In this article we are going to list the 20 fastest growing tech cities in the world. Click to skip ahead and jump to the 5 fastest growing tech cities in the world. According to the World Health Organization, two-thirds of the world’s population will be residing in urban cities in about 35 years. This would lead to an additional increase in the population residing in the urban cities. The demand of such an increase can only be met with the aid of cutting-edge technology. Technology will not only help with food production but also provide employment opportunities to people and a source of income. These tech cities further bring venture capital investment into the country and as a result, lead to economic prosperity and increase in standards of living.
Tech cities provide a huge benefit to their local and national economies. They help in attracting investment and skilled human resource from all over the world. Although tech cities do bring a bundle of advantages, they may also create challenges for the economies. In case of an increase in demand, the working spaces may become expensive for startups operating at a smaller scale with limited access to funds. Also, a threat of insularity may develop over time which may lead to lesser chances of external collaboration.
Government policies play a major role in the creation of tech cities. It is impossible that a city prospers in the global tech race without the intervention of its government. David Cameroon, ex-prime Minister of the UK, wanted London to be the next Silicon Valley. For this purpose, “Tech Nation” was launched by the government since their ultimate strategy was to boost technological capabilities within the UK. Similar was the ambition of the Dutch government in the Netherlands where the government focused on making favorable trade deals that would increase the technological potential of the cities like Eindhoven, Amsterdam, and Rotterdam. For example, Startup Amsterdam was initiated by the Dutch Government to increase the collaboration between the city and the private companies. Through this initiative startup could seek help and expand within the same environment, thus helping the Netherlands economy grow and become one of the tech countries that promotes innovation and collaboration.
Huge tech companies like Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Uber (NYSE:UBER), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), and Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) are based in USA because of tech-friendly initiatives and policies by the government. On the other hand, the French government, under the leadership of President Emmanuel Macron, has also pledged to make Paris the capital among all the tech nations, giving stiff competition to other European countries like Netherlands, Germany, and Poland. Paris has been home to the multi-million-pound startup, Station F, which serves as the biggest startup campus. There has been a large influx of startups moving to Paris and working at Station F. Not just small-scaled startups are using Station F’s resources and services, but also partners like Vente-Privée, HEC (NASDAQ:HEC), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), L'Oréal and Zendesk (NYSE:ZEN).
Berlin, arguably the world’s coolest city, is not far behind in technology and innovation. The organizational culture thrives on focusing on innovation. It is also home to one of the most successful startups, Delivery Hero, operating in more than 40+ companies and a parent company to Foodpanda, which rivals Uber Eats in certain countries. The German government introduced the Digital Hub Initiative to encourage collaboration between various startups in the digital era. The rankings and listings of the fastest-growing tech cities in the world have been compiled from London and Partners, Forbes, and Savills. So without further ado, let's take a look at the cities which are going to be the future tech capitals of the world, starting with number 20:
Eindhoven is the hub of technology and innovation in Netherlands. This city is home to companies such as ASML, Phillips and VDL. Eindhoven enjoys lower costs of living which attracts businesses to set up their offices and operations within this city. Moreover, a good standard of living also attracts talent from all over the world. There are currently 220 companies operating within a single High-tech campus in Eindhoven.
Vilnius, a city in Lithuania, is known for its leadership in cybersecurity, fintech and software engineering. Although the city is not widely thought of as a travel destination, it is popular among fintech companies or startups that wish to expand. Currently, Lithuania has more than 1000 startups and 200 fintech companies. Moreover, the Lithuanian government has introduced what is known as a “start-up visa” to encourage tech businesses and top talent from all over the world to settle in Vilnius.
What is fascinating about the tech capital of Estonia, Tallinn, is that with an e-Residency permit, an individual can start their business in Estonia, without actually living there. This is because around 99% of the public services are available online, which makes it incredibly easy for tech companies to establish there, something the other countries are still struggling with. In addition, the government has also introduced a digital nomad visa, which will allow individuals working remotely to live and work in Estonia for up to one year. This provides a supportive environment for tech businesses or startups.
