Some might confuse the name “Silicon Beach” with a suburb in Miami, Florida, that specializes in a certain type of plastic surgery. No such luck. Instead, it refers to the startup community that’s thriving in Los Angeles of all places. Geographically sitting in a stretch of town running from Santa Monica down to Venice Beach, Silicon Beach provides the perfect mix of good weather, easy runs to the beach and surfing, and a far more affordable area to live in. It shouldn’t surprise anyone then that the location has become an attractive place to set down career roots now that a number of tech companies are calling the location home.
Most of the push for product and ideas in Silicon Beach is driven by, no surprise, the adjacent entertainment industry next door in Hollywood. It’s obviously not going to be the hotbed center for government database software by any means (Richmond, Virginia, maybe?).
The location isn’t without its business generators either. In the business of sitting on eggs and helping them hatch into bona fide, successful startups, Silicon Beach has five incubators. Three of them are well known: MuckerLab, Launchpad, and Amplify. Once an idea takes off, there is also plenty of skill in the area to help as well. Hundreds of folks are migrating to the location to get on the inside track with new companies in their infancy.
So should people be surprised if they suddenly see Justin Beiber or Russell Crowe associated with a smart app based in Los Angeles in the near future? Nope. Given the proximity to the entertainment capital, a number of the startups located in the area are reaching out through connections and trying leverage name recognition with greater push of software product. Granted, Russell Crowe probably won’t be able to corner the market on a new smartphone app Spartacus game. A younger actor has that physique covered. But don’t be surprised if an actor or singer’s name ends up in the production credits of a new software. Hybrid investment is quickly becoming the new money for those with capital in Los Angeles and looking for a place to make it grow. Ashton Kutcher figured that concept out a few years ago.
In the meantime, the kiddies in Silicon Valley are chugging away, working to see who becomes the next big tech hit given all the possibilities and attention. Granted, no one is fooling himself that he is launching the next Google. But the potential is there. And, if not, the afternoon is definitely open for surfing and sun time on the beach.