RH Strategic recently caught up with Jonathan Aberman, director at Amplifier Advisors, at the DCA Live’s BIG Cyber Growth Summit in Crystal City, Virginia, to talk about DC as a tech and entrepreneurship hub in the region.

Jonathan Aberman, Amplifier AdvisorsIn our podcast, Aberman discusses the five components necessary for a successful innovation ecosystem: a creator of talent; a pool of capital; experienced people; good service providers; and good real estate.

According to Aberman, the DC region is an incredibly vibrant market, albeit one that centers around the federal government.

“When we talk about entrepreneurship in this country, from a standpoint of tech, we tend to talk about it from a standpoint of what I would call a venture-capital-driven business model, which is start a company, get angel capital, get expansion capital from VC, sell it to Google. And when you look at a tech capital in that way…this region often seems wanting because we don’t have a lot of venture capital, but what we do have is we have a lot of federal spending,” Aberman said during a podcast interview.  “For example, the federal government provides seed capital to roughly 300 companies a year from something called the Small Business Innovation Research program. You wouldn’t know that, because it’s not angel capital, it’s not venture capital.”

Hear more from Aberman, who wears many hats – including professional investor, University of Maryland business school professor, and host of the What’s Working in Washington podcast –  in the interview below.


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RH Strategic is a Seattle and D.C.-based communications firm providing strategic public relations for innovators in the technology, public sector and healthcare markets. Learn more about our cybersecurity practice.