The tech industry has a habit of chasing after the startups in two major American cities: San Francisco (Silicon Valley) and New York City.
Of course, there’s good reason for that. Most of the investors, business resources and engineers are concentrated in those areas. Being major cities, they’re also easily accessible through various means of transportation. So what about the rest of the country?
Boston, Chicago, Denver and other major cities are starting to throw their weight around, but they boast many of the same benefits as San Francisco and New York. What about mid-tier cities? How can they get in on some of the startup action?
Fast Company recently shared some startup advice for entrepreneurs in smaller cities, highlighting the benefits of working in a less chaotic ecosystem.
The rewards for entrepreneurs in smaller cities can be manifold: lower operating costs, fewer distractions, and heck, maybe even a happier life. America's innovative streak runs much deeper than its coast-centric media image; it takes a true visionary to mine it.
Kyle York, chief financial officer for Dyn, an Infrastructure as a Service provider, wrote about why he and the Dyn team decided to base their operations in Manchester, N.H.
Our parents set the foundation for us to care about community, to care about the local economy and to realize our ability to leave an impact in creating jobs, creating wealth and creating relevance in the process. We could run our business anywhere, but we choose to do it here. In Manchester, we aren’t just another tech company in the crowd and want to leave a legacy for our kids and grandkids.
Yes, it’s idealistic. Yes, it’s naive. Yes, it’s bold dreaming. But I actually think that’s the great inspiration for it all.
With our involvement in organizations like (see DynCares) the abi Innovation Hub, NH High Technology Council, TechHampshire, StayWorkPlayNH, SNHU, The Community College System of NH, NH Catholic Charities, Big Brothers Big Sisters NH, US First, Families in Transition and the Manchester Young Professionals Network and in startup advising/boards/investment/founding like Trendslide, Mosaic, Incutio, Ruustr, Carrier Pigeon, salesonrails, 1band 1brand and more, we’re just now scratching the surface. Dyn is our launching pad and it’s ingrained in our culture and brand.
In a world where so much business is conducted on the web, a good argument can be made that a startup’s location doesn’t matter. But there’s also something to be said for networking and in-person collaboration.
Given the opportunity, would you build your startup in a mid-tier city, or would you stick with the major startup hubs?