Brooklyn tech startup sees second largest growth in U.S. over past decade, report finds

Brooklyn’s tech startup sector is booming, a new report shows. 

While Manhattan maintains 89 percent of tech startups in the city, Brooklyn now boasts 9.2 percent of such ventures, having gained 941 businesses between 2008 and 2018 to reach 1,205.

That 356 percent growth rate surpassed the expansion seen everywhere in the nation but San Francisco, according to an analysis to be released Wednesday by the Center for an Urban Future, a think tank that relied on data from Crunchbase to compile the report, which was funded by the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation, Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, Dumbo Improvement District and Industry City.

"Companies or founders of startups are attracted to the incredible talent pool that exists there," said Executive Director Jonathan Bowles of the Center for an Urban Future. " That’s part of it, but there’s just a lot of creative and entrepreneurial energy in Brooklyn right now."

Brooklyn’s share accounts for more than six times the number of tech startups in Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx combined, the report found. The borough is home to a particularly high concentration of tech companies related to media entertainment, commerce and shopping and financial services, according to the analysis. 

The growth came along with an influx of young, highly educated residents, according to Adam Kamins, director of economic research at Moody’s Analytics. Shifts in educational programs that now  emphasize entrepreneurial and business skills has also helped buoy the startups, according to Kurt Becker, NYU Tandon School of Engineering’s vice dean for research, innovation and entrepreneurship. 

"That’s not just us," Becker said. "If you go to our neighboring institutions like Medgar Evers, Pratt, even St. Francis, you’ll see that they’ve all renovated their curriculum."