Survey: SoCal Startups Optimistic Even As Venture Capital Tightens

A new survey, released this week by Silicon Valley Bank, finds that even as the availability of venture capital in Southern California is tightening, and lofty unicorn valuations are declining, startup entrepreneurs are still optimistic about the future of technology in the region. The Startup Outlook 2016 report--SVB's annual analysis of the startup environment--broke out regional findings for Southern California for the first time, pulling responses from the local market about what technology and life science executives think about business conditions.

Overall, the report queried more than 900 executives across the U.S., U.K., and China for their opinions. Among highlights: 82% of startups in Southern California found the funding environment "somewhat or extremely challenging", 93 percent of startup executives said it was "challenging" to find people with the right skills to grow their business, and 50% of the companies here are hiring in the areas of engineering and technical skills. The report said that despite the bottom line being hit by issues in the near term, "optimism about the long-term future of innovation is not."