Is Silicon Valley’s crown slipping?

Is Silicon Valley's crown slipping?

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Could it be that tech lay-offs are a good thing?

Techstars’ 2023 State of Innovation Survey explores the key changes that entrepreneurs expect to see over the next five years.

Based on 1600+ entrepreneurs and VCs across the US, the survey’s responses demonstrate how technological innovation is evolving, from changing sectors to IPO targets and remote working.

What’s driving innovation?

Respondents still view Silicon Valley as the most innovative hub in the global technology industry. But, its influence is set to wane in the next five years.

In the very near future, emerging US cities like New York, Boston, Austin, Atlanta and Miami are set to take the long-held crown.

In terms of innovation, the leading sectors were named as HealthTech, DeepTech, FinTech, Sustainability and Web3. Although these are set to remain in the top five spots over the next few years, priorities will shift.

The survey’s results also indicate that entrepreneurs are currently combatting some of the biggest challenges of our era.

‘This is especially true of the latest generation of founders, who grew up amid a blizzard of information about social issues, climate, and sustainability – and are increasingly starting new companies, to tackle some of the planet’s biggest problems.’ Techstars
What are the biggest drivers of innovation?
  • Experience
  • Geography
  • Specialisation
  • Funding stage

27% of respondents believe that VCs and angel investors will be the biggest driver of innovation over the next five years, with this investment fuelling their growth and development.

The primary long-term goal for 28% of entrepreneurs is to stay private/independent; by comparison 36% are working towards being acquired by larger companies. 16% are targeting IPO status, whilst the remainder is unsure of this next step.

Currently, work environments are either fully remote (reported by nearly 50%) or hybrid (39%), with this flexibility giving startups greater access to top talent, from around the world.

What’s next for startups?

So, one big question that remains is, why do entrepreneurs begin in the first place?

Interestingly, this survey demonstrated that the most common reasons are choosing to solve a problem (cited by an impressive 45%); for personal gain; and to introduce more sustainable solutions to the market.

Despite recent tech layoffs, the Techstars report is convinced that affected workers will contribute towards a sharp rise in entrepreneurial endeavours.

And, nowhere is this more apparent than when we look to the growing procurement technology space, with new ever-more innovative digital solutions being borne to solve procurement’s challenges.

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