Tech Talk: Lowcountry boom

CHARLESTON,SC (WCBD) — The lowcountry is home to nearly 300 tech businesses. They’re all part of a scene that is growing twice the national rate. So what makes Charleston so ideal for tech?

“It’s got a combination of old and historic and important, and new and progressive at the same time,” says Levi Morehouse, who tried to describe the vibe in the Holy City. He said it is tricky because Charleston is multifaceted.

Morehouse founded Ceterus, a company that provides accounting and benchmark reporting for small businesses. He says the decision to move here from Michigan in 2013 was an easy one.

“Charleston really stood out as a place that talent, especially talent  early in their career – which we had a ton of – seemed really interested in being in Charleston and starting their career here.”

In 18 months Ceterus grew from 30 employees to 130 employees and he hopes this is just the beginning.

The same growth is seen at many other companies, but it wasn’t always that way according to Snagajob senior director of engineering, Jen Boulware.

“It started off slowly. It was really hard to bring someone to Charleston to work in tech because it was that job and nothing else,” says Boulware.

Snagajob is an online employment website that specializes in placing workers into hourly jobs. There Charleston location continues to expand as well. In a laid back work space, complete with espresso, team jerseys and a team dog. She says it’s job diversity that is bringing people to the area, and with them a large community.

Boulware herself is part of a group called Women in Tech. It started out with just a handful of members. Now they have hundreds who attend regularly.

“We are all going through the same things. How can we help each other rise up?”

North of the connector in the Pacific Box & Crate development you’ll find Boomtown an online platform for real estate. Their catalyst for citizenship and social innovation, Nina Magnesson is the chair person of the board for Women in Tech.

Magnesson says the community here is different than other tech hubs. “People are willing to share knowledge and experience here. They’re not so competitive that they won’t help one another.”

She says that it’s Charleston’s livability that makes it so special. In fact, she moved here herself looking for a better quality of life. She says she found it.

“We have an thriving tech sector here. People who want to do cutting edge work, can have a beautiful quality of life and a work life balance.”

A website called Charleston Open Source was created to help fill these jobs with talented employees. To learn more check out:

http://www.charlestonopensource.com/

To learn more about the companies featured:

https://boomtownroi.com/careers/

https://www.snagajob.com/

https://www.ceterus.com/

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