Jul 27, 2017, 8:58 PM
Move over, Silicon Valley.
Southern California (made up of Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego and Inland Empire) is producing more tech talent than several of the nation’s top tier markets. Los Angeles, specifically, has seen an upsurge in talent as the tech and media industries converge. For startups and established tech companies looking to up their media game, LA is the perfect location for growth.
Existing talent pool supports growth
Southern California is home to more people in computer and mathematical occupations than any other metro along the West Coast. 325,000 to be exact.
One third of that talent resides in Los Angeles alone, and about half of them work as computer programmers or software developers—the mostly highly sought type of tech talent.
More people employed in tech than ever before
After the development of the iPhone in 2007, and the subsequent boom in smartphone app development, the number of software developers in Los Angeles increased by 24.7%, with a spike of 14.4% in just the last year.
These numbers are only expected to rise as more tech companies become media companies and vice versa. Think about the rise of original content producers, digital streaming and the potential for VR. LA is a great place for tech to capitalize on the media industry by piggy backing on existing platforms and pioneering new ones.
Southern California is producing top talent
The talent pool doesn't seem to be running dry either. More than 76,000 engineering students—both grad and undergrad—are enrolled in top schools across Southern California, including CalTech, UCLA and USC. That’s higher than Boston, New York City and the Bay Area.
What about innovation? Can Los Angeles keep up with the Bay Area? Not quite, but Southern California comes close.
Southern California ranks 2nd for U.S. patents
Southern California ranks second in total patent generation, and those ideas are getting funded. Since 2014 the region has captured more than $1 billion in venture capital funding each quarter.
Where to look for talent?
If you’re a tech company looking to expand in Los Angeles, go west. The Westside and South Bay are where tech and media professionals call home. Some of the best looking office space in the SoCal region can be found in Culver City, Santa Monica, Marina del Ray, Playa Vista, El Segundo and even Hollywood.
Research: Amber Schiada | Editor: Lillian Veley