Photos: Ten best cities to start a business -- and where Denver ranks

Categories: Business, Lists

Big photos below. recently listed Denver among the ten best cities for female entrepreneurs -- and the city manages another top ten finish when it comes to the site's picks for the best cities to start a business.

Continue to count down the photo-illustrated top ten, supplemented with NerdWallet text and a graphic breaking down the stats, and click here to check out the original post.

Note: The criteria for the rankings is based on the following:

1. Access to funding: we calculated what we defined as small business loans--the dollar value of commercial and industrial (C&I) loans under $250,000 lent per capita in 2013 by banks with under $10 billion in total assets in each city.

2. Human capital: access to quality human capital and ease of hiring are important factors for businesses, so we measured recent population growth and the percentage of residents in each city with a Bachelor's degree or higher.

3. Local economy: we evaluated the strength of the local economy through per capita income and unemployment rate.

4. Business-friendliness: we measured the number of businesses per 100 residents and included the small business friendliness rating from Thumbtack's 2013 Survey of Small Business Owners by assigning numerical values to letter grades (an "A+" is equivalent to a score of 12, "A" is 11..."F" is 0).

5. Affordability: since affordability is vital for startup businesses, we included the 2013 cost of living index in our analysis.

Number 10: Memphis, Tennessee
Memphis has one of the highest amounts of C&I loans lent per capita as well as the lowest cost of living index of the 50 largest cities. Institutional resources include Emerge Memphis, an organization that provides strategic support to startups and entrepreneurs in the Mid-South....
Number 9: Denver, Colorado
Denver's top industries are aerospace and aviation, broadcasting and telecommunications, energy and healthcare. Some of the business-friendly characteristics of the city include a high proportion of well-educated people and a moderate cost of living. People hoping to start a business here can find resources at the Denver Metro Small Business Development Center....
Continue to keep counting down's list of the ten best cities to start a business.

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Kathryn Ballard Shut
Kathryn Ballard Shut

We incorporated TIMKAT Entertainment LLC (world-class jazz & soul music label/agency) in 2007 right here in Colorado. We are based in Westminster and are dedicated to supporting the economy of the state in which we live and work. The musical talent in Colorado is also second-to-none.

Jam Es
Jam Es

I've been here 3.5 years, started 2. Anything housing industry is gold. Denver is also about to pass a law allowing gardeners to sell their produce and baked goods from their front yard, with very little red tape (or seemingly so). I grow rare foods, why not... Excellent place to start a business, and getting better.

Benjamin Goewey
Benjamin Goewey

NYS is so married in ridiculous bureaucracy. If you make a mistake or even if you don't tax-wise, NYS will make you pay no matter what. They don't care about small business. The IRS is more forgiving. NC is WAYYYY more business friendly. We've had far fewer issues whether it was our fault or theirs.

Vito Biondo
Vito Biondo

Charlotte shows up on occasion. Whatever you do, don't believe what the Governor of NY says in his "Upstart" commercials.

Benjamin Goewey
Benjamin Goewey

Interesting. I have often seen Denver, Austin, and Raleigh on the top 10 of other lists for starting a business. I've never seem Miami. In fact, I've seen it on the worse place to start a business due to expenses, skilled workforce, and crime.


the last place you want to start a business is miami, unless it's a bar or a strip club. mostly everything else fails. 

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