The Silicon Beach area of Santa Monica and Venice is the up-and-coming tech scene in Los Angeles. Google’s Los Angeles campus has made the move to the Frank Gehry-designed Binoculars building in Venice, and many others are following suit. The emergence of new startups in Silicon Beach is contagious, as more and more businesses are moving to the new tech city.
Sole Society, a spinoff from sister brand Hautelook, launched in March 2012. The
website allows users to register for free and fill out a “style bio” questionnaire. After their style is determined, a collection of shoes are compiled. Each month, the user gets sent a pair of shoes that they selected for about $49.95. This startup already has over 500,000 members and continues to grow.
Mike Jones, the former CEO from Myspace, recently launched Science, a tech
studio in Santa Monica. The goal of his company is to develop, guide and help fund new startups. Science aims to build it’s own companies in house, as well as help already established companies. “We look at this as a long term portfolio, not a term based business,” Jones said. He feels that it is more difficult to get access to early capital in L.A. compared to Silicon Valley. He hopes this company will help boost other entrepreneurs into building successful businesses.
KarmaGoat is a new startup that focuses on giving back to charity. This startup launched in May and is similar to Craigslist. Sellers post pictures of items they want to sell, and buyers make the purchase through the website. The money from the sale goes directly to the charity of the seller’s choice. The seller and buyer arrange a time to meet and exchange the goods. Some of the featured charities include Red Cross, Doctors without Borders, Starlight Children’s Foundation and Pencils of Promise.
With all of these new startups emerging, it’s easy to see why Silicon Beach may be the new Silicon Valley. Santa Monica mayor, Richard Bloom said, “Today we are not just Santa Monica, but Silicon Beach and the Tech Coast. Our technology-qualified workforce, creative workplaces and leading broadband infrastructure will keep our economy well-positioned for future growth!”
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