Welcome to South San Francisco
South San Francisco is known as the birthplace of biotechnology since 1976 when Genentech opened its door. With over 200 biotech companies (Amgen, Stemcentrx, 23, and me) and 11.5 million square feet of space, South San Francisco is the world’s leading research and development (R&D) (e.g. vaccines, gene therapies, etc) hub for applications for drugs and therapies, as well as the manufacturing of medical devices.
In recent years, it has become the local hub for other tech leaders such as SAP(Successfactors) as well as the Headquarters for See’s Candies and Sanrio(parent of Hello Kitty. Just a short distance from San Francisco and the Peninsula, South San Francisco is expanding rapidly, as can be seen by the large numbers of cranes and construction sites. New offices and residential buildings are popping up rapidly.
This growth in the business sector is leading to a large demand for services to support the business infrastructure. A trip through downtown Grand Avenue reveals that the city’s decades-old family-owned businesses are now sharing space with increasingly stylish restaurants, a downstairs brewery and taproom, hip and trendy restaurants/bowling alleys/ basketball courts/meeting locations such as Foundry & Lux, and a growing number of cafe’s. Pedestrian street life is vibrant, encouraged by the city government’s partnerships with urban bicycle and carpooling apps spin.com and Scoop.com. A new Business Costco also opened last fall in South San Francisco to support and supply all these small businesses.