taking a risk and being an entrepreneur that they have to have the right DNA. What do you look for when you are talking to someone What I look for is an entrepreneur who is willing to listen tries to apply what they ve heard and do it quickly. They are resourceful. They have grit. They are going to be able to see it through when the tough times come because they always come. They have a true vision. That they are going to be able to hire great people and are going to sit in front of a VC [venture capitalist] who will say they are backable. Ever work with somebody that you thought was brilliant but had tough people skills How do you coach and mentor that person I ve screwed this up a lot. Avisena and CareCloud got up to 250 [employees] and I always made it a point that I did the newhire orientation. I was there to tell them about the values and what to expect and what we expected from them. I would always draw this quadrant which was borrowed from GE. One dimension was fit and the other was performance. The way I would explain it was if you were in the lower right-hand quadrant those were the people we should never hire. If they aren t a fit and don t perform you ve got to screen them in the HR process. If they are in the high-fit low-performance quadrant you have to work to get them in the upper left-hand quadrant. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 61 CEO CONNECT You have to mentor support them because they have great attitudes. The people in the upper left are your A players. Your challenge is how do you give them enough opportunity and pay to keep them But it s what you do with that remaining quadrant that makes a difference. These are the people that perform but don t fit. I ve tried to become more rigid about this. I ve tried to kind of patch up my mistakes in hiring to make sure I get it right. There s a book called The NoAsshole Rule. That s the best way to describe our policy about the lower lefthand quadrant. I m a headhunter and I have been recruiting 30 years and I have two children at home 12 and 14. I have no career advice that I can give them because technology is changing things so quickly. What would you give them as career advice The important thing is to become really good at people skills--ideally in the ability to manage others to hire inspire and lead others to success. Develop sales skills in whatever way those are applied. Have technology skills. That doesn t mean they have to code but to have computational thinking woven into who they are so they can understand that this is how business operates and how can you bring technology to operate it properly. What is one mistake you made that was a great lesson I think all my key mistakes--and 90 percent of CEOs will answer the same way--is not getting rid of a person fast enough. About CEO Connect SFBW s CEO Connect series is an exclusive invitation-only monthly event that brings together South Florida s top business leaders to meet mingle and talk among their peers. The presenting sponsor is Celebrity Cruises. Gold sponsors include Greenspoon Marder Shorecrest Construction TD Bank and Optime Consulting. The evening begins with a cocktail reception for about 100 guests followed by the highlight of the event a live interview between Gary Press SFBW chairman and CEO and a wellknown C-level executive providing insight into their personal lives careers and views on issues affecting the business community. Partnering with SFBW on this exclusive event provides an opportunity to network with the area s business elite generate new business opportunities and increase brand awareness. For information about event sponsorship opportunities email Clayton Idle at cidle sfbwmag.com. Celebrity ad A revolution is coming. Celebrity Edge is the future of cruising. To learn more Email PJacobs celebrity.com Call 800 722 5934 or contact your travel agent All images of Celebrity Edgesm are artistic renderings based on current development concepts which are subject to change without notice. Celebrity Edge and Edge are trademarks of Celebrity Cruises 2017 Celebrity Cruises. Ships registry Malta and Ecuador. 16053337 5 2017 62 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com PRIVATE TRAINING STUDIO CORPORATE CENTER 33301 WHY TRAIN WITH BILL I have been training with Bill since 1993 have referred dozens of friends & associates and have received positive feedback from each. -- Mike Maroone President Maroone Enterprises CLUB 1 HEALTH & FITNESS CENTER PRIVATE CORPORATE & GROUP CLASSES BEFORE 400lbs Here 45 minutes training is all you need Busy I can come to you Makoto Speed & Reaction Arena NOW 220lbs Your Results Guaranteed FOR MORE INFO GO TO BILLKYSER.COM OR CALL 954.290.292063 www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 SOUTH FLORIDA EXECUTIVE ROUNDTABLE Moderator Kevin Gale center with panelists Brent Blake Dwight Hill Oscar Vicente and Sergio Rodriguez Castillo Faster Cheaper Better It s just another day of innovation for these