Vancouver and Barcelona, attracting IT companies, comparison.
Living in Vancouver has given me the opportunity to realize how much potential the entrepreneurs have in this side of the world. I cannot avoid comparing the current IT intelligence with my home town in Barcelona. And a few notes right or wrong pop up from my thoughts to reflect on a few comparisons and differences.
Vancouver and Barcelona have highly skilled IT professionals: both cities have tremendous potential especially on Software development
Vancouver and Barcelona offer a great “space” for growth for IT companies. Barcelona however concentrated the efforts back in 2002 on building a central district called 22@, the relatively success was not measured on the IT related revenues but on the real estate, following the building fever that created the bubble that has surrender Spanish economy. Vancouver is not concentrating to have just a ward of the city building real estate for IT, is enabling IT entrepreneurs to start and grow. With IT related Venture firms or assistance from other organizations (NRC-IRAP) please see: VEC
Vancouver thinks about revenue generating companies with a world-wide vision that will live and work in the city and increase the city income with taxation.
Barcelona, wanted immediate gratification on the real estate. I know I will touch Spanish (or Catalan) sensibilities in this article, however is my personal opinion that the Barcelona council should have focused more on bringing the IT anywhere in the city and then building the grounds for more dedicated real estate space if it was the ultimate desire. Today’s technology helps new companies to be created on a garage or from the entrepreneur home, is later when these companies need space, and by then they may adopt new models that will not require much office space as Datacenters serving these companies can be located anywhere.
Vancouver should attract worldwide events like Barcelona, the Catalan capital successfully does that by becoming the world capital for mobile technology conference plus other major vendors choose Barcelona for their world-wide gatherings. Barcelona can be an example on bringing the big events to a world class city, while Vancouver can show Barcelona how to attract the entrepreneurial start-ups that are becoming world phenomenon’s, Vancouver is great for IT firms from the ground up through the economic development resources available.
As a Catalan-born I take pride of my country and my city: Barcelona. And in these times of uncertainty to help those new technologies that will reactivate the economy is crucial, and should be not attach to real estate focus by the administration.
As a “Vancouverite”, I take pride of my city today, looking forward to see some major world-wide technology gatherings as an ongoing activity, looking how my industry peers and I combine our innovative thinking, skills and specializations to develop the best IT.