The Future Will See You Now
Goooood Morning Silicon Alley!
Mark your calendar, young technologists: former governor, vice president and Internet Hall of Famer Al Gore is speaking in the Dumbo section of Brooklyn next month and if you’re lucky, you might be graced to hear the grand old man for a reduced price of $35. Mr. Gore, who, ahem, did not invent the Read More
This is a guest post from Gary Sharma (aka “The Guy with the Red Tie”), founder and CEO of GarysGuide and proud owner of a whole bunch of black suits, white shirts and, at last count, over 40 red ties. You can reach him at gary [at] garysguide.com.
Sooooo…it’s that time of the year again. SXSW (a.k.a. Spring Break for Geeks) is right around the corner, running March 8 to 12 in Austin, Texas. And you know what that means: Parties, parties ‘n more parties!! So, once again, we’re putting together what we hope will be THE definitive guide to all this year’s SXSW Interactive parties. We’ll be updating this list regularly, so check back often. And email me if you’re organizing an event or a party.
We knew Dumbo’s vacancy rates were low, but we hadn’t realized they were this low. The Wall Street Journal reports that yesterday Dumbo techies gathered at an unusual outdoor watering hole: Underneath the Manhattan Bridge.
Perhaps the roar of the traffic overhead provides a kind of natural white noise?
Office-sharing startup Loosecubes organized the event, Read More
The Brooklyn Tech Triangle already thinks it’s bigger and better than Manhattan, and now they’re getting a transportation upgrade to help them prove it.
The triangle–which includes Downtown Brooklyn, DUMBO and the Brooklyn Navy Yard–is getting its very own dedicated bus route, according to a press release issued today by New York state senator Daniel Squadron.
Senator Squadron and MTA stakeholders will plan the new route, which is set to roll out in 2013. “Brooklyn’s tech industry is changing the face of New York — and now, we’ll have a bus route that will allow the booming Tech Triangle to continue to grow and innovate,” Senator Squadron stated in the release.
And here we thought most startup kids were fiercely loyal to the ice cream-wielding Uber team.
DIY-ers, you may now begin crocheting celebratory pillows and other yarn finery: E-commerce site Etsy, also known as Amazon for Twee People, announced today that it has raised a $40 million Series F round from investors, including Union Square Ventures and Accel Partners.
In a lengthy blog post, Etsy CEO Chad Dickerson strayed from the typical tech funding announcement, instead choosing to first focus on Etsy’s growth and continued commitment to making the world a better place through business. The DUMBO-based startup has scored a B Corporation certification, which “gives [them] a framework to measure Etsy’s success against rigorous values and responsible practices as [they] scale as a company.”
Looks like DUMBO isn’t the only neighborhood eager to flaunt its tech prowess. According to a new site launched last week, DUMBO is just one ‘hood that’s part of the “Brooklyn Tech Triangle,” which also includes downtown Brooklyn and the Navy Yard. A local coalition from each neighborhood has been tapped to represent its district in the Brooklyn Tech Triangle initiative, which seeks to establish the area as an innovative and welcoming place for tech firms.
With Dumbo’s star rising, it’s time for the inevitable inter-borough smack-talking to begin. And, as often happens when boosters for Manhattan and Brooklyn go toe-to-toe, things are starting to look a little heated.
Crain’s is just the latest to notice all the fuss across the river. Etsy has long been a neighborhood fixture; digital consulting firm Takeout just relocated; Loosecubes and Docracy are homegrown efforts. Why are startups flocking to a neighborhood with a mere 3 percent commercial vacancy rate? Surely there are roomier (and therefore cheaper) environs. Turns out, Manhattan lacks a certain spark. (Manhattan, are you just going to let them talk about you like that?)
At an industry breakfast yesterday, the commercial real estate brokers at Cushman & Wakefield announced that New York City has reached a tipping point: For the first time since 1999, the information and media sector (including technology) beat out financial services terms of office leasing.
In the first quarter of 2012, information and media accounted for 27.8 percent of office leasing by square footage, compared to the financial sector’s 26.3 percent. “New York is not just a financial town anymore,” Cushman’s managing director Ken McCarthy told the Real Deal.
You don’t have to tell Dumbo. Yesterday, the Brooklyn Paper reported that commercial vacancy rates in the neighborhood are down to 2 percent, prompting city planners to try to make Downtown more appealing to Brooklyn’s creative class. “Everyone in the tech industry wants to be in DUMBO,” said the paper. And here we thought the ideal spot was spitting distance from Union Square Ventures.
Tech Talent Crunch
Apparently DUMBO isn’t wanting for tech talent after all. The sleepy strip of cobblestones and art galleries beneath the Manhattan Bridge has seen a surge in tech company leases, and DUMBO Startup Lab is next on the list to trade in their small workspace for a 2,300 square foot loft.
Jobs, jobs everywhere, and not a worker to fill them. In a city with nine percent unemployment, 17 Dumbo tech companies are struggling to fill 329 jobs in web development, mobile development, gaming and other related jobs, reports the New York Post. The agency HUGE needs to hire 50 people; Wireless Generation needs 150. Even DigitalDumbo, the local meetup and tech blog, is hiring a community manager. “We are growing and positions open frequently!” says Carrot Creative.