The Startup Ecosystem Report

“Countries are shifting from service-based economies to become increasingly driven by a new generation of fast-moving software and technology organisations.” 

The Startup Ecosystem Report published by Telefónica Digital was released recently ranking communities around the world that have the right ecosystem to promote tech startups as compared to the current well known Silicon Valley.

Vancouver was ranked in the top 10 which is great for BC in general and could help support a niche hub region in Squamish. The study provides tangible evidence and insight for investors, entrepreneurs and policy makers on where entrepreneurship takes hold in a community.

What is interesting to me is that this study also provides insight in to areas that a community like Squamish can focus on to attract tech startups to help build a more diverse economy.  Squamish, being a outdoor recreation mecca can provide a work life balance unlike many locations in the world which is already significant lure to entrepreneurs. We already have companies like Tiipz,  a tech company that’s developed a location based mobile marketing platform that enables brands to capture real time consumer insight. We also have hundreds of knowledge based consultants and professionals that are part of Inside Edge.

In the report, each ecosystem was ranked using the index below. It’s based on data from more than 50,000 startups around the world. It ranks them based on 8 weighted component indexes that are defined in more detail in the report.

startup index

Each ecosystem was profiled in the report and an investor, entrepreneur and policy maker perspective was described. Here are some of the highlights I found interesting and relevant for any community interested in establishing a  startup ecosystem.

Entrepreneur Perspective 

“Silicon Valley has given birth to more billion dollar companies than any other ecosystem because of its plentiful risk capital, world class talent, inclusion of the headquarters of many giant public companies, a vibrant support ecosystem, and an openminded, trust, “pay it forward”, change the world culture”

“People in Silicon Valley really believe in “pay it forward”. It’s not all transactional and tit-for-tat. Folks help each other and those not as far along as them. It’s also very accepting of failure; if you have some real catastrophes on your resume, that’s considered a badge of honor – there are not a lot of places on the planet that’s true. It’s also the easiest place in the world to start a company. Everyone is here to help you kick ass.”

“Over the past 15 years I have co-founded startups in the Bay Area, Boston and NYC, which has given me a first-hand look at their ecosystems. Boston’s key strength as an ecosystem is its diversity. There is no other place on Earth that comes close. Boston is #1 in biotech, #2 in high tech and top 3 in medical devices, energy technology, materials & environmental science, robotics, etc. This is fueled by the large number of top universities and by the diversified New England economy. Whatever your dreams may be—no matter how crazy they may seem—there are people here who can help you build a product and a business.”

“It’s all about people and their mindset. Startups need inspiring people to follow, mentors to teach, and money to support ideas. You can build an ecosystem with just a few committed people to help inspire others. A necessary requirement is an entrepreneurial mind set and there is no policy to easily foster that entrepreneurial mind set.”

Policy maker perspective 

  1. Decreased payroll tax to support high-head count low revenue tech companies(Silicon Valley)
  2. Supporting the development of new “collaborative consumption” startups, such as AirBnB, by deregulating lodging ordinances that protect hotels and bed and breakfasts, and Lyft, by deregulating traditional transportation services like taxi cabs to support ride sharing services(Silicon Valley)
  3. Policy makers can help closing the funding gap by attracting late-stage venture funds through tax breaks and incentives, and investor-friendly policies.(Toronto)
  4. Policy makers can encourage more investors set up late-stage funds with appealing tax breaks and tax incentives. (Paris)
  5. More accommodating immigration policies, tax breaks and incentives for startups and investors could help. (Australia)
  6. Policy makers are only supporters. They should not lead development. (Russia)

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