Red-carpeted premieres, sun and beaches, smog, Pauly Shore. Okay, maybe not Pauly Shore. But let's face it, when you think of Los Angeles, Internet startups are not the first things that spring to mind.
The city has, however, quietly been home to some of the most successful online companies to date, including CitySearch (sold to Ticketmaster for $260 million in 1998), Overture (acquired by Yahoo for $2 billion in 2003), eHarmony and LowerMyBills (bought by Experian for $330 million in 2005). And that's not even counting MySpace, which Rupert Murdoch famously paid $580 million for in 2005.
The Southern California locale benefits from its easy proximity to Silicon Valley, just an hour's flight away, as well as from the many universities in the area, including Cal Tech, where Intel founder Gordon Moore went to school.
Surprisingly, Hollywood hasn't played a major role in the formation of new companies, which have tended to be in less glamorous though more lucrative areas like lead-generation and service (with obvious exceptions like JibJab and Hulu, a joint venture of Fox and NBC).
Mark Suster, a partner at GRP Partners in Los Angeles, spoke with Fastcompany.com about what makes L.A.'s startup scene so hot.
Mark Suster tells why it could be a good idea to start a startup in LA. Mark, thank you for such a great interview!