This year was a busy one at Tech:NYC. Our organization continues to grow—both in terms of our hardworking team and our membership. We host increasingly more events and engage on more issues as we work to represent the diverse and creative tech ecosystem here in the most diverse and creative city in the world. The truth is, it’s a pretty easy job. Our successes are our members’ successes; our fights are their fights. I’d bet on the amazing women and men who make up our ecosystem any day.
2018 gave us a chance to kick the tires and test out what we’ve built at Tech:NYC. And we were thrilled with what we found. Nearly everything we envisioned came to life in big, bold ways. During our organization’s second full year, we hosted more than 80 events; fought hard in NYC, Albany, and Washington, D.C. on issues like computer science education and immigration; and celebrated big tech wins that show how quickly our ecosystem is growing. It’s an honor to fight alongside our members and our community, and I’m thankful for it every day.
A diverse and growing set of companies power NYC's tech ecosystem.
PROOF OF CONCEPT:
We've built a membership of 700 member companies, which includes more than 600 small startups. Together, they represent every kind of tech company there is—adtech, blockchain, fashion, fintech, healthcare, media, retail, and more. Which, of course, is exactly what you'd expect from New York.
Our membership is just a snapshot of the robust NYC tech ecosystem, which was responsible for 333,000 jobs, and more than $11 billion in funding in 2017 alone. We're so excited about these numbers that we launched a data resource page spotlighting them and many others.
New York's tech sector has an amazing story to tell.
Proof of Concept:
This year, we were pleased to see others telling that story too, with a few common themes: 1) NYC is diverse; 2) access to existing industries and markets sets NYC apart from other international tech hubs; and 3) tech is an increasingly large part of NYC’s economy.
Bloomberg outlines the new New York tech scene, which is fine with not being Silicon Valley. It includes more industry diversity and tech-fueled campuses like Cornell Tech (above).
New York Is a Genuine Tech Hub (and That Was Before Amazon)
The New York Times explores the evolution and rise of the New York tech ecosystem, highlighting its significant and ongoing maturation.
WHY NEW YORK CITY
Big expansion announcements from Amazon and Google solidified New York’s position as an international tech hub. Amazon’s planned HQ2 in Long Island City and Google’s expanded presence on Manhattan’s West Side will continue to diversify our city’s economy and both are a testament to a talented workforce and local leaders dedicated to creating a business environment that attracts innovative companies. We’ve spent much of this year supportive of and celebrating these expansions; we wrote about it in the New York Post and the Daily News.
HOW NEW YORK CITY ADDS UP
The numbers also tell our story. In 2018, Tech:NYC launched a page highlighting the continued growth, success, and diversity of our local ecosystem. And together with our partners at Accenture, we released original research showing that NYC tech companies plan to continue their local hiring spree in areas like web engineering and AI and that companies both large and small feel strongly that being located in NYC helps them stay ahead of emerging technologies.
Tech:NYC was featured and mentioned in more than 100 stories in the past year and continues to be a resource for media looking to connect with technology companies and better understand the NYC tech ecosystem.
New York's startups exemplify everything we love about our city.
Proof of Concept:
Our monthly Companies to Watch feature highlighted just how diverse and inspiring our community is. We learned about the best pizza, bagels, and coffee in the city. And how best to spend a snow day. Even more, we learned about what our community is building and what drives our founders.
OUR FAVORITE FOUNDER RECOMMENDATIONS
Arcade Bakery | Tribeca
Di Fara | Midwood
Maiella | Long Island City
Roberta's | Bushwick
Ad Hoc Collective | West Village
Devocion | Williamsburg
Filtered Coffee | Mott Haven
Grace Street Coffee | Midtown
We have a community of advocates who lend their voices on important issues.
Proof of Concept:
Hundreds of our members met with local and national policymakers this year and engaged in important conversations and advocacy around this issues that matter most to our community.
Attorney General Candidate Forum
In 2018 we hosted a first-of-its-kind tech forum with Axios and WeWork featuring candidates running for New York Attorney General during the primaries. Held at WeWork’s Bryant Park building, we gave four candidates (Tish James, Zephyr Teachout, Sean Patrick Maloney, and Leecia Eve) a chance to share their views on issues that matter to our community and talk with voters. More than 100 Tech:NYC and WeWork members showed up to join a lively conversation moderated by Axios’ Mike Allen.
TECH:NYC x The Verge Election Watch Party
On the eve of the 2018 midterms, we partnered with our friends at The Verge for an election night watch party. Hundreds of people representing the tech industry came out for a conversation about our favorite topics—tech and policy and politics—and NYC politicos Rep. Jerry Nadler, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, and Comptroller Scott Stringer all joined us.
2018 CS FAIR
Tech:NYC was a partner in the 2018 Computer Science Opportunity Fair, which hosted more than 1,800 NYC public high school students who are studying CS, giving them a chance to learn about tech careers and potential degrees. More than 60 tech companies and universities hosted booths at the fair.
It’s possible to shape policies to help New York's tech companies succeed.
Proof of Concept:
We continue to ensure the New York tech community is represented at the local, state, and national levels. When an issue that impacts how you do business arises, we're there.
ALGORITHM TASK FORCE
Tech:NYC worked closely with local policymakers to create a task force to study the city’s use of algorithms in the provision of government services. Our Executive Director now serves as a member on that task force.
For the second year in a row, Tech:NYC played a significant role in defeating a proposed marketplace provider tax that would have hit New York’s many internet marketplace providers. Working with a coalition of our members and others, we were able to convince Albany policymakers to remove this provision from the 2019 state budget.
We fought hard for the largest state-level investment in computer science education in the nation—$30 million over six years. Together with the city's ongoing commitment through CS4ALL, New York stands apart as a leader in computer science education.
BLOCKCHAIN POLICY LABS
Tech:NYC, NYCEDC, and IBM hosted the first Blockchain 101 Policy Lab, in conjunction with Blockchain Week NYC. The evening featured an overview of blockchain technology from IBM, demos from blockchain startups, and a Q&A with Assemblymember Clyde Vanel.
DRONES POLICY LABS
In partnership with our member DJI, we held a Drones 101, focusing on drones and the regulatory realities facing unmanned flight in New York city and state. We looked at the innovative ways governments, businesses, and individuals use drones.