This week is Atlanta Startup Week – a five-day celebration of our community’s unique entrepreneurial ecosystem. It’s proof that those of us living in Atlanta recognize the excitement and innovation that is going on in our city. It also reinforces that now is the time to showcase Atlanta to the world. Over 1000 startups already call Atlanta home. Here are the top 10 reasons why even more entrepreneurs should ChooseATL:
#1 Emerging Startup Hub
Atlantans aren’t the only ones who are seeing what Atlanta has to offer. The rest of the country is taking notice as well. In 2014, there were 15 Atlanta-based companies on the INC 5000 list and Atlanta companies like AirWatch and MailChimp are now worldwide names. Last year, Entrepreneur listed Atlanta #10 on its list of 25 Cities Worth Moving to If You Want to Launch a Business. This year, INC named Atlanta the #3 Emerging Startup Hub to Watch in 2016.
#2 Affordable Business Climate
Small business incentives including small business tax relief, Angel investor tax credits and financing of up to $250,000 make Atlanta a perfect climate to start a business. In fact, in 2015, Business Facilities ranked Atlanta as the #6 Metro Area for Best Business Tax Climate.
#3 Access to New & Raw Talent
With Georgia Tech, Emory, Georgia State, UGA, Spelman and other institutions of higher education in close proximity, metro Atlanta is bursting with an abundance of new talent. The region was even highlighted as the #5 Metro Area for Highest Growth of Engineering Graduates in 2014.
Atlanta’s startup ecosystem provides opportunities for all. Recently, Atlanta was named the #4 Best City for Women in Business by Forbes as well as a top 10 city for black entrepreneurs. Soon, digitalundivided will be launching its new BIG Innovation center in Atlanta for black and Latina women in tech.
#5 Close-Knit Community
With over 1000 startups in Atlanta, technology innovation hubs like Atlanta Tech Village, Strongbox West, Switchyards, ATDC and Tech Square have boomed in the last few years. These spaces offer Atlanta entrepreneurs networking, educational courses and the opportunity to collaborate.
#6 We’re Leaders in our Space
Atlanta has widely become known as the healthIT capital of the U.S, a leader in marketing automation, a front-runner in the FinTech and cyber security industries and much more. This makes it the perfect city to launch businesses in a multitude of areas.
Did you know that over 80% of the U.S. market is accessible within two hours of Atlanta? The convenience of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is ideal for both the busy entrepreneur who has places to be and the clients, customers, and investors flying in to meet with entrepreneurs.
#8 Low Cost of Living
In comparison to other entrepreneurial hubs in the country like Silicon Valley and New York, Atlanta offers a much lower cost of living. In 2013, Atlanta’s index averaged 95.3, below the national average of 100 and in 2015 Atlanta ranked was ranked #6 for Affordable Major Metro Areas for Housing.
#9 Vibrant Quality of Life
Today’s Atlantans are experiencing an exceptional quality of life and unlimited opportunity. The city is home to some of the nation’s top music, film and food scenes, offers over 129 miles of multi-use trails and more. It’s a Millennials’ dream. In fact, Atlanta’s quality of life made it Money’s #2 City for Millennials in the country and Nielson named it the #4 Metro Area with the Fastest Growing Young Population in 2015.
#10 Ability to Make Your Mark
As an entrepreneur who founded my company in Atlanta in my early 20s, I know this is a testament of truth. By choosing Atlanta entrepreneurs are provided with all the opportunities and resources necessary to make their mark on the world, and who wouldn’t want that?
Kate Atwood is the Vice President of Marketing at the Metro Atlanta Chamber, where she leads the recently launched ChooseATL initiative. Through ChooseATL, Kate is responsible for focusing the region’s narrative on all that Metro Atlanta has to offer in an effort to attract and retain top talent.