panelists BY ANDREA RICHARD Heart surgery as an outpatient procedure That s an example of the type of change and innovation panelists at the April 6 Executive Roundtable discussed. The panel featured an array of experienced executives in the fields of health care banking restaurants and hospitality Oscar Vicente chief financial officer at Tenet Healthcare. Dwight Hill president at Sabadell United Bank. Sergio Rodriguez Castillo chief operating officer at Areas USA. Brent Blake chief financial officer of the Americas region at DB Schenker Schenker Americas. The discussion moderator was SFBW Editor-in-Chief Kevin Gale. The South Florida Executive Roundtable is an invitation-only luncheon for C-suite executives and SFBW is the exclusive media sponsor. The following transcript has been edited for clarity and brevity. How do you define innovation Hill Doing something faster cheaper than before. It s ubiquitous today--you re a consumer and you have mobile deposit on your phone. You don t have to go to a branch. Blake You can look at our industry as a commodity industry but on the contract logical side the client expects you to come 64 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com SOUTH FLORIDA EXECUTIVE ROUNDTABLE up with innovation solutions to meet their needs. The overall customized solution must be innovative with that you need to streamline operations and hopefully adding value to that. Vicente We have a weekly meeting on the newest and the best technology that is available. But to use it physicians require a lot of training. Robotic surgery is the way of the future--a physician can do it remotely however it requires a ton of training. I don t know too many doctors willing to take three to four months off to learn it. New tech is introduced on a weekly basis. Hill I have a small team that works on innovation that are not bankers. I believe in having a separate group who works on innovation. What is your biggest challenge Hill The fintech [financial technology] world. A lot of capital is going into lending clubs and online banks. We have a company called VirtualBank.com. There have been very few banks started since the financial crisis. Blake The greatest challenge is the way you buy things and distribute things and to anticipate the client s needs driven by consumer trends. That whole Amazon effect. Vicente My vision and I m already seeing signs of it You are going to be in the hospital [only] for very high acute surgeries. Open-heart is soon going to become an outpatient service. They can go through a vein faster. Health care--the bad news. The great unknowns. What are we going to do as a country moving forward The payment mechanisms and delivery are going to change. I think we will see more outpatients. Castillo We need to double our size in the next three years. The real challenge is incorporating the digital experience into our business. Tenet like many other health care companies has seen its share price under pressure the last few years. How do you keep employee morale positive when a negative event like a falling share price happens Vicente I consider myself lucky--the stock price comes and goes. The people who work at our facilities took on the careers as a calling. They don t focus on stock prices. It s a 1 000-mile journey you take it one step at a time. Nurses doctors are so focused on delivering the best health care they can. What was the key factor to choosing Miami for your headquarters Blake I ve been here for 25 years. It s a great market for the logistics transportation industry. It s evolved dramatically. In the 70s we had a lot of mom and pop companies. And now we have global organizations. We have local talent and a well-established airport where you can almost go anywhere. We looked at Atlanta it wasn t the right fit for us. Dallas wasn t as good as Miami. We thought Florida was the right fit for us. Sometimes financial executives find themselves facing major changes in revenue streams. One presumably happened after Tenet announced last year that its doctors and hospitals would no longer be in the Humana network. What advice do you have for CFOs on how to adjust to an event that disrupts revenue Vicente Humana was a big chunk of our business. Unfortunately some patients won t be able to come to our facilities. My feeling is that it wasn t negotiated well on both sides. So it wasn t a situation I was involved in. And overall we have to adapt. We have had a challenge for this yes but it s not going to be a make or break. How important are brick-and-mortar locations in banking Is that going to fade away What innovations are on the horizon in banking Hill Bank branches weren t created for the convenience of the customer. They were created for the banker so they could have everything in one place. Branches are disappearing by size and number. We are reducing the number of people. With technology we can provide better service. What s more convenient Coming to our office or us coming to your office What was important in banking at one time--one era it was a free toaster and high interest rates-- can change over time. What do customers want now particularly business customers and how do you drive innovation to meet those needs Hill What people want is a solution to a problem. I want a loan and you do these things because you want to own a home grow your business. So we have to find ways to lend them money. How do our local airports rank in terms of providing innovative cutting-edge service to their customers when it comes to the type of amenities Areas offers Castillo A new concept is a sense of place. Ten years ago the iPhone was invented and everything has changed. Airports are looking to be the doors to the seas. