First of all, I was surprised to know that, Boulder, the place that is described as the upcoming Silicon Valley, is a lovely small town, not a city! How come a small town with less than 100,000 people has all that buzz around it!
Thanks to people like Techstars founders, the foundry group, and other VCs and angel investors in Boulder, in addition to having the University of Colorado in there, Boulder has become what it is today. Those people have actually attracted entrepreneurs to move there and have created the whole VC/entrepreneurship ecosystem in that town.
Entrepreneurs in Boulder have also created a welcoming environment to attract more entrepreneurs, co-founders, and job seekers to come and live in there. One of the best things they’ve done is Boulder.me, a website that lists what is called Boulder Ambassadors, or simply people who are willing to spend some time in helping new comers to find their target jobs, connecting them to investors, and suggesting events to attend, communities to join, and activities to do in Boulder.
I’ve personally contacted those ambassadors and met two of them in a very short notice! I also knew, via the website, about 3 great meet-ups that I’ve attended during my stay in Boulder. One of them was called Boulder Open Coffee, a quick gathering at the early morning on every other Tuesday. The other one was NewTech Meetup that is organized once a month.
This is a live example that we can do the same in any city in the Arab World. But we have to keep in mind that this didn’t happen in no time. They started in small steps and it took them hard work and dedication for around 15 years to create this ecosystem. In Amman, Dubai, Riyadh and other cities in the Arab countries, we’re still at the early beginnings, we need to keep working on it to get to a point where we can compare those cities to Boulder or Silicon Vally, and with Meetups like: AmmanTT, Dubai Tech Nights, and Riyadh Geeks, Communities like: YallaStartup, StartupArabia, ArabCrunch, VCs like N2V, IV-Holding, Meydan, Oasis500, Abraaj Capital, TwoFour54, Ideavelopers, Angel Investors like Fadi Ghandour, and all others, we will get there inshalla.