All roads lead to Indianapolis as tech community attracts more coastal firms
Tech companies across the globe are rethinking where, how and even if they plan to reopen or establish an office post-pandemic. Online real estate company Zillow Group referred to this decision-making process as the “Great Reshuffling,” but the geographic broadening of the tech sector to include more flexibility for work-from-home and remote work was already in motion before anyone heard of COVID.
I know this because in my capacity at TechPoint, I’ve been working for the past two years to help the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) bring high-wage new jobs in tech to our thriving information-based economy. Pandemic restrictions forced TechPoint ourselves to do a little reshuffling, but we have continued our quest together with IEDC to accelerate the growth of Indiana’s tech ecosystem.
TechPoint’s most visible initiatives are focused on growing and driving the tech talent pipelines into the state, and providing tech startups and scale-ups with the talent, customers, capital and other resources they need to grow. But for the first time in 2019, we stepped beyond our support for existing tech companies and organic growth to proactively identify, contact and recruit new tech companies to the Hoosier state. In that time, we have:
- conducted hundreds of meetings with more than 140 companies that indicated a desire to learn more about the growing technology presence in Indiana,
- referred 40 of them to have additional conversations about incentives opportunities with state economic development officials; and
- helped 18 of them to grow in Indiana.
Anatomy of a coastal corporate relocation
As anyone who’s ever relocated knows, making the decision to move is a complex one. For businesses, of course, it’s even more complicated and time consuming. Our work, which started months before the pandemic hit the U.S., actually began to show promise in the beginning of 2021. In fact, Indianapolis has seen significant investments from tech product companies in the state over the past six months:
- Applicant tracking and recruiting platform, Jobvite officially established its headquarters in Indy by moving the company from San Mateo.
- After the acquisition of Indy-based tech company SmarterHQ, New York based Wunderkind doubled down and is focused on growing the future of the organization in Indy.
- Longtime Indy tech company Tangoe (formerly Mobi) officially moved its global headquarters from New Jersey to Indy.
- Indy has also seen new companies enter the market with San Mateo-based and iPasS technology leader, Celigo, choosing Indy to grow 150 jobs.
- Pharmacy automation software firm Innovation Associates (iA) relocated its global headquarters from New York to Indy and is focused on hiring 420 new positions over the several years.
- Both Chicago-headquartered Active Campaign and Atlanta-headquartered Terminus have a significant presence in Indianapolis and both companies are coming off of significant capital raises over the last 6 months. With these raises, both Active Campaign and Terminus have signaled healthy headcount growth in the market.
- Additionally, notable acquisitions of homegrown Indy tech firms took place over the last 6 months, including Socio (Cisco), Pactsafe (Ironclad) and Emplify (15Five).
We look forward to seeing how Indy closes out such a turbulent 2021, and we recognize that our work is far from over. In concert with local and state officials through our partnership with IEDC, TechPoint is on a mission to help Indiana become the premier tech hub among mid-sized cities in the United States. When tech companies consider expanding or moving operations to a mid-sized city in the Midwest, we’re focused on ensuring Indy is at the top of their list.
Indy has been punching above its weight class for more than a decade, with more than $7 billion in tech transactions and significant investments by the likes of tech product and service firms Salesforce, Infosys, Genesys and several others.
TechPoint is focused on accelerating this growth by injecting important ingredients like talent, capital, connection and promotion into the ecosystem. Coupled with complementary talent-focused ecosystem organizations, aggressive venture capital partners and several accelerator programs and venture studios, Indy is tuned for a bright future.
Not convinced? At just the half-way mark, Hoosier tech companies have already attracted more than $400 million in fresh investment in their operations — eclipsing the prior record for annual investment. This activity shows that Indiana companies are considered good bets by in-state and out-of-state investors and indicates the promise the tech ecosystem offers to tech workers and entrepreneurs.
Ready to Relocate to Indy?
If you’re in a leadership role at a tech company headquartered outside of Indiana, and you’re looking to understand how a growing mid-sized midwestern city could be a part of your company’s future, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to share more about Indy and how you can do more than grow your company here: you can join a tech community that wants you to succeed and will help you do it. Moreover, you’ll be able to have an amazing quality of life free of the congestion and costs that can be expected with legacy tech hubs.