17. Cape Town
Cape Town is not only home to a scenic landscape but also to the largest financial institutions of the country. Startups are now taking advantage of the wide availability of the financial services in the city to expand their operations and services. As per the data by Invest Cape Town, around 60% of the South African startups are situated in Cape Town. However, venture capital investment is on the rise as well, in particular, it grew by 147% from 2016-2019. Thus, making Cape Town a popular choice among the tech companies.
With a jump of 200 places from 2016-2020, Bogota is now one of the fastest-growing tech cities of the world. Businesses enjoy cheaper costs, better tax incentives and rising availability of talent. The local government provides training schemes to the tech businesses, as well as promotes business wellbeing by introducing the iNNPulsa and Apps. co initiatives. A report by Ernst and Young in 2019, states that 76% of the entire population uses fintech services in Columbia which makes it the highest fintech adoption rate in any Latin nation.
Being the hub of shipping and trade for 150 years, Yokohama has attracted international investors and businesses as a result of its highly educated and skilled labor force. In addition, its close proximity to Tokyo has also been a factor in the city becoming one of the fastest growing tech cities in the world. Companies like Lenovo, Samsung and Apple have set up research and development centers in the city, owing to its wide specialty in the field of R&D. Hence more and more tech companies prefer to establish their businesses in the city.
Detroit was known for its auto industry before the Great Depression. It is now building itself to be a tech city of the world. Its major focus is now shifting to mobility technology, for which it has entered into partnerships with giants like Google, Fiat and Ford. Furthermore, Detroit offers a low cost of living which attracts skilled talent from all over the country.
Manchester is on the track to become the world’s fastest-growing tech cities. It currently has a tech industry comprising of more than 10,000 digital and tech companies, which includes Google, Microsoft, and IBM. The Manchester University, because of its strong link with the industry, produces highly skilled workforce which works on projects in the tech companies, allowing them to grow.
Beijing has jumped up 15 spots from 2016 to 2020, for being the world’s fastest-growing tech economy. Although the city may not offer the same incentives or a supportive culture towards startups, relative to other high-tech cities, it is widely recognized as a smartphone hub which attracts smartphone companies and ventures.
The city is known for its patent filings and IP litigations. However, it has recently emerged as a technology leader within the region, after a focus towards manufacturing. As a result, telecom industry giants have made their way into this city.
Just like other Chinese cities Shanghai also specializes in patent making. This patent filing for some companies is important in order to protect their intellectual property. Therefore, increasing manufacturing companies have set up their operations in this city to utilize this service while they focus on R&D and manufacturing. Currently, Shanghai’s ‘Silicon Valley’ has more than 1000,000 workers employed within the companies.
The city of Toronto attracts many small and medium-sized enterprises. This is a result of its business-friendly policies and a pro-immigration government. Toronto has a very strong diverse culture which supports collaboration among businesses and encourages startups to seek expertise and expand. Furthermore, the Economic Growth Division offers innovative infrastructure facilities like co-working spaces, incubators, hubs, and accelerator programs to boost startups.
8. New York City
Before 2010, New York was quite far behind Silicon Valley and Boston in technology and innovation. Now it is catching up and it is catching up fast. It is not because of its infrastructure, but because of its progress as a metropolitan city offering access to diverse and skilled labor. During 2013, there were around 7000 high tech companies operating in the city, as per the state’s office. The city also provided a free Wi-Fi facility, known as LinkNYC, which was made available to the public including small scale businesses.
7. San Francisco
San Francisco is home to the largest valuable tech companies in the world. Silicon Valley, the golden area of the city, has been every city’s dream to achieve. You can’t not think about Silicon Valley when you hear the word ‘tech’. According to 2thinknow, this area is the most urbanized of all and acts as a center for most programmers. The culture of innovation and creativity has prompted smaller businesses to set up here.
Investments in Mumbai, also known as India’s financial capital, have soared 1.7 times from around $0.7 billion to $1.2 billion in 2016 to 2020, respectively. The tech-friendly policies by the government and increasing population relying on technology has been an incentive for tech startups and companies to make their way into this city. Moreover, the availability of cheap labor is also preferred by small-scaled startup businesses wanting to reduce their operational costs.
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Disclosure: No position. 20 fastest growing tech cities in the world is originally published at Insider Monkey.