Miami NFT Week 2023: Everything You Need To Know
In 2022, Miami NFT Week was a bastion of web3 diversity and inclusivity. What can we expect in 2023? We speak to the founders to find out!
Sun, sea and web3 – what more could you need?
First held in 2022, Miami NFT Week has quickly become one of web3’s most anticipated annual events. Founded on the principles of diversity, inclusivity and representation, the event looks to elevate female and LATAM voices, plus offer workshops, speakers and networking opportunities that all in web3 will find valuable.
Ahead of Miami NFT Week 2023, taking place from March 31 to April 2, I sat down with co-founders Gianni D’Alerta, Erik LaPaglia, and Ted Lucas to discuss how the event came together, its aims, and what we can expect in this year’s edition.
John: Gm! Could you tell me a bit about yourselves, your backgrounds, and how you got into the NFT space?
Gianni: I’ve been working in technology, branding, and marketing for more than 20 years, beginning my career at one of Miami’s first ISPs. I entered blockchain in 2013 as a founding member of Ethereum, and worked alongside Ethereum’s founder Anthony Di Iorio at Decentral as the Director of Marketing. Currently, I assist businesses with their web3 strategies at NAKA, including assisting the City of Miami, Mayor Suarez, and Venture Miami on blockchain initiatives.
Erik: Prior to web3, I founded numerous companies in business consulting, advertising, real estate, and film production – and am still a member of several masterminds, and on the Board of over half a dozen nonprofits. Today, I’m the co-founder of Miami NFT – a digital asset firm facilitating large-scale web3 conferences, plus an angel investor and advisor.
Ted: I’m a 25-year veteran of the music business, having founded independent music label Slip-N- Slide Records – responsible for discovering, signing, and developing artists such as Trick Daddy, Trina, Rick Ross, Plies, and Pitbull. I’ve worked with UMG, WMG and SME, helping to generate 30m+ album sales and 5b+ streams. I’m also the founder of First-N-Gold Publishing, a music publishing company, and Boss Man Management, an independent music management company.
You held your first Miami NFT Week in April 2022, with big-name speakers such as Mark Cuban, Avery Akkineni and Swan Sit. How did the idea for the event come about?
Miami NFT Week was born out of our shared passion for the vibrant, diverse cultural scene of our hometown city – and how that culture has intersected with blockchain technology.
It’s no secret that Miami has seen tremendous growth as a burgeoning hub for the crypto industry. Witnessing this incredible growth – in particular the creativity that has stemmed from artistic applications of this technology, such as NFTs – we realized that we could draw on our different backgrounds to convene some really interesting, fun, and diverse conversations and workshops on the NFT industry, DeFi and blockchain technology.
Reflecting back on Miami NFT Week 2022, we’re really proud of what we were able to accomplish – from the diverse array of speakers to installations and performances – and even more excited to reconvene in the 305 this year.
Miami NFT Week 2023 is taking place from March 31 to April 2, with guests including Baron Davis, Laura Rodriguez and Dan Fleyshman. What can we expect?
Miami NFT Week prioritizes inclusion to improve representation and diversity in web3 by encouraging participation from early-stage start-up founders, women, and minority leaders in web3.
As a part of that commitment, this year, Miami NFT Week – with support from sponsor Mastercard – will feature four different panels focused on LATAM and the growing LATAM crypto community.
This year, we’re especially excited to elevate women’s voices in the industry and the incredible work they’re achieving in the NFT space.
Both ETH Denver and NFT Paris – two of the biggest web3 events of the year so far – saw big audiences. How many attendees are you expecting across the week, and what side-events will we see?
Last year, the inaugural Miami NFT Week attracted more than 5,000 in-person attendees. Though the NFT and crypto markets have been through a range of ups and downs since then, we’re planning and hoping to surpass our 2022 attendance.
We had a lot of great participants last year and this year the list of projects represented is even longer. You can see all of those confirmed for the 2023 event here.
You’ll be staging an IRL Buildathon during Miami NFT Week, with $25,000+ in prizes. Could you tell us more about this?
The Miami NFT Buildathon will feature various hacker challenges throughout the three day event including technical workshops, fireside chats, bounties, and digital art exhibitions – all culminating in the Miami Buildathon Demo Day.
This year’s event will take place between March 31 – April 2 in Downtown Miami, at Miami Dade College’s state of the art Business Innovation & Technology Center, which is the largest community college in the US with over 100,000 students.
There are three options for participation: development, no code, and creative tracks. For the 2023 Buildathon, we’re expecting over 500 builders to attend and participate in person.
What changes have you seen across the NFT space since your 2022 event, and what do you anticipate will take place between now and a possible 2024 event?
Putting aside the market shifts, the NFT space seems to be getting away from the hype-cycle surrounding record-breaking collectable sales, digital art auctions, and pricey metaverse real estate.
I think the space has matured, and we’re collectively making the choice to emphasize some of the potentially groundbreaking utility that NFTs can offer alongside the collectibles.
Further, word is getting out about the tremendous potential NFTs offer artists to have more control over their work, and stronger connections to their fans. It seems like the community-building potential NFTs provide is starting to get more of a share of the conversation, which is a very positive development.
In short, why is Miami NFT Week a must-attend event – for both creators and collectors alike?
Miami NFT Week focuses on bringing together attendees and speakers from unique and diverse backgrounds.
Attending Miami NFT Week is more than simply sitting and listening to experts speak about relevant industry related topics. Amplifying inclusivity to diversify the web3 narrative and break down barriers that prevent the industry from going global, Miami NFT Week emphasizes the LATAM community in Miami while simultaneously spotlighting industry-leading figures who have not yet had the chance to tell their stories.
The event provides a networking platform where attendees can meet and interact with other founders, developers, artists, and potential investors. The range of activities extend beyond the conference to include pitch competitions, creative installations, immersive art, performances and more for its guests.
With a new industry comes a fresh start, and Gianni D’Alerta, Erik LaPaglia, and Ted Lucas are intent on not just producing a fantastic in-person web3 event, but shining a spotlight on the underrepresented voices in the space.
With ETH Denver and NFT Paris both drawing impressive crowds so far this year, and with the current uplift in both crypto and NFTs, there’s certainly a buzz in the industry right now.
Can Miami NFT Week best their 5,000 attendance figure from last year, and put on another stellar event? We’ll find out this Friday!
For more details on Miami NFT Week 2023, visit their website.