A Scott Budman Perspective on the San Francisco’s Tech Gold Rush
I’m standing in a beautiful, calming rooftop garden, overlooking an area that has been described as “lousy,” and “undesirable.”
That’s how hot the tech market is in San Francisco right now. I’m at the top of Twitter’s new headquarters, a beautiful old building that’s been thoroughly modernized inside. It’s everything you’d expect from a tech company firing on all cylinders: Lots of space, cool vibe, awesome cafeteria. And, it’s probably going to transform the mid-market area, as so much of The City has been transformed by tech.
Hit hard by the dot-com bust of 2000, San Francisco has stormed back with a ton of recent tech success, and it goes way beyond just dot-com. Yes, Twitter is growing and hiring on its way to an IPO, and Zynga has brought even more style to the already hip Design Center area. But we’re also seeing growth from SF stalwarts like Salesforce, which has seen both its employee and stock price grow quickly. Biotech has boomed here, making it likely that San Francisco will soon be as famous for its cures as it is for its sports teams.
Lots of credit for this should go to Mayor Ed Lee, for giving companies tax incentives to move to where so much talent lives. DropBox is hiring near AT&T Park. StubHub, Trulia and Yelp have all launched recent successful IPOs. Reddit made social networking history by luring President Obama online. Instagram was bought for a billion dollars. And, if the editor gave me three times as much space, I could tell you all about the red-hot startup scene.
Fact is, San Francisco is the new tech hotspot. It’s cool, full of young smart people, and stretching the boundaries of what we call “Silicon Valley.”