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Old 02-14-2013, 11:48 AM
 
Location: Inman Park
402 posts, read 613,765 times
Reputation: 301

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The Atlanta Tech Startup Scene is getting some love from USA Today. The core of the community existed around Tech Square in Midtown for decades, but until recently it was just a small coterie of people associated with Georgia Tech. The primary institutional driver,The Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC) , has birthed companies such as Mindspring, Suniva, and Internet Security Systems. Atlanta is different from famous places like the Valley and Boston in that most of the startups are B2B, making them less sexy than the B2C giants such as Facebook and Twitter that come out of the Valley, but in many cases, no less valuable.

A few years ago ATDC opened its doors to any tech entrepreneur in the state and now provides free classes, information sessions, and training for entrepreneurs at all levels. Membership and demand for educational resources has exploded. The organization also created Flashpoint, a startup accelerator based on the Y-Combinator concept that has shown a crazy amount of ROI and success. More importantly, the community has a crop of visionary entrepreneurs and supporters that are committed in the long-term to Atlanta (20+ years). In most instances, these people and companies will not be sucked away to the Valley or NY. Although, there is still a problem keeping high quality engineering talent from leaving the state after they are trained at GT. New organizations such as Hypepotamus and the Atlanta Tech Village, both founded by successful entrepreneurs that wanted to give back to the community, are early examples of attempts to build Atlanta’s community brand, grow more companies, and keep quality talent in Atlanta.

The community does have a few hurdles:
1) Lack of story, cohesive community, and brand
2) A lack of large companies (Coke, UPS, etc.) buying SME's and those SME's buying smaller companies. For example, the startup ecosystem in the Valley is dynamic in that there are many tiers of companies that can or have the potential to buy other companies. The Google's at the top buying medium sized companies, medium sized companies buying smaller companies, etc. There is a positive feedback loop of the capital from the purchase going into creating new companies or seed stage investments. Our big companies rarely, if ever, buy startups.
3) Capital, there “is” money in Atlanta, but it’s not being used to build startups. It’s being used for real estate, BMW’s, and the stock market. More capital must be injected into this community. Most of our startups have to go out of state for money. The ratio of money invested in startups is something ridiculous like $1,000 - $1 Valley vs Atl. We have comparable population sizes and overall wealth. However, they have 3% unemployment.

Momentum for Atlanta Startups:
1) The “secret sauce” – the entrepreneurs, for a variety of reasons, are not afraid to fail and try again. The transient nature of the city may be partially credited for this.
2) Cost of living is low, office space is cheap, and we have a large housing stock for people that want to start a family.
3) Increasing density, the city seems to be filling up with more college educated types, and it is actively encouraging “serendipitous interaction” via the beltline and other initiatives. Many large apartment complexes are going up in the city making it easy and cheap for many 20 and 30 something’s to live in the city CLOSE to each other.

The Atlanta startup community is not striving to be the Valley, rather it is creating its own unique brand. With time and a dedicated group of entrepreneurs, investors, supporters, and institutional help (city, state, colleges) Atlanta can become the #1 destination to build a company in the US.
Atlanta tech startup scene
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Old 10-04-2013, 11:11 AM
 
2,092 posts, read 2,845,156 times
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"Non-profit Startup Atlanta launched a new website today, startupatlanta.org, to connect, support and expand the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the metro Atlanta region. Founded in May 2013, Startup Atlanta is backed by Atlanta Technology Angels, Entrepreneurs’ Organization, Invest Atlanta and the Metro Atlanta Chamber.

“Great ideas come out of Atlanta. We have talented, smart people generating world-changing ideas here, with outstanding resources to support them,” said Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. “Startup Atlanta’s online hub will help us highlight the many opportunities and successes for entrepreneurs and innovators in our region...”

Full Story: Startup Atlanta launches entrepreneur website - Atlanta INtown Paper
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Old 10-04-2013, 12:02 PM
 
2,136 posts, read 2,208,062 times
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I actually think Atlanta is a great city to raise money in--there is a sense of entrepreneurial spirit among the successful here--and no shortage of willing angel investors or big venture capital funds. Investors are more cautious then they were before 2000, but that's true everywhere.
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Old 10-04-2013, 12:25 PM
 
8,957 posts, read 11,466,453 times
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Atlanta has a lot of interesting startups, but the thing that really separates us is having a cooperative environment where these companies can get the tools and help they need to get on their feet.

