Everyone knows that Silicon Valley is the best place to launch a startup. But what if you have a brilliant idea and want to move to the area to network with all those brilliant people, but you are held back by two things?
1. You aren’t an American citizen (or non-citizen who managed to snag Permanent Residency), and
2. You don’t have enough cash that Immigration would wave you through the line
Take a Good Look at Me, I’m on a Futhermucking Boat!
Blueseed claims to have solved this problem. All you need is a short-term visa, because you’re not staying in the United States. Instead, you’re staying on a futhermucking boat outside the 12 nautical mile limit of the U.S. (The 12–24 mile zone is also known as the contiguous zone.) Blueseed plans to build some kind of floating city 12 nautical miles beyond Half Moon Bay and run twice daily ferries to the mainland. And by “floating city,” they mean raft-up.
Your job, dear Burbed readers, is to figure out if this is a project by The Onion or whether these people are actually serious. But get this. They’re charging “a combination of rent and equity.” Does this mean you would not be a rentard aboard?
Top 10 Facts about Blueseed
1 Who is this for? – The world’s best entrepreneurs and visionaries
The boldest, brightest, and most talented tech entrepreneurs from around the world. Plus the individuals and organizations that support and invest in them. 1100+ have already expressed interest.
Yes, you’re about to be priced out forever. Again!
2 Where will it be? – Right near Silicon Valley
On a ship anchored half an hour (12 miles) from Silicon Valley, in international waters outside the jurisdiction of the United States.
But well within drone strike range. So don’t get cute with the industrial espionage.
3 What does it cost? – Around $1,600 USD/person/month
We’ll charge a combination of rent and equity to accommodate the stage of your startup. The price per person will include living and office space, and will range from $1200 for a shared cabin to $3000 for a top-tier single accommodation cabin.
And you better spring for that top-tier single, or it won’t be Special. Come on, you want to live in the Real Boat Area, don’t you? Avoid the cabins on busy hallways, or next to the helipad.
4 Why should it be done? – Because innovation is awesome
The world’s best entrepreneurs should be able to gather and collaborate in one place, and not be limited by antiquated work visa restrictions.
And if those antiquated work restrictions force you to move onto a cast-off cruise ship, then you can make lemonade out of lemons, provided you’re willing to call lemon juice lemonade.
5 How can I get aboard? – Do something that matters, and be awesome
Get referred to us through a reputable angel, venture capital firm, entrepreneurs network, or trusted contact. Or surprise us.
Throw yer grapple and haul yerself aboard, matey! Why not commit a little actual piracy so you can convince us you want to work on the digital variety?
6 Can I legally work? – On Blueseed, yes.
You can legally earn an income working on your startup while on the Blueseed vessel regardless of your nationality, but you can’t legally earn a paycheck while visiting the mainland, unless you have a US work visa or are a US permanent resident.
So please don’t do anything more useful than winning a round of Angry Birds when leaving the boat.
7 Can I travel to the mainland? – Yes
You can travel to the mainland using business/tourist visas (B1/B2), for up to 180 days/year (these are significantly easier to obtain than work-visas). US residents can travel to Blueseed at any time.
Unless they’ve already been vaporized by a drone strike. Sorry!
8 What happens when I succeed and outgrow Blueseed? – We help you move to the mainland.
Silicon Valley is the best place in the world to scale a company, and once you’re large enough there are legal channels available to move into Silicon Valley proper. We will provide you with the resources and contacts you need to make the transition.
That means we’ll give you a link to Craigslist.
9 When are you launching? – End of 2013
We plan to launch between Q4 2013 and Q1 2014.
You know how those house construction projects always run late? What do you think would happen if you tried building all this in the Pacific Ocean? That’s why we said we plan to launch then, not that we would.
10 My organization supports startups, how do I join the project? – Partner up or Contact us
We’re primarily looking for incubators, support networks, and individuals or organizations that make our environment more awesome while solving a startup’s problems.
But we’ll take anyone’s money as long as you don’t ask to live here.
And the above isn’t even the FAQ!
Blueseed is already pitching themselves as a relative bargain compared to actually living in Silicon Valley. The rent (starting at $1200 a month for shared living space, mind you) also includes collaborative office space, more conventionally known as “good luck finding a seat somewhere in here.”
And while you won’t need a suitcase full of cash (as you would for an EB-5 investor visa), you would need to deposit enough money to pay for your ticket home.
Maybe the folks running Blueseed could invest your ticket deposits by buying a place near Google. Now that’s some equity.