Floating island community off Silicon Valley draws interest from hundreds of tech startups


Blueseed, a conceptual floating island that plans to operate in international waters 12 miles off the coast of California, has sparked interest in 175 startups from all around the world. The island's close proximity to Silicon Valley is designed to make it easy for startups to attract venture capital funding without requiring a US work visa. That's not the primary draw, though — a report released by Blueseed shows that 24.6 percent of interested startups are already based in the US, with India closest at 8.6 percent and Australia third at 5.7 percent. Instead, Blueseed wants to foster an environment for the "world's best entrepreneurs" to gather and collaborate without being held back by "antiquated work visa restrictions," and indeed 54 percent of the survey's respondents cited the "awesome startup- and technology-oriented space" as a primary reason to move.

Of course, showing interest on a survey at this early stage is quite different from actually upping sticks and moving your business into international waters, but the buzz around Blueseed seems more promising than other offshore havens such as Sealand. Blueseed plans to launch between Q3 2013 and Q1 2014, and it'll cost between $1200 and $3000 per person for accommodation and office space. The island will likely be built from a converted cruise liner, and will operate regular ferries to and from the mainland — if you need to visit the Valley for real, you should be able to do so on a tourist visa.

The Verge
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