New York City takes top spot - in an analysis by UBS of the world's most expensive cities (only Zrich and Geneva rank higher for cost of goods and services). But cost of living and working doesn't seem to be deterrent for young, nimble startup founders who see being physically located in New York City as absolutely essential to fulfilling their entrepreneurial dreams. Perhaps the "if I can make it here" attitude is the motivating mantra as they face the daily startup grind (plus the recruiting challenges all startups face nationally as well as the subway delays, ride-sharing price surges, affordable office space, scoring insider access to NYFW and other uniquely NYC problems).
Nine founders weigh in on why at any price, building their business in the Big Apple is the place for them to launch, scale and grow their startup:
Nineteenth Amendment Cofounder/COO, Gemma Sole: "Proximity and speed. My cofounder and I first met in Boston but soon realized NYC was the place to be - especially for fashion e-commerce talent but also for domestic manufacturers which we use to power our production."
Minibar Delivery Co-Founder, Lara Crystal: "Lindsey and I were born and raised in Manhattan. We love New York and never thought of starting Minibar anywhere else!"
Beltology Chief Beltologist, Andrew Heffernan: "NYC is definitely the most efficient city in the world to launch an e-commerce apparel brand. Within a few blocks we have access to our factory in the garment district, our tech team in Flatiron and our PR firm in Tribeca. There is so much creative talent in NYC that we can get photos shoots, videos and other promotional content made for very competitive prices."
Foursquare Editor-at-Large, Sarah Spagnolo: "Foursquare was started in a coffee shop in the East Village because Dennis Crowley, co-founder and executive chairman, wanted an easy way to connect and meet up with friends. It's always made sense for the company to be a part of New York."
BaubleBar co-founder, Daniella Yacobovsky: "New York City is the perfect intersection of e-commerce, retail, big data, personalization and mobile technology - all areas of focus for BaubleBar as a fast fashion brand. BaubleBar's plans for growth are uniquely enabled by the technology we build behind it and the access to top talent and expertise available in Silicon Alley have been crucial to that growth."
Jet VP of Marketing, Sumaiya Balbale: "There is an emerging tech scene in the New York area that Jet is excited to help cultivate. Plus, there are many great advantages to assembling a team right outside the banking and media capital of the world".
Gwynnie Bee founder & CEO, Christine Hunsicker: "The creativity and talent in those fields alone make it the right place for our company to have a home base. Plus, NYC has been my home for 15 years."
Handy co-founder, Oisin Hanrahan: "Technically, we started in Boston, but moved our headquarters to New York in 2012. Silicon Alley attracts some of the best developers and creatives, and the growth of the eco-system has proved in sync with Handy's own scaling-up."
THINX Co-Founder & CEO, Miki Agrawal: "New York City is where fashion, technology and culture intersect."