The Search for the South's Silicon Valley

November 22nd, 2011
Entrepreneurial Info

The Atlantic has begun an interesting new editorial series geared at exploring the South’s growing areas for technology startups, entitled “Start-Up Nation: The Search for the Next Silicon Valley.” Here are some of the key points and observations:
1) Atlanta’s start-up ecosystem centers around Georgia Tech and is bolstered by a number of startup community groups, including Startup Chicks, Atlanta Startup Drinks, Startup Riot and ATDC. To read about The Atlantic’s trip to Atlanta to explore the startup community, click here.

2) The internet has made it possible to access tools, work with others in different locations, and spread news and ideas quickly. While place is important, the new reality is that other regions now have the ability to develop their own, smaller scale versions of Silicon Valley in places where it is less expensive to start a company and competition isn’t as severe.

3) Areas once considered “infertile” for technology companies are now home to cutting edge innovation.  For example, Chattanooga, TN has made gigabit internet available throughout the city.

4) Some of the advantages for startups in mid-size cities over the “big four” (NYC, LA, DC, SF) are the tax credit support, office space, incubators and lower cost of living.
Startups receive more individual attention from the community, especially in smaller cities, because they are less likely to become lost in the masses, as many do in places like Silicon Valley.

To follow the editors on their startup-themed road trip through the South, click here.