At a private dinner Wednesday at New York’s luxury Le Pavillon Hotel, New York City Mayor Eric Adams called on tech executives to keep their companies in the city, even as industry leaders raised concerns of city officials about rising rents and an increase in violent crime.
One attendee said that while feasting on steak, halibut or pasta and copious amounts of wine, Adams made “an impassioned plea for tech executives to stay and invest in New York.” “New York City needs and wants tech companies,” an attendee said to more than two dozen tech leaders.And the He added that city officials wanted tech companies to “help grow this city’s economy.”
Adams’ spokesman, Fabian Levy, confirmed that the mayor had spoken to tech executives, but said, “Mayor Adams wasn’t around for dinner.”
“While we don’t discuss private conversations, Mayor Adams always welcomes and encourages businesses to come to New York City,” Levy said in an email. “During his remarks, he spoke about the importance of technology to New York City and government innovation.”
One attendee said the select group of diners were “incredibly impressed with his access and understanding of their fields”. The people who described the dinner refused to give their names in order to talk about a private event.
Adams’ attempt to encourage tech leaders and businesses to stay in New York comes as city council officials have sent private complaints from tech leaders about skyrocketing rents and soaring crime rates.
Average rental demand on active listings in much of Manhattan and Brooklyn jumped 40% or more in the second quarter compared to the same period last year, according to Bloomberg. The New York City Rental Guidance Board recently voted to increase rent for those living in a rent-stable apartment, NBC New York reported.
And the city said last month that crime statistics in New York City have been in flux since the beginning of July, when shootings across the city rose from the previous year.
However, shootings in August were down about 30% compared to the same month last year, according to the city’s crime statistics. But there was an annual jump in other crimes during the same period, including burglaries, theft and grand theft.
Longtime angel investor Ron Conway co-hosted the event with Josh Mendelson, managing partner of tech-focused investment firm Hangar, Mike Ference, associate partner at Hangar, and Julie Samuels, founder of Tech:NYC advocacy group Tech:NYC, according to List Hosts and attendees provided to CNBC.
Celebrity chef Daniel Boulud, who runs the company that owns Le Pavillon, stopped by to chat, according to attendees.
“It was a nice way to [Adams] To meet technology CEOs.” Conway said in an interviewAnd the Noting that it is important for technology leaders and companies to participate at the civic level. Mendelsohn, France and Samuels did not respond to requests for comment. Representatives of all other people listed as attending the dinner either declined to comment or did not respond to a request for comment.
Those who attended the dinner can also help Adams as he prepares for re-election in 2025. City campaign finance records show that Adams raised just over $850,000 to campaign for re-election in 2025.
Alan Patrikov, co-founder of venture capital firm Greycroft, and Conway were among those in attendance at the dinner that was collecting prolific political donations. Both helped raise at least $100,000 for President Joe Biden’s 2020 White House campaign, according to the nonpartisan organization OpenSecrets.
Partial dinner menu:
Alan Patrikov, co-founder of Greycroft
Ron Conway, founder of SV Angel
Julie Samuels, Founder of Tech: NYC
Josh Mendelsohn, Managing Partner at Hangar
Mike Ference, Partner at Hangar
Josh Vlasto, former chief of staff to former Governor Andrew Cuomo and advisor to Hangar
Dave Gilboa and Neil Blumenthal, Co-CEOs of Warby Parker
Mario Schlosser, co-founder of Oscar Health
Valerie Jarrett, former advisor to Barack Obama and Lyft board member
Steve McDermid, managing director of Emerson Collective
Michael Zuckert, general counsel at Silicon Valley Bank Financial Group