What makes a city a “tech hub”? In years past we thought of Silicon Valley as THE tech hub, since it was the home of so many technology companies. New York and Austin have carved “tech hub” niches for themselves recently by producing more and more successful startups.
But, now there’s a new standard for becoming a tech hub: What does Google think?
On Wednesday Google announced the development of its Tech Hub Network. Initially, 7 cities were chosen to receive Google money, products, and mentors for their startups. In each city there is a partner organization that will have contact with Google, and those organizations will each host a “Googler,” who will share best practices with startup leaders and work to connect them with Google and the other tech hubs.
In true everywhere else fashion, Google seems to have purposely stayed away from cities more often known for technology. But, you’ll probably recognize most of them from the pages of Nibletz. Here are the 7 organizations that were chosen to kick off the Tech Hub Network:
- 1871 (Chicago)
- American Underground (Durham, NC)
- Coco (Minneapolis, MN)
- Communitech (Waterloo, Ontario)
- Galvanize (Denver, CO)
- Grand Circus (Detroit, MI)
- Nashville Entrepreneur Center (Nashville, TN)
“These seven Tech Hub partners represent to us some of the very best-in-class organizations having an impact on startups and helping them directly succeed,” Mary Grove, Google’s director of global entrepreneur outreach, said.
Besides money and mentorship, there’s another, subtler benefit to Google’s presence in their tech hubs: recruitment. As more and more companies choose to stay away from the Valley, more cities are competing for that talent. Google Tech Hubs will have one more edge on other cities when it comes to enticing talented developers and engineers.
“Anytime Google names a city as a place they are going to be, the entire tech community takes notice,” Nashville Entrepreneur Center CEO Michael Burcham told The Tennessean. “I think it will be helpful us as we are recruiting coders and engineers to our city.”
There is money changing hands, but Google says it’s all in sponsorships. As of now, they have no plans to take equity in the startups coming from each city. Still, it’s not a financial wash for Google. Right now, many startups choose to launch in iOS because it’s often simpler to do so than in Android. But, with more Google engineers scattered across the country, it makes sense that we could see an increase in Android launches. (This Android girl is doing a happy dance!)
When big name Silicon Valley companies start to take notice of ecosystems everywhere else, it’s a sure sign that it’s time to “start where u are.”