Move over, Silicon Valley: Tech companies set up in Scottsdale - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Move over, Silicon Valley: Tech companies set up in Scottsdale

SCOTTSDALE, AZ (CBS5) -
When you think of tech companies moving to the Valley, you probably think of companies like Intel setting up shop in Chandler and the rest of the east Valley. But more companies are looking to relocate a little north of there - to Scottsdale - to help recruit young professionals.

Downtown Scottsdale has transformed from art and ice cream shops to bars, restaurants and clubs in recent years. And while some homeowners nearby may not like that, businesses tell us that's exactly why they're looking for.

With a stocked kitchen, ping pong tables, a nap room, a keg and music blaring, you'd think you stepped into a recreation center. But it's actually Yelp's office in Scottsdale.

"It's a priority for us to make sure people are happy and working in a fun, comfortable environment, and being in a city like Scottsdale is a big part of that," said C.J. Kowalsky, who manages a team of sales representatives who sell advertising for Yelp's website.

Yelp is headquartered in San Francisco, but their Scottsdale office is home to around 500 employees, many of whom want to be in a place where they can work, live and play.

"Thirty percent of the people who work here are transplants from other part of the country so when we tell them what Scottsdale's like, that's definitely a big part of what we tell them," Kowalsky said.

Scottsdale Mayor W.J. "Jim" Lane said many technology and biomedical companies are either looking relocate or expand in Scottsdale. And they've got at least five multi-family complexes in development to accommodate the influx of workers. But in an already booming - and some might even say chaotic - area, will it be too much, too soon?

"We want to be graceful about growth here, but nevertheless we have to manage it," Lane said. "We cannot stand pat and expect our downtown to do anything but die."

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
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