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 65 COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE A Look at Office Investments BY DARCIE LUNSFORD Experts and historical data aside no one really has a crystal ball for timing the real estate market. And arguably in the President Trump era with the verbal war on trade pacts that fill local buildings with multinational tenants rising interest rates and tax reform approaches that could nix deductions and write-offs for commercial real estate owners the timing game is more challenging this year. Despite the overhanging uncertainty office investment conditions largely should remain stable through the rest of the year according to the Marcus & Millichap U.S. Office Investment Forecast. The forecast s widely watched investment index measures year-overyear changes in employment new construction leasing velocity and other key economic drivers of the nation s top 46 office markets to sort out the best places for office investment. The report says Current investor sentiment reflects a cautious outlook as a widening bid-ask spread has slowed transaction velocity. Highly amenitized CBD [central business district] deals appear to generate less interest than in previous years reflecting heavier construction volume in many downtowns and slowing CBD growth. This year s index winners are the tech strongholds of San Jose and San Francisco in California Seattle-Tacoma and Portland Oregon. Boston follows jumping seven spots from its 2016 ranking thanks to double-digit rent growth and high occupancy levels. Raleigh North Carolina made its debut on this year s index as the eighth best metropolitan area to invest in after 23 300 new workers were added to local payrolls in 2016 with another 26 500 jobs forecast to be added this year. Corporate growth paired with a restrained development pipeline is putting the area on the map as one of the nation s top 10 locations for office buyers. The convergence of a highly educated and skilled workforce low taxes and synergy among tech firms has drawn companies to the Raleigh metro the report explains. In South Florida the Fort Lauderdale area moved up six spots on the index propelled by an anticipated 4.3 percent growth in total jobs with 36 000 new jobs expected to be added this year compared to the 30 100 added last year. Office rents are forecast to rise another 5.7 percent this year down from a 7.6 percent increase in rents last year. Palm Beach County s index ranking fell one spot to become the nation s 30th-best office investment place. Local payrolls are expected to increase by 15 200 new jobs this year compared to 7 600 jobs gained last year. Office rents are predicted to grow 4.3 percent compared to 3.4 percent in 2016. While still the most desirable and highest ranked of all the South Florida counties Miami-Dade s index ranking toppled six spots this year landing it at 11th. The drop was a function of more dynamic markets surging ahead on this year s index. MiamiDade employment is expected to grow 2.2 percent this year gaining about 25 000 jobs compared to the 21 800 created last year the report says. Office rent which grew by 7.6 percent in 2016 is predicted to rise another 6.7 percent this year. Investors are likely to continue to focus on the suburban markets of Kendall and west of Miami International airport. In the CBD there is a lot of new supply in downtown and along Brickell so the suburban markets are more in favor now says Alex D. Zylberglait senior managing director of investments at Marcus & Millichap in Miami. Global political and economic apprehensions are making many buyers leery of overspending on pricey assets he says. There is certainly an uneasiness about what is going on Zylberglait says. The fundamentals are still very strong so I think investors are just being more picky a little less aggressive and more conservative. According to the report technologydriven San Jose will be the nation s office-buying hot spot this year knocking last year s No. 1 San Francisco to third place. Freelance writer Darcie Lunsford is a former real estate editor of the South Florida Business Journal. She is the senior VP for leasing at Butters Group and is avoiding a conflict of interest in her column by not covering her own deals. 