|Key Findings Reveal that Region's Employment in InfoComm Industry
Approaches that of Federal Government; Region Dominates Nation's Internet Services
Herndon, VA The Potomac KnowledgeWay,
with co-sponsors PricewaterhouseCoopers, Hale & Dorr LLP, Virginia's Center for Innovative
Technology, and the Greater Washington Initiative (GWI), today announced the results of a
study that found a rapidly growing new economy in the Greater Washington Region. Conducted
by PricewaterhouseCoopers, the study analyzes the information and communications (InfoComm)
industry and trends in the Internet related segments in the region.
Study Finds InfoComm Industry Significant to Region's Economic Health
The study, entitled, "Toward a New Economy:
Merging Heritage with Vision in the Greater Washington Region," points to the notable
size of the region's InfoComm industry:
"The momentum that has been generated by the InfoComm industries and related Internet
companies is positioning the Greater Washington region as the nexus of new business
models which are sure to impact the region's future prosperity," says Fred Bollerer,
president and CEO of the Potomac KnowledgeWay. "With one out of seven workers employed
in InfoComm, we are working together to develop a regional agenda that supports this
New Economy," he added.Dominance of the Internet Industry, Entrepreneurial Culture,
and Critical Mass of Venture Capital Contribute to Region's New Economy
- Employment in the region's InfoComm industry totals 328,000, which is nearly
equal to that of the Federal Government at 340,000
- InfoComm supports a regional employment base that is more than five times the
region's share of total U.S. employment
- InfoComm companies headquartered in the region generate $90 billion in sales
As the birthplace of the Internet, the Greater
Washington Region leads the nation in Internet services and has spawned new Internet
related companies. The study cites that nearly 50% of the nation's Internet backbone
is supplied by regional companies.
The region is fast becoming a hub of
Internet entrepreneurship, due particularly to the critical mass of content and
communications companies located here. Additionally, a common thread in the study
is the region's heritage in the Federal Government that has contributed greatly to
the emergence of new enterprises and the evolution of many traditional companies.
The study cites several factors that
contribute to the growth of this new industrial powerhouse in the region:
- High-profile successes of several regional entrepreneurs
- A culture of entrepreneurship in the region
- Increasing venture capital investment in the region's software, information and
communications companies in the 1st quarter of 1998, investment was more than half
of the total amount invested in those sectors during all of 1997.
Issues Critical to the Region in Reaching Full Potential
The study concludes that the InfoComm
Cluster has emerged as one of the most significant sectors in the economy of the
Greater Washington Region. To reach its full potential, however, the study identifies
several issues critical to the region:
- The availability of high-tech labor and knowledge workers
- An integrated regional approach to address infrastructure issues, such as
the attraction of venture capital and retention of skilled labor
- A collaborative effort among the three jurisdictions DC, Virginia, and Maryland
to position the region as a national center for InfoComm technology.
The New Economy Study is the first part of
the Potomac KnowledgeWay's regional awareness initiative that will include studies on
the emerging industry sectors, such as the Internet; an Impact Report on infrastructure
issues; and a Regional Report Card of the region's progress on human, financial and
entrepreneurial resources, education, and research infrastructure issues.
Copies of the study are available on the
Potomac KnowledgeWay's Web site, http://knowledgeway.org .
Toward a New Economy:
Merging Heritage with Vision in the Greater Washington Region
The Potomac KnowledgeWay is a not-for-profit leadership organization acting as
a catalyst, thought leader and idea incubator to help prepare and educate this region
to be competitive in the advanced telecommunications, Internet and content industries
and the new opportunities their gradual convergence will create in the Greater Washington
PricewaterhouseCoopers (www.pwcglobal.com), the world's largest professional
services organization, helps its clients build value, manage risk and improve
their performance. Drawing on the talents of more than 144,000 people in 152
countries, PricewaterhouseCoopers provides a full range of business advisory
services to leading global, national and local companies and to public institutions.
Hale and Dorr LLP, a law firm with offices in Boston, Washington, D.C.
and London, has a national reputation for advising and guiding emerging growth
companies, especially those in the high technology, software and biotechnology
arenas. The more than 50 attorneys in the Washington, D.C. office provide general
corporate, securities, intellectual property, FDA, biotechnology, environmental,
tax, litigation, real estate and regulatory representation for a variety of large
and small clients located in the Mid-Atlantic region and elsewhere.
The Greater Washington Initiative (GWI) is a regional economic development
marketing organization created to promote the Greater Washington region as a premier
business location, with particular emphasis on science and technology companies.
Virginia's Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) exists to stimulate economic
growth within the Commonwealth by serving its technology-based businesses through a
variety of business, technical and financial assistance programs.
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