Leaders from four companies founded in Greater Philadelphia are sharing how the region’s talent pool and startup ecosystem create an ideal environment for business in a new, three-minute video created by Select Greater Philadelphia. Designed as a resource for entrepreneurs and site selectors who may be considering locating or expanding in the region, Greater Philadelphia: Achieve Your Vision Here features the perspectives of executives from Comcast NBCUniversal, PDC Machines, Spark Therapeutics, and Stimulus Inc. Among the attributes they say set the region apart are innovation, collaboration, funding, quality of life, cost of living, and, most significantly, talent. The video also shares data on the region’s position as a #1 emerging startup ecosystem and #2 cell and gene therapy hub.
Spark Therapeutics, a member of the Roche Group, is a company that has grown as a result of the region’s leading life sciences ecosystem. Spark was founded in 2013 and is now a fully integrated gene therapy company responsible for discovering, developing, and delivering life-saving treatments to patients worldwide. Ron Philip, Spark’s CEO, who is leading the company’s development of a $575 million, 500,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art Gene Therapy Innovation Center on the Drexel University campus in the city’s University City neighborhood, said, “The Gene Therapy Innovation Center that we’re building is going to be a standalone gene therapy manufacturing center right here in the heart of Philadelphia. The ability to do something here was already envisioned because of the biopharma resources here in the area, the universities, the medical systems, and we have an opportunity to really continue the journey that we’re on.”
Comcast, which started in Philadelphia nearly six decades ago, uses its Comcast NBCUniversal LIFT Labs Accelerator to help other companies and talented entrepreneurs succeed. The accelerator supports international talent by connecting class members with a network of mentors from Comcast’s family of brands. “Comcast is incredibly committed to building an amazing, incredible, innovative tech ecosystem here in Philadelphia,” Dean said. “You can actually do a little bit more here because we have a great cost of living, and we have a community here that is really committed to this city.
One entrepreneur supported by the accelerator is Jess Podgajny, Co-Founder and CEO of LLUNA and a member of the 2022 Comcast NBCUniversal LIFT Labs Class. “We’re building a hub in Philadelphia because I believe so much in the quality of the talent,” she said. “We can build here, we can grow here, we can live here, and we can thrive here.”
Tiffanie Stanard, Founder and CEO of Stimulus, Inc., a technology company helping companies make better purchasing decisions, was also spotlighted in the video. She describes the region’s startup community as growing, increasingly diverse, and inclusive of women and people of color. “We’re now seeing more investment and new funds that are popping up, so it’s been beautiful to watch. We’re a city of neighborhoods, so it’s easy to live here, and walk here, and grow here,” she said.
PDC Machines, a manufacturer of high pressure gas equipment for use in the emerging hydrogen energy industry, is on a mission to lead the world’s transition to clean energy. Kareem Afzal, CEO of PDC Machines, has been with the company for 24 years, helping its reach extend from local to international. “The green tech jobs of tomorrow are going to rely on this emerging workforce and will fuel the future of the economy,” he said.
“No matter your vision, you can achieve it here,” said Claire Marrazzo Greenwood, Executive Director and Senior Vice President of Economic Competitiveness for the Chamber. “Greater Philadelphia: Achieve Your Vision Here is an important new resource for sharing the assets and characteristics that differentiate Greater Philadelphia. Whether it’s our low industrial rental rates, our fastest rising tech salaries, our success in attracting venture capital funding, or our quality of life and ranking as a top 25 global city, it’s important that we share our story and stats so other companies can benefit from selecting Greater Philadelphia.”
For more information on locating or expanding in Greater Philadelphia, visit the Select Greater Philadelphia website or contact James Medaglio, Director of Business Attraction and Expansion for the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia, at (215) 790-3688 or [email protected].