High-Tech Industry Flourishes in Georgia’s High-Talent Environment

Staff Report

Monday, July 11th, 2022

The “Tech Capital of the South,” Georgia taps its diverse resources and strategic investments to bolster the wide-ranging tech industry statewide. Companies at home and abroad have taken notice of the state’s support for companies and startups through its embrace of talent development and an innovative partnership approach to doing business.

Small Business CashierGeorgia’s ascendance as a top destination for all variety of tech – artificial intelligence (AI), cybersecurity, data-processing, fintech, e-commerce, software development and more – was noted by a company executive at Fortune 500 business and world leader in semiconductor manufacturing Micron Technology, which just opened a state-of-the-art memory design center in the state.

Growing Talent a Priority

Georgia’s advantages for this sector are no accident, as corporate citizens like ADP, Google, Facebook, Synovus, UPS, and many others can attest. An outstanding pipeline for talent is the foremost attraction for high-tech companies.

For the second consecutive year, Atlanta was named the nation’s No. 1 Tech Hub. Georgia Institute of Technology’s Tech Square in Midtown Atlanta provides access to top talent and research centers including not only Georgia Tech, but Georgia State University, Emory University, and the Historically Black Colleges and University (HBCUs) schools found within Atlanta’s University Center. Opportunities for companies to directly engage with talent have been leveraged for innovation centers by more than 30 corporations including Delta Air Lines, The Home Depot, AT&T, and Honeywell.

“We chose Atlanta as our U.S. headquarters because of its reputation as a fintech and payments hub,” said Zoe Newman, U.S. Managing Director for London-based Capital on Tap. “There is a depth of talent and experience here that will be invaluable to our continued hyper growth in the U.S. The local universities in and around Atlanta provide an incredible recruiting ground for us to build our business.”

The state’s colleges and universities award more than 2,400 IT bachelor’s degrees annually, and Georgia’s connections to Fortune 500 companies headquartered in the state offer countless opportunities to young talent.

Store KioskDiverse, available talent has led companies like Microsoft to expand its presence in Georgia, and Apple and the Southern Company to invest $25 million each to launch the Propel Center, an Atlanta University Center facility that creates a tech hub for HBCUs. Georgia has further solidified its position with commitments from Airbnb, The Adecco Group, and Google.

In 2021, Visa, the world’s leader in digital payments, announced a 1,000-job expansion of its presence in Georgia. Major payment processing companies like InComm, which expanded its Columbus, Georgia, operations in 2021, NCR, and Global Payments also find their business needs met in the state; in fact, 70% percent all U.S. transactions are handled by payment processing firms in Georgia.

Research Partners Abound
Innovative research coming from Georgia also contributes to global solutions. The University of Georgia’s Innovation Gateway has been named No. 1 for the 7th consecutive year for the number of products developed by industry partners based on UGA research discoveries. Also leading the way are Georgia Tech’s Center for Machine Learning, with expertise in more than 16 areas ranging from artificial intelligence to bioinformatics to information security, and its Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines.

Among many businesses leveraging Georgia Tech expertise is Korean company SK Group, which will invest $473 million in a first-of-its-kind glass-based semiconductor part facility in Newton County.

“SKC strived to develop innovative technology solutions by working with major U.S.-based semiconductor players for many years. The initial scientific research outcomes at Georgia Tech greatly inspired our disruptive, glass-based semiconductor solutions,” said Dr. Sung Jin Kim, SKC’s Director of New Business Development.

Georgia is also a top 10 state for cybersecurity, hosting more than 120 cybersecurity companies that generate over $4.7 billion in annual revenue – almost 25% of the global security market. Many partner with the Army Cyber Command and state-invested Georgia Cyber Center in Augusta.

Cybersecurity in Georgia - Partnerships Make the Difference

Game-changing partnerships have catapulted the state into the upper echelons of high-tech destinations. ChooseATL, an initiative of the Metro Atlanta Chamber, was developed specifically to attract and retain next-gen talent in metro Atlanta.

Georgia has launched the public-private Partnership for Inclusive Innovation, which leads efforts to encourage growth, entrepreneurship, and innovation across the state. The Georgia FinTech Academy, an alliance between Georgia’s fintech industry and the University System of Georgia, also develops talent.

Companies seeking to tap into collaborative research opportunities and partners can get help from the Georgia Department of Economic Development-housed Center of Innovation’s Information Technology team. From health IT and medical devices to cybersecurity, mobility and creative technology, the center helps businesses seize new opportunities with Georgia’s robust technology community.

International Companies Converge in Georgia
Georgia’s longtime investment in international offices continue to spur new opportunities across industry.

In the last two years, announcements by international tech companies opening or expanding a presence in Georgia include France-based Ringover, a leader in cloud communications; software company Kainos, headquartered in Northern Ireland; South Africa-based Skynamo, a field sales solutions software developer; German company TeamViewer, a global provider of secure remote connectivity solutions and workplace digitalization technology; and ASOS, a London-based global online fashion and beauty retailer expanding its e-commerce capabilities.

“Our first-class education and training programs have helped the state create a pipeline of tech talent that receives international attention and investment,” said Governor Brian Kemp. “Georgia has quickly become the East Coast’s software and echnology hub.”

Learn more about Georgia’s high-tech industry sectors at Georgia.org/technology.