There’s an interesting conversation that just started on Facebook by Hesam Panahi about creating a Startup District in Houston. It was prompted by an Austin-American Statesman article about Mass Relevance, lead by CEO Sam Decker, a Capital Factory mentor, moving his startup to Downtown Austin.
Here’s what we have so far:
Hesam Panahi about an hour ago near Houston ·
Will Houston ever get to this? Hopefully.
Statesman.com : Austin startup Mass Relevance moving downtown as prepares for a new wave of growth
Mass Relevance, a fast-growing social media marketing startup, has leased 12,000 square feet at 800 Brazos St. The space is more than double the size of the company’s current offices at Braker Lane and North MoPac Boulevard (Loop 1). The company is planning a November move-in date.
We need to have a stronger “development and design community” first
I agree with Shion Deysarkar
- we need more people who care more about clustering their startups in one area. Having a cluster of like-minded startup people including developers, designers and ‘biz dev’ types would be great as long as the implicit agreement held that those companies could poach talent freely from each other. To get the equivalent of Houston’s Sam Decker
moving a large startup to a single area, we’d have to identify a place to go and the like-minded entrepreneurs to follow. In Houston, that means collecting and attracting established startups with 50-200 staff members like AlertLogic, FuelQuest, CPanel, CyrusOne, Universal Weather, Merrick Systems, RigNet, SnapStream, Schipul, MicroSeismic and Idera. This would be hard to do since Energy Corridor businesses have different needs than Medical Center startups. Back in 2007-2008, Kurt Stoll floated the idea of a ‘Startup District’ that started at the Houston Technology Center and ended at Caroline Collective
- with CoffeeGroundz in between. We all know that Houston is much more spread out than just about any other city and for this reason and more than a little bit of politics – a Startup District would be very difficult to sustain. The key to this is reaching out to building owners and tenant reps to plant the seed for this kind of thing – maybe a homegrown startup like TheSquareFoot
could help lead the charge.
Do you think that this is important, and if so, what we can do to make this happen? Personally, I do and I think that Greenway Plaza / Rice Village area have the best shot at being central enough to most Houstonians to make this work.
What do you think?