Continuing with yesterday’s post, Atlanta in the Top 10 for Startups Funded, one of the most talked about ideas is what it would take to be a top five tech startup city. With Washington DC in the number five spot with 69 fundings and Seattle at 67 fundings (source), it would require almost 80% more fundings than Atlanta had to earn the number five spot, assuming no other growth from these cities and others (unlikely). Let’s assume Atlanta would need 90 deals in 10 years to be a top five tech startup city since other metro regions would make progress as well.
Here are five ideas for Atlanta to have 90 first-time fundings by the year 2025:
- Multi-Billion Anchor Tech Company – One massive success story, like Atlanta’s had with Home Depot and CNN, creates hundreds (thousands?) of millionaires, attracts thousands of employees from inside and outside the region, and helps spawn dozens of new companies (10 company first-time fundings increase per year).
- New Accelerator Programs – With only a couple accelerator programs in Atlanta, there’s a real opportunity to build several more, especially ones that are more industry or technology specific (e.g. SaaS, IoT, internet security, etc.). More accelerator programs will result in more first-time fundings (10 company increase).
- Increased Startup Density – As areas like Buckhead and Midtown continue to attract startups and increase in density, a number of benefits ensue and the chance of entrepreneurial success increases. With increased success comes increased first-time fundings (10 company increase).
- More Recycled Capital – As the current generation of success stories achieve strong exits, more entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to invest in the next generation of entrepreneurs, and recycle a greater percentage of the wealth created. Creating a culture where entrepreneurs are expected to recycle some of their winnings will generate a number of new first-time fundings (10 company increase).
- Startup Relocations – Some percentage of the existing 39 deals last year in Atlanta were startups that relocated to Atlanta, especially from surrounding states in the Southeast. Assuming it was 10% (4 companies), doing a more proactive job and highlighting the strengths of our existing community, that number could rise to 14 companies (10 company increase).
With these five ideas turning into 50 additional first-time fundings per year, Atlanta has a real opportunity to be a top five tech startup city. Of course, it’ll take a tremendous amount of work, and a lot of luck, but with so many good things happening, momentum is strong and the opportunity is real.
What else? What are some other ideas to help Atlanta become a top five tech startup city?