San Diego Tech Sector Holding Its Own

By Donald Sears  |  Posted 2010-09-30

Venture capital may not be flowing as it once did in San Diego, but activity in technology and life sciences start ups is still lively. In the second quarter of 2010, 64 new startups launched which is an 84 percent increase from the first quarter, according to data released by Connect--a San Diego trade group that advocates for technology startups in the region. These startups have resulted in 250 new jobs in the quarter. It's not earth shattering, but it's worth noticing.

Much of the funding in the second quarter came from grants from the federal government, namely the NIH (National Institute of Health) which gave $380 million. These grants outpaced VC funding significantly.

There were substantial increases in the second quarter in the number of new companies compared to the first quarter of 2010 across almost all tech sectors. San Diego's software sector led the pack with 25 start-ups, more than double the 11 established in the first quarter of 2010, and ranked third statewide after LA's 38 and Santa Clara's 34 software start-ups.

Where is the VC money going? Well, the usual suspects like Silicon Valley and Boston, but most surprisingly, the LA and Orange County regions have seen strong VC investment and startup activity. The two counties accounted for 33 percent of the quarterly new startup number and rank second regionally at $687 million behind Silicon Valley, but ahead of New England and New York. San Diego accounted for 11 percent of he startups in the state and received $171 million.

If you have held on to your technology job in San Diego (yes, there has been some job loss), your wages hold up very well. The average technology job salary is $91,000. The two sectors to see job increases was biotech/pharma and tech consulting--both between 7 and 8 percent.

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