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Virtual Badge wins $120,000 at Startup Showdown

on October 4, 2021 / by Riley Kaminer ,

Read Time 3 Minutes

On Thursday, digital ID startup Virtual Badge won a $120,000 investment at the Startup Showdown, a pitch competition run by Atlanta-based venture capital firm Panoramic Ventures.

The event was hosted at Wynwood nightclub Le Rouge. Over 500 people attended to watch pitches from five other startups: Doctor Allways, Gemini Sports, Kazmaleje, Medblue, and Defy Trends, a Miami-based cryptocurrency insights platform that also landed a $120,000 investment at the event.

Virtual Badge is a South Florida startup that develops cloud-based digital identification solutions. This includes IDs for short-term events like conferences and meetings, as well as IDs designed for daily use. The badges make it easy for administrators to manage onboarding, operations, and compliance. 

For contractors, the IDs can hold information like certifications, skills, and licenses, as well as client feedback. For short-term events, the digital badges can contain Covid-related information such as proof of a negative test, screening waivers, and contact tracing if someone becomes infected.

Some of Virtual Badge’s clients and partners include the American Youth Soccer Organization, commercial real estate giant CBRE, and Delray Beach’s Mizner Country Club. Co-founders John Simion and Georges Duplessy, CEO and COO/CTO respectively, launched the startup in 2019 and took part in EndeavorLab.

Georges Duplessy, Co-Founder & CTO of Virtual Badge

“This competition was really great,” Duplessy told South Florida Tech Hub. “A lot of good companies participated, and winning it is a confirmation of not only what we’ve built here at Virtual Badge but that we’re on the right track!”

Duplessy explained that this funding will enable Virtual Badge to catalyze their marketing and sales efforts in order to “be able to reach more potential customers and be implemented at more job sites that are currently still using paper to try to track their workers’ compliance.”
He also underscored the important role the South Florida tech community has played in the startup’s success: “I’d like to also thank our team here at Virtual Badge and all the people from the local community including Tech Hub, Endeavor, Shrimp Society and many more that really showed up to support us not only during the event but way before that!”

Nikki Cabus, Interim CEO of South Florida Tech Hub, commented: “I am so proud of Georges and John. They know their stuff backwards and forwards, have perfected their pitch, and have made an effort to get out and about in the tech community. It wasn’t a shocker that they ended up taking home $120k and had so many wonderful people there supporting them.” 

She continued: “Fireworks, strobe lights, music and bottle service. That’s how you do a pitch contest Miami style! Congrats, Virtual Badge!”

Ahead of the Startup Showdown event, Virtual Badge and the other 25 semifinalist companies attended a mentor day, where they received mentoring and pitch advice from top executives at companies such as Calendly, NASDAQ, PwC, and ParkMobile.

Judges for the Startup Showdown included Paul Judge and Mark Buffington, Panoramic Ventures’ Managing Partners; Ana Paula González, Director of the Softbank Miami Initiative; Brian Brackeen, General Partner of Lightship Capital; and Chris Adamo, co-founder of Flamingo Capital.

“Startup Showdown is a unique opportunity for early-stage startups to present to well-known investors and innovators in the tech ecosystem as they look to take their companies to the next level,” Panoramic’s Paul Judge said in a statement. He said the goal with the Startup Showdown is to “democratize the funding process in order to showcase the most promising talent in the next frontier of innovation, regardless of race, gender, or geographic location.”

Interested in applying to pitch or RSVPing to attend a future Startup Showdown session? Visit

Learn more about VirtualBadge by visiting their website,

Virtual Badge wins $120,000 at Startup Showdown