It's not like we're nipping at Silicon Valley's heels or anything, but it's much less competitive and easier to get noticed and resources here. That's fueling a lot of neat ideas.
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Old 10-06-2013, 10:58 AM
 
Location: North Fulton
1,039 posts, read 2,169,167 times
Reputation: 601
Good article to post. Thanks, Nanosolar.

I know tech community to some degree here, but it seems some tech start-ups sometimes get a lot of investor attention in Atlanta overall. Yes, true enough, Atlanta is not known to be a tech-jobs city, but its tech presence here is solid for the Southeastern region. Georgia Tech's presence does help in this regard for Atlanta and tech-related industry.

The names of the many of successful tech startups here are not as well known as those in Silicon Valley, but they are noticeable within the tech industry. I think the point about them being B2B (business-to-business) is a major reason why. SecureWorks, which was acquired by Dell a few years ago sold its services to other medium and large-sized companies as did ISS (now owned by IBM). Neither of these companies are well-known with the regular consumer unless they happen to follow information security (Internet) sector trends. MindSpring (acquired by EarthLink), on the other hand, was well-known because it was an general Internet Service Provider.
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Old 10-10-2013, 05:22 PM
 
2,092 posts, read 2,845,156 times
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Scoutmob co-founder eyes "Flatiron" building for incubator

"An entrepreneur behind one of Atlanta’s most buzzed about startups, hopes to turn the city — an enterprise technology power center — into a hub for consumer and design startups.

Michael Tavani, co-founder of deal site Scoutmob. is mapping plans to launch an up to 65,000-square-foot incubator.

“Atlanta’s a great consumer brand town, just not a great consumer startup brand town,” Tavani said. “We need design and consumer wins to put Atlanta on the map...”


Full Story: Scoutmob co-founder eyes "Flatiron" building for incubator - Atlanta Business Chronicle
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Old 10-10-2013, 05:50 PM
 
Location: Ono Island, Orange Beach, AL
10,378 posts, read 10,429,962 times
Reputation: 6255
Gosh, I remember well the heydays of the 90s when Atlanta had more VCs and incubators than you could shake a stick at. We are doing very well in the financial services startup arena. Hope the momentum continues to grow. The key, I firmly believe, is in attracting outside capital in to Atlanta early stage companies. Helps spread the word nationwide. Local money will naturally follow. Boston and NY investors are very keen on our area.
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Old 10-10-2013, 09:43 PM
 
30,563 posts, read 29,030,773 times
Reputation: 11422
These look pretty interesting too:

Quote:
Atlanta Tech Village in Buckhead will be the site next week for two major events—Choose Choose ATL and Collab/Space Atlanta—both focusing on entrepreneurs, technology, and in the case of Collab/Space, media innovation, while they shine a light on Buckhead as a tech center.

The Choose ATL is a campaign to brand Atlanta as America’s digital hub and to better tell its story, showcasing why it’s a great place to live, stay, work and start a business. Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall will kick off the campaign at the Tuesday evening invitation-only event.

Then on Wednesday, a full-day hands-on Collab-Space Atlanta workshop will focus on media innovation, spotlighting eight cutting-edge media start-ups, from both Atlanta and outside Atlanta.

Collab/Space Atlanta is a production of PBS MediaShift, with sponsorship from the John S. Knight Fellowships at Stanford and the Center for Collaborative Journalism at Mercer University.

More....BuckheadView: Buckhead gets media innovation, Choose ATL events, both highlighting digital hub for technology start-ups
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Old 10-10-2013, 10:27 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
2,862 posts, read 3,081,948 times
Reputation: 1451
Interesting thread. I have nothing to contribute but am posting so that I can get updates. Is there no subscribe to thread feature on this site?
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Old 10-11-2013, 06:29 AM
 
Location: Atlanta (Finally on 4-1-17)
1,850 posts, read 2,630,530 times
Reputation: 2582
Quote:
Originally Posted by AtlJan View Post
I actually think Atlanta is a great city to raise money in--there is a sense of entrepreneurial spirit among the successful here--and no shortage of willing angel investors or big venture capital funds. Investors are more cautious then they were before 2000, but that's true everywhere.

One of the other reasons why I am moving to Atl, the "scene" is business friendly.
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