Writings by a younger, less handsome man who shares my name

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UPDATE (1/25/2010 @ 4:30pm): Rumor has it that Philadelphia is now going to be included in the Fast Company list of top startup cities! Here’s what Brad Feld writes below in the comments:

“I predict you will see Philly in the Fast Company series. I’ve already made intos for them there for an interview. They’ve expanded the list of cities beyond the original five (Boulder, NY, Seattle, Boston, and Austin). Philly is in the next batch.”

This is an amazing conclusion: You spoke and, with Brad’s help, Fast Company listened!

Most entrepreneurs have no idea about the magical things happening in Philadelphia.

Fast Company is doing a five-part series on great startup cities outside of Silicon Valley. It’s likely that Philadelphia is not one of them.

They have already featured New York City and Boulder, and Fred Wilson says Seattle is also on the list. That leaves two more, and I haven’t heard about them interviewing anyone from Philly.

Let’s change that.

If you were interviewed by Fast Company, how would you answer the question, “Why should you start a company in Philly?”

I gave my answer on Fred Wilson’s blog, but I don’t think I captured it. That’s why I need your help. Here’s what I wrote:

We have one of the tightest startup communities of significant size in the country. It’s built at the grassroots by the entrepreneurs who depend on it. It’s also deeply integrated into our thriving tech and indie communities. This integration makes Philadelphia a remarkably creative, collaborative place to launch a startup.

Because we’re not in our second decade as you are in New York, we have much more of a self-help ethos. It has led us to discover that more than anything else — more than advice from investors, service providers, academics, economic development folks — startup entrepreneurs need each other.

This do-it-yourself approach is reflected in our Philly Startup Leaders manifesto. And it drives the other anchor tenants of our creative scene: Indy Hall, Barcamp, Ignite, Technically Philly, MakePhilly, The Hacktory, Hive76, Refresh Philly and on and on.

We’ve seen startups move here from New York and some move to New York from here. I’m thrilled to see New York thrive and excited to build more bridges between our communities.

We can do better than this. Philly is a community-powered city, so we should give a community-powered answer to why entrepreneurs should start a company here.

This blog post is meant for us to answer this question together. So let’s start the conversation in the comments!

  • Philly is not the best place for internet entrepreneurs because of the mandatory blog tax.

  • We did it Philly! Fast Company profiles Philly, interviews Josh Kopelman and gives me a shout out (undeserved, but thank you).

    http://www.fastcompany.com/art...

    We're one of only eight cities to be profiled: Boulder, Seattle, New York, Boston, Austin, Chicago, New Orleans and, oh yes, Philly!

  • That is great news to hear. Although the desirability of a city as a place to launch a startup should not have anything to do to the amount of press it receives, the fact of the matter is that these are the sort of things that help a city become a "magnet" for for entrepreneurs and thus contribute, indirectly, to supporting the startup ecosystem.

  • Absolutely. Perception and reality feed each other inside and outside of Philly. They affect decisions people make on where to locate themselves, their companies and their investment money (and much more).

  • I predict you will see Philly in the Fast Company series. I've already made intos for them there for an interview. They've expanded the list of cities beyond the original five (Boulder, NY, Seattle, Boston, and Austin). Philly is in the next batch.

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