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Colorado business leaders highlight role of technology in economic growth, recovery

December 11, 2020, 10:25 am

The Progressive Policy Institute on Thursday issued the following press release on a Dec. 9 business roundtable to discuss the role that technology has played in the growth and recovery of Colorado’s economy:

Betsy Markey

DENVER, COLORADO (December 10, 2020) – Betsy Markey, former U.S. Congresswoman and Executive Director of the Colorado State Office of Economic Development & International Trade, joined business leaders and small business owners for a virtual webinar this Wednesday, December 9th, on the role that technology has played in the growth and recovery of Colorado’s economy. The event was moderated by Alec Stapp, Director of Technology Policy for the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI), a Washington, DC-based nonprofit focused on policy innovation and political reform.

Director Markey’s keynote address underscored the contributions of the technology sector to Colorado’s economy: “Companies such as Apple, Netflix, Google, and IBM have all made significant investments in Colorado. In total, we have about 11,000 technology companies in the state, employing more than 146,000 people with good, high-paying jobs.” Director Markey also discussed the state’s “market competitiveness in the technology sector,” noting that “we see a growing diversity among our firms here in Colorado.”

In addition to highlighting the contributions of larger technology companies to the state’s economy, the panel discussion spotlighted how technology lifts up businesses of all sizes and contributes to the entrepreneurial and innovative business climate in Colorado.

“I look at the larger tech employers as anchor stores. We need a community from small, medium, and large tech-centric organizations to provide diverse career opportunities,” remarked Frannie Matthews, President & CEO of the Colorado Technology Association. “Growth in technology brings very high-paying jobs, it’s good for our economy, and it’s good for our social ecosystem.”

“Large businesses depend on small businesses, and vice versa,” noted Debbie Brown, President of the Colorado Business Roundtable. “Some of these big companies that are investing in Colorado, bringing in talent, investing in our higher education, and investing in skills-based job development, all prompt more excitement for the state.” 

Alec Stapp with PPI referenced recent “tech lash” in Washington, D.C. and around the country, citing increased scrutiny in the technology industry. In response, Frannie Matthews with the Colorado Technology Association noted that “We’ve seen onerous regulation outside the U.S. that we should learn lessons from. We need to be thinking about what’s smart and paying attention to unintended consequences.”

To view a full recording of the event, visit: https://youtu.be/-FtBhwrZwIg

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