Boris Mann explains why Vancouver is such a great place to start or join a cool company (UPDATED)

My friend Boris Mann had some great things to say about Vancouver being an excellent place to join or start a company here in this posting. However, I would add “capital efficiency”, great education system, and an awesome talent pool to to the list of reasons that Vancouver is a great place to build a company.

Back in November 2005 at the IT Financing Forum, Anthony Lee from Altos Ventures talked about how he was particularly interested in “capital efficiency” and he found that Vancouver companies were, on average, 10x more capital efficient than Valley companies. At the time, they had a 75M fund open and had earmarked 4 of the 20 slots for Vancouver-based web 2.0 related companies. Anthony commented that more companies dies from too much money rather than too little and that capital efficiency = a higher Internal Rate of Return = the company is more appealing to venture capitalists.

John Berchers from Crescendo Ventures  (Palo Alto, Minneapolis) whose fund had 1B under management and a currently open fund of 650M, commented that Vancouver had “great people”.

And finally, Nicholas Darby from Dow Venture Capital Fund (a 400M fund inside the $48B Dow Chemical), talked about how there were only four countries that they invested in because of the great education system and good talent pool: Israel, USA, UK, and Canada.

Also, Boris was being modest and didn’t include his own startup in the list. So I would add some more interesting companies to the list starting with his:

* Bryght – Boris Mann, Roland Tanglao, Kris Krug, Richard Eriksson, and Colin Brumelle’s Drupal based startup that extends the Drupal platform and builds cool apps. This team works with Dries Buytaert, James Walker and Adrian Rossouw, the original Drupal team.
* DabbleDB – Avi Bryant and Andrew Catton’s Access/Filemaker killer (easy database creation on the web)
* Raincity Studios – Robert Scales’ Drupal/Bryght site web design firm
* Flourish Media – Karen Olsson’s Web & TV production firm that produces among other things, “Universe Village” – a sustainability game/TV show for kids
* Ma.gnolia – Todd Sieling’s social bookmarking application that looks nicer and does more than competitor del.icio.us.

Updates:

* EZ Systems – the open source CMS people are building a new office here with Zak Greant helping to set it up. (Thanks Ben!)

Know any other interesting companies you would add to the list? Drop me an email or add a comment!

(2) Comments

  1. eZ System, a Norweigan PHP CMS company is opening new offices in Vancouver as well. I was talking to Zak a few weeks ago and he mentioned that they chose to open their new North American offices in Vancouver over San Fran/San Jose.

    ben.

  2. Good point Ben. I knew that too and forgot about Zak and EZ Publish. I’ll update my list above. Thanks for that!

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