Here at Tech.li, our focus on Flyover Geeks and ‘innovation everywhere’ showcases contributions to the tech startup economy that tend to be outside the spotlight shined on a handful of media darlings in the Valley or Alley. As a new media company based in Chicago — The Second City; The City of Big Shoulders – our identity is built around supporting gritty underdogs. Yet even in the Big Apple, where big lights will inspire you, there are founders toiling away at the next big thing in a dimly lit corner of the startup universe.
Off-the-beaten-path New York City startups, here I come. And I’m bringing a bit of Tech.li with me.
New York can be a cliquey town where those with the loudest voice and biggest pockets hog the attention. Trust me, I know. I’m from Long Island! As an entrepreneur about to launch my own scrappy startup without the backing of a high profile VC or incubator, I will be documenting our time together from the bootstrapped trenches of Williamsburg and Madison Square Park to the pin-striped suits of Union Square and beyond. Having already checked into several coworking hotspots in Manhattan, including General Assembly, Grind Spaces, Sunshine Suites, WeWork and NYU-Poly Varick Street, the journey will continue into Meetups, conferences and networking events all over the landscape of the five boroughs’ startup community.
This is by no means a cattle call for social sharing widget rejects or daily deal flash sale wannabes to get some free press. I am looking for the unique stories of founders carving out an under-served niche, or turning mature industries on their heads with the push of a button. Sure, there’s room for covering the later-stage crowd in Dumbo, but it’s you lean startup crazed, starry-eyed visionaries I’m really after.
In a city that never sleeps, there is select breed of entrepreneurs burning the midnight candle on both ends, hustling to spark a fire while the competition drinks martinis at a gallery opening with the incumbents. I’d be honored to tell their story.