The San Francisco Bay Area has built a reputation for being the hub for technology and innovation, hosting the headquarters of industry leaders such as Google, Apple, Cisco and Facebook, but its Southern California neighbors are also developing their own up-and-coming tech scene.
Silicon Beach, an area of West Los Angeles that includes the beach towns of Santa Monica and Venice, is forming the center of the L.A. tech boom that is accelerating right now. While the Los Angeles metropolitan area is widely spread out, Silicon Beach is a more pedestrian-friendly space with plenty of restaurants, coffee shops, bars and workspaces that make it a prime location for the new entrepreneurs and start-ups moving in.
Business leaders and city officials in Silicon Beach communities welcome the growth of tech companies, saying it will lead to economic and employment opportunities in the area.
“Our technology-qualified workforce, creative workplaces and leading broadband infrastructure will keep our economy well-positioned for future growth,” Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom said at the annual State of the City address in April.
After the mayor’s address, a panel of people connected to L.A. start-ups spoke, including Jason Nazar, chief exectuive and co-founder of Docstoc.com, Paige Craig, CEO of BetterWorks, and David Travers of venture capital firm Rustic Canyon Partners. They discussed the area’s success so far and emphasized the need for financial resources, partnerships with local schools and other incentives to help the tech industry prosper and stay in the community.
“The next Facebook or Amazon or Google or what have you — the next multibillion-dollar great company needs to not only come out of here but needs to be able to stay here,” Travers said.
At a town hall meeting in Venice last month, called The Emergence of Silicon Beach, close to two dozen L.A. start-ups set up booths and pitched their ideas and products to around 400 attendees.
Thomas Williams, senior site and engineering director for Google’s L.A. office, which recently moved to the Binoculars Building in Venice, said he wanted to bring more tech events and partnerships to Venice.
“I’m very open now that we have a campus to being able to use it to help build relationships,” he said. “Regardless of whether we benefit directly, getting academics and getting technology companies can only be a good thing.”
Our headquarters is in New York City, but we are thrilled to join the Silicon Beach tech movement with the opening of a new Applico office in Santa Monica, located just a few blocks from the beach at 227 Broadway, Suite 200. We are excited to be a part of the ideas and innovation that are constantly emerging on the West Coast, and we look forward to this new chapter for our company.
“L.A. represents an opportunity for Applico to establish a local presence to interface with the thriving entertainment and technology industries, which stand to benefit greatly from the disruption being caused by mobile,” said Alex Moazed, Applico’s CEO. “Our services address the needs of big brands, Internet commerce, media-drive entertainment enterprises and tech start-ups alike. L.A. has all of that and more.”
Filed under: Platform Innovation | Topics: developers, platform thinking, platforms, start-ups