66 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com THE 2017 UP & COMER AWARDS FINALISTS ACCOUNTING Alexander Binelo Melinda Mergelsberg Diana Rivera Eric Santa Maria Brian Schlang MBAF Kaufman Rossin MBAF Verdeja De Armas & Trujillo LLP MBAF LAW BROWARD & PALM BEACH Mitchell Goldberg Matthew Kissner Adam Lusthaus Dana Somerstein Alessandra Stivelman Joshua Widlansky Community Capital Management Legacy Bank of Florida Apollo Bank Bank of America JP Morgan Chase Bank Berger Singerman Broad and Cassell LLP Lusthaus Law Group PLLC Greenspoon Marder Eisinger Brown Lewis Frankel & Chaiet P.A Padula Bennardo Levine LLP REAL ESTATE Matthew Cheezem Taylor Collins Charles Penan Ryan Shear Zachary Talbot JLL Two Roads Development Aztec Group Inc. Property Markets Group Cresa BANKING Elliot Gilfarb Golden Johansson Joaquin Medina Nikki Morley Antonio Tomaro REAL ESTATE BROKERAGE Jorge Guerra Jr. Avishan Joseph Christina Pappas Real Estate Sales Force Illustrated Properties The Keyes Company LAW MIAMI-DADE Karim Batista Law Offices of Karim Batista P.A. Kadian Blanson Rivero Mestre LLP Corey Lee Hunton & Williams LLP John Owens K&L Gates Weiss Serota Helfman Cole & Bierman P.L. John Quick Jaime Vining Friedland Vining P.A. SPORTS David Mack Truscott Miller Miami Dolphins Miami Marlins L.P. CONSTRUCTION Ryan Bridger Kar Ho Michael Joslyn Alex Lazowick Hedrick Brothers Construction Current Builders Suffolk Construction Keith and Associates Inc. TECHNOLOGY MANUFACTURING Gian Carlo Alonso AmeriKooler Inc. Stephen Carter Danielle MacLean Roebuck Christine Molloy Cody Stiffler Candidate.GURU Modernizing Medicine Accenture BioTrackTHC EDUCATION Andrea Catsicas Adriana Fazzano Ficano Dr. Scott Kjelson Mindworks Prep Broward College Nova Southeastern University MARKETING & MEDIA Angela Bradley Emily Loewy Michelle Martinez Reyes Chris Nielsen Wolfgang Pinther Rosemarie Reed Pipeline Workspaces Norwegian Cruise Line Greenspoon Marder Levatas MBAF World Travel Holdings FINANCE Andrew Costa Jason Heller Victor Hernandez Alex Horn Josu L on Global Wealth Management MassMutual Financial Group J.P. Morgan BridgeInvest New York Life Insurance Company 2 0 1 7 MARKETING ENTREPRENEUR Jason Brian Vanessa Goodis Lyndsi Stafford Redwood Recovery Solutions Promo Moxie Inc. eLuminate Marketing HEALTHCARE Melissa Christopher Aaron Epstein Justin Irizarry Michael Kuang Memorial Healthcare System Global Surgical and Medical Support Group OrthoNOW LLC Syphon Fitness NON-PROFIT Jayson Babel Kenneth Brighton Andrew George Erica Herman Johanna Kandel Ann Storck Center ChildNet The Honda Classic Voices for Children of Broward County The Alliance for Eating Disorders Awareness PRESENTING SPONSOR HOSPITALITY Moises Acosta Fernando Cerna David Demos Kelly Eppy Mike Linder Riverside Hotel EAST Miami Terra Fiamma Panera Bread Covelli Enterprises Silver Lining Inflight Catering PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Nathan Dapeer Nate Ernest-Jones Chris Giordano Will Nicoloso Wendi Weiner BBX Capital Partners Transworld Business Advisors Calvin Giordano & Associates Inc. Magic Bubbles Inc. The Writing Guru GOLD SPONSORS INSURANCE Erin Clampett David DeMott Conor Flynn Esther Francis Veronica Jimenez Eugene Mintze Marsh & McLennan Agency GridIron Insurance Underwriters Aon Risk Solutions MassMutual Financial Group Brown & Brown Sapoznik Insurance PUBLIC RELATIONS Kelly Coughlin Christina Nicholson Melissa Perlman Annex Communications Media Maven BlueIvy Communications NONPROFIT GOVERNANCE Nonprofit Spotlight George Taylor BY GERRY CZARNECKI George Taylor is a former family business executive and entrepreneur who now practices law with the firm of Brinkley Morgan. He received his bachelor s degree from Lynn University and is a cum laude graduate of the Nova Southeastern University s Shepard Broad Law Center. He serves on the board of the Salah Foundation a private charitable family foundation as well as the Broward Performing Arts Foundation. He is vice chairman of the ARC Broward board and a member of its governance committee. Taylor was asked about his engagement in the nonprofit community where he has the unique role of being a funder and a fundraiser. What was the first volunteer effort you can remember doing I remember very clearly. It was in eighth grade at the St. Elizabeth nursing home and I did that for a year and it moved me. I realized that giving back made me happy and I made a difference. What was the first nonprofit board you joined What was that George Taylor experience like Would you do it again It was the Salah Foundation a charitable foundation founded by my great uncle and it was a huge learning experience. I saw so many proposals that I began to understand just what it took to have a nonprofit to make a difference. I am blessed to be able to help a wide range of causes and I know we make a difference. I am honored to continue that mission. You have a varied business