Thursday, November 10, 2005

For those following the cleantech-cluster debate

[Update: this is a guestblog entry by Kjartan (it's nice to be back), sorry for not mentioning this in the original post...]

I had the pleasure of hearing San Francisco Mayor Newsom speak today at a luncheon. Mayor Newsom is a very skilled public speaker and always entertaining.

In addition to other good topics such as homelessness and hotel strikes, he reiterated the city'’s Cleantech initiative, which if you missed it, Joel Makower has already summarized nicely here.

For Cleantech investors this is interesting on a couple of levels: The initiative stands alongside three others, namely Biotech, LifeSciences, and Nanotech -- clearly the Mayor believes Cleantech as an investment area will continue to grow significantly in coming years. Also, will this help incentivize entrepreneurs to locate or re-locate to San Francisco? There are good arguments why it should: It's a great town; Good eats; Easy access to VC's; 10 year payroll tax credit for qualifying Cleantech businesses; etc. On the flip side: Prohibitively high cost of living.

In our outsourced world, the Mayor realizes that the city will never compete with low cost manufacturing jobs, and thus seeks to attract talent and creativity through initiatives such as this. Stay tuned.


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