Marriott Alumni Magazine

Fall 2016

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Page 30 of 51

S U C C E S S O N MEET SEVEN MARRIOTT SCHOOL ALUMNI INSIDE UTAH'S TECH BOOM T he Beehive State is abuzz. The stretch along the Wasatch Front from Ogden to Provo is growing into a hub of technology entrepreneurship, dotted with everything from scrappy startups to billion- dollar ventures. Silicon Slopes—the Utah foothills' new moniker—has landed headlines in national publications including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and Forbes. The accolades are piling up fast: This year the US Chamber of Commerce named Utah the No. 1 state in innovation and No. 2 in high- tech performance, and Entrepreneur included both Provo and Salt Lake City on its list of the fifteen best entrepreneurial cities. Six Utah-grown businesses appeared on the 2016 Forbes list of the world's best cloud compa- nies. Forbes and CNBC also placed Utah atop their rankings of best states for business, and named Provo the No. 3 city for entrepreneurs. Investment in Utah- grown companies reached $800 million in 2014—that's more venture capital raised per capita than in New York, behind only reign- ing tech kings Massachusetts and California. There must be something in the Jell-O—or maybe it's Utah's business-friendly govern- ment, cheap real estate, ready pool of STEM and business grads, and flurry of student startups. Successful entrepreneurs mentor fledgling companies and invest back, and many founders credit local values such as industry, work-life balance, and self-reliance. In this tech boom, BYU has been a key player. Read on for a look at seven Marri- ott School alumni among the builders and shapers of Silicon Slopes. B Y S A R A S M I T H AT W O O D P H O T O S B Y B R A D L E Y S L A D E 29 fall 2016

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