Despite social media giants Google and Facebook hosting their Australian headquarters in Sydney, Melbourne has been named as one of the top global cities for tech firms.
The news comes straight from the third edition of global research and property firm Savills’ Tech Cities in Motion report which measures what makes a successful technology-driven city and how they compare to the rest of the world.
Savills assessment for each city comprises over 100 individual metrics, ranging from the number of days needed to start a business, through to the cost of a flat white.
These metrics are then grouped into six categories: Business Environment, Tech Environment, City Buzz & Wellness, Talent Pool, Real Estate Costs, and Mobility.
Following this, each category is then weighted to reflect its importance to the technology sector.
This was the first year that Mobility was added as a category in the ranking, noting the international rise in urbanisation and the growing importance of a city’s ability to efficiently get people from A to B.
New York emerged as the world’s leading Tech City, driven up the ranks due to the city’s access to a deep talent pool and its reputation as a global centre of commerce.
The ‘Big Apple’ overtook San Francisco who previously topped the list three years in a row for its venture capital (VC) investment volumes. London came in third, with Savills stating that the city performed ‘especially well’ in the Buzz and Wellness and Mobility categories.
Melbourne ranked number 22 on the list, surpassing other international cities such as Seoul, Buenos Aires and Cape Town, but was the only Australian city to make it into the top 30.
Director of Global Occupier Trends at Savills, Nicky Wightman, commented that Savills 30 Tech Cities are among the fastest growing in the world: measured by metro area. Together they’re forecast to add another 18 million inhabitants in the next decade.
“This will put ever greater pressure on existing infrastructure, posing a risk to city competitiveness, hence why mobility is now an important component in our index,” she said, “with many of our Tech Cities at the forefront of addressing the issue.”
Associate Director in Savills World Research team and Lead Researcher on Tech Cities, Paul Tostevin, also commented that one of the most interesting trends they’ve noted in the last two years is the rise of China’s Tech Cities.
“While largely mid-table overall, these cities now account for more VC investment than their US counterparts: the US-city share of the VC investment into our 30 Tech Cities has dropped from a 40 per cent share to 28 per cent since 2012, while Chinese cities have seen their share rise from 11 per cent to 36 per cent over the same period.”
“Beijing has by far the greatest VC investment, but our ranking puts Shanghai ahead as a more ‘global’ tech city, however, thanks to an international business environment and better of quality of life for residents.”
The full report, including Savills’ full list of Top 30 Tech Cities can be found here.