portfolio. How has that influenced your thinking about nonprofits I tell every nonprofit I can Use for-profit disciplines. Too many do not and they hurt their ability to achieve their mission on a sustainable basis. What are some of your great give back passions Children because so many are in so much need. The arts because my mother against my will took me to The Nutcracker when I was a kid and it so impressed me I got hooked. What is your greatest success as a board member Without hesitation raising 22.6 million for the Broward Health Foundation. But in another case I helped turn a moribund board with little director financial engagement into one that is now fully committed to meaningful financial give-and-get goals. Of all the board experiences did you ever have a crisis to deal with What happened and what was the outcome Yes when I was the chair of the kids campaign for Broward Health. It was at a time of enormous turmoil at the North Broward Hospital District. We were raising money to renovate and expand the children s hospital and many potential donors questioned giving to an organization that had so much negative press. Despite the almost impossible hurdle in less than two years we surpassed the 20.6 million goal. As a board member what are your most significant expectations of your fellow board members Be passionate about the cause and commit to giving both your time and treasure to the best of your ability. Gerry Czarnecki is founder and chairman of the nonprofit National Leadership Institute (nationalleadershipinstitute.org) which helps boards of nonprofit organizations become strategic assets to the leadership team. His extensive background as a C-suite executive and CEO is coupled with current board leadership of corporate and nonprofit organizations. He is also chairman and CEO of the Deltennium Group. Contact him at 561.293.3726 or gmc deltennium.com. 68 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com TECH HUB Pet Conglomerate The largest e-commerce deal in South Florida s history BY CHRIS FLECK South Florida now has technology bragging rights that go beyond developing the IBM personal computer the first smartphone (Simon from IBM BellSouth) the largest web host (Hiway Technologies) the first pager (Motorola) application virtualization (Citrix) and mixedreality pioneer Magic Leap. Recently executives at PetSmart the Phoenix-based retail giant decided they needed to move beyond brick-and-mortar stores in a big way and purchased Dania Beach-based Chewy. com the largest online pet retailer for 3.35 billion. That s larger than last year s purchase of Jet.com by Walmart. Chewy.com has more than 50 percent market share. In 2016 it had 900 million in revenue with almost 2 billion projected for this year. It was founded by Ryan Cohen and Michael Day who met in a java coding chat room when Cohen was looking for a web developer for a previous company project. The pair s first venture was an online jewelry store but when that didn t work out as planned they identified an underserved market for pet products. It turns out they were right. In 2012 their first year of operation they sold 26 million in pet food. In addition to competitive pricing Chewy.com engaged customers with tips on pets handwritten thank-you notes and artist paintings of pet photos sent by clients. Today Chewy.com employs more than 4 000 employees and boasts a loyal customer base. The company s headquarters are in the Design Center of the Americas building located just south of the Fort LauderdaleHollywood International Airport-- i n t e r e s t i n g l y the same place Magic Leap started. Initial indications are that PetSmart will operate Chewy.com as a subsidiary and keep the operations based in South Florida. It would be smart to keep the pet passion Chewy.com has achieved with Amazon only a click away. Currently roughly 5 percent of pet products are bought online leaving a lot of upside for a local tech star. Chris Fleck is on the board of the South Florida Technology Alliance and vice president of emerging solutions for Citrix Systems (Nasdaq CTXS) a Fort Lauderdale company that provides secure delivery of applications and data. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 69 SALES STRATEGIES Back to school What motivates your people BY GRETA SCHULZ Earlier this year New York became the first state to offer free tuition to twoand four-year colleges for middle-class students. Understanding that there are certainly positives in passing this law I wonder if this is the best approach to the education issue. I am a big believer in merit. I have seen repeatedly that when people work toward something they appreciate it much more. I recognize not everyone can afford full tuition but isn t there a better way education institutions can offer it for free If you have children or even if you think back to when you were a child I bet you can relate to this story My son always loved computers. Everything about them. He played games