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Member Spotlight | Steve Edwards & Premier Virtual

on May 17, 2021 / by Riley Kaminer ,

Read Time 3 Minutes

Business: Digital platform for virtual events like job fairs and trade shows

Launched: 2018

HQ: Delray Beach

Full-time employees: 19


In early 2020, no one was really ready for a global pandemic. The one exception just might be Steve Edwards, Founder and CEO of Delray Beach-based startup Premier Virtual.

Edwards had worked in the job fair industry for the better part of a decade, “living on the road” and traveling as far north as North Carolina and as far west as Texas. He started running virtual events in 2018, and decided to build and license out a platform to help others run virtual job fairs too.

In 2019, when Edwards launched Premier Virtual’s first platform, he did not have a very receptive audience. “People laughed at me,” said Edwards of his early days. “People told me that I would never have clients.”

Enter the pandemic. “We went from small – just me, my business partner, and an administrative assistant – to international almost overnight,” recalled Edwards. Premier Virtual hosted 1,500 events on their platform from April to December 2020. 

Now, the startup has hosted over 200,000 candidates across more than 2,000 virtual events. They have a diverse set of clients including the US Army, who has run their national recruiting event through Premier Virtual’s platform, as well as colleges like the University of Arizona and a host of private corporations. All in all, 25,000 organizations have participated in job fairs run on Premier Virtual’s platform.

The startup is leveraging this growth to continue improving on its core product. Edwards told Tech Hub South Florida that Premier Virtual will launch its 2.0 platform later this year. “Our goal is to make it one of the most user-friendly platforms out there.”

Edwards explained how Premier Virtual’s platform both aims to replicate and improve upon the in-person job fair experience. Jobseekers can easily learn about participating companies and share a video resume. Through Premier Virtual’s “my journey” feature, candidates can keep track of the companies they have seen. They can also customize their resume for each company, which is crucial to stand apart in an increasingly competitive job market.

The platform offers a suite of tools to make it easier for organizers to set up fairs, and more attractive for companies to join them. This includes live reporting, which gives these parties an easily-digestible and constantly-updating dashboard with figures about what is happening on the platform.

Premier Virtual’s success is also a success of the South Florida tech ecosystem. Edwards took part in 1909’s accelerator program, which he credits with helping him learn the ropes of leading a startup. Equally, he noted that the Premier Virtual team actively participates in Tech Hub South Florida events: “there’s always something going on – from peer groups to coffee chats. I feel like Tech Hub is creating a really good community, so we try to give back.”

Ultimately, Edwards said that Premier Virtual’s MO is simple: “We connect people.” After a year of social distancing, perhaps there is no more important pursuit in the business world than forging strong digital connections. For that, Premier Virtual is happy to help.

Member Spotlight | Steve Edwards & Premier Virtual