Saturday, September 04, 2010

NY Tech Scene Heating Up

Image representing Foursquare Solutions as dep...Image via CrunchBase
Wall Street Journal: New York's Tech Start-Up Scene Comes Of Age: over the last decade, New York has been building a real tech center, where software, media, and ad-related startups are thriving, a venture capital community is growing and serial entrepreneurs are as commonplace as they are in Silicon Valley. ...... a general feeling here, a buzz, that there is momentum here ...... "As one of the most successful financial exits from the dot-com era, DoubleClick made people in Silicon Valley realize that there may still be some fire coming out of New York" ...... "Back then it was a gold rush mentality," he said of the late 1990s. "Now it's building a business." ...... the New York region ranks number four in total venture capital investment, after Silicon Valley, Los Angeles and Boston. ...... in terms of funding for software companies, New York ranked only second to Silicon Valley for venture capital funding in the second quarter ..... One New York startup that is well-known in Silicon Valley is Foursquare ..... "New York is a challenging city to build location-based services for because of its density, so once they built a product that could work well in New York City, they figured it would work well in other, smaller cities as well." ..... Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures is now seen as a veteran among New York venture capitalists ..... there are now more angel investors and startup incubators in New York. Venture capitalists are also now more willing to provide seed funding than they had in the past. .... No one calls New York "Silicon Alley" anymore. "Now we just call it New York," Ms. Halper said. "The industry in New York has finally come of age."

I am waiting for two things. I am waiting for the Great Recession to get completely over and done with. And you will know that has happened when Facebook goes IPO. Facebook is waiting for the recession to completely end before it will file. And I am waiting for a tech company in town to go IPO. I think that company right now is looking like FourSquare. But I need to be hush hush about it because I am superstitious. An IPO is such a big deal. And it is not a given.

A few IPOs and New York City will have finally arrived on the tech scene in a way I would like. The DoubleClick exit was grand, but it was no IPO. I have a feeling once we see our first IPO, we will see a string of them.

And I am fervently hoping a tech revival in this city is not just about dot coms and software. I hope this city makes strides also in other emerging tech sectors like clean tech and bio tech and nano.

A lot of smart people who go to top colleges in this country end up in this city. It is that allure of New York City. It is that magic. So far this city has not made the best use of all that talent. This city has needed a painful recession to shake off the Wall Street suction pump and to release talent into more meaningful sectors like emerging tech.

Slowly but surely it is happening though. This city is going bonkers.

New York City has a huge advantage over Silicon Valley. That is that Silicon Valley by now is like this big, old, mature company. New York City - the city - is a startup. That cultural advantage is priceless.

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