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Wonderling: Philly is leading collaboration and innovation

Supporting innovation could benefit the city of brotherly love.
Morgan Berman, founder and CEO of Milkcrate, an app that connect users with sustainable businesses. (Charles Mostoller)

Philadelphia has always been a city of inventors.  In 1888, Philadelphia-born Theophilus van Kannel invented the revolving door in order to cut down on chilly drafts that made their way into buildings. Townsend Speakman, a Philadelphia druggist, invented soda in 1807. Of course, we all know the most famous inventor of our region: Benjamin Franklin, creator of the odometer, the bifocal glasses, and the lightning rod, to name a few.

Thinking up new and problem-solving ideas is in Philadelphia’s blood, which is why it is no surprise that our region is gaining much traction in the startup sector. Philadelphia was designated as a top 10 emerging startup hub in the U.S. by Progressive Policy Institute and Technet in 2017.

Yet Philadelphia isn’t always seen as an innovative city compared to others in the U.S. Our business expansion arm of the Chamber, Select Greater Philadelphia Council (Select), has partnered with NBC10 to create a television program called Growing Greater Philadelphia, an initiative that highlights the Greater Philadelphia region’s business assets and success stories.

The most recent episode highlighted the innovation and collaboration happening in every corner of Greater Philadelphia. There are over 300 startups across the 11 counties that create a diverse entrepreneurial community. The Philadelphia startup community differs from other regions in that it is highly collaborative; entrepreneurs, providers, partners, mentors and customers are nearby and accessible, a sentiment not often found in other, more competitive regions. In Greater Philadelphia, startups have a supportive network, access to world class talent, and room to grow.

This Growing Greater Philadelphia episode features a roundtable discussion with Cloudreach’s Bob Moul, Seer Interactive Founder & CEO Wil Reynolds, MilkCrate CEO Morgan Berman, and Josh Kopelman, founding partner of First Round Capital. BioBots, a desktop 3D printer that prints biomaterials that are used research purposes, is also featured. It is the only machine of its kind that is affordable and compact enough to fit on a desktop.

The episode also highlights General Building Contractors Association, PECO, Energy Transfer Partners, Holtec International, and Virtua Health Systems, all companies located in Greater Philadelphia that are thinking up new and innovative technologies and initiatives that drive growth and prosperity for our region.T

Watch this episode of Growing Greater Philadelphia on NBC10.com and watch past episodes, on Select’s “Regional Stories” page.