Opinion
Opinion

Where in the world should you be building your tech startup?


When we think of the land of tech, our minds conjure up two words – Silicon Valley. The end game for all startups, Silicon Valley is the home to some of the world’s greatest cutting-edge companies like Apple, Google, Facebook, Slack and Twitter. Movies, TV series and literature are abound with glorifying stories of the demi-god individuals of the business world who managed to stand out from the rat race and steer their companies through the gates of Silicon Valley.

But the bubble of the greatest tech empire may witness a hole soon. Cities across the world endorse the same implements and are posing to be more favourable to work in for all tech startups. According to Expert Market, Silicon Valley may not be the best place to live and work in, despite its candescent and unchallenged seat at the top of the tech ladder.

9 Where to buildImage : Freepik

Last year, Compass released its ‘Startup Genome Project’, which ranked the world’s leading startup cities. They based this report on the data they managed to collect from 11,000 global startup companies, Crunchbase, World Bank and Numbeo’s cost of living index, in addition to lengthy interviews with over 200 entrepreneurs. This data was then used by the analysts of Expert Market which released its own list of the top 20 global cities, basing it on eight primary factors which are- seed funding, average salary, cost of living, average commute, startup output, average rent, paid vacation and the time needed to start a business.

But owing to language barriers, the report does not refer to cities in China, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea.

According to this list, Berlin occupies the hot-seat owing to the push in the startup culture in 2011 due to the efforts of entrepreneurs Schuyler Deerman and Travis J. Todd, who built a startup community through meetups, events, and an English-language blog. Berlin happens to offer the best tech hub-relocation spot since it offers great startup opportunities with low living costs and also the best commute time, which averages on a rough half-hour or less.

Hot on Berlin’s heels are Austin and Toronto, occupying the second and third positions of the list respectively. Austin is touted to be the top American tech hub to live and work in for millennial entrepreneurs due to the huge amount of funding available here coupled with its low living costs.

However, these cities have some serious competition. We are proud to announce that our very own Bengaluru features in this list of top global cities for tech-startups, ranking 11 on the list, beating cities like Chicago, London and even New York.

“Our idea was that often tech hubs are ranked based on purely economical factors, with people forgetting that you have to actually live in these cities,” said Bobbi Brant, a researcher with Expert Market, in an in an interview with Fast Company. “That is why we added in quality of life factors to find a more balanced ranking of the top 20 tech hubs,” he added.

The aim behind this list is to showcase to the world that although Silicon Valley has been the undisputed leader of the Tech-World for as long as anyone can remember, the same reason actually contributes to making it expensive, competitive and unfavourable to live and start a business in. Instead, there are a number of other leading cities much more suited for tech businesses, that offer greater and, most importantly, cheaper resources and infrastructure.

“Our philosophy is that if you are able to thrive in an area, either working in tech or building your own company, you need a balance between potential corporate success and an enjoyable lifestyle,” explains Brant.

Which City would you like to start your own tech business? Let us know in the comments!

About the author

Hailing from Kolkata, and now a brave Mumbai resident, Sanajna has worked as a junior reporter for The Telegraph, Kolkata, and a freelancer/global editorial contributor for The Australian National Review. Sanjana confesses that she can ramble on about history, food, and psychological thrillers when she's not writing for YourStory.

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