Make way for Connecticut, the new Silicon Valley for digital health startups! Indeed, this state is fast emerging as the new hub for setting up health IT and other tech startups.
Are you looking to launch your digital health startup? Here are 10 great reasons why you should consider calling Connecticut your new home.
1. Broad Base of Digital Health Customers
That’s one of the reasons why an increasing number of digital health entrepreneurs are making a beeline for Connecticut! This northeastern state boasts an excellent customer base for health tech—right from leading pharmaceutical firms, like Axerion Therapeutics and AxioMX, to medical device companies, like Covidien and Ivy Biomedical.
What’s more, the many CT-based first-tier healthcare providers and health insurers are also on the constant lookout for innovative digital health products and services.
2. Impressive Network of Investors
Did you know that Connecticut is the seventh most attractive U.S. state for venture capital investment? In 2015 itself, CT-based startups attracted $446 million in investments.
There are many venture capital firms in the state that love digital health startups! Connecticut Innovations (CI), for example, has put its muscle and money behind several health tech innovators, including Cara Therapeutics and Alexion Pharmaceuticals, both top industry names today. In fact, CI has played a prominent role in boosting the venture capital scene in Connecticut.
Oak HC/FT is another Connecticut-based VC firm that invests exclusively in health care and fintech. It looks for “tech-enabled services that use the latest and greatest technology to provide superior patient care and experiences,” said Nancy Brown, Venture Partner at Oak HC/FT.
Funding makes the startup world go round! Your digital health startup, too, can enjoy the vast funding opportunities in Connecticut.
3. Financial Incentives
Connecticut is going out of its way to attract and support businesses at every stage of their development. A host of incentives, tax reliefs and innovation funds is increasingly drawing digital health and other tech startups to the state.
For example, Connecticut’s Enterprise Zone Program enables qualifying corporations that are newly established within an enterprise zone to receive a five-year, 80 percent real and personal property tax abatement, and a 10-year, 25 to 50 percent corporate business tax credit.
Connecticut’s Urban and Industrial Site Reinvestment Tax Credit provides a corporate tax credit of up to 100 percent, for an investment up to $100 million in an urban area or an industrial project.
In addition, the Small Business Express Program in Connecticut provides incentive-driven loans and grants to encourage small businesses.
Is your startup dabbling in biosciences? Well, we have some good news for you! The $200 million Connecticut Bioscience Innovation Fund has been set up to push innovation in this field through financial assistance to startups and early-stage businesses.
4. Dedicated State Support
Since 2011, Connecticut’s state government has assisted more than 1,600 companies through a range of programs.
The state government also offers a concierge service to help businesses launch in Connecticut smoothly. In other words, your startup can get complete support from the state—right from the registration process to sourcing financial and technical assistance.
Stan Galanski, President and CEO of The Navigators Group, said, “Our decision to move to Connecticut after 39 years in New York was a very simple one, driven by this state’s strong public/private partnership. They made it very clear we were welcome here.”
5. Community of Innovators
Connecticut indeed has a vibrant, dynamic community of innovators and disruptors. Right from tech industry movers and shakers to entrepreneurs who are looking to set up their companies, Connecticut attracts them all!
With its unique focus on cutting-edge technology, the state boasts twice the national average for private R&D investment per capita in the United States. It is no wonder that the number of patents issued to Connecticut residents is 33 percent higher than the national average!
An environment that fosters innovation and growth is ideal for tech startups. Are you ready to join other like-minded disrupters in chasing next-generation technology?
6. Rich Source of Talent
Connecticut is a powerhouse of talent and productivity! It is ranked fourth among U.S. states, with the highest productivity per person. The state also has a 31 percent higher output per worker than the national average.
Not only that, Connecticut also ranks third among states whose workers hold the most advanced degrees. No wonder—Connecticut has nearly 50 percent more adults with advanced degrees than the national average.
Therefore, CT-based companies have the advantage of accessing an industrious and highly educated workforce. This makes the state a favorite among investors.
Jeffrey A. Flaks, Chief Operating Officer of Hartford HealthCare, said, “This is a region where people come together, people work together, people rely on one another. We can go to places beyond where we’ve ever been.”
Wouldn’t you like your startup to employ highly talented individuals?
7. Thriving Business Hub
Located just an hour away from both New York City and Boston, the state enjoys the advantage of easy access to major markets. Moreover, effortless connectivity via major highways, trains, ports and airports makes the region a prime business hub.
It’s no surprise that 22 of the Fortune Global 500 companies have subsidiaries in Connecticut.
8. Great Quality of Life
There’s never a dull moment in Connecticut! With an array of attractions that include over 90 miles of coastline, hiking trails, museums and restaurants, there’s plenty to do here.
It doesn’t hurt either that the average commute for Connecticut workers is less than 25 minutes, among the shortest in the Northeast.
What’s not to love?
9. Low Rent
The proximity of the state to both New York City and Boston enables entrepreneurs to tap into the markets of the two big cities, while still saving on basics like rent and transportation costs. Truly a win-win situation, isn’t it?
10. Center for Research
Connecticut is home to 42 universities and colleges, including Yale University, Wesleyan University and Quinnipiac University. In addition, the state has several leading research universities, including University of Connecticut and Fairfield University, plus world-class biomedical research institutions like the Medical Research Center of Connecticut and the department of Research and Innovation at Western Connecticut Health Network.
Several of these colleges and universities have been ramping up opportunities for entrepreneurship centered around health care and life sciences. In the words of Tim Shannon, General Partner at Canaan, “We have the innovators, both the small company innovators and the large company innovators, who bring products from early academic ideas into practical applications for the marketplace.”
The digital health business is booming in Connecticut! And why not? A strategic location, dedicated state support, plus access to a broad customer base and venture funding are just a few of the factors that digital health startups need in order to thrive!
Are you ready to make the best of the unique advantages that Connecticut offers to digital health startups? Are you ready to move to Connecticut?