New York is a hub for aspiring entrepreneurs and start-ups. Whether its fintech or consumer tech, The City That Never Sleeps is a revolving door that churns out interesting, quirky and (sometimes) downright genius ideas.
How big is the tech start-up scene? New York ranks as the number two tech ecosystem in the States, behind Silicon Valley. So yeah, it’s pretty darn big. And what’s so great about it, aside from its sheer size – is its diversity. From health tech to SaaS, there’s start-ups operating down every snicket of the tech industry.
A buzzing start-up scene
The New York scene is inspiring too. It’s buzzing – literally. It’s got entrepreneurial spirit in droves, and a trading mentality in every shop.
Seeing businesses begin life from the delivery van at street level is a common site in New York. You can sense everyone wants to make a name for themselves. That everyone wants to carve out some prosperity in a city where the rich are getting richer – and everyone else is just getting by.
Success comes to start-ups who are smart. A great example is Teachable on 17th Street, a venture-backed start-up. They developed a platform for teachers that allows them to create and share their own courses. Another is Call9 on 34th Street, an emergency service platform that puts highly-skilled first-responders on-site in nursing homes. These are but two of hundreds of interesting tech start-ups in New York. We could list hundreds more.
A step ladder for newbies
New York’s tech start-up scene is bustling with activity. Want in on it? Well of course you do – and you’ll get a helping hand with the right idea.
So-called ‘startup accelerators’ are available to early-stage start-ups. These are grants that provide the colostrum (seed capital) start-ups need to get started.
Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator (ERA) is perhaps the best. They run two four-month programs that give $100,000 in funding to accepted companies. There’s also TechStars, who run a three-month program with a $100,000 convertible note and instant funding of $20,000. There’s 10 big ones to consider, which are detailed here.
Online start-up networks and angel networks are another option. Angel networks are relevant to most tech start-ups. With these, high net-worth individuals invest in a start-up in return for equity. Think Dragon’s Den but in New York.
Co-working is the city norm
Hustle and bustle, hot dog stands, yellow taxis stuck in traffic, MetroCards – New York has lots of norms, and in the tech start-up scene co-working is one of them.
Fact is, New York’s expensive. Office space comes at a premium. And getting something that’s just right is impossible because places get snapped up so fast.
Co-working spaces are in plentiful supply by contrast and give entrepreneurs the creative environment they need to flourish. A perfect example is the Flatiron building, where you’ll find a collection of innovative fintech start-ups.
Collaboration is the key here. Spaces shared by multiple independent entrepreneurs and companies put talent in one place. They’re a productive place to get things done and have their own little community for start-ups to grow into. New York’s tech start-up scene isn’t a place for ordinary, as these creative spaces show.