Here’s one reason why startups fail in Atlanta. Dropbox would not have been funded out of Atlanta:
“Raising money is not like applying to college, where you can assume that if you can get into MIT, you can also get into Foobar State. Because the best investors are much smarter than the rest, and the best startup ideas look initially like bad ideas, it’s not uncommon for a startup to be rejected by all the VCs except the best ones. That’s what happened to Dropbox. Y Combinator started in Boston, and for the first 3 years we ran alternating batches in Boston and Silicon Valley. Because Boston investors were so few and so timid, we used to ship Boston batches out for a second Demo Day in Silicon Valley. Dropbox was part of a Boston batch, which means all those Boston investors got the first look at Dropbox, and none of them closed the deal. Yet another backup and syncing thing, they all thought. A couple weeks later, Dropbox raised a series A round from Sequoia”. – Paul Graham.
This is an excerpt for a great essay by Paul Graham called “How to Convince Investors“.