From, ‘Silicon Nation: Tech Firms, Chasing Millennial Workers, Look Beyond the West Coast’ published November 6th, 2018 in the Commercial Observer

Ari Hirt, Managing Director of The Debt & Equity Finance Group, shares his insight on the national expansion of tech firms, and the impact those moves have on a neighborhood in today’s Commercial Observer.
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[Published November 6, 2018 in the Commercial Observer]
When tech firms come to the neighborhood, they can have transformative effects far beyond the office space they lease. That, at least, is the perspective of Ari Hirt, a managing director who works on both debt and equity deals at Mission Capital.

“What Google did to Chelsea [in Manhattan] made that neighborhood much hotter than it was. The same phenomenon has occurred in the West Loop of Chicago,” Hirt said. Given that companies like Google and Pinterest have hung out their shingles there, “now, everyone wants to be in the West Loop,” he said.

Peter Thiel, the Silicon Valley mainstay who founded PayPal, Clarium Capital and big-data contractor Palantir Technologies, has never shied away from iconoclastic gestures.

In 2016, Thiel bucked his fellow new-economy titans and offered an unqualified endorsement to Donald Trump; he promoted efforts to forge floating societies in international waters; he’s even advocated space colonization.

But one of the entrepreneur’s boldest heresies came earlier this year, when he launched a broadside at Silicon Valley itself. In February, Thiel announced that he would uproot his technology ventures from their Silicon Valley haunts for Los Angeles, arguing that the birthplace of the software industry had become too insular. …

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