'Built In Denver' study shows
robust tech climate in 2012
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Colorado technology investors and trade groups are beaming about a recent report that boasts a fertile environment for digital technology startups in the state during 2012.

The study, conducted by the “Built In Denver” organization, claims 122 digital startup firms were launched last year and more than $500 million was raised in funding for tech-related businesses. Nearly 70 firms raised $1 million or more.

Some highlights of the “2012 Digital Startup Report”:

  • Entrepreneurs launched 122 digital technology startups; another 20 companies were acquired
  • Colorado tech companies raised a total of $502 million in funding in 2012
  • Denver companies raised $280 million; Boulder companies raised $197 million
  • More than 47 investors in Colorado digital companies were from outside of the state
  • 78% of investment went to software and business-to-business web-focused digital companies
  • 69 companies secured venture or angel funding of at least $1 million

Much of the investment came from Boulder-based Foundry Group, led by renowned area entrepreneur Brad Feld.

“Colorado has developed into a state that every investor should watch,” says Feld, who acts as managing director of the Foundry Group. “Our startup communities and economy are thriving and the companies being created here are awesome.”

Among the largest fundraisers was SendGrid, which attracted $21.6 million of investment in 2012. With offices in Denver and Boulder, the company provides cloud-based e-mail services. According to CEO Jim Franklin, “the funds we raised last year gave us the ability to scale our business to meet growing global demand and aggressively accelerate hiring and invest in our product, developer relations and customer support.”

key-exits-link“Built In Denver” was started in 2012 as an online community and a platform to connect, educate and promote digital entrepreneurs in Denver. It is chaired by Erik Mitisek, who also serves as CEO of the Colorado Technology Association.

“The spotlight on Colorado’s digital technology economy is shining bright, as government, media, large corporations, major universities and investors from around the country are taking notice — and now we have the data to prove it,” says Mitisek.

Kristin Russell, Colorado Secretary of Technology & Chief Information Officer, agrees. “Colorado is truly becoming the innovation center and 'Silicon Mountain of the Information Technology Community' in the United States,” she says.

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