Regions Hampton Roads

Norfolk picked as hotspot for entrepreneurs

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Norfolk has been ranked as one of the five best cities for entrepreneurs.

Entrepreneur magazine lists the Hampton Roads city as one of the selections of Shane Reiser, the co-founder of the Startup Genome.

Reiser has been compiling a database of founders, investors and  local business communities since 2011. He picked Norfolk and four other cities that he believes “have laid the foundation for small companies to find the investors and operational footing they need to grow big,” according to Entrepreneur.

The other four cities are Tucson, Ariz.; Corvallis, Ore.; Lincoln, Neb.; and Baton Rouge, La.

Reiser tells Entrepreneur that “Norfolk came out of nowhere” because of people like Zack Miller, the managing director at Hatch, a mentor-based startup accelerator.

Miller has created a number of companies and initiatives including Start Norfolk, an event that brings together entrepreneurs, engineers, developers, designers and businesspeople in a competition to develop a startup business in a weekend.

Reiser says when entrepreneurs aren’t working, they hang out on Norfolk’s Granby Street. "Every startup community needs a location where serendipity can happen--that's Granby Street for Norfolk," Reiser told the magazine. "Having the beach nearby helps, too."

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