interacted with friends-- everything that can be done on a computer he did. We had a computer for the kids to share in the family room to use for homework or whatever. This seemed to work fine for my other two kids but not for J.P. Mom I really need my own computer in my room so I can use it when I want and not have to wait for anyone. I feel that I am old enough and responsible enough to be able to have that J.P. would say. I thought about what he said agreeing with a lot of the points he was making. So I sat him down and had a talk with him. J.P. I agree with you about your maturity your responsibility and the attitude that you have to help others. These are great characteristics. Because of that I have decided that you can get your own computer that will be yours with some restrictions of course I said. He couldn t contain his excitement and asked if we could go get one immediately. He stopped in his tracks when I told him that he could get the computer as soon as he had half of the money to buy it. If he saved the money for half of his computer I would match that amount. As we sat there he picked up his head and complained Mom that s not fair. I am a good kid and I just want to have one thing--that s it I explained that those were reasons why I would match what he saved. After not talking to me for about three days he agreed to the terms. Not being old enough to work at a local store or fast-food restaurant J.P. began doing chores around the house. He talked to the neighbors about doing some yardwork and errands. When his friends would ask him to go to the movies he declined because he was saving money. At the end of the summer he had saved more than 600s which was half of what the computer cost. The night before we went to Best Buy to purchase the computer he couldn t sleep. The next morning he was up earlier than everyone else which was highly unusual for him. When we arrived at the store he knew exactly what he wanted grabbed it handed the cashier the money as well as my credit card and we returned home. As you can imagine this was a wonderful life lesson. To this day he tells me he still has that computer. It s in the closet and he doesn t use it but still has it just the same. I wonder if I had paid for all of it could this story have been told I doubt it. So is New York doing more harm than good Is it enabling another four years of apathetic attitudes about education as if it were an extension of high school By nature we need a merit-based system to drive motivation. Greta Schulz is president of Schulz Business a sales consulting and training firm. She is the best-selling author of To Sell is NOT to Sell and works with Fortune 1000 companies and entrepreneurs. For more information or free sales tips go to schulzbusiness. com and sign up for GretaNomics a weekly video tip series or email sales questions to greta schulzbusiness.com. 70 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com PEOPLE PASSION AND PROFITS Control Your Emotions or Your Emotions will Control You BY STEPHEN GARBER Emotional triggers--what we at Third Level like to call your hot buttons--are a part of everyone s emotional fabric. They are natural responses to upsetting or painful experiences. Think of them as sensitive spots that can leave an emotional bruise. Not surprisingly whether you re aware of them or not hot buttons can affect you in many ways. They can cause stress or pain when they have too much control over you. They manifest negatively in your subconscious which is why many people are unaware of them. They result in a pattern of beliefs communications behaviors and outcomes that are reactive rather than thoughtful. Sometimes our hot buttons are valuable. We are hurt by a failure in our past and we vow never to let that feeling of failure arise again. It helps motivate us to success. But sometimes that same hot button can hinder effective leadership communication and thoughtful decisions. It can make us driven and demanding in ways that cost us good people and performance. In the business world a powerful emotional charge that results in unproductive reactionary decisions and behavior is not only counterproductive it can also be destructive and limit growth leadership potential and the ability to work as an effective member of a team. These same negative consequences that will hold you back in the workplace will also cause problems at home and in personal relationships. Hot buttons do not have to run your professional or private life. As with so many things in life the first step in overcoming them is identifying and understanding them. Some common emotional triggers Lacking the confidence to say no. Feeling that someone else (a boss coworker customer) controls your time. Believing your opinion ideas are not valued. Considering a professional challenge as a personal failure. Changes in routine an atmosphere of instability or lack of structure. Managing your hot buttons takes a concerted effort and a lot of self-awareness. Once