Google seems to be becoming just as famous for their workplaces as they are for their immensely successful products and website that has allowed for such luxury. Starting with around 350 workers in a massive 75,000 square foot facility in Cambridge, to now leasing an additional 60,000 square foot property that is under construction with 2 new floors, Google has plenty of room for increased staff in the Cambridge neighborhood. Google employees are spoiled with gourmet food, nerdy games to play during breaks and other forms of entertainment to keep the morale high with the proven results that happy employees leads to better production and people who actually want to come to work and stay at work.
In the past eight years, Google has seen its primary location in The Greater Boston Area change three times, but for good reason. As we recently reported, there has been an ever-increasing need for major tech-savvy corporations to have a presence in the bustling and growing Kendall Square neighborhood of Cambridge. Major companies with a global reach and influence like Google and its chief competitor, Microsoft, are situating themselves in the area because of the vast array of intellectual capital piping out of the city of Boston every year. Microsoft owns nearly as much territory in Cambridge as Google, and Microsoft already envisions moving hundreds of employees from around the world and from its Waltham, Massachusetts location to be absorbed in the bustling city of Cambridge.
So why Boston, or Cambridge for that matter for garnering all of this attention out of all the nearby areas? A main attraction is that these larger firms are able to take control of smaller companies as Google did by engulfing ITA, a travel-software developing business for a cool $700 million dollars. The ability to also collaborate with all of the other great minds that are flocking to the Cambridge side of the Charles River is very appealing. Rich Miner, co-founder of Android who is now was bought out by Google to support their mobile arsenal, has stayed on with Google and helped setup an important program. This was the Venture Caf, which is a weekly event for entrepreneurs in the area to meet at Kendall Square at the Cambridge Innovation Center. Movements to bring more intelligence into the Cambridge scene aids in the effort for these individuals to network and learn from one another in their attempt to further their own products.
With such a small workforce here compared to the global scale that Google has established, one would be quite perplexed to learn that the rather select, yet growing Google Boston is responsible for much of the product development, decision making and releases that drive the entire global tech industry. The pure talent that is available here is hard to come across in other cities. As reported in a prior blog post, Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook, also wished he never left the Boston area after briefly attending Harvard University. See the difference now is that the vacuum no longer is coming from locales such as Silicon Valley. There is no must to go anywhere, but a choice to make camp in Boston, a place building a new reputation of its own.
Googles venture capital being embedded into Cambridge has even caused six prospering start-ups, one notable being SCVNGR the savvy smart-phone application firm, to have confidence as to the direction of the technological market in Cambridge. So with bigger firms laying the foundation for smaller firms (like Facebook once was), start-ups now see value in staying in Boston or moving their business to the area for the prolonged future.
So clearly this transition in the location of where these tech-sector giants and start-ups are moving is great news for them. What does this mean for the average Bostonian? Well, Google reported that in 2010 alone, $2.8 Billion dollars of economic activity was gained by the State of Massachusetts for its businesses and non-profits all from Google. With a likely couple hundred or more individuals to join the Google Boston team sometime soon, and as more firms continue to develop the area and grow as a business, it appears that this amount of money is due to only grow along with The Greater Boston Area itself!
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More information: BostonMagazine.com