#38 — Seattle Startup Tracker Update Q1'21 📊🌱

Wow Q1 flew by. Between Gamestop, NFTs, vaccines, and all the $20M seed rounds, it’s hard to keep track of time! Everything in tech is super hot and kinda confusing.

I updated the Seattle Startup Tracker this week for Q1 (share on LinkedIn). You can download the full Excel file to see the row-by-row details. Reminder: I made this tracker to highlight opportunities to work with, invest in, or otherwise connect with local startups. It started 9 months ago.

Here’s are a few graphs and my dry commentary 😇

Growth Continues to Increase

78% of startups have open roles. Now 6,776 open roles across the 393 companies tracked. All their career pages are linked in the spreadsheet and Airtable. The trend is up.

We can put this in context with our $1T+ big tech companies. Microsoft (ya heard of them?) has about 60K employees in the Seattle area. They have 2,948 open roles listed on their website. Ok… so startups are at least that big. But then you look at Amazon. They also have about 60K employees in Seattle. But they list 12,218 open roles in the Seattle area 😱. No wonder it’s so hard to compete for talent! For Software Development alone, Amazon has 5,196 open jobs listed in Seattle:

Growth by Stage

The Venture (30-100 EE) and Growth (100-300) stage companies had the biggest positive change compared to last quarter. In Q4 2020 we saw 72% of Venture and 59% of Growth companies increase headcount. Those were up to 79% and 69% respectively. This likely reflects some of the recent Series B and Series C funding rounds getting put to work.

Meanwhile, volatility in the early stage continues. Last quarter, 26% of the Very Early (<8 EE) companies increased headcount. That group dropped to 15% this quarter.

Growing vs Stable vs Contracting

When zooming back out, 63% of companies increased headcount this quarter across all sizes, stages, and categories. So it’s not just the total numbers increasing this time — there are more companies growing too. In fact, that’s the large percentage I’ve seen since running this tracker.

It’s been fun to get back into this data 1/4 of the way into 2021. I’m excited to keep watching.

What stood out for you in this update? Anything you’d like to see more/different/better in Q2?

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Nick Martin (CEO at Co-Founder at Joe Coffee) talks about on avoiding sameness, overcoming anxiety, and connecting with the work

On the spirit of a family business:

“There's an unshakable and incredibly admirable spirit about folks that launch a family business. I don't know if I could ever sufficiently articulate what that is, but it's a certain quality that you can see in someone's eyes. […] It’s this spirit that's just refuses to be beat.”