Nonstop flights to Seattle fuel Indy tech growth

Nonstop flights from Indianapolis to the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport via Alaska Airlines are a positive trend for the growing tech community.

First it was Los Angeles, then it was San Francisco in 2014, and now – Seattle.

The latest news of nonstop flights from Indianapolis to the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport via Alaska Airlines adds fuel to the already bustling engines that propel Indy’s business community. Thanks to dedicated efforts from the Indianapolis Airport Authority and community partners, the new service is the first year-round flight to Seattle in the Indy airport’s history and makes a substantial impact on the Indiana technology community.

Seattle is the tech hub where Amazon, Expedia, Microsoft, Zillow, and Zulilly all have large footprints. Other companies like Google, Facebook, Apple, Twitter, and Salesforce have also set up shop in Seattle with engineering offices and they are likely hoping to capitalize on the thousands of engineers that arrived in Seattle because of Microsoft’s presence in the 1980s and 1990s.

As Indiana’s technology companies continue to grow with capital, customers and talent, expedited business travel is a necessity.

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“A direct flight that links the Indy tech community to potential investors, customers and partners not only makes it easier for us to do business, but provides another proof point that we are a growing, thriving tech hub,” said Susan Marshall, co-founder and CEO of Torchlite. “We have technology partners in both the Bay Area, Atlanta and now Seattle that we meet with frequently over the phone, and our sales team is starting to travel more frequently to visit prospects and partners in the Seattle area. A direct flight will make it easier to build ongoing, strong relationships.”

“Non-stop flights from Indy are critical because of one simple fact: time is money. Most destinations require a layover (if you’re coming from Indy), which doubles the amount of travel time and decreases the valuable time I could be working or making sales calls,” said Jenn Lisak, Partner and VP of Client Strategies at DK New Media. As a frequent traveler, having a non-stop flight to Seattle, a major tech city, would be a game-changer for our business and revenue stream.”

“As a collector of over one million actual flight miles in my technology career, I can tell you that direct flights from our home base in Indiana are not only preferred, they are critical to linking our state in the most efficient way to the hubs of technology and innovation in our country and in the world.  I welcome with open arms these efforts to create direct links that will foster business growth and technology partnerships to propel our economy into the era of the Internet of Things,” said John McDonald, CEO of CloudOne.

The new nonstop flight will save passengers more than four hours of travel time round trip, and will connect passengers to more than 26 cities in the Pacific Northwest, Montana, California and Alaska including Portland, Edmonton, San Jose, Oakland, Boise and Anchorage.

The Indianapolis International Airport has added 25 nonstop flights since 2014, including major tech hubs such as Boston, New York, and San Francisco. Many of those nonstop flights required major community effort to get off the ground. The Indiana Economic Development Corporation, Indy Chamber, TechPoint, Salesforce and Purdue University were key community players that collaborated with the Indianapolis Airport Authority for more than two years. Nonstop flights to San Francisco in 2014 were a result of similar community efforts.

Tickets for Seattle flights can be purchased at http://alaskaair.com.  For more information about the Indianapolis Airport Authority, visit their Facebook and Twitter pages.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sara Croft is the director of communications at TechPoint. She writes about Indiana tech companies, jobs, people and events. Reach out to Sara @saraelysecroft.