Tech Through Time: Seth Pinsky Explains the Tech Explosion

Menglin Huang |

New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth Pinsky speaks with host Rafael Pi Roman about New York’s growing tech economy.

Last month, the Center for an Urban Future (CUF), a MetroFocus partner, released a report that presented thoughtful analysis what many techies in New York (and Mayor Michael Bloomberg) have been saying for a long time: The tech economy in the Big Apple is booming.

Since 2007, roughly 500 tech start-ups that began in the city have received angel, seed or venture capital funding, according to the report. Of the seven leading technology regions in the U.S., including Silicon Valley, New England and Texas, New York is the only one seeing growth in the numbers of venture capital deals. Overall, more than 1,000 Internet companies are now based in New York City.

At the top of this interactive timeline graphic are the number of people employed in the city’s tech sector over the past 22 years. From 1990 to 2012, the figure has more than tripled. At bottom of graph, drag the date range sector for different years; click letters to learn about specific companies. MetroFocus/Menglin Huang, based on data from the Center for an Urban Future.

A list of digital start-ups founded in New York City since 2007 that have received funding from angel investors, venture capitalists or other capital. Graphic courtesy of the Center for an Urban Future.

And beyond start-ups, some successful tech giants have switched their focus to the city, which has historically been recognized for Wall Street, media and real estate. Since the middle of 2011, a flood of Silicon Valley-based Internet companies have announced their plans to open New York offices, including Ebay, Microsoft and Facebook. LinkedIn, Twitter and Yelp also established satellite offices in the city less than a year ago.

“Over the first part of the mayor’s administration, we were very successful growing areas like tourism and growing sectors like film and television production but what we realized with the crash of Lehman Brothers was that we needed to redouble our efforts,” said Pinsky. “We believe that this is another important piece in the puzzle in ensuring that New York remains a healthy economy that’s subject less to the booms and busts that we’ve been subject to over the last few decades.”

While California is still the home for information technology, for many visionary tech entrepreneurs, New York is with huge economic potential that has driven them here, making it the second Silicon Valley, or, as nicknamed, Silicon Alley.

For more technology news, watch “MetroFocus: The Tech Economy,” airing on THIRTEEN on June 30 at 5 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. and July 12 at 8:30 p.m.; on WLIW at 5:30 a.m. on June 30; on NJTV on July 1 at 5:30 a.m. and July 2 at 4:30 a.m.


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