For Immediate Release - February 06, 2008

Patrick Administration Shines Month-Long Spotlight On State's Information Technology/Communications Industry

Month Long Focus on State's $26 Billion Dollar Industry Designed to Maximize Collaboration and Future Growth Potential

BOSTON - Wednesday, February 6, 2008 - The Patrick Administration through its Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Daniel O'Connell today announced a month-long focus on the Commonwealth's information technology/communications industry.

"The IT/Communications industry is a critical component to the economic vitality of the Commonwealth due to its significant workforce size and revenue contributions," said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Daniel O'Connell. "We want to both celebrate the industry's achievements and maximize collaboration to insure sustained growth in this key sector as we recognize its activities are embedded as a core component to all business activities in the Commonwealth."

The IT/Communications industry has a proud history in the Massachusetts. Its excellence is propelled by a powerful combination of world renowned research universities, entrepreneurial businesses, and venture capitalists here in the state. A core industry sectors contributing to the Massachusetts economy, IT/communications' current workforce statewide is roughly 174,000 with annual global sales of over $26 billion. The industry attraction to venture funding has made Massachusetts companies the second highest venture backed industry sector in the nation. Massachusetts is proudly regarded as an innovation hub for this industry.

Throughout February Governor Deval Patrick, his chief economic advisors, and industry leaders will highlight the accomplishments of the IT/communications and work towards long term sustainable growth. Regional forums have been planned to engage this industry in conversations about the opportunities and challenges facing the IT/communications industry in Massachusetts.

Activities including roundtable discussions are being planned to convene industry leaders and Patrick administration officials in face-to-face discussions leading to identifying strategies to increase collaboration between government, industry leaders and academia. These forums and other activities are designed to showcase the prevalence of this key sector while simultaneously exploring ways to increase Massachusetts' competitive edge for IT/Communications innovation.

Leaders like Joyce Plotkin, President of the Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council, and Mark Horan, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Network Communication Council, and Kiki Mills, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Innovation and Technology Exchange have all expressed strong support for the Patrick administration's focus on the IT/Communications industry.

"We are delighted with the Administration's focus on IT because not only is it an important component of the state's economy, but more importantly it's the enabling technology for many other sectors," said Plotkin. The Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council will host an awards ceremony later in the month at which Governor Patrick will deliver the keynote address.

"As wireless devices, social networking, and video on the Web transform the way the world communicates, Massachusetts must remain at the forefront of the revolution," said Horan. "We appreciate the Patrick Administration's efforts to boost these industries and, in the process, create tens of thousands of new jobs in Massachusetts."

IT/Communications is inextricably linked to the internet industry. "We are seeing vibrant growth in the internet industry - a healthy roster of new start-ups, expanding companies and continued innovations in digital technology, marketing and media," said Mills. "The Administration's focus is important to ensure the trend continues."

The focus on the IT/Communications industry is the first in a series of month-long "Spotlights" on the key industry sectors that drive the Massachusetts economy. In March, the Department of Business Development, in collaboration with the Associated Industries of Massachusetts, will focus on the Commonwealth's constantly evolving manufacturing industry.

Get a list of Information Technology Industry Events for February 2008

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The Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development is one of seven Secretariats that make up the Governors Cabinet. Under the leadership of Secretary Dan O'Connell, the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development oversees the following undersecretariates: Department of Business Development, Housing and Community Development, and Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation.