As the debate rages on throughout the U.S. about the role of immigration in the nation’s economy and demographics, one of Silicon Valley’s most accomplished venture capitalists and entrepreneurs, Shervin Pishevar, says that the questions surrounding immigration are largely becoming irrelevant for tech startups. Entrepreneurs, he says, are increasingly living in a borderless world. The problem that Shervin Pishevar identifies is that much of the U.S. tech sector is stuck in the mindset of 20 years ago where borders and trade barriers have primacy in the calculation of those seeking to found their own tech companies.
But Shervin Pishevar believes that Silicon Valley and the U.S. tech sector as a whole have some unwelcome chickens coming home to roost. In a recent tweet storm, Shervin Pishevar explained that tech entrepreneurs are increasingly freed from the artificial constraints imposed by borders, trade restrictions and the imperative to be in action centers like the San Francisco Bay Area. Shervin Pishevar says that simple conferencing technologies like Skype are fundamentally transforming the way that tech businesses operate, making it possible for remote locations to cooperate in ways that were never before possible.
He says that advancements in coding protocols and the ways in which websites are developed have also added to the ability of new startups to have talent located all around the globe. Pishevar himself has built companies using developers and web designers that have been simultaneously located in dozens of cities across the world. This ability, he says, is a wonderful boon to the capacity of entrepreneurs across the planet to compete on a level playing field. However, Pishevar warns that it could spell doom for the San Francisco Bay Area.
Pishevar says that migration outflows from the San Francisco area have been so heavy that U-Haul trucks going to Austin, Texas, now cost 10 times what they do on the return trip. Places like Palo Alto have seen living costs soar to such extremes that now even upper-class professionals are fleeing the area. If Silicon Valley doesn’t address these problems, says Pishevar, it may soon find itself not only irrelevant but completely insolvent.