New York spares no effort to become east Silicon Valley in U.S.




  New York

spares no effort to become

east Silicon Valley in U.S.


By Liu Li and Josiah Chen


There’s an old adage in the United States, “If you want to be a true tech entrepreneur, go West”. However, that’s no longer the case. You may be surprised to learn that New York is rapidly transforming itself into another prominent “technology hub” in the country.

A recent research has revealed that New York has eclipsed the Boston area as the second-leading breeding ground for tech startups in the country, and now trails only behind Silicon Valley in California.

Traditionally, New York has been widely acknowledged as the world’s financial, media and arts center. Even six to seven years ago, one could not find New York among the top of the rankings as a high tech hub in the country.

It’s hard to believe that within ten years, the city’s high tech industry growth would catch up and surpass any other place in the United States. According to a study, New York’s tech industry is boosting the country’s economic growth, inching up on Silicon Valley in terms of size.

The study, “New Tech City,” conducted by the Center for an Urban Future, said that between 2007 and 2011, 486 high tech companies were founded in New York. During that same period, New York’s venture capital deals have seen a 32 percent increase.

Mathew Farkash, the founder of Blueprint, a healthcare tech accelerator which moved to New York a year and a half ago, told Xinhua that New York is a good place for entrepreneurs to start up their businesses, from a healthcare perspective.

Clifford Jones, the CEO of a predictive analytics company Allazo Health which is taking the second stage class in Blueprint, said his prospective clients can be easily found due to the large amount of health insurance and drug companies based in the New York and New Jersey area.

Allazo Health determines which types of intervention should be given to individuals who are under medication and are predicted to not adhere to their prescription, thus saving health insurance companies 300 billion dollars each year.

“Not only do accelerators offer cash support, they also provide legal, human resource, public relations services and most importantly, pull resources together from different fields to help entrepreneurs find customers and capital,” said Clifford.

Various accelerators like Blueprint can be found in New York, providing specialized support to tech startups. In exchange for the support, accelerators receive a small amount of equity stake from these startup companies.

One reason that the development of digital technology seems to be taking root in the city is that New York is making best use of its advantages rather than replicating Silicon Valley’s high tech development model, so software or hardware development won’t be their focal point.

The current wave of innovation in New York is about devising creative applications of high tech technology for various industries, as the city’s dominant positions in industries like finance and advertising have made it a natural place for those seeking to invent digital services in those fields.

Besides, a large number of young entrepreneurs said they are attracted by New York urban environment. CEO of Etsy, Chad Dickerson, explained the reason why he would like to move to New York from California a few years ago.

“I think Silicon Valley is really a one-industry area,” he said. “Everyone’s working in tech–everyone you speak with, everyone you meet is working in tech in some way. And one of the things I really like about New York is that New York is much more diversified.”

While Silicon Valley has Stanford as a feeder school to provide it with tech experts, recruiting for tech positions is a challenge in New York due to the lack of tech schools in the area. To tackle this problem, Cornell University has been chosen by the city to build a world-class technology campus on Roosevelt Island with a grant of city-owned land and 100 million U.S. dollars.

The campus Cornell proposed will occupy 2.1 million square feet (195,096 square meters), accommodate up to 2,500 students and cost more than 2 billion dollars to build. A 350 million dollars gift from an anonymous donor, the largest in Cornell’s history, will help foot the bill.

Attracting prestigious technology-education institutions is one of the most important steps in New York City’s relentless efforts to become the Silicon Valley of the East Coast.

“This is the first selection announcement for the Applied Sciences NYC initiative,” says a statement released by the city. ” Productive discussions are ongoing with other respondents…and the possibility of additional science and engineering partnerships in the City is still open.”

As a staunch proponent of boosting New York City’s tech industry, mayor Michael Bloomberg has been incredibly visible in his efforts to support the growth of the industry. He’s been spotted cutting ribbons at new office openings for tech companies and has even set up a new digital department within the city government to oversee the efforts.

As he tries to turn the city into the next Silicon Valley, Bloomberg has visited the Silicon Valley in person and planned for the upcoming technology summit with his San Francisco counterpart. Under his support, New York has also launched various ad campaigns to promote tech start-ups.











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