Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Understanding Minneapolis’ business ecosystem

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For people with entrepreneurial dreams, the city of Minneapolis may just be one of the best places to start a business.

Minneapolis is known for its world-class urban assets. Its economic base is peppered with both big and small companies, and not to mention, a healthy workforce that can help startups achieve long-term growth in the industry.

However, despite foreseen advantages, the “Mill City” has some unique qualities that may affect the operation of a business. As a guide, below are some relevant facts to understand the city’s business climate better:

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Small businesses thrive in the city. According to Minneapolis’ Department of Community Planning and Economic Development (CPED), 19 Fortune 500 companies and several startups in the Russell 2000 Index are located in the lake city. The city, which is hailed as the new capital of the North, sees more than 70 companies launched every week.

High taxes are critical drivers in the city and the state’s current economic progress. Minnesota’s high government spending and high taxes are geared toward the diversification of the local economy. In effect, Minnesota has become the fifth fastest growing state economy and the 9th best state for business, according to Forbes.

Reliable workforce. Among the largest metros in the U.S., Minneapolis ranks as the fourth best city in the country with the most educated and experienced workers. In addition, the metro tops the lists of the “smartest people” (Travel + Leisure Magazine 2009 survey) and “America’s most literate cities (Central Connecticut State University 2013 study).

Boasting a healthy economy for various industries, Minneapolis is one of the best places for entrepreneurship. With proper guidance and strategy, it technically is an excellent ground for business opportunities.

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Steve Liefschultz, Equity Bank chairman and CEO, is a Minnesota-based banker and real estate expert. Like this Facebbok page for more business insights in the city of Minneapolis.