Business In Boulder

Boulder’s Vibrant Business Community

Boulder is home to longterm mainstays like IBM, the largest employer in Boulder County 4 out of the last 5 years, and Covidien, the  leading health care products company. Other companies include Broomfield-based WhiteWave Foods, a natural and organic food supplier, Crocs, the foam footwear manufacturer and Crispin Porter + Bogusky, the advertising agency  with a client list that includes Microsoft, Unilever, KRAFT, Phillips, American Express, Domino’s Pizza, MetLife, Old Navy, Applebee’s, Discovery Networks, SAS, Arby’s and Best Buy.

New exciting companies to the Boulder area include Sparkfun Electronics, growing at a double- and triple-digit sales growth, and Clovis Oncology, a biopharmaceutical firm that went public last year.

Most employers in the city of Boulder are small businesses; 80% have fewer than 10 employees. Employers with 50 or more employees represent an estimated 4% of firms, 59% of employees and 65% of the wages paid by the city’s employers.

The largest percent of employers (27%) in the city of Boulder are in the Professional, Scientific
and Technical Services industry (2.39 times the national average). The largest percent of workers (21%) are employed by the University of Colorado, federal research facilities or other governmental entities.

Boulder Is For Startups

The startup momentum keeps building in Boulder:
Cities Where Startups are Thriving (#1) – CNNMoney, Nov. 27, 2012.
Top Cities for Technology Start-ups (#9 Boulder/Denver) – USA Today, Aug. 23, 2012.
America’s Best Town for Startups – Bloomberg Businessweek, April 22, 2011.

A high concentration of advanced technology industries has helped fuel venture capital
investment in Boulder firms. In fourth quarter 2010, a total of $49 million was invested in firms
in Boulder County including $28 million in companies located in the city of Boulder. (Source:
Pricewaterhouse-Cooper/Venture Economics /NVCA MoneyTree™ Report).
In 2010, firms in the city of Boulder received $84 million in VC funding or 18.9% of the total
invested in Colorado companies compared to $243 million (54.8% of state total) in 2009.

The Boulder community has already turned out some impressive startups including: TradaRallyGnipOrbotixRoundPeggSendGrid and PivotDesk.  It’s the birthplace of the startup accelerator,TechStars, and it’s also home for many great VCs and angels. There are angel groups like Open Angel Forum and Boulder Angels, and VCs including Foundry GroupAccess Venture PartnersGrotech and more.

Want to get involved and network with fellow entrepreneurs? Check out the following meetups and groups: New Tech ColoradoBoulder Open Coffee ClubIgnite BoulderMobile MondayBoulder is For RobotsTEDx BoulderStartup Weekend, and Entrepreneurs Unplugged