you ve identified them you are on the right track to managing them and moving forward in a positive way. You can control those buttons and their results rather than your hot buttons controlling you. With knowledge comes empowerment. Recognizing a situation that will trigger an emotional response allows you to take an emotional step back and choose whether you want to ride the train along the same rails as in the past or take a detour toward a constructive response. Once you ve decided to change the pattern and being aware of your unproductive perceptions and behavior will allow you to address your stressful trigger situations with the tools necessary to set aside your emotional knee-jerk reaction in favor of a balanced thoughtful response. Shifting your emotional state and responding from a thoughtful logical place becomes a skill you can practice until the new dynamic becomes second nature. Rather than letting unconscious patterns and old emotions control you you can make conscious decisions that are more likely serve you and your business It s a healthier more powerful and more productive way to live. For information on identifying and overcoming your hot buttons or helping your team identify and overcome theirs visit thirdlevel.com and go to the Services Hot Buttons page email info thirdlevel.com or call 800.262.0705. Stephen Garber is director of Third Level Ltd. Contact him at 561.752.5505 or sgarber thirdlevel.com. www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 71 THE FAMILY OFFICE Bitcoin An Uncorrelated Asset Class BY JULIE NEITZEL Investors looking for new growth opportunities might want to consider bitcoin a peer-to-peer cashless system also known as cryptocurrency. Launched in 2009 bitcoin s value was less than 1 a unit and reached a historical high of more than 1 360 at the end of April 2017. Today the bitcoin market capitalization is nearly 30 billion with 600 million of daily trading of more than 200 000 transactions. It is estimated that there are more than 10 million bitcoin wallets globally. How does bitcoin work Bitcoin users establish digital accounts known as wallets with private key codes that enable access to balance information and the ability to transact. The price of bitcoin is determined by demand and supply subject to price volatility similar to a commodity or a stock. All bitcoin transactions are handled through what is called the blockchain which is a database containing a record of every bitcoin transaction from inception. The integrity and the chronological order of the blockchain are enforced with militarygrade cryptography and it is critical for bitcoin users to use trusted blockchain exchanges to process transactions. While bitcoin has the potential to change the way payments are made globally there are challenges. Given its technology foundation bitcoin is susceptible to hackers. According to Reuters nearly onethird of the trading platforms have been hacked while nearly half of them have shut down because of inadequate funding. Well-publicized hacking events have occurred including the theft of 70 million from the Bitfinex platform in 2016 and 350 million from Tokyo s Mt. Gox exchange in 2014. Currently more than 100 000 merchants such as Microsoft Expedia and Walmart accept bitcoin although adoption remains low. In 2013 Lamborghini became the first car company to accept payment in bitcoin and Vancouver British Columbia became the first city with a bitcoin ATM. Beyond the tech world however three out of four Americans have never heard of bitcoin based on research done by Gfk and The Street. Additionally the regulatory environment is evolving internationally. Earlier this year Chinese regulators banned bitcoin exchanges and India s government might consider legalizing bitcoin this summer. Other countries are drafting laws to regulate bitcoin transactions and U.S. regulators recently rejected a proposal for a bitcoin-backed exchange-traded fund. There are benefits with cryptocurrency. Family members living in different countries can access funds within minutes with lower costs than bank transaction fees. Capital controls and excessive costs for cross-border transitions make bitcoin appealing. Also because it exists in the public domain where there is no point of authority that a government can enforce individuals have full control of their financial activity. Bitcoin is creating a global network of developers whose goal is to pool resources and continue to build the blockchain framework it is estimated that more than 200 000 advanced computers are involved in bitcoin mining to enable transactions. Is there a wealth management role for bitcoin Investors in markets where there are strict capital controls (such as China) may use bitcoin and bitcoin investment products as a means to circumvent the traditional financial system through a shadow banking system thus enabling them to export capital. U.S. investors generally consider bitcoin a speculative investment given its risk profile and private capital has been invested in the development of the underlying blockchain technology and infrastructure which could create significant cost efficiencies transparency and enhanced risk management tools for asset managers. The future of bitcoin is uncertain but it might be the next uncorrelated asset class and an addition to managed portfolios. As always investors should confer with their wealth advisers about the risks and opportunities. Julie Neitzel is a partner and adviser with WE Family Offices in Miami and a board member of the Miami Finance Forum. Contact her at Julie.Neitzel wefamilyoffices.com or 305.825.2225. 