As discussed on our previous post, there's an interesting movement of companies moving south. This time, we'll talk about the San Diego binational region and its current software development landscape.

Welcome to sunny San Diego - America's finest city

Bordered by the ocean, deserts and Tijuana, San Diego is one of the fastest growing cities in the world and one of the best cities to live in the U.S.

San Diego is a thriving community that has innovation at its core. The city has multiple investments and has made significant strides towards having clean, sustainable energy, a revitalized commercial downtown and tech and innovation ecosystem.

A booming software development community

San Diego's software development ecosystem is unique, with employment and investment dispersed throughout many product verticals and innovation sectors.

According to the San Diego EDC, software development in San Diego has over $12B in economic impact and currently generates over 40,000 software related jobs – from defense to genomics and health companies.

These and many more factors make San Diego the perfect place for established tech companies looking to scale their operation without leaving SoCal. Startups like Bizness Apps are moving their operation from San Francisco to San Diego in hopes of expanding their business without facing the high-costs of living and extreme recruiting competition that would otherwise make it impossible for a startup to take-off.

Economic Dashboard Infographic

Is San Diego a smart city?

According to National Geographic, it is. In a recent documentary, NatGeo listed the reasons why San Diego is one the world's smart cities:

  • Smart grid. 32% of San Diego's electricity is renewable
  • "Plug-in" port. The San Diego port has fully switched to a shore-power system that improves air quality and reduces gas emissions
  • Fostering talent. Qualcomm's Thinkabit Lab™ provides students access to hands-on experiences in engineering
  • Top-level Universities. UC San Diego is one of the top 15 research universities in the world and is an innovator in solar and other renewable technologies
  • Genomics. San Diego is home to Illumina, the first company that cracked the $1,000 genome challenge
  • Dynamic aerospace industry
  • Innovation in all fields. Sea World's stem cell bank initiative is aimed at replacing drugs with stem cells in the treatment of many chronic diseases of animals

The Cali-Baja binational mega-region

With a combined population of more than 6.5 million, 27,000 sq. mile footprint, major international airports (including the first binational airport), the mega-region offers multiple opportunities for technology companies to scale their R&D south of the border.

Tijuana's has experience a quiet revolution, from being a manufacturing destination with cheap labor, to becoming an innovation hub where companies like 3DRobotics, Plantronics, Toyota have started their own R&D practice.

Should you move south? If you have the big bucks to sustain an aggressive recruitment strategy, then probably not. If you are a mid-size company, you should definitely consider San Diego as an alternative. Not just for its beautiful weather, beaches or awesome nature trails; but for it's ever growing binational technology ecosystem – something that we're sure you won't find anywhere else.

Photo by: peasap | CC