Major cities—including Salt Lake City, Atlanta, and Charlotte—are racing to become the next leader in financial technology (FinTech).
- Salt Lake City, Utah, is attempting to take the lead in the race for FinTech companies, attracting financial regulation, software engineering, or product-development companies to become a major hub, The Wall Street Journal reports.
- The Stena Center for Financial Technology only opened in January in Salt Lake City, and it has rapidly become the state’s most recent push to attract FinTech.
- The center—opened by the University of Utah—offers courses and networking opportunities while attempting to attract local FinTech executives to speak with students and incentivize new local startups.
- Mayor Erin Mendenhall launched the Tech Lake City initiative in 2020 to help spur interest in her city as a potential hub.
- The state of Utah has already created tax incentives, rebates, and credits for companies that relocate to the state or expand operations, The Journal continues.
- The city has many benefits that are already attractive to the business world, including low costs and a growing pool of talent from local universities.
Why It’s Important
With the modern economy split between office work and remote work, building office hubs in up-and-coming cities stands to be a valuable means for major cities to take advantage of the massive wave of migration from starts like New York and California to Texas, Tennessee, and Florida. Many businesses—particularly startups—thrive off of office cohesion and large buildups of talent and capital, such as Silicon Valley.
In the finance industry, businesses are often split between financial regulation, software engineering, or product development. Salt Lake City hopes to become a hub for all three specialties and set itself apart as the capital of the FinTech world, The Wall Street Journal reports.
It has had some early success. The Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that tech jobs in the state of Utah have increased by 18% in the past five years. Tech companies like Denali Therapeutics have already sought out the city, while BILL Holdings recently purchased the local expense management platform Divvy for $2.5 billion. Companies including Goldman Sachs, Visa, Brex, Plaid, and SoFi have already opened offices in Salt Lake City.