Technical.ly Pittsburgh Pittsburgh has just been included on a global list of “emerging” startup ecosystems. These local leaders are not surprised

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The Global startup ecosystem report 2021 of Starter genome is here, and Pittsburgh stands out both in the US and beyond.

Overall, Pittsburgh came in 23rd on the report’s list of emerging startup ecosystems, overtaking international cities like Milan, Moscow and Hamburg as well as national cities like Phoenix and Tampa Bay. Only 28 US cities in total were mentioned in the report. The City of Steel also ranked in the top 30 for regional ecosystem finance and regional ecosystem talents and experiences, as well as the top 20 for global emerging ecosystem finance.

“The American News and World Report the rankings are for colleges and universities as for us for the global startup ecosystem ”, Sean luther, executive director of InnovatePGH, said about the publication of the report. It’s important to note, he added, that Startup Genome compiles data within a 100-mile radius of downtown, so Pittsburgh’s numbers include much of southwestern Pennsylvania as well as parts of northern West Virginia, but no part of Ohio.

Each emerging market city was ranked in terms of performance, funding, market reach, talent and experience on a scale of 1 to 10; Pittsburgh got seven, nine, eight and five out of 10 in each of those categories, respectively.

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“Honestly, as an investor who has worked here for almost 10 years, it’s no surprise that Pittsburgh is hitting way above its weight in terms of opportunities for investors,” said Venture capital fund 412 Management partner Ilana Diamond during a conference call about the report. “For a city our size, Pittsburgh has an outsized innovation ecosystem. “

The numbers support Diamond’s comments. Startup Genome has listed Pittsburgh as having a total ecosystem value of $ 5.2 billion with $ 180 million in seed funding available. The city’s average software engineering salary of $ 81,000 is almost double the world average of $ 44,000. Median Series A funding of $ 3.4 million also surpassed the global average of $ 3 million, and local venture capital firms Black Tech Nation Ventures, Innovation works and Magarac business partners have been identified as key players in driving this growth. (Notably, however, the report places Pittsburgh’s seed median round at just $ 75,000, compared to a world average of $ 480,000.)

“In addition to Startup Genome, virtually every major think tank in the United States now reports that regional and even national economies are driven by strong startup ecosystems,” said Rich Lunak, the president and CEO of the accelerator and investment organization Innovation Works. Pittsburgh’s is particularly strong in advanced manufacturing and robotics, life sciences and clean technology, demonstrating multi-faceted success that is only expected to increase.

“Personally, I think we are capable of being one of the world’s leading hubs for technology and entrepreneurship, building on those roots, and we have a lot of momentum,” he added, mentioning the recent public offerings of Duolingo, Cognition therapy and autonomous vehicle companies this summer.

Build412 Tech happy hour in July. (Photo via Twitter)

The great successes also give way to the smaller ones. Catherine fantauzzi, the co-founder and CEO of the medical device company and University of Pittsburgh dilute Apollo Neuro, said that since basic research began in 2014, the concentration of talent in a small town has helped her build connections and develop a team.

“Pittsburgh really cares about Pittsburgh,” she said, pointing out that the spirit doesn’t always exist in other cities. “And it really matters because people are supporting each other and looking to help businesses grow. “

Having these local resources is important even in an age when businesses are questioning the need for in-person offices. Pittsburgh’s ranking in this report will not only attract new investors and founders, but will also focus on the further growth of tech talent from Pittsburgh: “Even remote workers need a community, they need a community. need for ecosystems that strongly depend on the place ”mentioned Marc Thomas, the president of the Pittsburgh Regional Alliance. The city’s ranking and other highlights from this report demonstrate why businesses should be looking to bring this community and physical space – no matter how small – here.

Yet while many of Pittsburgh’s tech cheerleaders believe she has the potential to be an even bigger global competitor, there are also questions about what it will take to lose the word ’emerge. Of the classification title. While there are a lot of moving parts needed to bring Pittsburgh to higher status, Thomas has an idea of ​​what this success will look like.

“You will see more startups, more VCs, more ecosystem organizations,” he said, adding that more real estate investments and completion of projects like the one at Pittsburgh International Airport. “You will see all of these things that will really reflect a higher density of activity. “


Sophie Burkholder is a 2021-2022 corps member of Report for America, an initiative of the Groundtruth Project that pairs young journalists with local newsrooms. This position is supported by the Heinz Endowments.

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