Sonpreet Bhatia, Puneet Mehta, and Archana Patchirajan are co-founders of MyCityWay, a mobile application provider and developer of NYC Way.
From 1995 to 2005, immigrants founded 44 percent of New York City’s startups, according to a four-part research study led by Duke University’s Vivek Wadhwa. Such companies created hundreds of thousands of jobs and are helping the City and our country stay competitive in the cutthroat global technology industry.
We’re perfect examples of what those immigrant entrepreneurs look like today. Our journey began in India, but we came to New York after the dot-com bust to attend graduate school and find better opportunities. Though San Francisco’s Silicon Valley is often considered the heart of tech innovation, New York was the obvious choice to us. Last year, we spent 40 frenetic days creating from scratch, NYC Way, our winning mobile application in the City’s inaugural BigApps competition that let software developers like us figure out the best ways to make local government data more accessible to the City’s residents and tourists. Our lives haven’t been the same since.
NYCEDC President Seth W. Pinsky, Bhatia, Patchirajan, Mehta, and CEO and Managing Director of FirstMark Capital Lawrence Lenihan.
Building on our wins for Investor’s Choice, Popular Choice, and Honorable Mention for Best Overall App in the competition, our company, MyCityWay has created apps for other cities, including Chicago, Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles. We also became the first company seeded by the NYC Entrepreneurial Fund, a $22 million fund managed by the City’s Economic Development Corporation and FirstMark Capital that provides technology startups with early-stage capital. With the $300,000 investment, we were able to move our offices from Jersey City to new space in Manhattan, and we’ve added two additional employees.