72 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com For Your Perfect Event Weston Hills Country Club proudly offers our services to make your next event an extraordinary success. Terrific Views Flexible Meeting Space with state of the art technology for your next Client Appreciation Galas Fundraisers Planning Sessions Holiday Events Golf Tournaments myoung westonhillsgolf.com www.westonhillsgolfclub.com www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 954.384.4670 73 HISTORY VIEWPOINT Photo by William Franklin Gerecke. HistoryMiami Museum 1975-053-25.a Biscayne Boulevard after the 1926 hurricane (Miami Fla.) 1927. Miami News Collection HistoryMiami Museum 1989-011-1654. South Florida Eye of the Storm Hurricanes have shaped the destiny of South Florida. The area s precarious position between two large bodies of water--the Atlantic Ocean to the east the Gulf of Mexico to the west--makes it vulnerable allowing storms to leave indelible marks on South Florida s history. The early 1920s in South Florida roared. Real estate boomed and northerners flocked to the sunny beaches like migrating birds. Midway through the decade however South Florida took some devastating blows. 1926 started with turmoil when Prinz Valdemar a 241-foot steel-hulled schooner capsized in the Port of Miami closing it off for more than a month. In September that was followed by the Great Miami Hurricane a massive storm that ravaged the burgeoning downtown. Witnesses reported surges as high as 15 feet submerging MacArthur Causeway. But the real devastation occurred when the storm s eye wall hit the heart of the city. New Floridians thought the storm had passed and filled the streets. Once the backside of the storm made landfall many were caught unsheltered. It was a harsh but valuable lesson. For the next three decades the tropics remained relatively quiet with few major storms making landfall in Miami. In 1960 Hurricane Donna changed that. The only major storm from that season Donna turned parts of the Florida Keys into desolate land. Storm surges as high as 13 feet were recorded there. At its peak sustained winds measured around 160 mph before the massive storm crept up the eastern coast of the United States. To date Donna is the only storm to hit Florida parts of North and South Carolina as well as areas of New England with hurricane-force winds. However the storm of the century was Hurricane Andrew. In 1992 it loomed in the Atlantic Ocean and built strength for 10 days before making landfall on the southern tip of the Florida mainland. The state was not prepared for the Category 5 storm which had maximum sustained winds of 165 mph and gusts exceeding 200 mph. The storm roared west in about four hours at approximately 18 mph. Homestead was hardest hit with entire neighborhoods obliterated. More than 100 000 people were displaced and the community needed more than five years to rebuild. The storm caused more than 26 billion in damage--at the time the costliest hurricane in U.S. history. It now ranks behind Katrina (2005 108 billion) Sandy (2012 50 billion) and Ike (2008 29.5 billion) according to U.S. News and World Report. This year marks the 25th anniversary of Andrew and HistoryMiami Museum tells stories from the storm s formation to its legacy. The exhibition Hurricane Andrew 25 Years Later opens June 1 and runs through Jan. 14. The guest curator meteorologist Brian Norcross will appear at the opening reception. For information visit historymiami.org. Information for this feature is courtesy of the HistoryMiami Archives & Research Center which is open to the public and contains more than 1.5 million images of southeast Florida the entire state and the Caribbean from 1883 to the present. For information or to visit HistoryMiami visit historymiami.org. 74 JUNE 2017 www.sfbwmag.com Introducing Celebrity Edge. A ship designed to leave the future behind. Coming to Ft. Lauderdale in December 2018. To learn more Email PJacobs celebrity.com Call 800 722 5934 or contact your travel agent All images of Celebrity Edgesm are artistic renderings based on current development concepts which are subject to change without notice. Celebrity Edge and Edge are trademarks of Celebrity Cruises 2017 Celebrity Cruises. Ships registry Malta and Ecuador. 16053337 5 2017 www.sfbwmag.com JUNE 2017 75