Today we speak with Constantin Bjerke, CEO and Founder, of Crane.tv, an online video magazine for contemporary culture. Constantin was recently selected as a 2013 Venture Fellow by NYCEDC.
What is your take on the current scene in New York today?
As the media and advertising capital of the world as well as being the most international city in the US, New York City was an obvious choice for Crane.tv. New York’s startup community is growing and maturing rapidly. With Stanford and Cornell engineers setting up shop, a Mayor who embraces entrepreneurship and a digital roadmap for the city coming into place in 2013, thanks to NYC’s Chief Digital Officer Rachel Hoat, it’s a good time to be starting a business in here. The startup community is incredibly supportive and friendly, and there really is a sense that “we’re all in this together”. It’s an incredibly inspiring and infectious environment.
What do you see happening over the next 3-5 years?
I think the next 3-5 years will see more B to B and enterprise/cloud based companies emerging in New York. We’ll see more variation, but rather than trying to establish the next Silicon Valley, I think NYC will focus on developing and revitalizing the areas in which it already presides: media and advertising. NYC is set to remain a global leader in these industries and by innovating and adapting to the changes in content consumption, NYC will grow exponentially.
What do you see as challenges?
As a startup, you have to fight for funding, space and talent. The competition is tough so, you have to be at the top of your game. The brilliant thing about NYC is that it is incredibly meritocratic, and excellence and innovation are recognized and rewarded. While the well-established heritage media giants struggle to innovate, Crane.tv, a digital native, is poised to revolutionize the media industry.
Competition with San Francisco for the tech talent remains a key concern though initiatives introduced by Mayor Bloomberg and the NYCEDC are going a huge way to attract the best and brightest. As a European company I think the stringent US immigration regulations are also very limiting, excluding top talent.
Where does your company fit in the ecosystem?
Crane.tv is a digital media company incorporating the world’s first video magazine for contemporary culture and a branded entertainment agency. NYC is the perfect fit for Crane.tv, as it exemplifies our own culture – diverse, dynamic and vibrant.
We are excited to dedicate more of Crane.tv’s resources to promoting New York City’s talent, from artists and designers to technologists and digital marketers, aiding the area’s continued branding as a hub of innovative growth. Crane.tv will also work closely with even more NYC brands, helping them reach and engage influential new audiences. We aim to add value to the NYC market, revitalizing Lower Manhattan, generating jobs, and contributing our share to a dynamic and growing economy.
Read what other thought leaders are saying in the “Pulse of the Alley”.