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Chicago is a top 25 city for startups. Here’s why

by James F. McClister

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Chicago is one of the best cities in the country for startup companies, according to a joint analysis from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, 1776 and Free Enterprise. And it has room to improve further.

“We are at the dawn of an extraordinary technological revolution, and it is transforming every part of the U.S. economy,” the report read. “In major commerce centers, yesterday’s expertise will not guarantee tomorrow’s economic wins.”

Ranked No. 12 nationwide, Chicago’s makeup proved ideal for startups, offering a population of well-educated entrepreneurs and investors willing to put money into new projects.

The setup bodes well for real estate agents hoping to make the eventual jump from contract employee to brokerage owner.

Check out the table below to see how our city compares:

City Overall Rank Talent Density Culture
Boston 1 8 1 4
Bay Area 2 1 2 9
Denver 3 2 9 3
Raleigh-Durham 4 5 7 1
San Diego 5 2 3 9
Austin 6 5 9 5
Los Angeles 7 20 5 16
Philadelphia 8 18 4 15
Washington, D.C. 9 7 7 18
New York City 10 11 11 20
Seattle 11 4 14 22
Chicago 12 22 6 22
Portland 13 10 14 5
Pittsburgh 14 13 19 12
Nashville 15 14 12 7
Minneapolis 16 14 12 24
Salt Lake City 17 12 17 14
Baltimore 18 9 19 21
Dallas 19 16 18 2
Houston 20 16 24 13
Atlanta 21 21 21 7
Miami 22 23 14 8
Phoenix 23 24 25 9
Kansas City 24 25 23 19
New Orleans 25 19 22 N/A

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