Silicon Valley – a region in San Francisco, CA which is home to many of the world's largest technology corporations as well as thousands of small startups. But why travel that far when we have our own technology lane here in Estonia. Silicon Alley which is in the heart of Tartu has become the new hotspot for innovative technology companies.

‘’Estonia’s coolest and most important future companies have all gathered here. Obviously we can’t seriously compare it to the real Silicon Valley, but it still the most technology startup orientated street in Estonia and it is located in Tartu’’ said technology entrepreneur Tõnu Runnel.

There are dozens of technology companies on Ülikooli Street, most of them still being classified as startups – fast growing and innovative small companies which have the ambition to take over the world. Their business ideas and technology is often so new that most people will not even understand what it is that the company exactly does. The businesses mostly sell their service abroad and it is common for them to highly increase their profit and number of employees in just a few months. Skype, which is the most successful Estonian startup company so far, started in the same way.

This kind of converging will only be of use to the businesses. It is a good opportunity for the employees to easily go out for lunch together and they also have the University of Tartu’s computer faculty close by, which is good for the numerous employees who are still in education. Even though the companies all have good relationships and they help each other out by sharing knowledge and experience, there is still some competition in the air for the employees.

''All in all it is a good thing for everyone that there so many technology companies have gathered here and that the number continuously keeps growing,'' says Runnel, ''This means that the IT talents have no reasons to leave Tartu because they have the opportunity to have an exciting job with a very high salary right here.''

Some examples of the companies that are located in Silicon Alley:

(Click on the picture to go to their website)

Edicy is a company that offers the easiest way possible for corporations to build and administer their websites. 

Fraktal is a design and software studio, which crafts websites, designs identities and creates user interfaces for web and mobile applications. 

Defolio is a company which helps designers out by storing their designs in the cloud, sorts them as web galleries and accompanies them with feedback and people involved. 

Playtech can be positively considered as one of the pioneers of the worldwide online gaming industry. 

Cybernetica is a developer and manufacturer of original hardware and software systems, a system integrator, an auditor of information systems, and an information security center of excellence. 

Utopic the webpage will give a personalised overview of the hottest news and topics discussed by people that matter to you the most. 

Quretec builds software for collection, management, and analysis of complex data, most typical in biomedical domain. 

Fortumo is the most developer-friendly mobile payments provider around. 

ZeroTurnaround products help Java teams improve productivity & efficiency – resulting in better code and more reliable releases. 

Cover picture:
All the logos are taken directly from the companies' websites