New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg was on site this morning for the grand opening of Twitter's new East Coast headquarters on Madison Avenue, which are currently occupied by about 30 sales and engineering employees. Twitter's head of East Coast ad sales, Dan Coughlin, is based in the office.
In his remarks, Mr. Bloomberg emphasized his determination to make New York the world's premier digital city, noting that there are 300,000 followers on the city's 65 official Twitter accounts, and that the platform was critically important for emergency communications in the lead-up to Hurricane Irene. He added that his administration has created nine business incubators to help startups find space and has launched the NYC Entrepreneurial Fund, a public/private partnership, to help early-stage startups.
New York's chief digital officer, Rachel Sterne, said that the city had convened its first-ever social-media summit last week, showing city employees best practices, and Twitter had participated.
Joined by Twitter chairman and co-founder Jack Dorsey, Mr. Bloomberg drove home a job-creation message, saying that Twitter's presence in the city will help New York's growing tech community. "Having Twitter here is going to help them thrive and expand," he said.
Mr. Dorsey observed that Twitter's ecosystem is an engine for job growth in indirect ways. There are thousands of Twitter developers in New York, he said, and companies like SocialFlow, Chartbeat and Crowdtwist have successfully raised capital based on their work using Twitter's API.New York City has more Twitter accounts than any other city. ""New Yorkers live in a very different way because of the density," Mr. Dorsey said.
He ended his remarks with a quip aimed at Mr. Bloomberg.
"We understand you have a degree in engineering, and we're hiring," he said.
"817 days from now, I'll need a job," Mr. Bloomberg replied.