Thursday, December 16, 2010

Mohamad Ali Named Chairman of MassTLC -- Shares Vision for the Future

I'm writing to share with you my vision for MassTLC, a vision built on the excellent work of Tom Hopcroft, Steve O'Leary, Steve Krom, and the Board of Trustees over the years.

As you know, MassTLC is by far the most significant member forum in Massachusetts' technology business community. We have an unmatched set of programs in our clusters, unconference, and other events, delivering significant value to over 400 member companies in terms of connections, dialogue, education, professional development, and mentoring -- elements key to sparking innovation and growth in our community.

Programs are one of three points on the triangle of services we provide to our members. The others are research and policy. Our 400 member companies have real business needs that we must better understand through research beyond what we do today. With a deeper analytical view of our members' business needs, we can craft policy initiatives and adapt programs to better serve our members.

I see a MassTLC with members at its center, a triangle of services around this center -- programs, policy and research -- a strong, multi-channel communications capability, all powered by what we do best here in Massachusetts: innovation.

I'd like to share an example of MassTLC at work. Earlier this year, our previous chairman Steve O'Leary announced the "MassTLC 2020 Challenge" to create 100,000 jobs in ten years. It's not an unreasonable goal. From a base of 168,000 IT jobs today, a 5% compounded annual growth gets us an additional 100,000 jobs in ten years. Yet Rich Miner of Google Android could tell you that mobile apps is growing at 38%, Alistair Rennie of IBM could tell you cloud based business analytics is growing at 22% and Carl Stjernfeldt (investor in VGo) could tell you video is growing at 17%. We can not only meet but exceed this job creation goal.

So, what should we do as the largest member forum in Massachusetts' technology business community to catalyze this growth? The MassTLC Policy Committee has been wrestling with this question for the last six months. It has developed a Framework of Action for the MassTLC 2020 Challenge. This framework has three key components -- people, capital and infrastructure -- which collectively contain eleven key elements. One such element is access to capital for early-stage companies. We have at least two trustees who are developing radically innovative approaches in this field. Other elements such as regulatory infrastructure affect all of our members. This Framework of Action will be formally launched at MassTLC's annual meeting in March, 2011.

At the end of the day, the incremental 100,000 jobs envisioned by the MassTLC 2020 Challenge will be driven by many of our member companies -- current and future members. Research, policy, and programs, powered by innovation, will get us there. I'm excited to be part of this amazing team that has fostered, and will continue to foster, innovation and growth here is Massachusetts.

Regards,
Mohamad Ali
Chairman, MassTLC

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