There is no denying that Silicon Valley has developed a reputation for being the center of the tech universe — and rightfully so — being the origin of some of the largest tech startups in history. However, as of late, it has been New York City that has experienced unparalleled growth in the tech industry. What was once considered hype is proving to be validated anticipation. There are a number of forces that serve as an aggregate catalyst in the rapidly rising tide of tech companies in NYC.
One of the most prevalent influences in the growth of the tech industry in NYC is the massive exposure to funding sources necessary to fuel the startups. With New York being the bedrock of multitudinous revenue powerhouses, including fashion, media, finance and commerce, there is no shortage of funding for startups with promise.
Over the past 10 years, New York has proven to be ground zero for startup activity for tech-based companies. Following are some of the top up and coming tech startups that promise to push the innovation envelope for some time.
Providing a uniquely presented summary of all that is necessary for the tech-focused individual to kick off their day, The Skimm is a daily digital newsletter that was founded by Danielle Weisberg Carly Zakin in 2012. Over the course of two separate rounds of fundraising, the firm has been able to secure $7.8 million from a total of 11 independent investors, with the leading investor being Homebrew.
Currently, the company has less than 20 employees, and it has been featured multiple times by a number of noted media outlets, including Inc. Magazine and the New York Times.
Millennials are playing an increasing role in the global business world, meaning that there are a lot of opportunities for companies that wish to provide services to millennials. Mic is a digital news platform that is actually ran by millennials with a focus on serving the interests of millennials. Being true to the youthful ideology of millennial thought, Mic’s CEO, Chris Altchek, is only 28-years-old, and already running an upstart with more than 130 employees.
To this point, Mic has been able to raise $30 million from its key investors, including Lerer Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Red Swan Ventures.
Andela has developed a reputation of having the innovative capacity to reimagine the best approach to hiring the top technical talent on the continent of Africa. The company identifies the top technical developers in Africa, and provides the training and insight to transform them into world-class leaders in the tech industry. Once they have developed the talent of the developers, they connect them with tech firms as full-time team members, functioning in a distributed capacity.
In two rounds of fundraising, the company has been able to secure $13 million from more than 14 venture investors. They currently employ over 200 people, with more growth in sight. Some of the most notable investors include Spark Capital, Omidyar Network and Founder Collective.
Having been founded in 2014, by Ian Carnevale, Jeremy Johnson, Christina Sass and Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, it is still in its infancy stages, but the company shows incredible promise.
Olapic is currently one of the top visual marketing platforms in NYC. The company focuses on helping a wide range of brands expand their visual reach to their customer base. With 176 employees currently on staff, and over $21 million raised, the firm is currently positioned to remain a relevant element in the rapidly expanding world of technology and how it influences business on a global level.
Founded in November of 2010, by Jose de Cabo, Luis Sanz and Pau Sabria, who all emerged from Columbia Universities MBA program, the company has been able to secure funding from a number of major investors, including Fabrice Grinda, Longworth Venture Partners and Unilever Ventures.
Trello is a company that was founded in 2011, by Michael Pryor and Joel Spolsky, and it focuses on developing free apps that will make working on group projects simpler. Currently, the firm employs 54 people, and they have raised $10 million from several top tier venture capital firms that include Index Ventures, BoxGroup and Spark Capital.
TripleLift is a tech startup that focuses on simplifying native programmatic, as well as making it effective and scalable. The company leverages pioneering computer technology to seamlessly transform general images and video content into in-feed native ads that are completely integrated into the design and color scheme of the publisher’s website.
The company was founded in 2012, and has consistently delivered measurable and meaningful results to some of the world’s largest brands. The services this firm is providing is being lauded as the next evolution of display advertising — helping their clients reach millions of consumers at scale across any device.
Focusing on learning technology, ELM is a company that focuses on creating innovative learning experiences by using intuitively stunning designs and modern brain science. Using a number of different modalities, such as multimedia and audiovisual, corporate gamification, social and mobile learning, the company has caused a significant disruption in the eLearning industry — possessing a unique ability to incorporate modern UI/UX, learning architecture and instructional design. The firm uses a simple model of hiring artists, training them in the latest eLearning development tools and then allowing them to use their creative expression to create high-performing work for their clients.
With New York City being the beneficiary of a number of city and state policies that favor business incentives that serve to attract tech businesses in the wake of the financial crisis of the previous decade, it is likely that the city will continue to see remarkable growth as far as tech-related businesses are concerned.
Another driving force behind the tech boom in NYC is the rapid expansion of the tech revolution. With the inversion of the tech paradigm that now has the latest technology finding its way directly to the consumer, there is a greater demand for tech services, as businesses scramble to keep up with the rapidly developing technical IQ of the consumer. The customer experience has become a central focus, and the most effective way to enhance the customer experience is through responsive technology. It is likely that this boom will continue for some time.