ATL Continues Attracting Tech Entrepreneurs
Atlanta hearts tech entrepreneurs and vice versa. If you live and work here, that statement is hardly surprising considering the anecdotal evidence supporting rich access to talent and an appealing cost of doing business and living. However, we can now say that the numbers don’t lie either.
According to a new CBRE Research report, Atlanta ranks 10th out of 50 U.S. markets when scored on its ability to attract and grow tech talent. The report cites the city’s 21 percent talent growth over the last five years. And of those 10 markets (Silicon Valley, SF, NYC, D.C. and Boston to name a handful), Atlanta has the lowest apartment rents, cost of living, occupancy costs and overall cost of doing business. Tech entrepreneurs also gain lots of the support from local government (zoning and licensing rules and growth-oriented tax policies) as well as strong tech-based organizations (TAG, Technology Executive Roundtable and MIT Enterprise Forum of Atlanta among others).
Earlier this year, Entrepreneur wrote about 7 ways that Atlanta competes with Silicon Valley. One was based on the fact that the city has the third largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the country (424 separate Fortune 500 companies have offices here). It goes on to quote David Hartnett, entrepreneur and vice president of the Metro Economic Chamber. “It wasn’t always this way, though,” says Hartnett. “For years, corporations were flying out of Atlanta to look for tech on the West Coast and in New York City and Boston, before the Metro Atlanta Chamber got involved and asked them to stop and look in their own backyard. Since then, the amount of corporate engagement in the startup community has skyrocketed.”
Now that Atlanta is showing some love, entrepreneurs are loving it right back..