Austin offers low taxes and a great technology workforce.
Times are tough. It amazes me that so many companies make it harder on themselves by operating in oppressive business climates.
Don’t get me wrong. I fully understand the value of running a business in California. There’s no comparison to the energy and talent in Silicon Valley. And if you’re looking for venture capital money, you’re in the heart of it.
But you also pay the price in California and other places that a number of domain name companies call home. It’s expensive. There are many government regulations and employee taxes that make hiring and managing employees incredibly expensive.
So here’s my pledge to help companies consider moving (or opening a office) in Austin. You may have been to Texas or have a vision of it that doesn’t represent Austin. You may have been to Dallas (concrete jungle filled with $30,000 millionaires) or Houston (humid swamp of oil barons). But Austin is different. Rolling hills and several recreational lakes. A huge base of technology employees. An outdoor kind of city. A big university.
This weekend is the SXSW interactive festival where techies will descend on Austin. Next week is the SXSW music festival featuring hundreds of bands.
But the bottom line is Austin is good for business. We don’t have crazy overtime rules here. We don’t have mandatory taxes to pay for health leave for employees. There’s no income tax, so employees take home more of what you pay them. And they live in homes that cost 1/3 as much as they would in California or the northeast. As an employer, you may have to pay franchise tax. But that’s about it.
If you want to check out Austin, I’ll give you a tour. I can even connect you with economic development consultants if you’d like. If nothing else, a scouting trip to Austin would make for an enjoyable tax write-off.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to mix up a margarita and hang out on my deck to enjoy the 70 degree weather.