In January we covered Europe’s top 10 entrepreneurial friendly cities, today we hop across the Atlantic and visit America, and while Silicon Valley, Boston and New York may all pop into mind as the de-facto places to start, we have some very interesting revelations. Sit back, and enjoy.
Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina
Say what? Yes. North Carolina, not only is there plenty of activity in the technology scene here but there is also a local push from government, and universities to foster entrepreneurship in NC.
Pros: The NC Research Triangle is a hub of activity for Linux, SAS, IBM among other initiatives.
Cons: People may make fun of you when you tell them you live in one of the Carolinas.
Strange Fact: Chances are you may find more native New Yorkers in NC, than in NYC.
Will refrain from making any Boston accent jokes here, but Boston is undoubtedly a hub for entrepreneurial activity. With MIT and Harvard both being in earshot of each other, and entrepreneurship activity coming in from a multitude or sectors, you can rest assured that Boston is not a place to start your company, be it biotech, or software.
Pros: Wealth of activity in research coupled with a multitude of initiatives makes Boston a great location to start a business.
Cons: Strange accents, and clicky locals. It’s been said that making local friends in Boston is not the easiest thing in the world.
Strange Fact: Whatever you do, don’t wear a Yankees shirt/hat to a Boston outing or bar. We warned you.
San Francisco Bay Area, California
Like Boston, this place has got it all, Universities, Research, Software, Biotechnology, Venture Capital, the whole 9 yards and a great healthy lifestyle to boot.
Pros: With all the activity in Silicon Valley it’s no surprise that the world looks at this little piece of California for inspiration, it’s the place European Startups go to when Europe fails its leading innovators.
Cons: SV is not the epicenter that it once was, other hubs have popped up around the U.S. which offer entrepreneurs and more mature companies the same or very similar benefits as SV
Strange Fact: If you lose a prototype product in a bar, chances are you’ll wind up swimming with the fishes. Collective Intelligence is very very very important here.
New York, New York
The concrete jungle where dreams are made of has its ups and downs. Typically a financial and media hub, NY has made strides in the past few years to become more appealing to entrepreneurs, and even boasts some great entrepreneurship initiatives from the city gov, i.e. all the stuff at the Levin Institute.
Pros: There is a lot of money, there are a lot of unemployed execs and financiers who can help get your startup to where it needs to be. Networking is great here.
Cons: Let’s face it, New York is not a cheap place to live, and the locals (at least those who haven’t moved to N.C) may be hard to come by.
Strange Fact: New York loves media, be they newspapers, new channels, blogs, what have you some of the nations biggest media companies are based here. If your startup is media focused. Well….
Minneapolis, St. Paul, Rochester, Minnesota
Makes up one of the leading medical device clusters in the U.S. and rank in the top 10 biotechnology centers in the U.S.A.
Pros: Cost of living is relatively cheap compared to the other cities on this list, which as a startup you know is a key factor to keeping you going when in the early stages.
Cons: Unless you’re focused on the biotech market, not much here in the way of media, web/mobile, clean tech space, and it’s cold.
Strange Fact: When a man meets a cow in Minnesota, he is required by law to remove his hat. Seriously.
Tomorrow we round out the 10 places to start your company in the U.S. – so be sure to check back.